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Messages - Don Haines

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31
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 17, 2014, 12:00:04 AM »
User interface design staff and sensor design staff are two very different groups with very different skills. One group is not going to be taking resources from the other.

At this point in time, it is a fairly trivial task to add a touchscreen to a camera. The hardware has already been designed and is in production. All the drivers have been designed and are in production.  The user interface is 99 percent designed and is in production. All that remains is to play with some text and a couple fields.... It may actually be LESS work to put a touchscreen into the camera than to update an old design.....

32
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 10:02:05 PM »
Would a touch screen still work flawlessly on a cold winter day when it's snowing and the gloves are on?
Around here it very rarely snows on a cold winter day... it usually has to warm up to -20C or higher before it snows. :)

Seriously though, very few cameras are rated for use below freezing. The Olympus Tough series of p/s cameras are one of the few exceptions and it is only good down to -10C. Once most DSLRs get cold the displays stop working.... the LCD shoulder displays are usually the first to go.... touchscreens and the rear displays seem to keep on going longer....

From using the camera hooked up to a telescope in the winter, I would be more than happy to have WiFi to a phone so I could remote control the camera once the camera displays stop working....

33
Animal Kingdom / Re: Grizzly bear with her cubs
« on: August 16, 2014, 06:46:35 PM »
Along the Alaska Highway, near the B.C. & Yukon border

This cub was very blonde and stayed close to mom

This cub not as blonde and very much a rascal as it kept running far from mom

Very nice. What were you shooting with?

34
Technical Support / Re: 5D mk2 wont turn on and off
« on: August 16, 2014, 06:22:03 PM »
Sometimes a defective battery can do weird things.... if the current or voltage is insufficient you can have some stuff that works and other stuff that does not.

I would say make one last ditch attempt....

remove both batteries for a day.
make sure your battery is fully charged, or better yet, borrow a known good battery.
make sure your cmos battery has decent voltage.

Then put everything in and try again... and if it fails, call Canon.

35
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 06:15:15 PM »
I concur.  The potential absence of a touch screen surprised me, rather than upset me.  But for me a killer AF with amazing speed and accuracy, combined with a high burst rate (and deep buffer to use it), are the two main "must have" items for this camera.  An improved sensor is also very desirable and I think that may be the biggest challenge for them to achieve. 

Like you, I also want them to succeed and succeed well.  Not just because I have a lot invested in their equipment, but because I want to see them retain their own sensor designing team.  The best way to make sure both Sony and Canon sensors continue to improve is a healthy competition and spirit of innovation for both sensor design teams. (Oh yes, and Fuji too!).

I totally agree. We really need competition in the marketplace. Aptina and some of the other sensor manufacturers don't really compete in the larger form factor  camera market (DSLRs and larger-sensor mirrorless). Since Nikon has effectively bowed out...it's mainly Sony and Canon, with a little bit of competition from Panasonic and maybe one or two other small players. So I agree, it's critical that Canon succeed here, so they don't hand Sony a default monopoly on a platter.

Jon, am I detecting a note of pessimism when it comes to the sensor tech, or do you think they'll pull it out of the hat?

I dunno. I've watched Canon for years now. I had high hopes, based on the patents I've read about. But when you dig into the history of those patents, many of them were initially filed before the 7D came out, or shortly after the 7D. Some were filed around the time the 1D IV came out. Filed, then granted usually around 18 months later. That means Canon had the technology long before that. Some of the patents indicate initial research in 2004, 2005, 2006.

A lot of Canon's patents sound very similar to the technology Sony has in the Exmor. I know Canon has a CP-ADC patent. They also have some very interesting patents that involve reducing dark current noise (something else Sony is very good at...Sony has some of the lowest dark current noise CCD sensors on the market that kick the crap out of the long-standing Kodak sensors. A Kodak KAF-8300, for example, has 0.02e-/s/px dark current noise accumulation, where as the new Sony ICX 674 and 694 sensors have an incredible 0.003e-/s/px...which is so low that no one who uses an astrocam with a Sony CCD even bothers with dark frames anymore...they simply aren't necessary anymore.) Canon has a patent that uses some kind of dynamic power disconnection to prevent dark current accumulation...I suspect it could reduce dark current levels below even Sony's CCD sensor levels. Canon also has a dual scale ADC readout system, which would allow them to switch to a slower readout speed when possible, which would also reduce read noise (a lot of read noise comes from high frequency components...reduce the frequency, reduce the noise.)

Canon has all this technology, and yet...where is it? Some if it is a decade old!! Where is it?

Yeah, I'm pretty pessimistic now when it comes to Canon's ability to actually EMPLOY their patents in actual products. There is another company that was like that. They were one of the most innovative companies in the cellphone industry. They have a patent library that is MASSIVE, and has some of the most incredible technology in the cell phone, smartphone, and tablet industry. They had technology patented long before Apple started making things like the iPhone and iPad that could have crushed Apple before they even got started. But they never used the technology. They invented it all...and just sat on it.

That company was Nokia. They used to be at the top of the cellphone world. They were the biggest manufacturer, raking in more money than all the rest combined. Look where they are now. They are a shadow of their former shadow, and Nokia itself no longer even owns a lot of those patents as they've sold them to Microsoft. Microsoft themselves is another company that rested on their laurels, and lost the race. They are still a force in the tech industry, but they have a major perceptual problem...they are often perceived as irrelevant now.

When I look at Canon...I see some kind of blend between Microsoft and Nokia being their future. Canon has a LOT of amazing technology. They've prototyped ultra high resolution sensors with very high frame rates. They file more patents every year than nearly all other companies. And yet...where are the products that use that technology? Canon is quickly racing towards a future where they could potentially be perceived as irrelevant by the consumers that currently pay Canon's bills, fund their innovation. Canon is quickly racing towards a future where they have a ton of technology that they are just sitting on, just like Nokia, just like Kodak, instead of putting it to work making competitive products that give their competitors a run for their money.

So yeah. I'm pretty pessimistic about Canon's ability to bring technology to bear in their products. The 7D II should have been in the works a long time ago. Canon should have been making it a competitive product long before the 5D III was released. Canon should have known where their competitors were going, so they wouldn't have been caught so massively off guard (as it seems clear now that they were...otherwise they wouldn't have had to delay the 7D II release so much...it's now two years overdue, that's a really long time.)

I am hoping the 7D II gets a major boost to still photography IQ, but it's a pessimistic hope.  :-\
Agreed! They have done great things in the lab, but I think any advancements at the consumer level are not going to happen until they finally switch to finer lithography for their production work. They have this capability for the p/s models, but the DSLR sensors are still on old tech fabrication lines.

What I hope has been happening is that Canon had accurately foreseen the shrinkage of the P/S market and made the decision not to spend the immense amount of dollars to create a new fabrication line because they knew that space would be available in the future on the existing P/S line.... and I hope that the 7D2 will be the first DSLR sensor to come from this new line, with all the improvements they have been working on for the last 10 or so years.

36
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:51:12 PM »
@ jrista – you seem to be taking the line of thought that including a touchscreen would come at the price of removing dials/buttons, but there no reason to think that would be the case on a higher end dSLR.  Rather, a touchscreen would add functionality.  If the 7DII has improved DPAF, would you really want to drive the AF point around the frame with a joystick? 

As others have stated, touch screens are becoming the norm - on phones, on remote controls, even on microwave ovens.  Your average teenager or twenty-something can type two-thumbed on an iPhone at wpm rates faster than most people can achieve on a regular keyboard.  Those are the people becoming professional photographers today.

That's not my line of thought. My line of thought is, adding a touch screen and all the firmware requires resources at Canon to perform. They have to implement it, test it, work the bugs out of it, etc. All that...when there are other things Canon could be investing those resources into. My line of thought is, for everyone who puts lack of a Touch UI at the top of their list of deal breakers or the thing that makes them must frustrated about the 7D II...they are very short sighted. My line of thought is, while I fully agree a Touch UI is nice (I've used the EOS-M's touch UI...its nice), it is the farthest thing from the most "essential" feature that the 7D II could possibly get.

That's my line of thought.

Ok, by that line of thought Canon should not include AFMA in the 7DII, either.  After all...They have to implement it, test it, work the bugs out of it, etc. 

Canon uses touchscreens in multiple products, including several dSLRs.  The hardware is 'off the shelf' and the firmware for the UI is already written, and would need only tweaks and testing (just as AFMA would, although they blew the testing with the 1D X which had an AMFA bug at launch).  So...the development resources needed would be minimal.  But, Canon doesn't want to release a 'perfect' APS-C camera, so if there's no touchscreen in the 7DII (a big IF, at this point), no doubt it'll show up in the 7DIII.
My thinking is that it is probably cheaper to just make one display and to use it on everything... only one part to stock... only one set of drivers to write..... This is why I would be surprised if it is omitted.

37
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 1200mm f/5.6L For Sale
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:41:12 PM »
if you really want to go crazy, the Hubble telescope is 57,000mm.....

and there is one in the Canary Islands... 16,500mm at F1.6... Who says you can't get a lens that is both fast and long.....

38
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:20:23 PM »
100-400 II is also on my RADAR--but I cannot afford both and I am reasonably happy with my current 100-400.  Still, I'd like to see them released together--then I could start saving for the lens after I buy the damn camera! LOL
I started saving for the 100-400II when the first rumours of it came out. I can now afford a 1DX and 800F5.6 :)
400mm f2.8 is ii + 2x tc iii is better than 800mm f5.6.  :P
yeah, but now I'm waiting for the  1DX2 and 800F5.6II :)

39
Animal Kingdom / Re: Your best animal shots!
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:17:52 PM »
Grizzly in Yukon - June 2014

Lovely!

40
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:03:35 PM »
100-400 II is also on my RADAR--but I cannot afford both and I am reasonably happy with my current 100-400.  Still, I'd like to see them released together--then I could start saving for the lens after I buy the damn camera! LOL
I started saving for the 100-400II when the first rumours of it came out. I can now afford a 1DX and 800F5.6 :)

41
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 1200mm f/5.6L For Sale
« on: August 16, 2014, 01:26:29 PM »
I wonder if they will "trade even" for my SX-50?

42
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 01:17:31 PM »

The thing is, I haven't seen a single CanonRumors post on the 7DII that is anything but speculation/wishlist.

Overall, I think that there is no real info about the 7DII on this site ... less than a month before announcement.
+1

Remember the 70D? The most important thing about it was DPAF. Remember how many rumours about DPAF on the 70D? Zero!

Remember all the rumours about the new 100-400? All these rumours over the last 4 years about how it's release was imminent? If the rumours were true it should have been released a dozen times already....

The only thing that we can say with any degree of certainty is that Canon does a very good job of keeping it's releases secret until they are officially announced. A rumour is just a rumour. It means nothing! They are just speculation on what may come.

43
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 12:14:32 PM »
No wifi or touch screen? Bummer. All future canon prosumer cameras should have BOTH wifi and touch screens IMHO.

I never liked Canon's wifi implementation.  I have had great success using an Eye-Fi card when I need that capability.  I dont think that built in wifi would be a deal breaker since it can be added later.

Can you control the camera and use live view over an eyefi card?  I have no interest whatsoever in downloading pictures over WiFi.
I have a couple of cameras with WiFi. I have yet to use either of them to download photos, but have used WiFi for taking pictures remotely.

And for those of you who say that you can't have WiFi on a metal shell camera, please explain to me why it works so well on the Olympus TG-3...

44
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 16, 2014, 05:07:06 AM »
Who in the world, ESPECIALLY pros, want to pull the camera away from their face so they can fiddle with a clunky touch screen?

Well, how about pros (or amateurs) who shoot with the 600 EX RT? Or Pros or amateurs who want to change tracking sensitivity or accelerate/decelerate tracking? There are dozens of functions that cannot be adjusted with a camera glued to your face that would be much easier and quicker to accomplish with the swipe of a finger rather than having to work through buttons and joysticks.

People need to open their minds a bit and quit being such Luddites about technology (especially ironic on a forum filled with gearheads). No one has ever suggested that a touch screen would replace the buttons and joysticks, but it is proven technology that would add significant functionality and convenience to enthusiast and pro-level cameras.
+1

45
Canon General / Re: A Rundown of EOS 7D Mark II Information
« on: August 15, 2014, 07:29:04 PM »
This is probably the truest statement anyone has made about the 7D II so far. ;) I've tried and tried to demonstrate to everyone, through theory, math, and even some visual examples (of which I clearly need to do more) that an APS-C sized sensor will NEVER perform as well as a FF sensor (all else being equal). The 7D II may close the gap, temporarily, between the 7D line and the 5D line, but it won't overtake the FF in terms of IQ.
and even if there was some new magic technology that allowed the 7D2 to outperform the 5D3, you can bet that the same magic technology would be rushed through development and we would see a 5D4 that restored the FF advantage....

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