Objective Development's Little Snitch is your best defence against software that goes out on the Internet not only for updates but sometimes for snooping too. Little Snitch 4 is a firewall, network filter and network monitor that now lets you drill down easily into connections up to individual server level. It comes with a gorgeous interface that shows you where those servers are geographically based.
SketchBook Pro users enjoy a whole year of improvements and new features even, for a price of about €30/year. A few months ago, Autodesk’s sketch app was upgraded to version 8, which comes with textured brushes, a new predictive stroke and direct access to brush libraries created by leading professionals. I checked out if the new stuff is worth the subscription money.
Atomos’ latest Ninja and Shogun monitor/recorders are pretty awesome, but if there’s one thing the company should work on it’s the way you have to remove your master caddies from the recorder. I can relate to the need for the caddy to sit really tight when recording, but they should be made in such a way that you don’t have to press so hard you risk damaging the top surface when trying to pry them from the unit.
If you use your iPad for audio recording or music making with any of the power consuming iRig devices, IK Multimedia has a solution for you: the iRig PowerBridge, a continuous charging system for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch while connected to digital iRig accessories. Unfortunately, some people do not fully understand how the iRig PowerBridge works, resulting in disappointment. iRig PowerBridge is not a pure iOS device charger, it’s different.
Ergonis Software is celebrating its 30th birthday this year. In the beginning there was the first version of PopChar. It ran on a Mac Plus with System 6 and was soon acclaimed to be the best character finder on the Mac. Today, PopChar X 8.0 has been released. It’s a major new version of the company's award-winning tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. With over 40 new features and improvements, it’s going to be the best PopChar ever.
When I reviewed the Wacom Intuos Pro Paper edition in May, a question kept nagging in the back of my head: why would you want to draw or sketch a draft on a paper sheet that you clip onto a digitising tablet like the Intuos Pro Paper edition? I did a bit of testing myself and came to the following conclusions.
Affinity Photo is a strong competitor for Adobe’s Photoshop CC product on the Mac and now it’s an equally strong alternative for Adobe’s Photoshop on the iOS platform. I tried Affinity Photo on my iPad Air 2 and I was very impressed with it.
Most users in the creative industry know they should regularly calibrate and profile their monitor for colour-critical work, but there’s more to colour accuracy than keeping your monitor in shape colour-wise. If you’re going to be printing or projecting your photos, art or videos, you’d better calibrate the output equipment as well. In fact, if you want to be absolutely certain colours will be accurately rendered from input to output, you will need to calibrate — or at least profile — cameras, scanners, monitors, printers and projectors. There’s only one affordable option that is accurate enough: the Red Dot Award winning X-Rite i1Pro 2 and I had the chance to test the Photo version.
Mac users roughly have two options if they want to use bare SATA drives: use a Wiebetech (now: CRU) Ultradock device and connect the drive through legacy interfaces or USB 3, or a Thunderbolt dock. If the latter is opted for, there’s either the RocketStor 5212 with one Gen. 1 Thunderbolt port, or the Thunderbolt 2 OWC Drive Dock. And of these two, the latter is obviously the fastest way to access those bare SATA drives.
Compatible with a huge range of iOS devices, Adonit’s Pixel Bluetooth-enabled iOS stylus delivered on its promise of unparalleled precision, better tip drag and pressure sensitivity for comfortable and accurate drawing. I tested with my iPad Air 2.