Blog

What is this?

  • Two months ago I announced that this would be less of a blog and more of a photography showcase.

Now I have followed through and changed the website from a site that were most af all centered around a blog to a site where the blog is a bit secondary.

I have said goodbye to BlogEngine.net and hello to WordPress.

Not everything is in place yet, but it will be and I already like the way i am able to show my pictures as galleries and collections in a beautiful way.

I still need to figure out exactly what the point is with this site, but at least now it can look pretty while I consider my options.

Going nowhere no more

This blog has existed since 2004 in various incarnations. I actually started blogging a couple of years earlier, from a sub domain provided by my Internet Provider back then, but d-noc.dk started back in 2004.
In the beginning I wrote in danish, and about all kinds of topics but over time it turned into a photography blog.

I had trouble making the site grow, and decided that I would be able to reach a bigger audience if I wrote in English. Now, some years later, I must admit that it did little difference, if any.
It has been very frustrating to try so many things and still end up feeling like I were going nowhere. I ended up thinking about the big “why?” and came to the conclusion that in order to make this blog really shine, I would have to put a lot more work into it than I am willing to do. When you do something, you must consider the effort, and the reward. What is the reward for me?

I don’t want to be a blogger, so no reward there.
I don’t want to make a living of my photos, so no reward there.
So.. all work, no reward. Why bother then?

Until now, for the fun of it. But now, things have changed. I do not have unlimited time in my spare time, so I have to consider if wasting time on this blog is really worth it. To be honest, it is not. Not right now at least.

So the blogging will be turned down to an absolute minimum. It will be a place for me to post my photos every week, and most likely that will be it.
But judging by the limited audience on this blog, I don’t think it will be a big loss.

Sometimes you just have to admit defeat and get on with better things…

Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 DI VC USD G2 rumoured to be announced this week

Oh my.. The competition in the 24-70mm f/2.8 zoom lens segment seems to be extremely busy at the moment. Sigma should have an 24-70mm ART lens announced any day now, and now Tamron is rumoured to announce a new 24-70mm G2 this week too, according to canonrumours.com. (also here);
Interesting enough, both are rumoured to start shipping with an initial price tag of 1299 USD.
I guess I will have to wait for some real life test and reviews before deciding then. I used the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 VC a lot on my 60D, and it was an excellent lens. If the new Tamron proves to live up to this, I might be interested.
Additionally, Sigma released some MTF charts that people “wise” in such things seems a bit disappointed about. I never decide on lenses based on MTF charts, so my advice: Wait for some real reviews by trusted sources.

Micro adjustment made easy

Micro adjustments has always been a bit intimidating to me. The idea is that the lens and the autofocus sensor in the camera does not always result in an exact focus on the actual image sensor. Focus might be a bit in front or behind the point that were focused upon when autofocus were engaged. This happens because of a tiny offset between the distance between Lens/Autofocus sensor and Lens/Image sensor.

To fix this, most Mid-/High range DSLR’s allows you to perform micro adjustments per lens. But the procedure included buying advanced focusing gadgetry that had to be set up very precisely, taking photos of the gadget and then trying to determine how far off the focus is.

In short, complicated and with a bit of magic involved.

This weekend I read a bit about a procedure called Dot-Tuning. It is kind of the same procedure as explained above, but much more simple to understand and do. Instead of a complicated setup, you print out a sheet of paper with a high contrast pattern which you then tape to a wall or similar. Next you place your camera on a tripod at a distance of 50x focal length of the lens (e.g. with a 50mm lens the distance would be 50x50mm=2500mm). Position the camera to point directly at the high contrast pattern with the center focus point and enable Live View. Now use the 10x magnification on the Live View to set focus, either manually or with the focus button. Once focus has been acquired, set the lens to manual focus to avoid refocusing.

Next the idea is to micro-adjust up from 0 to +1, +2 and so on, one step at the time, each time looking in the viewfinder and checking if the camera can acquire focus instantly without any hesitation. Once you reach this point, write down the number of the offset that were the last giving a positive focus dot. Now do the same micro adjusting down from 0 to -1, -2 and so on.

When you have two points, e.g. 6 and -2 you find the middle value, in this case 2. (-2, -1 ,0, 1, [2], 3, 4, 5, 6).
To make this step simpler, the video above links to this calculator.

The idea is that since 2 is dead in the middle of the values giving positive focus confirmation, the auto focus should be much more precise than without the micro adjustment.

I tried it on my 35mm, 50mm and 85mm primes, and so far it is too soon to determine if this were a major difference, but the camera / lens combinations seems to be faster to acquire focus when I try to focus on my fast moving 7 year old daughter or in low light situations. I will still have to test this further before I can say anything with absolute certainty, but at least the Dot-Tuning procedure has made micro adjustment easy to do.

Further details about the method, as well as an ongoing discussion can be found here.

Please note that I did not invent this method, nor am I trying to take credit.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave a comment below.