Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: « 1 [2]   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Black and White Conversion  (Read 6848 times)
john beardsworth
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2743



WWW
« Reply #20 on: December 13, 2009, 03:59:21 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: stamper
The point that I was trying to make was that there is only one review that was negative and there wasn't a review that was positive that would have balanced it? That imo is bad news for the publisher? A spiteful person could ruin sales if Amazon doesn't balance it with a positive review. The moral of the story is of course to look at other opinions?
Amazon are under no obligation whatsoever to provide balance in reviews - just honesty. They do delete malicious reviews, which this doesn't seem to be, but they shouldn't screw around and create "balance" to suit publishers, or authors. To paraphrase Roy Keane, their attitude has to be - it's a bad review, get over it.

My guess here is that often the UK and US publishers are different, so Amazon UK wouldn't pool its reviews with the greater numbers logged by Amazon US. The book is usually the same under the cover, so it's never a bad idea to read the US reviews too.

John

Author: Advanced Digital B&W (Amazon UK Amazon US)
« Last Edit: December 13, 2009, 04:14:24 AM by johnbeardy » Logged

Mark D Segal
Contributor
Sr. Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 6891


WWW
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2009, 06:41:52 AM »
ReplyReply

The Diallo book is a well-prepared, high quality publication with some very respectable names in the industry supporting it. Whether or not it suits the level and requirements and balance of content expectations of each individual reader is a reader-specific issue. The variety of the reviews will obviously reflect the variety of reviewers' backgrounds. The only way to know for sure whether it's for you is to go to a bookshop which carries it and look it over. Sometimes Amazon is able to publish Table of Content and sample chapters, and when they can do so it is often helpful. In this partticular case the TOC alone would not tell the full story because B&W-relevant content is included under other topics. It is correct that reviews are not pooled between the various Amazon.com sites - they appear where customers write them; so it is often useful to read the reviews on the US site, the UK site, the Canadian site, etc.
Logged

Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
Alan Goldhammer
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1620


WWW
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2009, 07:40:17 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: MarkDS
The Diallo book is a well-prepared, high quality publication with some very respectable names in the industry supporting it. Whether or not it suits the level and requirements and balance of content expectations of each individual reader is a reader-specific issue. The variety of the reviews will obviously reflect the variety of reviewers' backgrounds. The only way to know for sure whether it's for you is to go to a bookshop which carries it and look it over. Sometimes Amazon is able to publish Table of Content and sample chapters, and when they can do so it is often helpful. In this partticular case the TOC alone would not tell the full story because B&W-relevant content is included under other topics. It is correct that reviews are not pooled between the various Amazon.com sites - they appear where customers write them; so it is often useful to read the reviews on the US site, the UK site, the Canadian site, etc.
I have the Diallo book as well as the other two that I mentioned earlier.  All three are good books and differ in their presentations.  "If" I had to recommend just one book, it would be the Alsheimer and Hughes, "Black and White in Photoshop CS4 and Lightroom."  It is thorough in its presentation of all the conversion methods.  Given that these books are moderately priced, it's not a stretch to have all three in your library.  Ultimately what Mark says is correct, it will be an individual choice.  As to Amazon reviews, I think they do a service by inviting readers to post their own reviews.  One needs to remember that these are just the reader's views and I don't think there is anything conspiratorial about that.  Regarding the DeWolfe book, there is an extensive thread on this forum that you can find through the search engine.  Some very positive and negative reviews can be found there.
Logged

sniper
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 581


« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2009, 03:46:21 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote
Use the targeted adjustment tool instead of dragging the sliders. Drag up to lighten an area's rendition in b&w, down to darken it. Instead of continually glancing back and forth between image and sliders, you keep your eye on the picture and how tonal areas are being rendered in b&w.

John
I find the targeted ajustment tool less reliable for fine ajustments.

Quote
That review is dead-on IMHO. The Diallo book is very basic; it tries to cover everything remotely related to B/W photography, but ends up being only a very broad overview with no real depth on any topic. It is very much a "beginners" book IMHO, and should not have "Mastering" in the title. I bought this book when it first came out based on all the glowing reviews, and was very disappointed. I wish I had seen some reviews like the one above, it would have saved me some money.

I find your comment about why would Amazon allow such a review puzzling. Amazon doesn't censor negative reviews (unless they break rules regarding profanity or such), and why would they? It wouldn't be a very useful review system if they only allowed positive reviews. They have a voting system where people can register whether they consider a review helpful or not (and BTW that particular review has been rated quite positively).
I'm afraid I argree, the title gives the impression that the reader will be able to master digital black and white, in truth theres very little on the actual B+W conversion process, with chapters on portfolios, building a digital darkroom, and digital capture, the book tries to be "all things digital" IMHO.
Wayne
Logged
stamper
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2631


« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2009, 03:51:48 AM »
ReplyReply

[quote name='johnbeardy' date='Dec 13 2009, 09:59 AM' post='332351']
Amazon are under no obligation whatsoever to provide balance in reviews - just honesty. They do delete malicious reviews, which this doesn't seem to be, but they shouldn't screw around and create "balance" to suit publishers, or authors. To paraphrase Roy Keane, their attitude has to be - it's a bad review, get over it.

My guess here is that often the UK and US publishers are different, so Amazon UK wouldn't pool its reviews with the greater numbers logged by Amazon US. The book is usually the same under the cover, so it's never a bad idea to read the US reviews too.

John

Unquote

Further to above I done a search for "Perception and Imaging" by Richard D. Zakia, a professor at Rochester Institute of Technology. I discovered this review on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/02...howViewpoints=1

Read the panel on the right hand side as an illustration to what I was alluding to.
Logged

john beardsworth
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2743



WWW
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2009, 04:40:18 AM »
ReplyReply

That "Galen Woodward" wasn't "A Customer", and his comments don't look anywhere near as phoney. So sorry, I still think you're trying to shoot the messenger here rather than simply accepting what looks like a real reader's opinion - for whatever one person's opinion is worth. I hadn't noticed that best vs worst layout before - maybe it only appears when ratings differ wildly - and would agree that isn't a bad idea and does offer some balance - when the Amazon entity actually gets more than a single review. I just go back to my initial comment - try the book, and post your opinion.

John

Logged

Wally
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 64


« Reply #26 on: December 15, 2009, 12:46:55 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: stamper
Based on this post I have just ordered this book. Before doing so I looked at several reviews.

http://www.masteringdigitalbwbook.com/reviews.html

That was one among others.

They were all glowing and from well known names. The exception was on the UK Amazon site where I ordered it. It was the only review.

The issue with any computer/software book on Amazon and the reviews it gets are the same no matter what the software. If on the one hand the book is to basic for advanced users they will find it a waste and give it a bad review. If on the other hand it is to advanced for the novice user they will find it a waste and will give it a bad review. Getting it just right to please people on both sides is a monumentaly hard task and very few are able to pull it off and when they do they are generally very large books.

For example with Photoshop books if you dedicate a large section on using the curves tool for contrast adjustment some more advnaced users will be upset by that. Or if you just tell people to adjust curves to taste many readers will have no idea on what you are talking about or how to do it.

I think this gets compounded even more by the "specialty photography books" that are really more like 80% Photoshop 101 and 20% whatever specialty the book is about.

My advice is to get a good book on Photoshop or Lightroom like the ones from Scott Kelby or get the Lightroom Videos from this site and learn how to use the program(s) well. Once you you that mastered you will be able to use them to help shape your vision and vision is something that you can not learn in a book
Logged
Mark D Segal
Contributor
Sr. Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 6891


WWW
« Reply #27 on: December 15, 2009, 01:27:28 PM »
ReplyReply

Wally - very good post.
Logged

Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8....." http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/film/scanning_workflows_with_silverfast_8.shtml
JeffKohn
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1671



WWW
« Reply #28 on: December 15, 2009, 02:22:03 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Wally
The issue with any computer/software book on Amazon and the reviews it gets are the same no matter what the software. If on the one hand the book is to basic for advanced users they will find it a waste and give it a bad review. If on the other hand it is to advanced for the novice user they will find it a waste and will give it a bad review. Getting it just right to please people on both sides is a monumentaly hard task and very few are able to pull it off and when they do they are generally very large books.
This is precisely why the actual reviews at Amazon are so useful, beyond just the star ratings (on Amazon US at least). As a potential reader on any given subject, you probably have an idea of where you are along that newbie/guru spectrum, so if you read the reviews you can get a better idea of whether a book would be suitable for you. If I'm going to purchase a book that claims to cover advanced topics, then reviews stating that the book is too basic are a useful warning indicator.

As for the "most helpful" positive/critical reviews, I think there's some threshold for how many reviews a product has gotten, as well as how many helpful/not-helpful votes the reviews I've gotten. The voting system for reviews is itself useful since it helps get more exposure for the reviews that people have found most helpful.
Logged

Pages: « 1 [2]   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad