Friday, 28 October 2011

Canon 1DX Shutter Speed Test - Sound of the 14fps frame rate continous shooting

Hands on the Canon 1DX to see how fast the frame burst rate is in real use. The speed of this camera is amazing! Not only can it shoot at 14 frames per second but it can also shoot at up to ISO 204,800 which is a level that was unheard of for digital cameras

Canon 1DX Hands On - The Shutter Speed and High ISO King!

Yesterday I got my hands on the Canon 1DX to test in London. Unfortunately we were unable to get images from the Canon 1DX to test the high ISO performance and image quality at ISO 204800 but the ISO range on the back of the camera settings is phemonenal. To see an ISO range that goes from 100 to 51,200 in normal mode and with H1 and H2 settings of 102,400 and 204,800 is incredible. This is certainly one area where digital has now surpassed film by some considerable margin.

Canon 1DX Hands on - incredible frame rate and shutter speed
Canon 1DX High ISO - massive ISO range to 204,800

Canon 1DX hands on testing
The Canon 1DX is released in the UK in March 2012 so we still have a little time before we can get hold of this camera for use in the field or the studio

Friday, 21 October 2011

STS (Stage Theatre Society) Les Miserables Rainham School for Girls

I Dreamed a Dream by Gemma Scholes from Les Miserables
STS (Stage Theatre Society) will be performing the musical Les Miserables at Rainham School for Girls from 26th to 29th October 2011

This promotional video was shot on the Canon 5D Mark 2 with the Azten external microphone for Canon DSLR. 

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Canon 1DX - The Megapixel race is over?

Canon have announced the new Canon 1D X DSLR camera to replace both the Canon 1D Mark4 and Canon 1Ds Mark 3. Interestingly the new Canon 1D X has 18 Mp replacing the Canon 1D4 that had 21Mp.

We will be having a hands on look at the Canon 1DX this week and will post a review of the findings plus hopefully a few photos after the event.

Despite the numbers the actual difference in pixel count between 18Mp and 21Mp is minimal so it could be a good sign that finally image quality and noise performance are more important than the headline grabbing mega pixels. Does this mean that the megapixel race is finally over and features other than the sensor pixel count are starting to be more important. Certainly from a photographic point of view an ISO range up to 200,000 is of more use than a few extra pixels especially for low light wedding shots and the massive files generated by big pixel counts are a negative for long term storage.

Does this mean that the Canon 5D Mark 3 will feature less pixels than the Canon 5DII? As the 1Ds3 featured the same sensor as the Canon 5D2 we could speculate that this new 18Mp sensor will find its way into the Canon 5DIII when it is released.

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Composition: The Importance of Backgrounds

A Lesson in Composition and How to Avoid Poor Backgrounds in Your Photos

I was at a competition recently where a few images show had issues with the backgrounds and the judge commented that a slight movement would have vastly improved the images by removing background clutter. This gives some advice on how to remove background objects from your photos.

It is crucially important to always look at the background behind the subject not just the subject themselves. A slight change in position to the left or right, up or down can often make all the difference to a photo looking professionally composed or being just a snapshot.

The two example shots below show how easy it is to recompose a shot to remove background clutter and to give a nice neutral out of focus background to your photos.

shots were taken with the Canon 600D and the 35-80 USM lens.
 These shots of our cat were taken in the garden at home. The first shot above shows the legs of the children's climbing frame that are distracting and ruin the shot. The shot below was taken from a very slightly different viewpoint by raising myself slightly up thus giving a different angle towards the cat. This mean that the climbing frame was no longer in shot and all the background behind the cat is a nice soft neutral colour.

shots were taken with the Canon 600D and the 35-80 USM lens.

So as you can see above it is very easy to adjust the position for taking a photo that will vastly improve the background and make the subject stand out as they should. These shots were taken with the Canon 600D and the 35-80 USM lens.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

How to copy slides using a Digital Camera

How to Copy Slides using a Digital Camera

Are you looking to copy your old slides into digital photo format but can't afford to invest many hundreds of pounds in a high quality slide scanner? Or are you finding that the copying of slides using a scanner is not fast enough and are looking for a quicker way to copy slides to digital images?

If so then there is a very cheap solution that allows high quality copying at the standard resolution of your camera. You can buy a slide copier for a few pounds on Ebay or elsewhere that attaches as a lens to the front of your full frame camera and allows you to copy the slides directly to the card in the camera at the resolution you choose. So on a Canon 5D Mark2 it means you can scan slides at up to 21.8 Megapixels, far higher than most dedicated slide scanners.

I picked up my Ohnar Zoom slide duplicator copier on Ebay a few years ago having previously owned one some years for its original pre-digital purpose of copying slides to enable you to crop out unwanted objects or to recompose a slide. It is important to note that the original slide copies were designed for film cameras so they are only suitable for full frame DSLR cameras. If you use a slide copier on a crop sensor that it is not designed for then the crop factor will mean that you lose part of the slide image.

I've just checked Ebay and there are still bargains to be had - this Ohnar Slide duplicator to copy slides onto your digital SLR camera sold for £1.24 plus £4.50 P&P - an absolute bargain to get high resolution, very fast copies of your slides into a digital photo format and much quicker and better value than a dedicated slide scanner.

Monday, 3 October 2011

Canon 24-105 Lens Shows Error 01 on different cameras

If you have suffered from Error 01 on your Canon 24-105 Lens, shown as a message on your camera as Unable to Communicate with Lens or similar then you may like to see what causes the error. This error is particular prone to occuring on the Canon 24-105 f4 EF lens.

These shots are of the internal iris mechanism that had failed on my Canon 24-105 f4 lens on my Canon 5D Mark 2 and was giving error 01 on multiple cameras.

The point of failure is the cord that attaches the iris mechanism to the lens body. With the constant motion of the lens barrel for zooming and focus it can fracture or fray and the communication error Canon Error 01 is generated with Canon lens 24-105 f4.

Canon Camera error 01 problem with 24-105 f4 lens
It doesn't even need a complete break in the cord to generate error 01 in your Canon lens, sometimes it can occur at certain points in the zoom range when the cord is either stretched or compressed more which causes the fracture to widen and break the communication link.
Photos of 24/105 lens with Canon error 01

Canon 24-105 lens error 01 Canon 5D2