accessories Tag

No names, no pack drill. But occasionally even the most enthusiastic fan of photographic equipment must be struck by the thought that the manufacturers have lost sight of the design ball and are swatting at thin air. You can see this in new releases of accessories and add-ons as much as in the cameras and lenses themselves. It's somewhat understandable with the smaller accessory market. Independent makers with access to CAD CAM machines and aluminium bar stock can go mad with stylish struts and knurled levers. No idea whether they sell, but they certainly do blossom out around the photographic show time. A few become standards and are available for years...

No surprise that Sirui Optical is a Guangdong company - the products they turn out are excellently made - but it was interesting to google up their main site and see that they've been putting things on the market since 2001 and that they're also selling humidity control cabinets. I'll bet they sell like hot ( and wet ) cakes in southern China, given what we see of their weather conditions. The two products today are concerned with tripods, though they are accessories rather than the tripods themselves. Of course we have a good range of those as well in store but sometimes you need a little more than the basic three legger. This arm is designed to attach where you would normally put a or three-way head and it lets you move the action out and away from the centre line of the tripod. This is no new thing - I have a similar accessory for my giant Gitzo Studex but it is a much cruder casting and can only allow 90º displacement from the vertical. This Sirui HA-77 unit tilts as...

When I undertook the assignment of illustrating a catalogue of scale models for my club I got an attack of the Gottahavits - it occurred when I rounded the cabinet with the Lume Cubes in it and was probably just a recurrence of an old malady. The thought of using these tiny LEDs as a miniature studio light had been lying dormant since I first reviewed them several years ago. Cute goods sell in Japan and cute sells to me...

We live in a era of desperate bagging. Everywhere we turn we are urged to abjure them - or at least to bring our own to save the supermarket from having to give them away. We have the awful decision whether to buy a plastic bag from the checkout person or juggle 18 oranges and a litre of milk out to the car. And then we have to open the boot...

Or neat and sweet. This is a post praising the makers of Leica cameras and the Leica system. I sometimes don't do that - of course it is generally just jealousy on my part over equipment that I can't afford to own. Sometimes over a design decision that owes more to the stylistas than the engineers. But today I have to say that I recognise a real winner of a product - this flash bracket that's on special in the Leica cabinet. I asked Sam which Leica it was for - it turned out to be the Type 240 - an M-series body. I was instantly smitten and saw the whole puropse of it in a second. You see, I cobbled up a similar rig for my own purposes using components that I found in here in CE and overseas in Bic Camera in Tokyo. It couples a Fujifilm flash to my Fujifilm X-Pro1 camera with more or less TTL . I use it whenever I want to get the flash off the top bracket for more directional light. Also, there are times when I want...

I suspect that Peak Design made this bag before they decided what it was going to be used for. That's alright - many of the models I make and the images I take are halfway done before I know what they are going to do. Some sit on the shelf or in the hard drive for years before inspirations strikes...

Leica users have had a rough time of it in the past - they have always had access to the best of optical performance in most fields - but they may not have known it was available. The traditional Leica presentation of street photography in Germany or field photography in Africa has mostly revolved around the use of rangefinder cameras used with stand-off lenses. Unless one was using the 35mm SLR cameras, one was going to have to do a lot of hard work to get macro and close-up shots. Well, not any more. The digital revolution and the availability of live view and the LCD screen has changed all that. The Leica shooter can go in as close as people using other systems. It just needs the lenses and the determination. The Leica Macro Elmar M 90mm f:4 is one way to go. 1:2 close-up ratio and incredible resolution. You need to stack the Macro Adapter M in between the lens and the body to do it...