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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...

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...

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...

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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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Jack Neubart Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

While camera bags often aim for functionality over style, there were several shoulder bags shown this year that had fashion chic paramount in their design, and a number of them aimed at the female photo enthusiast. Still, the photo backpack seemed to dominate when it came to functionality and innovative design, including two combo packs targeting the hard-core backpacker or...

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George Schaub Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

As is our wont each year we take to the aisles of the PMA Show, the annual and largest photo equipment show in the US, in search of new and innovative products for photographers. This year we had six reporters, including Jon Canfield, Jack Neubart, Jason Schneider, Robert Mayer, Peter Burian, and, new with us at PMA this year, Ibarionex Perello, covering their respective beats;...

Ibarionex R. Perello Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

The absence of the major camera and digital back manufacturers, including Hasselblad, Mamiya, and Phase One, probably reflects less on the viability of the format than the fact that this show is more oriented toward amateur and advanced amateur photographers. But the lack of those exhibitors didn't dim one of the most interesting announcements at the show--a camera that...

Jon Canfield Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

PMA 2008 is not going to go down in history as the year of the new printer. Unlike past years where every major company had multiple new product announcements, this year was relatively quiet on the inkjet front. That does point to a maturing category, one where the existing quality bar is already very high. Indeed, you could take any of the top three (Canon, Epson, HP) and have...

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

While some sounded the death knell of filters when digital imaging arrived, with all the in camera and plug-in manipulations available, there were a number of new and often high-end filters on display. Here's what's new and improved in this frequently essential accessory:

Argraph announced a new Marumi DHG (Digital High Grade) Achromat Macro 200 (+5)...

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