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addicted2light

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  1. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from kazooless in LE-EA4 and back button focus   
    With my A7r + LA-EA4 back button focus works like a charm.
     
    I've set the C1 custom button to switching between mf / af
    The button inside the rear lever (AF/MF | AEL) is the "back button focus" activator (with the lever up; lever down it activates the magnifier when in manual focus)
     
    My settings:
     
    "Gear menu" > page 4 > AF w/shutter = Off
    "Gear menu" > page 6 > Custom Key Settings >  AF/MF Button = AF On
    (optional) "Gear menu" > page 6 > Custom Key Settings >  Custom Button 1 > AF/MF Ctrl Toggle 
  2. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from Gilgenberg in Minolta MC/MD lenses images thread   
    A couple of new/old images, all shot with the A7r:
     
     
    Minolta 55/1.7 Rokkor PF MC
     

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    Minolta 50/1.2 Rokkor MD
     

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    ...and if you're curious about the bokeh at f/1.2 (just a test shot)
     

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    Minolta 200/4 Rokkor MC
     

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  3. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from izzikiorage in Minolta MC/MD lenses images thread   
    You basically read my mind...today I found one semi-locally (a couple hours drive) and I was wondering if it might be a better buy than the 100/2.5 (that I still have not been able to find at a decent price). What to say: thanks!
  4. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from MaynardFrobish in Poor Print Quality   
    Printing is an art in itself, plus what Username and westindiangal said.
     
    Check YouTube or the web for "photo printing tutorials" for more detailed instructions, maybe even tailored to the software you use (Photoshop? Lightroom? etc.)
     
    But the bullet point version goes more or less like this:
     
    1) KEEP THE LIGHT LEVELS CONSTANT WHERE YOU EDIT YOUR PICTURES
    Changing light levels will skew how bright/dark/contrasty you will edit your picture from day to day. Try keeping the light levels and kind (artificial or natural) constant and try avoiding reflections on your screen. A decent solution (not perfect, though) is a colorimeter (see point 3) like the X-Rite that adjust, automatically, the brightness of your screen to compensate for changing light levels during the day
     
    2) LOWER THE BRIGHTNESS OF YOUR SCREEN, A LOT
    New displays have a brightness level, by default, that is waaaay to high for photographic use. I tend to stay around 120 cd/m2
     
    3) CALIBRATE YOUR SCREEN
    Not optional, otherwise you will fly blind literally without knowing what are you doing: buy a colorimeter and calibrate your screen. I personally use the X-Rite Colormunki Display and I'm pretty happy with it, more or less 100€
     
    4) PUSH (A BIT) CONTRAST, SATURATION AND SHARPENING
    After you've got your image exactly where you wanted in terms of colors, contrast, sharpening etc. on screen you will basically...have to start again
    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. . Essentially a printed image will exhibit less contrast, sharpening and (depending on the kind of paper you're using) saturation of an image displayed on screen, so you will have to push these values  
    5) CHOOSE YOUR PAPER CAREFULLY
    Glossy papers are easier, for a novice, to print on. Matte papers are generally more finicky because they tend to not be able to print a full gamut of colors (i.e. not all the colors you see will be able to get printed on the paper, at least not at their current saturation), so IMO they are best left for when you'll have developed at least a basic understanding of printing
     
    6) LIGHTEN (A BIT) YOUR IMAGE
    Brightness: an image on a screen is backlit, and the light is constant. An image on paper relies on the level of light that falls on it. This, even with a perfectly calibrated screen, means that often* you will have to add a tiny bit (1/3 to 1/2 a stop) of brightness to your images (in Lightroom's Print module there is a slider for this).
     
    *In reality this will depend by the light levels in the place where you intend to show your picture, but you will rarely find a place where the image will receive as much light as a backlit screen
      7) (DEPENDING ON THE LIGHT) ALTER THE COLORS
    Lastly, depending on the color temperature of the light that will illuminate your picture, you might have to mess a bit the colors in your picture. This, mind you, will apply just to pictures that are meant to be shown in a specific location, for example hung on a wall in a room where they are only lit from tungsten lights. Essentially you will have to decide if the print will have to look fantastic in that light, but wrong under other kind of lights, or just meh! but in any light.
     
     
    There are many more things to consider when printing, like I said it is an art form in itself, but these points should at least cover the basics.
     
    Have fun!
  5. Like
    addicted2light reacted to jackdevant in My workflow in RAW file management >1 TB per year, storage and backup   
    Huge 40 MB RAW files from A7rII challenge previous storage and backup workflow schemas. Here is what I use currently. Nothing special, but it's simple and works well for me.
     
    Background -- I'm a ballet photographer, shooting about 20-30 full length ballets around the world per year. My current run rate is about 2 TB of RAW photos per year. My main camera is Sony A7rII, average file size is abt 41 MB. I've used different scenarios, but currently using following one.
     
    1. I import all photos from SD cards to Lightroom. My PC has super fast M.2 512 GB SSD storage and also 10 TB HDD. I keep my Lightroom catalogue and all previews on M.2 SSD and all RAW photos on 10 TB disk. I've tried also to import last "hot" shoot to SSD, but I did not encounter big performance increase, but added manual routines, moving later files to slower 10 TB drive.
     
    2. All shoots are organised into collection sets and collections in lightroom, all photos are properly tagged during the import and additional specific tags are added later. So its easy to find everything later and track down to specific collection.
     
    3. All photos on 10 TB HDD are backed up to Synology NAS, RAID 5 DiskStation (4 x 4 TB disks) fully automatically by Cloud Station Backup 4 software (Synology).
     
    4. Selected directories from Synology NAS are backed up to Amazon Glacier for added off-site security. I use fully automatic Glacier Backup app for Synology.
    This setup is fairly easy and automated. I do not have to copy directories from one storage device to another. Lightroom catalogue is also very simple. This method is good for photographers having photo archive less than 10 TB, which is maximum size of single HDD.
  6. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from alfavisuals in Wide angle Lens   
    Hello and welcome!
     
    Now, about your question.
     
    There is an old Nikon lens (same optical scheme as the "current" Ai version, just possibly older coating) Nikkor-O 35mm f/2 that could suit your purpose. You can find one for 60€ and it is quite a nice performer.
     

    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Nikkor-O 35/2
     
    If you're willing to spend a bit more the Minolta MC 35mm f/1.8 (around 150€) is hands down one of the best classic (i.e. not aspherical) 35mm lenses I ever used. It soundly beat the Nikon 35/1.8 AF G that I had at the same time (this trying both on the same full format camera, an A7r), even fully open in the center.
     

    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Minolta MC 35/1.8
     
    Spend even more (price fluctuates a lot, I've seen it from 200€ to 500€) and you can get a Minolta M-Rokkor (Leica M mount) 40mm f/2. It is a touch worse than the Minolta MC 35/1.8, but it is also wildly smaller.
     

    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Minolta M-Rokkor 40/2
     
    If you need AF, considering third party adapted lenses on the A7r have poor focusing, then your only option (luckily a great one optically) would be an LA-EA4 adapter + the Minolta AF 35mm f/2. The adapter runs around 200€ (new, Amazon) while the lens can be had for 200/250€.
  7. Like
    addicted2light reacted to Username in 35mm f2 (or f2.8) legacy lens recomendation   
    Ai Nikkor 35/2.0  
       
    I have feeling it's not just the optical and mechanical 
    qualities that results in some of my fave images, but 
    it's also just the way the 35/2.0 affects what I do, or 
    what I see and do. Acoarst, this could also be due to 
    the exact reverse: when my mind is set on catching 
    the stuff I dig, maybe that makes me leave the house 
    with my 35/2.0 [and no other lenses]. It's like it's my  
    version of a 24-70/2.0 zoom, the general purpose do 
    it all and do it right lens ... plus you'll never see a 24- 
    70/2.0 as small as my 35/2.0.    
       
    I have a 35/2.0 Maxxum that offers the convenience 
    of auto iris on the a7, but I still prefer the toadally non 
    coupled Ai Nikkor. Not for any objectively measurable 
    qualities. It's like it's my wife ... or something like that. 
    I've used 35/2.0 lenses for maaanny different brands 
    of cameras. I'm just very partial to that spec. I own 3 
    right now [EOS, Nikkor, Maxxum] cuz they own me as 
    much as I own them. But the Nikkor gets all the action. 
       
    You went looking for 35mm lens comparisons online ? 
    Beats me how my 'wife' compares, but she can COOK ! 
    If you want a legacy lens, you don't want comparisons. 
    You want love stories :-) 
       
    YMMV. 
  8. Like
    addicted2light reacted to Username in How close FE 24-70 f2.8 GM at 55mm is compared to FE 55mm f1.8   
    I've always [OK not always, but for more than 40 years]  
    considered 35mm and 50mm to be an 'either-or' choice. 
    IOW I would NEVER carry both, but I've never regretted
    owning both. I love to carry just a 35, nothing more, but 
    thaz for personal work. If I'm in service to a client then I 
    carry a 50, not a 35, as part of a trio with 24 or 28mm,
    plus whatever longer lens seems reasonable, whether
    prime or zoom.  
        
    BTW I also use the 35 in a duo, with either a 20, or short 
    tele [85 or 105]. 35 and 50 are my most important lenses 
    but they are too similar to carry them as a pair. 
       
    If I were shopping for a 3rd lens beyond your 35 and 50, 
    I'd conssider each of those [35 & 50] separately and be 
    thinking how to pair either of them up with a new lens. A 
    20mm is tempting cuz 50 & 20 is a great pair ,and also 
    35 & 20 is a great pair. Likewise a 90 or 105 pairs nicely 
    with either the 50 or 35. I'd ignore things like 28mm cuz 
    it pairs with only one of your current lenses, the 50mm. 
    35 & 28 is too redundant. 
  9. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from KMG in FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS Lens ALTERNATIVE?   
    I recently bought a 35-105 (1st version) and even if I still haven't had the chance to shoot with it that much I am quite impressed, for now at least.
     
    As for the motor bulge in the la-ea4 I guess it's a personal thing. I, for one, I like it because I can rest the bottom of the adapter in my left hand enhancing stability. But I can certainly see how it could be annoying to someone else!
  10. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from ebouwens in FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS Lens ALTERNATIVE?   
    Sorry, I don't have any experience with the Techart. I'm using a first gen A7r, that is not supported by the Techart...
     
    As for the la-ea4, my guess is that, as long as you okay with the limitations listed above by KMG, the af speed will be more than enough (at least with the right lens).
     
    That being said, like you already inferred, I'd rather use manual focus if the movement of your subjects is this kind of "erratic but predictable" motion, so to speak, pre-setting the focus on the point where I know a dancer is going to appear.
  11. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from ebouwens in FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS Lens ALTERNATIVE?   
    If you need image stabilization: no (except Canon, please read below), unless you use one of Sony bodies with built-in IS.
     
    If instead you either don't need IS or use one of the aforementioned bodies: yes, several.
     
    Please keep in mind that I don't have a FE 70-200, because after seeing many full size samples I wasn't particularly impressed, worse still I was frankly quite a bit disappointed (mostly by the corner and border performance @ 200mm).
     
    And please also consider than I'd rather use a Minolta 200/2.8 hs + the 1.4 Apo multiplier on a la-ea4 adapter than a 70-200 zoom (this because if I'm using anything over 85-100mm usually is because I need quite a long focal length). This solution, btw, will also give you native speed af.
     
    Speaking of af, another solution that would let you do that is using the Canon 70-200/4. The non stabilized version is fairly cheap, but really sharp.
     
    The IS (stabilized) version is quite more expensive, and considering the cost of a good adapter (Sigma or Metabones) the price might not be competitive, compared to the native Sony solution. That is, unless you plan to use the adapter with several other Canon lenses.
     
    If you can live with manual focus (easier than you think, unless you shoot sport or wildlife) I would wholeheartedly recommend the Contax 80-200 or the Contax 100-300. Especially the first one is fairly cheap nowadays, but the results are really quite good (and there is a thread here on the forum devoted to Contax glass, check it out). The 100-300 is even better, IMO, than Canon L series glass.
     
    Pictures taken with Sony Alfa Cameras and Contax Zeiss le...
    Vario-Sonnar T* 80-200mm
    Vario-Sonnar T* 100-300mm
     
    Another really good lens was the first Nikon AF 80-200/2.8, the one without tripod collar (you can generally buy one aftermarket from China fairly cheap, or buy directly a Nikon/Sony adapter with one) but with still the aperture ring. Its weakness is mostly quite a bit of chromatic aberration shooting wide open in extreme contrast situations (a dark pole agains a snowy background, for example), not something you would encounter on a day to day basis (but please remember I haven't used this particular lens on a Sony, only on Nikon bodies).
  12. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from MikeOfBonsall in FE 70-200mm f/4 G OSS Lens ALTERNATIVE?   
    If you need image stabilization: no (except Canon, please read below), unless you use one of Sony bodies with built-in IS.
     
    If instead you either don't need IS or use one of the aforementioned bodies: yes, several.
     
    Please keep in mind that I don't have a FE 70-200, because after seeing many full size samples I wasn't particularly impressed, worse still I was frankly quite a bit disappointed (mostly by the corner and border performance @ 200mm).
     
    And please also consider than I'd rather use a Minolta 200/2.8 hs + the 1.4 Apo multiplier on a la-ea4 adapter than a 70-200 zoom (this because if I'm using anything over 85-100mm usually is because I need quite a long focal length). This solution, btw, will also give you native speed af.
     
    Speaking of af, another solution that would let you do that is using the Canon 70-200/4. The non stabilized version is fairly cheap, but really sharp.
     
    The IS (stabilized) version is quite more expensive, and considering the cost of a good adapter (Sigma or Metabones) the price might not be competitive, compared to the native Sony solution. That is, unless you plan to use the adapter with several other Canon lenses.
     
    If you can live with manual focus (easier than you think, unless you shoot sport or wildlife) I would wholeheartedly recommend the Contax 80-200 or the Contax 100-300. Especially the first one is fairly cheap nowadays, but the results are really quite good (and there is a thread here on the forum devoted to Contax glass, check it out). The 100-300 is even better, IMO, than Canon L series glass.
     
    Pictures taken with Sony Alfa Cameras and Contax Zeiss le...
    Vario-Sonnar T* 80-200mm
    Vario-Sonnar T* 100-300mm
     
    Another really good lens was the first Nikon AF 80-200/2.8, the one without tripod collar (you can generally buy one aftermarket from China fairly cheap, or buy directly a Nikon/Sony adapter with one) but with still the aperture ring. Its weakness is mostly quite a bit of chromatic aberration shooting wide open in extreme contrast situations (a dark pole agains a snowy background, for example), not something you would encounter on a day to day basis (but please remember I haven't used this particular lens on a Sony, only on Nikon bodies).
  13. Like
    addicted2light reacted to Username in going full frame, but which   
    Thaz a very workable approach. I use an older A-mount 
    90 macro on the LAEA3. All A-mount features EXCEPT
    autofocus are alive and uncompromised.  
       
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------  
        
    I also use the same 90 on an a6000 when I need tighter 
    framing but don't want to crop the a7-II image and lose 
    half my pixel count. The a6000 crams 24mp into a the 
    APSC format. You wouldn't need that for a dish of food,  
    but if you need to shoot, say, a berry or an eye-of-newt 
    then the APSC offers twice the pixel count at the same 
    image magnification.    
       
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------   
       
    Maybe I'm spoiled, but I cannot shoot nonzoom macro,  
    from a tripod, without a focusing rail. I recommend it.
  14. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from tarheelgarden in going full frame, but which   
    Sony la-ea4 adapter (250-ish €) + Minolta (or Sony, they are the same lens optically) 100/2.8 macro (200-ish).
     
    It will behave essentially like a native lens.
     
    And should you not need af the la-ea3 adapter will do the job for 100-ish € less.
  15. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from tarheelgarden in going full frame, but which   
    First of all: welcome!
     
    I use an A7r for landscapes with Minolta A-Mount glass plus the LA-EA4 adapter (it's basically like using the lenses natively on a Sony body, with AF etc.) and older Contax Zess and other glass, so I though I would chime in.
     
    If I were to start from scratch like you're about to do, for landscapes I would NOT go full frame at all!
     
    Especially with the high resolution sensor in the A7r you will often have to focus stack multiple frames to be able to get everything in decent focus, or use a tilt lens (when you can; not every scene can be "solved" with tilt).
     
    Besides, the A7r requires, deceptively being such a small camera, a rock steady tripod because its shutter shakes the Earth! That is, if you want sharp images... This especially using anything longer than 85/100mm.
     
    To be clear this is what I mean for rock steady (and what I personally use):
     
    Tripod Report 412 (without center column, otherwise you are using a monopod with 3 legs, IMO) + Arca Swiss B1 ball-head 
     
    Summing up, my advice would be to stick with an APS-c body, maybe one with full electronic shutter (or at least EFCS) in order to be able to carry a WILDLY lighter tripod.
     
    If you intend to use the camera mostly on a tripod, like you should for food and landscapes (not just for the added sharpness, but for better, more carefully planned compositions, IMO) an old inexpensive Nex 7 or an A6000 will be almost perfect.
     
    The problem, with these, and again IMO, is the relative lack of high quality glass (compared, say, to Fuji). So consider carefully the lens lineup you might want/need BEFORE buying into a system.
     
    You might also consider other brands, ehm (cough cough...) Fuji... (I shoot with both)
     
    If so you might want to read this old article of mine (I was considering a full switch, but for the time being I kept both):
     
    Giving the boot to Sony? A7r vs Fuji X-T10
     
    Summing up:
     
    A7r better for > availability of old (but well performing) glass (check my Camerapedia for a few reviews and "fast" ratings); unbeatable sharpness IF AND ONLY IF on a rock steady tripod and head
     
    APS-c body > wildly easier to get everything in focus*; lighter and less expensive setup; cheaper; in this case I'd personally chose Fuji, but mostly because of the price and availability of their mostly excellent glass (to give you a few figures, I paid for the ultra sharp stabilized 50-200 less than 300€, and you can get an even sharper 14/2.8 for the same money)
     
    Keep in mind that, if you print, using glass of the same "level" and proper sharpening you can reasonably expect to see a meaningful difference (i.e. comparing prints of the same picture side-to-side and not sticking your nose in the print with a magnifying glass in hand, but watching it from a close-but-normal distance) between the 36Mp A7r and a "measly" 16Mp X-T10 from at least 90cm wide, sometimes even 120cm (it will depend on how detailed the subject is). The 24Mp XT-20 will be released next week, btw.
    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content.  
    *this happens because, to get the same frame, due the crop factor you will use on a APS-c camera a shorter lens than on a full frame camera; focal length being independent from the format used, a shorter lens will have an extended depth of field. For example, a 35mm lens on APS-c and 50mm on full frame will give you the same frame (shooting from the same position), but the depth of field of the 35mm lens will be more extensive
  16. Like
    addicted2light reacted to Z√© De Boni in Thinking I've made a bad decision   
    I guess the reason for this is because A7RII is the choice of pros, many of them migrating from other brands. Therefore they are have more expectancies from the new system and naturally are more critic. The A7 and A7II did not offer enough features to attract pros using high end Canikons.
    I don't agree with the suggestions for trying old cameras (A77II) and lenses (Minoltas), mostly because your active on a competitive field where innovation is a key to the business.
    I have 2 A99 bodies, 1 A77II and 1 A77 (almost forgot, 1 A900 DSLR!!). I've used all these lenses on it: Sony ZA 16-35mm f/2.8, Sony ZA 24mm f/2, Sigma Art 35mm f/1.4, Sony 50mm f/1.4*, Sigma 70mm f/2.8 Macro*, Sony ZA 85mm f/1.4*, Sony 100mm f/2.8 Macro*, Sony ZA 135mm f/1.8*, Minolta HS 200mm f/2.8*, Minolta HS 300mm f/2.8* and Minolta HS 600mm f/4*.
    I tested all them on my A7RII with the LA-EA3 adapter. Lenses marked with * use screw-driven focus (no internal motor) and so they were used in manual focus. The only of these "manual focus" lenses that could justify the LA-EA4 adapter was the 300. I was surprised to see that the 85, 135 and 200 could not give good results as I get in the old cameras from wide to average apertures. I still want to repeat the test in more conditions, but what I can say now is that the FE 70-200 f/4 can outresolve all them and gives me great images on the A7RII and A6000. I keep the 24mm (not so great on the borders) and the 35mm (really great!!) in my A7RII bag, they work fine with the mirrorless adapter.
    I cannot stand the idea of a mirror box lens adapter to be used on a mirrorless camera! This is just an improvisation so that you may keep using the glasses that you already rely on while you are still on transition to mirrorless. All those lenses have limited functions on the new system, so if you already blaming on your camera, why should you buy something else to blame on. If the mirror box should be the solution, then get back to a DSLR or SLT body. The A99II seems to combine features from both worlds. I am planning to get one, since I have all those lenses and more accessories, but I wonder if the results of the old lenses on its 42MP sensor will be as disappointing as what I got on the A7RII. I shall repeat my tests before I take this decision. I hope to post it in this forum.
    The fact is that I am fully satisfied with the A7RII, despite all the flaws, mainly the refresh time. Truly, I have more expectations on its future substitute, A9, A7RII, whatever.
    Now, about your A7R: if you can't get a good price for it, them consider keeping it. As you may notice on my camera list, I keep my old bodies, since I cannot get paid enough for a quite used one (can't get E- score at B&H or 8 in Adorama). The old stuff is still useful as backup or for different setups. My work is quite different from yours, I do mostly nature and still. In the studio I have my repro system always ready, so one A99+Macro is always there. The other A99 I have converted to Infrared. That's my option. I am sure that you may find a better use for your A7R than change it for a few dimes! And I hope you can earn and save enough to buy a camera more suited to your needs.
    And just to add more fuel to the discussion about shifting systems: Since 2001, when I bought my first digital I have gone from Nikon (D100, D70, D70s, D200) to Canon (D1s MkIII), back to Nikon (D3X, Fuji IR) and then to Sony (as listed above). My transition to Sony was gradual, I kept Nikon for a while until I got sure that the SLT had good performance. I've always hated mirrors, raising it on 90% of my shots. The mirrorless camera was obvious the advance that I expected. I praise so much what this system allows. The flaws that I may get are nothing as compared to what I've left behind.
  17. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from tarheelgarden in Thinking I've made a bad decision   
    Minolta glass is available in two lens lines: MC/MD are manual focus, the A-mount are AF. And their AF is not some kind of adaptation with the Sony, but it is natively supported by the LA-EA4 (they are the same as the new Sony A-mount lenses, just usually with older screw-drive focus motors and/or different optical schemes).
     
    Minolta made (mostly excellent) manual focus lenses, the MC (later MD) line (well, technically it was called the SR mount, but almost nobody calls it this way...).
     
    If memory serves me correctly, it was Minolta that introduced the first commercially available modern autofocus camera (i.e. not some kind of experimental thing like the Nikon F3AF that sold just a few units), the 7000.
     
    When this happened, they decided to switch mount, and what now Sony calls the A-mount was borne (like Canon did with its switch from the FD to the Eos lens mount).
     
    Obviously the two mounts are incompatible, especially because they share the same flange focal distance, so you cannot adapt old Minolta MC/MD lenses on the AF bodies without some kind of optics in between (essentially a multiplier that lengthen the focal length and gives you the space to insert an adapter).
     
    But like I said, Minolta AF glass mounts natively on a Sony A-mount body, or on a Sony E-mount body with the LA-EA4. 
     
    And another big plus, IMO, of Minolta glass (both old manual focus and new af lenses) is that they decided to sacrifice a bit of contrast/resistance to reflections across the line to achieve a perfectly matched color response among all the lenses! This can make a huge bonus, again IMO, when working on a cohesive project or assignment, the moment you start color correcting or color grading these shots....
     
    Last time I forgot to mention another huge bonus of going the A-mount route: Zeiss glass!
     
    If you prefer the "Zeiss look", or just for the sake of shaking things a bit, there are several fantastic Zeiss lenses available in A-mount: the 24mm f/2 Distagon is fantastic, the Zeiss 16-35/2.8 and 24-70/2.8 Vario-Sonnar are seriously really good for landscape, and fantastic for portraiture and such (basically the corners are not exceptional by today standards, but still pretty impressive). And at least to my eyes they don't render harshly / clinically like some new glass does (they're Sonnars after all...), while still being super sharp.
     
    And in a "Zeiss format" are available as well a 50/1.4 Planar and a 85/1.4 Planar, and the legendary 135/1.8 (a Sonnar, so with a smooooooth bokeh and scary sharp).
     
    Finally some Minolta lenses I forgot to mention that, even if still bloody expensive, might be on your radar: the white Minolta 80-200/2.8 and 70-200/2.8, and the Minolta (also in Sony version) 135 STF (Smoot Transition Focus), a lens with a built-in apodization filter for smooth bokeh in portraiture and such, much like the Fuji 56/1.2 APD.
  18. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from tarheelgarden in Thinking I've made a bad decision   
    Besides the fact that the A7 II would probably solve most of your problems, assuming you don't want to sell yet the A7r and you don't mind the af motor making some noise there is actually another solution.
     
    Using the LA-EA4 (around 250€, brand new, on amazon) with Minolta or Sony A-mount glass (that is often ridiculously cheap, but of pretty good to jaw dropping quality) you could solve most of the af slowness and inconsistencies. Some inconsistencies will remain, but they are intrinsic, IMO, to how a phase af system works. Remember, though, to use the microadjustment functions in the A7r; it takes a couple of minutes per lens to do so, but it will make a world of difference.
     
    Especially for the modelling jobs, I don't think you could possibly go wrong with a Minolta 35-105 first series (super sharp and 20 to 50, yes fifty, €) and a Minolta (same optics as the Sony) 100/2.8 (ultra sharp and around 200€).
     
    Other really good lenses are the Minolta 50/2.8 macro, the Minolta 50/1.4 (from f/2 onwards; at f/1.4 there is a bit of spherical aberrations, and most of all the plane of focus is paper thin anyway), the Minolta 35/2 (kinda legendary), the Minolta 85/1.4, the Minolta 200/2.8 (these last two will cost a bit, around 500 to 700€, but they're worthy, and the 200 is apparently still super sharp paired with the 1.4 Apo).
     
    About the Minolta 35/1.4 I've read contrasting reviews, from "wow" to "not capable of handling high res sensors", so maybe try it before you buy it.
     
    You can check user generated reviews on Dyxum (filter them for 36mp sensors to isolate the ones of A7r owners). 
     
    If you can, prefer the RS versions, they have an updated (as in "faster") focus motor.
     
    I've just gone this road myself, and even if I haven't had the chance to shoot that much with my newly acquired lenses (the end of the year is always crazy times!) I've been quite impressed for now.
  19. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from Ben in Thinking I've made a bad decision   
    Besides the fact that the A7 II would probably solve most of your problems, assuming you don't want to sell yet the A7r and you don't mind the af motor making some noise there is actually another solution.
     
    Using the LA-EA4 (around 250€, brand new, on amazon) with Minolta or Sony A-mount glass (that is often ridiculously cheap, but of pretty good to jaw dropping quality) you could solve most of the af slowness and inconsistencies. Some inconsistencies will remain, but they are intrinsic, IMO, to how a phase af system works. Remember, though, to use the microadjustment functions in the A7r; it takes a couple of minutes per lens to do so, but it will make a world of difference.
     
    Especially for the modelling jobs, I don't think you could possibly go wrong with a Minolta 35-105 first series (super sharp and 20 to 50, yes fifty, €) and a Minolta (same optics as the Sony) 100/2.8 (ultra sharp and around 200€).
     
    Other really good lenses are the Minolta 50/2.8 macro, the Minolta 50/1.4 (from f/2 onwards; at f/1.4 there is a bit of spherical aberrations, and most of all the plane of focus is paper thin anyway), the Minolta 35/2 (kinda legendary), the Minolta 85/1.4, the Minolta 200/2.8 (these last two will cost a bit, around 500 to 700€, but they're worthy, and the 200 is apparently still super sharp paired with the 1.4 Apo).
     
    About the Minolta 35/1.4 I've read contrasting reviews, from "wow" to "not capable of handling high res sensors", so maybe try it before you buy it.
     
    You can check user generated reviews on Dyxum (filter them for 36mp sensors to isolate the ones of A7r owners). 
     
    If you can, prefer the RS versions, they have an updated (as in "faster") focus motor.
     
    I've just gone this road myself, and even if I haven't had the chance to shoot that much with my newly acquired lenses (the end of the year is always crazy times!) I've been quite impressed for now.
  20. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from rck in Landscape Tutorials (processing etc.)   
    Not a technical course, but hands down the best article on post processing I've read in a long time (and strangely enough not a promotional piece for Topaz):
     
    http://blog.topazlabs.com/post-processing-intent-rafael-rojas/
  21. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from rck in L Bracket   
    From my experience with various cameras, what you're giving up using the cheaper option is generally the strength once you put the camera in a vertical position, meaning the "side" piece of the L-bracket in cheaper models tends to vibrate and give you unsharp (or not so sharp) pictures if used with long lenses (135mm and above).
     
    Mind you, this can happen even with the ones made by "serious" manufacturers all the same, simply because on the side the camera isn't connected in any way to the bracket (i.e. no tripod screw on the side...)
     
    The electronic fist curtain should take care of that, at least in theory, assuming there aren't other factors like strong winds etc.
     
    That said, jamming cork between the side of the camera and the l-bracket and/or connecting with a plastic zip tie the metal ring where the camera strap goes with the corresponding "hole" on the l-bracket often is enough to cut vibrations down even on a cheap l-bracket to a reasonable level.
  22. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from EDBR in How to solve the A7r shutter shock problem (without adding weight to the camera)   
    The original A7r in my experience is very prone, especially with long-ish lenses, to disastrous shutter shock that will often render the pictures unusable.
     
    This happens especially with the lightest lenses. In my case two of the worst offenders were the Leica R 180 and the Minolta AF 100-300 Apo.
     
    Anything shot at less than 1/320s (and up to a few seconds) was bound to show, 90% of the times, substantial vibration-induced blurriness.
     
    Just to be clear, because I know this is a debated argument: I normally shot using either a remote (wireless) release or the 10s self-timer, using an heavy tripod (if I remember correctly more or less 3.5Kg, without the head) plus an 8cm wide Arca ball head (more or less another kg) that is almost as large as the A7r itself. The same setup was more than enough to support my 5x7" large format camera without a hitch, but wasn't enough for the Sony!
     
    But now I finally found a solution that doesn't involve adding the grip or other kind of weights to the camera.
     
    You can read the details here, should you be interested:
     
    How to: solve the Sony A7r shutter shock, for good
     
    but basically I just jammed cork stripes between the L-bracket and the camera (under the vertical "arm" as well).
     

    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content. Please ignore the small differences in "grain", I had to change the ISOs in order to keep exposure (and aperture) constant while changing the shutter speeds. All shot with the Minolta AF 100-300 Apo @ 300mm
     
    Now I can shoot at any shutter speed with impunity, and have to take precautions only in the same conditions that apply to other cameras as well, like heavy winds etc. (and in this case I use, also illustrated in the above mentioned article, a bike inner tube).
     
    Hope this can be of help to other A7r owners that have no intention of splurging another 3000€ on a new camera body, nor have more the patience to wait for Sony to release what should have been a fairly simple firmware upgrade to insert a small delay between the push of the shutter button and the start of the first curtain (like Olympus and others did to fight, successfully, this exact phenomenon).
  23. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from Ben in Landscape Tutorials (processing etc.)   
    Not a technical course, but hands down the best article on post processing I've read in a long time (and strangely enough not a promotional piece for Topaz):
     
    http://blog.topazlabs.com/post-processing-intent-rafael-rojas/
  24. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from Steve C in Landscape Tutorials (processing etc.)   
    Not a technical course, but hands down the best article on post processing I've read in a long time (and strangely enough not a promotional piece for Topaz):
     
    http://blog.topazlabs.com/post-processing-intent-rafael-rojas/
  25. Like
    addicted2light got a reaction from Tavee in How to solve the A7r shutter shock problem (without adding weight to the camera)   
    LOL  Actually neither, what I meant was a 35mm film canister!
     
    These days I'm fighting against a bad attack of Hasselblad-induced G.A.S., hence my slip of the tongue (well, actually of the keyboard but you get the idea!)
     
    The Hassy, specifically the 500 series, has been my most loved camera system ever. I sold it after the complete transition to digital (for the serious stuff; for fun I still shoot a bit of film), but after that I bought it back - and then sold again - a couple of times.
     
    What happened in each occasion was that I convinced myself to have the time to process and scan the films*, but then the cold reality of days made of just 24h caught with me.
     
    Now, if only I could find a relatively modern, over 24Mp, digital back for less than a kidney...
    Hello guest! Please register or sign in to view the hidden content.  
     
    *no, no decent labs in my area anymore; and I tried mailing the stuff in, but it was either mighty expensive or with really poor quality
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