December 19, 2014, 08:08:23 AM

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Topics - jdramirez

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Lighting / 72" umbrella... what to look for and what to avoid?
« on: December 03, 2014, 02:40:20 PM »
I know softies can give better catch lites, and umbrellas may not look as professional as studio lighting... but I'm cheap andi havea chance to get a 72 inch all white for $25 or a black back silver front for $35... (newer brand which can be a draw back) but once had newer stuff before and it doesn't prevent me from going back to that well.

So... any caveats,  72 is just unwieldy,  don't buy the all white,  don't buy the black/silver, set the 600ex rt to manual focal length and set it at...

I prefer not to throw away good money on something that seems like a good idea but isn't...

Canon General / What were you hoping to buy on Black Friday?
« on: November 29, 2014, 09:19:23 AM »
Last year Adorama had a 6ft... maybe 7ft umbrella for $50... and I was hoping that shooting star would be seen again.  But no.  Also last year, Buydig via ebay was selling a 100L for $700ish after rebate... but again, not this year.  Having said that, I just sold my 2nd 100L, so I really should just stay out of the 100L business.

I was also hoping that Amazon would have a deal like they have had in past years... where you buy an entry level body with a kit lens and then they practically give you the 55-250 and the 75-300 for free.  But no. 

Having said that, I think I got in on the photo deal of the season... Kohls was selling a t5, kit lens, and a 75-300mm for 449 plus 6% tax, but then you could get 9 or 10% back using a cash back site, plus getting $15 kohl's cash for every $50 you spend, plus this yes 2 you points... so I bought the maximum allowed of 5. 

So I paid $2380, but I'm getting $675 in kohl's cash (the wife is going on a shopping spree), $112.50 in the yes to you points, and $202 in cash back... so my total for 5 bodies and 10 lenses my cost is $1390.50.

So I'm pretty psyched about that. 

This is pre-mature as we haven't seen photos from the new 100-400L, but the presumption is that the image quality will be outstanding as many of the new offerings from Canon have been recently.  With the presumption that the image quality for the new 100-400mm mkii will be superior to both the mki version and the 70-300mm L, so much so that present owners of the aforementioned lenses opt to sell their zooms to defray the cost of the purchase of the mkii.

I foresee an initial flooding of the market which will drive down prices, and after a few months, the price should rise and plateau into its "new" used price.

For historical used pricing, I'm considering the used data from camel camel camel which holds an rudimentary archive of lowest used prices.  This doesn't provide data regarding the condition of the lens in question nor does it consider the reputation and reliability of the seller. 

70-300mm L

First... new pricing without consideration of discounts, negotiations, or rebates.  September we saw a price drop in the minimum advertised pricing for the 70-300L.  The price went from $1600 to $1450 (USD).  With consideration of a regression line/curve, the used price was around $1290 to $1180 prior to the price drop.  After the price drop there was a small market correction and the price $1150 to $1040.  Considering the time from September 1st through the present, the price for the lens is around $1080.  (The frequent drop in price down to $890 is ignored because that is a scammer posting on Amazon). 

So with the 100-400 mkii's release, we should see the 70-300L's price further depressed... I'm estimating down to $950 with a standard deviation of $50... so as low as $900 for a very good condition lens.  The price should rebound shortly thereafter to around $1000.

100-400mm L (mki or classic or whatever yall want to call the original)

Secondly... new pricing without consideration of discounts, negotiations, or rebates.  The price has been $1550 to $1700... but that's not really a fair picture considering there has been a rebate avialable for the lens more than there hasn't been.  So the new price after rebate is roughly $1300.  There is a good deal of recent fraudulent postings with the 100-400mm... so I'm going to just cut to the chase and estimate that the used selling price has been roughly $1250 to $1030 with a recent recent price drop in the last two weeks as the rumors of the mkii version became to pick up steam. 

So with the 100-400 mkii's release, we should see the 100-300L's price further depressed, though it seems to have already begun... This may sound like a broken record, but I'm estimating down to $900, but I see a greater deviation... I can see $800 consistently being the asking price and being quickly snatched up.  Used prices will plateau around $950...

This is all conjecture... and I'm not really in the market for either lens.  i wouldn't mind finding out that I'm wrong about the 70-300 and the price goes even lower (at which point maybe I'm in the market for the lens).  It's also possible I'm entirely wrong... the release of the 24-70mm f/2.8L mkii went up in price for a used lens... so future telling is still a mystery.   

Pricewatch Deals / Deal: X-Rite i1Display Pro $149 at B&H Photo
« on: November 01, 2014, 10:13:06 PM »

Add it to your cart... discount with appear at checkout... or before... but somewhere before you pay.

I don't have much more to say than that...

Post Processing / Why isn't there a magic wand in Lightroom?
« on: October 30, 2014, 11:30:11 PM »
I've been using the magic wand in photoshop since 1998... so it isn't exactly cutting edge technology.  I want to select a background... darken it... and leave my subject untouched...

I suppose I can guess the answer... it is because I should be using photoshop since they work best in tandem... but seriously... a magic wand... it seems silly to not have that stand alone functionality in LR.

Having said that... if it is there... and I'm merely ignorant... I will withdraw my outrage.

I got a new copy of Light room 5... in a retail box and somehow it found its way into the recycling bin.  Yeah... maybe I shouldn't have left it on the floor until I was ready to install it, but it didn't look like trash.

The person who I'm related to by marriage and lives in my home  is the only one who cleans, so I'm ok with the occasional why is this now missing for the rest of my life... because it is a fair trade off to having to clean.

Maybe I need labels that say, NOT TRASH.

It is used, but it it is in like new condition.  I bought it in a package and I don't need or want it.  Amazon will give me $217 as a trade in... but if y'all want it it's yours.

Software & Accessories / Optimizing your monitor for print production...
« on: September 01, 2014, 01:44:29 AM »
So I just retired my old Dell 20 inch monitor and it did a more than adequate job of recreating the print color and and exposure I received from my printer of choice, Costco. 

I replaced the Dell with a vanity 39" Panasonic tv;jsessionid=4F0EC0247B9821FA3FC38EE9E23ED333.bbolsp-app03-139?id=1219093275246&skuId=3730052&st=39%22%20panasonic%20led&cp=1&lp=2... which I don't expect to use for photo editing.  It is mostly there because I wanted a tv for my bedroom and I like playing really old school video games (Milon's Secret Castle) on a big screen. 

I also picked up a 23" Viewsonic ips screen which I did expect to use for photo editing... I turned down the backlighting a good deal on both, but the color on the panasonic seems better and more accurate than the color on the viewsonic (maybe too little red, and too much green)

So I need to fix it.  I was thinking about having a color wheel or vertical bars of color (no freaking clue what they are called) printed out from costco and then do my damn-dest to match the colors by messing with the settings.

So, since I basically rely on everything I do on ya'lls opinion, does this sound right?  Or is there a better cheap way to set up the monitor.  Ideally, I would like to have both perfect, but I know using a tv is a pipe dream. 

I have had two... the same one actually, but I think I lost the first one... the reason I think I lost the first one is because my house is a Mess with a capital M.  It very well could just be hiding under that pile of dead cats.  :/

It was a Dolica Monpod and it served a dual purpose... monopod for me and a walking stick for my daughter.  I'll admit... it was light enough in weight... I could convert it to put a ball head on it (though i didn't like the stability), it was strong enough that it could hold my camera gear and my daughter's weight... and it was less than $20... so perfect for me.

I primarily used it to pan side to side for my daughter's basketball games... so it worked just fine.  The only complaint I had about it is that the rubber grip would slide down and I would have to move it back up.  Small complaint... meh.

I came into a bit of free money for buying and selling some gear in less than week.  So I thought I would go ahead and replace the Dolica that I sold for $10.

So here's my wishlist for the new monopod.  I want something sturdy, well built (preferably with the flip latches), compatible with both heads and bodies (so both types of screws), and this is the sticking point... I want the three feet @ the bottom so it will stand without me holding onto it... and they should be retractable.   

I saw someone else's post... I'm 69" tall, and the heaviest load I would put on is the 5d mkiii and the 70-200mm f/2.8 (at present).

I kinda like this... of the panning grip and the claw feet... but it doesn't have a head... and I would like a bonus head if I'm spending that much money... it also doesn't have the flip lock...

and I like this flip lock, claw feet, and it does have a head... but that big panning grip is annoying... so I would probably not use the head that often. 

and I guess this is my 3rd option, but the stick feet look like they wouldn't be ideal to use and the head isn't a ball head... so maybe it will take some getting used to, but it does have the flip locks... And then there is this one... which has a fluid base for easy panning that is adjustable... and the flip locks... and while it isn't a ball head... it does have a head that's a bonus... and it has the feet I like... but that sansui... it appeals...

So I'm thinking my best best is to get the monopod I like and just buy a separate ball head that I'm fond of... but that's more money and suddenly my bonus free cash is spent and now I'm spending money that I don't want to spend... So I would greatly appreciate if yall can point me in a direction on a monopod yall like and head... ideally in one purchase which would reduce the cost... huff.

I'll have more details later, but it is used but in excellent condition... maybe very good.  I'm not sure what to charge... I normally sell on Amazon... so they take 8%... I think this takes 4%... So let's say $950...

Manufacture code: October 2008
Hood: included
Circular Polarizer filter: included
UV filter: included
Front lens cap: included
Rear lens cap: included
Useless leather bag: included
Original retail box: included

It really isn't that big of a deal.  I was at a AA baseball game and I was using my 5Dmkiii @ iso 3200ish, 1/1250ish, and my 600ex-rt on body.  I was taking photos throughout the game from the stands... literally in my seat and in the 6th inning I'm requested by an employee of the team to kill the flash.  The guy was nice enough and polite enough, so I'm really not complaining about being asked to kill the flash.

I suppose my question is... do yall just kick up the iso and live with the results in lieu of using flash at sporting events?  Considering it is semi-pro... and if 6 o'clock is right behind the catcher, I would say that I was at 7 o'clock... maybe 7:30ish... It just seems like they should be able to deal with the noise and one lone flash... though this is their profession... and if one at bat leads to 5 runs and a significant bump up in their ERA... so they DON'T get the call up to the pro's... so I understand this specific circumstance...

I will say it gave me an opportunity to force myself to shoot at iso 12800 which I never do... so I guess that's a sliver lining.

FOR SALE Photo Equipment / For sale... stuff... all kinds of stuff...
« on: August 07, 2014, 09:38:41 PM »
I do sell lenses and bodies (mostly of the entry level variety) but at present, I only have stuff... I'll post pictures when I meander upstairs.

*New* Sandisk 16 GB SD card, class 10 - $10

*New* Lexar 16 GB SD card, class 10 - $10*New* a small SLR bag from Amazon basics - $10*New* small SLR by Case Logic -$10*New* Vivitar 58mm filter kit (UV, CPL, ND8) - $10 Lexar 8GB Compact Flash Memory Card Professional 800x UDMA 7 - $15. I upgraded to a 32GB 1200x card

Used Lexar 16GB SD card, class 10 - $10. Canon Branded bag - $10

I'm a fan of bokeh... but when you have a single color backdrop behind your subject... shooting at a thin depth of field just seems like a dangerous game to play.  This is the shot... if only the eyes were in focus. 

Stopping down to f8 solves some of the thin dof issues... and since you can control the lighting, the images won't be under exposed... but then we don't want the images to sharp to show how fugly our subject is...

So I think... 100L for really sharp eyes, but 85 f1.2 for softer blurred skin, but maybe my in home studio isn't that big... so just go for a 35 L...

I make my decisions based on how I feel at the moment... some at f8... some at .11 inches of dof...

I was in a thread about someone going to Africa and the obligatory word of warning was given about theft of gear...

It occurred to me... what about locking or bodies with s code the way we do our phones.  Photographers need immediate access to their gear, so doing so each time it powers up isn't an option... but what about every 24 hours?  In the morning, enter the code and it won't require the code to be entered until the next twenty four hours...

If the body has wifi, you can back up the code to Canon interwebs and if you forget, you can have an email sent to your account.

Would this deter theft at all... certainly might deter resale value... to get the camera working again, a thief would have to connect it to the computer and re flash the firmware to the device... which might be too much work for a thief.

I guess they could sell it for parts.. Huh...

Pricewatch Deals / Searching for a lightroom 5 deal...
« on: July 13, 2014, 11:43:03 AM »
I was content with using lightroom 5... and then my desktop computer decides to commit suicide... thought it might have been auto erotic asphyxiation considering the materials on the hard drive... but I digress. 

If yall come across any decent deals with LR6 as an add-on or on just the software alone... I'd be very interested. 

I'm sure this goes without saying for most people, but I'm not interested in the Creative Cloud.

Also, when you buy the software... you can get a multi-use registration code... because I would want one for my laptop and for my desktop's successor.

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