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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Monmouthshire, UK
    Posts
    2,152
    Probably sneak under the Radar but you'd sure as hell hear it coming.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Ohio, USA.
    Posts
    1,161
    Don, 4 words.......ultra light personal aircraft! think about it! LOL
    Sony A700_____________Minolta AF 50mm. F/1.7
    Minolta AF 70-210mm F/3.5-4.5 Tamron AF 17-50mm F/2.8 XR DiII LD Asp. [IF]
    Tamron SP AF 70-200mm. F/2.8 DI LD [IF] Macro
    Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2
    Tokina AF 28-70mm F/3.5-4.5
    Tokina AF AT-X 80-400mm F/4.5-5.6
    http://flickr.com/

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Thumbs down The "unfriendly skies"

    With the skies filling with "unoccupied" aircraft, I am reluctant to take to the skies in a personal way.

    Anyway ... still grounded and experimenting with control. You must learn control ...
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-22-2009 at 08:49 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Talking Remote results

    It was kind of fun, today ... and the results seem ... acceptable.

    A700 w/ TAMRON SP AF 200-500mm f/5-6.3 Di LD
    Name:  3-22-2009-feeder.jpg
Views: 83
Size:  273.1 KB
    @ 400mm - f/7.1 - 1/200 sec - ISO-200 - Spot Focus - Spot Meter - Manual - Daylight

    A700 w/ TAMRON SP AF 70-200mm f/2.8 Di LD MACRO

    Name:  3-22-3009-male-cardinal.jpg
Views: 87
Size:  339.2 KB
    @ 200mm - f/3.5 - 1/250 sec. - ISO-100 - Spot Focus - Spot Meter - Manual - Daylight (CROP)

    A700 w/ TAMRON SP AF 70-200mm f/2.8 Di LD MACRO

    Name:  3-22-3009-female-cardinal.jpg
Views: 88
Size:  274.2 KB
    @ 200mm - f/3.5 - 1/250 sec. - ISO-100 - Spot Focus - Spot Meter - Manual - Daylight (CROP)
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-22-2009 at 06:10 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    2,204
    Nice work!

    The first is kinda odd to look at because I guess the wind was blowing or the camera wasn't level so it's like the bird feeder is defying gravity and tilting. You should get in even closer!
    flickr

    Canon 7D - 5D | 550EX - 430EX II - (2) PW FlexTT5 | 24-105 f4L | 70-200 f2.8L IS | 100 f2.8L IS | 50 f1.8 II

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Exclamation Get closer?!?

    Well ... I still have 100mm to give to the shot. I'll set that up, tomorrow.

    I have amended the first image to correct the tilt.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-22-2009 at 09:47 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Ohio, USA.
    Posts
    1,161
    Still way cool Don, something fun to play with I bet, can't wait to see more.
    Sony A700_____________Minolta AF 50mm. F/1.7
    Minolta AF 70-210mm F/3.5-4.5 Tamron AF 17-50mm F/2.8 XR DiII LD Asp. [IF]
    Tamron SP AF 70-200mm. F/2.8 DI LD [IF] Macro
    Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2
    Tokina AF 28-70mm F/3.5-4.5
    Tokina AF AT-X 80-400mm F/4.5-5.6
    http://flickr.com/

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Lightbulb A tool that doesn't break the bank ...

    Sean,

    I'll be honest here (like I wouldn't be ... geesh) ... I am getting shots I just could not get earlier. The camera is only twenty feet or less from the birds ... and I can snap away with impunity. The birds do not scatter ... I am not in some uncomfortable hole ... hiding under a tarp, to get the shot.

    You may ask, doesn't that take the fun out of it? Depends on what you call "fun" I guess. Here are images that I can leisurely achieve, with this variation on tripod shots. Hey, I suppose I could even do this with a Canon or a Nikon camera, at this point. It would take some work, but it may be doable. I really do love the included A700 software that allows for this kind of control.

    Anyway ... it really is nice to have this capability, without the struggle. The only real improvement I would like it to have a LIVE "sighting" camera with it. I may add that later, as things go along.

    One of the things that really would be nice to have would be the ability to "mark" or queue the various locations you would like the tripod robot to return to ... making it so you could just select that particular position and have it pan and tilt to precisely that point, thereby eliminating the "hunt & peek" issue. Much like the manual location storage capability of the telescope AutoStar system. Oh well ... room for improvement, right? This is still pretty cool for the rather small cost it took to implement.

    BTW: Using the robot requires you level the tripod, to maintain a flat pan. I am going to try a panorama, eventually, which should also be an interesting test, as the Hague "MPH" tripod head will also do a complete 360 spin. The "PH" version only does a 225 rotation ... but, in "Automatic" Mode, oscillates back and forth, if you should need that capability. That's more for video camera use.

    I've kind of been anxious to use this $100 MF 1000mm f/16 Reflex lens I got, back in my film days.



    Always was a bear to handhold ... but setting it to infinity and then doing a panorama with it on the robot ... well, it could be kind of novel. The base 500mm lens only weighs ten ounces ... "soaking wet" and the 2x extender is just a steel tube.

    Along the same lines as Ryan's suggestion of a pole for the camera ... theoretically, I could run the camera and robot tripod head on the top of a vertical pole (150 feet, with the length of Ethernet cable I have) and take aerial images from way up there! Okay, maybe that is a little high ... but, imagine you are in a crowd ... a big crowd. You could run your camera up a twenty foot pole, whip out the ol' laptop ... and get shots that would be, for the most part, impractical, without even moving. Oh, I suppose you could have someone lean and rotate the pole, if you do not want to spot the cash for one of these, but what the heck, right? Brainstorming the possibilities.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-22-2009 at 09:26 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Ohio, USA.
    Posts
    1,161
    I know our security cameras at the court house have a patrol feature which is nice, you can have it swing back and ofrth, or custom set so it goes so far, stops goes part way back then forward again etc. also has a 'hot return' or lock view while on sweep or patrol you can touch a button and camera goes back to a set point and focus. more software to add, Looks like it may be a summer of field trials!
    Sony A700_____________Minolta AF 50mm. F/1.7
    Minolta AF 70-210mm F/3.5-4.5 Tamron AF 17-50mm F/2.8 XR DiII LD Asp. [IF]
    Tamron SP AF 70-200mm. F/2.8 DI LD [IF] Macro
    Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2
    Tokina AF 28-70mm F/3.5-4.5
    Tokina AF AT-X 80-400mm F/4.5-5.6
    http://flickr.com/

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Cool I can see it -> REAL TIME

    Photography ... developing an interest.

    This really is fun stuff.

    EDIT: Okay, got the "sighting" camera part pretty well figured out using a pan/tilt security camera. Yes, it is a bit "Frankenstein", but I have news for you folks: we don't care what the photographer looks like ... it's all in the image we produce.

    Addition of "live" sighting camera

    Name:  live-site-cam.jpg
Views: 97
Size:  245.4 KB Name:  tilt-pan-controller-.jpg
Views: 96
Size:  158.5 KB

    So ... it may not be pretty, but it actually works pretty good. Lenses can be easily swapped. The entire system can be broken down in about two-three minutes. The security camera requires no additional power and can be 200 feet away from its monitor.

    I used one of my "Stroboframes" (it is aluminum and foam, but most of all -> lightweight) and a single 10-24 bolt, washer and nut and was able to quickly assemble the camera into position, directly in line with the DSLR's lens. The Stroboframe is on a Manfrotto 3299 RC2 Quick Release plate, at the top of the robot.

    Now, without wasting the batteries of the pan/tilt tripod robot, I can:
    1. use the pan/tilt "live" camera to hunt around ... looking for action ...
    2. quickly align it with the DSLR lens (using that white wire hanging out in front of it)
    3. turn the robot tripod head to the desired direction
    4. grab the image.


    It's a lot like having a "turret captain" on a tank, directing the big gun.

    Now, I have "real time" eyes @ the camera's location. True, it is not TTL (through-the-lens)... but, pretty darn close, eh? ... and with an effective 18mm field of view. I am, how you say, "no longer lacking for supervision."

    Please, do not think that I have not given that "TTL-idea" some thought. If you look at the security camera, you will note that it can tilt that little camera nearly straight down. If you added a little bit of an angle to its mount (say about ten degrees), it actually could. I know, "So what, Don? Now you can see the back of the camera ... what good is that?"

    Okay, wise-guy, always one-step ahead of me, right? Well, imagine one of those "L" shaped MACRO viewfinder eyepieces ... back there on the camera, with the magnification and lens diopter all ready set up for the little camera's focus (If you need to look through the viewfinder, you just slip the angle-viewer off.) so then TILT the security camera to peer right down into that eyepiece ... Hey, I've got enough in this as it is ... another $200 just is NOT happening.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-23-2009 at 10:37 AM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

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