Tom Caldwell

Lives in Australia Coffs Harbour NSW, Australia
Works as a Retired
Has a website at
Joined on Feb 19, 2002


Total: 367, showing: 1 – 20
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On article Throwback Thursday: Canon EOS 5D (216 comments in total)
In reply to:

GeraldW: I have long looked at 5D's. This article has me thinking again. Well done.
I have owned a couple of the little brother 30D. Looking back of my shots, the 8 MP 30D still has some of the best looking images.

OK, for future Throwbacks, how about the Canon Pro 1? I still have one (it's #6). When brought out, the early review models had a number of problems that were mostly worked out over the next two years. Early ones had AF issues, fixed by the new firmware; the early ones vignette at certain combinations of focal length and aperture, and they eventually got that right. The differences between the earliest and last production is quite significant. Unfortunately nearly all the reviews were done on the earliest build and give a false picture of what a good one can do.
DPR, set the record straight with a re-review of a late production Pro 1.

Go one better : The Canon Pro90 IS - so far ahead of its time then and perhaps well and truly past time now.

The Pro1 had a better lens, and perhaps a better build, but no IS and I doubt if it was really a success as there was an enormous fire sale at the end of its run.

Link | Posted on Aug 29, 2016 at 07:05 UTC
On article Throwback Thursday: Canon EOS 5D (216 comments in total)

My 5D is still working - I still use it as a protest to otherwise having to replace one camera body with much the same thing every two years or so at $3,500 per body.

If mirrorless bodies were this expensive to upgrade then maybe there is a lesson there for Sony? Oh, sorry, they have already learned it.

Link | Posted on Aug 29, 2016 at 07:01 UTC as 9th comment
On article Rebel in your pocket: Canon EOS M3 Review (435 comments in total)
In reply to:

Photato: One of the ironies about the M series is the ongoing criticism about the limited lens catalog.
However, the reality is quite the opposite. The M series in its humbleness can easily be the Camera with the most extensive lens collection from a manufacturer ever.
It certainly accepts more lenses than Canon Full Frame and Canon APS-C DSLR cameras.
Add to that gazillions of other lenses from other mounts that can be used with adapters and is easy to see why.
While is true that something similar can be said about all other mirrorless systems, specially 4/3rds, the M has definitely the edge given the Canon "natively" supported lenses namely EF, EF-S and EF-M.

The only edge is compared to Nikon now looking rather sheepish with their Nikon 1 diversionary experiment in disarray.

Making the M series without a built in evf model in its line shows that Canon is not yet serious about their M-light range. All the great lenses in the world will not disguise its intended market -"anyone but a dslr user".

Great camera for anyone that would truly like one.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 23:01 UTC
On article Rebel in your pocket: Canon EOS M3 Review (435 comments in total)
In reply to:

BeefCoffee: I don't really see whats so terrible about this camera. For people that have $500 for a body, without a mirror, it really isn't a bad option. Is it great anything in particular? No, not really. But it does everything the average person would need and then some. When I worked at CameraMart in Pontiac, MI people would come in with EXPENSIVE gear...not knowing how to change the "orange cast" (wb) in their photos. Cameras like this need to exist, and I think everyone else just needs to get over it. If there's another option out there that's better for you, then just take it. Why complain?

Simply because I have been waiting 10 years for Canon to make a pro-level mirrorless that uses EF lenses. I have given up. Nothing wrong with making a cheap entry level wannabe but average body without evf but where is the really serious mirrorless camera body that we all now that Canon is capable of making?

If they keep ignoring the market change then there is every possibility of doing the impossible - emulating Kodak. But dslr bodies are a high margin product (like film) and mirrorless bodies are low margin product (like digital media).

There's the rub. I am past complaining, it never did Cassandra any good.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 22:54 UTC
On article Rebel in your pocket: Canon EOS M3 Review (435 comments in total)
In reply to:

wb2trf: This camera, and in fact the entire slow rate of renewal of the Canon camera line, is what you get if corporate management gives the camera division a very low investment budget. It is entirely rational for corporate management to do that, since cameras are a shrinking market in which Canon already has high market share and Canon is a diversified company. Canon corporate is trying to find better, higher growth, markets to invest in while milking their brand in cameras for higher cash flow toward other markets. No surprises here.

Far out ... US$900m? Where are their bean counters? - what are they doing? They must be using the notes as fuel to tide them over winter.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 22:47 UTC
On article Rebel in your pocket: Canon EOS M3 Review (435 comments in total)
In reply to:

kevindar: its stinks generally speaking. and the sad thing is, canon already has a much better sensor in the 80D, as well as very good dual pixel AF technology, and ability to at least shoot 1080 60P. there is only one good thing about the M system, and that is, the lenses, though very few of them, are optically very good, and pretty cheap compared to other mirrorless systems. I have the sony a6000, the I wish I could buy M lenses for it.

Mirrorless camera body users are second citizens from the Canon perspective. They just have to have a mirrorless body in their line up but don't make it too good or it would take sales away from the high margin dslr body cash cow.

Canon can do better than this effort but they don't choose to do so.

I gave up - my EF lenses work perfectly on M4/3 bodies via Metabones adapters and I hear tell that they also work pretty well now on Sony A7II series bodies as well. Why bother with a compact wannabe mirrorless with no evf when the new Panasonic GX85 with Metabones will blow it away when fitted with EF lenses.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 22:44 UTC
On article Rebel in your pocket: Canon EOS M3 Review (435 comments in total)

Try harder Canon - no built in evf. Arrgh! these days - surely a clip on evf is soooo passe.

The Panasonic GF7 has a tilt up screen and the GM5 has a built in evf. And yet the Nikon 1 is excused from comparison because it is no longer being developed. The GM series doesn't get a mention.

Ah! and the GM series and GF7 have access to a whole gamut of lenses - natively mounted, no adapter required.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 22:35 UTC as 104th comment | 5 replies
In reply to:

sportyaccordy: I thought MFT shooters don't care about large formats? MFT has everything anyone ever needed lol

I kid but I do think Sony FE has pretty much killed Speed Boosters.

Bear in mind that Metabones adapters work almost to oem standard on EF to M4/3 and with the Ultra EF lenses are slightly closer to FF than just aps-c. Like apps-c x 1.1. So EF lenses are just as do-able on M4/3 as they are on the multitude of aps-c dslr bodies that they are commonly used on.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 00:57 UTC
In reply to:

Suhas Sudhakar Kulkarni: Makes the lens faster by one stop??
What will happen to those f0.95 lenses!
Too bad I sold my tamron 10-24 lens when I sold my nikon camera and moved to GX85...

I don't think it works that way - there is some sort of physical (technical) limit at about (perhaps) f0.80. Not sure, so don't hold me to that. The essence is that there is a limit and the "booster" effect does not go on forever.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 00:52 UTC
In reply to:

zzzxtreme: There are other options for aroubd $90 at Such as the canon fd to m43 reducer. Moreover you can attach mount adapters for it (for lenses of longer flange distance)

So much for Chinese jelly jar lenses - as far as I know all focal reduction adapters are made in China these days. I am not sure of the state of US lens manufacture for the masses. Lens Baby maybe?

A cheap shot for a cheap shot?

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 00:44 UTC

The Metabones Canon EF to M4/3 adapter gives very acceptable AF on M4/3 bodies

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2016 at 00:41 UTC as 6th comment

I am sure that this is a great product, but .... Does this company realise that in Australia "Cactus" means "had it, useless, will not work" eg: "this thing is cactus" = this article will never work again and should be scrapped. Noteworthy Citroen is also trying to launch a small 4wd vehicle called the "Cactus" - it will be interesting to see how it sells. "hey guys, I just bought a cactus ..." will see more than a few Aussies rolling around in mirth.

Link | Posted on Jun 30, 2016 at 07:35 UTC as 7th comment | 3 replies

Have you noticed the propensity to make "replicas" of Canon's dream lenses? The Canon 24mm f1.4 comes to mind in this case. There are others. The 42.5mm f1.2 and 35-100mm f2.8 OIS are examples.

Link | Posted on Jun 15, 2016 at 06:30 UTC as 21st comment | 3 replies

I am happy with such a lens and am sure that it will reward those that buy one. Shades of the 42.5mm f1.3 Nocticron and carry on by those that would not make themselves afford one and made every excuse to justify that fact.

No compulsion and if there are better, cheaper, lenses then go buy one.

I just hope that they make a better fist of the metal hood than they did with the one on the Nocticron - I ended up discarding it in favour of a Matin reversible bayonet hood.

Link | Posted on Jun 15, 2016 at 06:22 UTC as 125th comment
In reply to:

Seedeich: Interesting idea.

They should get rid of the battery as well and use that old school film transportation lever to produce just enough electricity to record the image and to drive the light meter.
With a couple of spare SD cards you could shoot forever off the grid.

Would be even better if Nikon made a FM-style DSLR without LCD and thumb-lever charged.

Now that is a truly useful idea - a modern digital camera that would work without batteries. Something useful anywhere, anytime , and very useful when the lights eventually go out.

Link | Posted on Apr 29, 2016 at 01:36 UTC
In reply to:

J Parker: Leica haters of the world, unite....

Leica does it again. First, Leica introduces an $8,000 monochrome camera and many of us are outraged. But Phase One introduces a monochrome camera that costs 5x the price ($40,000!) and the forums here are silent -- no outrage -- nothing. The Leica version saves you $32,000 -- the least we could've done was to say thanks. The humanity.

And now Leica releases a camera without an LCD.... Who do they think they are?

Seriously, all joking aside -- I wear a Timex -- but I would love a Patek Phillippe -- it is a pure work of art that also happens to tell time. Leica sells works of art that also happen to be photographic tools. And that I can understand. People buy fine art not for how it makes others (i.e. you) feel, but how it makes them feel -- and this can be an extremely powerful thing both logically and emotionally.

My auto fanatic friends don't stop enjoying their Mustangs when Ferrari puts out a new model. Enjoy the camera you have.

Not Leica haters, but nonsense must expect a certain brand of humour in response.

Link | Posted on Apr 29, 2016 at 01:30 UTC
In reply to:

AlanG: Can it pause for a couple of minutes after shooting 36 exposures? That's a feature I need.

Good one Marty ... :)

The cards come in film-like canisters?

Link | Posted on Apr 29, 2016 at 01:25 UTC
In reply to:

StIves: No rear screen, fair enough, I guess that might to some people be points for simplicity and retro. But all they could think of to use that space for was a butt-ugly ISO dial that only goes to 6400?

It actually discretely spins as the image is recorded.

Link | Posted on Apr 29, 2016 at 01:23 UTC
On article Fujifilm X70 Review (370 comments in total)
In reply to:

saeba77: i really can't understand why i need this camera or the ricoh?
i can buy the t10 or a6000 or a6300 or xa2 or ecc , mount a prime f2.8 and obtain the same image quality (well may be better) in a body more or less same spec

You forgot the Panasonic choice of GM1 or GM5 both of which offer smaller basic body sizes and a choice from a huge range of suitable lenses. Of course the GR does not have a lens stub and at rest is still the smallest. Fired up and ready to go the GM series cameras are the physical smallest to pack a real punch.

Link | Posted on Apr 18, 2016 at 21:05 UTC
On article Fujifilm X70 Review (370 comments in total)
In reply to:

caravan: The GR has the great snap focus feature which makes for superb handling and control,too bad Fuji went with the gimmicks;touch+tilt screen.

I am afraid that I am in the camp of tilt screen is a gimmick for a camera that size.

Link | Posted on Apr 18, 2016 at 21:01 UTC
Total: 367, showing: 1 – 20
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