General photography thread [img heavy]

What you see is what you get, including photography, displays, and video equipment.

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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:32 pm

TheEmrys wrote:The a6000 may change that. The AF-C looks awesome. In the video with the parrot, it keeps up completely.

http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/live-coverage-sony-a6000-officially-announced/


We can certainly hope- this is the kind of technology that will allow us to get away from mirrors altogether.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Thu Feb 13, 2014 11:24 pm

Hope it works out well and Sony keeps supporting both mechanical and electronic focusing lenses. It would be nice if tje tech makes it into the new a-mounts.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 12:32 pm

Went into a Crutchfield to play with the cameras today. They didn't have the E-M1 so I compared the a7 to the E-M5. I definitely prefer the ergonomics of the a7. The M1 is better than the M5 supposedly, because it has a real grip, but still. The controls of the a7 were also much nicer, and the EVF seemed much better. The a7 in the store had the Zeiss 16-70 (I think) which handled really nicely, and as far as I could tell from the screen on the back of the camera, was quite lovely.

I'll probably go and order the a7 tonight!
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 1:25 pm

Cool deal. If you can swing it, I would highly recommend you pick up either of the prime lenses. And if you have any questions about Minolta lenses, please feel free to ask or pm. I would also recommend you check out Dyxum. com. They have a thread going about a7 issues they would like fixed. If you find something in there that is a deal-breaker, better to find out now than later.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Sat Feb 15, 2014 2:58 pm

TheEmrys wrote:Cool deal. If you can swing it, I would highly recommend you pick up either of the prime lenses. And if you have any questions about Minolta lenses, please feel free to ask or pm. I would also recommend you check out Dyxum. com. They have a thread going about a7 issues they would like fixed. If you find something in there that is a deal-breaker, better to find out now than later.


The primes will have to wait. I picked up adapters for PK-mount and m42, so I'll probably stick to those systems for a little bit (once I graduate, I'll have a bit more to spend on lenses). Hopefully I'll have a fast 35mm prime soon, and I'm pretty happy with my 55mm.

Also played with a 6D at the store. GF hated it, and after playing with the E5 and the a7, I could understand why. It's incredibly heavy and didn't fit in my hands well. And my hands aren't small.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Sun Feb 16, 2014 2:44 pm

Grabbed my polarizers and headed out to the harbor yesterday:

Image

Overall, I was pretty pleased with the captures. Everything was handheld or braced and most were done with the EOS-M and 11-22/4-5.6 IS STM on the 11mm end with a Hoya CPL.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:31 pm

I stumbled across the a7 & a7r page on the fredmiranda forums. That was a mistake. I've spent a good chunk of today neglecting reading and just browsing through shots.

I've looked through ~30 pages now and the general consensus seems to be that the Zeiss FE 35mm 2.8 is a nice lens as is the 55 1.8. Seems like a lot of the photos there came from Leica and other Zeiss glass. They're rather stunning, and I wish I had an extra $1400 to drop on a C/Y Zeiss Distagon 35mm f/1.4. And the Zeiss 85mm f/1.4. And a 50mm Leica (not too particular about which, they're all superb). Since those are all out of my price range, I may buy some older, wide angle Canon L glass, as I've been really impressed by the FD mount Canons. Really, pretty much anything except the older rangefinder ultra-wides are really impressive on both the a7 and the a7r.

New lenses will have to wait a while though. I may win a 35mm Vivitar Series 1 f/1.9 on e-Bay, as I started bidding on that before my Canon broke, and this isn't exactly a cheap hobby.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:26 pm

I have been sorely tempted by the a7. The OOC jpegs (no matter what dpreview says) are stunningly good. But, I just have to remember how it just doesn't suit my shooting needs. Crisis averted. Or at least delayed. Those primes are stunning value, despite the high price. And yeah, the 35mm could be faster, but if it has to be an f/2.8 to be that small with that good of performance, I'll accept it willingly.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:00 am

I have one. ;) Now if I only had a camera. ;(. For me 2.8 is way fast, it will live on a tripod, and I don't often really care how long the shutter is open. I have to shift thinking to take waterfalls etc.

The a7R will be a big step.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Wed Feb 19, 2014 3:29 pm

It arrived! Slightly unhappy with Adorama, about shipping (ordered Saturday @2PM EST w/ second day air, arrived Wednesday...), and it's currently charging, but I'm glad to take hold of it.

After reading poor impressions of the kit lens build quality, I'm actually quite impressed. It is no where near as plasitcky as the Canon EF-S 18-55mm IS, and actually feels quite solid for it's weight. Both the focus and zoom rings are quite smooth, and I'm quite happy to see such a large focus ring, coming from the Canon.

The camera itself feels really nice. Dense and well built, but not heavy, and the controls fit well around your fingers. The grip might be a bit small for using a large lens like my Vivitar, but the K-mount adapter I got has a tripod mount built-in which will be very handy.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Wed Feb 19, 2014 3:34 pm

Well start posting pics. I have heard great things about the ooc jpegs (despite dpreview) and would love to see how it does for you. Now if we ciuld just get you an PenGun together with his 35/2.8....
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:34 pm

As requested, two from a walk around tonight. There would be more, but my tripod is garbage
The picture of the sign is SOOC, the other is the SOOC JPG played with a bit to try and bring out Orion, but not the other stars.
Sign was a 1/15 sec exposure at f/4.5
Image

This was a 20 second exposure at ISO 500. Next time, I'll raise the ISO, and expose for less time. In RawTherapee I underexposed it by a stop and a half or so, then changed the white balance and cropped half a speed limit sign out. I might have gone a bit overboard underexposing it, but I'll blame that on my monitor being brighter than usual.
Image

Impressions so far:
Extra batteries are necessary, just because of how long it takes to charge. Charging over USB does not help this at all.
It is extremely sharp! I don't have test shots, but I think my Pentax 55 f/1.8 and Vivitar 70-210 f/3.5 are both sharper than the kit lens, but it's plenty capable in the center, and the sensor is fantastic.
EVFs are as useless as OVFs in trying to frame stars and the environment for astrophotography.
For all it's features and buttons it is fantastically easy to use, as there are manual dials for the important controls (aperture, shutter speed, ISO).

I really like it thus far, and can't wait to shoot with it a lot more.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:38 pm

Try turning boffins WiFi and McCain and/or GPS to see how that helps with battery.

Looks promising!
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Thu Feb 20, 2014 3:07 pm

lonleyppl wrote:It arrived! Slightly unhappy with Adorama, about shipping (ordered Saturday @2PM EST w/ second day air, arrived Wednesday...), and it's currently charging, but I'm glad to take hold of it.



I was sorry to read that you were disappointed with the shipping time for your order, however, as per our website:

http://www.adorama.com/help/shippingAndDelivery
Orders for in-stock items placed on business days before 8:00 PM ET (Eastern Time) are generally shipped the same day (subject to verification, click here for details). Please note weekend orders, placed on Fridays after 1:00 PM ET will be processed on the following Monday.

Therefore your order did in fact arrive exactly within the shipping time you selected.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Thu Feb 20, 2014 8:25 pm

Helen, I do appreciate your response. I suppose I'm just a bit spoiled by Amazon for everything else.

More from the a7:
Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:38 pm

Posted a few more from the a7 on Flickr today. I downloaded the Sony RAW editor yesterday, but haven't done much more than white balance corrections. Yesterday and today were with the Pentax 55mm f/1.8.

The OVF is absolutely amazing for manual focus and I'm never going back! I've noticed that with my glasses, some light does get in, so the OVF feels a bit dim, but as long as I remember that what I see there isn't exactly what will be recorded and trust the exposure meter it's not bad at all.

MF lenses are a dream to use with the OVF though, which is really really nice. I like my antique lenses.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Fri Feb 21, 2014 7:34 pm

lonleyppl wrote:Posted a few more from the a7 on Flickr today. I downloaded the Sony RAW editor yesterday, but haven't done much more than white balance corrections. Yesterday and today were with the Pentax 55mm f/1.8.

The OVF is absolutely amazing for manual focus and I'm never going back! I've noticed that with my glasses, some light does get in, so the OVF feels a bit dim, but as long as I remember that what I see there isn't exactly what will be recorded and trust the exposure meter it's not bad at all.

MF lenses are a dream to use with the OVF though, which is really really nice. I like my antique lenses.

That's working for you. ;) I found with my Fuji I could set the diopter so I could use it without glasses although that was cranked all the way. It's a EFV actually but hey.

I just use the chimp screen myself. I have gone all the way from full viewfinder use, to the screen all the time. It just works well on a tripod.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:59 pm

Went to visit family this weekend, and on my way back I stopped at a nearby Civil War battlefield to capture the sunset. Those didn't turn out thanks to long distance power lines, but a lot of others did. If a lens has EXIF data it was the kit lens, otherwise it was my Vivitar Series 1. Here they are on Flickr.

Continuing impressions:
Battery life is less than stellar. I'm glad I purchased extra batteries, as at the end of shooting for about an hour, my half charged battery had completely died on me. I think it was only good for about 300 shots (shooting RAW + JPEG). Focus peaking continues to be really nice, but I need to use it with magnification, not by itself. It helps to get close quickly, but isn't enough on its own. You can see this in some (most) of the pictures using the Vivitar. They're was also a bit of vignetting & color shift using the Vivitar's macro mode and focusing on distant objects which I'll have to be aware of.
The kit lens - It's not actually all that sharp. Most of the landscape shots were taken at f/8 and used AF, but there are quite a few that I wasn't happy with how they turned out, as they were rather muddled at 100%. On the other hand, the colors are quite good, AF is fast and usually right and it handles well. EDIT: I forget to mention, there was some vignetting at 28mm, but I'm not sure if that was from the lens hood, or just the lens' tendencies. More to come on that...
General annoyances - I think there was some dust on my sensor as there's a smudge in almost every picture. Rather annoying that I didn't catch it at the time. Once I got home I used my rocket blower and that seems to have solved the problem. Also, I lost the eye cup. They seem to have a tendency to pop off, and I'm not a big fan.

Mostly, I would be concerned about battery life. While you can probably get 300 shots from one charge, spares are definitely something you should have around.

I'm still really impressed with the dynamic range and overall IQ whenever I use it. I'm really enjoying going out and shooting with it.
Last edited by lonleyppl on Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:03 am

I'm certainly not in this group's league, but I'd thought I would leave this here.

Image
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:50 pm

lonleyppl wrote:Continuing impressions:
Battery life is less than stellar. I'm glad I purchased extra batteries, as at the end of shooting for about an hour, my half charged battery had completely died on me. I think it was only good for about 300 shots (shooting RAW + JPEG). Focus peaking continues to be really nice, but I need to use it with magnification, not by itself. It helps to get close quickly, but isn't enough on its own. You can see this in some (most) of the pictures using the Vivitar. They're was also a bit of vignetting & color shift using the Vivitar's macro mode and focusing on distant objects which I'll have to be aware of.
The kit lens - It's not actually all that sharp. Most of the landscape shots were taken at f/8 and used AF, but there are quite a few that I wasn't happy with how they turned out, as they were rather muddled at 100%. On the other hand, the colors are quite good, AF is fast and usually right and it handles well. EDIT: I forget to mention, there was some vignetting at 28mm, but I'm not sure if that was from the lens hood, or just the lens' tendencies. More to come on that...
General annoyances - I think there was some dust on my sensor as there's a smudge in almost every picture. Rather annoying that I didn't catch it at the time. Once I got home I used my rocket blower and that seems to have solved the problem. Also, I lost the eye cup. They seem to have a tendency to pop off, and I'm not a big fan.

Mostly, I would be concerned about battery life. While you can probably get 300 shots from one charge, spares are definitely something you should have around.

I'm still really impressed with the dynamic range and overall IQ whenever I use it. I'm really enjoying going out and shooting with it.


Cool that you are happy. Its such a fascinating platform. If it ever gets IBIS, I will probably come over. However, I love my f/2.8 zooms (28-75, 80-200) and that does make it a bit tougher. But the primes are certainly promising.

Airplane mode didn't help for you? I have read it has had great results for many (~500 shots).
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 1:23 pm

TheEmrys wrote:Airplane mode didn't help for you? I have read it has had great results for many (~500 shots).


I'll have to try this on my current battery. I may've had WiFi and NFC on, so this should help quite a bit.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:17 pm

Darkmage wrote:I'm certainly not in this group's league, but I'd thought I would leave this here.


Any photographer worth his salt would tell you that it's not the tool, it's the user :).


And as far as the tool is concerned- you used a small sensor with a lot of pixels and a lot of light and held it steady, and that's all that's needed to get decent resolution with deep depth of field.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:37 pm

Darkmage wrote:I'm certainly not in this group's league, but I'd thought I would leave this here.

Image

Hey, I recognize that view.... Queenstown, right ?
Was there a couple of years ago...
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:20 pm

Aphasia wrote:Hey, I recognize that view.... Queenstown, right ?
Was there a couple of years ago...
Correct! I took this from the tourist trap at the top of the mountain, but I don't get much of a chance to get off the beaten path these days. If any of you are ever thinking about visiting New Zealand - do it! The entire country is one majestic view after another.

Airmantharp wrote:Any photographer worth his salt would tell you that it's not the tool, it's the user .
Which is pretty much why I said "I'm not in your league." I'm just not that good of a photographer. I look at the stuff in this thread and there's skill there that I can't replicate, even if I had the tools.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:10 pm

Darkmage wrote:Which is pretty much why I said "I'm not in your league." I'm just not that good of a photographer. I look at the stuff in this thread and there's skill there that I can't replicate, even if I had the tools.


I think you're just being lazy :).

You are a geek, after all- you're here!- and so very much of photography is technical, even much of the 'artsy' stuff. The 'Rule of Thirds', for example.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:55 pm

Oh yeah, New Zealand, teh win. Nothing so far where I've been can beat it. I was there just about 4 weeks, almost 2 weeks on each island. Could've been a week at each place, but was only 3 nights at the most, and that was over new year at queenstown.

Personally, being a geek doesnt really help with the compositing, other then you have a very good headstart on not having to care about the technology. For me, technology on camareas while incredibly interresting, means nothing when taking photos. The means to learn everything about how it works is really to be good enough so you can forget about the tech, because it's basically transparant, in, for this effect i set this to this and that, but the compositing and creativity pretty much comes from somewhere else. I have a few friends that have a incredible eye for doing great shots, but they really had a hard time getting through the tech and how it interacts when trying to make the conscious choices, instead of by sheer intuition.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Tue Feb 25, 2014 6:26 pm

Most photography is about as technical as calculating your change when you pay for a Big Mac with a 20.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Tue Feb 25, 2014 7:07 pm

Yeats wrote:Most photography is about as technical as calculating your change when you pay for a Big Mac with a 20.

This part of the problem. The cameras do all the work now and people blame the camera for their mistakes and mediocre results. They never learn the basics even, just buy another piece of equipment if it's not working out.

I just go where it's really wonderful and take pictures of it. A huge amount of what I do is getting there and really is at least half the fun. I don't carry my camera anywhere except out into the wilderness, no snap shots, no family, well hardly ever, just pictures of the bush.

I know what I am doing. I know what I want and I know how to go about getting it. This started nearly 40 years ago for me, so maybe that's why. ;)
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:44 pm

If I weren't so invested into micro 4/3 I would certainly switch back to a Sony. Loved the colors of my old DSC-R1. That camera just has something magical about it... even though it was slow. The kit lens output bokeh looks a bit busy to me though, but not horrible.
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Re: General photography thread [img heavy]

Postposted on Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:06 am

liquidsquid wrote:If I weren't so invested into micro 4/3 I would certainly switch back to a Sony. Loved the colors of my old DSC-R1. That camera just has something magical about it... even though it was slow. The kit lens output bokeh looks a bit busy to me though, but not horrible.


Funny, I am loving what mft are doing. Its such an elegant solution and the glass is excellent. The thought of going to a 600mm equivalent with a relatively tiny lens is tempting as well.
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