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                 Fresh air and photos
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561st message | this message only posted: 2 Sep 2020 19:31
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Martin Wynne wrote:Two months on, and yes it's in full leaf:




And now with the crop grown and harvested,




and Autumn clearly in the air.

The lighting is never the same twice:




The years roll on. That tree has seen them all, and will see a few more yet.

Martin.

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562nd message | this message only posted: 2 Sep 2020 20:36
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from:
John Lewis
Croydon, United Kingdom

 

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Hi Martin
Very nice!
What is the distant hill to the right of the tree in photo 2 (and 3), please?
John
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563rd message | this message only posted: 2 Sep 2020 21:52
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Rob Manchester
Manchester, United Kingdom



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John Lewis wrote: Hi Martin
Very nice!
What is the distant hill to the right of the tree in photo 2 (and 3), please?
John
My guess is the Wrekin :)

Rob


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564th message | this message only posted: 2 Sep 2020 22:00
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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John Lewis wrote: Very nice! What is the distant hill to the right of the tree in photo 2 (and 3), please?
Thanks John.

That's North Hill (1302ft) at Malvern, about 14 miles away:

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Hill,_Malvern

We are looking almost due south at the northern end of the range of Malvern Hills -- here's the line of sight on the map:

 https://osmaps.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/route/5984784/AstleyMalvern-Hills-line-of-sight

More about the Malvern Hills:

 https://www.malvernhills.org.uk/

cheers,

Martin.

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565th message | this message only posted: 2 Sep 2020 22:34
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Rob Manchester wrote:My guess is the Wrekin :)

Hi Rob,

Brave guess. :)

The Wrekin is about 27 miles to the north-west. There's high ground west of Bewdley in the way, and even without that it would require exceptional visibility. It would also put the sun in the north-east, meaning I was out very early in the morning. :)

But it is 33 feet higher than North Hill.

cheers,

Martin.

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566th message | this message only posted: 3 Sep 2020 00:02
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Rob Manchester
Manchester, United Kingdom



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Martin Wynne wrote: Rob Manchester wrote:My guess is the Wrekin :)

Hi Rob,

Brave guess. :)

The Wrekin is about 27 miles to the north-west. There's high ground west of Bewdley in the way, and even without that it would require exceptional visibility. It would also put the sun in the north-east, meaning I was out very early in the morning. :)

But it is 33 feet higher than North Hill.

cheers,

Martin.
Hi Martin,
Uh, my geography was a bit out then :(

I did look at the map after I posted and I thought it was a bit out of your territory to be up there apart from being in totally the wrong direction.

The paterns you get on fields always intrigue me. Previous crops sown in different directions and variable seed rates can show for several years afterwards. Maybe even the long forgotten pattern of old field boundaries before the farms went in for huge fields to make mechanised sowing and cropping more efficient.

Rob


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567th message | this message only posted: 3 Sep 2020 00:21
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from:
Andrew Barrowman
USA

 

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I suppose it's all a bit relative. My PC is allegedly sitting at 2227 feet ASL and about 100 feet above the surface of a biggish lake :)

Fortunately the Pacific stops it getting too cold here in the Winter but it's a different story a bit further East on the other side of the Rockies. I can assure you minus 35 (pretty much the same in C as F) is not a lot of fun.

Currently about 80F in my shop/shed but there is no cloud cover so it will cool down a lot overnight.
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568th message | this message only posted: 22 Sep 2020 17:22
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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My walk in the Teme Valley yesterday took on a renewable energy theme.

Down on the farm.





High Point Solar Farm, with a capacity of 4.5MW from 14200 solar panels. More info and the live current output figures (not much at night):

 https://electricityproduction.uk/plant/GBR0004701/

What struck me was the silence -- I can't imagine many ways of generating 4.5MW which allow you to hear the birdsong.

Less controversial at the planning stage was this:





Tetstill Mill, now using a water turbine to generate a more modest 14.4kW for residents in the village of Neen Sollars. More info:

 https://www.shropshirestar.com/news/2014/08/13/shropshire-village-now-producing-its-own-electricity/


Lunch with a view.





Hard-boiled eggs, oatcakes, cheese, Tetstill Farm.

I'm still very happy with the X100F, who needs a zoom lens when you can do this on the computer:





And a couple for the chocolate box.








Martin.

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569th message | this message only posted: 22 Sep 2020 21:01
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Rob Manchester
Manchester, United Kingdom



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Hi Martin,
Nice pics - thanks for posting them.

There is more money to be made by a farmer with fields full of solar panels than crops and livestock. Not sure how good the solar technology is at maintaining output on dull days though :(

Some ( all ? ) of the wind turbine farms are very noisy when you get close and it doesn't help the landscape photographer unless they are considered modern art.

How do you find the battery life of the Fuji. I don't use my original X100 much these days but despite buying new batteries it seems to run fine and then just dies when the batteries start to discharge much - which may be 100-150 shots.

Rob


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570th message | this message only posted: 22 Sep 2020 22:32
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Rob Manchester wrote: Some ( all ? ) of the wind turbine farms are very noisy when you get close and it doesn't help the landscape photographer unless they are considered modern art.
Thanks Rob.

Anything with moving parts is bound to make a noise. I don't know how much power that farm was generating while I was there in the afternoon sunshine, but it certainly wasn't making any fuss about it -- I couldn't hear a thing.

I don't find the solar panels themselves too obtrusive, it's all the fences and warning signs which spoil the countryside for me. There are more and more of them everywhere, alongside the railway too, and no-one ever takes one down. They will go on increasing for ever. Presumably the sheep in these parts can read:



To be fair, they have planted some new hedgerows, but it will be a few years before they amount to much.

As a boy I was able to wander and explore anywhere -- I survived, and so did the countryside.

What is the environmental cost of making all those photo-voltaic cells? Maybe if they moved the rows of panels a bit further apart they could get a few rows of cabbages in between each row. :)




I haven't had any battery problems at all with the X100F and never think about it. Yesterday I took 249 images with no noticeable effect on the battery level. It recharged via the USB in about an hour after I used it to transfer the images.

The X100F has a higher battery voltage and capacity than the earlier models. But the way it's used does make a big difference. I mostly use only the optical viewfinder, flicking to the EVF only very occasionally, and I use the rear LCD only to check what I've taken. But if you record video or burst mode or use focus mode C it does hit the battery. Just using the EVF in preference to the OVF will also hit battery life.

cheers,

Martin.

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571st message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 05:33
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from:
Andrew Barrowman
USA

 

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Fresh air has been a rare commodity around here recently. We were stuck indoors for about a week trying to avoid the smoke from the fires that have been raging in California and Oregon. Reminded me a bit of the smog in the UK many moons ago.

We are fortunate to benefit form a substantial amount of hydroelectric generation here. The lakes are all around 2000 feet above sea level - lots of potential energy available. They'll start bypassing the turbines to lower the lake in a week or so to make room for the water as we move from the very dry season to the very wet season :)

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572nd message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 07:18
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Tony W
North Notts., United Kingdom

 

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Hi Martin.
One problem with solar panels, as your photo clearly shows, is that very little grows underneath them, which can't be that environmentally friendly.
We have a growing number of them round here and from a distance it looks like we have a new lake.
Regards
Tony.

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573rd message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 14:22
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Nigel Brown
 

 

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Tony W wrote: Hi Martin.
One problem with solar panels, as your photo clearly shows, is that very little grows underneath them, which can't be that environmentally friendly.
We have a growing number of them round here and from a distance it looks like we have a new lake.
Regards
Tony.
One of the claims when solar panels first appeared was that the fields could still be used for grazing. They obviously hadn't thought it out!
Nigel

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574th message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 15:44
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Nigel Brown wrote: Tony W wrote: Hi Martin.
One problem with solar panels, as your photo clearly shows, is that very little grows underneath them, which can't be that environmentally friendly.
We have a growing number of them round here and from a distance it looks like we have a new lake.
Regards
Tony.
One of the claims when solar panels first appeared was that the fields could still be used for grazing. They obviously hadn't thought it out!
Nigel

Mushrooms?



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575th message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 20:48
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Andrew Barrowman
USA

 

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It might be possible to use them as greenhouses.

https://solarmagazine.com/solar-panels/transparent-solar-panels/
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576th message | this message only posted: 23 Sep 2020 23:19
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Rob Manchester
Manchester, United Kingdom



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Hi Martin,

Times have changed since we were kids roaming the land looking for somewhere to play. My mum of dad would have given me a good slap if I got caught tresspassing. These days the signs are there so if you do go where you shouldn't the land owners can at least cover their backsides.

Seeing as Tesla seems to be the only electric car company that makes any sense maybe the solar farms could offer some kind of charge facility so you at least have enough power to get home. If they had little heated panels at the end of each row you could fry an egg for lunch instead of taking boiled ones.

Thanks for the thoughts on the Fuji. I only use the optical finder ( surely one of the cameras biggest features ) and rarely change settings or 'chimp' though the memory card. I just found somebody selling 'proper' Fuji brand batteries for mine rather than cheapo ones so maybe I will shell out for one and see how it goes. Do you shoot in aperture priority mode ? I do and usually set F4 ( or stop down a bit if it is very bright ) on the lens and let the camera work out the shutter speed. The lens is marginally less impressive at F2-2.8 but I guess it depends what you are doing with the pictures.

Rob


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577th message | this message only posted: 24 Sep 2020 00:08
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from:
Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Hi Rob,

Yes aperture priority. But usually around F/8 - F/11 for better hyperfocal depth of field. Then if the speed is slower than about 1/125 I up the ISO as necessary -- I can't hand-hold as steady as I used to. I've got ISO on the front wheel for quick changes -- the top dial is a bit small without my reading glasses.

For exposure I mostly use AE bracketing at +/- 2/3rds of a stop. This is the lazy way out of doing careful metering, usually one of the 3 images is good. :)

At present I'm trying to fathom how the auto-ISO works with AE bracketing. In theory you can set auto-ISO to maintain a minimum (slowest) shutter speed, but the bracketing messes it up. I did have it working fine, but I can't remember how I did it. :?

cheers,

Martin.

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578th message | this message only posted: 29 Sep 2020 19:33
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Rob Manchester
Manchester, United Kingdom



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Hi Martin,

Sorry, must have missed your last Fuji related post.

The Fuji manual for the X100F isn't much help on AE bracketing with Auto ISO as I just looked. I find the multi-pattern metering mode works pretty well if you stay away from beaches, snow and other difficult situations which is a little odd as the original Amateur Photographer test from way back in 2011 found that the camera could easily produce differing exposures is similar lighting conditions if you just recomposed a little.

The spot metering mode works quite well as long as you have the sense to meter off a suitable part of the scene and think carefully about the dyanamic range you are trying to capture. Think I will stick to multi-pattern with -1/3 compensation for general use - it works pretty well.

Rob


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579th message | this message only posted: 29 Sep 2020 20:57
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Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Rob Manchester wrote: The Fuji manual for the X100F isn't much help on AE bracketing with Auto ISO as I just looked.

Hi Rob,

The chart on page 169 indicates that Auto ISO isn't available with bracketing. What it doesn't say is what ISO setting is used instead. It seems to go for 400 ISO for all three bracketed images when ISO is on A, although where that is set is a bit of a mystery.

It's puzzling, because I'm sure I found a setting which worked. And I can't see why it couldn't work -- do normal Auto ISO/min speed for the first image, keep ISO the same and adjust the shutter speed up and down for the next two.

I mostly use the Multi metering, although page 64 suggests that Average is good for landscape shots. When I've tried it, it has worked well. But not every shot is a landscape, and you can't change everything for every single shot. I suspect that using bracketing means that any differences between the metering modes (apart from Spot) are in effect cancelled out.

cheers,

Martin.

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580th message | this message only posted: 10 Oct 2020 02:13
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Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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First hint of Autumn colours, a neatly trimmed hedgerow, new life at my feet. But a chill wind and leaden skies seemed to catch the national mood today.




This is the first time I've used Google's WebP "weppy" image format instead of JPG. A smaller file for faster download but with better image quality. Allegedly. But if you are viewing in Safari you will need the latest update to see it. Other browsers have supported the format for years.

Martin.
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581st message | this message only posted: 10 Oct 2020 20:50
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Rob Manchester
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Martin,

The image format needs the latest Firefox updates ( 72.0.2 ) with which it displays fine. Guess I should keep upto date :(

Rob


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582nd message | this message only posted: 10 Oct 2020 21:51
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Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Rob Manchester wrote: The image format needs the latest Firefox updates ( 72.0.2 ) with which it displays fine. Guess I should keep upto date :(
Hi Rob,

??? That's not the latest, I'm on Firefox 81.0.1 :?

Weppy images have been working for ages here.

cheers,

Martin.

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Rob Manchester
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Martin,

My system says it is on 72.0.2 and claims to be upto date. Sometimes things like this don't always go up in one jump. Maybe I need a reboot :)

Rob


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Martin Wynne
West Of The Severn, United Kingdom



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Hi Rob,

Are you on the Release Channel? This is what I'm seeing:

 https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/81.0.1/releasenotes/

Firefox channels:

 https://wiki.mozilla.org/Software_Update:Channels

cheers,

Martin.

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Andrew Barrowman
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81.0 here. Looks fine. Lasts a long time :)
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586th message | this message only posted: 11 Oct 2020 22:21
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Rob Manchester
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Martin Wynne wrote: Hi Rob,

Are you on the Release Channel? This is what I'm seeing:

 https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/81.0.1/releasenotes/

Firefox channels:

 https://wiki.mozilla.org/Software_Update:Channels

cheers,

Martin.
Hi Martin,
Thanks for the Firefox channels. No, I am not on them. My system is now up to date with yours :) after switching on tonight.

Rob


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