Online SLR Camera Simulator is a neat flash app that helps teach the fundamentals of using an SLR camera by letting you tweak different variables and settings, then showing you what the resulting photograph would look like. It’s a great way for any beginner to become more familiar with a camera’s controls, though nothing beats going out and practicing by taking real photos — though this app would have been a lifesaver before the digital era.
The Nikon F, Nikon’s first SLR camera, played an important and influential role in photographic history after it was unveiled in 1959. It was the first to combine many of the emerging camera design ideas into a single body, and was the first SLR system widely adopted by professional photographers around the world. This is an interesting 20 minute documentary film that tells the story of how the camera was designed. Read more…
What would it look like if you tripped and with a Pentax Spotmatic F camera in hand, and it somehow smashed neatly into its most basic components? Artist Todd McLellan gives us an idea by taking one apart, neatly arranging it on a table, and photographing it in a style similar to Carl Kleiner’s IKEA baking book shots. Read more…
Today, Canon Japan’s Image Communication Products head Masaya Maeda said that Canon is working on a smaller version SLR to be released in the near future. In an interview with Reuters, Maeda said the idea behind the small SLR is that it could compete with Nikon’s future mirrorless system and other existing EVIL systems that are inherently more compact than most current mid-level DSLRs.
Maeda did not reveal whether the new Canon camera would include a mirror, but he suggested that the company has their focus elsewhere. Maeda said:
It’s not a question of whether or not you have a mirror. There is a consumer need for good-quality cameras to be made smaller … We will meet this need.
Still, Maeda did not commit to a solid answer about internal mirrors, though he suggested that there may be more ways to reduce the size of SLRs without removing the mirror.
Reuters cited an analyst, Kazumasa Kubota of Okasan Securities, who believes Canon may be wisest in sticking to traditional SLR designs. Kubota added, “Looking directly at something through a viewfinder is different from seeing it indirectly via semiconductors.”
What do you think? Is Canon on the right track, or are they missing the next gravy train?
Canon and Nikon broke ground when they launched DSLRs that have HD video capabilities. Now Sony’s taking a different approach by offering a comparatively affordable HD video camera with all the attractiveness of interchangeable lenses, plus the ability to take high resolution stills.
Not only will the camcorder share the same Sony E-mount as the NEX series (it comes standard with a kit 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 lens), Sony DSLR owners will be pleased to know that with a separate adapter, the camcorder can be mounted with any A-mount lenses — including Sony G and Carl Zeiss lenses.
The camcorder also has the same Exmor APS HD CMOS sensor as the NEX-3 and NEX-5. The DSLR sized sensor alone gives the camera a lot of extra real estate to work with; Sony boasts the sensor to be approximately 19.5 times larger than the standard sensor of conventional camcorders.
The NEX-VG10 can shoot 1920×1080 high def video at 60 fps, which Sony says is ideal for Blu-Ray recording. And for stills shooting, it can capture 14 megapixel images with a continuous burst of up to 7 fps.
Some benefits of using the NEX-VG10 over a video DSLR is that the camcorder has the right ergonomics and image stabilization for shooting video, and doesn’t have the same limited clip time that plagues DSLR video shooters — it can shoot up to 315 continuous minutes. Also, Sony says the NEX-VG10 has a silent auto-focus system that could cut down on noise typical on video DSLRs.
Stills shooters may appreciate the camera’s Auto HDR mode, but the fact that it doesn’t shoot RAW images could be a dealbreaker.
Nikon President Makoto Kimura says that in order to keep its “top position” in Japan’s DSLR market, it needs to create an “entirely new domain” that may go well beyond its plans for a mirrorless, EVIL camera.
In an interview with Pen News Weekly, Kimura said:
“Nowadays digital cameras take movies, performance of cameraphones is rapidly advancing and demand for simple movie cameras for uploading video on the Internet is on the rise. Redefinition of photography may become necessary.”
Much of this comes at the heels of Canon’s revelation of their future plans at the Shanghai World Expo, with its Wonder Camera presentation. With the introduction of cameras like the iPhone 4 and other smartphones with HD video modes, both companies suggest that there is a lot of pressure to keep abreast of the improving technology in typically lower-end camera competition from camera phones, as well as in higher end DSLRs with video capabilities. It seems that Kimura hopes to reassert Nikon’s product by marketing EVIL cameras to consumers primarily for higher quality video and video sharing, perhaps through a built-in internet mode.
However, it sounds like Nikon may have more up its sleeve than simply adding better video and internet. Kimura also said:
“It will be a camera that may take photos of the world that the traditional SLR cannot reach.”
If you want to dabble in 3D on your SLR without having to use separate frames or “gluing” your cameras together, this 3D lens accessory by Loreo might be a happy solution. The Loreo 3D Lens-in-a-Cap is a standalone lens that mounts onto the camera body like a normal lens. The resulting image is duplicated side-by-side, and can be enjoyed in 3D with a special monitor viewer.