Monday, September 27, 2010

Lacie Rugged Hard Disk

If there is one thing that I got from my trip to the Canon Expo in New York, it is that speed is a great thing to have: use a fast CF card, use a firewire card reader, use a firewire external hard disk, etc. So, I finally decided to get the LaCie Rugged Hard Disk with firewire 800, firewire 400 and USB 2.0. Before, I was on the fence on whether I should get this disk or not. The thing that prevented me from getting this was due to the fact that the price for a 500GB model is much higher than a 1TB desktop model, albeit the Rugged one is portable while the 1TB model is only USB. I actually have the LaCie Hard Disk 1TB Neil Poulton USB model where I store my photos while this is backed up by a 1TB Western Digital Hard Disk. I also use the Western Digital for my Time Machine back ups.

I was already thinking about getting an external drive because my aging Macbook Pro was running out of disk space. I tweaked the contents of my internal disk drive by deleting stuff that I felt I will never miss and moving some of my stuff from the internal disk to the external ones. But, after I attended the Expo, I finally took the plunge and got the Rugged Hard Disk. The Expo even pushed me into buying the firewire 800 model.

After getting the hard disk, I partitioned it and allotted 100GB for my iTunes contents. Then I transferred my Photoshop and Adobe Bridge cache folders to the remaining disk space. I got two advantages when I got the hard disk:

  1. My internal hard disk got a lot of breathing room when I transferred my iTunes contents - 70GB total.
  2. After a photo shoot, I download my photos to the two 1TB drives but I also download the photos to the Rugged hard disk. I do my photo edits there and, when I am completely satisfied with my edits, I transfer my final versions of the photos to the two 1TB drives. This may sound like a lot of steps in the photo edit process, but the time it took me to save a 500mb .psd file, for example, to the firewire drive is much less than the time it will take to save the same file to the USB drive. When I am done editing, I just transfer the files to the USB drives and I can do what I want like read a book, watch the Yankees, or go to sleep - since I am done with the edits, I don't have to wait for the copy process to finish.
If speed is of the essence for you, then I suggest that you also follow what I have learned from the Expo - use firewire 800.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Studio and Location Lighting Secrets... by Rick Sammon and Vered Koshlano

Studio and Location Lighting Secrets for Digital Photographers

Like mostly everything in life, photography is a never-ending learning process. Just when you thought you have mastered something, then there comes along something new that you have to learn (though I am the last to say that I already have mastered anything...).

So, wanting to learn about portrait photography some more, I got this wonderful book by Rick Sammon and Vered Koshlano. The title of the book is actually longer than the title of this blogpost - Studio and Location Lighting Secrets for Digital Photographers. The book includes a DVD.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Canon Expo 2010 in New York

For the first time, I attended an Expo that doesn't involve books. I got an invite from Canon and, the moment I got the invite, I pre-registered right away. The Expo itself was held on September 2 and 3.

I arrived at the Javits Convention Center really, very eager to attend. It was a really hot late summer day but I didn't mind the heat. All I wanted to do was go to the Expo, attend workshops, and hopefully to get a hold of the Canon lenses that I wish I had now...

After getting my ID and having my bag checked, I was greeted by this sight:

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Lens That I Wish I Have Right Now (Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L) - Part 2

In a previous post, I talked about the lens that I wish to add to my collection: the Canon EF 24-70 f/2.8L lens. I've been reading a lot of reviews about this lens from the World Wide Web but mostly from user reviews from the Amazon website. There are a lot of reviews, with some dating as far back as 2004. A lot of camera bodies since then, the lens is still in the Canon catalog and there is still an on-going debate on whether to get the f/2.8 lens or the Canon EF 24-105 f/4L IS.

So, further tests must be done to answer which, given the chance, L lens I would get, specifically, would the increased ISO be a factor on whether I should get the f/2.8 or the f/4 - would my camera be able to give me workable photos despite the increased ISO?

Again, to help me with this experiment, I will be employing my trust-50 Canon EF 50 f/1.8. All shots were taken handheld with the shutter speed enough to prevent camera shake. This was done so that I will be able to test if I can do away with the IS completely. The set back with hand-holding the camera is, unlike in the previous post I alluded to at the start, I won't be able to provide an exact replica of the picture albeit the change in the settings - the shots would be slightly off.


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