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Posts posted by Duncan_Andison

  1. I will have to upgrade at some point because I will probably update my Canon dslrs by the spring and version 7 won't support new equipment.


    Russell, I haven't seen any mention of plug ins. I wish they would because then they might get a PhotoMechanic plug-in and provide industry standard, integrated metadata management. Perhaps they are avoiding it to try and drive sales of Media Pro 1 which I am currently looking at (and am pretty unsure about it).


    I just tried Media Pro and deleted it. Same forced Alphabetical listing of keywords and seems very slow compared to Photo Mechanic.


    I've found that you can use PM with C1 in sessions. Set the metadata to load with preference for XMP sidecar files. It will write metadata to the raw files and be available to see in C1. It also works with C1 v8 however, it will display the keywords alphabetically but when you export the file, it will keep the same ordering that was created in PM.


    Why are they so dammed keen to force alphabetical ordering for keywords....., they allow you to change ordering of images by name, rating etc. It's looking like I will have to v8 at some point which means buying PM...... unless someone knows of a different Keyword Editor for a Mac!

  2. Allan, set Noise Reduction to -2 and Sharpness to at least -1. Even at -1, there is still some NR going on with the Jpegs. If you leave the it at Zero there is an increased chance of the watercolour effect.


    The max I have used the Dynamic Range setting is 200. Be aware that using this will push the ISO up more than it has to be so in order to cover an increased DR. I quite like the effect you can get with this at times, even when set to 400 (I used the Auto 200 and 400) but make sure it isn't on dull days or to limited light otherwise you will quickly be using high ISO. I'd recommend having a bit play with these. You can get the same/similar effect in raw by using the Highlight and Shadow sliders.

  3. Got Version 8 installed and I quite like the interface it is a bit cleaner/larger on  a high res screen..


    • Externally created keywords do not appear to get reordered, at least on import. Not checked save.
    • Fuji CA correction seems to be much the same so my support case still stands.
    • Found a bug, if you use the Focus Tool the label remains whichever tool tab you open. It even remains on the desktop when you minimise the application. When I have some time I will notify Phase One but that should have been picked up in testing; or does no one really use the focus tool?


    I will experiment more when I have more time but jury is still out. My instinct is to wait until at least 8.1 is released.


    That would be wise, these are their words not mine...


    "We know, there are still bugs in the software, and our development team is still hard at work at fixing the issues you have been reporting in the last couple of months."


    They've improved the layers system and added a few new features but the benefits of them are sort of out weighed by the negitives of the keyword and metadata system.


     I've received three emails now from Alamy in regard to them collecting DACS money on my behalf.Three times  I responded it's ok to collect on my behalf.
    I just received the email below.
    Kind of frustrating since they did not respond to my request to confirm receipt of that email. 

    Hi L,


    We're emailing you because we don't think we've heard from you about your DACS claim. Sorry if you've already acted on it.



    I know, all the agencies seem to be doing it at the moment. I specifically emailed a couple saying I've got it sorted and they replied saying thanks for letting us know, then proceeded to email the same question again?!?! 


    Although, I wouldn't want Alamy (or any of the others) to do it for me. Alamy will take 50% and the others were taking at lease 20% for a job that is very easy to do.... only takes about 5-10 minutes.

  5. Phase One have consistently failed to understand the need for good metadata management. Even dropped it in some versions (5, I think) - they come from an assignment/ social photography background where it doesn't matter. I have used PhotoMechanic for many years although the linkage with with C1 is awkward. Hopefully the new commitment to IPTC may resolve that and might address the keyword ordering issue, one of the reasons I dropped LR. Do you know if C1v8 reorders externally created keywords (like LR).


    I will give version 8 a try over the next few days (it might solve my Fuji CA issue as well - I have support case with them).


    BTW PhotoMechanic is wonderful for sports events and the like as you can easily set up code replacement. For instance at the powerboats I typed up the entry lists before the event so that I only had to enter short codes (class & boat number) to caption images with name, country and other details . PM also has powerful structured keywords with synonyms.Most press photographers seem to use  it. I wish it were avilable as a plug-in to C1 (I have suggested it in the past!).


    I'll give this a go later along with Photo Mechanic. Really disappointed in Phase's handling of Keywords..... they have taken one of their unique selling points and flushed it! ah well. C1 v7 still works fine so I guess I will stay on that. I confirmed this to the guys who managed the Beta testing..... I told them about the problems during the Beta Test but as yet, no notice as to whether they will look at this. I'll let you know.

  6. Phase have just released their latest version of their Raw Processing software. I was fortunate enough, as were many others no doubt, to have a good bit play with this during the Beta stages to get a feel of the software and report problems.


    If you are considering upgrading and use/like the keyword system on version 7 (i.e. being able to manually order you keywords) I would suggest trying the trial first before buying the upgrade.


    Version 8 has a new Hierarchal Keyword system which is great for grouping keywords together but..... and for easy use with Alamy it's a BIG but, you can no longer manually order keywords. The only way to ensure one keyword follows another is to make it a child of the one above. This is doable but is not great if you want to move one word from the end to the beginning as it will move all of it's "Child" keywords along with it. Also, if you delete a keyword, it will delete all "Child" keywords it has.


    As it stands, I haven't found an easy workaround for this issue, other than writing keywords in a text editor and using either < or > instead of a , to to create child / parent lists. A bit of a mess considering all they needed to do is switch off auto text on it.


    If anyone else has used it and does know of a easy way to manually re-order keywords within this package I would love to hear as the other changes are good..... I just don't want to triple my workload by having to manually adjusting the keywords in the 3 agencies I submit to that like Keyword Ranking.

  7. I have been using this lens for a couple of weeks now and have had several images taken at the wide end (18-20mm) pass QC.  Any CA has cleaned up in LR with no problems.  I don't tend to use small apertures though, preferring f8-f11.


    All images have passed QC BTW.




    +1. I read somewhere that the sweet spot was between f/8 - f/11 although I have had good results up to f/13. 


    It isn't my favourite lens in terms of IQ but I've kept it for those bad weather days and general stock use. I find this lens requires a lot more sharpening than any other Fuji lens.


    If I'm out in the hills on good weather days, I opt for the X-T1 with the 56mm and the Pro one with the 23mm. Both attached to backpack harness straps with Capture Clips from peak design. That way I have two popular FL's and the weight is on the Backpack and not my neck.

  8. I get a lot more than 118 images per charge - more like 400 but then I rarely chimp; I grew up with film so I only review if I am working in difficult lighting conditions or at the limit of low shutter speeds. I also have no review set, don't machine-gun and I switch off between shooting sequences.


    Similar here. I have 6 batteries and normally take out 3 for a day trip and 9/10 I come back with the 3 with the original one still in the camera. When I have the battery grip on and working in the studio, it will last for 3/4 of the day, I pop a third in. But, I use the wifi a lot while using my phone to control it.


    It would be lovely to have DSLR battery life but that would mean I wouldn't have the EVF with all the benefits it offers. Histogram in EVF with level, see the effects of any changes straight away before pulling the trigger. We just need to take the DSLR tracking abilities and add them to the Fuji / Sony etc and we're sorted. In time it will happen but I can manage now as I don't take sports or wildlife shots.


    I have used it to take moving shots while it's attached to the roof, bonnet, wing and underside of the car using my phone to see what the shot looks like without getting out.... I couldn't do that with my DSLR. It all comes down to individual needs, one size doesn't fit all.... with any camera really.

  9. Alan


    Just dropping in here as an X-T1 and 5D2 user like yourself and wondering which RAW developer you are using. My findings are that Capture One produces wonderful sharpness and accurate colour rendition from my Fuji, being right up there with the Canon.


    Lightroom, on the other hand, just doesn't seem to get the best from the X-Trans files.


    Just a thought.


    Yeah..... LR's default is washed out yellow colour for some reason... too much NR applied as well mixed with the limited sharpness control can exaggerate any Watercolour Effect. C1 is far better. I also had the 5dmkii with L glass and traded the lot in after a couple of months use of the Fuji's. 


    It may be an idea to make use of the C1 60 day trial of C1 Pro.... can't do any harm.


    Most other sites show them (Getty, Corbis etc etc), maybe its what the customer wants? 

    Possibly, but the other agencies you mention do the keywording themselves so keyword spamming is not an issue.  Does it matter?  I suppose if you've put in a lot of work researching and keywording an image only for someone else to come along and cut and paste all your hard work it might be somewhat annoying.





    Corbis don't. They do have a very good keyword system though.




    Alamy isn't searchable, so you never see their images in an image search on google. I would assume it is the same with Bing.


    Are you sure about that? When I do a search on "Ed Endicott/Alamy" I see plenty of my images on Google.

    I never fin any pics unless they been on the forum. Pics placed on the forum are searchable. I have never seen any of my pics in a google search except for those Alamy ads.



    Alamy have an ongoing project to make images searchable to Google etc. this is the collection not just forum images.



    Yes, and they also advertised for an SEO specialist as well to help develop that project.

  12. I am still waiting for THE camera from Fuji!!! I like my X-T1, but don't love it... Personally, I like the X-Pro1 much better but am in the process of selling it because of the slight edge (and some bells and whistles) the X-T1 has over a now two (or three??) year old model... Anxiously waiting for the X-Pro2 (if it's ever released) so I can sell the T1 again... grrr.


    X-T1 is a nice little camera, but not enough for me to dump full-frame just yet. For travel, it's great because of size and weight... Plus, for those to whom it matters, cost/quality ratio beats out the canon FF kit IMO when it comes down to it. Probably not overall quality or resolution. But, you are comparing a $1,200 APS-C camera to a nearly $3,000(?) full-frame sensor camera.


    No experience personally with the Fuji 18-55, but I would have expected similar results to what you described. Fuji's primes are where they really shine. They are sharp (MUCH sharper than the Canon 24-105 copy I have), especially when you compare corners. Again, a $500 kit lens compared to a Canon 'L' series lens at twice the price... Also, check your shutter speeds- I find with mirrorless (with no lens stabilization) I might have to use approximately 2x min shutter speed to be comfortable hand-holding... so with 35mm Fuji (53mm equiv?) I tend to keep min speed around 1/100 or 1/125, etc.


    Give it a few days though! I felt much the same as you when I first had mine in my hands... Unsure... Wanting more... But ultimately in the few months I have had the camera I have come away with some great shots, especially low light, hard contrast, etc... Get to know it's strengths and shortcomings (like any other tool in the bag).




    +1. On Auto ISO I've set the min to 1/125. They take a bit of bedding in, in terms of how to get the best out of them. It's like finding the sweet spot of a lens, plenty of use and testing to get to know the system first. Keep the Canon gear for now, it will take the pressure off and act as a fall back if you just need something familiar to use.

  13. Allan, it is good to hear that you are happy with the 18-135mm as I have been blowing hot and cold on buying it. I have pretty much decided to go with it, possibly at the expense of my 18-55 & 55-200 - see rather long my post about rediscovering my dslr!


    I do love shooting sport - perhaps the X-T2 will have it covered but the Fuji is not there yet; it is not just about a different technique. Viewfinder is fine but I had forgotten just how good dslr AF is in comparison.


    I would say sacrifice the 18-55 first. I'm keeping a hold of the 55-200 for a while yet. I'd say it has the edge on IQ but I want to be 100% happy with the 18-135 before I'd considering losing it.



    But then, the 55-200 can't take that wide angle shot... :)


    I'm psyching myself up for the trauma of shelling out £800 for the 10-24.




    Yep similar thing here, but cant make my mind up to go with the 14mm or the 10-24 ....



    I wouldn't mind testing out the 10-24 to see how it performs compared to the 14mm..... which is stella. Relatively small lens as well.

  15. I've been testing the 18-135 for about 10-14 days now, trying to get used to it and learn it's strengths and weaknesses before committing it to outdoor winter use in the mountains etc.


    Coming from mainly primes (14,23,56,60), I've been spoilt with perfect sharpness and OOF rendering and it took a little bit of establishing what the best f/stops for maximum sharpness were for the 18-135 but once worked out, consistent results started appearing. At it's widest aperture it is a little soft but not to the point that it can't be sharpened. It's sweet spot is around f/11 but anywhere from f/8 to f/13 produced really sharp shots. I also like shooting this at a min speed of 125, even with the 5 stop IS. 


    As a result, this lens didn't shine straight out of the box and it took a good few days to get to know it..... if you buy it, spend some quality time with it to work out it's strengths etc.... it will reward you if you do!


    Compared to the 55-200 it is smaller, has no lens creep (as yet). That always annoys me with the 55-200 when it's on the Capture Clip system on my backpack. The lens points downwards and after only a few minutes the lens is always at full length! The 18-135 is not as sharp and I prefer the bokeh of the 55-200. It's a little less nerves and more pleasing to the eye (for me anyway). When compared to the 56mm, it's night and day but then again, the 56 beats most lenses. The 18-135 does appear to be faster at locking focus than the 55-200 though.


    Weather proofing. This will be it's main purpose for me, I want it for mixed / crap weather days in the mountains. Not wanting to leave things to chance and wanting to have complete confidence in leaving my camera attached to the shoulder strap of my backpack in torrential rain, I thought I better test it. I attached the 18-135 to the X-T1 and placed it into a cold shower..... let it run for a few minutes and then started using it while under the shower. Pressing buttons, zooming in and out as well as flipping the screen etc. Well, it still works :D so when I was out this weekend and there was a heavy shower that lasted about 10 minutes I didn't think twice about leaving it out on my backpack..... the weather sealing seems to do it's job rather nicely!! Still felt somewhat wrong though  :P.


    I think it's a good general purpose lens that can do a lot of things very well (excellently if you include the ability to sit in the rain). I would, whenever possible, always use my primes when I have the time as the quality is a lot better..... not just in terms of sharpness but the way the primes render the out of focus areas. 


    Weaknesses. I would say the 18mm side for sure.... the edges are softish.... not to bad but not what I would want if I was shooting anything other than a walkabout stock shot. 


    If you don't need the weather proofing or the convenience of the wide focal range, the 18-55 is a better option, stronger at the 18mm end..... but that 18-135 is very convenient!

    • Upvote 1
  16. I've had a couple of Seagate USB drives so far. The drives have been ok but the connector leads have been poor. As a result, they would permanently disconnect from the laptop.


    Personally, buy the drive and the bay separatly. This will probably cost you less and is dead easy to do. You will also get a far better bay. Stronger USB3 cable and it will likely have a higher throughput. Often you will not see the max speed of the drive because the bay will be the limiting factor.


    My bay of choice now is "Inateck" because it is easy to swap drives quickly (slide off top) and the cable is very robust, withstands a lot of plugging in and removing.


    You can use standard or SSD drives with it. I prefer the speed, Silence and durability of the Samsung 840 Evo.... In any event, you could buy a numberof drives over time and just pop them in and out of the bay as you need them!



    I guess it's a matter of who is buying what where. Personally, I find that my images do better on Alamy then anywhere else that I've tried. It's a matter of finding out which outlets work best for you, at least that's what I've discovered.


    There are images I have that sell here and wouldn't be accepted anywhere else. Alamy may have it's faults but it is still a worthy outlet and has consistently returned a few hundred $ each month for the most of this year. So while it isn't returning anywhere near my smaller micro port, combined it they work well together!


    Hi Duncan!   you're right, in the midst of all this micro pharaphernalia, Alamy sure is worthwhile. I could kick myself in the ass for deleting almost 1000 images two years back!  anyways I'm here now.



    Yeah, I add my Micro stuff here but as a catch all but I wouldn't add what I have here to micro (even if it were RF).... before long I'll be back splitting my time 50/50 between my RM and RF port.... I had a lot of work to do to catch in terms of specific micro material but that's getting there now.


    I find I do more "Photography" when shooting RM and more studio/Photoshopping for Micro.... I like both but I feel a photography phase coming on before too long :-)

  18. I guess it's a matter of who is buying what where. Personally, I find that my images do better on Alamy then anywhere else that I've tried. It's a matter of finding out which outlets work best for you, at least that's what I've discovered.


    There are images I have that sell here and wouldn't be accepted anywhere else. Alamy may have it's faults but it is still a worthy outlet and has consistently returned a few hundred $ each month for the most of this year. So while it isn't returning anywhere near my smaller micro port, combined it they work well together!

    • Upvote 1
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