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Messages - wsheldon

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Photography Technique / Re: Natural Light: Corporate Headshots
« on: January 14, 2015, 03:41:00 PM »
Excellent work and case study. Thanks for sharing.

Canon General / Re: What's a good studio lens for a small studio?
« on: January 13, 2015, 04:51:20 PM »
ähm, what's wrong with your 24-105 L ??

Exactly. That lens is typically very sharp at f5.6, particularly in the 35-85 range. Mine certainly is. It's my go-to lens for indoor portraits under controlled lighting.

Lenses / Re: What the better value?
« on: January 12, 2015, 06:01:36 PM »
You can't really go wrong either way. I personally went the 70-200 f4is + 100macro route, which are awesome for general and nature photography and easier to travel with, but if portraits or events are your thing you can't beat the versatility of the 2.8 zoom. Neither 70-200 can touch the macro near their minimum focus distance, particularly the f4 (MFD sharpness is it's only real shortcoming in my experience), so if you like any kind of close-ups or macro that would argue for the f4 + macro option. Real world IQ would be very close for all 3 lenses, and each is awesome within its range.

Good luck!

Lenses / Re: Purple fringing of 85 1.2ii
« on: January 12, 2015, 09:56:56 AM »
Agreed, and ditto for the 85 1.8 (and 135 f2) wide open. Metal on instruments in concerts and eye catchlights are other bugbears for PF/LOCA I deal with regularly, but Lightroom is extremely effective at removing those artifacts when they're bothersome. I don't hesitate to shoot wide open when the shot calls for it.

EOS Bodies / Re: NEW CAMERA - EOS 80D?
« on: January 09, 2015, 03:21:27 PM »
That's a Rebel based on the switches and physical size. NFC is a very "consumer friendly" feature, which also indicates Rebel. Just look at the WiFi feature of both my cameras - 6D and 70D. They don't transfer full size image over WiFi, just resized JPEGs, which is very consumerish. I use it occasionally for a quick publish to the web, but I prefer to tweak the RAW files first. NFC is made for consumers, not professionals or enthusiasts like myself.

Sorry, but I strongly disagree that WiFi is "consumerish", plus you are confusing the WiFi capabilities of the camera with those of the *very* limited EOS App. You certainly can transmit raw files and full-quality JPEGs over Wifi using the EOS Utility from a laptop (via the Canon WFT utility), or using 3rd party iOS/Android apps like ShutterSnitch.

In my experience, WiFi in DSLRs is being quickly embraced by portrait, event and wedding shooters, as well as people setting up commercial photo booths. I'd have a hard time moving from the 6D to another camera without that feature. Shooting raw+JPEG on camera and having the JPEGs stream to an iPad in real time during a portrait shoot to show to the subject is a real game changer, IMO.

There's less you can currently do with NFC, but I'm sure serious photographers will find a use for that tech in time as well. I'm not arguing that every possible piece of tech needs to be shoe-horned into every DSLR, but Canon would be foolish to ignore the growing expectations of amateurs and pros alike when it comes to device-to-device communication.

Technical Support / Re: Replacing Canon Flash AF assist cover
« on: December 30, 2014, 11:16:07 AM »
Hi Brian.
Not sure as the picture is not great detail, but it looks to me like it might just clip, (snap fit) in once the remains of the old are completely removed. Worth asking the supplier how it fits? Just buy it and look, worst case it costs
It looks to me like that is the basic fee for a service engineer to just pick the flash up (from reading other posts here).
At the worst the flash might need to have some screws removed and bits disconnected, and some bits unclipped.
How difficult it is would seem to me to be subjective, to me I'd just get in to it, I've been in cameras, lenses, laptops, engines, gearboxes and rear axles, to me they are all just nuts and bolts jobs that start from the premise it's broke, it can't get more broke. Mine have been low value items so failure was of less financial consequence than success. I mostly succeed, but occasionally with electronic stuff I have to do it twice, or put the tools down and walk away, go back to it!
If you are not familiar with the concepts of repairing things and you fail to repair the flash you stand to loose more than you would save if you succeed, and Canon will not put your bag of bits back together for you! ;D
Let us know which way you go.

Cheers, Graham.

One other point - flash units have large capacitors, so I'd be wary of opening up the body unless you know exactly what you're doing. Otherwise you may be in for a rather large shock (literally).

Lenses / Re: Where are the new Canon 50mm and 85mm lenses?
« on: December 29, 2014, 07:25:00 PM »
I have the Sigma 35A and it's incredible. I've been eyeing the 50A, but man, I really want lighter, smaller primes.

Then again, maybe I should just buy a small mirrorless system as an alternative for when size/weight matter.

I tried that route, buying a cheap micro 4/3 system used (Olympus PEN E-PL5) for ~$200, but finding high quality lenses that don't cost as much/more than EF equivalents has been a problem. The cheap kit lenses have pretty mediocre IQ, but going up-market quickly gets you to $500-$1000 each. Due to the smaller sensor, IQ starts dropping due to diffraction by f5.6 so it's ideal to start with the biggest aperture you can, but selection is poor and prices are high for what you get. I eventually found a good price on a lightly used Panasonic 20/f1.7 (~$250), but I'm stuck with so-so Olympus 14-42 and 45-150 to round out my kit and I can't find a really good wider angle I can afford.

That said, it is a joy to carry around a 3-lens kit covering 28mm-300mm (FF equivalent) in a tiny bag that only weighs a pound or two, and still get great 16 mpix images that hold up well to ~1600 ISO, but the ergonomics suck compared to my 6D and I just don't enjoy photography as much.

A larger mirrorless with built-in viewfinder would be better, but then you're too close to the 6D in size/weight/price, so I don't see the point unless you're after some other specialized feature (like 4K video, focus peaking, etc). So going mirrorless is no panacea in my experience, tempting as it as (and practical).

Regarding the OP, I would really like to see an improved 50/1.4 or 85/1.8 (or 1.4) as well. I like the 85/1.8, and have gotten some great images with it, but the obvious purple fringing below f2.8 does really limit it's usefulness for shallow DOF work. I have bought and sold 2 copies of the 50/1.4, finding them terrible below f4 (soft and low contrast), so lots of room for improvement there as well.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: using EOS Remote with 6D, af not working
« on: December 26, 2014, 10:06:23 AM »
Chaps! I found a much better solution for this as I always shoot "back button focus". In the EOS Remote App, there is an option under settings "Show AF Button", turn that on and you get a second "shutter release" button that lets you auto focus before you shutter release.

Exactly. That's what I do as well (since I use BBF and don't want AF on the shutter button).

Lighting / Re: No 600EX-RT discounts this holiday?
« on: December 25, 2014, 11:38:13 AM »
Should we not expect any price drops on this unit at all for the foreseeable future?

The recent sale in Germany was also only half-baked on premium products like the 600rt. Obviously Canon has decided to really go for it - either people pay their price, or they have to switch to an inferior clone.

That's because if well-off customers or pros want reliability, they'll pay the price - and if people want to save money, €100 less won't matter if Yongnuo is still €150 below that. If I'm correct with this analysis, I don't expect any price drops on the 600rt - or a "little brother" 440ex-rt to appear anytime soon.

I hope you're wrong about the prospects of a 4xx-rt. I love the 600, but it's just too big to stick on a macro bracket and I don't always need all that power for a hair light or fill. A 1/2 price, slave-only 4xx-rt would be perfect for rounding out a multi-flash system. I had to buy a 90ex + 270ex just for off-camera macro that I could easily handle on my bracket, but I'd dump those in a second if a 4xx-rt came out.

I use a grip about 1/3 of the time on my 6D, primarily when shooting long events or doing kiddie sessions with WiFi on sending photos to a nearby laptop for real-time printing. The primary reason is not having to worry about battery drain, but I do really like the feel when shooting both landscape and portrait. Gives me the best of both worlds - take the grip off and tote the compact 6D around with me, or put it on and have the extra grip comfort, better balance with larger lenses and tons of battery life.

Technical Support / Re: Question about 50D known issues or recalls.
« on: December 18, 2014, 10:52:47 PM »
I bought a 50D used about 4 years ago and it's been a workhorse. At the current selling price it's a solid bargain and should server your friend well.

Software & Accessories / Re: i folded and bought CC :(
« on: December 18, 2014, 03:38:58 PM »
Thanks for the clarification on MathWorks' policy, wsheldon; that's really helpful to know.

So, given your stated needs, if Adobe were to come to you and ask how they could improve their policy to make you feel good about their subscription service--while still allowing them to make a reasonable profit from their labors--what would be your answer? There are obviously a number of ways to skin this cat, but I think the photo-hobbiest market has a legitimate beef with their current policy and if we can communicate that to Adobe they may be willing to listen.

Honestly, I think a hybrid approach would be ideal. Offer a CC subscription option with a higher start-up fee that gives you the right to keep using your latest version if you stop subscribing, but still offer the lower priced pay-as-you-go option with no start-up for the people that makes sense for. Basically an option for a perpetual license but within the existing CC infrastructure.

Offering hold-outs like me who are clinging to our full versions of CS6 and LR5 a discount for that perpetual license option would be even better (and smooth our ruffled feathers).

Software & Accessories / Re: i folded and bought CC :(
« on: December 18, 2014, 02:56:20 PM »
I just had another thought. Though the only thing I know about MathWorks' subscription model is what has been revealed in this thread, it just occurred to me that allowing someone to continue using software that they once subscribed to has major pitfalls for the publisher. For instance, it wouldn't take long for people to figure out that they could game the system by subscribing for a single month, paying their $9.99, then canceling. They could then go on using two versions (both Ps and Lr) that they had just rented until such time that they wanted to "upgrade." They'd then resubscribe, get the newer versions, then cancel again. This tactic would cost Adobe millions.

Technically Mathworks and similar companies don't offer a subscription model, but rather a software maintenance service (SMS) model. They sell you a perpetual license to use the software for a sizable fee (similar to buying a new copy of PS or LR) that includes 1 year of free software maintenance, then prompt you to pay a much reduced fee (e.g. 20%) each year after that to renew your SMS. So it's like buying a full update every 5th year, but giving you all the updates in between and giving them a steady revenue stream. Lots of technical software I use works this way.

As said up the thread, the big benefit for users is that they can keep current on all the releases as long as they want, but stop paying at any time and just keep using their last version as long as their hardware supports it. They can restart their SMS later, but they effectively have to pay a catch-up fee equivalent to the time they skipped (or just buy a new full license with 1 year SMS if that's cheaper). So there's no way for the publisher to get screwed by people churning their subscription as you postulated.

Also, I'm not saying there are not people who benefit from the Adobe subscription model. As others have said, if you're a media professional who always has to stay up to date on versions, or if you're just starting out and haven't already bought these professional-grade software packages, it's a huge bargain. No doubt about that. It's those of us in between who have already invested in these tools and want a way to upgrade only if and when we really need to and have the means to, but want to have perpetual access to our catalogs and editing tools REGARDLESS of what Adobe does in the future, that have a problem with the CC model.

Business of Photography/Videography / Re: Update on SmugMug
« on: December 17, 2014, 04:34:20 PM »
I rate them as adequate. Biggest problem I have is the place seems to be run by children, very juvenile.

The latest problem is image view tracking. Used to be you could see all image views except yours. Now they've thrown your own views into the results and tout it as some kind of benefit. I think their intent is to move you to Google Analytics.

Still seems to be about as good as is available given the options.

I agree. I'm generally happy with their (updated) site building tools, LR plugin and image rendering, but I literally cringe every time I get one of their immature emails, like "Cha-ching! Who loves ya, baby?" when someone buys prints. "Smugmug Pro" is almost a contradiction in terms. They should call it "Smugmug Buds" or something. Sad.

A little surprising to me that manufacturers of these big teles don't provide an OEM A/S-compatible foot, or even groove standard feed and then include a flush-mounted tripod screw bushing to cover all bases. Seems like a disconnect there.

Anyway, I'm using a Markins PL-55 plate for my 100-400 mk1 and I like it a lot. It's tough, thin, just a bit longer than the tripod collar foot, and has a no-slip back lip. That plate is generic so would probably work for the mk2 as well.

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