Posts Tagged ‘pro’

Rock ‘N’ Roll Picture Show


Yeah Yeah Yeahs, 2007, photo by Michael Young (Nikon D70)

Nikon recently launched NikonLIVE, a website for photography and music fans that has exclusive music-related content, including tips on shooting concerts. A cool feature of the site is the Rock ‘N’ Roll Picture Show, which lets you browse an enormous archive of concert shots taken by pro photographers at shows across the country. If you’re headed to a live music show this summer—and let’s hope you are—this gallery is great inspiration for those who plan to capture the moment forever with a photograph (if the venue allows, of course).


Band of Horses, 2007, photo by Andy Argyrakis (Nikon D200)


Dave Matthews, 2009, photo by Mike Corrado (Nikon D3)

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Nikon Announces NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II lens

Nikon has just announced the NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II lens. This pro lens can be used widely and is especially ideal for sports and nature photography.  Being the second generation of this lens, it has a lot of updates, including gaining an extra stop of IS with the new VR II image stabilization, as well as M/A and A/M focus modes.

The NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II will be available in May for $6,999.95. Full press release below.

From Nikon:

MELVILLE, N.Y. (April 27, 2010) –  Today, the evolution of the super telephoto lens continues as Nikon Inc. announced the new AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II lens which delivers optical excellence and stunning image quality for professional photographers. Ideal for bringing to life exquisite detail for sports, nature and travel photography, this new lens affords a constant maximum aperture of f/4 and rugged construction for maximum versatility. Continued refinements and new technologies such as Vibration Reduction (VR) II, Nano Crystal Coat, and optimized autofocus (AF) modes enhance functionality and improve performance for discerning FX and DX-format photographers.

“The AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm lens builds upon a proven design for professional level optics by incorporating the latest Nikon lens technologies to give photographers the edge in the field, and the ability to capture the most intricate of details with extraordinary fidelity,” said Lisa Osorio, general manager of Marketing at Nikon Inc.  “As both camera capabilities and the roles of photographers expand, NIKKOR enhancements will continue to meet demands and exceed expectations to remain the pinnacle of optical excellence for all types of photographers.”

Whether photographing the decisive play at home plate or predators of the Serengeti, the 200-400mm f/4 lens is an essential tool for photographers who require long focal lengths and maximum versatility without sacrificing image quality. The 200-400mm lens benefits from the addition of Nikon’s proprietary Nano Crystal Coat to reduce instances of ghosting and flaring.  The result is unparalleled clarity and sharpness in challenging lighting environments typical to sports venues or harsh sunlight.

Additionally, this new NIKKOR lens features Nikon VR II image stabilization, which is specifically engineered for each lens for maximum performance. VR II is a valuable asset to those shooting photos or HD video, as image blur introduced by camera shake and telephoto magnification is significantly reduced. Users are able to shoot up to four stops* slower than otherwise possible, overcoming many of the challenges of handheld shooting with such extreme focal lengths. VR functionality is further augmented with Automatic Panning Detection and an Active VR Mode to help compensate for movement from an unstable position such as a moving vehicle.  Additionally, VR is always engaged when shooting in the D-Movie mode on select Nikon D-SLRs, helping to stabilize HD video capture.

The new 200-400mm f/4 lens features a host of professional focusing features to further enhance functionality. Photographers can now select from three focus modes to match shooting conditions, including manual mode (M) and autofocus with manual override (M/A) mode, and new A/M mode which is used to avoid cancelling the AF setting by unintentionally moving the focus ring while shooting. The M/A and A/M focus modes enhance AF control with fast, secure switching from automatic and manual focus to adapt to personal shooting preference and techniques. Additionally, photographers can activate the AF Recall Mode at the press of a button that allows for instant return to a predetermined point of focus to confidently capture anticipated shots.

This professional lens is constructed of die-cast magnesium for maximum durability and is sealed to resist dust and moisture, with protective Meniscus glass to safeguard the lens’ front element. The optical formula features four Extra-low Dispersion (ED) glass elements for superior sharpness, color and image quality, while minimizing chromatic aberration. The lens also features Nikon’s exclusive Silent Wave Motor (SWM) technology, which enables high-speed autofocus performance with exceptional accuracy and powerful, super-quiet operation. Nikon’s Super Integrated Coating further suppresses flare and offers superior color consistency throughout the frame.

Price and Availability
The AF-S NIKKOR 200-400mm f/4G ED VR II lens is scheduled to be available at Nikon authorized dealers in late May 2010 with an estimated selling price of $6,999.95**. For more information, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

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Canon Announces Two New Pro Camcorders

For video pros, Canon has announced two new big guns today, both available to consumers in late June.

From Canon:

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., April 7, 2010 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, today announces the Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders. Both new models employ an MPEG-2 4:2:2 50Mbps codec – Canon XF Codec – for capturing and recording native 1920 x 1080 video onto affordable, universally available Compact Flash (CF) cards. Uniting video, audio and metadata into a single file, the Canon XF305 and XF300 use an MXF (Material eXchange Format) File Wrapper, a widely supported open source format, to maximize compatibility with existing industry infrastructure and non-linear editing (NLE)systems. Priced under $8,000 per model, the Canon XF305 and XF300 are engineered for multiple production applications including broadcast news, documentary and independent filmmaking and event videography. Canon will be demonstrating a variety of professional applications for the Canon XF305 and XF300 at the Company’s booth# C4325 at the 2010 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in the Las Vegas Convention Center.

The Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders include a Genuine Canon 18x HD L-series lens providing documentary filmmakers and news camera operators with the focal-range versatility required in the field. Designed with input from professional users, each model includes three Canon developed and designed native 1920 x 1080 CMOS image sensors, and the new Canon XF Codec for extreme color detail required for accurate chroma-keying, color-grading and compositing for digital filmmaking. For finer transitions in tone and color, 4:2:2 color sampling offers twice the color resolution of HDV and other 4:2:0 formats. In addition, Canon’s XF305 model features industry- standard HD-SDI output, genlock, and SMPTE time code (in/out) terminals for multi-camera or 3-D productions.

“The creation of HD video content continues to grow across every market category,” stated Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A. “We are proud to introduce the new Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders, which provide extraordinary image quality, a generous array of features and seamless integration with file-based workflows, all at an attractive price. These camcorders provide the convenience, production cost and quality that the HD video market has been asking for.”

Further adding to the low total-cost-of-ownership of the Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders is their use of CF cards. In addition to rugged, solid-state construction and the speed and ease of file transfer to computers, CF cards are cost effective and widely available, unlike proprietary memory systems. The new Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders feature hot-swappable dual card slots and support UDMA CF cards for maximum performance.

To support the swift adoption of the Canon XF Codec, Canon has worked in cooperation with major editing and post-production software developers, including Adobe, Apple, Avid, and Grass Valley, to ensure compatibility with leading software programs widely used within the video production and broadcast industries.

Genuine Canon Optics with Image Stabilization
Leveraging the Company’s expertise as a global leader in the design and manufacture of high-performance optics, the Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders feature a Genuine Canon 18x HD L-series lens with a 35mm equivalent zoom range of 29.3 – 527.4mm and a Full Manual Focus mode with mechanical “hard” end stops and distance markers for professional operability and repeatable manual focus. Canon utilized HI-UD (high-index, ultra low dispersion), UD and aspherical lens elements to minimize chromatic aberrations and provide a compact size and weight to the lens – while also delivering a resolution of approximately 1,000 TV lines. The lens also features a new SuperRange Optical Image Stabilizer (OIS) system featuring Dynamic and Powered modes for optimal performance in the greatest variety of situations.

DIGIC DV III Image Processor
At the heart of Canon’s XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorder models is Canon’s proprietary DIGIC DV III Image Processor, which ensures natural, lifelike colors and captures tonal gradations and shadow detail with remarkable accuracy. The DIGIC DV III Image Processor also powers Canon’s innovative Face Detection Technology, an autofocus option that can significantly reduce the effort required when camera operators work alone, such as in news applications.

To maximize the camcorders’ adaptability across various production environments, Canon equipped each model with the ability to record at multiple bit rates, resolutions and variable frame rates for slow and fast motion. Additional professional features include variable-interval (for time-lapse) and frame-record for stop-motion animation, and a photo feature for frame-grabs.

Refined Ergonomics and Operation
The Canon XF305 and XF300 are designed to maximize shooting comfort and usability. The well-balanced design allows the operator to comfortably control the camcorder and easily maintain a steady shot while minimizing arm fatigue. Each camcorder also features a convenient, freely rotating 4.0-inch, 1.23-megapixel LCD monitor that can be positioned at either the right or left side of the camcorder body, allowing for easy viewing even in the most difficult shooting positions.

The LCD monitor also provides a display of the camcorders’ built-in waveform monitor and vectorscope to aid in achieving accurate exposure and color levels while shooting. Additionally, the LCD can show peaking, edge-monitor-focus and magnify the image, enabling users to confirm critical focus, an essential objective in all HD production.

The Canon XF305 and XF300 models also come equipped with a 0.52-inch, 1.55-megapixel color electronic viewfinder, providing ample resolution for critical focus and approximately 100 percent field-of-view coverage for accurate judgment of composition.

Audio Flexibility
The Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders feature a built-in stereo microphone as well as dual XLR inputs for external audio sources. The new camcorders support 16-bit PCM audio at 48 kHz with automatic and manual audio level adjustment

Canon’s XF305 Professional Camcorder is scheduled to be available in late June for an estimated retail price of $7,999. Canon’s XF300 Professional Camcorder is scheduled to be available in late June for an estimated retail price of $6,799.

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Tip From A Pro: by Larry Lytle

Rather than gather up virtual tips from various photo magazines, websites and blogs, and then regurgitate that information back to you in the form of a “tip” from DP, I’ve decided to seek out the best of the best in the professional photography world and have them deliver an authentic, hand-crafted tip especially for DP readers. To kick off our “Tip From A Pro” section, I’ve tapped Los Angeles photographer Larry Lytle to give you an in-depth how-to on studio lighting. Larry is a prolific commercial and fine art photographer. I’m sure you have seen his work, whether you knew it or not. One of his most notable commercial pieces was the poster for the “Psycho” remake in 1998, which he won a Hollywood Reporter Key Art Award for.

Read the rest of this entry »

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