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Sunday, June 1, 2008

In Focus: June 2008

When you’re on uneven terrain, steady your shot with the Manfrotto 190CX3. The tripod supports up to 11 pounds, yet weighs just three pounds, thanks to the 100 percent carbon-fiber tubes and aluminum die-castings used to build it. The Q90° quick center column lets you go from vertical to horizontal in one simple motion. The column also comes with a low-angle adapter at the bottom that can be used as a short column. Estimated Street Price: $250. Contact: Bogen Imaging, (201) 818-9500, www.bogenimaging.us.
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Skooba Superbungee

If you do most of your editing work with Adobe Photoshop Elements, an updated plug-in suite from onOne Software will help you further enhance photos quickly. Essentials 2.1 consists of four tools for correcting color, replacing backgrounds, and enlarging and adding frames. The Enlarge It plug-in is based on the powerful Genuine Fractals 5 engine, which lets you make poster-sized prints of your landscapes without losing detail or sharpness. Plus, there are new features for cropping and resizing at the same time. List Price: $59. Contact: onOne Software, (888) 968-1468, www.ononesoftware.com.
Cullman Universal Tripod

ATP has designed the first biorecyclable USB drive. Available in 1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB and 8 GB capacities, EarthDrive was built from recycled materials. The rugged exterior is shock-, dust- and water-resistant. With each EarthDrive sold, ATP will donate a portion of the profits to help plant trees and restore the environment. List Price: $19 to $99. Contact: ATP Electronics, (408) 732-5000, www.atpinc.com.
Linhof Master Technika

Books and Such
Photofile with introductions by various authors (Thames & Hudson, 2008; ISBN: 0-500-41091-2). This series brings together the best work of the world’s great photographers, including Araki, Guy Bourdin, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Elliott Erwitt. Each volume contains some 60 full-page reproductions, a critical introduction and chronology.


Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 Maximum Performance: Unleash the Hidden Performance of Elements by Mark Galer (Focal Press, 2007; ISBN: 978-0-240-52092-6). With step-by-step instructions and video tutorials, you’ll master the powerful tools in this popular program in no time. A DVD comes with the book for extended support.

The Essence of Photography with John Upton (Calumet Photographic, www.calumetphoto.com). This is a solid instructional DVD for beginners and advanced amateurs with discussion that includes understanding how cameras work, learning to see pictures, photographic history and the development of the photographic image.

Wild Acadia by Jerry and Marcy Monkman (University Press of New England, 2007; ISBN: 1-58465-524-0). Travel to New England’s oldest national park through the beautiful photographs and insightful prose found in this tribute to Acadia National Park. Historical photos are paired with present-day images showing how the park has changed.

Capture NX: Industrial-Strength Production Techniques by Ben Long (Peachpit Press, 2007; ISBN: 978-0-321-48999-9). The guide is packed with useful information on how to compose great images, correct color and tone with the software’s adjustment tools and create a comprehensive workflow for processing images.

Take those sprawling vista and scenic shots with the Tamron SP AF10-24mm ƒ/3.5-4.5 Di II LD Aspherical (IF) lens for a classic ultra-wide perspective. Special HID (High Index/High Dispersion) glass, a pair of Low Dispersion glass elements and four aspherical elements correct for a variety of optical aberrations, while helping to deliver superb sharpness, color and contrast. A minimum focusing distance of 9.4 inches across the entire zoom range helps get you closer to the subject. Designed for cameras with APS-C sensors, the zoom gives a 35mm focal-length-range equivalent of 16-37mm. Compatible mounts include Canon, Nikon, Pentax and Sony. Estimated Street Price: TBA. Contact: Tamron, (800) 827-8880, www.tamron.com.
Olympus SP 570 Ultra Zoom

Keep your long lenses out of the rain with the Think Tank Photo Hydrophobia 300-600 rain cover. The fabric is more water-resistant than other types because of a film that’s applied to its underside, as well as tricot mesh, basically creating a three-layer fabric. Ideal for outdoor photographers, the rain cover fits 300mm to 600mm lenses. It pre-mounts to the lens hood for easy deployment so you can continue shooting when it gets wet. A clear PU window lets you view the LCD and controls. Estimated Street Price: $150. Contact: Think Tank Photo, (866) 558-4465, www.thinktankphoto.com.
Nik Software Viveza

Upping the ante of its Secure Digital High-Capacity lineup, PNY now offers a whopping 32 GB memory card. Depending on your camera settings, this means there’s enough space for up to 8,000 3.8-megabyte images when using a 10-megapixel camera. The card is available in two versions with data-transfer speeds of up to 4 MBps or 6 MBps. Estimated Street Price: $249 (4 MBps); $299 (6 MBps). Contact: PNY Technologies, (973) 515-9700, www.pny.com.
Giottos Series Tripods

The Monostat RS monopods are nice alternatives to a tripod because they’re more portable, yet able to fully support your camera. The latest RS16 ART model features a more modern look with a foam handle and fine rubber twist locks. The ART stands for Anti-Rotation Tubing, which allows you to open and close the monopod in any position without the turning tubes. A single-stem design allows for fast setup, and the Swivel Toe Stabilizer provides steady shots at angles of up to 60 degrees. Estimated Street Price: $175. Contact: Accurate Sales, Inc., (718) 302-7063, www.monostat.us.


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