It’s been a busy month and I couldn’t let it end without sharing some updates to some of my favorite applications and technologies.
Adobe Camera Raw 13.2
The first update is to Adobe Camera Raw (13.2). Adobe Camera Raw is the technology accessed from either Photoshop or Adobe Bridge to allow you to process your raw images (and JPGs) non-destructively. Normally it would be just support for new cameras and lenses, but this time there’s more. Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) has gained a great new feature called “Super Resolution” that allows you to double the resolution of your photo without losing quality. Also for people shooting in Raw on the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max will be happy to see the new “Apple ProRAW” Profile.
Check out these features here:
What’s New in Lightroom Classic and Lightroom?
There were a few minor, but important updates to both Lightroom Classic and Lightroom.
I started to take my fitness and health more seriously by going to the gym multiple times a week. Then the pandemic hit and I thought it best to not go. Planet Fitness ultimately did the right thing and closed their locations for a while. Once they opened back up I still didn’t feel comfortable going back. I really missed my routine. I have an elliptical machine at home and I started doing daily walks in my neighborhood, but it just wasn’t enough. I decided to get a Peloton Bike in July 2020. There was a wait of just over a month. As you can imagine, I wasn’t the only one that decided to buy exercise equipment due to the pandemic and being home more. I got the Bike at the end of July and I was pretty much hooked.
Why is the Peloton Bike so different than any other piece of exercise equipment I’ve ever used?
Clubhouse is an audio only social network. It’s currently invite only and currently only on iPhone (Android is in the works). Here’s the official description:
Clubhouse is a new type of network based on voice. When you open the app you can see “rooms” full of people talking—all open so you can hop in and out, exploring different conversations. You enter each room as an audience member, but if you want to talk you just raise your hand, and the speakers can choose to invite you up. Or you can create a room of your own. It’s a place to meet with friends and with new people around the world—to tell stories, ask questions, debate, learn, and have impromptu conversations on thousands of different topics.
I was surprised
I’ll admit that I wasn’t extremely excited to see a non-visual network start to get popular. After all, I’m a visual communicator and photographer. Everything I have done over the past 25 years has been visual. However, there are definitely some advantages to an audio-only platform. For one, you don’t have to get dressed up for it. You don’t have to worry about your lighting and background. Since it’s an iPhone app, you can do it anywhere you have WiFi or great cell service. Also since it’s audio-only there are no visuals to prepare. No demo to break. It’s just talking and actually, that’s a refreshing change.
It’s Free! Today I will be in studio and doing a LIVE shoot to contribute images for sale on Adobe Stock. I’ll walk you through the steps from start to finish to get your images online for sale and to potentially make money from your photography while you sleep.
I have been on a quest to find the ultimate wireless iPhone charger for my nightstand. After upgrading to the iPhone 12 Pro Max, I added MagSafe to my list of requirements:
Has to charge an iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods case simultaneously
It should come with the Apple Watch charger already built-in and not require me to use my existing Apple Watch charger.
It should have one cable and one power supply
While the Apple Watch is charging it should be easy to see at night in Nightstand Mode
MagSafe Charging (if you have an iPhone 12 series)
No annoying LED status lights
The Apple Watch charger has to accommodate bands that don’t open!
There are several wireless chargers out there. The problem is that most of them get the design wrong. I’ve gone through a few models and all but the last two I tried were complete disappointments. Again, this is mostly due to bad design. Also, it seems harder to find ones that will charge all 3 devices. Many will charge the iPhone and Apple Watch or the iPhone and AirPods case.
One of my hobbies is critiquing and redoing user interfaces in my head. I have been slowly making a transition from my Nikon DSLRs cameras to Nikon Mirrorless cameras. I started with a Nikon Z6 and now use the Nikon Z6 II pretty much as my primary camera. I’m not quite ready to sell my Nikon D850 because it’s just so good! However, I can see the day in the future where I just shoot with mirrorless bodies.
I’ve never been a big fan of Nikon’s menu system
Although I have enjoyed shooting Nikon since 2007, If you were to ask me to name the things that are my least favorite, the menu system would certainly be high on the list. At least the new Z mirrorless models do have a touch screen. This makes moving through the menus a little faster as you can just tap on the option you want instead of having to arrow up, down, left, and right all the time. I have a suggestion I’ll share at the end that would make all the difference in the world, but that’s not why I’m writing this post. I’m here today to point out something that really pisses me off. I noticed it first with the Z6 and have run into it on the Z6 II as well.
You can’t use that feature and I’m not going to tell you why!
I’m really hoping that we can get back to some form of travel this year. I really miss traveling and shooting. With that in mind, there’s a great way to start off 2021 by learning some new skills from the best instructors at the Kelbyone Travel Photography Conference. This two-day online conference is a must for anyone interested in boosting their travel photography skills. I hope to see you there. You can register here.
Happy New Year everyone! It’s a new year and I decided to give my blog a new look with a fresh theme. One of my goals this year is to do more blog posts. I had almost completely fallen off my blogging in favor of social media. However, as many of you know, social media has issues that if you don’t pay to boost your posts, most of your followers won’t see them. In other words, social media is not free. My blog is a platform that I can control and get my messages out to the people that are interested in them.
I’m wishing all of you a healthy prosperous New Year!
I recently added three new items to my smart home. The first one is one I’ve been waiting for the longest. When my home was built in 2016 I went with a Ring Pro doorbell. It was a good choice at the time and has worked well for me. However, my smart home platform of choice is Apple’s HomeKit and Ring is not native to HomeKit. While I was able to integrate it through unofficial HomeBridge support, HomeBridge doesn’t give it all the available features of HomeKit and now HomeKit Secure Video. While there have been a couple of entries into the HomeKit video doorbell market, one is extremely expensive and the other one doesn’t yet support HomeKit Secure Video. That all changed last week with the introduction of Logitech’s Circle View Wired Doorbell.
Logitech Circle View Wired Doorbell
Logitech is no stranger to HomeKit. Their Logitech Circle cameras are in use and loved by many, but this is their first entry into the video doorbell market. Sometimes it’s better not to be first. By taking their time they got many things right out of the gate that others still struggle with. First and foremost this doorbell not only supports HomeKit but also supports HomeKit Secure Video which is Apple’s locally encrypted video stored in iCloud. Most others promise this feature in an upcoming software update or not at all. Logitech built it in from the start. They also did a great job including everything you would need including a choice of mounting brackets.
2020 has sucked for the most part. There’s no other way to say it. However, I feel that better days are on the horizon. With that said, people look to me for holiday gadget recommendations, and quite frankly I haven’t really been in the mood to flaunt gear with so many people out of work and struggling due to the pandemic. So this year, I’m going to keep the list short and relatively low cost.