Wednesday, October 19, 2016

PhotoPlus Expo New York 2016–Day 1

Today was a light day where on a small subset of exhibitors were on hand for the “Test Drive” event, but some of what I saw was very cool. Here are some of my favorites of the day:

Global Drone Union (GDU) Byrd  – Replace the gimbal, not the drone

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This was a super cool drone that collapses up and is easy to carry, but it has a unique feature – you can mount different gimbals. What this means is that in the near future you can mount any camera up to 5 pounds including DSLR’s and point and shoots like the Sony RX100 IV.

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While this drone does have the limitation that it can only travel up to 1000 meters from the user, FAA guidelines require line of site so this won’t be an issue. Instead, what people will love from this $849 drone (before the gimbal which should cost about $100) is that you can choose the device you want to use from major makers like Canon, Nikon and Sony, yet still have it control shooting via your phone app.

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I’ll have more news on these early next year after it has fully matured, but all signs show that this is the drone many photographers have been waiting for. If you are someone who is fine with having a camera provided by the drone, then they offer that too as shown in the display image above.

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DJI users will find the controls very familiar as there are ex DJI employees who worked together to make this product realize their dreams and ambitions about what a drone should be.

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Mounting your phone is exactly like the DJI and the feel of the controls seems the same from a quality standpoint, but more intuitive from a practical standpoint.

VR is getting real

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Ricoh was showing off the Theta SC 360 degree camera which is everything you like about the Theta S, but with a cost savings derived from not having an HDMI port. Aside from that, it’s the same lens and sensors so the final results are identical – at a lower price.

To really enjoy 360 cameras, VUZE was offering the 3D 360 degree VR camera which adds a whole new dimension to enjoying VR content:

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Panono also showed off its unique 360 camera with demos of amazing shots achieved by tossing it in the air. Be careful though, as this device isn’t drop proof so if you toss it, you better catch it!

DxO One

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I’ve been eager to try the DxO One out ever since I heard about them, so it was fun to finally see them in real life. It not only works great with your iPhone as shown above, it offers a wide selection of underwater housings to take a great camera and make it even more practical:

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Unlike a GoPro, it offers a tiny LCD for the scenarios where your mobile phone isn’t attached as shown below:

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Placing it in the housing is a simple operation that happens in seconds, so you don’t have to choose do I want an underwater version or not – you can have both as shown below:

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And why stop at an underwater housing, when you can have cool filters to go on the end as shown below to help you realize your creative intent:

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Ikan Gimbal Stabilizer

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The best way to describe the Ikan gimbals that I saw would be to say they are intelligent gimbals designed for mobile phone cameras all the way up to DSLR’s. It’s a brilliant design that works incredibly well. Definitely check them out if you are looking to get smoother video.

Conclusion

Lots more to come in what promises to be a fun and exciting show this year.

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