ProfHankD

ProfHankD

Lives in United States Lexington, United States
Works as a Professor
Has a website at http://aggregate.org/hankd/
Joined on Mar 27, 2008
About me:

Plan: to change the way people think about and use cameras by taking advantage of cameras as computing systems; engineering camera systems to provide new abilities and improved quality.

Comments

Total: 652, showing: 21 – 40
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In reply to:

SteB: As I've tried to explain on the forum, this is very uniform distribution, which is the opposite of random distribution.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Randomness

If this was just random dust it would not be distributed like this. It could be dust trapped in the sandwich covering the sensor, but there would have to be something in the manufacturing process causing it to be evenly distributed. This is why I'm guessing a fault in the manufacturing process, for it to cause this uniform distribution.

Anyone who has studied distribution, randomness, statistics and probability in depth, will be aware that it is very unlikely that such a uniform distribution like this would be caused by a random fault like dust falling onto something. It could be dust again, but it would be dust formed by part of a process.

I'm fairly certain this will be fixed, once they discover what part of the manufacturing process is causing it.

As I said below, my guess is a defective sputtering process for applying a coating. What do I win if I'm right? ;-)

Direct link | Posted on May 1, 2015 at 11:03 UTC

Interesting defect; I've not seen anything quite like it. Looks sort of like a very even distribution of tiny water spots (e.g., like fine mist settling on a lens surface)... maybe some kind of sputtering artifact when applying a coating? It will be interesting to see what this really is....

Direct link | Posted on May 1, 2015 at 03:10 UTC as 124th comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

iAPX: Good upgrade. But I think that people interested in it won't like the video or live-view features, and would have preferred a simplified camera, to take pictures the old way.

Monochrome videos at 1080. I think a 4K color video converted to monochrome will beat it easily... assuming anyone cares about monochrome videos.

Direct link | Posted on May 1, 2015 at 00:40 UTC
In reply to:

Mark Banas: Waiting for someone to do the math on the prize value vs. # of prior paid entries. ;)

That said, it's great to have any excuse to shoot more panos, and I see Peter Lik was one of the past judges, while Aaron Spence is one of the current ones. The standards have gone up!

There are several reasons to run a photo contest. There are tons of photo contests that are basically scams in which getting the entry fees is the real goal... I don't think that's what Epson is doing here. For Epson, I'd expect it to be mostly about goodwill and bolstering the brand, but this is Epson Australia, not all Epson, and it seems likely to me that they literally didn't have the cash to invest in this. Actually, it isn't even clear that Epson initiated this; there are other sponsors, so Epson might just get top billing because they contributed the most.

So, a little math says the expected value of entering is approximately loss of 40% of your "investment" in entry fees, and the prizes are mostly not cash (yet probably taxable for the winners). Not compelling... unless you're sure you can win. These are at least way better payoff odds than you'll get gambling in Las Vegas. ;-)

Direct link | Posted on Apr 30, 2015 at 02:54 UTC
On GoPro announces Kolor acquisition article (46 comments in total)
In reply to:

Paul Guba: I am uninspired by the footage.

Yeah, it does lack awesomeness. However, they do a darn good job of hiding where the seams are and how the cameras are being held (they are being held by something, so the removal of that is being done quite well). I'm a little disappointed if it's really 3 GoPros and not one new 360-degree model... but perhaps that's in the works?

Direct link | Posted on Apr 29, 2015 at 18:08 UTC
In reply to:

Photato: About Sensor Size.
Strictly speaking Sensor Size should not be a factor in Noise, because lenses can concentrate the same light (photons) in a large or small area.
So much so that you can start a fire concentrating Photons with a magnifying glass in a small area.

What happens is that normally smaller sensors have a higher Density of pixels making it less efficient in photon collection.

For instance. A Small Sensor filled with 8 Micron Pixels should be able to collect the same amount of Photons than a Bigger Sensor filled with 8 Micron pixels. The difference is that the Bigger Sensor would have higher resolution.

As I was hinting above, quantum efficiency usually isn't the same for large and small sensors. A larger fraction of the photons hitting the smaller sensor get counted, which reduces noise. It is also often true that the maximum charge that can be stored is increased by the more aggressive design rules/ fab technology used for smaller chips. In sum, the advantage for big sensors isn't quite as big as might be expected.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 28, 2015 at 03:32 UTC
In reply to:

Photato: About Sensor Size.
Strictly speaking Sensor Size should not be a factor in Noise, because lenses can concentrate the same light (photons) in a large or small area.
So much so that you can start a fire concentrating Photons with a magnifying glass in a small area.

What happens is that normally smaller sensors have a higher Density of pixels making it less efficient in photon collection.

For instance. A Small Sensor filled with 8 Micron Pixels should be able to collect the same amount of Photons than a Bigger Sensor filled with 8 Micron pixels. The difference is that the Bigger Sensor would have higher resolution.

Actually, smaller sensors tend to be better than larger ones (per unit sensel area). Chip yield drops dramatically with area increase unless you use a more conservative design/fab technology. This partially compensates for the usual benefits of larger sensels.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 27, 2015 at 19:59 UTC
In reply to:

ProfHankD: These look clearly designed for Sony FE bodies, and even the OLED display makes sense for that (the info was digitally available, so I bet this doesn't cost any more than the usual focus/DoF scales). A big step for Zeiss... a giant endorsement for Sony.

Sidath: Yup, and also the fact that they've obviously done some new electronics -- not just basic AF, but also the cute little OLED display on the lens. No, it isn't earth-shaking, but Zeiss is a very conservative company, so I do see this as a big step for them.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 26, 2015 at 16:22 UTC
In reply to:

Eugeniu Sofroni: Canon had this option with the Magic Lantern firmware add-on www.magiclantern.fm/features.html

it also has motion detection trigger, lightning trigger ... many other options

No CANON does not have any such thing -- Magic Lantern has a variety of triggering options, and CHDK has even more, and they happen to work on Canon cameras. Canon's lack of security in their camera firmware allows benevolent open source development, but Canon is in no way supportive of either ML nor CHDK.

In contrast, Sony, which ironically uses open source Linux in all their cameras, uses Linux security features to effectively prevent anyone from developing such goodies for their cameras. Sony is slowly moving toward enabling powerful and portable remote control (via wifi and JSON protocol), but nothing allowing 3rd-part code in the camera yet. I wish they would let us open source developers develop for their cameras, and use the security features to void the warranty if you run a non-Sony-approved app (with an Apple-like approval process for camera apps), but nothing yet along those lines....

Direct link | Posted on Apr 25, 2015 at 17:32 UTC
In reply to:

Marty4650: Those are the best quality photos I have ever seen coming from a smartphone.

Of course, the real question is.... how many smartphone users want, need, or are willing to pay for better quality photos? Over one billion smartphones were sold last year, and very few of them were purchased to take high quality photos.

You really don't need image quality this good for facebook posts or email attachments. So will these users pay a very high premium price to get better photos?

My guess is.... no.

Nice exercise in proving it can be done, but I think Apple and Samsung are safe.

Better IQ in phones is gonna happen. Up to around ISO400, this is darn pretty, if slightly artificial looking. Higher still works. Overall, I think you'd be able to get really nice images scaling down to 5MP, which is plenty for nearly everything. All good.

Will people buy it in droves? Probably not; it isn't from Apple nor Samsung. Still, it is another step in an inevitable direction.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 25, 2015 at 03:17 UTC
In reply to:

ProfHankD: These look clearly designed for Sony FE bodies, and even the OLED display makes sense for that (the info was digitally available, so I bet this doesn't cost any more than the usual focus/DoF scales). A big step for Zeiss... a giant endorsement for Sony.

Whyamihere: for a guy who apparently doesn't even know why he's here, you're pretty opinionated, aren't you? ;-)

My point is that these appear to be designed from scratch as FF short-flange-distance lenses, including full and innovative AF electronics, targeting Sony FE and nothing else. It's true that Zeiss has done interesting things for Sony before (e.g., the F828 lens), but they've usually done things that are leveraged across multiple camera brands (e.g., Otis on Canon+Nikon, Touit on Sony E and Fuji X). New electronics and AF in a FF lens targeting only Sony FE seems like a big jump to me: has Zeiss made any flavor of AF FF lens in any modern mount before? Oh, and this is two lenses.

BTW, this makes perfect sense. Zeiss has complained about licensing AF interfaces for other brands, but not Sony. There also isn't the PDAF inaccuracy argument against AF in a camera that can always check focus using CDAF.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 23, 2015 at 01:05 UTC

These look clearly designed for Sony FE bodies, and even the OLED display makes sense for that (the info was digitally available, so I bet this doesn't cost any more than the usual focus/DoF scales). A big step for Zeiss... a giant endorsement for Sony.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 22, 2015 at 20:37 UTC as 48th comment | 7 replies
In reply to:

D1N0: I see an aps-c 24mp sensor with 19fps capability (so it must also be able to do 4k)

IMX271 24M APS 3.91 19 SLVS 8Lane
SLVS-EC 8Lane RGB DSLR Exmor

That doesn't quite follow (many LVDS might be 4K capable), but SLVS 8Lane is a significant interface change, probably intended to drop power enough to make high framerates not cause significant chip heating. Sony has had a continuing battle with sensor heating during video (actually, most sensors do, which is why some high-end video cameras have active sensor cooling).

Direct link | Posted on Apr 18, 2015 at 12:18 UTC
On Manfrotto unveils Digital Director for iPad Air article (46 comments in total)
In reply to:

Mister Roboto: Firstly, why they have made such overpriced device for a miserable overpriced device?
Secondly, try to shoot a moving subject and you will end up with 1/2 of the subject out of the frame. I would rather see the picture bright and clear in the EVF and hear the nice sound of the shutter than poke my fingers on a device that is next to useless for shooting IMHO.

I stand corrected. It's a $5 processor acting as USB host. ;-)

Direct link | Posted on Apr 15, 2015 at 14:06 UTC
On Manfrotto unveils Digital Director for iPad Air article (46 comments in total)
In reply to:

Mister Roboto: Firstly, why they have made such overpriced device for a miserable overpriced device?
Secondly, try to shoot a moving subject and you will end up with 1/2 of the subject out of the frame. I would rather see the picture bright and clear in the EVF and hear the nice sound of the shutter than poke my fingers on a device that is next to useless for shooting IMHO.

The iPad doesn't have USB host ability by itself, so the "CPU" is probably a $0.25 microcontroller to act as USB host to both the iPad and the camera. Ah, marketing....

Direct link | Posted on Apr 15, 2015 at 12:01 UTC
In reply to:

ProfHankD: The Sony QX1 stumbled into a new market with serious growth potential -- no, I'm not talking about clipping it to your cell phone, but using it as a high-quality stick-it-anywhere "electronic film back" for scientific use, drones, etc. It's really a lot like a typical industrial camera, except it's so much more consumer friendly.

This Blackmagic is a bit less friendly, but has more hackable I/O for integrating with other control systems, and looks a bit like a mini-RED (purely coincidental, I'm sure). Ok, except for $1000 I was expecting 4K video; the $400 QX1 might actually beat it in video, as well as stills (which the QX1 clearly wins).

Anyway, I predict we'll be seeing a lot more of this sort of camera over the next few years, and that's good.

The QX1 has good 802.11, which would be sufficient on my quadcopter or a kite. However, I agree that it certainly isn't the ultimate answer for longer-range UAVs... maybe a future model will be? Actually, my favorite for that is Canon PowerShots under CHDK, because they can be programmed to be quite smart devices on their own and have fantastic USB tether support including remote Lua scripting.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 15, 2015 at 00:11 UTC

The Sony QX1 stumbled into a new market with serious growth potential -- no, I'm not talking about clipping it to your cell phone, but using it as a high-quality stick-it-anywhere "electronic film back" for scientific use, drones, etc. It's really a lot like a typical industrial camera, except it's so much more consumer friendly.

This Blackmagic is a bit less friendly, but has more hackable I/O for integrating with other control systems, and looks a bit like a mini-RED (purely coincidental, I'm sure). Ok, except for $1000 I was expecting 4K video; the $400 QX1 might actually beat it in video, as well as stills (which the QX1 clearly wins).

Anyway, I predict we'll be seeing a lot more of this sort of camera over the next few years, and that's good.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 14, 2015 at 02:57 UTC as 19th comment | 4 replies
In reply to:

Eric Hensel: Wonderful sample shots.
I want the lens because of them.

Actually, this lens almost certainly isn't f/1.6 at 1:2. A "unit focusing" Xmm lens that is f/Y at infinity focus and moved Zmm more distant from the sensor still has an aperture of (X/Y)mm, but now has effective focal length of (X+Z). Thus, the effective f/number would be (X+Z)/(X/Y). So it's probably around f/2.4 at 1:2. Of course, your marked-f/2.8 macro isn't really f/2.8 at 1:2 either.

Various fast 50s, many faster than f/1.6, are capable of competitive IQ overall when used on a short tube to get 1:2 or even higher magnifications. I initially also compared this to my real macros with good bokeh, such as my Tamron SP 90mm f/2.5 macro, but the IQ of the Tamron is way better without having worse bokeh.

This is even more like http://www.instructables.com/id/Using-Ultra-Fast-Lenses-on-DSLR-Cameras/ -- but not as extreme as these repurposed lenses (some of which literally are faster than f/1.6 at 1:2).

Direct link | Posted on Apr 12, 2015 at 12:25 UTC
In reply to:

Eric Hensel: Wonderful sample shots.
I want the lens because of them.

These are really good examples... better than many on the Lensbaby site. This again seems to confirm that the lens is better corrected for close up than distance, so I'm even more convinced that the close focus is really the selling point over many old lens options. Still, I don't think I'd pay $500 for this when it's not that awkward to stick a $10 extension tube behind any of those other lens choices.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 12, 2015 at 05:57 UTC
On Samsung NX1 Review preview (1235 comments in total)
In reply to:

fmian: My feeling is that this camera won't have much of an impact on anything but specification comparisons on a chart.
As far as video goes the Sony A7S release has overshadowed the GH4 for serious compact video work. Pros want lens adaptability and a good frame size to suit the image circle of most lenses out there.
APS-C sits in an uncomfortable middle ground where there are lots of lenses for M43, HEAPS of lenses for full frame, and very few lenses for APS-C.
Sure, it's very close to Super35 size but why would anyone serious enough to use those kinds of lenses look at this over the A7S that can also use every full frame lens ever made to their maximum capability??
While Samsung have created a very good product in it's own right, it ends up being a bit of a black sheep that many people wish was a dark horse.
Just my 2c.

Peiasdf: Sony certainly has a long history of making great sensors and has captured a large fraction of the sensor market, but there are many other players, http://image-sensors-world.blogspot.com/p/image-sensor-companies-list.html . I'm very impressed by Sony sensors and also own a little fleet of Sony cameras from F828 to A7II.

Samsung is still developing their sensor tech; I expect that Samsung is taking a loss on the BSI APS-C sensor, and maybe that was true for their smaller sensors too? My read is that Samsung isn't trying to be the world's supplier of sensors, but I think they would like to be the world's #1 supplier of cameras (arguably are already, thanks to their cell phones), and they are willing to invest more in that goal than other companies can afford. We'll see how that goes for them....

I wouldn't trade my Sony E/FE cameras for this Samsung, and I use a lot of Canon PowerShots for CHDK, but my cell phone has been a Samsung for a while.... ;-)

Direct link | Posted on Apr 10, 2015 at 08:36 UTC
Total: 652, showing: 21 – 40
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