Thursday, October 18, 2012
Vanguard USA has announced mail-in rebates on three series of tripods, heads, and camera bags. Photographers who purchase any Alta Pro tripod between now and 31st December will receive up to a $50 mail-in rebate—- $50 for carbon fibre models, $25 for aluminium. Those who buy any BBH ball head will receive $25. Finally, those who purchase any UP-Rise series backpack, sling or messenger camera bag are entitled to a $15 mail-in rebate. This excludes zoom bags (14z, 15z, 16Z) and shoulder bags (15,18, 22). Rebates can be claimed by completing the official rebate form.
Contour today announced the ContourROAM2 full HD action camera that introduces several new consumer-requested updates, fine-tuned video quality and a simple, user-friendly interface. The main features of the camera include a 270° rotating lens, locking instant on-record switch, four HD modes up to 1080p/60fps, waterproofing down to 1m without a case, interval shooting and compatiblitity with Contour’s extensive collection of camera mounts. The ContourROAM2 will be available for $199 at Best Buy stores and Bestbuy.com as well as select speciality retailers on 21st October.
Sony has posted a firmware update for the Sony NEX-7 compact system camera. The update allows users to disable the movie record button to avoid the risk of accidental operation during still shooting; and adds wider 1EV, 2EV and 3EV steps to the list of exposure bracketing options. Further enhancements include improved auto image review, improved image quality with wide-angle lenses and improved indication when setting Flexible Spot AF Area. Registered owners of the Sony NEX-7 compact system camera can download the firmware update from the website below.
Canon has issued a firmware update for the Canon EOS-1D X digital SLR camera, enabling AF with lens-teleconverter combinations as slow as f/8. Furthermore during AI Servo AF shooting in low light, viewfinder information is now illuminated, with the AF points blinking intermittently in red, allowing them to be easily confirmed whilst shooting, without affecting the metering of the scene. Firmware update v 1.1.1 is available to download now from the website below.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
The Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD is a 15x ultra-zoom lens for Nikon and Canon APS-C DSLR shooters. Crucially offering built-in image stabilisation, the Tamron 18-270mm offers an effective focal range of 28-420mm, replacing at least three lenses in your camera bag. Read our Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD review to find out if it's too much of a compromise or not...
The UK team for Joby Gorillapod tripods has issued a warning to beware of fake Joby products which are circulating, reminding consumers that cheap imitations will not be of the same quality and may not meet UK safety standards. Loraine Morgan, Senior Marketing Manager for Joby in the UK said: ‘The quality of these products is poor and ultimately it is the consumer who suffers when they buy a product that does not deliver the function and reliability of a genuine JOBY product.’
Zoner Software has just released a new version of its photo software Zoner Photo Studio. New features in Version 15 include Quick Search, Folder Synchronisation, an all-new Import Module, Quick Edits, automatic backups, Quick Filters and a new tool that helps users emulate one of the effects achievable with a tilt-shift lens. Zoner Photo Studio is available for $69.99 and can be extended to all computers in a household for an additional $29.99.
Epson America has introduced two new additions to its line of Epson Perfection scanners. The Epson Perfection V37 and V370 Photo scanners both come with a high-rise 180-degree lid for scanning oversized artwork, 3D objects, photo albums and more. For added flexibility, the Epson Perfection V370 Photo includes a built-in 35mm transparency unit for scanning mounted slides, negatives and film strips in 135 format. The hardware resolution of these scanners is specified at 4800x9600dpi. The Epson Perfection V37 (MSRP $89.99) and Epson Perfection V370 Photo (MSRP $119.99) are now available exclusively from Epson.com, and will be available at Staples in mid-November. Both models include Epson’s one-year limited warranty.
Land Rover North America has teamed up with 500px.com for a photo competition. Hosted by 500px, the contest encourages Land Rover fans to submit a photographic story that will fulfill a theme associated with the Land Rover brand’s “go anywhere” spirit. Entries must be tagged with “Land Rover Story Challenge.” In November, five winners will be announced on both the Land Rover USA and 500px communities, and will be invited to use a Land Rover vehicle from the 2013 lineup year for up to two weeks. They will also win a contract for $10,000 and travel expenses. For a complete list of rules, visit the website below.
Tamron USA has announced the “My Food Exhibit” photo contest offered exclusively to Tamron lens users residing in the US. Entrants will create a 3D virtual exhibit showcasing 8-14 of their best images in a food theme. Professional photographer Hernan Rodriguez will judge the contest and choose the winning exhibit based on overall image quality and originality of the collection. The winning exhibit will be featured on the Tamron USA website and Tamron newsletter. The winner will also receive his/her choice of one of five Tamron lenses: 18-270mm Di II VC PZD 15X all-in-one zoom lens; SP 17-50mm F/2.8 Di II VC; SP 70-300mm Di VC USD; SP 60mm F/2.0 Di II 1:1 Macro; or 18-200mm Di III VC for Sony E-Mount. The deadline for submissions is 31st December. As always we suggest that you read the rules before entering your work.
PMDA today announced that its fourth annual Portraits of Love Project will launch in November 2012 and aim to provide active US military personnel with free family portraits during the holiday season. Starting 1 November 2012 and running through 31 January 2013 military families can sign up for a free portrait session hosted by the program’s growing network of photographers. Participants will receive two free 5x7 prints from Shutterfly. Active military families can participate at select USO facilities, military bases hosting on-base sessions and at the Project’s nationwide network of local photography studios.
Available in three editions, the Wi-Fi enabled GoPro HD HERO3 is billed as the world’s smallest 4K video camera. Each new edition retains the look of the previous HD HERO cameras but comes in at about half the size of its predecessors. At the top end of the new product line up, the GoPro HD HERO3 Black Edition delivers 4K and 2.7K video resolutions at 12 and 30fps respectively, all in the size of a small box of matches. At 1080p Full HD and 720p HD resolutions, the Black Edition is capable of capturing movies at up to 60 and 120fps, respectively, for slow-motion playback. The White, Silver and Black editions are available for pre-order at GoPro.com and are shipping to speciality retailers around the world for $199.99, $299.99 and $399.99 respectively.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Plustek has released three sample images scanned with its brand new OpticFilm 120 dedicated medium-format film scanner at 5300ppi. Shot with a Rolleiflex T Type 2 TLR camera on Kodak Professional T-Max 400 and Ilford HP5 films, the samples have a pixel count of ~121 million (approximately 11,000x11,000 pixels) each. Two of them are presented as TIFFs, while the third one is a JPEG. According to Plustek they were all “scanned using the Auto CCR function of LaserSoft SilverFast Ai Studio 8.” You can download the Plustek OpticFilm 120 samples from the website below but do note that the files are huge and Plustek warns that the “link may be removed at any time if bandwidth restrictions are exceeded.”
Matt Burns, the mastermind behind the Stolen Camera Finder website, has launched a new free service called OddPrints. “It’s basically a free and simple way to print photos for unusual picture frames or for passport applications etc.,” Matt explains. “With OddPrints you simply upload a photo, choose the size of your frame and then re-download your image. The image is ready to print and cut out at just the right size with optional guidelines to help… It’s free to use, no ads, no watermarks, no nonsense.”
Nikon UK and NME have teamed up for the NME Music Photography Awards with Nikon exhibition at the famous Getty Images Gallery in London. The exhibition will feature the best images from this year’s music photography competition which was open for entry during the festival season this summer to both amateurs and professional photographers. Now in its third year, the competition attracted more images than ever before, with the judges having to select winners from over 7,000 entries. With a Nikon 1 camera kit up for grabs for the amateur categories and a D800 digital SLR kit for the professional category, each of the category winners will also get to meet NME’s Picture Editor and experience a photography master class with an NME photographer. The best two will then be chosen to shoot a gig for NME and one eventual winner will get to shadow an NME photographer. All winners will be announced in NME magazine, issue 27th October 2012. The exhibition at the Getty Images Gallery opens on 7th November and runs until 1st December.
Online photography business gurus Mark Cleghorn and Kenny Martin have launched ‘Business Class’ - a brand new webinar-style monthly learning programme aimed at helping portrait photographers trade more profitably. Under the plan photographers will be able to access the online classes on an ongoing or ad hoc basis for £29 per month. Mark Cleghorn (pictured), founder of PhotoTraining 4U (PT4U), international seminar speaker and author of a series of ‘How To’ photography books explained: “For the cost of a 10x8 print photographers will have access to our monthly 3-4 hour webinar classes plus downloads, including a full recording of each webinar they attend.” For more information check out the website below.
Manfrotto UK has announced three Christmas promotions on its acclaimed range of tripods and monopods. The Manfrotto MK293A4-A3RC1, the most compact 3-way kit in the 290 family, now retails for £99.95 (a saving of £30.00). The Manfrotto 055XB tripod complete with the 804RC2 head is now available for £149.95 (£75.00 off the regular price). The compact and lightweight Manfrotto 190XDB tripod can be yours for £89.95 (saving you £15.00). Each promotion runs until 31 January 2013.
Monday, October 15, 2012
The Nikon Coolpix P7700 is a new compact camera for enthusiasts, offering the functionality of a DSLR without the associated bulk. The P7700 adds 1080p video, a vari-angle LCD screen, 8fps burst shooting and a faster lens to help make it an even more serious rival to the market-leading Canon Powershot series. Read our in-depth Nikon P7700 review now, complete with full-size JPEG and RAW sample images.
Fujifilm UK has announced availability and pricing for the Fujinon XF18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS lens. The 27-84mm equivalent Fujinon XF18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS is a compact standard zoom with optical image stabilisation and a linear motor-driven focussing system that allows the camera to lock focus on the subject in a matter of 0.1 second. In the United Kingdom the lens will go on sale at the end of October / beginning of November, priced at £599.00. (The US MSRP is $699.95, as announced earlier.)
Canon U.S.A,, Ron Howard and the public have selected 91 winning photographs from the “Project Imaginat10n” contest, which will see five innovative celebrities direct short films based on ten of the photos. A consumer vote helped narrow down the photographs, where one of the selected winners’ photos was chosen by Ron Howard in the “Discovery” category to be a thematic tie across the celebrities’ films. The directors will now each select one additional photograph from the other nine storytelling categories that personally inspire them, ultimately utilizing ten photos to represent their creativity and imagination. In addition to “Discovery,” the themes include Character, Mood, Goal, Backstory, Setting, Obstacle, Relationship, The Unknown and Time. The winning photographs determined by Ron Howard and the consumer vote can be seen at the website below.