Is It Good For Photographers? Lenovo Yoga 9i 15-inch Review

The Lenovo Yoga 9i offers a lot of promise for photographers but falls flat in some ways.

When it was announced, I wondered how the Lenovo Yoga 9i would do for photographers. Like many of you, I still own a 2015 13-inch MacBook Pro. That, for us, was the best laptop you could get your hands on for photography. But we’re now six years later. And PCs have come a long way. Unfortunately, they’re not all still appealing to photographers. The Lenovo Yoga 9i is targeted at both gamers and creatives. Lenovo got a whole lot right about this laptop. But they also did some things that made me not want to use it at all.

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The Laptops Photographers Should Be Considering in 2018 and Why

There were some big changes to mobile processors at the end of 2017: make sure your 2018 laptop purchase is one you won’t regret

A laptop, not unlike a camera, is a major investment for a photographer in 2018 and if you are one of the many possibly looking to upgrade their laptop this year then you are going to want to have a look at this post. Towards the end of 2017, there were some major advancements made to the Intel processors used in most modern laptops. These changes saw improvements of up to 40% over comparable laptops sporting the processors being used in laptops throughout 2017. This sort of improvement is not your average year over year performance improvement; this one was major and something you need to pay attention to.

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10 Tips for Optimizing Lightroom Performance in 2018

If you are a photographer who uses Adobe Lightroom then you have likely run into slowdowns from time to time… here are some ideas to eliminate those headaches.

There is no doubt, over the last year or so Adobe has done a lot to improve and optimize performance in Lightroom, but that doesn’t mean there are no issues with performance in Lightroom here, midway through 2018. If you are more than just a hobbyist photographer chances are you spend quite a bit of time in Lightroom, and by extension, you likely run into performance issues more often than a casual user would. These slowdowns and optimization issues can be incredibly annoying and often result in additional stress you simply don’t need.

Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be that way and chances are there are some things you can do to greatly improve the performance and speed of your Lightroom without needing to go out and spend thousands on a new computer. Continue reading…

Review: Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens (Canon EF Mount)

The Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens is fantastic: will you trade up for it?

One of the best pieces of news professional working photographers have heard in the lens world could be about the Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG OS HSM Art Lens. Unlike many first party options out there, it has optical stabilization built in which helps a lot at weddings, events, for portraits, etc. Those types of photographers will greatly appreciate this addition on top of the already fantastic optics. Speaking of those optics, Sigma has consistently hit the ball out of the park in our reviews, and I’m happy to say they’re pretty much going to do this same thing in this review. But I should warn you that Sigma’s zoom lenses, while good, aren’t their primes. Sigma’s prime lenses are better. So if you want the best of every focal length offered here, you probably won’t be satisfied until you go for their f1.4 primes instead. And like many of those other lenses, you can take the Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG OS HSM Art out into the rain due its weather resistance.

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Lightroom Mobile on iOS and Android’s Latest Upgrades Include Selective Brush

Adobe has been working to improve Lightroom Mobile in many ways, and today the company announced significant updates for both the iOS and Android versions of the app. Lightroom has always been sort of an interesting thing for photographers. On one hand, you have this powerful photo processor in your phone or on your tablet that can sync with your computer (assuming you use Lightroom). On the other, you have this sort of watered down version of the desktop app you (we are assuming) use on a regular basis. Continue reading…

Driver Fixes Lightroom AMD GPU Crash Bug as Adobe Seeks Your Feedback on Performance

Lightroom performance has been a somewhat hot button issue for years, but specifically towards the end of 2016 and now into 2017 the problem has not gotten any easier for Adobe. Lightroom performance remains troublesome for many users and competitors, like Alien Skin Exposure X2, On1 Photo RAW, and Capture One, are all offering appealing alternatives which is pulling users away from the Adobe ecosystem faster than ever before it appears. Continue reading…

6 Tips For Getting The Most Out of Your Fujifilm X Pro2

fujifilm lenses

When moving over to a new camera, especially when moving from a completely different system, there is always a bit of a learning curve while you figure out the menu and discover how you work best with the camera. Fujifilm has been hot lately with many transplants from other systems picking up new X Pro2, [amazon_textlink asin=’B01I3LNMAM’ text=’X-T2′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’bd657981-1a4c-11e7-82f5-f916e12a9809′], and [amazon_textlink asin=’B01N10DKLK’ text=’X-T20′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’c24e3012-1a4c-11e7-87a2-e70fcb0f0c10′] cameras for the first time.

In this post, we are going to give you our top tips for getting the most out of your [amazon_textlink asin=’B01A8DUR74′ text=’Fujifilm X-Pro2′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’b8c8e6ed-1a4c-11e7-a8c2-0bdd9228705b’] (with many of these tips also applying to the X-T2 and X-T20) so you can minimize that adjustment period and get right into rocking your shoots.

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We’ve Updated our Fujifilm X-T1 Review for Firmware 4.0

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm 16mm f1.4 first impressions product photos (5 of 7)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 2.8

With the release of Firmware 4.0 for the Fujifilm XT1, we’ve updated our review to reflect the changes. The new firmware brings with it a large number of autofocus upgrades like new tracking, zone focus, and improved speed to single AF focusing.

Indeed, the camera is significantly faster to focus, and we almost want to say that it’s about on par with the fastest of Sony’s APS-C mirrorless cameras and Samsung’s NX series. However, it still isn’t at Micro Four Thirds speed. We tested the camera with the 16-50mm f2.8 lens for the video after the jump.

Also be sure to check out our full review.

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Review: Sigma 150-600mm f5-6.3 Contemporary (Canon EF)

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sigma 150-600mm f5-6.3 Contemporary Review product images (3 of 7)ISO 4001-180 sec at f - 2.5

Sigma offers the 150-600mm f5-6.3 lens in two different flavors: Sports and Contemporary. For those of us that failed Phys Ed, the company designed the Contemporary lens with a smaller size and lighter weight over the Sports’ better image quality and better optics. But that doesn’t mean that this lens is a slouch at all–and for what you’re paying for it, it shouldn’t be.

This lens is aimed at the high end enthusiast, though at its current price point it’s really not badly priced considering what you’re getting in a package like this. But at the same time, we think that the person using this lens really has to know what they’re doing–and a couple of specific ergonomic changes are only part of what makes us think that.

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Review: Adobe Lightroom 6 / Adobe Lightroom CC

Lightroom CC logo

Since Adobe announced their movement to the Creative Cloud, many photographers were hoping that Adobe Lightroom didn’t make the move. Today, Adobe is giving consumers and professional photographers alike a new option. Photographers can either go for the new Adobe Lightroom 6 (most likely for the amateurs) or Adobe Lightroom CC (most likely for the working pros with a Creative Cloud account.) For the most part, they’re the same pieces of software.

Adobe’s Sharad Mangalick told us that both programs will receive updates at the same time when the patches and release candidates are available for download. New to Adobe Lightroom are four big features: enhanced performance for the editing of all RAW file types, a new filter brush that works in conjunction with gradients, HDR merge, Panoramic merge, and a couple of new additions for folks that make slideshows such as syncing to music and changing the pace of the image progression to the beat of the music.

All of these features are standard to Adobe Lightroom 6; and Adobe Lightroom CC’s major differences come with its integration with the Creative Cloud and with Lightroom Mobile for iPad and Android. Adobe Lightroom CC is also included in the Photography package for $9.99/month.

If you’re a landscape photographer, the upgrade to Lightroom 6 seems like a no brainer and if you’re a pro, the CC upgrade just makes so much sense.

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DxOMark Confirms That the New Nikon 1 V3 Can’t Outdo Micro Four Thirds Models Despite Price

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 9.20.05 AM

If you’ve ever wanted a reason to point and laugh at someone chasing after that more expensive camera, then now is the time. The latest from DxOMark states that Nikon’s new 1 V3 camera is outdone by more affordable Micro Four Thirds cameras when it comes to sensor performance. In their results announced today, the 1 inch sensor at the heart of the ovr $1,000 V3 fails in comparison to  the older sensors and cameras, but it comes close in terms of color depth. Granted, neither of the Micro Four Thirds models can fire at 60fps or shoot slow motion video. But still, it’s quite pricey. For what it’s worth, we’re also not sure that it should be such a high price. Instead, Nikon will need to lower it. But the company also did this for the D800 when that was released. The price eventually came down to where higher level mortals could afford it.

The Basics of Photography: I for ISO

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 final review photos (4 of 8)ISO 64001-50 sec at f - 2.2

As we continue our series on the basics of photography, we run into the letter “I”. What better term to define in the photo world than one of the biggest parameters of exposure today: ISO. In the video world they call it gain, and back in the film world they called it ASA. But either way, the ISO setting that your digital camera is set to is incredibly important to a number of factors like your shutter speed, aperture, and it can even affect flash output. Digital photographers and those that are brand new to the craft may not have known about what a pain ISO performance used to be in the early digital days and some of the headaches that film photographers used to go through by only working at lower ISO settings. These days, with a single camera you can have a vast range of settings.

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Nikon Releases Firmware Update for Lower End DSLRs and P7700

Chris-Gampat-The-Phoblographer-Nikon-D5200-review-images-1-of-8ISO-2001-500-sec-at-f-1.8-680x510

If you’ve got a Nikon D5100, D5200, D3100, or D3200 as well as a P7700, then you’ve got some updating to do. But no, you’re not getting a massive firmware update. Instead, this one has to do with juice.

The new firmware update brings with it more accurate battery life readings in addition to the battery life performance being optimized to allow the user to get more from one charge.

In all honesty, Nikon didn’t need this. When we reviewed these cameras, we found the battery life to be incredible. But now it’s even better.

Via Nikon Rumors

Zeiss Goes Official With Their Super Pricey New 55mm f1.4

Zeiss-Distagon-55mm-f1.4-ZF.2

Zeiss has been talking about the development of their 55mm f1.4 lens for quite a while. This lens was designed to work with high megapixel full frame DSLR cameras. However, it is also designed to be the absolute best lens ever created. Last year at Photo Plus, we got a personal demo of the lens. And from what we took away, this lens is supposed to perform wide open like other lenses at f4 or 5.6–meaning that the sharpness and more will be absolutely top notch.

When the lens was first announced, it turned a lot of heads due to just to big the claims were.

And for that, you’re paying quite the price. B&H Photo has the lens already available for pre-order at $3,999 for both Canon and Nikon mounts.

The whole story behind the lens is in a video after the jump.


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The Canon EOS M’s Focusing Speed Doesn’t Suck So Badly Anymore

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Canon EOS M First Impressions (6 of 18)ISO 200

The Canon EOS M has been the butt of many jokes. The company has received well deserved critiques stating that they essentially half-assed the camera. But it seems like from there, they have figured out a way to try to improve on it. We played with the camera a while back and by all means, it isn’t a bad camera per se. But the autofocus really wasn’t the best.

However, the camera received a firmware update recently that was supposed to greatly improve the autofocus capabilities–therefore giving some extra hope to the camera.

Canon Watch’s readers sent them videos showing off the differences. From what we see, it still isn’t faster than Olympus, Panasonic, Sony or Samsung. But it can be said to be a tad faster than Fujifilm’s focusing. See for yourself after the jump.

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Using Zeiss Touit Lenses at a Wedding

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss Touit Beach Wedding (1 of 1)ISO 1001-320 sec at f - 2.8

“You’re brave,” that’s what Stan Horaczek from Pop Photo told me when I told him that I’m shooting a wedding with the new Zeiss 12mm f2.8 and 32mm f1.8 Touit lenses for the Fujifilm X series system. He said this not because he didn’t trust the products, but because he would never use brand new gear for anything paid. However, I do it all the time for this site–and a recent wedding that I photographed was no exception. Since stepping out of professionally shooting weddings years ago, I had always wondered what it would be like to shoot one with an X Pro 1. Granted, it was only the secondary camera. And after being smitten with Zeiss lenses for a while, I figured that this would be one of the best testing grounds for the new optics targeted at the higher end.

While they performed admirably, something went wrong–very wrong.

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Review: Nikon D7100

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Nikon D7100 product images (7 of 7)ISO 2001-50 sec at f - 5.6

The Nikon D7100 is the company’s newest flagship DSLR for their APS-C line of interchangeable lens digital cameras. We’ve tested it out quite a bit so far often posting night photos, golden hour samples, and our own first impressions. This is a very powerful camera that we’re straight off the bat not recommending for the beginner, and the camera is almost a perfect APS-C DSRL. However, there is one big nagging problem that we can’t get over–but if you can, then you’ll fall madly in love with the Nikon D7100.

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Review: Apple MacBook Pro 13″ Retina Display Laptop

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Apple Macbook Pro Retina 13 inch product photos (6 of 6)ISO 2001-125 sec at f - 10

The Apple MacBook Pro 13″ Retina has been out for a while and it’s been in use with me since it was announced. Over that time period, I have tested it, pushed it, tweaked it, and travelled with it. Many creative professionals swear by Apple products though some of us have been jumping ship to the PC world due to what we believe is a lack of innovation on part of the company.

But as far as this editor goes, I’ve got no major complaints.

 

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Useful Photography Tip #9: Get the Most Out of Your Mac

Mac users enjoy a level of virus free stability Windows users can only dream of. A poorly written app might crash but it’s unlikely to shut your whole computer down. However, demanding creative professionals (like us photographers) will often complain their Mac is too slow. Here are a few tips on how to get the most out of your Macintosh computer if you’re not ready to shop for a new one. Sorry PC guys, I have no idea if any of these tips work for Windows or not, I’ve been using Macs since my first computer in 1994. If you use Windows and want to but haven’t moved yet, I’m sorry, let’s try again.

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