Shutterbug Staff
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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 28, 2008 0 comments

The League of Creative Infrared Photographers (www.irleague.com)
was officially formed in January 2008. It was established to promote the joy,
excitement, and creativity of infrared photography from in-camera capture to
enhancing images in the digital darkroom.

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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 27, 2008 0 comments

Mamiya has introduced the new Mamiya Sekor Macro MF 120mm f/4 D Lens -- successor
to the popular Mamiya Macro MF 120mm f/4 Lens.



"The Mamiya 120mm f/4 macro lens is one of the sharpest lenses available
today," said Jeff Karp, Mamiya Product Marketing Manager, "and it
has already been critically corrected for digital imaging. But it needed an upgrade
to be fully compatible with the latest cameras, software and digital backs."



The primary upgrade of the new lens is related to digital communication with the
camera. Data transfer is now controlled by a 16-bit CPU instead of the previous
4-bit CPU.



The advantages of the new CPU are:

Rewritability: The new 16-bit CPU is rewritable and can be overwritten
with firmware upgrades that would be required for compatibility with future cameras
and digital backs.


Finer Lens Correction: Thanks to the bigger capacity of the CPU,
the new lens has more lens data. It is possible to apply finer lens-characteristic
corrections when using Mamiya's Digital Photostudio¨ software.



Fast, Reliable Communication: The new CPU enables faster and more reliable communication
with the camera body.



As its name suggests, the new D-series lens shows its true capabilities when shooting
with the Mamiya ZD Digital back and other high-end digital backs. However, it
is designed to be equally at home with film backs.



The new Mamiya Sekor Macro MF 120mm f/4 D Lens is compatible with the Mamiya 645AFD
ll camera and is available for immediate delivery.



www.macgroup.com...

News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 26, 2008 0 comments

Sony's new Cyber-shot DSC-W300 digital camera integrates an ultra-high
13.6-megapixel CCD imager along with a Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 3x optical zoom
lens, a 2.7-inch LCD screen and an eye-level viewfinder in a compact size. With
its ultra-hard titanium coating, the W300 camera newly features an "extra
high-speed" burst mode that can shoot three-megapixel photos at five frames
per second, ideal for fast-action shooting of sports, pets or children.



In addition to the blur-reducing effects of Super SteadyShot optical image stabilization,
the camera also has a new "extra high sensitivity" mode (up to ISO
6400 in this mode only) to help minimize blurry photos when shooting in challenging
lighting conditions, such as indoors or at twilight, even without a flash.



Noise reduction is now a user-selectable option, with high, low and standard
settings, for greater control over the final look of images. For example, a
low setting can help reduce noise without sacrificing resolution, making it
ideal for landscapes and detailed subjects.



As the top-of-the-line model in the series, the W300 camera integrates the latest
"intelligent" features. Sony's Smile Shutter technology prioritizes
the faces of children or adults so that the camera takes the photo at the moment
the intended subject smiles. Improved face detection technology can also prioritize
child or adult faces as the basis for the camera to apply focus, exposure, white
balance and flash color controls for up to eight faces in the camera's
frame.



The model's intelligent scene recognition technology automatically can
detect five different types of scenes and optimize the camera settings for those
conditions for a better photo. And advanced mode can take two shots almost immediately
-- one with standard automatic settings and the other with optimized settings.



The W300 model has a number of features to maximize picture quality. Among them
are five color modes, including "real" for less in-camera processing
and more faithful color reproduction; 12 scene selection modes with a new "underwater"
mode that adjusts white balance for more natural-looking photos; Sony's
new D-Range Optimizer Plus that process picture to improve detail in photos
with harsh highlights or dark shadows; and an improved auto focus system that
includes macro ranges.



Viewing and image management has also been enhanced with helpful date and calendar
views, in-camera search by face or date, slide show with longer music files,
and high-definition component output for viewing photos on a compatible HDTV
set.



The DSC-W300 camera and optional accessories will be available in May for about
$350. All can be purchased online at sonystyle.com, at Sony Style retail stores
(www.sonystyle.com/retail),
at military base exchanges and at authorized dealers nationwide.



www.sony.com

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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 25, 2008 0 comments

The Sigma Corporation is pleased to announce the launch of the new 4.5mm F2.8
EX DC Circular Fisheye HSM lens. Features include:

· The first 180 degree circular fisheye lens designed specifically for
APS-C size digital SLR cameras

· Fast F2.8 maximum aperture making it ideal for low light photography


· Minimum focusing distance of 13.5cm and a maximum magnification of 1:6


· SLD glass minimizes color aberration

· Equipped with HSM with full-time manual focus override

· Equisolid angle projection method is possible for art and scientific
use



This autofocus circular fisheye lens has an angle of view of 180 degrees in
all directions. It is exclusively designed for digital SLR cameras with the
APS-C size image sensor. When used in conjunction with digital SLRs with APS-C
size image sensors, it produces a circular image within the frame. The F2.8
large aperture value produces a bright image in the viewfinder and allows photographers
to take pictures in low light conditions, making it an ideal lens for Astrophotography
and Aurora photography. Due to the quantifiable angle/area relationship it produces,
this lens can be used for scientific and arts applications such as solid angle
measurements of cloud distribution over the sky or vegetation distribution of
the forest. The minimum focusing distance of 13.5cm/5.3inch and maximum magnification
of 1:6 make it particularly useful for close-up photography. SLD(Special Low
Dispersion)glass provides effective compensation of chromatic aberration. Sigma's
Super Multi-Layer Coating minimizes flare and ghosting. It is equipped with
an inner focusing system that creates high definition and good image quality
over the whole frame. The HSM(Hyper Sonic Motor)ensures fast and quiet autofocusing
and allows full-time manual focus override by rotation of the focus ring.

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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 22, 2008 0 comments

Fujifilm announced its sponsorship of the Rainforest Alliance's first annual
`Picture Sustainability Photo Contest' to raise awareness around issues
of sustainability and conservation. US residents are invited to submit photos
illustrating sustainable agriculture, forestry and tourism. The Rainforest Alliance
is an international nonprofit conservation organization.



To qualify, photos must be submitted to www.raphotocontest.org/
by March 15, 2008. The winners will be announced on the Rainforest Alliance's
Web site (www.rainforest-alliance.org)
on April 18, 2008.



Winners will be chosen from the following categories:



Wildlife on farms, forests or other natural habitats

Landscapes (forests, waterways, flowers and plants, beaches,
wetlands)

Eco-tourism in Latin America (bird watching, hiking, surfing,
scuba diving, kayaking and other nature activities)

Macro (insects, flowers and plants, leafy vegetation, birds,
reptiles and amphibians, mammals, textures)

Conservation in action (people working to protect natural resources,
including water, flora and fauna)



"Images connect the general public to conservation," said Tensie Whelan,
executive director of the Rainforest Alliance. "We hope this contest will
engage people in sustainability, take them out of their back yards and foster
emotional connections with some of the world's most sensitive ecosystems."



"Fujifilm believes that sustainable development is the most important issue
for our planet, the human race, and all business entities in the 21st century,"
said Bert Aerts, president of Fujifilm Hunt Chemicals USA, and a member of the
Rainforest Alliance's board of directors. "Fujifilm's global
Green Policy aims to stay at the forefront of efforts to attain this goal in terms
of our company's impact on the environment -- and we are proud to partner
with the Rainforest Alliance in this unique effort."



One grand-prize winner and a guest will receive a seven-day trip to the Galapagos
Islands, including airfare, four nights on a cruise ship and two nights in Guayaquil.
Additionally, in May 2008 they will be flown to New York City to attend the Rainforest
Alliance annual gala as a guest of Fujifilm, to sit at their table and receive
a Fujifilm FinePix SLR-style digital camera. This professional model digital camera
is worth approximately $800 and is set to be announced by Fujifilm at the 2008
Photo Marketer's Association Show in February 2008. Round-trip airfare will
be provided for two from any major city in the US to New York City. A tour of
the city, lodging at an eco-friendly hotel for three nights and dinner for two
nights will also be included.



Five first prize winners, one from each category, will receive the same Fujifilm
FinePix digital camera as well as a book of photographs by award-winning wildlife
and nature photographer, Art Wolfe. In addition, up to seven exceptional photos
will be awarded honorable mentions and will receive a book of photographs by Art
Wolfe. The grand prize and first prize winners' photos will be framed and
auctioned off at the Rainforest Alliance's annual gala in May 2008 with
proceeds directly benefiting the organization. All winners will also receive an
honorary one-year membership to the Rainforest Alliance.



Rainforest Alliance staff members will select up to six finalists in each category.
Art Wolfe will select the winning photos based on overall composition, creativity,
artistic merit and relevance to the Rainforest Alliance mission.



Other sponsors of the photo contest include Ecuador-based tour operator Via Natura,
Green Spot travel agency, Guayaquil-based Hotel Oro Verde, Ecuadorian airline
AeroGal, Vermont-based energy company Native Energy and Art Wolfe.



www.fujifilmusa.com ...

News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 21, 2008 0 comments

Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) has announced the highly anticipated
Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 software for Macintosh is now available for pre-order
at www.adobe.com/go/buyphotoshop_elements_mac.
Photoshop Elements 6 software for Mac combines power and simplicity so consumers
at all experience levels can easily achieve outstanding results with their digital
photos.



Photoshop Elements 6 software helps photo enthusiasts achieve desired results
quickly and easily. New features based on proprietary Photomerge technology let
users easily combine the best facial expressions and body language from a series
of shots to create a single, perfect group shot. The new Quick Selection Tool
reduces a once time-consuming select-and-adjust task to a single click. Photographers
-- beginner to expert -- can choose from one of three edit modes, each
geared toward a different experience level. A new Guided Edit mode helps walk
users through the steps of improving a photo. Photoshop Elements 6 software streamlines
editing with clean, uncluttered screens that draw focus to the photos, with new
tabs providing simple access to the many capabilities of the program. Additional
enhancements include an improved conversion tool that dramatically converts color
images into elegant, nuanced black-and-whites.

News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 20, 2008 0 comments

Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE:EK) has announced improved versions of its Kodak Professional
Portra 400NC and 400VC films.



The new films offer:

· Finer Grain: Extended use of antenna dye technology
enables PORTRA 400NC and 400VC films to deliver finer grain than ever before.




· Outstanding Scanning Results: With finer grain and an
emulsion overcoat specially designed for scanners, PORTRA 400 films reproduce
beautifully, with either optical or digital output.



· Spectacular Skin Tones: The new PORTRA 400 films continue
to deliver smooth, natural reproduction of skin tones.



Kodak introduced the new Kodak Professional Portra film family in 2006. The new
Kodak Professional Portra films will be available worldwide on a stock-turnover
basis beginning Q1 2008.



www.kodak.com...

News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 19, 2008 0 comments

Lexar has announced that it has increased the capacity of its SDHC (Secure Digital
High Capacity) format memory cards in all three of the company's popular
product lines including Professional, Platinum II, and standard. Available later
this month, the new 8GB cards provide consumers and professionals with the ultimate
in functionality and performance, and are designed for SDHC-compatible devices
such as digital cameras, PDAs, and mobile phones, to name only a few of the
many popular SDHC-compatible product categories.

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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 15, 2008 0 comments

SanDisk Corporation, (NASDAQ: SNDK) has announced it has begun to sample 12-gigabyte
(GB) microSDHC flash memory cards to major phone manufacturers for testing and
evaluation. The 12GB card represents a 50 percent boost in card capacity from
SanDisk's industry-leading 8GB microSDHC cards, which are currently available
worldwide, and highlights the growing popularity of mobile phones with storageintensive
features that include music players, digital cameras, video recording and playback
and GPS capabilities.



SanDisk has embarked on a `slot education' program to raise awareness
of both the card slot included in the majority of new mobile phones available
today and the benefits to the consumers who use it. More information is available
at: www.WakeUpYourPhone.com.



A 12GB microSDHC is ideal for storing large quantities of music, photos and
video. For example, it will be able to store a combination of 1,500 songs, 3,600
photos and 24.5 hours of video.



SDHC is the designation for any SD or SD-based card that is larger than 2GB
and adheres to the new SD 2.00 specification required for cards and hosts to
support 4GB to 32GB capacities. The specification was developed by the SD Association,
an industry standards board, which has also created three classes to define
minimum sustained data transfer speed. These cards adhere to the SD Speed Class
4 Rating.



www.sandisk.com

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News
Shutterbug Staff Feb 14, 2008 0 comments

The DSLR-A200 model features upgrades influenced by the recently-introduced, enthusiast-class
DSLR-A700 camera and replaces the former Sony DSLR-A100 model, which was Sony's
first in the DSLR class. The new model is designed to be faster, lighter and easier
to use. Upgraded features include a wider, 2.7-inch Clear Photo LCDTM screen for
easy playback viewing; a more compact body and an easily-accessible mode dial;
an easy-to-use function menu (camera function display); improved noise control
for higher quality images; an auto focus speed 1.7x faster than the previous model;
improved predictive control performance; quieter shutter sound; automatic pop-up
flash; and a battery life indicator that displays the percentage of battery life
remaining so you know exactly when to recharge.



As seen in all a (alpha) camera bodies, the DSLR-A200 camera incorporates Super
SteadyShot image stabilization in the body to allow shooting at shutter speeds
of 2.5 to 3.5 steps slower than otherwise possible -- a benefit realized
with every compatible lens attached to the camera. Compatible lenses encompass
all Minolta Maxxum mount lenses, in addition to Sony a (alpha) lens lineup - including
Carl Zeiss® lenses.



With its 10.2-megapixel (effective) APS CCD image sensor, the DSLR-A200 camera
is said to continue to offer high-quality images by allowing more light to pass
through to each pixel -- increasing sensitivity, reducing noise, and providing
greater detail. Clean, reduced-noise signals are sent from the image sensor to
Sony's BIONZ processing engine, which processes data-rich picture information
at high speeds and reduces picture noise in the RAW data stage before image JPEG
conversion. The results are high-resolution, detailed images with rich tonal reproduction.



The DSLR-A200 model supports JPEG and RAW file format support. It has a slot for
CompactFlash Type I/II media cards. An adaptor for Memory Stick Duo media cards
is sold separately as an accessory.



Get The Photo Results You Want


In addition to Super SteadyShot image stabilization for virtually blur-free photos,
the new model incorporates Sony's D-Range Optimizer (DRO). It helps you
capture well-exposed images, especially when shooting high-contrast or backlit
scenes that often lead to loss of highlight and shadow detail. Sony's DRO
modifies the range from highlights to shadows, including gain and contrast, through
its in-camera hardware processing to produce more natural, evenly exposed pictures.
The camera's image analysis technology studies the captured image data and
instantly determines the best exposure and color tonality for the image before
JPEG compression.



The BIONZ image processing engine powers the camera up immediately and the eye-start
autofocus starts the focusing system before you even press the shutter. The camera
can shoot up to three continuous frames per second at 10.2-megapixels at the finest
JPEG compression level.



As seen in previous a (alpha) models, the new model carries a static-free anti-dust
coating on the CCD filter which is gently vibrated to dislodge any dust that might
have collected each time the camera is powered off.



Additionally, the DSLR-A200 camera's supplied lithium ion battery offers
up to 750 shots per full charge.



Sony is providing a full line of accessories for the model, including flashes,
rechargeable battery packs and several carrying cases. An interesting addition
is the VG-B30AM ergonomic vertical grip equipped with the most essential controls
for portrait orientation shooting. It also allows for the use of two InfoLITHIUM
batteries (sold separately) for up to 1,500 shots on a single, full charge.



The DSLR-A200K kit includes the camera body and a DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 3.9x zoom
lens for about $700. The DSLR-A200W kit includes the camera body, the DT 18-70mm
lens and a 75--300mm f4.5-5.6 lens for about $900. Both will ship in February
and will be available at sonystyle.com,
Sony Style retail stores (www.sonystyle.com/retail),
military base exchanges, and authorized dealers nationwide. Pre-orders begin online
on Jan. 7 at www.sonystyle.com/dslr.
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