Tag: 5d mkiii

Nikon D810 – So…What’s Coming from Canon???

I’m a little surprised Nikon announced a replacement for the D800 / D800e before Canon even releases a high megapixel camera to challenge it. I do like my 5D MKIII, and know its not all about MP…but would still like a super high megapixel camera for studio and landscape use…why not?

The under $4k price of the D810 is very attractive.


New Canon EF Wide Angle Zoom Announced – 16-35mm f/4 IS USM L – $1,199 retail, No 14-24mm f/2.8 Though?!!!!!

Canon announced a new full frame EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM L lens today. Positioned to replace the 17-40mm f/4. Should be a nice lens…perhaps Canon’s sharpest wide angle zoom in the lineup.

Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM, image from Canon press release

Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM, image from Canon press release

 

But….can we please have an awesome 14-24mm f/2.8 lens similar to the Nikon version? Or a 16-35mm f/2.8 mk iii ? Current Canon truly wide angle offerings are pretty weak with the exception of the 17mm ts-e, 24mm ts-e mk II and the new 24-70mm f/2.8 mk II (awesome lens).

 

Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM, image from Canon press release

Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM, image from Canon press release

The following is from the Canon press release:

Canon Broadens Its Imaging Lineup with Two New EF Ultra Wide-Angle Zoom Lenses and White EOS Rebel SL1 Digital SLR Camera

High Performance Lenses Offer Optical Image Stabilizer and a Refined Compact Design; Lightweight EOS Rebel SL1 SLR Kit in White Available Soon
MELVILLE, N.Y., May 13, 2014 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is proud to announce two new wide-angle lenses and a new white color model of the EOS Rebel SL1 Digital SLR camera, just in time for summer. The introduction of the new Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and the EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM wide-angle zoom lenses provides Canon digital SLR camera users with the ability to capture stunning photographs and videos of spacious landscapes and many other iconic scenes. The EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM lens is the first L-series wide-angle zoom lens equipped with image stabilization, providing professional photographers with expanded creative options, especially in low light. The EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM wide-angle lens is an affordable option for entry-level DSLR users looking to enhance their images and videos with unique and creative perspectives.

Since its introduction in March 2013, the EOS Rebel SL1, the world’s smallest and lightest digital SLR camerai, has provided photographers of all levels with a high-performance digital SLR in a small, compact camera body. The new white EOS Rebel SL1 Camera Kit is complemented by a matching white EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens and offers a stylish alternative for photographers who like to stand out from the crowd.

“Having just reached a milestone of producing 100 million EF lenses, Canon is dedicated more than ever before to its heritage of creating outstanding optics for photographers of all levels,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “The EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ultra-wide zoom lenses, when paired with Canon EOS Digital SLR cameras, are powerful tools that can enhance any photographer’s creativity. And new to the U.S. market, the white EOS Rebel SL1 Digital SLR camera with its companion white lens, provides users with high-quality images in a small, compact body that is easy to bring along on all their summer adventures.”

EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM

Fully compatible with all EOS Digital SLR cameras including full-frame models like the EOS 5D Mark III and EOS 6D Digital SLR cameras, the compact and lightweight EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM ultra wide-angle zoom lens offers high image quality and an Optical Image Stabilizer (IS) for shake correction up to four shutter speed stepsii, making handheld shooting possible in dimly lit scenes where camera shake can occur. In addition, an intelligent CPU in the lens automatically selects the optimal IS mode by recognizing differences between normal handheld shots and panning. This technological advancement supports a greater range of creative expression for photographers in otherwise difficult shooting situations, such as dark indoor scenes where flash photography is prohibited, or in places where a tripod cannot be used, or when shooting at low ISO speeds.

The EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM ultra wide-angle zoom lens features newly developed, high quality Canon optics that incorporate three GMo (Glass-Molded) aspheric lens elements, including a large-diameter aspheric lens, which help improve image quality by correcting aberrations. Two additional UD lens elements help reduce chromatic aberration from edge to edge throughout the entire zoom range for excellent image quality with high resolution and contrast. The lens also features enhanced fluorine lens coatings on the front and rear lens surfaces to repel dust particles and help ensure superb color balance while minimizing ghosting. The inner focusing and ring USM offer silent, fast and accurate autofocusing. Full-time manual focus adjustment is available in autofocus (AF) mode. A nine-blade circular aperture creates beautiful, soft backgrounds. A new compact four-group zoom system provides a minimum focusing distance of 0.28m/11 inches throughout the zoom range and a maximum magnification of 0.23x at the telephoto end for outstanding performance.

EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM

Created to be a great companion lens for the Canon EOS 70D, EOS Rebel T5i, EOS Rebel SL1 and other EOS Digital SLR cameras with APS-C size image sensors, the EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM lens expands Canon’s line of Stepping Motor (STM) lenses. For entry-level users, this affordable wide-angle lens offers the ability to shoot creative, high-quality images and video in tight indoor locations such as a cozy corner table in a restaurant or unique vacation photos where the subject is close up, yet the surrounding area can still fill the frame.

The EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ultra wide-angle zoom lens features a compact and lightweight design with an Optical Image Stabilizer for shake correction up to four shutter speed stepsiii, enabling handheld shooting in low light. The lens’ stepping motor and newly designed focus mechanism are ideal for Canon EOS Movie Servo AF (available on EOS 70D, EOS Rebel T5i and EOS Rebel SL1 cameras) to provide smooth, quiet and continuous autofocusing during video shooting, as well as when taking photos.

The EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ultra-wide zoom lens features one UD lens element to help reduce chromatic aberration throughout the zoom range for excellent image quality with high resolution and contrast. It also features enhanced multi-layer lens coatings to help ensure superb color balance while minimizing ghosting and flare, while a seven-blade circular aperture creates beautiful, soft backgrounds.

Compared to the EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM wide-angle lens, the EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ultra wide-angle zoom lens is nearly 20% smaller and 38% lighter. When combined with a compact digital SLR, such as the Canon EOS Rebel SL1 camera, the smaller size makes it very convenient to carry with the camera when traveling. The compact four-group zoom optical system provides a maximum magnification of 0.15x at the telephoto end. The wide-angle zoom range of the new EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM is a perfect complement to the currently available EF-S 18-55mm IS and EF-S 55-250mm IS STM zoom lenses.

New Lens Availability

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM and the EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM ultra-wide zoom lenses are scheduled to be available in June for estimated retail prices of $1,199.00 and $299.99, respectively. For more information about Canon EF Lenses visit: www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/ef_lens_lineup.

White EOS Rebel SL1 Kit with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM Lens Availability

The Canon EOS Rebel SL1 and EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens kit in white is scheduled to be available at the end of June for an estimated retail price of $749.99. For more information about the white Canon EOS Rebel SL1 Digital SLR Camera kit and the full list of product specifications, visit www.usa.canon.com/eos.

About Canon U.S.A., Inc.

Canon U.S.A., Inc., is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions. With approximately $36 billion in global revenue, its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), ranks third overall in U.S. patents registered in 2013† and is one of Fortune Magazine’s World’s Most Admired Companies in 2014. In 2013, Canon U.S.A. has received the PCMag.com Readers’ Choice Award for Service and Reliability in the digital camera and printer categories for the tenth consecutive year, and for camcorders for the past three years. Canon U.S.A. is committed to the highest level of customer satisfaction and loyalty, providing 100 percent U.S.-based consumer service and support for all of the products it distributes. Canon U.S.A. is dedicated to its Kyosei philosophy of social and environmental responsibility. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company’s RSS news feed by visiting www.usa.canon.com/rss and follow us on Twitter @CanonUSA.

For media inquiries, please contact pr@cusa.canon.com.


Areca ARC-8050 8-Bay Thunderbolt to 6Gb/s SAS RAID Storage Review

 

 

In my last post I reviewed external thunderbolt storage devices for our Imac capture station, none of which worked correctly. I came across this Areca 8 bay box on the OWC website. This looked more “promising” than the Pegasus R6 :) sorry Promise Tech…had to do it. Costs around $1500/free shipping. Price is very close to the Pegasus R6 when you take into account 8 bays vs 6 bays. Its empty which is how I would prefer it anyway. Lets me use my existing drives. Here are some quick specs from Areca’s website:

  • The ARC-8050 incorporated on-board high performance dual core 800Mhz ROC storage processor and with 1GB DDR3-1333 SDRAM memory on-board to deliver true high performance hardware RAID.
  • Bootable
  • RAID level 0, 1, 1E, 3, 5, 6, 10, 30, 50, 60, Single Disk or JBOD (just a bunch of disks aka passthru)

Check out their website, they have it all spelled out. Some of the other manufacturers don’t have real detailed spec sheets showing whether they are bootable, JBOD capable, etc. Areca’s was pretty clear. The drive trays have mounting holes for 2.5″ and 3.5″ drives. Seems like a nice piece of hardware.

There were a couple of hiccups to get it going, which ended up being a default being set incorrectly. But from the first time it started up, there was a noticeable difference in operation and a feeling of reliability. The Pegasus box was just the opposite.

 

Passthru created
Passthru created

 

We’ve had it running for about two months and haven’t had any issues. In the first bay we placed a 90 GB 6G SSD OCZ Vertex 3 to run the OS (running around 400 MB/sec read & write). The next bay has a HST 4 TB Time Machine SATA drive. Next bay is empty (may use for hot spare or add another drive to the RAID 5 array). Then we have 5  2TB Hitachi SATA HD’s in a RAID 5 setup (these will be used for working still and video files, running around 415 MB / sec read & write).

 

Arc-8050 Thunderbolt rear view
Arc-8050 Thunderbolt rear view
Areca ARC-8050 Packaging
Areca ARC-8050 Packaging

 

I still don’t trust the RAID 5 as a single solution for storage and backup. You still need at least two other copies of all data you don’t want to lose, one of which off site at all times.

Here is the iMac machine specs we are using:

 

iMac 27 inch, Late 2012
iMac 27 inch, Late 2012

 

Our first attempt at RAID 5 with factory defaults and using their Quick Function > Quick Create option was not successful. The ARC – 8050 would start to initialize for an hour or so then freeze at exactly 5.6%. The box would freeze and crash the iMac. Fun. Now this product just started shipping so they will get cut some slack. The problem was also resolved quickly. See below.

 

Areca Raid Storage Manager
Areca Raid Storage Manager

 

Long story short, after emailing Areca’s tech support over then next couple of days and running some more tests we found a fix. Under System Configurations > Disk Write Cache Mode needs to be set to Disabled, not set to SAS and SATA (which is the default). After changing that it initialized properly the first time and haven’t had any problems since.

 

Disk Write Cache Mode
Disk Write Cache Mode

 

If you are looking for a fast external thunderbolt enclosure with all of the bells and whistles…this appears to be the ticket…for now at least.

Jordan

June 2013


Areca Moment – High Performance External Storage Options Review for iMac & Macbook Pro – USB 3.0, Thunderbolt, RAID, eSATA

Areca ARC 8050 front panel

Areca ARC 8050 front panel

 

A few months back, we put a new 27″ iMac (late 2012) 3.4 GHz Intel Core i7 model into service at the studio. Duties would include tethered capture with Phase One digital backs & Canon DSLR’s as well as various post production tasks – Photoshop, Video Editing, Lightroom, etc.

The computer came with a 3 TB internal SATA hard drive. My hope was that with the addition of USB 3.0 ports and Thunderbolt we would have plenty of reasonably priced options to choose from for some additional storage needs. Well, that was easier said/thunk than done.

Pretty simple if you want to grab one or two external 3 or 4 TB USB 3.0 hard drives from Western Digital, G-Tech, Seagate, Hitachi, etc.  The problem comes when you realize you don’t want to use up all of your USB 3.0 ports on a few drives and or you want to get a serious performance boost. Nice to have at least one port free for connecting flash card readers, monitor calibrators, tethered capture, wacom tablet, etc. There are of course the Thunderbolt ports, but even thought they’ve been around for over 2 years, there is still a pretty weak selection to choose from. And most are still quite expensive compared to a similar drive in a USB 3 package.

Speaking of a lack of ports on the new iMac, it’s real pretty and all but I would have rather it been an inch or two thicker and have a few more ports. Actually it needs to be thick enough to have room so you have 2 owner accessible hard drive bays. Maybe one 3.5″ and one 2.5″, at least 2 or 3 more USB 3.0 ports and 1 eSATA port. I know it looks thin and cool, but the reality is it’s going to be parked against a wall 90% of the time and by the time you plug in 4 or 5 things back there it looks messy. Sure it looks awesome in the product photos with no cables :)

 

Business End

Business End

 

I know some of you are thinking, why didn’t you just go buy a Mac Pro? A few reasons. Though they just announced a new one, it hasn’t had a refresh in a long long time. And as of late 2012 there was no Mac Pro with USB 3.0 ports and they are more expensive. For this machine whose primary purpose is an image capture station…a fully loaded Mac Pro seemed like overkill. Plus, on a big shoot its much easier to bring the iMac along. I will comment on the new Mac Pro announced today in the future.

Ideally at a minimum, this machine would have a separate reasonably fast volume for each of the following: OS, scratch, working files (stills and movies), Time Machine and a swapper backup drive bay. The following are a few options tested.

 

 MacGurus Burly 4 Bay Hot Swap Firewire 800 enclosure 

Existing MacGurus Burly 4 bay FW800

Existing MacGurus Burly 4 bay FW800

 

I’ve had this Burly enclosure collecting dust for the last couple years, worked fine when the only option was FW800. Never had any problems with it other than the fact that it was slow ~ 80 MB/sec read & write. I checked out MacGurus website and spoke to them on the phone. They recommended to swap out the FW800 bridge for a “MGBurly UPM Upgrade kit  Burly USB 3.0 and eSATA upgrade kit = Lycom USB3/eSATA port multiplier to up to 5 drives for $115”

 

MacGurus Burly Box rear

MacGurus Burly Box rear

 

This would allow a single USB 3.0 cable to connect to 4 drives and probably achieve around 250 – 300 MB/sec read write speeds for all drives combined. Not too bad, especially considering the cost. I asked them if there were any issues…they said no :)  I ordered it, installed it. Seemed to work ok, but over the next couple of weeks we were having issues with multiple drives randomly ejecting, dismounting, etc. I have since contacted MacGurus and explained my problem, they replied and said it appeared to be a common issue (hmmm…not what I was told when I bought it). He said there was a fix using an app called Keep Drive Spinning. Having to run an app to keep my drives from ejecting makes me want to vomit. Even if it works and is simple. No thanks. MacGurus should probably put that disclaimer on their website product page. Thank you time vampire #1, next…

 

Promise Technology Pegasus R6 – RAID Storage with Thunderbolt

Promise Tech Pegasus R6

Promise Tech Pegasus R6

 

Enter the Pegasus R6 w/ Thunderbolt. Its a 6 Bay enclosure with (6) 1 TB SATA drives installed. If I remember correctly these are what Apple waved around when they announced Thunderbolt, showing you what would be offered. I should of just bit the bullet from the get go and went this route, so I thought. I noticed newegg.com had some factory refurbished / reconditioned units with warranty which would save a few hundred dollars. Normally I would stay away from refurbs, but I thought in this case I would make an exception. I don’t have the best luck buying new, so why not try refurbs? Maybe the factory has taken a better look and ensured this one works correctly before sending it out again? ;)

Showed up and looked nice. As always I read the instructions, check firmware, current software, updates, etc. I could write a short story about what it was doing but don’t want to take all day. In short, it seemed possessed. Throwing multiple error lights, telling me it was overheating, etc.  Spent hours trying to make it right…gave up and sent it back.

Another one shows up a week later. This time totally different issues. The box itself seemed OK, but 2 of the 6 drives they shipped with it were reported as bad by the Pegasus display and utility. FWIW, tried it on two different thunderbolt computers with 10.8.2 and 10.8.3. Wow what a huge waste, to think those units leave the Promise Tech facility after being “fixed/inspected?”  Stinks. Time vampire #2, next up the solution…


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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