USNews Money column has an article titled “20 things you should never buy used”. Most of the items on the list are based on common sense but it also recommends not buying used digital and video cameras and used camera lenses for the following reasons:

… used digital and video cameras are likely to have been dropped and banged around. It may not be obvious, but once the damage kicks in, it’ll be expensive to repair. If you know what to look for in a digital camera, you can get a great new camera without breaking the bank.

An SLR camera lens is the most expensive part of a camera. It also directly affects the quality of your images. Any damage to the lens, however slight, will show up in your photos.

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Posted in Tips and Techniques on July 22nd, 2010. 4 Comments.

The Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G AF-S ED VR is a very popular lens for users of Nikon DSLR cameras with DX format sensor. Rumors started to swirl recently about an upcoming Nikon release of a FX version. That would be cool …

Thom Hogan didn’t think it is likely to happen. He suggested that it is most likely the “FX equivalent of the 18-200mm lens”, which will be a 28-300mm F/3.5-5.6 VR lens. Canon has one (Canon EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6L IS USM) available but it is not cheap.

Posted in News, Rumors on July 20th, 2010. No Comments.

According to the Reuters report, Canon is developing a smaller DSLR camera to better compete with the mirror-less interchangeable cameras from Olympus, Panasonic, and Sony. The compact mirror-less cameras are said to have become very popular in Japan and the popularity is expected to rapidly grow.

It is not very clear if Canon’s smaller SLR camera will be mirror-less. SLR camera with optical viewfinder can certainly be made smaller.

Nikon is also rumored to be working on a mirror-less camera.

Canon and Nikon are the No. 1 and No. 2 in the industry but they cannot afford to loss a rapidly growing market segment where consumers are increasingly demanding high quality cameras that come in smaller sizes.

Posted in News on July 20th, 2010. No Comments.

Photography is all about light and there is no exception for model photography. Professional model photography puts a lot of emphasis on artificial lighting. There are a large variates of tools available to photographers to add, block, reflect, soften, and shape lights to create the perfect light for the model.

In a pair of nicely written tutorials by Maciej, readers are presented a case study of how to setup the lights to take the photo and how to perform the post processing in Adobe Photoshop to enhance the photo. You can read the tutorials at Tutorials9.

This is just an estimated increase of speeding fines that the government will collect when a fleet of 6 new high tech vehicles outfitted with cameras and radars are deployed. According to the report, the system can “catch as many as six speeding cars travelling in either direction, every second, day or night, regardless of weather conditions.” That is an amazingly efficient system. There is no need for the police to chase the speeding vehicle down and hand over a speeding ticket to the driver, which frequently happens in the US, while other speeding cars pass-by without being ticketed because the police is busy.

Speeding vehicles are photographed using a 11 megapixel still camera that does 2 frames per second and a video camera that captures a short clip of the offense. Obviously the computer of the system needs to recognize the plate numbers from the images. Interestingly the system uses an infrared flash, not regular flash, to illuminate the cars passing by so driver safety isn’t affected. Details of the system are available in this video.

Posted in Other on July 11th, 2010. No Comments.
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