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Tuesday, May 5, 2009

In Focus: June 2009

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This Article Features Photo Zoom
in focus Made from aerospace material, carbon fiber and stainless-steel hardware, CASE-X camera cases are lightweight, extremely durable and weather-resistant. The interior is padded with up to three-quarters of an inch of fleece-lined foam, providing shock-absorbing protection for the camera. All edges are finished with rubber weather stripping for weather-resistance and additional protection against impact. The X-PAC is designed for mid- to advanced-level D-SLRs and a single lens, while the PRO-PAC fits full-frame D-SLRs with a large zoom or two smaller lenses. List Price: $499 (X-PAC); $899 (PRO-PAC). Contact: CASE-X, (786) 402-7789, www.case-x.com.
Western Digital’s My Book external hard drives have expanded to storage capacities of 2 TB. The update includes the Studio, Mac, Home and Essential edition models. All of the hard drives allow you to store and back up files in a central location, feature compact streamlined designs and have capacity gauges showing how much space is available (except My Book Essential). The eco-friendly drives also save power by going into standby mode after 10 minutes of inactivity, and turn on and off with the computer. List Price: $329 to $379. Contact: Western Digital, (877) 934-6972, www.westerndigital.com.
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Capture big images fast with the Lexar Professional UDMA 300x 16 GB CompactFlash memory card. With UDMA (Ultra Direct Memory Access) capability, card-to-computer transfer rates are considerably faster when paired with a compatible reader. Speed-rated at 300x, which represents minimum sustained read/write speeds of 45 MBps, the high-capacity card comes with Lexar’s Rescue 3 software for recovering lost or corrupt files. The software also can reformat the card, delete images and report on the card’s overall condition. List Price: $299. Contact: Lexar, (800) 789-9418, www.lexar.com.
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Crumpler’s 8 Million Dollar Home shoulder bag has the same footprint as the model just below it, but has more depth so that you can vertically store a pro D-SLR with an attached 70-200mm zoom. There’s also more space down the sides for fitting bulkier zooms, primes or flash. The “super stealth” Velcro® silencer ensures that you won’t make a lot of noise when opening the bag. A configurable divider transforms the 8 Million into a photo/laptop bag that can hold a 13-inch laptop. List Price: $170. Contact: Crumpler Bags, (718) 384-3020, www.crumplerbags.com.
Make fine prints of your nature photographs using Hahnemühle’s eco-friendly Sugar Cane 300 gsm paper, which is 75-percent bagasse fiber, a by-product of sugar cane processing, and 25-percent recycled cotton. The textured natural white fine-art paper is OBA-free and very resistant to aging. It features a premium inkjet coating that ensures prints with rich contrast and detail, making it ideal for printing warm-tone color and monochrome photos, as well as fine-art reproductions. List Price: $34 (20 sheets of 8½x11). Contact: Hahnemühle, (815) 502-5880, www.hahnemuhle.com.
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A redesigned and more powerful RAW converter, batch processing and improved editing tools are some of the features included in the latest update of Digital Light Color’s Picture Window Pro. When using the program, typical image enhancements are made through “transformations.” Every time a transformation is applied, the app creates a new copy of the image so you can compare it with the original file. In Version 5.0, there are new transformations for increasing vibrancy and sharpness, as well as remapping color. List Price: $89. Contact: Digital Light Color, (617) 489-8858, www.dl-c.com.
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