Monday, October 24, 2016

PhotoPlus 2016 Gadget Report–Day 3

Friday October 21 was my last day at PhotoPlus 2016, but it was a big day with lots of great products. While I can't fit them all here, I thought I'd go over some of the ones that I liked the most for consideration for future blog articles.

BlackRapid

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Double-locking hook

If you think you know BlackRapid, think again, as they've updated their entire line to include big improvements in comfort and safety. As you can see from the image above, the locking mechanism across the board ensures that your gear can't come out with this double locking system.

Below is the new design for the shoulder straps that allows for better breathing and feels much lighter and comfortable in person:

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BlackRapid Breathe Strap Design

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Improved fasteners

Everything in the line up is improved and better, so if you've had or heard of issues with their stuff in the past (and I've only heard one which I think was user error), then it's time to look them up again.

Click here to learn more about the new BlackRapid Breathe products.

Mindshift Gear

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I've been a long-time fan of ThinkTankPhoto bags so when I heard some of the same great people were going to go off and form a new company with lighter bags for hikers, I supported them on Kickstarter. I was one of the first to get and review the MindShift Gear Rotation 180°, and I still have it to this day, but it's evolving and improving as shown above.

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They are also making more sizes and colors than when I last reviewed the MindShift Gear Panorama. As a result, this show was a wake up call for me that this is no longer a company that just makes a couple bags, and that I should start reviewing them more in the near future.

I loved my Digital Holster, so these lighter versions are likely to be where I start...

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Nikon

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The all new 70-200mm from Nikon

I already talked about the new lenses in this article, so check that out if you haven't already.

In addition to the lenses, I spent most of my time talking about the new Action Cameras.

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This discussion warrants its own article, so come back later this week for more details. I've got lots of pictures and hopefully some new info so if you are as excited about these very well built cameras as I am then you'll really enjoy this article.

Epson

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Epson always has the most amazing art display at PhotoPlus, and this year was no different. So many images were breath taking, but on the gear side there wasn't much new news. They did have one of the P20000 beasties which is fun to see as it's as big as a small car!

Tether Tools

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I haven't caught on to the tethering fad, but the crowds around the demos by great photographers like Peter Hurley suggest that I'm the exception, and not the rule.

Peter gave an awesome demo using the Flex light panel from Westcott and showed near live results via Lightroom for this very impressive demo of studio photography in 2016.

Check out more about Tether Tools current line up here.

AquaTech

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AquaTech is well known for making create underwater housings, but their rain cover looks pretty good so I might be checking that out in the near future. If you've got one and want to share feedback, then leave me a comment here. Please note that comments are approved manually due to massive bot attacks, so you only need to post once and you won't see your comment right away.

Westcott

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Westcott Flex Continuous Light Source was definitely the star of PPE 2016!

It was clear at this show that Westcott wanted to make a big impression with its Flex LED mat products as they were all over the show. Either they are that good or they spent a bunch of money to create that perception, but there's no doubt that they are both very cool and worth giving a closer look. Definitely look for a review of this very promising, but very expensive, continuous light source in the future.

In case it isn't obvious, what makes these so great is that they have a ton of light in a mat that can literally roll up like a blueprint. No more bulky flashes as what you see is what you get, and they don't run hot or take up a lot of space. Perhaps the only down side is that they are so bright that having that much light in your face can be pretty annoying. Videographers are likely to love them and photographers will certainly benefit from them.

Learn more about Flex here.

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RapidBox reminds me of my Elinchrom 39" Rotalux Deep OctaBox
in terms of performance, but at much friendlier price

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SkyLux LED Lights aren't new, but definitely were a popular choice at several booths at the show

LUMAS Opens New York Gallery with a WhiteWall.com ShowroomIMG_0236

I had a chance to check out the new LUMAS gallery where WhiteWall.com is the as part of a show related event for the media, and let's just say I'm a huge WhiteWall fan now. If you haven't heard of them it's because they are a major fine art print service in Germany, but they are just landing on our shore in the heart of the New York SoHo district.

As a print master, NEC Color Visionary, X-Rite Coloratti, successful eBook author on printing, and the success of my printing series certainly qualifies me as someone who knows a good print when he sees it. After touring other galleries in New York and seeing WhiteWall's best work, I can assure you there's nobody in the US printing business right now has impressed me more than they did.

I'll be talking a lot more about WhiteWall, but in the meantime you can get a discount and learn more about how much I loved my HD Metal print here.

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The studio in the basement gave us an opportunity to see everything they make on all of the different media, so if you get a chance then stop by or book an appointment with them as it's very helpful in deciding what you want to do for your next print.

Other print services should take notice that it's time to up your game as no print company in the US that I've seen prints from can touch them, so prepare to lose market share from photographers who care about quality as they switch to a company that I think is the best in the business.

Conclusion

PhotoPlus New York is always a great way to see the best of what everyone in the camera business has to offer, so while it's a bit expensive to get out there it's worth the trip. I had fun getting see what's new and what's coming from my blog partners, so I can't wait to get you some fresh reviews this coming year based on what I've learned.

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NOTE: More gadget reports to come about PhotoPlus very soon!

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