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All posts tagged "digital photography"


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ACDSee Pro 4 Beta Open to the Public

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 07:00 PM

http://www.acdsee.com/offers/probeta

"We invite you to participate in the ACDSee Pro 4 public Beta program and have your say in the development of the next version of ACDSee Pro, the software application that helps professional and advanced amateur photographers accelerate their workflow from beginning to end. Preview Pro 4's improved metadata management, enhanced processing technology that will bring out the best in your RAW and other image files, and the new Map feature that allows you to add location information to photos, and view photos by location."

Like beta testing? Have a bunch of photos you'd like to work with? Then the ACDSee Pro 4 beta might be just the ticket. They're adding some interesting new features, including mapping, enhanced metadata management, and better raw processing. I see ACDSee Pro constantly, but the features I'd like to see added are, I guess, just too "quirky" to ever make it into the product. One example: quite often, the last photo at an event or location that I take is really what I want to be the first of a set. The restaurant sign, the sign for the park I just walked through, etc. I seem to miss those things on the way in to a place, and all I want is a one-click way - or even a drag and drop method - to change all EXIF/file time stamps at once to be just prior to the first photo I took. Think of it as a time machine for photos. I can do this now of course, but it requires changing, at minimum, three EXIF fields. I'd find a feature like that to be quite useful - would you?


Thursday, September 30, 2010

Miniature Bluetooth Transmitter Plugs Into Nikon DSLRs for Easy Geotagging

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 06:00 PM

http://www.photographyblog.com/news...om_foolography/

"Wiesbaden-based Foolography has released new GPS modules for the Nikon D3100, D5000, D7000 and D90, which enable these cameras to include location data captured by any Bluetooth GPS receiver in the EXIF."

Well this is a clever little device! Every other GPS solution I've seen has been bulky and ugly, but this looks like it's small enough to not get in the way - but remember that you'll still need to have a Bluetooth GPS to go along with it; I mistakenly thought this was an entire GPS unit unto itself at first, but it's a slightly less interesting product. 125.21€ is the price tag, which seems expensive for a Bluetooth receiver, and it looks like it's only available in Europe. While this looks like a decent solution, I'm really surprised that neither the Nikon D3100 nor the D7000 have a built-in GPS. It seems like a no-brainer at this point, but Nikon obviously doesn't agree, so devices like this are necessary.


Friday, September 3, 2010

Dump Your Digital Cameras for Something Called "35mm Film"

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 07:00 AM

http://www.vivitar35mm.com/

"Start snapping away with the Vivitar 35 millimeter film camera! Who needs complicated digital Camera when you can rely on the classic camera you know and love? The Vivitar 35 millimeter film camera gives you everything you need to capture precious moments with friends and family! Don't bother with expensive, complicated computer software and wires. Simply point and click! It's just like the good old day... and with built-in flash and focus free, taking pictures has never been this simple!"

I got quite a chuckle going over to the Vivitar site and checking out the video - but the reality is that companies like this wouldn't have a business selling film cameras if digital cameras were easier to use. For anyone reading this site, using a digital camera and getting your images printed (or shared) is second nature. But I firmly believe that the overall ecosystem for digital cameras still isn't as easy as it should be. The flow from snapping the picture to getting a print is still confusing for some people; the simplicity of taking the pictures, then taking out the roll of film and giving it to someone, then getting back a bunch of pictures, hasn't quite been duplicated in the digital world yet. Read more...


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Nikon D90 Replacement Imminent?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home News" @ 11:32 AM

http://nikonrumors.com/2010/07/20/f...ikonRumors.com)

I follow Nikon Rumors on Twitter, and enjoy watching the crazy - and sometimes not so crazy - rumours about Nikon cameras and lenses get bandied about. They've definitely seemed more solid lately though, because it seems like Nikon is gearing up to release some new DSLRs. Today's rumour is focused on the D90 replacement DSLR. It's rumoured to have a 16 MP DX sensor (cropped), noise performance similar to the D700, full HD 1080p video, and feature the continual auto-focus system that was hinted at earlier. Noise performance similar to a D700? Sounds almost too good to be true, especially given the bump up to 16 megapixels, but Nikon has certain achieved a knack for superb noise performance in their cameras, so it's not unreasonable to think that some of that technology would trickle down to lower-end cameras. The rumour also says 8 frames per second, which I find quite hard to believe - Nikon uses FPS limitations to separate their cameras, and the D90 has 4.5 fps now. I'd say 5fps or 6fps would be reasonable; not eight.

Of course, what I'm really waiting for is the successor to the D300/D300s. I still love my D300, but I'd found myself tempted lately by the D700 to get the lower sensor noise - yet I'd hate to give up the 50% extra zoom reach I get with all my lenses on the DX body now. I have a whack of cash saved up for my next DSLR...I'm just waiting for Nikon to release it!


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Scrapbook MAX 2.05 Released

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 10:00 AM

http://www.photographyblog.com/news...apbook_max_2.05

"The new Scrapbook MAX v2.05 is billed as "the first digital scrapbooking software program to combine ease of use with an archival quality graphics engine". With this new version, users can bend and stretch text, and fill characters with patterns and images. Photos and elements can be accurately re-coloured with a colour-picker tool, and users have complete control over the angle, distance and colour of shadows. Additionally, a new eraser tool allows scrapbookers to extract people and objects from photos with precision, or add artistic blurred edges to photos and embellishments."

I've had Scrapbook Max on my "maybe review this someday" list for a while now, and I hope eventually I'll get to it. It's unfortunate that scrap booking has such a frilly, feminine stereotype to it. Anyone that's into digital photography is likely to have a strong "memory keeper" streak, and putting photos onto paper is a natural extension of that. I'm proud of the digital scrapbook I created of a vacation to Japan in 2008 (though this was my first such project), and I hereby reclaim the word "scrapbooking" for men everywhere so we don't need to feel ashamed of putting our photos into books accompanied by text and even, gasp, little graphics. :-)


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Oloneo PhotoEngine Beta Released

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 03:00 PM

http://www.oloneo.com/

"Oloneo today launched the first public beta version of Oloneo PhotoEngine for Windows, the only high dynamic software offering photographers full control over light and exposure in real-time, as if they were still behind the lens. Turn on and off light sources, deeply re-expose pictures in full 32-bit per channel without compromising details and color appearance. Oloneo invites photographers to take an active part in the final development stage of Oloneo PhotoEngine for Windows by downloading the beta version at http://www.oloneo.com."

I've seen a lot of different software for editing images, and many of them are just, well, awful. This one might be different though - I'm extremely impressed by what I'm seeing in the video above. Light source detection, and being able to change the white balance of each light source, one at a time? That's some freakishly impressive coding right there - I've never heard of anything like this before. I've downloaded the free beta and will check it out - and there are two more videos after the break. Read more...


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Easy Photo Sharing With Dropbox

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 07:00 AM

There are a lot of ways to share photos online, but not all of them are as easy as others. Dropbox, a popular file synchronization service, has one of of the quickest and simplest methods I've seen. Read more...


Wednesday, June 9, 2010

New "Grunge Appeal" StylePack From Photodex for ProShow and ProShow Gold

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 10:30 AM

http://www.photodex.com/eid9121/pro...ylepacks/grunge

If making slide shows is something you do - professionally or as a hobby - it's worth checking out ProShow from Photodex. It's my absolute favourite tool for making slide shows, and while it has some minor irritations I keep bugging Photodex about fixing, overall it's a really nicely program that makes beautiful slide shows quite easy to make. One of the great things about Proshow is how it can be expanded with StylePacks - relatively cheap, easy to use styles that will give your slide show a whole new look and feel. Above are two videos of what come with the new Grunge Appeal StylePack ($19.95) - there are some great styles in there!


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

ACDSee Photo Manager 12 Released

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 07:30 PM

http://www.acdsee.com/mediaroom/med...eases/2010/4/22

"A new decade brings new and powerful features to ACDSee Photo Manager 12, the latest version of ACD Systems International Inc.'s easy-to-use photo software designed for people who need speed and flexibility when managing their photos and creative projects. ACDSee Photo Manager 12 helps users quickly and affordably stay organized and share their growing number of digital images and priceless memories. In this new version, photos and personalized artwork can easily be stored online and turned into posts on the leading social media network, Facebook."

ACDSee, my all-time favourite image management tool, has been updated to version 12. In terms of big changes, there's a 2 GB storage account that users receive access to; it allows them to share photos, give others access to original-resolution images, etc. There's an improved user interface - that's always been a bit of a weakness with the program - and the ability to resize and transfer images via FTP. I have to admit, nothing on that list really jumps out at me as being "Wow, I've got to have that!". Things that would excite me in a future version of ACDSee are anything that would save me time or save me from having to use other applications. Read more...


Friday, April 9, 2010

Amazing Insect Photos

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 04:00 PM

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...orning-dew.html

One of the great things about digital photography is that because it makes capturing great pictures easier than it was in the analog world, we get to see more of our world as interpreted through the lenses of the many photographers out there. This is a perfect example of that - these images of insects are breathtaking and creepy at the same time. You have to check them out - the colours, vibrancy, and sharpness will blow you away.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Tokyo, the HDR Way

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 02:00 AM

http://www.geekiz.com/80-photograph...de-tokyo-en-hdr

Here's a look at Tokyo through the lens of HDR (high dynamic range) photography - surreal, unearthly, and bizarre are terms I'd use to describe these images. Oh, and beautiful. Well worth a look.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Do I Have a Problem Buying Too Many Cameras?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 07:00 AM

Above: starting in the middle and going 'round, that's a Nikon D300, Panasonic GF1, Panasonic TS1, Flip Mino HD, Panasonic ZS3, Kodak EasyShare M1093 IS, and a Nikon D5000. I took this photo with my HTC HD2.

I have to admit that since the birth of my son, I've become a bit of a camera whore enthusiast - I just can't seem to have enough cameras with the right features in the right places to capture all his cuteness. Yes, I'm a completely biased father, but comon', this is one cute kid. ;-) Not shown in this picture are my Canon HF100 and Canon G1 video cameras (the latter I haven't used in a couple of years) - and I also forgot to include my Canon SD870 because it was tucked away in a container below one of my monitors. Yeah, I have a lot of cameras. The question is, am I using all of them? For the most part, yes. Read more...


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Corel Releases PaintShop Photo Pro X3

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 10:44 PM

http://www.corel.com/servlet/Satell...51#tabview=tab0

"Corel Corporation today announced Corel® PaintShop Photo(TM) Pro X3, the latest version of its renowned photo editing program, that brings advanced photo management, editing and creative tools together to deliver everything the photo enthusiast needs in one package. Combining professional quality tools for organization and photo editing along with burning, sharing, and for the first time, high definition (HD) video capabilities, Corel PaintShop Photo Pro X3 has been developed to meet the evolving workflow needs of today's digital photographer."

PaintShop Photo Pro X3 - probably still better known as it's original name PaintShop Pro - is the latest version of this program, and X3 adds some interesting features into the mix. I had a chance to speak with Craig Copley from Corel and get a demo of the software recently and jotted down some impressions about what I thought was noteworthy. Corel built a new organizer to enhance workflow - various preview modes are available, which reminded a bit of ACDSee. ExpressLab is a quick editor that allows you to make basic fixes quickly and easily, whereas RAW Lab is their raw editing tool - it looks a bit crude compared to Adobe Camera Raw, but seems to have most of the basic functions. In the organizer you can pick up settings on images - so if you have a group of images and you adjust one of them, you can apply the changes to the other images. Adobe Lightroom has a similar feature, and it's a huge time saver. Copies of the original image are kept so you can restore it if you really muck things up. Read more...


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

ACDSee Pro 3 Released: More Speed, Better Workflow

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Software" @ 03:52 PM

http://store.acdsee.com/store/acd/e...uctID.156603200

"ACD Systems International Inc. today unveiled ACDSeeTM Pro 3, a new version of its leading digital image management software that retains the same fast and flexible features photographers rely upon and incorporates an enhanced user experience that delivers professional level workflow tools at a tremendous value. ACDSee Pro 3 builds on its reputation as a leading viewer, browser and organizer with new advanced speed capabilities in the editing and online stages. For example, the program's unique process mode integrates two highly prized features - nondestructive image editing and precise pixel-level editing - into one seamless application."

I've been a long-time fan of ACDSee, in all its variations, and it's always one of the first five applications I install on any new computer I'm using. It's really fast, really stable, really useful software. Version 3 of their Pro line brings with it some user-interface changes, and a bunch of improvements when it comes to raw photo processing. I'm a big fan of Adobe Lightroom, but I'll have to take ACDSee Pro 3 for a spin with some raw photos and see how it does. About once a year I email the nice people at ACD Systems and make some feature requests...I'll have to see if any of them made it into this product. Probably not, but a guy can dream, right?


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Get Crazy Depth of Field with the Brenizer Method

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 12:00 AM

http://photojojo.com/content/tutori...renizer-method/

"Do you dream of faster lenses, larger apertures, and ice cream? We do too! Too bad, brand new lenses don't drop into our laps everyday. Fortunately, photographer Ryan Brenizer has developed a way to get specular results from your thrifty fifty or a basic kit zoom lens. By stitching together multiple shots, Ryan makes impossibly shallow depths of field, possible."

This is something I'm going to have to try - it's extremely creative! Definitely not the kind of thing you'd tend to think of in terms of getting this great-looking effect. He also has a video up on Facebook that explains the process. If anyone has tried this method, please let me know how it turned out!


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Making On-Camera Flashes Smarter

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 11:29 AM

http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2009...re-intelligent/

"David: I enjoyed your rant about the flash on digital cameras. You mentioned the clueless people who take flash pictures at an event from 200 yards away, totally pointlessly - but I've always wondered why these modern, smart cameras can't turn off the flash automatically when they're more than 10 feet from the target?"

Image Credit: spmcfarland on Flickr

The above comment was sent to David Pogue, who replied that there's no reason why these cameras can't implement that exact feature - which got me to thinking about other ways point and shoot cameras can be made smarter. One of my personal pet peeves - in addition to pointless flashes popping off by clueless camera holders - is how noisy most point and shoot cameras are. Many cameras make noise when they turn on - typically a beep of some sort but some make "zooming" sound effects - followed by a beep every time the user presses a button navigating a menu. There's a beep it makes when taking a picture, and often a beep when the user moves from image to image in playback mode. I can't help but feel irritated when I'm at a special event - wedding, a ceremony of some sort, etc. - and the moment is littered with the near-constant BEEP BEEP BEEP of digital cameras. Read more...


Monday, November 17, 2008

How to Capture Motion Blur

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 12:00 PM

http://digital-photography-school.c...ur-photography/

"Photographs, by definition, capture and immortalize a small slice of life. There is little for the viewer to infer what happens before or after that moment. However, there are images that need to communicate motion. For example, you may want to capture a dog running, a train barreling down the tracks, or trees that are blowing in the wind. Each of these scenes can come alive within your photographs if you learn how to convey motion properly. Today, I'll describe how you can use different shutter speeds and panning to capture motion in your photography. I'll also explain a potential issue you might experience along with tips to resolve it."

Motion blur photography is a fun way to experiment, and also a great way to capture beautiful images that impart motion, speed, and time. This is a great article on some of the basic steps to taking these types of images. And if you want to see how beautiful motion blur photos can be (beyond the samples on the article page), check out these 45 great examples.


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