Podcast: “Learn Travel Photography, Best”

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If inspiration is what you are looking for, the story of how Eric Kruszewski became a photographer should supply you with plenty of it. Of course, it all starts with a personal desire but, planning, networking, hard work, and even a simple Google search like the eponymic one above, all go into the recipe for success.

Photographs © Eric Kruszewski

Taking up photography as a hobby in your thirties seems a commonplace occurrence, but deciding to change careers and become a working photographer is another story altogether. Join us as we speak with travel, editorial, and documentary photographer Eric Kruszewski about his journey from newbie to National Geographic. We talk about the value of workshops, mentors, cold calls, and persistence, and trace Eric’s career from its inauspicious beginnings through long-term personal projects, one-off jobs, artistic setbacks, learning new skills and, ultimately, a satisfying career—paying the bills by doing what he loves.

Guest: Eric Kruszewski

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Into the Dark of Night, with the Nikon D850

Author: admin  |  Category: Best Photo Sharing, Digital Cameras

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Are you reading this because you are wondering if the new Nikon D850 camera is better than the Nikon D810? Are you questioning whether the aging D800 that has been your high-resolution workhorse for years will give the new camera a run for its money? What brings you here? You pretty much want to know if the Nikon D850 is a spectacular photographic machine. Well, I have the answer for you: it is amazing.

Photographs © Todd Vorenkamp

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Nikon D850 DSLR Camera

Before I dive into my experiences with the Nikon D850, let me mention to you, or reinforce in your mind, that no one is making a bad digital camera these days—no one. Is this camera light years ahead of its competition in image quality, features, or awesome picture-taking-ness? No, it is not. And, it is not light years ahead of the competition, because the competition from Canon, Sony, Pentax, Fujifilm, Olympus, and Panasonic is very, very good.

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Also, this is the first part in a series of articles talking about different aspects of the Nikon D850. We are passing the camera around the office and letting different photographers explore the camera in their preferred way. My preference for shooting any type of camera is to take the machine out at night and make urban landscapes, so that is what I did with the brand-new production model D850 lent to Explora by Nikon.

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Upload Your Action Videos Easily with the New HERO6 Black

Author: admin  |  Category: Best Photo Sharing, Digital Cameras

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We here at B&H Photo Video are pleased to announce the introduction of the latest GoPro action camera, the GoPro HERO6 Black. This new GoPro features QuikStories—an automated app that edits and then shuttles your latest creations to your phone for the easiest possible sharing. Post your daring adventure footage to Instagram, Facebook, or other social media platforms to keep your legions of fans updated. Or use QuikStories to text or email a chronicle of a special event to your nearest and dearest. The HERO6 Black showcases whopping 4K60 and 1080p/240 video rates, the new GP1 sensor for improved image capture, and advanced stabilization for smooth, flowing moves.

No need to wait until you’re back at your home base to edit and upload your videos. Compared to the HERO5 Black, the HERO6 Black offloads footage up to three times quicker when using its 5 GHz wi-fi compatibility. To use the exciting QuikStories function, download the free GoPro and Quick apps to your iPhone or Android. Sometimes a graphic adds just the right note to highlight your accomplishments—when you want to track your travels or sporting event distances, use the Quik desktop app to add GPS data overlays to your QuikStories projects. The HERO6 Black uses GPS to log your path, speed, elevation gain, and more.

The HERO6 Black features improved performance for capturing crisp, clear video and still photos even in low-light settings. Voice control of camera functions and image stabilization have also been upgraded. Features the rugged HERO6 Black shares with other GoPro models include waterproofing to 33′ without a housing, a 2″ touchscreen display, three built-in mics, and HiLight tagging. Choose from specialized still and video imaging modes such as RAW, WDR (wide dynamic range), photo bursts, timelapse, night photo, and looping to best capture your specific activity.

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Softube Releases First-Ever Emulation of Buchla Hardware

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Eurorack enthusiasts take note: Softube has done it again. The well-regarded company has offered a new Modular toy for your sound-designing pleasure. This time, Softube has modeled a coveted piece of hardware from Buchla, giving you the Buchla 259e Twisted Waveform Generator. This software features two discrete oscillators that connect to each other in complex routing schemes. Of note is the Mem Skew function, which uses the internal memory of the operating system as a wavetable, one that’s controllable with an external signal.

Indeed, the Mem Skew Mode is chock-full of unpredictable noise and unexpected cut-outs—the sort of things that lend real, sonic excitement to your sound-design endeavors. The plug-in also gives you the ability to harness and employ the harsh sound of digital aliasing, which you can now implement deliberately for truly twisted tones. Such features allow this piece of software to really shine when you use it to create, harsh, metallic, cold, screaming sounds. You can, however, use the plug-in to service your warmer aesthetic, as well.

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Wide-Angle Zooms for Nikon DX: 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6 versus 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5

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While strolling through Midtown Manhattan with my family over the weekend, we stopped for a few minutes at the courtyard of the Stephen A. Schwarzman building, the main branch of the New York Public Library. It was one of those moments during the golden hour in which the light was hitting the architecture just right, and I’d wished I’d had my camera with me. This library never stood out to me as a prime subject to photograph, but now I’d seen it in a new light (pun intended). So, on Monday, when I was asked to review the new Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Lens, I knew exactly where I was headed to test it.

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Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Lens

As a proud owner of the Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5, I was pretty surprised to see that Nikon was offering a DX wide angle zoom for less than half the price of that lens, even if it is somewhat slower and a not quite as long. The truth is, I don’t need my wide-angle lenses to be super fast anyway, since I’m mostly shooting landscapes and architecture, and mostly on a tripod. I was curious to see how this new and affordable 10-20mm stacked up against the 10-24mm in other ways, such as sharpness, autofocus speed, and size.

Once I received the lens, I was pleased to find it quite small, and light. Weighing slightly more than 8 oz, the 10-20mm feels as light as a feather, versus the 16-oz 10-24mm to which I’m used accustomed. I noticed that the 10-20mm has a 72mm filter thread, rather than the 77mm thread on the 10-24mm. So, I picked up a 72-100mm adapter ring, to allow me to use my 100mm filter holder and ND filter set with the 10-20mm lens.

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Recommended Support and Grip Devices for Smartphones and Tablets

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Even though smartphones and tablets were designed to be used as handheld devices, first and foremost, unless you’re taking pictures under bright sunny skies, you should mount your phone or tablet on some sort of support device for truly sharp images. Support devices for smartphones and tablets come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and in this roundup, we consider some of the options.

Mini tripods designed for use with mobile devices are available with flexible or solid legs. Small and light enough to stow away in your coat pocket or the side pocket of your camera bag, tabletop tripods are available from Joby and Magnus. Typical of the genre is the Joby GripTight ONE GP Stand, which holds smartphones up to 3.6″ wide firmly in place on a GorillaPod stand. Smaller still, but sturdy nonetheless, is the Joby GripTight ONE Micro Stand, which can support smartphones measuring up to 3.6″ wide, like its taller GorillaPod sibling.

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Joby GripTight ONE Micro Stand for Smartphones

Need a mini tripod with a secure mount bracket for your tablet? The iStabilizer tabFlex Spring-Loaded Mount for Tablets just might be your ticket. Mountable in portrait and landscape positions, the iStabilizer tabFlex features protective rubber coatings, ¼”-20 threads, foam padding, and includes a flexi-leg mini tripod.

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Lighting Options for Mobile Photography

Author: admin  |  Category: Best Photo Sharing, Digital Cameras

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Not long ago, mobile phones were judged by their sound quality. Nowadays, phones are judged by their image quality. “Can you hear me now?” has been replaced by “Your phone has how many lenses?” But while image quality continues to improve in quantum leaps, the lighting systems built into our mobile communication devices are “quaint” at best.

Your mobile device undoubtedly has a flash or LED lighting system built into it, but in terms of using it as a flattering, photogenic wash of light, save your phone’s LED lamp for the next time you need to light your way out of a burning building.

The following lighting accessories are designed to expand and enhance the lighting quality of stills and videos captured with mobile devices. The color temperature of these devices is invariably daylight (give or take a few hundred degrees Kelvin). Depending on the model, some allow you to adjust the color temperature of the lights to fit the occasion. And yes, they’re all available at B&H Photo.

The iblazr 2 LED Flash for Smartphones and Tablets is a simple device that slips onto devices 0.24 to 0.37″ thick. The rectangular iblazr 2 LED Flash for Smartphones and Tablets features four LEDs that, together, output up to 300 Lux of light at a 75-degree beam angle.

Connectivity is via Bluetooth and the color temperature can be adjusted from 3200K to 5600K. Other features include red-eye reduction and free downloadable apps for iOS and Android devices. A mount clip, key clasp, and diffuser are included.

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Life after Dark: Pentax K-1 Field Test

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After months of running around with nothing but mirrorless and rangefinder cameras, the first thing that came to mind when I picked up the new Pentax flagship DSLR was, “Geeeeeez this puppy’s heavy…” The Pentax K-1 is, indeed, a heavy camera, especially when paired with an HD Pentax-D FA 24-70mm f/2.8 ED SDM WR zoom lens, but the image quality and functionality of the K-1 quickly allayed any weight issues I had the first time I lifted the camera to my eye.

The dynamic range of the K-1’s 36.4MP full-frame CMOS sensor, combined with the processing abilities of the camera’s PRIME lV image processor, are immensely impressive. Highlight and shadow details hold up equally well and the transitional tones between these extremes are equally sweet. What’s more, except for my photograph of stars in a midnight sky, all the street scenes photographed for this review were captured handheld.

Photographs © Allan Weitz

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Pentax’s first full-frame camera contains a 36.4MP CMOS sensor that, in a bid to maximize resolving power, lacks an anti-aliasing filter. In its stead, the K-1 features an electronic anti-alias simulator (i.e., a controlled micro-burst of sensor vibration) when photographing moiré-prone subjects.

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Selfie Sticks: A B&H Buying Guide

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Whether you hate ’em or love ’em, there is no getting around ’em—literally. I have been bonked on the head by a selfie stick on the busy streets of New York, while skiing, and even in the confines of a major arena during a basketball game. Let’s add to their numbers on the street with a convenient buying guide to the best and the rest.

First, selfie sticks are not all that new—they have been around in some form since the 1990s and are basically an inverted monopod with a handle. But with the growth of the smartphone camera and the apparent need to document all that we do, the selfie stick has become a common sight throughout the photo-taking world. Truthfully, selfie sticks don’t have to be “all about you;” they are practical tools to be used for high- or low-angle shooting and can double as monopods or even hiking sticks.

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GoPole Evo 14-24″ Floating Extension Pole for GoPro HERO Cameras

But what differentiates one selfie stick from another? Generally, not too much, and that is part of the reason for their abundance. The best way to distinguish one from the other and to determine what will work for your needs is to think about these five characteristics: Camera Compatibility and Mounts; Length (folded length and total reach); Strength (build quality and load capacity); Remote Control Capability; and finally, Specialized Purposes or Accessories, such as mirrors, secondary mounts, or even underwater capability.

Mounts and Camera Compatibility

Nothing about a selfie stick really matters if it won’t hold your camera, but fortunately, most available models offer the versatility to mount any compact camera with a ¼”-20 tripod thread, and there are many models with mounts for smartphones and GoPro cameras. Long zoom point-and-shoots, larger mirrorless, and DSLR cameras are generally not a match for selfie sticks, because they are simply too heavy.

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Bose® Releases SoundSport Free™ Headphones, Updates QuietComfort™ 35

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Bose® has updated its popular SoundSport™ wireless in-ear headphones with a new version, called the SoundSport Free, that does away with wires completely, leaving customers with two independent wireless ’buds that connect to computers and mobile devices via Bluetooth 4.1. They stay planted, thanks to StayHear+ eartips, also found on other Bose in-ear headphones, and three sizes are included to fit a wide range of ears. The SoundSport Free has a built-in microphone for phone calls, and integrated controls let you pause your music, adjust the volume, and skip tracks. IPX4 water resistance helps prevent interference from sweat or light rain. The included charging case has enough juice for two full charges, each of which is enough for up to five hours of playback.

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