Photo of the Month – March

Opera Recital Practice, Leica M8, Summilux 50mm

Opera Recital Practice, Leica M8, Summilux 50mm

Leica M8
Leica 50mm f/1.4 Summilux-M
50mm, 1/60 Sec at f/2, ISO640
Post Processed in Adobe Lightroom V5.3
On a MacBook Pro, OS-X 10.9.2

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Leica T 701 – Part 1 – iOS intergration

Leica Press Conference Times

  • 3 pm Berlin time
  • 2 pm London time
  • 9 am New York time
  • 6 am Los Angeles time (sorry for that)

This afternoon for us in the UK Leica make their press announcement and its now about definite that the announcement is going to be the new Leica T 701.

It is looking like a standard mirror less, none viewfinder compact system camera with a fancy touch screen, and with the ability to take Leica M glass as well as a new range of autofocus Leica T glass.

For most its likely to be too expensive and not offering anything that a Sony NEX or Fuji X camera cannot do better, but for those of us with Leica M glass its worth a serious consider as it will support coding on modern M glass and correct vignette and colour drift.

As I am publishing this before the announcement the above is conjecture but I believe will be accurate from the rumours so far leaked.

Its also going to integrate with the iPhone and iPad like many other recent mirror less releases and the iOS app has already been released.

Leica-T-701-camera-iOS-appAccording to Leica it will:

Camera live view Control capture settings Triggering the camera Start / Stop video recording View, download and share images from the camera Delete images.

 

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Leica T – final rumours

We are now less then a week a way from Leica’s press conference, those hoping for a real mini Leica or an interchangeable Leica X are all holding their breaths in excitement.

It now looks like its going to be a APS-C sensor, interchangeable lens mirror less camera.  The big thing for me is whether its going to have a built in viewfinder.

The rumoured price is $3000, with an optional EVF, but there will be an optional adapter to take Leica M glass so it may be a cheap (in Leica terms) spare body for us Leica M users.

 

Is this all true or is something else going to be announced; well we will all find out on Friday.

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Gardening – Veg Plot

Jeremy Clarkson remarked recently that gardening was a pursuit of the old who are waiting to die, well I suppose that means I am now old.  Over the last few weeks we have been building our raised beds and tidying up the garden to suite our needs.

This bank holiday weekend we have been concentrating on the raised beds which we built over the last few weeks.  Its been hard work but they are nearly finished and we have been digging over the soil, and sorting out are seed trays in anticipation.

Despite the the hard physical work its been very satisfying.

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Adobe’s Lossy DNG

iPad MiniQuite a while ago now, back in 2012 I think, Adobe announced lossy DNG.  Like many photographers I did not see the point but now that Adobe Lightroom Mobile has been released it makes more sense.

You see when you select a RAW file to sync from your desktop you don’t get the large RAW file synchronised across to your iPad, or a jpeg that with its 8 bit compression is easy to break when editing.

To quote Adobe

‘Lossy DNG allows something in-between Raw and JPEG in terms of size but retains the flexibility in terms of adjusting White Balance and preserving detail’

Its this lossy DNG file that gets transferred to your iPad and its that you are working on.  In this scenario it makes a lot of sense.

With cameras regularly producing RAW files over 16 MP now even 24 MP now common and the top end cameras at 36 MP, it would be useful if camera manufactures started to use lossy DNG.  When you want a file smaller then RAW but still with the ability to edit more flexibly then a jpg it makes sense.

I suspect some camera manufactures like Ricoh and Leica may adopt it but the Canon and Nikons of the world will either keep offering RAW/JPG or offer their own proprietary lossy  RAW format.

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Wedding Days 2015

WeddingThe wedding season has truly started and we are now getting booked up for 2015.

I enjoy the odd wedding but only do a few a year to stay fresh, if you do to many I feel it becomes a chore and not something to enjoy.  I feel the key to photography is always do something you enjoy.

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Leica T Type 701 mirrorless leaks

Leica-T-type-701-mirrorless-camera

There have been rumours of a Leica mirrorless camera for a while now.  Of course the Leica M is a mirrorless camera but we tend not to count that, by mirrorless we tend to think of Panasonic/Olympus MicroFourThirds cameras, Sony NEX or Fuji X range.

Leica have pretty much stated they have a mirror less camera coming but very little news has slipped out, but finally as the Leica press conference scheduled for April 24th gets closure more leaked pictures start to appear.

For those of us wishing for a built in EVF and it taking Leica M glass, then we are likely to be disappointed but even if its not the camera I want, I am looking forward to what Leica are about to release.

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Mac OS X Spotlight issues

Being a bit of command line geek, I often use Apple’s Spotlight feature to run applications. Its much quicker to click the command key and spacebar then quickly type what you want then to use the trackpad or mouse to find the application.

Sometimes though, the index can get corrupt and spotlight stops finding some apps.  Its a quick fix and very easy.

First find your way to /Users/(loginname)/Library/Preferences, the fast way to do this is from finder press Shift-Command-G then type ~/Library/Preferences this will take you to your library within your user folder.  Its easier this way as the library folder under your user is hidden by default.

Find com.apple.spotlight.plist and delete it, then as  an administrator run terminal and enable Spotlight Indexing by typing mdutil -E / you may have to use sudo (super do) as its requires admin permissions.

This should then sort out your spotlight issues.

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Command Line Fun – telnet and ASCI Starwars

Starwars VI

 

If you use Unix or are a bit of a command line geek like me then you might be interested in a bit of fun.

There is telnet server hosted in the Netherlands which has a Star Wars video made in ASCII that is run when you connect.

Check out the fqdn towel.blinkenlights.nl

Starwars - R2D2 & C3PO

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Lightroom Mobile & Lightroom V5.4

Lightroom MobileLightroom V5.4 has finally made an appearance, I know Fuji users have been waiting this one and for myself I was hoping for a more stable version.  Lightroom V5 while very usable has been the least stable Lightroom of all the versions and I am hopping that V5.4 has finally gotten rid of all the bugs.

Along with Lightroom for the desktop; Lightroom Mobile for the iPad was released, a much anticipated launch.  While detailed editing in a colour unmanaged environment is not practical, being able to do a quick edit sort through a selection of images and decide on you selects on the iPad is a very useful thing.

I would have loved to see some meta data facilities and key wording but that has not made this version, until then we will still have to use applications like PhotoSmith on the iPad.

While the mobile app can edit your photographs already on your iPad it really works if your an Adobe Create Cloud subscriber.   You can simply select which collections you want to sync over and its as simple as that.

Lightroom Collections

The big question for me was if it could handle Nikon RAW files or DNG files imported directly to the iPad.  Unfortunately testing with my little Nikon V1 and Leica M8 has shown that if your saving RAW/DNG only while the iPad can handle the files they cannot be brought into Lightroom Mobile, you need to convert first using either PhotoRaw or shoot jpg and RAW/DNG.

For now the source for you files has to be your computer not your iPad, not ideal if you want to work in the field and travel light and not take a laptop.  Unless Adobe add RAW support then I can see an Apple MacBook Air  arriving in my camera bag.  Still it may suite your work flow or it may not, if your an Adobe Creative Cloud subscriber then its free to try out and test.

Its certainly a very good first try.

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4K on still cameras

Sony Alpha A7r

Sony recently announced the new A7S, designed for 4K video.

There is a lot of discussion about 4K and whether it will take off or fail like 3D TV.  To be honest for content providers there is a case for going to 4K, while consumers are yet to take up 4K it does make sense for film makers to produce their content now in 4K ready for the future.

Putting 4K in what are predominately still cameras to me makes less sense.  If your going to shoot movies then use the right equipment.  By the time you have purchased all the accessories to make it work you might as well have bought a proper video camera and now 4K video cameras are more available.

There is a case for video in still cameras but its mainly for news paper photographers, they need quick short clips, sound bites for websites.  The rest of us also might want to pop a quick short clip onto our websites or YouTube but if your serious about moving making then buy a proper video camera for that use.

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