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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

In Focus: December 2010

Editors' Picks: Our annual look at products that the OP Editors found to be particularly interesting and useful for nature photographers.

This Article Features Photo Zoom
Wacom Cintiq 21UX
Using a Wacom pen tablet to edit images gives you a more intuitive way to work with photos. With its natural, interactive interface, the Wacom Cintiq 21UX has 21.3 inches of screen space for displaying software toolbars and large views of your images. The Grip Pen offers 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity for enhanced accuracy, with a pressure-sensitive eraser and two side switches that can be customized for commands such as double-click and right-click. Touch Strips and 16 programmable ExpressKeys give you instant control over zooming, modifier keys and shortcuts without having to reach for the keyboard. List Price: $1,999. Contact: Wacom, (800) 922-6613, www.wacom.com. —WP.
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 35mm F/1.4G
In cramped spaces or for making landscapes look more vast, nothing beats having a fast wide prime. The Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 35mm ƒ/1.4G delivers superb resolution and natural blur characteristics at maximum aperture. For greater sharpness and clarity, the Nano Crystal Coat reduces ghosting and flare across a wide range of wavelengths. Rear Focus does away with front-barrel rotation and lens-length changes to provide smooth, fast autofocus. The M/A Focus Mode Switch allows quick changes between manual and autofocus. List Price: $1,799. Contact: Nikon, (800) NIKON-US, www.nikonusa.com. —WP
Sigma 8-16mm F/4.5-5.6
Designed specifically for use with APS-C-sensor cameras, the Sigma 8-16mm F/4.5-5.6 provides an extreme wide-angle view with a 12-24mm 35mm equivalence value. At the wide end, the 8-16mm is close to the distorted perspective of a fisheye, but once zoomed in to 16mm, the field of view is closer to the naturalistic appeal of a wide-angle. Minimum-focusing distance throughout the zoom range is only 9.4 inches, which means your subject can be placed right in the foreground for exaggerated compositions. The Hyper Sonic Motor (HSM) autofocus system is designed for quiet, fast autofocus, and full manual-focus capability is available. List Price: $1,100. Contact: Sigma, (800) 896-6858, www.sigmaphoto.com. —DW
SanDisk Extreme Pro CF Cards
As the needs of photography (and now video) become more demanding with ever-faster burst rates and higher-resolution images, memory cards are constantly improving to meet those needs. Now available in 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB capacities, the SanDisk Extreme Pro CF cards offer up to 90 MB/s read and write speeds, fast enough to keep up with the buffer of even the most advanced DSLRs. The cards are tough, with shock protection for bumps, an RTV silicone coating that protects against moisture and humidity, and an operating temperature range from -13º F to 185º F for use in the most extreme environments. List Price: $335 (16 GB); $559 (32 GB), $895 (64 GB). Contact: SanDisk, (866) SANDISK, www.sandisk.com. —DW
Tamrac Evolution 8
When sling bags first came out, I had some trouble with them, mostly because I was a little uncoordinated and kept putting the one I had on wrong. With the Evolution 8, Tamrac has come up with a perfect bag for me because it has several options of how to use it. The harness system lets me set it up as a left sling, a right sling or a backpack. In either sling mode, the Evolution 8 gives me full access to my DSLR and other gear without having to remove the bag from my back, and there’s a rain cover for inclement weather. List Price: $199. Contact: Tamrac, (800) 662-0717, www.tamrac.com. —CR

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