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: 910, showing: 141 – 160
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In reply to:

mahonj: a; I cannot see the point of a 1/20,000 second shutter speed - at all.
How many people want photos of a wet dog shaking itself ? or a girl swirling her hair ? Leave it at 1/2000 and ship some images of the above.

b: A companion camera with no zoom lens ?????
To me, that makes no sense. Surely the main point of a companion camera is the zoom. You can already get F1.8 on phone cameras.

c: maybe they could make 2 versions:
An F2.8 3:1 zoom one and a F1.8 fixed focus one.
or a version with both lenses and a sliding sensor that can switch between them.

I have $80 Canon PowerShots that can do 1/30,000s with their mechanical leaf shutter (under CHDK, which also makes them completely programmable stand-alone devices as small as this). I don't have an iPhone. I have no problem with what DxO is doing, and it might be the most tightly integrated phone clip-on, but it isn't for me.

Link | Posted on Dec 2, 2015 at 11:13 UTC
In reply to:

ProfHankD: This is a fine thing to do, but the devil is in the details, and from this article I'm not seeing anything that suggests they got the details right. It sounds like this is nothing more than a burst focus bracket mode at 8MP JPEG. Things it could/should do:

1. For a scene with stuff close and stuff far, but nothing in-between, does the camera still capture a pile of images for the in-between focus distances or does it intelligently skip those distances that the pre-scan found worthless?

2. Does the camera do any focus stacking for you or do you need to extract and stack frames in post?

3. If it does stacking, does it align images (as Sony does in multi-shot modes)?

4. Does it have any depth-from-focus/defocus processing options? For example, can it produce a depth map or interpolate a focus point between images?

In sum, I really want to like this, but I get the feeling this is a pretty crude implementation of an old idea, significant mostly in that it's done in 4K...?

SSantana75: Because this awkward-to-use feature is missing most of the benefits that it should bring. This seems to be a cheap and easy hack to make a marketing claim, not a carefully-planned implementation of a feature users requested. In fairness, it would be hard to make all the computational focus tricks work with arbitrary lenses (due to focus breathing), and might be slow to process the 4K images in-camera using the processing power currently there (although Sony has had enough compute power for needed type of alignment processing since the NEX-5).

Link | Posted on Nov 30, 2015 at 11:21 UTC

This is a fine thing to do, but the devil is in the details, and from this article I'm not seeing anything that suggests they got the details right. It sounds like this is nothing more than a burst focus bracket mode at 8MP JPEG. Things it could/should do:

1. For a scene with stuff close and stuff far, but nothing in-between, does the camera still capture a pile of images for the in-between focus distances or does it intelligently skip those distances that the pre-scan found worthless?

2. Does the camera do any focus stacking for you or do you need to extract and stack frames in post?

3. If it does stacking, does it align images (as Sony does in multi-shot modes)?

4. Does it have any depth-from-focus/defocus processing options? For example, can it produce a depth map or interpolate a focus point between images?

In sum, I really want to like this, but I get the feeling this is a pretty crude implementation of an old idea, significant mostly in that it's done in 4K...?

Link | Posted on Nov 26, 2015 at 13:00 UTC as 30th comment | 3 replies
In reply to:

Snikt228: I think everyone just opened to confirm the A7R II was the top recommended. Silly the 5D3 is even on the list, almost 4 year old body and technology.

I wanted to see who got "also consider." Unfortunately, DPReview had to break their own rules here to give it to the D750... because just like the A7II, the D750 costs under $2000. Anyway, the correct answer is probably D810 and not 5DSR, which is still bad news for Canon, if anyone there is listening....

Link | Posted on Nov 25, 2015 at 20:44 UTC

Wouldn't it have made more sense to stick the A7II on a tripod and shoot the exact same scene using compressed and uncompressed raw, then show the difference?

I was away at a conference (SC15), but now that I'm back, I will be upgrading my A7II and doing the side-by-side tests. Might also rework KARWY to generate an uncompressed Sony raw rather than DNG when it repairs artifacts in a compressed raw....

Link | Posted on Nov 21, 2015 at 00:10 UTC as 22nd comment

Stereo fisheye is something I've played with on and off since 1999. There are some technical issues with viewing/manipulating fisheye stereo, but this is basically a very viable upgrade for those who love GoPro-like things. Certainly has potential as a body camera for recording first responder (police, etc.) experiences, realtor walk-throughs, etc., and for surveillance with minor repackaging to make it a wifi network camera.

I don't get the 1080p per eye capture given that they seem to be taking circular images from the fisheyes (which means it doesn't quite cover a square aspect ratio, let alone 16:9), and the DPReview crowd is not really the intended market for a camera with no controls, but overall this has a lot of appeal -- especially in having live video out.

Link | Posted on Nov 14, 2015 at 13:12 UTC as 6th comment
On article 2015 Roundup: Interchangeable Lens Cameras $500-800 (276 comments in total)
In reply to:

ProfHankD: Interesting. I don't really disagree with the conclusions here, but the Samsung NX500 actually was rated slightly higher by DPReview (81%) than the three cameras that won here (each 80%). Honestly, every camera considered here is really quite good -- even the Canons that suffer from an outdated sensor fab are quite viable for serious use.

Rishi, I'm an engineer -- I'm perfectly happy attributing this to the fact that the ratings have more than 1% noise. ;-)

Link | Posted on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:24 UTC
On article 2015 Roundup: Interchangeable Lens Cameras $500-800 (276 comments in total)

Interesting. I don't really disagree with the conclusions here, but the Samsung NX500 actually was rated slightly higher by DPReview (81%) than the three cameras that won here (each 80%). Honestly, every camera considered here is really quite good -- even the Canons that suffer from an outdated sensor fab are quite viable for serious use.

Link | Posted on Nov 13, 2015 at 00:32 UTC as 35th comment | 5 replies
On challenge Read the friendly manual (3 comments in total)

I've had a request to drop the "taken after announcement" requirement... but the system will not let me change that rule now. Sorry.

Link | Posted on Nov 8, 2015 at 12:01 UTC as 1st comment
On article The great outdoors: Canon EOS 5DS and 5DSR Field Test (108 comments in total)
In reply to:

nycgazelle: Wow photos don't even have a magic light quality to them. The jpeg's straight out of my A7r look so much better than this without me even trying. I wish better people would shoot these types of images.

These images look somewhat flat to me. Especially in smaller sizes, the DR really is the dominant feature -- DR is not a strong point of the 5DS models. That said, they don't look bad and I suppose there's tons of resolution to play with....

Link | Posted on Nov 6, 2015 at 15:42 UTC
On article What's missing? Ming Thein on the state of mirrorless (751 comments in total)
In reply to:

mgrum: The thing about mirrorless cameras is they are not DSLRs. You have to do things slightly differently and you have to learn some new techniques, you can't just pick it up as if it's a DSLR and expect to be able to get the same results right away.

This is something reviewers often miss, they don't have the time to learn to use a particular camera. A perfect example of this is the complaints over cluttered EVFs, every camera I've seen has a way of turning that off.

Another one is ergonomics. After using an A7R for less than a year DSLRs now feel like they have poor ergonomics.

Yup, film-based thinking is a huge problem leading to many unwisely selected priorities. The number one issue I have with modern cameras is the lack of user/3rd-party in-camera app support... which is really all about understanding that modern cameras are fundamentally different from those things that took film. The lack of other voices calling for this tells me very few folks understand what cameras really are now about: a camera isn't just an image capture device, but an intelligent tool for creating scene models (including a time dimension) from which images may be rendered. When you think of it that way, an OVF is comically less appropriate than an EVF.

Link | Posted on Nov 6, 2015 at 14:05 UTC
On article Lytro unveils Immerge, a pro-grade light field VR rig (55 comments in total)

Stick a bunch of Lytro cameras together and capture a 360 lightfield. Ok. It still leaves a lot of depth ambiguity compared to things like structured light capture or time-of-flight, but it will work in bright daylight with scenes that have distant elements. Of course, the model is constructed from a very limited set of points of view, so their scene model will still have lots of occlusions that prevent free exploration of the captured space (can't look behind things), but that's still a big step up from a 360 view without any depth info. It will be interesting to see who partners with them....

Link | Posted on Nov 6, 2015 at 03:09 UTC as 27th comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

ProfHankD: I think it's great that Sony is doing this -- especially that they are doing more than just the uncompressed raw. For what it's worth, the free tool I created that credibly repairs the compressed raw artifacts, http://aggregate.org/DIT/KARWY/ , still hasn't had all that many users (still under 200), so I think the focus changes will be meaningful to far more users than the uncompressed raw will be.

Raw formats can do lots of things JPEGs cannot, but very rarely does the lossy raw encoding mean that uncompressed raw can do more, and that's even more true given how well KARWY repairs the lossy raw artifacts. So, yes, it is overhyped. Still, the lossy compression is a legitimate issue, and would probably be worse in future Sony cameras, so it is good to have the uncompressed option to use when you need it. For older raws, or for when you didn't realize you needed uncompressed, there's always KARWY.... ;-)

Link | Posted on Nov 5, 2015 at 05:37 UTC
On article BOOMR camera strap features unique bungee design (53 comments in total)
In reply to:

alextardif: Someone failed their Physics 101 class in high school, didn't they?

..."Bungee cords are extremely strong BLA BLA BLA ... and significantly decrease the weight load of carrying a camera around your neck or shoulders..."

Um, no, it doesn't decrease the weight load. 5lbs around your neck is... still 5lbs around your neck no matter what you attach it by.

Elasticity will provide shock absorption sure, but no one is running a marathon around with their camera just dangling around, regardless of the strap design. I'm all for innovation, but this is poorly thought through with drawbacks FAR outweighing any perceived benefits. And it's fugly too.

Aha! Great idea for a new product: the Hindenburg Floatee Strap. Extra-wide 6" strap inflated with hydrogen to truly reduce the weight on your shoulder by lifting some of it for you. Comes with grounded mooring clamp to keep the hydrogen chambers safely anchored around your neck. Do not use near open flame.

Shouldn't be any harder to fund via Kickstarter than making potato salad.... ;-)

Link | Posted on Nov 5, 2015 at 00:31 UTC

I think it's great that Sony is doing this -- especially that they are doing more than just the uncompressed raw. For what it's worth, the free tool I created that credibly repairs the compressed raw artifacts, http://aggregate.org/DIT/KARWY/ , still hasn't had all that many users (still under 200), so I think the focus changes will be meaningful to far more users than the uncompressed raw will be.

Link | Posted on Nov 4, 2015 at 20:19 UTC as 26th comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

Mark Banas: Comment by noflashplease (4 months ago)
"GoPro just did the $99 Polaroid Cube.... for $399....1080P? Really?"

We definitely knew that the Polaroid was first to market, and apparently beat the Session's patent by a day. Anyone think GoPro wouldn't sue C&A if the tables were turned?

I get this -- I had to look-up which cube was which -- but I have to say this "design" seems well within SEP (standard engineering practice) and thus not patentable. Submitted also doesn't mean awarded. Lytro could probably even sue 'em both if they didn't specify the depth dimension of their rectangular box design. I hate this modern trend to seek patent protection for everything rather than just the things that actually are new and different; if they want folks to know which is which at a glance, just stick a big logo on it....

PS: Heck, I personally have built squarish wooden boxes to hold camera guts before, e.g.: http://aggregate.org/DIT/PEEPFISH/

Link | Posted on Nov 4, 2015 at 11:27 UTC
In reply to:

Joseph Black: You could almost reverse engineer the lens by looking at the flare. In a couple of shots it's almost as if you can see each individual lens element. Was that an artistic choice or is flare a serious issue with this lens?

Rishi, http://www.dpreview.com/sample-galleries/0777680044/sigma-24-35mm-f2-dg-hsm-art-real-world-samples/8151519187 is about 42MP -- but I gather it's a cropped image from a Canon? You have a few that are odd sizes here so I didn't trust the EXIF saying Canon. I guess the DR of that camera left no great options... it would have taken a lot of shadow lifting to be sure. The ones with blown sky are ok, but I like the images that didn't blow the sky more -- like #11 or #12.

Anyway, nice photos and a quite nice lens too. Also doesn't hurt to remind folks that wides can be good for portraits....

Link | Posted on Nov 2, 2015 at 22:17 UTC
In reply to:

Joseph Black: You could almost reverse engineer the lens by looking at the flare. In a couple of shots it's almost as if you can see each individual lens element. Was that an artistic choice or is flare a serious issue with this lens?

Yeah, I probably would have kept the sun behind things more too. Despite all the DR work Rishi's been doing, many of these shots also seem to have less than optimally leveraged the DR to cover the scene (although I did notice lots of the sun shots are 42MP while others are 50MP, so it does look like he tried to leverage the Sony vs. Canon DR).

Link | Posted on Nov 2, 2015 at 17:31 UTC
In reply to:

Joseph Black: You could almost reverse engineer the lens by looking at the flare. In a couple of shots it's almost as if you can see each individual lens element. Was that an artistic choice or is flare a serious issue with this lens?

Actually, Rishi seems to have decided the sun should be in nearly every shot... given that, and f/2, I'm pretty impressed with how small the flare patterns are. That said, they are quite intense... a combination that means you will not see them in the viewfinder, but you'll definitely want to fix them for the final image. For example, the flare in the cover image easily could be fixed using smart heal selection.

Link | Posted on Nov 2, 2015 at 16:03 UTC
On challenge Read the friendly manual (3 comments in total)
In reply to:

kkardster: Can those of us who read their manuals cover to cover even before we buy the camera enter if we use a feature we've never tried before?

That's in the spirit, so I just modified the rules to allow it. Thanks.

Link | Posted on Nov 1, 2015 at 18:08 UTC
Total: 910, showing: 141 – 160
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