Results tagged “Cameras” from Kazza the Blank One

Had a fairly quiet weekend.  

Went out to the club on Friday night.  Attempted to go to bed early but it was still nearly 11pm by the time we turned lights out.

Spent Saturday morning doing crafty stuff.  Then a bit of socialising.  In bed by 8:15pm.

Caravan breakfast

Came home after breakfast this morning.

Foggy web

Had quite a productive afternoon.  Did some crafty stuff, vacuumed half the house, moved a desk into the "winter" hobby room, cleaned the kitchen somewhat.

Cooked a nice chicken roast with three cheese and bacon stuffing.  Yumm!

Then we watched Prisoner of Azkaban.

But I got hit with Sunday night depression/anxiety.  Hate hate hate Sunday nights.

I still haven't decided which lens to get.  I tried out work's 24-105 during the week.  While it's nice I really don't think it's *that* much better than my 18-135, which I much prefer the range on, especially for travelling.  I used the full zoom on that *all the time*, so to lose 20mm would suck.  Also, it's half the price of the L-series.  And the L-series weighs a fricken tonne (ok 670g vs 480g).  I've been stuck with this indecision for months.  But now I'm really running out of time to do something about it :(

Camera Dramas

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During our Turkey trip, I started having focussing issues with my camera (actually dad's camera, but my old lens).  Especially in low light, and mostly at full wide angle.  I had a quite a few failures, and it was most frustrating in the basilica cistern to get any photos that would work.  If I persisted and changed the focal length it'd usually come good.  But quite disappointing.

When I got back I didn't use it all that much, as I mostly use my phone for photos.  But I took it to the poultry show and it was having even more issues.  A week later and it was pretty much dead, completely unable to focus.  Even in bright light, it would just chug the motor back and forth and simply not focus at all.  

I tried taking off the UV shield to have a look, but it was wedged on pretty good - one side had jumped a thread by the look of it.  I think it might have happened in Turkey when I was taking photos out the bus window.  We went over a pretty decent bump and the camera got shoved nose first into the window.  I think that might have been what damaged it.  

I've seen youtube videos of people pulling apart the lenses to replace the auto focus flex cable, but it might not even be that.  There's definitely something loose in there though, as it rattles a little when I tip it upside down and back.

So it's all very sad.  Can't decide what to do - either get it fixed, get a replacement, or go the L series 24-105 .. which has less range on it than my 18-135, which is why I've been reluctant to get it...

Random Cameras

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New and old.  I actually like the feel of the old one a lot better.  And then the sweetie tells me he wants a random camera to take to Japan next year.  Hrmm.

Random cameras

Almost there..

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Started freaking out last night about how much was left to do before Christmas, including just about all our Christmas shopping and a tonne of stuff to do at work.

Had a relatively successful day today, and most of our Christmas shopping is done.

Went to the Dumpling Inn for dinner - had the mixed chow-mein and shredded beef peking style.

Dumpling Inn
Dumpling Inn
But while taking those photos I've discovered that something is seriously wrong with Random Camera :(:(  The other day (can't remember when, maybe when I was trying to take photos of the bugs on the cherry tree), random camera wouldn't turn on.  Just dead.  So I swapped out the battery and all was good.  Charged it up and forgot about it.  Then tonight I tried to turn it on, and dead again.  Swapped the battery to get it to work.  So something is draining the battery completely even while the camera is off.  Most distressing and means I might have to go through the whole hassle of trying to get it repaired :(:(:(

Whoops

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I might have accidentally bought a new toy today.

Well you see Phil asked me if I was looking to a buy a point-and-shoot camera and I'm like .. well actually .. 

Hardley Normal were doing a buy-one-get-one-free special on point-and-shoots and I'm like .. ooo!

So did some research on one of the ones I'd been considering recently (the Sony TX10).. it's waterproof!!  And reasonably decent picture quality and good in low light and only $225 with the discount!  So thought it would make a great new random camera.  

So got it.  It's pretty cool.  A few failures in a batch of pics but pretty awesome macro and it's 16 megapix!  Should be fun :)

New toy

Epic crap day (evening) at work.. accidently broke half the network for a couple of hours.. *yay*.  Stressed/depressed.. they'll most likely fire me in the morning :(

Dave gave me a lift home, and I snaffled his camera to take photos of grasshoppers while he was getting petrol.

Grasshoppers
Grasshopper
Grasshopper
Grasshopper
Can somebody please kill me now? :(

Snail Comparison

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Saw an unusual sight this morning - a snail crawling across our front welcome mat in broad daylight.  Of course this needed to be documented.  So tormented the little guy a bit by putting him in the sun and taking photos on three different cameras to compare them.

I used my old Sony F828, our Sony S600 (Random Camera) and my Canon 500D (in that order in the photos below).

They all did quite well.  I've half forgotten how to use my old F828 so had to try and remember when to use macro and when not.  I think the photo I went with was using macro.  Random camera doesn't actually have a macro feature, but can get quite close.  Unfortunately it's focus is not as accurate and kept focussing on further in the background.  The Canon did well enough too, but no macro at all on that one, so have to sit back and zoom all the way.  This means the depth of field is very shallow, so the shell was out of focus when the head was in focus.

Sony DSC-F828

Snail
Snail
Sony DSC-S600

Snail
Snail
Canon 500D with 18-135mm lens

Snail
Snail


So I had a chance to play with Dave's Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 last week and at the coast.

It's a pretty nifty little camera - feels nice and solid, has fantastic macro functionality and performs well in low light.  Unfortunately it has some saturation issues (I was mostly using it on "Intelligent Auto" mode) and the colour balance with the flash is a bit off.

These are some macro shots I took with it at drinks last week.

Lumix macro
Lumix macro
Lumix macro
And some more I took on the walk to the shops on Saturday.

Mushroom
So a pretty awesome shot of the mushroom, but you can see how saturated the green is.

Here's a couple I took in close succession - the first one got the saturation all wrong, but the second one is ok (I don't think I changed any settings).

Lumix saturation
Lumix saturation not so bad
And a few more shots just for fun :)

Benny
Lumix macro
Lumix macro


And so it ends...

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I still miss my three month uni summer holidays .. I know, it's been fifteen years since I had one, but I still miss them!

Anyways.

So the end of the break and I actually had a really relaxing day.  Was sort of at peace, so to speak.  Got my desk mostly cleared.  Paid some bills.  Sorted out some finance stuff.  Sorted some receipts.  Played Loops of Zen.  Played Canasta.  Did some kirigami.  Went through some newspapers.  Edged some of the front lawn.  Played with my magnets and made a buckyball.  Played with HDR, Camera+, and Instagram on my iPhone.  Cooked a nice red curry for dinner.  Watched some Star Trek with the sweetie.  Kept the kitchen cleaned up.  Did some washing.  Downloaded photos.

Really good productive day, with lots of fun as well.

I got this 7x7 cube for Christmas.  I haven't been game to muck it up yet!
7x7 cube
Bucky ball!
Buckyball
I'm really liking making my own red curries at the moment.
This one has:
A little bit of leftover pork, garlic mince and half an onion fried in peanut oil in a wok
Mushrooms and zucchini added next
Finally some red capsicum and pak choy
Add in three teaspoons of red curry paste and a tin of light coconut cream
Nomm!   (I also added a small handful of cashews on top).  The sweetie went back for seconds :)
Red curry

Macro goodness

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Me little brother came over tonight.  He brought his camera equipment including some pretty funky lenses.

I might have had a little bit of fun with the macro one taking fish photos...

Bit of a crop - 
Macro duboisi
Full pixels - 
Macro duboisi
So yeah, camera seems ok, it's just my cheap lens that's very soft.  If only I could get an L-series 18-135mm and I'd be set...

Swan closeup

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Wherein proving that my camera can focus *sometimes*

Resized full image -
Swan - original (resized)
Actual pixels - 
Swan - actual pixels

Firsts

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So we went into town yesterday to have brunch, get Stu a haircut, buy me some replacement ratchet straps for my roller blades.

And we accidently bought ourselves new toys.

That is to say, we had intended to get Stu a video camera.  I hadn't quite intended to buy a camera for myself.  That is, I'd been thinking about it, but hadn't fully decided what to get.  So it wasn't as fully researched as I'd have liked it to have been.  

So the new toy.  A Canon 500D with an 18-135mm lens (28-200mm equivalent) - which is pretty much what I had with the Sony.  The idea of having to continually change lenses while travelling still puts me right off - one of the big reasons I went with the Sony last time.  So this lens is a decent compromise. 

Canon 500D

If anything the focus is a little soft, but still possibly clearer than the Sony.  Certainly the colours are better and less chromatic aberration.  I gave it a bit of a workout today at the Lego Brick Expo at Woden.  Generally did fairly well.  

One disadvantage of using a real viewfinder is that it doesn't give you a guestimate of the exposure.  With the Sony you could get a pretty good idea of how the photo would turn out even before you took it.  No such luxury with the Canon (except maybe with the live view thingie).. gonna be a bit of trial and error methinks.

The image stablising is pretty nifty though and seems to work fairly well.

So this is the fifth real camera I have owned.

My first was a Ricoh film camera I got for Christmas in 1991.  It was a great little camera and took quite decent pictures.  Unfortunately it was stolen along with my bag in 1996, along with half a roll of undeveloped film that included such events as my birthday outing to Phantom of the Opera.

First photo on my Ricoh
My second camera was a Hyundai.  Yes I know.  I was in an altered mental state the day I bought it, having been told off by someone previously.  So I wasn't thinking clearly and was sucked in by the sales guy on the day.  Stoopid stoopid stoopid.  This camera was very average, but I used it up until I got my first digital camera.  Pretty sure the first photo on it was of my brand new second hand (and first) car.  Ended up giving it away on Freecycle some years ago.

First photo on my Hyundai
My third camera was my first digital camera - an Olympus C-900 zoom.  My Uncle Graham bought it for me in Singapore for ~$1500.  This was a fantastic camera.  1.3 megapix, 3x optical zoom.  I used it for five years and was totally happy with it.  The main problem with it was not having any control over exposure settings, so it didn't do well with the colouring in sunsets etc.  Loved this camera, still have it stored away.

First photo on my Olympus
My fourth camera was my Sony DSC-F828.  OK I really *really* loved this camera.  ~58500 photos taken on it.  Three overseas holidays.  8 megapix, which was ahead of its time (I got it in 2004 and it was several years before 8mp camera became the norm).  One of the best features of this camera was its ability to bend the camera body, which made taking photos from waist height, and over the head, extremelly easy.  I am going to miss that sorely.  Really the only reason I'm upgrading at all is for better photos in low light.

First photo on my Sony
Technically "random camera" is Stu's camera.  I bought it for him for Christmas in 2005.  It's also a great little camera, that's pretty easy to hold onto and take photos of "random" stuff when just walking around - it was used in Japan a lot this way.

First photo on Stu's Sony
Not sure if the iPhone counts as a camera, but I do take quite a lot of photos on it (it somehow seems more socially acceptable to pull out a phone than a thumping big black camera).

First photo on my iPhone
And finally the 500D.  Still only about a third of the way through reading the manual.  Still have a lot to figure out how it actually works and how I can get the best results out of it....

First photo on my Canon

Time Lapse

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Another camera feature I've wanted in forever is a camera that does proper time-lapse.  One you can setup on a tripod and have it take photos every x seconds for however long.  How freaking cool would that be?  Very tempted to get a little camera just for that reason.  Anyone ever used one or have any recommendations?

New toy :)

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Ever since I got my camera in 2004 I've wanted an external flash unit.  Recently I started keeping an eye on them on ebay, and the other week I bought one - a Sony HVL-F32X.  It arrived today.  It's very cool :)

Flash from camera:

Camera flash only

Flash from external flash unit, pointed upwards:

With external flash unit

More macro!

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This arvo I had another play with the macro lenses, this time being a little more systematic and writing everything down as I went.

Took fourteen rounds of photos of four objects using some of the different combinations of macro lenses and zoom settings on my camera.  I've just included the extremes here.

The first round shown here is about the best my camera can do with macro photos by itself.  Photos are simply resized to show how much of the frame they fill.  The zoom is about "50mm" (equivalent).

Macro Macro Macro Macro
The next four are the far extreme - the macro lens, the 4+, the 2+ and the 1+, and zoomed to about 100mm equivalent.  The depth of field here is about as shallow as you can get, and the camera had to be within a certain distance range or it just wouldn't focus at all.  Again, just resized for comparison.

Macro Macro Macro Macro
And here's a cropped version of a couple of them, actual pixel size...
Macro Macro
Because of the distortion with all the additional lenses attached, I think I'd just use the "macro" and "4+" ones in combination if I was going to do general macro photography.  You don't get a whole lot extra by adding the other two, and it does weigh the camera down somewhat.

Fun fun :)


Macro!

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The other day on a whim, I bought a set of macro lenses for my camera.  This morning I finally got around to having a play.  Of course I should have written down which lenses I used for each shot, for future reference and all .. But anyways, here's some of the results:

Macro
Macro
Macro
Macro
Macro
Pretty funky!  
First up, we have a four-legged spider.  !!
Well that's what it looked like walking across the floor.  Like something had gotten a few of its legs (and its head!)

Four legged spider

Here's an early photo from Stu's camera of a cockatoo in a tree in our front yard
Stu's photo of a cockatoo

Mine isn't quite a comparison because I didn't use a flash.  No colour enhancement here.
Kazza's photo of a cockatoo

Stu looked almost professional-like taking photos of the birds :)
Stu the photographer

And then we went to Nat and Andrew's where everyone started comparing the sizes of their .. lenses .. hehe
Crazy camera people


Friday I snapped this:
Under the Bridge


Yesterday was quite a busy day.

Went into town to spend lots of money on the Stubie.  He got an Olympus E-420 digital SLR camera.  He actually wanted an E-620, but that's not due out til April - after our Japan trip.  He also got a couple of pairs of jeans and some underwear.  Had lunch in the Canberra Centre - where I had a full roast pork meal for $8 - and it was very nom-worthy!.  And then we tried to spend a DJs gift card we got for our wedding.  Man that was hard work.  Who knew spending money in DJs could be so hard.  Unless you want to spend $300 of course :/ 

Stu with camera


The rain yesterday was very cool, although we still need more of it!  Hint! Hint!
(in the morning Mt Ainslie was gone, in the afternoon it was decorated with a rainbow)

Mt Ainslie missing

Mt Ainslie rainbow


For dinner we went down Northbourne Ave to find some places in the Entertainment Book to use our card for.  The first place we went to (Zipp) claimed to be fully booked at 7:30pm, even though the place was only about 1/3 full.  hrmmm.  So went up to Breeze.  The food was good enough and the service was quite good, however yet again, we came across an Entertainment Book restaurant that didn't give the deal specified in the book.  We were supposed to get "buy one main course get one free", which would have been worth $28, however they only gave us a $17 discount.  I wanted to say something, but Stu is more allergic to confrontation than I am, so we just gave no tip.  Which made me feel a bit sorry for the dude cause he was actually pretty good.  <mails the Entertainment Book people>

Then we toddled off to see The Reader (via dessert at Baskin and Robbins), and got home very late.

Today was a bit quieter.  Got a bit of house tidying and Japan planning done.  Did our food shopping.

And that was it really. 

Less than two weeks to go!  Wheeeee!!




Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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