October 02, 2014, 10:46:24 AM

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Messages - johnf3f

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1
Some very interesting observations!
I can see many liking this camera and I was looking at it for myself. Unfortunately it is completely useless for my uses - pity as I quite fancied the A7 version - ah well it will have to be a 6D or 5D3, bulky and heavy but they do have reasonably quick AF and viewfinders (optical).

2
When I got into Wildlife photography I had a 20D and a 100-400, now I use a 1DX with either an 800 F5.6 or a 300 F2.8. I think you can guess what my vote was!

3
Premium = the current additional cost for additional features.  1D4 = $1500, 1Dx = $6799

I'm sorry, we must use current values for value tradeoff analysis

I was merely quoting the relative prices of my camera to show that the 1DX need not be such a price jump as many seem to think. Naturally if you are going to compare a new current camera to a superseded, lesser, used model it is going to be more expensive - that seems pretty obvious.
As to the 1DX being worth the extra, to me, it most certainty is! If you are using long lenses in less than perfect light then the difference in AF and ISO performance is a lot, so much so that I have only used the IS on my Canon 800 F5.6 once (briefly) this year so I am additionally benefiting from further improvements in AF performance from the lens as well as the camera. The AF benefits of turning off IS are very small but I am getting more successful shots since turning it off, this applies to a friends Canon 600 F4 L IS as well, doesn't seem to make much difference with my 300 F2.8 L IS though.
If you are shooting in reasonable light then the 1D4 is still an excellent camera - the 1DX is simply better.

4
I have shot the 1Dx and know what it can do but it's not worth the premium IMO especially when I scored a 24K actuation 1D4 for $1500.  Maybe if the 1Dx had 24MP+ or priced around $3500, but not now.

Premium?
My 1DX cost 100 GBP less than my 1D4 - both bought new after their prices had dropped from their initial highs.
As to 24mp - no thanks especially if it cost any high ISO performance, which (with current technology) it is bound to do. As I stated in my previous post the 1D4 is a fine camera and I loved mine but the 1 DX is significantly better for my uses especially with the longest lenses.

5
It looks like I can get a 1D4, 7D2, and 5D3 for less than the price of a 1Dx and sell off my 5D2 and 70D.  So if the 7D2 can do that, I will get one then sell my 5D2 and 70D to get the 5D3 or whatever is coming down the line

Having had the 1D4 and having tried the 5D3 (both VERY nice cameras) but not being able to comment on the 7D2 yet, I can see why you are concerned at the price of the 1DX! I would therefore strongly suggest that you do not try out a 1DX under any circumstances. I had my 1DX for 3 months before I sold my 1D4 and can confirm that the advances are significant and well worth the extra expense, though the extra weight is not welcome.
You also mention the "crop reach". Having gone from APSC (1.6 crop) cameras to APSH (1.3 crop) to full frame I am not really experiencing any significant loss of reach or pixel density and would certainly not entertain a smaller sensor DSLR with current technology for my uses.
I am not a sports shooter, I shoot mainly small birds using the Canon 800mm F5.6 L IS and 300mm F2.8 L IS - so if there were a significant loss of reach I would know about it.

6
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Next purchase?
« on: September 28, 2014, 05:52:29 PM »
Unlike others I am not lusting after the Canon 200-400 - mainly because I would rarely use it at 400mm and mostly use it at 560mm.
However, having used one, I think it is a great lens if it suits your needs. The first thing that struck me was how fast the AF is. It made my 600 F4 IS seem distinctly pedestrian and was VERY nearly as quick as my 300 F2.8 - maybe as quick! Even on a 6D it is going to AF pretty quick.
I don't own a 6D (yet!) but I am a fan of this camera, nevertheless I can't help feeling that for sports etc a significantly faster camera may be a better first step. I replaced my Canon 1D4 with the 1DX and find it to be a significantly faster responding camera with superior AF.
I would normally advocat glass before camera bodies but perhaps you should try a 1DX before you decide.

7
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Why haven't you left canon?
« on: September 28, 2014, 05:40:01 PM »
Why haven't you left canon?

For my uses there are only 2 systems - Canon and Nikon.
Played with the Nikon D800E recently, as well as the 500 F4 VR - very nice too. Pity the owner was so pissed off when he tried my Canon gear!

Why was he pissed I wonder? Just curious...

AF speed and lock, ISO performance (dull afternoon), flexibility of my AF system and he commented on the overall speed of my camera and how the main controls (shutter release etc) had a better more positive "feel" - his thoughts not mine. I thought his camera and lens combination was pretty good but the typical Welsh light didn't really give his sensor a chance to shine. His AF was pretty slow and didn't track as well as I am used to but that is to be expected as I was using a 1 series so it is not really fair to compare them directly - though I was using a slower lens.
What I think really got to him was that, for our conditions (photographing small birds) the Canon setup proved significantly faster with a much higher "Hit Rate" - this combined with the fact that I hadn't paid much more than he did yet had a faster/more responsive camera (1DX) and a better (though slower) lens that is 300mm longer.

8
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Why haven't you left canon?
« on: September 27, 2014, 04:02:01 PM »
Why haven't you left canon?

For my uses there are only 2 systems - Canon and Nikon.
Played with the Nikon D800E recently, as well as the 500 F4 VR - very nice too. Pity the owner was so pissed off when he tried my Canon gear!

9
Software & Accessories / Re: UniqBall
« on: September 24, 2014, 05:36:48 PM »
I have been considering the larger version for my 300 and 800mm lenses. Andy Rouse is promoting them over here in the UK and they seem to be getting some very good feedback. I am not certain that I could get on with having to have some friction (to prevent the lens drooping) compared to the free movement of my Wimberley 2.
I would be interested in your observations when yours arrives.

10
More pixels on the bird. That is what I get with crop camera. Pixel density. If I were shooting stuffed birds I would use full frame and the 180 mm macro lens. In real life, it is hard to get enough pixels on the bird.

Curious- I have gone the opposite route!
My main subjects are small birds and I have achieved better results when I moved to larger sensors (Apsc to Apsh to FF). True the cameras have improved in areas other than sensor size but the pixel density has dropped significantly - yet I achieve better results, not to mention the silly ISO levels that I can now use. My 18mp FF sensor is looking sparsely populated compared to the current rash of high MP sensors but, in all the comparisons that I yet have tried, produces better results for me.

11
As I wildlife photographer I don't see too much use for a 7D2 in less than perfect light

That's the problem with describing the newer crop cameras as "wildlife" cameras.  The newer, high MP Canon crop sensors only work well in the best of light.

Reach doesn't matter much if fur and feather detail is obliterated by noise. I think we're at the point now that unless you shoot tiny birds, FF is the way to go for all applications.
+1
Though I should say that I generally photograph small birds (Kingfishers etc) and I am loving the results from my 1DX - significantly better than my 1D4 was and it also (in my opinion) gives a touch more reach despite the lower pixel density.

12
From what I have read the 7D2 is nearly there.
Not in the reach department - even the very best APSC sensors offer very little reach advantage and bring along a number of disadvantages such as ISO performance etc, etc.
Canon could have mitigated this by dropping the MP count about 6mp from the 7D - but instead they increased it by 2mp! As I wildlife photographer I don't see too much use for a 7D2 in less than perfect light - but, to be fair, I will give one a go.

Hmm I have to disagree. After I sold my 7D and 5D2 to get a 5D3 I did miss the 7D reach at times. So I'm not sayng that as a 7D owner trying to defend it. I simply got more detail on birds when I used the 7D a majority of, although not all, the time.

If they cut 6MP off it and made it 12MP the high iso performance would probably only improve by maybe 1/4 stop, being generous, at print view. Does it matter if the 100% view noise is worse? 100% view is not a fair comparison.

If it were only 12MP the reach advantage over the 5D3 would be a lot less and at that point, other than for the fps (of course 10fps vs 6fps is a big difference granted), why not get the 5D3? But what about a used 1D3 or 1D4 at that point? OK, I guess those are bulky.

But I don't see the point in giving up the reach just to, maybe, maybe, get 1/4 stop better SNR. And don't forget the tighter the 'grain' the less objectionable it looks and the more room you have to apply advanced NR techniques (as opposed to the simple filtering of high frequency noise from less MP).

You gain reach when the noise is not a problem and only get a tiny bit more noise, tiny bit, when the noise is a problem.

I have been through the Apsc/Apsh FF cycle and have yet to experience any significant loss of reach - in fact when I changed from the 1D4 to the 1DX I appear to have the same or even greater reach.
I am not too much up on the technical side but if Canon were to produce a 12MP Apsc sensor with the same tech as the 7D2 sensor then I would expect a significant improvement in ISO performance.
As to the "tiny bit more noise, tiny bit" I find the current 7D to be barely adequate under South Wales lighting conditions much of the time (hopefully the Mk2 is better) and at my normal working ISOs it is too soft as well as noisy. Admittedly I am using an 800mm lens so higher shutter speeds are required but my FF 1DX achieves this with ease and gives clean files - I have yet to use NR software with this camera. I just feel that it would be nice for Apsc shooters to have some of the advantages that the larger sensors can give, hopefully without the expense!

13
Lenses / Re: used 300 f2.8 IS or new sigma 120-300 f2.8
« on: September 23, 2014, 03:08:47 PM »
Go for 300MkI. I tried both, and there is quite a bit extra IQ from the Canon. The difference is even more pronounced with 1.4x extender...

Thanks for the reply and suggestion. I will go for the Canon model.  :)

I have one myself - you won't regret this decision.
I often use mine with a Canon 2 x Mk3 extender, whist it is not as good as a 600 F4, it makes a very portable and high quality 600mm.

14
From what I have read the 7D2 is nearly there.
Not in the reach department - even the very best APSC sensors offer very little reach advantage and bring along a number of disadvantages such as ISO performance etc, etc.
Canon could have mitigated this by dropping the MP count about 6mp from the 7D - but instead they increased it by 2mp! As I wildlife photographer I don't see too much use for a 7D2 in less than perfect light - but, to be fair, I will give one a go.

15
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: f8 AF question or the 7D and 1D4
« on: September 04, 2014, 01:48:54 PM »
It would appear that your extender is of the non-reporting type as it should not work with that lens and the 7D which will not AF below F5.6.
The 1D Mk4 is designed to AF at F8. The AF will slow down quite a bit but I found mine accurate with a Canon 2 x extender on 300 and 600mm F4 lenses.

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