3 Things I Want In My Next Nikon Body

images compliments of iStockphoto.com

I'm actually pretty content with both my Nikon DSLR bodies. I use my D700 primarily for studio work and my D7000 for travel and event photography. I've had the D700 for a while now and of course the rumors have been circulating for a while regarding a D700 replacement. Even if there were no rumors we all know that there would be a D700 replacement (let's call it a D800) getting announced eventually. In thinking about what I would want in my D800 there are really only three things that come to mind. Sure, I'll take better sensors with less noise at higher ISOs and even a slight bump in megapixels is OK. However, neither of those things would make me want to buy it. I'm not unhappy with the 12 megapixels I have now and the ISO:Noise ratio of the D700 is fine for what I shoot. Nope, those features alone would not get me to upgrade. 

 

I Want 3 Things

 

1080p HD Video

This one is almost a given. I can't imagine that Nikon or any other manufacturer would not include DSLR HD video in their bodies from here on out. Although my D7000 has the video features I wanted including external mic support, I would like to see those same exact features in my D800 too. If they have to improve upon them, then give us a 60fps video capture option too. This is not rocket science and like I said, it's all but a given that the D800 would have this.

 

Built-in WiFi

I continue to be amazed that WiFi is not being built into every camera being sold today, especially the higher end models. After spending a few days shooting wirelessly to my iPad 2 via the Eye-Fi Pro X2 Card, I want this even more. It's crazy to have to continue to transfer images via cables and card readers as the only options. 802.11n chips are small and cheap. If an iPod touch can have WiFi, why not a $2,500+ camera body?

 

GPS Geotagging

I love the fact that Nikon DSLRs have built-in GPS support right in the camera's menu.

However, the actual GPS receivers continue to be an external option only. I have several different models, but it's time to have this functionality built-in. Again these chips are small and relatively inexpensive. After all you can get an entire portable GPS unit for your turn-by-turn directions for $99 or less. Those devices have touch screens, speakers, storage, etc. The actual receiver can't cost that much by comparison. Also size can't be much of an issue since most modern smartphones being sold today have them built-in. As big as a D700 (D800) is there has to be room in the case. 

 

I'll gladly take any additional features that Nikon wants to throw my way, but the three things above are the ones that would make it a no brainer for me to upgrade.

 

Plan B

I've even got a way that they can make these last two features available optionally for those 5 people on the planet that wouldn't want them built-in to the bodies themselves. There is easy way to give us WiFi and Geotagging in a more convenient way. They could build them into the Battery Grips. A WiFi transmitter in the Battery Grip is not a new idea. Both Nikon and Canon have done this before. The problem is the early ones were both SLOW and EXPENSIVE! It's time to go back to the drawing board and make these grips more functional, less costly and bring them into the 21st century. 

 

 

iTunes, App Store and Mac App Store

With the tragedy that has happened in Japan, we can all certainly wait! There are more important things to focus on right now.

Live at Photoshop World: Wrap Up #PSW

photo from one of my InDesign sessions by Jason Lykins

I had a great Photoshop World! While no one would disagree that the weather could have been better without all the rain, the conference continued on and people were generally upbeat. Hey, if it's raining outside, you might as well be inside learning stuff. All four of my conference track classes were well attended and people seemed happy with what they were learning. It's always great being in front of "real users" of our (Adobe) products and getting feedback, even if it's not always praise. 😉

 

Presenting on the Show Floor

photo by Jason Lykins

I had some good one-on-many time with this intimate setting in the Adobe Booth. I got a chance to highlight some of my favorite features of Adobe Creative Suite 5.

 

photo by Jason Lykins

I also got a chance to show some tips and tricks using the Wacom Intuos 4 tablet while using a Cintiq 21 inch as my display (Heaven) and Photoshop CS5 in the Wacom Booth.

 

Shooting Live on the Show Floor

photos by Jason Lykins

I had a couple of short sessions on the show floor shooting live and showing various lighting setups. My first session was at the Westcott Booth and showing a couple of different lighting techniques  with the NEW Spiderlite TD6's. I love doing these sessions with continuous lighting because once I set it up and take a couple of shots, people can walk up and just start shooting.

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Hey! Are those my images in the NEW 2011 Westcott Lighting Solutions Catalog?

 

One of things I look forward to every year is the NEW Westcott Catalog! I've been taking my photography more and more seriously over the past couple of years and when a well known company chooses to use one of my images to represent their products, that's a big thing for me. I got a chance to pick up a copy (ok several copies) of the new Westcott Lighting Solutions Catalog here at Photoshop World. Needless to say that I was deeply honored to have not just one image in the new book, but six of my shots featured. Wow! The crappy iPhone shot of the catalog above doesn't do this book justice. Stepping aside from looking at my own images for a minute, this is by far the best version of their catalog yet. There are not only tons of great images from some of the top photographers in the world, but also the book has a new format, layout and it just looks awesome overall!

The NEW catalog is not yet up on their website in PDF, but as soon as it is you'll be able to grab a copy here. If you are here at Photoshop World this week be sure to stop by their booth and pick up a copy.

Don't forget to check out my shots from the Photoshop World Project Runway Keynote.

One more thing….

I was also very thrilled to see my images on their booth too! Woot!

I also have to thank my great models: Aferdita, Cecilia, Lauren, Tika and makeup artist Renata.

Live at Photoshop World: Keynote #psw


I’m here live at the Photoshop World Keynote where the theme is “Project Photoshop”. Photoshop project manager Brian O’Neil Hughes is showing some hidden gems in PS CS5. He’s also sneaking some cool NEW Tablet based technologies to tie into Photoshop as well as some slick NEW lens correction technologies in the Adobe labs.


Needless to say, the fashions are Photoshop based 🙂


Editing a photo with layers on the iPad


The layers animate in 3D!

Launching a new Photoshop Feedback Site. Check it out!

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad 2

Location:Universal Blvd,Orlando,United States

Shoot Tethered (Wirelessly) to the iPad

If you’re a photographer and you own an iPad you probably already know the benefits of showing off your photos on that nice 10″ display. However, chances are at some point you also had a wish to get your images to your iPad either directly from your camera (tethering) or from your computer wirelessly (not having to sync them over via iTunes – even typing it sounds so outdated). There are ways to do it! I’m at Photoshop World this week and I got a chance to try a new combination (new to me anyway) of the latest Eye-Fi Pro X2 SD card and a cool App called Shuttersnitch for iOS. I reviewed the first Eye-Fi a little over 3 years ago. While the technology worked backed then, and like I said in my review at the time, I really didn’t have any use for it. Back then the idea was this card would wirelessly and automatically transfer your images to your computer or a photo sharing site. First of all I have no interest in uploading images to a photo sharing site directly from my camera without some post processing. Secondly even the transfer to the computer was way too slow. You might as well just pop the card in your card reader and transfer them over in a fraction of the time. Lastly back then the card didn’t support RAW files. Yep, it was a non-starter for me. After I did the review I never touched the card again.

3 years later…I have a use for Eye-Fi cards

As with most technologies, they tend to improve over time. While I still have very little interest in the Eye-Fi cards for wireless transfer to my computer (still a bit too slow) or uploading directly to a photo sharing site, I’m intrigued by the thought of shooing wirelessly into my iPad. While there are other tethering solutions for the iPad out there, they tend to all involve using a computer in the middle of the process to tether your camera to and then transmit the images via WiFi to your iPad. This solution doesn’t require a computer beyond the initial setup of the Eye-Fi Card itself.

 

 

How does it work?

First you need an Eye-Fi Card. I went with the Eye-Fi Pro X2 8GB card because it’s the only that does support RAW files. If you don’t care about shooting in RAW then you can use one of the less expensive cards. The card comes with a card reader and the software you’ll need to install for your Mac/PC to set the card up. The Eye-Fi card has its own built-in WiFi chip and this latest model supports 802.11n which helps out a lot on the speed! After configuring the card to join your wireless network, you need to disable all other image transfer options. In other words, just setup the card to join your hotspot, but NOT to transfer images to your computer.  I shot with my Nikon D7000. For a mobile hotspot, I used my UNLOCKED GSM MiFi 2372 hotspot. It should work with just about any WiFi network as long as both the card and iPad are on the same network. It also should work with the Personal Hotspot feature of the iPhone.

UPDATE: Eye-Fi Cards now support Direct Mode. No need for a hotspot!

Next you’ll need the Shuttersnitch App

The Shuttersnitch App is the App you’ll need on your iPad to talk with your Eye-Fi card. While this App does have native Eye-Fi support built-in, it’s not limited to Eye-Fi cards. It will work with other wireless camera solutions. I hear that David Ziser and his sidekick Damie Tepe are running around here at Photoshop World somewhere showing this with the Canon Wireless Transmitter (instead of the Eye-Fi Card) and getting some SPEEDY transfers (like 1.4 seconds of FINE JPGs) directly, sans the mobile hotspot (probably in an AdHoc mode). I’ve got to check him out and see how he’s doing this?

Once you log into your Eye-Fi account via the App it sends the secret signal over to your selected Eye-Fi card to pair the two together. Now when both your iPad and your Eye-Fi card in your camera are on the same network, your images will automatically transfer over to the Shuttersnitch App so that you can view them right on your iOS device.

See my Shuttersnitch review here or you can just go ahead and buy the App here from the .

What about the transfer speed?

This was the big question I had that I couldn’t seem to find an answer on, so of course I had to try it myself. It’s good, but not great! As you might expect RAW files are going to be slowest. It could take anywhere from 20-30 seconds to transfer a 14MP RAW file from my D7000. The story gets much better if you shoot JPEG. When I shoot JPEG I get anywhere from 9-13 seconds depending on the JPEG quality setting I use. Also keep in mind that the images are still on the card too for transferring to your computer later. An even better workflow for my Nikon D7000 is to shoot JPEG BASIC to the Eye-Fi card for the fastest transfer to the iPad and RAW to the second SD card slot. Finally! A reason for me to like RAW+JPEG shooting. LOL, Thanks Jason for the idea.

Here’s an idea of how it works:

 

What about Compact Flash?

Eye-Fi cards have always been aimed at consumers and like it or not SD is the predominant format in consumer cameras. However, don’t fret my CF shooting pro friends. With this adapter you can can stick an SD Eye-Fi card in your CF based camera. NOTE: This Adapter does NOT work with the newest X2 cards and also keep in mind that this is NOT officially supported. You do so at your own risk!

 

The Bottom Line

If you’ve got an iPad and an SD based camera, the Eye-Fi Pro X2 card plus the Shuttersnitch App is a nice way to go. If you have a CF based DSLR camera, then you might want to consider other wireless transmitter options.

Live at Photoshop World: Setup


It’s that time of year again and I’m happy once again to be teaching and presenting at Photoshop World Orlando this week. As a result my blogging schedule will be all out of whack and therefore I’ll be blogging on the go and from different devices.

Looking forward to seeing you if you’re here. Let’s have fun!


– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad 2

Location:Convention Way,Orlando,United States

How To Remove Unwanted Noise From Your Video

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpOWqDH7SzY

 

In this episode I'll show you how to remove unwanted noise from the audio track of your video. Using Adobe Soundbooth CS5 I can roundtrip the video over, take out the annoying hum and bring it right back to the timeline in a non-destructive manner.

 

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:

Learn Adobe Creative Suite with Terry White - Wizzard Media

 

Review: F.J. Westcott Spiderlite TD6

There is no easier lighting setup to use than the Westcott Spiderlite TD5's. While these lights are great, everyone that uses them says the same thing. "I wish they were brighter." In other words we all wish they output a little more light. Westcott has answered our wishes with the new Spiderlite TD6's. Instead of 5 daylight balanced fluorescent bulbs you not get to use 6. This means 1200W of output instead of 900W of output on the TD5s and that makes all the difference in the world. In fact for everything but their giant softbox, a 6 foot shallow rectangle softbox <-this softbox is amazing though, I can now shoot at 200 ISO as opposed to 400 ISO.

It's more than just an extra bulb

They also made some additional and welcomed improvements. The switches on the back and now more high quality and professional looking. They also added a much needed cord switch to turn the entire unit on/off without having to climb up on a ladder when you have the lights mounted high. Speaking of the cord it's longer too. Basically the TD6 is improves over the TD5 in just about every way possible.

 

The Bottom Line

Although I love my strobes, I'm still amazed by the results I get with the continuous lighting the Spiderlites. Life will only be better with the enhancements on the TD6's. They don't get hot and are great to use in workshops/classes where you will have multiple shooters. If you're doing product photography they rock for that too! Thanks Westcott!

You can get a single Spiderlite TD6 here for about $420. My recommendation is that if you have Spiderlites already, then perhaps one TD6 to replace your main TD5. Otherwise, I would recommend this kit if you're starting out. I use a setup like this one for most of the portrait work I do!

What I’m teaching at Photoshop World

It's almost time for Photoshop World! It's next week and I'll be teaching at this year's East Coast show. My classes are the same as they were in Vegas last fall although I'll be adding a few new twists to my Creating Interactive Portfolios Class. I'll also have some updated information for my Facebook class too.

  • Introduction to Adobe InDesign CS5
  • Creating Interactive Portfolios in InDesign CS5
  • Why you should be on Facebook
  • Importing & Managing your Images in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3

Don't forget to see me on the show floor as well. I have sessions scheduled in the Adobe booth as well as partner booths such as Westcott, Elinchrom, and Wacom. 

See you next week and if you have an iOS device don't forget to grab the free App here from the iTunes

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