7D II ISO 1600. Part III: Staring Osprey & Used Canon 600mm f/4L IS II for Sale « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

7D II ISO 1600. Part III: Staring Osprey & Used Canon 600mm f/4L IS II for Sale

What’s Up?

Swim shortened by lightning…. Core exercises and ice bath today. And lots more healthy eating (for a change). Lots more Final Four games. I enjoyed another great night’s sleep with just one pit stop. This blog post took about 2 1/2 hours to prepare and was published from my home at ILE, FL very early on Saturday Today marks 80 straight days with a new educational blog post.

St. Augustine Alligator Farm Short-Notice Spoonbill and Wading Bird Chicks IPT: May 1-4, 2015. TWO FULL and TWO 1/2 DAYS: $1099. Limit 8/Openings 6.

Two folks have signed up for this IPT that was announced only yesterday. See the previous blog post for complete details.

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Canon 600 mm f/4L IS II Lens

David Ramirez is offering a used Canon EF 600mm f/4 L IS II in excellent plus condition for $10,499.00. The sale includes the Lenscoat cover in Max-4, the rear lens cap, the front lens cover, the lens trunk, the lens strap, the original box, the lens manual, and both the original lens foot and the 4th Generation Design replacement low foot CRX-5 (a $122 value). Insured shipping via UPS Ground is also included. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact David by e-mail ­­­­­­­­or by phone at 541-892-3726 (Pacific Time).

As the lens sells new for $11,999 you can save a cool $1500 by grabbing this one now.

I currently own and use the 600 II as my go-to super-telephoto lens when I need reach. It teams well with any camera body and offers amazing reach with the new 7D II (960mm at f/4!). I use it often with my 1DX with both TCs especially the 2X III. as I recommend and use the Mongoose M3.6 I use the CR-X5 Low Foot as the plate. Some young strong folks hand hold the 600 II for long flight and general bird photography shooting sessions. I can hand hold it only for short periods unless I am seated. It is a killer lens when using your car as a blind with the lens supported by a BLUBB.


This image was created at 7:40am in Fort DeSoto Park on the foggy morning of March 6, 2015 with the Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM lens, the Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and the Canon EOS 7D Mark II. ISO 1600. Evaluative metering +3 stops off the foggy sky: 1/320 sec. at f/5.6. Cloudy WB.

Three up from the center AF point/AI Servo Expand/Rear Focus AF as framed was active at the moment of exposure; the active AF point fell on the bird’s left eye. Click here to see the latest version of the Rear Focus Tutorial. Click on the image to see a larger version.

ISO 1600 Staring Osprey

I might have even stopped for this bird on a clear morning as the perch was pretty nice with a clear line of sight from the park roadway. But I was in an ISO 1600 mood and anxious to get some high ISO stuff to share with y’all. Once again, color, contrast, and image quality for today’s featured image look pretty darned good for web presentation at least. I chose this as the best keeper because of the great look at those sharp talons.

There’s Nothing Foggy About This Image Optimization

During the RAW conversion in DPP 4 I used Arash Hazeghi’s luminance and chrominance Noise Reduction values. In Photoshop the image optimization was straightforward. With fog, a simple Level adjustment done by pulling in the shadow slider while holding down the Alt key routinely performs miracles. Then I corrected a slight color cast, applied a low opacity dose of my NIK 50-50 recipe, did just a bit of Eye Doctor work, and selectively sharpened the bird’s face. Not much else. I did finish the image off with both Selective Color and Curves adjustments to give the image some additional pop.

A New Comparison

For the first time, I am comparing a representation of the original RAW file with the optimized version via the animated GIF above. Next time I will compare a representation of the original RAW file with the the converted TIFF. Both are crops of the 100% view. Interestingly enough, noise in the dark feathers of the optimized version looks greater than the noise in the dark feathers of the original that because of the increase in contrast.

Digital Basics

Everything that I did to optimize today’s image is covered in detail in my Digital Basics File–written in my easy-to-follow, easy-to-understand style. Are you tired of making your images look worse in Photoshop? Digital Basics File is an instructional PDF that is sent via e-mail. It includes my complete digital workflow, dozens of great Photoshop tips, details on using all of my image clean-up tools, the use of Contrast Masks, several different ways of expanding and filling in canvas, all of my time-saving Keyboard Shortcuts, Quick Masking, Layer Masking, and NIK Color Efex Pro basics, Contrast Masks, Digital Eye Doctor techniques, using Gaussian Blurs, Tim Grey Dodge and Burn, a variety of ways to make selections, how to create time-saving actions, the Surface Blur (background noise reduction) settings, and tons more.


Learn the details of advanced Quick Masking techniques in APTATS I. Learn Advanced Layer Masking Techniques in APTATS II. Mention this blog post and apply a $5 discount to either with phone orders only. Buy both APTATS I and APTATS II and we will be glad to apply at $15 discount either with phone orders or here in the BAA Online Store. For phone orders, call Jim or Jennifer at 863-692-0906 weekdays.


You can order your copy of “The Photographers’ Guide to Canon Digital Photo Professional 4.0” (aka the DPP 4 Raw Conversion eGuide) by Arash Hazeghi and Arthur Morris by clicking here.

The DPP 4 eGuide (PDF)

The Ideal Companion to the 7D Mark II User’s Guide

Learn how and why I and many other discerning photographers choose and use only DPP 4 to convert their Canon RAW files in the DPP 4 RAW Conversion Guide by Arash Hazeghi and yours truly. The latest version supports all of the newer Canon camera bodies and several older models including the EOS-7D and the EOS-1D Mark IV. A free update that will cover most of the newly added cameras will be sent some time next week. See upcoming blog posts for exact details.


The strange thing is that when I live in New York, I never knew about this amazing and consistently productive location.

Nickerson Beach/JBWR (possibly…)/Black Skimmer/Oystercatcher/migrant shorebird IPT: August 13-16, 2015. 4 1/2 DAYS: $1399.

Meet and greet on the evening of WED August 12. Limit 10/Openings: 6.

Most of our seven photo sessions will be spent at Nickerson beach photographing the nesting Black Skimmers. In flight, sometimes battling. Carrying fish. Chicks of varying sizes from a very few just-hatched to lots of fledglings. It is likely that we will get to see some Great Black-backed Gulls preying on the juvenile skimmers. They swallow them whole. There will be lots of gulls to photograph as well as some Common Terns. Locally breeding shorebird species include American Oystercatcher–pretty much guaranteed, Willet, which is likely, and Piping Plover, which is probable but we need to get lucky with those to get close….

If local conditions are ideal we may visit Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge to photograph southbound migrant shorebirds on one or possibly two mornings. Even if we do not visit JBWR we should get some good chances with the migrant shorebirds at the beach, especially Sanderling and Semipalmated Plover. Red Knot and others are possible.


As you can see, the oystercatchers are quite tame at Nickerson. And we will get you up early and we will stay out late.

Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge In-the-field Instructional Photo Workshop/Scouting Session. August 12, 2015. Morning only: $250. Cheap!

The tide will be pretty good at the East Pond…. If I learn that conditions there are un-photographable we will do Nickerson Beach as a back-up. This will work either as an add-on for out of town folks coming for the IPT above or as a stand alone session. Either way, you will, as always, learn a ton. And we might even get some good images.


Used Photography Gear for Sale

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3 comments to 7D II ISO 1600. Part III: Staring Osprey & Used Canon 600mm f/4L IS II for Sale

  • I like the new comparison technique. I also see that you have about the same amount of noise in the dark feathers as I am experiencing. Maybe my technique is better than I thought. I have noticed that you are using zone AF for some of your flight shots. I started doing that and it has really helped me get a sensor on the bird. Something about age and using only one sensor don’t mix.


    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks. While I agree on the age thing, I almost never rely on Zone AF for flight…. I have been experimenting with it for some action shots and also with somewhat static stuff… I have been leaning srongly towards using Expand for flight with my Custom Case 3…. That has been working great. artie

      • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

        ps: I see similar noise in the BLACKs with my 1D X images made on dreary days…