January 2018

Photographers take note: VR180 is worth keeping an eye on

Action cameras and VR have been two of the most hyped new categories of photo and video over the last few years. Action cams, typified by GoPro, have definitely taken the world by storm, but sales have become sluggish as the market has gotten fairly saturated. VR and 360, in contrast, have been slow to take off. Now, Google’s YouTube, along with several consumer electronics companies, are trying to combine elements of both into something they hope will extend the role of action photography and help make something happen in the VR space. Like consumer 360-degree cameras the VR180 units have two cameras, but instead of having one face in each direction to create a 360-degree 2D image, they face the same direction and produce a 180-degree 3D image. That makes them more suitable for VR viewing – and since most VR setups don’t really allow or promote full 360-degree motion, 180-degrees is easier and more practical. You can read more about the technology and the first VR180 cameras in .

Adobe adds some nice goodies to Photoshop CC: Including High-DPI monitors and Masking

Adobe continues to keep a steady trickle of Photoshop improvements coming. Today it announced improved support for high-DPI monitors, with the Photoshop UI now adapting the native Windows scaling of between 100% and 400%. That will be particularly well received for those (like me) with 4K laptops and less-than-super-human vision. There is also a new slider for Masking off Selections that tries to calibrate how precise you want it to be. Presumably this builds on its “Sensei” machine learning technology for improved results over previous systems.

DJI's new Mavic Air gives you more reasons not to put off buying a drone

DJI Mavic Air (Arctic White)If you’ve been stalling on getting into the fun hobby of drone photography, DJI has come up with another reason not to. Its new Mavic Air combines some of the very best features of the amazingly-popular Mavic Pro with the diminutive Spark. I’ve written up our . For serious photographers, I think the Mavic Pro still offers some big advantages, like more flight time, faster lens, and possibly more support for advanced video modes like D-Log (although the Air might also support those). Most of the fancy photography features of the new Air will help you get started quickly, but won’t do much for those of us who already shoot RAW and use Litchi for our panoramas. The 32MP built-in panorama mode certainly isn’t a match for custom panos like the one below I built out of 46 RAW images using Photoshop and Hugin.

New Hasselblad camera uses multi-shot to capture 400MP images

For those applications where you just can’t have too much resolution, the new Hasselblad H6D-400C MS may be just the thing. It uses the company’s 100MP sensor coupled with a body that can shift the sensor and lens mount tiny amounts to improve image quality and create a super-resolution image of 400MP. You can read more about it in the , where I contrast it to Phase One's new Trichromatic technology.