Archive for June, 2012

Now Available! OWC 960GB Mercury Electra™ MAX 3G SSD 2.5″ Serial-ATA 9.5mm Solid State Drive

OWC is now selling 960GB SSD drives. We’ve been using them (smaller sizes) for the last year or so, in both single drive and dual RAID 0 configurations. Big improvement over normal 3.5″ SATA hard drives. They are not cheap but if you need the speed they are well worth it.

See specs below from their website


Mercury Electra™ MAX 3G SSD
2.5″ Serial-ATA 9.5mm Solid State Drive

Mercury Electra 3G SSD

When only the fastest and most reliable Solid State Drive on the market today will suffice for your data storage and backup, look no further than the OWC 960GB Mercury Electra MAX 3G SSD.
The Mercury SSD line features industry leading SandForce® DuraClass™ Technologies:
  • DuraWrite™ extends the endurance of your Solid State Drive (SSD).
  • Intelligent Block Management & Wear Leveling automatically distributes data evenly across the entire SSD.
  • Intelligent Read Disturb Management spreads the active read/write across the flash components eliminating data corruption caused by constant use.
  • Intelligent “Recycling” for advanced free space management gradually re-writes data across the SSD over time to ensure data never gets corrupted.
  • RAISE™ (Redundant Array of Independent Silicon Elements) protects the data on your drive similar to having a RAID setup.
  • Best-in-Class ECC Protection for longest data retention and drive life.
No Risk, No Hassle 30-Day Money Back Guarantee.
This internal 2.5″ SATA SSD uses the latest SandForce 2181 Processor and DuraClass™ technology to deliver the highest transfer speed, endurance, and performance available today.With sustained reads up to 254MB/s and writes up to 250MB/s, up to 100X greater data protection than enterprise class Hard Disk Drives, and RAISE technology for RAID like data protection and reliability, the OWC 960GB Mercury Electra MAX 3G SSD line delivers unbeatable performance that’s designed and built in the U.S. from domestic and imported parts and backed by a three year warranty.
  • Highlights
  • One of the fastest Internal SATA 2.5″
    SSDs available…and Built in the USA!
  • Ultra-efficient Block Management
    & Wear Leveling for unparalleled reliability & performance.
  • 3 year OWC warranty

Canon 5D Mark III Test – ISO

1/60 sec, f/4, iso 800, Canon 24-105mm


The new Canon 5D Mark III showed up recently. So far so good. The following items are improved, AF,  frames per second, audio capability, high ISO performance, construction/weather seals, LCD screen, etc.

1/640 sec, f/8, iso 320, Canon 24-105mm










For the first round of tests we have some in studio ISO samples. ISO 100-12800, 50mm Canon f/1.2 L lens (focused with live view on the rodenstock loupe), processed in Lightroom 4.1. Full Res JPEGs with default sharpening applied, no other tweaks.

5d Mark III test shot

ISO 100, 50mm f/ 1.2









click photo for full res jpeg

Click here to download a zip of the RAW’s ISO 100-12800

I decided to do a print test on our big Epson with an ISO 3200 file.  The native file size @ 180ppi gives us about a 21″ x 33″ print.  No interpolation. After a little adjustment on the Luminance in Noise Reduction in Lightroom  and some sharpening, I made a print.

What the print revealed was that with proper technique, good optics, etc. a beautiful large print can be produced from the Mark III even at ISO 3200 to 6400. There was just a slight “grain” look at ISO 3200, and a little “grainier” at 6400.  But, overall it exceeded my expectations.

1/1000 sec, f/2.8, iso 640, Canon 70-200mm f/ 2.8 IS







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