If you have heard anything lately about the Olympus E-M5 Mark II, it’s probably something to do with the 40 megapixel High-Res Shot Mode. However, this isn’t the only feature of the new OM-D camera that should be piquing your interest.
Olympus E-M5 Mark II is More Than Just 40 Megapixels
Featuring a redesigned 16 megapixel sensor, and the Truepic VII image processor, the camera also offers a mechanical shutter of 1/8000 of a second. In S-AF mode, a maximum rate of 10 frames per second is possible. Shutter shock is now remedied by an Anti-shock Mode, while Silent Mode allows electronic shutter speeds of 1/16000 of a second, eliminating all sound from the shutter, and putting it in direct competition of other models already offering this feature (Fujifilm).
These features of the New Olympus E-M5 Mark II aren’t even the whole story, as the list goes on to include 81-point Auto Focus, 5-axis in-body image stabilization providing 5.0 EV steps of exposure compensation, and a working minimum handheld shutter speed of 1/4 of a second.
If you still aren’t impressed, Olympus has also upped the resolution of the EVF and the touchscreen LCD, thus improving the E-M5’s user interface.
Capable of recording Full HD at multiple frame rates, and with audio monitoring supported via the HLD-8G external grip, the new Olympus E-M5 Mark II is also gunning for better video performance.
Focus Peaking even gets an upgrade, now offered in four colors: red, yellow, black, and white.
Of course, the standard Olympus art filters all make an appearance, but this gimmick seems outweighed by the inclusion of the ever-useful built-in WiFi.
All in all, there’s a lot going on with the Olympus E-M5 Mark II besides that 40 Megapixel Sensor Shifting Publicity stunt. Of course, how all of this handles in actual practice is another story entirely.
Not unlike choosing other things, selecting a good 17-50mm f2.8 lens requires some research. Hopefully you’re doing that right now, and if you are, you will find this article fairly helpful.
So, without further ado…
Choosing your 17-50 f2.8 Lens: Canon/Nikon, Tamron, and Sigma
Brand name optics are good stuff. They usually receive ample attention from the same company that manufactured your camera, and as such, will offer fantastic results. Canon offers the 17-55 f2.8 IS USM, while Nikon offers the 17-55 f2.8 G ED-IF AF-S. These lenses feature great ergonomics, superior optics, and a price point to match. In Canon’s case, you receive some banging IS while in the case of Nikon, you pay a lot of money for some fantastic optics and the ability to switch to manual focus at anytime by simply using the manual focus ring. Brand Name 17-50mm f2.8 lenses – both Canon and Nikon – are reasonably sharper and less prone to chromatic aberration than less-expensive models.
The Canon 17-55 f2.8 IS USM lens.
If you are a Canon photographer, purchase the Canon 17-55mm f2.8 if you are an event photographer, or shoot in low light. If you shoot in response to your environment – for example, if you are doing photojournalism, documentary work, or event photography where a flash is not preferred, the IS will save your bacon time and time again.
The Nikon 17-55 f2.8 G DX AF-S lens.
If you are a Nikon photographer, invest in the Nikon 17-55mm f2.8 G lens if you want the very best image quality (sharpness, contrast) out of your cropped-sensor DSLR. A wide range of photographers will benefit from this lens, but the lack of Nikon’s VR will not lend it to the exact same applications as the Canon lens listed above. Instead, this lens is all about raw quality and ease-of-use in regard to manual focusing. The cost of this lens may actually prohibit many photographers from buying it.
Sharper than the junk that Sigma makes, but not as sharp as Nikon or Canon, these bad boys are the runners-up in terms of quality. In terms of bang-for your-buck, though, they cannot be beat. Image quality is adequate or excellent for amateurs and pros alike, but the most exacting of pixel peepers may find them sub-par. These lenses also come in two flavors: those with stabilization (Tamron calls it VC), and those without.
The Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 (with VC).
Buy the Tamron VC version if you shoot in low light, and don’t use a flash. Don’t expect whisper-like auto focus, but don’t expect a coffee grinder, either. Suffice to say, it should be seen as a budget option offering moderate sharpness, some stabilization, and a lower price point than brand-name competitors.
The Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 (without VC).
Buy the non-VC version if you shoot primarily in daylight, use a tripod (for longer exposures) or a flash, or shoot at ungodly-high ISO. Don’t buy the non-VC version because you need the VC version but don’t want to spend the money, because you can’t really make up for the lack of stabilization short of changing your shooting style.
Buy this lens if you absolutely must have a 17-50mm f2.8 equivalent. Otherwise, meh.
The Sigma 17-50mm f2.8mm lens.
For those on a budget, she can’t be beat. Offering stabilization in the form of Sigma’s OS, this lens provides all the specs needed to woo those who aren’t familiar with back-focus issues on older Sigma lenses.
Other Options (from Sigma)
Sigma also makes a decent 18-35mm f1.8 lens that will provide phenomenal results for most photographers. Hallmarks of this lens include that rare 1.8 constant aperture, improved image sharpness, and generally fantastic build quality. The down side? Lower zoom range.
A Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 lens.
Buy this lens if you shoot events or environmental portraits. Photographers who prefer to work at a longer distance may not appreciate the benefits of this lens. However, sliver-thin depth of field at a wide range of focal lengths may just win them over.
If less expensive lenses are your cup of tea, you could also consider the 17-70mm (also from Sigma), offering an f2.8-4 variable aperture that may not be as sweet or as expensive as a constant f2.8. Image quality is still good though, and should not be dismissed solely on the basis of the Sigma Brand.
The Sigma 17-70mm f2.8-4 Contemporary lens.
Who should look into this lens? Those who want a better lens than the one that came with their camera. This lens is a great option for people who want longer zoom range, a faster aperture, and maybe some slightly sharper images to boot.
Tis the season…to cobble together last minute gifts for people you feel obligated to give gifts to. But if you have a photographer in your life, here are some ideas to help you choose stocking stuffers – or a full blown Christmas list.
Just remember that these are suggestions. Not every photographer will want a Toy camera lens, or 3200 ISO film.
A Holga Toy Lens made to fit Canon EOS Cameras.
Numero Uno on our list, and arguably the most fun, is toy lenses. You can find theses suckers on ebay and Amazon for daaaaaaaaaamn cheap, son. They aren’t quality lenses, but at $44 and under, what’s not to love? Don’t speaker camera lingo? Here are some simple steps:
- Ask your photographer what camera they use. Example: Fuji x-e2
- Type that stuff into a search bar with the words “lomo lens” behind it
A lens cap keeper/buckle thing-a-ma-jig.
Lens Cap Keeper/Buckle
Well, this one is pretty useful. You can get them cheap at most camera stores. But the coolest looking ones (in my opinion) are on ebay. Just search for “lens cap buckle” and see what comes up.
Note: there are different size buckles for different size lens caps. Check the size (listed in mm) on the bottom of the lens cap (or caps) in question. Popular sizes include 37, 43, 49, 52, 58, 62, 67, and 77mm.
A Battery Grip designed to fit the Canon 5D Mk II.
Batteries and/or a Battery Grip
This one will work best for those photographers in your life who don’t already have tons of batteries or a battery grip. Both batteries and grips may be specific to one camera model, or multiple camera models may use the same batteries and grips. Search online or call up a camera store to find the right items.
A neoprene neck strap with buckle-style releases for easy use.
Consider these the woolen socks of Christmas morning. As good as receiving a new camera? No. Better than receiving something non-camera related? Hell yes. Go flashy for those who want to stand out from the crowd, or give an enthusiast photographer something designed more for comfort or ease of use than personal style. Thanks to a large number of newbie photographers theses days, the amount of whacky (or downright professional) straps out there has really taken off.
The ATR3350IS from Audio Technica can’t be beat.
A cheap-as-chips (but still pretty awesome) accessory for video work (or recorded notes!) this device can run as cheap as $29.99 and offer audio much improved over the camera’s built-in mics. Audio Technica’s ATR3350iS is a particularly enticing model, with a built in adapter that allows you to monitor the audio feed with a pair of headphones while recording.
A roll of Kodak 120 film (left) and a roll of Fujifilm 35mm (right).
Ah, the half-stocking stuffer because hey let’s face it, film ain’t for everyone. Hopefully it is for your photographer, though, because film is relatively inexpensive, fun, and educational. Yayyy!
So here’s a basic guide:
You want 35mm film if your photographer shoots 35mm film. Telltale signs of this film include plastic containers, and pudgy little cardboard boxes with the number “135” on it.
If your photographer shoots medium format (120 film), you should buy that. It usually has black paper on the back and gets rolled up when it’s finished. It comes out of the box in a little foil or plastic wrapping. It doesn’t come out of the camera neatly wound up in a metal canister.
Low ISO film will have a number from 12-100 on it. This stuff is smooooth. The favorite of landscape photographers and some portrait photographers who lose their marbles when every single detail isn’t right. Buy this film if your photographer likes to shoot in bright daylight, talks about sharpness a lot, or prefers large prints.
This speed of film usually ranges from 200-400 ISO. It’s great for photographers who do indoor shooting, use flashes in their photography, or take some action shots. Buy 400 ISO film if your photographer talks about “pushing” or “pulling” film.
If your photographer shoots in low light (indoors, at night) or likes to photograph lots of action with a film camera (a few sports photographers, a LOT of street photographers), look no further than this film. Look for ISO numbers between 800 and 6400. This can be tricky, though, because certain cameras can’t use film this high. Do some research online using this formula:
camera model + “asa range” (or “film speed range”)
If you can’t for the life of you figure that out, call a camera shop. A good shop will give you great service even before you step foot into the store.
What’s So Great About The Superlux HD-681 EVO?
The next and most recent in a line of reputable, reliable yet affordable headphones from the relativity unknown headphone company Superlux, the HD-681 EVO offer amazing sound at an even more amazing price. While being on the cutting edge of fashion isn’t a strong-suit of the Superlux fame, this is quite possibly the coolest looking of their line, and the most reminiscent of a high level Sennheiser headphone vs their standard AKG look-alikes.
The Superlux HD-681 EVO offers a nicely balanced sound profile while offering a level of bass you wont find in most “audiophile” headphones. Generally I have been left missing a bit of that thumping bass that’s so quintessential to the type of music I listen to most, House. With the Superlux, the HD-681 EVO I’m not left missing anything. While it’s not the type of THUMP THUMP THUMP bass you can actually feel, it IS a pleasant and fairly balanced amount. While the mids on these headphones are indeed slightly recessed, they can be made slightly brighter by removing some of the padding between the driver and your ears.
HD-681 EVO Mod Heaven
One of the coolest things about the Superlux EVO, the HD-681 and indeed the whole superlux line is that their relativity easy to customize and with such low price points they are not so scary to mess with. Would you ever remove factory padding from a $700 headphone and experiment with stuffing other materials in their place to see how the sound changes? Probably not…but what if your audiophile quality cans are only $50? You’d probably stuff a bologna sandwich in there if you thought it would make the sound better. Point is, with a not so prohibitive cost, these headphones offer 100’s of possibilities for audio enthusiasts willing to experiment a little.
That being said, messing with the Superlux, the HD-681 EVO to get them to sound right is certainly not a requirement. Right out of the box, even pre-burn in the EVO’s sound great and deliver a bright yet warm and lush sound. Their semi-open design makes for amazing sound-staging and the closed part lends it self to blocking out enough outside noise so you can enjoy your music peacefully.
For the price of $49.99, there are not too many headphones that can effectively deliver that which the Superlux EVO brings in droves. Precision sound, value and a touch of class and style. Get yours at Audio46.com or here at HandBDigital.com today!
For years now headphones and the use of personal audio players have been on the rise. Ever since Steve Jobs introduced us to the brick sized ipod of the early 2000’s, the world has been living life with their headphones in. The trouble is, it’s not always easy to find the best headphone store.
That’s why we launched our very own headphone store. Audio46.com, our sister site is a site developed and designed with headphone lovers in mind. Sometimes when you’re looking for a specific product on H and B it can be hard to find with 1000’s of products from every category. That’s why we created Audio46.
A Headphone Store With A Personal Touch
Just like at H and B Digital, Customer service is #1 at Audio46 headphones, and it seems to show with the highest customer service score of any headphone specialty shop in the city! We make it easy to shop for the headphones you crave with helpful categories like best dj headphones under $50, best headphones under $100, under $200, Shop by Brand, and Shop By Style. Whether it’s In-ear, On-Ear or Over-Ear headphones you need audio46 has you covered!
Check out our ratings on Yelp and Shopper Approved, and you’ll see why Audio46 is quickly changing the way New Yorkers shop for headphones. Audio46 AND H and B Digital are authorized dealers of Audio-Technica, Sennheiser, Sol Republic, Panasonic, JVC, Rhythmz and more! With 100’s of the top names in headphones, they have something for everyone.
If it’s up close and personalized service you’re looking for, just come into the store at 29 W. 46th street and try out as many of the headphones as you need to find that perfect pair.
Visit Audio46.com Today!
Come in and check out some of Sennheisers new products the URBANITE and the Momentum!
Just announced (and just arriving in some retail locations), the Olympus E-PL7 appears to be little more than a glorified “selfie” cam aimed squarely at the narcissist in us all. But the performance of this plucky little pipsqueak says otherwise.
A Beautiful Manifestation: Shooting with the Olympus E-PL7
When I was in college, my father gave me his old Pen FT. I fell in love right away. Besides the fact that you could cram 72 frames into a 36-exposure roll of 35mm, the design was breathtaking. No telltale hump of a penta-prism. No unnecessary/gimmicky features. Not even a hot shoe.
Then I found out that Olympus was reviving the Pen cameras and I was amped UP. Then I found out what the new digital Pens looked like, and I was no longer amped at all.
I believe that a tool is a tool. If it looks bad, but it still does the job, it is still a good tool. But if you can have a beautiful tool, and it still does the job, even better.
When the E-P5 came out, with that sexy “Olympus PEN” emblazoned on the front of the camera, I was sold. When I handled that camera, I was astounded at the image quality. And when I looked at the pricetag, I was a little sad.
Enter the Olympus E-PL7, a lightweight, fun, and more economical alternative to the E-P5. The image quality is excellent. With built-in WiFi, an articulating LCD screen that can also be front-facing, touchscreen controls, and a slick design, it’s plain to see this baby isn’t a slouch. Certainly, it is worlds above the E-PL5 in comparison. Just holding the camera, and firing off a couple of shots confirms as much.
“A really good camera has something I suppose you might describe as its own distinctive aura.”
Perhaps Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki said it best: If you want to change your photographs, you need to change cameras. Changing cameras means that your photographs will change. A really good camera has something I suppose you might describe as its own distinctive aura.
So what was the review? I took the Olympus E-PL7 out for a stroll on 50th street, from 6th Avenue over to Lexington, and then back down to 46th, and then back to 6th.
Pros for Street Shooting:
- kit lens ain’t bad wide open (it is so-so when you zoom with it; you get workable results, but no “oomph”
- unobtrusive/looks like a toy/not threatening
- chicks dig it
- looks vintage (hipsters may not roll their eyes at you. maybe. unless they’re doing it ironically.)
Cons for street shooting:
- controls are limited
- maybe a little cramped for big hands
- not a Leica rangefinder
Overall, I was amazed at how strong of an impression this camera made on me. Unboxing it with some other people, I jokingly dubbed it the “Narcissist 5000” because of that front-facing LCD. However, after an hour touring midtown with the camera, I had come to a different camera: something fun but functional, offering capability at an economical price.
SNYPEX, LLC, a company based in Long Island, New York, specializing in the production of premium grade performance sports optics products for the industrial, military and consumer markets, is pleased to announce the release of its Knight ED (extra-low dispersion glass) binocular series, designed for all outdoor activities: from birding to biking, hunting to safaris, and a multitude of activities in virtually any environment. The Knight ED binocular series feature six models of the full-mid to compact prism sizes.
SNYPEX Knight ED Series Binoculars are offered at an average price point of $439.00. Its products include the compact Knight ED 8×32 and 10×32 binoculars, as well as the larger 10×42, 10×50, 8×42 and 8×50
SNYPEX Knight Optics Bak-4 prisms use precision-crafted ED glass with a higher degree of color correcting and image-lacking chromatic aberration, resulting in true-to-life images with startling clarity and color accuracy. Fully multi-coated optics and phase correction coatings enable a wide field of view, unusually close focus distance varying from 6.56 to 4.92 ft., generous eye relief, and a comfortable, functional open bridge body design that is both fog and waterproof, nitrogen-filled, lightweight, and strong because of its magnesium/alloy body.
All SNYPEX LLC Knight ED Binoculars are protected with a durable rubber housing to absorb shocks and are backed by a five year warranty.
“It is our pleasure to bring high definition precision ED binoculars with competitive pricing to sportsmen, distributors, and dealers worldwide,” says Sam Shaheen, founder and president of SNYPEX, LLC.
- Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass produces outstanding color fidelity and high quality images
- Bak-4, Phase Coated Roof Prisms
- 100% fully multi-coated optics, green-coated on four sides of the prism
- Large aperture apochromatic lens with water-repellant coatings
- Exceptional image quality in all lighting environments
- Rubber-armored, shockproof, anti-slip body
- Long eye relief and twist up eye-cups, compatible for eyeglass wearers
- Minimum focus distance of 4.92 f on 50mm and 40mm models, 6.56 ft on 42mm model
- Magnesium alloy for maximum durability and lightweight body
- Fully waterproof, fogproof, nitrogen-filled allowing submersion to 1 meter for 15 minutes
- Wide field of view
- Ergonomic open hinge design
- Extra-low image aberration even at the edge of the field of view
About SNYPEX, LLC
SNYPEX, LLC is a sports optics company based in Long Island, New York, offering an extensive line of products, including ED binoculars, ED spotting scopes, ED digiscopes, military laser range finders, and more. The powerful instruments are ideal for all outdoor activities, from birding to biking, hunting to safaris, and a multitude of other activities in any environment.
SNYPEX has set a new standard for high-performance optics, raising the bar to a level of quality rarely achieved in the field.
These Canon Instant Rebates are in effect now until March 1st. So if you’re looking for savings from one of the leading names in the business, take advantage of the savings. Here are setups eligible for the Canon Instant Rebates.
Canon Instant Rebates
Canon EOS 6D
Like the 5D, this camera offers extreme potential for its price point, with 20 megapixels, a full frame, and everything else you’ve come to expect from Canon.
EOS 6D Body Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,899.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $2,298.99 Final Price
EOS 6D EF 24-105mm IS USM Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $2,499.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $2,898.99 Final Price
Canon EOS 7D
Like that professional performance, but don’t want to break your bank? Snag the EOS 7D and get HD Video, an 18 megapixel full-frame sensor, and improved auto focus.
EOS 7D Body Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,499.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $1,898.99 Final Price
EOS 7D EF 28-135mm IS USM Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,699.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $2,098.99 Final Price
EOS 7D EF-S 18-135mm IS Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,799.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $2,198.99 Final Price
Canon EOS 70D
The prosumer-turned-pro camera that offers stunning HD Video and versatile performance in a compact design. Canon Instant Rebates abound on this model, offering you the chance to save big on your perfect setup.
EOS 70D Body Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,199.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $1,598.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF 18-55mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,349.00 + $649.99 = $250 Instant Rebate = $1,748.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF-S 18-135mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,549.00 + $649.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $1,948.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF 18-55mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $1,349.00 + $349.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $1,548.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF-S 18-135mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $1,549.00 + $349.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $1,748.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF 18-55mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $1,349.00 + $299.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $1,498.99 Final Price
EOS 70D EF-S 18-135mm IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $1,549.00 + $299.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $1,698.99 Final Price
Canon EOS 60D
A mid-range shooter that shows promise in an enthusiasts hands, the 60D is the perfect next-step-up for any evolving photographer.
EOS 60D Body Kit
Reg. Price: $899.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $699.99 Final Price
EOS 60D EF-S 18-135mm IS Lens Kit
Reg. Price: $1,199.00 – $200 Instant Rebate = $999.00 Final Price
EOS 60D EF-S 18-200mm IS Lens Kit
Reg. Price: $1,299.00 – $200 Instant Rebate = $1,099.00 Final Price
EOS 60D Body Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $899.99 + $649.99 – $450 Instant Rebate = $1,099.98 Final Price
EOS 60D EF-S 18-135mm IS Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,199.00 + $649.99 – $450 Instant Rebate = $1,398.99 Final Price
EOS 60D EF-S 18-200mm IS Lens Kit + EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Reg. Price: $1,299.00 + $649.99 – $450 Instant Rebate = $1,498.99 Final Price
Canon EOS Rebel T5i
The newest addition to the Rebel Line, the T5i offers an entry-level experience with an 18 megapixel APS-C sensor, as well as an improved ISO and auto focus.
EOS Rebel T5i Body Kit
Reg. Price: $699.99 – $50 Instant Rebate = $649.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit
Reg. Price: $849.99 – $50 Instant Rebate = $799.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-135 IS STM Lens Kit
Reg. Price: $1,049.00 – $50 Instant Rebate = $999.00 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $849.99 + $349.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $999.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-135 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $1,049.00 + $349.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $1,198.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $849.99 + $299.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $949.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-135 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $1,049.00 + $299.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $1,148.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $849.99 + $199.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $899.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T5i EF-S 18-135 IS STM Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $1,049.00 + $199.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $1,098.99 Final Price
Canon EOS Rebel SL1
A newcomer that boasts the title of most lightweight DSLR ever made, this camera offers excellent creative control in an ultra-portable package. Get great savings with extra Canon Instant Rebates when you pair it with qualifying lenses!
EOS Rebel SL1 Body Kit
Reg. Price: $599.99 – $100 Instant Rebate = $499.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel SL1 EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit
Reg. Price: $749.99 – $100 Instant Rebate = $649.99 Final Price
EOS Rebel SL1 EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $749.99 + $349.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $849.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel SL1 EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $749.99 + $299.99 – $250 Instant Rebate = $799.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel SL1 EF-S 18-55 IS STM Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $749.99 + $199.99 – $200 Instant Rebate = $749.98 Final Price
Canon EOS Rebel T3i
The T5i boiled down to a bare-bones shooter with video capabilities, the T3i is great place to start with Canon DSLRs and your wallet.
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $599.99 + $349.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $799.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-135 IS Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $799.99 + $349.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $999.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $599.99 + $299.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $749.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-135 IS Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $799.99 + $299.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $949.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $599.99 + $199.99 – $100 Instant Rebate = $699.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3i EF-S 18-135 IS Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $799.99 + $199.99 – $100 Instant Rebate = $899.98 Final Price
Canon EOS Rebel T3
The most basic of Canon’s DSLRs, the T3 has been around for a while now, and for good reason. Offering a no-nonsense experience perfect for still shooters who don’t care for extra bells and whistles, it is also a great gift for those who have outgrown more compact cameras.
EOS Rebel T3 EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Reg. Price: $449.99 + $349.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $649.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3 EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Reg. Price: $449.99 + $299.99 – $150 Instant Rebate = $599.98 Final Price
EOS Rebel T3 EF-S 18-55 IS II Lens Kit + EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III
Reg. Price: $449.99 + $199.99 – $100 Instant Rebate = $549.98 Final Price
This year, a lot of folks are buying the E-M1, but I’ve encountered even more people asking about the E-M5. And even though it’s already over a year old, the camera is still a worthwhile investment for many photographers. But why? To be sure, I too was somewhat skeptical when I first picked up the E-M5. Soon, though, I realized that what so many reviewers had pointed out as shortcomings or deficiencies are in fact selling points for this robust and versatile camera system.
Testing the E-M5
The E-M5 is incredibly light. With no grip, there’s room to spare for those with big hands. The slim body is more reminiscent of film cameras than any other retro-looking digital bodies, and this really improves the portability. Even without a pronounced grip, a rubber thumb pad on the back of the camera offers enough control to avoid dropping it. The EVF is excellent as well, offering 100% coverage and a slight magnification of 1.15x.
The user interface works for beginners and pros alike. A touch screen LCD and intuitive menu lend themselves to novices, while two control dials and three customizable function buttons reel in the pros. Shooting with the E-M5 was more fun that any of the Pens or even the E-M1. While having to delve into the menus to change white balance and ISO, there’s no confusing switches that change the function of the dials, like the haphazard “2×2” setup on the E-M1.
The only drawback I could find in the design of this camera was the position of the tripod mount, which was just a little off-center, and could prove bothersome to panoramic shooters. Otherwise, I was generally impressed with the layout and construction of the camera.
Another high point for this camera is the image quality, no doubt stemming from the pairing of its 16 megapixel sensor with the TruePic IV processor. The max resolution one gets from this combo is 4608×3456. Image quality is further secured with 12 white balance presets, 5-axis image stabilization, and an ISO range of 200-25600. I have yet to print anything shot by the E-M5, but even at larger magnification the image quality holds up. Finally, the ISO range is excellent, only showing true noise around ISO 1600. I found I could live with it, as I could with most of the images shot at higher ISO settings (the only exception here being 25600, which reminds me of grainy film).
Should you still desire it, you can use one of the art filters to give your photos a certain look, like this black and white shot of pigeons.
Here we have perhaps the most pronounced shortcoming for pros and serious amateurs – the lack of focus peaking, which is available in both the E-P5 and the E-M1. Although I found manual focus easy enough, I can see where some users would have difficulties. With 37 points of focus, though, relying on the camera’s contrast-detect auto focus isn’t necessarily a bad idea.
The E-M5 kit includes the 12-50mm f/3.5-5.6. And while I generally poke fun at most kit lenses, I strongly urge the use of the 12-50. Besides having the focal length equivalency of a 24-100mm lens on a full frame or 35mm camera (a range that covers wide angle to medium-length telephoto ), the lens is weather resistant, and offers the photographer a third customizable function button. The lens mode ring is another key factor in why I suggest it – featuring both manual and electric-assisted zoom, the whole setup is richly rewarded by a third, close-focusing macro mode at 43mm.
Video recording is easy and straightforward – exactly what you’ve come to expect in most top-shelf cameras. While resolution probably suffers from the Micro Four Thirds Sensor, there’s no difficulty in shooting video with the OM-D E-M5, since it has a dedicated button allowing near-instant video capture, regardless of current camera settings or scene modes.
In conclusion, the E-M5 is a well-rounded camera offering a cost-effective alternative to the pricier E-M1. Additionally, analog photographers desiring to make the move to digital may find the shape and size of the E-M5 to be more comfortable than other models. Finally, I recommend getting your hands on one of these so you can try it out yourself, considering its merits with your own needs in mind.
A new year means new opportunities for growth, so make sure you’re making the most of your photography by increasing online visibility for your work. There are a lot of great options out there, and while many of us probably already have a Twitter, Flickr, and professional website, there’s still plenty of other avenues to consider.
Four Platforms for Increasing Online Visibilty for Your Photography
Still growing, and no longer just the province of trust-fund hipsters, this blogging platform allows free or paid layouts – both with HTML code you can tailor to your needs. A popular relationship with younger crowds and the more vocal sectors of the internet mean you’ll receive a fair amount of traffic without having to actually do anything.
Viral images or photos with a viral appeal will work best on Tumblr, where users like or reblog material over and over again, growing your traffic exponentially.
An excellent alternative to the DIY approach, WordPress can give you a photo blog or a pro-looking website, complete with all the plugins and widgets you need to make the most of your web experience. The online community that this site has already fostered enhances its appeal, with plenty of tutorials for anything you could possible want to do.
WordPress is a great platform for just about any kind of image, but I especially recommend those photos that form the backbone of your portfolio. The strong sale-makers for your clients.
Upload, share, and sell. What’s not to love? The site offers many photographers more than just a shot at increasing online visibility. Photographers subscribing to Smugmug can make money from the sale of their prints. Photographers take the photos and Smugmug handles prints, shipping, and customer service, as well as legal fees. All for a 20% cut. Not bad indeed.
Excel at Smugmug by showcasing your work that will sell – think of images people would buy for consumption, and post, post, post!
Just when Flickr started to suck, another website came to fill its need. Photographers the world over are rejoicing and joining up, with easy connectibility to Facebook not only increasing online visibility, but multiplying the relevance of your photos in social media. And as an added bonus, there is no “save” option when users right-click on an image (regardless of browser), discouraging theft of your images.
Here is a site where you can let your creativity fly. With as much focus on creative genius as Flickr used to have, this option guarantees your hard work and vision won’t go unnoticed.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there and get seen. Great images deserve to be shared, and with all the confusing technology out there today, it really is time we started using it to our advantage.