PDA

View Full Version : Balance with Positives



erichlund
01-19-2006, 02:13 PM
I've been talking about some negatives I've seen with the D200. In fairness, I guess I should mention some positives to balance the equation. Let's talk white balance:

This photo was from a white balance test I did, in this case, preset using a Whibal grey card:
http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/photos/51619958-M.jpg
I'm hoping you are not too impressed, because I wasn't either. However, it should be noted that I think I probably just had the whibal card angled wrong, and wasn't catching the correct combination of lighting.

This next photo was preset with an expodisc on the main light source, a halogen lamp. It is very accurate. The brown cast to the left is reflection off of a dark oak chest that's just out of picture.
http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/photos/51619984-M.jpg

This photo was on Auto. I'm very pleased how accurate this came out. Not quite as good as the expodisk, but if I weren't there, I don't think I'd know which one was more accurate.
http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/photos/51619993-M.jpg

I haven't messed with the ability to set color temp by kelvin value, but it's very easy to do. The white balance button is very handy to have. I didn't mess with it at the zoo, just leaving it on automatic, but as I get more experience with the camera, I feel like it will be very handy to have.

I've probably mentioned this before, but having a viewfinder that I find adequate for critical focus is great. Pair that with the ability to use old manual focus lenses, and this becomes a great camera for focusing. AF lenses have one specific weakness, they have a very short throw so that the AF mechanism can work quickly. Unfortunately, we humans benefit from a lens that is less sensitive to a given range of movement. The AI-S 55 f2.8 micro I have is very easy to accurately focus, and I'm very pleased with that. I definitely see more AI-S glass in my future, and the new Zeiss glass is also very exciting. The fact that I can accurately meter such glass is a definite positive from my perspective.

I suspect the most unused button on the camera will be the QUAL button. It has a very prominent position, and I'm sure many photographers will be changing quality settings all the time. I take full size NEFs. I don't need a QUAL button. Not sure what I'd replace it with though.

Another very cool feature: 40X photo review. Yes, you can in fact determine critical focus on this camera. In fact, you can often get so tight that you may think it's out of focus, but that's because you are too tight and are on auto sharpening. I'm leaving the camera on med high sharpening, then turning it off in post and using USM (unless I'm satisified with the particular image).

Yes, despite the fact that it sucks power like L.A. on a hot summer day, I really like the BHJ (Big Honking Jumbotron). It makes photo review very effective.

The function button is nice. It would have been nicer if you could just pick any menu item to associate it with, but I guess that's asking a bit much. I currently have it set up to go to spot metering when depressed. That way, I can leave the camera on matrix metering, and I can just press the function button if I want to spot meter a shot.

Cheers,
Eric

D70FAN
01-19-2006, 03:00 PM
I've been talking about some negatives I've seen with the D200. In fairness, I guess I should mention some positives to balance the equation. Let's talk white balance:

This photo was from a white balance test I did, in this case, preset using a Whibal grey card:
I'm hoping you are not too impressed, because I wasn't either. However, it should be noted that I think I probably just had the whibal card angled wrong, and wasn't catching the correct combination of lighting.

This next photo was preset with an expodisc on the main light source, a halogen lamp. It is very accurate. The brown cast to the left is reflection off of a dark oak chest that's just out of picture.


This photo was on Auto. I'm very pleased how accurate this came out. Not quite as good as the expodisk, but if I weren't there, I don't think I'd know which one was more accurate.

I haven't messed with the ability to set color temp by kelvin value, but it's very easy to do. The white balance button is very handy to have. I didn't mess with it at the zoo, just leaving it on automatic, but as I get more experience with the camera, I feel like it will be very handy to have.

I've probably mentioned this before, but having a viewfinder that I find adequate for critical focus is great. Pair that with the ability to use old manual focus lenses, and this becomes a great camera for focusing. AF lenses have one specific weakness, they have a very short throw so that the AF mechanism can work quickly. Unfortunately, we humans benefit from a lens that is less sensitive to a given range of movement. The AI-S 55 f2.8 micro I have is very easy to accurately focus, and I'm very pleased with that. I definitely see more AI-S glass in my future, and the new Zeiss glass is also very exciting. The fact that I can accurately meter such glass is a definite positive from my perspective.

I suspect the most unused button on the camera will be the QUAL button. It has a very prominent position, and I'm sure many photographers will be changing quality settings all the time. I take full size NEFs. I don't need a QUAL button. Not sure what I'd replace it with though.

Another very cool feature: 40X photo review. Yes, you can in fact determine critical focus on this camera. In fact, you can often get so tight that you may think it's out of focus, but that's because you are too tight and are on auto sharpening. I'm leaving the camera on med high sharpening, then turning it off in post and using USM (unless I'm satisified with the particular image).

Yes, despite the fact that it sucks power like L.A. on a hot summer day, I really like the BHJ (Big Honking Jumbotron). It makes photo review very effective.

The function button is nice. It would have been nicer if you could just pick any menu item to associate it with, but I guess that's asking a bit much. I currently have it set up to go to spot metering when depressed. That way, I can leave the camera on matrix metering, and I can just press the function button if I want to spot meter a shot.

Cheers,
Eric

Thanks Eric. I really appreciate your input on the D200 as it is still on my shopping list for this spring.

Since the Exif data is not attached to the images, and you made mention to the 55mm f/2.8 AI-S, I was curious as to which lens you used for these pictures.

Keep the information rolling in, as you become the defacto teacher on this one.;)

erichlund
01-19-2006, 05:22 PM
I've downloaded a utility to attach EXIF data to images, but I haven't installed it yet. I think it's from www.opanda.com, or something like that.

Anyway, all these shots are from the 18-200. Here's a link to the Test Shots gallery: http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/gallery/1108651/1/51579592 where you can find the EXIF data attached.

D70FAN
01-19-2006, 10:28 PM
I've downloaded a utility to attach EXIF data to images, but I haven't installed it yet. I think it's from www.opanda.com, or something like that.

Anyway, all these shots are from the 18-200. Here's a link to the Test Shots gallery: http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/gallery/1108651/1/51579592 where you can find the EXIF data attached.

Any chance of seeing some shots with the 55mm f/2.8 AI-S? I'm just not convinced that the 18-200 VR is any better than the 24-120 VR, but the D200 should be great with a good fixed focus lens.;)

erichlund
01-20-2006, 01:06 AM
Any chance of seeing some shots with the 55mm f/2.8 AI-S? I'm just not convinced that the 18-200 VR is any better than the 24-120 VR, but the D200 should be great with a good fixed focus lens.;)

I've added some photos to the lens tests gallery (http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/gallery/1108651/1/51579592).

The first is my watch, taken with the 55mm. There's detail on there I cannot read even with a magnifying glass (lettering at the bottom of the dial). Now I know what it says. Yes, it needs cleaning and polishing, but it doesn't look nearly this bad to the naked eye.

The second is a shot in the store of a ceiling lamp fixture. That's with the 18-200. I was expecting some sort of chromatic abherations or moire from that photo, but it's very clean.

On the next page are two versions of the same rose photo and two versions of the same storm damage photo. In the first of each, the photo is as shot. The second rose has sharpening and contrast changed from auto to high. The storm damage has only the sharpening turned up to med-high. The rose is with the 55mm and the storm damage is with the 18-200.

In both cases it was very windy out. I was lucky to have a sheltered spot for the rose, but it still took about 6 shots to get one without motion blur. I had to go to f2.8 but I didn't want to come off of ISO 100 for that shot. You can get an idea of the windy condition in the storm damage shot by looking at the palm trees at the left top of the photo. They don't normally point that direction. :)

I used camera sharpening controls rather than USM to show what I would have gotten if I had used those settings in the camera. Normally, I would prefer to use USM for sharpening. Also, I didn't check, but I think all these are still on sRGB. I did take a look at the rose switching to aRGB under NC. Wow. That's what I will use when I really get around to messing with that photo. The colors really pop. Of course, I can't show that on the web.

Cheers,
Eric

coldrain
01-20-2006, 03:15 AM
I do not understand why you would expect moire on the ceiling lamp, it may be confusing to our eyes, but it is not really a very fine structure.

erichlund
01-20-2006, 09:18 AM
I do not understand why you would expect moire on the ceiling lamp, it may be confusing to our eyes, but it is not really a very fine structure.
It wasn't so much an expectation as a possibility, given all the internal reflections possible in the light fixture. With all the patterns and angles, I kind of expected it to give the sensor a problem somewhere, but it handled it very well.

D70FAN
01-20-2006, 10:31 AM
I've added some photos to the lens tests gallery (http://eric-lund.smugmug.com/gallery/1108651/1/51579592).

The first is my watch, taken with the 55mm. There's detail on there I cannot read even with a magnifying glass (lettering at the bottom of the dial). Now I know what it says. Yes, it needs cleaning and polishing, but it doesn't look nearly this bad to the naked eye.

The second is a shot in the store of a ceiling lamp fixture. That's with the 18-200. I was expecting some sort of chromatic abherations or moire from that photo, but it's very clean.

On the next page are two versions of the same rose photo and two versions of the same storm damage photo. In the first of each, the photo is as shot. The second rose has sharpening and contrast changed from auto to high. The storm damage has only the sharpening turned up to med-high. The rose is with the 55mm and the storm damage is with the 18-200.

In both cases it was very windy out. I was lucky to have a sheltered spot for the rose, but it still took about 6 shots to get one without motion blur. I had to go to f2.8 but I didn't want to come off of ISO 100 for that shot. You can get an idea of the windy condition in the storm damage shot by looking at the palm trees at the left top of the photo. They don't normally point that direction. :)

I used camera sharpening controls rather than USM to show what I would have gotten if I had used those settings in the camera. Normally, I would prefer to use USM for sharpening. Also, I didn't check, but I think all these are still on sRGB. I did take a look at the rose switching to aRGB under NC. Wow. That's what I will use when I really get around to messing with that photo. The colors really pop. Of course, I can't show that on the web.

Cheers,
Eric

Thanks for those shots, and the effort. Can you send some of that rain down here? We are going on 97 days without a drop. But that's why they call it a desert.;)