Reliable and Strong. 3 Legged Thing Winston 2.0 Tripod Review

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Examining and understanding tripods can be a tough job. But the 3 Legged Thing Winston 2.0 felt pretty definite. I have a Manfrotto and Benro tripod that I use fairly often. However, the 3 Legged Thing Winston 2.0 is undoubtedly the strongest of the bunch. If you’re careful, it also has the best ballhead. This tripod was designed for heavy loads. Got one of those Mamiya medium format cameras? Grab this! Going birding? The 3 Legged Thing Winston 2.0 has you covered. Overall, this is a fantastic tripod that is hard to beat, but can surely be improved.

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A Professional Twenty in One Kit – Freewell Magnetic VND Filters

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Variable Neutral Density (VND) filters have traditionally had a negative connotation attached to them. This is because of the dreaded X pattern that appears as you rotate the filters to obtain varying degrees of density. The folks at Freewell claim you won’t experience this when using their new Magnetic VND filters. They’re not wrong. During three days of testing, I never once faced anything close to this image-killing X when using these filters. What’s more amazing is that they double as CPL filters if you flip them around. Freewell has done an outstanding manufacturing job with these filters. Read more to see how they fared in our review.

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It Keeps Getting Better. HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker Review

When I think of HoldFast Gear, I think of ultra-accessibility, comfort, and long-lasting and stylish gear. The company is beloved by wedding photographers and event photographers in the industry, and rightfully so. The HoldFast Gear Skinny Money Maker is a skinnier iteration of their original best-selling dual camera harness. Any fears of the thinner straps digging into my shoulders subsided after testing it out for several weeks. The leather is supple and molds around the contours of the shoulder. The harness has that added layer of convenience with which HoldFast Gear has become synonymous. Additionally, it’s incredibly comfortable for the most demanding of photoshoots.

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Challenge Yourself: PrismFX Centerfield Split Diopter Filter Review

The PrismFX Centerfield Split Diopter Filter is unlike anything we’ve tried before.

Let’s be honest here; traditional photography is starting to get boring. These days, we define traditional photography as shooting then editing. It’s monotonous. Instead, finding a way to get it right in-camera is more entertaining. And that’s why we’re fascinated by the PrismFX Centerfield Split Diopter Filter. It’s designed to inspire you to think differently. Remember when Instagram used to do the tilt-shift effect in a certain area only? Well, that’s what this is like. Except, in this case, you only have it in the center. And you can rotate it however you’d like. 

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We Survival Tested PNY SD Cards in the Laundry. Were They Destroyed?

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SD cards are like mini hard drives — but that mini part means they are prone to loss and destruction. I’ve lost SD cards to a teething puppy, to a toddler bending a plugged-in card, and to inexplicable card errors (thankfully, all after transferring the images). When PNY reached out with their Elite-X and Pro Elite Class cards, there was little doubt that the cards would be able to handle living in a camera. But, we wanted to see if the PNY SD cards could handle what happens after you pull them out of the camera. Like when you accidentally put them in a pocket and don’t remember until after laundry day.

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The Secret Ingredient for Better Portraits. PrismFX Radiant Filter Review

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Last year, I bought almost every filter PrismFX makes. As a camera reviewer, it’s easy to become bored. Most camera and lens brands try harder and harder to erase character and fun from lenses. Software companies do the same thing too. So we have to use lens filters or vintage glass to get the looks we want. When PrismFX launched the Radiant filter, I was a bit skeptical. Some of the company’s other products were mediocre. But quite honestly, this might be my favorite lens filter I’ve ever used.

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Add Some Flair to Your Photos! PrismFX FlareFX Filter Review

The PrismFX FlareFX filter is a fun way to make photography exciting again.

Modern photography is very bland. Manufacturers work on creating super technical and clinically perfect images. It’s annoying. But the PrismFX FlareFX filter surely can help with that whenever you need. Using this filter, you can create in-camera flare effects. Better yet, there’s the option of making it look like a rainbow. Ever wanted some lens flare when shooting a model against a bright sun? We have. But loads of companies engineered that out of their lenses. The PrismFX FlareFX filter brings that back.

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Your Time’s Up Wacom: Xencelabs Pen Tablet With Quick Keys Review

The Xencelabs tablet and Quick Keys Combo is a powerful tool that makes complex editing jobs easier.

We get by pretty well when it comes to editing our images on PCs and Macs. Still, there are times when I wish I had just a little more control over the edits I make. The mouse doesn’t want to cooperate sometimes, and making tiny brush strokes can be challenging. This is where editing tablets and pens come into play. We’ve all heard of Wacom before, but Xencelabs (which is pronounced Sencelabs) – that’s a new name for most. They have released an editing tablet that can be bundled with an OLED powered Quick Keys panel, and they’re going for the jugular. Will their new tablet and aggressive pricing strategy take image editors away from Wacom, though? Find out in our full review.

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This Strap Packs a Hidden Tool: Wandrd Sling Review

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Necks weren’t designed for holding much more than your head. Sling straps hold the weight of the camera on the shoulders instead. Made with the ability to switch back and forth from shoulder to neck carry, this type of strap design often offers more comfort for all-day shoots. The Wandrd Sling is one of those straps. Made from incredibly soft nylon material, the strap is a happy medium between the expensive leather and the cheap, scratchy numbers that ship with your camera.

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Eco-Friendly, Sturdy, and Stylish: Gitzo Légende Tripod Review

The Gitzo Légende tripod proves there’s still a place for tripods in an IBIS-fueled world.

In a world full of IBIS and lens stabilization, tripods are quickly beginning to fade away. However, there’s still a place for trusty tripods in our lives. If you’re a landscape or astrophotographer, tripods are essential. Macro photographers, product photographers, and studio shooters rely on tripods too. Picking a tripod is a pretty serious business. At the end of the day, you’re placing your expensive camera and lenses on it. You need to be able to trust it. We’ve had our hands on the new Gitzo Légende tripod for a little while now. Is it one you should be fluttering your eyelids at, or should you walk away? Find out in our full review.

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Not Quite as Strong. Benro Rhino Tripod Review (VX25 Head)

The Benro Rhino tripod is pretty sturdy with a not so great head on its shoulders.

One of the most important parts of a tripod is the head. I’ve always loved different variants from ProMaster, Vanguard, and Manfrotto. With the Benro Rhino, it’s a bit of the opposite. You are getting quite honestly some of the best tripod legs I’ve ever tested. But the attached VX25 head is a bit disappointing. But throughout my testing, I still question whether or not I was pushing the tripod too far. At the same time, you should know its limits.

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A Simple Strap That Almost Feels Like You’re Not Wearing One: Wandrd Wrist Strap Review

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Shooting without a neck strap is both a bit liberating and terrifying. Liberating because there’s no neck or back pain, even with long shoots. Terrifying because of the constant threat of a catastrophic drop. Thanks to a loose-fitting design that instantly tightens when dropped, the new Wandrd Wrist Strap is the next best thing to shooting strap-free.

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Photography Storage and a Whole Lot More: Synology DS1520+ Review

The Synology DS1520+ is an excellent NAS that boasts loads of additional features.

The Synology DS1520+ is the company’s latest Network-Attached Storage (NAS) device. Designed to mitigate our storage nightmares, it comes at a great time. Photographers are still caught in a megapixel war between manufacturers. Videographers are having 8K video pushed on them, and journalists need to manage a ton of multimedia files. Redundant storage is always an issue. But aside from being centralized storage for all of your data, the DS1520+ has got lots of added functionality too.

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Fancy Lanyard Is a Better Description for This Strap: Wandrd Neck Strap Review

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Mirrorless cameras and DSLRs have seemingly endless neck strap options. But, cameras with only a single attachment point have few choices. Digital and film point-and-shoots often have slim pickings when it comes to strap choices and there are even fewer choices for photographers who don’t want a wrist strap. The Wandrd Neck Strap is a new option for those cameras. Using Wandrd’s custom attachment hardware, the Neck Strap attaches in seconds.

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It’s Really Easy to Use! HY Magnetic Filter Holder System Review

The H&Y K-Series Magnetic Filter Holder System is an innovative and easy way for photographers to attach filters to their cameras.

The H&Y K-Series Magnetic Filter Holder System uses magnets to remedy an inconvenience for photographers. With this one system, there’s no need to have a ton of filters; you can theoretically use one filter across many lenses. The savings can add up too! Buying different Neutral Density and Circular Polarizing Filters can get pricey. The H&Y K-Series Magnetic Filter Holder System is a super user-friendly alternative.

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Long Exposures Made Easy: Haida 17 Stop ND 5.0 Filter Review

The Haida Red Diamond 17 Stop ND 5.0 Filter is an invaluable tool for photographers specializing in daytime long exposure photography.

Shooting long exposures in broad daylight can be very challenging, and the Haida Red Diamond 17 Stop ND 5.0 Filter was created with this in mind. Most conventional ND’s simply don’t provide enough light reduction. When photographing on a sunny day, you’re limited to exposures of a second or two at best. That’s barely enough time to blur out moving clouds or flowing water. Thanks to the whopping 17 stops of light reduction on the Haida Red Diamond Filter, significantly longer exposures become possible. For example, a 1/60 second filterless exposure would take 36 minutes and 16 seconds to complete. That’s a notable difference. We recently got to test the Haida Red Diamond 17 Stop ND 5.0 Filter out in the wild. Check out how it fared in the real world after the jump.

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The SK Hynix Gold S31 Surprised Us in Capture One

Essentials is a series featuring products we’re currently lusting over in quick, easy to digest posts.

Modern cameras are becoming more powerful with every new release. While this is fantastic news, it can also create problems. One such issue is the ever-growing size of both RAW and JPEG files. Long gone are the days of 10Mb files. Now, we routinely deal with file sizes in the 60Mb or higher range. Owning gear that can handle and store such large files is now something that has to be considered more carefully. Thankfully, you can buy high capacity, speedy SSD’s without destroying your bank account. We were sent the SK Hynix Gold S31 SSD, and have been putting it through real-world tests. Will the SK Hynix Gold S31 SSD help you generate a more efficient workflow? Find out in our quick review.

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They Finally Got It Right! Holdfast Gear Vegan Money Maker Strap Review

The Holdfast Gear Vegan Money Maker is oddly enough their best camera strap yet.

I’ve never really adored many vegan leather products, but the Holdfast Gear Vegan Money Maker is changing my mind. A staple amongst the wedding and event photography community, this camera strap is their softest and most comfortable option yet. Most vegan leather I’ve used tended to be rigid, tough, and sort of weird. But the Holdfast Gear Vegan Money Maker isn’t like that at all. I’ve been very used to their Money Maker straps cutting into my shirt or skin. The exception is their canvas option, and now the Holdfast Gear Vegan Money Maker is my favorite. Not only is this the best vegan leather camera strap I’ve used, but it’s something I may consider using more often.

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For Your Next Adventure: ProMaster SP528K Tripod Review

The ProMaster SP528K Tripod kit is exactly what most serious photographers need.

Fact: the staff of The Phoblographer is always on the lookout for new tripods. We use them a lot when we’re testing gear. And because of how much abuse we put them through, we tend to break them. None are created equal. In our discoveries for the perfect tripod, we were introduced to the ProMaster SP528K. At under $300, this tripod can get really tall – taller than I am. But the best part about it is the ball head. It’s capable of doing things that much more expensive heads do. It’s not perfect, but at the price point, I’m not sure anything can beat it–and it has us liking a lot of what the ProMaster lineup can do.

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Who Knew Tripods Could Be Cool? The 3 Legged Thing Ray Tripod Is

Essentials is a series featuring products we’re currently lusting over in quick, easy to digest posts.

Tripods are perhaps one accessory we rely on a lot but give little credit to. I mean, they’re just tripods, right? You plant it on the ground, attach your camera, and it just sits there doing its job. But did you know that tripods can be cool as well as functional? We had a chance to test out the new 3 Legged Thing Ray tripod and the new Airhed VU ball head, which are a part of the 3 Legged Thing’s new Legend range of tripods and accessories. The Ray is an ultra-compact carbon fiber tripod that not only looks great but also functions well too, while the Airhed VU is a precision-engineered ball head with a cool viewing panel. Let’s take a quick, closer look after the break.

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