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Friday, 29 May 2009

CPN Article on the 5D MkII

The Canon 5D changed the landscape of digital cameras. It was cheap (compared to the other alternative, the 1DS MkII), small and full frame. It fast became the tool of choice for photojournalists the world over. So the 5D MkII had huge shoes to fill and had a tough act to follow.

Check out my article on how the camera's been received by photojournalists from around the world. The article's called "The changing path of photojournalism" and is live now on CPN.

5D MkII Manual Control For Video

Apologies for the delay in bringing this to you, but I was having surgery when this was announced!

Canon Enables Manual Exposure in Video on EOS 5D Mark II

LONDON, UK, 27th May 2009:  Canon announced today it will release a firmware update for the EOS 5D Mark II allowing users to manually control exposure when shooting video.  The new firmware will be available for download from 2 June 2009 on Canon Europe’s support web site.

Following the launch of the EOS 5D Mark II in September 2008, Canon’s Research and Development team has listened closely to customer feedback to develop additions to the camera’s movie recording functionality.     

Allowing EOS 5D Mark II owners to achieve even more stunning video results with the camera, the firmware update will include the following manual controls when shooting video:

·        Full aperture selection 
·        ISO speed: Auto, 100 – 6400 and H1 
·        Shutter speed: 1/30th – 1/4000th second 

This is huge news. I for one was convinced to start shooting video purely because of the camera. However, with the fully automated exposure, it became a challenge to override it with various cheats. With this firmware update, its going to allow so much more freedom and it'll really allow every ounce of the camera's stunning visual capability to be harnessed. I for one can't wait to give it a try. I just hope that a similar update is in the pipeline for the audio.


The firmware is now live and can be downloaded HERE.

Monday, 25 May 2009

Canon 5D MkII Audio Hacked

5D Mark Free audio meters from Trammell Hudson on Vimeo.

Well, its happened. The audio function has been hacked on the 5D MkII to allow an override on the automatic gain control. This is superb news and my congratulations go to Hudson for this.
There's a thread on the Cinema 5D forum exploring this update to the camera's firmware.

Aperture Zoom Tip

Although I'm usually pretty thorough with reading manuals and finding out helpful tricks with software and equipment, I must admit to stumbling on this very neat trick on Apple's Aperture just recently.

If you hover the cursor where you want to zoom in on and then hit the zoom shortcut key, it will zoom in exactly there, using where your cursor is as the central point! Genius!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Informative 5D MkII Video Tips

EventDV TV // 5D Reel from StillMotion on Vimeo.

Just watched this very interesting video and the author's tips on manually controlling the aperture, shutter and ISO on the Canon 5D MkII in video mode. Well worth a watch.

Saturday, 16 May 2009

The new Mac Pro (Early 2009 model)

Anyone who's used Mac OS X knows how quickly the OS starts up and is ready to use. Its stunningly quick. As always though, I'm looking at ways to shave off time and speed things up so I decided without even turning on the new Mac Pro, I was going to install a 300Gb WD VelociRaptor hard drive; what makes this drive special, is that it runs at 10,000rpm compared to the standard 7200rpm drives. This drive takes up one of the four internal bays and will only be used for the OS and applications. I've populated the others with larger 1Tb and 1.5Tb drives for storage. With this drive, the computer starts up fully in just over 30 seconds from pushing the power button! Programs start up in seconds!
Years ago I switched from Mac to PC as before Apple went over to Intel chips, the PC platform was quicker (on hardware). Back in those days I used to make my own workstations and would spend days wiring them up perfectly and arranging fans for the perfectly cooled system. So, yes, I admit that I'm a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to interior computer design and set-up. I was already amazed by the first Mac Pro's innards, but the latest model is a pure work of genius and a work of art. The way the processors and ram are arranged is superb. I upgraded the graphics card to the new Radeon and discovering the retention clamp and release mechanism did leave me speechless! Absolute genius. Ok, I'll stop this anorak tech talk now!
Although nothing new, MobileMe (or .Mac as it used to be called) still puts a smile on my face when. When you configure a new machine, all you need to do is put in your details and within minutes all your contacts, calendar appointments, Safari bookmarks, Keychains, Mail settings and more are automatically loaded in from the "Cloud" - simple, straight forward and genius!

I'll be setting this machine up as my main workstation for Aperture and Final Cut Pro. The older Mac Pro will be given over to server and storage duties and I've spent a while researching the perfect storage solution for my 350,000 (so far) picture archive, plus videos and sound, as I'd like to retire my PC server; watch this space to find out which company I've decided to go with and how I end up setting the system up. I'm also about to start scanning in negatives and transparencies from my 20 year career, so this new storage system is going to play a huge role.

Monday, 4 May 2009

New FaceBook Fan Page

FaceBook & Twitter are a great way of keeping in touch and networking, both in a professional and a social sense.
I've just set up a FaceBook page HERE for anyone who's interested in my work. There are already seven projects on-line to look at and I'll be updating it with more photographs as time goes on.
Please feel free to pass on the link to anyone who is interested in photography, journalism and technology. So, swing by and click the "Become a Fan" button. From time to time I'll be sending out updates on my work and also any news which will be interesting. Cheers :-)

Friday, 1 May 2009

HRH Prince Charles Speaks At The Sony World Photography Award

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales speaks at the Sony World Photography Awards 2009, and announces the winner of the Prince's Rainforests Project Professional Award, Daniel Beltrá. This video was shown on the night of the awards.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Daniel Beltra won the Prince's Rainforests Project Professional Award. This video is from the evening of the awards ceremony and has a clip showing Daniel's visit to the Palace to meet HRH and receive his award.