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Messages - RustyTheGeek

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How many times do you use more than 3 flashes? Do you use ganged flashes?

I was thinking of lining up all the flashes together or hiding them all around an area and remote triggering them off of each other as unsuspecting folks walk by.  I could probably make a whole book out of the surprised and freaked out face shots I would get.   Esp when there isn't any actual paparazzi in sight.  ;D

Oh, and I'm very pleased and satisfied with my older Canon flashes.  They've always worked great and have been very reliable.

"So I don't really know what to do with the 600EX-RT Speedlites"

Wow, that is some bad case of GAS you got there.

Buying photographic equipment and then trying to figure out what to do with it.  ;D

You need help, my friend.   ;D ;D

Yeah, I'm sure I'm not the first one to jump on a good deal and then try to decide if I should have in the first place.   ;)

Seriously, as much as I jest, I've tinkered and messed with my speedlites off and on for years.  I found a good deal on some TT5 Pocket Wizard remote triggers a few years ago and bought them, only to discover that they sort of sucked off and on.  I would practice, plan and then take everything to a small informal portrait shoot and then they would only work intermittently.  I'd fall back to the good old Canon IR remote system that does indeed "just work".  So I sold them after they sat for quite a while.  My hope is, after all the stuff I've read over the past year about how the 600EX-RT flashes "just work", that I can be more productive this time.  I've borrowed stuff off and on and while I don't feel like a total noob with off camera flash, I'm not a polished veteran either.  There's only so much time in the day and I've been pretty busy over the last few years.

What I'm shooting for now is a decent, efficient set of items that can be easily packed and carried, then set up for a quick portrait shoot with good results.  If I wanted to carry around a whole studio, I'd just buy 3 Alien Bees strobes, stands and softboxes and I'd be set.  I'm wondering if there is something that would work almost as well but be used with the 600EX-RT Speedlites.

Extra points if there are Rainbow Unicorns running all around the photo shoot when I'm finished!   ;D

OK, a while back I was unfortunate enough to find a new 600EX-RT for about $330.  As everyone knows, if you find a killer deal on something like the 600EX-RT, all it is going to do is make you start looking for a few more.   :(  And lo and behold, I was again plagued with another good deal last week for $419 each.  So I bought two more.  Then I got the Yonghuo YN-E3-RT wireless transmitter on Amazon for $89 and some StoFen Diffusers.

Now this isn't the first Speedlite I've ever owned.  In fact, the various Speedlites I already have work great.  (430EX, 580EX and 580EX-II, along with a 270EX-II and some SunPak RD-2000 flashes which are what I use most.)

So I don't really know what to do with the 600EX-RT Speedlites.  I guess I can use them to prop up an uneven table or (once I get the Sto-Fen diffusers I ordered) I could use them as back scratchers.  Paper weights?  Door stops?  They're not quite big enough to make good wheel chocks.  I mean, what are they really good for anyway?  And what does the RT mean?  Real Tough?  Radioactive Terminator?  Real Time?  Romeo Tango?

Regardless, since I'm stuck with these cotton-pickin' things, I guess I should see what everyone else here would do if they were in the same situation and had to deal with this problem.  Assuming you owned a good body like the 5D3, etc what would you buy to utilize these babies fully?  Most of my shooting is for journalistic/event stuff.  Then I shoot ceremonies in a church sanctuary.  But I'd like to also work at improving skills on smaller portrait settings that could be portable.

So seriously, I don't want to spend a ton of money at this point, just get a few essentials that would give best bang for buck to add versatility and usefulness.  Like for instance, if I want to shoot a small family group portrait shot, etc in a portable way.  I've got a good friend out of town that will have an informal wedding soon and I could shoot a few shots with him and his bride.  Or shoot someone in daylight shade from a distance with the 70-200 and have some fill light out of frame.  Stuff like that.  I'm thinking perhaps a simple background setup, a couple stands/modifiers, portable little stands/clamps for outdoors or other goodies.

I thought subject this might make a good thread for everyone to share things that have paid off for them using speedlites in various situations.  Thanks in advance!  (OK, David Hobby and Joe McNally, time to stop just lurking out there and start actually posting something!  Come on, you know you want to!!)


Is this the husband/wife team that shoots Canon and Nikon?  (One half of the team each dedicated to a different camera system?)

Maybe that explains the vast difference in photography styles and why one shot has such poor color saturation.  (It almost looks sepia or monochrome!)  LOL!

Seriously, this is a fun thread.  Is it just me or does the jepabst shot in front of the bride/groom with the skyline and street behind them almost have a 3D, sort of toy perspective like the couple were "dropped into" the scene in photoshop?  Don't get me wrong, it's a great shot, I'm just wondering how you got the shot to have sort of a surreal quality to it.  Twilight Zone perhaps?

EOS Bodies / Re: All I Want For Christmas...
« on: December 15, 2014, 04:36:27 PM »
To the OP: Welcome to CR. Nothing personal, but I will not tolerate another person using the term "ecosystem" for an imaging system consisting of cameras and lenses. Your cameras, etc. are not living organisms.

I think he meant, EOSsystem!   :D

Technical Support / Re: How to remove a filter that is bent.
« on: December 15, 2014, 04:32:04 PM »
Hells bells, the guy in this video is AN ANIMAL. If you follow this you might as well send it straight to Canon as I would bet the strain on the workings would do damage. The idea is not to try to tear it off the front but to twist a V in to the circumference (across the front) to reduce the diameter, therefore reducing the tension on the thread. Whilst doing this if you hold by the filter, the stress, or force will not be transmitted to the lens.

Cheers, Graham.

If you are brave enough, try this one


Well, in the videos, the original video with "Sneakers", the lens was merely cross threaded so it was much easier to remove than a fully seated, bent and tightened filter.  Also, the video referenced did OK.  This kind of thing is rarely easy to watch or perform when dealing with a precision and delicate item like a $1000+ lens.  If someone doesn't feel confident, just leave it to Canon repair.

There doesn't appear to be any banging, dropping or other shocks to the lens so I doubt that it was damaged at all unless the original drop that caused the dent damaged the lens internals.

Hope everything turns out ok for the OP.

Software & Accessories / Re: advice asked on EOS for a microscope
« on: December 15, 2014, 09:33:10 AM »
I can contribute nothing except that this is interesting to read about and it seems that this is an ideal situation for the articulating screen of the 60D or 70D.  Of course, that's moot if tethering is involved but then again, tethering would require a LOT more work, equipment and desk space.  Thanks for sharing!!

I sold my D3200 (why did I buy Nikon?) after 13 months of listing. $800

I sold my 7D after 5 months of listing. $950

My most nerve wracking purchase was a Canon 1V HS that I bought from a pawn shop in LA. (the purchase turned out fine) $400.

I'm in the process of purchasing a 1DX. $5000 ish.

I've sold a Harley. $6,3000.

Craigslist works, just ignore those negative nellies.

Thanks for the support.  I'm fine with tolerating negative nellies.  It's when CL shoots me down with no explanation or recourse that I am pretty much stuck.  And that is hard to predict or mitigate.  In general I am learning that CL isn't reliable, can't be counted on and won't do anything (doesn't give a dam) about it.  That's my primary disappointment.  And I'm learning that it's a common problem for many other CL users.


It sounds like you have put a lot of thought into this.  IMHO, I think sometimes that it would be nice for a photographer to try to see things through another photographers' eyes like you are wanting.  It would be interesting and could produce some very unique results.  After all, as you say, it's your day, your images and your vision.  The photographer is just the mechanism in this case because you can't take your own picture.  Some photographers are a bit too self involved when it comes to their 'craft'.

I think humble flexibility is key when you are working for others.  Someone on this forum once explained what being a professional is and it was mostly the ability to give the client what they wanted, the way they wanted it in a timely manner.  (Regardless of the photographers' taste or impression.)  Practicing ART & CREATIVITY that the photographer is invested in should be reserved for personal time, not professional time.

Good luck getting it all worked out.  And have a fantastic, fun and memorable day!!


Another thing I came to realize pretty quickly...

The expensive stuff sells with a lot less hassle.  For example:  The used 60D I have had listed for almost two months still hasn't sold even after lowering the price.  I've had more scam offers, low-ball offers and waste of time wafflers on that camera than anything else I have listed.  In contrast, while I still get a few low-ballers, the 6D, 5D3 and 7D2 in general sold fairly quickly to actual photographers who simply wanted to meet, inspect and buy with cash.  I usually enjoyed a nice conversation over coffee about photography or whatever topic came up.

I am possibly being naive about how folks use CL.  I assume when folks want something they do a search, find some deals and contact the seller about purchase.  I didn't realize (and I'm not sure I believe) that there is a whole "CL community" that spends their time browsing CL and "policing" or "flagging" numerous listings for mistakes or other minor things.  Major spam/scam listings, sure.  But again, maybe I'm just not tuned in to the true CL reality.

Technical Support / Re: How to remove a filter that is bent.
« on: December 12, 2014, 10:41:09 AM »
I'd try a simple solution that has worked for me, a rubber jar lid opener.  I would try that before trying using any tools:)

That's what I use!

Ditto!  And I keep a few wide rubber bands loosely wrapped around my filters case.  Also, it might help to put a thin strip of gaffer tape on the filter rim before using the rubber jar opener to give it even more grip.

My absolute last course of action if the filter is so bent that it won't budge would be to use my dremel tool to carefully cut the filter ring so I could lift it out.  This would require covering and protecting the lens element, etc first and then going very slowly and carefully.  You might not need to cut the last thin little bit that touches the lens if this allows the ring to flex enough to be removed.  You also might need to make several cuts.  Just make sure the cutting wheel is spinning in the direction so that the cutting debris shoots away from the lens.

Technical Support / Re: What photo printer do you use?
« on: December 12, 2014, 10:33:29 AM »
I purchased one of the bundles myself and would love to sell the Canon Pro-10 beast of a printer that just arrived.  I don't print images at all.  Maybe someday but no time at this stage of my life.  Anyone interested?  It came with a 50 pk of Canon Pro Luster paper too.

This experience is precisely why I would like to see a way to Buy & Sell here on CR.  But I understand it's not easy for the mods, just more work.  And CR will have to deal with all the scammers/spammers/trash that having a selling forum attracts.

It's like every picnic draws unwanted insects and potential bad weather when all you wanted to do was enjoy the day with some tasty snacks and a good drink.  Sigh...   ::)

We get married in may.
Our photographer is getting half an hour
our enjoyment of the day, the comfort of our guests is paramount. 
First, all the best wishes to you and your wife. Have fun on that day and for the rest of your lives.
Second, great opinion. Although the wedding photograpers might think different ;)
Third, don't forget to tell your guests about the "ettiquite". ;) Normally there are also a lot of cameras invited ;)

Yes!  Congratulations!!   :D

I agree, for the most part.  I think the entire wedding "industry" has gotten out of hand and over the top.  It has become a ridiculous over-the-top circus that costs tens of thousands of dollars.  I don't get it.

However, with that said, I think the photography is an important part of the wedding as long as an experienced professional photographer provides a subtle and delicate presence to capture the event.  The images are all you will have in 20 years.  A few pictures of the wedding party standing with cars may seem lacking down the road.

We did our wedding in '95 at our church.  Our primary goals were to have a good time with friends and celebrate our union (ie: spend 90% of the time partying, eating, dancing, drinking, socializing at the reception), get good photos and enjoy some nice floral arrangements.  Prioritized in that order.

We had our wedding on time.  It was well planned.  It ran smoothly.  Our photographer did the pictures before, during and after + reception.  We were done with the wedding in 20 minutes, photos were another 15 or so and then it was reception, reception, reception where we have a lot of great pictures of friends, family, etc.

The photography is usually not what ruins weddings, poor choices and poor planning ruins weddings.

My point is that our wedding album is priceless, well done and beautiful.  It was money well spent.  It didn't ruin the event or even distract from it.  Don't over simplify such an important day that you later wish you had perhaps gotten a few traditional images to look back on.  Looks will fade and you'll be glad you can look back and see how beautiful you were together at this time in your life.

Thanks for the feedback.  Yeah, last night was a rant.  I was both irritated and disappointed that CL is yet again proof that if something cool can exist, it can be corrupted and ruined by a minority percentage of abusers.  And I woke up a little cranky this morning too.  CL was created to alleviate and provide a simple alternative to exactly what it has become.  So sad.   :(

I just want to sell some stuff slowly and not have it become a full time job, logistical nightmare or complete waste of time.

Several of you have expressed your experience, thanks for that.  The most frustrating thing is that what works one time may not work tomorrow.  I have tried to post a 70-200 f/4 IS lens 4 or 5 times, even trying from a completely different PC, location and ID and it still gets ghosted.  I'm starting to understand why CL became a bigger target for serious hackers and is now fighting off DNS and other major cyber attack problems.  They are pissing people off in droves.  And if you need help, you get snide snarky smartass replies to your help request post where you are essentially told that it's a free service and you shouldn't be complaining because you are the problem, not CL.  CL is perfect, it's everyone else who can't figure it out that are the problem.  Oh, and I was told if I didn't like it, I should just go back to eBay where I belong.   >:(

Someone put up a pretty extensive Wordpress site about how bad Craigslist has become.  There are a lot of complaints on consumer sites too.  Wow.  Seems things started really going downhill in 2013.  Here is a page that explains ghosting and what they did before ghosting, which I remember.

In general, I try to just roll with the punches and adapt.  In the end, that's all you can do.  I like using CL because I get to meet some nice people and I have had some great transactions the last couple months.  For that reason I am concerned that I'll eventually have to stop CL if it becomes too much trouble.  And that's just sad.  Some days it just doesn't pay to get outta bed!!   ::)

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