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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...

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 & 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...

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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: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

Because of the increasing resolution and burst speed of some new cameras, the capacity and speed of memory cards continues to increase. While a super-fast card cannot boost a camera’s maximum framing rate, the extra card speed can provide greater burst depth (more frames in a long series) and shorter data recording times. A high-speed card is also ideal after a long trip, when you’re...

Peter K. Burian Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

The primary emphasis was on D-SLRs during the photokina 2008 show, but many new digicams with integral lenses were introduced, including some inexpensive models strictly for quick snapshooting. While those may find eager buyers, I’ll concentrate on cameras intended for the photo enthusiast. In these categories, only a few trends became obvious, starting with resolution: 13- and 14-megapixel...

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Jack Neubart Posted: Jan 01, 2009 0 comments

Digital photo frames at photokina were riding the tide of increasing popularity, with wireless technological support in the driver’s seat. Manufacturers are trying to make them more utilitarian, so these digital frames don’t just sit there when not in use. Whatever you say about them, they’re always fashionable, competing with traditional frames for attention, and they make a...

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

With the growing popularity of D-SLR cameras with sensors of various sizes, most of the manufacturers are working to expand their line of lenses. As expected, many of the latest products are “digital only”: designed for the majority of D-SLRs with the APS-C or Four Thirds size sensor. But (as specified in the text), some are multi-platform products suitable for all 35mm and digital...

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

At photokina 2008, there was (as usual) an extraordinary range of camera supports. So many in fact that a “laundry list” of new introductions could easily fill the whole magazine. This prompted me to think hard about what to look for in a camera support. It seemed to me there are three things: three legs, if you like. What you need; what you want; and what you can afford. You may care...

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

In order to organize and conveniently display your favorite pictures of family, friends, pets, and travel, you need albums. There were many sizes and shapes on display with a host of color variations, textures, and themes. For those precious few images worthy of even more prominent display, there were lots of frames for single or multiple images.

There were also...

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Jon Canfield Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

There may not have been many new printer announcements at PMA this year, but that certainly didn't affect the paper vendors from going all out with new products. It's clear that old is new again, as many of the surfaces shown mimic those of traditional darkroom days. If you're a lover of fiber-based papers, this is a great year for you with plenty of new options...

Jack Neubart Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

It appears someone hit the dimmer switch when it came to lighting this year: the number of entries was sporadic, at best. But the good news is that there were a few shining lights. In strobe lighting the focus was entirely on self-contained monopacs, notably in lighting designed with digital control, smaller and easier-to-use lights, and one super-lightweight battery...

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