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Re: Learn Photography Master Thread A friend of mine messaged me yesterday after I recommended he buy the Samyang 12mm f/2 lens for aurora and night photography. His question was simple: is there another use for this lens outside of these fairly specialized applications? Specifically, could this be used for typical landscapes?

So I tried to answer him, but then the answer got too long, needed examples, and just wouldn't work on Whatsapp. So I typed this up, and then figured I may as well share it here as it's something others may find useful too.

Let's get the easy part out of the way: by being f/2, this lens is extremely fast - i.e., it lets in a ton of light. Your Sony kit lens' largest aperture is f/3.5, so this Samyang lens lets in approximately 3x as much light. For astro and aurora photography, it's immediately obvious why this would be a great lens.

Now for the more complicated part: it’s extremely wide. That’s really the defining feature, and that is both its boon and its bane.

What that means is that it distorts relative space and perspective. Close objects appear closer (and consequently larger), while distant objects appear more distant.

The big fallacy with how people use this lens – and the reason why it’s not simply "the best landscape lens" – is that they think wider = stuffing everything into the frame. They forget about the perspective distortion. They see a big, beautiful scene in front of them, think “hey, I’ve got a wide lens so I can capture it all”, and end up with an image that’s half taken up by the patch of grass they were standing on and with some tiny mountains in the background.

Why is that? Perspective distortion. The grass they were on is close, and so became the dominant feature in the image. The mountains are far, and so they receded even more into the distance and now look minuscule. This is why pictures of incredible views often look so underwhelming: the vast majority of those are taken with wide lenses trying to capture the immensity of the view. But in doing so, everything just ends up tiny and barely visible.

Here are two of my first attempts at using an ultra-wide lens (don't judge!). Both pictures are pretty pathetic, with most of the picture taken up by deathly-boring foreground and the rest by what may have been a pretty or dramatic scene, had everything not been so tiny:

The trick to using this lens successfully is understanding this distortion and using it to your advantage - for example, use it to highlight an interesting foreground object. The lens will make it appear way bigger and more dramatic, and is especially useful for water and rocks.

There was this 2” river running over the beach here, and barely visible. But by getting close to the water and tilting the camera a bit downwards, I was able to exaggerate the water and make the picture infinitely more interesting:

Same goes for this rock. The picture was relatively blah, with no color or a good anchoring subject. So I got into the water, put the camera within 3 inches of this little rock, and got a nice picture. The rock adds balance, a splash of color, and most of all, a feeling of standing right in the water with me:

And it’s that last point that is my favorite use of this lens: placing the viewer smack dab in the scene. Neither of the following pictures would have been possible with a regular lens. The distortion you get with the wide one, however, allows you to feel like you’re standing IN the scene, rather than just being an observer on the outside. You are essentially stretching the scene around the viewer:

And of course, sometimes you just need a wide lens because otherwise you simply cannot fit your scene into your frame. In the following shots, this works because the important elements of the shot were all relatively close and so did not shrink into the background, as would happen in "deeper" scenes.

In this shot, all of the important parts if the image were within a few feet from the camera. Even better, there was an unimportant element a slight distance away, so the distortion worked even more to my advantage. See that parking lot off to the left? It's barely visible. In reality, this lot was far closer than it appears and was quite a distracting part of the scene. But using such a wide lens allowed me to shrink it down to a barely-noticeable issue:

In order to get both the ground and the best part of the aurora, I needed a lens wide enough:

And the same here: the rocks were too close to be included had I not had an ultra-wide lens. Note that the mountains here were incredibly close, which is why they maintained their impressive size. Had they been further away, this image would not really have worked:

Another thing to watch out with ultra-wide lenses is that anything in the very corners will be very distorted. This is not a huge issue with landscapes, but try putting a face in the corner and watch the camera add 50 pounds.

So in short, this type of lens is absolutely invaluable to a landscape (or interior) photographer. But you can't use it willy-nilly on every pretty scene you come across.

With a bit of discipline and some practice you can become the master of the ultra-wides.

February 07, 2018, 02:14:04 PM
Sanpellegrino Blood Orange Sparkling Beverage, 11 Fl. Oz Cans (24 Pack) $12.97 Or less with S&S:

February 14, 2020, 04:25:10 AM
Ear Drops for Baby by Hyland's,Infant Earache Drops, Natural Homeopathic-$1.08 -$0.96
February 17, 2020, 10:49:08 PM
Re: Adobe Creative Cloud
I would like to install Adobe Acrobat Pro on a computer without paying $14.99 a month (a crazy price for just one program!), Is it still possible to buy for a one-time cost like it used to be?

Just search for Acrobat Pro 2017. If you want to buy it direct from Adobe it can be found here.

March 04, 2020, 08:56:03 PM
Re: Pesach Programs
Wrong. In the news section of this past weekend Hebrew Mishpacha.

Its almost kedai to get corona there, just to be able to sue the gebrochts out of them!!

March 08, 2020, 09:35:32 AM
Re: Free Annual Credit Report Try calling: 877-322-8228
March 25, 2020, 01:27:52 PM
Re: Dan's Deals Magazine? EXTRA, EXTRA, READ ALL ABOUT IT:

April 06, 2020, 02:58:14 PM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related .
April 12, 2020, 12:05:03 PM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related
Well, the issue is droplets. So you know how those same underwear and jeans can hold it if there's a little droplet that comes out unintentionally when you your friend farts? Well, the covid droplets are even smaller, and so the mask works.

Hope that helps your friend.

April 22, 2020, 09:09:08 PM
Bird Feeders and Backyard Critters Anyone else here into this? I've been feeding wild birds for a couple of years now and gotten a few DDFers hooked. I've also spoken to people recently who've wanted to get started now that they're stuck in quarantine.

The main thing I've found is to attract the biggest variety of birds you need to put out a variety of foods. That generic mixed bag of bird seed has its place, but most birds prefer certain types of food and have a preferred way of eating. The more you cater to their whims, the more birds you'd get.

At the moment my feeding station consists of 5 different feeders plus a bird bath, and I've observed 27 different species to date (updated 2/13/21):

6 kinds of sparrows (chipping, house, tree, savannah, song, and white-throated)
3 kinds of finches (american goldfinch, house, and purple)
3 kinds of woodpeckers (downy, hairy, and red-bellied)
2 kinds of nuthatches (red-breasted and white-breasted)
American robin
Black-capped chickadee
Blue jay
Carolina wren
Common grackle
Dark-eyed junco
European starling
Gray catbird
Mourning dove
Northern red cardinal
Northern mockingbird
Pine warbler
Tufted titmouse

Here's my current setup:

(For the record, this is a composite photo of around 8 pictures from last Friday.)

1: Hopper feeder at top right, filled with seed mix. For sparrows, titmice, cardinals, and a little bit of everything else.
2: Perching tube feeder in the lower middle (with the yellow), filled with thistle seed. For goldfinches, house finches, chickadees.
3: Tray feeder just to the left of the tube, filled with safflower and whatever random thing I want to experiment with. For juncos, cardinal, wrens, bluejays, catbirds, doves, and more.
4: Suet cage (straight on top of the tray), filled with suet cakes. For woodpeckers, nuthatches, grackles, and starlings.
5: Oriole feeder all the way to the left, with orange halves and grape jelly. For orioles and warblers.

This entire thing is in a corner of my deck and positioned right outside my main kitchen window. A bit off the the side is the bird bath, which is clamped onto the railing:

I cannot recommend this enough. You don't have to go all-out - start with a basic hopper feeder and mixed seeds and you won't believe how many birds come. And yes, even in the city.

It is ridiculously entertaining to just sit and watch them. I've seen a cardinal couple bring their fledgling twins and show them how to crack open seeds, I've seen fights, courtship and everything in between. You'd hear a hawk calling and instantly all birds run for their lives, but they don't know that it's actually a bluejay doing a perfect imitation. A second later the bluejay soars out of the trees and has the place all to himself. You'd notice that the larger the woodpecker, the more scared he is of his shadow. I've even recognized individual birds who come back to my feeders season after season.

Most of all though, you'd just enjoy having that little slice of nature all to your own.

Any questions? Ask away!

May 04, 2020, 12:28:25 AM
Re: Bird Feeders and Backyard Birding Some random pictures, taken at my feeders or the nearby trees - and all taken through my kitchen window.

Male American goldfinch - my personal favorite:

The above picture is their summer plumage - in the winter they're more drab. There are ten of them in the picture below, two shy of the all-time record (which happened on a Shabbos, of course):

Red-bellied woodpecker - the largest woodpecker we have here and the most skittish. You as much breathe heavily in the house and he takes off:

Downy woodpecker - the smallest one we have, and has no problem with you walking right up to him:

Black-capped chickadee:

A northern cardinal teaching his son how to crush seeds:

Common grackle - dark and drab in the shade, but has a beautiful iridescence in the sun:

Tufted titmouse:

Gray catbird - this guy shows up every summer for about a week, hangs around on the same spot on top of the feeder, and then moves on:

The bluejay brigade:

May 04, 2020, 12:28:56 AM
Re: Looking For A Good Wireless Mouse
What's that?
It's a super deluxe model that never runs out of batteries and has a special mechanism installed to prevent it from getting lost.

May 07, 2020, 11:55:09 PM
Re: Canada closing borders to most travellers who are not citizens
What does it take, and what are the risks?

May 21, 2020, 02:50:08 PM
Hertz Cars on Sale for Good Prices! From Hefkervelt:

Hertz Rental car went bankrupt. $25Billion debt. If any of your family or friends are looking for used cars, ask them to go check out Lots of cars are getting loaded there starting this morning and they are $10K or so less than blue book. Deals as low as $7K in small and mid size cars. Straightforward no haggle price. Share with all.

May 31, 2020, 01:35:16 PM
Re: Site Suggestions
If you click the New button in the list of threads, it takes you to what you're up to

June 04, 2020, 11:09:11 PM
Re: Tweets, Pictures, And Videos That Are Coronavirus Related
This is another picture I got of the same 'shul'
It's ironic that the caption says "backyard shul" when it's on the street

June 05, 2020, 03:32:43 PM
Re: Laptop Deals Master Thread
Thanks! Looks great

1) Can that be purchased in store at bestbuy?

 2) do you know of anything in the price range with 32gb of ram?

1) "Only available for shipping"

2) not offhand

June 22, 2020, 05:09:05 PM
Re: Interesting Articles... The Israeli game that will make you into a hacker

July 02, 2020, 09:50:04 AM
Re: New DDF Forums
I don't see DDMS that way. IMO, the value of DDMS is selected deals sent out to the public, with a personal blog-like touch. Many of the deals have some personal commentary you wouldn't get from user-posted deals. You also have the CC sign up deals and analysis, as well as the personal experience and public interest posts. I think that by changing the format of the deals, it becomes a completely different site, more similar to SD.

Within the forums themselves, I see a value in making the deals page more similar to what you're suggesting. It should generate more traffic without changing the DDMS, and upvoting may help Admin get eyes on good deals quicker, plus additional insight into which deals are valued by readership.
The way I am imagining it:
User submits a deal on DDMS, it gets published on a landing page like, if it gets enough traction (likes, comments, views, upvotes) or if chosen by Dan/JJ - it gets pushed to the homepage. Only frontpage deals would trigger a push notification etc.

Think of it as a reddit for deals. It removes clutter from the forums, makes Dan/JJs job much easier, but most importantly; it makes it super easy and comfortable for regular site visitors to find deals they are interested in. Again, this would be for Amazon/Walmart/Ebay deals only. Other deals stay as is

July 08, 2020, 10:33:15 AM
Re: New DDF Forums As someone who often visits the Unread Posts and New Replies page, which show all boards mixed together, I can see a lot of value in separating the deal posts and the discussion posts.
July 08, 2020, 10:59:46 AM
Re: New DDF Forums I also think we could improve the search system so you don't get issued an arrest warrant if you mistakenly make a second search with 5 seconds of your first.
July 08, 2020, 11:29:38 AM
Re: Baby Present for Dan: (DAN *AND JJ* DO NOT READ THIS THREAD) Ok.

Send the money to via Zelle only (No cash app, PayPal, etc.)

In the note please write your DDF handle.


July 08, 2020, 04:00:17 PM
Re: Camera Deals?
As a camera amateur, do NOT get either of the deals above!

You can get an excellent starter interchangeable lens camera for around $400-500 from Nikon, Sony or Panasonic.

1. Get a mirrorless. These are much lighter than a DSLR and generally less expensive.
2. Look for a crop sensor, such as PS-C or micro 4/3.
3. Camera technology advances incrementally. Unless you *need* a particular style, a slightly older model will generally be cheaper and just as good.
I have the sony a6000 and I absolutely love it. I can take moon shots, micro shots, kid shots. I've done a handful of jobs as "favors" and they came out great.
4. Unless you want to switch lenses and want to have a full telephoto lens as an option, spend $150-$200 and get a pocket size DPS (digital point & shoot).
1.Can't beat that price tag. And regarding the size, that depends on each users preference, and is NOT a reason to NOT get that camera.
2. this has an APS-C
3.How is the T6 for $299.99 with 2 kit lenses not an older model which is slightly cheaper? (It's actually 2 years newer than the a6000)
4. Good luck trying to get nice bokeh with that. (which is the number 1 reason beginner photographers enjoy their big cameras.)

July 08, 2020, 07:03:20 PM
Re: Random Posts Here on Dansdeals we do Charles Tyrwhitt
July 08, 2020, 07:55:15 PM
Re: Baby Present for Dan: (DAN *AND JJ* DO NOT READ THIS THREAD)
Anybody with cashapp willing to receive and zelle to Joeymc?

July 08, 2020, 10:05:49 PM
Re: The Big One® Solid Bath Towel All Colors $3.99!
Same reply  :D
I hope you don't say that when someone has $$ for you. And you just need to pick it up locally.
Call it $$ that needs to be picked up in form of towels 😊

July 09, 2020, 11:42:52 AM
Re: Corny Jokes & Bad Puns Thread
July 09, 2020, 02:13:47 PM
Re: {ALIVE AGAIN} Baby Present for Dan: (DAN/JJ DO NOT READ THIS THREAD) You guys shouldn't be turned off by the $25 donations.

 $2 does the same job.
  And so does $3 and $4+.

 If we get 50 to 100 members to each give three- $4 we will be in good shape.

   Great campaign guys!

July 09, 2020, 03:39:45 PM
Re: All About Grilling
Care to share recipe?
We really like this marinade:

3 T mayo
2 T soy sauce
1 T teriyaki sauce
2 tsp dried basil (or 1 cube frozen)
1 tsp garlic powder (or 1 frozen garlic cube)
1 squirt mustard

Marinate chicken for 30 minutes or up to 3 hours (depending on how much flavor you like, I like 30 minutes). Then grill (it's great on a George Foreman too).

If you don't have time to marinate you can just spread the marinade on top before grilling, it's also delicious that way.

July 09, 2020, 04:48:24 PM
Short Answers to Long Threads Do All Black Lives Matter To BLM? - No

Are we going too far? - Gone, but yes

Is the need to feel safe white privilege? - Yes

Is everyone really a racist? - No, but many are

Have Recent Events Made You Consider Moving Or Making Aliya? - Surprised myself, but yes

Is It Ethical? - Probably not

What did you get for Fathers Day? - "Grab the baby, she's about to spit up."

Will Amazon vs Walmart war ever end? - Walmart+ says no. (I liked the first part better than the sequel.)

Donald Trump: World's Most Dangerous Man?!? - Yes

Is Count Valentine an FBI agent? ******* (redacted)

Are you afraid every time a black man walks by you? No

A World Without Kim Jong Un?? - Remember when he was a thing?

Is your spouse on DDF? - No

Is this the ultimate RESET - will states be allowed to declare bankruptcy? - No

July 12, 2020, 03:36:07 PM
Maybe try thisAnd in that post put a disclaimer and link to this post ;D
I'm not that good at clickbait, but I think it has to be more dramatic:

These three aliens may be living in your cholent pot!


Click to see which DDFer is really a Russian spy (Hint: It's not who you think)

July 12, 2020, 05:25:25 PM
Re: Settlers Of Catan It's probably worth $63 (here) or $65 (here). (I backed their
Kickstarter 2 years ago, so my base-game price was $65.)
If you're actually considering buying the game:
The box is quite large, with a length and width like Ticket to Ride but about 3 times the depth.
Verify that you're okay with all the art in it first - here's the rulebook.

Bonus rambling:
"Is product X worth money Y" is a subjective question, and I don't think
I'm a qualified judge of what either board games or money are worth.
There's almost always going to be a game of comparable quality available for
less; how significant is that when valuing items with unique characteristics?
I don't have enough experience with this game (that was my first time playing
it) and other games of its kind to comment on it from a critical perspective.
In terms of material quantity, there's a lot in the box. It has 697 components
to Catan's 287 (though 210 are pretty small chits) and some storage trays.

July 13, 2020, 06:54:42 AM
Re: Chase Denied my Card Application
Seems like you both agree it can be fixed,
Full disclosure: Do it relocating credit.  ;)

July 14, 2020, 11:06:18 AM
If ppl are wondering why there’s less ppl involved this time around, my guess would be because DDF is a lot less of a family than it used to be. Could be I’m wrong but the feeling I get is that it used to be a lot more homey & Dan was a lot more personally  involved obviously the bigger it grows the less it retains that feeling…

I agree, and especially a lot of new members (myself included) have not met many (or any) other members so it's hard to feel like family.

But even just from a hakaras hatov aspect, think about how much money Dan and JJ have made you with money making deals and with money making advice, and how much more they have SAVED you!

I think everyone here has benefited at least a couple of dollars from DDF in deals and advice.

I personally have earned hundreds of dollars from this site, and saved probably thousands.

Just my .02

July 14, 2020, 06:54:28 PM
Make sure to list it in the wiki.

July 14, 2020, 07:00:37 PM
Re: POLL: Wedding expenses in the frum Community - BH for simchos? or out of hand?
who says it is impossible? Its a shame people dont live within their means! Even if someone wants to by a wedding there is 2 sides

yea the mother and the mother-in-law

July 14, 2020, 09:19:00 PM
Re: The funny/strange/interesting/random pictures thread
July 15, 2020, 12:32:21 PM
Re: Chrome Tab Grouping

It's called Toby Mini

July 15, 2020, 09:45:10 PM
Re: The funny/strange/interesting/random pictures thread
July 16, 2020, 10:58:18 AM
Re: Computer Troubleshooting/Help Master Thread
Iv'e never used it, is it easy to set up?
You'll need to do a bit of coding but not too much for your use case.
Here are a couple of places to start:

@ChaimMoskowitz can probably help if you need :)

July 16, 2020, 07:59:15 PM
Re: Computer Troubleshooting/Help Master Thread
I own a Lenovo laptop which unfortunately doesn't allow you to press alt + F4 to close a program, instead you need to use the function button.
Anyway to fix that? possibly a registry edit or good program?
(I'm able to switch the whole row to be Function keys, but I don't want that.)
Maybe check out the Keyboard Manager coming with Microsoft's PowerToys. See here

July 16, 2020, 08:09:15 PM
Re: Computer Troubleshooting/Help Master Thread
If that can do it it'll be easier than autohotkey
Tested now, works well:

July 16, 2020, 08:26:12 PM
Re: Random questions.
Does attending/watching a zoom bris qualify for one who watches to be allowed to eat meat as a part of a Seudas mitzvah? Would one need to leave the video on for the meal/speeches or after the bris part can you turn the zoom off?
You can watch a cooking show after.

July 21, 2020, 10:12:06 PM
Re: Scam or Deal
On what bases?

First and third. Top of the sixth, if that matters.

July 22, 2020, 06:16:22 PM
Cool Tools I started listening to the "Cool Tools" podcast, where guests talk about their three favorite tools. Tools can be anything. Tech, Hardware, Books, Podcasts, or anything. I wanted to start something like that here, where we can help each other find our favorite things.   
July 23, 2020, 01:34:40 PM
Re: The funny/strange/interesting video thread...

July 23, 2020, 07:19:55 PM
Re: Cool Tools
Just to be clear, hammer and impact are two different things, for regular screws impact works great, hammer (which uses a hammer motion) is great for drilling in stone and tiles etc..
Hammer impact IMHO would work better on screws. My impact wrench would just strip a lot of screw heads.

July 24, 2020, 03:10:00 PM
Re: Nine Days -- What's on Your Menu?
Someone just sent this to me.

Stop the name calling about lubavitchers

July 24, 2020, 03:14:55 PM
Re: Master Thread of reasons deals don't make it to DDMS
Good point.
Should get used to using them more often
Just be sure to click on the DD link afterward :)

July 27, 2020, 03:45:08 PM
Re: Woot BOC Discussion Nothing like getting a box of Christmas crackers a few days before Tisha Bav.
July 27, 2020, 07:41:47 PM