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Photography Equipment & Software Thread


rundll
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I have my Olympus VF-2 viewfinder. Experience thus far is a bit mixed...

On the one hand, it's a fantastic picture - big, bright and full frame. But it's also insanely cold, colour wise, and far too bright. You can apparently adjust these via a menu in the camera, but I think that must only be for the PEN cameras - on the XZ-1 there's no such menu.

I'm asking around a few fora, but I'm hoping that if you hook the VF-2 up to a PEN camera and adjust the brightness/colour temp, it'll then remember that when plugged into an XZ-1. If that's the case, I'll visit my local camera shop and borrow one of their PENs for a few minutes. Pretty poor integration by Olympus, though.

On the plus side, it's a nice firm fit in the hotshoe and doesn't feel like it's in any danger of sliding out. I've heard various horror stories about VF-2s falling out, hence the addition of a hotshoe lock on the VF-3.

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I love that site. Been looking at wedding venues lately and I've come across so many bad photographer websites worthy of being featured. It's amazing how many people think they can 'go pro'. Which leads onto:

I'm currently undergoing my conversion from IT lackey to professional (as in paid) photographer. Since the first wedding I did in July, I've booked another three weddings (plus two 'maybes') a couple of portrait sessions and three charity events. I'm doing the charity events for free, though one of them is close to my heart (alzheimers society) and another is a bonfire night burlesque party :eyebrows: for which they're throwing in a three course meal as 'payment'. It's all going well so far, people seem very happy with the results and I'm enjoying the work a lot. Each job seems to lead to three more through recommendation and word of mouth, though sealing the deal can take a while when you're new to the business. You learn a lot about photography when you put yourself in a position where you're responsible for not fucking up the most important day of someone else's life! I've been renting gear from lensesforhire.co.uk depending on the job, that's working well too.

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I bought myself a canon 50mm 1.8 after recommendations here and reading a few reviews. Amazing lens...but I noticed most of my f1.8 / 2.8 shots were out of focus. Checked up a bit on-line and seems to be a reoccurring problem so I did some quick test shots. My lens is definitely front focusing when using the viewfinder, but is fine when using live mode. Less than 3 months old and bought from Amazon here in Japan. So I hope it should be easy enough to send back for a refund or replacement.

Here's one of my test shots, I took quite a few focusing and refocusing to really test well, always with the same result. The middle N was the point focused on. Seems to be focusing quite far in front, just at the start of the C I'd say.

post-967-028030900 1315123865_thumb.jpg

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Are you using manual focus? If you are, the viewfinder may have the wrong dioptre adjustment on it (the small dial next to the viewfinder), which would cause the focus to appear in a different spot to how the sensor would see it!

If it's autofocus then that shouldnt matter though.

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Are you using manual focus? If you are, the viewfinder may have the wrong dioptre adjustment on it (the small dial next to the viewfinder), which would cause the focus to appear in a different spot to how the sensor would see it!

If it's autofocus then that shouldnt matter though.

I tried both auto focus and manual focus. I also re-checked the dioptre. But that's fine.

The focus with my other lenses seems spot on, so the problem must be just with this one.

Also noticed it's out of Amazons 30 day returns policy, so will have to sort it out with canons warranty.

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I've been eyeing some mirrorless camera's lately, especially the NEX. They do seem to have the best sensors (by far), especially in the new NEX-5N... it's just so unfortunate that they seem to have a small-body-huge-lens problem. Not exactly pocketable or much easier to carry around with such a form factor :(

Have been looking at the PEN´s as well, despite having a worse sensor, they do at least seem to grasp the concept excellently, with some nice pancakes (Panasonic's new 14-42 X as a walkaround, together with a 20mm f1.7 would be nice I spose).

I just don't completely understand why the newest PEN is so damn expensive (800 euro body only)... :(

I can buy a nice Sigma 85mm f1.4 for my 7D for that kind of money, or even a Canon 24mm f1.4 if I include some lenses.

Am I missing something here?

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So, I was recently given a Panasonic G2, which I really like. It only came with the standard 14-42 lens and, in the future, I'll want to get more lenses for it.

I know nothing about this sorta thing! Should I stick with lenses made specifically for the camera or is it worth picking up cheaper lenses? I didn't realise just how expensive lenses are!

Is something like this likely to be any good?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/500mm-P-Tele-Lens-Panasonic-G1-G2-G10-GH2-GF1-GF2-G-/330600182123?pt=UK_Lenses_Filters_Lenses&hash=item4cf94e716b

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I recently sent 23 (previously developed) APS films for scanning.

I already had digital scans of a few of the films, but I didn't know which was which, so I sent them all.

Got them back and was disappointed with a smoothing/anti-grain effect on many of the pics - eg the girls head on the right here:

959100182.jpg

Then I dug out this, lower-res scan from 10 years ago...

018182.jpg

... and that shows the new scan lacks colour (in the sky) and detail (wax on board).

The scanning company says it NEVER gets complaints, but has agreed to rescan the lot.

Just wondering if you're seeing what I'm seeing? Is it just a brightness issue? Or have they, as I suspect, got carried away with grain suppression? (Which probably pleases most people)

(These are 100% crops, btw - not full shots. Not really showing the smoothing problem too well)

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So, I was recently given a Panasonic G2, which I really like. It only came with the standard 14-42 lens and, in the future, I'll want to get more lenses for it.

I know nothing about this sorta thing! Should I stick with lenses made specifically for the camera or is it worth picking up cheaper lenses? I didn't realise just how expensive lenses are!

Is something like this likely to be any good?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/500mm-P-Tele-Lens-Panasonic-G1-G2-G10-GH2-GF1-GF2-G-/330600182123?pt=UK_Lenses_Filters_Lenses&hash=item4cf94e716b

For low-quality SPY SHOTS, yes.

At the other end of the spectrum is the amazing Panasonic 20mm. It's THE micro 4/3rds lens, imo.

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So, I was recently given a Panasonic G2, which I really like. It only came with the standard 14-42 lens and, in the future, I'll want to get more lenses for it.

I know nothing about this sorta thing! Should I stick with lenses made specifically for the camera or is it worth picking up cheaper lenses? I didn't realise just how expensive lenses are!

Is something like this likely to be any good?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/500mm-P-Tele-Lens-Panasonic-G1-G2-G10-GH2-GF1-GF2-G-/330600182123?pt=UK_Lenses_Filters_Lenses&hash=item4cf94e716b

You should see some prices of quality Canon and Nikon glass :)

I'd definitely expect to pay at least 300 euro (264 pounds) for some nice glass for m4/3, buying new.

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I really like those portrait shots were the background is blurred and the subject is in focus.

I'm also keen to take nice landscapes.

What type of lens would I need for that?

Panasonic 20mm - is that the 'pancake lens'?

I have bought a few magazines and some weak lemon drink to try and get to grips with this hobby!!

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I really like those portrait shots were the background is blurred and the subject is in focus.

I'm also keen to take nice landscapes.

What type of lens would I need for that?

Panasonic 20mm - is that the 'pancake lens'?

I have bought a few magazines and some weak lemon drink to try and get to grips with this hobby!!

It is F1.7 and would definitely allow the portrait shots you are after. This was taken with a GF1 and the 20mm.

5413511543_e32e12fc0c_z.jpg

Untitled by themomentbefore, on Flickr

It would be fine for Landscapes too although you could arguably do with something a bit wider for that.

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I recently sent 23 (previously developed) APS films for scanning.

I already had digital scans of a few of the films, but I didn't know which was which, so I sent them all.

Got them back and was disappointed with a smoothing/anti-grain effect on many of the pics - eg the girls head on the right here:

959100182.jpg

Then I dug out this, lower-res scan from 10 years ago...

018182.jpg

... and that shows the new scan lacks colour (in the sky) and detail (wax on board).

The scanning company says it NEVER gets complaints, but has agreed to rescan the lot.

Just wondering if you're seeing what I'm seeing? Is it just a brightness issue? Or have they, as I suspect, got carried away with grain suppression? (Which probably pleases most people)

(These are 100% crops, btw - not full shots. Not really showing the smoothing problem too well)

The top scan is awful, if that helps.

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I really like those portrait shots were the background is blurred and the subject is in focus.

I'm also keen to take nice landscapes.

What type of lens would I need for that?

Panasonic 20mm - is that the 'pancake lens'?

I have bought a few magazines and some weak lemon drink to try and get to grips with this hobby!!

The 14mm (28mm equiv) end of your kit lens will be fine for landscapes to start with. The 20 f1.7 is supposed to be a fine and v. versatile lens but I will say get a long zoom like the 45-200 or 100-300. It will help blur the background for portraits as well.

Don't get that eBay lens that you posted. It is a manual focus only lens that is not specially built for your camera. I would say just stick with Olympus and Panasonic micro four thirds lenses. They are built specially for the system.

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The top scan is awful, if that helps.

Well, yeah. :-)

Tbh, I was a little surprised by the defensiveness of the scanning company. "We *never* get complaints..."

I guess I would have lived with the results (blamed the photos/format) if I didn't have odd scans to compare against.

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I've been eyeing some mirrorless camera's lately, especially the NEX. They do seem to have the best sensors (by far), especially in the new NEX-5N... it's just so unfortunate that they seem to have a small-body-huge-lens problem. Not exactly pocketable or much easier to carry around with such a form factor :(

Have been looking at the PEN´s as well, despite having a worse sensor, they do at least seem to grasp the concept excellently, with some nice pancakes (Panasonic's new 14-42 X as a walkaround, together with a 20mm f1.7 would be nice I spose).

I just don't completely understand why the newest PEN is so damn expensive (800 euro body only)... :(

I can buy a nice Sigma 85mm f1.4 for my 7D for that kind of money, or even a Canon 24mm f1.4 if I include some lenses.

Am I missing something here?

800 euros seems exorbitant for body-only. US price is $899 and comes with kit lens. Still expensive though and is going to face stiff competition from the much better speced Sony. Although I hear the EP3 touchscreen is the best implementation yet. The upcoming 45mm f1.8 also looks great.

Still you have the options of the cheaper EPL3 and the EPM1. Both still seem to retain the much faster autofocusing of the EP3. Also the GF3.

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Had an interview yesterday and followed it up with some camera shop mooching. You get plenty of attention when you're clean shaven in an expensive looking suit!

Anyway, saw the Pentax Q in the flesh for the first time, although I didn't get a chance to handle it. It's *tiny* - even smaller than I thought. Neither place was listing the price, sensibly, as I understand it's extortionate (more than a E-P3). Seriously though, it looked smaller than a credit card.

As and when they fail horribly and hit HP Touchpad style bargain basement prices, they might be a fun thing to pick up, like the old Olympus Mju Mini.

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The upcoming 45mm f1.8 also looks great.

Yeah, it seems M43 has the best lens selection, and it's still maturing. The 45mm is getting very good early review (though it's hard to trust these of course), and it's bloody cheap. I will be buying one ASAP. The system is missing a really great wide angle lens though, and Sony's sensors are wiping the floor with olympus and panasonic's offerings.

This system cameras are a massive growth area and I think it'll take a while for things to calm down before we see sensible prices. I'd love something like the PEN mini as a backup camera, but Olympus seem for interested in selling it with a lens to those upgrading from a compact.

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Yeah, it seems M43 has the best lens selection, and it's still maturing. The 45mm is getting very good early review (though it's hard to trust these of course), and it's bloody cheap. I will be buying one ASAP. The system is missing a really great wide angle lens though, and Sony's sensors are wiping the floor with olympus and panasonic's offerings.

This system cameras are a massive growth area and I think it'll take a while for things to calm down before we see sensible prices. I'd love something like the PEN mini as a backup camera, but Olympus seem for interested in selling it with a lens to those upgrading from a compact.

You mean this review?:

http://www.lenstip.com/index.php?test=obiektywu&test_ob=316

Yeah, i've been looking hard at the system. Panasonic's new 12-35 and 35-100 will be ones to watch. No good wides though? What about the 7-14 (probably as wide as you're going to get with this size sensor), 9-18 and the new 12mm? I agree that the Pen mini is probably the most interesting as it is so compact. All it's lacking are more controls but I think you can make do with the super control panel. $200 more for an EPL3 with an unarticulated screen and a mode dial doesn't seem very appealing.

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The Olympus 9-18mm (which is apparently really very good) is cheapish, cheaper than any first-party UWA on the other camera platforms. Damned good performer too, I hear.

Heads up for XZ-1 owners - JJC have re-worked their auto-lens cap so it's not longer absurdly long for no decent reason. I've ordered one of the new version, looks good.

2011981418571.jpg

For those who've not used these, they're rip-offs of the ones Ricoh put on their cameras - the front opens up like a sandworm's mouth. I had one on my DP2 and it was a total godsend, as that camera amazingly had a lens cap even worse than the XZ-1s.

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After last months odd ball adding me as a contact on Flickr I had a new one today.... he'd added some of my skating pics and I had a quick look at his profile... yeah, he likes skating.... but hang on, why are all the faves of his of blokes skating, in tight jeans, with their arses to the camera.... what else is this? he's got lots of pictures as faves of blokes bending over in tight jeans.....

http://www.flickr.com/photos/60035596@N03/favorites/page1/?view=sq

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The Olympus 9-18mm (which is apparently really very good) is cheapish, cheaper than any first-party UWA on the other camera platforms. Damned good performer too, I hear.

Heads up for XZ-1 owners - JJC have re-worked their auto-lens cap so it's not longer absurdly long for no decent reason. I've ordered one of the new version, looks good.

2011981418571.jpg

For those who've not used these, they're rip-offs of the ones Ricoh put on their cameras - the front opens up like a sandworm's mouth. I had one on my DP2 and it was a total godsend, as that camera amazingly had a lens cap even worse than the XZ-1s.

Having got a grip for my XZ-1, this would solve my other main gripe with the camera. When I can buy this?

Cheers.

Andy

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After last months odd ball adding me as a contact on Flickr I had a new one today.... he'd added some of my skating pics and I had a quick look at his profile... yeah, he likes skating.... but hang on, why are all the faves of his of blokes skating, in tight jeans, with their arses to the camera.... what else is this? he's got lots of pictures as faves of blokes bending over in tight jeans.....

http://www.flickr.com/photos/60035596@N03/favorites/page1/?view=sq

Such evocative titles too, such as `Arse stops play` and `Crotch Shot`

And on page 11 of his fav's there's a photo of some guy pissing up against some doors... :unsure:

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