Shooting film outdoors can be a lot of fun, but it’s detrimental to your equipment if the weather turns against you. That’s why companies like LaCie, CalDigit and G-Technology make these rugged drives you can toss around, drop and submerge. CalDigit’s bus-powered portable Tuff drive is a fine example of a really tough drive. It’s now available in 1TB format with an SSD drive inside.
The Luxi for All is a light meter accessory for smartphone and tablet light metering apps. It turns the camera of your mobile device into an incident light meter.
Light meters are expensive but you’re bound to have an iPhone or iPad. What has one to do with the other? Simply this: some people develop cheap light meter apps and the nec plus ultra of those apps must be Cine Meter II by Adam Wilt. I’ve tested Cine Meter II as a reflective and an incident meter.
Palette, a smal Australian company of enthusiasts, develops the Cube Portable Color Digitizer, a small, white cube-shaped scanner that stores up to 20 colours in its internal memory and helps designers and artists find matching colours. A smartphone/tablet app and/or macOS/Windows desktop app complete the offering.
I’m not a fan of automatic image enhancement tools, but Perfectly Clear 3 struck me as a Photoshop plug-in that allows for subtle improvements on portraits without making you look like a plastic Barbie doll. It offers a plethora of presets and a full set of controls too.
PhotoSweeper is a virtual mop for your images. The app lets you get rid of duplicates, but you are in control of what duplicates mean exactly. Version 3 is a free upgrade for licensed users and it comes with a few nifty new features.
DxO has built itself a reputation for automating RAW image editing. With DxO ViewPoint 3 you can automate the correction of image distortions such as perspective and skewed horizons and there’s one new exciting feature: a tilt-shift lens effect.
Macphun develops Aurora HDR 2017, the best HDR app currently on the market. It just released Luminar, a photo editor that resembles Aurora HDR’s interface. However, it is less feature rich and falls short in some areas, although it is easy to use.
Using an iOS device to trigger your dSLR or system camera's shutter, aperture and exposure is a tempting idea but it's not straightforward to implement. The experiences I had with the Triggertrap Mobile and Triggertrap Timelapse Pro were mixed. Some features work well, others much less. Triggertrap Mobile lets you use an iPhone or iPad as a control device that allows you to press the shutter button, create timelapses, HDR image series, bulb ramping, and sensor-driven photos.
Since its first version, Aurora HDR has been a huge success for Macphun. Aurora HDR 2017 is the second version to be released. It has new features, such as a polariser filter and a batch mode. Its tone mapping algorithm has been improved and other improvements are scattered throughout the application. It's now more than ever the golden standard of HDR photography.