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Thursday, November 13, 2008

December 2008

This Article Features Photo Zoom

December 2008 DOES SIZE MATTER?
Enlarge several photos at once using Alien Skin Software’s Blow Up 2, a new version of the image resizing plug-in. A simplified user interface lets you resize, crop and sharpen more efficiently. The app processes images faster with support for multi-processor and multi-core systems. Easy batch processing lets you change the size of multiple photos in a single step. Plus, there are new controls for cleaning up JPEG compression artifacts in images from low-quality sources. Estimated Street Price: $249. Contact: Alien Skin Software, (888) 921-SKIN, www.alienskin.com.

December 2008PRINT PIX
Create every photo gift imaginable, from professionally printed and framed images to fun items like photo trading cards, at Mpix.com. The site has been recently upgraded to make ordering easier, with cool features like the ability to preview prints in a variety of frames. The custom framing service now includes options for mats and glass for all print sizes. Estimated Street Price: Varies by product and print size. Contact: Mpix, www.mpix.com.

December 2008 PHOTOS TO GO
Put your entire photo library in the palm of your hand with Western Digital’s My Passport portable hard drives, which now come in capacities up to 500 GB. The My Passport Elite and My Passport Essential drives weigh less than 7 ounces, making them an ideal way to back up files when you’re traveling. A capacity gauge lets you know at a glance how much space is available. Included synchronization software lets you sync changes and protect information with 128-bit encryption. Estimated Street Price: $179 to $219. Contact: Western Digital, (949) 672-7000, www.westerndigital.com.

December 2008 ULTRAZOOM CAMERA
Capture subjects from near and far with the Olympus SP-565 UZ, featuring wide-angle, telephoto and macro capabilities with a 26-520mm lens (35mm equivalent). Combining Sensor-Shift and Digital Image Stabilization, the 10-megapixel camera helps you take blur-free images in low light and of moving subjects. Additional features include Face Detection and Shadow Adjustment Technology, along with a 13.5 fps capture rate. Estimated Street Price: $399. Contact: Olympus, (888) 553-4448, www.olympusamerica.com.

December 2008 LOOKING SHARP
Take the guesswork out of image sharpening using Nik Software’s Sharpener Pro 3.0. Version 3 features the company’s simple yet powerful Control Point technology, which allows localized adjustments without the hassle of masking. Other features include a Sharpening Soft Proof tool, improved handling of new output devices and new output presets for repeating results. Estimated Street Price: $199. Contact: Nik Software, (888) 284-4085, www.niksoftware.com.

December 2008BAG IT
Shield your SLR system from scrapes and dings using Calumet Photo’s durable BP935 or BP1500 backpacks, which are made from 100-percent ballistic pattern nylon. To enhance comfort, the bags have a fully adjustable suspension system with padded shoulder straps, a secure waist strap and a triple-adjustment chest strap. A fully padded laptop compartment holds up to 17-inch models. The customizable interior compartment includes removable padded dividers. The BP1500 is larger and includes a tripod carrying system with foot pouch. Estimated Street Price: $169 (BP935); $199 (BP1500). Contact: Calumet Photo, (800) 225-8638, www.calumetphoto.com.

December 2008 BRIDGE TO DIGITAL
Scan photos, slides and negatives with the affordable Epson Perfection V300 scanner, which features one-touch scanning and photo-restoration capability. Four scan modes accommodate users with varying needs from Full Automatic Mode to Professional Mode, which has image-correction tools such as a histogram, tonal curves and a color palette. The scanner has a built-in transparency unit for easily scanning slides and negatives. You can scan a 35mm filmstrip (up to six frames) or four 35mm mounted slides with the included film holder to create enlargements up to 13x19 inches. Estimated Street Price: $99. Contact: Epson, (800) GO-EPSON, www.epson.com.

December 2008PHOTO TAG

Pinpoint where you got the shot with the easy-to-use photoGPS from Jobo. The small, lightweight unit fits on a digital camera’s hot-shoe just like a flash. Each time you take a picture, the unit automatically captures raw GPS data and stores the information in its internal memory. When you upload those images to a computer, the GPS data transfers over via the included software. Estimated Street Price: $159. Contact: JOBO AG, (734) 453-0300, www.jobo.com.

December 2008 IN FULL VIEW
Give yourself some room when working with images on the NEC MultiSync EA221WM 22-inch widescreen LCD. Wide-angle viewing of up to 176 degrees, a high 1000:1 contrast ratio and 1680 x 1050 resolution help to optimize image quality. Enhancing the monitor’s functionality is four-way ergonomic capability (height, swivel, tilt, pivot/portrait), a four-port USB hub and built-in multimedia speakers. Estimated Street Price: $389. Contact: NEC Display Solutions, (866) NEC-MORE, www.necdisplay.com.



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