Tuesday, December 23, 2008
New Tools Of The Trade
Get to your camera quickly using the Tamrac Aero Speed Pack 85 backpack, which offers access through a convenient side-door entry point. When wearing the bag over your shoulder, you can bring it around to the front and use the side door to get to your camera. Traditional front-panel access also is an option when the pack is removed. It fits a D-SLR with grip and attached zoom, two to three lenses, and accessories. A foam-padded laptop compartment holds most 17-inch notebooks. Estimated Street Price: $149. Contact: Tamrac, (800) 662-0717, www.tamrac.com.
Take more control of your remote flash output using Quantum’s Qflash TRIO QF8. The unit combines a Qflash head that mounts to the camera shoe with a built-in FreeXwire TTL radio transmitter and a QTTL adapter for Nikon and Canon digital cameras. The radio QTTL signals from the TRIO don’t require line of sight, like camera optical links, so the TRIO is able to send reliable TTL commands up to 600 feet away to control an unlimited number of remote Qflash TRIOs and older Qflash models that have been mated to FreeXwire receivers. Features include Manual, Auto, Auto-Fill, Strobo and Program preset modes. The TRIO is powered by Quantum Turbo battery packs and weighs just 20 ounces with the included reflector and flashtube. Estimated Street Price: $875. Contact: Quantum Instruments, (631) 656-7400, www.qtm.com.
Digital Photo Filters
With Tiffen’s Dfx v2.0 software, you can digitally reproduce many of the company’s most popular optical filters. The program consists of more than 2,000 standard, exclusive and special-effects filters, such as Ambient Light, Close Up Lens, Haze, High Contrast, Warm Polarizer and Wide Angle Lens. These all can be quickly and easily customized, then saved to a filter library for later use. Available as a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Apple Aperture, Dfx v2.0 features multiple masking and layering capabilities that can be performed without exiting the plug-in for faster and more efficient processing. Available also as a stand-alone, the plug-in version additionally works for CS3, Elements and other programs. Estimated Street Price: $299 (plug-in); $99 (stand-alone). Contact: Tiffen, (800) 645-2522, www.tiffen.com.
The Broadcast Trailer
For pro still shooters who are crossing over into video, check out Petrol’s Broadcast Trailer Professional Backpack. There are two padded main compartments, capable of fitting one full-sized broadcast camera like the Sony F900R, Panasonic HPX-500 or similarly sized models. An ergonomically contoured fit distributes weight more evenly for better comfort. Six removable dividers create pockets for organizing camera lights, batteries, cables and other accessories. Other features include nine exterior pockets for additional storage, and the Viewfinder compartment is reinforced with cold-molded laminate panels for extra protection. Estimated Street Price: $425. Contact: Camera Dynamics Inc., (845) 268-0100, www.petrolbags.com.
Perfect White Balance
The ExpoDisc Neutral Professional White Balance Filter attaches to your lens and allows you to use your camera’s custom white-balance feature to get accurate colors in every shot. It’s dead-easy to use, and it works. ExpoDiscs are available in standard sizes from 52mm to 95mm, as well as 4x5.65 flats. Estimated Street Price: $69 to $169. Contact: ExpoImaging, www.expoimaging.net.
The next time you’re on assignment outdoors, be ready for inclement weather by throwing the Rainsleeve-Flash into your camera bag. The plastic weather cover is big enough to fit over your camera with a shoe-mounted flash and telephoto lens. The eyepiece opening adapts to most viewfinders so you can compose shots through the lens, not the plastic. It fits any lens up to seven inches in diameter and up to 14 inches long. The Rainsleeve-Flash comes with two in each bag. Estimated Street Price: $9. Contact: OP/TECH USA, (800) 251-7815, www.optechusa.com.
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