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Posts Tagged ‘watch’

Watch a mirror, LED, razor and a camera make the invisible visible

16 Jun

If you have a camera and a long lens, then you’re halfway toward a Schlieren photography setup. YouTube channel Veritasium demonstrates the effect in the video above, essentially revealing gasses and airflow normally invisible to the human eye. All it takes is an optical-grade concave mirror, an LED, a camera on a tripod with a telephoto lens and a razor blade.

What the camera sees with everything aligned is actually the slight differences in the refractive index of whatever’s in front of the mirror. If you light a match in front of the mirror, light from the LED will change direction slightly differently as it passes through the warmer and cooler air around the flame.

We don’t normally perceive those differences, but this setup reveals them as lighter and darker spots to the camera. The same thing happens with, for example, butane escaping from a lighter. Light passes through it at a slightly different angle than the air around it, and the Schlieren rig captures those slight differences.

Suddenly, it’s possible to see the heat displaced when you rub your hands together, or worse, the stuff that flies everywhere when you sneeze. It’s pretty darn cool, especially when played in slow motion as in the video above.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Trends to watch at NAB 2017

21 Apr

Trends to watch at NAB 2017

Next week is the annual National Association of Broadcasters show, or NAB, in Las Vegas, Nevada. NAB is primarily an industry conference, and isn’t generally focused on consumer products, but we go to NAB because it often gives us a window into the future. Tools and technologies created for Hollywood or the broadcast industry have a funny way of tricking down to everyman products over the next few years, and that’s usually a good thing (3D television being a notable exception, in my opinion).

So, let’s take a look at a few of the product categories we’ll be watching at NAB next week that have the potential to impact us not-named-Spielberg types in the coming years.

Tools for Emerging Filmmakers

The filmmaking industry has changed a lot in the past few years: technology has become better, costs have come down, and tools suitable for serious content creation are now accessible to anyone with a dream of producing films and the passion to make it happen. This transformation has ushered in an explosion of what are often referred to as ’emerging filmmakers.’

These are people who often started making films with DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, but have grown their skills or businesses to the point where they need better, dedicated tools. They include independent filmmakers, small businesses working for commercial clients, or any number of other filmmaking roles. Some things they have in common are that they care about creating high quality content, have high expectations for production value, and they don’t have upwards of $ 20,000 to buy a single cinema lens.

This category has grown large enough that we’re seeing more companies which have historically catered to the high end cinema market now looking to meet emerging filmmakers’ needs. Whether it’s to drive revenue or create brand loyalists, we’re seeing more tools designed and priced for these users. By way of example, in the past year we’ve seen cinema lenses such as Cookes and Fujinons with sub-$ 5,000 price points. We expect to see even more products aimed at emerging filmmakers at NAB. 

Virtual Reality (VR)

Virtual reality is a technology that everyone, from manufacturers to content creators, seems to want to succeed, but which hasn’t quite managed to do so. There’s clearly a lot of unrealized promise, and even Hollywood executives will tell you they’re spending a lot of money trying to figure out how to make it work. Will this be the year VR makes the leap?

NAB will once again feature a dedicated Virtual and Augmented Reality Pavillion where the VR community can show off its latest technology. And there are clearly a lot of businesses betting big money on it, ranging from consumer-focused companies like Yi Technologies, which plans to announce VR capture devices at the show, to the likes of 360 Designs, whose Flying EYE drone system will livestream 360º 6K content from miles away for a cool $ 75,000. 

The big question is whether any of the VR products or technologies we see at NAB this year will be enough to get significant traction in the market, or collectively move the needle toward wider adoption of VR by consumers, but the industry isn’t giving up on this one yet.

8K Technology

We actually saw 8K display technology for the first time at NAB a couple years ago. And yes, it’s good bleeping amazing. Last year, Canon had an 8K reference display in its booth with a magnifying glass next to it, teasing you to try to see the pixels. After all, with 8K you’re collecting about the same number of pixels as a Nikon D810. In bursts of 24 or 30 frames. Every second. Think of the memory cards you’re going to need… but I digress…

What does 8K mean for photographers, videographers, and emerging filmmakers? Right now, not a lot. In fact, it’s unlikely we’ll even see 8K TVs being widely marketed to consumers for a number of years. But on the content creation side, there’s a lot to be said for 8K. With 4K quickly moving in the direction of becoming a standard for viewing content, 8K will give content creators the same advantages that 4K acquisition has for creating 1080p content. Right now we’re still talking about very expensive, high end pro cinema and broadcast equipment, but what we see at NAB is often a preview to what we’ll see in less expensive gear a few years down the road.

And 8K technology may come faster than we expect. We’ve seen 4K gain fairly wide adoption very quickly, and most of the industry seems hell-bent on a collision course between full 8K broadcast and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (having already demonstrated it at London 2012 and run test broadcasts from Rio 2016). Some of this 8K goodness (or massive data storage overhead, if you’re the glass-half-empty type) may start filtering its way into our cameras in the next few years.

HDR Video

HDR video is pretty much what it sounds like: high dynamic range video that lets us see brighter brights, darker darks, and more shades in between. It’s like HDR photos, but with motion, and done well it can look pretty amazing. From a consumer perspective, most talk about HDR video these days relates to TVs, but the market is still sorting itself out. As the old adage goes, ‘The great thing about standards is that we have so many to choose from.’ Between HDR10, Dolby Vision, and Hybrid Log-Gamma, there’s plenty of room for the marketers to fight it out and educate consumers on the jargon.

But what we’re most interested in is content creation, or HDR video capture. Admittedly, there’s not a lot here for the enthusiast or prosumer at the moment. But… (and you know there’s always a ‘but’) Panasonic has already told us to expect Hybrid Log-Gamma to be included in the mother of all firmware updates – or, as we affectionately know it, MOAFU (really rolls off your tongue, doesn’t it) – that’s coming for the Panasonic GH5 in summer 2017. We look forward to testing it. Once we figure out how to test it.

Drones

Love ’em or hate ’em, people are going to use drones for all kinds of things. (At least until Skynet, and we all know how that ends.) Of course, what we care about at DPReview is aerial imaging, whether it’s still photography or video. The drone industry has exploded in the past few years, with tools ranging from octocopters that nonchalantly ferry around RED and Arri cameras to consumer products you can buy off the shelf and use to make your own movies.

As with other video categories, what started out as technology available only to well-funded production studios has quickly started to filter down to the emerging filmmaker or prosumer level. In fact, less than six months ago DJI introduced the Inspire 2 drone and Zenmuse X5S camera. That combo uses a Micro Four Thirds camera to shoot 5.2K CinemaDNG Raw video with a bit rate of 4.2Gbps. All for the price of a Canon 1D X II. This is Hollywood-level stuff. They even got cinematographer Claudio Miranda, ASC (Life of Pi) to make a film with it, though he had to carry it around in his hands for some shots.

Why do I bring up a product that was announced a few months ago? First, because it’s an indication of where the technology is going, and competitors will need to find a way to respond. We’ll be watching to see if that happens at NAB. And second, because for the love of God, DJI, can you please put this combination of tech into a regular camera? I don’t care if it’s a Micro Four Thirds camera the size of a Canon 1D X II, I will write you a check tomorrow.

Such is my plea.

Live Streaming

It used to be that we recorded home movies which we then forced our friends and family to watch over Thanksgiving. Later came the internet, so we could just send aunt Mabel a Vimeo link, or start a YouTube channel about cats with millions of followers.

Today that’s no longer adequate. Things must be on the internet, and they must be on now! Whether it’s Vloggers broadcasting live from a tradeshow floor using their iPhones, or sites like DPReview doing live webcasts from a studio, live streaming has gained a lot of momentum, and viewers are demanding higher quality live streams as time goes on.

We’ve already seen products to meet this need at a consumer level, whether it’s a DJI Osmo that uses your phone to broadcast on Facebook Live, or the Blackmagic Web Presenter, which allows you to turn virtually any high quality camera into a streaming broadcast camera. We’ll be on the watch for other products and technologies that will fuel our live streaming future. Though we can’t promise to stream them to you live.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Timelapse Tour: Watch How Cities Grow Between 1984 to 2016

07 Jan

[ By SA Rogers in Culture & History & Travel. ]

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Human civilization has grown and expanded at an amazing rate – or alarming, depending on who you ask – and you can watch the last 32 years of it unfold via satellite imagery thanks to Google’s Timelapse feature. Originally released in 2013, Timelapse has been updated to add four more years of data and tons of new imagery data from two new satellites, offering clearer views with more detail than ever before. Choose any location in the world to see how it has changed – from cities to the shrinking ice caps.

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Some of the most dramatic changes have occurred in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Dubai and Chongqing, China, but you can also watch the Aral Sea dry up and the Shirase Glacier of Antarctica melt into the sea.

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Miami, Florida

Beijing, China

Las Vegas, Nevada

Shirase Glacier

Hangzhou, China

Look for the location of your choice and create your own annual time lapse at Google’s Time Engine Tour Editor.

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[ By SA Rogers in Culture & History & Travel. ]

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Filmmaker ScottDW trades his pro video gear for Canon EOS 80D: Watch the results

19 Dec

What happens when you swap out a video pro’s cinema-grade gear with a Canon EOS 80D?

Filmmaker ScottDW found out, when he put down his usual pro kit and picked up the 80D to shoot an installment of his High School Dance Off video series.

 ScottDW is a professional filmmaker with over 880,000 YouTube fans

ScottDW put Canon’s Video Creator Kit to use filming the short. The bundle was introduced alongside the 80D and includes a Rode directional microphone along with a power zoom adapter for the camera’s 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 kit lens. Take a look at how it all came together in the video above.

The Canon 80D offers a touch screen, handy for things like AF point selection

Though you won’t find any choreographed dance routines, you can also check out the 80D’s performance in DPReview’s video feature Barney Builds a Boat.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Evolution of Decay: Watch American Buildings Fall Into Ruin Over 40+ Years

19 Nov

[ By SA Rogers in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ]

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Architecture that was at its prime in the 1970s has slowly fallen into decline and often ruin thanks to decades of neglect, especially in America’s poorest and most racially segregated communities, including Gary, Detroit, Camden and Harlem. Many of these structures were historically significant, built between the late 1880s and the 1920s, but when no budget exists to care for them and entire cities are left behind by economic progress, the forces of nature and decay take over.

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In a potent visual representation of poverty in America’s urban centers and the loss of historic architectural character via demolition, Chilean-born photographer Camilo José Vergara has spent the last 40+ years documenting the downfall of dozens of structures and city streets. The resulting series, ‘Tracking Time,’ is a time-lapse in slow motion, photographing the same buildings once every few years.

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One old shop in Harlem gets painted several times over, has its stained glass windows knocked out, loses a facade to an ugly garage door and is split up into multiple smaller businesses before finally being boarded over and transformed into a mini-mall-style church in 2014.

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A massive brick building in South Bronx becomes modest row houses, while The Ransom Gillis House in Detroit (top) sinks into the ground, its bricks falling in clumps, the roof caving in, ivy and trees taking over. It’s almost completely obscured by greenery before a restoration brings it back to its former glory.

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But other stories aren’t so positive, since people care more about mansions than they do about public housing projects, row houses, and modest residential neighborhoods. Occasionally, Vergara ventures inside to show us that even though the facades still look beautiful, like that of the former Camden Free Public Library, the interiors are utterly destroyed.

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It can be a heartbreaking journey but also a fascinating one, watching some of these structures remain the same for many years while the world changes around them before transforming into something new. And some do manage to endure.

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[ By SA Rogers in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ]

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Slice and dice: Watch as a 60,000 PSI water jet slices an SLR in half

12 Nov

You may remember (and were traumatized by) a video that we posted earlier this year where a hydraulic press was used to crush a Nikon and a Canon camera to determine just which camera company reigned supreme. This time around a 60,000 PSI waterjet gets the honor of slicing an EOS ELAN 7E 35mm SLR in half.  

Camera companies often slice camera bodies in half to show off the inner workings of their new products at trade shows, but the Waterjet Channel kicks it up a notch by slicing a Canon camera body with the lens attached in half. Don’t try this at home!

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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CMRA band for Apple Watch features front and rear cameras

03 Nov

If you’re worried that having to pull your smartphone out of your pocket might make you miss the decisive moment, the CMRA band for the Apple Watch could be just what you’re waiting for. The watch band comes with not one but two built-in cameras. An upward-facing 2MP module is meant to be used for video calls, via a dedicated app, and the occasional selfie. The outward-facing camera captures 8MP images or HD-video clips right from your wrist.

To do so you have to tap a button that is built into the band or long-press it for video recording. A double-tap of the button switches between cameras. The makers of the CMRA claim you can capture ‘hundreds’ of images with one battery charge or record approximately 30 minutes of video footage. 

Recorded images and videos are accessible via Apple’s stock Photos app, so they can be easily sorted, edited and shared. In terms of storage the CMRA offers 8GB of built-in memory. The band comes with a dual-charging dock that charges Apple Watch and CMRA band at the same time.

The CMRA band is expected to launch in Spring 2017, but those interested can already put a pre-order in at an early bird price of $ 149 for either the 38mm or 42mm version. The estimated retail price after launch is $ 249. More information is available in the video below or on the CMRA website where you can also order the band.

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Watch thousands of books being reshelved in a two minute time-lapse

31 Oct

After a two-year closure for repairs, the Rose Main Reading Room at the New York Public Library reopened earlier this month. That meant a whole lot of books had to go back on the shelves. Thankfully, the whole process has been documented in a totally engrossing time-lapse video that makes it look way easier than it actually was. Take a look at the video above, and head to the NYPL’s blog for more on the grand re-opening of their Rose Main Reading Room.

Related: Photos of Cincinnati’s impressive ‘Old Main’ public library

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Watch thousands of books being re-shelved in a two minute time-lapse

29 Oct

After a two-year closure for repairs, the Rose Main Reading Room at the New York Public Library re-opened earlier this month. That meant a whole lot of books had to go back on the shelves. Thankfully, the whole process has been documented in a totally engrossing time-lapse video that makes it look way easier than it actually was. Take a look at the video above, and head to the NYPL’s blog for more on the grand re-opening of their Rose Main Reading Room.

Related: Photos of Cincinnati’s impressive ‘Old Main’ public library

Articles: Digital Photography Review (dpreview.com)

 
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Attack of the Giant Spider! Watch This Optical Illusion Mural Come to Life

20 Oct

[ By SA Rogers in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

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A nightmarishly oversized spider emerges from a gaping hole in a wall in this anamorphic optical illusion mural by French street artist Denys Pasco, better known as Densoner. Known for his highly detailed graffiti style as well as oversized murals frequently featuring creatures of the wild, Densoner created a creepy effect with the massive arachnid’s legs stretching out toward the viewer.

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The process of creating ‘Eat Me’ is captured on video and sped up so you can watch the spider come alive in the hands of the artist. Denoner starts off by painting a photorealistic black hole on a tattered urban wall, with the edges painted in shadow to make it appear 3D.

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Then, with a few strokes of white, the spider begins to appear, becoming more and more threatening as the artist works. Watch the video all the way to the end for a fun surprise.

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[ By SA Rogers in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

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