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Topics - nightsky87

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Technical Support / "Ripple" in Image with ND Filter
« on: March 24, 2013, 08:02:35 AM »
I just got a new Hoya Pro1D 64x ND filter so I decided to take it out on a test run. I picked the Hoya over B+W for the supposed lack of color casting in the image. True enough, there was no apparent color cast in my images.

When I got back home, I was just aiming the camera at random targets and shooting. I noticed then that the images had a ripple-like pattern exactly at the middle of the frame (see attached picture). I swapped out the ND filter for my B+W UV one and the pattern was gone. Going back to the ND resulted to the pattern again. Strangely enough, going to the long end of my lens resulted to a larger ripple (much like a zoomed version). Inspection of the filter showed no dirt except some strange residue on it that is only visible when wet (see second picture).

After rigorously cleaning the filter (enough to maybe even leave some scratches :o), I put it on the camera and the pattern was there. I cleaned it again and the pattern was completely gone this time. I really have no idea what caused this. The residue wasn't at the center so a perfectly centered ripple seems strange.

Anyone have any ideas?

2
Software & Accessories / Is this support setup good?
« on: March 06, 2013, 02:34:00 AM »
I'm currently looking into a complete tripod system that should completely replace the current one. For starters, here is the list of gear I'm working with:

- Canon 5D3 w/ BG-E11 grip
- Canon 50 f/1.4
- Tamron 24-70 VC USD
- Tamron 70-300 VC USD

In terms of sheer weight, the heaviest combination would be that with the 24-70 weighing in at 1.34kg (measured lol). Center of gravity does get worse with the 70-300 though.

Right now I'm using a Manfrotto MKC3-H02 tripod and the ball head definitely can't handle the weight. I've noticed that the rivets holding the legs are starting to bend as well so it might really be time for an upgrade. The thing is, I would rather not go through intermediate upgrades and just go with a good support system that I can use for a very long time even if I invest in more lenses. On this note, the next thing I'm thinking of saving up for is the 70-200 2.8L IS II.

After searching on the web, I've listed what I *think* might be good:
- Gitzo GT2541 Mountaineer Legs (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/567541-REG/Gitzo_GT2541_GT2541_Mountaineer_6X_Carbon.html)
- Arca-Swiss Z1 Head (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/469920-REG/Arca_Swiss_801102_Monoball_Z1_sp_with.html)
- Kirk QRC-3 Arca-type QR base (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/555493-REG/Kirk_QRC_3_0_QRC_3_Quick_Release_Clamp.html)
- Kirk QR Plate for 5D3 with grip (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/880629-REG/Kirk_PZ_149_Arca_Type_QR_Plate.html)

Are these parts any good? Would you recommend other components? Note that I since I don't have a good local source for these (they mostly sell Benro here :o), I would prefer getting them from one retailer as just one order. Thanks in advance for the responses!

3
Lighting / Nissin Di866 II AF beam works on 5D3
« on: December 23, 2012, 08:50:15 AM »
So I finally got my 5D3 last week and I got around to testing it with my current flash, the Nissin Di866 II. I seem to recall hearing about 5D3 having trouble using the AF beams of the 580 and 600 speedlites. I don't have any of those flashes to give a comparison but I can say that the AF assist with the Nissin was very reliable in low light!

I've tried using the AF beam both with and without actually firing the flash and in both cases, the unit actually manages to find the target even in a pitch black room. Heck, I couldn't even see what I was aiming at! All my subjective testing was done using the Tamron 24-70 lens on the 5D3 and from what I noticed, focusing with the AF beam seems to be just a tad slower than focusing with sufficient light.

Are there any users of both the 5D3 and the Nissin flash that can confirm these? Again, I have no experience with the 580/600 so I can't do even subjective comparisons.

4
Software & Accessories / Would you use it?
« on: December 07, 2012, 03:26:12 AM »
Okay, out of curiosity I'd like to ask this to the community.

Denoising images post-RAW (or in fact post-demosaicking) presents a few problems and artifacts (e.g. spatial noise correlation) which would otherwise be avoided when denoising the RAW 14/16-bit data. The problem is that AFAIK, plugins to RAW editing tools give access to post-demosaicked data so it would be difficult to incorporate it in existing software. An alternative option is to read RAW, denoise, and save as RAW again to fit into the workflow.

So the question is this... If such a software option were available that would allow you to denoise images better than DPP/LR/others, would you use it?

Of course, this has question has a follow-up. If space is a concern, you can overwrite the original RAW files but this is a destructive process. Otherwise, you can retain the original RAW files but use up more space. Which would you prefer?

5
EOS Bodies / 5D3 Box Size
« on: November 23, 2012, 10:05:33 AM »
So instead of preordering the 6D, the recent 5D3 deal at $2500 was just so sweet (with or without warranty), I just grabbed it!

Since I'm not within the US, I have to have it shipped to me by my friend. So the question is... For the 5D3 owners out there, can anybody give me the dimensions of the camera box (not the shipping box... the one from Canon)? I can't seem to find that info on the web.

6
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Upgrade advice: 6D or 5D2/3?
« on: November 15, 2012, 10:41:19 AM »
Okay, so I know there's been a lot of topics like this recently but I believe that advice might differ from one person to another. So here goes...

First of all, I would like to emphasize that photography is strictly a hobby (although it does come in handy with my image processing research from time to time). My previous system was a 60D with the following lenses: EF-S 15-85, EF 50/1.4, Tamron 70-300 VC USD. The body and the 15-85 lens have already been sold to facilitate the move to FF.

For my type of photography, I enjoy doing landscapes, macro (although I use an extension tube for budget reasons), portraits (still subjects mostly... and my pet dogs!), and general travel photography.

So here's the thing. I understand that the 5D3 is by far superior in terms of AF functionality. With my 60D, I've had no problems dealing with focus though. Sure, I have a hard time tracking my running dogs and focusing spot on when there's fast motion but is that really just the difference? To give you an idea of what I've shot, here's some samples:

http://500px.com/nightsky87

Is there anything wrong with the focus on those?

On the other hand, the 6D has the WiFi functionality and low light focusing capability as well as UHS-I support for much less. So, so far I'm leaning towards that. It seems to have a similar AF as the 60D and even the controls! Before anyone says anything, I find the remote control/monitoring capability of the 60D (with a USB cable and my Nexus 7 tablet) great especially for my research work.

Finally, there's the good ol' 5D2. Is there really any reason to go for it instead of the 6D? Again I'll say this before anyone complains, I know there have been little reviews on the 6D but most seem to say that the AF system works fast so that might be good for me. So lets just work with what we know at least?

So basically, any other insights might help. Anyone?  :)

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