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Angry the Clown

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Posts posted by Angry the Clown

  1. Its close focusing distance, albeit requiring EVF/LCD, is particularly appealing for an M lens, but above everything the rendering from images I've seen is just sublime. I think it would join the 50 APO as my dream lens combination for an M (frustration over seeing 35mm frame lines be damned :) ). Both are, in most respects, the qualities of their SL equivalents squished down into M form though which makes them miraculous and justifiably expensive technical achievements, and the SL versions would both be on my long term radar if I decide to go for an SL2-S next year.


    Things are still quiet on the SL2-S firmware update news, although Atomos updated the Ninja to fully support L-log now which I hope in the near future also means the two companies are going work together to be able to offer ProResRAW recording. 


    The SL2-S is (a little) cheaper than an R5 so it's definitely high on my cameras of interest. I'm not expecting miracles from the firmware update as far as improving the af is concerned though, but the promise of an improvement with a new algorithm can hopefully only be taken to be a good thing nevertheless, and once it's out there and I can safely visit a store again to play around it will be easier to gather my thoughts, and I'd like to talk to the staff at the Leica Store about where things stand for customers after warranty periods reach their natural end in the UK's post-Brexit climate.


    The SL2-S definitely wins in video functionality over the R5, with the obvious exception of Canon's exemplary video autofocus, but I'm more concerned about improving the stills af on the SL2/SL2-S as going manual for video doesn't bother me at all, and I could use M lenses, or Sigma L mounts (like that dinky 28-70) quite happily with a manual rig. Even the Leica SL lenses added linear focus throw to their firmware several weeks ago which makes their own glass a lot more practical now for video use as you can now select varying options for degrees of rotation in the menus. 



  2. That's great. Fuji have a desktop RAW processor that I don't think many people know about.


    Fujifilm X Raw Studio:



    You need the camera connected as it leverages the processor in the camera body to do the work, so it's basically like doing the in camera RAW conversion that's available but being able to do it at the desktop.


    I really do like the film simulations and the control you have over changing them in the Fuji's these days, they're quite brilliant, although I still just leave everything to RAW and do my own work in Capture One but I do have some custom set ups in camera just to work from as a visual jumping off point in the EVF/LCD.


  3. The OLED Vita was so nice, it would be great if a higher end Switch was built to such a standard. That said, I doubt it would entice me to buy one given how rare it is for me to use the system undocked, and with my want to pick up a SeriesX later in the year it seems unfeasible that I'll also spend money upgrading a console I already own. I'm still perfectly at ease with how good Switch games look on my TV too, so unless we start to see serious performance issues with future games on the current hardware then I'll probably feel OK sitting this one out. 

  4. 24 minutes ago, ChrisBardon said:

    That was fast on squadrons.  Almost glad I didn't buy it already?  I had the demo and hadn't gotten around to it  yet.


    Squadrons is a really interesting one. It seemed to launch above EA's expectations, but was nevertheless discounted in sales mere weeks after its release and then showing up regularly in subsequent sales. I really need to put more time into it as it's terrific. 


    I don't suppose it's too shocking that they're holding Fifa 21 back from EA Play for the time being. 


  5. Have Sigma cottoned on to the fact that most mirrorless lens sizes are absurd with the debut of their dinky little 28-70 f2.8?



    It's currently only for E and L mount (when/if Sigma do RF and Z mount lenses I'd expect to see it carry over however). They should do a series of f2 primes in their 'Contemporary' series in my opinion. That would be lovely to see. 


    I should give Leica some credit with their line of SL Summicrons when it comes to mirrorless lens size in fairness. I remember several years ago being in store and lamenting the chunky size of the SL 50 Summilux, stunning as that lens is, only to then be presented with 90mm f2 which just felt perfect, and then you realise the ingenious approach to their entire lineup of SL Summicrons as more came to market in that they are all roughly the same size and they all share the same 67mm filter thread. That could just about convince me they're worth the £4000 a piece that they cost. :) 





  6. 15 hours ago, xPieter said:

    I'm so glad to hear someone else have trouble seeing frame lines for lengths wider than 50mm. I'm still very much in the weeds about which is the best 50 for me. Trouble is they're all pretty special. Do you have a favorite?


    It's definitely frustrating to wear glasses and be a rangefinder user, and the silly thing is I know this each and every time I end up buying another M because I'm stupid like that. I think the lure of M's is really driven more by emotion than it is rationality (and that's perfectly OK). I like wearing glasses though and find my face is strange without them having worn them for most of my life, and I'm not big on contacts or the thought of laser surgery...etc. The viewfinder in the M10 and all the M10 variants that have since followed (P, Monochrom..etc),  is definitely an improvement for brightness and eye relief, but I still found I'd have to move my eye around a little to see 35mm frames. I can basically get by with a 35mm mounted if I just assume the entire window to be my frame, but it's not ideal. Anything wider than 35 is just out of the question. 


    With M's, or any camera for that matter, I really do like to minimise what I carry around with me, and try to be a one camera one lens kind of person as much as possible, so I will always go for a 50mm as it's my favourite focal length, but modern London is quite a cramped city when you view it through a viewfinder, and after many years I was finding myself longing to be able to go wider, which is why the Q and its 28mm was so eye opening to me creatively, and why the 35mm equivalent from the X100 right now feels just right.


    I've a fairly varied history when it comes to 50mm M mount lenses. My M2 was my first M, and I must have had that for sixteen or seventeen years now. I partnered it with a Zeiss Planar T 50mm ZM (f2). Years later, sometime after living with the M9, I traded the Zeiss for an old "rigid" Leica Summicron from the late 1950s which had a lovely rendering, and it would flare but in the most flattering way. I traded that a couple of years back against getting the 50mm Summilux ASPH when I had the M10-P though. I would have kept it for its historical value and its unique rendering, but I needed the money to bring the cost of the Summilux down, and I get an infuriating sense of anxiety when I have camera gear sitting around going unused so I couldn't quite justify owning two 50mm M lenses.


    The old rigid 'Cron had a pretty long minimum focus distance (even for an M lens) and the focus ring was rather slow and stiff which bugged me at times, and quite honestly I was feeling greedy (not to mention crazy) so wanted to have the Summilux just once in my life, for however long. While I don't always go to f1.4 (again, f2 is personally my favourite wide aperture), it's often nice to know you have that range if you want need/it. I also think the Summilux rendering is about as magical as it gets from a modern M mount lens, short of paying up for the majestic 50mm Summicron APO, or getting the Noctilux which is beautiful but in my opinion little more than an impractical proof of concept unless you have amazing eyesight to nail the focus wide open, or use it with the M's EVF attachment or mount it to a camera with a built in EVF. The rendering is the real reason to go for the Summilux I think, even though yes, it's very sharp wide open too if that also floats your boat.


    My current 50mm (now mounted to my M2), is the contemporary 50mm Summicron. I say "contemporary,".... its design already dates back to the 90s, but it's a terrific lens that I got used in pristine condition. It doesn't have any real unique quality to it like the Rigid Summicron or Summilux have, but it nevertheless has the basic qualities you'd expect from Leica's lenses. There's a saying that Leica has never made a bad 50 and I've no reason to believe that not to be the case. You can't really go wrong whether you pick up one from five or six decades ago, or go for something in the modern lineup. I may have to sell the lens to help fund investments next year (I don't run a roll of film through the M2 that often), but I'd likely hold onto it if I got the SL2-S as the sensors in the SL bodies are tuned to work pretty much natively with M mount glass.


    I'm not really one to chase sharpness with lenses. I'm more interested in rendering and character which is a big reason I find so many lens reviews online so damn frustrating as it's always about the sharpness, sharpness, sharpness and the bloody "bokeh," though that isn't to say I don't see the value in sharp lenses (after all, you can soften a natively sharp lens by various means whether it be through filters or the variety of tools we have available at the computer, but you really can't sharpen a soft image with pleasing results). The Zeiss was razor sharp but had a lovely creamy rendering. It's something very close to the Summilux to be honest but for a fraction of the cost (it's just that one lens was f2, and the other 1.4), and Zeiss leans towards being slightly more clinical and contrasty. The Zeiss ZM lenses are so, so good though and were it not for the not wholly irrational thought of "well if I am going to have a Leica camera I should really have Leica glass" then I'd probably still be using that Zeiss Planar to this day (I'd have saved myself a lot of money).


    I will also say that the Summilux is heavy and a little front weighted when mounted, and after living with it fixed to my M10-P for long enough it was that which really made me realise that I wasn't enjoying using it as much as I had anticipated. It wasn't something I'd felt during the many times I'd tested the lens in stores over the years, it was a conclusion I could have really only made having lived with the lens. Now, in a perfect world where I could leisurely spend money on being able to own an M as a second camera instead of the expense meaning a camera like that could only be my one and only camera, would I buy the Summilux again? .... possibly, but money no object I'd rather have the 50mm Summicron APO (and if I were willing to put up with the fuss over the frame lines, I'd have a 35mm Summilux too... in which case I'd have two M's with a lens of each focal length mounted to each.... Like I say.... in a perfect world 😩 ). 



  7. Finally picked it up in a sale but can definitely say that the UK Studio Canal disc of Fifth Element is a step up over the US Sony release. All that distracting sharpening is gone and I prefer the Dolby Vision HDR pass on this release too. It's one of Studio Canal's discs mastered by Fidelity in Motion so it's A+ on the compression front too.


    Also grabbed Studio Canal's disc of Don't Look Now, which is a disc I've heard nothing but good things about, so I'm looking forward to spinning that soon.

  8. I've found the tilting LCD on the X100v really useful. 


    The EVF is the exact same spec on the X100V and Pro 3 isn't it? I don't use the X100's EVF that often as it just feels a bit cramped with my glasses. Again, I was spoilt by the SL's big EVF display which is kind of why I'm drawn to looking at large bodies that have something as good/better (better in the case of the R5, SL2/SL2-S). I did have the same problem with the Q's EVF too but found the Q2's EVF to be a notable improvement when I was in store to test one back when it came out. On my M10-P it was still difficult to see frame lines for anything wider than 50mm. 

  9. 11 hours ago, xPieter said:

    Ask and you shall receive... Fujifilm patent shows XF35/1.4 II WR included!


    Edit: Nope, just a patent.


    I don't see it happening anytime soon. Interesting to see a patent nevertheless. They randomly produced a whole new promo video and webpage for the old lens last summer which I took to be the strongest indication that a replacement isn't on the cards in the immediate future. I really don't think the optical formula needs to change. It's a lovely, lovely lens. It just needs a new WR enclosure and a more modern af mechanism in my opinion (the 56mm could do with the same treatment too). 


    I'd been thinking about what lenses I might get if I had another interchangeable Fuji. In the past when I had the XE-2 and XPro2 I'd had the 35 1.4, the 35 f2 and the 56mm 1.2. All great, but next time I think I'd go 50mm f2, 90mm f2 and the 18-55 2.8 for video, with the X100V kept on hand to cover me for 23mm natively and 35mm with the TCL adapter. 


    I'd suspect I'd be a little torn between XT-4 and the X-Pro3 though. I've never owned an X-T before and it would be more practical, but I do so love the X Pro line. With that said I think they made a mistake with the X Pro 3 that honestly puts me off it somewhat. I understand the thinking behind hiding the rear LCD, but it seems like a poor implementation to have reduced it to only being a flip down screen. Instead I think it would have benefited from having a screen like the one on the XT-4 that flips out, rotates, and can be closed against the body with a blank back facing the user (which would still allow for a user to pretend as if there is no screen at all as the XPro3 encourages you to do). I say that as someone who doesn't chip and leaves LCD's switched off a lot of the time. I just think it better to give people more options for how they want to use a camera as the luxury of choice certainly pays off in certain circumstances. 

  10. 45 minutes ago, xPieter said:

    Does Canon have an X100V competitor? Or maybe a Q/RX1 competitor? I would be very interested to see what they do with a fixed lens offering.


    I don't think so, but I'm not 100% certain. A patent emerged for a fixed lens camera from Canon just this week but it's for a model with a variable aperture 15-45mm lens.


    I was wondering about a Leica CL recently, their interchangeable aps-c camera. I looked at the original back when I was testing a Q in store and it wasn't quite the Leica answer to a Fuji X-Pro that I was hoping it would be. It's funny how much Fuji took from Leica with the X100, X Pro and XE ranges, and how much Leica could actually take in response from those cameras. I would imagine a CL 2 will emerge this year so it will be interesting to see how it might be improved. I keep forgetting that the CL (and TL) are also L mount cameras.

  11. 43 minutes ago, Starhawk said:


    I'm really curious as to how the A7IV turns out as well. If there'd be anything to make me switch before I get too invested in a system, it might be that. Better color science would be nice.


    The colour science debate is interesting. I personally think with a bit of work one can basically get the colours from any camera to match if working from a RAW file, but at the end of the day you want to be spending as little time at the computer as possible (I know I do anyway) so there's certainly value in starting with a base image that you like.


    I continue to cheer Capture One for their exemplary dedication to camera profiling which still beats Adobe from everything I've been reading, and while I haven't upgraded to Capture One 21 the new ProStandard Profiles takes everything to another level entirely (they're gradually rolling that out for more and more cameras and brands, but so far the most recent Canon, Nikon and Sony bodies are supported alongside the Leica S3, SL2 and SL2-S, and obvious the Phase One cameras. No Fujis as yet) . Sony's files, pretty much like every other manufacturers files, do seem to fare better straight out of camera in C1 as a consequence. 


    I completely understand about the trepidation over investing too much in a single system. It's a big reason I've set myself a red line that if I were to invest in an R5 or A7IV, Z6II...etc to pair them with Sigma's 50mm 1.4, see whether I can actually start to get the ball rolling on the work I want to be doing, and only then think about investing in native glass. Again, I don't think I'd have the Leica SL2-S on a shortlist were it not for the fact Sigma's lenses are available for the L mount too. 





    I did upgrade and buy a Z 6II and the new firmware just came out yesterday. I've not tested it much, but the eye-detection is a huge improvement. Much faster and stickier. 


    I was a little surprised that the mkII still needs to be sent away for a hardware adjustment to enable output for ProResRAW (and now Black Magic Raw). It's a $200 add on cost, but on reflection maybe Nikon are actually being smart as I see a lot of R5 users commenting on how little its video functionality means to them, and that they were sour on how it was primarily promoted on the basis of its video overshadowing the fact that it is a phenomenal photographer's tool.


    So I guess Nikon made the right choice to walk a finer line in marketing their mirrorless hybrid, plus it's a feature only the A7sIII/FX3 and Fuji GFX100s offer out of the box, and a feature Canon do not support/offer at all, so I guess I can't really look down on Nikon for offering it as a paid add on. It seems you can also buy the camera with the update installed, but only if you buy the "movie kit" which is actually a well put together ensemble of parts including the camera, small rig cage components, extra batteries, the Atomos Ninja V recorder...etc. Everything you need basically. All for under £3000.


    How do you find the EVF on the Z, Cam? I seem to remember some criticism of the blackout time. Is that just in burst modes or what? (I don't do anything that warrants use of burst mode on any camera).


    I do know that I'd be perfectly at ease with a 24mp camera. The 45 mp of the R5 isn't really the big attraction for me, but more the quality of its sensor (which seems better than the one of the R6 in a variety of areas), that EVF, and the sense that ergonomically and menus wise there's always going to be a familiarity with Canon that I know I'd be at ease with, which I can't say for Sony having had no experience using their cameras before. 


  12. The next entry in the series from Game Freak is coming a lot sooner than I would have expected. It's described as an open world turn based adventure that promises an evolution and new approach for the series.




    It's set the Sinnoh region, which I can't take credit for knowing anything about but according to the Pokenerds is where Diamond and Pearl were set, only Arceus will be set in the past (which presumably explains the remakes coming ahead of this).

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