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Re: NEW Kodak PRO DCS-720x Digital Camera (was Re: Using AKA images on Aquabid?)
Interesting, but my understanding is that the new 14n camera is to cost
about $4000 on the street. However, Kodak has apparently recently increased
the wholesale price and the camera will probably sell at near its list,
which is $5000, with enough change to bid on a few pairs of killies to
photograph. Also, the 14n can take 2 shots per second, which is probably
not significantly different from 4/sec in burst mode. Personally, I would
not buy the 720 for that price. I lust after the 14n.
The 14n is an amazing camera for the price, assuming it works as
advertised. Some years ago at Cornell we bought the then top of the line
DCS camera, with 6 mpixel resolution for our Image Lab. It cost $27,000.
Now you will soon be able to buy a far superior camera for less than $5000.
I hope the street price does eventually drop to near $4000. If it does, I'm
going to start saving up.
I happen to already own a Kodak DCS 330 (3+ megapixel camera). I still
prefer to take most of my pictures of fish using slow transparency film (I
use Fuji Sensia). One of the problems with the digital camera is that the
flashes and the camera body are calibrated to read the light output as
reflectance from the film plane. The imager in the digital camera has
different reflective properties and it is harder to get good exposures. I
am still playing with finding the perfect compensation setting. The problem
is that it seems to vary from shot to shot, to some extent. With my camera,
you can automatically take a train of 3 shots with over and under
compensation. As you say, you can discard all but the best and you don't
waste a lot of film. The problem is, the fish might be posed ideally for
that first exposure, then move for the second and third.
I would also comment that I don't really think you need burst mode to get a
good shot. You will need to take multiple individual shots, but my
experience is that IF you are patient, put the fish in a photo tank, then
wait for some time for it to become calm, many fish, not all, will settle
down and just hover in one area. I've had the experience where I can take
multiple shots that almost look identical due to this. I also have to admit
that I've had fish that drive me crazy zooming back and forth, never
stopping for me to get off the shot. One other point along these lines is
that when the fish, at least Nothos, stop to hover, their fins are
generally extended. If you try to photograph them while swimming forward,
the fins typically will not be well spread.
Well, enough waffling.
At 10:46 AM 12/11/2002 -0800, you wrote:
>Serious phish photographers may want to take a look on e-bay.
>Kodak is bringing out their "ultimate" pro digital camera this month (the
>14n), and is dumping older PRO models at way below anything I have seen
>before (nearly 65% off).
>If you are a user of Nikons with lenses compatible with the F5 body, $1800
>can buy a swinging camera body that should take great fish pics. Write
>Santa quickly, as they only have a few on sale. Kodak clearly realizes
>that they can no longer charge $4995 for this model if the new one is only
>$6-7K. The sale is direct from Kodak, bypassing the distributor and dealer
>This is a 2MP camera, which isn't as bad as it sounds. It is more than
>adequate for magazine photos with normal printing resolutions, 8X10
>prints, and -- particularly -- web photos. It is actually near the
>resolution limit for most 35mm zoom lenses, but has 32 bit color, which is
>way larger dynamic range than almost any film. Pro photographers have been
>more sensitive to the speed loss of going to higher pixels than the
>consumer market, and this camera is one of the fastest. Direct computer
>coupling and transfer via Fire-Wire, BTW.
>Bursts of 25 shots at over 4 per second let you shoot moving fish and
>select the best pose, discarding all the rest. [The film is free. ;-)]
>Worth a look for anyone interested in serious fish photos and with
>relatively deep pockets. This burst mode is impossible with 14MP cameras,
>BTW, and the sensitivity (high ISO) and low noise are big pluses over
>anything with much smaller ccd cell sizes.
>If I already had an investment in Nikon/Nikkor lenses, I'd take a really
>close look at this one.
>Wright Huntley -- 209 521-0557 -- 731 Loletta Ave, Modesto CA 95351
> We have a million monkeys typing on a million keyboards.
> The 'net still does not look much like Shakespeare.
>See http://www.aka.org/AKA/subkillietalk.html to unsubscribe
>Join the AKA at http://www.aka.org/AKA/Applic.htm
Barry J. Cooper, Prof. Emeritus, Dept. Biomedical Sciences, Cornell University
Adjunct faculty, College of Veterinary Medicine, Oregon State University
Home address: 27505 Riggs Hill Rd., Sweet Home, OR 97386 (bjc3 at cornell_edu)
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