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EOS Bodies / Re: This web site is making me question why I lurk here
« on: March 30, 2012, 12:11:08 PM »
V8: Good post.

One thought: This isn't new with digital. I remember a lesson I learned back in the ancient 70s when I was a struggling newspaper photographer. The other photographer was a much better technician, but whenever we had to shoot a portrait of somebody for the paper, the subjects very seldom liked his pictures.

Eventually I figured out why that was. He spent so much time perfecting the lighting that he never paid any attention to the subjects. I was then, and still am a "seat of the pants" sort of guy. So, I'd get the lights up as simply as possible, usually with just a nice, soft umbrella, but all the time I was setting things up I'd talk to the person, find out what their story was, and just generally try to distract them and make them more comfortable.

The lesson I learned: Photography, like everything else is about 10% technical skill and 90% people skills. If you can't empathize with people, put yourself into their shoes and have a real interest in them, it usually comes across in your pictures.

I suspect that even if your business is taking beautiful images of incredible cars, you're still dependent on your people skills.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon smarter than we think
« on: March 29, 2012, 11:26:13 PM »
@unfocused.  Interesting observation sir!  It also seem to align with the fact Canon seem to have decised to segment the market in several buckets and come out with a specific camera for each bucket.  This is why I beleive we are seeing more model coming soon like a video specific model to sit between the C300 and the 5DmkIII for example (The famous 4k model) or the fact they will likely have a high MP model at one point.

Nikon seem to have taken a different approach with two major pro camera for all the segment (D800 and D4) where Canon might have 4-5 models in total when we are all said and done.

Will be interesting to see this one pan out!

The only people who appear to have been left out in the cold so far are wildlife shooters, through the loss of f/8 AF.  That makes me wonder if Canon has a plan in that segment. - Could the 4K DSLR be coming with an APS-H sensor (cropped to Super-35 for video) and f/8 AF to satisfy the market of (wildlife) documentary makers, working in the field under adverse conditions? - That would allow them to work with a single camera for video and stills.  Of course, that is total speculation!

I think the key difference here is volume. Even small towns of less than 5,000 or so have at least one or two wedding photographers (not necessarily just weddings of course). In a city of 100,000 there might be 20-30 (maybe more). But, how many wildlife photographers are there in a similar size city? (meaning people who earn their living shooting wildlife) Probably less than one.

My original point was that Canon knew the market and developed a product that would satisfy that market. Read some of the comments on these posts from wedding photographers. They seem to be very pleased with the Mark III.

As for further differentiation...I don't know enough about either the market or the relative cost of development to venture a guess what further differentiation would be worth the investment for Canon.

My original point was just a simple observation.  There has been a lot of self-obsessed complaining on the internets from people who didn't get exactly the camera they wanted. But, from a business perspective, it sure looks like Canon figured out a need and focused in on it with laser-like precision. I admire that kind of corporate skill.

EOS Bodies / Re: This web site is making me question why I lurk here
« on: March 29, 2012, 11:30:48 AM »
Aside from the snarky and superfluous comments about the pictures the some persons post here, there are some good points made in the original post. (Frankly I find the average quality of images posted here to be quite high)

I have watched Canon Rumors go through several experiments in reader feedback and perhaps a bit of history lesson is in order.

A few years back, CR was structured just like Nikon Rumors, allowing readers to comment on the blog posts directly. The result was pretty disastrous. Conversations not only went quickly off topic, but often degenerated into slurs and name calling that were an embarrassment to the site. I and others protested to CR Guy and he responded with the forum system. Not perfect, but it certainly helped significantly.

No secret, I was a fan of the Karma system. I felt it kept people in check and discouraged flame wars. I'm pretty sure we've seen a significantly deterioration in the site since the Karma was removed. (Sometimes little things do matter). 

Nonetheless, I am apparently in the minority. It's CR guys website and he decided to make a change based on user input. I think it was a mistake, but so be it.

The announcement of the 5DIII seems to have brought out all sorts of crazy. Perhaps its just a result of the pent up demand and inevitable disappointment by persons with unrealistic expectations. Hopefully things will settle down soon. One particular frustration is that everyone and his brother seems to feel the need to start a new forum thread with their every rant. Unfortunately, I don't see a good way to limit the number of threads or the ability of individuals to start a thread that would not destroy the democratic nature of this site. (Of course, this comes from someone who just started a new thread five minutes ago.)

I'm guessing I'll continue to check the site too many times during the day and continue to participate more frequently than I should. But, I do share some of the frustrations of the original post.

EOS Bodies / Canon smarter than we think
« on: March 29, 2012, 11:07:06 AM »
As the new 5DIII starts to appear in the real world I think I'm starting to get a better feel for Canon's strategy and, I must say, it seems pretty brilliant.

When Canon announced the 5DIII they placed a lot of emphasis in their announcement on the camera being the result of feedback from professional photographers. But, of course, "professional" is a very broad term that can cover a lot of very disparate specialties.

Now that we are seeing some examples of what the camera can do, it seems like they focused on one particular, but very large segment of the professional market – wedding and special event photographers.

Early examples seem to show a camera that performs very, very well at higher ISOs. Not necessarily in the stratosphere, but rather significant improvements in the 1600 to 6400 range. A range that I suspect many wedding photographers find themselves needing. The autofocus improvements, of course, benefit everyone, but event and wedding photographers don't get the chance to refocus their shots, so improved autofocus would certainly be beneficial.

At the same time, the camera is very well-equipped for ordinary studio work under controlled lighting situations. So, no compromises for studio work but more flexibility in the field. Not to mention some improvements in video for those who need to use it for that purpose as well.

Now, of course, the camera is great for other purposes as well, but it does seem to have some significant improvements that will benefit a large and very competitive segment of the professional photography market.

In short, what I am saying is that it seems as though Canon really did study their market closely and may have produced a camera that is intended to sell, rather than a camera that is intended to be popular on forum and testing sites.

EOS Bodies / Re: No 7D Mark II? [CR1]
« on: March 27, 2012, 06:56:18 PM »
Mentioned this elsewhere but it belongs more here. Remember, the DX mode of the D800 is a 16MP 1.5 crop mode, and by all accounts the image quality is pretty good. If we can get that in a 7D2 I know I'd be pretty happy... if it could do 8FPS and bump up the MP to 18.

It does seem the winds of change are running against crop sensors now, though...

I think crop sensors will be around for quite some time.

Convergence is happening of course – The incremental quality between full frame and APS-C is narrowing and I suspect that the incremental cost of producing APS-C and full frame is also narrowing. Still, there remains a difference and there probably will be one for quite some time. For the foreseeable future, I imagine it will remain cheaper to produce an APS-C sensor and the quality of the full frame sensor will continue to be slightly better. Just a matter of degrees.

In addition, I think the crop advantages of the APS-C sensor will remain hard to replicate in a full frame for quite some time. Cropping from a full frame is a compromise and at this point, not a very convenient one. There is no reason why the two cameras won't continue to co-exist for quite some time. Indeed, from the manufacturers' standpoint, they probably prefer to have both formats.

EOS Bodies / Re: No 7D Mark II? [CR1]
« on: March 27, 2012, 05:07:38 PM »
There is plenty of pricing and design room for a 7D Mark II. It would stay as the top prosumer camera. There are features that would make it attractive for action shooters that could be added w/out damaging any of the DSLR line: better low light performance (less noise), improved IQ, 61 AF metering system, match the 5D Mark III video, and a faster focusing system. I would be queued up right away at $1,600.

That sounds like way too many features to fit a $1600 price point. I think if they were to make a detuned aps-c version of the 5DmkIII it would have to be at least $2500. Also, with all those features and a $1600 price tag, don't you think that would hurt sales of 5DmkIII's and even 1DX's? There would be a ton of people choosing the 7D over a 5 or 1 series because they believe it's the better bang for your buck.

$1,600 is probably too aggressive, but I wouldn't be surprised to see something around $1,800-$2,000. Not necessarily with quite those specs, but some incremental improvements over the current model with most of the emphasis placed on sensor improvements.

As far as hurting sales of the 5DIII or 1Dx, Canon doesn't seem to be overly concerned about cutting into sales of one model with another. They would have never released the 5DIII with the features it has if they were worried about protecting the 1Dx.  And, look at the clustering of Rebels and the 60D – barely any differentiation between those models.

In the current competitive marketplace, making sure they have an model that can retain existing customers and draw new customers from other brands seems to be taking precedence over protecting one model over another.

Third Party Manufacturers / How About This Canon?
« on: March 27, 2012, 01:17:38 PM »
This is a camera I'd love to see Canon make. (Well not at $6,000 obviously)

Seriously, a digital panoramic would be terrific. Fuji has a panoramic option for in-camera stitching with the X-10 which is the second best thing. I'd much rather have a panoramic option than the "double-exposure" thingy that Canon has been adding.

What do others think?

Site Information / Bring Back Karma – NOW!
« on: March 27, 2012, 01:07:29 PM »
I just spotted this on another thread:

Gee I miss the karma system... some of the comments are just getting out of hand -_-

I too have noticed the amazingly rapid degeneration on this site since Karma was dropped. People suddenly feel the urge to insult one another, use negative stereotypes and call each other names. I'll bet if you did a word search on "fanboy" in the last week you'd find the frequency about 10 times what it used to be.

In less than two weeks this site has gone from one of the most civil and helpful forums on the web to sinking down there with so many other sites on the web, where drive-by comments, name-calling and denigrating other users is the order of the day.

Time to admit the experiment was a failure and bring back the Karma. Whatever its flaws. It worked.

EOS Bodies / Re: No 7D Mark II? [CR1]
« on: March 27, 2012, 10:29:29 AM »
why couldnt the 70D fit in as top of the line?

Because the 7D is already the top of the line.

Lets say the 7D replacement comes with all sorts of upgrades that make it better than the mkI but it happens to be branded as a 70D. What's wrong with that? Why would the badge make it less desirable?

Who really knows though. We could both be way off and Canon could throw another curve ball.

Well, certainly it doesn't matter what any model is called. My (over)reaction is to the minority of commenters who seem to feel that the bigger the sensor they have the more of a photographer they are.

For the sake of argument though, I just don't see Canon re-branding the 7D as a 70D. Manufacturers don't usually take an existing product and down-brand it. They've spend the last 2 1/2 years building the 7D brand and have done a very good job of it. The 7D is a very well-positioned product that has had remarkable success and customer satisfaction. Having invested a significant amount of resources into the brand, I don't see them throwing it away.

However, you are right about the curve balls. Canon has thrown so many in the past year, I really will not be surprised by almost anything they might do.

Although I have found it's usually not a good idea to bet against CR Guy's sources, I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around the "entry-level DSLR" concept.

But, looking at it from Canon's perspective (not from the many wish-list comments I've read) I can see it under these circumstances:

Manufacturing three full-frame sensors is inefficient and ties up fabrication resources that can be better used for other purposes. So, instead of continuing to make the 5DII sensor, maybe it makes sense to switch to the 5DIII sensor (Assuming production costs of the new sensor are not much different than those of the older sensor)

Canon does like to re-use its sensors, as evidenced by the APS-C line, so having one sensor in at least two full-frame bodies makes some sense.

Same with the DIGIC chip. Probably cheaper to just use the DIGIC V, instead of keeping an old chip alive.

Apparently, again judging by the APS-C lineup, the incremental cost of slightly different models is not significant, so perhaps Canon would like to stretch its full frame development costs over more bodies.

Canon doesn't seem to be concerned about cannibalization of sales from one body to another (Again, note the clustering of features with the APS-C lineup) so they may not be concerned that a less expensive full frame will cut into 5DIII territory (They don't seem to be concerned that the 5DIII will hurt the 1Dx.)

The question, I think, is autofocus. Do they recycle the original 5D autofocus one more time? Or, do they spend the money on a new autofocus that is improved from the 5DII but not up to 5DIII standards? I'm guessing the latter, just because they probably don't think they can get away with using the same old autofocus one more time. But, that does create new costs.

Then, it's just a matter of picking and choosing which features to leave off and which ones to keep. Probably a mixture based on the incremental costs/savings from each feature. One thing they definitely will have is video capability. Anyone who thinks we will ever see a stills-only camera again is crazy. The incremental costs of video are small, but the risk of lost sales by leaving it out are huge.

So, maybe a rebranded 5DII with a 5DIII sensor and processor, possibly with a different autofocus or possibly with the same 5DII autofocus.

Price: I would say that without a new autofocus they might bring it in for $2,200. With a new autofocus, maybe closer to $2,500. I think an under $2,000 full framer is very, very unlikely.

Will it replace the 7D? Not in a million years. This obsession that full-frame fanboys have with APS-C is just ridiculous. APS-C fills a much-needed niche that has only gotten more significant with the killing off of the APS-H sensor.

Perhaps in five years the technology will have advanced sufficiently to offer an all-in-one DSLR that can shoot both formats, but it isn't there yet.

There will definitely be a 7DII and there may even be a 7DX (Enthusiast version with add on grip/Professional sports and wildlife version with one-piece integrated body and grip).


The debates on this forum remind me of Sayre's Law: "Academic politics is the most vicious and bitter form of politics, because the stakes are so low."

... "low stakes" is relative: Spending a good part of your savings for your recreation is a serious thing to some (including me), and for professional photography it's worth money and concerns your future to have an edge.

That was not the point. I believe he's referring to the stakes of forum arguments.

Exactly. Thanks EYEONE. Plus, the stakes are low because the technology these days is so good overall that most of these comparisons are equivalent to splitting the hairs on a gnat's knee.

Canon General / Re: Is it worth *really* studying photography?
« on: March 23, 2012, 01:53:20 PM »
Good comments here. I will just add another thought.

There is a lot of emphasis here on the technical training, but a good education is also critical for aesthetic training as well. Learning the history of photography, becoming familiar with the work of someone other than Ansel Adams, and having instructors and fellow students discuss and critique your efforts presents opportunities that you may seldom have again once you begin a professional career.

Although I make my living outside of photography today, I still draw on the lessons I learned back in college every time I take up a camera. Carrying around in my head iconic images from Walker Evans, Robert Frank, Garry Winogrand, Edward Weston, Nathan Lyons, Lee Friedlander and literally hundreds of other incredible photographers helps me every time I look through a viewfinder and compose a shot.

Most importantly, it reminds me that f-stops, pixel counts, dynamic range and all the other technical matters that get discussed ad infinitum on this and other forums are insignificant if there is no vision.

But in the end, i think image quality on all these upper tier cameras are getting so good across the board that we are really splitting hairs with these numbers

True that. In fact, I'd say that's the case with almost all the DSLRs, even the Rebels. Make a 16x20 print from any Canon or Nikon and for 99% of shooting conditions, no one will be able to tell the difference between the $700 and the $6,000 camera. 

The debates on this forum remind me of Sayre's Law: "Academic politics is the most vicious and bitter form of politics, because the stakes are so low."

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