Friday, March 6, 2009

Photographic Marketing Association 2009

If any of you have been following the Pre-PMA announcements like I have, you have seen the cool new things out, you have seen the mass of boring as well. If not, then follow the link I have provided above, to go to DP Reviews full PMA 2009 page. 

Between Canon & Panasonic, I think 1,218 new point and shoots came out, ok... maybe that is a slight exaggeration, but it feels that way sometimes... what I am getting at, is that every one and their dog brought out a gaggle of P&S's; and I am going cross-eyed from reading them all. 

This was the most non-exciting year for me in the last 8 years of PMA, with the exception of Olympus's new E-620, Canon's new wide angle Tilt Shift lenses (a 17mm & a 24mm), Nikon's 35mm AF-S DX F1.8 (to allow it to work on  the D40 & D60 series), Pentax's new super wide Limited lens a 15mm, and last but not least Leica announced that they will be ceasing production of their R-Series

The two things that did catch my attention, was not from PMA, but from WPPI (the Wedding & Portrait Photographers International) instead; and for me, this is the show were all the cool things came from this year. 

Lastolite introduced the TriFlash umbrella mount, this allows the user to put 3 hotshoe flashes into a single umbrella. With 3 flashes on the one stand allows the user to do one of two things, it either will give the user more light, allowing the user to get a greater depth of field by stopping down more; OR... and this is how I think most are going to use it, it allows one to dial back the flash output, and get faster recycling speeds out of the flashes. Faster recycle times means you can shoot more rapidly, without the sacrifice of the power now. 

This really was one of the biggest V8 moments I have ever had *WACKS FOREHEAD* "Why didn't I think of that!?!"

I am going to be buying myself that adaptor from Lastolite as soon as it is available, but in the mean time, I am also going to build something like it on my own... I'll post photos and how much it cost as soon as I am done. 

And the last really cool thing to be announced, was from PocketWizard, as they introduce the Mini TT1 & the Flex TT5's, thus by giving Canon and Nikon users full wireless TTL over a wireless system, without having to be in line-of-sight like both their current systems use. The Mini TT1 being a tiny transmitter to sit on the camera, and the Flex TT5 being the Transeceiver (PW's own designation for being both a Transmitter and a Receiver all in one). 

Full E-TTL II comes first for the Canon users, available this week, and the Nikon iTTL to be available in April.... I think of it as how PocketWizard is beta-testing with the Canon first, before they make it available for Nikon users ;-) 

The range of the TTL Wireless is 800 feet, and full manual control up to 1200 feet. 

PocketWizard also added something called HyperSync'ing, which allows a user to plug their new Mini TT1 or Flex TT5 into their computer via mini USB port, and dial in their triggers, to give a camera a higher flash sync speed than it might normally. 

My Fuji for instance, has a top sync speed of 1/180th of a second, with some testing and the use of the new radio triggers with the HyperSync ability, I theoretically can bring that up to a max of 1/500th of a second. It all depends on the camera, Rob Galbraith described it best in his full review of the PocketWizard's, so please visit his site here is you want to know more about it all. 

I hope to finish my own TriFlash Umbrella Mount this weekend, and will likely have a post about it by our next meeting. 

John R. 

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