Gadgets & Gizmos

AS MIRRORLESS cameras outsell DSLRs, it appears the manufacturers still selling DSLRs are pulling out all stops to extend the life of what is arguably photography’s most successful design to date. And one of the advantages the DSLR seems to have over mirrorless cameras is speed, or if not speed, power usage.

With a DSLR, the viewfinder is always ‘on’ because you’re looking through an optical path which requires no power, whereas with mirrorless cameras, you need an electronic viewfinder (or the rear LCD screen), and this not only chews through power, it can take a split second to power on. It’s this split second that is so important for sport and wildlife photographers - and perhaps this is who Canon has in mind for its latest EOS 90D.

The EOS 90D DSLR shoots 10 fps with autofocus tracking and 11 fps in Live View. Canon suggests the optical viewfinder better enables the responsiveness needed to shoot wildlife, such as birds in flight, while all the camera’s essential settings are still visible within the viewfinder, as we would expect. And given the EOS 90D isn’t powering an EVF, a fully charged battery can provide enough juice for up to 1300 shots.

Inside, the new camera features a 32.5-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor coupled with the DiG!C 8 processor. The processor also unlocks lens correction tools, including the Digital Lens Optimiser and Diffraction Correction, which produce corrected images straight out of the camera.

Also improved is eye autofocus tracking (so face and eye are on board, but not head detection as found in the new EOS-1D X Mark III – see article later in the magazine), working in collaboration with a 220,000-pixel RGB+IR metering sensor with flicker detection. This new sensor works from ISO 100 to 25,600 and the camera focuses in very low light, down to EV -5 when used with lenses with f1.4 or wider apertures.

For more information, visit https://www.canon.com.au/cameras/eos-90d

NO-LIMIT IMAGE EDITING AT HOME AND AWAY!

The Perfect Travelling Companion

Whether travelling abroad or on the couch at home, the new MobileStudio Pro lets you work wherever you want, whenever you want. By Peter Eastway.

At the end of a shoot, there’s nothing better than sitting down with a Wacom MobileStudio Pro to review and edit your work. Best of all, it doesn’t matter where you’re shooting because the battery powered MobileStudio Pro operates anywhere.

The Complete Package

I take it to Antarctica with me on one month voyages, to New Zealand for my art photography workshops with Tony Hewitt, and I’m just back from photo tours to Bhutan, Iceland and Bolivia, all accompanied by my trusty MobileStudio Pro.

Before listing the important improvements on the latest MobileStudio Pro, it’s worth explaining why I find it an essential tool for the way I work. At the heart of what we do as photographers, when editing our work, is make decisions about our images based on how they look on-screen.

Whether you’re using your files to make prints or simply to show them on social media, it’s important to start the process with a file that has correct colour and tone.

However, if you’re using a screen that is highly saturated or oozing with contrast, it’s very difficult to start from a neutral point and who knows what your photos are going to look like on other screens or as prints.

And that’s why I love the MobileStudio Pro because the screen is first class. In fact, it’s the best I’ve seen on a portable computer.

In my opinion, there aren’t that many portable computers (laptops and tablets) that have suitable screens for photography. They might look great for playing a movie or showing a business graph, but they struggle to accurately render my photographs.

Many laptop screens have good brightness, contrast and colour, but the resulting combination bears little resemblance to the photo files I am editing.

When working on my files, I need to see an accurate representation of colour and tone and this is where Wacom’s MobileStudio Pro excels.

On paper, the MobileStudio Pro 4k (3840 x 2160), 15.6-inch display offers 85% of the AdobeRGB colour space, but equally important is the silky-smooth tonal gradient (from white to black) and a low-sheen, etched-glass surface that produces a viewing screen that is ideal for photographers.

The result is exactly what I need when working out on location.

Working Creatively

Looking at a great screen is one half of the enjoyment, the other is being able to edit your photos with layers and adjustments using the Wacom Pro Pen 2.

(I could use my finger on the touchscreen, but in comparison to the Pro Pen 2, it is a rather blunt instrument!)

These days, there are a number of tablets and laptops offering pens, but none offer the precision and control of the Pro Pen 2.

It offers virtually lag-free pen performance with tilt response and 8,192 pen pressure levels for precision and control. And thanks to Wacom’s battery free, electro-magnetic resonance (EMR) technology, the well-balanced and ergonomically designed pens never need recharging, no matter how long a project takes.

But that’s the specifications talking. The real experience happens where the pen tip meets the screen. Optical bonding reduces parallax error (so you’re pointing precisely at the area you want to), while the etched glass surface creates the natural feel of pen on paper – and although that is probably designed more for artists, it is equally welcomed by photographers. It just feels and works great.

But wait, there’s more! Now add in the eight customisable, application specific ExpressKeys™, together with the Radial Menus, Multi-touch control and the included Wacom Stand. I can also use the MobileStudio Pro anywhere without a keyboard or a mouse. And I can use it on long haul flights, in hotels while on location, or curled up at home on the couch watching the cricket.

The MobileStudio Pro continues to offer its hybrid capability as well, allowing both Windows® and Mac® users to connect the device to their PC or Mac desktop workstation and use it as a Cintiq display (a Wacom Link™ Plus adaptor is required – sold separately).

However, the MobileStudio Pro isn’t just a pen and screen system, it’s a fully functional Windows 10 computer. When travelling, I’m working with Capture One, Adobe Creative Cloud and Davinci Resolve, exactly the same applications I use on my desktop at home and in the studio.

And then if I’m adding in some captions or some EXIF data to my files, and I want to check on the spelling of a location I’ve photographed, I simply switch over to my web browser and Google what I want to know.

The MobileStudio Pro has everything I need for travelling on the road and with the new model, it has some extra grunt as well.

More Power

When I started using the MobileStudio Pro many years ago, I was shooting 80-megapixel files and doing very little video. Today, my still files are up to 150-megapixels and I’m shooting quite a bit of 4K video as well. I noticed that my MobileStudio Pro didn’t seem to be as fast as it used to be – obviously!

The new Wacom MobileStudio Pro 16 solves all this by offering a range of improvements that are all designed to handle larger volumes of data more quickly.

It is now powered by an Intel Core i7 Quad-core processor, 16 GB memory, a 512 GB SSD and a NVIDIA Quadro P1000 graphics for highest performance.

Even better, a new back-door feature allows easy replacement and upgrade of the SSD and DDR memory, making the Wacom MobileStudio Pro future-proof for even the most challenging projects.

And it’s easy to do! I have just added in a 2TB SSD and ramped up the RAM to 32 GB, so now the MobileStudio Pro is flying faster still and, when travelling, I can fit in all my raw and video files without needing an external drive (but I still need an external drive for backups, of course).

For more information, visit www. wacom.com/en-au. And to purchase any of Wacom’s products, visit the Wacom eStore at buywacom.com.au/, or selected retailers.

As Special Wacom/Better Photography Promotion

10% OFF For Better Photography Readers

Use this coupon code in the Wacom eStore

BETTERPHOTO10

HAVE MORE FUN WITH A PEN AND DRAW ON YOUR CREATIVITY!

I N T U O S • C I N T I Q • M O B I L E S T U D I O  P R O

A Special Wacom/Better Photography Promotion

Photographers really should consider a Wacom pen solution – it gives you so much more control over your craft. By Peter Eastway.

And more control over your art as well!

Using a pen and tablet (or a pen and display) is vastly superior to a mouse, especially when it’s a Wacom!

While some aspects of post-production are just clicking buttons and dragging sliders, the creative side involves drawing masks, making selections and even moving curves. A pen is not only more comfortable and easier to use, it gives you the fine control you need to express yourself properly. And it’s fun to use!

The Wacom Pro Pen 2 provides 8,192 levels of pen pressure sensitivity, so the size of your brush can be adjusted simply by changing the pressure with which you press down on the tablet or display – and this is one of the keys to greater creativity.

There are three ways you can use a Wacom Pro Pen 2: with a tablet, with a screen display, or with a self-contained screen and computer combination. Let’s start with the Intuos tablets.

Intuos – Pen & Tablet

While Wacom makes Intuos tablets in three different sizes, we’re going to suggest you start with the Wacom Intuos Pro Small. It’s around the size of an A4 sheet of paper – or a page of this magazine, so it doesn’t take up much real estate.

The larger size Intuos tablets can be great, too, but we find there’s a balance between the larger size and how far you need to move your hand to operate yoursoftware. A smaller tablet means shorter, quicker movements. And, if you need to use bigger strokes for finer detail, you simply enlarge the image you’re working on. We think small is best!

Whether you’re using the Intuos Pro or one of Wacom’s pen displays, all the units offer a number of ‘shortcut’ buttons and a touch ring, which means you can operate your software without a keyboard if you wish.

You can purchase an Intuos Pro Small from the Wacom eStore for $349, less a 10% discount using the coupon code below.

Cintiq – Pen Display

Wacom has been producing pen tablets since 1983 and it also produced its first ever pen display, the original Cintiq, in 2001.

A pen display is the best of both worlds: not only are you using a pen, you’re working directly on the image itself. The Cintiq provides a high quality, colour managed display that doesn’t only look sensational, it is incredibly accurate as well.

Wacom’s introductory model is the Cintiq 16, offering a1920x1080 px full HD display with a fine layer of anti-glare film to prevent distracting reflections as you work.

With reduced parallax, your cursor appears exactly where you would expect and, built of durable, scratch resistant materials, Wacom Cintiq 16 is a creative tool you can rely on day after day.

At just $899 in Wacom’s eStore, the Wacom Cintiq 16 is a steal, especially when you take the 10% discount off using our coupon code!

However, if you’d like to take the display specifications a step further, check out the Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 and Pro 32, offering up to 4K resolution with 10-bit colour as well. These amazing pen displays are designed for the home studio and again, we recommend the Cintiq Pro 24 as the 32 is just a bit larger than is really needed for photography.

The Cintiq Pro 24 with touch-screen control will set you back $3499 in the Wacom eStore, less the 10% discount, of course!

MobileStudio Pro

A confession up front: I went for the big one! I use the 16-inch Wacom MobileStudio Pro because one of the pleasures of travel photography is being able to look at your work in the evening, pick out your best shots and edit a few of the photos that really inspire you.

Unlike the Wacom Cintiq Pro displays, which are best used in a studio attached to a computer, the Wacom MobileStudio Pro is a laptop computer and pen display all in one.

It has all the portability and functionality of a top-of-the-line laptop. I’m often leading a group of photographers when I’m travelling, so having a large screen to show them a Photoshop technique, play an audio visual or give a Powerpoint presentation is really helpful.

And yes, the MobileStudio Pro runs all my applications. It’s a fully fledged Windows computer – and it does simply everything, from Capture One and Davinci Resolve to emails and web browsing.

My Wacom MobileStudio Pro 16 i7 512GB (RRR $4299) has a 512GB SSD, it offers a massive 16GB RAM and the faster Intel Core i7 processor. It really is a seamless device and can happily replace my desktop computer too.

And with USB-C connectivity, attaching an external drive for extra storage, archiving and backing up is really easy and practical.

For more information, visit www.wacom.com/en-au. And to purchase any of Wacom’s products, visit the Wacom eStore at buywacom.com.au/, or selected retailers.

10% OFF for Better Photography readers - use this coupon code in the Wacom eStore - BETTERPHOTO10

STOP PRESS!!

NEW MOBILESTUDIO PROS!

Wacom has placed a teaser on its website announcing new MobileStudio Pro models which should be available right now! No doubt they will be faster and more powerful!

Check out the new units in the Wacom eStore – buywacom.com.au/

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