30 April 2009

From the canal, Oxfordshire

These last few pics were taken with the D50 in case either of you were wondering. The one above (also on the D50) is, though technically OK, of course a bit dull.

Collective Artistes

Twickenham: Spring Sunshine

UAE - one less country to bother with

Another reason, as if you needed one, not to live in an Arabic country in the Middle East - see one of 22 royal brothers of the UAE president and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince torturing a man by whacking him with a board with nails, burn his genitals, run him over.... Ah me. Delightful people.I've not watched it myself but it is up on the Times Online website. I guess there is a chance that the man will be dealt with appropriately by the authorities there. (And Gordon Brown is a competent politician).

29 April 2009

Swine Flu: No worries in the UK then 2.

Then there is this. Ah me, how delightfully dreadful this government truly are.

SWINE FLU. Not "novel flu".

The EU is no longer calling swine flu swine flu but has instead come up with the moniker "novel flu", apparently in an attempt to prevent damage to the pork industry. Now, when you have stopped rolling your eyes, perhaps you would like to address yourselves to the potential damage caused to the publishing industry by the EU's careless renaming.
If the EU wanted to prevent damage to the swine industry (sic), perhaps they should look at the industrial-size pig farms, here in Europe and the states, that will no doubt be roundly criticised in due course. More here, from 2007. It ain't natural that's fo' sure.

27 April 2009

Are you ready for another cheesy title? Oh go on then: On Golden Pond

I took this to compare with a Mandarin duck jobby I took about a bazillion years ago when I first got my D50 (bung "duck" into the search box - only one other entry comes up, at least as of today's date). It'll be on Mrs Lemon's somewhere. Whaddya know? The first one, when viewed onscreen, looks as good if not better. Must get me to printing up some poster size numbers....

21 April 2009

British Museum Visitor

Pretty much untouched. Slightly burnt out highlights on the man's skin in places but overall, wahey, a keeper. Well, I like it anyway - the curve and the lion make it.


D700; Aperture Priority; 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 @90mm f/9.5; 1/250s; ISO 1600; -0.3EV

Bit of a snapshot I know but hey, early days! And look at the quality at ISO 1600!

Oh yes, and there are people in the picture - hello to them too. The woman back left is looking at me like I'm knifing puppies or something. Ah well, you can't please everyone.

20 April 2009

I used to live in the same road as Thomas, albeit some time after he moved on

Hands On with the D700, Part II

So, after many requests, (well, one), here's the skinny on the D700, used mainly so far with a 28 - 105 f/3.5 - 4.5 D.

1. Noise: All but gone at "lower" ISOs (i.e. 1600 and below); some issues thereafter but NOTHING like the noise on my D50 at 1600 or even 800 ISO. Hallelujah! I have a choice of apertures once more! Shooting indoors is possible, and I've only used the flash once so far, and that was for a heavily backlit scene at lunchtime today. However, despite all this good news (there's always a but....):

2. The lens isn't much cop, as far as I can see, wide open, and seems to get very soft below f/8. Now, there may be a way to fix some of this via in-camera, lens-specific focus adjustment - I haven't delved too deeply into the menus yet, but focus adjust appears is present, and I think it can be lens-specific, so I may give this a go at some point.

2. Weight: In truth, I'm not as bothered by the increase in weight as much as I thought I would be. I do worry a bit more about dropping the thing, though that might be as much a product of the price as the mass of it. It feels very solid in my hands and it isn't so heavy I'm shaking with the effort of keeping it still.

3. Complexity: At the moment I'm conscious (very conscious) that it is a new camera, so I'm constantly checking the settings I'm using, ensuring that the ISO isn't way up in the thousands, that exposure compensation isn't on when it doesn't need to be, that bracketing is off etc. The danger will come when I start to relax a little, as I always do at some point when using new equipment, and get home with dozens of shots white-balance bracketed or whatever. This will happen and, whilst I'll have software means to rectify such errors, I'll pay for my mistake with the extra time processing will take. But c'est la vie.
As noted already, I've not delved into the menus in a big way yet but even from cursory use there appears to be enough in the way of possible adjustments to keep me busy for the next three years of use or so before I start pining for the next great thing to come along with it's 50 megapixels and sensor the size of a postcard. The manual says something along the lines of "We recommend that you take a few moments to familiarise yourself with the camera's controls" - I stopped counting at about 140 when perusing the various functions depicted by numbers on the first few pages of the manaul.

4. The strap is crap.

5. The free software is dated in appearance and, on my machine anyway, somewhat slow. Whilst Capture NX is included in the box, it is trialware and so offers only 60 days of solace. A shame as I tried it before and really liked it.

There, that's enough for now - more later after a few more shots have been processed.

19 April 2009

Happy Birthday Mrs Lemon - 5 years old today (time to go to school)

5 yrs. 1950 posts. 1.06 posts per day per average. And 2 regular readers. Wahey, that's the way to make your mark!

15 April 2009

Oh Lordy

I can feel a D700 coming on. Bought the first bit today - a second hand 28 to 105mm f/3.5 - 4.5 Nikkor: not the world's greatest lens but I was told by the man in the shop that it was one of the better Nikon zooms. So, of course, it must be, the man in the shop not having anything whatsoever to gain by making a sale... Doh.
Anyway, tomorrow, or, more likely, Friday, should see the new shiny toy showing up in the form of some new pics on here. Watch this space both of you!

14 April 2009

Laws of Physics Broken in the Kitchen

The distance from the boiler to the sink in our kitchen is about 2 feet. Allow a bit extra for the bendiness of the pipes as they make their way from boiler to tap and you have, if you are generous, four feet of pipe. What is surprising is that the pipes manage to convey an amount of water roughly equivalent to half the volume of Lake Superior before anything approaching even mildly heated water arrives at the business end. How this miracle is achieved without pipes several miles in diameter is a mystery but if any physicists wish to verify this all they have to do is call...

9 April 2009

No you don't

Mmm, WMD anyone? Thought not.

Adios Ireland

I don't like swearing on my blog too often (you never know who is reading - nephews? nieces? LOLs*?) but this story in the Irish Times really does suggest that Ireland is most comprehensively fucked. 2.6% deflation? They are borked. I'm a bit tempted to say "well wasn't it obvious with the cost of housing over there being comparable to buying a house where the sun sometimes shines and there are jobs?" but that would, of course, be undeserved, mean and unnecessary.
2.6% deflation? Lordy.

*Little Old Ladies

7 April 2009

Bust to boom in one easy move - just ask your local Financial Accounting Standards Board

I think, buried somewhere in here, are new rules that allow bust banks to report losses as, well, not-losses, or at least not-yet-losses, thereby "helping" them with their financial results and thereby allegedly helping to slow the crashing world economic situation. I'm not sure how lying about your assets will be of assistance in the long run but hey, why not give it a go? Everything else has been tried.

Our Beloved Boys in Blue

If this doesn't get you at least a little bit upset then please, do me a favour, don't leave a comment along the lines of "a few bad apples" - I'll take it as read you think that.

3 April 2009

Religion 1, Humanity 0.

Here we have the religious press in Israel photoshopping women out of the government. Ah, I loves me a religious mindset.

Peabody at the Seven Stars