March/April 2014

Nikon D3300

Nikon‘s newest entry-level DSLR, the D3300 delivers pro image quality with a 24.2-megapixel DX (APS-C) CMOS sensor, the latest EXPEED 4 image processing and no OLPF (optical low-pass filter) for maximum sharpness. Normal ISO range is 100-12800 (expandable to 25600). The new camera can shoot stills at 5 fps and do 1080 full HD video with full-time AF at 60p. The eye-level pentamirror viewfinder shows about 95% of the actual image area, while the 3.0-inch, 921K-dot LCD monitor shows 100% (in Live View mode). Shutter speeds range from 30 to 1⁄4000 sec., with X flash sync up to 1⁄200 sec. (with built-in or optional external flash unit). Images are stored on SD/SDHC/SDXC cards (one slot), and the camera can also take Eye-Fi cards. The optional WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter adds Wi-Fi connectivity for instant uploading of images and videos to a smart device (which then can be used to operate the D3300 remotely). The camera is also compatible with the optional GP-1A GPS. Dimensions are 4.9×3.9×3.0 inches and 15.1 ounces (body only). List Price: $649.95 (with 18-55mm VR II kit zoom). Contact: Nikon, www.nikonusa.com.

Sigma Lens Global Vision Additions

Sigma has introduced two new lenses in their Global Vision lineup: the 18-200mm ƒ/3.5-6.3 II DC OS HSM Contemporary and the 50mm ƒ/1.4 DG HSM Art. The 18-200mm is smaller and lighter than its predecessor and improves macro capabilities (focusing down to 15.4 inches for a 1:3 reproduction ratio), with updated optics for corrected chromatic aberration and minimized distortion. The new 50mm ƒ/1.4 DG HSM is a pro-level performer for full-frame DSLRs, updated with SLD glass and improved large-aperture performance. An optimized autofocus algorithm and a floating focusing system improve AF. Both lenses provide quiet high-speed AF, thanks to Sigma’s Hyper Sonic Motor (HSM), and are compatible with Sigma’s USB Dock and Mount Conversion Service. List Price: TBA. Contact: Sigma, www.sigmaphoto.com.

Fluid Video Head

The compact Sirui VH-10 Professional Fluid Video Head weighs only 1.98 pounds, yet can support camera/lens systems weighing up to 13.2 pounds. A built-in, 4.4-pound counterbalance system helps keep everything level. The Quick Release Platform lets you easily adjust the camera for ideal balance, while the panning resistance is preset to provide smooth 360° pans (and can be locked in position, when desired). Two bubble levels help keep things perfectly aligned. List Price: $199.95. Contact: Argraph, www.argraph.com.

HDR Darkroom 3

Everimaging has improved upon their HDR software with the newest version of HDR Darkroom 3. While the software offers additional HDR styles, the real upgrade is in processing power. An improved alignment algorithm consistently corrects any alignment issues that arise between bracketed frames without you needing to intervene. Advanced ghost-reduction technology also removes objects when they differ between frames. HDR Darkroom 3 supports over 150 cameras, including Canon, Nikon, Olympus and Panasonic models, and is available for both Mac and Windows. List Price: $129. Contact: Everimaging, www.everimaging.com.

Sports-Action Cams

Polaroid has announced three new mountable, high-definition sports-action cameras, all offering shockproof, waterproof technology and ultrawide-angle lenses. The XS1000i features a unique, patented quick-change mounting system, a 16MP Aptina CMOS sensor and a 170° angle of view. It can shoot 1080p and 960p video at 30 fps and 720p at 60 fps, as well as still images. The Polaroid C features a square design, a 5MP CMOS sensor and a 120° angle of view, and can do 720p and 640×480 video, as well as 5MP still images. The XS100i provides Wi-Fi with iOS and Android apps, a distortion-free lens with 170° of coverage, and can do 1080p, 960p and 720p video as well as 16MP still images. List Price: $179.99 (XS100i;) TBA (XS1000i, Polaroid C). Contact: Polaroid, www.polaroid.com.

Fujifilm X-Series Ultrawide Zoom

Fujifilm continues to expand their X-series lens lineup for interchangeable-system cameras with the ultrawide 2.4x XF10-24mm ƒ/4 R OIS lens. The 15-36mm equivalent range is optimal for grand landscapes. Fujifilm has designed a new optical system with four high-precision aspherical lenses and three extra-low-dispersion glass lenses to match the performance of Fujifilm X-Trans sensors. The lens also features a new coating on the reverse side of the lens, going one step further to reduce ghosting and flare. With a seven-blade aperture diaphragm, the lens has a 24cm minimum macro working distance. The lens will be available starting in March 2014. List Price: $999. Contact: Fujifilm, www.fujifilmusa.com.

Monolight Kit

Monolights are a great option for photographers who want to work with portable, yet powerful off-camera lighting. The aluminum-housing Flashpoint Budget Studio Monolight Flash units come in 120Ws, 160Ws and 300Ws options. AC-powered, the units take 0.5 to 2 seconds for recycling time, and provide an audio and LED alert when they’re ready for the next flash. Additional features include a preflash test button, optical slave/master setting with LED indicator, SA fuse-protected circuit and replaceable flash tube. Each unit is also available as a kit, with a 40-inch white/black umbrella from Glow by Flashpoint and a six-inch Flashpoint three-section light stand. List Price: $49/$89 (Budget Studio Monolight Flash 120/Kit); $69/$109 (Budget Studio Monolight Flash 160/Kit); $99/$139 (Budget Studio Monolight Flash 300/Kit). Contact: Flashpoint (Adorama), www.adorama.com.

Bare-Bulb Pro-Flash

The Strobies Pro-Flash One Eighty provides versatile lighting options at a budget-friendly price. Used either on- or off-camera, just like a traditional speedlight, the 180Ws bare-bulb flash spreads smooth and even light across your frame. The Pro-Flash One Eighty is powered by an external 11.1V/4500 mAh li-ion battery pack that provides 700 flashes with a 2.2-sec. recycle time for shutter speeds as quick as 1⁄8000 sec. The One Eighty can also be used with a variety of modifiers to vary the lighting look. List Price: $594 (Strobies Pro-Flash One Eighty and Battery Pack); $405 (Strobies Pro-Flash One Eighty Flash Head); $209 (Strobies Pro-Flash Battery Pack, compatible with Canon, Nikon, Sony and Metz speedlights). Contact: Interfit, www.interfitphotographic.com.

Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm ƒ/1.2 ASPH Power OIS

Pushing the aperture range of Micro Four Thirds lenses, Panasonic recently announced the Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm ƒ/1.2 ASPH Power OIS lens for the LUMIX G system. With an 85mm equivalent, the rugged metal case has 14 lens elements in 11 groups. Two aspherical elements, an extra-low-dispersion element and an ultra-high refractive index element ensure sharp images from corner to corner with high contrast without color bleed. Nine blades create a smooth bokeh, and the Power OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) compensates for handheld shake, allowing you to take full advantage of the large aperture range. List Price: $1,599. Contact: Panasonic, shop.panasonic.com.

FlexFlash Monolights

Ideal for indoor use with versatility to light large group portraits down to studio product photography, the FlexFlash monolights, in both 200Ws and 400Ws options, are now being offered by Photoflex. With an oversized LCD screen, these monolights sync with speedlights using a preflash detection system and contain an auto-cooling system. With auto-voltage protection for worldwide use, Continuous Mode allows for output control independent of the flash for continuous light and Auto Power Save kicks in after 20 minutes of inactivity. The FlexFlash features the universal S-type bayonet mount for all sizes of softboxes. Estimated Street Price: $319 (FlexFlash 200Ws); $389 (FlexFlash 400Ws). Contact: Photoflex, www.photoflex.com.

Acratech Video Ballhead

The aluminum and stainless-steel Acratech Video Ballhead provides a sturdy all-in-one tool for making fluid video movements and sharp still photos. Fluid damping maintains smooth pans and tilts, and you can fully adjust the ball tension control for your needs. The oil-less and greaseless ball doesn’t attract dirt, and the open frame allows quick and easy cleaning. The video handle is removable, and a 15mm bull’s-eye level and laser-engraved dual degree markings allow for use as a panoramic head or with a long lens. Compatible with Arca-Swiss quick-release plates, the head fits standard ¼”-20 and 3⁄8″-16 tripods. Estimated Street Price: $599. Contact: Acratech, www.acratech.net.

HDR Projects 2

HDR projects 2 offers control over seven HDR algorithms, including smoothing, denoising and halo adjustment, all in full 32-bit quality. An exclusive fully automatic alignment tool helps with handheld brackets and moving leaves. Features include individual weighting for every luminance, fully automatic high-end ghosting correction with manual control, when desired, 56 presets (sorted by theme) for pro results, five tone-mapping algorithms and 52 high-end filters. There’s also integrated RAW processing for pretty much every RAW format. List Price: $169.99. Contact: Franzis, www.franzis.de.

Manfrotto Backpack 30

Manfrotto has announced a new Pro bag line, including the Backpack 30. The pack features a rigid, multi-layered Exo-Tough outer construction with thermo-formed areas and reinforced feet that protect against impact. The bag’s interior Camera Protection System (CPS) center includes thickly layered core center dividers that mold to your equipment and provide shock absorption. The top partially unzips to give quick access to your camera, or can be unzipped completely, providing a flap that also functions as a field mat, with pockets for accessories and a tablet. The pack holds a pro-sized DSLR with lens attached, additional camera body and lenses, and strobe. Exterior zippered pockets carry accessories, personal items and 13-inch laptop. The bag features a moisture-wicking padded back system with adjustable straps and a waist belt. A tripod may be attached on the front or side with a detachable strap. List Price: $199. Contact: Manfrotto, www.manfrotto.us.

Mirrorless NX30

Samsung‘s new NX30 replaces the NX20 “mini-DSLR”-style model in the company’s mirrorless NX lineup, offering a more powerful image processor, better EVF and external monitor, and improved video and wireless capabilities. The 2359K-dot eye-level EVF tilts up to 80° upward for easy low-angle shooting, while the new 3.0-inch, 1037K-dot Super AMOLED monitor swings 180° horizontally and swivels 270° for easy all-angle shooting. The 20.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor benefits from a new DRIMeIV processor, providing 9 fps shooting at full resolution, ISO settings from 100-25,600 and 1080/60p full HD video capability. Wi-Fi with NFC connection makes it easy to transfer and share images, and operate the camera remotely from your smartphone. Dimensions are 5.0×3.8×1.6 inches and 13.2 ounces (body only). Price: TBA. Contact: Samsung, www.samsung.com.

Replichrome

Totally Rad! Inc. has created Replichrome, a group of Lightroom and Photoshop presets for digital shooters who still relish the look particular traditional film stocks could provide. The company collected 13 popular film stocks, including Fuji 400H, Kodak Portra 400 and Kodak TRI-X, and shot in every lighting condition and with every camera possible. Then using Noritsu and Frontier scanners, the team created 134 total workflow presets. Each preset gives you additional control over tone, color, grain and density. List Price: $99. Contact: Totally Rad! Inc., www.gettotallyrad.com.

Location Laptop Bag

With a water- and rip-resistant outer shell and inner lining, the Flaked Extravaganza Pro Camera Laptop Cabin Luggage by Crumpler keeps your camera gear safe, whether you’re carrying it over your shoulder to your location or rolling it onboard a plane. The removable, molded EVA main compartment features 13 impact-resistant dividers available for personalized configuration via Velcro®. An easy-access false floor stores cables. Along with zippered outer compartments and clear mesh interior pockets, the exterior of the bag has a front pocket for a 15-inch laptop, as well as removable tripod carrying straps. For peace of mind during travel and location shoots, the bag features a security chain that loops around immovable objects while on location and integrates with the TSA zipper lock in the main compartment. List Price: $355. Contact: Crumpler, www.crumpler.com.

Lens Cleaner

For the past 20 years, LensPen has been creating products to make sure your photo lenses are clear of any distracting smears, smudges and fingerprints. Carbon is often used for this chore, and while it gets the job done, it’s messy to work with, sometimes leaving black smudges on your fingertips or on plastic cases. This year, LensPen has created the new Invisible Carbon compound for their LensPen Elite line, which cleans surfaces, yet doesn’t leave any black residue, even if you touch the cleaning pad surface. LensPen has expanded this specialized technology with several applicators: five photo cleaners, ScreenKlean for tablets and SmartKlear for smartphones. List Price: $8-$14 (LensPen Photo Cleaners); $19 (ScreenKlean); $9 (SmartKlear). Contact: LensPen, www.lenspen.com.

Phottix Multi-Boom 28

The Phottix Multi-Boom 28 is a flash bracket and 28-inch boom arm that can hold four shoe-mount flash units and mounts in a standard umbrella swivel, allowing it to be mounted on a traditional light stand. It provides full tilt and swivel motion, and you can tilt the umbrella or umbrella-style softbox. Umbrella softboxes are impossible to tilt, and the Multi-Boom overcomes this limitation. The unit holds the four flash units on-axis with the umbrella shaft and also comes with a single-flash mount. There’s an integrated short column for compact or handheld operation, as well. The unit quickly and simply sets up and folds for easy transport. List Price: $120. Contact: Phottix, www.phottix.com.

Picture Rescue 2

Picture Rescue 2 (nee Klix) features a new user interface that makes it easy to recover digital photos and videos from accidental reformatting, deleting or card corruption. Just select a card, press start and deleted pictures appear. The software works with all USB and FireWire cameras and all common image formats, including RAW, as well as MOV, MPEG-1 and AVI movies. It’s available for Mac (OS X 10.7 or later) and Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. List Price: $19.95. Contact: Prosoft Engineering, www.prosofteng.com.

Mobile Power

Anton/Bauer offers new batteries for cinema cameras. The lightweight DIONIC HC and HCX provide 91Wh and 124Wh, respectively, and are easily transported as carry-on luggage with no restrictions—ideal for location work. The 183Wh DIONIC HD weighs 3.4 pounds, 40% less than a NiCad or NiMH battery. The NiMH CINE VCLX (honored in 2013 with a Scientific and Engineering Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences) provides extra power for extended run times and can power supplementary gear such as lighting, as well as 24V film, 14V video and 28V digital cinema equipment. All feature Anton/Bauer’s RealTime LCD that accurately displays remaining running time and a visual 15-minute warning. Estimated Street Price: $467.50 (HC); $637.50 (HCX); $956.25 (HD); see dealer for CINE VCLX. Contact: Anton/Bauer, www.antonbauer.com.

MOBILE APPS FOR PROFESSIONALS

Lapse It is a full-featured app for making time-lapse and stop-motion videos with your mobile device. There are no restrictions as to capture length or number of frames. You can insert soundtracks, adjust the frame rate, apply effects filters, and adjust focus, white balance and exposure. Projects can be rendered to MP4 and MOV, and uploaded directly to your social networks. The Pro version lets you make videos in resolutions from 240p to 1080p, the free version, only a lower resolution. Lapse It is available native for iOS and Android. List Price: $1.99 (Pro version); Free (Basic version). Contact: Lapse It,

As social media and mobile editing become more integrated into the pro photographer’s business strategy, the need for quick image protection and branding is also on the rise. Marksta is an app for your smartphone and tablet that lets you easily watermark images with your personal brand/logo before uploading to your social-media outlets. You choose where your watermark is positioned, its size, shadow effects and what’s included, such as your website URL, Twitter handle and copyright notice. List Price: $1.99 (Full version); Free (Marksta Lite). Contact: Marksta,.

As pros, we’ve all felt that need to turn our friend’s phone to landscape as they’re shooting vertical video. The Horizon app now ensures a landscape video no matter the shooting orientation of the phone—be it portrait, 45º or moving in between while shooting. Using the gyroscope in the phone, it makes sure the landscape orientation is horizontal to the ground, which is also a handy function for those of us who shoot landscape orientation, but sometimes find our horizon line crooked or shaky due to handholding. The app includes multiple resolutions and aspect ratios, different filters, geotagging, AF/AE lock, and is compatible with front- and back-facing cameras. List Price: $0.99. Contact: Evil Window Dog,.

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