April apparently comes to Europe earlier than America. Nikon Europe site has post the Capture NX2 2.20 updater as announced earlier. Among the changes, you will find NRW support, increased batch processing speed, automatic distortion correction function, renaming of the Auto Color Aberration to Auto Lateral Color Aberration, and some bug fixes.

Download – EU

Download – US

Posted in News, Software on March 31st, 2009. 4 Comments.

Christian Løverås of Automagisk blog has posted a mini review of the Nikon GP-1 Geotagging GPS unit.

Previously, he has used a Garmin handheld GPS unit as a GPS logger to log the locations as tracks and sync the data with the photos afterwards using a specialized software. By using the Nikon GP-1 direct geotagging solution, the geotagging process has become quite simpler. The camera records the information directly in the photos with no post processing required.

Check out the Nikon GP-1 mini review and see how the GPS unit can be mounted directly on flash hot shoe or on the camera strap.

Posted in Accessories, Photography Gadgets on March 31st, 2009. 1 Comment.

In the March issue of Tech Tips, Chuck Westfall, Technical Advisor for Canon”s Consumer Imaging Group, answers quite a few interesting questions for Canon users.

Canon EOS 5D Mark II captures video clips (HD or SD) at precisely 30.00 fps, while other A/V devices confirming to North American standard record and playback at 29.97 fps, which will eventually leads to audio out of sync problem if both are used in the same timeline. There is no easy solution from Canon except either transcoding the EOS 5D Mark II footage to 29.97 fps or stretching the 5D Mark II footage on a 29.97fps timeline. However some users have found that  reconforming to 29.97 (no render needed since this is only a change to the meta data) is all it takes to make the audio sync a non-issue in Cinema Tools.

There are questions that can be answered quickly by reading the product manuals but some lazy people choose to ask anyway.

In the comment section, there are users who got upset because their brand new Canon EOS 5D Mark II cameras had to be sent in for service within weeks of purchase due to hot pixels in video mode and “Err 20”. As expected, the real Chuck wouldn’t address directly to those complaints but the FAKE one would.

Nikon Capture NX users may complain about its slowness or strange user interface, but apparently the Canon DPP software cannot even fix tilted horizon… Some has suggested Canon stop making its own software that can produces the best image quality but suffers badly in usability and functionality, but it looks like Canon will not, just like Nikon.

Read: Tech Tips

Posted in Online Resources on March 29th, 2009. 3 Comments.

DigitalCameraReview.Com just published the review of the new DX format prime lens Nikon AF-S DX 35mm f/1.8G. I will leave the details for you to read. In conclusion, the reviewer said,

“In short, the new AF-S Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G is an amazing lens with fabulous edge-to-edge sharpness, great bokeh, and an outrageously low price. In terms of overall sharpness and aperture range this lens is superior to several lenses that cost more than twice as much! Nikon finally delivered a fantastic prime lens for average consumers who own the D40, D40X, or D60. If you own one of these cameras, this lens belongs in your camera bag.”

Other reviews for AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm F/1.8G

  • DPreview – “Highly Recommended”
  • Photozone – “4/5 for optical quality and 5/5 for performance/price”
  • Ken Rockwell – “This could be the only lens you ever need for a DX camera”
  • Bjørn Rørslett – “… expect this lens to become very popular for DX shooters seeking a good performance under situations in which a 35 is the solution”
  • DPTnT – My impressions.

Availability

Posted in Digital SLR Cameras, Lens, Photography Gadgets on March 28th, 2009. 3 Comments.

When a photo gallery or photo sharing website holds your digital photos hostage and demands payment to avoid the total destruction of your photos that were uploaded to the site based on the promise of “free” service, consumers like you can get stuck. When you clicked on “Accept” on the Terms and Services (TOS) during sign-up process, you might not have read it thoroughly and you perhaps missed the fine prints in the TOS allowing them to change the TOS whenever they want.

That’s what happened to a user of Kodak Gallery. The customer found out that she now has to spend at least $4.99 a year  on prints or other products to keep her photos on Kodak Gallery from being deleted. It certainly sucks standing in the consumer’s shoes. However the business has the goal of making money.  Kodak simply wants to focus on its best customers, not folks who merely want to take advantage of free picture storage. And its new rules are hardly unusual in the online photo business.

Even if you pay for the service from beginning, it is still not certain you will have access to the original photos without paying extra. Some sites are charging extra to download original high resolution photos. Some sites may suddenly go out of business and take all of your photos with it. Especially for those sites are offering unlimited free storage and sharing but doesn’t seem to have any valid business model to generate revenue.

What’s the virtue of the story? Keep a safe backup of your own photos yourself.

Posted in Legal issues, Miscellaneous on March 28th, 2009. No Comments.

It is rare for Nikon to announce upcoming software updates. But this time they announced the April release of Capture NX2 V2.2. It will be a free update for users of current V2.x versions.

The new version will include improved processing speed in batch processing, Intel-approved logo permitted for Core 2 Duo/Core 2 Quad support, NRW (Coolpix P6000’s RAW data) support, vignette control function utilizing lens information, and axial color aberration correction.

Posted in News on March 27th, 2009. No Comments.

Nikon has announced two software updates for ViewNX and Nikon Transfer. 

The ViewNX update introduces a long list of usability improvements (full list of modifications can be found below for your reference). The change list for the Nikon Transfer version 1.4.0 is significantly shorter but it finally provides an alternative option to the very annoying “feature” of the previous version: adding trailing numbers to folder names formulated using the transfer date. Read More…

Posted in News, Software on March 25th, 2009. No Comments.

20090325_lores_t1i_front

For body only price of $799 and kit (with 18-55 mm IS lens) price of $899, this Full HD capable entry level DSLR is destined to be very popular. It also puts some pressure on Nikon D90, which has less pixels (12.3 vs. 15.1 megapixels) and less capable video recording capability (720P vs. 1080P).

However, it seems the 1080P HD is a stretch for its underpowered hardware. At the full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 (1080P, 16:9), the EOS 500D / Rebel T1i can only shoot 20 frames per second (fps), which is kinda awkward. 720P video (1280 x 720) is capable of a good 30 fps (compared to Nikon D90’s 24fps at the same resolution). The new Canon DLSR can also shoot up to 30 minutes (or max file size of 4GB). Nikon D90 can only shoot 5 min at 720P resolution and 20minutes at other resolutions.

Please don’t get it wrong though. Video shooting is fun and maybe important for some people, still photo taking should still be the number one consideration for a DSLR camera. In that regard, I doubt Nikon D90 is any significantly inferior than the Canon 500D. The side-by-side comparison of spec sheets can provide you with some quick ideas. Read More…

Posted in Digital SLR Cameras, News on March 25th, 2009. 1 Comment.
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