Tuesday, August 12, 2008
New Tools Of The Trade
The Tenba Shootout Convertible Photo Sling Bag puts a spin on backpacks. This top-loading backpack with a single strap that wraps around your chest allows you to swing the bag around to the front of your body and get your camera out at a moment’s notice. Movable padded walls give you the flexibility to fit a range of camera-lens combinations while saving room for extra gear. The walls can be fully removed, letting you use the Sling Bag as a long-lens bag. With water-resistant nylon, weather-sealed zippers and bottom rubber treads, the Sling Bag is designed for the on-the-go photographer who wants to capture a shot quickly without fumbling for the right gear. Estimated Street Price: $115. Contact: Tenba, (914) 347-3300, www.tenba.com.
Capture high-definition video with the Panasonic HDC-SD100. The camcorder’s iA (Intelligent Auto) mode automatically stabilizes video and makes adjustments based on contrast, scenery and subjects, but you can still use manual controls to change zoom, focus, shutter speed, iris and white balance. AVCHD video is recorded directly to an SD memory card; an 8 GB SDHC card comes standard. The HDC-SD100 also sports a handful of other convenient features like Pre-Rec mode, which continuously records three seconds of video in the internal buffer memory and attaches those to the beginning of a clip when you start recording. Estimated Street Price: $1,099. Contact: Panasonic, (800) 211-PANA, www.panasonic.com.
The latest upgrade to DxO Optics Pro’s image-enhancement software, version 5.2, improves RAW conversion for images shot at ISOs as high as 25,600, while enhancing detail and color. The app is based on camera- and lens-specific profiling to automatically correct image distortion, color, exposure, perspective, vignetting, noise, fringing, lens softness and more. New noise-removal technologies do a better job of preserving color nuances and removing larger noise spots that result in even smaller digital grain size after correction. Estimated Street Price: $169 (Standard); $299 (Elite). Contact: DxO Labs, www.dxo.com.
Buy And Sell
PhotoShelter, an online marketplace for buying and selling images, has received an update. Features include more intuitive navigation, better lightbox capabilities, batch image handling, easier access to advanced search features and new user tutorials. Photographers can group similar images for editing and comparison. An entirely new addition to the site is “Shoot! The Blog,” a community blog designed to inform, entertain and provide practical content for photographers and other visual artists. Contact: PhotoShelter, (212) 206-0808, www.photoshelter.com.
Search the web for images using an image with TinEye from Idée Inc. The new search engine, currently in closed beta, allows you to find where on the Internet a picture has appeared using an example of that picture. Using advanced pattern-recognition algorithms, TinEye creates a unique and compact digital signature, or fingerprint, for each image and adds it to an index. TinEye still can identify pictures that have been moderately altered, letting you find the image you’re looking for even if it has been cropped, skewed or color-adjusted. Contact: Idée Inc., www.tineye.com.
Re-create the look and feel of traditional prints with Harman Photo’s Gloss FB AL Warmtone inkjet paper. The paper uses photo Baryta coating, which is traditionally applied to a fiber photographic paper base prior to coating with emulsion layers. Greater detail and definition, extended tonal range and excellent archival properties are among the benefits. Nanoporous Alumina coating and the warm tint also help create rich-looking black-and-white prints on 320gsm paper. Contact: Harman Photo, (888) 372-2338, www.harman-inkjet.com.
Photo Book Press
Have your work professionally bound by Photo Book Press. The group professionally binds photo collections with room for captions or text. Event photographers may like the idea of producing one or two copies of a professionally bound book for a client (Photo Book Press has a special range of products designed for weddings), while other photographers may prefer running several copies of a single book as a portfolio for distribution. Contact: Photo Book Press, (888) 333-6950, www.photobookpress.com.
Change a boring backdrop to one that adds flavor to your image with ZozArt’s Digital Backgrounds. ZozArt.com is a stock-image website that specializes in organic, abstract images. Designed by artist Dan Larsen, seven collections of unique backgrounds are available on CD. Each disc contains 50 royalty-free, high-resolution files. Use the backgrounds to create custom mattes for your prints or add excitement to your photo website. The wide variety of designs offers potential as a source for backgrounds and borders for a range of photographs. Contact: ZozArt, (206) 427-3241, www.zozart.com.