Fstoppers Gear Reviews
I know that all of the iPhone 7 hype is on the portrait mode and DNG file capture that the new camera has, but I was particularly interested in another aspect of iOS's photo capability. Having been stuck on a Nexus 6 for the past year and a half, I missed out on a lot of the new tricks that the iPhones were offering. Specifically, Lightroom Mobile's new raw file support, giving it similar editing capability as the desktop version of Lightroom.
After ten years Animoto has just launched their next product, Marketing Video Builder. If you're not already familiar with Animoto, their first product has been a staple for photographers to easily make quality video slideshows. Their product lets you combine both stills and video to your favorite song (or songs), or use their expansive collection of over 2,000 royalty free songs, to produce a video slideshow that's perfect for marketing, client products and so much more.
During the recent years, Dell launched its affordable UltraSharp Premier Color wide gamut monitor series in different screen size and resolution options. The features and technical specs of Premier Color monitors are impressive on paper, but how about the real results? After spending 3 months with 4 different units of the 25-inch model, I have finally completed my in-depth review.
Aimed at DSLR filmmakers looking to invest in a larger production kit, the Blackmagic Video Assist 4K is a seven-inch touchscreen monitor that doubles as a video recorder. I was able to use the Video Assist during several shoots last month in Chicago, and I’ll go over the features, build quality, uses, and talk a bit about pricing as well.
It's been nearly two years since the people at Lume Cube launched their Kickstarter to bring their vision of an incredibly powerful and portable light to the photography community. For the last few weeks, I've had the pleasure to test these bad boys out in the wild and see what all the hype is about.
I always enjoy a good time-lapse. Making them is a hobby of mine, as I love getting to relax and work at the same time. Leaving your camera stuck on a tripod or Gorillapod doesn't always give you the most dynamic shot I've found. Fortunately, there are ways to add some depth to your time-lapse film without having to lug around several backpacks worth of gear. One such device would be the Syrp Pan/Tilt Bracket.
When getting into flash photography, it’s easy to look at camera manufacturers' flagship flashes and assume they are the best you can get. When I first started out, I made this exact assumption. But I always wondered how some of the cheaper hotshoe flashes would hold up against these higher priced competitors. So I ordered a few Phottix Mitros+ flashes and put them to work.
First, let me just preface with the fact that I have been outsourcing my album design for the past four or five years now. While I took the time to learn and use this product myself, I do still believe in outsourcing your non-photography work. But, regardless of whether you outsource your album design or do it yourself, you want to have the best and fastest designer.
Parabolic softboxes are all the rage in the lighting world. It seems like you can't check out lighting videos on Youtube without coming across one. But with price points all over the place, I was reluctant to pick one up for fear of spending too much money on a modifier I wouldn't like or use. Then, I came across the budget-priced Selens Parabolic Softbox. With a price of about $100 and good reviews, I was ready to pull the trigger. Here are my thoughts and video review.
As photographers in a digital era, we all spend a lot more time in front of a computer than we would like to admit to. When a single one-hour photoshoot can lead to multiple hours in front of a computer, we start looking for ways to minimize that time. There are tons of options out there that can help you out too, from Bluetooth controllers to pens and tablets, but what you really need may just be a simple mouse upgrade.
I recently had the opportunity to try out Lexar's modular workflow line of products which is an array of modular components that fit into a multi-bay, hot-swappable hub that connects to your computer via Thunderbolt or USB 3. After spending a few weeks with this interesting product, here is what you need to know. In this review I will be covering the hub itself, along with the SSD, SD Card Reader, and USB Hub modules.
500px just introduced their RAW app. It uses the new iPhone raw image capabilities to make editing on the go easier and as intuitive as possible. The app gives you the capability to export to your social networks as well as your 500px profile, where you can sell the images and make 60% of the profit. It also has an Assignment section, which I believe will be used to give photographers paid projects depending on their location. Is editing raw images on mobile devices the future of post-production? By the looks of what Lightroom has done with their mobile apps in which you can edit your raw images by using a smaller proxy file, it might be the way the industry is moving.
Adobe recently released a new version of its Lightroom Mobile app that takes advantage of the raw image support in Apple's just-released iOS 10. Taken on an iPhone 6S running the developer GM seed of iOS 10 (10.0.1), these images show just how good your mobile photos can now be. You'll need to have the latest versions of iOS 10 (running on an iPhone with a 12 MP camera) and Adobe Lightroom Mobile to do this yourself, but we're providing comparison files for testing purposes for those without such access. Tell us what you notice.
The clear night sky under a new moon is almost always the same brightness in the same location. I have blindly put my camera on ISO 6400 as a result. But after having read somewhere that Sony supposedly builds sensors that are ISO invariant, I wanted to test this claim with my own Sony-equipped Nikon D750.
Traveling as a photographer can be difficult. The issue we always seem to encounter is a lot like G.A.S.; we want to have the right lens for every shot, and we don't want to miss out. The key to circumventing this issue is planning. While some of the best shots can be unexpected, you have to have an idea of what you're looking for. When planning my recent trip to New York City, I had to find a way to pack the camera gear I wanted for a variety of work in a small, comfortable bag. Enter the ThinkTank Photo Turnstyle 20, the best small travel bag I've ever seen.
One of the biggest hits at a wedding reception (or any event) is the photobooth. It’s an area where guests can gather around and make ridiculous faces, dress in silly props, and have an overall great time. When running a photography business that shoots events, we are always asked if we offer photobooth services, so I think it's a natural evolution to want to incorporate one into your packages. When I first found the booth from Photobooth Supply Co, it instantly stood out from all the other options.
Peak Design’s last Kickstarter for the Everyday Messenger was the most successfully funded photography product on the crowd-funding platform. With two days to go, its latest for the Everyday Backpack, Tote, and Sling just beat that record with nearly $5 million in pre-orders. These are my first impressions after a week with a pre-production version of the highly anticipated Everyday Backpack.
It’s hard to pick a component of gear that’s most important for editing your color-dependent photo and video work. But it’s easy to say that a great, accurate, wide-gamut monitor is near the top of that list. NEC recently gave us a chance to review a monitor of theirs that's popular for its balance of features, size, and mid-range price for its tier: the EA275WMI-BK.
Lighting on land can be daunting when a photographer is first starting out in their business. Understanding the angles, the intensity, and the direction comes from education and experience. So when I started working with illuminating subjects beneath the water's surface, it felt like a whole new game.
MagMod has quickly become the go to flash modifier for a ton of photographers. Being able to quickly and easily attach grids, gels, and diffusers to your flash via small magnets makes shaping your light super simple. So when MagMod announced the new MagBeam, a lot of people got really excited. So excited that they demolished their $25,000 goal by raising just over $300,000 via their Kickstarter campaign. But does this new modifier live up to the hype?
It's about time for a new approach. There are a few online stores and stock libraries where you can get templates, videos, and music that help you save time when creating professional videos. Some of them can get really tricky when dealing with prices and licensing.
ORCA is the maker of a wide range of photo and video accessories: primarily bags and other protective gear. They sent me their new rolling camera bag to try out, and I was eager to give it a go. As you'll see below, I've been using a $50 suitcase from Target as a camera bag for the last four years, so I was excited to see how an actual camera bag would hold up.
First, I have to give a huge thank you to Adorama and Canon for inviting me to come play with the highly rumored 5D Mark IV. I'm completely blown away that they asked, and truthfully, I'd be lying if I didn't do a few skips at the thought of getting in on the new toy ahead of time.
Let’s be honest with ourselves. We don’t always need to bring four or five lenses, two camera bodies, and a portable lighting studio with us every time we leave the house. Sometimes it makes sense to own a lightweight secondary grab-and-go day pack that offers more than just camera storage. In this article I take a look at the Mountainsmith Spectrum, a $90 split-use backpack that’s ready to rock.
A good camera strap is something that a lot of people don't find important until they actually try a good camera strap. I have found that getting the camera off of my neck and onto my shoulders to make a world of difference while shooting and especially the day after shooting. This becomes even more important when you are dealing with the added weight of carrying dual cameras. Enter the Clydesdale Pro-DLX from RL Handcrafts.
I have always preferred simplicity when it comes to lighting portraits. When connecting with a model or subject, especially when working without assistants, I hate having to deal with several lights or various flags, cutters, and bounce cards. This way I can work the camera and move around without having to worry about tripping over my whole setup, and my subject feels more comfortable without obtrusive equipment crowding them. Also, if the model can move around a little, I feel that I can get far more natural poses when they aren't confined by specific lighting. My favorite lighting tool to "keep it simple" with is the Westcott 7-foot Parabolic Umbrella.
As a former standard zoom lens user, I noticed that 28mm was one of my most preferred focal lengths according to the metadata in my image catalog. Seeing this choice that I've made subconsciously, as well as the obvious advantages of using primes, I finally decided to switch all my zoom lenses with primes. The Nikon AF-S 28mm f/1.8G was my final choice for a wide-angle prime. So far, it looks like I've made a good decision.