Thursday, 31 January 2013

Finally! I got me an SSD!

Taken using my sister's point and shoot. Yeah, ignore my large eyes. Just too happy!

Quick update on my life, I got another component for my PC, and its the Plextor M5 Pro SSD!

I have been wanting an SSD so bad and so long, but I finally got enough money to make the purchase.

I have read, and heard, good things about this very SSD and its maker, Plextor, but was still hesitant, I wanted either the Intel or Crucial SSD's. But since they weren't available, couple what I heard and read with the 5 year warranty, then I was literally sold.

I just hope it holds up to what I have heard and read.

Sunday, 27 January 2013

I Put You Under Rainy Day

The Cure - 2 Late

so i'll wait for you
where i always wait
behind the signs that sell the news
i'll watch for you like yesterday
and hope for you
one day that once
spent out on me
and up 'til late
i search for you
your hat pushed straight
away from me
your measured step
heads up you win
always too late

oh if i could just once catch your eye
invisible against the words
that hold you down in solitude
and never let you go
the way that every time
my eyes just close
like lids of wooden men in file
i put you under rainy day
your hat's all off
and i'm gone away...

so i'll wait for you
where i always wait
behind the signs that sell the news
and i'll watch for you like yesterday
and hope for you
one day that once
spent out on me
and up 'til late
i search for you
your hat pushed straight
away from me
your measured step
heads up you win
always too late

It comes to no surprise that I am Cure fan; I have countless times regarded them as my main influence in learning how to play the guitar, and subsequently, other instruments, just like them. Here is another reason why Robert Smith and company are deemed my all time favorite artists of all time (Yes, hate me if you will, but The Beatles for me rank 2nd in my all time list. Different strokes for different folks).

I will reiterate, I am a Cure fan... not the biggest, because physically I am not tall, and technically, by the true definition of "biggest fan", I don't have all their merchandise, but I boast a lot of their CD's that I am proud about. I tweeted recently that I started collecting their older albums once again and just a few days ago, I got me their Join the Dots: B-Sides and Rarities album. I wanted to hear their B-Sides to such songs I have already been accustomed to and listen to those unreleased songs that I have never literally heard of. I have yet to fully explore the album, but I immediately fell in love with a song entitled "2 Late".

I first heard of this song in their deluxe edition of their Disintegration (It was the B-Side to Lovesong) album, but it was only an instrumental band demo; it has a catchy tune, albeit without lyrics, but when I finally heard it in all it's glory in their Join the Dots album, and I was hooked.

In essence, it may not be as lyrically prolific and Davinci Code-esque as Robert's other songs, but this song still has it's own need to decode some of it's meaning, even if it's nearly obvious as to what the song really means.

Something about tragic love songs that ends in a horrific manner, or such the case, never even began (yes, I speak of unrequited love that I am far too familiar with now), that really takes a hold of me.

It starts out so stalker-like with "I'll wait for you where I always wait. Behind the signs that sell the news", but it goes on to tell a story of a girl this guy doesn't really know, more of a stranger falling in love at first sight. But like most of us men, we cower at the thought of talking to the girl we like. He would always see her in that same spot over and over, hoping to just get her brief attention  but she would always "push her hat straight away from me (him)", but the song goes on to show that he waited far too long and "put you (her) under rainy day" to signify he gave up, only to have her "hat's all off and I'm (him) gone away...", no longer waiting at the usual spot.

It is such a simple, tragic, little unrequited love story, backed up by a catchy tune with a subtle bass, floating keyboards, echoing drums, and surreal guitar riffs that just takes me away, reminding me of the many girls I liked in the past then went unrequited.

It's painfully beautiful.

I urge you to listen to the tune (video provided above), and try and get a copy of their Join the Dots album to listen to treasures that we aren't to familiar with since they are mostly B-sides to the songs that we have already known.


And this may be far off topic, but being a hobbyist photographer, keep shooting! Never look back!


Saturday, 26 January 2013

Typography Fun
D' Group: Me and my medschool buddies little group

Since I just finished my midterm exams yesterday, I had nothing to do today and decided to play around with Adobe Photoshop so I don't get too rusty as it it.

This is for my buddies at school!

Friday, 25 January 2013

2013 Week 4: End of Exams!


My midterm examinations bit the dust! But why does it seem I was the one that bit the dust? LOL

The exams was like and ECG tracing - ups and downs. There were some exams that were a breeze, and there were A LOT of exams that felt as though those questions were reserved for the consultants in that particular department of medicine. But that's the life of a medical student; this week, as every other examination week, felt like the longest 7 days of my life. I probably lost even more weight than I should! My hair as grown and started to have a mind of its own, as well as my mustache and goatee. Well, the weekend is here to fix that right up; going to get a decent haircut tomorrow and I will shave my facial hair tonight to look slightly more human again. Wish me luck!

With my hellish exams over, I can look forward to this weekend to play with my new toys I got 2 weeks ago; my Macro LED Flash ring and a filter ring mount for reversed lenses during macro photography. I will be trying some macro shots again and try out a series of self portraits (my social accounts photos need to be updated LOL) with the macro LED ring in order to get those ring catchlights on my eyes. I would also want to try and replicate a specific self portrait that I stumbled upon recently; very interesting concept that really got my attention, and I reserve describing it until I post my shots. And oh yeah, I purchased a program where I can tether my Nikon D5000 (you can tether other camera models) and have live view on my desktop or laptop; very helpful for me since when I shoot at my room, I don't always have an assistant for those delicate self portraits.

I am also going to shop around for my much delayed videocard, SSD, optical drive, some specialy made sleeved PSU cables, and order a custom clear window for my Bitfenix Shinobi case; this will make my system build complete for the most part... I still would want a second 23" IPS monitor since I am currently running one paired with my old 17" TN monitor. As I do a lot of media editing, I like having dual monitors to have a bigger real estate in terms of desktop space. Having a 23" on 1920 x 1080 with a 17" 1280 x 1024 can be bothersome for someone as anal as me. I would want my monitors to run at a similar native resolution. But I guess I'll get my second monitor this summer.

My ultimate goal this year, or ultimate purchase this year, is still that Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 lens. But I will save that for Christmas... I've been putting that purchase off for 2 years now LOL

Jeez, I will make the best of these 2 days just to have fun and just regain my lost energy during the exam week.

Meh, I will hit the sack for now.



Follow me on Twitter: @ChanUdarbe

Saturday, 19 January 2013

2013 Week 3: I got sick.. And I'm still sick. We got exams next week; I think I'm gonna be even more sick.

So, I'll keep this short and sweet... because that how I am. I am short and sweet.

Okay, last Monday night, I got down with the colds, to my own surprise, it was a systemic viral infection that became fulminant by Tuesday night, and made me miss classes from Wednesday up until Friday. I did make it for preceptorship for Pediatrics last Thursday, but that's it. I missed 3 days of school. Makes me feel stupid.

Now this Monday is our midterm examinations... oh boy oh boy... Lord have mercy...

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

I've Got Mail! Literally!

Way back when, I was quite interested in getting a macro ring flash so I can get those ring catch light effects on a subjects eyes in portrait photography, and of course, to use it for macro photography since I use a reverse lens and sometimes to use an external flash can be tricky, to say the least, in getting the required amount of light when everything is done manually on a reversed lens.

I have pushing back my order for a macro ring flash for the longest time since I was using a reversed lens and the filter thread can't be used by the macro ring flash as a mount. I had to find a filter mount for the Nikon F mount in order for my reversed lens to have a filter thread available for mounting a macro ring flash otherwise my purchase will be limited to portraits. And being a cheapass, I wouldn't want that.

It wasn't until last week when I seriously decided on searching for one, and ultimately ordering one, because in our research in Obstetrics and Gynecology required us to photograph the women subjects' genitalia internally (specifically, the cervix) after the inclusion of acetowhitening techniques to compare the results with pap smears; we wanted to have 3 consultants on the spot to just assess the results, but this was frowned upon by our advisers since we will not be able to find consultants willing enough to help us the whole day, in separate sessions, to assess our results. Thus, we were told to take photographs instead. And who did my class choose to take these photographs? Obviously me! To my dismay, I felt like my medical career is in jeopardy before it even began! LOL

Anyways, with that being said, I knew my off shoe flash will not be enough to illuminate the cervix, so I immediately remembered about a macro ring flash. As thus, I went on to find a good priced, good branded, good GN, macro flash. I found a great priced one, an alien branded one (I couldn't find any familiar brands here), and a high enough GN for what it is worth at 18.

Now, I can justify the purchase since I will be using this for our research (I forgot where I read it, but the ring flash was said to be originally made for dental photography? I could be wrong, but apart from macro, it certainly is used in the medical field, so I was literally sold), I can use this in portraits, and I can use this in macro photography.

But then, there was the problem looming over me... The fact that I do not own a dedicated macro lens, I simply use a macro reverse ring to reverse my lens to have the magnification needed for macro. The down side here is that everything is done manually; the focus, the amount of flash (if you aren't using an off camera shoe cord), and the aperture (since the aperture arm is no longer in contact with the camera body, you either have to place a card or something in order to control the aperture... and you do not know what f/stop it really is in, apart from the highest and lowest f/stops). And the most important limitation in conjunction with the macro ring flash is that, since it is reversed, I can't used the filter thread to mount my ring flash!

Oh the dilemma... but of course, since we needed it for the research, that didn't stop me from ordering the ring flash.

It wasn't until 10 minutes after I made my order yesterday, that I found a Kiwi Foto Filter Ring Mount which was a female to female mount, meaning one end accepts a Nikon F mount and the other end is a 52mm filter thread. BAM! I found what I was in dire need of! So I also ordered it.

Fast forward to a today, and I got my packages in the mail!

Nothing like getting packages in the mail!

So I hurried to open up my first package, specifically the Kiwi Foto Filter Ring Mount!

In my cutting board, with trusty cutter; I blurred out my address. Go Figure!

Relax people! I wasn't sent the wrong item! I have ordering a lot from this guy and he seems to have a style of doubling up the boxes so the actual item's box isn't damaged.

Here is the real item!

I must say, I love the box; simple. No sh*tting around here! No manual either. Well, if you are going to use a reversed lens for macro, you should probably know a thing or two about your camera by now that you need not read any manual to use certain accessories.

Time to see it with my kitlens (which I now primary use as a macro lens)!

I closer (darker) look at the item. I wasn't to keen in getting all the lighting set up in my room so this is how it looks like roughly. LOL

Here it is attached on the F mount of my kitlens.
A somewhat better angle; again I wasn't keen on setting all my lights up for these shots.

An even better angle of the filter ring mount on my kitlens!

Now time unbox the macro ring flash!

As I mentioned earlier, it was from an unknown brand to me, a Meike Macro Ring Flash, but it's the only good one I can find here in the Philippines, so it should suffice.

To the cutting board!!

A wild Meike Macro Ring Flash  MK-FC110 appears!

This is the first time I heard of this brand, so I hope I wont be let down.

Time to see actual item and its contents included:

Package inludes: 7 adapter rings to fit any lens' filter threads, a warranty card, a manual, the LED ring flash, and an orange colored temperature filter (without it on the temp is 5500k; with it on, the temp is 3200k)

A closer look at the colored temperature filter

Without the colored temperature filter

The control unit; this MK-FC110 improved upon the previous FC100 by having a slightly higher GN (previously 15, now it is 18) and the LED screen on the control unit.

The unit
Here is the Meike Macro Ring Flash MK-FC110 on my Nikon 18-55mm kitlens via the Kiwi Foto Filter Ring Mount. If you look behind the lens (Well, the front of the lens... since it is reversed and all) you could see my JJC macro reversing ring

Since it is still the school week, I couldn't test this to the fullest, probably the weekend after this, I will write my thoughts on these 2 items, mostly the macro ring flash since the filter ring mount simply does what it was meant to do immediately.

So far, I am happy with the macro flash, it is bright enough to get the job done. But I will write a separate entry on its features, etc., and my thoughts next time. For now, I just wanted to give a preview and share my happy feeling upon receiving new camera gear.

Oh yeah, all of these shots were with my Nikon D5000, no post processing since its just items...


Until next time!


Saturday, 12 January 2013

2013 Week 2: Four Days of Exams, "Window Shopping", and The Search for he "Tape of the GAWDS!"

The second week of the year, and concurrently, the second week of the resuming of my classes, we had four days of consecutive exams and not too mention a couple of reports in between. 

It started at Monday, with an exam in Internal Medicine which I survived thanks to the plasma cell disorder topic, specifically, multiple myeloma, that I had read maybe three times over from November to December because I was mistaken (yes, three times mistaken) about the topics to be lectured (I thought it was plasma cell disorders but it wasn't... three times...).

Then Tuesday came without Morrie, but exam and two preceptorships made me feel as I have ALS. But just like the day before, I passed with flying colors in the exam in Pharmacology. Fist pump of pure awesome-ness.

Wednesday had yet another exam, this time in Clinical Pathology, which was easy enough, but I had mental block that made me want to commit suicide from the 4th floor of our university's School of Medicine building. Thankfully, still passed, but not the way I wanted.

Thursday, that where sh*t just got real! The exam in Pediatrics made me fear and loathe children again. That is enough to say that the exam was difficult. Can't win them all, my mom told me, and I guess she is right. Immediately after the exam, me and buddy, Joed, skipped on that afternoon's preceptorship in Pediatrics to meet up with a cardiologist, Dr. Jocson, to have our Pharmacology research paper on the adherence of the physicians here in the Philippines with the CPG on dyslipidemia; it needed a lot of revisions... to say the least. Good thing Joed is such a soldier to stay up that night and even sacrificed entering Neurology the very next morning. Kudos, Joed... kudos.

So Friday came, my voice echoed around the university, shouting TGIF and a tribute to my all time favorite band ever, The Cure, I also shouted "It's Friday I'm in Love!". It was supposed to be the day I just relax and not care about life; where I can merely sleep in class and not care if the weight of my professors eyes were upon little ol' me. I DIDN'T CARE ANYMORE.


Remember that Pharmacology research paper Joed had to finish the night before? Well, that, along with the other researches that we have (Yes, we have multiple research papers spanning Obstetrics, Gynecology, Preventive Medicine, and Pharmacology; we more or less have the same grouping in each research paper, so we divided the "capable" ones in the different departments to lead... in doing so, I was in Pharmacology with Joed.) were supposed to be passed on that Friday to the IRB (forgot it stood for, but its a panel where they give the go signal or not; they talk amongst eachother in the panel to give verdict); like every year, we are supposed to just pass and they will just let us know of any revisions needed and whatnot. We need not have an oral defense. Well... they suddenly said we will have an oral defense. So most of us leaders were dumbfounded. So my TGIF and Friday I'm in Love became Friday the 13th (which so happens to be the day I was born...). Got through that scare since when it was supposed to be me and Joed's turn to defend, it was too late for the panel to stay any longer, so they said they will just take home our paper and give us the verdict next week. Dodged a bullet there. But the stress was too much for me to enter a good mood again later that day.

During the hectic week, I was also in the market for a "modder" of PC cases since my case, the Bitfenix Shinobi, has a smoked windowed side panel. Too smoked to really see the beauty inside. I was literally "Window Shopping". Therefore, I went up to the forums where most PC enthusiasts are here in the Philippines and was pointed the guys at Ragezmodz PC Workz and they happen to have a window for the same case two months ago. And thus, I ordered a customized clear window side panel for my case. But I requested not to include the fan mounting holes and the mounting holes for the actual window for my side panel; I rather do what the guys at MonsterMawd does... use the Tape of the GAWDS (3M VHB #4010).

My current PC project is to change the smoked window (lower right) with a clear window. I ordered a clear window without the fan mount holes and asked not to include the holes for the screws where the window will be placed into the side panel (upper right). Not much use for the screws (lower left) anymore since I will be using the "Tape of the .GAWDS"

Also during the week, I was in search for this double-sided tape. I just found it yesterday in SM at Ace Hardware for a good enough price; they didn't have the #4010, I just got #5070 which is essentially the same, but this one holds up to 5lbs unlike the #4010 that holds up to 2lbs, and the #4010 is a clear double-sided tape while the #5070 isn't. All good since it will be used in the opposite side of the side panel where it won't be seen.

Lo and behold! The "Tape of the GAWDS"!

And that's how my week went... How was yours? That just may be a rhetorical question... LOL

Anyways, tomorrow is when I turn 24! I was born way back at January 13, 1989, which so happens to be a Friday, hence, why my name was supposed to be Jason. I ended being named Christian, which is better. Child of God as they say. And I wouldn't have gone for in my studies and life without my faith.

Well, that's it for now, I have been tying on the fly for like 30minutes so I am starting to get numb in my wrists... No it isn't carpal tunnel syndrome. I more or less impinged on my ulnar nerve since my medial 1/3 of my ring finger and the whole pinky of my left hand is numb. LOL


Saturday, 5 January 2013

The Sulfur Show AKA 2013 New Year's Fireworks Display!

As mentioned in my previous post, I was supposed to dedicate one entry as a tutorial of sorts on what are the settings I used often when taking photographs of fireworks; it can be very tricky to get the right timing of the fireworks display alone, and to actually formulate the base settings to achieve what you intend in the shot in that short time frame is daunting to say the least; I will go over them. And there are times where you got a wonderful display only to be let down to see in your DSLR's LCD that there is a tree or another anomaly blocking the view or even that the fireworks display you took of was a tad too late and you only got ONE of the fireworks in your shot; with the advent of post-processing programs, we can remedy that. Well, I will post that tutorial before the 4th of July later this year to prep you guys/gals for the event.

I've got at least 2 or 3 more fireworks display shots which I haven't post-processed just yet; classes have began, and in such a way! I had an exam and 2 reports on the first day, and this coming week, I got 2 reports and 4 exams. So, that's why I am being slow (again) in post-processing some photos.

Anyways, below are but a few shots that I actually got to work on; click on the photo to get redirected to my Flickr Photostream. If you do own a Flickr account, do not hesitate to add me up there.

You can also find me on the following sites:
  1. You got Facebook? Add me up HERE 
  2. You got Twitter? Follow me and I'll follow you: 
  3. You got Google+? Add me to your Circle and I'll add you back HERE 
  4. Chatting at 
    Yahoo! Messenger? Then add me up! 
  5. Join the Cazillions at; Click HERE 
  6. Computer Geek? Join us... or else... at! Click HERE


New Year 2013!

New Year 2013!

New Year 2013!


2013 Week 1: Crazy Two-Day School Week...

New Year's Treats!
Happy New Year! Some sweets that my sister made for the new year's celebration.

To start things off! Happy new year! I will be posting a separate entry for some fireworks display photographs that I have taken, and I was supposed to post an entry on the settings I used most often when shooting these light shows, but was unpredictably busy preparing for the New Year's celebration.

Anyways, I decided to try and post at least 1 entry per weekend this year to keep my blog site alive. I do hope more and more followers will join in the fun. LOL

So class resumed for us last January 3, hardly enough time to get sobered up; take note I do not drink alcoholic beverages, but the the vacation gave the same effect of being drunk... not that I know of, and I had hardly enough time to get of the vacation hangover into the real world. And the fact that I had 2 reports and an exam on the very first day of resumed classes ain't something to sneeze about.

The next day, January 4, was a little more lax. I don't really recite a lot in class, because I no longer love the lime light as I once did in my Pre-Med course years ago, but my playful classmates forced me to recite; which would come to no real problem for me if I knew what the question was supposed to be... Yes, before our professor even blurted out his question, he was asking a volunteer to answer, which was unfortunately me. Not knowing what question it would be, I was ready to turn the question down in that instant, thankfully, he asked me to recite the visual pathway which I knew quite well. Not too shabby a start for the new year in my opinion.

Still on that same day, the very next class, Medical Jurisprudence, was another elating experience for me, with a textbook at hand, I was answering, however not formally recite, my professors random questions.

The afternoon was so and so, and I was getting hellishly sleepy due in part by the fact I am still hungover by the vacation and what not, so I laid low the entire afternoon, except for one hiccup from my Internal Medicine professor's laptop, that even if the problem was negligible to what I normally consider a computer problem and that anybody in my opinion may fix it, I was still called to step and fix this... "problem".

Thus we entered Saturday, which is today. I spent most of the day typing a homework for my dad's friend's daughter... that almost confused me there. Anyway, to my dismay, I had to sacrifice my so-called study ahead day for someone else but being a good Samaritan ain't a bad thing. After typing what seemed to be a never ending jargon of words, I decided to just slack off the entire afternoon.

This evening, however, after publishing this, I shall try and study Pediatrics since their exams in that department is like a huge gamble; you have notes from class which is insufficient, you have your official text book which is nearly the size of my CPU case (I have the Bitfenix Shinobi and the book I speak off is Nelson's Textbook in Pediatrics) and you have no idea if what you read will come out of the exam (our exam can be as little as 8 questions to as much as 24 questions depending on the hours spent on the topic in class).

Ah well, I'm nearly a clerk, so there shouldn't be any complaints now! Just fight! And Pray!

Wish me luck and I do appreciate prayers...