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Messages - David Hull

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Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: EOS 5D Mark III Body $2574
« on: May 11, 2014, 10:10:26 AM »
Just out of curiosity, are there similar deals around for the D800?  I don't shoot Nikon so I don't follow them but I an curious if these sorts of deals on Nikon gear pop up every now and again.

Re: Canon needs to respond with SOMETHING


Case in point…

I am committed to Canon myself...

Sony dSLRs aren't even close to competitive with Canon (or Nikon) from a market share standpoint, and this new Sony camera isn't going to change that.

Not only that, Sony isn't Canon and it is going to be a long time before they are truly competitive (if ever) as a full service camera company.  Canon has a huge service organization that will fix just about anything that breaks in a week or less -- try that with Sony.  Canon has a lot more lenses to choose from and even if you don't own them, there are dozens of places where you can rent them -- once again, try that with Sony.

Why is it that all reason goes out the window every time some other manufacturer releases a camera with some new "wiz-bang" feature.  Let's see, IBIS was supposed to be a hit out of the park for Sony but it wasn't.  The awesome sensor technology hasn't done it for them either.

Software & Accessories / Re: Adobe Lightroom Mobile Version Official
« on: April 08, 2014, 11:56:09 AM »
It appears to be absolutely worthless if you are not part of the Adobe Creative Cloud game or pay them $10/month to use it.  I thought it might work as a stand alone app but apparently not did I miss something?

Canon General / Re: PMIdigital - worth it?
« on: April 05, 2014, 10:41:17 AM »
I've read the various threads about sticking with B&H, Adorama, etc., for large purchases and avoiding the risks on ebay.  Usually, I do purchase from B&H and have been since the 90s.  However, PMI digital is an authorized Cannon dealer/retailer and noticed a few things on their recent ads and would like your thoughts:

1.  Some ebay ads say they are a Canon dealer, others ads say they are a Canon RESELLER.  For warranty purposes, I would stick to ads that only say they are a Canon dealer.

2.  The ads I would stick to also specifically include all that is supposed to come with the box and say that they include a "Canon 1 Year Parts and Labor USA Warranty."

3.  They have a 30-day return policy and they have 100% buyer feedback.

So if I purchase from them in this way, what is my risk?  As long as I can input the serial number online at CanonUSA, I should be ok, correct?

Thanks for your input.
I bought my Canon 5DIII from PMI Digital and had no problems whatsoever.  I picked the brand new in the original box version -- you can (or could at that time) buy the broken apart kit version for a bit less.  The camera had all the parts, warrantee card, box contents appeared to have never been returned or tampered with etc.  I would recommend them.

Rather than disseminating useless marketing fluff, Canon should give us the raw data, so we can see whether their claim is substantiated or not.
They could publish a costed BOM for each of their cameras too, that would be nice.

The average repair cost is at least partially providing information regarding costs for parts replacement. This is of course not the same as a BOM, but should imply that vendors like Nikon or Leica do provide rather expensive parts. Once you apply factors like production costs depending on production volume the difference to Canon becomes smaller, as both Nikon and Leica don't produce the same quantities Canon does. Of course quantities produced at Nikon are still far more than at Leica.

I think that part of Canon's higher repair cost is related to the speed with which they are able to turn the repairs around.  This is even more impressive when you realize the amount of gear out there compared to the others.  Roger needs to put up a third chart (maybe he has it) which compares the amounts of stuff that he has sent back among the manufacturers.  I bet that Canon wind that one as well.  To me the higher price for Canon reflects the concept of you get what you pay for.  Quick turns on a high volume means multiple repair centers, a larger staff, etc.  All this costs money.

What would be nice to see is a chart indicating average repair costs, customer satisfaction, use by professionals, units remaining in service over years, etc.  Categories where Canon has probably done well, but who knows how well compared to other brand.

Courtesy of Roger at  This is data from 2012-2013, he has previous years available on his blog, too.

The average repair cost is not surprising -- my 24-105 went belly up a while back and they charged me $408 to fix it.  That was a bit of a surprise.

Interestingly enough, I had it back in roughly 5 days.

Rather than disseminating useless marketing fluff, Canon should give us the raw data, so we can see whether their claim is substantiated or not.
They could publish a costed BOM for each of their cameras too, that would be nice.

Well... they clearly don't hang out on internet forums like this one and DPR then  ;).

Canon General / Re: Off Brand: Nikon Announces the D4S
« on: February 27, 2014, 09:32:00 AM »
With regard to the 400k ISO, IMO the real question should be "where does the ability of the AF to work crap out?"  Super high ISO isn't of much use if you can't focus clearly. 

Canon General / Re: Canon lack of innovation
« on: February 18, 2014, 04:41:07 PM »
I keep reading on hear about Canon's lack of innovation.  Apparently not everyone agrees, as they landed at #3 in this article on "The world's most innovative companies":

If you received a $2000 bonus every time you successfully filed a patent for your company (e.g. Canon), would that be sufficient motivation to encourage you to create as many patents as possible? And if you were so motivated, what would your outlook on other companies that also register lots of patents be?
You DO understand why companies do this, right?  It is not so they list higher on some arbitrary magazine or web sites "innovation" ranking.

At one time I worked for Rockwell Semiconductor when Lucent came knocking on the door and said, "Hey guys, we are Lucent... you know the old Bell Telephone Laboratories"   "well we have a boat load of patents and we're pretty sure you are in violation of quite a few of them so why don't you consider taking out a blanket license, as in, you hand us a bag of money each year and we agree not to bother looking" "otherwise we are about to start."

Sadly, THAT is what patents are for in the modern age and that is why companies encourage people to file.

I wonder what the story is from the Olympics?  I see a lot of White lenses there it appears to be more than half but there are quite a few black ones as well.

Note that this new flash is weaker - I guess they called it "MR14" because it looks the same and "MR10.5-EX" would have sounded lame.  The GN of the new flash is 10.5m/34 ft, vs the GN of the original that is 14m/46 ft.

Other than the LED modeling lights, a revised LCD display, and a shorter recycle time I really don't see any benefit of this flash over the original.  The shorter recycle time may simply be due to the fact that it's less powerful...

There's also confusion over whether this is RT or not.  The DPR blurb states, "Canon also announced the MR-14EX II Macro Ring Light, which can be controlled wirelessly using the radio-based 'RT' system."  Controlled wirelessly isn't the same as controlling wirelessly, and an RT slave-only capability for a flash that only mounts to the end of the lens seems really stupid.  No real information one way or the other, because the 'wireless' in the vendor product pages could refer to optical control.  Having the new MR14 be a master for the -RT system would be quite useful, but it's not clear if this is the case (I'm guessing no, simply because I'd assume if it was, Canon would have called it the MR14-EX-RT).
I was thinking exactly the same thing -- my guess is it is Optical or IR or whatever they have always been.

Reviews / Re: Why the DxO bashing?
« on: February 09, 2014, 11:21:50 AM »
What I find really interesting is when the DR/FPN Evangelists are actually challenged with an image that squarely disputes their assertions religion, they all ignore it.

hmmm?? Don't get "FPN"?

Fixed Pattern Noise, it is the banding that can be seen if you process files badly, particularly if they are badly exposed files processed badly.

FPN = Five-stops Pushed Noise

LOL  +1

Reviews / Re: Why the DxO bashing?
« on: February 09, 2014, 01:04:32 AM »
There's obviously a lot of very knowledgeable people here so I'll pose a question that's been bugging me for a long time.
How is it possible for DxO to claim > 14 stops of dynamic range for cameras with a 14 bit ADC  ???
Noise determines what is considered "absolute black", and from this absolute black is counted how many points of DR to reach full white (highlights without texture). When DXO makes downsize to 8 megapixel, the noise is reduced, and this aspect of sensor 36 megapixel lead comparative advantage. If you do not apply to downsize 8 megapixel count DR will not reach 14 stops.

But how can you possibly get more than 14 stops from a 14 bit conversion?

There are many ways to do this -- one thing to consider, for example, is some CD audio equipment that used 12 bit converters to get 16 bits of performance through oversampling or the so-called "1" bit designs that produced 16 bit equivalence. I don't think this is what is going on here though.  I think if you pick the correct settings on the DxO presentation the Sony's measure out at about 13.8 bits of DR which is not surprising for a low speed SAR design.

Reviews / Re: Why the DxO bashing?
« on: February 08, 2014, 05:15:25 PM »
If you are shooting static subjects, how hard is it to bracket and merge to 32bit in photoshop and get all the DR in the world with even the worst camera.

And if you shoot moving targets, how often do you actually use iso 100 which is where this advantage actually exists? I at least virtually always use much higher ISO to freeze motion and well at high ISO it is actually Canon that got the best DR according to DXO.

I find it funny when I hear this too.

Even a landscape can have dynamics that prevent working around DR limitations by bracketing and merging.
If it's small and static, then it can be lit to fix it... unless it's not practical, you know, like outdoors.
So these workarounds aren't always viable either.
Then you shoot something else that you can shoot.  For most of us, that's just not a huge disaster.  The reality is that this whole DR argument is pretty much a non starter an any practical sense. 

As I said earlier, if it were the huge issue that people like yourself seem to think it is, nobody would buy the equipment but that isn't really what we see in the real world, now is it?

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