DPP Home Gear In Focus November 2012

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

November 2012

New Tools Of The Trade

This Article Features Photo Zoom
Medium-Format Shooter
With a more modern-looking design and a new electronic engine, the Hasselblad H5D improves on its predecessor, the H4D, in several ways. The upgrades include a new True Focus II autofocus system, a focus confirmation option called Immediate Focus Confirm, RAW + JPEG mode for quick previews and capture of print-ready files, larger ergonomic buttons and improved weather sealing to make it more durable. The camera will come in 40-, 50- and 60-megapixel models. Also new is the HCD 4.8/24, a 24mm lens that's equivalent to a 17mm lens on a full-frame camera. Estimated Street Price: TBA. Contact: Hasselblad, (800) 367-6434, www.hasselbladusa.com.

Compact Body, Full-Frame Sensor
Packing a 35mm full-frame, 24.3-megapixel sensor into a compact frame, the Sony Cyber-shot RX1 blends features normally found in a high-end DSLR with physical dimensions that are closer to a point-and-shoot. It's 4.5 inches wide, 3 inches tall and weighs less than a pound. Ideal for use as a lightweight backup to your DSLR system, the camera packs a Carl Zeiss T* 35mm ƒ/2 fixed lens, 3-inch LCD, pop-up flash and full manual controls. The large sensor size boosts the camera's sensitivity range to ISO 100-25600, with the option to shoot as low as ISO 50 in expanded sensitivity mode. ISO settings as high as 102,400 can be achieved using Multi Frame Noise Reduction so you can shoot handheld in conditions that are nearly dark without needing a flash. Estimated Street Price: $2,800. Contact: Sony, (877) 865-7669, www.sonystyle.com.

Simple Rig
The Manfrotto SYMPLA rigging system makes it easy for you to make adjustments when you're in the middle of a shoot. It can be configured in seconds, without tools, and accommodates a wide range of DSLRs, camcorders and lenses. Flexibility and speed influenced how each of the components was developed, from self-supporting clamps that stay in place even before they're locked to easy-locking ball-joint handgrips, which were inspired by Manfrotto's ballheads for still cameras. The steel-and-aluminum rig can be mounted on a tripod, supported on the shoulder or held like a "steering wheel" using the optional Fig Rig attachment for shooting from more creative angles. Camera remotes, which fit the rig handgrips, allow you precise fingertip control for framing and accessing camera functions without losing your grip position. Estimated Street Price: Varies. Contact: Manfrotto, (201) 818-9500, www.manfrotto.us.

Strong Support
The Gitzo Systematic tripod series received a fresh update this year. Stronger and more stable than the previous generation, the latest models were built using new construction and bonding methods that double how much weight the legs can support. The tripods are available in 6x carbon-fiber and aluminum tubing. The aluminum models were completely redesigned and upgraded to share the same features as the 6x carbon-fiber models. One of the key innovations is the use of Gitzo's latest aluminum tubing, which is 1.2mm thick and 30% lighter than its predecessor. With the Anti Leg Rotation system, the aluminum tripods are as fast to operate as their carbon-fiber siblings. Estimated Street Price: Varies. Contact: Gitzo, (201) 818-9500, www.gitzo.us.

Sturdy LED
The Litepanels Luma is an on-camera, daylight LED that outputs a soft, yet high-illumination fill light in a 50° spread. It delivers accurate color temperatures, flicker-free output at any frame rate or shutter angle, and no color shift when dimming. When using the light on an outside shoot, it produces enough fill light to get rid of deep shadows while allowing the ambient natural light to hit your subject. The dimming knob allows you to dial in the exact amount of light needed to reach shadows. It weighs less than a pound and is powered by six AA batteries, DC from the camera or through an AC power supply. Estimated Street Price: $396. Contact: Litepanels, (818) 752-7009, www.litepanels.com.

Carry All
A pair of new straps from Sun Sniper expands your carrying options. The Back-Pack-Strap allows you to carry your backpack while using it as an additional camera strap for a DSLR. The strap clips onto your bag and has a stainless-steel ball-bearing camera connector, as well as a steel wire that runs through the channels of the strap. The weight of your camera gear is evenly distributed through the backpack's shoulder pad. With the Strap-Surfer, the camera rests by your side and is ready whenever you need it. Just clip the strap to your bag and attach the stainless-steel bearing connector to your camera's tripod socket. Estimated Street Price: $67 (Back-Pack-Strap); $96 (Strap-Surfer). Contact: Sun Sniper, www.sunsniperusa.com.

Fluid Head
The Sachtler 75mm Ace L has a load capacity up to 13 pounds, a seven-step counterbalance, as well as three vertical and three horizontal grades of drag. Other popular Sachtler features, such as an illuminated bubble level, also are included in this model. The head is available with a choice of two different carbon-fiber tripods. The two new Ace L carbon-fiber systems offer a 4.4-pound weight savings over other systems. With the midlevel spreader, the Ace L system weighs just 8.6 pounds. The counterbalance, along with the long 4.1-inch sliding range of the Ace camera plate, allow for quick counterbalancing of your camera setup. The fluid head features clearly marked counterbalance settings and has a tilt range of +90° to -75°. Estimated Street Price: TBA. Contact: Sachtler, (845) 268-0100, www.sachtler.com.


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