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 Friday, April 14, 2017

 
From the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom YouTube Channel:
 
Lightroom tips and tricks in 60 seconds or less from longtime Lightroom team member Benjamin Warde.
 
B&H carries Adobe Photography Plan subscriptions.
Post Date: 4/14/2017 6:44:19 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Thursday, April 13, 2017
by Sean Setters
 
Are you curious to know how awesome your image is? Would you trust a computer algorithm to judge the merits your photo?
 
The developers at EveryPixel have created a tool to distinguish good stock photos from not-so-good ones.
 
From EveryPixel:
We are building a stock image search engine. And we want it to be the best search tool for stock image users ever. At the moment we can search across hundreds of millions of stock images and unfortunately not all of them are great. Far from it. And this is where our aesthetic detector comes in handy. There are two very important tasks it can accomplish:
 
1. Automatic Image Curation
Neural network would estimate a visual quality of every image and apply aesthetic score to every file. Later on this data would take part in the overall mix of ranking factors and help improve search results by bringing aesthetically better images to the first pages.
 
2. Bad Stock Image Terminator
There are lots and lots of unforgivingly bad stock photos. Neural network would detect photos with the lowest aesthetic score and literally weed them out from the search results.
For fun, I uploaded a few photos from my most recent portrait session. One of the images (seen atop this article) was rated very highly by the tool, while others from the same session were determined to have a much lower probability of awesomeness.
 
EveryPixel Neural Network Awesomeness Image Analyzer 2

EveryPixel Neural Network Awesomeness Image Analyzer 3

While there is certainly some entertainment value in uploading a few images to the tool to see how they score, the real beauty of this neural network analyzer is its ability to fairly accurately generate key words/tags for your images. Using the suggested tags when uploading images to your preferred social media platform may prove extremely beneficial in allowing your work to be found by those who should be most interested in seeing them.
Amazon has the Adobe Photoshop Elements 15 & Premiere Elements 15 available for $74.99. Regularly $124.99.
 
Note: This is a Gold Box Deal of the Day, but sometimes the deals expire before the end of the day. If interested in taking advantage of this deal, get it now while you can. [Sean]
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Turn frowns upside down Transform frowns into smiles, adjust squinting eyes and make other quick tweaks, so everyone in your photos looks their best.
  • Guided Edits for help along the way Photoshop Elements offers 45 Guided Edits that step you through to fantastic results.
  • Picture incredible text Get step-by-step help turning a photo into cool visual text and then adding an embossed look and drop shadows to really make it pop. Great for collages, scrapbook pages, cards, signs, and more.
  • System Requirement Note: Only compatible with 64-bit processors
Post Date: 4/13/2017 7:56:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Canon:
 
Firmware Version 1.0.4 incorporates the following fixes and improvements:
 
  • Fixes a phenomenon in which a red-colored area may appear at the bottom-center of a captured image when shooting in bulb mode or during a long exposure.
  • Fixes a phenomenon in which the autofocus may not respond when the autofocus is initiated via pressing the shutter button, the AF-ON button or the AE lock button when configured in the custom control menu.
  • Enhances the reliability of communications between the camera and SD card.
  • Fixes incorrect wording on the Finnish language menu screen.
Download: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Firmware v.1.0.4
 
B&H carries the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/13/2017 7:42:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
by Sean Setters
 
Not long ago we posted a video where photographer Jordan Matter used shop window lights for downtown nighttime portraiture. I thought it'd be fun to try my hand at some nighttime portraits using whatever light that downtown Savannah, GA had to offer and see if there were any additional lessons I could learn along the way. I contacted a local model I've worked with on a few occasions, Hunter, and asked if she'd like to experiment with downtown portraiture; she readily agreed. The following are a few things I took away from the downtown session.
 
Trustees Theater Entrance Savannah,GA

1. Finding sufficiently bright shop window light can be tough, but alternative downtown lighting options may be available.
 
I typically rely on off-camera flash for portrait lighting, but I was determined not to on this occasion. My goal was to use whatever light I could find in downtown Savannah for creating the portraits. Knowing a thing or two about downtown Savannah, we chose Broughton Street as the most likely candidate for finding brightly lit shop windows.
 
Unfortunately, while there were some shop windows that were somewhat well lit, I wouldn't consider them sufficiently well lit for my preferred portrait exposure parameters. However, the lights in front of the Trustees Theater proved more than sufficient from a brightness perspective. And even though all of the lights were positioned overhead, the huge area that the lights occupied created a very soft light that proved very flattering for portraiture.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 2

2. A very wide aperture and a relatively close subject may not be enough to completely eliminate background distractions.
 
While the Trustees Theater may have been perfect from an illumination standpoint, it proved problematic from another standpoint as it located next door to one of the most popular hangouts in Savannah, Leopold's Ice Cream shop. The theater's location combined with its proximity to a busy ice cream shop (with a long line of customers snaking out the door) meant that we had to pause numerous times so that nearby pedestrians could move out (or farther out) of the frame. However, it wasn't until I was reviewing the images later that I realized that the chairs outside Leopold's were a bit too distracting for my taste. It's true that I could have used an even wider aperture (I used an f/1.6 aperture in the image above), but... I'm not sure just how much that would have helped. Of course, choosing a different framing could have eliminated the distraction, but one of the points of using a wide aperture was to create enough blur to render background elements unrecognizable. No matter, care should always be taken to ensure that background elements do not detract from the main subject.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 1

3. You will likely need a confident subject if shooting in populated areas.
 
If shooting along a busy street, you'll want to make sure your subject is confident enough to deal with the attention that he/she will inevitably garner. Thankfully, Hunter proved quite adept at dealing with the attention of passersby without missing a beat. However, a less confident subject may require scheduling similar downtown shoots during a less busy weekday evening and/or at a less popular location.
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 5

4. Always remember to us a white/color balance target.
 
I was actually on my way back to my parking space after the session when I realized I had forgotten to capture an image of the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport under the neon lights of the Trustees Theater entrance. Not wanting to turn around and walk the three blocks back to the theater, I reasoned that I could get the color balance "close enough" in post without it. However, being red-green colorblind and without any great color-neutral objects in the frame, color balance became nearly impossible for me. In fact, I had to return to the same location the following evening to take a picture if the color target in order to get a decent skin tone in the images.
 
Note that because the neon light of the theater entrance was a vastly different color than the lights illuminating the street and surroundings, the background light took on a noticeably reddish hue. And while that hue may not be what I had imagined when setting up the shoot, the important thing is that the skin tones have an appealing warmth to them and the hue even makes the background look a little more interesting to me.
 
You may not be colorblind like me, but shooting a color target can help automate the sometimes tedious process of color balancing. It's definitely made my life easier (when I remember to use it).
 
Hunter Downtown Nighttime Portrait 4

5. I won't be giving up my flashes anytime soon.
 
While I thoroughly enjoyed the convenience of this shoot, with the ability to simply set my exposure, position the subject and snap away, I felt more than a little "boxed-in" by having to limit myself to shooting in a single location and pointed in a single direction (the direction with the most interesting, street light illuminated background). A small off-camera flash setup consisting of two flashes, one (or two) foldable soft boxes, radio triggers and color gels would have allowed me to get similarly-lit results anywhere (or I could have used a single light - possibly with a reflector - as the main source and a rim/hair light behind the subject). This setup would have been more cumbersome overall, but it would have also provided more flexibility.
 
Final Thoughts
 
Education is the key to understanding what's possible. Experience teaches us how to deal with the unexpected, giving us the confidence to react and think on our feet. If you come across an idea that sparks your interest, grab your camera and try to replicate the results and/or put your unique spin on the concept. By doing this over and over again, you'll gain the experience needed not only to recognize but to make the most out of the opportunities that abound for the inspired photographer.
Post Date: 4/13/2017 6:48:54 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the G-Technology G-RAID mini 1TB Dual-Drive Storage System available for $99.95 with free shipping. Regularly $199.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • G-RAID Dual-Drive Storage System
  • 1TB Storage Capacity
  • 2 x FireWire 800 Interfaces
  • 1 x USB 3.0 / 2.0 Interface
  • 16MB Cache per Drive
  • Preformatted HFS+ for Mac
  • Mac / Windows Compatible
Post Date: 4/13/2017 6:11:21 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, April 12, 2017
From the Canon Digital Learning Center:
Whether you’re an amateur still photographer or a one-person video production crew, focus is critical to a successful shoot. Autofocus systems in previous generations did a passable job overall, but increased demands and more sophisticated technologies called for a more comprehensive solution.
 
That’s why, in 2013, Canon introduced Dual Pixel CMOS Autofocus. We believe it’s a game changer for both video and still shooters. The benefits of Dual Pixel Autofocus (or DPAF) for shooters of all experience levels are vast and diverse. This article will explain the capabilities of DPAF, as well as outline several real-world examples of just how groundbreaking this new technology can be for your photographic projects.
Read the entire article on the Canon Digital Learning Center.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/12/2017 2:47:37 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Photoshelter:
 
Are you using the right Instagram hashtags?
 
You’re on Instagram. You use hashtags to help get your work out there. But the question is: Are you using the right ones?
 
We’ve partnered with Feature Shoot to give you a curated list of some of the best searchable and submittable hashtags for professional photographers. Inside, you’ll get a rundown on 11 genres including travel, street, black and white, landscape, fine art, and more.
 
Hashtags just might be the key to getting that extra exposure for your photo business, so get started with this guide.
 
Get the Free Guide
Post Date: 4/12/2017 11:08:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
With a Canon EOS 77D (nearly the same as the Canon EOS Rebel T7i) in my hands, it is time to set up the camera for use. How do I set up a 77D for use? Following are the 27 steps I took to get started with a brand new 77D or T7i.
 
  1. Open the box, find the battery and charger and plug it in. If you have another charged LP-E6/LP-E6N battery available, you can continue to the battery-required steps without a wait.
  2. While the battery is charging, unpack the other items you want from the box. This is a good time to install the neck strap.
  3. Download and install the Canon Solution Disk software on your computer to get support for the latest camera(s). Canon Digital Photo Pro (DPP), EOS Utility, Photostitch and Lens Registration Utility are the options I manually include in the install.
  4. Insert the battery (after charging completes).
  5. Power the camera on.
  6. The date and time setup screen will show at startup the first time. Use the Rear Control dial and Set button to update this information.
  7. Insert a memory card (don't forget to format the card via the tools menu option before taking pictures).
  8. Set the camera's mode to Av, Tv or M (some modes provide only a small subset of available menu options).
  9. Scroll through all of the menu tabs to configure the camera as follows:
  10. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Image quality: set RAW to "RAW"
  11. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Image review: 4 sec.
  12. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Release without card: Off (highly recommended)
  13. Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Lens aberration correction: All disabled (though I suggest leaving CA correction enabled for most uses - all can be applied in DPP)
  14. Shooting Menu, Tab 3: Picture Style: Neutral with Sharpness Strength set to "1" (Note: the low contrast "Neutral" picture style provides a histogram on the back of the camera that most-accurately shows me blown highlights and blocked shadows on the camera LCD. I usually change the Picture Style to "Standard" in DPP after capture.)
  15. Shooting Menu, Tab 3: Long exposure noise reduction: I usually have this option set to "Auto", but my choice varies for the situation.
  16. Shooting Menu, Tab 3: High ISO speed noise reduction: Off (noise reduction is destructive to images details - I prefer to add NR sparingly in post)
  17. Shooting Menu, Tab 2: White balance: AWB-W (Auto: White priority)
  18. Playback Menu, Tab 3: Histogram disp: RGB (I want to monitor all three color channels for blown or blocked pixels)
  19. Tools Menu, Tab 1: Auto rotate: On/Computer only (this provides the largest playback image size on the camera LCD)
  20. Tools Menu, Tab 2: Viewfinder display: Viewfinder level: Show, VF grid display: Show, Flicker detection: Show
  21. Tools Menu, Tab 3: Beep: Disable
  22. Tools Menu, Tab 4: Custom Functions: C.Fn I:ISO expansion: On
  23. Tools Menu, Tab 4: Custom Functions: C.Fn I:Exposure comp. auto cancel: Disable
  24. Tools Menu, Tab 4: Copyright information: Enter author's name: [your name]
  25. Display Level Menu: Mode guide: Disable
  26. Display Level Menu: Feature guide: Disable
  27. My Menu: Add the first tab; Register the following options for Tab 1: Long exposure noise reduction, Mirror lockup, Format card, Date/Time/Zone (great for monitoring what time it is), Sensor cleaning, Expo.comp./AEB (back up near the top of the list)
I make other menu and setting changes based on current shooting scenarios, but this list covers my initial camera setup process.
 
Using this camera configuration means that you intend to shoot similar to how I shoot – including shooting in RAW-only format. While this setup works ideally for me, your best use of this list may be for tweaking your own setup preferences.
 
Cameras continue to become more complex and if you can't remember your own menu setup parameters, it is a very good idea to keep an up-to-date list such as this one. If your camera goes off to a service visit, it will be returned in a reset-to-factory state (unless you request otherwise). Your list will ensure that you do not miss an important setting when putting the camera back into service.
 
More Information
 
Canon EOS Rebel T7i
Canon EOS 77D
 
The Canon EOS 77D is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
 
The Canon EOS Rebel T7i / 800D is also available at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/12/2017 9:33:17 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Just posted: Tamron TAP-in Console Review.
 
If there are compatible Tamron lenses in your kit, acquisition of a TAP-In is worth considering.
 
The Tamron TAP-in Console is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Post Date: 4/12/2017 8:07:49 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
From Nikon USA:
 
Exceptional Speed, Precision and Low-Light Ability Has Never Been as Attainable; The New D7500 Uses the Same Powerful Imaging Sensor and Includes Many Features from Nikon’s DX-Format D500 Flagship
 
MELVILLE, NY – Enthusiasts are a distinct type of photographer, who go to great lengths in the relentless pursuit of the perfect capture. It is for this user that Nikon Inc. announced the D7500 today, an advanced-level DX-format DSLR that provides a robust yet lightweight camera with powerful performance and premium features. Using the same 20.9-megapixel image sensor, processor and wide ISO range as the D500, Nikon’s flagship DX-format DSLR, the D7500 incorporates an exceptional combination of stunning image quality, impressive speed, astounding low-light ability and 4K UHD video capture, yet remains within reach for a diverse array of image makers and creators.
 
“The Nikon D7500 was engineered to be as versatile as the photographer using it, and excels whether shooting fast-action sports, stunning low-light landscapes, distant wildlife, glamorous portraits or multimedia content,” said Kosuke Kawaura, Director of Marketing and Planning, Nikon Inc. “This is a camera for the photographers who are serious about their passion, infatuated with the next frame and above all else, want speed, small size and an excellent value.”
 

Balance Image Quality and Low-Light Performance
The new D7500 features Nikon’s latest 20.9-megapixel DX-format imaging sensor and EXPEED 5 processing engine, the same high-performance heart of the Nikon D500. Designed to excel in a wide array of shooting conditions, the D7500 eliminates the optical low-pass filter (OLPF) for maximum sharpness and clarity, with the class-leading dynamic range flexibility that is a hallmark of Nikon DSLRs. The compact DX-format form factor also gives photographers extended focal length reach that is an advantage for sports and wildlife photography, especially when coupled with the vast selection of available NIKKOR lenses.
 
Whether shooting a landscape at dawn or sports under indoor lights, the D7500 affords the latitude of low-light capability to consistently nail the shot, time and time again. Even in the most challenging light, users can capture images with minimal noise, thanks to a native ISO range that spans from 100-51,200, and an expanded ISO range up to an astonishing 1.64 million equivalent. Those same stellar image quality and low noise virtues also apply to those shooting video, whether it’s a 4K UHD production or a mesmerizing astro time-lapse of the night sky.
 
Focus with Precision, Capture with Confidence
The Nikon D7500 DSLR gives photographers many new premium features and advanced Nikon technologies to help create incredible images and video:
 
  • The D7500 is fast enough to keep pace with the quickest athletes or animals; capable of shooting at up to 8 frames-per-second (fps) with full AF/AE, with an expanded buffer of up to 50 RAW/NEF (14-bit lossless compressed) or 100 JPEG images.
  • Nikon’s proven 51-point AF system covers a large portion of the frame. A Group-Area AF function has been added, which is a preferred focus mode for those shooting fast action.
  • The slim, tilting 3.2” 922K-dot touchscreen LCD can be used to easily control, compose and play back, even while mounted to a tripod. The menus can also be easily navigated using the touchscreen function.
  • Like the Nikon D5 and D500, the 180K RGB Metering system is used with the Advanced Scene Recognition System to help ensure balanced exposures and fantastic color rendition in nearly any shooting situation.
  • Lightweight DX form factor allows for an agile, comfortable body with deep grip and comprehensive weather sealing. The monocoque body is durable and approximately 5% lighter than the D7200 and 16% lighter than the D500.
  • Shoot all day and well into the night with up to approximately 950 shots per charge (CIPA standard).
  • Like the D500 and D5, the Auto AF Fine Tune feature when in Live View allows users to automatically calibrate autofocus with specific lenses if needed.
  • Through the Retouch menu, users can access an in-camera Batch Process RAW Converter that can handle multiple images to optimize workflow.
  • The camera’s pop-up flash can act as a Commander for remote Speedlights, while the camera is also optimized to function with line-of-sight using SB-500, SB-700 and SB-5000. It can even support the radio frequency control system of the SB-5000 when using the optional WR-R10 accessory.
  • New Auto Picture Control function analyzes the picture scene and automatically generates a tone curve within the camera.
  • Images can automatically be downloaded to a compatible smartphone, and the camera can also be triggered remotely using Built-in Bluetooth1 and Wi-Fi2
Multimedia Capabilities for Creators
The Nikon D7500 adds in a diverse array of advanced features for multimedia content creators, including 4K UHD (3840 × 2160/30p) video capture and the ability to produce awe-inspiring 4K UHD time-lapse movies in-camera. Video files can be stored as either MOV files or as MP4 files, for greater flexibility and easier playback on a wide range of devices. Like the D500, the D7500 offers 3-axis built-in e-VR image stabilization when shooting 1080p Full HD video, and can be easily focused using the rear touchscreen function.
 

For the advanced videographer, the D7500 offers simultaneous 4K UHD output to card and uncompressed via HDMI, as well as a headphone and microphone jack for pro-level audio recording and monitoring. To allow for smooth exposure adjustments, the camera also supports power aperture for smooth and step-less depth-of-field transitions while users can also keep highlights in-check using visible zebra stripes in live-view mode.
 
Price and Availability
The Nikon D7500 will be available in Summer 2017 for a suggested retail price (SRP)* of $1,249.95 for the body only configuration, or with a AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens for $1,749.95 SRP*.
 
Preorders: B&H | Amazon | Adorama | Wex Photographic
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 4/12/2017 6:22:15 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Through April 30, use coupon code SUMMERSAVE at LensRentals.com to save 10% on your rental arriving in May or June.
Post Date: 4/11/2017 10:40:17 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
If you currently have a Rebel/***D or **D series camera, the Canon EOS 6D and EOS 7D Mark II will likely be considered prime upgrade candidates as you look to expand your imaging capabilities. As such, let's take a look at these two DSLR bodies to see which upgrade option may be right for your needs.
 
First, let's take a quick look at the EOS 6D's benefits over the 7D Mark II:
 
  • Full frame sensor capable of cleaner imagery at higher ISOs
  • Larger ISO range: Auto (100-25600), 100-25600, L: 50, H1: 51200, H2: 102400 vs. Auto (100-16000), 100-16000, H1: 25600, H2: 51200
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Higher battery life: Approx. 1090 (at 23°C, AE 50%, FE 50%) vs. 670
  • Slightly smaller/lighter: 5.7 x 4.4 x 2.8" (144.5 x 110.5 x 71.2mm), 26.6 oz (755g) vs. 5.85 x 4.43 x 3.08" (148.6 x 112.4 x 78.2mm), 32.10 oz (910g)
Now let's check out the EOS 7D Mark II's benefits over the 6D:
 
  • Compatability with EF-S lenses
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF Sensor
  • Pop-up master flash vs. No flash
  • Headphone socket vs. None
  • Multi-controller joystick & AF area selector vs. None
  • More powerful image processing: Dual DIGIC 6 vs. DIGIC 5+
  • More advanced AF system: 65-point all cross-type AF (f/2.8 dual cross-type AF point at center) vs. 11 points (f/5.6 cross type at center, extra sensitivity at f/2.8)
  • More advanced metering system: 252 zone Dual Layer SPC vs. 63 zone Dual Layer SPC
  • More sensitive metering range: EV 0 – 20 (at 73°F/23°C and ISO 100) vs. EV 1 – 20
  • Faster continuous shooting and larger buffer: Max 10 fps (infinite JPEG, 31 RAW) vs. 4.5 fps (1250 JPEG, 17 RAW)
  • Faster max. shutter speed: 1/8000 sec. vs. 1/4000
  • Larger viewfinder coverage: 100% vs. 97%
  • More movie encoding options: .MOV & .MP4 (max. 1920 x 1080 [59.94, 50 fps] inter-frame) vs. .MOV (max. 1920 x 1080 [29.97, 25 fps] intra or inter frame), no .MP4 option
  • Faster Interface: SuperSpeed USB 3.0 vs. Hi-Speed USB 2.0
  • Dual Memory Cards: CompactFlash (UDMA 7 compatible) & SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I) vs. SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I) only
At the heart of it, you're looking at a comparison between Canon's low-end, budget conscious full-frame camera and their high-end, top-of-the-line APS-C model. Based on Canon's historical naming conventions, the camera bodies' names suggest the the EOS 6D is placed just above the 7D Mark II in the lineup spectrum, but that's simply a sensor-based categorization. Otherwise, as is clearly evident, the 7D Mark II provides a significant superset of features over 6D.
 
There are two key differentiators that usually appear in our camera comparisons – resolution and price – which remain unlisted above. In this case, these attributes fail to be differentiating factors between these particular cameras. Both DSLRs feature the same 20.2 MP resolution (although the 6D's sensor is larger, providing a larger pixel pitch) and both are priced similarly (the 7D II's MSRP is $100.00 USD higher, although instant and/or mail-in rebates can level out pricing).
 
Who should opt for the EOS 6D?
 
If you are looking for the absolute best image quality, especially at higher ISOs, you will certainly benefit from the 6D's full frame sensor. If who want a true 35mm angle of view from Canon's EF, TS-E & MP-E lenses, the choice is easy – get the 6D. If you want built-in Wi-Fi, the EOS 7D Mark II doesn't have it; the 6D does. The 6D makes for an excellent dedicated studio/portraiture body. Although the 6D is slightly smaller and lighter than the 7D II, I wouldn't necessarily consider it compelling differentiator between the two bodies.
 
Who should opt for the EOS 7D Mark II?
 
With a myriad of features not included in the EOS 6D, the 7D Mark II could be considered the jack-of-all-trades in this comparison. And if you're upgrading from another APS-C body, the 7D II allows for a seamless transition because of its compatibility with designed-for-crop-sensor, EF-S lenses, while still being compatible with EF, TS-E & MP-E lenses.
 
If you shoot sports or wildlife, you'll love the 7D II's advanced AF system and substantially faster 10 fps burst rate. If you're interested in filmmaking with your DSLR, the 7D II's expanded movie options, headphone socket and excellent Dual Pixel CMOS AF – allowing for superb focus tracking in movie mode – are huge benefits.
 
Aside from the advanced AF system, faster burst rate and impressive movie options, the 7D II's dual memory card slots is another feature that I consider to be a significant benefit over the 6D. The extra memory card slot provides the benefit of redundancy should a memory card become corrupted (or otherwise unavailable due to forgetfulness). If redundancy is not needed, the extra memory card slot can provide up to twice the storage available for use. And if the benefits of redundant/more storage are deemed unnecessary, you can always throw a Canon W-E1 Wireless Adapter in the SD card slot for the benefits it provides.
 
Summary
 
As is typical of Canon DSLRs, each of these cameras can easily be utilized to create stunning imagery. Your personal priorities and intended subject matter will ultimately determine which of these bodies is the best investment for capitalizing on your photographic opportunities. Hopefully, the comparison above has provided some insight into which of these bodies is the right addition for your camera kit. If not, check out Bryan's full reviews for more in-depth information on these (and many more) cameras.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 4/11/2017 7:45:06 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
by Sean Setters
 
I've been very interested in lightning photography for past several years. My original lightning trigger – the Vello FreeWave Stryker Lightning & Motion Trigger – was destroyed by a set of AAs that ruptured and corroded the battery compartment. While the Vello FreeWave Stryker worked as advertised in very dark conditions, dialing in the correct sensitivity was difficult and you couldn't use it effectively in even dimly lit overcast conditions. With my first lightning trigger irreparable (at least by me), I began looking for a more full featured trigger.
 
Not long after the Vello trigger bit the dust, I picked up the Miops Camera Trigger. After more than a year with the device, I've come to realize just how awesome this little trigger is. Following are three reasons why I love the Miops Camera Trigger.
 
Lightning Over Savannah, GA June 28, 2016

1. It saves wear and tear on the camera's shutter.
 
Of course, this benefit is true of all lightning camera triggers to a certain degree, but I find the Miops' sensitivity settings to be very easy to dial into a "perfect" setting for whatever situation presents itself in front of my camera, whether I'm photographing in very dark conditions or comparatively bright ones. The ability to finely tune the trigger means that the camera only triggers when lightning occurs. Contrast this with the technique of triggering your camera via an intervalometer where your camera fires endlessly whether there is lightning or not, and you'll quickly realize that a 1-hour storm translates into a lot of wear and tear on your shutter mechanism. Not only does the lightning trigger significantly reduce the wear on your camera, but it also saves you considerable amount of time in post processing as you don't have to wade through a mountain of images to find the candidates where lightning occurred.
 
Cannon Firing at Fort Pulaski Miops Camera Trigger

2. It's not just a lightning trigger.
 
Even though I purchased the Miops trigger primarily for photographing lightning, I love the fact that it features multiple kinds of triggering. In addition to lightning, the device can trigger your camera based on sound or laser catalysts. And on top of that, the Miops trigger can even serve as an intervalometer or a Bluetooth/smartphone remote trigger. In fact, I used the device to photograph a cannon firing demonstration (seen above) by remotely triggering my EOS 5D Mark III in continuous burst mode from a vantage point where spectators were not allowed (with prior permission, of course).
 
Miops Camera Trigger Li-Ion Battery

3. The internal battery is excellent.
 
To be perfectly frank, I wasn't sure I'd like the internal, rechargeable battery feature of the Miops trigger. I envisioned the battery running out at exactly the wrong time with no way to quickly replace the battery (or batteries) for uninterrupted operation. However, I've only charged the device twice in the year that I've had it and its battery indicator has never dropped below full power (after the initial charge, I recharged it once around the 6 month point just as a precaution). The device uses so little power that its relatively large internal battery seems to last forever. Of course, given enough time or enough usage, the battery will be exhausted, but... considering its performance, I'm happy to throw it on the charger once or twice a year. And if you're really concerned, you can purchase an additional rechargeable lithium-ion battery from Miops and keep a separately charged one in your bag or, alternately, use an USB battery pack to power the device while in-use.
 


About the Featured Image
 
Ever since creating the composite image of a lightning storm over River Street, I envisioned a tighter framed depiction of Savannah City Hall's gold dome with lightning in the frame. However, the biggest problem with the tighter framing is that the lightning would have to occur within a much smaller portion of sky in order to fall within the required field of view. While the perfect placement of a lightning bolt seemed unlikely, I thought it was worth an effort.
 
With a lightning storm forecast for the evening of April 5, I headed across the Savannah River to International Trade and Convention Center, the same spot I photographed the lightning composite of River Street. The great thing about this location is that it has a canopy covered side which has a great view of River Street on the opposite bank. This time around I used an EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM affixed to a 5D Mark III, the Miops trigger and an OP/TECH USA 8" Small Rain Sleeve and pointed the tripod-mounted rig at Savannah City Hall on the other side of the river. Using a focal length of 140mm allowed for the City Hall gold dome to be the prominent feature in the frame while [hopefully] giving me enough buffer around it to capture a lightning bolt.
 
After setting my exposure values (f/5, 1 sec, ISO 200), I sat down in a spot shielded by a canopy and alternated between watching the storm and reading articles on my smartphone. One of the great things about this type of photography is the automation; once everything was in place, it just became a waiting game.
 
While waiting for a fortuitous bolt, a riverboat which tours the Savannah River, the Georgia Queen, parked just under the City Hall dome right along River Street. The bright lights of the riverboat helped balance out the frame by adding some interest to the otherwise dimly lit River Street below City Hall.
 
After about an hour (and only 4 minutes after the Georgia Queen settled into place), I had the shot I was looking for. As it turns out, I was reading articles on my smartphone when this particular strike took place and I had no idea I had captured the image I set out to get. I packed up about 30 minutes later a bit disappointed thinking I was going home empty handed. It wasn't until I was reviewing the images later that evening that I realized I had been successful in achieving my goal of a photographing a lightning strike near the golden-capped landmark.
Post Date: 4/11/2017 7:00:42 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Nikon:
 
Changes from Firmware Version 1.0 to 1.1
 
  • Reduced the occurrence of an issue that in rare cases prevented the restoration of normal operation if the camera was restarted after the message “Turn the camera off and then on again” was displayed.
  • Improved the reliability of photo and movie transfer using the SnapBridge app.
  • Fixed an issue that sometimes resulted in location data added using the SnapBridge app not displaying correctly.
  • Fixed an issue that would in rare circumstances cause photographs to be recorded in black-and-white.
Download: Nikon COOLPIX A900 Firmware v.1.1
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 4/11/2017 6:32:54 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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