The Week in Photography News and Culture: March 31st to April 6th 2013

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This was quite a busy week in the photo world. Fujifilm announces new price changes as well as killed their motion picture films, Adobe updated Lightroom 4, Nikon’s DSLR got a huge firmware overhaul, a new Lenovo monitor promised to cover most of the Adobe RGB color scale, and Sears and Wal-Mart shuttered their portrait studios.

But there’s a lot more. Here’s our roundup for the week.


Say Good Bye to Saying, “Cheese” at Cheesy Studios

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Wal-Mart and Sears have shuttered the doors on their portrait studios. Though the companies wouldn’t state why this is exactly happening, it is something that we had to be seeing for a very long time. We received an email from the L.A. Times asking about this yesterday and in all honesty, it was only a matter of time. First off, many of these companies advertised for workers on Craigslist of all places. Then the decline began with the wedding industry where people barely wanted to pay for prints anymore. Plus, many are just so much happier taking photos themselves with their own DSLRs or iPhones and then sharing directly and instantly to the world via Instagram and Facebook.

Indeed, the killer apps have become the killer of these studios. I’m relieved to know that one day when I have kids, they won’t have to go to these places and have total creeps try to tickle them to make them smile for a picture.

Smash!!!

We’re not sure how we missed this video back around CES, but Hoya’s new HD2 filters were designed to take quite a beating. We’re calling them in for review. Many people choose not to use filters as they can degrade image quality. But sometimes, it’s totally negligible. Check out our full post on the new optics if you’re interested in more.

Win This Package When You Help a Good Cause

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We’re giving away all the stuff you see above if you just pledge to help a good cause. We’re extending the contest an extra day and we hope that you’ll have the heart to help those less fortunate.

Nikon’s DSLRs Get Some More Press

If you’re a Nikon D7100 user, you’ll need to live with the fact that the aperture cannot be controlled by the camera in video mode. Now in all honesty, you shouldn’t be changing your aperture while recording video and it is more of an incentive to use cinema primes. This just makes us wonder so much though–will Nikon get into cinema prime manufacturing?

That’s not all in the Nikon world though–they released tons of firmware updates for their cameras. And you can read all the details about yours here.

Oh and one more thing–Capture NX may be dead.

Thing Don’t Look Good for Analog Fujifilm Fans…

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Hey film lovers, you just became a very classy and pricy bunch. Fujifilm announced a 20% price hike on their film line. But that’s not all–they’re killing their motion picture film as well.

The Compact 4×5 Camera

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A new Kickstarter is billing that they have the solution for you large format shooters. Wanderlust has produced some interesting things in the photo world before, and now they’re coming out with a way for many of us to keep our large format dreams alive. Their new Travelwide cameras are lighter than DSLRs but tout a large 4×5 film area. Plus, they can use existing lenses.

We’re super excited about this project to say the least–4×5 image quality is better than anything digital.

Adobe’s Latest Version of Lightroom Supports Loads of New Cameras

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm X100s product images (1 of 6)ISO 1001-200 sec at f - 11

 

Adobe took version 4.4 out of the release candidate stage and have set it to the final version. You can read all the details here, but the company is touting the fact that Fujifilm cameras now have some serious support after working with the company to create better processing algorithms.

Lightroom 4.4:Windows | Mac

DNG Converter 7.4: Windows | Mac


One Many Stood Up Amongst Many…

This week an angry consumer stood up and came out to say that companies are confusing their customers. He stated that so many cameras have come out in the past year and that customers are confused. The video went viral on Reddit and though he can easily be seen as a troll, the former customer service rep in me sees this as a cry for help. Indeed, many cameras have come out in the past year but that is because the year previous almost nothing came due to the natural disasters in Taiwan and Japan.

Additionally, companies don’t do enough education on their items for people to make the right, informed decisions.

Sigma’s DP Cameras Get Hacked to Use an M Mount

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Seriously, who has ever been so angry with the limitations of their camera that they decide to hack the thing? It’s rare, but a Chinese company is doing just that. Not happy with the performance of your Sigma DP point and shoot? Well you can send it to China to have the lens hacked off and then they can attach an M mount to the camera and a new shutter unit.

Pretty crazy, huh? It’s nice to know that people are still able to be creative like this–but I only hope that Sigma sees this and embraces it instead of trying to shut it down.

Lenovo’s New Display Is Designed for Photogs

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A couple of years ago, Lenovo had a couple of good laptops for photographers–but many have gone the Apple route. This week though, the company announced a brand new monitor that is designed to cover most of the Adobe RGB scale–they’re claiming over 90%.

Confused? The Adobe RGB scale is what many photographers use for prints, while sRGB is more tailored for the web.

Even more confused? You should be–how many photographers are really printing these days? It’s a highly specialized device that I see being best for labs at the most.

 

LaForet Has a New Camera Stabilizer That He’s Smitten With

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We all love Vincent LaForet–ever since Reverie and helping the Canon 5D Mk II change the world, he’s been following his dreams of being a director and DP. But he’s been testing a product that he’s touting as revolutionary, and from the videos we’ve seen it seems very much so. It’s a brand new stabilizer for DSLRs, and it works extremely well from the footage we’ve seen.

However, being a steadicam user is something that takes lots of practice–and we really wish someone would create a tutorial on just how to do a better job of using them before they flood the market and people fling customer service inquiries like mad.

Here’s How You Can Piss Off Your Video Editor and DP

LockCircle Prime Circle XE System

 

Last but not least, LockCircle came out with cinema lenses that are a bit different from the rest. They let you control the aperture from a distance away via a radio transmitter.

Now seriously, why would I ever need that? You’re often locking your aperture while shooting to begin with. It’s well worth the read, and laugh.

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