Covering The Photo Beat
Tabletop Shooting Tents, Tripods, Bags, And More Page 2
New from Photoflex is the LiteRoom, two sizes of tabletop shooting tents for effortless photography of small products using either flash/strobe or continuous lighting sources. The LiteRoom diffusion material produces nearly shadow-free lighting, but when combined with a Photoflex SilverDome nxt softbox even softer, more diffused and dramatic lighting is produced. This double diffusion is particularly useful when photographing highly reflective items such as glassware, coins, jewelry, gems, and artwork. Flexible steel rods with aluminum bullet tips support the shooting tent similar to the method used in softboxes.
Quick-Release Corners make setup and teardown fast and easy. The medium LiteRoom measures 24.5x32x17" high and the large measures 34x45x24.5" high. Arced exterior walls provide continuous gradations of light and the translucent fabric has a one f/stop diffusion rating. Shooting portholes are positioned on the top and at one end where a zipper runs in an arc from one corner to the other. The zipper makes it easy to place and replace the objects and also assists in proper positioning of the camera, then it can be zipped back up around the lens to keep out undesired light. At the opposite end a vestibule extension with a flap provides increased interior height for objects as well as backlighting. An open bottom permits choosing your own background and foreground flooring. An instructional CD contains both assembly data and lessons using photo by photo setups. The medium LiteRoom (ST-MD) has a MSRP of $175 and the large version (ST-LG) is $250. In addition, four kit versions including lights and stands are also offered. Contact: Photoflex Products Inc., 97 Hangar Way, Watsonville, CA 95076; (800) 486-2674; fax: (831) 786-1371; www.photoflex.com.
AC Power Adapter
For Quantum Qflash X Units
You can substitute the new Quantum PR4 AC module for a current PB1 or PB2 battery, connect the module to AC power, and have uninterrupted power for day-long studio shooting. When you need to go on location away from AC power, just remove the PR4 module and reattach either the PB1 or PB2 for outdoor situations. In the studio or on location you can shoot i-TTL, D-TTL, A-TTL, E-TTL II, E-TTL, or TTL with the Quantum Qflash X2D or TTL with the Qflash X/X2. The recycle times are the same for AC or DC power. All versions of the Qflash can be used in Manual or TTL modes with a Quantum Softbox for portraits. In addition you can easily interchange accessory reflectors for shooting bare bulb, wide angle, diffused, or telephoto photos. The retail price is $426. Contact: Quantum Instruments, Inc., 1075 Stewart Ave., Garden City, NY 11530; (516) 222-6000; fax: (516) 222-0569; www.qtm.com.
Studio Out Of
For quick, simple small product photography in a small space, the new Kaiser Studio Out of the Box really does a nice job. In one carrying/storage case measuring just 24x18x4" you can carry an adjustable length sweep table having a variable position camera support (for cameras weighing up to 1 lb) and variable angle background holder. A metal, neutral gray table pulls out as does a jointed metal background sweep--you then lift up the camera's arms and set them for the desired angle. It's adjustable for height and angle and can also be moved left or right. The camera can be positioned at any angle from straight down for copy stand use to 180Þ from the background. When done, all you need to do is remove the camera, roll up the background and place the entire unit back into the carrying case. The MSRP is $223. Contact: HP Marketing Corp., 16 Chapin Rd., Pine Brook, NJ 07058; (800) 735-4373; fax: (800) 282-9010; www.hpmarketingcorp.com.
Fluid Tripod Heads
The Gitzo Rationelle series of low-profile tripod heads (G2270M, G2271M, and G2272M) were designed to provide improved support, ultimate balance, and reliability. Made from lightweight magnesium they can support payloads of up to 12.2 lbs. A unique plate design offers multiple spirit levels, which used to be difficult to see when medium format cameras were used. Each head has ergonomically engineered pan and tilt handles for use on either the right or left side. A built-in fluid system permits smooth movement along both vertical and horizontal axis. The Rationelle G2272M features a security locking system for the plate so equipment cannot accidentally fall off even if not locked down. A square plate facilitates keeping the side of the mounting plate parallel to the back or front of the camera for perfect alignment. Formerly, in portrait mode with a low-profile head, up and down tilt was lost, but with this new square release plate system the camera can be positioned in the adapter sideways, enabling up and down manipulation. The MSRP ranges from $323-$339. Contact: Bogen Imaging Inc., 565 East Crescent Ave., Ramsey, NJ 07446; (201) 818-9500; fax: (201) 818-9177; www.bogenimaging.com.