Monday, 6 April 2015

buy by the Kilo (or bang for buck)

Hi

we're all familiar with the price of things by weight (either Kg or lbs depending where you're from) but most of us don't think of our photographic gear this way. Some time ago I did look at that with respect to my Panasonic G1 and a Canon EOS 5DMk ii and found that the image quality was not so different but the price per Kg was ... I thought I'd expand on that post with some more data and in a chart.


its sort of interesting that there is a reasonably linear price / kg change along the line from G1 (price when new) to Sony A7ii (price when new too) and some standouts in the "dear" range as well as the lower end.

What's also interesting is that I seem to also buy on the more cost effective side of things (interesting coincidence really).

I should probably toss in megapixels into that but to me they are about equal as image making tools.

:-)

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

party camera

I took my GF1 along to a party recently with just the 20mm f1.7 and the 45mm f1.8 ... I wanted to remain discreet (not look like I'm carrying a brick). I dislike flash so I like the GF for its larger sensor than compact cameras and this setup is great.

I was able to get great shots



and the images were acceptably clean at 1600 ISO which still gave me 1/60th (which stops enough motion). I dislike OIS in these situations because people move (no matter if the camera was on a tripod or had top shelf stabilisation).


So my 5 year old micro43 GF1 is still pulling good shots while some people struggle with their "superior" SLR cameras.


and others snap away with their phones...



its sorta clear to me why the SLR market is diminishing as phones are getting pretty good results these days (like the top shelf ones anyway).

None the less I'm not about to trade in my GF any time soon as there is no way the phones can capture stuff like this:


with that sort of subject DoF isolation ...(again, hand held, 1600 ISO 1/160th) or to step out on the balcony and get this as cleanly:


even pushing the friendship with 3200 ISO (the max) isn't too disgusting when the light gets low (I should probably have under exposed this a bit ... )


The host of the party spins a better yarn than me, although I'm not sure anyone believes his story either. Certainly with a bit more light up your shutter speed sleeve dropping the ISO to 1600 its nicer




I had a good time, my camera worked with me to get some good shots and most importantly the birthday boy was happy with it all.


Happy Birthday mate!

Saturday, 7 March 2015

my Full Frame camera is 35mm film

Fortunatly we've had 35mm around for longer than digital, and while I really DO like my micro43 cameras I am under no illusions that good old 35mm full frame (there was half frame you know, such as the Olympus Pen F series).

At about the time when digital cameras (my main snapshot cameras for 15 years now) were good enough to use as a reasonable substitute, Film Scanners were expensive and their use was poorly understood. By the time that good scanners were at reasonable prices and systems like Noritsu's 35mm development / scanning process machines were around it was too late.

For the enthusiast picking up 35mm gear at bargin prices, and for those pulling out their old images, the quality you can get with a good scan rivals the best of the current Full Frame digital cameras (like the Sony A7 or any of the Full Frame Canon / Nikon cameras). Especially if you don't have shit hot lenses.

I was going through some older shots I took in Tokyo back in about 2002 and liked this one of a temple just up from where I lived


Its a good 20 Megapixels.

I took it with my faithful (still running fine) EOS630 with an EF24 f2.8 lens (still running fine too).

So lets have a look at some details ... at pixel peeping levels ... from over there on the left ... just under the roof


then the gutter above it ...



moving over to the right hand side:


and lastly one from the middle:


Which makes it clear also (judging by the reflections in the windows) that I could have focused a little bit closer than I did (instead I relied on the infinity "stop" on the lens) and the rope would be sharper .... when magnifying this much (which is what a good scan does) the DoF assumptions many people make on 35mm (like what's on the lens barrel) are inadequate.

So, all in all I'm not about to stop using my digital camera but I recognize that its got its place and that there is still a place for 35mm for me (especially for 4 day hikes in -15C where batteries freeze).

Enjoy

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Petty emotions ruin beautiful things

A little while back APOD (the NASA site) featured this absolutely beautiful SciFi view of the future inspired by Carl Sagan.

I noticed today that the video has had its audio voice over by Carl removed. I am unclear why, but the comments on the original Vimeo link suggest its by his estate or the minions of administering that.

The original can be found here: https://vimeo.com/108650530, now sadly minus Carls powerful words. It seems some who had ownership of Carls legacy wanted that removed.

Terrible, I'm sure Carl would be turning in his grave given his sentiment and his passions.

This is still on Youtube (for now) so get it while you can ... before greed destroys art.



To those with greed and selfish driven motivations who required Carls voice to be taken off this recording I leave you with a quote from Carl from Pale Blue Dot:
Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.