Some Really Crazy Guys!

Despite the weird weather that we have been having for the last couple of weeks, the summer festivities seem to be in full swing.

With really hot weather for Victoria Day weekend, we went to much cooler, wetter and windier weather for the last week and it did not agree with us.

With the up & down weather and what they (the weather people) were calling “the pollen vortex” – sounds apocalyptic, doesn’t it? – i have been sick for the last week.  Never fear though, it is nothing that modern day drugs couldn’t fix.

Anyhow, feeling much better today, we made it down to Place des Arts to catch some of the entertainment going on.  As i waited for my two ladies, i sat down and watched these two….  well, i’m not sure what to call them.  Though, they made me laugh real good.

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Mr. Golden’s girlfriend.  The sun was right on top of these guys.  I can’t imagine that they got away without any heat stroke, which may have added to their “madness” .

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An intergalactic spacecraft, with some questionable cargo.

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The cargo is slowly being revealed and it’s…..

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….something really fury!

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It attacks Mr. Golden.

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Mr. Golden fights back!

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Uhhh, don’t know what this was about.  Maybe Mr. Golden was being enlightened?

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Water break.  The core temperature of these guys must have been red lining.

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Ohhhhhh, a screwdriver through the hand.  That’s gotta hurt!

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Exacting revenge on Mr. Golden.

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He is at his wits end.  How does he beat Mr. Golden??

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Muhahahahaha, nothing a hack saw and a power drill can’t solve.

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And off to bring a whole world of hurt down onto Mr. Golden!

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After all his efforts, Mr. Golden is not defeated.

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Victory!!!

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Happy shooting!

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The Fujifilm TX-1: The Lenses

After doing my initial post about the TX-1, i was interested to learn a bit more about the lenses themselves.

As i pointed out in my first post, 3 lenses were released with the camera: a 30mm, 45mm & a 90mm.  None of them are particularly fast, with the maximum aperture being f/4.

I found information on these lenses from the pages of Hasselblad.com.

If you would like to learn more about the 30mm:

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/hs5fzrxmlg6ah91/XPan30.pdf)

The 45mm:

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/x2xff6gl444mcqw/XPan45.pdf)

The 90mm:

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/y4xut3wtcpyxfoz/XPan90.pdf)

Again, keep in mind when viewing these brochures, that the lenses were designed & made by Fujifilm.

If you would like to see what these lenses in tandem with the TX-1 can do, all you have to do is some quick Google searches.  Trust me, you will be wowed!

Thanks for looking.

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The Fujifilm TX-1: The Secret Hasselblad, Which Is Really A Fuji.

In recent years, Hasselblad has almost been laughed out of the camera sphere for re-badging Sony cameras, attaching a bunch of pretentious crap to them and then selling them for astronomical prices.

Well, it seems that all back-fired on them, since they are once again in financial troubles.  I guess not everyone has “stupid” written on their heads.

Hasselblad’s recent foray in re-badging gear is not new however.   One other example of this occurred back in 1998 with the XPan, which was actually designed and built by Fujifilm.  The XPan was the first “Hasselblad” camera to use 35mm film.

Fujifilm called the camera TX-1 and it’s subsequent  “upgrade”  in 2003, the TX-2.  Interesting, since we now have a Fujifilm camera named the XT-1.

Throughout this post, i will be talking about the Fujifilm version; after all, they are the ones who made this fantastic camera.  The Hasselblad version came in black and had the Hasselblad badge on the front of the camera.

The three lenses that were “made” for this camera, were also made by Fujifilm.  All were stellar, as all Fujinon optics are.

Reincarnated with the X-Pro1: 

Just looking at this camera, it reminds me of the X-Pro1.  The shape, the dials, the grip……  if it were not so wide, it would be the spitting image of the X-Pro1.  Furthermore, the X-Pro1 was also launched with three prime lenses as well (18mm, 35mm and 60mm).

I can’t see that Fuji designers ignored the TX-1 when designing the X-Pro1.  They just look to similar.

TX-1 lenses:

As did the X-Pro1, the TX-1 had three lenses to compliment it when it was launched:

– A 45mm, f/4

– A 90mm, f/4

– A 30mm, f/5.6 (an external viewfinder was needed to use this one)

Keep in mind that all these lenses were/are medium format lenses.

None of them are particularly fast lenses when you compare them to the Fujinon primes of today.  Though, keep in mind, the whole idea of this camera was to take panoramas, not portraits.

It was a bit of a tangent for Hasselblad to work with Fuji (i do believe they did so a few other times).  Their usual partner was Zeiss.  However, in regards to the TX-1/XPan, it was a match (secret?) made in photographic heaven and Fuji got it bang on.

As with the X-Pro1, the TX-1 is also an all metal camera (both aluminium & titanium are used), making it very robust.

Below are the rest of the specifications of the camera:

  • Camera type: Coupled rangefinder with interchangeable lenses
  • Viewfinder: Bright frame viewfinder (ambient light), automatic parallax compensation, automatic standard/panoramic switch over via format selector dial, automatic bright frame switch-over according to lens fitted, integral LED exposure metering indications. Field of view 85% or more
  • Focusing: Lens helicoid interlocked to coupled rangefinder
  • Film transport: Pre-wind type, automatic positioning according to format, automatic wind-on, automatic rewind. Single-frame and continuous.
  • Film type: 35 mm
  • Format: 24 × 36 mm and 24 × 65 mm
  • Frames per film: 36, 24, and 12 frames in standard format, or 21, 13, and 6 frames in panorama format from 36 exp, 24 exp, and 12 exp cassettes respectively
  • Exposure counter: LCD. Automatic, shows number of frames remaining. Illuminated. Panorama format indication.
  • Shutter: Focal plane shutter, B (max 270s) – 1/1000 sec, flash synchro from B – 1/125 sec. Activated by button or cable release socket. 1 EV step control on manual, 1/12 EV step control on automatic, self-timer with 10 sec. delay
  • Exposure control: TTL measured at shutter plane, center weighted averaging system, aperture priority automatic/manual switch over, ± 1.3 EV accuracy, 4 EV (f4) – EV 19 (f 22) (ISO 100)
  • Exposure compensation: ± 2 EV at 1/2 EV step intervals
  • Auto bracket: 0.5 EV or 1.0 EV step intervals. Order: standard, under, over
  • Film speed: Auto DX setting and manual setting. ISO 25 – 3200 sensitivity
  • LCD information: Illuminated. ISO, Tv, Auto bracket, self-timer, battery check, total exposure counter
  • Batteries: CR2 x 2 (6v total)
  • External dimensions: Camera body only: 51 mm L x 166 mm W x 82 mm H. (2.04 × 6.64 × 3.28″); 45mm lens: 47 mm (1.88″), Ø 60 mm. 90 mm lens: 73 mm L (2.92″), Ø 60 mm.
  • Weight: Body only: 720 g (25.2 oz) without batteries. 30 mm lens: 310 g (10.85 oz). 45mm lens: 235 g (8.23 oz). 90 mm lens: 365 g (12.78 oz).

So, as you can see from the above specs, when you use the TX-1 for it’s intended purpose, you are not going to get the most out of your roll of 35mm film.  However, you can switch to taking conventional 24 x 36 frames, even mid roll.

If you are interested, here is a link to the XPan manual.  When you read this, keep something in mind: this camera was designed & made by Fujifilm

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/vg5pubfkh4dgw53/3c8f1f64-b0af-4a98-b35e-0db6a220cfdb-XPan_English.pdf)

How did i come across this camera?:

Don’t read it wrong, i don’t have one.  As much as i would love to get my hands on one, they are kind of pricey.  You are going to have to lay down around $1500 dollars for a TX-1, with a lens.

Funny enough, the “Hasselblad” version is no more expensive.

Anyhow, last night i was watching Kai on Digital Rev and him & Lok got their hands on an XPan and a Fuji GF670, which is a medium-format camera being made & sold today.

The purpose of them getting their hands on these film cameras, was to show people that full frame cameras are somewhat “overrated” and that there are some other formats out there worth considering, albeit film options.

In addition, they were showing that if you want “big”, you don’t have to spend over three grand for a D800 or 5D MKIII to get it.  The GF670 goes for about $1600 and as i pointed out before, a TX-1 will set you back around $1500.  Of course, you have to think about film and processing as well.

In love with the TX-1:

Aside from the aesthetics of the camera, i am in love with the format.  Just take a regular sized 35mm “frame” or photo and double the length, then you have what will be spat out by the TX-1.  A very appealing format in my eyes.

With a few photos a while back, i cropped them to 9 x 16, somewhat a similar format to what the TX-1 will give you.  I really like this format and it would work great for some street shooting in dense areas.

History always tends to reveal some clues about our present.  In this case, i see where Fuji designers may have gotten inspiration when designing the X-Pro1.

TX-1?  Well, we now have the XT-1.  Coincidence?  Perhaps.

Fuji always seems to have interesting cameras to read about and the TX-1 is no exception.

Thanks for looking.

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Going Back To The ’80s

I’m not even sure i was in my teen years when we first went to Mirabel for the airshow.  I also can’t remember if i was using a disposable or a compact 35mm.

The year escapes me at this time, but i am sure it was in the mid ’80s that i took these photos.

A B-52

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An A-10 (C-141 in the background)

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All the aircraft below are no longer in US military service.

North American T-2 Buckeye (US Navy Training Jet)

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Douglas TA-4F Skyhawk

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Grumman A-6 Intruder

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McDonnell Douglas RF-4C Phantom

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Thanks for looking.

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Vipers & Tomcats

There used to be some awesome airshows in Montreal some 20 years ago.  The biggest one was held in Mirabel and then it was scaled back some and moved to St. Hubert.

Being out on the tarmac at Mirabel, gives you a clear perspective at how huge the airport is.  It is immense and it is a shame that it has come to it’s demise.

Of course, 20 plus years ago, there was no digital camera that was affordable for a teenage kid as there is now.  All i had back then, was a P&S film camera (in earlier air shows, i used a disposable).

I have no idea what film i used, what speed, etc.  It was just to long ago.  I do vaguely remember which pictures came from what air show, but i am not sure of the years.

For the below photos, i simply scanned them and then cropped them to 4 x 6.  Perhaps not the best way to do it, but it works.

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I may have lost resolution.  I am going to have to look into doing this better.

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Going through the process of scanning these film prints, has made me think about film again.  I think i may have to look at some Oly’s, Canon’s and Fujica’s again.

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My composition was really off.  I had to straighten out a lot of the photos as well.

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“I feel the need…. the need for speed!”  I remember every line from that movie.   Seeing these Tomcats, you tended to look for Maverick & Goose.

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Out of all the aircraft at the air shows, the F-14  Tomcat was THE aircraft that i always wanted to see.

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Thanks for looking.

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Listening To ATC

Certainly not everyone’s cup of tea, but i find listening to ATC very interesting.

Not only can you determine which runway a particular flight is going to land on, but you hear some interesting things as well.  For example, on Monday night, a Royal Air Maroc flight got his altitude change wrong.  Ooops.

He was told to go to 6000ft.  He repeated the command (normal procedure), but stated 5000ft.  He was quickly corrected.

On the same night, pilots in the Ottawa and Mirabel area, were being told of the training exercises being performed by Air Canada’s new Boeing 787.

I was able to get the below photos of this Pilatus PC-12 because i knew he was going to land on runway 28.  The approach for 28 goes right over my house.

Pilatus PC-12

This Pilatus belongs to Starlink Aviation, based in Montreal.

Pilatus PC-12

I also caught this American Airlines 737-800 turning south to go into the USA.

American Airlines 737-800

American Airlines 737-800

Thanks for looking.

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Nature In The Middle Of The City

Olmsted was a genius.  Instead of having people leave the city to go see nature, his idea was to put beautiful parks in the middle of the city and bring nature closer to all of us (Mount Royal & Central Park, NY).

When you are on top of Mount Royal, you really do feel like you are miles away from the city.  All the wildlife and different types of flowers & trees only help that illusion.

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These ducks were in a marsh area just above and at the back of the chalet.  I would imagine they will move on down to Beaver Lake once the water here dries up.

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They have pretty good camouflage.

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A White Trillium.  Funny enough, this is the provincial flower of Ontario.

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Squirrel having it’s lunch.  It was amazing to see the thousands of cracked acorn shells all over the ground.

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I am sure that if I spent the day here, i could come away with hundreds of photos of different plants, birds and other wildlife.

Happy shooting!