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Jack Neubart Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

Studio lighting comes in all shapes and sizes, and the lights that are new to photokina certainly support that contention. Our primary focus here is on strobe lighting, but that includes a mix of monolights and power packs (generators), and select flash heads that attach to these generators. If we can see any trend in studio strobes it is the increasing reliance on electronic components and...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

As ever, medium format—hereafter MF—ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. For sublime, it’s hard to beat the new 50-megapixel Hasselblad or the 37.5-megapixel Leica S2, or possibly the Rollei/Sinar/Leaf Hy6, built by Franke & Heidecke (with their new option of a 6x6cm rollfilm back). As for ridiculous, well, I know I’ll get hate mail from Holga owners, but...

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Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

Charge!
You can now charge your electronic devices while you are on the move. The G24i solar panel was developed for MIA (Mascotte Industrial Associates) by Gcell and has so far been incorporated in a backpack, a laptop bag, a camouflage bag, and even a tennis bag. It is lightweight and flexible, not too sensitive to the angle of the light, has a high energy output, and...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

When it came to rangefinders, Leica completely stole the show: Zeiss and Voigtländer had only one new product each. Admittedly they were interesting—an 85mm f/4 Tele-Tessar in Leica M-compatible ZM mount and a dual-format rangefinder folder, the Bessa III—but they were somewhat eclipsed by Leica’s four new lenses and the revised M8.2 camera body.

The item...

Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

At two very well-attended open forums, Kodak asked the all-important question: “What’s film got to do with it?” The answer, given by four top professionals (Amy Postle, Pep Bonet, Det Kempe, and Eddie Soloway), cheered on by large audiences, turned out to be “A lot more than you might think.”

I forget which of them first said, “I use digital...

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Peter K. Burian Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

Whether you own a 35mm or digital SLR camera, a dedicated external flash unit can be a valuable accessory. Not many new models were unveiled at photokina, and three of the four were macro ringlights. These have been gaining in popularity for extra lighting in extreme close-up photography of products, nature subjects, and medical/dental applications, but they can also be useful for some...

Peter K. Burian Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

As the price of D-SLRs and high-resolution digicams drops to more affordable levels, an increasing number of families and serious photo enthusiasts want a better photo printer. We found lots of new machines at the photokina show, some with high-tech features such as Wi-Fi and Ethernet compatibility. Lack of space precludes coverage of every new product, but the following printers are worth...

George Schaub Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

The photokina trade fair held in Cologne, Germany, every two years has a solid reputation for previews and announcements meant to shake up the practices and worldviews of photographers, be they amateur or pro. This can come in the form of products real and imagined, with some making it to shelves and others just a wistful dream of designers and engineers who hope what they propose will become the...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

Let’s start with the cheapest Large Format (LF) camera at the show, and, as far as I am concerned, the one that is likely to be of the most interest to the largest number of our readers: the Bulldog 10x8” camera (also available in 8x10” for the American market—it’s a reversing back and can be used either way). The UK price is £250, which means that although a...

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Roger W. Hicks & Frances E. Schultz Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

Every photokina, we are assigned a category that for want of a better term we call “weird and wonderful.” It’s stuff that doesn’t easily fit into any other category, or differs so much from the mass of its competitors that it deserves special mention.

Some products are just bizarre: we’ll come to what we thought was the most bizarre trend at the end...

Peter K. Burian Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

Although digicams with built-in lenses still outsell D-SLRs by 10 to 1, market research indicates that 20 percent of consumers are planning to upgrade to an interchangeable-lens camera. As a result, most manufacturers are devoting significant R&D efforts to the D-SLR category, and we found some really desirable new cameras at photokina. The trend was toward more of the high-tech...

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Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

One of the great pleasures of photokina is finding really brilliant new accessories. Some are completely unexpected. Others, you’ve wanted for years but have never been able to find—often because until now, the technology needed to build them has not been available.

A shining example (literally) of the latter, and the accessory hit of the show as far as I am concerned...

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Peter K. Burian Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

As digital camera resolution is increasing, memory card manufacturers are keeping up, releasing new products with greater speed and storage capacity. Whether you shoot raw or the finest JPEGs, there's definitely a benefit to using the fastest memory card. The extra speed is useful primarily for greater burst depth--more frames in a long series--but also for shorter...

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Peter K. Burian Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

Considering the many D-SLRs that are introduced each year, it's no surprise that virtually every lens manufacturer is also expanding its line of new products. That includes both digital-only lenses--for cameras with a typical small sensor--and multi-platform lenses suitable for any SLR. The latter are particularly important now because of the increasing number of...

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Robert E. Mayer Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

The new models of shoe-mount portable flash units seen at this year's trade show not only offer more powerful light output for more distant subjects, but also frequently include new features that make them easier to use. This report also includes new small camera-mounted LED lights for continuous lighting, intended for camcorders but also useful for still photographers.

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