Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Apple iPhone 5 Experience and Video Test

The Apple iPhone 5 launch day was just three weeks shy of a calendar year since the release of the previous Apple iPhone 4S. Did almost a year make a world of difference? Consider the new Apple iPhone 5 more of an evolution than a revolution to the more advanced average consumer, nowadays.
My Apple iPhone preorder days are over. Ever since the two previous Apple iPhone launches, I learned a valuable lesson about supply and demand in the Apple world. Avoid the demand online and head to the supply with no wait at your local AT&T Store like this one at International Plaza in Tampa, Florida. No lines, no chaos and no headache!
Faster, lighter, slimmer and sharper describes the new Apple iPhone 5 smartphone. A faster A6 processor cranks out the new features of iOS 6. A new design with lighter materials gives a near weightless and slim form factor than the previous Apple iPhone 4S. The longer screen gives way to a sharper "Retina" display of 4 inches instead of 3.5. The crystal clear 1136x640 resolution screen is now a native 16x9 aspect ratio. Hooray for the video filmmakers! I can go on and on about the new features of the Apple iPhone 5 but I am really interested in the photography and video capabilities. Read on...
The 8 megapixel iSight camera with f/2.4 lens touts a wider field of view and better low light capability with improved noise reduction for both stills and HD video. The slightly wider angle glass lens helps the already amazing picture quality in daytime and nighttime.
Although this new Blogger interface does not give this Apple iPhone 5 Panoramic photo at ISO 3200 justice, the low light performance and noise reduction makes a world of difference. This ISO 3200 is comparable to my Canon Powershot ELPH 300 HS. This impressive caveat combined with the new iOS 6 Panorama feature gives a new meaning to "Smartphone". Minus the optical zoom of the Canon ELPH 300 HS, the Apple iPhone 5 is really a camera with a phone built in...

The improved iSight camera features spill over to the amazing 1080p Full HD video capture of the Apple iPhone 5. The wider angle f/2.4 glass lens, improved noise reduction in low light and better in camera image stabilization makes this iPhone 5 an impressive filmmaker's tool. My Apple iPhone 5 verdict? The photo and video capabilities are a night and day difference with the previous iPhone 4S. The physical attributes of the iPhone 5 are simply beautiful. A great piece of Apple machinery! Now for the bad stuff! The Apple Lightning connector is great on paper but horrible for the rest of the world with a plethora of previous dock connectors. It is just another Apple product to consume with our money. The Google iMap application is now replaced with a Apple designed Map app powered by Tom Tom. Why change something that is not broken? My quick solution to this problem is to download the free Google Chrome App. Bookmark the built in Google Map tab in the Chrome browser and your Google Map problems are solved. Hurry and download the Chrome App before Apple pulls the plug! To view more photos and videos in full resolution shot with the Apple iPhone 5, you can see them all in my Apple iPhone 5 Experience and Video Test Gallery. Stay updated with the latest camera gear by Becoming a Fan on my Facebook Fan Page and following me on Twitter!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Canon EOS 6D Full Frame DSLR Announced

The full frame sensor DSLR market has new competition with the introduction of the 20 megapixel Canon EOS 6D. According to Canon, the Canon EOS 6D is the smallest and lightest full frame DSLR with built in GPS and Wi-Fi capabilities. Consider the Canon 6D a full frame Canon 60D with no articulating screen but with most of the features of the bigger and more expensive Canon 5D Mark III. I have to say most features because there is no headphone jack to monitor audio for video as well as dual slots for flash memory. At a retail price of $2099, the Canon EOS 6D is expected around December 2012 to hit the streets.

The full frame Canon EOS 6D is priced and marketed in between the Canon 7D and the more expensive Canon 5D Mark III in the EOS lineup. Canon APS-C and EF-S lens photographers maybe less shy to upgrade to all the advantages of a full frame sensor. Take note, the Canon 6D with DIGIC 5+ has only an 11 AF point focus system compared to the 61 AF points of the 5D Mark III, along with a slower 4.5 fps shutter rate compared to 6 fps of the Mark III. You get what you pay for...

The Canon 6D's shortcomings are made up by the additional features of consumer add-ons like GPS tagging and Wi-Fi capabilities. Camera Pro's may frown upon gimmicky features, but the built Wi-Fi has caught my consumer eye. Canon has developed a mobile device App to work in conjunction with the Canon 6D for a host of Wi-Fi enabled remote capabilities. The Full HD video features carry over from the Canon 5D Mark III as well, except for the infamous headphone jack to monitor audio during video capture. Minus that useful function, the Canon 6D can record up to 29 minutes and 59 seconds of 1080p video in ALL-I and IPB compression rates like its big brother. I have to add full control over video exposure and audio levels, also. Not too shabby for a smaller and better featured Canon 5D Mark II...Did you notice the removal of the joystick controller on both body and new BG-E13 grip? You now have the Canon 60D multi-controller dial instead. Hmmm...at least you have the Live View/Movie record button to quickly go back and forth from stills to movie mode!

I almost forgot about the new Canon Powershot G15 announcement. Obviously, overshadowed by its bigger Canon G1X advanced point and shoot brother, the Canon Powershot G15 features a smaller sensor and a faster f/1.8 multi-zoom lens. The Canon G15 loses the articulating screen of the previous G12 and still does not feature full manual control over video like the ,yet to be released, mirrorless Canon EOS M. Not to exciting in my opinion...

My Canon EOS 6D Verdict and Video Review will come shortly on this small and compact powerhouse. I am curious about the capacity of the buffer memory shooting RAW images compared to the 5d Mark III as well as the new 20 megapixel CMOS sensor's ISO capabilities. It is only 98 days until Christmas...

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Images courtesy of Canon Europe Press Release.

Monday, September 3, 2012

A Labor of Love

A few words spoken rewards the thankless without expectation. The diaper changes, the sibling rivalry and the constant attention to every wanton need wanes with a simple baby babble of "Hi, DaDa!". In this family, Labor Day celebrates achievement in milestones.

The hours of preparation by my beloved wife honors the memory of marinated Pinchos of Puerto Rico. Sliced pork seasoned and skewered like Filipino kabobs over flame pleasures the palate and numbs parental headaches of child upbringing. Sounds like good medicine to me!

Growing up is hard to do these days. Academic expectations are higher and more demanding from school and parents. Homework, tests, projects and more homework can seem overwhelming to little minds with big hearts. Madeline and Jude, keep up the good school work and it will all make sense when you are adults.

Parental patience burns faster than marshmallows roasted over an open flame without adult supervision. Add a little Hershey's chocolate sandwiched between two crispy graham crackers, you have yourself a potentially sweet s'mores meltdown. Can somebody please pass "some more" virtue?

Labor Day symbolizes the end of summer but not in this household. Family trips to the beach for sunset strolls and sandy swim sessions last until the cooler weather arrives for two more months. Two very very long months of more Florida heat and humidity...

Almost 18 months old and counting for my baby daughter Serena this Labor Day Weekend. Your spoken words are growing and adorable to parental ears. The bursting charm and cuteness are as big as your never ending appetite for cheeseburgers in paradise.

You can view more corn cobs and pics in my Labor Day Weekend 2012 Gallery shot with the Canon EOS Rebel T4i/650D paired with the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS lens.

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