Canon video firmware update for 5D MkII

Canon announced today it will release a firmware update for the EOS 5D Mark II allowing users to manually control exposure when shooting video. The new firmware will be available for download from 2 June 2009 on Canon Europe’s support web site.

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Adobe ACR 5.4 Release Candidate

Adobe has released its Photoshop Camera Raw 5.4 Release Candidate, available immediately as a free download from Adobe Labs at http://labs.adobe.com. The “release candidate” label indicates that this update is well tested but would benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all customers.

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Latest Master Photo>Digital issue on-line

The May edition of Master Photo>Digital is now available for reading, free, on our YUDU digital edition site:

There is also a new site for MPA Affiliates and anyone interested in becoming a member of the Master Photographers Association (this is limited to full time photographers).

– DK

Sigma’s DP2 – Camera less obscure

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Sigma’s DP1 was launched in 2007 (with production models available in 2008) to great critical acclaim. occupying a unique spot in the marketplace by combining an APS-C format sensor with a compact “point and shoot” style body. There were a few controversial design choices, and the user and reviewer feedback varied greatly with the time and effort people were prepared to put in learning about the camera, yet the verdicts on the optical performance were united – the DP1 was astounding. Now the DP2 has arrived, with production-quality units available from UK retailers.
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Pentax K-7 – pinnacle of video?

PENTAX UK is pleased to announce the launch of the PENTAX K-7 lens-interchangeable digital SLR camera. The K-7 combines a variety of advanced functions and user-friendly features to ensure outstanding reliability and capability within a compact, lightweight body.

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The K-7 joins the current PENTAX K digital SLR camera series as a high-end model in the range. True to its series concept, it has been designed to deliver outstanding image quality combined with ease of use, to benefit photo enthusiasts of all levels, including advanced amateurs. The K-7 also includes revised and upgraded features including viewfinder, shutter unit, continuous-shooting capacity, and exposure and autofocus systems.

Protected by a durable, high-quality metallic body, the K-7 is extremely compact and functional — as with all other K-series models — delivering enhanced portability and manoeuverability. The model includes several new user-friendly features, including video recording, high dynamic range (HDR), and automatic horizon correction. All of these features serve to deliver a highly effective photographic tool, perfect for all discerning digital SLR photographers.

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Portrait Professional v9 update

Portrait Professional’s updated version 9 is due to be launched from Anthropics Technology in around 20 days. If you buy the current version 8 (see our earlier reviews) you will automatically receive the Version 9 update free as well, and be buying at the old price saving an extra £10. Literally in a few minutes, this quick and intuitive photo editing and airbrushing software subtly reshapes faces, fix skin blemishes, whitens teeth, removes wrinkles and adjusts lighting plus much more – all at the click of a mouse.  It is a dual platform programme which works well on both Mac and PC.

Portrait Professional is currently on offer at half price for only £39.95. Master Photo Digital and dPhotoexpert readers can claim a further 10% off by quoting code mpa609

To purchase the software or download a free trial please go to www.pprof.com

Kelso Races – D5000 freehand with 70-300mm VR

The wind noise has made filming with the D5000 almost impossible for the last few days, because it has been very windy. Simple as that. So I devised a popshield or wind sock for the tiny microphone by cutting a piece of red nyloop fabric from a pad which once belonged in the bottom of a lens case. Then the 70-300mm lens arrived, so I tried this combination on a race when the light was reasonable and it was not raining.

Technically, it’s not a good idea to pan with action when holding a lens of this size at arms’ length in order to see the framing on a rear screen. However, I had already experimented with a monopod and found that didn’t work – my pans tended to skew the horizon too easily – and for this clip, I did not want to use a tripod. I wanted to see what the VR did, and how well it worked with a fixed focus set on the fence before starting.

– DK

Nikon D5000 HD video – May Day evening

True to promise, the Nikon D5000 did become available on May 1st in the UK, and my review camera turned up mid-day in time to be photographed and have its battery charged. Taking it out on my walk to the post (regrettably, to send in large sums of VAT and tax…) the sun came out though it was a very cold and windy day. With the sun, the breeze dropped to a reasonable level and on the way back I was struck by the motion of the trees, leaves and flowers.

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