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 Monday, October 12, 2015
My Most-Used Product Photography Lens
You've probably seen many of the product images I create on this site, but ... did you ever wonder what lens I used to capture them? No, it was not with the Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM Lens shown in this photo.
I take a lot of photographs of products and, somewhat uniquely, my most-frequently photographed products are cameras and lenses. Taking pictures of a camera and lens of course requires a ... camera and lens.
The standardized product images found in the site's comparison tool have been captured by a Canon EF 180mm f/3.5L USM Macro Lens. Off topic, but in case you were also wondering, this lens is semi-permanently locked onto a Manfrotto 400 Deluxe Geared Head on a slightly customized (wheels removed) Manfrotto O800 Static Camera Stand. The head is great and the stand is sturdy and compact, though it permits a significant amount of vibration. As long as I use mirror lockup along with the self-timer to release the shutter, vibrations stabilize and, they wouldn't matter anyway as my studio lights have a very short duration that would freeze any movement.
While I use this setup for a significant percentage of the product images I create, The 180 L is not my most-used product photography lens. That honor goes to the Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM Lens. Why use this telephoto zoom for camera and lens product photography?
The focal lengths in the 70-200mm range create a reasonable (slightly compressed) perspective that works well on camera gear. The focal length range of this lens also makes it easy to keep the white shooting table background completely in the frame. Wider angle lenses must be closer to the shooting table to avoid extraneous subject matter. While that closer distance can work, there is some flexibility lost (and a closer perspective results with parts closer to the camera appearing larger than those farther away).
This lens is very sharp, corner to corner, even on a full frame body. Ticking the CA removal check box seals the deal.
While I also have the f/2.8 version of this lens, I don't need an aperture that wide when I'm shooting with studio strobes (f/11 is the aperture I most-often use). The narrower max aperture allows for the f/4L IS to be a relatively lightweight lens, inducing less fatigue (along with less wear and tear on my body).
Very helpful is that this is an image stabilized lens. While the studio strobes are fast enough to stop any camera motion, image stabilization greatly aids in subject framing.
The 70-200 f/4L IS is a very useful lens for other purposes, including landscape photography. The additional versatility makes having this lens in the kit a better business proposition.
The weakest aspect of this lens for product photography use? It does not focus close enough to frame smaller subjects tightly. If I need to more maximum magnification, I'll most often use the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro Lens, though extension tubes can remedy this issue to some extent.
Products come in all sizes and most lenses can be used for product photography of some kind. The range of sizes covered by a telephoto zoom, especially if you have plenty of working space, are great.
What is your most-used lens for product photography and what are your typical subjects?
Camera and Lens Settings
111mm  f/11.0  1/160s
ISO 100
3008 x 3503px
Post Date: 10/12/2015 9:08:55 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Crucial MX200 SATA SSD
Post Date: 10/12/2015 7:25:55 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon EOS 5Ds R DSLR Camera
Between October 11, 2015 and January 9, 2016, Canon is offering a full-featured accidental damage protection program – called CarePAK PLUS – on select items purchased at authorized retailers (like B&H, Amazon, Adorama, etc).
The details of the extended accidental damage protection program are really pretty amazing, especially considering manufacturers' warranties around the industry.
CarePAK PLUS Benefits
Protection from Accidental Damage
Protection from kids, pets, and life including accidental damage such as drops, spills, power surges and other unforeseen events.
Priority Service and Free Returns
No additional cost, free return shipping,* and minimal downtime with fast and reliable service direct from Canon. We’ve got you covered!
$0 Deductible
No Deductible for any repair or replacement, ever.
Additional Hardware Coverage
No more worries! Receive additional hardware coverage from excessive wear and tear on all mechanical and electrical issues.
Service & Support Directly from Canon
With hassle free service and support direct from Canon, you will never deal with a 3rd party. Feel confident your product will be serviced by Canon factory trained technicians using only Genuine Canon parts.*
CarePAK PLUS is transferable. Purchase a product as a gift for someone else or sell it during the covered period and transfer the benefits to someone else.
Always Genuine Canon Products
If your product cannot be fixed and needs to be replaced you will receive the exact same model, or better, always!
No Lemon Guarantee
If the product needs to be repaired for the same problem three times you will receive a new product.
* Offer valid October 10, 2015 12:00 a.m. through November 15, 2015 11:59 p.m. ET. Offer valid in U.S.A. only, and void where prohibited, taxed or restricted. Availability of certain items may be limited. Limit of ten of any one item per order, subject to availability. Order will be shipped to a street address in the 50 United States or the District of Columbia only. Dealers, distributors and other resellers are not eligible for this offer. Offer subject to Canon Online Store Terms of Sale.
Please see the EOS CAMERA/EF LENS LIMITED WARRANTY terms and conditions for your specific Canon model or visit us at usa.canon.com/carepak-plus for complete details. Additional benefits provided by CarePAK PLUS are listed below. Valid for purchases between Oct. 11, 2015 – Jan. 9, 2016.
  • An extension of the LIMITED WARRANTY term from one (1) year to thirteen (13) months from the date of original purchase.
  • ACCIDENTAL DAMAGE FROM HANDLING (ADH): labor and /or parts required to repair the Product, or at our sole discretion, replacement of your original Product in lieu of repair in consideration of sudden and unforeseen ADH; such as damage resulting from dropping the Product or in association with screen breakage or liquid damage.

Eligible Camera Bodies/Kits
Eligible Lenses
Posted to: Canon News
Category: Canon USA News
Post Date: 10/12/2015 6:18:23 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
DxO Optics Pro 10
For a limite time, B&H has DxO OpticsPro 10 Elite Edition (DVD) available for $119.00 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $199.00.
Product Highlights
  • Powerful Raw and JPEG Processing
  • PRIME Noise Reduction Technology
  • ClearView Haze Reduction
  • Automated Optical Corrections
  • Intelligent Sharpening Control
  • Automated or Manual Smart Lighting
  • Anti-Moiré and Image Editing Tools
  • Supports DNG File Type
  • Collaborative Editing with Lightroom
  • For Mac and Windows Operating Systems
Post Date: 10/12/2015 5:14:12 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Sunday, October 11, 2015
Adobe Apologizes for Lightroom 6.2 Release
From the Adobe Lightroom Journal:
I’d like to personally apologize for the quality of the Lightroom 6.2 release we shipped on Monday. The team cares passionately about our product and our customers and we failed on multiple fronts with this release. In our efforts to simplify the import experience we introduced instability that resulted in a significant crashing bug. The scope of that bug was unclear and we made the incorrect decision to ship with the bug while we continued to search for a reproducible case(Reproducible cases are essential for allowing an engineer to solve a problem). The bug has been fixed and today’s update addresses the stability of Lightroom 6.
The simplification of the import experience was also handled poorly. Our customers, educators and research team have been clear on this topic: The import experience in Lightroom is daunting. It’s a step that every customer must successfully take in order to use the product and overwhelming customers with every option in a single screen was not a tenable path forward. We made decisions on sensible defaults and placed many of the controls behind a settings panel. At the same time we removed some of our very low usage features to further reduce complexity and improve quality. These changes were not communicated properly or openly before launch. Lightroom was created in 2006 via a 14 month public beta in a dialog with the photography community. In making these changes without a broader dialog I’ve failed the original core values of the product and the team.
The team will continue to work hard to earn your trust back in subsequent releases and I look forward to reigniting the type of dialog we started in 2006.
Tom Hogarty and the Lightroom Management Team
Category: Adobe News
Post Date: 10/11/2015 6:55:13 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Saturday, October 10, 2015
Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD Lens
Have you been thinking about getting a longer focal length lens? If so, eBay and BuyDig have a deal for you.
eBay (via BuyDig) has the Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD Lens (for Canon, Nikon or Sony) as a Daily Deal for only $849 (regularly $1,069 before $70.00 mail-in rebate).
It appears that the "USA Warranty" eBay deal would also qualify for the rebate, making the final price only $779.
Post Date: 10/10/2015 8:41:03 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Canon EOS Rebel T6i Kit
Adorama has a Canon EOS Rebel T6i Kit with PIXMA PRO-100 Bundle available for an in-cart price of $799.00 with free expedited shipping after $350.00 mail-in rebate. Regularly $1,149.00 after $100.00 instant savings.
Bundle Includes
  • Canon EOS Rebel T6i DSLR Camera
  • Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM Lens
  • Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Professional Inkjet Printer
  • Canon SG-201 Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss, 13x19", 50 Sheets
  • Lowepro Nova Sport 17L AW Shoulder Bag, Slate Gray
Note: All bundled items and reduced pricing will be shown in-cart.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 10/10/2015 7:34:55 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Friday, October 9, 2015
Adobe Logo
From Adobe:
Lightroom CC 2015.2.1 and Lightroom 6.2.1 are now available through the Help-> Check for Updates menu item inside Lightroom.
This update provides a performance fix related to Import and also fixes crashing bugs identifying in the Lightroom CC 2015.2 / Lightroom 6.2 release.
Installation Instructions
Please select Help > Updates to use the update mechanism in the Creative Cloud app.
Direct download links: Mac | Win
Category: Adobe News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 11:32:20 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Huge Bull Moose, Katmai National Park, Alaska
With Alaska being such a massive state, it is only fitting that many of the Alaskan animals are also large. This huge bull moose looked very impressive walking down off of the mountain, initially with only its antlers rising above the trees.
Know what our bear guides were most afraid of? Moose. We spent days sitting among brown bears, some weighing well north of 1,000 lbs, with nothing more than minor issues, but a huge bull moose walking down off the mountain directly toward us definitely got the guide's attention. To reduce the drama, I should also say that part of the attention grab was because the sighting was so unusual in this location – this was the only land mammal other than brown bears that I saw in coastal Katmai National Park.
While moose were not my primary photography target at the time, I consider myself an opportunist and didn't hesitate to turn the camera from the bears when this bull showed up.
The moose was walking at a steady-but-leisurely pace and I could easily fill the camera buffer whenever I chose to, but that would have given me too many images that were similar to each other. Instead, I timed the frame captures with body positions that I thought would make a good composition with an eye also on the background. The body position I often chose had the far front leg in a forward position.
While I did not hold the shutter release down, I did shoot more images than I thought I needed. Aside from having insurance shots, I was trying to use a marginally long shutter speed, allowing a lower ISO setting to be used for less noise. Though a handful of my images were slightly blurred, the tactic proved to be a good one as I still ended up with many good images.
When the bull moose came to the edge of the high tidal stream bank, it proceeded to smoothly drop right over the edge. I caught that action nicely and might share it later, as soon as I get over being slightly bothered by the antler covering the eye. What I didn't correctly anticipate was the speed of the moose's decent and the base image for this shot, the one with the far lead leg in the air and sand flying, became cropped slightly too tightly on the bottom of the frame. Capturing some quick additional shots with different framing allowed me to create a panorama in post, correcting the tight crop and resulting in a 76-megapixel image.
With that much resolution available, cropping into the bull moose much more tightly remains an option, but I like seeing the environment the moose was in and especially like the fall-colored fireweed in the background.
What do you think? Should I have cropped this image tighter?
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr, Google+, 500px and Facebook. Also, if reading from a news feed reader, click through to see the framed image.
Post Date: 10/9/2015 9:24:55 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan

From the Canon Europe YouTube Channel:
Discover how photographer Timm Schneider brought the city of Stockholm, Sweden to life with two eyeballs and a Canon camera. Come and see.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 9:24:01 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Kenko Tokina Acquires Filter Maker Formatt-Hitech
From Amateur Photographer:
"Filter giant Kenko Tokina has snapped up Wales-based filter maker Formatt-Hitech in a move designed to expand Hitech's production of Firecrest ND filters for cinema.
Formatt-Hitech, which is based in Aberdare, said it will continue to produce filters in the UK as an independent subsidiary of Kenko Tokina.
In a statement, Formatt-Hitech explained that its Firecrest filters have been on ‘backorder’ with most dealers throughout 2015.
‘The acquisition provides Formatt-Hitech with the financial stability to produce Firecrest in the volumes demanded by the market…
‘Kenko Tokina’s acquisition immediately rectifies the situation and it is expected that the backlog of Firecrest filters will be produced before the holiday season.’"
Read the entire article on AmateurPhotographer.com.
B&H carries Formatt-Hitech products.
Post Date: 10/9/2015 7:19:22 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens
eBay (via always.deals - 98.2% Positive feedback) has the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Lens (review) available for $79.00 with free shipping. Compare at $125.00.
Note: This is likely a grey market item and therefore technically ineligible for a Canon USA warranty.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 6:57:30 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Manfrotto PIXI EVO Mini Tripods
From Manfrotto:
Manfrotto, world leader in the photography, imaging equipment and accessories industry, launches the new PIXI EVO, the brand new mini tripod to join the PIXI family. Enthusiast and hobbyist photographers who are deeply engaged in their passion and are looking for a lightweight portable solution will ?nd in this tripod an extremely versatile, sturdy support for larger lenses. PIXI EVO perfectly ?ts their needs thanks to a rich feature set that provides ?exibility of use, robustness and great variety of framing.
Flexibility of Use
PIXI EVO tripod boasts 2 different leg angles with a sliding selector, enabling users to shoot ground level images. Indeed another great innovation is its two-section legs, adjustable in 5 different steps adapting to non-level surface the footprint. Passionate photographers can now take their low light, landscape and architecture pictures with the maximum stability.
Variety of Framing and Robustness
With PIXI EVO photographers can set their inspiration free thanks to the alternative to shoot also in portrait mode, allowing the camera to tilt to 90° to capture incredible images, while ensuring great stability and precision for accurate pictures.
Moreover, PIXI EVO supports a wide range of devices up to 2.5Kg/5.5lbs. So, photographers can easily use longer and larger lenses for their shoots. However, it remains extremely lightweight thanks to its Adapto and aluminium construction and can be easily carried anywhere without ever feeling cumbersome.
PIXI EVO is yet another example of the careful attention Manfrotto pays to photographers’ needs, always looking to provide them with reliable, high-quality tools to support their passion.
Available in three colours: black, white and red-anthracite.
B&H has the Manfrotto PIXI EVO Mini Tripods available for preorder.
Category: Manfrotto News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 6:30:10 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Eyefi Logo
From Eyefi:
Pioneer of digital camera connectivity through its award-winning WiFi SD product line delivers first and only app for instant photo and video transfer from virtually any digital camera; photographers now have an integrated cloud photo-management solution for all their cameras.
Mountain View, Calif. – October 8, 2015 – Eyefi, the global leader in digital photo-management apps and services, just made it possible for photographers to choose a single app and cloud service to manage all the photos and videos they shoot on every single camera they own. Now that Eyefi supports the latest WiFi cameras from the leading manufacturers, there’s no need for photographers to use a mix of camera-specific apps to transfer photos to a computer. Instead, Eyefi’s smart apps automatically download photos from any device and push them to Eyefi Cloud, where they are consolidated and organized with all their other photos and videos — for viewing, editing and sharing.
“Eyefi is the only photo-management solution that works from the moment of capture, automatically transferring and organizing all photos into a unified and organized collection, regardless of which camera they originated,” said Matt DiMaria, Eyefi CEO. “For the first time, photographers now have a single app and cloud service that elegantly manages what they shoot on every camera they use. With Eyefi Cloud as their media hub, photographers can spend more time taking and enjoying photos, and zero time messing with cables and a patchwork quilt of desktop and mobile apps.”
Expanded WiFi camera connectivity for Canon, Casio and Nikon
Original-resolution photos —and now, videos— shot with any of the 50+ WiFi cameras supported by Eyefi are instantly transferred from the camera to a smartphone, tablet or desktop, and then to Eyefi Cloud, Eyefi’s advanced photo-management solution. Eyefi Cloud automatically analyzes, tags, organizes and displays them alongside images captured with all the photographer’s other cameras, including DLSR cameras equipped with an award-winning Eyefi Mobi WiFi SD card, smartphones, and tablets.
Eyefi Cloud now supports video as well as images
Until now, many photographers have had to manage their videos separately from their photos. With support for video now included, Eyefi Cloud makes it possible to see photos and videos on the same timeline, and create vivid stories that combine stills and motion. Videos are automatically synced and secured in the cloud, and made available for streaming to all connected smartphones, tablets and computers.
Eyefi: the only integrated photo-management solution for photographers
Eyefi has deep roots in the photography sector, where its award-winning Mobi Pro WiFi SD cards have led the market by providing cable-free transfer of images to a smartphone or tablet. Eyefi Cloud gives photographers a powerful platform to manage and safeguard all their photos and videos:
  • Wireless photo transfer from any digital camera or smartphone. Eyefi’s smartphone and tablet apps automatically transfer new images and videos captured using any device, including digital cameras equipped with an Eyefi Mobi card, smartphones and tablets, or the latest generation of WiFi-enabled digital cameras. With Eyefi, photographers never have to connect their cameras to their computers.
  • One unified and intelligently organized photo collection. Images from every device (even photos stored on a computer) are consolidated into one collection in the cloud, organized by date and time, and always available. Advanced image analysis automatically classifies and indexes photos by location, device, lens, aperture, speed or any of 10 categories and 80 sub-categories — making it easy to find, enjoy, edit or share images, no matter where you are.
  • Automatic backup to both the cloud and to any local device. The best of both worlds: combined cloud and desktop storage. Eyefi gives photographers complete control over how and where they store and archive their photos. Eyefi desktop apps can be configured to automatically archive locally (for example on network storage) any new image transferred to Eyefi Cloud from an Eyefi mobile app. Users control where their original images are stored: on the WiFi SD card in their camera, on their mobile device, in the cloud, and on their desktop — eliminating any possibility of an image being lost or damaged.
  • Every photo, accessible from any device. Eyefi Cloud optimizes presentation of high-resolution images for each device, ensuring fast display and minimizing local storage requirements. Images on smartphones and tablets are stored in a local, synchronized database that can be viewed even when the device is “airplane mode.” At last, the photographer’s entire photo collection is available for viewing, curating, editing and sharing—anytime, anywhere.
  • Resolution is never compromised. Eyefi transfers original-resolution photos and videos from the camera to the mobile device or desktop to the cloud keeping them safe and secure and always accessible for download at anytime.
Pricing and availability
Eyefi WiFi camera connectivity is available for free to Eyefi Cloud customers. For a list of supported WiFi cameras, see Eyefi WiFi cameras. Eyefi Cloud memberships are $4.99/month for unlimited photos and up to 300 videos/month with a maximum length of 15 minutes per video. All Eyefi Mobi Pro cards include one year of Eyefi Cloud membership and are available starting at $69.99.
B&H carries Eyefi Wi-Fi Memory Cards.
Category: Eyefi News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 5:32:29 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon EOS Rebel T5, EF-S 18-55 IS II & EF 50mm f/1.8 II Bundle
The Canon Store has a Refurbished Canon EOS Rebel T5, EF-S 18-55 IS II & EF 50mm f/1.8 II Bundle for $240.78. Compare at $524 new (camera kit + 50mm f/1.8 II).
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 10/9/2015 4:59:34 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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