Thursday, 12 July 2018

My Contribution To The 2018 MY Garden Birdwatch Survey

A Pair Of Scaly-breasted Munias

The yearly MY Garden Birdwatch Survey was held this year on the 2nd and 3rd June, 2018. About 2 weeks earlier than usual when compared to previous years, as far as I could recall.

I did my counting at my home, as usual, on 2nd June 2018, time 7:30 A.M. Yes early in the morning as I was afraid I might forget. You will find my count results below.

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Upgrading My Android x86

I have had my Android x86 version 4.3 installed in my VirtualBox since April 2014. With software upgrades being released by the day, I think its about time I have this operating system upgraded to a more recent release.

Version 7.1 r2

Version 7.1 r2 looks like a good bet, out since May 2018.

But after spending something like two hours downloading the installation ISO image, it looks like it wouldn't work with 512 MB RAM in VirtualBox - that's all I could afford in my 1GB RAM computer. There is lots of disk activity alright; it doesn't seem to stop. After waiting for something like 20 minutes and not seeing the home or setup screen, I gave up.

Installation was a breeze though. It zip right through in about a minute.

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Raynox DCR-250 - Adding Value To My Canon Powershot SX530 HS Camera

This Raynox DCR-250 clip-on lens - there's only one way of describing it: Amazing. No that's an understatement, make that Super Amazing. To show you what I mean, just looks at this picture that I have taken with my Canon Powershot SX530 HS in macro mode, uncropped but scaled down to fit in this page:

Wasp Moth shot in Macro mode Canon Powershot SX530 HS

The subject, a Wasp Moth, barely fills 1/9th of the frame. Not much details to look at I must say. Cropping doesn't help much either.

Now compare the picture above with the following picture below. The same camera but with the Raynox lens attached, again uncropped but scaled down to fit in this page:

Wasp Moth shot in normal mode Canon Powershot SX530 HS but with Ranox DCR-250 lens attached

See why I am so excited with this lens now? A magnifying glass for my camera with the insect now filling about half the frame. The fine details, the furry bits around the insect, even the flower's pollen on the insect's feelers can be captured with my low-end prosumer point-and-shoot camera. A perfect value-add accessory to my camera.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Attaching My ProocamSXC67 Filter Adapter

I bought this ProocamSXC67 filter adapter a few days ago for my Canon Powershot SX530 HS. The price: about a third of Canon's FA-DC67A. A much more budget friendly alternative, that's for sure.

Now mounting it on my camera: that's proves to be a bit of a challenge. Much force is needed to twist the adapter into place, but will this cause any irreparable damage to the lens optics?

I had a look at my Canon's Powershot SX530 HS manual. Sad to say, it is of not much help.

Izzy of Digital Goja showing how to mount the Canon filter adapter

Thursday, 7 June 2018

ProocamSXC67 - A Cheaper Alternative To Canon's FA-DC67A

I love it when I get a great bargain.

The official Canon filter adapter FA-DC67A for my SX530 HS costs something like RM120 here in Malaysia. No doubt, it must be of high quality and reliability. But it's a bit way off my budget.

ProocamSXC67 - Canon FA-DC67A alternative

So off I when searching for a third-party alternative at Lazada Malaysia. And this is the cheapest that I could find, and eventually bought: the Proocam SXC67 adapter. A piece of metal ring (well it felt and sounded metallic) with 67mm diameter that costs me RM34.44. It would have been around RM40, but I got it off the recent Lazada 2018 Raya sale, and hence the cheaper price. Quite sturdy and well built in my opinion.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Good Old XVID

There is this problem that I have with my 7 year old Panasonic Viera LCD TV - it just can't play certain MP4 movies. The video and audio CODECs (usually H264 for video and AAC for audio) are all compatible with what the TV supports, but it just won't play.

ffmpeg - Running Within The Command Prompt

The problem, after much digging, is that this particular Panasonic TV model only supports playing video files that are in certain video standard resolution - 360p or 720p resolution, for example. It took me many attempts, but one workaround is to convert the video CODEC into XVID/DIVX. The size of the output file may be larger, but hey, it works.

I use ffmpeg to do the audio and video codec conversion. And this is the command that I use:

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Google's - Slowly Fading Away

The announcement about the turning down of by Google

Looks like another product by Google is going the way of the Dodo. The official announcement by Google can be found here. I have since moved my only link to Bitly. Good thing I didn't have many as it would be a nightmare to move them off, one-by-one.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

My Opinion On My New 32-bead LED Lamp

Items Included In The Box

Should I get the 16-bead, 32-bead, 36-bead, 49-bead or the 64-bead LED lamp for my still-life and wildlife macro photography? Will the lighting be adequate? There's only one way to find out - just go out (or online), buy one, test it out and see how it performs. And that was exactly what I did last week. Shown in the picture above is the lamp that I bought - a 32-bead rechargeable LED lamp from Lazada Malaysia. It arrived last Friday, 6 days after placing my order. Not too bad, considering that the item was shipped overseas from Hong Kong, China. The price: about US$10 (including shipping charges) which is quite reasonable since I didn't want to spend too much on something that I know nothing of.

My Opinion

So did it meet my needs? Well, not exactly.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Getting More Sales - My First Google+ Collection

Sitting quietly and waiting for things to happen, I don't believe that is a prudent strategy. When it comes to sales, marketing and advertising I think this is what they say: More Publicity = More Sales.

My First Google+ Collection: "Ipoh Wildlife"

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