Cheap EOS gadgets and the ineffable joy of being

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by jdm_von_weinberg, Sep 13, 2016.

  1. Introduction
    Remember the wait for delivery of the coveted premium from the cereal box coupon?, the bicycle ordered from Sears?

    Learning from such experiences as a child plays an important part in growing up in a Capitalist world (see Ralphie’s experience with the Little Orphan Annie decoder in Christmas Story: “It’s a crummy ad!”).
    A colleague of mine was one of the first social scientists to get into East Germany after the Anßluss with the Bundesrepublik. She found that many former citizens of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik were completely without defense mechanisms against shady hard-sell marketers. Few children in the First World, on the other hand, could not have learned early on that what is seemingly promised is not always what one gets.

    Sometimes the desired object turns out OK, of course. Although it is of limited utility in a broader sense, I have never failed to be pleased by my accessory shoe level:

  2. Tubular Ligation
    So when I see some kind of gadget or bargain item offered, I do understand that the chances for a fully satisfying response is small, but all the same “with a bold curiosity for the adventure ahead!", “ I can’t help “going for it”.

    So what was the object of my innermost desire? Well, I do a bit of macro work from time to time. I’ve actually got some actual macro lenses, in fact. But 1:1 is kind of limiting, isn’t it? I do have EOS bellows for stop down use and various + diopters, but the former is stop down. Wouldn’t it be nice to keep automatic functions (aperture and focus) on such a device?

    However, the automatic-function extension tubes on-line tend to sell for US$100 and up. Cheap, I know, but costly for a person who collects old cameras in terms of their equivalent value in pizzas.

    However, when idly looking for something else altogether, I found a set of Canon EOS auto-extension tubes on eBay for $13.47, postpaid. It’s true the reviews pointed out the plastic construction, but this was pretty close to my pizza-price limit, after all. what could I lose except for the $14?

    So I took the bait and ordered on Sept. 3. It finally arrived on September 10. Eagerly I opened the package. There in a box, and in a pseudo suede sack, was the extension tube set.

  3. Looks pretty good doesn’t it? Of course when you pick it up you notice there isn’t much “heft” there. It is also clearly molded to suggest that it is finely machined metal, instead of plastic.

    Here are the metal rods that carry the EOS connections:
  4. So I mounted it on my various EOS EF camera bodies and tried my 90mm f/2.8 Macro (Tamron). Now of course, any rational person knows that automatic focus is a mixed blessing in macro work, but the automatic aperture connection is helpful. I also tried my Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 and several midrange zoom lenses on both APS-C and “full-frame” bodies. All worked well. The plastic mount was a little stiff at first, but improved as the casting edges were worn down.
  5. I also tried mounting a EF 100-400mm lens on one of the rings. Although it seemed to work fine, such a huge lens on a plastic ring may be something where great caution is advised.

    So how do I feel about this episode in my life?

    On a ‘Ralphie’ scale of 0 (it’s a crummy ad!) to 10 (an official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle! ), I’d put this on a “5” or “6” level (works, but you know).

  6. Where'd you get that cool accessory shoe level? Gotta get me one of those.
    It's one of those things that my wife would ask, "What do you need that for."
    And I'd answer, "I don't know, but it's cool!"
  7. The level gizmo was got long ago, probably from Porters in Iowa; but I think eBay probably would find something similar.
  8. You could float the level in your drink as a levelling ice cube.
  9. Yep, I just had to have one of those Hot shoe levels when I ran across them.
    I do use mine sometimes. It's handy, keeps your mind occupied worrying about losing it,
    dropping it, scratching it up carrying with your pocket change, etc., etc..

    Tim, got mine from either Adorama or B&H because I've not shopped for camera gear any
    where else!

    JDM's Extension tube set looks interesting! My photography gear budget could maybe do those!
  10. BTW, I also note that other eBay vendors were selling what look to be identical, same brand-name plastic auto-extension tubes for up to three times more money (caveat emptor, as they say).
  11. Interesting, I have the very same items too! Got both on eBay from Chinese sellers. The level is in my DSLR camera bag, haven't used it yet but don't mind because it only cost a few bucks.
    I always felt the need for extension tubes, but wasn't interested in paying the higher prices for good ones. Found plastic ones on eBay for under $20 a set, but they didn't interest me. Then I found the ones as shown in plastic but with metal mounts, for around $27.00. I've only played with them a few times, will probably not see much use like most of the inexpensive gadgets I have.
  12. I'm another one with a cheap hotshoe level (although given the amount of other widgetry I have, that's no surprise). I can't say I use it on my DSLRs that have integrated digital levels, and having a grid in the finder helps me keep the horizon straight(er) anyway - although I've just had to fix a few photos that I shot when I was tired. But it's handy for my older cameras - Eos, Nikon and especially my Pentax 645. A level in the tripod head tends not to be as handy, partly because it tends to be obscured by the camera somewhat. Mine lives in my toploader bag, just in case. I've not seen one with metal mounts, though - that sounds posh.
  13. A colleague of mine was one of the first social scientists to get into East Germany after the Anßluss with the Bundesrepublik.​
    Totally OT post.
    1. It is Anschluss or Anschluß. The sharp s is used where you might expect a ss, but never instead of sch. Since the German orthography reform of 1996, it is used only after long vowels and diphthongs while ss is written after short vowels. The current correct spelling is Anschluss while Anschluß is antiquated. You also need to take care never to use the symbol for the Greek letter beta for the sharp s. The symbols are similar but different.

    2. I have never seen this term used when talking about East and West Germany. In that case people usually talk about Wiedervereinigung (reunification). That's a long word, but if you use Anschluss instead, any German would take this as satire at best, or more likely as caustic criticism of the reunification. Anschluss was the Nazi propaganda term for the annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany, and is widely known as such.
  14. Ja. i saw that too late to correct after i put in the ß by selecting and typing over.
    Among my people, the word Anschluß is commonly used to apply to the "reunification" . I have seen it frequently outside my own use.
    As I understand it, Springer and the others have given up on the 1996 spelling reform. link

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