Rod McD

Lives in Australia Australia
Joined on Jan 15, 2010

Comments

Total: 231, showing: 1 – 20
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On article SLIK introduces SLIK LITE tripod line (32 comments in total)

I like their 634CF for a backpacking tripod and these look closely related. I can't say that a light in the bottom of the center column looks all that exciting. Once you've set up the camera, there can only be one place the light can be shone - downwards. It'll be quite useless for illuminating camera and lens controls. Is there anyone who sets out to do night photography who doesn't take a head torch or handheld torch with them?

And would somebody please inform Slik USA that the internet is an international phenomenon - showing both imperial and metric specs in their site might just help potential buyers consider their products.

Link | Posted on Jul 21, 2016 at 09:27 UTC as 5th comment | 2 replies
On article Remembering Fan Ho: 1931-2016 (37 comments in total)

Brilliant photography. Thank you.

Link | Posted on Jun 30, 2016 at 23:42 UTC as 2nd comment
On article Medium-format mirrorless: Hasselblad unveils X1D (1188 comments in total)
In reply to:

Rod McD: Interesting. No doubt priced to compete with the 50mpx Pentax 645Z and far lighter. It will appeal to many. Having said that, I don't think I'd personally enjoy the design. The body and lenses are virtually devoid of the dedicated controls that I prefer and the lenses have no scales or markings at all. Buyers will face a limited lens range and no ability to adapt other lenses. Not for me. It'll be interesting to compare it with the much-tipped Fuji if the rumors are borne out later this year.

@ surlezi Who said they preferred a non-existing system? What I actually wrote was that it will be "interesting to compare it with the much-tipped Fuji if the rumors are borne out later this year".

Link | Posted on Jun 22, 2016 at 21:48 UTC
On article Medium-format mirrorless: Hasselblad unveils X1D (1188 comments in total)

Interesting. No doubt priced to compete with the 50mpx Pentax 645Z and far lighter. It will appeal to many. Having said that, I don't think I'd personally enjoy the design. The body and lenses are virtually devoid of the dedicated controls that I prefer and the lenses have no scales or markings at all. Buyers will face a limited lens range and no ability to adapt other lenses. Not for me. It'll be interesting to compare it with the much-tipped Fuji if the rumors are borne out later this year.

Link | Posted on Jun 22, 2016 at 13:59 UTC as 255th comment | 4 replies

I can't help but think that at that size and weight, it kind of defeats the purpose of choosing a smaller sensored system. There's not much saving over an equivalent APSC lens . Eg the Fuji 16mm f1.4 weighs 375g and takes a 67mm filter. Or go FF and choose a 24/2.8 - it might even be smaller.

Link | Posted on Jun 15, 2016 at 12:41 UTC as 13th comment | 3 replies

I've been trying the M mount version of the same CV 15/4.5 III with an adapter on my APSC XT1 and it's brilliant. I don't need AF in a lens that wide. The fact that it's slow has been irrelevant because for landscape with a WA lens, I inevitably stop down. It's sharp and contrasty with very low distortion and it's resistant to flare. It's far smaller and less expensive than the very fast Fuji 16mm. I couldn't ask for more - other than a version in native Fuji mount.

Link | Posted on May 19, 2016 at 22:24 UTC as 4th comment
In reply to:

Rod McD: Interesting to see their development of AF and disappointing that they appear to have abandoned any decent AF-compatible mechanical implementation for MF when it's needed. I guess it's focus by wire with no mechanical infinity stop, and I see no distance and DOF scales.

I can understand longer lenses not needing scales, but a 14mm (in particular) not to feature even a distance and DOF scale? To me WA lens images are all about what happens in the foreground, so their omission from the 14mm is unforgivable. Give me a super wide MF Loxia or Voigtlander 15mm any day. I'm not buying any AF lenses without good MF implementation.

There are AF, linear-motor-driven lenses with engraved scales and mechanical MFD and infinity stops. Fuji makes three of which I've got two. I'm considering also using a Sony A7, but I'd go for the Loxias and perhaps the Batis specifically for the control over focusing and DOF.

One can of course also go fully MF - Samyang, Voigtlander and Zeiss make plenty. Leica too, but beyond my budget.

Link | Posted on May 4, 2016 at 10:15 UTC
In reply to:

Rod McD: Interesting to see their development of AF and disappointing that they appear to have abandoned any decent AF-compatible mechanical implementation for MF when it's needed. I guess it's focus by wire with no mechanical infinity stop, and I see no distance and DOF scales.

I can understand longer lenses not needing scales, but a 14mm (in particular) not to feature even a distance and DOF scale? To me WA lens images are all about what happens in the foreground, so their omission from the 14mm is unforgivable. Give me a super wide MF Loxia or Voigtlander 15mm any day. I'm not buying any AF lenses without good MF implementation.

I know full well that these are designed for mirror-less camera. I've got one. And I know full well that the AF in these lenses is electronically driven. So what? My point is that AF doesn't cater adequately for all situations. There are plenty of AF lenses that have electronic AF AND a mechanical implementation for manual focus (when its needed) that is better than these Samyang lenses because they (ie the Samyangs) don't have stops for infinity and close focus and because they don't have focusing distance and DOF scales. I'm just saying that it's a pity that Samyang didn't offer those features. You may not need them, but for others they may be very useful.

Link | Posted on May 4, 2016 at 06:45 UTC
In reply to:

Rod McD: Interesting to see their development of AF and disappointing that they appear to have abandoned any decent AF-compatible mechanical implementation for MF when it's needed. I guess it's focus by wire with no mechanical infinity stop, and I see no distance and DOF scales.

I can understand longer lenses not needing scales, but a 14mm (in particular) not to feature even a distance and DOF scale? To me WA lens images are all about what happens in the foreground, so their omission from the 14mm is unforgivable. Give me a super wide MF Loxia or Voigtlander 15mm any day. I'm not buying any AF lenses without good MF implementation.

Focus peaking certainly won't help you get precise infinity focus with an UWA lens. Everything highlights red (or whatever) because the DOF is deep. It's a long way from good enough for (say) aerial photography or night sky photography, both of which require exact infinity focus. Yes magnification does help, but accurate infinity registration works just as well and faster.

And neither focus peaking nor magnification will tell you anything about the DOF. Eg, if you're looking for deep DOF for the classic near-far landscape, you need to know the hyperfocal distances and only a lens scale, tables or an app will give you that. It disappoints me that manufacturers are dropping them just to build to a price.

Link | Posted on May 4, 2016 at 04:06 UTC

Interesting to see their development of AF and disappointing that they appear to have abandoned any decent AF-compatible mechanical implementation for MF when it's needed. I guess it's focus by wire with no mechanical infinity stop, and I see no distance and DOF scales.

I can understand longer lenses not needing scales, but a 14mm (in particular) not to feature even a distance and DOF scale? To me WA lens images are all about what happens in the foreground, so their omission from the 14mm is unforgivable. Give me a super wide MF Loxia or Voigtlander 15mm any day. I'm not buying any AF lenses without good MF implementation.

Link | Posted on May 3, 2016 at 23:46 UTC as 43rd comment | 7 replies

Great article - thanks for the link. It's always good to know more about how our tools function. In a converse kind of way, it also makes me appreciate the mechanical elegance and simplicity of some of my MF lenses. I've a couple of Voigtlanders focused by conventional helixes and they're beautiful to use. I've a feeling they'll outlast all my focus by wire lenses......

Link | Posted on Apr 22, 2016 at 10:48 UTC as 4th comment
On article Upwardly mobile: Sony a6300 Review (2133 comments in total)

When I read the pros and cons, it all comes out looking excellent to me. If you're a stills photographer who shoots at a moderate pace, who couldn't care less about video, high frame rates or the absence of a touch screen, almost the entire list of 'cons' in the conclusion simply disappears.

Yes Sony could develop better menus and a more cohesive system of high grade APSC lenses.

Link | Posted on Apr 7, 2016 at 05:07 UTC as 182nd comment

This concept would bring the benefit of data, menus, and other facilities into DSLR VFs, but I can't help but think that it is an extra complexity and cost.

Many people have suggested that the chief advantage of mirror-less cameras in the long run will be cheaper production costs. This patent takes DSLRs in the opposite direction. Still, there's still a very active demand for DSLRs at the moment, so perhaps there will always be those willing to pay extra for the benefits of a prism, however sophisticated it might have to become to offer the benefits people come to expect because they're offered by mirror-less cameras.

Link | Posted on Apr 1, 2016 at 06:07 UTC as 42nd comment
On photo Black as a crow white as a cockatoo in the Black and White in Nature challenge (4 comments in total)

Great shot. Incredible luck to get a Raven and Sulphur Crested Cockatoo in the same spot and the same time..... and good exposure

Link | Posted on Mar 31, 2016 at 22:07 UTC as 1st comment

Another lens without a single marking on the barrel. Ugh. I thought Leica was all about giving photographers control.

Link | Posted on Mar 23, 2016 at 20:54 UTC as 31st comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

Rod McD: Good to see some interesting options emerging from Asian manufacturers. (I'm thinking of the German designed, Chinese made Iberits there.) I'm not sure why they haven't included some mirror-less mounts though at least they can be adapted. The only downside I can see is that the lens is rather large and heavy at 600gm+. AF? For a lens that appears to suit landscape, architecture and potentially astro photography? Who cares?

@Saurat. I know Europe is not in Asia. Read the article. The lens is marketed as Swiss and manufactured in Korea. (Which is why I made the analogous comment about the German marketed Iberits which are manufactured in China. Having a link to a European heritage appears to be the current strategy for new manufacturers to get more market traction than those who launch from their country of origin.) Your negative view about Americans is noted, not that I am an American.

Link | Posted on Mar 22, 2016 at 21:24 UTC

Good to see some interesting options emerging from Asian manufacturers. (I'm thinking of the German designed, Chinese made Iberits there.) I'm not sure why they haven't included some mirror-less mounts though at least they can be adapted. The only downside I can see is that the lens is rather large and heavy at 600gm+. AF? For a lens that appears to suit landscape, architecture and potentially astro photography? Who cares?

Link | Posted on Mar 21, 2016 at 21:20 UTC as 30th comment | 5 replies
On photo Farewell to a Legend. in the Jump jet challenge (7 comments in total)

Hi,
Great shot. That's a HS Harrier isn't it? Have they developed an upgraded/ replacement VTOL aircraft?

Thx, Rod

Link | Posted on Mar 18, 2016 at 10:18 UTC as 4th comment | 1 reply

Hi DPR,
Thanks for the review. Interesting lens. (They've also released a 2:1 macro you might take a look at.) I think you over-rate the difficulty of using MF lenses in your conclusion. It isn't that hard. Certainly Leica, Voigtlander and Zeiss don't think so. And who needs AF on a 15mm lens anyway?

Would it be possible for your lens database to be updated for all the new Chinese manufacturers - Venus/Laowa, Handevision, Mitakon, SLR Magic, Zhongyi etc. They may not be longstanding or mainstream (yet), but you have to hand it to them for trying some interesting products. They should be in there too. Thanks.

Link | Posted on Mar 13, 2016 at 23:07 UTC as 27th comment | 2 replies

The Canon EOS M MILC lags behind other mirror-less systems. Mr Tokura may hold the view that the EVF experience isn't the same as a prism (and he's right) and that mirror-less AF isn't as fast as DSLR AF (though the gap is closing). What he hasn't acknowledged is that for many people, the current 2.4mpx EVF technology and the current levels of mirror-less AF speed both work absolutely fine.
There is a very active enthusiast/pro market they could participate in somewhere between the EOS M and heavyweight pro DSLRs.

Link | Posted on Mar 3, 2016 at 22:12 UTC as 12th comment
Total: 231, showing: 1 – 20
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