If you do a lot of hiking and long-distance treks as a photographer, you might have some difficulty finding a good backpack to carry your equipment. Sure, regular camera backpacks will protect your gear and allow quick access, but they might not be comfortable for long travels. The other option is to get a hiking backpack, which works for longer hikes, but won’t let you access your gear as easily (or potentially protect it as well). That’s where companies such as F-Stop Gear and Gura Gear jump in with something in between — hiking bags built around carrying cameras. There’s a new company on the scene, too: Shimoda Design. I’ve been testing out the Shimoda Adventure 60 bag over the past month, and it ticks a lot of boxes for what this sort of bag should be. Below is my review, along with the pros and cons of this intriguing new backpack.
Loupedeck is a photo editing console for Adobe Lightroom. It is a keyboard-sized device that allows you to adjust most image settings in the develop module with a simple turn of a knob, scroll of a wheel, or push of a button. If you’ve ever wanted to ditch your mouse while editing photos and have direct access to each individual field in Lightroom, this might be a step in the right direction. In this review, I’ll give an overview of the Loupedeck Lightroom editing console, describe my experience with it and make some recommendations as to who might find it useful.
For a number of years now, I have been a big fan of network attached storage (NAS) in order to keep all of my data in one place and simplify my photography workflow. Having access to the same fast storage from multiple machines, as well as the Internet, is important for my needs, so I have been utilizing NAS heavily at my home office. Ever since I got a hold of the Synology DS1815+, I have been a big fan of Synology products. However, there has been one main limitation that I have been struggling with when processing large files or accessing storage from multiple computers, and that is network throughput limitations. With the DS1815+ model only featuring 1 Gbit Ethernet ports, I have been limited to a maximum total of 100-120 MB/sec transfers, which is simply insufficient in today’s high-resolution photo and video environments. So as soon as Synology announced its DS1817+ unit with the capability to add a 10 Gbit network card, I knew I had to move up to it. In this review, I will provide detailed information on the Synology DS1817+ NAS and provide detailed information on what one can expect from it in terms of performance and network throughput.
Perhaps one of the most anticipated camera releases of 2017 has been the D810 successor, the Nikon D850. Nikon’s high resolution camera body shook up the industry once again, this time with a strong punch, making the Nikon D850 the most versatile DSLR on the market. Thanks to its 45.7 MP sensor with a native ISO sensitivity range of 64-25,600, upgraded 153-point autofocus system, advanced 181,000-pixel RGB metering system, 7 fps continuous shooting speed that can be bumped up to 9 fps with a battery grip, a fully weather sealed construction and a bunch of other hardware and software upgrades, Nikon managed to pull out a camera that can satisfy every photography need – from landscapes and architecture, to sports and wildlife. In this review, I will be assessing the camera from many different angles and comparing to its predecessor, as well as its primary competition.
Note: This is an ongoing review that will be going through a lot of changes and additions over the period of the next few weeks. I decided to consolidate all the information related to the camera into a single review, rather than piecemeal it to many different articles. Expect to see a lot more content – every time I publish new information, I will be bumping up the review to the front page of the site. Also, I am currently working on uploading a few images for the review. More images will be posted very soon!
In this in-depth field review, we are going to have a look at the new Nikon wide-angle DX lens Nikkor 10-20mm f/4.5 – f/5.6 AF-P ED VR, which was launched in June 2017. This lens was announced among two other professional wide-angle lenses (FX Nikkor Fisheye 8-15mm and FX Prime Nikkor 28mm f/1.4). While those bigger brothers raised a lot of expectation for full-frame shooters, the plastic entry level 10-20mm DX lens hardly caused any excitement. In this review I will show that this lens deserves the attention of both amateur and semi-professional photographers.
Backpacks are a sore spot for many photographers. Personally, I’ve owned so many different types over the years that I truly can’t remember them all. I know photographers who have entire gear closets filled with bags, and nothing else. The problem here, I think, is that bags look amazing online (or in a store) — seeing them, reading reviews, and even trying it on for a few minutes — but then reality kicks in a few weeks later, and you realize that your new purchase isn’t all that spectacular. That brings me to the company Peak Design. I’m sure you’ve heard of them; they made headlines a couple years ago after fundraising millions of dollars on Kickstarter for their lineup of bags. We haven’t yet reviewed one of their bags on Photography Life, so, when they reached out to send a copy for testing, I decided to see how it measures up. This review specifically covers the 20 liter version of the “Everyday Backpack.” So, does it live up to the hype? Can you finally clean out your closet of bags and turn it into something more productive? The answers are more nuanced than you might think.
As a landscape and travel photographer, I heavily rely on tripods. After making a number of wrong purchasing decisions early on in my photography career, I realized that a solid tripod and tripod head are very important – sometimes even more important than choosing a camera or a lens. A poor tripod setup can create many headaches and really mess up images, and tripod heads play a big part of that. Many cheap tripod heads sag even after they are tightened. Some can barely hold gear and shake like crazy in wind or when they are touched. Others have poor plates and attachments, making them very frustrating to use in the field. Unfortunately, many of us go through a number of bad tripod heads before realizing that we should have gotten something solid to begin with. For the past seven years, I have been very happy with the Really Right Stuff BH-55 ballhead. In fact, after using the BH-55 for a few years, I ended up buying a few more ballheads from RRS for other needs such as travel. However, after attending a few trade shows and seeing other options from other companies, I wanted to see if there was something even better than the RRS ballheads that I have come to trust and love. I bumped into FLM at Photo Plus New York last year and after talking to the company, I decided to give their ballheads a try and see how they compare to RRS. Thanks to FLM Canada, I was able to obtain three ballheads to test, the CB-58 FTR, CB-48 FTR and CB-32 F. In this review, I will go over these three ballheads in detail and discuss their pros and cons.
Both Hasselblad and Fuji got quite a bit of buzz in 2016 when they introduced the first mirrorless medium format cameras. The Hasselblad X1D-50c stole the show with its beautiful design, compact build and leaf shutter lenses, whereas the GFX 50S got Fuji fans excited with its functional camera body, modular EVF, tiltable LCD screen and a lower price point. Both cameras compete head to head when it comes to image quality, since they feature a very similar 44x33mm sensor, which is why I will be bringing them up quite a bit for side-by-side comparisons in this Fuji GFX 50S review. I have now been shooting with the GFX 50S for approximately six months, so the experience that I am sharing with our readers is based on quite a bit of field work, including international travel.
Less than a year ago, Apple introduced the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus phones to the market. The iPhone 7 Plus was the first Apple phone to have a dual lens design (28mm wide-angle and 56mm telephoto equivalent), so Apple put quite a bit of emphasis on photography with this model. Although I was quite happy with my iPhone 6 Plus at the time of the announcement, I decided to upgrade to the latest version, primarily because of these camera features the phone offered. Since then, I have captured thousands of images in different environments, which not only allowed me to get a deeper understanding of the camera capabilities of the phone, but also understand its many issues and limitations. In this review, I will be going over my experience with the iPhone 7 Plus camera and discuss its pros and cons.
Hasselblad created quite a bit of buzz when it released the Hasselblad X1D-50c in June of 2016. With its 44x33mm image sensor, 2.36 MP electronic viewfinder (EVF), dual SD card slots, 3″ touchscreen LCD, built-in Wi-Fi, leaf shutter, a super lightweight construction weighing only 725 grams with a battery and a very compact size, the X1D looked absolutely stunning both in terms of its specifications and its stylish design. Hasselblad priced the camera at $8,999 MSRP at introduction, which when compared to the traditional Hasselblad prices, looked like a bargain for the first time. Hasselblad called the X1D a “groundbreaking” camera and a game changer – pretty bold, but valid statements given “the world’s first medium format mirrorless” status. Despite the fact that the camera was delayed a number of times since its announcement due to high demand, I was able to get a hold of a sample unit back in March of 2017. So this review is based on 4 months of heavy shooting with the camera in different shooting environments.