Cameras, camcorders, and photography advice.
Photography and Video
George has a teenage daughter who wants a camera to take pictures with. He doesn't really want to give her a DSLR yet, but he doesn't want to get a cheap point and shoot either. He wants something she can use, grow with, and enjoy with him since he shoots with a Nikon. Leo says that the Nikon D3400 is a great option because it's only $500 and it would use the same lenses as his.
Rob is a professional photographer and he wants to use an iPad Pro to capture his images from his camera. Leo says that there are shortcomings here, because the camera connection kit by Apple doesn't really work well, and the iPad can't read RAW files. So he'll have to look at JPEG images. That's why Leo gave up on it. Canon has an iOS app that would enable him to wirelessly transmit photos to his iPad if his camera has wireless capability. It works quite well. The only other option would be to use his Mac and then copy the photos over from there.
Vinesh has noticed that nobody calls about camcorders anymore. Leo says that the show evolves as technology evolves. It used to be primarily about Windows issues. Then it transitioned to internet issues. Then just about any hardware imaginable including cameras, mobile phones and the like. So it evolves constantly because technology is constantly evolving. Now that camcorders are becoming less useful due to how good the cameras have gotten in mobile phones, we don't get those calls much.
This week Google announced a ton of new products, including a new Google Home and a donut sized version of Google Home (called the Mini) that Leo says may be better than Amazon Echo. Though Leo says that Amazon has a huge lead, in the long run, Google may have the advantage. Meanwhile, Amazon did get a shot in the arm this week with the announcement that Sonos will partner with Amazon to bring connectivity of Sonos to the Amazon Echo. But that may be short-lived since Sonos plans to work with Google and Apple as well.
Today's topic is the cinematic look of split focus. The Hateful Eight was shot on old 70mm Panavision film cameras with anamorphic lenses and it shows something really close and really far in the same shot, with both in focus. That's not easy to pull off. You need something called a Split Diopter on your lens. It splits the lens in half and shows both in focus. Citizen Kane and The Andromeda Strain used it as well. Strain has over 200 scenes filmed with it.
Chris says that the iPhone X will give you technically better images because the camera has been improved. The Portrait Lightning is also a great new feature. Auto HDR has improved, with a wider color range. It also has a slow sync flash, which gives the background more light to make it look better. 4K/60 in video mode or 240 fps at 1080p. It has a lot of options. But just remember, even with all of these new photo features, it won't make a good photo composition for you. You still have to decide what looks best.
Chris wants to talk about the technology of a digital camera. Every DSLR camera has a bump on it and that houses the penta-prism or penta-mirror. The electronic viewfinder is also in there. Why does an electronic camera still have a mirror? Well, mirrorless cameras don't have the mirror array, but they do have a viewfinder. A DSLR needs one to bounce the image in order for you to see the image, and the prism makes sure it shows up right side up. When it's mirrorless, then the camera doesn't need to reflect any image, it just broadcasts it to an electronic viewfinder.
Linda is going on an Alaskan cruise and is looking to get a good phone that has a great camera. She also wants to get binoculars, though. Leo says binoculars will probably be on the ship. She should take that money and put it towards a good camera. The problem with a camera phone is that the zoom is digital and it still won't be that good for her sole means of capturing memories. A nice point and shoot with 10x optical zoom would be a better choice. The Panasonic Lumix LX10 is a good choice.
Chris has a granddaughter that wants to take professional pictures, but Chris doesn't want to spend much more than $500. For $600, Leo recommends the Sony Alpha a6000Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens, which is an affordable body that leaves room for more lenses if the photography hobby gets serious. Leo also recommends the Nikon D3400 DSLR Camera 2 Lens Bundle, which comes with a broad range of lenses and a memory card.