October 26, 2014, 12:53:31 AM

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Messages - Famateur

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1
Whew! One-way definitely makes it a bit easier to fit things in. If that's the case, unless you really want to see the sites in Utah, I'd do Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, Death Valley, Yosemite, San Francisco, Redwoods, then on up 101 until Lincoln City (or until you're tired of the coast), then east over to Portland. Once in drizzly Portland, Powell's books, as mentioned, is a great place to chill -- if you like reading. :)

I've actually always loved the coast during the nasty weather. The clouds, mist, rocky cliffs -- can make for some great photos. Get the sun to peak through those clouds once or twice during sunset, and you've got some dramatic skies just begging to be captured. I'd bring an ND filter and stout tripod for some silky water shots on those rocky shores.

Should be a great trip! Drive safely, and enjoy the journey as much as the various destinations...

PS: If you like split-pea soup, be sure to stop at Andersen's in Buellton, CA (right on 101, about 40 minutes north of Santa Barbara). Could really hit the spot if it's a bit nippy outside.  :P

2
If you had a shload more time, I'd consider a loop like this:

1. White Sands National Monument (Up I-10 to Las Cruces, then east on 70)
2. Grand Canyon (West on I-10 to Phoenix, then I-17 to Flagstaff, then HWY 180?)
3. Antelope Canyon Photo Tour (HWY 89 to HWY 98)
4. Lake Powell (HWY 89)
5. Zion National Park (HWY 89 to HWY 9)
6. Bryce Canyon (Back across HWY 9 to HWY 89, then HWY 63)
7. Salt Lake City and Temple Square (Go West to I-15, then head North)
8. Park City (East on I-80)
9. Columbia River Gorge (I-80 West to I-15 North, then I-84 West*)
10. Portland (You made it!)
11. Oregon Coast (Perhaps HWY 99/18 to Lincoln City, then down HWY 101)
12. Redwood National and State Parks, Fern Canyon, etc.
13. Agate Beach at Patricks Point State Park? Lots of seals at Patricks Point...
14. San Francisco
15. Yosemite (Whatever route Google says is best :) )
16. Death Valley
17. Las Vegas
16. Back to El Paso...

According to Google, hitting everything on this list would require about 70 hours of driving. Yikes. That would be 7 hours every day, without stops, so that definitely qualifies as a whirlwind tour (although only 2 hours a day more than Google's recommended direct routes). Better to have 30 days for this one...

* If you can hit Dead Man's Pass at sunrise or sunset, all the better! Not many other photo ops between Salt Lake City and the Gorge. :P

3
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: DxO mark: here we go again!!!
« on: October 24, 2014, 03:53:24 PM »
From Nikon rumors:

http://nikonrumors.com/2014/10/23/nikon-d750-camera-tested-at-dxomark.aspx/

Let the trashing begin.

I think the one that I find most amusing is that they rate the Nikon D810 higher in low-light ISO performance than the 6D. Yet, if you use the comparisons on DPReview even a blind squirrel can see how awful the D810 is at higher ISOs.

They reduce the resolution of both to 8mp which has the effect of removing visible noise.  Some buy a D810 to get the high MP count, reducing it to 8mb in order to make it look good is misleading.  If you want 36 MP but have to reduce it to get the quality, that's a disadvantage.  I often have to severely crop my images, and quickly found out that it was a big error with my D800.

Don't you know you're supposed to check your real-world experience at the door login?  :-X

4
Any chance you can fly into Portland, then take a one-way rental car down the coast and back to El Paso? That could be expensive, but it would give you time to actually stop and see some things. :P

For that matter, any chance you can skip El Paso and spend your time on the west coast?  8)

5
Is this a round trip (El Paso to Portland and back), or is it one-way?

If round trip, good luck having much time to see anything along the way in only 10 days. Using Google's recommended route from El Paso to Portland, it's still about 25 hours of driving, without stops along the way. For a return trip through California using Google's recommended route, it's another 26 hours, without stops, for a combined 51 hours of driving. That's still 5 hours of driving every day, without any stops.

If one-way, you've got a bit more time to spend at each place you choose to stop, but the route you choose will be more important. I'd rather spend a meaningful amount of time at a few neat places than rush through as many as I can hit.

6
EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 6D Mark II to Move Upmarket? [CR1]
« on: October 14, 2014, 11:56:57 AM »
Typical Canon response:

Person 1: We are not making enough money

Person 2: Well then raise the price.

Fixed that for you.


The Economic LAW of supply and demand says when the price goes up the quantity demanded goes down...   ;D

True, but both economics and mathematics also allow that maximization of the revenue curve might actually call for an increase of prices, even if units sold decrease.

We naturally want to increase units sold, but if carefully raising prices brings higher revenue with fewer units sold than with the current price and higher units sold, revenue wins.

Of course, this doesn't factor in lost lenses sold for the lost units sold... :P

7
1D X Sample Images / Re: Any Thing shot with a 1Dx
« on: October 14, 2014, 11:32:50 AM »
Had a rather heavy trip in the mountains today, Very windy, wet, low clouds and slippery. The attached looks a bit boring, with just rocks and more rocks. But up in the right corner ...
16-35 f4L IS, 1/80s, f5.6, ISO800

This reminds me of hiking to the top of Ben Nevis while backpacking Scotland a couple decades ago...

8
EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 6D Mark II to Move Upmarket? [CR1]
« on: October 14, 2014, 11:29:27 AM »
I could see them matching the features and AF of the 70D to the 6D's replacement.  Maybe increasing the FPS a bit and adding a 19 pt auto focus and DPAF.    Give it an articulated screen and you would have a very nice successor.

This is my hope. If they make the 6DII essentially a full frame 70D, I will immediately sell my 70D and buy the 6DII.

When I chose the 70D, I would have saved up a few hundred dollars more and bought the 6D if it had DPAF and articulating touch screen. I just can't live without the articulating screen...

9
EOS Bodies / Re: More 7D mk ii samples
« on: October 09, 2014, 11:31:37 PM »
Very interesting. Thanks for sharing!

I'd love to see the RAW files to get an idea of what the noise is like to start with and then what I could get as a final result in Lightroom. For web-sized photos, the cat image at 6400 ISO is pretty awesome. Makes me want to get out my 70D to see what it would do in similar circumstances...

10
EOS Bodies / Re: Next Rebel Going EVF? [CR1]
« on: October 02, 2014, 12:19:10 PM »
If Canon retired the EF-S mount, wouldn't that harm the upgrade path to EF lenses (particularly L series)? Would someone using an entry level body with EF-M mount really be as likely to buy an L lens if they have to buy an adapter, too?

I just don't see Canon dumping EF-S any time soon...

11
Pricewatch Deals / Re: Deal: Canon EOS 70D Bundle at Adorama $799
« on: October 01, 2014, 04:37:44 PM »
I already have the 70D and PIXMA Pro-100, but I'm sorely tempted to do this.

Even with careful FoCal calibration, I've never been able to get consistent focus using the viewfinder on my 70D. Live View shots are nice and sharp, so I know it's not the lens. View finder shots just seem to vary based on distance to my subject, which is frustrating. High-speed burst is just pitiful with almost zero hit rate using AI-Servo (I understand the possibility of user error -- been troubleshooting this for quite some time). I hear glowing reports about focus and speed from other 70D owners on this forum (some after Canon repair/tuning), so I know it's possible.

If I do the deal (my rebate for the printer deal came in just a couple of weeks), then I could compare the two bodies (calibrated) side-by-side to help confirm that I might have a bad copy. If the new one works properly, then I warranty-repair the old one before selling it (full disclosure to the buyer, of course). After selling the printer and the old body, I still come out ahead a couple hundred bucks, plus a bag, more paper and a memory card.

Any reason I shouldn't do this?

Edited to add: Plus, this would mean I have a body to use while the old one is visiting Canon. :)

12
I agree. I was so ready to buy it and then i come to know that even though the 1DX AF system came in, the exposure system did not!

So focus point based spot exposure :(

Yeah, and that's pure marketeering on Canon's part.  Although there may have been technical reasons for the 5DIII not having AF point-linked spot metering, there's no reason the 7DII can't have it...other than Canon reserving that feature for the 1-series bodies.

I really wish Canon would just fire their entire executive board and product planners and marketing feature planners. They could be so much more. They used to be. They have so much tech.


I want the best tech as soon as possible, too, but I suspect the board is considering more than just arbitrarily holding back tech. There's a global economic sag and the point-and-shoot market (i.e. Canon's bread and butter) is all but vanishing. This is a time where companies often choose a conservative approach to ensure long-term viability. I'd rather technology be metered out in a more steady fashion and know the company will likely still be strong ten or twenty years from now. If you release everything you have now, what do you do that's "new" when your engineers are developing technology that isn't production-ready?

It's funny how rarely we hear people complain about Sandisk "crippling" their memory cards for speed and capacity. Knew a guy who worked for Sandisk. The stuff he could tell me about was drool-worthy, and the stuff that was non-disclosable was "light years" ahead of that. Still, Sandisk wisely meters out releases at a fairly predictable pace, maximizing return on development investment and keeping pace with (or just ahead of) the competition. It's just how technology markets work.

All that said, I have my wish list, too. :P

I'd like a 70D body with a 6D sensor for the 6D price...

13
EOS Bodies / Re: High ISO Samples from the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
« on: September 17, 2014, 11:38:37 AM »

What we really need is a camera that doesn't let you take a bad picture, something that automatically chooses the best focus and tells you what pictures are good.


Hmm...that actually would be a cool idea. Imagine if the camera had an algorithm similar to FoCal in which it evaluated the sharpness at the active AF point and applied a sharpness rating to the image meta.

Then you could filter in Lightroom for sharpness ratings above a certain threshold. That could save time when you have dozens of bursts to sort through, looking for the best shots.

Maybe the geniuses at Magic Lantern could implement something like that (or already have?). If not, I bet some other genius could create a Lightroom plugin that does the same thing to photos already taken (as long as they have the AF point data). Shoot, maybe FoCal could make the plugin!  :P

Anybody else think this would be a cool feature/plugin? Does it already exist, and I'm just missing out?

14
EOS Bodies / Re: High ISO Samples from the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
« on: September 16, 2014, 06:19:48 PM »
Granger is a pretty solid Nikon shooter.  And yes, he got to rattle off 5 shots as fast as he could in whatever light available. I doubt he had time to play with AF system setup and lord knows what mode it was on.

You wonder why Canon does this? Why not give someone a reasonable chance to produce some images that show the cam in it's best light?

But that defeats the purpose. We want to see samples of images with the camera in crappy light.  ;)





* I admit I didn't read the couple of pages that have been written since the above-quoted comment, so if someone beat me to it, right on.

15
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Nikon announced D750
« on: September 12, 2014, 01:00:42 PM »
I'm all about competition, so bring it on, Nikon -- whatever you can throw at the market.

One thing I'd love to see is a Canon full-frame body with the tilty/flippy LCD of my 70D. Maybe in a 6DII? Give it similar AF points to the 70D, and I'd go for it. I guess I'm saying I'd love my 70D with a full-frame sensor at a 6D price.  ;D

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