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Messages - sdsr

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Enthusiasm and tech are not synonymous, my experience over the last 30+ years of serious photography has been that enthusiasm trumps pretty much everything, sure there will always be images that are just not possible without the latest or greatest, but from what I have seen, none of us, including myself, are shooting them.

That's probably right.  But in my experience it's not really either/or: better equipment, up to a point (doesn't have to be "latest or greatest" - the original question simply referred to equipment that was better than you started with), boosts enthusiasm by making the learning process easier and more enjoyable.  Those who have said that experience/learning/technique/an artistic eye matter most have a point, obviously, but it's easier to achieve those things when you're not hampered by, say, inferior focusing mechanisms (too few focus points, inconsistent/inaccurate AF lenses, design that effectively makes MF near-impossible, etc.), bad ergonomics (esp. burying important controls in intimidatingly complex menus) and so on, and when the resulting images look inherently better (less noise etc.). 

("Better" is relative anyway and needn't be expensive.  There was no such option when I bought my first dslr, but for my purposes, miles "better" than the Nikon dslr I started out with would have been a good mirrorless body with a few old MF lenses and perhaps a couple of good modern AF lenses - it's easier to learn what the controls do if they're easily accessible and you can see their effect as you look through the viewfinder, and incomparably easier to MF when magnification and focus peaking show up there as well  - for me, at any rate.)

Canon General / Re: Advice for re-investing please?
« on: October 06, 2014, 02:49:09 PM »

The best mirrorless cameras are grossly overpriced, and the technology is moving rapidly, so consider that before investing thousands in a mirrorless system that almost matches your "M" in IQ.  You can use a adapter to mount a Zeiss lens to the "M" and have something very special.

Some seem overpriced to me too, but the best aps-c mirrorless camera is probably the Sony a6000, which costs <$600, while right now the ff a7 is <$1500 and a7r <$2100 (often less).  Provided they're compatible with the use to which one wants to put a camera, they all seem like a pretty good deal to me, especially since you can attach just about any lens to them, albeit usually with complete loss of AF performance (or with the Metabones Canon adapter, considerable loss of AF performance - though I would note it's much faster on the a6000).  With such a body there's no need for a "system" at all.

EOS Bodies / Re: High ISO Samples from the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
« on: September 16, 2014, 04:38:34 PM »

Someone that many would call a competent photographer posts a series of images, of which a substantial fraction are out of focus and criticising the camera is baseless trolling?

So what would you like to blame for the focus problems:
* The camera
* The model
* The lens
* The photographer

Why speculate at all?  For all we know, people milling about around him kept bumping into him at awkward moments, or the model kept moving, or....  What's odd isn't so much that some of the photos are duds as that anyone should have thought the bad ones worth publishing in the first place.

EOS Bodies / Re: High ISO Samples from the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
« on: September 16, 2014, 04:31:14 PM »
Okay, finally found some real samples:

Cameraegg Canon EOS 7D Mark II Sample Images & Movies

EDIT: These are from the Canon Japan website and are damn impressive (as you'd hope).  The ISO 100 performance and sharpness of the 85L portrait is amazing.  They must have really optimized the low pass filter (like they did in the 5DIII) as well.

I wonder if the second one there is a response of sorts to the third one here:



The benefit between 22 and 36mp bodies is negligible when using let's say the Tamron 24-70mm. Once you get the zeiss 135mm APO, the difference is stark.

However, doesn't change my point that even at 36mp it's hard to get the detail out of it and let alone a 50mp sensor in 35mm format.

Funny you should mention that lens, inasmuch as Roger Cicala reports that the Tamron 24-70 on a D800 outperforms in terms of resolution the (superior) Canon 24-70II on a 5DIII, a combination that outperforms the Tamron 24-70 + 5DIII.  You can't attach the Canon to a D800, but you can (and people do so) to a Sony A7r, so.... 

I'm not sure what you really mean by "get the detail out of it".  You seem here, and in other posts, to suggest that unless you own lenses that can make the most of (whatever that means) a higher resolution sensor, there's no point in using a camera with a higher resolution sensor (other things - such as noise, dynamic range, etc. - being equal, presumably).  I'll leave the science to others, but have you tried this yourself or is your argument based on speculation?   I've attached a fairly wide array of lenses to my A7r, mostly Canon EF (including some rather inexpensive ones) but a few others as well, including some fairly elderly inexpensive manual lenses even older than those you sneeringly (or so it seems) invoked in another post, and with only one exception so far they are capable of sharp detailed images when viewed at 100%, probably more so than when I use them on my 5DIII (which is not to say the differences are significant).  Is your experience different?

But of course the appeal of a sensor, let alone a camera, isn't just its resolution - it's other aspects of its performance; when Sony (or whoever else) releases a 50mm FF camera the other things mentioned above won't be equal.  E.g. there are reasons to like the Sony A7 line independent of sensor resolution - noise, dynamic range, that fact that the sensors are housed in mirrorless bodies to which you can attach just about any lens and which have good EVFs, and so on.  Given all the other benefits (they're not for everyone, of course), it's nice to be able to attach EF lenses and obtain images that look at least as good as they do via their native bodies.  Whether those lenses "gets the most out of" the sensor doesn't matter much to me, and I suspect it won't to lots of others too; you can always supplement them with lenses that perform better.   It would be disappointing if the images looked worse, but no-one has provided any reasons to suppose that they would.

Lenses / Re: DXOMark Reviews Zeiss Otus 85mm f/1.4
« on: September 10, 2014, 09:44:37 AM »
Again fascinating that a lens with better "metric scores" (better sharpness, vignetting, and CA) is getting a lower overall DxOMark Score than the Otus 55/1.4.

DxO scores mean nothing to me.

Edit: I was referring to the comparison picture displayed here at first with the D800 Body and Otus 55/1.4 and Zeiss Apo Sonnar 135/2.0 as opponents. See here:

There's a rather different sort of review, by someone who actually took photos with one, here:


Lenses / Re: Sigma 35 Art vs EF 35 IS in real life
« on: September 09, 2014, 04:17:06 PM »
How's the focusing of the Canon in low light? I've been eyeing the Sigma but like the IS of the Canon and the price. I shoot with a 5D3 which seems to help some lenses focus in low light and accuracy.

I rented both lenses when they were new for about a week, using them on a 6D or 5DIII (I forget which) mostly in very low light (after sunset in winter), and although that probably isn't long enough to get much sense of AF accuracy, I never had a problem with either one.  But, since you mention low light, there is one issue where the Sigma seemed unquestionably superior - coma. Few review sites address this, but this one does:



If coma is a big enough issue for the sort of things you photograph, the Sigma seems preferable; otherwise the Canon might be more appealing.  (I couldn't decide and while I was dithering Adorama had a ridiculous short-lived sale on the 28mm IS, so I bought that instead....)

Pricewatch Deals / Re: Preorder Zeiss Otus 85mm f/1.4 Apo Planar T*
« on: September 09, 2014, 03:37:30 PM »
This may already have been posted elsewhere, but in case anyone's interested here's an early review:


As a working pro stated earlier, shadows are important for the art...and shadows are supposed to be dark. 

This is a loaded topic.


The point is that when your sensor introduces little to no noise over your image data, you have the freedom to do whatever you want.


Anyway, my point here is that how you define 'shadows' itself is flexible. I can tell you one thing shadows *aren't* supposed to have: FPN & read noise. :)

Exactly right (including, of course, all the snipped bits) - even if for most people, most of the time, it doesn't matter enough to affect the overall market.

let's say for the sake of argument that Sony sensors really are better at this point in time (a judgment that is highly subjective and very suspect, since it hinges on tiny, tiny differences in just one subset of a sensor's overall performance

There's nothing 'highly subjective' here at all. It's a quantifiable, demonstrable fact. And it's not a tiny difference in just one aspect of overall performance. Low downstream read noise not only increases base ISO dynamic range, but can allow you to maintain high dynamic range at all ISOs if you know how to take advantage of 'ISO-less' sensors.

It may be demonstrably true that Sony sensors (plus whosever are in Nikon's APS-C cameras?) are measurably superior in various ways, but it's not demonstrably true that the differences aren't "tiny" - that's where the "subjective" part that unfocused was (presumably) referring to comes in.  Depending on what you shoot, in what sort of conditions, how you process the image files, how you view/present the results, and the standards you/the viewer apply/ies throughout all of this, the differences may be imperceptible, or noticeable but irrelevant, or significant, etc.  So it could well be that the differences among cameras are all at the margins, margins so small that there aren't enough users out there to significantly affect the market.  For everyone else, there's no "better" in any way that matters. 


The questioning and complaints, I feel, come from people who are, for the most part, intelligent and interested in the technologies and see what they believe to be big differences in Banner Specs.  An example of this to me is the recent back and forth on these forums about Sony's 36 and (rumored) 50mpixel sensors.  The Banner Specs look impressive.  In the details, well, it depends on who you are as to whether a system is really better than what you own or not.  If Sony's A7 series is any example, who here would put up with a 1.2FPS?  Who would tolerate terrible AF performance in lower (not even low) light conditions?  Who here would be happy with the current Sony E-mount lens situation?

The folks who are publicly upset (in on-line forums where anonymity can be easy cover) may have other things going on in their lives that lead them to spout off in perhaps inappropriate, ill-informed, ways (see an article on Mary Beard in a recent New Yorker Magazine for how she deals with trolls for an glimpse of what I'm trying to say here).

That sounds about right.  As for the Sony A7 line, it may have some interest for a few here (I happily concede that this is almost certainly a tiny niche) to the extent that it can provide an engaging/useful supplement to Canon bodies.  Some of us (I doubt I'm the only one, at any rate) only use single shot and thus don't care about fps, and the limited range of FE lenses (the two primes, esp. the 55mm, are marvelous) doesn't matter, unless (fast) AF does, since you can easily use your Canon lenses as well as just about any other lens that takes your fancy (MF is easy on these bodies).

As for the various Canon Must Do X To Its Sensors To Survive discussions/assertions, does anyone out there have actual knowledge of the relevant market shift(s), if any?  We all know that Canon outsells everyone else overall, that dslr sales are down, that mirrorless remains a minority segment, that cellphones are a significant threat to the point-and-shoot market, etc., but do we know - say - how many high-end users have switched from Canon to Nikon or Sony (or vice versa) on account of their sensors (or for any other reason, for that matter)?  Do we know how many people care enough about details of sensor performance to contemplate switching?  I suspect we don't, in which case....


I'm thinking of shifting the Sony A7r myself, from the 5D Mark II.


I'm quite happy with my 5D Mark II for landscape, although I'd love more dynamic range and less pattern noise. But it still does the job well. The A7r gives me more dynamic range and nicely handled noise. But there's drawbacks too. No camera is perfect, so I think we'll always wish for more and complain about things, but in the end the 'best' brand for certain things always changes anyways. For ISO it was Canon, then Nikon, now Sony. Give it another couple of years and it'll be someone again or someone else.

At least, unlike switching to Nikon, switching to or adding an A7r will allow you to use all your Canon lenses (unless you insist on/want/prefer fast AF) which, in my experience, seem to make images that look at least as good as they do on Canon bodies.  For me, that's part of the appeal of good mirrorless bodies - leaving aside (fast) AF, you can use just  about any lens you want.

That said, out of curiosity - how often do you find yourself wanting more DR and/or better low ISO noise performance?

Lenses / Re: Input on building a prime lens kit
« on: September 08, 2014, 11:52:01 AM »

I want to sort of "force myself" into leaving the house with 2 or 3 primes and the 6D and making it work to see what happens.

There's a lot to be said for doing this, I think (I often take just one - restrictions can be liberating...), but why don't you start doing this with the lenses you have and see whether you feel limited at either end of the range?    You may be perfectly happy with what you have, or you may want much wider (24mm or less) and/or longer (200mm, say); only you know what you find useful, after all.  And, as I think neuro suggested, supplement this with an experiment take your zooms, but used them fixed at specific lengths - e.g. spend a day or two with your 24-105L at 24mm and see whether it's a focal length that works for you.

Given that you have 35/50/100 I'm inclined to suggest that 85 doesn't make much sense unless you find the 100L too heavy cf 85mm 1.8 or need the extra speed/shallowness of focus at equivalent distances of a faster lens (bearing in mind that you can get much closer to your subject with your 100L than you can with any 85mm lens); and the same may be true of the 135L too - the differences between 85/100 and 100/135 could well prove too small to be worth the expense.  At the other end, if you want wider, since you already have 35mm, you probably would want to skip 28mm in favor of 24mm (or wider).

Who knows, you may not need to buy anything at all....

EOS-M / Re: Anything new on EOS-M3? How it may compare to A6000?
« on: September 08, 2014, 11:21:54 AM »
Question from a newbie here.

Comparing the recent price drop on the M. Are the differences in quality really worth the additional expenses of shifting to a different system sony,fuji,olympus? Considering, that is, if one already has a number of ef lenses.

It depends what you mean by "quality".   The image quality created by an M is much the same as that created by Canon's other current APS-C cameras, which is to say barely distinguishable without close scrutiny from any other APS-C camera or, <ISO 1600, from current M43s.  I prefer the images made by my a6000 to those created by Canon or Fuji APS-C or M43, but there's not much in it and, depending on what you shoot and how you look at the results, the differences may not be noticeable at all. 

Since you already have EF lenses, you presumably also have a Canon body of some sort, so the more important question may be whether the M has any advantages over what you currently own.  If you have an older APS-C body, the images may be a bit better, and if you have AFMA issues you can avoid those on an M.  But it will likely boil down to a matter of ergonomics, which is entirely subjective.  I hated the process of using my M and sold it after a couple of months, but you may react otherwise, especially if you don't mind foregoing a viewfinder.  Similarly, there are lots of good reasons for jumping to Sony etc. for smaller, mirrorless bodies, and doing so may not be that expensive (I added, rather than switching, but using Canon lenses requires MF, which you may not want to do), but those reasons may not apply to you either....

EOS Bodies / Re: Is Canon now two generations behind Nikon?
« on: September 03, 2014, 07:08:33 PM »

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