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February 28, 2017

Members react to Nikon's gloomy financials

NIKON-LOGO-SQ-125.jpgHere are some of the topics and news items we're tracking for our community this week.

Nikon, currently celebrating 100 years as a corporation, is facing financial difficulties. Gold member Gerry Mulligan (Gerry M) from Arizona, USA has started an in-depth discussion on the recent financial news regarding Nikon Corporation:

Nikon-100th_450.jpgHis summary:
Imaging business net sales for 1st to 3rd Q (3/2017) down 29% when compared to 1st to 3rd Q (3/2016). Operating net income for same time period down 18.4%. They issued a notice of an "extraordinary loss" (their terms) for the company.

Our members added thoughtful analysis of the current news, along with predictions and wishes for the future of Nikon's imaging team. Here are a few examples:

• Nikon reminds me of Leica in the 1950's when they stuck with the rangefinders because the SLR's were a "passing fad." The company primarily responsible for bringing the venerable Leica to its knees was none other than Nikon! I would have guessed that Nikon learned from Leica's experience - apparently not.

• It is not just Nikon, it's is the whole industry. Mobile phones are hitting it harder and harder.

• My advice to Nikon's photography segment? Focus on two types of FX pro cameras; merge the DXs into two series, reduce the number of P&S cameras, and provide better service, as Canon seems to be trending to. That's my 2 cents from 55+ years of photography, almost all with Nikon gear.

Care to share your thoughts? Join the discussion.

2- Limited edition Nikon Gear

Nikon-Gun-Metal_325.jpgHardcore Nikon enthusiasts will probably be drooling over a new anniversary edition set of cameras and lenses. Richard Haw (ricoBaby) attended the Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA) annual international camera and photo imaging show in Yokohama, Japan last week and he shares images of the limited edition sets in his blog.

He tells us the show (called CP+ 2017) is:
Japan's version of Photokina wherein new products are showed to the public and international brands come to Japan to sell theirs here. There are plenty of newcomers but it usually consists of the usual big boys in the Japanese camera industry.

Thanks Richard for sharing your images of the new gun-metal finish gear (and your overall review of the show).

3- Exclusives for Nikonians

PhotoBert-March-2107.jpgThe world's best lens cleaning solution is used by Leica, Hasselblad, Bausch & Lomb & NASA and PhotoBert has it for you at a special rate.

Observe measurable differences in brightness and clarity with glass or plastic lenses! 2 sizes: 1 & 2 ounce. Now on sale. (US customers only)

Upgrade your Shutter! The most inexpensive upgrade for your camera.

Each package contains 2 shutter upgrades (choose RED or BLACK). Fits all Nikon DSLRs.

Save 20% on our legendary CheatSheets; 10% on Helicon Software and 5% on accessories. Get your discounts on all items mentioned above with this link

4- Password change

Cloudflare_250.jpgNikonians founder Bo Stahlbrandt (bgs) is asking us to change our Nikonians passwords as a precaution following news that a third party system has had a security breach.
There is no known impact on any of our members, but an ounce of safety is worth a pound of cure.

Bo assures us:
We are not using Cloudflare for payment pages. Payment related data thus not affected

Login pages are running through Cloudflare and thus are at potential risk. This issue has also been of concern to such sites as uber and yelp.

5- Advice on shooting dogs
We have a member entering the field of agility dog photography contemplating camera choices.
Gold member Beth Russell (goldogs) from Virginia, USA wants to upgrade:

DogJock_325.jpgI'm less than a year into working as a pro. Its weekend business that I dearly love. Also helps pay a few bills. I photograph what you see--field dogs in motion. I shoot at field trials and hunt tests. A unique specialty but remarkable dogs. I have a D750 and a 70-200 F2.8 as my primary lens. I rent an 80-400 when I need it.

The problem:
I realized after a few big shoots in the summer that I was missing key moments. These retrievers move like lightening. I need a camera with a higher FPS rate. I have sold lots of photos and a few gallery wraps. Nice. However, I see I'm my workflow that I am missing key fractions of a second. For this work, going faster makes sense to me. How to --is the question?

Do I go the financial distance and purchase a D5 or buy a D500? I'd consider buying a used D4S but only from someone I know. I crop a great deal on most shots --focusing in on the dog. I do know about noise with the D500. How substantially do you think it would impact the type of shots I've attached?

I really appreciate any advice  -- Thanks

Responses to her question include some great action shots and the context could easily apply to many forms of fast-action sports photography.

6- Cowboy action
We've already mentioned action dog photography. Now, let's combine fast horses, angry bulls and determined cowboys.

Rodeo_400.jpgSilver member Robert Metheney (bobpilot) from Utah, USA is working on his rodeo action photography and he's looking for critiques:
This morning I looked at some photos in the Sports forum and then looked at the images I planned to post. Mine are not as good. I see the difference. So, what can I do to produce sharp images?
I hope it's all right to post four. I am not asking for a critique on each photo, the same problem exists in each one, although at different levels.
I rented a D500 and used the ruler method to check focus with my 200-400mm lens. The focus point was where it should be, no front focus, no back focus. I checked again the next day. Perhaps I didn't do it right.
Possibilities:
1. I need to pan to keep up with the forward movement of the steer and cowboy, this might explain for some of the issues.
2. I use the shutter release button, I don't believe this will produce a soft image at 1/2500

Check out his images and read the responses so far. Perhaps you have another good piece of advice to add to the discussion. Once again, the advice from this sport will be of help for many others.

7- Getting started: Custom Settings
You get a new Nikon DSLR and as you browse through you owner's manual you see hundreds of settings choices. You may be wondering what settings some of your fellow Nikonians have chosen.

D300-Setting_300.jpgP. F. Infante (pfinfante) from New Jersey, USA recently asked:
I just received my D300, had the D100 many years ago. Does anyone have any suggestions for the Custom Settings, like best choice for configuring the AE-l/AF-L button, Qual setting, use of AF-ON button, etc.? Somewhat overwhelmed with all the options. Seems like more than the D100, but then again, I was 10 years younger!

Responses so far show a common theme:
• There is no best practice. You have to choose the settings that work best for you. Based on the subjects you shoot, the ambient conditions you shoot in, your preferences, and your particular shooting style.

• There's no "best practice" per se, since as Marty points out, they are settable for a reason: photographers and their situations are highly variable.

While we have agreement that perfection is elusive based on many factors,  we already have a few "basic" settings being shared in this discussion and we invite you to add yours.  

8- Masking Tips
Your portrait shot will need some masking during post-process but you soon find out this is easier said than done. It gets even harder with strands of hair.

Masking_450.jpgSilver member Allen R. Stewart (cutupguy) from Oregon, USA has posted two sample images and the discussion has led to others sharing their techniques (with their own samples).

Allen asks:
I am trying to swap out the background on these 2 images, but the hair is driving me crazy. I'm beginning to think there just isn't enough contrast or color difference for the selection tools to pick up.
I have used PS(CC) Refine edge brush and painting overlay blend mode on the mask, but no joy.
I have tried Fluid Mask 3, which has some amazing color selection tools but had no success.
I have tried On1 Photo RAW Perfect brush and refine edge brush, same problem.
I have tried mangling the image in black and white with contrast, structure, etc., but still can't get a good mask.
I have tried inverting the colors and then trying the above again, same problem.
If anyone could share a technique that works, I would be eternally indebted.

Look like a challenge? Allen posted images large enough for you to show him your technique. Dive in and give it a shot. And don't forget to describe your work-flow.

9-Laptop Darkroom?

Predator-Laptop_400.jpgCan you work on your image collection with a laptop? Many of our members are doing it right now, and we have a question on best choices for photography work.

Silver member Raymond Lach (Ray701) from Illinois, USA asks:
Hello fellow Nikonians! I've been a member for short time and finally felt it was time to get involved. I just recently got back into photography after a long hiatus.

Not too long ago I purchased my first DSLR, a slightly used D7100. While I am getting familiar with its features and functionality, I am in desperate need of a new computer. I am very partial to laptops and I would like to get some suggestions.

My budget is roughly $1000 to $1200. I would really like to be able to attach to a monitor (does not need to be very large) that could easily be color calibrated if needed in the future. I am strictly an amateur that has never used any photo editing software. My use will be only personal with no intentions of selling any of my photos. Sorry for the long post, and - Thank You for reading.

Any suggestions? - Post your thoughts here.

 

That's it for this week. Make sure you grab your favorite camera and capture some images to share with family and friends (especially us at Nikonians). -- Tom Boné (flashdeadline)


Posted by flashdeadline at 7:36 PM | TrackBack

February 26, 2017

Please change your Nikonians password

Due to a bug in a 3rd party system, which also Nikonians uses called "Cloudflare.com", data sent to Nikonians, specifically passwords, may have leaked. We have no indications that this is the case and this request for password change is precautionary.

Please do change your password. This can be done in your user profile. Click the "Change password" link.

More info on this bug here.

More background info:
We are not using cloudflare for payment pages. Payment related data thus not affected. Login pages are running through cloudflare and thus potentially at risk.

Posted by bgs at 2:37 PM | TrackBack

February 21, 2017

NiMH puzzle, D200 dead?, Triptych tips and more.....

Pocket-watches_SQ_110.jpgHere are some of the topics and news items we're tracking for our community this week.

1- NiMH batteries puzzle

2700-batteries.jpgSilver member Jerry Klumpp (jwk1940) from Texas, USA is having difficulty understanding why his MB-D17 battery grip with the D500 is not working well with his choice of nickel metal hydride batteries.

Jerry asks:
I was wondering if anyone has encountered a problem trying to use nickel metal hydride batteries in the MB-D17 battery grip with the D500? 

When I tried using my 2700mAh, fully charged batteries, the camera would show a full charge, then after one picture, it shows low charge and will not work. If I remove the batteries and re-insert them, the camera once again shows full charge, take one picture, then shows low charge and won't work. I called Nikon tech help and all they could tell me was I'm using the wrong brand of battery, I should use Energizer or Duracell. I don't think the camera cares what brand I use as long as they supply the necessary voltage. 

I know Ni-MH batteries don't have as high voltage as alkaline or lithium, so I thought that's the reason for the three battery type options listed under MB-D17 battery type, so it would accept the lower voltage, 9.6 vs 12. Anyone have any input on this issue?

Replies to this particular question may be useful to any of our members with battery issues.


2- Nikonians Uploader for Mac v1.32 now available

Screen_Shot-uploader_325.jpgOur image gallery uploader for Mac has been updated. You can download it here

This new version takes care of some issues found in V1.30, such as a stall that could happen during upload.

The Nikonians Uploader is an application allowing you to easily upload images to the Nikonians galleries directly from your Mac by simple drag & drop functionality.

The latest version of the Nikonians Uploader works on Mac OS X Lion (Mac OS X 10.7) up to and including El Capitan (10.11).

It is available for free to Nikonians on a Silver membership or higher.


3- Pocket Watches anyone?

Pocket-watches_325.jpgWe've known for many years that our members have a wide span of interests and hobbies (other than our Nikon gear) and recently a new topic has surfaced. Pocket watches - along with some very interesting macro shots of these relics from the past.

It all started with a simple question about a certain purchase-- and soon our members with collections started listing their favorites. 

The neat part is our members used well-done macro shooting to illustrate their replies.

Here's a sample:
I own five, all family heirlooms. The ones at 12:00 and 2:00 belonged to my father, a violinist who felt a wristwatch interfered with his ability to play. The newer Hamilton was presented to him by the Women's Committee of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in 1959. Continuing clockwise around the circle, my paternal grandfather's watch, my maternal grandfather's watch (a college graduation gift perhaps, engraved with his name in 1905), and finally, a watch belonging to a great uncle.

All are in working order. I have no idea what their dollar value is, and I don't care.

For the record, my dad was also a Nikon man. He bought his Nikon Photomic T and a variety of lenses at the Sony Galleria in Tokyo on a CSO world tour sponsored by the U.S. State Department in 1966. He brought one back for me, too.

Join the discussion if you want to show us your favorite pocket watch.


4- D200 Disaster

NikonD200_325.jpgBenedikt Balian (bnbphoto) from Belgium has a Nikon D200 that has turned into an expensive paperweight. Is it really dead?

Here is the original question:
Hello everybody,
I am desperate, I bought today a nice D200 second hand. I decided to upgrade the firmware.

I downloaded the file from Nikon's website, formatted a CF card (Sandisk Ultra 4GB) in camera, copied the A file to the card with a card reader in my PC and started the update.

Once he was done and told me to switch off the camera I had a PG UP warning on the top LCD.

I took out the CF card copied the B file to it and put it back in. When I tried to switch the camera back on it stayed with the PG UP warning and nothing happened. I took out the battery to restart the camera.
However now the camera is completely dead. It doesn't switch on. There is nothing on the top LCD. It just doesn't do anything.
If anyone has any idea, please let me know. Thanks a lot.


5- Jig-saw selfie

Geoff-Puzzle_250.jpgGold member Geoff Baylis (GBaylis) from England, The United Kingdom has been working on a digital artistry project that includes using JavaScript to create puzzle pieces.

During discussion on the project he told us:
I think that the most useful feature of PS that I discovered answered one of my biggest frustrations: how to easily identify and select a particular layer within a multi-layer document...simply right click on the point in the image that you want to manipulate and a window pops up showing the stack of layers (and masks) that exists under your cursor: just click the one you want and it's selected without having to visit the layers panel.

How is it that all the tutorials I've followed didn't mention that?

If you are looking for more on how to pull off a similar digital artistry project - ask Geoff. He has been a productive member since 2012 and has many outstanding images in his User Gallery


6- Triptych tips

Triptych-300.jpgGold member Dale Maas (marnigirl) from Arizona, USA has posted a triptych for critique and if you have never tried this three-image format before, the replies can serve as a starter guide.

Here is a sample of some comments:

• Terrific action shots, but I'd love to see more of the horses.

• I agree with Candy, more horse. Is there a chance you could change to Landscape mode, widen each panel?

• Lovely and exceptional works. My eyes visualize the scene better with the vertical presentation,it seems to flow better.

• Great attempt - and so much to work with. My two thoughts echo the other's thoughts.
The top attempt;
The middle photo is a nice composition but it took study to figure out what was going on. Also if you study the triptychs in the history of painting, you may notice there is a composition of each and a composition of all three. The composition of all three in the top group is very poor in my opinion.
The second group;
This is so much better. It is clear what is going on and the composition is more pleasing. If the center image was slightly more to the left and the top to the right, you would have the classic triangle composition.

This entire discussion shows the benefit of posting in our critique forum with an open mind, accepting the comments and then followed by a few attempts to attack the project with an alternative view.


7- February Assignment no shows

Assign-Dec_300.jpgCrickets are chirping in the February 2017 Photo Assignments section.  Zero entries at press time. 

Assignments coordinator Rob Migliaccio (rmigliaccio) has made this one easy, letting you decide the topic.

Rob tells us:
February is a short month. Rather than burden you with a specific assignment that you may or may not be able to perform during this short month, I am instead letting you decide what your subject will be. 

The assignment is wide open.  - You decide! Shoot anything you want. Have fun with the assignment, but make sure the image is wall worthy.

There are no other restrictions except that your image(s) must be taken during the month of February, 2017. Using images taken prior to February, 2017, is not permitted and will be deleted. Please honor the rules of the assignment.

We encourage you to grab your camera and enter your image in the February assignment today.


8- Markins Ball Heads explained

Markins-Article-BV22-BV-12_325.jpg

Nikonians co-founder J. Ramon Palacios (jrp) has posted an article explaining Markins ball head models and new modules. 


He describes a truly integrated camera support system, not just for landscape, wildlife, and portrait, but now for birding, video and for panorama photography, by including ingenious compact tools.

The brief article includes the introduction of new modules -- the BV-12 which can be used on the Q10i and Q10i-Q and the BV-22 for the Q20i and Q20i-Q.

His description:
These modules mount on the ball head clamp (dropped on the open channel) and serve to constrain all camera-lens movements except for up and down tilt, allowing for use of the ball head pan capability. This makes Birds in Flight (BIF) photography and Video (hence the denomination BV) an efficient delight. In fact, the BV module replaces the need for an obtrusive Gimbal head or a Sidekick for BIF and for another head for video.


Posted by flashdeadline at 10:45 PM | TrackBack

February 17, 2017

Nikonians Uploader for Mac v1.32 now available

Our image gallery uploader for Mac has been updated. This new version takes care of some issues found in V1.30, such as a stall that could happen during upload.

Silver, Gold and Platinum members can download the uploader at no cost on the Nikonians site.

Posted by bgs at 10:47 AM | TrackBack

February 14, 2017

Congrats Top Ten 2016 -- I am Nikonians/Candi -- DL cameras cancelled

Best-Nikonians-2016-Owl_SQ_110.jpg

Here are some of the topics and news items we're tracking for our community this week.

Nikonians Photo Contest Director David Summer (dm1dave) has announced the winners of the Best of Nikonians 2016 Photo Contest. 

The winners are:  (listed in random order)
1. John McGarry (jtmcg) from Connecticut, USA with his image titled Dew Covered Honeybee.

2. Fred Morton (Fred Morton) from Virginia, USA with his image titled Night Time in Havana

3. Peter Allinson (critidoc) from Maryland, USA with his image titled Swordfish

4. Koos Erasmus (Rassie) from Ontario, Canada with his image titled Gliding Snowy

5. Russ Glindmeier (russg) from Arizona, USA with his image titled Meadview Arizona

6.  Michael Kawerninski (qanik) from British Columbia, Canada with his image titled Spring is in the Air

7.  Tom Jacob (sevendayimages) from Spain, with his image titled A Bright Stare for the Photographer

8.  Henning Bossen (henbo) from Denmark with his image titled Alpe di Siusi at sunrise

9. Godofredo Baylon (GBaylon) from Ontario, Canada with his image titled This face needs Photoshop help

10. Scott Ashley (scottashley) from Colorado, USA with his image titled Red Fox Peering Over Snow

The winners had gained points by entering in the Landscape, Wildlife, Micro-Macro & Close-up, Travel, Digital Artistry Forums and Online Assignments as well as themed segments covering: People, Animals, Plants and Places.  Competition was open to Silver, Gold and Platinum Nikonians Members.

Higgins_170.jpg

Speaking of winnersCongratulations to Gold member Richard Higgins (HigginsR1) from Florida, USA.  He was named Wildlife Photographer Of The Year 2016 by The Societies of Photographers, an international organization for serious and professional photographers based out of Rhyl, North Wales, United Kingdom.

Here is the official announcement.


The world's best lens cleaning solution, Shutter upgrades and CheatSheets are all on sale!

The world's best lens cleaning solution is used by Leica, Hasselblad, Bausch & Lomb & NASA.

Observe a measurable difference in brightness and clarity with glass or plastic lenses! 2 sizes: 1 & 2 ounce. Click here: Now on sale. (US customers only)

Upgrade your Shutter!
The most inexpensive upgrade you can make to your camera. Each package contains 2 shutter upgrades (choose RED or BLACK). Fits all Nikon DSLRs. Click here to save 5% now.

Save 20% on our legendary CheatSheets; 10% on Helicon Software and 5% on accessories. Get the discount with this link.  (discounts show in Cart).


I Am Nikonians - Candi Foltz (CandisCamera)

Candi-Pet_350.jpg

Moderating Team member Marsha Edmunds (meadowlark2) has posted her latest chapter in the Nikonians member profile "I am Nikonians" series of articles.

Her subject in this installment is Silver member Candi Foltz (CandisCamera) from Florida, USA.

Candi tells us:

I think with these images I have illustrated a short autobiography of my history with photography and the Nikon camera. The photos of the Iguanas and the Pug dog are a glimpse into my past when I was a pet photographer twenty years ago using the Nikon 8008n film camera.  I made all the costumes myself and most of the backdrops. The other photos show more recent digital camera shots and my interest in post processing artistry.

The article includes images showcasing her expertise in pet photography.


Berger Bros. great trade-ins and spectacular deals

Berger Bros Camera is offering great trade-ins or outright purchase for your used Nikon or any brand photo gear. We see many people trading in older heavy DSLR gear toward new Fuji, Sony or Olympus Mirrorless cameras.

We now have in stock new fabulous Olympus EM1 MKII Sony A6500, Sony A7R II cameras as well as Fuji XT2 and coming soon Fuji GFX50S medium format 50mp.

Also we have spectacular deals on Nikon D810 and put your order in now for the new Nikon Full Frame Body to be announced shortly.
Great Personal service: Brad Berger 516-816-4921 or Brad@Berger-Bros.com. - BradBerger@mac.com.


Nikon cancels DL cameras

Nikon-DL-Cancl_325.jpg

Silver member Ron DeBlock (ron917) from New Jersey, USA has started a discussion on Nikon's announcement of a product line cancellation.

Nikon's official statement of February 13 includes:

A June, 2016 release was originally planned for the DL series. However, with the identification of issues with the integrated circuit for image processing, release of the three cameras was delayed indeterminately.

Since then, everyone involved has worked very hard to develop products with which our customers will be satisfied. However, it has been decided that sales of the DL series will be canceled due to concerns regarding their profitability considering the increase in development costs, and the drop in the number of expected sales due to the slow-down of the market.

 If you had been planning on purchasing any of the DL series cameras, join the discussion


Mac software picks

p-shop-lightroom_250.jpg

New member P. F. Infante (pfinfante) from New Jersey, USA is asking for advice on Photo Editing software on a Mac.

We've seen this question many times in the past few years, but for our newer members, it's worth having a look at the latest (most up to date) replies.

Here's a sample:

• If you exclude Photos, which is better suited to cell phone shots and lightweight editing, Lightroom is probably the most popular. Ditto on Windows. A large percentage of apps are licensed to run on either Macs or Windows computers. You don't necessarily need to buy new apps. Lightroom is a good example of that.

• Lightroom is popular with Photoshop but comes with monthly subscription. You can also look at others like Luminar from Macphun, Nikon software, ON1 raw, Affinity Photo, Phase One, DxO... now a day, you can get a trial version to try them before buying.

• One should note that each time you make a change from one editing software to another, your images will not look the same as each and every one have their own algorithms and codes to produce the image, (that's a layman's explanation.

These are just short samples-- check out the full discussion for details, and don't forget to share your opinions. 


Spring ANPAT in less than 3 months

ANPAT-17-Eric_325.jpg

Start the new year right by locking on your reservation for our Spring ANPAT (Annual Nikonians Photography Adventure Trip).

The Spring ANPAT will be held in Moab, Utah.  Join us for a full week of photography, shop talk and camaraderie.

The dates this year will be: 
Arrival on Saturday May 6, 2017
Departure on Saturday May 13, 2017

As with previous editions, this ANPAT is administered under the Nikonians Academy for bookings and it is for all skill levels. For more information check our FAQ's.

Posted by flashdeadline at 11:13 PM | TrackBack

February 7, 2017

December congrats -- Melissa is angry -- Hasselblad news -- Solar Safety

HNL-SQ-02-08-2017_110.jpgere are some of the topics and news items we're tracking for our community this week.



Nikonians Contest Coordinator David Summers (dm1dave) has posted the results of the December contests. Congratulations to our winners!
Specials congratulations go to Scott Ashley (Scottashley) who took top honors in two categories for the month of December.

Check our winning images legend below and scroll down for the names of the winners. Each photo title serves as a link, which will lead you to explanations behind some of the photographs and an overall look at the competition.

Contest-December-2016-H_900.jpg

1. -- Wildlife - "Winter & Wildlife" theme winner Scott Ashley (Scottashley), from Colorado, USA with his image titled Red fox peering over snow.
2. -- Landscape -  "Best of 2016" theme winner Scott Ashley  (Scottashley), from Colorado, USA with his image titled Spotlit trees in the Smokies.
3. -- Macro - "Your Personal Best of 2016" theme winner Geoff Baylis (GBaylis) from The United Kingdom, England with his image titled Abutilon Pictum.
4. -- Travel  - "Into the Shadows" theme winner Huw Thomas (HUW) from New South Wales, Australia with his image titled Into the Shed.
5. -- Digital Artistry -  "Holiday" theme winner James Buch (jimray) from Oregon, USA  with his image titled Father Frost Needs Help.
6. -- Assignment  -  "Bottles" theme winner Dan Wiedbrauk (domer2760) from Michigan, USA with his image titled Wavy Glass.

Interested in submitting your photos?
If you want to participate, please be sure to enter one of the monthly competitions listed in David Summers' contest guide.

The Online Photo Assignments category is coordinated by Rob Migliaccio (rmigliaccio) from Rhode Island, USA. You can check his recap of past winners here.

The current (January) assignment is "You Decide" - and this one lets us choose our own artistic direction.

Here is Rob's description:
February is a short month. Rather than burden you with a specific assignment that you may or may not be able to perform during this short month, I am instead letting you decide what your subject will be. The assignment is wide open - you decide! Shoot anything you want. Have fun with the assignment, but make sure the image is wall worthy.

Melissa is angry

Silver member Melissa OGarr from Western Australia is a bit mad (actually she used a much stronger descriptive) with her Nikon D3300.
It seems the camera has gone "dead" on her and she's not happy with any of her fixing options.

D3300-Hammer_400.jpg

Here's a small (condensed) portion of her post:
I wanted a good Macro camera, and was advised to buy Nikon. The Nikon is terrible at macro, see a previous post, now I'm stuck with four lenses that are no good to me at all and severely out of pocket). Now the hardware seems to be failing and I haven't even had it a year! I bought it in China, so getting warranty in Australia could prove difficult.

Two days ago, this Nikon stopped being able to download any pictures onto my laptop or PC. We have tried everything, to find out what's gone wrong. The cable has charge, the camera works, but I can't get any communication between camera and computer. I tried taking out the card (which I initially thought was the problem as my Canon card (only 4mths old - just suddenly died two days earlier) it was able to be read on a friend's PC, but I have no card reader on my PC or laptop. I'm a pensioner so a $300 charge and a cost to drive 400km to Perth to get it repaired is out of the question. I also thought that maybe there was a driver/windows conflict - so downloaded over 2GB worth of drivers from Nikon, which put me over my monthly data limit and now I'm throttled at a slow crawl.  None of those drivers were of any use, so it was back to square one.What the hell do I do now? The camera is USELESS if I can't access the photos.

This problem has caught the attention of many of our members and we're expecting someone to come up with the best answer at any time. If you had a similar experience -- Check it out.

Hasselblad changing hands

Hass-Dron_350.jpg

The Nikonians community has always held quality gear from other manufacturers in great regard. Industry legends like Leica and Hasselblad are not only respected but also owned by some of our members. That is one of the reasons we found this discussion, led by founder Bo Stahlbrandt (bgs) of interest:

In case you have missed it, Swedish Hasselblad now Chinese, going the way Volvo and other iconic Swedish manufacturers went.

When will we see the first Hassi with integrated propellers?

More info over at luminous landscape by Kevin Raber.

Kevin's article includes this important disclaimer: Information relayed in this article was obtained from numerous credible and reliable sources.  

Although the final conclusion has not yet been confirmed by Hasselblad or DJI, I am confident in my sources and believe that a formal announcement is forthcoming.

As the discussion progressed, it was highlighted by a bit of industry background provided by Gold member Steven Licht (SteveDotNet) from New York, USA. If legendary gear is one of your passions, join the conversation.  One more thing -- our image of a camera under a drone is pure imagination. 

Sun Shooting Safety

We have more members planning to shoot the Solar eclipse in August, and now the conversation is shifting towards safe filters. The consensus so far comes from those who are advising extreme caution.

D500-Sun-Helmet_325.jpg

Here are some samples:

● Don't even think about using anything but real, purpose-built solar filters. Many are available from the astrophotography world.

● It's worse to use the wrong filter than to use no filter at all. Some ND filters do not block the full spectrum of IR and UV light. Some filters are drop in filters positioned at the back of the lens stack so light and heat is not blocked until passing through the lens.

● I would strongly recommend an external filter. While the internal filter would prevent damage to your sensor, everything "in front" of the filter could still be damaged by heat or IR.

If you have ever aimed your camera at the sun for an extended period of time, this discussion is a must read

Posted by flashdeadline at 6:09 PM | TrackBack

February 2, 2017

Speedlight update, missing Easy ISO and Solar Eclipse planning

NIKON-LOGO-SQ-125.jpgHere are some of the topics and news items we're tracking for our community this week. Some of you may have seen the same information in an earlier newsletter.


Is your SB-500 Speedlight not working with your camera?

Nikon has released firmware update version 13.002 for the SB-500 Speedlight. We had a question from one of our members back in November wondering why his Nikon Df was not functioning with the SB-500. It was his only post, so we're not sure if he's still checking in -- but if so-- this firmware upgrade should fix his problem.

Apparently, there were some instances of certain Creative Lighting System (CLS) supported cameras that were not communicating with the SB-500.

According to the Nikon Download Center, the update should work for:

• The D5, D4, D4S, Df, D3X, and D3S
• The D3 (camera A/B firmware version 2.00 or later)
• The D810, D810A, D800, D800E, D750, D700, D610, D600, D500, and D300S
• The D300 (camera A/B firmware version 1.10 or later)
• The D7200, D7100, D7000, D5600, D5500, D5300, D5200, D5100, D5000, D3400, D3300, D3200, D3100, D3000, and D90
• The COOLPIX A

Missing Easy ISO

Silver member Mike Kuznicki (mmm55) from Pennsylvania, USA started an interesting discussion, wondering why the Nikon D500 seems to be missing a popular International Organization of Standardization (ISO) function:
Researching the D500 and don't see "Easy ISO" feature. Am I missing something, or did Nikon really choose to not include it in this body?

Not part of a software package, but a feature of the camera. If enabled, and in certain modes like shutter or aperture priority, it allows changing ISO on the fly simply by rotating the main command dial (no need to press a separate button). I've found it extremely useful on my D810, and can't imagine why it wouldn't be included on every body.

His question led to detailed descriptions of "work-arounds" and more than one member hoping Nikon finds a way to return the function to the D500 via an upgrade.  Check it out.

Berger Bros. great trade-ins and spectacular deals

Berger Bros Camera is offering great trade-ins or outright purchase for your used Nikon or any brand photo gear. We see many people trading in older heavy DSLR gear toward new Fuji, Sony or Olympus Mirrorless cameras.

We now have in stock new fabulous Olympus EM1 MKII Sony A6500, Sony A7R II cameras as well as Fuji XT2 and coming soon Fuji GFX50S medium format 50mp.

Also we have spectacular deals on Nikon D810 and put your order in now for the new Nikon Full Frame Body to be announced shortly.
Great Personal service: Brad Berger 516-816-4921 or Brad@Berger-Bros.com. - BradBerger@mac.com.

AF-S Nikkor 105mm f/1.4E ED IF Review

Silver member Glenn Koury (Glenn_K) from Texas, USA recently enjoyed the excitement of opening a NIKKOR lens box, and wasted no time in slapping it on his Nikon D750 for some test shots.
Later, he took the time to share with us his AF-S Nikkor 105mm f/1.4E ED IF - User Review.

Glenn tells us:
I have officially joined the “Out of Focus Nose and Ear Club” by acquiring the 105mm f/1.4E.
I have been shooting with a D750 for the past two years, having moved up from my D200 after more than eight years (I’m a slow upgrader) and was wanting an excellent portrait lens. Over the past eight months, I rented the 85mm 1.4G twice and was about to get it when the 105mm f/1.4E was introduced, so I held off. I rented the new 105 about a month ago, and decided to get it.

He also shares his first few images and a well thought out list of important factors that can help you if you decide to make a similar purchase.

The world’s best lens cleaning solution, Shutter upgrades and CheatSheets are all on sale!

The world’s best lens cleaning solution is used by Leica, Hasselblad, Bausch & Lomb & NASA.

Observe a measurable difference in brightness and clarity with glass or plastic lenses! 2 sizes: 1 & 2 ounce. Click here: Now on sale. (US customers only)

Upgrade your Shutter!
The most inexpensive upgrade you can make to your camera. Each package contains 2 shutter upgrades (choose RED or BLACK). Fits all Nikon DSLRs. Click here to save 5% now.

Save 20% on our legendary CheatSheets; 10% on Helicon Software and 5% on accessories. Get the discount with this link.  (discounts show in Cart)

Start Planning for the USA Solar eclipse

Our members in the USA are already making plans for the Solar eclipse coming to the "lower 48" in August.


According to earthsky.org:
It will be the first total solar eclipse visible from the contiguous U.S. since 1979. The path of the moon’s umbral shadow starts in the northern Pacific and moves east through parts of Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina.

We have members in the English Café currently sharing the best vantage points and shooting tips, thanks to United Kingdom Gold member Stephen Dann (mort) who plans on visiting the USA in time for the eclipse:
I appreciate this is still 7 months away but is anyone planning to be in Tennessee for the solar eclipse taking place in August. I am going to be in the area between and north of Nashville and Chattanooga. Some advice would be nice as to if there are any parts of this part of Tennessee to either avoid or be at on the day.

Faster Glass for DX?

Silver member Paul Boden (greenhorn) from The United Kingdom, is wondering why Nikon isn't pushing faster glass in the DX arena:

As we all know the key advantages of FX over DX is the shallow DOF and superior bokeh. The current range of Nikon primes are f-1.4/1.8 and give excellent results on FX cameras, less so on DX.

What is needed is a series of DX f/1.2 primes. I am far from being an optics expert but my gut feeling is that it would be possible to take advantage of the reduced image circle to make this happen at a cost comparable to the current f/1.4 lenses. (Please correct me if I am wrong). Look at how tiny and cheap the DX 35mm f/1.8 is compared to its FX counterpart.

If my assumptions are correct then the only thing preventing this is commercial decisions. I can think of two scenarios:

1. DX shooters won't pay out for expensive primes so they won't sell any.
2. DX primes will be very popular and will reduce FX camera sales.
I'm a hopeless businessman but what do you think- Paul

Spring ANPAT coming in May

Start the new year right by locking on your reservation for our Spring ANPAT (Annual Nikonians Photography Adventure Trip).

The Spring ANPAT will be held in Moab, Utah.  Join us for a full week of photography, shop talk and camaraderie.

The dates this year will be:
Arrival on Saturday May 6, 2017
Departure on Saturday May 13, 2017

As with previous editions, this ANPAT is administered under the Nikonians Academy for bookings and it is for all skill levels. For more information check our FAQ's.

Posted by flashdeadline at 6:05 AM | TrackBack