DIY Intervalometer for Canon & Nikon

Intervalometer

Completed Intervalometer from Otter Creek

This is an unusual item that Canon and Nikon photographers might find useful – an intervalometer! An intervalometer is a device that will permit the photographer to set the camera to take a series of images for a set interval. A common use is for time-lapse images of flowers opening, etc. Well, you can do the same thing with you DSLR from Canon or Nikon (others too, with the right adapter). This intervalometer is actually a kit which is available from Amazon.com created by Otter Creek (www.ottercreekdesign.com). Continue reading »

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Magic Lantern adds 5D MK II Enhancements

A few weeks ago, Canon released a firmware update for the 5D Mark II, 1.1.0, which added the ability for photographers to capture video with manual control over exposure and ISO settings. Now, a hacker, Trammell Hudson, has released a beta update to the firmware which allows the photographer even more control over the video settings!

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/5267475] Continue reading »

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Strobist Boot Camp II

Strobist Boot Camp II - Head Shot

A friend and I decided to participate in the latest Strobist Boot Camp II exercises by David Hobby, (Strobist Blogspot) and for my head shot, I wanted to see if I could use an MR-14EX macro ring flash as an on-camera fill. This image is the result of my test.

The posted head shot here (courtesy of my friend, Fred!) is the result. I had a Canon 580Ex off to the subject’s right with a Honl grid, set on slave and triggered by the MR-14ex on the camera. The MR-14ex was set on manual and since the two strobes are already on banks A and B, I set the 580Ex on bank C. I manually set A and B to 1/64 power and the C bank (580EX) to 1/16 power so it would act as the key. Continue reading »

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Radiopoppers

Radio Popper with mounting system

Radio Popper with mounting system

I’ve been waiting for the Radiopopper Jr. system since last year when they were first announced.  However, the designers/manufacturers of the “Poppers” decided they weren’t happy with the design and decided to pull back and add all the new features that they were going to save for future models.  Now it appears the Jrx. Popper is finally going to be released next month!

What is the Radiopopper?  For all you Strobist junkies out there, the Popper is a radio remote unit for your flash units.  If you are familiar with the PocketWizard, then you know what a Radio Popper is, except the Poppers are full TTL!!  That means the flash units can be used on automatic as well as manual!  These clever guys figured out how to take the infrared (IR) signal that flash units use to communicate TTL information and convert that into a radio signal that can be sent hundreds of feet, instead of ten to fifteen feet.  Even better, since these are radio units, the units do not have to have a direct ‘line of sight’ in order to operate – put ’em anywhere!  The Px units are now on the market and cost about $250 each for the transmitter and receiver.  However, the JRx model is suppose to come in around $50 each and will also work with the Px transmitter unit!

I’ve been using the eBay $25 Hong Kong units, which are unfortunately not that reliable (lots of misfires) and don’t have much range, so I’m really looking forward to trying out the new Jrx which are suppose to be released late next month.  For more information, check out http://radiopopper.com/ and click on their blog link for current status.  As soon as I get my hands on one I will post a review here and at my new forum at www.elusiveimage.net/forum.

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Camdapter(tm) Handstrap

Camdapter(tm) strap in action

Camdapter(tm) strap

Now and then I run across a product that not only performs better than promised, but the company that produces that product also has outstanding customer service.  A recent purchase of the Camdaper(TM) is such a product!

The Camdapter(TM) is a handstrap system that consists of two parts: an optional adapter that bolts to the bottom of the camera (if required) and the straps themselves. Continue reading »

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DXO Labs Camera Database

home  DXO labs have been accumulating a lot of data for their DXO RAW convertor, lens correction software and just recently decided to release their findings to the public.  The new site is located at http://www.dxomark.com/.  The database now consists of a number of popular cameras and lenses and you may wish to check the site out to compare your favorite brand with others.  Please keep in mind that the database is only reflecting scientific measurements and does not include subjective information such as comfort, layout of controls, reliability, etc.  However, it should provide the “pixel-peepers” lots of new ammunition to argue pros and cons about the various cameras now available!  The site is free!

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Film is Dead

New Kodak Ektar film stock

Well, not according to Kodak!  Kodak has announced a new low grain ISO 100 film stock.  I guess I’ll still have something to use in my old film bodies for awhile longer (I’m running out of refrigerated Ektachrome!).  This new stock is suppose to be very low grain and therefore quite sharp.  More details can be found on the Kodak site at http://www.kodak.com/global/en/professional/products/films/ektar/ektarIndex.jhtml?id=0.2.26.14.5.14&lc=en.   Once I’ve been able to get my hands on a roll, I’ll publish my opinions here!

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Canon 5D MK II HD Video

Laforet video shot with Canon 5D MK II

Laforet video shot with Canon 5D MK II

Canon recently announced their update to the aging 5D, the new 5D MK II.   Normally I wouldn’t get too excited except Canon added a new feature (likely inspired by Nikon’s latest release) and added HD video capability to this 21 Megapixel camera.  Since I have a background in filmmaking as well as still photography, I find this addition quite interesting.  However, just adding video capability isn’t a big deal, if the video is an after thought with low quality, jerky footage. Continue reading »

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John Moran

Comet Hale Bopp by John Moran

Wow! 

Now and then I will discover the work of another photographer, and I feel obliged to urge other photographers to investigate their work.  I just encountered the work of Florida based photographer, John Moran and I urge everyone to check out his website at http://www.johnmoranphoto.com.John was a photojournalist for 23 years in Gainesville.  He photographed comet Hale Bopp in 1997 and produced this stunning image.  Oh yea, this was before digital!  If you would like to know how it was done, head over to http://www.strobist.blogspot.com – hint:  it was all produced with a few dollars worth of hardware and a couple stobe lights,  a five minute exposure – and quite a bit of patience and ingenuity!

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Orbis Ring Flash

Orbis Ring Flash

Orbis Ring Flash

Every now and then something comes along that has one intended purpose, but I see more potential for other uses!  One such product is the new, as yet to be released, Orbis Ring Flash.  The Orbis is made to work with your current strobe unit to soften and direct the light directly from the lens axis.  It is actually a type of ‘beauty light’.  However, it would appear to me that this unit might also be a subsitute for the more expensive macro ring flash units – and it would be more universal!  Best of all, the unit is suppose to cost less than $200, which makes it considerably less expensive than dedicated macro flash units. Continue reading »

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