Joe Colson Photography
UPDATE: It appears the 25 Batis may be useable with the 590nm or 850nm filter while fairly wide open. I have to do more testing to see how much one could get away with. The hot spot is fairly faint and small in a centralized area. The 85 has a large hotspot so it's pretty unusable IMO so far in most IR photography.
I'm shooting on the LifePixel A7R converted to Full Spectrum (although I was very tempted with the Super Color/ Super Blue options) for the flexibility. I imagine I wouldn't want much more than 36 megapixels for printing so I went ahead converted it to Full Spectrum and just keep my lenses to common filter sizes as much as a I can. Right now it's all 49mm, 67mm, and 72mm lenses.
Oh and I like Yates Mill too since I discovered it about 3 years ago... I try to take all of my new lenses there to shoot at some point to see what they can do. Generally can get some pretty good clouds there as well for IR.
Couple questions for you IR folks ---
I have a Sony A7r. I generally dislike the system -- wanted to love it but it just doesn't work for me. BUT, with this thread it does seem an ideal cam to convert to full spectrum since it is sensor view and can take about any lens, so maybe I can still find a use for it -- fact is I can't sell it for beans now anyway so why not?
My plan is shooting full spectrum for converting to mono, and then may shoot with the deep red 60 for brighter false-color. Is this a good strategy?
Next question is lens -- is the Sony 24-70 worth the money for a dedicated full-spectrum Cam, and/or does it hot-spot? (We should have a lens IR suitability thread here maybe?) If it were under $800, I wouldn't even ask, I'd just buy it and go with it as good enough. But it's slow, apparently weak at each end, and friggin expensive at $1200. (C'mon Sony, really???) I like the idea of reasonable AF with the cam, so that leaves most obvious lens choices out. My other option is the 28 AF and call it done.
Finally, as an alternative I do have the Metabones Nikon adapter and a bunch of N glass, but then it's back to manual focus. Probably not a huge deal, especially for this application, but then I'd like AF if it worked well on full spectrum...
Appreciate any comments.
jack, shooting IR with the a7R is a great strategy. I don't shoot full spectrum because I have an aversion to carrying filters and trying keep up with them, especially with different lens filter sizes. So I went with the LifePixel 665nm conversion and have been happy with it.
I use the FE 24-70mm almost exclusively, having experienced hot spot issues with other FE lenses. Tre is probably a better source of information on lens compatibility than I am. The 24-70mm is a good, not great, general purpose zoom that you can find on Fred Miranda or eBay at a reasonable price (used, not new).
I'm working on an article for my blog on IR photography with the a7R that I will publish in the next few days. It's not a tutorial, but will have some tips and resource links that might prove helpful. Stay tuned.
Joe, how are the mono conversions from 665 as compared to full spectrum? Thanks for the 24-70 info. Unfortunately I cannot access FM -- Fred is a strange guy and blocked both Guy and I permanently the day we launched GetDPI But if there is somebody over there with one at a really good price, please steer them my way! In the meantime, I'll check eBay...
Jack, I’ve gone just about round the world in IR conversions similar to a dog chasing his tail. My first conversion was on a Canon 1Ds II in 720nm. The conversion was good and I actually got several prints that have sold well. The downside to a DSLR was that I needed a dedicated lens. Then came Guy and his selling of the Sony Nex which turned out to be my first mirrorless camera being converted again to720nm. I picked up a 7r shortly after it was released and that too was converted to capture 720nm for a couple months.
I sent the 7r back to have it converted once again to full spectrum and am very glad I did. For me the WS has opened up the ability to shoot in just about any spectrum I wish from WS, color by adding a hot mirror filter, and currently 590, 720 and 830nm. I’m currently thinking about adding a 665nm filter to the mix as well. It’s like have several cameras in one just by changing a filter on the lens.
The great thing about the 7r is that since it’s mirrorless,what you see in the viewfinder or LCD is what the camera sees and what you’ll get in the end. It’s a bit of a PIA onwhite balance however that is solved in C1 (I’ve written a blog or two onshooting IR).
Regarding lenses; I’ve reduced the Sony lens herd down to2-primary lenses, the 24-70 which works very well and the 50 f/.95 which worksjust as well. Sandy has a 70-200 which Ican also use if I need the extra reach as well as the 90 that I haven’t triedas yet.
In the end a converted 7r is good for what it does; offers a small lightweight 36-megapixel platform that will capture great IR files. Personally, I feel that any file converted toB&W from IR is above that is converted from a color file.
Slightly off topic, I had the chance to test/use a Leaf WSand was just as pleased with those files.
And to throw another thought into the mix, Ken Doo and Ihave been exterminating with flash photography in IR by using the same filteron the flash as we have on the camera. Very interesting results….
Hope this helps.
I do love the b&w conversions that I've done, and here's one (that I've posted before) simply to demonstrate the potential. Not much processing required.
I'll keep my eyes open for a mint used FE 24-70mm. They pop up frequently on FM. I didn't realize that you and Guy were on Fred's s**t list. That sucks.
Joe and Don, thanks for the great feedback.
This may be hard to believe, but I am only slightly less compulsive than Guy when it comes to making a camera decision and purchase! So the cam is off to LifePixel for a Full Spectrum conversion, I found a decent 24-70 on ebay from a 100% camera seller and it's on its way, and ordered a 67mm B+W 090 deep red, or 590nm filter, 091 deep red/650 and 092/730 ir, all should be ready to assemble in a couple weeks. Probably will also ultimately experiment with UV, but that can wait. Almost ordered a UV/IR cut for normal light, but will likely never bother shooting the cam normal capture anyway
Again, thanks for the feedback and info!
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Have any of you with IR modified A7(R) bodies tried the (new this year) Sony 28mm SEL28F20 and its 21mm adapter SonySEL075UWC?
i wrote to lifepixel to ask their opinion, awaiting their reply
Welcome to the best photography forum on the net, great first post! Looking forward to hearing LifePixel's reply re the 28 with adapters
Don Libby and Cindy Flood are by far the bigger IR Photography experts (despite Joe's gracious comments) compared to myself. They both helped me out a lot through questions and past posts. As far as the 24-70 goes - it works. and it's a great lens to have if you can find it in the $6-800 range. That's what it's worth to me but some find it to be great amongst 24-70's.
For the most flexibility I recommend the Full Spectrum Conversion. If I wanted the flexibility with color IR then I'd do the Super Color 590nm. You can still put filters on the front and white balance is achieved with a 18% gray card still until you get to IR 720 or higher (I believe) in which case you'd WB with live foliage.
As for the lenses that I've used on the A7 that worked well for IR - 35 Distagon FE, 55 Sonnar FE, 35 Sigma Art, and Contax Yashica 100/2. Vivek has used the 28/2 on IR and it works well. There are many examples in this thread of what works.
As far as filters go check out some of the past filter tests in this thread. There are some filters that still allow IR contamination.
I use Sigma A 10-20 f/3.5 and Sony 16-35 f/4 on my A6000. I don't have hotspot trouble. I'm hoping to sell my A6000 and convert my A7II to full spectrum. Then I'll stick to 16-35.
Welcome Mike in Brazil.
I had foot surgery and am out for a day, and look what happens, Jack Flesher
So far I've used a 16-25, 24-70, 70-200 and the 50 f/.095 all with great success. I've now down sized my lens herd to just 2, the 24-70 and 50mm f/0.95. Sandy has her copy of the 70-200 and a 150-500 and just picked up the 90mm which she says I can use for a "price".
I only use the 7r for infrared so having a bunch of lenses that I may or may not use is pointless.
The 16-35 is a great wide lens just a little too wide for me and Sandy didn't like it as well so we ended up selling it. I did get some great files from it when I used it. The 70-200 was sold because Sandy has one and I simply didn't use it enough to justify a second copy.
Okay, slightly off topic. The great (at least for me) reason to have the camera converted to wide spectrum aka full spectrum is the flexibility in using an assortment of filters. I had a conversation shortly with Life Pixel shortly after testing/reviewing the Leaf WS 50 on whether or nor there's a difference between "Wide Spectrum" which Leaf calls their color spectrum and "Full Spectrum" which Life Pixel calls their conversion and we decided there wasn't any. The files I captured looked the same from both systems. We decided it was just a naming convention.
I've been carrying several filters with me ranging from a color to infrared including 580, 720 and 830 that I use depending on the location. Full/wide spectrum files are unique in themselves from normal color files and can be a real joy to see what they produce. I'm still surprised at the files where as I've used the IR filters enough to know what to expect.
Shooting either wide spectrum or infrared is both easy and somewhat time consuming (speaking solely from a converted camera). There's the white balance that needs to be considered as well as post processing. I've made the WB easier by taking capturing a file using a Expo Disk as a first shot in the filter cycle then keeping the WB on the camera set to "Auto" bang away. The downside to using this method is that what you see in camera ill always have a red tint to it. I use the Expo Disk again if I cage filters thus giving me a place marker. The files are all opened in C1 Pro where the first file (Expo Disk) is calibrated for WB then copied over to all the remaining files in the series. Takes much longer to write about it than it does to actually do it. After much trial and error this process works for me.
I've been doing landscape, nature and some wildlife as well as flash and lightning using the system described above with very good results.
Hope this helps.
Too hot here for anything other than a backyard shot.
I just posted an article on my blog summarizing my experiences with infrared photography using the Sony α7R. Feedback and comments are always welcome.
Last edited by iiiNelson; 26th July 2015 at 07:09.
I'm waiting on the Adobe ACR/Lightroom Batis Profiles as my belief is that Adobe took their rendering engine up another level even above LR5 with LR6/CC. When combined with Photoshop and DXO I think I can get a better overall image than I can in Capture One Pro 8 that seems to add a tiny bit of softness to my multispectral images... which is great for portraits but not environmental shots. Capture One still has the edge for tethered shooting I believe though.
Last edited by iiiNelson; 26th July 2015 at 08:41.
Priolite Ambassador | Sony Visible Light & IR Photographer
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My limited experience is the deeper IR you go, the worse any hot-spotting gets. One reason I like the lower false color band, and speaking for myself, prefer the more balanced look from them when converted to mono. Obviously for the high-contrast deep-IR look, you want to learn to deal with the hots. I found that a broadly feathered circular mask in CS can do wonders -- when you have it figured, save the mask for future use as a pre-set for that lens, then play with contrast and brightness sliders to balance.
I generally prefer doing IR shots in IR590 for the amount of flexibility available to me using that wavelength over longer wavelengths. As a bonus I can get the same look essentially as any other filter and it only takes a 18% gray card to white balance instead of looking for live foliage.
This might be interesting for this group:
Fujifilm announces X-T1 IR for infrared photography: Digital Photography Review
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Last edited by MikeEvangelist; 4th August 2015 at 10:59.
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Mike, welcome to the fray! Whilst I eagerly await my full spectrum A7r to return, I could not resist playing with this image of yours -- hope you don't mind, and if you do I will delete it post-haste!
Simple R<>B channel swap, pump R channel afterward in curves slightly to the point cyan in tree bark neutralizes a bit, then added a skosh of vibrance to balance overall look.
By playing with the individual curve color channels after the channel swap, you can significantly adjust the color of the leaves. Same with hue/sat tool on individual channels -- FWIW
I just got back from a week long+ whirlwind trip looping up through central Oregon to the Washington Palouse to Portland over to the coast and down to Carmel. I use a full spectrum A7r and 24-70 as my "p&s" and it works great. Filters are super quick and easy to change using the Xume filter system, using a Tamrac filter pouch on my belt, and room for a expodisc filter to set a wb shot before each filter change. Don Libby and I have dabbled a bit with IR flash capabilities, starting with the Quantum Qflash QF80. I've since made an IR adapter for the Profoto B1/B2, and this set-up worked exceptionally well on selected shots in Oregon. Blog post to follow (with all my free time ).
This one off the beaten path:
So here is my first capture with my "new" A7r Full Spectrum conversion... This was with the B+W 091 deep red which is supposed to be roughly 630nm. Set a custom WB, and it looked good in the VF, but colors seem overly vibrant -- thoughts? :
Original as out of cam:
But here is a B&W conversion from the captured file -- and I'm actually pretty impressed:
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