Sunday, July 20, 2014

Win Fuji X-T1!

You can win the Fuji X-T1 by entering this competition here: http://is.gd/1WR67O




Monday, May 05, 2014

Sony announces SLT-A77 II


Sony has announced the Mark II version of its SLT-A77 DSLR with APS-C sensor. Incorporating some updated features the camera will retail around £999 for body only, placing it squarely in the semi-pro category. Here are some details on its features:

Dedicated AF sensor with 79 phase-detection AF points:

Sony’s newly developed AF system comes with the world’s highest number of phase-detection AF points (79 including 15 cross points). Spreading the points over an area approximately twice as wide as in the α77, Sony has optimised subject tracking to stay locked on your subject even in difficult conditions with great performance extremely well in low-light conditions — as low as EV -2 (ISO 100) according to Sony.

12fps for up to 60 frames, with AF tracking:

Incorporating 12fps continuous shooting, the A77 MkII allows you to capture the decisive moment at the full 24.3-megapixel resolution of the sensor, even during the tracking of fast-moving subjects. Up to 60 frames can be recorded per burst.

Sophisticated AF algorithm:

Sony has developed an AF algorithm that it claims strikes the perfect balance of speed and stability. Apparently, it does this by accurately analysing detailed AF metering data from the 79 AF points, as well as subject position data that takes subject movement continuity into account. Tracking performance is further improved when using the Lock-on AF function, which analyses information on subject colour as well as subject position.

Other features include:

1. Expanded Flexible Spot - using one of 8 surrounding AF points to make sure highly accurate tracking of your moving subject continues without interruption.

2. Enhanced Focus Area modes - Lock-on AF, which optimises target frame size and ensures use of the optimal AF point, is now available as a focus area mode. You can choose the initial AF point for tracking from the Wide, Zone, Center, Flexible Spot or Expanded Flexible Spot area mode.

3. 5-step tracking adjustment - AF tracking duration is adjustable in 5 steps, with low settings prioritising stability and high settings prioritising speed. Three settings are also available when shooting movies.

4. Eye AF - The face is sharply focused thanks to extremely accurate Eye AF. A green frame appears over the prioritised eye when focus has been achieved.

5. AF Range Control - You can limit autofocusing to a specified range of distance from the camera so the α77 II stays focused on your subject even if objects enter the AF frame in front of or behind your subject.

For more detailed specification, check out the A77 II micro-site at A77 II.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Tokyo gets the world's fastest broadband!

SABIC Innovative Plastics: Fiber Optic Connect...SABIC Innovative Plastics: Fiber Optic Connectors Made Using SABIC Innovative Plastics' Ultem* Resin (Photo credit: PressReleaseFinder)

For about $50 per month you can become the proud owner of the world's fastet broadband. However, there are just one or two catches. First, you have to live in Japan and secondly, you have to sign up for a 2-year contract. If that's no problem then you can enjoy a 2Gbps connection! Its on offer from So-net, an Internet service provider owned by the Japanese company Sony.

Although Japan is noted for the speed of its internet connections, with up to a quarter of the population on fibre, this is still a very impressive development. Especially when you consider that here in the UK there are still plenty of people who would love a 2Mbps connection! 

What woudl you do with a 2Gbps connection I wonder? Stream HD video to your PC all day long. Internet gaming. Download software non-stop? I am not really sure who needs this sort of connection but no doubt someone will find a way to max out their connection and at that price who can blame them for trying.

Just one other thought, is this really the best use of resources - couldn't the same energy (literally) be expended in providing decent connections to everyone instead of a limited number? Maybe even use some of the money and energy expended on helping the poor get onto the web for starters? Just a thought.


Win an iPad! at Paddle!
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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy

Taken in the main square on Arezzo ( a location in the Italian movie 'Life is Beautiful' ). Camera was a Samsung NX11 with 20-50mm standard zoom. I used the panoramic feature. Edited in Snapseed app on iPhone.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Nikon UK - Digital Cameras - SLR - Consumer - D600 - Digital Cameras, D-SLR, COOLPIX, NIKKOR Lenses

Nikon UK - Digital Cameras - SLR - Consumer - D600 - Digital Cameras, D-SLR, COOLPIX, NIKKOR Lenses

The Nikon D600 has a lot going for it if you are in the market for a DSLR that lies between a consumer level one (such as the D3100) and the Pro level D800 or D4. Also, if you are stepping up from a compact camera and wish to get serious about your photography and can afford it then it probably makes a better buy that say, the D3200, though I recommend looking at the D7000 as well.

Specification-wise it offers:


    24.3-megapixel FX-format (full-frame) CMOS sensor with excellent signal-to-noise ratio and wide dynamic range. Delivers richly detailed images with smooth tonal gradations.
    Highly sensitive autofocus with Multi-CAM4800 39-point AF system: delivers fast and precise coverage across the frame. Sensitive down to -1 EV and compatible up to f/8.
    ISO 100–6400: extendable up to 25,600 (equivalent) and down to 50 (equivalent). Enables faster shutter speeds for finely detailed images with minimal noise.
    Multi-area D-Movie records FX- and DX-format Full HD (1080p) movies in 30p, 25p and 24p. Max recording time approx. 29 minutes 59 seconds. Offers uncompressed HDMI output to external devices and high-fidelity audio control.
    EXPEED 3 image processing engine with 14-bit A/D conversion and 16-bit image processing for superb tonal gradation.
    HDR (High Dynamic Range): ideal for high-contrast scenes. Takes two shots within a single shutter release to create an image with an extremely wide dynamic range, low noise and rich color gradation.
    Active D-Lighting: capture more detail in high-contrast lighting conditions. Nikon’s Active D-Lighting automatically retains the details in both dark and bright areas for stunning images with natural contrast.
    Scene Recognition System: the camera’s image sensor and its 2,016-pixel RGB sensor provide precise data to the Scene Recognition System, which optimizes exposure, autofocus and white balance immediately before the shutter is released for sharply defined images.
    Time-lapse shooting: use Interval Timer Shooting to trigger the shutter at preset intervals. Use Time Lapse Photography to save images as movie files and view slow action in fast playback, with playback rates from 24 to 36,000 times faster than normal.
    Picture Controls customize the look of your stills and videos by fine-tuning parameters such as sharpness, saturation, and hue before capture.
    Precision 8-cm (3.2-in.), 921k-dot, VGA LCD monitor with automatic monitor brightness control. Delivers bright, crisp image playback with a wide color reproduction capacity.
    High-performance viewfinder with approx. 100% frame coverage and 0.7x magnification. Offers DX Crop Mode with viewfinder marking.
    5.5 fps continuous shooting: capture fast-moving action at five-and-a-half frames per second.
    Quiet shooting mode: perfect for discreet photography, the sound of the camera’s mirror return mechanism is noticeably reduced.
    Mirror balancer: minimizes the bounce of the mirror’s down movement, extending viewing time and allowing more time for AF operation—one reason the D600 achieves AF and focus tracking even during high-speed continuous shooting.
    Compact, light and durable: built to withstand severe conditions, the camera boasts magnesium alloy top and rear covers and weighs only 760 g (without battery). Weather-sealed to the same degree as Nikon’s professional D800 SLR, it offers enhanced resistance to moisture and dust.
    Dual-axis electronic virtual horizon: you can confirm the camera's position relative to the horizontal plane and its pitch (forward or rear rotation) using the LCD monitor, or the viewfinder.
    Twin SD card slots: two SD memory card slots offer enhanced shooting flexibility. Use the second card when the first is full, or record stills on one and movies on another. SDXC and UHS-I compatible.
    Wireless transfer: Nikon’s optional WU-1b Mobile Adapter lets you share images directly from the D600 to a smartphone or tablet, or to control the camera remotely via your smart device*.
     
* Compatible with smart devices using Android OS. Compatibility with iOS will be available from fall, 2012. A Wireless Mobile Adapter Utility must be installed on the smart device prior to use. This utility can be downloaded from Google Play™ at no charge.

Cuurently you can but it for around £1586.00 (inc VAT) for the body only or £2006 including 24-85mm kit lens. The D7000 currently retails for around £1109 body only or £1253 with twin-lens kit.
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"Italian Beauties" by newbeltane | Redbubble

I bought a Samsung NX11 just before a holiday in Italy and this is an example of the images I took with it. Hope you like it!

Steven Dale
"Italian Beauties" by newbeltane | Redbubble:
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