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Messages - Botts

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Lenses / Re: Is your midrange gear insured?
« on: February 16, 2013, 11:37:45 PM »
Another question since I stayed clear of insurances so far: What happens if I actually loose something and the company has to replace it? Do say "No problem, no need for proof it was really stolen or it's a fraud attempt, here's your (insert value here) and have fun with it"? Does the insurance rate rise afterwards or (when) do they cancel the contract? Sorry if this sounds silly or naive, but I really have no experience with insurances at all.

My insurance company (home insurance as I'm not a pro) told me that if I'm in the USA or Canada, they'd like a police report stating the loss, but if I'm in Mexico, or a country that the police will hassle me in, they'd rather I not take the risk of reporting it.

My home insurance also didn't require an itemized list, just the ability to prove what I had in the event of loss. So I keep a copy of the receipts for all my gear in a folder in a safe, and a PDF copy of all receipts on my laptop, and in the cloud with DropBox. 

I believe this is partially because my insurance plan also covers "mysterious disappearance" without exclusion.

Canon General / Cannon / Nikon Meme
« on: February 05, 2013, 09:12:56 PM »
Haven't seen this on here yet.  Couldn't find an off-topic forum so I thought here would be best.

Lenses / Re: VC on the 24-70 f/2.8 VC
« on: February 05, 2013, 01:29:46 PM »
I'll have to rent another copy to try it then.  With the lens I was shooting with the 17-55 was decidedly better.

Also, bring that lens hood with you if you buy the Tamron 24-70mm, flare kills it's contrast.

Lenses / Re: African Safari Lens Help
« on: February 05, 2013, 01:25:41 PM »
Yikes. I wouldn't want to carry your camera bag if your thinking of bringing all of that!

The weight limits are likely far smaller than you are expecting.  Weigh your camera gear some time, it's heavier than expected.  I'd consider purchasing a LowePro CompuTrekker AW Plus.  It's huge, but it balances weight well.  In mine I had a 7D with 500L mounted, a T2i, 70-200 f/4, 10-22mm, 430EX II, 15" MacBook Pro, and Gitzo 3541LS with Wimberley.  It weighed a ton, but carried everything I needed.

I'm looking at a Botswana Safari soon with a maximum of 46 pounds of luggage including carry-ons.  That really limits the options.

Some fast glass would be great if you're thinking of any evening animal shots.  I'd still bring the 7D, but maybe not the EF-S lenses, keeping the 7D as a backup only.  I'd also leave the 100-400 at home if you're thinking of the 70-300L.

Lenses / Re: VC on the 24-70 f/2.8 VC
« on: February 01, 2013, 10:54:13 AM »
I don't have my Aperture library with me, but when I get home I'll grab a couple.

I started even using a 1 second burst to allow the VC to for sure have a chance to settle.

With respect to AFMA, I used Focal Pro on the lens as soon as it arrived, and got good AFMA results, so that's not it.  It's clearly motion blur.

Lenses / VC on the 24-70 f/2.8 VC
« on: February 01, 2013, 02:53:54 AM »
Hello everyone!

I just rented a 24-70 f/2.8 VC from and have been using it to shoot around Disneyland.  One thing I'm noticing, and wonder if it may be just this copy is that the VC/IS, isn't nearly as good as I had expected.

I have extensively used a 7D & 17-55 f/2.8 IS combo, and the IS on the 17-55 seems at least a full-stop equivalent better than the Tamron's VC, closer to 2 full stops.  I could handhold 80% of my shots sharp on the 17-55 at 1/8, but I'm only hitting about 20% sharp with the 24-70 @ 1/20th.

Has anyone else been able to do a similar comparison?

Lenses / Re: Quick decision help: canon 24 vs zeiss 21
« on: January 15, 2013, 04:13:50 PM »
I would qualify Optikus's reply : manual focussing on an slr is much more difficult with wide angle lenses than with longer focal lenses. That's because things don't "snap in focus" in the same way, due to the wider dof. You may see things in focus on your viewscreen, which provides a small enlargment of your picture, but when printed at a significant size, you find out that your focus plane is not where you expected it to be.

Even if you've manual focused with an SLR before it may not be like MFing on a DSLR.  Keep in mind that MF only SLRs had good focusing screens that sacrificed brightness for accuracy.  Things like split prisms are extremely useful.

New SLRs don't have these focusing screens and thus it is extremely hard to nail manual focus.  You could always use liveview to MF in 5 or 10x, but this is slower.

Expect to upgrade the focusing screen (not easy) in your 5D3 to maximize MF lenses.

Lenses / Re: 6D & new lenses
« on: January 15, 2013, 12:06:15 PM »
I'm getting a 6D this week, moving from my Canon XS. I'm 41 and am not a pro, but w/ 2 boys in scouts/soccer/choir/skiing and a lot of travel out West and in the Catskills I have an eclectic mix of photo opportunities, I don't want to miss anything.
  I love the photo-journalistic style of photography. Over the last year, I've shot exclusively the Sigma 30mm f1.4 (50mm equivalent) on my crop camera to better learn this science/art. What I learned best was that I love shooting w/o a flash, but that the 50mm equiv. is often not wide enough, and that I need more iso, hence full frame.
   I can do the 6D and starter lenses now to get a feel for what I really like in Ff, and can do a serious lens @ 1x per year thereafter. I'm thinking about starting w/ 6D and 40mm 2.8 STM, and Tamron 70-300 now, then moving to 70-40 and a 35mm f1.4 the next year. Followed in year 3 by a 70-200L 2.8 IS, year 4 w/ a 24-70 2.8. Somewhere in there getting a 135 F2 as well for indoor events.
   What I could really use is some input on whether this is the right game-plan, or whether I should just get a 24-70 2.8 now, and fill in from there (only hesitation is IS)?
   Thanks for any productive input from a first time poster on this great site!

I would recommend that given what you are going to shoot, you must seriously consider the 135L. The lens is an absolute beast for indoor sports, low light conditions and street photography. Also, this is one of the relatively cheaper L lenses Canon offers and is perfect "value for money".

Many people forget about the 100f/2 USM.  This lens is half the cost of the 135L, almost as sharp, and it tracks action really well.  I'd put the $500 savings from buying the 100/2 instead towards a good normal length zoom.  Or instead buy a 200/f2.8 for the extra length.

I'd say start with the 40STM, and get the 50/1.4 later if you really feel you need that extra stop.  My 50/1.4 only goes on in really special occasions.  (Mostly dark rides in Disneyland).  Otherwise, I use the 40STM.

Also, rather than a 35L, I'd seriously consider a 17-40 or 16-35mm.  Way more versatile, and I don't find I need that fast of glass in a wide angle lens.  I'd just throw on my 50/1.4 instead.  When I was shooting crop, I'd have had a 35L high on my list, now that I've shot FF for a little bit, the 35L has dropped on my lens list.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 6D + 24-105 vs T4i + 24-70 II
« on: January 15, 2013, 11:22:57 AM »
For $2,699 and $2,499 if you can find a great deal, you can effectively sell the 24-105mm for probably $750 used after you have the cash to go to the 24-70 f/2.8.

Also, I reread the gear you had before.  Did you feel you were lacking normal length lenses back then?  You effectively had a 16-35mm and a 70-200mm before.  Also, how did you find the apertures that you had back then?

The 10-22 was a 3.5-4.5, on a crop sensor.  When you consider the ~2 stop ISO advantage on the 6D vs the T3i, you could effectively shoot a 16-35mm f/7-8.8

You could probably consider buying a used 70-200mm f/4IS due to the ISO advantage on the 6D as well.  If you went used, again, you could sell this for a minor loss when you want to upgrade to f/2.8

Lenses / Re: Lens firmware update
« on: January 13, 2013, 06:50:43 PM »
The firmware update isn't MacOS software.  All the Mac needs to do is mount the .dmg file so you can copy the file to a CF/SD card.

To the OP - hopefully you're aware you can't use any body to update lens firmware, you need a 2012 body (T4i/650D, 5DIII or 1D X).

The 6D will also work.

I have both for my 6D.  However, if I were shooting crop, I'd pick up a Sigma 30, and sell the 50/1.4 to fund a 40STM.

I use the 50mm f/1.4 when I need the low light for events where I can't use a flash, or I want extreme depth of field.

However, at almost every other point, I've got the 40STM on my camera.  I like the slightly wider focal length.  It's also incredibly sharp.  If I'm shooting an event with a strobe, I'll go with the 40STM over the 50mm every time, set it to f/4 and you've got IMO the right amount of DOF, and super sharp images.

I also like that if I want to travel light and without my camera bag, I can throw the 40STM in a pocket, and keep the 70-200 f/4L IS on the 6D.  It covers most of the range I need, and I don't need to worry about bag checks or the weight.

Also, another nice bonus is that the 40STM is cheap enough I don't even bother with a lens cap for it, so it's always ready.

Finally, despite thinking that us Canon owners are the only ones with a "body cap" lens, Olympus M43 users have an even smaller option!  Only downside is it's a fixed f/8 with the focus set permanently hyperfocal.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 6D weatherproofness, tested.
« on: January 13, 2013, 01:47:27 PM »
+1 for insuring your camera gear!  Then you don't have to worry about the weather when you're shooting!

Lenses / Re: 17-40 vs 16-35, which one got the mojo ?
« on: January 12, 2013, 03:52:43 PM »
If the OP does want to purchase a 17-40mm, I have heard of problems until Canon "updated" them, or fixed the production line.

Does anyone know when this fix occurred?

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Reikan FoCal Pro with 40 STM
« on: January 12, 2013, 03:45:58 PM »
I just AFMA'd my 40mm today with FoCal and got "excellent" result confidence.   

What I did notice (and I didn't put this all together til now), the 2nd lens I tried, my 35mm f/1.4 L, couldn't get decent results after 3 attempts.  I'm wondering if the battery (which was at 80% after I was finished with the 40mm) or camera body temp had something to do with the ability to get good results.

When I used FoCal before, the first lens I tried always got "excellent" results (shown on the printout under "result confidence").  but none of the lenses after that ever got that rating (usually good to poor but never excellent).

After boosting my lighting to EV 10.5 it worked like a charm.

I redid my 50mm and got good results again.  I redid the 70-200mm f/4IS and got excellent results that matched the first time.

I also moved my tripod + 30 pounds of weight from carpet to hardwood.  That also really helped it appears.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: whats up with 5d2 used pricing?
« on: January 12, 2013, 03:30:55 PM »
as a 450D user I'm on the hunt for a good deal on a 5d2 or save for 6D or 5d3   

however I always see people selling bodies with 5-25K clicks attempting to sell the 5d2 for 1500 or even more, because they spent 2 grand on it a year ago. 

I dont think I'd pay more than 1400 with body and kit lens.   Is everyone crazy hoping we don't know what the market looks like or just hoping to find a sap.

Considering you can buy a 6D with 24-105 kit for $2,499 and sell the lens for $800 with no questions asked. That makes the 6D a $1,699 camera. 
For the extra $200 you're getting way better AF, and better ISO performance.  You also gain the "silent shooting" which is great for events.

The 5D2 for that price makes no sense at all.  I'm sure it's people who factored in "depreciation" when the bought the camera, and planned to get "x" amount when the sold it.  The onslaught of the 6D was probably unexpected.  Maybe these sellers thought, I paid $2400 new, 25% depreciation in year one takes you to $1800, and 20% depreciation in year two takes you to $1440.
A perfect example is, they'll have a rental price based on what they paid for the lens new, and then what they expect to get when they sell it used.  That's why occasionally you'll see gear pop up used on for the same as the current new price.  I.e. they listed the 50mm/1.4 for $300 last week, which is the same as what B&H was asking new.  Strangely enough it sold, but the point is that likely doesn't want to take a write down on what they expected used gear to be worth.

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