Archive for the 'Cool Gadgets' CategoryPage 2 of 5

A Look Inside TimeScapes – DSLR Video Just Keeps Getting Better.

by Gavin Seim – I’m more a still than a video man myself. Maybe it’s because I’ve not found a way to print videos yet. Still, their value can be unrivaled and the quality that’s come about in the past few years is stunning. Not long ago ago DSLR video was a new toy. That has changed very fast.

This is a neat 25 minutes behind the scenes at Timefest 2011 and gives an inside look into Tom Lowe’s impressive TimeScapes project. And an almost equally good look at some very impressive video gear, including some brand new stuff from Kessler. To top it off, the guys hanging out are experts like Vincent Laforet, Shawn Reeder, Tom Lowe, Carson Garner, Ben Wiggins and many more.

I have to say I love the planning they put into each sequence and wish it happened a bit more in the world of stills. These guys know that if they don’t plan right, they won’t get the footage. What’s next? How about time lapses on 4×5 film drum scanned and rolled into footage. OK maybe that’s going too far. Or is it? Well just enjoy the video. Then share some thoughts about how your using DSLR video… Gav

Pro Photo Podcast #79RT. Lightning Rounds.

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Today’s Panel... Gavin Seim (G Pixel)Barry Howel (B Groover) – Rob Owens – Scott & Adina Hayne

On this weeks roundtable we talk about perspective and starting out. Then we put ourselves under the time gun as we speed through questions and answers. PS. This episode is not about storms. Though that is an awesome idea ;)


Podcast #79 forum discussion:

Notable Time Indexes:

  • 00:00 Introductions
  • 06:30 photography news
  • 25:53 LIGHTNING rounds. ZAP.
  • 1:13:20 Picks and goodies
  • 1:28:46 4×5, closing, Next LIVE show
  • 1:39:55 Short after show

Links to things we mentioned.

Gavin’s Lights & Shadows HDR workshop this Fall.

Canon Mirrorsless camera?

New pen cams. Still no finder…

Fuji X100 still looks cool, but not perfect. Spendy too.

Hoya sells Pentax to Richo.

Light field camera has infinite focus. Heres a photo session done with it.

Vuzix wrap 1200 for camera view camera like experience? Just a thought.


Barry. Bubble level….
Scott & Adina – Cinevate video gear – Atlas slider – Shoulder mount and more.
Also check out the Rode Video Mic.

Rob – RRS WPF flash bracketEpson artisan 50 printer for making disks (try it with Tayo CD/DVD). perfect for disks. Lightflow Presets.

Gavin – Epson V700 scanner for prints and filmLighted Loupe.



Pro Photo Podcast #77. Better Concepts and Evil Laughs.

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Today’s Host... Gavin Seim

On this shorter episode Gavin takes a look at what he learned with another month on the road. A discussion of 4×5 film, a look at learning and working conceptually, and a little practice session on evil laughs.

140 minutes of night. Gavin's longest ever exposure. Click the image to see Gavin's post with all the details.

Podcast #77 forum discussion:

Notable Time Indexes:

  • 00:00 Introductions quick updates.
  • 04:09 Experiences from a month on the road.
  • 12:32 Random interesting video and things.
  • 16:27 A month long trip with 4×5 film.
  • 26:05 Lightroom Power online workshops.
  • 28:00 Main – The Concept Photographer.
  • 45:05. The after show. Picks and stuff.


Links to things we mentioned.

Gavin’s Online LR Workshops.

Lightflow Aperture Presets are now available.

Video. Battle At F-Stop Ridge. Can you say, Awesome.

Good reads on using Zone System for digital. One by M Frye…. and a thesis by Gary Meek….

Color images before there was color, by Prokudin Gorskii.

Ansel Adams videos.

Rothco 550lb. Type III Paracord.

Gavin’s favorite travel apps list is here.


Pro Photo Show 2010 Christmas Giveaway.

Ok folks. The 2nd PPS Christmas giveaway is here and we over two thousand dollars in prizes up from grabs from 5 great sponsors.

No strings here. It’s simple and you can win some great prizes. Go here for all the details and to enter using the simple form…

Enter here –

Merry Christmas… Gav

How to WindProof Your Lightstands (without sandbags):

by Gavin Seim: Attempting to setup light outside with an with an umbrella, softbox, or even a lone strobe can quickly turn into a fiasco of tipping. I have a family session with over forty people this weekend, and the last thing I want to worry about was whether my lights are secure. One common method is to use sandbags, but I wanted something small, light and adaptable to keep stands from falling over. Behold the DIY quick release cords for.

Direct YouTube link.

PS. The wind was not intense on the day I made this, but I left them up all afternoon without reservation. These make a VERY stable light and they should handle heavy winds if needed. Do some tests of your own and if in doubt just add a few extra tether cords to make it as sturdy as you need. Also here is a good video on how to tie the Tautline Hitch.

Naked Elements Textures

Canon 70-200 2.8L IS II Review. V1 vs V2 Comparison:

by Gavin Seim: Canon just released version II of the 70-200 2.8 IS, which may be their most legendary lens ever. My friends Ben & Molly from Nickles photography just got the new 70-200 2.8 IS II in their hands, so I went over for some tests (thanks for the help Ben). Being that the V1 is such a great lens, many (including myself) have been wondering how much it could be improved. And with a price tag of nearly $2500, it better offer something new. According to Canon the V2 “increases the speed, performance and optical quality of the 70-200, while maintaining all of the characteristics that have made it a legend“.

Well the images are in and so is this lens. I think Canon nailed it. Now granted their can be differences between one lens and another of the same model and my V1 lens is a few years old. It’s still in excellent working order however so I feel the comparison is pretty fair. These examples were all shot in RAW on the 5D MK2 under the same conditions and settings for each sequence. Images were processed in Lightroom 2, but no adjustments were added except that Camera Calibration in was set to Camera Standard.

Aside from the image quality I found a couple of interesting things. The V2 seems to shoot nearly 1/3 stop brighter and with a tad wider view than the V1. I checked this using a tripod for the detail tests to make sure the camera position would be the same. The V2 does indeed seem to be a few mm wider. I don’t know what that would be, I’m just showing what I found. I don’t see this as a big problem however. In fact the V2 letting in more light seems a good thing.

So far I’m impressed. See for yourself below. I’m posting full frames alongside tight details crops of each image. You can click any for a larger view,. You can also download the package of full res JPEG files at the bottom of the post if you want to take a close look. You can find this lens here on B&H or here on Adorama or here on Amazon. OK lets get started.

Image Stabilization Tests.
For each test I hand held 2oomm at 1/20th, supporting the lens barrel with my left and pressing the body firmly against my face. I took 5 consecutive shots for each comparison so I could account for variations in my own steadiness (or lack thereof). The results shown are the sharpest image from each sequence of five images, as well as crop zoomed in view of the same. While the V1 was good, the V2 of the lens was clearly better, producing consistently better IS performance.

It can't be said that IS is not useful. Even on the V1 it makes a huge difference. But on V2... Well read on.

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