Monday, February 23, 2009

Quick Hit Monday: The World Of Off-Camera Flash; A Digital PhotoBook For Your Customers; 2 Tera-Byte SD Card, and More

Good Morning Everybody,
We arrived home safe and sound last evening to a brisk 24 degrees, ahhhh, the great Midwest in February. Actually, I never care too much what the weather is like as long as the sun comes up in the morning. Regardless of the weather, it's always good to get back home.

We had a great week in Las Vegas, and the few days off after the convention gave me a little time to polish up the DWC tour presentation which is shaping up really well. We head up to B&H next weekend where I'll get a chance to test drive most of the presentation. My book needs to wrap this week too - just pulling the final images for it. I get to peek at cover designs later today, so I'm stoked about that.

Anyway, their seems to be lots of stuff to report on today - I've picked a few of my favs. Hit the "Read More..." link below for all the news you need to know!

The World Of Off-Camera Flash; A Digital PhotoBook For Your Customers; 2 Tera-Byte SD Card, and More

The World Of Off-Camera Flash
I have to tell ya' the WPPI convention seemed to be the year for off-camera flash. Three, count them, three manufacturers were showing off gear to fire remote flashes. My buddies at Quantum were showing off their new Trio units [link] with their built in radios and high speed flash capabilities. The sent me 3 of them to "play with" right before we left for the show. I only had time to read the manuals and am looking forward to trying them in the next week or two.

What I like about the Quantum is the amount of "juice" - light they get on the scene. As a wedding shooter, an off-camera 580EX II is just a bit too underpowered for me. I love my 200 w.s. fast recycling Quantums on the job. With the Trios now supporting high speed sync, I think the outdoor shooting options definitely get more interesting.

I mentioned, last week that Kevin King of Radio Popper [link] fame is letting me try a few of his new units too. I want to see how/if they work with the Quantums too.

Now on to player #3 of the off-camera flash arena - Pocket Wizard, has what I think may be the most interesting product of all. Their MiniTT1 [link] fits neatly between the camera and the flash. The remote unit, the Flex TT5 [link], mounts to the remote flash's hot shoe. With the units attached, you have complete Master/Slave and high speed flash functionality now operating with very reliable radio signals - way cool.

I'm making a call to them today to see if I can get a couple to test. Mr. Hobbie over at the had a super in depth review of the new units - definitely worth the peek [link]. Hopefully, I'll have all three solutions in house and can see how they best work in a wedding/event situation. There's lots of wonderful new products and solutions in the off-camera flash department - no reason to be shooting like Uncle Harry any more. I'll keep you posted.

A Digital PhotoBook For Your Customers
I caught this post by fellow blogger, Eric over at Photography Bay. It talked about the new Digital Foci Photo Book [link]. This new electronic "proof book" offers some interesting features - here are a few:
8” digital LCD with 800 x 600 resolution.
Large 4 GB internal memory holds thousands of digital photos.
Built-in memory card slots provide native support for: CF, SD/HC card, MMC, xD-Picture Card, MS/MS PRO (Supports mini-SD, RS-MMC, MS Duo with adapter).
USB host capability - supports USB flash drives.
Copy albums directly from memory cards for USB flash drives to internal memory without needing a computer.
Run automatic Full-Screen or Photo Book photo Slide-shows with adjustable time intervals.

Heck, for only $189 it looks like another alternative for the wedding photographer to me.

Here are a few of quick ideas:
1 - Give it to the B&G as an electronic honeymoon album to preview their wedding.
2 - It could serve as a electronic proof book.
3 - Maybe it could be included with the wedding album after a certain minimum order.
4 - How about using it as a portable electronic portfolio?
5 - Let the B&G's parents pass it around at the wedding reception.

Hey, those are just a few ideas dancin' in my brain for this cool little gizmo.

2 Tera-Byte SD Card
OK, what's 24x32mm and 2.1mm thick? How about a 2 tera-byte SD card for your Canon Sure Shot? Yep, you heard right - 2 TERA-BYTES. That's an estimated 100 HD movies or 480 hours of HD recording or 136,000 fine-grade photos, or 4000 RAW images. Man, one of these little puppy's would cover me for an entire wedding! The SD Association is releasing the "specification" for the new SDXC cards. Their press release - you can read it over at Ephotozine right here [link] - The SD Association points to 64 gig cards being first to be offered.

Think how this will impact all of us - not just photographers, but anyone requiring lots of storage in small places. I can see it now - new laptops with "instant on" capabilities and storage to spare! All sounds pretty cool to me!

A Few More For The Road
Impact Protection For Your Camera

When LaDawn and I were picking out her new cell phone a week ago, one of the “up-sells” was the neoprene protective cover for her new Verizon "Dare". Well, it turns out you can get the same thing for your camera too. I found the post about it over at the Imaging Insider, a blog always packed with insider information and worth the visit. It’s made by the Camera Armor Company and does exactly the same thing for your camera that the protective cover does for La Dawn’s phone – worth a peek [link ].

PMA Predictions
With the Photo Marketing Association [link] PMA show happening in Las Vegas next week, Photography Bay has some predictions for you. The PMA show is another one of those venues where the camera, lens, and equipment manufacturer latest and greatest goodies and make announcements about what’s down the pike. Hey, it always kind of fun to see how many of these guesses turn out to be true. Anyway, check out Eric’s best guesses [link] and tune in next week to see how many he guessed correctly.

Hey gang, that’s it for me today. It’s the first day back after a week long trip and my desk is heaped pretty high – time to start digging in. See everybody tomorrow for another episode of Technique Tuesday. See ya’ then, -David


  1. Hey David the event at B&H how much is it?


  2. I'm interested in your review of the Mini PW. remember there is a bug and it doesn't work with the new 5D Mark II (I think you have that). Was that pg 39 of the manual?

  3. Thanks for the plugs David. Unfortunately, my speculation regarding DSLRs is not looking so great right now. We'll see if this week turns out any better...

  4. Thanks, the Digital PhotoBook could be e great gatget...

  5. Good Morning David,
    after seeing your tutorials here and at Kelby I have decided to upgrade to Quantum and the Trio is really getting my attention. Have you had a chance to try it out and if you have what are your thoughts on it. Especially as an off camera light.
    Thank You
    Jim Brandano