Thursday, January 16, 2014

CyberLink PhotoDirector 5 Deluxe

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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CyberLink today launched PhotoDirector 5 Deluxe, a program which integrates photo management, adjustment, editing and sharing functionalities. To satisfy the versatile needs of home and casual users, PhotoDirector 5 Deluxe is packed with various photo editing features from the PhotoDirector family, including content-aware removal, people beautifier tools, HDR exposure blending and photo presets. The software is available for $59.99.

Total Production of Nikkor Lenses Reaches 85 Million

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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Nikon has announced that total production of Nikkor and 1 Nikkor lenses for interchangeable-lens cameras has surpassed the 85-million mark. As the 80 millionth interchangeable Nikkor lens was manufactured in June, this means that Nikon produced no less than 5 million interchangeable lenses in a bit more than half a year. In August 2013, Nikon announced the AF-S DX Nikkor 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens, a versatile 7.8x high-power zoom lens compatible with DX-format DSLR cameras, while in November, Nikon introduced the AF-S Nikkor 58mm f/1.4G, a fast FX-format offering capable of elite low-light performance, earning accolades for its ability to minimize sagittal coma flare. Also introduced was another addition to Nikon’s f/1.8 lens lineup, the AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G for FX and film cameras. Additionally, Nikon has released the world’s first waterproof and shockproof 1 Nikkor lenses, the 1 Nikkor AW 11-27.5mm f/3.5-5.6 (read review) and the 1 Nikkor AW 10mm f/2.8, alongside the Nikon 1 AW1 camera.

Capa in Colour

Zoltan Arva-Toth
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Legendary Hungarian photojournalist Robert Capa is mostly remembered for his iconic black-and-white photographs, but he is actually among the pioneers of colour photography too. From as early as 1938 right until his death in 1954 he shot literally thousands of frames on colour film, principally Kodachrome, in various formats ranging from 35mm to 4x5". Capa in Colour, on view at the International Center of Photography (ICP) from 31st January to 4th May and comprising over 100 contemporary prints, is the first full assessment of his colour work. The exhibition spans a variety of genres including war photography, portraiture, classic photojournalism and fashion photography. In conjunction with the exhibition, ICP will present a panel highlighting Robert Capa’s life, career, and legacy on Wednesday, 12th February at 7:00 pm. The event will take place at the School at ICP (Shooting Studio, 1114 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street, New York).

King Jim to Launch Camera Mouse

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital
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Japanese company King Jim is set to launch a camera-equipped mouse on 31st January. The hybrid device is primarily aimed at computer users who need to illustrate documents and emails with images of a product or some other object, but we expect that a lot of "mouse photos" will also be taken for Facebook and Twitter as well. The photos are relatively small (up to 2 megapixels), and the mouse is capable of transferring them to your PC immediately after capture courtesy of the bundled software, which also offers basic editing functions. According to the company, the software works with the Japanese versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8. The camera-equipped mouse will retail for 4200 yen including taxes.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Nikon 1 Nikkor AW 11-27.5mm f/3.5-5.6 Review

Zoltan Arva-Toth
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The Nikkor VR 11-27.5mm f/3.5-5.6 is the standard zoom lens for the new Nikon 1 AW1 weather-proof compact system camera. But is the world's first water- and shockproof interchangeable zoom lens any good? Read our in-depth Nikkor VR 11-27.5mm f/3.5-5.6 review complete with sharpness crops and full-size sample photos to find out...

Accessory of the Year 2013

Mark Goldstein | Accessories, PhotographyBLOG
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This week we’re revealing our favourite products from last year in our annual awards, looking back at the essential photography kit that helped to define 2013.

The Accessory of the Year 2013 award goes to the NEC MultiSync PA242W monitor.

“Sure, the NEC MultiSync PA242W costs a lot more than most 24-inch monitors, but if colour accuracy is paramount, you can't do much better than this...”

Read the Full Review

Congratulations to NEC and the MultiSync PA242W!

IGPOTY Exhibition and Book to be Unveiled at Kew

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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On 15th February, an exhibition of exquisite images from International Garden Photographer of the Year (IGPOTY) awards will be unveiled at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. The exhibition, which is located in the Nash Conservatory, runs until  30th March. Entry to the exhibition is included in the entry ticket to the gardens. The book, International Garden Photographer of the Year: Collection 7, will also be on sale in the Kew shop. The 2014 competition, which has a total cash prize fund of £13,000; also opens on 15th February.

Last Chance to Enter Love Captured Photo Contest

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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There are just two days left to enter eHarmony’s Love Captured photography competition.Celebrating eHarmony’s five year anniversary, the competition offers a grand prize of £5,000 to the photo which best captures the concept of love, whether it’s a touching photo of a couple or friends sharing a special moment, or an abstract image that symbolises love. Visitors to lovecaptured.eharmony.co.uk will be able to view the gallery of entries and vote on their favourite images. The entry that receives the most votes in each region will automatically go through to the final 25, from which the overall winner will be chosen. The competition will closes on 17 January 2014. As always, we suggest that you read the terms and conditions before entering your work.

Acratech Video Ballhead No. 7100

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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Acratech’s new Video Ballhead is a sturdy, lightweight tripod head that is a ballhead for still photography and a fluid dampened pan and tilt head for video. Weighing in at 1.5lb, the Acratech Video Ballhead Model #7100 features an oil- and grease-free ball which will not attract dirt and debris, and will not shift once tightened. Compatible with Arca-Swiss type quick release plates, Acratech's Video Ballhead Model #7100 also works as a long lens head as well as a panoramic head. Manufactured in the US, the new ballhead retails for $599.95.

DxO Optics Pro 9.1.2

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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DxO Labs have released version 9.1.2 of DxO Optics Pro. This update bring support for the Panasonic Lumix GM-1, the Nikon 1 AW1, and the Apple iPhone 5S, and benefits from the addition of 160 new DxO Optics Modules. The Standard and Elite editions of DxO Optics Pro v9.1.2 for Mac and Windows are now available in the DxO Labs online store (shop.dxo.com) and at photo resellers at a special discount price until the end of this month.

Adobe Photoshop Photography Programme Extended

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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Via its Photoshop.com blog, Adobe has announced that its Photoshop Photography Programme has been extended until 28 February 2014, and is open to those who own Photoshop CS3-CS6. The company initially launched this programme in September as a limited-time offer, with photographers required to sign up before the end of 2013. The offer gives Adobe customers who own a perpetual Photoshop CS3-CS6 licence the opportunity to use both Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5 for $9.99 per month, and includes 20 gigabytes of online storage, access to Creative Cloud Learn's training resources, Behance ProSite, and ongoing upgrades and updates.

Website: Adobe Photoshop Photography Programme for CS3+ Customers

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM Sample Images

Mark Goldstein
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Ahead of our full review, here are 32 sample JPEG photos taken with the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM lens, mounted on a Canon EOS 5D Mk III.

The Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM is a premium constant-aperture standard zoom lens for full-frame DSLR cameras, retailing for £2299.99 / $2299.99.

Printer of the Year 2013

Mark Goldstein | PhotographyBLOG, Printers
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This week we’re revealing our favourite products from last year in our annual awards, looking back at the essential photography kit that helped to define 2013.

The Printer of the Year 2013 award goes to the Canon PIXMA PRO-100.

“If you do most of your printing on photo papers, particularly luster and gloss, and you shoot a lot of landscape/flower type photos, the Pro-100 is a clear winner.”

Read the Full Review

Congratulations to Canon and the PIXMA PRO-100!

Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM Review

Mark Goldstein
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The Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM is a brand new premium standard zoom lens for full-frame DSLR cameras. Retailing for £849.99 / $899.99, can the Sigma 24-105mm take on and beat the equivalent lenses from Canon and Nikon? Read our Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM review to find out...

Epson Moverio BT-200

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital
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Epson has announced its second-generation Moverio “smart glasses” featuring a true binocular display and a built-in camera. Set to compete with Google Glass, the Epson Moverio BT-200 projects a stereoscopic virtual display with a 16:9 aspect ratio and a 23-degree field of view. A 360-degree panoramic experience is possible through third-party software that takes advantage of the glasses’ head-tracking features. A front-facing camera enables image and video capture, while a hand-held controller unit powered by Android 4.0 gives users access to a growing selection of augmented reality apps. The Moverio BT-200 smart glasses will be shipping from March 2014 with a MSRP of $699.99. For more information, visit the website below.

Tagaboom for iOS

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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The free Tagaboom app is now available for iOS. Photos and animated GIFs can now be combined with sound effects, drawings and text. "Tagaboom captures the entire moment and makes it easy to share the ideas, sounds, and style that accompany each photo," the developers say. Tagaboom for iOS is now available on iTunes.

LightRocket Boosts Connections between Photographers & Buyers

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Websites
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Recently launched online photo service LightRocket is leveraging its extensive industry connections to promote relationships between its members and thousands of professional picture buyers around the world. LightRocket takes no commission or service fees on sales generated via its platform, ensuring 100% of picture licensing fees go directly to the photographer. The company says it plans to deepen this aspect of its service in 2014 with the addition of new functionality designed to further facilitate and promote connections between photographers and picture buyers. The platform's premium annual subscription package is currently available for $49. New users may try out the system free for 30 days.

Mountainsmith Announces 5 New Camera Bags

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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Mountainsmith has launched an assortment of redesigned camera bags for the photographer seeking to capture the experiences in the great outdoors. Designed with the consultation of National Geographic photographer Andy Mann, the new bags offer a better fit through correct load dispersion and serious protection for your photographic equipment. There are five bags in the range including Parallax, Borealis, Spectrum, Descent and Tour FX (pictured). For more information, visit the website below.

Terry O’Neill 2013 Award Winners Announced

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The winners of the Terry O'Neill Award have just been announced. The list of awardees includes Laura Boushnak, Javier Arcenillas and Claudia Moroni. The winner of the mobile device category is Richard Gray. The 2014 Award will launch at the Photography Show at Birmingham NEC: 1 – 5 March 2014.

Hahnemühle Canvas Metallic 350 gsm

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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Hahnemühle has expanded its Digital FineArt canvas collection with the 350gsm Hahnemühle Canvas Metallic poly-cotton inkjet canvas. This bright white, metallic fine-art canvas has a one-of-a-kind surface with an elegant pearlescent silver gloss, extremely high density for dark colours and a wide colour gamut. Hahnemühle Canvas Metallic 350 gsm will be on display at Imaging USA (booth#239) in Phoenix, 12-14 January.