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Tony Peterson's Mindat Home Page

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Tony Peterson's Mindat Home Page

Registered member since 24th Dec 2005

Tony Peterson has uploaded:
5360 Mineral Photos
35 Locality Photos
9 Other Photos

Tony has published 2 articles on
In 2006 when I began contributing photos to Mindat, I used Olympus E300 and E330 cameras with a Zuiko 50mm 1:2 macro lens. The lens remains very good but the Olympus cameras by current standards are noisy and lo-res. I added the Canon MPE-65 macro lens on an XSi body some years later; that camera's shutter finally broke and I temporarily replaced it with a Canon T5i. I was using a Manfrotto macro rail with a stepper motor designed to be used for telescope focussing for my micro shots (minimum FOV=4 mm). This was a very analog, hands-on setup!

Finally, I have graduated to more cutting-edge gear by acquiring a Canon 6D, a 100 mm macro lens, and a Stackshot focussing rail in late 2015. The 6D is a full-frame camera and the pixel size is larger than the T5i. However, the sensor resolution still exceeds the optical resolution of my MPE-65 lens and, with the much lower noise of the 6D and the ability to employ mirror lockup provided by the Stackshot rail, there is a noticeable improvement in the detail of individual images. Image stacking is improved due to the lower noise. So even though my minimum FOV with the 6D is now 7 mm, a cropped image is still more detailed than I could obtain with the APS sensor cameras.

I have used more than one stacking program and I'm sticking to Zerene Stacker right now, it works particularly well for high-contrast micro work, and for generating stereo pairs.

About stereo images....... At the least, a stereo version helps the viewer to appreciate textural relations and crystal forms, and so is technically useful. At best, stereo pairs are dynamic and beautiful visualizations, and are the only means to accurately depict for example, inclusions in transparent minerals. The principal difficulties in obtaining quality stereo pairs from stacking programs are, that a large number of images is required, and the initial result nearly always requires some touchup. The out-of-focus backgrounds (less often foregrounds) are flat and have the appearance of painted stage scenery.

I hope you enjoy my Mindat gallery! My avatar is a photo of a pair of rock hyraxes I encountered on the way up Mount Kenya in 1986.

last edited November 29, 2015.


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