Thursday, January 17, 2008

40D second impression/Oakland Zoo

Well, the camera works. The Oakland Zoo is actually very cool as it turns out - it's not huge but the animals have plenty of space and the habitats are the modern nice naturalistic kind where the animals are much happier. There's a few angles like the one pictured where you can see the surrounding homes in the east bay hills which is kind of funny if you're a local. Also the vegetation is mostly what you would find anywhere in the east bay so the lions are sitting under California Live Oaks (Quercus agrifolia) which is a bit odd in its own way. But it's of no consequence, it's just a bit odd for me to realize there are elephants up in the hills.

If you're thinking about some San Francisco tourism and have some kids who need a break or just like animals, definitely consider it as a change of pace. It's pretty close to Berkeley and other east bay places you might want to visit.

The only real camera notes is that the autofocus does a good job - the river otters and meerkats and an active gibbon put it through its paces - and I fired off some buffer-filling bursts (17 shots in RAW) just to see how it did and it writes to the card so fast you pause just for a moment and you have a couple more shots ready. I didn't time it but just holding the button down it's noticeably faster than the 20D to take follow-up shots even though the files are bigger. It's really nothing you couldn't do by practicing on the household cat but I got some exercise and I'd been meaning to check out the Zoo anyway.

I have three model shoots scheduled and a couple of more where we don't have a date yet that might turn out, all by the end of the month so hopefully we'll get a real test soon.

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