Is a dedicated camera bag necessarily the only option for carrying camera gear, especially with a laptop. We look at the Riutbag R15.3 laptop backpack to find out if it passes muster as a dual-purpose bag for photographers.
After down-sizing my laptop, I need a smaller/more convenient bag to carry it and my mirrorless camera gear. Could a crowd-funding project be the answer?
London's Brownsword Hepworth Gallery is to exhibit previously unshown portraits by photographer Phil Griffin (24th October - 23rd November)
If you are saving your pennies for a Huawei Mate 20 X phablet due out next month, bad news if you are in the UK; it's not coming to our shores.
The new Huawei Mate 20 Pro, like its earlier stablemate, the P20 Pro, has a 40 megapixel camera that can records DNG RAW files. We find out if it has real potential or is just a tick-box gimmick.
Photography powered by AI continues to be the primary lure for Huawei's impressive new Mate 20 series of premium smartphones. We were at the global launch.
200 Euros price tag for a Gitzo mini tripod?
When we heard that Gitzo, the Italian manufacturer of premium tripods and accessories, was showing a 200 Euro mini tripod at Photokina we just had to see it for ourselves. The Gitzo Mini Traveler Ball Head is, indeed, gorgeous can carry a full frame DSLR and only weighs 265g, but is it worth the price tag? A Gitzo mini tripod would always be special, but how special?
The Gitzo mini tripod is already available for pre-order in the UK via dealers for around £189. It uses the same kind of carbon fibre leg construction as its bigger counterparts in the Gitzo stable. It has a neat patent-pending mechanism for switching each leg between standard and low positions. There is no thumb-wheel to tighten the tripod screw, unlike its Manfrotto Pixi cousin, but it’s lighter, smaller and stronger.
The aluminium ball head can safely carry an attached load locked in position up tp 3kg in weight, though there is no quick-release option. To unlock the ball head you rotate a collar at the base of the head. It’s available in grey and black.
The engineering, materials and design all look superb as you can see in our pictures. But it costs 200 Euros.
|Safety Payload Weight||3 kg|
|Min Height||12.5 cm|
|Maximum Height||17.5 cm|
|Closed Length||22 cm|
Chuck in a bundle of assorted size photo prints and the Epson FastFoto FF-680W scanner does the rest
The Epson FastFoto FF-680W is a very clever solution to a familiar old problem. What are the odds that you have a box (boxes?!) or a drawer full of odd-size photos lying about the house? Wouldn’t it be great to scan them so you could share them conveniently via the cloud or social media?
But have you tried scanning dozens or more old prints? It’s a thankless task and it takes ages. A quick demo of Epson’s new and unassuming-looking FastFoto FF-680W scanner at Photokina genuinely wowed onlookers.
The FF-680W’s feeder is remarkably unfussy; you can place a wad of of different size prints up to A4 dimensions into the feeder and they will processed by the scanner without any fuss, one by one, at a rate of about one print per second.
The companion software then automatically crops the prints and even scans the back of each print to detect written or other notes, which are also scanned and saved as images linked to the front image.
You can configure the software to automatically upload the images to Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive or DropBox. For a stack of, say, 30 prints, the whole process takes literally no more than a couple of minutes. You really have to see it working to appreciate how clever the Epson FastFoto FF-680W is.
Too good to be true?
So is the Epson FastFoto FF-680W too good? in a sense, some will think so once they learn the prospective price, which is around €600. The FF-680W is not aimed at household consumers. Instead, Epson hope you will see them in retail locations for customers to use as a service and for other companies to offer photo print digitising services.
Touching Photokina anecdote
A rather lovely anecdote shared with me by the Epson staffer, Julian Maddock, demonstrating the FF-680W on the Epson booth here at Photokina was that an elderly gentleman produced a Photokina pass and ID from way back in 1954, In fact the person first started attending Photokina in 1950. Of course, the precious souvenir from 1954 was duly scanned by a FF-680W for posterity.
The Epson FastFoo FF-680W in America and will start shipping it in Europe at the end of the year.
You can find more information on Epson’s website.