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Alan7140

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Alan7140 last won the day on 1 April

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About Alan7140

  • Rank
    Grandmaster Member
  • Birthday 07/01/1953

Profile Information

  • Real Name
    Alan Lesheim
  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Tasmania, Australia
  • Photographic Interests
    Photography, Guitar
  • Edit my pics?
    Ask Me
  • Fav. Camera
    Pentacon Six
  • Fav. Lens
    4/50
  • Fav. Editor
    Rodinal, with some elbow grease ;)
  1. I bought the camera fully intending to use older M42 lenses, which proved to be a bad mistake for normal colour use, and which I think might also be a problem for other manufacturers' lenses. After buying a Sigma 70/2.8 macro lens (previous model to the current one) it became evidently clear that Sigma cameras with Foveon sensors recognise Sigma lenses, and this is not the case with any of the other lenses I've used with the camera, including adapted Zeiss Pentacon Six lenses. It must be something to do with the Foveon being a construction of three vertical sensel layers rather than a single layer grid as with Bayer and X-Trans which gives it depth enough for light reaching the edges to diffract differently as it travels down the layers there as opposed to its path towards the centre, because all the off-brand lenses I've used result in a bias to green cast in the centre to magenta at the periphery, or vice-versa, except the Sigma lens, which processes normally, so there's obviously some software compensation being applied. So either Sigma Photo Pro or the camera itself shifts the balance where required when processing the files, which is why I use RawDigger because it definitely only uses the information from the top layer (or G or R if they're selected individually) and this effect then does not appear as such a strong hot spot in the centre or a lighter edge vignette as when processed with SPP in B&W mode, although sometimes, depending on the lens, this can still appear to a degree. Long story short, I eventually conceded defeat in my original intended use, and instead started buying film cameras to fit the lenses, which in turn has seen me using B&W film full-time, and using the sd Quattro-H as a scanner of negs instead. As for the IR - the camera is unbelievably sensitive to IR light with that cut filter removed, and will overexpose by numerous stops if used without a very deep red or opaque IR filter, so yes, hand holding is easy even with an R72 or deeper IR filter fitted. In that regard I do believe the Foveon is unique amongst sensors in that unusual IR sensitivity, so probably you'll never duplicate the same results with a normal Bayer filter unless the sensor is permanently converted, and even then the results will probably be different. The odd thing is that the Foveon is least sensitive to visible red light, which is why the Merrill sensors had such a poor reputation for higher ISO noise, which the Quattro sensor tried to mitigate by making the G & R layer sensels four times the area as the top layer B layer's , and doing a colour-only interpolation win combining those lower two layers lower resolution but less noisy larger sensels with the smaller upper layer sensels. These larger red layer sensels, effectively boosted through light gathering ability alone, probably send the IR sensitivity through the roof owing to that greater sensitivity to the IR that all Foveons display. Unfortunately I never owned a Merrill Sigma DSLR that had a removable IR/UV cut filter - my Merrills were the fixed lens dp type so didn't do the IR thing all that much better than anything else, although they still did a very reasonable job, just not with that huge speed increase. I must mention that all of the above is from personal observation and use - my reasoning and conclusions might be a bit off-track, but I think I'm in the ballpark. To give an idea of that IR sensitivity, the following was taken after I broke the filter, but without an IR filter in front of the lens (so full spectrum plus IR) and shot at meter indicated correct exposure, then opened in SPP. The file was all but unsalvageable it was so overexposed.
  2. Price. That, and the backlash from "traditional" Land Rover Owners who prefer cars bolted and riveted together by hand from flat pieces like Meccano, ride like buckboards, have less elbow room than an outback dunny (i.e. toilet) and leak like sieves all as standard equipment, which will probably make the model, good as it promises to be, difficult to sell in Australia outside of the wannabe-Crocodile-Dundees in the suburbs, where its potential abilities will be totally lost and pointless and mostly be spent driving over gutters and kerbs in low range. No doubt sales will be further hampered with the joyous inclusion of the Nanny-mode "Reduced Engine Performance" feature, which I have had the dubious joy of experiencing without warning last year in my own 2011 Land Rover product. This is nothing short of downright dangerous (picture a fully laden log truck pulling out to pass me on a hill as the "feature" had reduced my car to a 5 km/h crawl and nearly ended up with said log truck rear-ending my car going uphill), and which would make cross-desert holiday expeditions much favoured by the Aussie 4WD adventurer community a hazardous gamble to undertake at best, and possibly a hideously expensive rescue-retrieval operation ensue should some electronic decision of the unfathomable computing system buried in the workings of the car cause Nanny-mode to engage and render further progress impossible, as there is simply no override switch or command. Clearly the concept of remoteness and distance is not one fully understood in the design rooms of Solihull (or wherever the vehicles are designed these days), and situations where it is perfectly possible, and not even unusual, to drive for 1,000 or even 2,000 km without seeing another car or even human being, for that matter, are simply not even entertained. Australia was probably the reason long-range accessory fuel tanks for 4WD vehicles were invented, and not without very good reason. To have full tanks of fuel and die of thirst and exposure because your new vehicle's computer shuts the show down with no warning or reason would be perhaps one of the lousiest ways to exit this life. So as good as it might be, and as much as I'd like one (Tasmania is more reasonable when one thinks of remote - if you're healthy you can usually walk to safety from any vehicular track on this Island State, which is certainly not the case for mainland Australia), I really do think the vehicle will fall short in sales targets after the initial "must have one" brigade get done and move off to the next latest-and-greatest vehicle to drive over kerbs in.
  3. Sigma sd interchangeable lens camera models prior to them jumping ship to Bayer (yawn) with the FP have an easily removable (with fingers, no tools necessary) IR-cut filter positioned just behind the lens flange, and not glued to the unique Foveon sensor itself as other sensors do. You then have a choice of visible spectrum plus IR, or with the use of an on-lens IR filter, proper infra-red photography without having to butcher the camera forever. Using RawDigger as the processor you can isolate the top sensor layer (nominally the Blue layer, but in reality it's fully panchromatic in sensitivity) to get an uninterpolated, true pixel-for-pixel B&W IR result which will challenge, and probably better any converted Bayer sensor camera in resolution. Using an R72 IR filter, it cuts through mist and haze like nobody's business (taken about a half hour apart mid-winter June 2017 - hence the differing viewpoints. From memory the mist was very much local and in the foreground, the sun was clear and shining in the background, which happens often in winter here living close to a river: For standard IR landscapes it probably gives a better IR result than large format IR film would do. Even just using a standard red filter with the IR-cut in place and isolating that top sensor layer works well enough for the black sky look: Camera used was an sd Quattro-H with IR-cut removed for second, third and fourth photos, and in place again for the last, which I was experimenting with using adapted film-era M42 Soviet and East German lenses before I got lured back into the world of standard film photography, and which is now the camera I use as my B&W film neg "scanner", also just utilising the top "B" sensor layer with RawDigger. The only thing one has to watch out for is not to drop the IR-cut filter onto a hard surface (such as a desk) when removing it - the brittleness of the glass makes eggshells appear like titanium, and the replacement ain't cheap - it's definitely a Sigma exclusive. I tried an Internet-suggested in-front-of-lens IR-cut filter while waiting for the replacement from Japan (none in stock here, of course), and it gave a really weird visible spectrum result even though it looked the same as the broken one visually.
  4. Alan7140

    Some Snowy Owls

    Great set of shots.
  5. No lasting effects, however I still remember the "WTF" feeling when the bike didn't stop as I expected, as well as my foot not ending up where it should have. When something has become habitual, it's hard to change to new regime quickly. A bit like swapping the position of the clutch and brake pedal in a car, I suppose. Indeed, I can also feel it to this day, some 56 years later.
  6. That's all anyone rode when I grew up in South Africa. Opposite lock and stand on the pedal and you could do the most amazing 180º skidding stops. I nearly got wiped out several times when I got my first bike in Australia with handlebar lever operated brakes. Standing on the pedal just before top dead centre did nothing but instantly drop your foot to bottom dead centre with an attendant loss of balance and running into what you were "braking" to avoid...
  7. A while ago I had a Corelle cereal bowl explode - and not "shatter" as Corelle's complaint's department insisted. Heck, I was holding the bloody thing and I understand "shatter (breaks into a zillion pieces which fall to the floor, usually as a result of a blow) and that which actively propels small pieces of itself into three rooms (even behind a fridge) in a proper explosion, complete with an appropriately loud bang, with no provocation at all. I'm lucky I didn't lose any fingers. Eventually Correlle acquiesced and admitted that tempered glass can have weak spots and this might happen (although they still reckon it shattered, and so implying I was mishandling it). Reading further online it appears there are at least two separate tempering procedures, one cheaper than the other, and the former less reliable than the latter. No prizes for guessing which Corelle uses. Eventually they offered me a hush "gift", but I responded that I had already thrown all the Corelle crockery into the recycle bin (six plates, five bowls and one bowl's worth of small glass shards, and a large serving plate), so why would I want any more of it? That stuff is bloody dangerous, and reading complaints online, such occurrences with actual injuries resulting are not exactly rare.
  8. That's Akadaka in Australian.
  9. There is just something wrong about this. Really wrong.
  10. Alan7140

    Challenge: Old

    This wasn't meant to be for this topic - I had found that the lens on the old 1870's Scovill whole plate camera had an epic light leak when out in broad daylight, and yesterday, after some creative flocking and making a sleeve for the rear of the lens barrel I went into the paddock behind my place to try the repair out, the subject matter of which I then realised comprised nearly 100% of stuff that was older than I am. The Oak tree I know to have been planted as a sprouting acorn on the 17th of January 1881, which is the day the new school for the area was dedicated and as was the custom back then, the oak being the "Tree of Knowledge", or some-such. This spreading oak now covers almost a third of the property and has a substantially larger footprint than both the two-classroom school and the three bedroom headmaster's house it shares the ground with. It further occurred to me that the camera I was using was also contemporary with both the school and the oak, it being made around that time (give or take a year or two); and the lens itself, although unbranded and being a Petzval design of around 180mm f/5.6 (without conventional f/ stop markings but apertures simply marked 1 through 5) most probably is even a bit earlier than that. OK, the lens circle doesn't cover whole plate at this sort of focus distance, but for the portrait use it was meant for it covers it comfortably. L left the cutoff in shot as I didn't think it was all that detrimental in effect. So there it is, the shot shows that I have fixed the light leak (and I have attached the first photo anyway just to demonstrate that I wasn't kidding when I said "epic light leak), but there you are, the subject matter and the camera all predate my birth by around 72 years or so. 😄
  11. Alan7140

    Challenge: Old

    Patience....
  12. Alan7140

    Night Spider

    As Dallas says, set the flash manually (camera in full manual, shutter speed 1/250 or slower, depending on ambient light balance). Disengage exposure preview mode in the viewfinder so that you get a constant viewfinder brightness (if your menu is the same strange Fujinglish as the XT-2 = Menu: Set Up>Screen Setting>PREVIEW WB/EXP IN MANUAL MODE>OFF, and then Menu: Flash symbol>Flash Function Setting>M). Take a test shot, adjust camera aperture and flash settings accordingly, get that balance right and then fire away, never having to worry about whether the flash is changing settings but having full viewfinder brightness at the same time. If preferred set camera to instant preview so you can see what you're doing is working immediately after taking the shot and that you're properly balancing ambient light, but I find that annoying and if you're maintaining a close-to-same-distance of the flash itself from the subject from shot to shot there should be no need to alter the exposure settings at all once set correctly. That's how I used to run things in my studio with digital, (in fact it's still the way I read exposures for film, in preference to using a flash meter I use the X-T2 as I get to see how the lighting is performing as well - far better than the old way of taking a Polaroid to check ), but bear in mind everything in my studio is static as far as the flash heads on their stands is in relation to the subject and that ambient light is low and therefore not a factor, so moving the camera itself towards or away from the subject makes no difference in exposure other than lens extension itself (up to plus 2 stops for 1:1 from infinity). With macro if you have the flash mounted on the camera, relatively small movements towards or away from the subject will have an effect on the exposure that's probably going to be greater than anticipated visually (familiarise yourself with the inverse square law online if that's not making sense), so check exposure every time that relationship changes. Or, as you've already alluded to, simply get an LED ringlight to fit whatever lens you end up using for shadowless illumination of the subject.
  13. Neither Victoria or Tasmania had much of an iron/steel industry worth getting excited over, but both had vast stretches of old-growth hardwood Eucalyptus forests that apparently needed destroying, hence wood was a readily available resource for building things out of during the early -mid 20th Century.
  14. Not really - seems to be a country thing. Here's one of the same design doing garden duty at Yackandandah in Northern Victoria back in 2011 (or "Yack" to the locals, which seems appropriate to this subject matter ). I doubt very much that they imported it from Tasmania, probably grabbed it from Yack's main street when the thing was disconnected.
  15. OK, here's a pair of them, still in service, in the main street of Ross, Central Tasmania
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