As part of the groundwork for some posts I’ve been working on, I have posted my scans of the Owner Manual for Minolta Micro Bellows 12.5 f/2 and 25 f/2.5 lenses. There is also a link to that page in the “Useful Links” section in the main menu above.
I received an awesome birthday gift from my wife last fall, an Orion XT8 Dobsonian reflector. I’ve had a bit of fun with it just stargazing, but eventually that wasn’t enough and I wanted to try photographing with it. I had some minor success with eyepiece projection photography as in the Moon and Jupiter shots below. The thing is, the specs listed on the label are just too interesting to pass up. As a prime focus lens, it’s a 1200mm f/5.9 optic. Who could resist trying to see what they could make of that?
I was reading through this article on cnet and the following statement sort of jumped out at me:
"Many people like the optical viewfinder, but from a technological point of view we think [translucent mirror designs] are better."
"Better" in what way, and according to who? Before the Sony SLT cameras hit the market I had never seen an EVF that I liked, and since I own a DSLR with what is arguably the best OVF in the business — the ɑ900 — I found myself wondering about the direction that Sony will take with the ɑ900/850 successor. The following post details my experiences and thoughts about this new “wonder-camera”. Continue reading
This weekend, having collected and fabricated the necessary parts, it was time to upgrade the head on the venerable Uniphot tripod that I purchased around 1988. The tripod has served me well for all these years, though really the dual-handle head tilt mechanism isn’t always ideal. Often it moves when tightening, and while I have learned to mentally compensate for this my recent forays into shooting panoramas have sometimes been frustrating because of this. Getting my node rail properly leveled was much more fiddly than it needed to be. I’m shooting longer lenses these days(and wider sometimes, but that’s another story). When trying, for example, to get a shot of the moon with a 500mm lens the tiny bit of movement upon tightening the head makes for quite a shift in the image centering. Below are some details and pics…
This subject was the catalyst for me to set up a blog. Gary Regester has a terrific page dedicated to the history of Tiltall Tripods plus sources for updated center columns, spare parts, etc. here and a Tiltall-specific blog here. I contacted Gary to point out some differences between the knowledge posted on the two sites above and my own observations based on the tripod that I bought new about 20 years ago, also to share some enhancements I have made with the help of my brother. Gary suggested that I provide links to my blog so that I could offer these enhancements to “The Cult of Tiltall” followers. Funny thing is, I didn’t have a blog at the time.
Well, here is that info. I have not yet spoken with my brother about producing the parts in quantity, if there is sufficient interest I will do so. Before proceeding I will need to understand the specific differences between Tiltall variations that would affect fitment of these parts, so if I have anything wrong please let me know.
Also in this post I will show the Leitz version that I picked up recently for about $40 that was manhandled and needs some TLC, along with my observations as to how it differs from my Uniphot model.