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Jason Schneider Posted: Oct 26, 2011 Published: Sep 01, 2011 0 comments

The performance parameters of today’s cameras are flat-out astonishing. Many current entry-level and middle-tier D-SLRs provide image sensors with resolutions ranging from 12-18 megapixels (MP), burst rates of 5-7 fps, and full 1080p HD video capability. Sophisticated digital point-and-shoots are not far behind, with 10-14MP sensors, 720p or 1080p HD video, and respectable burst rates in the 3-5 fps range. Needless to say, pro and prosumer D-SLRs often exceed even these incredible specs, with sensors in the 20-25MP range, blistering burst rates up to 10 fps, deep buffers, and phenomenally rapid image processing software. Not surprisingly, flash memory manufacturers have responded with a veritable explosion of high-capacity, high-speed memory cards with incredible write speeds and an array of enhancements aimed at increasing reliability and security.

Jason Schneider Posted: Dec 10, 2015 5 comments

I’ve been collecting cameras for (ahem) well over half a century. But unlike many of my fellow film camera fanatics, I actually use these things to make pictures, which is a lot more fun. That’s why all the cameras on my 10 Favorites list below are prime, high-performance user-collectibles capable of outstanding image quality that can give those digital upstarts a run for the money. Yes, shooting film is a lot less convenient, and more expensive than shooting digital, but if you enjoy being a contrarian, iconoclast or outlier, being a Film Dinosaur is a great way to go.

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Jason Schneider Posted: Jun 01, 2008 1 comments

What happens in Vegas is supposed to stay there--unless it happens to be one of the eight hot new D-SLRs that debuted at the annual PMA Show. Yes, 2008 is shaping up as a banner year for the expanding D-SLR sector and neither the pace of D-SLR sales nor the advancing technology that goes along with it is showing any sign of slowing down.

With eight new D-SLR...

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Jason Schneider Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

One of the coolest things about wandering the cavernous halls of PMA is having the opportunity to snoop around and discover fascinating items where you'd least expect to find them. Just keep your eyes peeled and you'll be rewarded with fascinating tidbits, ranging from strange photo accessories to clever upgrades of traditional items, to exciting new technologies, some...

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Jason Schneider Posted: Aug 01, 2005 0 comments

If there's one thing that makes pictures shot by leading professional photographers stand out from the pack, it's lighting. But while it's relatively easy to get precisely controlled lighting effects in a well-equipped studio, these pros have to deliver consistent studio-quality results in the field--whether they're shooting on location in a dark...

Jason Schneider Posted: May 01, 2007 0 comments

With prices of all film cameras at historic lows, now is as good a time as any to glom onto that classic screwmount Leica you've always wanted!

When it comes to embodying the classic Bauhaus dictum "form follows function," nothing can beat a vintage screwmount Leica. From the late version of the Leica I or C of 1930/31 (the first model with...

Jason Schneider Posted: Feb 01, 2008 0 comments

Adventurous souls and early adopters were shooting with 35mm SLRs (namely the Kine Exakta) as far back as 1936, but it wasn't until the late '50s and early '60s that 35mm SLRs really began to dominate the serious amateur and professional camera market. No other camera type offered the SLR's supreme optical flexibility and a penta-prism finder with...

Jason Schneider Posted: Jun 01, 2007 0 comments

If I have any guiding principle that informs my desultory scribblings it is simply this: "Don't write about things you haven't actually tried yourself." It's a great way to avoid "foot in mouth" disease, and as the sages are wont to say, experience is the greatest teacher. So, before holding forth (as I did in my last column) on the...

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Jason Schneider Posted: Aug 01, 2006 1 comments

This fairly large (6.5" long, 3.3" in diameter), reasonably lightweight (32.5 oz, including removable tripod collar) macro tele covers the 24x36mm format in film or digital as well as the smaller APS-C digital format. The Di (Digitally Integrated) designation indicates that it's "optically designed for digital SLR cameras." To translate the remainder...

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Jason Schneider Posted: May 20, 2014 Published: Apr 01, 2014 0 comments
Given that the physical and perceptual experience of making a photograph is shaped by technology, and that technology is also embedded in the resulting images, one of the chief and perhaps most profound changes in how we make an image has been the changes in focusing—and recently autofocusing—technology. There’s a reason that the documentary photojournalism of Lewis W. Hine (shot with a ponderous 5x7 view camera or a 4x5 Graflex SLR) has a qualitatively different feel from that of Alfred Eisenstaedt or Henri Cartier-Bresson (shot with pocket-sized 35mm rangefinder cameras). It’s not only framing—it’s responsiveness, spontaneity, and, perhaps, repose, that underlies what these image-makers showed us.

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