Archive for April, 2009

Ken Rockwell on the Megapixel Myth

Posted in Uncategorized on April 29, 2009 by Richard

Ken Rockwell further explains:

I am incensed at vendors such as Best Buy who push this myth:

Frakking unethical, lying bastards!!!

Frakking marketing whores!!!

I think people get confused by image resolution vs print resolution. There is NO CORRELATION between the two!


The Myth of Megapixels

Posted in Uncategorized on April 29, 2009 by Richard

I’ve been studying this issue carefully. Here’s what David Pogue, tech writer at the NYT, says:

The actual lesson, then, is this: “For the nonprofessional, five or six megapixels is plenty, even if you intend to make poster-size prints.”

Pogue’s experiment is pretty conclusive. People just can’t tell the difference in IQ in poster-size prints of 5, 8, and 13 mp. (A subsequent experiment with poster-size prints of 7, 10, and 16 mp had the same outcome.)

Well, I’ll *never* be printing posters, so my 10 mp are quite a waste. Such high mp only result in bigger files, longer data transfers, and hence lower fps of continuous shooting.

Here’s my dilemma:  *someday* my 40D will die on me. What do I replace it with? Some high mp camera that produces huge image files??? Hopefully, Canon will have the wherewithal to continue manufacturing low mp DSLRs…

(Good luck with that. Canon is one of the biggest culprits — their idiotic marketing department keeps pushing for higher and higher mp.)

Photo Mule

Posted in Uncategorized on April 27, 2009 by Richard

I’m going to be a photo mule. My Lowepro Fastpack 250 camera bag, when empty, weighs 3.6 lbs. Add my Canon 40D and 3 lenses, and the total weight exceeds 9 lbs. On top of that, add the HP dv2’s 4 lbs (incl. a 6-cell battery) and I’m lugging around 13+ lbs on my back! And that’s *before* I add a water bottle. Fraaaak!

I have a bad back on top of a screwy right knee. Long hikes into the wilderness carrying my camera gear will probably kill me.

My advice to all you folks:  Don’t grow old.

HP dv2

Posted in Uncategorized on April 27, 2009 by Richard

Hey, Win 7 could ship in time for school! Which means I could get my HP dv2 in September! Woo-hoo!

Sonovabitch, I’ve turned into a Microsoft lackey! All because of the recession — Apple gear is too expensive. I need an affordable, ultra-portable laptop for my photography hobby, and Apple refuses to satisfy this market segment. (If the MacBook Air cost ~$1,000, I’d jump at it.)

I think I shall join the order of Opus Dei and self-mutilate to atone for my betrayal.

[Yes, I’m anti-Microsoft. Have been for more than 15 years.]

My Lens Hoods Arrived!

Posted in Uncategorized on April 22, 2009 by Richard

They arrived just minutes ago. Jesus, these things are HUGE! They’ll take up a lot of space in my backpack.

At $20 for the pair, they’re worth it. Canon/Vistek/Henry’s wanted to charge ~$70 a piece for a total of $140!!! Sweet Mother of Jesus!!!!!

They’re just pieces of plastic moulded into a conical shape. Are these companies insane???

Field Laptop (Netbook)

Posted in Uncategorized on April 18, 2009 by Richard

I think the Acer Aspire One is the best overall netbook:

(White, because I think black shows smudges more easily.)

No netbook is perfect and compromises are inevitable. I like the Acer because:

  1. it’s fairly light at 1.18 kg
  2. it has decent battery life
  3. it has a good size hard drive (160GB)
  4. it runs Winblows XP (<gag>)

I need Winblows to support the Canon 40D out in the field (for interfacing). The netbook is not for annotating photographs but to download images from the camera, and to access the Internet at cafés and such. I may also write little blogs for later posting (when I have Internet access).

The netbook is also good for previewing photographs. The camera’s 3″ LCD is just plain silly for previewing.

I wish the card reader supported CF but that’s life. Once the hard drive is full of pictures, I can transfer them over wired Ethernet (the fastest method) to my post-production machine, the Core 2 Duo desktop.

The netbook has one other key use: watching movies on my flight down to Nevada (or wherever). Of course, I’d have to load up on movies over wired Ethernet (there’s no DVD drive!).

Good Day For Me

Posted in Uncategorized on April 16, 2009 by Richard

It was a good day for me…

Yesterday, Henry’s called me and said my backordered Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM macro lens had arrived. This afternoon, I went down to pick it up. I assumed, and hoped, that the price was CAD$650.

It was. I’m astonished that Henry’s could sell it to me at the old price. The sales guy said that I was very lucky:  I was getting one of the very last macro lenses at that price, and they’re *very* hard to find. Canon was going to hike prices very soon, he said.

Funny, Canon had already hiked prices on April 1st. So I surmise the sales guy was referring to that particular price increase. For whatever reason, there is a lag at Henry’s for the new Canon prices. And I benefitted greatly from that lag!

I’m a very happy camper.

But the story doesn’t end there. I also wanted to buy the Lowepro Fastpack 250 camera bag (regular price $110). This particular bag can carry a 15″ laptop. I wanted this feature because I think I will bring a laptop with me on my field trips. It would be useful for 2 reasons:

  1. I can make notes about my adventure.
  2. I can download images from the camera, thereby freeing up space on the CF card, and letting me do photo previews (previewing images on the camera’s 3″ LCD is ridiculous). Moreover, if I can find a Wi-Fi hotspot, I can immediately post my pictures.

When I went to pay for the Lowepro, I was told that it was on sale — I would get the bag for $88. When I checked the price *yesterday*, it was $110. So that means the sale started *today*!!!

Shit, I am one lucky frakking bastard!