July 30, 2014, 02:25:38 PM

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Messages - JPAZ

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Reviews / Re: 35/2 IS Review by Dustin Abbott
« on: April 11, 2014, 04:45:04 PM »
Nice review.  Thanks.

Lots of info in this thead that has got me thinking.

First, the 40mm Pancake.  I also have a difficult time figuring out where it fits into my regime.  Frankly, I do like using it on the M with the adapter and almost never put it on the DSLR.  But, as others pointed out, the price was very right when this lens came out and it does fit into my pocket.

What's really got me thinking is using the M in conjunction with the DSLR.  I am not accustomed to carrying more than one camera body on my adventures but the discussions, here, were like an epiphany for me.  I can carry my 5Diii with my usual 2 or three lenses and then also bring the M with an appropriate lens to expand my opportunities while out and about.  That's another reason why I look about on CR.....to get new ideas and to learn.

Photography Technique / Re: What if we were still shooting slide film?
« on: April 09, 2014, 10:16:58 AM »
I've been guilty from time to time of taking a less than stellar shot thinking I'll fix it later in post (which never turns out to be such a wonderful image anyway).  I'd never do this with film because working in the darkroom to get the guy out of the background is much more difficult than using the clone stamp in PS.  Certainly not all of my film exposures were keepers, but I think I was more careful and more selective.

For serious trekking, I use the f-stop Loka but I have a Thinktank holster hanging from the shoulder straps and put the waist belt from the backpack through the belt loop on the holster.  That way, the camera is always there to grab and use and, with a zip, is protected from dirt and rain.  It is not ideal, but pretty reasonable.  I still need to take the pack off to change lenses but I'd think that would be the case for any setup (unless you have multiple bodies hanging in front of you.

Here's a crop from a larger pic showing what I mean.  Pardon the quality, but it is from a P&S jpeg and just to give you an idea.

Photography Technique / Re: Missed opportunity
« on: April 07, 2014, 05:26:45 PM »
Still a nice memory recorded.  Before you beat yourself up too badly, there are about a gazillion shots that don't turn out the way I wish for every one I like.

I have found one of the biggest issues I have had is the need to calm myself down.  I often jerk the camera when I am trying to get a fast shot that suddenly presents itself. So, I often get a motion artifact that is because I am moving too much at the time of the exposure.   

So, If I am just wondering around with a camera, I'll often leave it on Shutter Preferred / Evaluative metering at at least 1/500 in case an opportunity arises for which I cannot change the settings fast enough.  Does not allow for DOF thoughts,, but at least I have a better chance at getting a usable image. 

EOS-M / Re: I fell in love with EOS-M again and again
« on: April 07, 2014, 03:56:23 PM »
Nice shots.  I have a love/hate relationship with the EOS-M.  It is great because it is small and convenient.  But, at times, the lag drives me crazy.  Here's what's good:

-Size (and not too conspicuous)
-Interchangeable lenses

And here's what's bad:
-Lag time
-No dedicated viewfinder

None of this is news to any of us.  I recently took the M with me on a quick trip to Boston.  By the end of the trip, I was thinking about selling it (seeing street photo ops that were gone by the time the shutter snapped and then the wait until the next phot could be obtained).  Then, reviewing the images, I remember why I got it in the first place because of the IQ even in the OOC jpegs.

So this camera is one to love but also to hate.  It fills a spot in my photo armamentarium, but is not the item I would use to shoot pics of fast moving kids, random people in action or anything moving.

Then I put on my 1.4x iii and went outside.  Again, all hand held at 420 mm.

First is f/4; 1/1000; iso-200 and second is f/ 4.5; 1/1000, iso 125 (sorry but I don't have a cat to submit, just a dog  ;D ).

So, I am thinking I made the right purchase, especially since the price is now almost $2000 more than what I paid!  In retrospect, should have purchased 3 of these and sold 2 for a profit!  Maybe next time.....

Crazy day but got to try the new toy.  Put my Ebay LP-100 plate on the foot for now.  I've ordered a drop in screw CPL and got a pretty good deal on a 2x iii (wish I'd thought of that before April 1!).

Here's a few "fooling around" shots, all hand held.  Did not do any AFM as of yet..

First is existing light f/ 7.1; 1/50; iso 12800

Second is f/2.8; 1/50; iso 10,000

Before you start spending $ on lenses, I'd work on getting very familiar with the camera.  i know the trip is coming up soon but try to shoot alot between now and then and carefully critique your own work.  Even after years of shooting, I still learn and modify my techniques as I use my camera.

As far as lenses are concerned, decide what is your "must have" range.  Again, if yo find yourself always wishing you could be closer, you need something longer than the 18-55.  Or, if you wish you could step back farther a lot, you need something wider (although a panoramic technique can make do). 

While certainly things like optical quality and faster apertures are considerations, I'd consider adding the EF-S 10-22 for wide and any of the 70-200's for longer.  Tripods are nice if you use them and are willing to carry one, but given the size of your setup, something like a small Gorillapod or a bean bag might make as much sense.  Then, get an extra battery, some extra memory cards, and finally figure out how you'd like to carry all this and you are good to go for a long time.

Canon General / Re: PMIdigital - worth it?
« on: April 05, 2014, 12:12:47 PM »
While almost all of my online purchase have been through B&H or Adorama or Amazon (and recently, Camera Canada), I have had good experiences with PMI and BuyDig as well.  As with anything, just use common sense.  As long as it is a new and warrantied by Canon item, they are both authorized dealers.


BTW, when I rented one last fall I added an Arca compatible plate.  Any thoughts on this versus replaceing the whole foot?

Just got the lens last night!   Played with it in existing light in my kitchen and, wow, it is everything I remember from when I rented one.

Now,  I had to order a drop in CPL for it, and I am looking for a good deal on a 2x iii. And, I'll need an Arca compatible plate. That being said, I'll be tapped out for a while!  Guess I need to reenter the GAS program  ;) .

Hope to find an excuse to shoot outdoors this weekend. 

Software & Accessories / Re: Tripod & Head - $500 or less
« on: April 01, 2014, 08:19:11 PM »
All of this depends on the budget and the intended use.  Looking at the OP's gear, there is not too much weight involved.  Yeah, I know that vibration and wind factors are better with a more substantial tripod. 

All in all, I am pretty happy with my Redged TSC-424 (Carbon fiber).  The head that came with it was just so-so.  I replaced the head with a Sirui K 40x and put Arca plates on my gear and I am "good to go." 

If I were doing a lot of Tripod work with heavy lenses, I might want something beefier.

Are the support base options any good (ones with feet at the base)?

While I've never used any of these options, I'd have to believe they are pretty unstable.  By definition, any significant weight like a tele lens would create a "top-heavy" scenario.  If you think you'd like something that is self supporting, I'd go with a tripod. 

While a but "corny" for some, check out "Old Tucson Studios".  It is a recreated old western town where many films and TV shows have been filmed.  A fire a few years back destroyed some of it but they've rebuilt some of it and there are opportunities for some interesting photos and backgrounds.

Depending on your interest and time allowances, you might want to go to the town of Oracle and check out the Biosphere, a huge greenhouse like structure that was allegedly built as a self-contained environment meant to replicate what might be done for space travel in the future.

South of Tucson, about an hour or so, is the tiny town of Tubac, and "artsy" community set in the desert that makes ro some interesting shopping, walking and photography, as well.

Pretty happy with the Sirui carbon fiber monopod

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