Lens Review Tamron 18-400mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD w/ Picture Proof

Working for Gene’s Camera Store in South Bend Indiana has taught me so much more in 4 months than shooting for 5 years.  One thing I learned was how much Tamron and Sigma stepped up their quality.

My whole life growing up I was taught the Kia and Hyundai were bad cars.  And once upon a time they were.  But like Kia and Hyundai, Tamron and Sigma had the same stipulation.  It was until I started selling Tamron Lens, that I realized how their new G2 and entry level lens were much better than people claimed.  Below is a photo I took with my Tamron 18-400mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II with Vibration Control.  I paired this with a Canon 7D Mark I.  

Goose was happy to pose for me in front of Mackinaw Bridge

I was about 30 feet away from the bird and lied on the ground to capture this image.  I lined the goose up with the bridge in a vertical orientation and shot this at 5.6 aperture.  It still produced more than enough bokeh and separation from the foreground that I like.   Here is another shot at more of a wide angle with the same camera/lens combo.

The bridge from the other side shot at 18mm with crop sensor camera

In short, this lens has a great value to your collection.  In particular, if you are currently using kit lens for either Nikon or Canon, this would make all of those inferior.  You can sell your kit lens on eBay, purchase one of these from Tamron, (with an included 6 year warranty), and make your camera bag weight and size a lot more condensed.  Keep your eye out for upcoming specials on this lens around $599.  Purchase only from authorized retailers and make sure you do not purchase a grey market lens or camera.

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5 Cyber Monday Camera Package Deals

Black Friday was just a day ago, now the real time to save some money is on Cyber Monday! Here are 5 Camera Kits that will save you money this Holiday Season.  (To see more specs, just click the item image to see more).

Nikon D3500 2 Lens Kit

This kit is great for a student or someone learning photography as a new hobby.  It is on special this weekend until Monday with a saving of over $100 dollars.  Not only do you get the 2 lens kit, which covers 18mm wide all the way to 250mm, but you get a travel case, a memory card and much more.  Our number one choice this Holiday for the best bang for buck package deal. $449.99

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Sony A6000 Bundle

We’ve discussed this camera in previous articles on DSLR Warehouse.  If you have read those reviews we are very critical of the A6000 series.  For the consumer looking to learn and have a small light weight travel camera, we suggest these all day!  Great bang for your buck and awesome for bloggers and vloggers.  Save over $100 these Holidays by clicking the link below.   $529.00

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Canon 5D Mark IV

This camera is for the person who is serious about photography.  It is a pro-level full frame sensor and the latest series to the 5D collection by Canon.  Great color spectrum, great for any kind of photography including portraits, sports, real estate and more.  Now has built in wifi, touch screen, and more megapixels.  Originally $3199 for the body only, marked down $400 this weekend.  Get yours while you can!  $2799

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Tamron 18-400mm Telephoto Lens

This lens is designed only for crop sensor cameras although it can be used on FX Nikon. Nikon allows you to change the ratio in camera unlike Canon or Sony.  You will however still experience some vignetting on a Full Frame Camera.  This Lens is a great deal because it allows you to get a better quality build while throwing away your standard kit lens.  If you take into consideration the crop factor, this is really a 27-600mm Lens.  Suggest you gets yours on sale now before the sell out!!! $50 dollars off!!! Only $599

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Nikon D500 Specials!

We had to throw this in the specials because its a great deal for a sports or nature camera.  This shoots over 10 frames per second, is crop sensor, and has a great feel.  I love shooting with the high resolution pro level camera for all birding trips or local sport events.  Over $400 in savings this week!  Only $1799 on Amazon.

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Share this with your friends looking for great deals this Holiday! Make sure to follow us on Social media and follow this blog for more information and finds.

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Personal Prints for Purchase 

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Portrait Photoshoot with Sony A6000 Review

I really wanted to down size my equipment to be more suitable for traveling and I wanted something that would be good enough for both landscape and portrait photography.  I thought by getting a 24 megapixel Sony with an e mount lens, I would be able to get decent high resolution photos.  I was wrong.

My normal set up is a Canon 5d Mark III with an 85mm lens.  Yes I understand I am comparing apples to oranges but my biggest complaint about the Canon gear is that it’s so large and bulky.  When I go hiking or travel for a shoot, I usually take about 30-40 pounds of equipment.  Its ridiculous.  With this Sony A6000, I had 4 e mount lens, the camera, and 3 memory cards and I was still under 5 pounds.

Now, one complaint I had when using the Sony A6000 when taking portraits was how small it was.  With out a battery grip, my pinky finger would hang off the side of the body, and when shooting vertically, it felt like it was going to fly away in the wind.

Shooting with a professional model doesn’t make you feel confident either when shooting with an entry level camera.  Good thing she was awesome and we were shooting for fun because I let her know I was testing the camera for this purpose.

Below are three images.  Each with an excerpt of my opinions of the photo quality when I shot with Joelle.  Below those three will be photos I did for a clothing brand up in Grand Rapids with my 5D Mark III.

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The photo above (@joelle.raquel) is straight out of Camera Raw.  She did a great job in cold weather and we did get some great photos together.  The nice thing about the Sony was that it does have facial detect and would lock the AF on her face.  But the thing is, the was a 1.8 Lens I was shooting with.  I figured I could have the ISO slightly up to compensate for the shutter speed being set a 1/500th.  I typically do this to make sure there is no blur in the image with my 5D mark III and 85mm lens.

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This is the quality of the photo on the edge.  By seeing this, it may just be the lens producing the poor quality.  There looks to be extra grain (possibly from the smaller sensor) and its also leaving aberration.  It’s not sharp and has too much noise.

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The center of the image is a lot more sharp and produces less fringe.  But with the amount of noise from the ISO at 500, it is enough to make the features on the face and hair below my standards.  I think I may use a metabones adapter in the future with a Canon lens to test the quality again.

Here are two photos taken with my Canon 5d Mark III features Model (@breighannamarie).  Notice the difference?

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Would you agree that this is a night and day difference?  I would.  If you’ve got any input, please comment below and share with your friends.  Photographers and Models alike.


Thank you again for reading and thank you for supporting DSLR Warehouse along with me, Rawfoto.  I enjoy writing this excerpts for you and hope you take something away from them.  Coming soon, Top 5, How-to’s, and more.

Special thank you to both models for allowing me to shoot with them for these demonstrations.  If you want to see more, visit my personal website:

www.rawfoto.net

Remember to follow the models above by clicking on the blue links.

For inquires with Joelle, visit her personal website:

www.joelleraquel.com

 

Remember to read last weeks article and find out what we recommend for winter photography clothing.  @DSLRWAREHOUSE

Why you need a professional Website! Not just Instagram!

 

 

 

What to wear when shooting landscapes in the Cold

This sound like it should be explanatory but for some, they may need guidance.  Not everyone has shot in the cold before and there are some cool little gadgets photographers can use to stay warm while being able to function a camera properly.

#1 – Gloves, Gloves, Gloves!!!

Not all gloves are created equal.  You can search Amazon or Camera websites for days and find photography gloves between $8 and $50.  This is a case where you do get what you pay for.  Your limbs and fingers are the first things that get cold and are exposed to frost bite.  I would highly recommend a pair of gloves that are waterproof, windproof, and made with good insulation.  Any snowboarding glove will do but they make special ones for photographers that have finger tips that allow you to use your touch screen and they also have ones that have flip back finger sleeves.  Pretty neat right!

Here is an example of some lightweight insulated gloves below.  Follow the link HERE to see where I buy my Water Proof Photography Gloves.

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#2 – High Quality Ski Mask

This last week I spent two nights in Michigans upper peninsula.  It was cold, 28 degrees to be exact, and that isn’t even as cold as it gets.  One major thing people forget when traveling around cold climates is that there is usually a body of water somewhere near by.  If there is a breeze, this creates a wind chill.  It can usually make the temperature feel 10-20 degrees colder.  In Michigan, they experience the “Lake Effect” quite often.  I personally use an old snow boarding bandana with a velcro release in the back but a full ski mask is much easier for most people.  Here are both examples below.

Half Mask Snowboarding Style Bandana

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Full Face Mask Ski Mask Cold Weather

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#3.  Protect your Feet!

Here are two more self explanatory items everyone should have when it’s cold, icy, and wet.  I would highly suggest a nice pair of cold weather socks.  I have seen sets of 4 for only $9.99 at Cabela’s and Bass Pro shop that are very soft and comfortable.  The other I would suggest, to prevent you from falling, would be Yaktrax.  These are a must need if you don’t have the correct shoes.  This will help prevent slippage and falling on hard ice and surfaces.  Very reasonably priced, and you can get them at Costco if you don’t want to get them here. Click the photo below to find out more today!

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Our Top 5 Picks: Photography Youtubers

Youtube has been a major platform for hosting funny video content and allowing individuals to be creative.  Are you a creative person and do you love teaching people and learning new things?  Then Youtube is probably for you.

We have made a short list of our Top 5 Photography related Youtube accounts.  Please keep in mind this is just an opinion and if you have any other people you’d like to include, leave a comment and share.  Our criteria for ranking these accounts our top 5 include:

  • Content Content Content!
  • Engagement with the viewer & Personality
  • Video Quality and Production

We feel that content is key and we love when Youtuber’s get straight to the point.  Our society is very big on instant gratification and this is one of those situations.  Not only is valuable content important, but viewers want to see what they came to see sooner than later.  Personality is key and not everyone can do this in front of a camera to a large audience.  Keeping the viewers attention helps keep the viewer viewing.  Along with attention comes production.  A poorly produced video won’t get as many impressions as a studio produced video.  Very simple stuff here.

So on to number 1!

1. Peter McKinnon – Visit His Channel Here!

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Peter came from Canada and he came up fast.  Being one of the most popular tech and photography pages on Youtube is no simple task and his dedication proves why he is the best in the game.  He has many tutorials and makes learning simple.  His direction is precise and he puts things in simple terms for the beginning photographer and editor.  He has made so many How To videos that he started producing his own short films now.  He has mastered B-Roll and shows you how to do the same.  Just keep in mind, use this as a tool and don’t copy.  Originality is key and this is why he stays on top.

2. DigitalREV – Check them out Here!

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DigitalRev has been long hosted by Kai Man Wong.  A funny guy that is knowledgable when it comes to understanding the mechanics of a camera.  His style is a little monotone and dry and this is part of his appeal.  But his content is valuable! His speciality is camera comparisons and hands on reviews and he is not biased! He takes his cameras out and shoots them in the streets and sometimes people get mad at him.  It makes for a good laugh.  Unfortunately Kai recently left Digital Rev but you can follow his new independent youtube channel here.

3. Thomas Heaton – Beautiful Landscape and Fine Art Here!

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Thomas Heaton, in my opinion is one of the best in the game.  Currently under rated but will be one of the top influencers here in the near future.  As of now he is still a non biased photographer and pays for most of his equipment out of his own pocket.  What sets Thomas apart from the rest is that he actually goes out and explores.  He takes so much into consideration when planning a shoot.  One thing I’ve learned from watching his vlogs is how to scout locations and how to use google earth to plan the path of the sun and shadows.  Another feature about why I really like his feed is that he doesn’t go out and shoot 100-500 photos.  He knows what he wants, he knows what he is doing, and takes 1-10 shots max to get his masterpiece.  An addition to his amazing work, he shows you his prints and how he ships them out to customers.  He should be one to learn from.

4. Mango Street – Take a look at their reviews and Presets here!

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These two are just cute.  They work together as a team and now they are making money together sharing their passion with the world.  They get straight to the point and most of their videos are under 7 minutes long.  On their youtube channel they even state, “Photography tutorials that don’t waste your time”.  We need more of this because there are plenty of videos out there that are 20 minutes long.  They are very trendy and know how to set trends.   Creative, fun, and quick!  You won’t see much technical work or camera specs on this channel but you will see more of “How To” Tutorials.  If you are learning, they make it simple.  If you want to order their presets follow this link here!

5. Jared Polin aka FroKnowsPhoto – A channel you should subscribe too!

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Jared Polin is the only one on this list that should or could have his own TV show on cable TV.  His production is as legit as it gets.  Don’t let his Fro fool you because he is no fool! He knows pretty much everything there is about photography and he has been doing it most of his life.  He has a blunt attitude and doesn’t mind being critical when critiquing viewer submissions.  As you can see by the photo we chose to show him, he does comparisons.  In depth and detailed.  If you are not technically inclined, he may be a little too advanced for you at this point.  Because he is so popular he gets his hands on all the new gear ahead of the regular consumer.  Don’t we all wish we could have his job?  Well you could if you work hard enough and know what you are doing.

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Our blog is to help inform you.  We love to hear from other photographers and readers.  Please feel free to add to the discussion on who you like and or don’t like and why.

Mirrorless Revolution: Is is worth the money?

With all of the new generation mirrorless Camera’s being release just in time for the holiday’s, it’s tough to tell if it is really worth the money.  So let’s jump into a few questions and concerns we all have.

  • What is a mirrorless camera?
  • Is a mirrorless camera right for me?
  • Pro’s & Con’s of a mirrorless camera
  • Is it worth the money?
  • Specs comparison: Sony a7riii, Canon EOS R, Nikon Z7

What is a Mirrorless Camera?

If you take your lens off the body of your DSLR camera you will see a nice shiny mirror. (Hopefully it’s shiny).  That mirror is a key component to all DSLR Camera’s.  It reflects the light being brought in through the lens up into the view finder where you see the image you are framing.  In a mirrorless camera, it is just that.  It has no mirror.  This leaves the sensor exposed to light continuously.  You can see a preview electronically through the LCD screen on the back of the camera or through an Electronic View Finder.

Example 1 – Mirror DSLR Canon 5D Mark III

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Example 2 – Mirrorless Sony Alpha 6500

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Sony a7 III Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable-Lens Camera Optical with 3-Inch LCD, Black (ILCE7M3/B)

Is a Mirrorless Camera Right for Me?

You may be asking yourself if a mirrorless camera is right for you.  The short answer is… maybe.  It depends on what you are using the camera for.  Are you using the camera on a professional level or using it to make video?  Or are you a hobbyist looking for a toy to learn on?  This answer is not as simple as you may think.

The new Sony A7III has a starting price point of about $2000 USD and the A7riii is starting at $3500. That is for the body alone.  There has been debate if this is the next generation of camera and many professional photographers are not sold completely on the concept of mirrorless.  Some people question, why fix something if it ain’t broke?  At this point in technology, 4K video is all the hype, but many people don’t know that when you upload to the internet, video resolution may get dumbed down to 1080p anyway.  Rendering 4K useless until everyone has 4K monitors or TV’s.

One pro I have seen by using a mirrorless camera is the weight and size.  If you are using a gimbal, this is a very easy to use set up.  But if you are taking photos with a mirrorless camera and have large hands, it may not be comfortable for you.  Another huge benefit with mirrorless cameras are the focal points and facial tracking features.  I recently had the opportunity to play with the new Nikon Z7 mirrorless camera and let me tell you, the facial tracking is fast and responsive and would be a great tool for videographers.  Along with facial tracking, it has 493 point auto focusing and 45.7 Megapixels.  To top it off,  it has a full frame CMOS Image Sensor.  These are going to be on back order for a while.  Pick yours up here as soon as you can if Mirrorless is right for you.

Pro’s & Con’s of a Mirrorless Camera

Lets start with the pro’s since we like to be optimistic

  • Great for Videography
  • Usually small and compact for easy travel and mobility
  • Many focal points (typically over 200)
  • Tach Sharp Prints and Photofinish
  • Lighting fast auto focus and facial tracking

Now on to the negatives with mirrorless

  • No mirror = easier to get sensor damaged or dirty
  • Less lens selection unless using adapter ring
  • Small frame for those used to full sized cameras
  • Very expensive
  • New technology, usually has some bugs that need to be worked out
  • Battery life is typically less
  • Not as fast auto focus for sports and nature photography

If you feel I missed a few pros or cons, please email me and I will add to either list

Is it worth the money???

Please remember the opinions expressed here are unbiased and based off my experience  with both mirrored and mirrorless cameras.  I do paid photoshoots on the side but I am not a full time photographer.  In my opinion, going mirrorless for the cost is not worth it.  If I were making videos for clients or making very large prints, I would say the mirrorless route may be the right route for you.  Remember each persons goals with photography are different.

New Mirrorless Camera Specs:

Nikon Z7

Nikon Z7 FX-Format Mirrorless Camera Body w/NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S

Full model name: Nikon Z7
Resolution: 45.70 Megapixels
Sensor size: 35mm
(35.9mm x 23.9mm)
Kit Lens: 2.92x zoom
24-70mm
(24-70mm eq.)
Viewfinder: EVF / LCD
Native ISO: 64 – 25,600
Extended ISO: 32 – 102,400
Shutter: 1/8000 – 30 sec
Max Aperture: 4.0 (kit lens)
Dimensions: 5.3 x 4.0 x 2.7 in.
(134 x 101 x 68 mm)
Weight: 41.4 oz (1,175 g)
includes batteries, kit lens
Availability: 09/2018
Manufacturer: Nikon

Canon EOS R

Canon EOS 5DS R Digital SLR with Low-Pass Filter Effect Cancellation (Body Only)

Full model name: Canon EOS R
Resolution: 30.30 Megapixels
Sensor size: 35mm
(36.0mm x 24.0mm)
Kit Lens: 4.38x zoom
24-105mm
(24-105mm eq.)
Viewfinder: EVF / LCD
Native ISO: 100 – 40,000
Extended ISO: 50 – 102,400
Shutter: 1/8000 – 30 sec
Max Aperture: 4.0 (kit lens)
Dimensions: 5.3 x 3.9 x 3.3 in.
(136 x 98 x 84 mm)
Weight: 23.3 oz (660 g)
includes batteries
Availability: 10/2018
Manufacturer: Canon

Sony A7Riii

Sony a7R III 42.4MP Full-frame Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera Body with Sony 128GB UHS-II SD Memory Card, Sony Soft Carrying Case a7RIII, and Sony Gun Zoom Microphone Bundle

Full model name: Sony Alpha ILCE-A7R III
Resolution: 42.40 Megapixels
Sensor size: 35mm
(35.9mm x 24.0mm)
Kit Lens: n/a
Viewfinder: EVF / LCD
Native ISO: 100 – 32,000
Extended ISO: 50 – 102,400
Shutter: 1/8000 – 30 sec
Dimensions: 5.0 x 3.8 x 2.9 in.
(127 x 96 x 74 mm)
Weight: 23.2 oz (657 g)
includes batteries
Availability: 11/2017
Manufacturer: Sony