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.

Dave from DQ Studios speaking at the Renaissance Booth

Simon and Carol spent a fair bit of time checking out some beautiful new album styles at the Renaissance booth and we watched an impressive presentation by Dave of DQ Studios, who was going over image selection and culling using PhotoMechanic and some basic album page design tips using Photoshop.

Manfrotto's affordable new mid-range 501HDV Video Head

Back through the Manfrotto booth a second time allowed me to have a quick look at the 501HDV head, the baby brother to the bigger 504 head we currently have at Beau Photo. The 501 is a bit smaller and less sophisticated, but still has the essential features you'll need and is beefy enough to take a fairly big camera rig.

Dynalite RoadMax packs compared

Next up is Dynalite, who has some new lower pricing coming up and a range of new packs, ranging from  400, 800 up to 1600 w/s. With very fast recycle times and excellent compatibility with HyperSync on the new Pocket Wizard Flex TT5 transceivers, and even more compact dimensions, these travel-friendly new packs should be high up on a location photographer's shopping list!

I also checked out some nice new paper by Pictorico, a premium "Opalescent" paper, which is an ultra high-gloss inkjet paper that has an almost metallic sheen to it, more of a pearl-finish paper and anything else I've seen that has "pearl" in the name.  I think that because so many companies describe their papers as "pearl", Pictorico had to call it "opalescent" to differentiate it and indicate to people it was a totally new surface.  It does have a slight shimmering colour shift as you tilt it in the light.  Very attractive and eye-catching.

Finally, I'll leave you with one more photo outside today, as I was going to find a few minor items for family members.


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