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Messages - ahsanford

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Reviews / Solid DPReview video (20+ min) with a wildlife photographer
« on: November 10, 2014, 05:48:17 PM »
DPReview just put out a very nicely produced 7d2 hands on with a wildlife photographer, using the 16-35 f/4L IS, 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, and ever-so-affordable 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x.  Mountain lions, wolves and landscapes were shot, as well as some intervalometer and video work (note: the pro in question is a wildlife stills shooter and not a video pro).

A very nice watch if you have 22 minutes to spare:

I want to see more 'big picture' reviews like this in the field after a week filled with minutiae and lab tests.  Nicely done, DPReview. 

- A

Lenses / Is the new 100-400L II going to be a push/pull after all?
« on: November 10, 2014, 04:43:08 PM »
Just saw this at photo rumors:


Of note:  "New “push-pull” zoom"

The article was then pulled from the site in question.  Is there anything to this?  Any chance that push/pull might live on?

- A

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 7D Mark II - DXO, Tony Northrup, and You
« on: November 10, 2014, 03:15:33 PM »
I think that he makes excellent videos and I do not understand that bashing here

In the first Northrup video I watched (which immediately became the last and only one I'll watch), he and his co-host basically concluded that the Canon 5D Mark III was probably ok for non-pros posting their pictures to Facebook.   Really, really excellent.  ::)

It seems like he thinks someone needs to be the Carl Sagan (or perhaps Neil DeGrasse-Tyson) and fill the void between the data and the masses' interpretation of it.  I admit, the less-well-read people out there could certainly use the help.

But this man seems under-read technically to pull that off.  I'm sure he can work a camera, but his explanations are really off-target at times.

I nominate Neuro, Jrista and anyone else over 3000 posts to fill the void.  The world needs you.

- A

I won't be watching this video.  This guy discredited himself terribly with his video titled, "Crop Factor with ISO & Aperture: How Sony, Olympus, Panasonic, Canon, Nikon & Fuji Cheat You".

I missed that particular fiasco.  I clicked the link when the thread was new, saw it was Northrup, and closed the window.  My first and last Northrup infomercial was when he said the 5DIII might be ok for non-pros posting pics on Facebook.   :o

He actually said that? Grrrrr.

Northrup's videos are like the Arias video about sensor size not being important.  They just wind people up.

What gets me with the 7D2 is how the boat is so comprehensively missed by gear enthusiasts and camera reviewers.  If I'm an action/sports/wildlife/birding shooter, I'd rather nail the shot with a 7D2 and possibly have 10% less DR or color depth than miss the shot altogether due to poor AF, smaller buffer size or limited burst rate. 

Put another way, if Canon gave the world's 7D1 owners a choice of what do with the 7D2 of:

Get one more stop of cleaner high ISO (i.e. a 7D2 shot at 3200 would resemble a 7D1 shot at 1600) and everything else is the same,


Get +2 fps, a bigger buffer, DPAF, and a 1DX-like AF system

I'm guessing those folks would choose the latter.  That's why I think the 7D2 is going to be quite successful despite what testers and enthusiasts are heckling the sensor for.

- A

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon 7D Mark II - DXO, Tony Northrup, and You
« on: November 10, 2014, 11:46:31 AM »
Choice quotes:

"37% is a whole lot more!  We'll get more into that later."

"It's maybe 1/3 of a stop better, which is maybe 26% better."

"We're going to get real nerdy here, so brace yourself geeks."

"Bigger buckets gather more rain."

"It's like saying you like Key Lime pie."

Arbitrarily changes sign conventions in comparisons.  Awesome.

- A

EOS Bodies / Canon 7D Mark II - DXO, Tony Northrup, and You
« on: November 10, 2014, 11:21:25 AM »
Our favorite long video gear talker  ::) has chimed in on the DXO ratings for the 7D II.


Where's my popcorn, dammit...

- A

Lenses / Re: Introducing the Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II
« on: November 09, 2014, 08:24:39 PM »
Ahhh "50 f 1.x"  I read right over the "x"  That said, I dont see them going bigger than 1.4 because of the size and price issue.  But yes, I agree as I mentioned some pages ago that I would have to think the 50mm L is the next rebuild along with the 35mm L.  I dont think there's anything else more pressing in Canon's glass line right now, especially considering the new Sigs and the fact that it seems there isn't much left in their line (apart from the 135mm) that needs a major reboot

I was actually thinking more in terms of the 50/1.4 getting updated with true ring USM and IS. Compared to the current 50L, the 1.4 is ancient.

Respectfully, this is OT.  There are copious threads on the 50 f/1.4 replacement, included my 'can recite my personal rant verbatim' content here:


But let's stay on target, good people.  This is a Unicorn thread.   :D

- A

Lenses / Re: Introducing the Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II
« on: November 08, 2014, 05:55:01 PM »
For me when I'm "birding" it means I can get closer ... and for the smaller birds you can ... sometimes you may be there being still and they will fly right up close to you ... it happens a lot .. and with the old 400, a mfd of 3.5m well forget getting a shot, and forget getting those tiny birds or small reptiles etc any where near close enough to get the detail, and yes fill the frame ... so to me it's a game changer.
I think a bigger macro lens is just not really needed, so it's a design thing specifically for macro work ... you can put  extension tubes on a bigger lens, but will loose longer focus, but you won't need to get as close to the subject with a longer lens.

Sure, but it's technically possible, right?  My 100L Macro is also a great short tele prime with the flick of a focus range switch.  Why not try the same thing with a longer focal length?

- A

Lenses / Re: Introducing the Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II
« on: November 08, 2014, 05:37:33 PM »
I'm over the moon on this lens. I have been waiting to hear something on a new 400 for over 6 months now, and the reason I started visiting this site almost daily and more recently numerous times a day.
This lens hits all the marks I have wanted in a 400 lens ... bar one, it's a zoom, slightly lower image quality than a prime and the extra weight of a zoom  ... but I'll concede that point if image quality is at least better than the 100-400 .. which I am sure it would be of course ... dare I say, it's canon glass ....
The impressive feature for me is the MFD .. 0.98 ! wow .. blows any prime 400 out of the water and any of the other "big whites" for that matter .. for small birds/animals ... even flora ..
The price is very reasonable for someone like me who may never be able to afford any of the "big whites"
So this lens is long awaited and will be part of my kit as soon as I see a few test reviews just to confirm it's good to go.
Unless of course they announce a 400F5.6LIIis with a mfd of around 1.4m

Just curious -- so many folks are ga-ga about the 0.31x, which I'm interpreting to mean that people want to fill the frame with their subjects and have to crop less.  How often are folks pushing their MFD with lenses this long?

Has any company ever tried something like a 1:1 macro in longer focal lengths?  Is that technically problematic for some reason?  It seems everyone's macro lenses are 50-60mm (for crop), 100mm or 180mm...  Why not longer?

- A

Lenses / Re: Introducing the Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II
« on: November 08, 2014, 05:32:56 PM »
I'm also keen to hear whether the performance at 400mm will be as good as every other millimeter on the lens.

I often wonder if some people actually skip the 100-399mm focal lengths on the lens and just use the 100-400 as a collapsible 400 prime.   :P

(Thankfully, I am not afflicted with the reach addiction many CR forum dwellers have.  I have little desire to buy this thing, slap a 2x on it and then put it on a crop body.  But I do like Canon putting out better options for us.)

- A

Lenses / Re: Introducing the Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS II
« on: November 08, 2014, 04:33:17 PM »
So this lens can use the 1.4 and 2.0 TC?

1.4x = I would assume so, but it is not confirmed.

2.0x = I assume it will fit but your AF won't work.  MF only.  If I understand correctly, your effective max aperture with a 2x will be too narrow for the AF system, at least it will be until Canon offers an F/11 AF point on a body (someday).

- A

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon to Continue Using Canon Sensors in DSLRs
« on: November 07, 2014, 08:35:06 PM »
Once these "alternative" brands get their own lenses for the real critical key ones, like your 70-200's, a few large fast primes (300/2.8, 400/2.8, 600/4), and a few high quality wide, normal, and short tele primes (for which Sony already has a few good ones), I think the market will really open up, with better viable diversity.

I'm on the fence there, Jrista.  If the lenses come, you are dead on. 

Committing to (or at least prioritizing) one mount for 25+ years continues to pay dividends for Canon.  They have developed a lens portfolio that no one can comprehensively match up to.  I'm not saying all the lenses are modern or best in class -- they surely aren't -- but chance are, if you need a specific sort of lens, Canon has one. 

So for someone to try to match even 25% of what Canon offers would represent a staggering investment in present/future development dollars.  And *what* 25% needs to be made available is not a sure thing.  A company could go hog wild and offer a solid roster of 'staple pro wants' (in FF equiv)...

16-35 f/2.8
24-70 f/2.8
70-200 f/2.8
35 f/1.4
50 f/1.4
85 f/1.4
100 macro
135 f/2.0
70-300 or 100-400 f/slow
300 f/2.8
400 f/2.8
600 f/4

...and folks would still find something to bemoan the lack of:  a tilt-shift, a lighter weight F/4 zoom, a fish, cheaper wildlife primes, etc.  As Canon people, we often can feel the sensor grass is greener elsewhere, but everyone pines for access to our glass (save perhaps the Leica crowd, who only need a few primes and a cocksure worldview  :P).

I want your competitive future as increased choice will only bode well for us as consumers.  But I'm not convinced every rival to the Canon/Nikon dominated SLR world is prepared to or is capable of delivering that lens portfolio.  Sony is certainly trying, but Samsung, Fuji and the m43 cabal seem worlds behind in the scale of their ambitions.  So I'll stick the mothership for the foreseeable future.

- A

Whoops. Didn't mean to wade into the middle of the crop vs FF debate. What was I thinking? Seems like folks already have their clearly staked out positions on this one. Think I'll stay out of it.

Anyway, just ran off a couple hundred frames and I am really beginning to love the handling of this camera. The in-viewfinder level is awesome. Wish my 5D's had that. Its so easy to lose track of the horizon when you are photographing wildlife and then have to do a major crop to square things up. Given that it's already a "crop" sensor you don't want to needlessly be throwing away any precious pixels for that. 10 FPS is waaaaaay faster than 6. Hard to just get one frame off in high speed mode. It really wants to run!

The 5D3 has an in-viewfinder level.  No one ever talks about it:

(skip to 0:22 in the video for the simulation of the in-viewfinder level)

That said, it lacks fidelity (it's fairly discrete/clumsy) and it effectively takes over the VF when you'd like to be doing other things inside of it.  The 7D2 level seems much better located in the VF from what I've seen and read (though I have not tried it myself).

- A

Shooting out-of-camera JPGs for any sort of meaningful comparison (other than comparing JPG engines, for who-knows-what reason) would make for a pretty poor test, and that's now twice you've made that incorrect statement about TDP's testing.

The problem with having a beard is how the egg on my face gets stuck in there.   :-[  Again, I stand corrected.

Me and my speed reading.  I saw 'picture style' and thought he was referring to onboard camera JPG picture style, when he was in fact talking about picture style in DPP. 

The lesson here?  Never doubt Carnathan.

- A

EOS Bodies / Canon 7D Mark II AF tracking through the viewinder (VIDEO)
« on: November 07, 2014, 01:06:06 PM »
Worth a watch:

Shot with the 18-135 IS STM lens.  Impressive, I'd say, but I don't shoot action like this often.  Others may be less impressed.

- A

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