epten
Topic Author
Posts: 190
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 5:12 am

New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:13 am

Hi, I have EOS350D, EF75-300 and my aviation photos are grainy.

I usually shoot with ISO400 and there is grain. If I want to shoot with ISO200 or ISO100, the exposure is too long for my clumsy hands and images have motion blur. There are two possible solutions:

1. Buy bigger lens, with smaller F number: more light will be collected and I will be able to achieve sharp photos with lower ISO settings - no grain.

2. Buy new body, with better sensor: I can still shoot with ISO400 and with the same lens, but better sensor will mean no (or much less) grain.

What would you do? I'm otherwise very satisfied (and emotionally attached) with my old EOS350D and I would gladly keep it.
 
User avatar
NZ107
Posts: 4946
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 6:51 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:48 am

Depends on what your main priorities are (in terms of shooting) and depends on what lens you're looking to buy. Only super expensive lenses come with a bigger aperture than f/4 so I believe you'd be more on the line of getting a lens with IS. If you use your camera for many other things and you want to reduce grain for those pictures as well, I'd probably head for a new body first.
It's all about the destination AND the journey.
 
epten
Topic Author
Posts: 190
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 5:12 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:17 am

Quoting NZ107 (Reply 1):
Depends on what your main priorities are (in terms of shooting)

Thank you for your reply.

My main priority is to have some photos accepted on a.net. Personally, I really don't mind a little barely visible grain in my photos, but screeners do. For those "many other things" I am satisfied with my current setup and results.
 
unattendedbag
Posts: 2154
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 10:35 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 6:49 pm

Quoting epten (Thread starter):
the exposure is too long for my clumsy hands and images have motion blur.

Eat a candy bar before you go taking pictures. That will increase your blood sugar and give you more steady hands.
Slower traffic, keep right
 
dazbo5
Posts: 2717
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2005 8:05 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 7:36 pm

Quoting epten (Thread starter):
the exposure is too long for my clumsy hands and images have motion blur

Have you considered a monopod or tripod? What conditions are you shooting under, ie how much available light is there when you go out? Unless the weather is awful, when I wouldn't be out with the camera anyway, I rarely use more than ISO 200 and still have a perfectly acceptable shutter speed. I can't remember the last time I needed to increase the ISO over 200 during the day, even in less than ideal conditions. What shutter speeds would you normally look for? I would review my technique and the conditions I'm shooting under before looking at new equipment. I used the 350D for 3 years, and still have it as my back-up camera. It's a great tool.

Darren
Equipment: 2x Canon EOS 50D; Sigma 10-20 EX DC HSM, 50-500 EX APO DG, Canon 24-105 f/4 L, Speedlite 430EX
 
conoramoia
Posts: 481
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2007 7:04 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:18 pm

I personally would get a body.
People will definitely disagree!I do think glass is the more essential but if its your ISO you need then get a body IMO.


Conor

[Edited 2010-06-10 14:26:57]
 
fergulmcc
Posts: 1877
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2004 8:36 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 9:55 pm

I would upgrade a lens before a body. Even with my 1Ds, its only as good as what's on front of it!

Fergul
Zambian Airways, Where the Eagles fly free!!
 
User avatar
Kereru
Posts: 596
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2003 8:19 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 10:52 pm

Quoting epten (Thread starter):
If I want to shoot with ISO200 or ISO100, the exposure is too long for my clumsy hands and images have motion blur.

Does your present lens have IS? If not then invest in a lens that does have IS to help improve your results. Work on your technique and use a tripod / monopod.

Pan with your subject when it is moving fast.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Colin Hunter



When aircraft are taxing towards you a shutter speed as low as 1/15 sec and a steady hand can achieve good results.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Colin Hunter



IS helps with low shutter speeds in low light situations. 1/10 sec and pan with subject caught in dusk lighting.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Colin Hunter



Give it a try even if your present lens does not have IS some good results can still be achieved.

Have fun.

Colin   
Good things take Time.
 
User avatar
lgw340
Posts: 268
Joined: Sat May 05, 2007 3:54 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:06 pm

Unless you only shoot in low light, you shouldnt need a long shutter speed. When I had mine, I just kept it ai ISO 100 and its as good as any other camera. For night/low light shots, always use a tripod. I shot this with my 350D and its fine:

http://www.airliners.net/photo/Omni-...d=0f98376d908234daef8bb92f8b238f26

Cheers
Chris
Live life from the window seat...
 
HNLPointShoot
Posts: 226
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 3:32 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:21 pm

Quoting epten (Thread starter):
Hi, I have EOS350D, EF75-300 and my aviation photos are grainy.

If you're not already using the IS version of the 75-300, I'd recommend upgrading to that first, especially since you'll probably be able to get a new copy of that lens for less than what a higher quality body (like a 50D or a 7D) would cost. B&H is quoting $549 USD for that lens.
 
JakTrax
Posts: 4654
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 3:30 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:25 pm

I honestly can't understand why you need ISO400 with a 350D, and I'm surprised that no-one has yet mentioned that upgrading either your body and/or lens(es) won't solve the problem. I'm not being rude when I say this but it sounds to me like you need to work on technique as opposed to changing your gear.

As for lenses with large maximum apertures, don't forget that this has the potential to create depth-of-field issues. Widening the aperture really isn't the best way to achieve a higher shutter, and also bear in mind that using many lenses wide open will produce softer images. Most lenses have their 'sweet spot' at around f/8-11.

The only thing that will be truly effective is IS in the lens - which of course comes at a price. Have a look at the 70-300 f/4-5.6 IS USM, available for just under GB£400 (EUR450).

Finally, is the noise at ISO400 on a 350D really that excessive? I used to own one but can't remember. I now use a 50D and the noise performance at ISO400 is extraordinary.

Karl
 
Silver1SWA
Crew
Posts: 4458
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 6:11 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 2:58 am

A fast lens or a high-end camera that handles high ISOs well are not as important for standard aviation photography as they would for other types of photography like indoor sports or concerts, or studio work for example. It's important to note that no matter what camera you use, even at low ISOs, if you don't nail the exposure you may have noise problems. And another note, if by upgrading body you are thinking 50D you will be disappointed. While they are better than the 350D in terms of ISO, they aren't to be used heavily at the high ISO spectrum. You would still have difficulties for this site. You would be looking at a 1D series or 5Dmk2 and even then you need to get the exposure right.
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
GPHOTO
Posts: 799
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2004 11:44 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:34 am

Quoting JakTrax (Reply 10):
Finally, is the noise at ISO400 on a 350D really that excessive?

I've never thought so. It's noticeably noisier than ISO100 (naturally) but an image that requires little or no cropping and a touch of noise reduction in your favourite image editor should produce a perfectly satisfactory photograph that would be accepted here. What seems to be my weak point is a combination of poor technique, lack of shutter speed and having the aperture too wide leading to loss of depth of field.

Epten,

I would suggest that changing the body is probably the last of three options you should choose. Upgrading to a new body might help, but be aware that the more pixels on the sensor, the more risk there is of increasing the noise. If you choose the wrong body, you could make the problem worse.

In any case I would suggest looking at your technique first because if nothing else, it's won't cost you anything. Don't ask me for any tips because my technique is terrible and I'm pretty shaky too.  

After that, you should probably be considering a new lens, with IS. It can help, but for moving subjects needs to be combined with technique to work properly.

I shoot with the 350D and have no problems with it noise-wise, so the answer to your problems must lie elsewhere. I have the Canon 100-400L on my 350D and it breathed a whole new lease of life into the body. The image quality jump was quite significant compared to my previous lens and the IS and focussing are quick and accurate. I get some odd looks at times for the combo of expensive lens on a consumer camera - I was even laughed at by two photographers recently for it. But so what? I can't afford a new body and won't be able to for quite some time. It took me 3 years to save up for the 100-400L. It's a combo that works for me, I'm happy and that is all that matters.

Best regards,

Jim
Erm, is this thing on?
 
JakTrax
Posts: 4654
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 3:30 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 2:53 pm

Some good points from Jim there. If you're not getting the exposure right then post-processing can often lead to excessive noise. Upping the brightness is a good example and can really make noise stand out.

I'm also in agreement with Ryan; that a new(er) body such as a 40/50D would be a little better - however very high ISO performance only comes with very highly-priced cameras. I can get images accepted here using my 50D at ISO400 with no noise reduction required, but it spells trouble as soon as push towards 800.

Quoting GPHOTO (Reply 12):
I was even laughed at by two photographers recently for it

Think I'd have been tempted to smack them in the chops! Far better to have a basic body and great glass than vice-versa. These people should consider that not everyone earns £100,000+ a year! I remember someone once bragging to me about his 1Ds III and L lenses - his images were laughable!

Karl
 
HNLPointShoot
Posts: 226
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 3:32 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 3:00 pm

Quoting JakTrax (Reply 10):
Finally, is the noise at ISO400 on a 350D really that excessive? I used to own one but can't remember. I now use a 50D and the noise performance at ISO400 is extraordinary.

I have a 450D (Rebel XSi) myself, and I always shoot at ISO 200 or below during daylight while outdoors as a general rule, with higher ISOs reserved for indoors or night shooting. That's just my own preference; it's possible the 350D has better noise performance (which would likely be due to its lower pixel count), or that I'm overly conservative about using higher ISOs.
 
viv
Posts: 2953
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 5:17 pm

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 3:36 pm

Honestly, it sounds like a problem of technique, not equipment.

It is perfectly possible, in normal light conditions, to shoot hand-held at ISO 200, with a 400 mm lens.
Nikon D700, Nikkor 80-400, Fuji X Pro 1, Fujinon 35 f/1.4, Fujinon 18 f/2
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1486
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Fri Jun 11, 2010 3:55 pm

Quoting JakTrax (Reply 13):
I'm also in agreement with Ryan; that a new(er) body such as a 40/50D would be a little better - however very high ISO performance only comes with very highly-priced cameras. I can get images accepted here using my 50D at ISO400 with no noise reduction required, but it spells trouble as soon as push towards 800.

Karl,

What do you use for a RAW converter? I've had a lot of luck lately with Lightroom 3 using their new noise reduction. The beta version was good, but the newly released final version is even better, and it has a demo out to boot. It's very good at taming the color noise without losing saturation and fidelity. The grain structure is also very nice and film-like, and their luminance reduction smooths it out without destroying details. Give it a shot sometime. I think it would work well on your 50D files.
From the Mind of Minolta
 
JakTrax
Posts: 4654
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 3:30 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Sat Jun 12, 2010 1:24 am

Hi Dan,

Thanks for the advice mate but to be honest I'm too lazy to apply noise reduction. I sometimes use Neatimage for touching up slide scans and dare say that would be okay for digital files but it's just having the patience (which I haven't really got). Would be good though, to shoot at 800 and get an image acceptable for here. I certainly know it's possible as a few friends have such images on A.net.

Viv,

I'm with you 100% on that comment. That was basically what I was attempting to say in my first response. No amount of upgrading will mask poor composition/technique - if indeed that's where the problem lies.

Karl
 
User avatar
dvincent
Posts: 1486
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2007 9:53 am

RE: New Lens Or New Body: Dilemma

Sat Jun 12, 2010 2:01 am

Quoting JakTrax (Reply 17):
Thanks for the advice mate but to be honest I'm too lazy to apply noise reduction. I sometimes use Neatimage for touching up slide scans and dare say that would be okay for digital files but it's just having the patience (which I haven't really got). Would be good though, to shoot at 800 and get an image acceptable for here. I certainly know it's possible as a few friends have such images on A.net.

The great thing about LR is that once you get a setting you like, you can save it as a preset when you process your images automatically for that ISO. You don't even think about it. At ISO 200 it applies little, but you make your favorite settings once and it'll remember it. A modern camera like a 50D with modern software should have zero problems getting ISO 800 images, and ISO 1600 should be within reach.

It's not just about noise reduction, it's about workflow. Plus, you'd automatically get lens corrections for most of your lenses, I bet. Automatic CA/vignette/distortion correction is nice.
From the Mind of Minolta

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests