Tuesday, February 22, 2011

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WPPI Day 2 Report

The new Phase One IQ180 on a 645DF body

The highlight of the day for me was dropping by the Phase One booth and handling a brand new IQ180 medium format digital back. What a gorgeous screen! It is most definitely the best rear LCD I have ever seen on any camera and the touch functionality is very well done. In addition, the back really must have an enormous amount of CPU horsepower as it was handling the huge 80 megapixel files with ease. Zoom-in delays were minimal and scrolling and selecting images was smooth and intuitive.  The screen mode you see above was definitely my favourite as one could see the image, a histogram and a blown-highlight preview screen at a glance, and all it took was a tap on the small histogram to pull up a huge and very readable full-screen RGBL histogram.  Double tap on the image, and it goes right to a 100% view zoom which you can then pan around. Not visible on this screen, is when you single tap the image, a little zoom slider appears on the left, and you can drag a virtual zoom control up and down to control magnification. Very fluid zooming as well and, as mentioned already, overall very impressive performance considering the file size it was having to deal with.
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WPPI Day 1: Notes from the show floor...

New WiebeTech Dual-Bay 2.5" RAID Enclosure

Today was the first day of the WPPI trade show.  While not a huge as some PMA shows I've attended in the past, there were still an impressive number of vendors to see.

First up, a photo of a slick new WiebeTech portable RAID enclosure that uses two 2.5" laptop drives rather than the full size 3.5" desktop drives.  This unit can be configured as a RAID 0 or 1 and packs impressive performance and flexibility in such a small form-factor.  Since we sell WiebeTech drive enclosures at Beau Photo, we may decide to stock this nice little bit of kit. For a few more items of note, read on...

Monday, February 21, 2011

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Las Vegas! Pre-WPPI walkabout...

Well, the day before attending the WPPI trade show, the Beau Photo gang wandered around Las Vegas. The weather was beautiful and although not hot, it was a fair bit warmer than when we left Vancouver in the morning!

As usual Las Vegas was over-the-top, but fun to walk around and photograph.  Here are a few more shots...

Friday, February 18, 2011

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NEW! Phase One IQ Backs

Back in late January, Phase One announced an awesome new series of digital backs, the 40MP IQ140, the 60MP IQ160 and 80MP IQ180. Click on the names to download the respective PDF datasheets. The IQ backs represent the biggest leap in digital back functionality that I have seen in a very long time.  This is no subtle warming over, rather Phase One has given us a completely new system with an innovative user interface and stunning hardware.

The most obvious change is the new high resolution (290ppi - 1.15 megapixel) 3.2" multi-touch LCD on the back. This may sound familiar to you since it is apparently very similar to the display used on the iPhone 4, so it should provide stunning clarity, accurate colour balance and very intuitive touch-screen operation of the camera.  This is clearly a huge step up from Phase One's previous LCD screen and indeed a huge step up over anybody else's display as well! In addition, Phase One has kept the traditional 4-button interface as well for those familiar with that, or for easier operation while wearing gloves.
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Fujifilm FinePix X100: Hands on!

Last week, the local Fuji rep was kind enough to bring by a preproduction sample of the highly anticipated Fujifilm FinePix X100 (thanks Gord!) and I decided to take a few photos of it with one of the Fuji cameras I already own, a FinePix S100fs. The new X100 is "rangefinder style" digital camera and has been the talk of the camera world since its introduction at Photokina in the fall of 2010. As you can clearly see, it has very distinguished "retro" styling but in this case, it is not just retro for the sake of being retro, rather there are some true innovations and it has some carefully thought out ergonomics too. For a closer look at this beautiful camera, feel free to click on the images as well...

Thursday, February 10, 2011

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A Successful Fusion Event!

Although a few of the Beau Photo crew were feeling under the weather (including myself), the Saturday Fusion 2011 event was a resounding success! We had over 150 attendees and a dozen exhibitors showing off their video related wares. The speakers were awesome and we have received a lot of very good feedback from show attendees.  This is definitely something we are aiming to do again next year!

We had well over $3,000 worth of door prizes through the generosity of our many exhibitors, including a Canon Pixma Pro 9500 Mark II printer from Canon, an Atlas 10 Slider from Cinevate, a CoolPix P7000 digital camera from Nikon and many other great prizes.  Thank you everyone!

A special thanks to the staff and students from VanArts who worked hard to make the event a success!

For a list of the major door prize winners and some photos during the event, read on...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

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Fusion 2011 is almost here...

Just a quick reminder for those following this blog via RSS, that the Beau Photo Fusion 2011 show is only a day-and-a-half away - Saturday, February 5th!

Tickets will be for sale at the door of course, but as always, we recommend you buy in advance to ensure getting a spot to see your favourite speaker(s).

For more details on times, location etc., see the previous blog posting here: Fusion 2011