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About pierces

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    5,000+ Club

About Me

  • Location
    Southern California
  • Interests
    Cruising, cruising, wildlife...oh, photography too!
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal Caribbean, Celebrity
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  1. Portrait? I am finally ready to grab a portrait lens. The 24-105 does a pretty good job at 105mm - f/4 but not exactly a "portrait" lens. I looked at the Samyang/Rokinon but I'm also impressed by the Sony 85mm f/1.8. The 85mm GM lens is way above the BFTB threshold for me. I would lean towards the Rokinon based on your review if it handles signaling for Eye-AF well. Any input? The weight of the 70-200 GM on the A7III is over a ½ pound lighter than my old A77 with the Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 and the battery grip on it. I never had an issue with the weight walking up and down the sidelines at football games. A lot of football games. Thirty plus years of weightlifting may have helped and I'm still more grizzly than gazelle. The f/2.8 when needed option and the ability to move to a 140mm-400mm f/5.6 by adding a 2x teleconverter with (reportedly) little impact on image quality is a compelling argument to me, though I am concerned about the mechanical issues you mentioned. Maybe waiting until next year no matter what my decision will resolve some of that and maybe native third-party options will materialize. First world problems. Dave
  2. Top guesses seem to be A9-II, A7000 (or whatever) or more remotely, an RX10-V. I so want it to be the APS-C camera, but with a $1000 drop in the A9, maybe they are positioning? Darn guessing games! Dave
  3. Lens snob? Maybe a little. I do love the 24-105. However, I am also fond of the 16-50PZ as a walkabout lens on the A6000. I think the reason we differ so much on this lens is that I shoot JPEG almost exclusively and pretty much all the time with the 16-50. This means that the distortion, CA and vignetting is corrected in-camera and I never really have to deal with it. The darned thing is just so compact and handy. The 16-50 is current on loan to my lovely granddaughter along with the A6000, so I currently have the all-manual 7artisans 25mm f/1.7 mounted as the pocketable option. Best $75 lens I have ever seen! I agree with the bang-for-the-buck threshold. If I were to decide on a f/2.8 normal zoom, the Tamron would be the way I would go. In assessing the 70-200 f/2.8 option, I have to consider that there are no third-party options in native mount and the AF integration is becoming so complex that it just may be worth the extra for the Sony GM, especially if I want a matched teleconverter. Big bang. Big bucks. To compare my lens snobbery to the world of wine, I guess I would be a part time snob who isn't afraid to drink out of something in a brown paper bag on occasion. 🙂 Dave
  4. I'm sort of in the same place. A performance-oriented APS-C body to replace my A6300 as a second to the A7III is at the top of my list right now. Even with the new lens, the telephoto question I mentioned before is below a good wide-angle zoom. My general shooting does not include much telephoto work and the 70-300 is filling the need nicely for now. I really shoot more wide than long. While I love the Rokinon 12mm f/2.0 on the A6300, The 12mm-24mm F/4 G just makes sense since it can be mounted on both cameras. BTW, in case you didn't notice in the press release, the 200-600 doesn't extend while zooming. That is huge for dust control. The 70-300 is sort of a heavy breather which is why I'm leaning toward the 70-200f/2.8 GM with a converter as a longer telephoto option. Another side note. Sony just registered a camera China. This usually happens 30-60 days before announcement. Dave
  5. Luminar 3.1.1 update says it is focused on speed. Guess what? It seems there is truth there. At least 50% faster loading the catalog and my SWAG is about 100% faster loading previews. I may actually start using it more once the new computer is built and my planned workflow alterations are in effect. If they would add a right-click link to an external editor for heavy fixes, it would erase almost all my initial misgivings about Luminar as a primary editing tool. These guys are listening and seem to be serious about putting on the big boy pants. Dave
  6. The cat is officially out of the non-disclosure agreement. Both the FE 200-600mm F5.6-6.3 G OSS and the FE 600mm F4 GM lenses are official and both will be available in August with the 200mm-600mm going for $2000 and the 600mm for $13,000. DPReview TV did a video of their hands-on at the Sony event. https://youtu.be/9BZBZFWtF_0 200-600 Sample gallery: https://www.dpreview.com/samples/5011616089/sony-fe-200-600mm-f5-6-6-3-g-oss-sample-gallery The 200-600 appears to me on par with the 100-400 with fast autofocus and sharp wide open corner to corner at 200 with slight corner softening at 600mm. Described as an enthusiast wildlife photographer's dream lens. The 600mm? Yeah. As expected, it's great. It's also a lotto or rental lens. At some point in the next year or so, I will have to make up my mind on a telephoto. If my grandson tries hockey and loves it, I will have to consider the 70-200 f/2.8 GM. Outdoor sports or Alaska? 100-400 or 200-600? I have no idea. Maybe I'll just watch for Justin's 200-600 photos when he inevitably buys one and decide then. Meanwhile, my 70-300 is pretty darned good. Especially as a 105-450 on the A6300! Two great additions to the arsenal. Thanks, Sony. Dave
  7. A few years ago, my son talked me into trying Borderlands 2. "You'll like it Dad! It's smart and funny!" Well, he was right. The artwork makes it look like you're playing in a graphic novel and the dialogue is clever and often hilarious. It also has a lot (really, a lot) of guns and a target-rich environment. Stress relief on steroids. In preparation for the release of Borderlands 3, they released an update pack with new adventures foreshadowing version 3. Less than an hour after the Sunday release, it was installed and I was linked with my son’s console doing run and gun across Pandora making the bad guys very, very sorry that they are the bad guys. Hold my beer while I blow this up... Family Fun Time! Dave
  8. Pictures taken between Monday, June 10 and Sunday, June 16.  Rules: See above That's it. This isn't a contest. All photos taken this week are welcome (not just cruising). Prizes will not be awarded. Discovering the joy of photography is the prize. The idea is to get folks out using their cameras for more than vacations and toddler birthdays. Post one. Post many. Up to you. Have fun with your camera and share your fun with others!
  9. Since it looks like items are for sale and the tour bus didn't stop, it may have been a mirage. 🙂 Dave
  10. The rumor mill has predicted with high certainty (odd mix of meanings there) that the Monday announcement will be the 600mm f/4 and it will have a $14k price tag. Yay Sony for releasing another super-telephoto that I don't need, want or is remotely affordable to the vast majority of photographers. I'm sure the action/wildlife pros who have embraced the A9 will be popping the corks on Monday, but I am left sitting in the corner waiting for my turn on the dance floor. Actually, I am no longer shocked at the pricing and no longer shake my head when these lofty units appear. I have learned that good lenses are expensive. I have also learned that great lenses are more expensive. Based on how long I had to wait for my 24-105 f/4 G, priciness is not necessarily a death sentence to sales if the quality is worth it. The wait times for the $1400 24mm f/1.4 GM seem to support the theory. I still respect the Sony 16-50 PZ kit lens for APS-C as a flawed but ingenious lens that will take excellent photos when one understands it's limitations. Same with the 28-70 FE kit lens. I have, however, learned that better lenses are worth the money. When I switched to the 18-105 f/4 G on the A6x00 bodies, I could see the difference. Not night and day, but I didn't have to tweak images as much. As nice as that lens is , the FE 24-105 f/4 G that is my current daily driver is a prime example of "you date your camera but you marry your lens". I can see it outliving several iterations of bodies until growing sensor resolutions force it into retirement. I still love to play with the $100 7artisans lenses on the A6300 and the Rokinon fisheye is a great little optic, but for a primary use lens, I now see the benefit of waiting a little longer and saving up for a better lens. I also see why a professional photographer will drop vast (to me) sums on equipment if they perceive value. I guess the best news is that the tech developed to produce these stellar top-end lenses isn't locked away in a safe for use only on the high-dollar units. A lot of that becomes standard and is used on any new lens introduced afterwards. Granted, a $350 kit lens won't have ultra-low dispersion glass elements but the molded aspherical lens components and focusing motors in them were once only used in $2000 pro zooms. It's a great time to be a photographer. And it seems to be getting better. Dave
  11. The $2000-ish (rumored) 200-600 was supposed to be officially announced at the end of journalists' event today but their non-disclosure agreement doesn't expire until Monday 6/10. Apparently, they are announcing then along with another "fast telephoto prime". The 200-600 is a "G", so I assume the image quality is going to follow the recent trend of excellent G lenses. A Bigma killer? The prime? 500mm and 600mm f/4 lenses have been patented. One of these? Something sneaky like the old Minolta 500mm mirror lens? (Unlikely, but I always thought donut bokeh was cool 🙂) Some great stuff, but the APS-C camera world is waiting for some news. I'm a lot more likely to take a hammer to the plaster pig for an $1700 APS-C body than a $12,000 lens. sonyalpharumors.com will likely be the first to break the news but I'll update after the Monday reveal. Dave
  12. Imgur has been an issue for a very long time. They just won't link to CC forums. Not sure what the issue is but the issue pops up every once in a while when someone tries to link. Just a thought on your export to medium JPEG. I always export at highest JPEG quality. The upload processor on this and most other sites recompresses, so I try to start with the best I can manage to avoid as much degradation as possible. Dave
  13. I usually post from a link to my Zenfolio galleries. I assume that since I upload full-size there and use their prepared pre-sized links they do a smart resize/sharpen process as they usually look pretty good. Here's a photo with a link and a copy uploaded after resizing to the same dimensions as the link: Link Upload The link is 850px on the long edge as is the uploaded image the upload was resized at 240 PPI. Some small differences but not day and night. Also not significantly different than the resized copy viewed directly. On a hunch, I resized a copy to 850 long edge with 100 PPI to closer match the actual pitch of a modern 24" - 27" monitor. 100 PPI Maybe a little sharper? Small enough difference that I may be imagining it. In theory, exporting at close to the monitor's pitch should look best but since there are a wide range of viewing devices and with 4K monitors, a wide range of pixel pitch. A moving target. I have always exported at 240, regardless of file size and seems to work well for me. Dave
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