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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

January/February 2010

Labels: NextGear

This Article Features Photo Zoom

Take the powerful, compact Sigma DP1s on your next trip. The 14-megapixel camera has the same FOVEON X3 direct image sensor, processor and 16.6mm (35mm equivalent of 28mm) lens, but features enhancements to its user interface that mimic the Sigma DP2. It also offers enhanced performance when shooting backlit subjects. The DP1s can shoot separate RAW and JPEG files, but not simultaneously. Estimated Street Price: $600. Contact: Sigma, (800) 896-6858, www.sigmaphoto.com.

Turn your Lensbaby Composer or Muse into a fisheye lens and capture a dramatic 160-degree angle of view from infinity all the way down to one inch from the front of the lens. The Fisheye Optic features a six-element multicoated optical design with an ultrawide 12mm focal length. This optic has a much flatter field of focus so it creates some edge blur at brighter apertures, but it doesn’t have the “sweet spot” of sharp focus and dramatic blur like typical Lensbaby optics. Also new is a Soft Focus Optic for creating a soft, diffused look. Estimated Street Price: $150 (Fisheye); $90 (Soft). Contact: Lensbaby, (877) 536-7222, www.lensbaby.com.

Stop dust and debris from affecting image quality by using Dust-Shield, a disposable filter for DSLRs that prevents dust from entering the chamber when you’re changing lenses. With high light transmittance, autofocus and image capture are unobstructed. Simply place it in the camera body and the chamber area is protected from external dust. To remove it, apply an adhesive tab on its center and gently pull up. The first available models are for the Canon EOS 5D and 5D Mark II, with more to come. Estimated Street Price: $19. Contact: OmegaSatter, (410) 374-3250, www.omegasatter.com.

Showcase your images in a book fit for a shelf at the local bookstore with AsukaBook. The bookmaker now offers a total of six different book lines, as well as a new size and faster turnaround times. The new Book Bound EXD line lets you custom-design a slide-in box for the book with images, text and more. Inside the box is the printed hard cover and matching printed book jacket with customizable inside flaps. The new landscape/horizontal format size measures 8x5.5 inches and is available for all of the lines. Turnaround time has been shortened from four weeks to three. Contact: AsukaBook, (866) 330-1530, www.asukabook.com.

Use the eco-friendly Lowepro Primus Minimus to carry your camera gear. The dual-compartment bag is made from mostly recycled material. It holds a DSLR with a medium zoom lens attached or a compact 3-CCD DV camcorder, plus a couple of extra lenses, filters, flash unit and more. A portion of the proceeds from each backpack is donated to Polar Bears International (PBI), a group dedicated to preserving polar bears. Lowepro and PBI are working together on a new effort called “Project Polar Bear,” aimed at reducing carbon emissions. Estimated Street Price: $249. Contact: Lowepro, (800) 800-LOWE, www.lowepro.com.

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