Digital Home Thoughts - News & Reviews for the Digital Home

Be sure to register in our forums and post your comments - we want to hear from you!

Zune Thoughts

Loading feed...

Apple Thoughts

Loading feed...

Laptop Thoughts

Loading feed...

All posts tagged "dslr"

Monday, May 30, 2011

CameraSim: Learning DSLR Settings in Your Browser

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 09:30 AM

"So you've been thinking about getting a DSLR but you're not sure if you're ready to step up to a heavy-duty camera. If you don't have a friend who can teach you how it works, or you'd rather learn on your own, CameraSim can give you a pretty realistic account of what it's like to use a DSLR-but in your web browser."

If you're new to using a digital DSLR - or, more than likely if you're reading this site, you might know someone who is - this Web-based tool allows you to see that impact of using various sliders that emulate camera ISO settings, aperture, and shutter speed. Pretty slick!

Friday, February 25, 2011

DigitalRev TV Canon EOS 600D/Rebel T3i Hands-on Review

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:00 PM

"We've got the new Canon EOS 600D / Rebel T3i in! When it was first announced, it made some people question the purpose of this upgrade and some just got annoyed at it. We take it out on the streets to find out what it is like and what changes there are over the 550D and what it has gained from the 60D."

If you're curious about how well the Canon Digital Rebel T3i stacks up against the still-feels-pretty-new T2i, this video does a nice job of explaining it.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Nikon D7000 Real-Word Review

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 12:51 PM

"This is a quick review of the Nikon D7000, highlighting a real world usage scenario. It's not an exhaustive look at the D7000, but I hope it gives you a good idea of what it's like to use this camera if were thinking of buying it to take pictures at sporting events."

My friend Xavier Lanier and I are both fans of Nikon DSLRs and he purchased a D7000 recently. He's been enjoying it and wrote up a great article about using it to capture a tennis event, along with great examples of how a high frame-per-second shooting count can really make a difference when it comes to capturing the shot. I agree with him - shooting in bursts is a great way to capture the "perfect" shot. The D7000 looks like a great camera...but I'm holding out for the true replacement for my beloved Nikon D300.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Nikon's D3100 Reviewed: A Great Entry-Level DSLR

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 01:00 PM

The D3100, announced back in August of 2010, is an entry-level DSLR from Nikon, but the list of features and specs might surprise you: the 14.2 megapixel CMOS sensor is at the heart of this camera, giving it ISO 100 to 3200 (with a high ISO 12,800 option), 3 frames per second continual shooting, 1080p 24fps MPEG/h.264 video with continual auto focus, an 11-point autofocus system with 3D tracking, 420-segment RGB II metering, automatic image sensor cleaning, in-camera retouch options (including trimming of video clips), and a built-in pop-up flash. It's a very capable camera for under the $700 mark. Be sure to check out my two-part unboxing and first impressions video if you haven't already seen it. My full review video is after the break. Read more...

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Nikon D7000 Teardown: The Guts, The Glory

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

"The Nikon D7000 is a 16.2 million effective pixel DSLR camera, considered to be at the enthusiast-level, and an upgrade to the D90 and D5000 models by Nikon ( That being said, early reviews of the D7000 have it challenging the much respected, semi-pro grade Nikon D300S. This new Nikon DSLR features full HD video (1920 x 1080 at 24 fps), a 3" LCD screen with 921,000 pixels, and 6 fps continuous shooting."

Curious about what the guts of a DSLR look like? Then feast your eyes on this article!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

More Glass for Less: A Simple Guide to Inexpensive Lenses

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 AM

As more people get into photography as a hobby, a common refrain heard is that it is an expensive hobby. It is not without some truth, as hobbies by their nature can involve spending large outlays of money since it is human nature to delve deeper into our interests, and hobbies that involve any kind of gear will have many opportunities for the hobbyist to spend their hard-earned money on. Not helping is today's world of marketing departments' promises of being better at what you do if you buy their companies' products or services.

Even if you ignore the messages from marketing, you still need some basic gear to take a photo, like a lens, and lenses can be very very expensive. Lenses can range from the popular f/2.8 zooms (as much as US$2,000+) to the super telephoto lenses (too much). Thankfully, there are cheap options out there, some good, some downright awful. So what does a budget (and budding) photographer buy? Well, here's a short roundup of some lenses that can be considered to be not too expensive.


Saturday, December 4, 2010

Portable Camera Stabilization with Not-A-Pod

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:49 AM

"Not-A-Pod is a convenient, user friendly product for increasing camera stabilization. It consists of two adjustable straps and a swivel screw which attach to a camera and the user's belt loops. After adjusting the straps for individual height, tension is achieved when the user pulls up on the camera as the photo is taken, providing a three point stabilization system."

Looking to get greater stability when taking photos? If you don't mind looking a little goofy, then this might be just the product for you. It's definitely clever!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Kuwait Times Issues Retraction

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home News" @ 10:06 AM


"The Kuwait Times, original source of the "news" that Kuwait had banned the use of DSLRs by non-journalists, has issued a retraction, which I quote here in full."

The retraction can be read at the link on The Online Photographer, and this is the reason why I did not post the news initially when it was breaking out on the blogosphere and even the mainstream news. Kuwait is one of the more progressive (or less conservative depending on your viewpoint) Middle East countries, and such a blanket ban seemed somewhat out of the blue.

In any case, this teaches us all to be critical of what we read; just because it is in a book, newspaper, or on the Internet, it isn't always true!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Nikon D7000 vs. Canon 7D: FIGHT!

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 PM

"So, we reviewed the Nikon D7000 just a few days ago and we liked it a lot. With the upgrades, it really has been upped a class, what with the 100% viewfinder, 6fps continuous burst, metal body, as well as 1080p video recording. So, it's only natural that lots of people have been asking us - Canon 7D vs Nikon D7000: which one is better? Well, we take a look in this video by taking photos of a model named Kinki cleaning a BMW."

What I find interesting about this match up isn't that Kai ended up choosing the Canon 7D as the better overall camera; it's that not once in the video does he bother to mention that the Nikon D7000 is about 25% less expensive. Some people, myself included, feel that the D7000 matches up against the Canon 60D, though the 60D is a couple of hundred dollars cheaper. Anyway, it's an interesting review - especially the high ISO performance, where the Nikon D7000 takes the crown.

Monday, November 1, 2010

DigitalRev Goes Hands-On with the Nikon D7000

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:00 AM

"The D7000 has finally landed and our presenter, Kai W, has been fondling the camera lovingly. So, what's new about this successor to the D90? We've all seen the specs sheet, and it looks pretty good even when compared to the D300S and other such cameras like the Canon 7D and Pentax K-5. But what is it really like to use? Find out in this review."

Kai is in fine form in this video; you can tell he's a fan of Nikon cameras, and has been waiting for the D7000. It's a seriously nice camera - I'm slightly tempted myself because this eclipses my D300 in several ways, but I'm waiting for the D300 successor...because if you look at what the D7000 brings to the table, you just know that Nikon is really going to bring the heat with the D300 replacement!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

DigitalRev Looks at the Nikon D3100

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 03:00 PM

The ever-friendly Kai looks at the Nikon D3100, considered by some - including me - to be one of the top entry-level DSLRs on the market today. I discovered a rude surprise today though: Nikon changed their raw format with this camera, so Adobe Lightroom 3.2 can't import the raw files. I sure hope Adobe releases an update for Lightroom soon!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kingston Brings The Speed with a 32GB, 600x Speed CompactFlash Memory Card

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 PM

"Kingston has released its CompactFlash Ultimate 600x memory cards. Available in 16GB and 32GB capacities, the Kingston CompactFlash Ultimate 600x cards support UDMA mode 6 and offer read and write speeds of up to 90MB/sec. Backed by a lifetime warrenty, the cards are priced at £170.85 (32GB) and £97.55 (16GB). For added peace of mind, the price of theCF Ultimate 600x cards include free downloadable data recovery software from MediaRECOVER."

CompactFlash may be a dying memory card standard, but Kingston and professional photographers the world over still have a lot of love for this format - and I do as well. Although things are looking better for the speeds of SD cards with the release of UHS cards, right now CompactFlash wipes the floor with SD cards in the speed department. 32 GB of storage this fast would simply be could shoot all day and never have to charge cards!

Miniature Bluetooth Transmitter Plugs Into Nikon DSLRs for Easy Geotagging

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

"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 24, 2010

The Nikon D3100 DLSR: Unboxing and First Impressions

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 02:30 PM

The D3100, announced back in August, is an entry-level DSLR from Nikon, but the list of features and specs might surprise you: the 14.2 megapixel CMOS sensor is at the heart of this camera, giving it ISO 100 to 3200 (with a high ISO 12,800 option), 3 frames per second continual shooting, 1080p 24fps MPEG/h.264 video with continual auto focus, an 11-point autofocus system with 3D tracking, 420-segment RGB II metering, automatic image sensor cleaning, in-camera retouch options (including trimming of video clips), and a built-in pop-up flash. It's a very capable camera for just under the $700 mark.

I've had a few entry-level Nikon DSLRs over the past couple of years; I got a Nikon D60, sold it, then bought the Nikon D5000 (and reviewed it here), and sold it to purchase the D3100. I quite liked the D5000, but the video functionality was hobbled by the lack of auto-focus. The D3100 brings 1080p video with auto-focus to the table, along with a slight bump in resolution and several other enhancements over the D5000. Check out the two-part unboxing and first impressions video after the break. Fire your questions my way after watching the videos. Read more...

Saturday, September 18, 2010

What is Nikon "Q"?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 12:00 PM

The rumours are starting to mount: it's looking like Nikon is going to be announcing something big at Photokina, but the speculation is it will be simply an announcement - no product yet. So what is it? Well, Nikon Rumors is guessing that it's going to be Nikon's mirrorless EVIL camera - and given that the "F" mount lenses are what Nikon DSLRs use, calling the new system's lens mount the "Q" makes a certain amount of sense. But in looking at the image above, I'm struck by how much the grip seems to stick out - that's not something you tend to see on EVIL/DILC cameras. On the other hand, it might be part of Nikon's design to make them easier to hold - and if the rest of the camera is quite thin, it might work out OK.

I'm honestly quite excited about whatever Nikon has cooking with their mirrorless camera; I'm an unabashed fan of Nikon and the image quality of their DSLRs, and if I could get near-DSLR image quality in a camera I could fit in my jacket pocket, well, sign me up!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

HDR Video: Cool and Kind of Creepy!

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home News" @ 10:30 PM

"A company called Soviet Montage Productions has released a short HDR video captured using two Canon EOS 5D Mark II digital SLR cameras and a beam splitter. The two cameras used different exposure settings but - thanks to the beam splitter - filmed the exact same scene, allowing the two pieces of footage to be blended and tone-mapped in software. The result is a more realistic and more "film-like" video, as you can see below."

Talk about some interesting visual effects! HDR video is something I hadn't heard of before seeing this post; it's fascinating to see how they've created the HDR capture...

Tags: dslr, hdr, hdr video

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Make Way for Some Expensive, Awesome Glass: The NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G and the NIKKOR 200mm f/2G

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:04 PM

"Mississauga, ON, September 15, 2010 - Nikon Canada today announced the addition of two new pro-level lenses to its legendary NIKKOR line. The new AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G and AF-S NIKKOR 200mm f/2G ED VR II deliver the performance, reliability and stunning image quality that photographers come to expect from a NIKKOR lens. The AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G and AF-S NIKKOR 200mm f/2G ED VR II produce sharp results with excellent clarity and colour reproduction whether capturing still images or recording HD video. In 2010, Nikon introduced a total of nine new NIKKOR lenses, reinforcing its role as the world leader in optics."

I've spent some serious green on lenses over the past two years, so I feel like I've got a decent array of lenses to chose from, but Nikon keeps tempting me with interesting lenses. The 35mm f/1.4 looks like a great lens, but the $1999 CAD price tag will keep most people away - never mind the $5999 CAD price tag on the 200mm f/2 lens! Anyway, if you're a fan of great glass and a Nikon shooter, these lenses are worth a look.

Full press release after the break.

Nikon Canada Announces the SB-700 Speedlight Flash

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:52 PM

"Mississauga, ON, September 15, 2010 - Nikon Canada today introduced the versatile SB-700 Speedlight, the latest addition to Nikon's powerful and versatile Creative Lighting System (CLS). The SB-700 is a high-performance versatile Speedlight that brings simplicity to on-camera, remote and multiple flash photography. Building on the success of the popular SB-600 Speedlight and the advanced functionality of the SB-900 Speedlight, the SB-700 also incorporates a wide zoom range covering the most popular focal lengths, FX/DX format identification that optimizes zoom settings and provides a more efficient use of batteries and flash coverage, and three light distribution patterns for flash-to-scene customization. Whether used as an on-camera flash or as a wireless commander or remote, the Nikon SB-700 Speedlight offers dependable and consistent flash exposure even under the most challenging lighting conditions."

I have a real love/hate relationship with flashes; in general, I dislike flash photography, but that's mostly because I'm not very good at working with off-camera flash (and direct flash, even bounced, can be awful). I've tried putting my SB-600 into slave mode, and it was the most convoluted process I could imagine. I'm sure it would get better with practice, but it's not exactly simple. The SB-700 is on my "might buy" list because it has a user interface that looks much easier to figure out than my SB-600. I have a friend that works wonders with off-camera flash, so I know it's something I should add to my photographer's tool kit. Where do you stand on flash photography?

The remainder of the press release and more images are after the break. Read more...

Nikon Canada Announces the D7000: 16.2 megapixels, 1080p Auto-focus Video, Lots More

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:01 PM

"Mississauga, ON, September 15, 2010 - Nikon Canada today introduced the D7000 digital SLR camera designed to fulfill the needs of passionate photographers who demand exceptional performance, reliability and unprecedented levels of control and versatility in a compact form factor. Engineered as an ideal balance of durability and functionality, the D7000 features a multitude of new enhancements and updated Nikon technologies to help photographers produce exceptional photos and full 1080p HD (High Definition) movies.

Continuing the tradition of innovative technology that began with the revolutionary D90, the first digital SLR to capture HD movie, the D7000 features a new 16.2-megapixel CMOS sensor with low-light ability never before seen in a DX-Format (APS-C) camera. The new EXPEED 2 TM image-processing engine fuels the enhanced performance of the D7000 along with a new 39-point AF system and groundbreaking new 2,016 pixel RGB 3D Matrix Metering System to deliver amazing image quality in a variety of shooting conditions. Additionally, the D7000 provides full 1080p HD movie capability with full-time auto focus (AF), enabling users to capture their world with both striking still and moving images."

The Nikon D7000 is one of the worst-kept secrets in the DSLR world as of late, so the announcement lacks much in the way of excitement other than to confirm the specs that pretty much everyone already knew as of a couple of weeks ago. However, I was able to sit in on a conference call a couple of weeks ago and got some details about the D7000. In short, it's a lot of camera for the price point - which will be $1279.95 CAD for the body only, and $1599.95 for the body plus the 18-105mm lens. And despite what some other sites are saying, the D7000 is the replacement for the D90. The D90 will continue to be sold into early 2011, then that's it.

The D7000 highlights: a new 16 megapixel CMOS sensor with native ISO from 100 to 6400, with support for ISO 25,600 on the High 2 setting; a 2016 RGB pixel metering sensor, up from a 400 pixel sensor on the D90; 39 auto focus points, 6fps shooting, magnesium alloy body, and twin SD card slots. That RGB metering system is a big deal: it has more than double the pixels of the D3x, and 4.6 times more than the D90. The auto-focus system is twice as fast as any focusing system before it - and the full-time contrast detection system apparently works really well in Live View mode. The video is 1080p in AVCHD (h.264) format, supporting 30/25/24fps. There's also a VGA video mode, but there's no high-speed video mode at that lower resolution. They've made some improvements to minimize the "rolling jello effect" from side to side pans when shooting a video, and there's also support for an external stereo microphone and basic movie editing directly on the camera.

The D7000 is built to last: it offers 150,000 shutter release cycles, new reinforced glass on the screen, and has the same level of weather sealing as the D300s. There will be a battery grip offered that is also built out of magnesium alloy; worth noting though is that Nikon has implemented an "authentication function" that verifies that a battery is a Nikon-created battery. This means no third-party batteries will work in the D7000; Nikon said this was to "protect users", but I think it's a bit of a protectionist move to boost Nikon's bottom line...though I really do have to wonder how many people purchase an extra battery for their DSLR. I used to be a big "always have an extra battery" guy, but DSLRs are so incredibly power efficient, you can usually shoot for days without needing a recharge. The D7000 uses a new battery as well: the EN-EL15, boasting 1900 mAh of power versus the 1430 mAh on the D90's EN-EL3e.

A note about the dual SD card slots: they support SDXC cards, and the new UHS50 interface, so really huge, really fast memory cards will work nicely in this camera. The dual SD cards can be configured in various modes: overflow mode: when one card gets full it writes to the second card; backup mode: records image to both cards; record raw to one card, JPEG to another. You can record movies to one card, images to another. Slick!

Full press release and lots of images after the break. Read more...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

dpreview Gets Their Sticky Fingers on the Nikon D3100

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 01:00 AM

"Nikon has developed a habit of making very attractive entry-level DSLRs, which are rarely the best specified but cleverly designed so that they're easy and enjoyable to shoot with. The D3000 fitted this pattern perfectly, a gentle refresh of the D60 (which was itself a slightly updated D40X), it added ease-of-use features to make it a pleasant little camera despite a specification that was beginning to look rather out-of-step with the rest of the market. The D3000 sold well, despite its rather aged 10 megapixel sensor and lack of both live view and video. However, there's only so long that clever product design and feature integration can make up for a specification that looks dated. So with this in mind, Nikon has announced the D3100 - probably the biggest refresh of its entry-level offering since it really attacked the low end market with the original D40."

Not surprisingly, Nikon send a D3100 over to dpreview - hey, if I were them, I would too - and a six page preview is the result. A few things I didn't know before: the videos are limited to 10 minutes long, which isn't such a bad limitation. Also, the Guide Mode looks pretty helpful for beginners. Definitely worth checking out of the D3100 is on your potential wish-list!

Featured Product

The Canon PowerShot S100 - The incredibly fun and small camera that offers you 12.1 megapixels with a bright f/2.0 lens and full 1080p video recording . MORE INFO

News Tip or Feedback?

Contact us

Thoughts Media Sites

Windows Phone Thoughts

Digital Home Thoughts

Zune Thoughts

Apple Thoughts

Laptop Thoughts

Android Thoughts

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...