Steve Balcombe

Lives in United Kingdom United Kingdom
Joined on Jun 16, 2004

Comments

Total: 195, showing: 1 – 20
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Funny that one of them has named the 75-300 USM as the first lens he worked on - "Canon's worst lens" according to some!

Link | Posted on Mar 22, 2017 at 13:12 UTC as 52nd comment | 2 replies
On article Throwback Thursday: Our first cameras (374 comments in total)
In reply to:

phill104: Being only in my early 40s most people think I would have started with modern to the 80s cameras. However, my first was a box brownie followed by a shed load of different cameras dating back to the first world war. I was fascinated by these old beasts, by making my own plates and by the simplicity of them. I did move to a Zenit E, then an OM10 before going all AF with an EOS 5. I stll love those old toys, shame they were all nicked.

Sorry to hear they were stolen Phill.

Autofocus was what caused me to switch to Canon too - an EOS 10 which I still have. One day perhaps I'll put a roll of film through it, using the somewhat better lenses I have today!

Link | Posted on Mar 16, 2017 at 12:07 UTC

If you believe in karma, that's justice for all the migrating birds they shoot.

Link | Posted on Mar 9, 2017 at 08:34 UTC as 46th comment | 6 replies

Whatever your preferred definition of "macro", they're stretching it a bit with this lens. At MFD you can fill the frame with a subject measuring 88x66 mm !????

Link | Posted on Mar 1, 2017 at 08:24 UTC as 6th comment | 2 replies

Very, very impressive.

Sadly the smeary effect around the brightest screws near the right-hand edge of image 4 is very reminiscent of coma. Hope I'm wrong.

Link | Posted on Feb 28, 2017 at 12:19 UTC as 57th comment | 5 replies
In reply to:

AlonRozen: It looks very good in all aspects but one - distortion. To my taste the distortion is too much in most of the presented pictures. I know that this is the case with 14 mm lenses but I would love to have it less pronounced.

@jnd - actually no, this is a rectilinear lens so make a large flat print then view from very close, so the corners are at the angle they would have been in real life. Bingo, no distortion.

Link | Posted on Feb 28, 2017 at 12:16 UTC
On article CP+ 2017: Hands-on with Sigma's newest lenses (198 comments in total)

I just hope that 14/1.8 performs well across the frame. If it does it will be an instant classic.

Link | Posted on Feb 23, 2017 at 14:35 UTC as 59th comment
On article Comedy Pet Photography Awards open for entries (46 comments in total)
In reply to:

John Koch: Do animals laugh? Not really. Donkeys bray if they are hungry, lonely, or jealous. Some apes hoot in derision or to belittle a threat. But they have no habit of what we call laughter. It takes a creature with the power of reason and evil to be obsessed with laughter. Some humans can laugh at themselves, but most chortle only at events that reflect the failure, incompetence, or pain that sets back rivals. Laughter and pain are often intertwined. Clowns and comedians have a difficult, at times sad, calling.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/earth/story/20150611-chimps-smile-like-us

Link | Posted on Jan 30, 2017 at 00:52 UTC

"+/-0.03° of angular vibration compensation" - that seems a very small figure especially for a wide angle lens. Is it a typo?

Link | Posted on Jan 26, 2017 at 09:31 UTC as 10th comment | 2 replies

Awesome. Shame the pilot wouldn't switch off those annoying lights on the wing ;-)

Link | Posted on Jan 19, 2017 at 12:03 UTC as 20th comment | 2 replies
In reply to:

StephanBG: Wow, love DP, same people who played up the difference between APSC and FF now downplay the difference between FF and MF.

@fmian - I don't mind that the definition of medium format has shifted - we just need to be aware what it is.

Link | Posted on Jan 19, 2017 at 10:56 UTC
In reply to:

StephanBG: Wow, love DP, same people who played up the difference between APSC and FF now downplay the difference between FF and MF.

Yes, but that's because the step from FF and MF really is much smaller than APS-C to FF.

There's a clear reason for this. Medium format film was 6x6 or 6x7, with 6 x 4.5 being looked down upon by many as not really proper MF. But now 33x44 - half the size of even 6 x 4.5 - is being touted as "medium format". It's a simple fact that the step up from 24x36 to 33x44 is significantly less than from 15x22.5 to 24x36. When you then factor in the high price and limited choice of lenses, you have the very definition of 'diminishing returns'.

Link | Posted on Jan 19, 2017 at 10:30 UTC

Maybe a problem with the specification for the battery, rather than the batteries themselves. That would explain why batteries from multiple suppliers were 'at fault'.

Link | Posted on Jan 16, 2017 at 20:37 UTC as 35th comment | 2 replies

Stunning.

Link | Posted on Jan 1, 2017 at 11:31 UTC as 48th comment

Superb series - much, much better than I was expecting!

Link | Posted on Nov 5, 2016 at 10:24 UTC as 39th comment
In reply to:

SwissSwiss: My Samsung Note 4 gets quiet warm sometimes when charging or on long phone calls. Is that something to worry about? Battery looks fine.

Very warm is fine.

Link | Posted on Oct 21, 2016 at 12:21 UTC
In reply to:

Timur Born: Minimum focus distance of only 1.10m, which is always welcome. Albeit I wonder at what end this is measured? My understanding is that usually this comes at the price of focus breathing, so I'm curious how they solved this in practice.

Maximum magnification suggests that it could magnify the same as the Canon on the long end, but do we know at what end the Nikon achieves its maximum magnification? The shorter minimum focus distance might also suggest that you have to step forward to achieve that magnification compared to the Canon.

Just realised I mis-typed in my first reply - I wrote "For SLR lenses, minimum focusing distance is normally the same throughout the focusing range." - that should of course have been "throughout the zoom range".

@Dr_Jon - 0.12x at 1.4m? - wow, I hadn't realised the old one was that bad, no wonder such a fuss is being made! It looks like Nikon has caught up in several ways with this lens, great news for Nikon shooters.

Link | Posted on Oct 19, 2016 at 10:20 UTC
In reply to:

obsolescence: Nikon should have designed a removable tripod collar so that only the camera moves and shift-stitching avoids parallax. But I guess that wouldn't work too well with their humongous pro bodies -- if only they had a mirrorless.

How about a filter holder and adjustable hood/flag for this lens. Don't they listen to us?

The middle part of the lens, where the name plate is, almost looks designed for a simple tripod collar. Maybe that will come later as a £/$500 accessory?

Link | Posted on Oct 19, 2016 at 09:10 UTC
In reply to:

Timur Born: Minimum focus distance of only 1.10m, which is always welcome. Albeit I wonder at what end this is measured? My understanding is that usually this comes at the price of focus breathing, so I'm curious how they solved this in practice.

Maximum magnification suggests that it could magnify the same as the Canon on the long end, but do we know at what end the Nikon achieves its maximum magnification? The shorter minimum focus distance might also suggest that you have to step forward to achieve that magnification compared to the Canon.

I notice there are some other posts about focus breathing so for anybody interested, here are the numbers. Given the published MFD of 1.1 m and magnification is 0.21x. It's not difficult to calculate the actual focal length from those figures:

1/a + 1/b = 1/f (the "thin lens formula")
- where a is the distance from the subject to the thin lens, b is the distance from there to the sensor, and f is the focal length.

b/a gives the magnification of the lens (just from 'similar triangles').

The published "focusing distance" is the total distance from the sensor to the subject - which is simply a + b.

So for this lens:

b/a = 0.21 (magnification)
a = 1/0.21 x b = 4.762 x b

a + b = 1100 (MFD, working in mm)
(4.762 x b) + b = 1100
b = 1100/5.762 = 191 mm
a = 1100 - 191 = 909 mm

1/f = 1/909 + 1/191
1/f = 0.00633
f = 158 mm

Which is not too bad for a close-focusing, internally focusing XX-200 mm zoom.

Link | Posted on Oct 19, 2016 at 08:59 UTC
In reply to:

Timur Born: Minimum focus distance of only 1.10m, which is always welcome. Albeit I wonder at what end this is measured? My understanding is that usually this comes at the price of focus breathing, so I'm curious how they solved this in practice.

Maximum magnification suggests that it could magnify the same as the Canon on the long end, but do we know at what end the Nikon achieves its maximum magnification? The shorter minimum focus distance might also suggest that you have to step forward to achieve that magnification compared to the Canon.

For SLR lenses, minimum focusing distance is normally the same throughout the focusing range. If not I'd expect it to be stated in the specs. In the absence of a specific macro setting, maximum magnification will always be at the long end. As you have spotted, the MFD is slightly closer than the Canon but the magnification is the same, which indicates slighter more focus breathing.

Link | Posted on Oct 19, 2016 at 08:36 UTC
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