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Topics - Mt Spokane Photography

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Pricewatch Deals / Refurb 1D X in stock for $5439.20
« on: May 29, 2013, 06:21:43 PM »
Now that the refurb sale is over, Canon has restocked their refurb store.
Save $$$$ while they last.

There is a comparison of the two cameras,
[Japan: EOS Kiss X7i, Americas: EOS Rebel T5i, Europe/Asia/Oceania: EOS 700D]
                    [Japan: EOS Kiss X7, Americas: EOS Rebel SL1, Europe/Asia/Oceania: EOS 100D]

Animal Kingdom / Hawk
« on: May 21, 2013, 02:36:06 PM »
Young Hawk. 
5D MK III + 70-200mm f/2.8L MK II @ 200mm ISO 5000 f/3.2 (cropped)
Here is a cropped close up.


Reviews / The Digital Picture Reviews the Tamron 24-70
« on: May 13, 2013, 05:19:43 PM »
After difficulty in getting a lens that did not have problems, they finally got one from Tamron (Not Retail) that was good.
This is worrisome, if the only way they could get one that met specs was to get it from Tamron.  My dealer told me to avoid it, apparently his customers had similar issues.
At any rate, here is the review.  http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Tamron-24-70mm-f-2.8-Di-VC-USD-Lens-Review.aspx

Apparently Canon has decided to make the complete Software disk 28.1A  containing DPP, EOS Utility, and Picture Style Editor is available for download.  The rest of the Canon software will have to be downloaded individually..
A Serial number is required, my 5D MK III serial number worked fine.
Great news for those with lost disks or installation issues.  Many laptops do not have CD Rom drives, so this is a solution.
I wonder why it took them so long to realize this?  At least, they finally did.

Animal Kingdom / Honey Bees
« on: May 06, 2013, 02:51:22 PM »
Saturday evening we became the guest of 32 hives of Honey Bees.  They are out behind our house, (we have a lot of space behind us) and the air is thick with them.  They quickly found our flowers and Crab Apple tree.  They are peaceful, and just work like ... Bees ;)
I used my 5D MK III and 70-200 f/2.8L to capture a image.  Its at f/6.3 and 1/500 sec to try and stop the action a little.  We will get a small amount of the honey for the use of our land, and we will get everything well pollinated.

Software & Accessories / Free Glass LCD Screen Protector for 6D
« on: May 05, 2013, 12:26:02 PM »
I ordered a Screen Protector for my 5D MK III from Amazon, but the vendor (Not Amazon) had put a screen for a 6D in the package. 
Amazon refunded me, but I now have the screen protector that I can't use.  Its a GCS Glass Protector and looks to be of reasonable quality.  It uses static electricity to cling to your LCD, no adhesives involved.  There are two pieces, one for the rear LCD and one for the top.
I installed it because it seemed to be the right size when I held it up to the camera, but it was about 1/32 short of fitting.  I put the protective covers back in place, I'm sure you can use it just fine.
I'll mail it to any USA address, and when you get it, just send me something to cover the postage.  If you are not happy with it, just toss it.
Send a PM.  I'll remove this as soon as someone responds with their name and mailing address.

Software & Accessories / Are there any Redged Monopod RMC-532 Users
« on: April 24, 2013, 12:19:37 AM »
The Reged seems to fit my needs, high capacity, low weight, low cost, and it looks easy to setup.  I've heard that they make good equipment, but insite from actual users is always a plus. I've checked the total length and it seems just right after I put a head, AS clamp, and camera on it. 
Redged RMC 532 Monopod Tutorial
I'd probably put a manfroto 234 head on it secured to one of my Kirk SA compatible clamps. It has adequate capacity since I won't be mounting any big whites, and its 5.5 lb capacity is likely under rated.

Third Party Manufacturers / Nikon D800 Value Dropping?
« on: April 12, 2013, 04:59:20 PM »
There is a almost new D800 on our local craigslist (not a scam) for $2100.  I checked ebay and noted that there were a lot of sales in the $2200 range, some even included a cheap lens.
Why are people dumping them?  I was tempted to get it as a 2nd body to my 5D MK III.  I have several Nikon lenses.  Finally, I decided that I'd pass it up, if others don't want them, I won't be able to resell it a year from now without losing money.
I did buy one new last May for $3K, and later sold it for $3200 when they were hot items.   There are some better lenses now available or on the horizon, so the lens situation is not so bleak as it was.
I think I'll wait for a new backup body and see what the year brings.  I just bought my 6th 40D this week, its great for my product photography, but isn't capable of ISO 6400 or 12800.

We occasionally get posts from new users who see all the wonderful professional images posted on the internet and want to improve their work.
I think it would be useful if we could list some of the issues and the good things that a person switching from a small sensor P&S to a DSLR should expect.
I've bought a number of DSLR's barely used locally by disillusioned photographers who went back to their P&S.  For them it was likely the right decision.  I'm sure we could all expand on this, and perhaps a Admin will make it sticky so new users can take advantage of it, kind of a FAQ for those upgrading from P&S to DSLR or even large sensor P&S like the G1X.
Things that new users find disappointing:
1.  The main complaint I hear is the pictures are blurry, or not in focus.  The fact is, small sensor cameras usuallly are very easy to focus and have a huge depth of field to hide any focus errors.  This is a big factor that buyers did not realize.
2.  The Kit lenses are plenty sharp, but are not suitable for low light photography wothout supplemental light or a steady tripod and long exposure.  New users do not understand the need for external flashes, or wider aperture lenses in low light.
3.  Weight and size.  Lets face it, its a pain to carry a big rig and heavy lens or set of lenses with you, and it might just make you a target for thieves.
Benefits of a DSLR:
1.  Speed:  By that, I mean that you can usually take photos as fast as you can press the shutter.  Many P&S cameras take about 2 seconds between shots.
2.   Shallow depth of field.  This is something that P&S users intrepret as a blurry image, but once you understand it, you can use distance, focal length and aperture to create a 3d look where a subject is in focus and the foreground and background are smoothly blurred.
3.  Low light photography using no supplemental lighting.  Sometimes the use of flash or other supplemental lighting is banned, or would ruin a image.  A DSLR with a much larger sensor has better low light capability by increasing the ISO setting.  Its also possible to gain advantage with wider aperture lenses, but you do have to understand how to use that f/1.4 or f/1.2 lens to get depth of field and sharpness by selecting the right lens for the subject distance.
The Best Lenses Under $500 for Crop Bodies (EF is fine)
18-55mm IS  - Standard zoom, sharp but limited to good light, and inexpensive construction.
55-250mm IS -   Telephoto zoom, sharp but limited to good light, and inexpensive construction A good buy.
50mm f/1.8  Standard Prime lens, wide aperture good sharpness, inexpensive construction and a good buy for the performance.
50mm f/1.4 - Standard Prime lens,wide aperture good sharpness, better construction.  Performance is not a lot better than the f/1.8
85mm f/1.8 - Short Telephoto Prime Lens Wide aperture and very good sharpness.  Excellent performance for the price.
please add more.
The Best Under $1200 for Crop Bodies:
17-55mm f/2.8  High Quality Standard Zoom with excellent sharpness and the widest aperture found in a zoom.  If you can afford it, get it.
lots more to add

Pricewatch Deals / Canon Refurb 400mm f/5.6L $910
« on: April 10, 2013, 03:05:23 PM »
Just added to the refurb site.  I don't recall seeing it here before.

Lenses / How Much do you use your Canon EF 16-35mm L ??
« on: March 23, 2013, 03:52:25 PM »
Last July, I bought a new one for $1350 on a impulse buy from Newegg, but haven't really warmed up to it.  I previously found the same thing with my 17-40mmL.
I use it on my 5D MK III.
I do low light photography, and have analyzed the photos I've taken.  Almost all of them are at f/2.8 and fall in the 24-35mm range of focal lengths.  They also required that I boost my camera ISO to very high levels, often 25600.
I'm thinking of selling it, but I hate to.  It is a very sharp lens, no problem there, I just find that I have little need of super wide angles.
Perhaps a 24mm L to go with my 35mmL, or a 24-70mm f/2.8 to replace it?
Here is a example taken at 35mm, ISO 25600.  It was in blue light, which explains the tint.  There is lots of noise, but it prints well at 8 X 10.
16-35mmL @ 35mm ISO 25600

I think I like the one taken with my 85mm f/1.8 at f/2 and ISO 16000 better.  Maybe a 85mm f/1.2?

Third Party Manufacturers / Nikon finally Admits D600 Dust Problem
« on: February 23, 2013, 09:49:16 AM »
Well, they at least admitted what many owners have known for months, but are still in denial that there is any widespread problem.  Why can't Nikon just be straight forward and admit the issue in a timely manner?  They have been hurt by poor sales and a bad rep over this, when they could have sent out a letter like this long ago.
The answer is likely that users who haven't checked their sensor and do not even know how, will send in their camera for a cleaning.  I hope they have resolved it with newer production units, but nothing is said or admitted there either.

Software & Accessories / New FOCAL (Beta for Pro Users)
« on: February 18, 2013, 10:19:29 PM »
The upcoming 1.8 version sounds like a big step forward.
http://www.reikan.co.uk/focalweb/index.php/2013/02/focal-1-8-release-candidate-available-for-focal-pro-users/Updates and FixesWith the last major issues with the Mac version of FoCal ironed out, we’ve been steaming ahead working on fixed for various bugs and improving the features of FoCal.  This new version brings the following updates:
  • RAW analysis – RAW sensor data is now analysed by default for more accurate and repeatable results
  • A new TurboCal tool for Canon cameras which performs a shutterless AF microadjustment calibration in 20-30 seconds!
  • A new Camera Information tool showing lots of useful information about your camera (including shutter count where available)
  • Addition of Focus Controls to the Target Setup tool to allow live adjustment of focus (useful for Aperture Sharpness/TurboCal tests)
  • A completely rewritten Dust Analysis test which is faster, gives better results with more detail and even detects hot pixels!
  • Much of the analysis has been made multi-threaded for improved performance on common multicore processors
  • Improvements to the integrated licensing to not require program restarts in most cases
  • Option to use Canon Legacy interface files for older cameras (e.g. Canon EOS-1D(s) Mark III)
  • More information in the reports for all tests (e.g. camera firmware, operating system version etc)
  • Fixes to handling of Canon EOS-1 series camera mode control
  • Fix for Nikon shutter speed inaccuracies

Anyone tried it?  Shutterless sounnds good to me, using up a few hunndred shutter actuations to calibrate a few lenses is noot something I look forward to.

Pricewatch Deals / Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L MK II on Sale
« on: December 07, 2012, 11:55:19 AM »
Beach Camera /Buydig .com has the lens for $2199.  You must add it to the cart to see the price.  I suspect that other stores would match the deal if you call them.

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