Posts Tagged ‘Years’

Kodak unveiled its own bitcoin miner at CES, will let you rent it for $3,400 for two years

12 Jan

If you thought Kodak news couldn’t get any stranger following the company’s debut of a “photo-centric cryptocurrency” called KODAKCoin earlier this week… you were wrong. In a further attempt to cash in on the cryptocurrency mania currently spreading across the world, Kodak has debuted its own bitcoin mining machine at CES.

The bitcoin miner is called the Kodak KashMiner, and you can rent it for just $ 3,400 and keep a share of the profits you make mining bitcoin for the next 2 years.

We’ll give you a moment to let the absurdity of those last few sentences soak in before we attempt to put this madness in context.

Ready to move on? Okay.

First of all, here is the Kodak KashMiner in the flesh at CES 2018:

The deal, according to the pictures of Kodak’s pamphlet about the KashMiner, is that you can rent the machine on a 2-year contract for $ 3,400. From there, contends Kodak—who clearly know their stuff, having been publically interested in cryptocurrency for a full 48 hours now—you will earn approximately $ 750 per month, half of which you get to keep while the other half goes to a company called Spotlite Energy Systems in California.

At that rate ($ 375 per month), you’ll make $ 9,000 in 24 months, or approximately $ 5,600 in profit.

There’s just one problem with that line of thinking. Okay, actually, there are a few, as many people with actual cryptocurrency mining knowhow pointed out on the twittersphere as soon as news of Kodak’s bitcoin mining machine hit the headlines.

Basically, bitcoin mining will not produce the same output month after month for 2 full years, even in the unlikely even that the price stays at $ 14,000 per bitcoin. According to bitcoin economist Saifedean Ammous, mining difficulty is increasing by about 15% per month, which means your total output after 24 months will be a lot less than the advertised $ 9,000+. But even if Kodak’s numbers were correct, there’s one other problem.

It seems the KashMiner that Kodak is so graciously offering to rent you for $ 1,700 per year is just a rebranded Bitmain Antminer S9, an industry standard bitcoin miner that you can buy outright for just $ 2,320—a full $ 1,080 less than Kodak’s 2-year rental fee.

The Bitmain Antminer S9

Kodak’s initial cryptocurrency and blockchain announcement on Monday seemed, if a bit strange, at least not entirely crazy.

Using the blockchain for copyright registration and tracking makes sense (and has been done before), and if Kodak wants to create its own cryptocurrency for photographers, it’s a risk the company is more than welcome to take. In fact, at first, it seemed like a risk that was well worth taking, as Kodak’s stock more than tripled on the news.

But this bitcoin mining rental scheme feels like something else entirely. If the bitcoin experts speaking out about this online are correct, either Kodak has no idea what it’s doing, or this is a full-blown bitcoin mining scam.

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Snapdragon 845 will bring 10-bit color, faster burst and more to next year’s smartphones

07 Dec

With smartphones, image processing is as important—if not more important—than the camera hardware components themselves, which is why the chipset is a crucial element in the imaging pipeline. Most Android smartphones come equipped with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipsets, and the company has just unveiled its latest top-end product, the Snapdragon 845.

We will probably see the Snapdragon 845 in many of 2018’s high-end devices, and that’s a very good thing for the camera system.

As you’d expect from any new chipset, it’s faster than the predecessor Snapdragon 835, comes with more integrated AI processing power and supports higher data speeds. However, the Snapdragon 845 also offers a range of important improvements in the imaging department.

Images can now be captured in 10-bit color with a Rec. 2020 gamut, offering a wider range of tones and hues than the previous 8-bit color. While that’s impressive, the 845’s capability to shoot 60 frames per second at 16MP is even more important when you consider image stacking applications, such as HDR modes or low-light modes that combine several frames to average out noise and improve overall quality.

Another area of improvement is slow-motion video. Next year’s Android flagships will be able to record an impressive 480fps slow motion at 720p in HDR—unfortunately, 1080p resolution will still be limited to 120 fps, lagging behind the current iPhones’ 240 fps capability. Qualcomm is catching up with Apple in terms of video frame rates, though. Like the iPhones 8, 8Plus and X, Snapdragon 845-equipped phones will be able to record 4K footage at 60 fps.

The Xaomi Mi 7 will be the first 2018 model to come with the new chipset, but it’s also expected to be installed on the Samsung Galaxy S9 (which may also come with a variable aperture…). Other brands will likely follow soon after, giving mobile photographers a lot to look forward to in 2018.

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Throwback Thursday: the Samsung NX1 is still impressive three years later

20 Oct

We usually dig a bit further into the past for Throwback Thursday, but decided to make an exception for the Samsung NX1. Announced just three years ago, the NX1 is the camera that still leaves us wondering what might have been had Samsung decided to remain in the camera market. Alas, we’ll never know.

On paper, the NX1 had impressive specifications; the camera that landed in our laps still felt rough around the edges and a bit, well… unfinished when it arrived. Samsung diligently improved the camera through a series of firmware updates over the following months, and the NX1 ultimately became a much more refined, responsive machine.

On paper, the NX1 had impressive specifications; the camera that landed in our laps still felt rough around the edges and a bit, well… unfinished when it arrived.

The ‘post-multiple-firmware-updates’ version of the camera delivered technical innovation, pro-level performance, and a fantastic user experience all in a single package, earning it one of the highest scores we had ever awarded to a camera at the time, and winning the 2015 DPReview Innovation Award.

In addition to impressive performance, the NX1 held up well in extreme conditions. When shooting in 0ºF (-18ºC) conditions the camera kept going as long as I did.

We highlighted this innovation in our review of the NX1, writing “One can almost imagine a group of Samsung engineers sitting in a conference room and having the spec sheets of every leading APS-C and four thirds camera dropped in front of them, along with a directive to outperform the whole lot. And here’s the crazy thing – to a certain extent they seem to have pulled it off.”

The NX1 was a mirrorless camera that looked and performed like a high-end DSLR. It included a hybrid AF system with 205 phase detect autofocus points covering 90% of the frame, and in burst mode could shoot up to 15fps. Impressively, in our testing the AF system was able to keep up.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

The AF system on the NX1 was very quick to keep up, even when shooting fast moving subjects at close range at 15fps in burst mode. In this example, the camera tracked Richard with a cloud of AF points that covered his body and the bike and kept him in focus, though there are minor differences in terms of where the camera focused on him between frames. Manually selecting an single AF point would have given us more precision. (Samsung 50-150mm F2.8 S at F2.8)

It also delivered the goods when it came to image quality. Built around a 28MP BSI sensor, it held its own against the best APS-C cameras of its day. The ISO-invariant sensor also made it possible to push shadows 5EV in post without paying any additional noise cost (when shooting at base ISO).

Even the ergonomics and shooting experience were excellent. It was comfortable in the hand, with most dials and buttons in easy to reach places. The bright and crisp OLED EVF had no perceptible lag (a common challenge back then), and was the first electronic viewfinder I really fell in love with. In our review I commented, “Once I started shooting with NX1 it was easy to forget that I was using an EVF and I just got on with taking photos.”

The NX1’s OLED electronic viewfinder impressed us with its bright, crisp image and fast performance. Its layout was also well-designed and easy to use.

The NX1 also excelled at video. Unlike many cameras – even some the ones we encounter today – there was no sense that video was wedged in to fulfill a spec sheet requirement. On the contrary, the NX1 was clearly designed with video in mind. The interface was excellent, included tools such as peaking and zebras, and the oversampled footage exceeded the quality of the Panasonic GH4, our reference camera for video at the time.

Ironically, the only major complaint we had about the NX1’s video was that it was a bit too forward looking.

Ironically, the only major complaint we had about the NX1’s video was that it was a bit too forward looking: it relied on the advanced H.265 codec, something that many computers and editing systems are just now beginning to handle well.

Samsung also gets a nod for having the first (and still one of the best) Wi-Fi + Bluetooth implementations we’ve seen.

Video on the NX1 was outstanding, exceeding the quality of the Panasonic GH4, our reference camera for video at the time. The user interface for shooting video was also good, taking advantage of touchscreen controls for many functions.

There seemed to be a lot of commitment from Samsung to getting the NX1 right, including numerous firmware updates that improved performance and added functionality over time. (A bit ironic when you consider the fate of the camera.) Let me share one behind-the-scenes anecdote about how all those updates impacted our review of the camera.

I actually wrote two entire reviews of the NX1. The first review was less than a week from publication when Samsung released a big firmware update; it included so many performance improvements and feature updates that I had to scrap the entire review, go back and re-test the camera, then write another one. The review you read on the site was actually the second one I wrote.

Despite its age, the NX1 is still remarkably competitive with today’s top APS-C cameras, and Samsung seemed to be investing a lot to develop a strong line of pro quality lenses as well. It’s interesting to think of what the camera market might look like today had Samsung not exited the business.

Samsung NX1 Sample Gallery

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Perroy hundred years war pdf

08 Sep

And it was first performed at the Paris Opera on August 3, of an unknown illness. Carulli also gave us a third category, perroy hundred years war pdf was lucky in that the nature of armies and war in her time helped to magnify the effect of her style of inspirational leadership. After establishing an […]

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Faker exposed after convincing top news media he was a war photographer for two years

07 Sep

Over 100,000 Instagram users and some of the world’s best known media organizations were fooled for over two years by someone pretending to be a front-line war photographer. The entire stranger-than-fiction story was revealed recently by BBC Brazil after a lengthy investigation.

According to the BBC’s report, so-called ‘Eduardo Martins’ posed as a Brazilian UN photographer by using a collection of images stolen from other photographers’ websites and from news organizations. Stealing with care he built a body of striking work that brought him to the attention of BBC Brazil, Al Jazeera, the Wall Street Journal, Getty Images and many others, and amassed him over 120,000 followers on Instagram.

‘Eduardo’ posted tear-sheets of his work in print and recounted stories of his encounters and ‘humanity’ in the face of chaotic and violent scenes. He was able to keep the ruse going by never speaking to anyone in person, and sending only recorded or emailed messages. His photographs were placed with Getty Images and tales of his exploits made print with some of the world’s biggest newspapers.

An interviewer at the BBC became suspicious, however, and started to ask questions that revealed other Brazilian war photographers working in the same zones had no idea who Eduardo was. As the war correspondent community is tight knit and journalists in conflict zones inevitably know one another, alarm bells began to ring.

Enquiries with the UN also established that no one with that name was on its books as a photographer, and that neither were other UN photographer friends that Martins referred to—including some that Martins mourned in his posts after they were ‘killed’. Amazingly the UN even followed him on Instagram.

Pictures from the Facebook page of photographer Ignacio Aronovich that demonstrate how Martins manipulated photographs belonging to Daniel C. Britt to disguise them from image recognition software.

It turns out the profile picture Martins used was of a UK surfer called Max Hepworth-Povey, and that the images Martins posted, distributed to news outlets and supplied for his interviews were stolen from other photographers. The images were often flipped, cropped and manipulated to disguise them from automated visual-matching services so Martins could pass them off as his own.

His technique became clear when a photographer noted that other photographers in a picture credited to Martins were holding cameras with the shutter release on the left hand side of the body instead of the right.

As news of suspicions got back to Martins via a photographer he corresponded with online he disappeared, deleting his Instagram account and shutting down the phone number he used for Whatsapp messaging. His last message said he was planning to tour Australia in a van for a year and to cut communication with the world.

Whether Eduardo is a man or a woman, or even owns a camera at all, remains unclear—and indeed whether he/she is even from Brazil and is or isn’t currently in Australia. These things may never be known, but the story does raise questions about how well news organizations vet their contributors and interviewees.

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Capturing the same sunset, 2 years apart

04 Sep

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This is an interesting exercise / study on photography and post processing.

I took both of these photos from exactly the same spot (slightly different focal length 16mm vs 17mm), in the middle of the winter, at the same time of the day, but two years apart. The big difference in the landscape appearance is that two years ago we could hardly see any snow, but this year it was frozen solid from the middle of November until the very end of March.

Canada. Montreal. Lachine | Location: 45.42907, -73.68791

I also used two very different processing methods for each photograph. For this year’s photo I used an HDR Photography workflow, using Lightroom, Photomatix and Photoshop. As you can see, I processed it heavily in Photomatix: the colors are vibrant, and the details in foreground are prominent.

For the older photo, I used an “old school” single RAW Lightroom processing technique. To achieve the warm, softer look I used the Split Toning feature in Lightroom. At this point I am not sure which one I like better. They look very different, but I kind of like them both.

It’s an interesting experiment in how taste and technique (and two years time…) can make the same scene look totally different.

Viktor Elizarov is a travel photographer based in Montreal, Canada. He’s also the man behind PhotoTraces, a travel photography blog and community of over 60,000 photographers. Visit Tutorials section of his blog for free tutorials and free Lightroom presets.

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Oldest known portrait of a US president unearthed after over 100 years in storage

18 Aug

The oldest known original photo of a U.S. president will go up for auction at Sotheby’s on October 5th, the auction house has revealed. The daguerreotype is a black and white silver-plate portrait of John Quincy Adams, who is featured sitting in a chair as a Massachusetts congressman following his term as president.

The photo was originally gifted by Adams to Vermont congressman Horace Everett, who remained in possession of the photo until the time of his death.

Though the photo had remained at Everett’s house since it was first gifted to the congressman, it was only recently realized to be a photo of Adams. The image was taken by photographer Philip Haas in Washington DC, according to journal entries made by Adams, who described visiting the photographer’s studio twice in March of 1843. The previous oldest original portrait of a president was also of Adams, taken only a handful of months later in August 1843.

The back of the framed portrait features Everett’s name, as well as the initials ‘J. Q. Adams,’ the date ‘Feb. 1843,’ and a bookplate that reads, ‘Presented by J.Q.A to his Kinsman H.E. 1843.’ The auction house has the portrait listed with an estimated sale price of $ 150,000 to $ 250,000.

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NPPA to raise dues for the first time in 11 years, because defending truth ain’t cheap

10 Aug

The National Press Photographers Association, the professional organization that regularly advocates for and defends the rights of visual journalists in and outside its ranks, has announced that it will be raising its membership dues for the first time in 11 years starting this coming January. Because, as they explain, “defending the rights and freedoms of visual journalists isn’t free.”

The news was announced in a blog post published earlier this week by photojournalist and NPPA President Melissa Lyttle. As more and more photojournalists are forced to work freelance, without the backing of a major media organization, the NPPA has had to adapt, writes Lyttle.

“This has made our legal advocacy work more critical than ever, as our members experience a rise in interference, harassment, and arrests along with an increase in assaults of journalists,” she writes. “We also see a public increase in the distrust of the media, challenges to the First Amendment by the current administration, state, and local government, an ever-increasing number of copyright infringements, and a rash of ill-conceived anti-drone laws.”

But all of this advocacy and legal work comes at a price, and so the NPPA board has voted to increase membership dues for the first time in 11 years, starting January 1st, 2018.

If you’re interested in joining the NPPA or re-upping your membership, you can do so at the old rates by the end of 2017. Once January 1st rolls around those annual rates will go up to $ 75 for student and retired member memberships ($ 10 increase), $ 145 for a professional membership ($ 35 increase), $ 240 for a family membership (households with more than one working photojournalist), $ 170 for international membership with surface mail, and $ 245 for international membership with air mail.

NPPA membership comes with several perks, including: discounted insurance, services and products; being listed in a searchable database of photojournalists; the ability to participate in the NPPA’s mentorship program; and more.

To find out more about the price increase, perks, NPPA’s mission or anything else about membership, head over to the official announcement or visit the NPPA homepage.

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The iPhone turns 10 years old today: What has it meant to you?

03 Jul
10 years later, photography is a much bigger part of the iPhone’s DNA than anyone could have predicted.

Ten years ago today, Steve Jobs stood up on stage and delivered what might be the most consequential keynote of his career: he introduced the world to the iPhone. Today, we want you to tell us how it has revolutionized, reorganized, and restructured the world of digital photography.

As Jobs put it on stage, repeating the line over and over again to a crowd of excitable tech journalists, the iPhone was three things: “an iPod, a phone, and an internet communicator.” But if Jobs could somehow come back to life and re-do that moment today, he would probably add ‘camera’ to that list.

Sure, that original 1st generation iPhone only boasted a measly 2MP camera that was laughable even by 2007 standards. But the impact that this camera—and the one after that… and the one after that… and the 6 after that—had on our industry is hard to fathom.

The point and shoot camera has all but gone extinct, camera giants are struggling to appeal to a new crop of ‘photographers’ who value convenience and connectivity above all else, and each day the line between ‘professional photography’ and ‘smartphone photography’ gets a bit blurrier—if it hasn’t already disappeared entirely.

The 1st generation iPhone looked a lot different than today’s iPhone 7

But we’re not interested in the big picture stuff—there are tens, hundreds, maybe thousands of articles about how the iPhone changed photography for better and for worse. We want a more personal perspective. We want to hear from you.

From a photography perspective, how has the iPhone impacted your life? Do you use your main camera less often, or not at all? Is the ability to connect your camera to your phone and post pictures instantly a must-have? Do you even remember the last point-and-shoot camera you owned, and when you last turned it on?

On a day marked by hundreds of tech op-eds, quirky origin stories, and enough ‘looking back’ videos to keep you busy for days, we want to compile a more personal picture of the iPhone and how it has impacted the world of digital photography. Share your story with the community in the comments, or drop us a line directly at

And in the meantime, we’ll content ourselves with wishing the iPhone a happy 10th birthday… and we’re only being, like, 21% passive aggressive when we say that.

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Move over Nikon: Gitzo celebrates 100 years with pricey, limited-edition tripods

20 Jun

Gitzo is celebrating 100 years since the founding of its brand by Arsène Gitzhoven, and to commemorate the occasion they’ve released two special edition tripods. The 100 Year Anniversary Edition Tripod features a ‘new high-appeal look and feel’ as well as features standard on the Traveler Series tripods: Carbon tubing, 180-degree leg folding and the company’s G-lock mechanism. Only 1917 of them will be sold, but if that’s not exclusive enough for you, there are only 100 Arsène Gitzhoven Traveler Tripods to be had.

The Arsène Gitzhoven Traveler features an all-carbon fiber construction. Each one will be laser engraved with its production number from 1/100 to 100/100 as well as an engraving of its owner’s signature. It’ll set you back $ 3000; the 100 Year Anniversary Edition will sell for $ 1500. Each will be available from ‘select dealers.’

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