Well I have a new toy. No it’s not a $3500 underwater housing for my 5D (though that would be awesome). I’ve been shooting with a little Canon Powershot D10 for the last week and it’s been a lot of fun. If you are considering a trip to anywhere water-lush, I suggest giving the D10 a shot. It’s not perfect, but it sure beats spending a boat load for an SLR underwater housing if you’re strapped for cash.
First, the D10 is waterproof and shockproof. I tested it thoroughly (trust me, I break point-n-shoot cameras regularly). I carried it around in my swimming suit pocket and sat on it, swam with it, dropped it out of moving golf carts and threw it to friends when we didn’t have a ball. The thing is solid. I didn’t have a strap and this was a crucial error. If you are going to parade around with one, definitely invest in some kind of way to connect it to your person.
Next, it’s massively fun to have an amphibious camera that can fit in your pocket. I underestimated how much fun it would be and spent a very long time on various bizarre photo missions (#43. Try to take a photo with the lead singer from Kings of Leon, underwater. *Unsuccessful, but close). Even if you are just in a pool, the camera is worth trying.
The photos above are a few of the cooler ones I got. Dolphins are kind of a cheating way to make a photo look cool, but still, the colors and clarity are nice, especially for a wee little camera. These photos were shot with sand everywhere, all over the lens, and my complete lack of concern for the camera’s well-being. Pretty cool I’d say — it’s nice to not have to treat your camera like a fragile little hamster (5D).
On the negative side, it’s very bulky for a point-n-shoot. If you are in water, who cares, but if you are looking for a one stop shop that you can also bring out with you at night, this isn’t it. Putting it in your pants pocket renders that leg odd looking as it protrudes rather unfortunately. Personally, I also find it ugly, but I gravitate towards all black cameras, so take that with a grain of sea salt. The camera definitely looks more like a toy than a Bell & Ross.
This post certainly cements my affinity for underwater photos (Asako Narahashi will always reign supreme). I have a bunch more, but most are of my friends and I floating in the water, and we isn’t Facebook friends!
RED is finally bringing a prosumer class camera to bear and it looks like the release is imminent. While certainly not cheap at nearly $5,000 for the “lens and brain kit”, it certainly makes for a compelling alternative to the Canon 5D MK2. The aesthetics on the RED cameras (founded by Oakley’s Jim Jannard) are a little to reminiscent of those MP3 goggles Dog The Bounty Hunter wears but there’s no denying the quality of the output.
All the of RED stuff might as well be vaporware to me, I know it must exist somewhere but I’ve never seen it in person or even heard of anyone owning or using one of their cameras. Here’s a video of someone actually holding (apparently not using though) a Scarlet. I really like the screen configuration. Does anyone around here own or use a RED? Does it live up to the hype? Do you get free MP3 goggles with it?
This is the S1, Leica’s first digital camera. Introduced in 1996, it was a digital scanning back that could work with various lenses. Each exposure took 185 seconds to complete so had to be shot using continuous light. You might think that such an old digicam would produce inferior results, but apparently it was quite the opposite:
“Though slow, the S1 yielded 76Mb @ 24-bit (151Mb @ 48-bit), 5140 x 5140, 12-bit RGB image files that contained little if any of the artifacting, blooming, and fringing that continue to plague us to this very day” – B&H
And it operated at ISO 50! (the film speed) Pretty good for ’96, and it would only set you back $21,500… I’m loving the look of this thing which stands in stark contrast to the subsequent and far more familiar looking Leica S2 model. The second to last (with the rackmount processor) apparently depicts the “Highspeed Kit” which dramatically reduced the scanning time per image.
Here are some pages from the original brochure featuring some example output from the S1: Page 1 . Page 3 . Page 5 . Page 7 . Page 8
Image sources eBay Auction, B&H, Leica Forum via Gizmodo
Polaroid hinted at a potential rebirth for instant photography today with this teaser sent to Engadget. Looks intriguing; the slot at the front is just enough to get me lusting after this. Will be really interesting to see if they can recapture some of their former glory with a new instant camera. But in this day and age of 8MP camera phones I wonder if the thrill of the instant physical copy might be lost on most. How ever would you Facebook it!!?
I’m personally hoping for some nice balance of tempered throw-back aesthetics with a healthy dose of new features. From the vague image they’ve provided, it’s looking pretty clean. But knowing how they roll now, I’d be surprised if they really pull it off.
Of course, you can always just use Impossible Project film with your SX-70…
All of this recent hype about the FujiFilm X100 has really forwarded my attention towards Leica and some of their compact cameras. Namely the M8 and M9. Sure they may be expensive but it’s definitely on my “to own” list.
If you’ve used one of these or better yet own a Leica then I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Images via Ffffound
FujiFilm has just released a gorgeous, large-sensor compact camera that was inspired by traditional analog film cameras. The camera, called the FinePix X100, has a 12.3MP APS-C CMOS sensor (approx. 1.6x crop factor). The X100 also has this new feature called the ‘hybrid’ viewfinder that allows the user to switch between optical and electronic viewfinders and project shooting information into the optical viewfinder. If all that was too much for you, check out this video.
More importantly than that though, I find the subtle design of the lip over the LCD, the viewfinder flip switch and the shutter and aperture controls to really sell me on the design. Listed below are also more of the features that are sending me head over heals. Oh wait a second, news just coming in: the camera ships March 2011 for $1000!
I’m very tempted to pre-order, but what are your thoughts on the camera?
Specs to consider:
• 12.3MP Sensor
• 1280 x 720 HD Video w/ sound
• F2-F16 Lens
• ISO 100-12800
• 5 FPS Shooting
• 2.8″ LCD
• 127(W) × 75(H) × 54(D) mm in size
• More info here
This “brand new”, supposedly made for NASA, Hasselblad MKWE can be yours for around $34K if you win this auction. It apparently comes as new in the original packaging. I love the concept of new-old stock; something about the idea of a product sitting undisturbed for decades in the original packaging is pretty cool. I have seen some classic synthesizers still sealed in the original box come up here and there on ebay, I even once saw a Rhodes piano, in the box, still unassembled. But none of those really compares to this beauty. The hardest part about getting this would be deciding whether to even use it or to preserve it in some sort of airtight viewing cube.
Auction via Sam Valenti
If you’re looking for a high end compact camera, the newly announced Nikon P7000 may just fit the bill. I’ve found myself leaving the full size SLR behind more and more lately so I’ve been thinking of filling the gap with something a bit more portable without sacrificing much in picture quality.
You can pick one up later this month for around $500. Plenty more info and specs over here.