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 Thursday, February 2, 2017
Adorama has the Glow 31 x 31" Quick Softbox with Shoe Mount S-Type Flash Bracket available for $39.94. Regularly $47.94.
 
Note: I use several similar collapsible (albeit smaller) softboxes on a daily basis because of their low cost, easy setup/teardown and flattering – yet well-controlled – light they produce. If you've been experimenting with off-camera flash and have yet to pick up a softbox, pick up this deal to see what you've been missing. [Sean]
Through midnight tonight Eastern Time, B&H has the Delkin Devices Fat Gecko Triple Mount available for $59.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $99.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Mount Combines Fat Gecko Original & Mini
  • Works on Smooth, Non-Porous Surfaces
  • Three-Point Mount Increases Stability
  • Three Industrial Locking Suction Cups
  • Features Six Adjustable Points
  • Slide & Lock Design Secures Connection
  • Adjusts to Contours of Shooting Surface
  • Features a Standard 1/4"-20 Tripod Head
  • Rubber Washer Dampens Vibrations
  • Supports DSLRs & Camcorders Up to 12 lb
Note from Sean: I've recently been testing a similar (but more robust) product and have been having an absolute blast with it.
 
Self Portrait with RigWheels RigMount X4 Magnet Camera Platform 1

Post Date: 2/2/2017 5:36:32 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, February 1, 2017

 
From the B&H YouTube Channel:
 
As many people know, our National Parks are seeing ever increasing numbers of visitors which means traffic jams, long waits, and huge crowds at the better known photo spots. The good news is that almost everyone disappears after the sunset fades. Chris and Lance are two of the five instructors that make up National Parks at Night, and they will show you how to make the most of your visit to any national park and experience them in ways that most people never do. National parks have some of the darkest skies in the country, which means they are filled with amazing views of the Milky Way.
 
Lance has been photographing at night for 30 years, and has almost 20 years experience teaching night photography, and Chris literally wrote the book on photographing national parks. Together they will share their experiences photographing the night sky in Parks like Acadia, Yosemite, Joshua Tree, Death Valley, Zion, and many others. They will also present general tips on night photography, including techniques and gear for working in natural light situations.
Post Date: 2/1/2017 2:37:25 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the Oben CT-3451 Carbon Fiber Travel Tripod with BE-113T Ball Head available for $199.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $299.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Load Capacity: 13.2 lb
  • Max Height: 61.3"
  • Min Height: 8.9"
  • Folded Length: 17.1"
  • Leg Sections: 4
  • Weight: 2.5 lb
  • Detachable Leg and Column Form Monopod
  • Rubber Feet & Metal Spikes
  • Arca-Type Quick-Release Plate
  • 2 x Bubble Levels
Through tomorrow, use coupon code PXLOVE20 at AdoramaPix to save 20% on your Valentine's Day photo gifts.
Post Date: 2/1/2017 12:27:39 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
From now until April 21, you can get a free Air Remote with the purchase of a Profoto B1 or B2 kit.
 
With the purchase of a B1/B2 kit, you can bundle one of the following (ranging in value from $311.00 to $419.00):
 
  • Profoto Air Remote Transceiver
  • Profoto Air Remote TTL-C for Canon
  • Profoto Air Remote TTL-N for Nikon
  • Profoto Air Remote TTL-S for Sony
Post Date: 2/1/2017 12:23:36 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
The GoPro Karma Quadcopter is available for preorder from B&H with an expected availability at the end of March.
 
You might remember that the GoPro Karma was announced in September of last year, released a short time later, and then quickly recalled due to power failures mid-flight. According to GoPro, the issue has been resolved in upcoming re-release of the drone.
 
One big question remains, though: Which one is better for you, the DJI Mavic Pro or the GoPro Karma?
Category: Preorders
Post Date: 2/1/2017 12:00:45 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Lexar:
 
Doubled Capacity Allows Cinematographers, Filmmakers, and Content Creators to Capture Highest-Quality 4K Video and Beyond
 
MILPITAS, Calif., Jan. 31, 2017 – Lexar, a leading global brand of flash memory products, today announced doubled capacity for the Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 memory card, providing the capacity and speed thresholds needed for cinematographers, filmmakers, and content creators to capture the highest-quality 4K and ProRes video and RAW photos. The new 512GB capacity card is designed to address the exacting demands of today's top content innovators. The Lexar Professional 3600x CFast 2.0 card line, specifically optimized for ARRI cameras, will also double in capacity to 512GB in the first half of 2017.
 
"As professional imaging technology continues to advance, it's crucial that memory storage formats keep pace with ever-evolving data needs," said Jennifer Lee, product marketing director, Lexar. "When shooting 200 FPS on a high-end, production-level camera, it's easy to fill up an entire 256GB card with content in just 17 minutes. Comparatively, the new Professional 512GB 3500x CFast 2.0 card can capture up to more than twice that time. It's essential that professional content creators shooting in bandwidth-heavy applications such as RAW, 4K, burst-mode, time-lapse, and beyond have access to increasingly higher capacities and faster transfer speeds like those offered by the new 512GB Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card."
 
The 512GB Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card provides write speeds up to 445MB/s, for professionals to capture lots of footage and keep shooting. From the first take through to post-production, content innovators will have the speed and space needed to capture the highest cinema-quality video for their next masterpiece and quickly power through post-production with read transfer speeds up to 525MB/s. The Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card includes a lifetime copy of Image Rescue software to recover most photo and select video files, even if they've been erased or the card has been corrupted.4 The card is also backed by expert technical support and a limited lifetime warranty. The new card capacity will be available in Q1 of 2017 with an MSRP of $1699.99. The Lexar Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 card line is also available in 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB capacities. In addition, the Professional 3600x CFast 2.0 card line is available in 128GB and 256GB capacities. All Lexar products undergo extensive testing in the Lexar Quality Labs to validate performance, quality, compatibility, and reliability with more than 1,200 digital devices.
 
B&H carries the Lexar 512GB Professional 3500x CFast 2.0 Memory Card.
Category: Lexar News
Post Date: 2/1/2017 6:49:12 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Through midnight tonight Eastern Time, B&H has the DJI Inspire 1 v2.0 PRO Quadcopter with Zenmuse X5 4K Camera and 3-Axis Gimbal available for $2,799.00 with free shipping. Regularly $3,399.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 4K MFT Camera with 3-Axis Gimbal
  • 15mm f/1.7 Lens Included
  • Up to 1.2 Mile Radio Range
  • GPS-Based Stabilization System
  • Optical Flow Sensor for Indoor Flying
  • DJI Lightbridge System Integrated
  • Live 720p HD Monitoring with Lightbridge
  • Retractable Carbon Fiber Arms
  • Unobstructed 360° Shooting
  • Dual Transmitter Operation Supported
 Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Adorama has the Toshiba 32GB EXCERIA 1000x CompactFlash Memory Card available for $16.95 with free shipping.
 
Adorama is also selling the same memory card for an identical price on Amazon.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • CompactFlash Card
  • Holds 32GB
  • 150MB/s max read speed
  • 120MB/s max write speed
  • UDMA 7
Note: About a month ago, this card was retailing for $40.00 - $44.00. I just picked one up to replace a [now seemingly ancient] 8GB CF card currently being used in my IR-converted EOS 7D. [Sean]
Post Date: 1/31/2017 9:41:11 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the Impact 5-in-1 Collapsible Circular Reflector (42") available for $27.95 with free shipping. Regularly $49.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Two Handles (Hand Grips)
  • Two Threaded 3/8" Sockets
  • Collapses to Approx. 1/3 Its Open Size
  • Includes Carry/Storage Case
  • Translucent Disc
  • Silver, Gold, Soft Gold, White Surfaces
Unless you have an assistant perpetually available, you may consider getting a reflector holder (if you don't already have one) for ease of use with a light stand.
Post Date: 1/31/2017 5:28:33 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Monday, January 30, 2017
Through tomorrow Eastern Time, B&H has the SanDisk 256GB Ultra UHS-I microSDXC Memory Card (Class 10) available for $119.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $179.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 256GB Storage Capacity
  • Class 10 / UHS-I
  • Max. Read Speed: 95 MB/s
  • Water / Temperature / Shock Proof
  • X-ray / Magnet Proof
  • Downloadable Memory Zone App
  • SD Adapter Included
by Sean Setters
 
A few short years ago, there were no super telephoto zooms featuring a 150-600mm focal length range. How things have changed...
 
In 2013, Tamron introduced the 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD, an affordable super telephoto zoom with a huge and versatile focal length range. The following year saw Sigma introducing a pair of similar lenses – the 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports & Contemporary models. Now Tamron has released an update to their original lens, adding a "G2" tag to the name.
 
Considering that neither Canon nor Nikon makes a native 150-600mm lens, it seems a bit odd to be spoiled for choice in this particular market segment. However, that's exactly what's happened. The third party manufacturers have solidly filled a niche that the big two lens manufacturers have yet to fill.
 
With so many options available, you may be wondering which one is the right lens for you. Read on for our take on this interesting crop of lenses.
 
Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD Lens and
Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD G2 Lens
 
The lens that started it all, the Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD Lens, burst onto the scenes in 2013 and was immediately a popular choice for sports and wildlife photographers whose budgets did not extend to the Canon big white telephoto lens range. Its price-to-performance ratio makes it an excellent value.
 
This lens is sharpest in the middle of its focal length range with less sharp results produced at its widest and longest extents. Unfortunately, this lens turns in its worst performance at 600mm, an important factor considering that most consumers purchasing a 150-600mm lens likely intend to utilize the longest focal length a significant percentage of the time.
 
The Tamron 150-600 G1's vignetting performance is typically mild for lenses in its class, showing roughly 1-1.5 stops of corner shading when used on full frame cameras. Flare is fairly well controlled. You may notice mild pincushion distortion if straight lines are near the long edges of your frame.
 
Important for a lens such is this is weather sealing, and indeed Tamron's initial 150-600mm offering has a level of weather sealing. Like three of the four lenses in this comparison, the Tamron 150-600 G1 features a 95mm front filter thread. Filters of this size are certainly not inexpensive, but... compatibility with filters makes for a more versatile lens. Some may find Tamron's zooming mechanism, which rotates in the opposite direction compared to Canon lenses (Nikon standard), a bit frustrating.
 
Focusing is probably the weakest aspect of this lens. The Tamron 150-600 G1 we tested sometimes failed to lock on to a subject in good light even with a high contrast and accuracy consistency was not stellar. The good news is that Tamron eventually issued a firmware update to improve focus performance. We did not retest the lens, but initial reports suggested the AF performance was improved. The bad news is that, unlike its successor, this lens will require a trip to Tamron's service department to modify the firmware should an upgrade be necessary.
 
One obvious advantage of this lens is its budget-friendly price.
 
In a rather surprising move, Tamron released the 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD G2 (Generation 2) Lens only 3 years after the introduction of its predecessor. Improvements included increased sharpness and contrast in the shorter and longer focal length ranges (with the middle focal length range remaining similar), an updated exterior design with metal construction, better AF and VC performance, a new zoom lock mechanism and compatibility with Tamron's new TAP-in console.
 
Differences in vignetting, flare and distortion are largely insignificant between the G2 version and its predecessor, which is somewhat surprising considering they feature different optical formulas. Lateral Chromatic Aberration (LatCA) is moderately apparent in both of these lenses, though correcting the issue in post processing is typically quite easy.
 
With the ability to update the lens' firmware and adjust focus parameters, the G2 version allows for more flexibility and peace of mind for its users. For those needing focal lengths beyond 600mm, the G2 has new dedicated 1.4x and 2x teleconverters available.
 
Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens and
Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens
 
Sigma made a big splash in September 2014 when they announced two 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Global Vision lenses at the same time, featuring a Contemporary model and a higher grade Sports model.
 
Before we can quantify the differences between the Sigma models and Tamron models, we first need to see how the two Sigma models stack up against one another. Here's a brief rundown of the main differences:
 
  • Sports lens is roughly 2x more expensive
  • Sports lens has 24 elements in 16 groups while the Contemporary has 20 in 14
  • Sports lens has two FLD ("F" Low Dispersion with performance similar to fluorite) and three SLD (Special Low Dispersion) glass elements vs. one FLD and three SLD glass elements
  • Sports lens is significantly more-ruggedly constructed – alloy barrel and lens hood vs. composite
  • Sports lens is moderately larger
  • Sports lens is significantly heavier – 6.96 lbs vs. 4.49 lbs (3.16kg vs. 2.04kg)
  • Sports lens has a larger, smoother manual focus ring
  • Sports lens has dust & splash proof "construction" while the Contemporary has a dust & splash proof "mount"
  • Sports lens has a stronger, non-removeable tripod ring vs. removeable on the Contemporary
  • Contemporary lens has a 1/3 stop wider aperture over a small subset of the focal length range
  • Contemporary lens utilizes smaller filters – 95mm vs. 105mm
From a sharpness perspective, the 150-600 Contemporary lens edges out its Sports counterpart until 600mm where the Sports version is slightly better. Full frame camera owners will experience roughly 2 stops of vignetting in the extreme corners with both lenses. However, the Sports lens' vignetting is more gradual and encroaches farther into the center of the frame compared to the Contemporary lens (which has sharper falloff around the edges). While both lenses turn in average performances when it comes to flare, the Contemporary version features more contrast when the sun is in the corner of the frame. Both lenses show very slight pincushion distortion over the entire focal length range.
 
A benefit shared by both lenses is compatibility with Sigma's USB Dock, allowing for easy end-user firmware updates and access to customizable focus options.
 
Feature Comparison & Max Aperture by Focal Length
 
Below is a feature comparison chart followed by the available maximum apertures by focal length for the lenses discussed above.
 
LensElements/
Groups
Lens Measured
Dimensions (DxL)
Weight w/Hood
& Tripod Ring
Filter
Thread
Weather
Sealing?
Tamron 150-600 G120/134.15 x 10.57”
(105.5 x 268.5mm)
74.5 oz (2110g)95mmY
Tamron 150-600 G221/134.27 x 10.54”
(108.5 x 267.68mm)
74.7 oz (2115g)95mmY
Sigma 150-600 C20/144.12 x 10.55”
(104.7 x 267.99mm)
71.8 oz (2035g)95mmN
Sigma 150-600 Sports24/164.76 x 11.77”
(120.95 x 299.05mm)
111.4 oz (3155g)105mmY

Modelf/5.0f/5.6f/6.3
Tamron 150-600 G1150-225mm226-427mm428-600mm
Tamron 150-600 G2150-212mm213-427mm428-600mm
Sigma 150-600 Contemporary150-179mm180-387mm388-600mm
Sigma 150-600 Sports150-184mm185-320mm321-600mm

Subjective Rankings
 
With all of these lenses featuring identical focal length/aperture ranges and similar features (like vibration/optical stabilization), other lens aspects become the prominent differentiating factors. And, even image quality is close enough among the group to not be a major decision factor. Here's how we would rank each lens based on our own personal experience:
 
Image Quality
 
  1. Sigma 150-600 Contemporary & Tamron 150-600 G2
  2. Sigma 150-600 Sports
  3. Tamron 150-600 G1
Build Quality
 
  1. Tamron 150-600 G2 & Sigma 150-600 Sports
  2. Tamron 150-600 G1
  3. Sigma 150-600 Contemporary
AF Responsiveness/Accuracy/Consistency
 
  1. Sigma 150-600 Sports & Tamron 150-600 G2
  2. Sigma 150-600 Contemporary
  3. Tamron 150-600 G1
Value
 
  1. Sigma 150-600 Contemporary
  2. Tamron 150-600 G2
  3. Tamron 150-600 G1
  4. Sigma 150-600 Sports
Conclusions
 
If you do not need weather sealing, it's difficult to top the value offered by the Sigma 150-600mm Contemporary lens. It's only slightly less expensive than the Tamron 150-600 G1 (the least expensive lens in this group) yet offers class-leading image quality and customizability via Sigma's USB Dock. If weather sealing and focus consistency are a priority, the Sigma 150-600 Sports and Tamron 150-600 G2 should be your top considerations, with the deciding factor likely being the price-to-image-quality performance ratio desired. And lastly, the lens that started it all – the Tamron 150-600 G1 – still remains a good choice if one's budget is the primary limiting factor.
Post Date: 1/30/2017 12:10:14 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
Today Only: Amazon has select Belkin Surge Protectors featured as Gold Box Deals.
 
For what it's worth, I use the Belkin 12-Outlet Pivot-Plug Power Strip Surge Protector with 8-Foot Power Cord with my entertainment center and it works great. [Sean]
Post Date: 1/30/2017 6:16:00 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Through midnight tonight Eastern Time, B&H has the E-Image EK60AAM Fluid Drag Video Head and Tripod available for $159.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $299.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 17.6 lb Capacity Fluid Drag Tripod Head
  • Sliding Balance Plate with Safety Lock
  • Spring Loaded Counterbalance System
  • Fixed Tilt and Pan Drag
  • 75mm Claw Ball
  • 2 Stage Tripod with Mid Level Spreader
  • 31 to 63" Height Range
  • Independent Leg Adjustments
  • Removable Anti-Slip Pads / Spike Covers
  • Travel Soft Case
Post Date: 1/30/2017 6:06:59 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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