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 Thursday, November 13, 2014
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR Lens
eBay (via GetItDigital) has the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR Lens available for $749.99 with free shipping. Compare at $1,296.95.
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 11/13/2014 8:42:28 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
What to Look for When Selecting a Mountain
I love mountains, but not all mountains are created equally. Height is great, but a flat or round-top mountain, even if extremely high, is difficult to make photogenic. Give me a craggy, jagged-topped mountain with character and I can entertain myself for days. Add some color for an over-the-top mountain.
 
The Maroon Bells Scenic Area has mountains with character and Sievers Mountain, just north of Maroon Lake, is one of my favorites. Along with having character in its shape, this mountain has color character including the namesake "Maroon" with bands of light-colored rock running through it. While the top of this mountain alone can make a good photo, I worked a set of colorful aspens into the foreground so that the tops of the trees somewhat matched the craggy-ness of the mountaintop and added strong contrasting color. With some room to significantly change my shooting position, I adjusted the perspective so that the amount of trees showing in the frame was balanced relative to the amount of mountain showing. Said another way, the closer I approached the trees, the higher the percentage of the frame consumed by those trees and the larger the trees would appear relative to the mountain.
 
With the perspective I wanted, I then made use of a zoom lens to retain only what I wanted in the frame. In this case, that meant zooming to 57mm.
 
With a partly cloudy sky, good timing (note that the odds of good timing are greatly increased by patiently waiting) was required to get a dark foreground base, bright trees, shade on the mountain directly behind the tree tops and some direct sunlight on the mountain above. Blue skies are beautiful, but I often prefer that they remain a small part of my landscape images. In this case, the blue adds another color to the image and forms a solid, uninterrupted top margin to this scene that keeps the viewer's eye from leaving via the top of the frame.
 
I made strong use of the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Lens on this trip. Nearly every shot I captured with this lens was tack sharp. It is an awesome choice for tripod-mounted landscape photography.
 
A larger version of this image is available on Google+, Facebook and Flickr.
 
Camera and Lens Settings
57mm  f/11.0  1/40s  ISO 125  5760 x 3840px
Post Date: 11/13/2014 9:46:22 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
 Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Apple 15.4
B&H has the Apple 15.4" MacBook Pro Notebook Computer with Retina Display (Late 2013 Model) available for $2,799.00 with free expedited shipping. Originally $3,299.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 2.6GHz Intel Core i7 (Crystalwell)
  • 16GB of Onboard 1600MHz DDR3L RAM
  • 1TB PCIe-Based Flash Storage
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M Graphics (2GB)
  • 15.4" LED-Backlit IPS Retina Display
  • 2880 x 1800 Native Resolution
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • Thunderbolt 2, USB 3.0, HDMI
  • FaceTime HD Camera, Dual Mics
  • Mac OS X Mavericks
Hoya 82mm Variable Density Filter
Through November 15, B&H has the Hoya 82mm Variable Density Filter available for $119.00 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $179.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Variable 0.45 - 2.7 Density
  • Reduce Exposure by 1.5 - 9 Stops
  • Greater Control Over Exposure Settings
  • Low Profile, Rigid Aluminum Filter Ring
Post Date: 11/12/2014 2:57:07 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
AdoramaPix Logo
I've always been very pleased with the quality of prints I receive from AdoramaPix; they have been my preferred print retailer for several years. I regularly take advantage of the AdoramaPix deals I post to the site.
 
Unfortunately, the cost of shipping can often mitigate the savings of purchasing online prints (even when they are on sale). That's why I'm glad AdoramaPix is now offering free standard shipping on orders of $39.00 or more.
 
The best way to take advantage of this program is to keep a running list of prints you want – either to gift to family or friends or simply to keep for yourself – and jump on one of their periodic sales while buying in bulk. This is going to be my new print-purchasing strategy going forward... [Sean]
Post Date: 11/12/2014 1:14:37 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
LensRentals Logo
From now until the end of the year, use coupon code FALL2014 at LensRentals to get 10% off any rental!
 
Details:
 
  • Eligible for any order with an arrival date on or before 12-31-14
  • Can not be combined with any other offers
To support this site, click on the appropriate product review and then click the Rent button beside the camera/lens you want to rent.
Post Date: 11/12/2014 11:58:57 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Photoshelter Logo
From Photoshelter:
 
In The 2015 Photographer’s Guide to Photo Contests, get a fresh look at over 25 photo competitions worldwide, including new insights on which photo contests are worth your time, and which you should skip.
 
Get details on a long list of photo contests, including:
 
  • Sony World Photography Awards
  • World Press Photo Contest
  • PDN Photo Annual
  • Wildlife Photographer of the Year
  • Smithsonian Photo Contest
  • Communication Arts Photography Competition
  • Pictures of the Year International
  • Plus many more!
We award each contest a star rating based on factors like entry fee, prizes and promised exposure, plus give you direct feedback from recent winners to help steer you in the right direction.
 
Get the free guide today!
Post Date: 11/12/2014 10:29:08 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
The Story Behind the Rainbow over Aspen
Something that all landscape photographers need to know is that the worst weather can bring the best photo conditions. For example, without rain, there are no rainbows.
 
I would like to say that I had spent all day climbing to the top of some remote mountain to capture this image, but ... in this case, I was simply driving from a gas station back to the hotel. When the clouds on the western horizon broke open just enough for the sun to shine under the heavy cloud cover and into the rain, I simply pulled off the road at a safe location and started shooting. In this photo, the very warm-colored last sunlight of the day is illuminating the rain along with an aspen grove at the top of a mountain near the town of Aspen, CO.
 
From a compositional perspective, I would like to have moved the bright aspen grove and mountain peak to the right (or left) to about 1/3 of the way into the frame. To do that would have required me to drive to a new location. Rainbows and the sun shining through small openings in clouds are both fleeting opportunities and I was not going to chance missing the opportunity.
 
The leftmost rainbow was easily the most eye-catching subject, so I placed it in the 1/3 (maybe 1/4) frame position. The strong, bright rain easily balances the bright rainbow and the small, faint rainbow remains in the frame on the right. The dark land in the base of the frame works with the dark cloud at the top of the frame to bring the viewer's eye inward. The near-centered mountaintop then works for me in this case.
 
Without being able to significantly change perspective at this very long subject distance, a telephoto zoom lens allows flexibility in final subject framing.
 
I love unplanned images such as this one. The only requirement (beyond knowing how to use your gear) is being there. So, be there!
 
A larger version of this image is available on Google+, Facebook and Flickr.
Post Date: 11/12/2014 9:20:30 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Tascam DR-22WL Recorder
Adorama has a Tascam DR-22WL Recorder with Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Headphones Bundle available for $169.00 with free shipping. Regularly $218.99.
 
Bundle Includes
 
  • Tascam DR-22WL 2-Channels Handheld Audio Recorder with Wi-Fi
  • Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Professional Monitor Headphones, 96dB, 15-20kHz, Black
Post Date: 11/12/2014 7:15:43 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens
For a limited time, DigitalRev has the Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens for Canon/Nikon available for $544.00. Compare at $749.00.
Post Date: 11/11/2014 9:17:05 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Sony 32GB SDHC UHS-1 Class 10 (94MB/s) [SF32UX/TQN]
Amazon is featuring select Sony Memory Products as its Gold Box Deal of the Day. Be sure to check them out for great savings on SDHC/SDXC/microSD memory cards and flash drives.
 
Deals of Particular Interest
 
ItemCompare
at
Gold Box
Sale Price
Sony 32GB SDHC UHS-1 Class 10 (94MB/s) [SF32UX/TQN]$33.50$17.99
Sony 64 GB SDXC UHS-1 Class 10 (94MB/s) [SF64UX/TQN]$66.95$34.99
Sony 128 GB SDXC UHS-1 Class 10 (94MB/s) [SF128UX/TQN]$124.95$69.99
 
Note from Bryan: I have a pile of these cards in the 32GB capacity. They are very fast cards that have worked flawlessly for me. These are great deals!
Post Date: 11/11/2014 8:18:14 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Monday, November 10, 2014

 
So what happens when you give a film camera to a bunch of kids? Almost 7 full minutes of entertainment, that's what!
 
On a personal note, I consider myself fortunate to have grown up during the period of time when we were transitioning from film-based photography to digital. I have a lot of fond memories of film, like my mother teaching me how to load film as a kid and the many rolls of film I shot while visiting Europe as a teenager.
 
But even though I have fond memories of those magic rolls, I'd never go back. I've grown much too fond of the benefits of shooting with DSLRs to relive my childhood. :-) [Sean]
Post Date: 11/10/2014 12:41:54 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
Note: Be sure to read Bryan's Breakthrough Photography X3 Filter mini review following the press release.
 

 
Breakthrough Photography announces a new line of professional ND and UV filters with ‘Traction’ frame designs
 
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – Nov. 10, 2014 – Breakthrough Photography announced Neutral Density and UV filters called the X-Series filters which are available for pre-order on Kickstarter.
 
HIGHEST QUALITY OPTICS
The X-Series ND and UV filters incorporate SCHOTT B270 and AGC glass made in Germany and Japan and feature an independently developed state-of-the-art 16-Layer Multi-Resistant Coating to increase light transmission, nanotec nano coating layers to repel dirt, water and other elements and weather-sealing.
 
TRACTION FRAME DESIGN
“We really tried to take the legacy standard flat black filter design back to the drawing board to really understand what it was that photographers needed in order for a filter to be most effective. Of all the various prototypes and frame materials, the ones with texture in the metal were the clear winners among photographers” said founder and photographer Graham Clark.
 
X-Series Filters by Breakthrough Photography
 
The X2 and X3 filters feature a new filter design which incorporates texture in the metal achieved by CNC machining brass and environmentally friendly aluminum.
 
“When I first felt these traction filters I thought ‘Why don’t all filters have this?’ It makes getting filters on and off a whole lot easier” said acclaimed outdoor and nature photographer Art Wolfe in the startups Kickstarter video.
 
DESIGNED FOR WIDE-ANGLE FULL-FRAME SETUPS
“In our extensive field tests, we found that 4mm filters on 16mm lenses produced +1 stop of light falloff. At 3.7mm the vignetting was entirely eliminated on our full-frame setups. Our standard flat black X1 and X2 traction filters have 3.5mm, whereas our X3 traction filters are machined down to 3.2mm.”
 
Worldwide Pricing and Availability
The X-Series filters will be available for pre-order on Kickstarter on November 6th, 2014.
 
“We’re really excited to bring our new line of unique and innovative filters to the photography community on Kickstarter first” says founder and photographer Graham Clark. “We’ll be offering a one-time launch sale price of up to 50% off, just in time for the holiday season. the Kickstarter is successful, the X-Series filters will be available on B&H, Adorama and Amazon starting in January, 2015.”
 
The X-Series Kickstarter can be found by visiting: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/breakthrough/x-series-traction-filters
 
  • $109 X3 Traction ND in 3-stop or 6-stop (Available in January 2015)
  • $79 X3 Traction UV (Available in December 2014)
  • $59 X2 Traction ND in 3-stop or 6-stop (Available in January 2015)
  • $39 X2 Traction UV (Available in December 2014)
  • $25 X1 UV Standard Flat Black (Available in December 2014)
X3 key features:
 
  • Available in either Neutral Density or UV
  • SCHOTT B270 optical glass made in Germany
  • State-of-the-art 16-Layer Multi-Resistant Coating
  • nanotec Nano Coating Layers to repel dirt and water
  • 3.2mm Traction frame CNC Machined from brass
  • Weather-sealed construction
  • Available in small, medium and large sizes: 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 57mm, 62mm, 67mm, 72mm, 77mm, 82mm
X2 key features:
 
  • Available in either Neutral Density or UV
  • AGC glass made in Japan
  • State-of-the-art 8-Layer Multi-Resistant Coating
  • nanotec Nano Coating Layers to repel dirt and water
  • 3.5mm Traction frame CNC Machined from aluminum
  • Weather-sealed construction
  • Available in small, medium and large sizes: 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 57mm, 62mm, 67mm, 72mm, 77mm, 82mm
X1 key features:
 
  • Available in UV
  • State-of-the-art 4-Layer Multi-Resistant Coating
  • 3.5mm Traction frame CNC Machined from aluminum
  • Weather-sealed construction
  • Available in small, medium and large sizes: 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 57mm, 62mm, 67mm, 72mm, 77mm, 82mm
Bryan's Breakthrough Photography X3 Filter Mini Review
 
Breakthrough Photography provided me an early sample of their new filter line – an X3 UV filter. The X3 experience starts with great packaging that includes a nice box that is sufficiently rigid to prevent the plastic filter case from cracking in normal shipping. A lens cloth and, as mentioned, the typical plastic filter case are found inside the box. The plastic case has bottom padding as well as side padding that provides a pair of finger openings for easy access to the filter from the sides.
 
The X3 filter itself is very well constructed including the brass "Traction" ring. I'm still determining the amount of benefit provided by the Traction feature, but it seems nice. This filter is extremely light (very noticeably lighter than a standard-framed brass filter) and extremely thin, or "slim". When I originally saw the 3.2mm thickness spec, my mind immediately questioned the lens cap fit issue. No worries there. A standard lens cap attaches normally.
 
An important aspect of a filter commonly used for protection is how easily it cleans. I pressed a full fingerprint onto the X3 glass and easily wiped it off with a microfiber cloth.
 
How image quality is affected is the most important filter selection consideration for me. I conducted a couple of with and without filter comparison tests including a flare comparison with the sun in the corner of the frame. The good news is that I can see no image quality difference with the X3 filter installed compared to the bare lens. No sharpness degradation. No increased flare. No contrast change.
 
I have no concerns with using the Breakthrough Photography X3 for my important work. I'm anxious to try the circular polarizer slated for future production (dependent on funding).
Post Date: 11/10/2014 8:00:00 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Friday, November 07, 2014
Nikon-D3300-with-18-55mm-VR-II-Lens.jpg
eBay (via BeachCamera) has the Refurbished Nikon D3300 DSLR with 18-55mm VR II Lens available for $399.00 with free shipping. Compare at $546.95 new.
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 11/7/2014 9:23:21 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM Lens
Sigma is describing this most recent round of discounts as "price drops." However, they look like the typical-for-the-season instant rebates to me. Unfortunately, no Global Vision lenses were included in the price reductions.
 
There's no word on how long these discounts will last (I doubt they are permanent), so be sure to take advantage of the savings while you can.
 
Sigma Lenses with Price Reductions
 
ModelRebate Amount
Sigma 8-16mm f/4.5-5.6 DC HSM Lens Buy$50.00
Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX DC HSM Lens Buy$80.00
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 DG II HSM Lens Buy$75.00
Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM Lens Buy$150.00
Sigma 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 DC Macro OS HSM Buy$200.00
Sigma 50-500mm f/4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Lens Buy$150.00
Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Lens Buy$200.00
Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Lens Buy$200.00
Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM Lens Buy$100.00
Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro Lens Buy$300.00
Sigma 2x EX DG Tele Converter Buy$50.00
Post Date: 11/7/2014 8:17:01 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Thursday, November 06, 2014
Transcend 32 GB High Speed Class 10 UHS SDHC Memory Card (45 MB/s, 300x)
Amazon has the Transcend 32 GB High Speed Class 10 UHS SDHC Memory Card available for $15.99. Compare at $21.99.
 
If the card above isn't big or fast enough for you, Amazon has the Transcend 128 GB SDXC (90mb/s, 600x) Memory Card available for $64.99. Compare at $79.99.
AdoramaPix Logo
Through 11/9, AdoramaPix is offering reduced, Autumn pricing on 8x10s and 11x14s. See below for details.
 
SizeGlossy/LustreMetallic
8x10$1.00$1.25
11x14$2.00$2.50
Post Date: 11/6/2014 8:11:25 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, November 05, 2014

 
From Nikon Europe:
 
Integrated marketing campaign to inspire a new generation of photographers
 
Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 3rd November 2014 – Nikon today announces the launch of I AM DIFFERENT, a major new integrated marketing campaign designed to inspire photographers to explore the world of photography through their own individual perspective.
 
Understanding that photographers strive to be different through the images that they capture, Nikon will inspire and enable those at every level to achieve their ambitions and develop their skills using featured photographers.
 
The first phase of the campaign will launch on 3rd November 2014 across Europe with a TV commercial featuring Clark Little, the Hawaii-based photographer whose images captured from the middle of breaking waves are already causing a stir across the world. A second phase will roll out later in the year with up-and-coming photographer, Andrius Alexsandravicius.
 
For those motivated by the stories of Clark and Andrius, the campaign will be supported by a digital hub - www.europe-nikon.com/iamdifferent - on Nikon websites, where consumers can discover the photographers’ journey and the inspiration behind the emblematic images used in the advertising. In Clark’s case, visitors will find also find a mini documentary, behind the scenes footage and an interactive interview with the man himself.
 
The campaign is fully integrated, with a 20 and 30 second TV commercial, print, out of home, cinema and online advertising. Its core creative was devised by advertising agency Jung von Matt, with digital support provided by strategic digital agency, Blast Radius, and PR and social media from London-based integrated communications agency, Brands2Life.
 
“From teenagers getting to grips with Instagram right through to professional D-SLR users, photographers of all levels have aspirations of standing out from the crowd with their unique work. With this new campaign, we are guiding these individuals into quality photography by helping them take that next step and discovering their unique photography niche. This integrated marketing campaign will achieve this by tapping into the huge cross-media following that distinct and inspirational photographers have gathered across the world,” said Yasmin Hartson, Advertising and Media Manager, Nikon Europe. “This is an incredibly exciting time for photographers. We love the fact that so many people are enjoying taking so many pictures – whether on their smartphone or on a camera – and we’re there for them when they are ready to take the next step into quality photography. Our vision is to keep Nikon imaging technology at the heart of the image, and that means engaging more photographers at all levels more effectively and with more passion than ever before.”
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 11/5/2014 3:16:09 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
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