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George Schaub Posted: Feb 07, 2013 Published: Jan 01, 2013 2 comments
It’s as if camera companies had been holding back in the last few months and finally the dam burst, resulting in a flood of new cameras debuted at photokina 2012. While there was a fair share of Micro Four Thirds mirrorless, interchangeable lens compacts, and medium format digital cameras, the major headlines were grabbed by a full slate of full-frame cameras—even “compacts.” In addition, it seems as if smartphones have chased the camera makers into offering more and more Wi-Fi-capable cameras, along with downloadable apps that can expand a camera’s capabilities. In all, it made for a host of new camera announcements—enthusiast, pro, and high-end alike—although there were few bargains to be found. As I go through the camera intros I’ll include the list price (when available) without comment, but in general you might be somewhat shocked by some of the prices these new cameras command.
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Staff Posted: Jan 29, 2013 Published: Dec 01, 2012 11 comments
The Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida will present an exhibition that reflects a transformative moment in photographic history during the tumultuous interwar years. On view from October 9, 2012 through January 6, 2013, The Modern Impulse: Photography from Europe and America Between the Wars will explore how the newly portable 35mm camera was celebrated as an instrument of poetry, analysis, and social change. Covering the years between 1918 and 1945, the exhibition will highlight over 40 artists who expanded the new medium and changed the way we perceive the world. Celebrating technology while embracing spontaneity and improvisation, these artists captured the spirit, vitality, and invention of a new age.
Jack Neubart Posted: Aug 21, 2012 Published: Jul 01, 2012 4 comments

It wasn’t too long ago when the use of a CMOS chip in a digicam was a sign of a cheapie camera. Well, the tide has changed, with CMOS today reflecting the highest level of capture in our newest digital point-and-shoots. Yes, there continue to be CCD holdouts even in innovative designs, but the writing is on the wall, spelling an eventual fade-out of the Charge-Coupled Device. And today, the Backside Illuminated (BSI, or simply “backlit”) CMOS sensor is slowly but surely moving into center stage—at least among small-sensor point-and-shoots, for improved light reception at the sensor, hence clearer, tonally fuller, and more detailed images. We’re also seeing quite a few long-zoom models and more GPS-enabled cameras, with a digital compass to boot, mostly in travel/outdoors-oriented designs. The “rugged” category continues to grow, as well as features such as sweep panorama mode (just swing around with your finger continually on the button) and touchscreen displays. But perhaps the new feature that stands out most is Wi-Fi capability. One camera is even Android-powered. The latter may not be smartphones, but they certainly appear to be the smart way to go for the wireless generation. With those trends in mind here’s our roundup of the digicam class of 2012. (Please note that this report contains both cameras on the market as of spring 2012 and those announced to be available when this article goes to press. Check with the various manufacturers for current availability.—Editor)

Jack Neubart Posted: Jun 21, 2012 Published: May 01, 2012 0 comments

Among the latest trends in lighting are the increasingly popular LED lights. While these lights were initially aimed at video, they serve a purpose in still photography as well, notably as accent or fill lights. In studio lighting, we have new monolight kits; and in speedlights, we have a new TTL ringflash along with a wireless TTL remote. We’ll also look at some interesting lighting accessories as well.

Jack Neubart Posted: Jun 19, 2012 Published: May 01, 2012 0 comments

The trend in tripods is toward more compact and lighter-weight tripods, with an increasing number of entries in carbon fiber. Is carbon fiber the ultimate lightweight tripod? The jury is still out, although everyone seems to want one. And along with tripods, various ball heads grabbed our attention. We even found a portable copy stand.

Jack Neubart Posted: Jun 20, 2012 Published: May 01, 2012 8 comments

Camera bags and carriers come in every shape and style, from highly functional rollers to bags that make a fashion statement whenever you step out the door with your gear. Among the new products appearing this year are those that will fit every photographer for every photo excursion. There are backpacks for day hikers to trekkers, and rollers for making the transition from plane to city streets. Camera carrier makers are always improving product to keep up with the changing needs of photographers and their gear.

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Feb 01, 2011 2 comments

In our recent photokina reports (January, 2011, issue) we covered products and trends at the show. Here’s a brief follow-up on some film and paper processing items and information on friends old and new, present and gone.


In our photokina reports we mentioned Kodak’s new film, of course, and Harman’s Direct Positive paper, and...

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

In all probability, most photographers could gain more from investing in lighting equipment than from investing in new cameras. Not professionals, perhaps, though studio lighting continues to come on in leaps and bounds, but countless amateurs could greatly improve both the range and quality of their work.

George Schaub Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

Our show report this year is an amalgam of product news and trend spotting, which pretty much reflects what photokina has stood for in our minds. The sense of a United Nations of photography still prevails at this increasingly European-directed show, but the image and its uses is still the universal tie that binds.

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Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

Perhaps the hardest thing to convey about photokina is just how wide-ranging it is. Where else are you going to get an opinion, from a factory representative, about how much longer film coating is going to survive in Iran? The answer, incidentally, was “maybe two to three years.” Did you even know there was a coating line in Iran? Then there are Romanian photo-book machines, Turkish...

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 1 comments

Let’s be honest. One thing no one would have expected at photokina was a unique new black-and-white silver halide process. But that’s what we got. Well, not exactly brand new. It’s a revival of a technology that hasn’t been seen in decades, quite possibly not in the lifetime of many of our readers: direct reversal paper.

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 1 comments

The weirdest camera at the show, the GFAE, wasn’t even recognizable as a camera, not least because it was a view camera with the bellows left out in order to show its construction more clearly. We’ll come back to it later, but first, let’s look at some more conventional offerings.

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

There’s a new kid on the block when it comes to tripods, and they’re impressive, both in design and philosophy. Redged was founded in Holland by a nature photographer (Ed Dorrestein) and a sports and reportage photographer (Bart Bel) in order to get the kinds of tripods they personally wanted.


We weren’t the only ones who were impressed. This was...

Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 0 comments

Let’s consider, to start, the humble camera strap. Several models of sling strap were shown, designed to carry the camera over your shoulder and under your arm or even on your hip.

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Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2011 1 comments

One of the great things about photokina is that you find a lot of “straws in the wind”: not necessarily major introductions from major manufacturers, but intriguing indicators of which way the wind is blowing.


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