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  1. #641
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,557

    Thumbs down Word back from BUFF

    I received a reply to my interrogative and wound up with a lengthy, detailed possible solution, which involved a lot of additional, expensive hardware... in order to add an "intervalometer" capability to their already existing electronic solution. They are not too interested in changing it, apparently.

    Guys, the whole idea was to eliminate these nasty "Rube Goldberg" contraptions... not build a new one! What's the point? I know Rome was not built in a day, but they are, in effect, saying... "we have what we have... we're too tired to move forward with anything else."

    I know... lame as it sounds, I suppose it is understandable. The real thrust of even contacting them, concerning this improvement, was that they are so close to having it working, it is almost to their discredit not to simply add it as a firmware upgrade. It's just software, folks. There was to be no hardware involved at this point. Just slow the ignition trigger for some of your lights or group.

    Now get this, they have it already segregated into 8 Groups of 16-strobes, individually addressed. I mean, that is about as divided as you can get. Just slow them down a bit for a longer exposure time.

    Sorry... but, there is a limit to even my patience about such short-sightness.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-11-2011 at 04:33 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

  2. #642
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    God's Country - Australia
    Posts
    10,424
    Don, you seriously need an ego reality check. Paul Buffs team have worked with some of the best photographers and strobists on the PLANET. you know...REAL strobists...the guys that make lighting things beautiful. limit to your patience for their short sightedness ? lmfaooooooo man you seriously delusional.
    D800e l V3 l AW1 l 16-35 l 35 l 50 l 85 l 105 l EM1 l 7.5 l 12-40 l 14 l 17 l 25 l 45 l 60 l 75
    flickr

  3. #643
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,557

    When an IDEA stikes, what do you do with it?

    My need is to limit the expense of the lighting. The Paul C. Buff higher-end lights (Einstein e640) are roughly $499 ea... then their plug-in controller module is another $30... then a Cyber Commander for the system is another $190... it adds up, when you consider a minimum of four strobes, mate. Last check... about $2400... worth of strobe replacement.

    To do what I want to do (sequential strobe firing) with the current technology, I would have to pop for five (5x) additional PocketWizard MultiMax units (educationally discounted to $240/ea), to ADD to the Paul C Buff stuff. You have your calculator handy? That's roughly another $1250, to add what would be, effectively, a relatively simple "firmware" change in the Paul C. Buff system (which equates to effectively FREE!).

    Regardless, if I can enlist a company to make an improvement to whatever capability of their current offering... I am going to step up and request it. If you do not ask them, Rooz... they usually are not beating a path to your door to ask you.

    Call it arrogance, if you want. I'm not sitting on my hands, here. I have a mission and I don't give a rat's behind how many images you (collectively -> you and your "strobist" pals) have taken... I am the one taking mine! I am spending a lot of cash to find out just what modern photography is all about. I, pretty much, know what I would like to have to compose and shoot the shot. I would like to keep the overall costs within reason, because is all coming out of my wallet. Of course, if YOU want to contribute to the cause... I can live with that, too. Our country is having some serious issues with maintaining stable finances these days. It is a regular rock and roll affair, on Wall Street and the government. Personally, I had the quit the market, entirely, because I simply cannot trade my common stock as fast as the declines are taking place.

    As such (there is a reason I mention this), my spendable capital has taken a major clip. It is time to get a bigger bang for the buck out of our technology.

    Then again... when it comes to artistic effort, it may be argued that it is all about ego.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-13-2011 at 09:01 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

  4. #644
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    God's Country - Australia
    Posts
    10,424
    yeah no worries, i'll ask the ferrari F1 team to fit cupholders and if they dont do it i'll complain that they are morons. lol

    bigger buck for technology ? are you serious ? we have NEVER been better for the devices we use. my d5100 was $600 and its packed chock full of things i couldnt even have got in a compact for that price a couple of years ago let alone a dslr. in fact it is clear that for some users, technology and the gadgetry have overwhelmed the intent of the original device.

    and no i dont call it arrogance at all. arrogance infers exaggerated confidence in ones sound knowledge of a subject. i call it delusional cos it is exaggerated confidence based on very limited knowledge of the subject.
    D800e l V3 l AW1 l 16-35 l 35 l 50 l 85 l 105 l EM1 l 7.5 l 12-40 l 14 l 17 l 25 l 45 l 60 l 75
    flickr

  5. #645
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
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    9,557
    The power of the camera is an amazing thing, my friend, but the power of imagination with a camera unleashes its true potential. I'll leave it at that... and press on.

    When it comes to the strobe control, my biggest interest was getting this capability down to the electronic flash units, not just studio strobes. One big, happy family of control. It boggles the mind...

    Unfortunately, the BUFF system requires replacement of nearly everything you currently have, to get its full capability. A lot of things go that way... it is a technological shift in power. Personally, I just don't think they went as far as they could have... or should have.

    I want THIS...


    Instead of the same old this...


    I mean, who better than The Flash to demonstrate?
    Last edited by DonSchap; 09-13-2011 at 01:24 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

  6. #646
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Monmouthshire, UK
    Posts
    2,152
    Hi Guys, I'm back from a trip to Germany.

    Don, I'm not sure why you want the capability you're advocating for the Buff system.

  7. #647
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,557
    Welcome back, Peter... it's been exceptionally quiet without ya.

    Didja get any pictures? I mean, talk about the place to grab vistas and castles... and a tall one. Wow.

    Three thousand miles, from coast to coast, and all we have here are old barns and California girls.


    Quote Originally Posted by Peekayoh View Post
    Don, I'm not sure why you want the capability you're advocating for the Buff system.
    Well, rather than go through my particular needs for such sequence triggering ... here's the PocketWizard MultiMAX feature I guess that I am trying to emulate in a little more cost-effective way (Remember the word "KISS"):

    "B: Intervalometer (Time Lapse Photography)*/MENU A B

    Enters the Intervalometer interval setting screen.

    Intervalometer can be used to trigger a flash or a camera at a set interval (time gap between triggers) for a set number of
    triggers. The interval time is set in HH:MM:SS format (Hours:Minutes:Seconds) up to a maximum of 99:59:59.

    While Intervalometer is running, it will display a count down time until the next trigger on the main screen. Also, TRIG will be displayed on the main screen in inverse video as the PORTs are being triggered.

    1. From the main screen press */MENU A B to enter the numeric entry screen
    2. Enter the interval or time gap between triggers
    3. Press */MENU to proceed to the next screen
    4. Enter the count or number of triggers
    5. Press */MENU to return to the main screen. The interval will be displayed, and the count will show the number of triggers to be executed.
    6. Press TEST or trigger MultiMAX via Radio to begin intervalometer function

    Intervalometer has two modes of operation depending on which PORT is used:

    • PORT 1 = first trigger takes place AFTER first interval
    • PORT 2 = first trigger takes place BEFORE first interval

    A MultiMAX (set for TRANSMIT mode) does not send interval radio triggers. The MultiMAX (set for TRANSMIT mode) will send out a single radio trigger pulse at the beginning of the first interval only. It will continue to trigger devices attached to its PORTs, but it will not send a radio trigger for any more intervals. For remote interval operation, use interval mode on a RECEIVE unit. Each MultiMAX (set for RECEIVE mode) may have a unique interval setting or can be used with equal settings. Interval and count entry screens are instantly active The Set Interval and Adjust Counter screens are instantly active.

    While the Set Interval screen is displayed a change of interval will be immediately executed upon trigger either from the TEST key or Radio trigger. The count used will be the last count set. If the Adjust Counter screen is displayed a change of count will be immediately executed upon trigger using the last interval set.

    Intervalometer can be interrupted by pressing and holding the */MENU key.

    For delays longer than 9.9999 seconds (maximum available in delay modes) use Intervalometer or Multipop mode. Set the interval to the desired delay. Set the count to 1. Attach your camera to PORT 1 and trigger the MultiMAX . The camera will trigger after the set interval.

    Contact time is affected by Intervalometer mode. If you set an interval that is LESS than the contact time, the contact time becomes the interval minus 0.3 seconds. If you set an interval that is GREATER than the contact time, the contact time is simply performed as entered.

    ☞ When using Intervalometer and Relay Mode together, a MultiMAX (set for RECEIVE mode) will switch to Transmit mode and send a Radio trigger after the last interval.

    ☞ When using Intervalometer or Multipop modes exclusively, battery life can be 200 – 300 hours.

    D: SpeedCycler - TRANSMITTER*/MENU A D


    Enables SpeedCycler mode. Use this mode to rapidly cycle through remote flash units and trigger faster than a single flash can recycle by using multiple flash units. It can also be used for triggering remote cameras sequentially.

    This mode only works with Quad Triggering channels (17 and higher) (<- this the expensive part & reason - these upper channels are exclusive to this device & the crux of my contention ->) and two or more MAX or MultiMAX units (set for RECEIVE mode).

    1. From the main screen press */MENU A D
    to enable SpeedCycler mode on a MultiMAX (set for TRANSMIT mode)
    2. Enable two or more remote zones
    3. Set each MultiMAX (set for RECEIVE mode) to a different zone
    4. Trigger the MultiMAX (set for TRANSMIT mode). The first trigger will fire the first zone selected, the second trigger will fire the next zone selected. The display indicates the next zone to trigger with an arrow. Only the zone just triggered will display proper confirmation

    If L is selected then PORT 2 on the MultiMAX (set for TRANSMIT mode) will trigger every time and is not cycled. It will be in sync with each cycled zone."



    Now, consider that the BUFF-device ("Cyber Commander™," through the "CyberSync™" system) has all of the flash units it talks to already individually addressed for POWER RATIO management. Adding a TIME DELAY component for the individual flash triggering would be without peer and you would not have to worry about this or that flash location interfering with another, as each flash site "develops." You could, literally, "light paint" your way through your image with a long exposure.

    Say that Joseph M. Blough or "Joe Blow", for short, was walking along a prepared trail of flashes. With this delay flash trigger feature, he could "time" his way through the event with each flash illuminated as he drew close.

    Obviously, with the current system, if ALL of the flashes went off at the same time, the image would look entirely different and all the prior exposures would be effectively washed out, as EVERY flash would go off after its inherent recycle time (0.7 - 3 seconds). The effect is ruined.

    Thanks for asking...

    OUR NEXT QUESTION: "How high is... up?"
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-13-2011 at 09:07 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

  8. #648
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Monmouthshire, UK
    Posts
    2,152
    Thanks, Don and yes, although the main purpose was R&R and tall ones.
    As for Barns and CGs, one out of two ain't bad.

    I guess you're stuck with the pocket wizards then!

  9. #649
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,557

    Angry Reasoning... versus added expense

    "Stuck"... hmmm, that's a fair word, I suspect, when that means an extra $300+ per flash head to pull this off. (That's one PW MultiMax per head). I mean, consider the magnitude of what you are saying. The Cyber Commander can independently address up to 8 groups of 16 flashes per group! Do the math! 8 x 16 = 128 flash heads! 128 x $300 = $38,400 ...and a lot of "AA" rechargeable batteries to keep running with those PW units (batterie$ not included).

    One firmware change... effectively free (except for the code-writer cost)

    You see, in this day and age, Peter, I would like to think we can find our respective rear ends with both hands and not have our head in the sand. My suggestion is merely a firmware addition to give the CyberSync system that added "pop", if you will. A little more bang for the buck... the technology is RIGHT THERE. They just need to step up and pop it in.

    I believe that if there was added interest from people reading this... it might just happen. What a boon... industry driven INTEREST! Who knew?

    Here's their web site... just drop them a note. Tell them you heard about their system... and that you would really get serious about buying it... if it only had an "Intervalometer" and "SpeedCycler" capability, too. They will know what you mean, believe me. It is nothing revolutionary... it just needs a good home.

    The Crusade goes on...
    Last edited by DonSchap; 09-13-2011 at 01:17 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

  10. #650
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    602

    Large(er) Format

    So, I am into my first week of my Large Format photography class. Actually, it probably should be called Larger Format Photography as we will also be shooting some medium format. Now, I've loved using my Yashikamat TLR medium format camera, so that won't be a new experience. What will be is using the Mamiya in which we will use both digital and film backs. Then there's the 4x5 view camera. I can't wait to get that out into the field with the exception of the fact that the rail versions weighs a ton. Might need to ask for a field version where hiking is involved.
    Darin Wessel
    α 900
    Zooms: Tamron SP AF70-200mm f2.8 Di LD Macro; Sigma 28-90mm D macro, Konica-Minolta 18-70 f3.5-5.6
    Primes: Minolta 28mm f2.8; Sony 50mm f1.4
    Minolta RC-1000 remote commander

    Film:
    Calumet Cambo CC400 4x5 View Camera
    YashikaMat 6x6 TLR (other accessories)
    Minolta Maxxum 7000 w/ Minolta 35-80mm f/4-5.6 & Minolta 2800 flash
    Minolta Maxxum 5000i & Vivitar 728 AFM flash
    What's next???

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