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About masterdrago

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    Cool Cruiser

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    SE Texas
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  1. masterdrago

    Where to back up photos/videos dai

    Thanks for that suggestion. Exactly what I was looking for. Got it last week and it's a breeze to do what I need - back up a near full 64gig memory card. It does a wealth of other tasks which I'll not need but will work great for securing our vacation pix. I have no idea how many I'll use on our 16 day trip to Alaska this Spring. Got two camera bodies, shooting RAW & jpeg, and a GoPro7Black. Thinking 5 for GP, 10-12 for 2 Nikons.
  2. masterdrago

    Fixing skies in Lightroom

    I had never considered the ghosting effect of the two exposures. I had always thought I heard the two shots but never gave that much thought. I guess I believed that the exposure differential was done internally by software, not really two separate pix. I'll have to keep that in mind. Thanks. Most of the HDR shots I've done have been landscape and still portraits.
  3. masterdrago

    Fixing skies in Lightroom

    I've a question since I don't use LR and do not shoot RAW that often, though that is slowly changing. I use something called Affinity Photo and an old version of PS6. My question is when shooting images like those mentioned, why not have the camera set for HDR? The DSLRs that I use have settings for auto, extra high, high, normal, & low and although I've not done a lot of experimentation with all those settings, it would seem to me that using HDR would prevent a lot of time at the desktop. I do understand that for a giant wall hanging, it might be prudent to spend a great deal of time tweaking everything we can from an image.
  4. masterdrago

    Top LCD panel...why?

    It is a weird thing to still have on cameras. The D5100 dropped it, back on D7500, both D700 & D750 have it. Especially with large tilt screens, I see absolutely no point. The D7500 has a nice touch screen also. Just weird. I agree with zackiedawg it would be nice if unable to see the screen or in areas not wanting to disturb due to brightness - even on the lowest setting, the displays are very bright, especially in low light situations.
  5. masterdrago

    Why take pictures?

    This is a great thread. It brings to memory why I began carrying a camera, A Minolta SRT101 in high school, then a Leica M3, then Nikon gear. I'm like most here, I enjoy taking pictures, and yes sharing them. On our upcoming cruise, I'll be taking much too many pieces of gear. I would hate to say, danged, if I only had that 600mm lens here instead of it sitting at home. I've finally gotten my wife a good cell phone so that she can take all of our in transit photos that she can instantly post to her FB page. I even figured out how to install a 64gig card in it and how to put all her snaps on it while on the trip. I have found over the last several years (retired now) that I enjoy editing pix I take. I never did b4. And like some here, I spent years making b&w in the darkroom. I'm even considering entering the astrophotography arena. I'm finding myself even shooting more RAW now which seems to give me the ability to bring out more color hidden in the dark parts of images although I rarely do more than crop and resize for a web post. I've recently decided to digitize my entire collection of slides - over 38 years worth! It will bring back many years of good memories and allow me to relive some great trips and experiences. I'm truly enjoying photography again.
  6. masterdrago

    image drop test

    just testing the options
  7. masterdrago

    Car rental in Anchorage/Seward?

    When doing our research to rent a car while on the DIY land part of our cruise, I found that prices varied by the day I looked, the type of vehicle and who renting from by a considerable amount. I researched transport from Anchorage to Seward by bus, train and private transport companies. It takes a lot of time and but with the help of a spreadsheet, it became clear the best package for us. What others say about doing it soon and possibly 2 vehicles might work best.
  8. masterdrago

    Dyea Dave - Skagway

    Just a praise for their response. I had sent them an email asking about eateries in Carcross . We are booked on their Emerald Lake tour in late May. I received a phone call the very next day from Dave McClelland directly. The caller ID was Dyea Dave Juneau Alaska. We had a ~10min super nice conversation concerning my question on eateries and his resent cancer treatment. I found him jovial, very friendly and knowledgeable. He is in good spirits and coming along well after finishing the treatments.
  9. masterdrago

    Alaska Airlines credit card companion fare question?

    I've talked with them several times by phone and have found the call takers to be extremely helpful and knowledgeable every time. Give them a call directly 800 932 2775.
  10. masterdrago

    Sept 2019 Aurora help needed

    Thanks for sharing your pick. I had not seen those folks in my searches. Looking at those reviews and their web pages, I would say you could not have made a better choice. With their long experience and well thought out methods, you'll have a great time. I know you'll be tired but will be running on adrenaline for days after getting to view such sights. Take care and I'll be watching for your trip report late in the year. Out trip is in May but being a novice video nerd, I'm sure it will take several months to edit something together to post a report.
  11. masterdrago

    Sept 2019 Aurora help needed

    Some more advice for PRPLE. When you have a chat with the aurora tour companies, try to find out where they will be taking you to observe. Try to bend their ear a bit. Use the resources I and others have pointed to. Use google Earth, MapQuest and the light pollution map link. While I was looking over that, I would guess that the best location would be north of Silver Gulch up highway 6 or 2. See if the tour company can be specific. Even up near Chatanika, the light pollution glow from Fairbanks is slightly worse than at our astronomy club dark site 120km west of Houston. The newest maps even show light pollution from new oil field operations. Take the time to do all the homework you can - you have seven months. Again good luck. I am so envious of your trip and opportunity to see the best aurora. This is the tour we are looking at... http://www.spearstravel.com/astronomy-travel/astronomy-upcoming-trips/2019-iceland.htm
  12. masterdrago

    Sept 2019 Aurora help needed

    For PRPLE. I keep trying to bump this thread to the top of the Alaska category. I just suspect that those that could give recommendations on Fairbanks Aurora excursions from personal experience are not monitoring the boards this time of year. It is rather quiet. Like others say, just peruse the reviews on Trip Adviser. There are many to study. For Northern Aurora. My Aurora experience is far from vast. I have a much better understanding of things atmospheric and celestial than any average American. Since 1983, I've been a serious amateur astronomer and living in Texas have only seen two aurora by shear luck. On March 13, 1989 I was sent up to Trinity, Texas to observe a grazing occultation. While setting up for that event, I noticed the northern sky was on fire. At least, that was what I thought. Thoughts ran to nuclear war. As I watched, thick white contrails ran through the sky as far as Orion. Then vibrant green curtains formed with thick black pleats covering most of the northern sky up to the zenith. All I had was a voice recorder which was full after 45 minutes of verbal descriptions. As it turns out, the abrupt change in the ten meter band during the day should have been my warning - particles from an X8 proton storm flare on March 10th had finally made contact with the atmosphere. A week b4, an X15 storm had erupted but those particles had missed Earth. I contacted friends when I got home but cloud cover had completely engulfed Houston and even my home 55 miles north. The 2nd lucky observation was from the visitors center at McDonald Observatory Oct. 29, 2003. By strange coincidence, a small group of amateurs were having a week long star party near Ft. Davis, Texas. The display erupted rather suddenly and only lasted ~1/2hr and a few photos were taken then on Velvia slide film. The intensity was not the grandness of the 1989 view but there were white bands among the huge red glow to the north with a broad, wide band of lime green running as an arc along the horizon.
  13. masterdrago

    Snow in Alaska

    If you look at some of the trip reports at the top of the Alaska Category, You should find a report about the time you will go. There is snow visible in Ketchikan In post #41 in