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Seagullman
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Dec 13, 2013

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

Although as a pensioner I actually had the time before the pandemic, I've started spending more time experimenting with some of my new photographic equipment which I bought last summer and during this last winter. E.g. Super Telezoom 150-600mm, New Nikon D750 DSLR and a few other things.

I've got some blue tits showing some real interest in one of the nesting boxes I've got hanging for them in the garden. They've been carrying nest material in since yesterday. With luck they'll stay and raise a few young. I've got the camera and telezoom set up on a tripod with a gimbal and I'm hoping to get some good photos of them. We also had a super moon yesterday and I photographed that.

I'm adding a couple of photos for those who may be interested.

 

And just in case anyone is interested about the camera settings.

ISO 100 / Focal length 600mm  /  f/16  /  1/60s

Anflug

ISO 12800   /   Focal length 600mm   /    f/9   /      1/4000s

I've had to really sacrifice a fair amount of picture quality to get files small enough for the forum. They do however give a small insight into what I'm doing.

My Garden is a great place for photography at just about any time of the year. At the moment it's waking up after what's been a very mild winter.

Jeff_K
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Sep 13, 2018

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

Very nice, Seagullman, and definitely a great time of year for pics outside...and strumming the acoustic on the deck, in the garden, etc

The only bad thing about Spring around here is the young denizens of the air and burrow are easier for my male cat to catch and, um, present to us. Baby rabbit last night and a young Robin this morning...thankfully I found both before the wife did. Maybe we shouldn't let him watch The Tiger King with us...

Jeff

CityFolk
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Jun 4, 2018

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

per my last post I’m out of this thread as a result of ST’s reprimand. As I don’t understand what this is supposed to be about anymore.

Seagullman
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Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

Jeff K posted:

Very nice, Seagullman, and definitely a great time of year for pics outside...and strumming the acoustic on the deck, in the garden, etc

The only bad thing about Spring around here is the young denizens of the air and burrow are easier for my male cat to catch and, um, present to us. Baby rabbit last night and a young Robin this morning...thankfully I found both before the wife did. Maybe we shouldn't let him watch The Tiger King with us...

Jeff

Hi Jeff,

When I lived with my parents we always had cats. They also proudly brought smaller creatures home to show us. A friend of mine had a very large cat which sometimes brought fully grown rabbits home.

The way my nesting boxes are hanging makes it extremely difficult if not impossible for cats to get the birds. Also, due to having the pond I chase any cats I see out of the garden. After a while most to them don't tend to be a nuisance. 

May God keep your daughter safe.

Tony

 

Archtop_Eddy
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Jul 25, 2004

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

CityFolk posted:

per my last post I’m out of this thread as a result of ST’s reprimand. As I don’t understand what this is supposed to be about anymore.

Feel the same way. Got other things I can be doing. Continue to enjoy the thread fellas, but for me -- it's adios!

JFd
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Nov 22, 2008

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

Jeff K posted:
ST posted:

I like the "a song a night" aspect. I've seen several Facebook Live events that went on far too long as they revealed a lack of preparation and focus. Over the minutes, the audience fell away.

Yeah, I've noticed the same with some events. That's one nice thing about those pages doing the uploaded videos but stressing the "spontaneous, at home" variety vice pre-produced ones  They want to share what people are doing at home during the Quarantine, not their YouTube promo reel.

Also best are those Virtual Open Mics that do a sign-up list where members Go Live at their "time" for 3 or 4 songs, then sign off and the next person on the list goes live. That works a lot better than, "Who wants to go next? Anyone? Bueller? Fry?". You still get some bumps in the road as everyone's learning how to do this whole Live thing, but it can turn out pretty well if you make up a schedule for everyone to follow, and have more fun

Jeff.

Re. Open Mic

We continue our weekly Open Mic on Thursdays online.  

- We start a meeting on Skype, people start logging on at 18:30,

- I take the names of the people who want to perform (we do 1 song at this point. Our normal “in person” Open Mic is 2 songs or 10 minutes)

- Right before 19:00, I sort the names using the Excel “Random” function and this gives us our performing order. We are limiting to 20 performers at this point.

- The person performing turns on their camera and mic. Everyone else turn off their camera and mic during the performance, then turn the mic’s on to applaud.

We are still working things out, but are having fun!

JFd

Mariposa... le Café

Keep on strumming

ST - Pro
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May 11, 2020

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

The Two Meter band (see details above) were out playing at the assisted living center yesterday.  It was 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) and partly sunny. Much warmer than last week. 

We had a great time although we were concerned because we're playing to a captive audience under lock-down. We double-checked with the management, and they said we were welcome to come back as often as we can. They have asked us to perform in three locations around the complex so more people can hear us.

The facilities are under total lock-down. There are no electrical outlets on the outside of the building, so a staff member has to toss an extension cord down from a balcony above. This is cumbersome because we play one long set to one side of the complex, then pick up and move to the other side. We need a staff member to pull in the extension cord and then run around to the other side.  There's a third part of the complex where we can't be heard so starting on Friday, we'll be moving twice.

Last time, the bassist/guitarist/vocalist brought an AC powered PA and a 12-channel mixer. This worked fine but after he saw my S1 Pro, he got excited about getting something more portable. He rented a Yorkville Sound EXM Mobile system. It's almost a big as an F1 Model 812 (not as loud), but it runs on internal batteries.  It was a good choice for our application because we need support for the bass guitar.  It has a 12-inch woofer and the cabinet is much bigger than the S1 Pro.  However, with only three inputs shared between two people, it took some dancing to switch cables when they switched instruments.

To stay within the physical distancing rules and recent regulations, each musician needs to be self-sufficient.  In my perfect world, every person would bring what they need to support their contribution to the whole (mic, instrument, personal sound system). It will be interesting to see how we handle this going forward.

I wonder how much longer we'll be able to do this. As we approach the long weekend, there is increasing pressure for everyone to stay home. I don't think we qualify as an essential service.

ST

Jeff_K
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Sep 13, 2018

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

Hey ST,
A couple of recommendations for the lack of inputs would be either a battery powered mixer or one that has a DC input plug (vice an IEC AC plug). I know of a number of folks who use a 12v auto/marine battery to power DC powered items for power-less gigs, which can be wired up to support a surprising number of band equipment via a DC port (mixers, wireless mics, pedalboards, etc). The larger items like amps and speakers obviously do better designed with their own internal batteries, but even those that aren't can also be powered from a 12v car/marine battery and a power converter.

Hope this helps,
Jeff

Sam_Spoons
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Sep 17, 2019

Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

We discussed a Li-Ion power pack with built in mains inverter in another thread a while ago. I have one but, whatever you use, make sure it's a 'pure sine wave', not a 'modified sine wave' inverter. At best the latter will introduce noise into the system, and at worst may damage delicate equipment.

I do have a little Epiphone Valve Junior I modified with a sealed lead acid battery and a cheap (M.S.W) inverter which works ok but the VJ is a pretty simple and robust bit of kit. The M.S.W version of the power pack did not work well with my Behringer XR-12 mixer or AER C60 so I bought a pure sine wave power pack which works beautifully.

FWIW It runs the XR-12 while the S1s run off their own batteries. Sadly I've not yet used it in earnest for obvious reasons......

Dave_O_Heare
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Re: What are you doing with your extra time these days

I own a Behringer 1002B mixer, which can be battery powered. It uses 2 9V batteries, or three if you want phantom power, Behr says good-quality alkalines last about 4 hours; I've never run mine on batteries that long. Be warned, you need a small Phillips screwdriver to change the batteries, it gives no indication of battery life remaining, and it does not charge rechargeables. 

They call it a 10-channel mixer, but... It has 5 XLR inputs, which they say are 2 Xenyx preamps and 3 have associated stereo pairs of 1/4" line inputs; these all have Low/Mid/Hi eq. There is a set of inputs labeled 2-Track Input, aimed I guess at CD players and such, with no EQ. There is no way to collapse things to mono. There are no built-in effects.

It's okay for what it is, quiet enough, no funny noises, etc. The power supply, if you use it, is a pain; it uses a non-standard mini-DIN plug which is easily damaged. It's also cheap; $170Cdn at L&M, $120US at B&H Photo.

The mixer, though, is very robust. It lives in my van year-round, and I live in Ottawa, Ontario, in Canada, where temperatures can hit -35 Celsius in the winter, and +35 in summer. It's my emergency backup for when my regular mixer blows up (happened a couple of years ago on St. Patrick's day). This does mean that the faders and pots get dirty, but I always have DeOxit contact cleaner and fader lube with me.

-Dave