When Google acquired Nik Software in late 2012, I was among those photographers who wondered what this would mean for the future of the software suite of plug-ins. Silver Efex Pro II, Color Efex Pro, Sharpener and the other plugins had become an integral part of my workflow. So, I not only wondered whether the plugins would continue to be updated but also would there be any new plug-ins in the future?
Well, it seems that both questions have been answered with the latest addition of Analog Efex Pro to the Google Nik Collection which gathers together 7 plugins for$149.00.
The new plugin that simulates a variety of cameras, films and lenses is not a revolutionary introduction. There are other plugins on the market that have covered similar territory. However, Analog Efex Pro provides a unique editing experience that complements the other apps found in the collection.
If you’re a videographer or a landscape photographer, you’re very familiar with graduated ND filters. These filters usually start with a lot of light cutting ability at one end and very little light cutting on the other. In practical terms, you use them to get more details in a sky while exposing for the shadows in a scene. Today, Hoya is announcing their Graduated ND10 graduated Neutral Density filter. The new filter will cut out three stops of light at its darkest portion and one stop at its lightest–basically giving you more power to create an HDR image in a single shot if the situation and conditions are correct.
The filter is two pieces of glass that rotate around themselves so that the darker or lighter portion can be moved appropriately. The filter will come in sizes of 52mm, 58mm, 77mm, 82mm when they launch. No word on launch date or price point yet.
Videographers perhaps more than photographers are being treated to Hoya’s New Pro ND Neutral Density filters. These filters are said to eliminate color casts that other ND filters often add to your videos–which require better white balancing in post or in the camera. Buying a bunch of them in various sizes will also mean that your footage will be easier to white balance in camera.
The 9 filters can reduce anywhere from two to 10 stops of light. They’re all built using an aluminum frame and have the company’s ACCU-ND and Metallic ACCU-ND coatings that help to do everything that we stated previously.
You can snag sizes from 49mm to 82mm if you’re dealing with super large lenses. No official word on pricing or availability has been released; but we’re sure that come holiday season loads of these will be under the trees of videographers.
Editor’s Note: Big thanks goes out to Doug Guerra over at the Alternating Line; a new NYC based company that focuses on freelance camera operating and video engineering.
Filters are an interesting bunch–many photographers will say that you don’t need them but others swear by the protection that they can offer. But when it comes to the video world, they’re a necessity. While many of us on the site prefer to use Vari-ND filters for the convenience that they offer, many videographers still prefer to go with dedicated filters. Both have their advantages, but some are really designed to give an extra punch. In the case of Tiffen’s Combo IR ND filter, you might want to use this one with a cinema camera.
“Almost fifty shades of grey…” That’s how Cokin describes their latest variable Neutral Density filter. Variable ND filters have been around for some time now, but ever since the advent of HDSLRs and their blitzkrieg on independent video production, variable ND filters have increased in popularity by an enormous margin for their incredible versatility. Cokin is a French filter manufacturer that recently launched a new line of filters called Pure Harmonie which is supposed to be even higher quality, and without color-casts that some ND filters can cause.
Photoshop is an incredible piece of (software) engineering that’s getting better and better with each iteration. Also, the number of tools and options it has to offer is constantly rising. So it probably comes as no surprise that many of us haven’t really a clue what all the different effect filters actually do–mainly because we don’t have the time to try them out one by one. Well, the guys from Device took that time, and not only did they try out every single Photoshop filter, they also compiled a video that shows them all off. Yes, all of them. But it gets better. They then created a soundtrack for the video that translates each filter into sound. We’ve got not idea how they did it, but it’s brilliant. And in case the videos is too fast paced for you to digest it all on the fly, they also created a tumblr that shows off each filter as an animated GIF file. Brilliant. Did I mention this is brilliant? You’ll find the video past the break.