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Samsung NX30 Pros and Cons

NX30 Front.jpg

After a few weeks with the Samsung NX30, I have a pretty good feel for it. Over at c't Digital Photography, I posted my hands-on review.

To help me write that piece, I compiled a list of pros and cons that I'm sharing with you right now.

Pros

  • Large APS-C 20MP sensor that produces excellent RAW files and Jpegs.
  • Electronic viewfinder that can be angled upward for a variety of shooting positions.
  • Colorful 3" articulated LCD that's touchscreen capable.
  • Clever fn button on side of lens that provides easy access to common camera settings.
  • Excellent WiFi (with dedicated button) and NFC feature set for Android users.
  • Image-stabilized kit zoom lens.
  • Photoshop Lightroom 5 is included with the camera.

Cons

  • Feels large for a mirrorless camera, especially the kit 18-55mm lens.
  • Some hesitation in performance when working with RAW+Jpeg.
  • WiFi compatibility with iOS devices could be better.
  • Standalone battery charger sold separately as an accessory.
  • Mundane body styling.

I've handed the camera to many people to see how it felt. In general, those with larger hands thought it was comfortable, while others evaluated the grip to be a bit too deep. This leads to my bottom line: The Samsung NX30 is a camera that you need to test in person before purchasing. How it feels in your hands and responds to you commands will most likely determine its overall appeal.

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Many devices allow us to stream content to our iOS device, but iStick will let you copy photos from your iPad or iPhone to a flash drive.

backup-photos-to-istick.jpg

iStick features include:

  • Free universal iPhone/iPad/iPod touch iOS app
  • Music & Movie Player (able to decode MKV, RMVB, AVI, WMV etc.)
  • 1080p HD movie streaming, direct playback from iStick
  • Photo & Document (Excel, Word, Powerpoint, PDF, iWork) Viewer
  • Open files directly on the iStick without the need to copy to iDevice
  • Copy/Move files between iDevice and iStick
  • File Management (Copy/Cut/Paste/Delete/Rename/Create Folder)
  • Backup photos/videos from iDevice Camera Roll to iStick
  • Support "Open In" functionality
  • Open files from other apps in iStick app
  • Open files from iStick in other apps
  • iDevice Contacts backup and restore

There's two weeks left in the iStick Kickstarter project, and you can jump in if this looks interesting to you. I'll publish a review once I receive mine in August.


Nimble Photographer Logo

The iStick has a high Nimbleosity Rating. What does that mean? You can learn about Nimbleosity and more by visiting TheNimblePhotographer.com.

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When I first covered Transporter Sync, I was intrigued by the $99 network device, but I thought its iOS functionality left a bit to be desired.

Now with version 2.2.24, Connected Data has added automatic Camera Roll backup that is useful. Once enabled on your iPhone or iPad, images from your Camera Roll will be automatically copied -- full sized and with metadata intact -- to your Transporter Sync. You have control over when and where this happens via Preferences. The app creates a new folder called Camera Uploads and places subfolders inside it labeled as your connected iOS devices.

Browsing the backed-up images on the iPhone still leaves a lot to be desired. But with Transporter Desktop 2.5.17, the viewing experience on my Mac is reasonable.

transporter-on-mac.jpg Browsing my backed-up iPhone images via the Mac desktop application.

So the scenario plays out like this: You connect your own hard drive to a $99 Transporter Sync, you have control over your private cloud with automatic and user-initiated backup of your mobile images (plus anything else you want), you can browse and access the content on your desktop computer (and mobile devices if necessary).

I wouldn't use it as my only mobile backup solution. But as part of an overall effort, this latest version of the software makes Transporter a nice addition.


Nimble Photographer Logo

The Transporter Sync has a high Nimbleosity Rating. What does that mean? You can learn about Nimbleosity and more by visiting TheNimblePhotographer.com.

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SF Street Skateboarders

If you hang around the Embarcadero across from the Ferry building in the late afternoon, you might catch Felix and his team of talented skateboarders.

A small group of us stopped there on our way to a twilight shoot at Pier 14. We asked permission to catch the action. Permission was granted and the hat was passed.

Air by Derrick Story "Air" captured with the Olympus 75mm on an OM-D E-M10. Photos by Derrick Story.

For the first time during the San Francisco Street Photography Workshop, I pulled out my Olympus 75mm f1.8 prime lens for the OM-D E-M10. That was a good choice. The 75mm is perfect for getting close to the subjects.

5-0 Grind

I set the ISO to 1600 and the aperture to f/2.8. This provided fast shutter speeds of 1/4000th and 1/2500th to freeze the movement. And of course burst mode allowed me to have several frames to choose from. After the shoot, I processed the images in Aperture 3.5 using my favorite urban presets.

We hadn't planned to shoot skateboarders. That's the beauty of street shooting. You just don't know what you're going to come home with.

Aperture Tips and Techniques

To learn more about Aperture, check out my Aperture 3.3 Essential Training (2012) on lynda.com. Also, take a look at our Aperture 3 Learning Center. Tons of free content about how to get the most out of Aperture.


The Digital Story on Facebook -- discussion, outstanding images from the TDS community, and inside information. Join our celebration of great photography!


This week on The Digital Story Photography Podcast: Analog Efex Pro 2 from Nik Software, Top Shape Camera, Bay Bridge Spectacular, and the $99 Fisheye - All of this and more on today's show with Derrick Story.

Story #1 - The Weekly Update: MBLOK - One memory for all devices. Always by your side - This 256GB storage cube could change the way you use your mobile devices.

lomo-instant.jpg

In other news, Lomo Instant, the world's most creative instant camera system also has a Kickstarter project.

And finally, Thomas Hawk posted an interesting piece titled, 20 Cool Things You Can Do With Nik Software's New Analog Efex Pro 2. "The purist film photographers out there are probably going to hate this new software, but for you digital photographers who dig an analog look and feel, you are going to love this." ($149 for the package.)

Story #2 - Top Shape - More and more, I see similarities between our digital cameras and high performance automobiles. One of those being the value of a little TLC. In this segment, I talk about firmware updates, LCD screen protectors, multicoated filters, and cases.

Story #3 - The Nimbleosity Report: The Olympus 9mm f8.0 Fisheye Body Cap Lens was put to the test this last weekend during a twilight shoot at the Bay Bridge. This super nimble $99 lens turned out to be quite a performer.

Story #4 - From the Screening Room - Portrait Project: Changing a Sky Background with Chris Orwig. This is a handy technique to know, not only for bland skies that need a little oomph, but any selection and mask in a photograph.

You can watch Chris in action by visiting the TDS Screening Room at lynda.com/thedigitalstory. While you're there, you can start your 7 day free trial to watch other design, photography, and computing titles, plus every other topic in the library.

Virtual Camera Club News

May is Wow and Double Wow Month For Graduation, Engagements, June Weddings, Birthday, Fathers Day ... and, because SizzlPix! loves making you a super hero with a camera strap around your neck, order TWO: one for them; one for yourself, and your second SizzlPix! is 25% off! Any two SizzlPix!, from the same image or two different, any sizes, any hanging options, save 25% on the second or more.

Save on Ground Shipping for Red River Paper: Use coupon code ground50c to receive a 50 percent discount on UPS ground shipping for Red River Paper. No minimum purchase required.

Photo Assignment for May 2014 is "Around the House".

If you haven't done so already, please post a review for The Digital Story Podcast in iTunes.

BTW: If you're ordering through B&H or Amazon, please click on the respective ad tile under the Products header in the box half way down the 2nd column on thedigitalstory.com. That helps support the site.

Listen to the Podcast

In addition to subscribing in iTunes, you can also download the podcast file here (31 minutes). You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App for only $2.99 from the Apple App Store.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

lynda.com - Learn lighting, portraiture, Photoshop skills, and more from expert-taught videos at lynda.com/thedigitalstory.

Red River Paper -- Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

SizzlPix! - High resolution output for your photography. You've never seen your imagery look so good. SizzlPix.com. SizzlPix! now is qualified for PayPal "Bill Me Later," No payments, No interest for up to 6 months, which means, have your SizzlPix! now, and pay nothing until August!

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I encouraged everyone to experiment and have fun during the Saturday night session of the SF Street Shooting Photography Workshop. I knew that I wanted to play with Art Filters and Live Bulb on my Olympus OM-D E-M10 with M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 prime lens.

bay-bridge-pier-14.jpg Bay Bridge from Pier 14 with Olympus OM-D E-M10. Photo by Derrick Story.

We had set up shop at Pier 14 on the Embarcadero. I perched my MeFOTO DayTrip Tripod on a covered trash receptacle, set the E-M10 to RAW+Jpeg, enabled the Pop Art filter, and proceeded to have a blast capturing the bridge as it came to life at twilight. The long 13-second exposure helped smooth out the water, and setting the 17mm lens to f/10 with manual focusing allowed me keep all the details crisp.

I also have the master RAW files if I decide to apply a completely different treatment to the image at another time. (When you shoot RAW+Jpeg, the Art Filter is applied to the Jpeg and the RAW is left untouched.)

We wrapped up for the evening around 9:30 pm, then headed back to the Hotel Cartwright to prepare for another day of street shooting.

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nikon-4s-front.jpg

You want to capture quality, but not necessarily a huge file size. Is the new Nikon sRAW format the answer?

Nikon Rumors posted, What exactly is the new Nikon sRAW file format? that provides a good overview with a link to even more detail if you want it.

Personally, I've shied away from sRAW on Canon because of some decoding problems with image editing apps. I'll be curious to see how Nikon users embrace this streamlined format.

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otto-with-pi.jpg

OTTO is an interesting little camera with an unique set of features. Powered by Raspberry Pi, you can customize and even create new shooting modes via WiFi and your mobile device.

Currently, its creators are raising money via its KickStarter program that is open until June 14, 2014. Backers can pledge $199 to receive the first shipment of OTTOs if the project is successfully funded.

Among its talents, OTTO can capture animated Gifs in-camera, time-lapses, stereo images, and really just about anything the mind can conceive. Part of this magic stems from its brains. OTTO is the first product to be powered by the brand new Raspberry Pi Compute Module, a thumb-sized system on module identical to the Raspberry Pi Model B, but in a much smaller package meant to be embedded in products.

It includes an optical viewfinder, 35mm f/2 manual focus lens, 5MP CMOS sensor that also captures Raw, and HD video up to 1080p30 / 720p60, and VGA 640x480 at 90 frames per second.

If I were teaching a high school photography class, I would probably buy a half dozen of these for exploring and creating new media.

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ct-cover-16.jpg

The next issue of c't Digital Photography Magazine is ready to go to press. But I have the cover to preview now.

Topics include full-frame cameras, Lightroom vs Photoshop, macro photography, and much more.

New subscribers can receive a 20% discount through the end of May. If you subscribe by Friday, you'll be included in the first shipment of this latest issue.

c't Digital Photography Magazine is for those who like depth and detail. It's German engineering for photography. If you want to see for yourself, check out their Free Downloads Library. If this type of expertise is appealing to you, take advantage of the May Discount Offer. Subscribers also receive the electronic version of the publication.

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You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

sony-rx100-m3-dimensions.jpg

This week on The Digital Story Photography Podcast: A Preview of the Sony RX100 Mark III, Is Fujifilm Working on a Medium Format Mirrorless Camera?, The 4-Pound Urban Lighting Kit, The Difference Between Presets and Plugins - All of this and more on today's show with Derrick Story.

Story #1 - The Weekly Update: Sony RX100 Mark III Preview (Source DP Review)

In other news, Sony Alpha a7S Mirrorless Digital Camera Comes in at $2,498 via B&H Photo. The early guesses were around $3,500 for this full frame 12MP camera that features ISO 50-409600 and 4:2:2 UHD 4K Output via HDMI.

And finally, Fuji Rumored to Be Working on a Medium Format Mirrorless Camera. "Details are sparse, but the anonymous source told FR that the prototype of this mystery camera looks something like an X-Pro1, with hybrid viewfinder, but "more of a size of the Fuji GF670." The source also claims the camera uses the same Sony sensor found in the Pentax 645z." (Source: Petapixel)

Story #2 - The Difference Between Presets and Plugins for Lightroom and Aperture - Recently, I published the article Spice Up Your Image Editing with Presets and Plugins. I think both of these editing tools help bring creativity to our post production. But they are quite different. I explain how in the second segment of today's show.

Story #3 - The Nimbleosity Report: "Street Portrait Lighting Kit that Weights Less than 4 pounds. The lighting kit I'm going to use for the upcoming SF Street Shooting Workshop will include a Manfrotto MS0490A Nanopole Stand with the new Manfrotto Snap Tilthead with Shoe Mount and Cowboy Studio wireless flash triggers. The whole kit, including flash and diffuser weights less than 4 pounds. Here's more about it.

Story #4 - From the Screening Room - Video Production Techniques: Location Audio Recording with Anthony Q. Artis. When it comes to movie making, audio is half the picture. And nobody know that better than Anthony. This is a terrific title to help visual artists get the sound right.

You can watch Anthony in action by visiting the TDS Screening Room at lynda.com/thedigitalstory. While you're there, you can start your 7 day free trial to watch other design, photography, and computing titles, plus every other topic in the library.

Virtual Camera Club News

May is Wow and Double Wow Month For Mothers Day, Graduation, Engagements, June Weddings, Birthday, Fathers Day ... and, because SizzlPix! loves making you a super hero with a camera strap around your neck, order TWO: one for them; one for yourself, and your second SizzlPix! is 25% off! Any two SizzlPix!, from the same image or two different, any sizes, any hanging options, save 25% on the second or more.

Save on Ground Shipping for Red River Paper: Use coupon code ground50c to receive a 50 percent discount on UPS ground shipping for Red River Paper. No minimum purchase required.

Photo Assignment for May 2014 is "Around the House".

If you haven't done so already, please post a review for The Digital Story Podcast in iTunes.

BTW: If you're ordering through B&H or Amazon, please click on the respective ad tile under the Products header in the box half way down the 2nd column on thedigitalstory.com. That helps support the site.

Listen to the Podcast

In addition to subscribing in iTunes, you can also download the podcast file here (32 minutes). You can support this podcast by purchasing the TDS iPhone App for only $2.99 from the Apple App Store.

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

lynda.com - Learn lighting, portraiture, Photoshop skills, and more from expert-taught videos at lynda.com/thedigitalstory.

Red River Paper -- Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

SizzlPix! - High resolution output for your photography. You've never seen your imagery look so good. SizzlPix.com. SizzlPix! now is qualified for PayPal "Bill Me Later," No payments, No interest for up to 6 months, which means, have your SizzlPix! now, and pay nothing until August!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.