I Went With a Caze Zero 5 for my iPhone 5

When I wrote my iPhone 5 review, I indicated that I was waiting for the case that I really wanted to arrive. Well it did and I love it. I can probably count the number of times that I’ve dropped my iPhone (all models) on one hand. I tend to be pretty careful, but as the saying goes S*it happens. Also the black iPhone seems to scratch more easily than previous models. For that reason alone I tend to protect my devices with either a Gelaskin, a case or both. I will ultimately put a custom Gelaskin on the back of my iPhone, but I also wanted “some” protection in case I drop it too. I’m not a fan of cases that add bulk and weight. Therefore I was looking for something really thin and if possible CLEAR. The Caze Zero 5 iPhone 5 was exactly what I was looking for. This is the thinest case I’ve seen and being clear it doesn’t detract from the beauty of the device. Also being so thin means that it fits in my holster.

You can check out the Caze Zero 5 here on their site.


Wacom Cintiq 24HD Review

I can’t imagine doing photo retouching in Photoshop without using a Wacom tablet. As a matter of fact I refuse to retouch without a tablet unless it’s an emergency. I’ve been a serious user since the Intuos 3. I’ve enjoyed the Intuos4, and Intuos5 as well as the Wacom Cintiq 12wx and Cintiq 21ux. Although I’ve owned a couple of Cintiqs I find that I used the regular Intuos tablets more often. The Cintiq line has been great and it’s awesome being able to draw/retouch right on screen, but the problem has always been “positioning”. While I could hold the Cintiq 12wx in my lap it still required some finesse to be able to hold it, draw, and have a hand free for occasional trips to the keyboard. The Cintiq 21 ux amplified this issue with no real way to bring it to my lap and I couldn’t really get an angle that I enjoyed more than a few minutes. So I used my regular Intuos tablets more often.

The Wacom Cintiq 24 HD changes everything!

It’s easier to show you rather than tell you. See my video below:

Not only is the Cintiq 24 HD a work of art, but they figured out a way to give me the angles that I always wanted. With the innovative new stand I can position the this 24″ HD display off the table and down into my lap to work. However, I don’t have to bear the weight of it actually on my lap. It floats there where I want it to be. The Wacom Cintiq 24 HD has all the bells and whistles you would expect. It has a gorgeous LCD HD display with 2,048 levels of pressure. It’s like having a large Intuos 5 built into a large display. You get 5 touch keys and a touch ring on each side. Each of these keys and rings can be programmed with different functions in different apps.

The Only way the Cintiq 24 HD could be better is to have multi-touch gestures! Oh, by the way, Wacom did that. The Cintiq 24 HD Touch is everything above with multi-touch gestures. They also make a less expensive 22 inch model too.

Wacom has knocked this one out of the park. From the moment I sat down with one of these beauties at Photo Plus East last year, I knew I wanted one! Now that I have it I can’t imagine not using it.

Get the Cintiq 24HD here

Get the Cintiq 24HD touch here

Get the Cintiq 22HD here

Get the Cintiq 12wx here


Over 10 Million Served!

I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for making my YouTube Channel such a huge success! Over the weekend I surpassed 10 Million Views of my YouTube videos and that’s quite the accomplishment. It also encourages me to continue making the videos that you want to see. You can subscribe here.

Also my Adobe Creative Suite Video Podcast is on track to hit 25 Million Downloads soon. Thanks again!


Review: iPhone 5

Rather than do my usual 1st impressions post I decided to wait a bit and integrate the iPhone 5 (AT&T, 32GB Black) into my daily routine before writing a review.

What did I notice first?

The 1st couple things I noticed with the iPhone 5 was the fact that it definitely felt lighter than the previous iPhone models. The next thing I noticed was a definite feel of faster speeds overall. Apps ran faster, internet functions were faster, it just feels faster. After that It was great having a taller screen with a 5th row of App icons. When you do your restore your icons will be restored to their respective pages/folders, but on each page you’ll have an empty row at the bottom. Also folders can contain 20 Apps instead of 16 Apps. I quickly took advantage of this by consolidating App folders and screens.

What about the bigger screen?

Aside from the App management I mentioned above, it didn’t take long to get accustomed to the larger display. The Apps I use most have been updated or are being updated daily to take advantage of the taller display. Like speed, you get accustomed to more screen real estate pretty quickly. It wasn’t until a couple of days ago when I look at my sister’s iPhone 4 that it really dawned upon me how much larger the display actually is. I like it, it’s great.

What about battery life?

I’ve read mix reviews on battery life and it appears that I’ve lucked out in this area. Not only is my battery life good, but it’s noticeably better than my iPhone 4s. I have not problem getting through full a day on a single charge. Since I charge my iPhone, iPad, etc. every night, having a battery that lasts from the time I wake up til the time I go to sleep is all I need. One thing I will say is that I can see battery life sucking for those in either an area that doesn’t have 4G LTE or or weak coverage. Your iPhone 5 is going to constantly look for LTE service or try to connect to it unless you turn this feature off. Otherwise your iPhone 5 will work harder trying to connect and therefore drain the battery faster. So far I’ve been in areas with AT&T 4G LTE coverage so my battery life has been fine.

What about 4G LTE Speed?

Speedtest.net Mobile Speed Test - Ookla

My iPhone 5 is on AT&T and my new iPad is on Verizon. AT&T’s 4G LTE service in Detroit went live (much to my surprise) the day before the iPhone 5 was available. I was shocked to see my iPhone 5 display the LTE symbol at the top of the display. The speed is definitely FASTER than their faux 4G on the 4s. However, my iPad always tests faster on Verizon than my iPhone 5 does on AT&T. I tested both in Detroit and San Francisco and the speeds on Verizon were about double in both cities. Not sure if that’s a iPhone vs. iPad limitation, but those are the only two 4G LTE devices I have.

What about the new Lightning connector?

My 1st thought was “boy that’s small”. The new connection dwarfs the old 30 pin connector. Small is good the transition is going to be frustrating for a while. While Apple will undoubtedly use the new connector on everything mobile they make from here on out, I like many of you have a large connection of devices, docks, cables, etc. based on the old connector. As of the date of this review I hadn’t received my 30 pin to Lightning adapter yet. So I can’t speak to compatibility issues with that adapter yet (I’ll have to review it separately). At this point I’m going to need to have both cables with me for at least another 6 months to a year. I have no reason to upgrade my iPod touch to the new one and there won’t likely be a new full size iPad until 2013.

What about the cameras?

The rear camera is still an 8MP camera which is fine by me. However, Apple advertises that it does better in low light. Honestly I can’t really tell a difference between the two on my limited low light testing. IMHO smartphone cameras in general have a long way to go to please me with low light photography.

It’s mostly about iOS 6

If you look at most of the things that Apple touts when it comes to the iPhone, many of those benefits are iOS 6 benefits and not specific to the iPhone 5. Things like the new panorama feature, Passbook, etc. are available to users that upgrade their existing iOS devices.

Any problems?

The problems that seem to be making the news are: purple haze from the camera, Apple Maps, scratches and battery life. I’ve already addressed battery life above. I have yet to see a single one of my shots with any kind of purple haze. However, I don’t take a lot of shots directly at the sun :) . I handle my devices with care most of the time. I put the iPhone 5 in a case as soon as I could and before that I carried in my holster and not in my pocket. To date no scratches. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t scratch easily. It does, I just haven’t had any scratches yet. Lastly I’ve been burned by the new Apple Maps too, but that’s not really an iPhone 5 thing as much is it is an iOS 6 thing (See: iOS6 Maps Got You Down?). I also don’t use the built-in Maps app enough for it to be a problem since I use Navigon for my turn-by-turn voice GPS directions and it works great in iOS 6 and iPhone 5. My only issue initially was finding a decent case and having to switch holsters since the iPhone 5 with a case wouldn’t fit in my existing holster. More on my choices of case and holster in a separate post. Reason being, I bought a case that I’m not totally thrilled with and the one I really want hasn’t arrived yet. The only other problem that not many people seem to talk about is the fact that the iPhone 5 uses a new “nano” SIM instead of the “micro” SIM of the iPhone 4 and 4s. This means that you can’t just pop your pre-paid, international, etc. micro SIM out of your iPhone 4/4s and put it in an iPhone 5. Nor can you take your new iPhone 5 nano SIM and put it in a different phone without some sort of nano SIM to micro SIM tray. This will surely frustrate users that move their SIMs between devices until there are solutions out there that let you cut down/shave micro SIMs and trays that let you put the smaller SIM in a larger SIM holder. The good news about the Verizon iPhone 5 is that it has a nano SIM slot that is factory UNLOCKED! This means that you could take your Verizon iPhone 5 abroad and put in a local nano SIM to save money on international roaming.

The Bottom Line – Should you upgrade?

As usual these changes are “evolutionary”, not revolutionary. Faster processors, more ram, thinner body, better cameras, faster internet, bigger displays, better battery life are really what we would expect at this point. The iPhone 5 is a NICE upgrade, but not a game changer. All of these little enhancements make for a better iPhone than any of its predecessors. If you have an iPhone 4s then there’s little reason to upgrade (especially if you have to pay more because of your contract) to an iPhone 5. However, if you’re new to iPhone, on an iPhone 4 or earlier and you are eligible for upgrade pricing then the iPhone 5 is definitely worth upgrading to. Be prepared to also buy new cables/adapters, cases, etc. The combination of new faster hardware and iOS 6 makes the iPhone 5 a great choice.

Also see: “25 New Fun Things To Ask Siri in iOS6

The 25 Apps That I Use Most


Acrobat XI is Here and Now Available to Adobe Creative Cloud Members

Adobe Acrobat XI ships today! If you’re an Adobe Creative Cloud Member you can download it right now. Just head to Application Manager and install it.

Watch this video to see what’s new:

If you’re having a problem watching the video embedded on this page, check it out here.



Do you really “need” unlimited data?

If you’re an early iPhone adopter like me, then chances are you are grandfathered in to AT&T’s “Unlimited” data plan. AT&T has taken a lot of heat (and deservedly so) over playing games with this plan and doing things like throttling users back that use a lot of their “unlimited” data and holding back features ie. Data Tethering and FaceTime over Cellular, from users still on these plans.

Never gonna give it up!

Like many of you I have no plans of giving up my unlimited data voluntarily. Actually I don’t have a choice as my AT&T plan is through work. I do use a lot of data when I travel. I’m on this plan until they take it away (cold dead hands) or until work changes to something else. However, I also have a family plan with family members on it. Many of those iPhones and iPads were on unlimited plans too. A couple of months ago I decided to look not only at my bill, but to also look at usage and I found that most of these family members don’t use a lot of iPhone 3G/4G data at all. They are on WiFi most of the time either at home, work or school. I also had 3 iPads on various monthly pay-as-you-go plans. I decided to bite the bullet and move everything over to one of AT&T’s Shared Data Plans. Doing the math it would save me about $30/month and everyone (but me) would get the benefits of tethering and FaceTime over 3G/4G. I went with the 10GB/month plan because for 5 iPhones and 3 iPads the math you don’t really save anything by going with a lower plan as the cost per phone goes up!

How’s it going?


iTunes

This is my first full month after the switch and as I suspected they didn’t go anywhere near the 10GBs of allotted data. Again remember this is for 5 iPhones and 3 iPads.

The Bottom Line

While I like the idea of buying data and using it anyway that I want, I still don’t like AT&T’s tactics here of not allowing you to use your device to fullest if you were an early adopter on an unlimited data plan. If you use the data (especially video streaming) then by all means stick to your unlimited plan. Stick it to the man! However, if you could save a few bucks and you’re not using that much data you might be actually better off on one of the new shared data plans. These plans also include unlimited voice and unlimited texting.

Check your usage in the My AT&T App

iTunes


How To Get Started With Photoshop CS6 – 10 Things Beginners Want to Know How To Do

In this episode of the Adobe Creative Suite Podcast Terry White shows beginners How To Get Started with Photoshop CS6 – The 10 Things Beginners Want to Know How To Do. Photoshop has infinite possibilities and it’s impossible to cover all there is know even for a beginner in any one video. This video takes the approach of showing beginners how to do the things they usually want to know how to do right away. Including the most asked for topic of “how to remove an image from a background.”

Are you missing out on my Bonus Content?

See more of my Adobe Creative Suite Videos on my Adobe Creative Suite Podcast and get the App here. 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:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media



Google Adds Street View to their Mobile Web Based Maps

I think it would be an understatement to say that there is disappointment among users of Apple’s iOS 6 Maps App. It replaces the long standing and trusted Google Maps App and it fall short in many key areas. While I wasn’t a huge Maps user to begin with, I do use the App from time to time to find local businesses, get phone numbers, websites, etc. Long ago I adopted the Navigon App as my choice for turn-by-turn voice directions. However, since the new Maps App offers turn-by-turn plus direct Siri support it’s nice to be able to simply say things like “navigate to 123 Main St” and have the Maps app find the location and start navigating to it. Just last night I had the opportunity to use that feature and this was my first frustrating experience with the new Maps App. Since I was driving I wasn’t staring at my iPhone. I was simply listening to the voice directions. One of the directions was make a u-turn in a half a mile. However, by the time I got to the point to make the u-turn I realized that it had me navigate almost a mile past my destination just to turn around and go back to it. I could have made that u-turn right at the location I was headed to. That’s a mile of my life that I’ll never get back :-)

Another problem I’m having with the new Maps App is that it simply doesn’t have the businesses listed that Google does. I ended up looking up that address last night using a regular Google search since Apple’s Map App didn’t have it.

Google beefs up their Maps Mobile Web App with Street View

One of the other missing features of Apple’s Maps App is Google’s Street View. Before today that feature wasn’t available in the mobile browser version of their Maps. Now it is. This means that I’ll likely use Google’s Map in my mobile browser more often and definitely use Navigon for my turn-by-turn directions as I’ve learned that I just can’t trust Apple’s Map app at this point for even basic navigation. Luckily there’s even a good trick to use Siri to get the Maps App to show you where you want to go and then hand it off to Navigon. Fire up Siri and simply say “navigate to __________ by train”.

Apple’s Map App doesn’t offer public transit options and therefore you’ll be offered the choice to use another app to do your navigation. Tap the Route button for Navigon and away you go (by car or public transit). This is by far the fastest and easiest way to get your destination into the Navigon app provided that the place you asked for is in Apple’s Map app or you simply use an address. I should also point out that Navigon has Google features built-in to their app. In addition to Google Local Search for POIs, it also has a Street View feature that comes up automatically as you arrive at your location so that you can see where you’re going on foot from the car, bus, train, etc.

NAVIGON North America - Garmin Wuerzburg GmbH

I’m sure that Apple will improve their Maps app over time, but at this point I definitely can’t recommend using it. The combination of Google Maps Web App, Navigon and Siri will be my solution for the foreseeable future.


Adobe Lightroom 4.2 and Camera RAW 7.2 Updates Now Available

 

The Lightroom 4.2 and Camera RAW 7.2 final releases are available. As usual the update to Lightroom addresses bugs and provides additional camera support

New Camera Support in Lightroom 4.2:

  1. Canon EOS 650D / Rebel T4i
  2. Canon EOS M
  3. Fujifilm XF1
  4. Fujifilm X-E1
  5. Fuji FinePix F800EXR
  6. Leaf Credo 40
  7. Leaf Credo 60
  8. Leica S
  9. Leica D-LUX 6
  10. Leica V-LUX 4
  11. Nikon Coolpix P7700
  12. Nikon 1 J2
  13. Nikon D600*
  14. Panasonic DMC-G5
  15. Panasonic DMC-LX7
  16. Panasonic DMC-FZ200
  17. Pentax K-30
  18. Samsung EX2F
  19. Sony Alpha NEX-5R
  20. Sony Alpha NEX-6
  21. Sony Alpha SLT-A99V
  22. Sony DSC-RX100

* Please note that the support for Nikon D600 is preliminary and there is a minor risk that the appearance of your images may change when the final support for Nikon D600 is available in an upcoming release.

Newly supported cameras for tethered capture:

  • Canon EOS Kiss X5
  • Canon EOS Kiss REBEL T3i
  • Canon EOS 600D
  • Canon EOS Kiss X50
  • Canon EOS REBEL T3
  • Canon EOS 1100D
  • Canon EOS 5D Mark III
  • Canon EOS 1D X
  • Nikon D4
  • Nikon D800
  • Nikon D800e

Bugs Corrected in Lightroom 4.2:

The following bugs that were part the Lightroom 4 releases have been corrected. The team appreciates the very detailed feedback the community has provided on Lightroom 4 and we’re excited to correct a number of issues experienced by our customers. These issues have been FIXED:

  • Stacked photos were hidden in both the Grid view and Filmstrip. This occurred when photos get unstacked as a result of enabling auto-stacking.
  • Folder stacks with virtual copies were unstacked when moving to another folder.
  • When scrolling through the filmstrip (at somewhat fast rate), occasionally a “gray” image was displayed for an instant and then replaced by the correct image preview.
  • The Navigator Panel in Map did not pan correctly.
  • Parents and synonyms of “do not export” keywords also did not export.
  • Occasionally were unable to publish videos to Facebook
  • Audio did not play in video files after creating a slideshow that contains music (Win 7 only)
  • Image select arrow on keyword list didn’t display when keyword list contained a large number of keywords
  • Unable to edit Lightroom photos as jpegs in Photoshop Elements
  • Carriage Return in either the Title or Caption field invalidated a Flickr upload.
  • Tether capture bar disappeared after deleting photo (Win only).
  • Back Cover of Book layout had Horizontal text on spine rather than Vertical
  • Sharpening was not applied to books that were exported as JPEG files
  • Double-byte characters were not exported to Books saved as PDF files
  • Unable to type accented character in book module in LR4
  • Luminance Noise slider was unresponsive when Clarity is greater than 0.
  • Develop keyboard shortcuts (+ and – keys) no longer worked in older process versions such as PV2010


Lightroom 4.2 Download Links

WindowsMac

Camera Raw 7.2 Release Notes

These items have been FIXED in Camera Raw 7.2:

  • Cannot change “Erase” size, feather and flow settings while utilizing the Option key.
  • Cannot write metadata to images previously opened in some 3rd party software.
  • Luminance Noise slider is unresponsive when Clarity is greater than 0.
  • In certain cases, the new Defringe controls can cause vertical streaks to appear.
  • Some images from Canon 5D Mark II exhibited pattern noise in the form of maze/green split artifacts.
  • Adjusting the Blue channel does not affect monochrome images.
  • Certain TIFF files can cause Bridge to become unstable.
  • Defringe settings are not retained when editing the file in Photoshop as a Smart Object and then returning to ACR.

Download Links

Camera Raw 7.2 – Please use the update mechanism in Photoshop CS6

DNG Converter 7.2 – WindowsMac

 


iOS 6 Panorama Trick

Apple’s iOS 6 includes a great new Panorama feature for shooting panos on the iPhone 4s, iPhone 5 and 5th generation iPod touch (dual core iOS devices). The interface is really easy to use. You start shooting from the left of the scene and simply pan to the right with a visual arrow and line to keep your shots lined up (or tap the screen to go in the opposite direction right to lef). It feels more like shooting a video than it does the typical multiple still shots and then stitching them together.

The other advantage to this interface is that you can shoot at your own speed and that means that once you’re past the area on the left (like a person in the shot), that person can walk around you and get in the same shot on the right before you get there. Admittedly this is not a new idea and has been done before, but the pano feature in iOS 6 really makes this easy. Give it a try.



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