Charge 4 Mobile Devices At Once!

 

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I travel with an iPhone, and iPad, a Jambox, a Nike FuelBand, etc. All of these devices charge via USB and all of course came with their own chargers. Rather than bring all those separate chargers with me I tend to look for multiple port USB charges that I can plug into one AC outlet and charge at least two devices. I was looking for one that could charge four devices including the iPad/tablets that need more power. I found one!

The Bolse 4 Port Premium High Output Wall Travel Charger has 4 Amps /20 Watts of output. That’s good enough to charge 4 devices at the same time including a tablet. I bought a couple of these and so far so good. As we speak it’s charging my iPad Air, iPod touch, external battery, and Jawbone headset. My only problem with it is the ultra bright blue LED status light. It’s blinding at night in a hotel room. Nothing a piece of gaffers tape or a Light Dim won’t cure, but I would love it if manufacturers either used lower power LEDs or allowed you to turn them off. Otherwise, this charger rocks and lets me easily charge 4 mobile devices at once!

You can order one here in white or black.



What’s New in the Adobe Muse CC November 2013 Update?

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In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV, I’ll show you the 5 major new features of this latest November 2013 update to Adobe Muse CC. Photographers will LOVE the last feature I show! See how this visual web design tool has just gotten a lot better.

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Cloud Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

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FAA Finally Relaxes Rules on Using Small Electronics During Taxi/Takeoff/Landing

compliments of istockphoto.com

compliments of istockphoto.com

If you’re a frequent flyer like I am then you know the drill when it comes to your mobile devices. Usually in the US you could use them while at the gate with the plane door open. However, once that door closes it was time to “power off and stow all electronic devices with an on/off switch.” Use of such devices during flight could interfere with the plane’s navigation system. Quite frankly I never bought this. The reason I never really believed that this was a real issue is because if there was some real way for this to happen believe me portable electronic devices would be banned from planes! If 4 oz of tooth paste constitutes a potential threat and is siezed by TSA,then what chance do you think your iPad would have? Also there was never any real policing of this. Sure the flight attendants would do their best to visually look for gadgets, but I’ve accidentally left things on in my bag in the overhead bin. Well it looks like we can finally stop second guessing this weird rule as the FAA has now started allowing some airlines (i’m sure more will follow) to allow use of these devices pretty much during the whole flight. They still want you to have the device in airplane mode, but now it’s no longer required that you shut if off and put it away.

Currently Delta, United, American Airlines, US Airways and Jet Blue have been cleared to allow the use of personal (small) electronics during take off and landing. Even the Delta flight attendants on my last flight were so used to telling everyone to turn things off they had to catch themselves a few times.

Air travel is definitely not “fun”. It’s actually a pain in the ass at times. However, as a frequent flyer the little liberties (like TSA Pre-Check) we’re starting to get back are helping make air travel suck less. Now can we get the seats redesigned on these planes?



Do something nice today for the veteran in your life

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Chances are if you know a veteran personally, he or she has made tremendous sacrifices for his or her country and family. Why not do something special for that person today to let them know that you appreciate them and all that they did for their country and loved ones.

Happy Veterans Day!



Nikon Df – A mix of Old School and New School

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Nikon has announced the Nikon Df. Imagine a classic SLR camera but instead of it being filmed based, it’s all digital on the inside. This Full Frame (FX) DSLR definitely has a sexy look to it. It’s hard not to smile and have a nostalgic feeling when you look at it. On the inside it’s all digital.

16.2MP FX-Format Sensor and EXPEED 3 Image Processor
The 16.2 megapixel full-frame (FX) CMOS sensor and EXPEED 3 image processor work in tandem to produce overall high image quality with notable detail, dynamic range, color accuracy, and low-light sensitivity to a native ISO 12800, which is further expandable to ISO 204800. This still image-only camera is also well-suited to working with moving subject matter with a top 5.5 fps continuous shooting rate using either the viewfinder or when working in live view.
AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition Lens
Included with the silver Df body is the AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Special Edition lens; a fast normal-perspective lens that features a complementary design with enhanced knurling on the focusing ring to emphasize the manual shooting capabilities of the camera. When using autofocus, a Silent Wave Motor (SWM) is integrated into the lens to enable fast, precise focusing that is equally quiet and smooth. One aspherical element is also incorporated into the optical design to help minimize chromatic aberrations and maintain high image sharpness and clarity.
39-Point Multi-CAM 4800 AF Sensor
Benefitting the exceptional image quality is an apt AF system that employs 39 distinct AF points, including nine cross-type sensors, to quickly acquire focus in a range of lighting conditions, from -1 to +19 EV. An intelligent Scene Recognition System, typically reserved for exposure metering, benefits the focusing performance by analyzing and identifying subjects to suit panning and tracking-based shooting styles. Depending on the situation, 9, 21, or 39 point arrays can be selected from and seven centrally-located points are compatible with f/8 or faster lenses, extending the auto focusing abilities of the longest lenses used in conjunction with teleconverters. When using this phase-detection focusing method, selectable AF-area modes include: Single-point AF mode, Dynamic-area AF mode, 3D-tracking mode, and Auto-area AF mode.When working in live view, a contrast-based AF system is employed to acquire focus precisely and can function in continuous, full-time servo mode to better-suit working with moving subjects. Four distinct AF-area modes are available when using the contrast-detection focusing method: Face-priority AF, Wide-area AF, Normal-area AF, and Subject-tracking AF. Additionally, benefitting working with manual focus when in live view, the image can be magnified up to 19x for critical examination and easier focus confirmation.

Scene Recognition System
The intelligent Scene Recognition System with 3D Color Matrix Metering II utilizes a 2,016-pixel RGB sensor to evaluate and analyze all aspects within a scene, including brightness, contrast, subject distance, and the scene colors, to quickly determine an accurate exposure and white balance setting to best render the scene at hand. The information gathered is also checked against onboard reference images to ensure consistency from image to image in regard to exposure, white balance, i-TTL flash settings, and subject-tracking AF performance.
Other Camera Features
  • Picture Control modes can be directly accessed via a dedicated button and allow you to set predefined looks to imagery in-camera, and include Landscape, Monochrome, Neutral, Portrait, Standard, Vivid, and user-customizable settings.
  • Active D-Lighting helps to preserve both highlight and shadow details when working in contrast-rich scenarios, such as backlit lighting. Utilizing the EXPEED 3′s processing power, a more controlled image will be produced with brightness values closer to how they are naturally seen. This mode is suitable for working with moving subjects.
  • Built-in HDR works to extend the tonal and exposure range of a single image by recording two separate exposures and blending them together in order to gain greater highlight and shadow details with an extended range of mid-tones. The smoothness of the edge where the two separate exposures meet can be adjusted for more apparent softness to benefit images with a greater range of encompassed exposure values. This mode is best suited for working with stationary subjects.
  • The accessory terminal supports the use of the optional WU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter to enable remote, instant transferring of photos to Android and iOS mobile devices for sharing online. The GP-1A GPS Unit is also supported, which automatically adds locational information to images’ metadata for geotagging applications.
  • Spot White Balance enables precise, selective control of the white balance setting by simply pointing and metering a pure white portion of the scene in order to set the proper color balance when working in live view.
  • One memory card slot is available and accepts SD, SDHC, and SDXC type memory cards, including UHS-I SDHC and SDXC cards.
  • An in-camera virtual horizon can detect both rolling (horizontal inclination) and pitching (forward or rear inclination) directions and display an electronic level on the LCD when working in live view. The rolling direction of tilt can also be displayed within the viewfinder.
  • Supported languages: Arabic, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, and Ukrainian.

 

The Bottom Line

I guess the first thing that came to my mind when I saw this camera was “hey, Nikon just came out with a ‘designer’ DSLR”. It looks nice, the specs are decent, but it’s not on my wish list. It’s on my “would be nice to have” list. The price is probably the biggest stumbling block. It’s more than a D610 and less than a D4, however the specs don’t really make it worth the extra bucks for me and since I have both a D600 and D4, I don’t really have a need for one in the middle. Could I sell my D600 and Df? Sure. However, then I’d lose the ability to capture DSLR video, that’s kind of a deal breaker for me. If you’re strictly into still photography AND you’re looking for a cool looking full frame DSLR this is it. You can pre-order yours here.

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts. What do you think of this camera? Are you ordering one? Sound off in the comments below…



How To Edit Video in Photoshop CC

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In this episode of Adobe Creative Cloud TV I show just how easy it is to edit video in Photoshop CC even if you’ve never edited video before. Adobe Premiere Pro CC is Adobe’s award-winning, industry standard video editor. However, there are many Photoshop users out there who aren’t professional video editors, but know how to use Photoshop. That’s why Photoshop has a very capable video editor built right in that takes advantage of all your Photoshop skills.

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Cloud Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

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iPad Air Review

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I use my work iPad quite a bit. I had been on an iPad 3rd generation (The New iPad) since it first came out. I skipped the 4th generation iPad since it really didn’t offer much in terms of an upgrade. The 4th generation iPad also came out a mere six months after the 3rd generation. I decided to wait for the next iPad. As you probably know by now, that iPad was introduced on October 22nd, 2013 and available in stores on November 1st, 2013. This iPad is a completely new design for the full sized iPad. While it still has the same size 9.7 inch Retina Display, it’s smaller and lighter in every other way. It’s narrower by reducing the bezel size on the sides. It’s also thinner and noticeably lighter in weight. So much so that I actually no longer feel the need to have an iPad mini. I prefer the larger screen size over the mini and now that the iPad Air  is lighter and thinner, my iPad mini envy has come to an end. The other thing I was really interested in was the increase in performance. The iPad 3rd generation was a good performer, but the 4th generation promised twice the performance and the iPad Air even faster than the 4th generation. The more heavy duty apps I was running the more I craved a faster iPad.

First impressions

It’s impossible to pick up the new iPad Air and not notice the difference in weight. It has the feel of the iPad mini due to the form factor and curves, but all the power and full screen size of an iPad Retina Display. Once I got it set up I could immediately see the difference in performance. Apps launch faster and the iPad Air is more responsive over all. It’s definitely much faster than my iPad 3rd generation. Since I never had the 4th generation I can’t really compare against that model (sorry).  Since the iPad Air is physically smaller in size you’ll likely need new cases, covers, etc. This means that I’m now anxiously awaiting Logitech to come out with a new Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover. They make the best iPad keyboards on the market. Gelaskins has already announced new iPad Air skins. The other thing I’m pleased by is that the built-in speakers are definitely louder. I use my iPad to watch TV with the HBO Go and Xfinity Apps. On the iPad 3rd generation with the volume all the way up it still wasn’t quite loud enough. Now I can definitely hear the difference in the iPad Air. Apple did the same thing with the iPhone 5/5s over the 4s. Lastly you’ll notice an increase in WiFi speed too.

I went with the 128GB WiFi+Cellular AT&T model. This is a switch for me from Verizon. I had no problems with Verizon, but since I was grandfathered into the original AT&T unlimited plan for iPad and now they allow FaceTime over 4G, I was ready to come back. AT&T has more LTE 4G coverage now than they originally had as well. Also I was running out of space regularly on the 64GB model. The other thing I appreciate is the Lightning connector for charging/syncing. It’s nice to finally be able to use one cable to charge both my iPad and my iPhone 5s.

The Bottom Line

The iPad Air is better in every way over its predecessors. There’s nothing really revolutionary about it though. It’s an iPad and it works just like all other iPads before it. It’s smaller, thinner, lighter in weight and faster. These are all the things we would expect from an upgraded device. Surprisingly though the price is the same and it’s amazing that it hasn’t changed since day one. The iPad Air starts at $499 for the 16GB WiFi version. That was the same price/configuration when the iPad launched back in 2010. If you were looking for a smaller, lighter weight, faster full size iPad, then you can stop waiting. This is the one you’ve been wanting/waiting for. While I wish the price had dropped $100, the iPad Air doesn’t disappoint and lives up the promises made by Apple. iOS 7 runs like a dream on it too. No issues to report so far.

iPadAir

Update: Logitech is taking Pre-orders for the NEW iPad Air version of their Ultraslim Keyboard cover.



One Hundred Thousand Thank Yous!

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I just looked at my YouTube Channel and I was thrilled to see that I passed the 100,000 subscriber mark! I just wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for not only watching my content, but subscribing to my channel. At every event I do and public appearance I make there are always people coming up to me and thanking me for the videos that I do. Without your constant support I probably wouldn’t be as motivated to put out so much content. So again thank you! I’m on tour right now so I’ve been away from my recording studio, but as soon as I get back this weekend I promise to record a new tutorial or two. Cheers!

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Nikon D5300 – Great Entry Level DSLR

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Young photographers just starting out always ask me which DSLR should they buy. Of course the answer to that question greatly relies on your budget. Also the great news is that it’s hard to go wrong with any of today’s DSLR products. I’m a Nikon shooter so therefore I’m familiar with Nikon’s product line more so than say Canon’s or Sony’s. Nikon just introduced the D5300. I’ve owned both a D5000 and a D5100 and this line is a great fit for those just starting out. What generally separates the entry level cameras from the more expensive pro level cameras usually has to do with the quality of materials and sensors, but also the number of buttons and external controls. On entry level models there are less buttons, therefore requiring the shooter to go into the menus to change settings more often. However, many times the entry level cameras introduce features that have not yet made it into the pro line. For example, the Nikon D5300 is Nikon’s first DSLR to offer built-in WiFi and GPS. I’m actually stunned that in 2013 these features aren’t on all cameras just like WiFi and GPS are on ALL smartphones. Nonetheless, they’re finally here. The D5300 also offers a swivel out LCD. Not a revolutionary feature by any means and has been around on previous models and lower end cameras for years, yet not really on pro level DSLRs yet.

The D5300 is a great choice if you’re just starting out. You can pre-order the body here (even in red) or the kit here.



What’s New in Photoshop CC? – Feature Walkthrough

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Last Tuesday I did a HOW Design Cast webinar giving a complete walkthrough of the new features of Photoshop CC. I not only showed the new features of Photoshop CC, but I also showed the new features that have been added since June.  If you missed it, here’s the recording.

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Cloud Videos on my Adobe Creative Cloud TV and get the App below. It features EXCLUSIVE CONTENT that no one else gets to see. This episode has a BONUS CLIP that is available only in the App! My iOS App is a Universal App for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. I also have an Android version on the Amazon App Store:

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