Monday, July 30, 2012

Canon Goes Mirrorless

I think the key thing to Canon's approach is that they're opening up the possibility of being able to use a very wide range of fine Canon lens with their new compact mirrorless sytsem. It's something that I believe many will find very appealing.

I know it's got me thinking about it.

Canon EOS M digital camera enters into the mirrorless territory
by Edwin

Inspired by EOS technology, the EOS M will be able to leverage on the company’s core technologies, while distilling them down in order to deliver outstanding video capture capabilities without sacrificing image quality when it comes to still shots. Whenever you want to capture still images, the EOS M camera’s 18-megapixel APS-C-sized CMOS image sensor is more than capable of delivering a shallow depth of field, in addition to incredible low-light image quality and a wide dynamic range which is more than capable of capturing rich gradation and detail.

This is the latest member of the EOS family, where both videographers and photographers alike regardless of their level of professionalism and interest, will be able to play nice with a couple of lenses that were specially designed for Canon’s new camera format – namely the EF-M 22mm f/2 STM kit lens and the optional EF-M 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens. Not only that, you are also able to make full use of your Canon EF and EF-S lenses courtesy of the optional Mount Adapter EF-EOS M.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Panasonic Announces New Class of Cameras

They're calling it the "DSLM" class, or "Digital Single Lens Mirrorless" cameras. They think the name change will help them compete more directly with DSLRs.

We'll see.

Panasonic aiming to 'replace' DSLRs
By Amy Davies

Panasonic is hoping to replace DSLR cameras with what it is dubbing "DSLM", or "Digital Single Lens Mirrorless" devices.

Speaking to TechRadar, Ichiro Kitao, Panasonic's director of digital imaging, said "We're aiming to innovate, to replace the DSLR category with mirrorless cameras.

"There's certainly enough potential to compete with entry level [DSLR cameras]," he said.

With the launch of the Panasonic G5, the company is hoping to market a new name for the category, away from the compact system camera name which has been predominantly used for the past couple of years.

DSLM, or Digital Single Lens Mirrorless, is the name it hopes will catch on around the world for the more advanced cameras in its line-up.

"Our message is that we want to grow mirrorless cameras more, so the name reflects that goal," Kitao said.

Message coming in, loud and clear.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Visual Revolution

Five Ways the Cell Phone Camera Has Changed the Way We Live
By Jeff Balke

5. Search by photos.

... Functions like Google Goggles which allow you to point your camera phone at, for example, the Statue of Liberty, and have it return all sorts of information about it as well as Google's "search by photo" function which will seek out any identical or similar photos to one you upload and solving the mystery photo problem for everyone.

4. Sharing our photos with others.

... The dreaded family slide show is a thing of legend as were the litany of children and pet photos filling wallets and purses. Fortunately, with photo sharing websites like Flickr, apps like Instagram and photo galleries on Facebook, your friends can look through your photos at their leisure instead of yours...

CameraPhone from Justin Hackworth on Vimeo.

3. Turning amateurs into pros, pros into amateurs.

I'll be the first to admit that I was always rather queazy about the use of filtered images. First, there were just the dreary self-portraits taken with old school film cameras that seemed to proliferate on Flickr and Polaroids of naked girls covered in chocolate that passed for art. Then, there was Hipstamatic and Instagram, the apps that turn your digital images into dirty-looking shots that appear as if they were birthed from a Holga found in someone's grandmother's attic. But, the filters are used less as the fad has faded and more and more people are using these apps to take really fantastic photos and treat them creatively. And pros are using these toy apps to expand upon their artistic repertoire. In truth, these are the same kind of creative tools pros used to use in darkrooms. They are just more easily accessible and that's a good thing.

2. Documenting our daily lives.

This might be the most fascinating aspect of having a camera in one's possession every day is the ability to document everything that happens. Sometimes, it can be inane and ridiculous, but in the hands of someone with an idea or creative spark, it can turn into something fascinating....

1. Citizen journalism.

The first photos of US Airways flight 1549 that crash landed in the Hudson came from people with cell phones on a passing ferry, not from CNN or Reuters or some local news helicopter. While the beating of Rodney King may have been caught using a digital video camera, dozens of other photos and videos of violence -- some fascinating and poignant, others ridiculous and pointless -- litter the web and inform us of things we wouldn't see otherwise. As badly as the credibility of journalism has been damaged by biased news networks, self-promoting blogs and just plain bad reporting, everyday people are proving that a picture does say a thousand words and giving all of us an opportunity to shed light on the truth.


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

DSLR/Smartphone Mashup

Now here's a marriage I think just might work.

Flash Dock, allows you to easily attach a smartphone to whatever digital camera that has a hot shoe.

Bruno Rousseau, founder of pocketDEMO says:
"With the AppStore for iPhones, the Android market for Android devices and the marketplace for Windows-Phones, SmartPhone users have access to thousands of apps. There are a number of apps dedicated to help photographers. Unfortunetely, we tend to use them only once, as it is not pratical to hold a DSLR and a SmartPhone at the same time. Flash-Dock solves that issue by bringing the touch screen of the SmartPhone right next to the DSLR setting screen and buttons ... and the possibilities are endless."

Here is a list of the most useful apps that can be used with your DSLR:

- Sharing pictures: Imagine a DSLR with a 3G/4G connection!: Bruno Rousseau says: "What if we could share a High Quality picture by E-mail, SMS or via cloud services like iCloud or DropBox? That is something users have done for years with their camera phone but never did with their DSLR. How does the Flash-Dock help doing that? Well, have you heard about the EyeFi SD Cards? EyeFi cards are SD Cards that store pictures and send them to the SmartPhone through their built-in WIFI chip. Again, it is possible to use EyeFi cards without the Flash-Dock, but it is not that easy. The SmartPhone being next to the DSLR, everything works seemlessly and without the user paying any special attention to it. Once the photo-shoot is finished, the photographer only has to share his photos with the world through the 3G/4G networks... they are all on his SmartPhone."
- Geotagging with .GPX files: SmartPhones have a built-in GPS and most DSLR don't. SmartPhones can record tracks into a file called a "GPX file". That file is then read by iPhoto, Aperture, Lightroom, Photoshop Elements, Picasa and most photo library softwares. What these softwares do is, merge this GPS data with the metadata of pictures taken during the photo-shoot. It is simple and free.
- Geotagging with bluetooth: Some add-on devices like the BlueSLR are plugged into the DSLR GPS connector. Since SmartPhones also have a bluetooth connection, they can send in real-time location information to the camera that in turn will geotag pictures. It works the same way as if there was a GPS receiver plugged into the DSLR, only cheaper.
- LightMeter: SmartPhones have cameras and light sensors. Both combined, some smart developers have managed to create Light Meters that perform very well. They do require a calibration with a real light meter, but passed this stage, all the fotographer needs is a SmartPhone.
- Depth Of Field calculator: These apps let the DSLR user calculate precisely the sharp area before and after the subject. These calculators take into account the lens type, the camera model and aperture to give a very precise value.
- Level: Photographers have used levels for years on their tripods and now some DSLR feature an electronic horizontal line. However, some cameras do not have this feature and people can now monitor a level even without a tripod. Typical accelerometers inside the SmartPhones have an accuracy of 0.1°, more than enough for a level functionality.
- Microphone: The latest DSLRs all have video functionalities. However, the sound is often not in par with the video quality. SmartPhones on the other hand are made to deliver good sound quality with ambient noise cancellation and remote recording. Another good exemple of combining DSLR and SmartPhones.
The very cool thing about the marriage of these two devises is that more apps are being developed out there daily, that I think will lead to an increasingly blissful union.