The Canon HF G25 Camcorder By David Hague And still they keep coming. Today we received a new Canon HF G25 for testing, and true to recent form for most of the latest camcorder releases, the features and functions are truly staggering. This camera is designed to be fully automatic or as manual as you like. Things such as Auto Gain can be adjusted as can focus preset and a manual focus assist. Zebra patterning is there as are white balance presets for daylight, shade, cloudy, tungsten and by colour temperature. ...Read More »
The Sony PMW-200 Camcorder By David Hague The power of a motor vehicle is usually measured in kilowatts (although still more easily identified by most in the "old currency" of brake horse power). Sadly this is not always an accurate measure of grunt as other factors should also be brought into the equation such as power-to-weight ratios and so on. Similarly, most non-professionals (and advertising blurb and salespeople) tend to measure how good a camcorder is by its zoom factor, number of megapixels or even its internal storage capacity. While all of these are a small part in the total power factor they are by no means anywhere near the be-all and end-all. ...Read More »
Upload By Lou Wallace In what may be a prophetic view of our future, Upload focuses on a time where cyberspace and virtual reality have converged, showcasing both the promising potential and the dark underside of these new technological wonders. ...Read More »
Motion Composer By Ko Maruyama MotionComposer is a new way to create and deliver HTML5 or Flash animation. Designed by French company Aquafadas, the software is available in both Mac and PC versions to allow anyone the ability to start animating right away. Although Adobe Flash animations have recently been the subject of scrutiny, there are many advantages to using HTML5. With MotionComposer, you can easily make your content much more engaging. ...Read More »
ArtRage 4.0 By Ko Maruyama In time for use with your brand new Wacom tablet, Ambient Design offers a new version of their ArtRage software. Version 4.0 is packed with a ton of new tools that will help you work better, easier, and give you the ability to extend your creative works for an affordable price. You may also be using ArtRage 3 on both devices (iPad and computer), but if you haven't you might not know about the ability to move between iPad to desktop version and out to other software (like Photoshop's .psd format). ...Read More »
Filmmaking with the iPad and iPhone By Ko Maruyama Chances are, you've adopted a smart phone and maybe a tablet into your daily life. And if you've chosen the Apple iPhone or iPad as your weapon of choice in your production pipeline there's a lot more that you can be doing with it to help you out during your filmmaking process. Hand Held Hollywood's Taz Goldstein has written the ultimate app guide for every moviemaker with mobile devices. (It's not just about shooting with your device!) ...Read More »
Hands On with the Nexus 10 By Lou Wallace Right before Christmas my tablet, an Iconia A500 died (just a couple weeks after the warranty ran out of course) and I was faced with the task of choosing its replacement. The timing was great because the latest iPad was out,several new Android tabs were being released and Microsoft was just about to start shipping the Surface. All have some very compelling aspects and I like all three platforms, but as I already have had several android tablets and a lot of apps for that system, my focus and ultimate decision was towards the Nexus 10 from Google. Since there were plenty of 'First Looks', 'Quick Peeks' and such being written already, I wanted to spend some more time with it before actually evaluating it. This review is really my perspective on using the tablet, what that experience has been like and finally was it worth the money. ...Read More »
Understanding Adobe Photoshop CS6 By Ko Maruyama A new year; a new chance to expand your skillset. This weekend, I looked at "Understanding Adobe Photoshop CS6 for Imaging Professionals". It's a long title, and there are three differently treated fonts in the title treatment - don't let that dissuade you from peeking inside. This is Photoshop we're talking about. You've heard about it. You've purchased the latest version. And now, you want to jump in and figure out how to work it like a pro. Richard Harrington has just the book for y ...Read More »
AFTER EFFECTS APPRENTICE By Ko Maruyama Trish and Chris Meyer have been writing books for Adobe After Effects users for several years. Their After Effects Apprentice book is currently in its third edition, which covers Adobe's current version of After Effects, CS6. This also offers lessons for those who may be using earlier versions of the software. The book is not only for the "Aspiring" motion graphics artist, but for anyone who wants to improve their all-around skills in the popular animation software. ...Read More »
EYES IN THE BACK OF MY HEAD..... By Douglas Spotted Eagle With the new Oregon Scientific ATC Chameleon, syncrhonized video with two channels/angles in a single stream is quick and easy. This camera is unique in that it features dual lenses, shooting two views to a single stream that may be displayed either side by side or over/under. This allows not only for POV, but reactions to the POV. The large button allows even the most thick mitten or glove to turn on/off the camera. Powering up the camera also starts record mode. ...Read More »
Best POV Action Camera Shootout By Douglas Spotted Eagle We set out with 6 of the most popular models of action cameras in an all-out camera review. Our desire was to uncover the answer to the question "What is the best POV camera on the market?", and at the same time determine the strengths and weaknesses of the cameras being reviewed. The overall performance results were a little surprising to us... Could the GoPro be dethroned? ...Read More »
MAXON's CINEMA 4D R14 By Ko Maruyama In Los Angeles and New York, motion graphics animators have seen year over year dominance and adoption of MAXON's flagship software CINEMA 4D. Their newest release offers users improved feature sets and new tools to create 3D models and animation even easier than before. ...Read More »
Pogo Connect By Ko Maruyama The Pogo Connect is the first stylus that allows its user to use pressure sensitivity with a touch screen device. Previously code-named Blue Tiger, the pen promises to change the way artists interact with their portable devices. ...Read More »
Wacom's Bamboo Pocket Stylus By Ko Maruyama Today, Wacom introduced a brand new way to be creative on the go. The Bamboo Pocket Stylus is small enough to take with you everywhere, but has enough volume to feel like your professional stylus. The Bamboo Pocket Stylus fits your creativity wherever you are. ...Read More »
BENQ GW2450 By David Hague In the video world monitors are probably more critical than any everyday old computer monitor is. Serious photographers who play with Photoshop will know what I mean. Calibration is everything. Which leads me neatly to the BENQ GW2450 which landed on my desk today. ...Read More »
AKITIO ENCLOSURE By Ko Maruyama The Akitio Neutrino U3+ enclosure is for everyone, and more specifically for some than others. Like many other enclosures of its kind, it supports a nice array of connection standards. The function is what you'd expect from an external hard drive enclosure. The Neutrino U3+ has the added benefit of being designed beautifully, and fits as a companion to your other Mac hardware. ...Read More »
My first impressions of the new Canon C300 are simply - wow! By David Hague The product manager at Canon for Pro video gear, Charles Montesin has sent us a unit to play with, with a 70~300mm EF lens stapled to the front. And this weekend is the Blues Festival in Echuca. A fantastic subject to test it with! ...Read More »
Adobe Photoshop CS6 for Photographers By Ko Maruyama It may have taken only one Evening to write it, but it will take you several months to ingest all of the lessons within the pages of Martin Evening's latest, "Adobe Photoshop CS6 for Photographers". The book is a massive 800 pages long, and filled with all kinds of instruction, tips, tricks and necessary information for photographers who are looking to really refine their images. ...Read More »
The Panasonic AC160 By Heath McKnight The Panasonic AC160 really surprised me, and not because I wasn't expecting such high quality -- I was -- but because for the price point (between $4100 and $4799), I was sort of expecting a small camera, like the Sony NX5U or some of the smaller Canons. This is a larger, but not heavy, handheld camera that's about the same size as the Panasonic HPX250. Images are crisp in full HD 1080p, the controls are simple to use and it does well in low light with its 1/3-inch 3-MOS sensors, and you easily can customize looks. The multiple frame rate and recording options are also superb, helping make this a quality camera for shooters involved with film, run-and-gun video, documentaries and more. ...Read More »
Twixtor: 30p to 24p in After Effects By Jeremiah Hall Twixtor, from Re:Vision Effects, Inc., has been around for a while. It works with Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro (X and 7), Autodesk combustion, flame, Maya Composite, Avid, Foundry Nuke, Sony Vegas Pro, and several others. It changes speed, timing, and frame rates of footage (frame rate conversion is currently only available with After Effects or Combustion). Twixtor does this by warping and interpolating new frames from the original footage using RE:Vision's proprietary tracking technology to calculate every individual pixel's motion in a sequence. ...Read More »
Tamron 18~200mm F/3.5-6.3 Di III VC E-Mount Lens By David Hague The NEX 7 I have not seen before, but apart from one and a half little niggles, I am in love with this little beastie; it takes fantastic shots. And the niggle and a bit? The viewfinder as it brings up my left eye dominant issue is the big one. The half is as it has an auto LCD to viewfinder switch when you look through the viewfinder, if you wear glasses, sometimes it does 'sense' you unless you press hard against the rubber cup and this tends to smear your specs. ...Read More »
PluralEyes - Sound Synching Software from Singular Software By David Hague Singular Software has a range of sound synching software available. PluralEyes is the flagship. It works specifically with particular nominated software so you must obtain the one that suits your software. PluralEyes will only play with Green Valley Edius, Adobe Premiere Pro, Sony Vegas, Apple's Final Cut Pro and Avid's Media composer. For each of these editing program, Singular Software provides a specific set in instructions which, at first to me at least, sounded a bit arcane, but in fact turned out to be easy to follow. The end result is an additional sequence inserted into to your project with the sounds all lined up. ...Read More »
NAB Professional Gear: Wacom By Ko Maruyama For years, Wacom tablets have dominated the professional market; their name synonymous with responsive, accurate results. The new Intuos5 tablet heralds a new definition for what tablets can be. Not only is this pressure sensitive for your designer needs, but it also boasts a touch capability. Now more than ever, you'll find yourself with your Wacom all day long. ...Read More »
BrightSign Announces New Line of Solid-State HD Digital Signage Players By Miles Weston BrightSign unveils new family of PC-free digital signage controllers...smaller, more powerful, more economic. ...Read More »
The Azden WLX-Pro Radio Microphone By David Hague Viewers will put up with the occasional skippy frame, shaky image or even the odd out of focus, but lousy or stuttery or out of sync audio will never be tolerated and people will turn off. So to fix audio problems, the first thing to do is make sure you are using the right mic for the job, and for interviews, this generally means using a radio transmitter receiver and lapel (also called lavaliere) mic. ...Read More »
Corel VideoStudio Pro X5 By David Hague While it is still fair to say that Corel has struggled in the video editing market, I suspect the latest carnation of VideoStudio Pro X5 will change all that. And oddly enough, I say this not because of any improvement over its standard video editing approach as this retains the 3 step approach that many programs of this type use - Capture, Edit, Share. No, not at all. This version has some truly ground breaking features. ...Read More »
Edius 6 By David Hague If you are looking at graduating from a basic Windows NLE to something more, shall we say, grown up, and have Premiere, FCP, Vegas and AVID on your list to check out (no I know that FCP won't run under Windows but some people DO change platforms you know), certainly add EDIUS to that list. There is a free download available at the website which is fully functional and lasts for 30 days. ...Read More »
Filming the Fantastic By Ko Maruyama "Filming the Fantastic" has been recently released in its second edition. The book by Mark Sawicki is not only a "guide", but a personal discussion about the ebbs and flows of visual effects trends, and stories of universal truths.Sawicki's book is a great read for directors, VFX supervisors, post-production teams, artists, and - naturally - those who gather around the eyepiece. ...Read More »
What's New in Photoshop CS6 Public Beta By Jeremiah Hall When your software goes from being a proper name to a verb, as in "I Photoshopped that building out of the picture", new versions are a big deal. The public beta of Photoshop CS6 Extended is available for download now. What's changed? There are alsover 64 changes PS6 users have asked Adobe for, called the "JDI"s by the Photoshop team. "JDI" stands for "Just DIt," small changes and improvements asked for by the end-users. Here's a sample from the list Adobe provided DMN. ...Read More »
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 for the Videographer By Jeremiah Hall I have never used the previous versions of Lightroom, since most of my time was taken up with Avid, After Effects and Final Cut Pro. When I needed to do something with stills, I used Photoshop. When I got the chance to try Lightroom 4, I jumped at the chance, but I was more interested in the video capabilities than I was in the photographic features and tools. Lightroom 4 will not be replacing Premiere or Photoshop, it's not designed for heavy photo or video editing. You can't cut your movie masterpiece with it. But if you're a DSLR shooter, I can see it becoming a very useful tool in your arsenal. ...Read More »
The RØDE NTG-3 External Microphone By David Hague It appears there is no set standard for microphone diameters so in the case of the Panasonic AG-HMC41E (the others are a Canon XA10 and Sony NFX5) for example, when the NTG-3 is placed in the external mic holder it rattles around - not enough to simply slide through, but enough to be a worry. ...Read More »
Matrox Thunderbolt Adapter By Heath McKnight Matrox recently released their Thunderbolt adapter, which can be purchased at their site, or added to your order of one of their devices, like the MXO2 boxes. This is a significant little box, because you can use a MXO2 device with a Mac that doesn't have a PCI Express card slot or ExpressCard/34 slot by connecting the adapter to your Mac and the MXO2 box. I'll also talk briefly about Matrox's new software update allowing their devices to offer broadcast monitoring with the latest update of Final Cut Pro X. ...Read More »
PluralEyes, An NLE Essential App By Heath McKnight After spending time with Singular Software's PluralEyes, I can say without a doubt, that I wish this software was available in the early days of Final Cut Pro and other non-linear edit systems (NLE). PluralEyes will easily sync video and audio, which is very useful when you have multiple sources of footage, but only one great track of audio. It does it quickly and efficiently, saving editors hours of time trying to sync the audio with all your video sources. ...Read More »
Sony HDR-PJ760 Camcorder - Australian Exclusive By David Hague Bordering between high end consumer and low end professional is the new Sony HDR-PJ760, and it has been packed full of every feature you could possibly think of. Auscam has been lucky enough (or we schmoozed better than anyone else) to get our grubby little hands on a real life version and it is more than fair to say we are impressed. ...Read More »
Simple steps for better design By Ko Maruyama "Thou Shall Not Use Comic Sans" is an abbreviated list of graphic design do's and don'ts, published by Peachpit Press / Pearson. As I sit and skim through the compendium of rules set out in this book, I realize that I am breaking article three hundred and eighteen, but only immediately, as I smile, smirk, laugh out loud, and nod in agreement with the words on the pages. ...Read More »
Apple's Richard Townhill Calls to Discuss the Final Cut Pro X 10.0.3 Update By Heath McKnight I just got off the phone with Apple's Richard Townhill, senior director of applications marketing, who took the time to update me on the latest major update to Final Cut Pro (http://www.apple.com/finalcutpro/), ver. 10.0.3. Apple is delivering multicam support, broadcast monitoring via third-party PCI-e cards and boxes (in beta, along with Thunderbolt), advanced chroma keying features, XML 1.1, the ability to import layered Photoshop graphics (PSD), and media relinking. ...Read More »
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