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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera ON SALE - 50% off!

Click here for more information about the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera

Believe it or not, the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera is now available for a staggering low price of $495.00 until August 31st! (Buy it today at B&H) Which means you get a 50% discount on this very popular camera. If you've been holding off on buying this little gem, now is the time to add it to your collection.

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera from Blackmagic Design is a compact Super 16 format camera designed for digital film production. The Super 16 sized sensor has an effective resolution of 1920 x 1080 and is capable of capturing 13 stops of dynamic range. The Pocket Cinema Camera records Full HD video in either the lossless CinemaDNG RAW or Apple ProRes 422 (HQ) format. The active Micro Four Thirds lens mount can accommodate a growing range of MFT format lenses as well as a host of excellent legacy lenses via optional adapters. Blackmagic Design has packed all of these impressive features into a remarkably compact (5 x 2.6 x 1.5") and lightweight (12.5 oz) magnesium alloy chassis.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Adobe's New Creative Cloud 2014

Adobe Creative Cloud 2014

Adobe revealed its latest update to Creative Cloud with 14 new versions of CC desktop applications, four new mobile apps and the official launch of the company's stylus and ruler set for iPad.

"We’ve been hard at work the last two years to address four key areas of the Creative Cloud you told us to focus on: performance boosts, workflow efficiencies, support for new hardware and standards, and of course innovative features, which we call the Adobe “magic.” If you’ve been hanging on to your old CS disks, waiting for the right time to join the Creative Cloud community, that moment is here. The latest version—available today (B&H 1-Year Subscription)—is packed with new, truly inventive features that will make it easier to do your work from anywhere, help you do it faster, and let you bring all of those great creative ideas in your imagination, to life."

Monday, April 7, 2014

Announced: Sony a7S Mirrorless Digital Camera

Sony a7S Mirrorless Digital Camera

Product Highlights

  • 12.2MP Full-Frame Exmor CMOS Sensor
  • BIONZ X Image Processor
  • Gapless On-Chip Lens Design
  • 3.0" 921.6k-Dot Tilting LCD Monitor
  • XGA 2.36M-Dot OLED Electronic Viewfinder
  • 4K and Full HD Video Recording in XAVC S
  • Full Pixel Read-Out, S-Log2 Gamma
  • Expandable Sensitivity: ISO 50-409600
  • Fast Intelligent 25-Point AF System
  • Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC

The Sony Alpha a7S Mirrorless Digital Camera features a full-frame 12.2MP Exmor CMOS sensor and BIONZ X image processor to enable notable video and still image quality with an expansive dynamic range, low noise, and extended sensitivity to ISO 409600. At the sensor level, this full-frame sensor features a unique on-chip gapless lens design, which incorporates small lenses between neighboring pixels in order to increase light-gathering efficiency and promote greater image quality across the entirety of the sensor plane. The sensor and processor combination also avails a wealth of speed throughout the camera system, including a top continuous shooting rate of 5 fps, support for 4K video recording, and a fast 25-point contrast-detection AF system with sensitivity to -4 EV.

Beyond its still image performance, the a7S is also quite adept in regard to recording video. It supports recording uncompressed 4:2:2 4K video to an optional external recorder, as well as full HD 1080 video in the high-quality XAVC S format at 50 mbps in multiple frame rates. Extending the video recording capabilities is support for the S-Log2 gamma, which helps to expand the effective dynamic range during recording, as well as picture profile options, time codes, and zebra and marker display aids. Sound can be recorded in the AAC/Linear PCM format via the internal stereo microphone, with a built-in headphone jack for on-board monitoring, or via an external microphone.

Rounding out the a7S's imaging capabilities, both a 3.0" 921.6k-dot tilting LCD monitor and 2.36 million-dot OLED electronic viewfinder are available for image monitoring and review. Built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, with support for NFC, is available, too, for instant sharing of imagery from the camera as well as remote camera control from a linked mobile device.

Monday, February 3, 2014

NEW - GY-HM850 and GY-HM890 ENG & Studio Camcorders

JVC's Full HD Shoulder-Mount ENG/Studio Camcorder

JVC have launched the GY-HM850 and GY-HM890 ProHD shoulder-mount camcorders (available for pre-order at B&H), setting a new benchmark in ENG camera network capability. The company will be demonstrating them to the public at the upcoming Broadcast Video Expo show in London at the end of February. Complemented by a new interchangeable Fujinon 20x autofocus zoom lens, both cameras deliver outstanding full HD image capture and delivery, while the built-in streaming engine, FTP and GSM connectivity allows live HD transmission directly from the camera without requiring additional encoding hardware.
Both the GY-HM850 and GY-HM890 models utilise a very nicely-weighted shoulder-mount form factor, with the GY-HM890 also designed for use as an HD studio camera or multi-camera field production camera. It has a multi-pin connection that accommodates JVC fibre or multi-core camera modules and is compatible with a full range of studio components, including customised studio sled, zoom and focus controls, CCUs and 8.4-inch LCD viewfinder, as well as box-style lenses from Canon and Fujinon.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

REVIEW - SEL1018 Sony E-mount Super Wide-Angle Zoom Lens

Click here for more information about the Sony 10-18mm f/4 OSS Alpha E-mount Wide-Angle Zoom Lens
Sony 10-18mm f/4 OSS Alpha E-mount Wide-Angle Zoom Lens

It's been a while since Sony announced their new batch of E-mount lenses, but today I'm finally able to do a hands-on review of the much anticipated Sony 10-18mm super wide-angle E-mount zoom lens, compatible with the Alpha NEX cameras and NEX Camcorders. Now, I won't be doing this review from a scientific point of view. I'm a photographer and filmmaker and personally care more about how it is to work with in the field and seeing the results created with my own camera and settings, then talking about specs and lab-results. So if you were hoping to see some nice colour boards, diagrams, graphs and lab experiments, I'm very sorry to disappoint you! Luckily there are many sites out there that can show you exactly that and they can certainly be interesting to see. A comparison (with video) between this 10-18mm ultra wide lens and the Sony 16mm pancake lens with VCL-ECU1 ultra wide converter will be posted soon.

First impressions
SEL1018 in use on the Blackbird stabilizer
When I opened the box and took out the lens, I was pleasantly surprised with how light-weight the lens actually is. It weighs only 225g. This is perfect for using it on a Sony Alpha NEX Mirrorless Digital Camera and even better for using it on a NEX-FS100 or NEX-FS700 in combination with a handheld stabilizer / Steadicam.

The second surprise was the build quality. Except for the lens hood, there's little plastic parts to be found. The zoom and focus rings operate very smoothly, but unfortunately there are no markings on the focus ring and it doesn't have stops. However, it works and responds much better then the focus ring on the Sony 18-200mm NEX lens, which feels a bit more electronic-ish. When using the zoom ring to go to 10mm ultra wide, the lens will extend slightly. This is the opposite of what you might expect normally. The drawback of this, is that the lens will retract a bit when mounting the lens cap when you're in full wide. The lens is quite small when you compare it to a similar lens like the Tokina 12-24mm f/4 lens and it's only half the weight. The lens has a filter thread in front, so you can add a 62mm Variable Neutral Density filter or 62mm UV filter if you want. An option that was seriously lacking when using the ultra wide converter with the 16mm pancake lens.

Sample images
Now before talking further about specs and performance of this lens, I'm going to share some sample images I took with this lens on a Sony NEX mirrorless digital camera.

Friday, January 17, 2014

REVIEW - Radian Pro Wireless HD Video

Radian Pro Wireless HDMI Video From Camera Motion Research
Radian Pro Wireless HD Video From Camera Motion Research

A few weeks ago Camera Motion Research, the manufacturer of the critically acclaimed Blackbird stabilizer (review here), launched their professional wireless HD video set for the US market and now they also made a version available for Europe! I've had the great opportunity to try it out the last couple of days and I'm happy to be able to share my experiences with you.

Radian Pro Wireless HD Video Set

The CMR Radian wireless HD video set is manufactured with Amimon WHDI professional quality chip sets for best uncompressed resolutions and frame rates up to full 1080P(60). The system has near zero latency and line-of-sight range of over 300 feet (90 meters)! A connection between the Radian transmitter and receiver is established in just a few seconds and it automatically selects the best channel to use. Even if you have never used a wireless system before, you will be up and running in no-time.

Here's a quick video showing how long it takes for the Radian Pro wireless video system to link the transmitter to the receiver. A longer video demonstration with the system in action will be added at a later point in time.

The Radian system is available in two flavours. The Radian Pro unicast for connecting one transmitter to one receiver and the Radian MC multicast for connecting one transmitter to up to 4 receivers simultaneously. The one I'm reviewing here is the unicast version. The system is shipped with many different parts. You'll receive HDMI and USB power cables, remote, power adapter and of course the Radian transmitter and receiver. All perfectly packed with a quick start guide. In order to be able to use the system you will need some kind of power and mounting solution for your camera and monitor, and that's what we're going to discuss now. So please take some time to (re)fill your favourite coffee mug and I'll wait here for you to return.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Television Studio Camera - Update

The camera set is finally complete!
A couple of weeks ago I found this great Philips television studio camera. When picking up the camera I learned that it had been used till last summer and had to go when the studio changed all of their equipment to HD. Ever since HD became the standard I knew I had to be on the lookout for these cameras to pop up which isn't as easy as it may sound.

Update - See the camera in action!

NEW GoPro HERO3+ Cameras, Mounts, and Accessories

GoPro has announced their new and improved HERO3+ action cameras, available for pre-order, in two models with several new accessories!

Both the HERO3+ Black Edition and HERO3+ Silver Edition cameras are 20% smaller then the original HERO3 and their batteries last 25% longer. They have improved wireless performance (faster WI-Fi) when sending footage to your mobile device, an ultra-wide-angle glass lens and they are both compatible with the new LCD Touch BacPac, the new Battery BacPac, and the Wi-Fi Remote (which is included standard with the Black model).

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Wireless HDMI Video From CMR

Radian Wireless HDMI Video From CMR
Camera Motion Research, the company from North Carolina that brought us the Blackbird stabiliser, has added a very interesting new product to their line up. The CMR Radian wireless HDMI video set. Manufactured with Amimon WHDI professional quality chip sets for best uncompressed resolutions and frame rates up to full 1080P(60), near zero latency, and line-of-sight range over 300 feet!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera ProRes Files Released!

Thanks to John Brawley, we can all play around with some ungraded ProRes files from the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera. Lenses used: Olympus 14-35mm, the fantastic Olympus 7-14mm F2.0 ultra wide angle lens and the SLR Magic 35mm f/1.4.

We've been waiting for this for some time now and we are finally able to get some footage in to our editing systems and give it a go!