About Thomas Fitzgerald

Thomas is a professional fine art photographer and writer specialising in photography related instructional books as well as travel writing and street photography. 

Some Bits and Pieces

Some Bits and Pieces

I’ve come across a few interesting tidbits-bits of information over the past week that I wanted to share, but none of it was long enough to put into individual blog posts, so I thought I’d compile it all into a singe compilation. This is pretty random, but anyway.

Sony RX100Mark IV

RX100.jpg

Sony recently released the latest iteration of its popular RX100 line, the RX100 Mark IV. I’ve tried the original RX100 and I was impressed, although it was starting to show its age. I’ve always liked the idea of a high end compact camera, and I even bought the Canon version of the RX100 line (the G7X Mark II) as it was significantly cheaper at the time. The Sony is undoubtedly more capable though, especially when it comes to video, but its also more expensive.

The headline feature of the new Mark 6 version is the lens. It now comes with a 24-200mm equivalent zoom lens, which, when you think about it is pretty impressive for such a small camera. Apparently it’s very good too. There are a few other new features, such as an improved viewfinder, bluetooth and touch screen. The downside to this is the price. It’s now getting fairly expensive for a compact camera, retailing at $1200. For that price there are quite a few mirrorless alternatives, but you won’t get such a high quality and wide ranging zoom for that. Sony will continue to sell the previous versions.

For me the biggest downside to all of these cameras is the lack of microphone input. They make ideal vlogging cameras, especially with the Sony’s wide ranging video capabilities, but the lack of any way to input better audio is a real drawback. I can understand the lack of space on such a small body, but surely there’s some way to do this over bluetooth, or have some kind of adaptor that uses the USB port. After all, Sony did release a new grip with this camera, which includes start and stop record, and a shutter control, so it isn’t too much to ask to allow it to input audio too. Then it really would be the perfect Vlogging camera.

Its available for pre-order now on Amazon (only in the US store at the moment) and you can find out more directly from Sony. Camera Labs has done a good preview of it on YouTube too (embedded below).

There’s also a good article on the camera, with lots of sample image on Alpha Universe.

Nik Software first Release from DXO Labs

Since it acquired the Nik software collection from DXO labs a while ago, the company has been promising that it would continue development of the much loved set of software plug-ins. Last week it finally released the first new version since taking control of the applications.

The new version is no longer free, unlike when Google owned the suite, and it also doesn’t offer any new features compared to the previous version. However, the company has claimed to have updated the software’s code, and is now more stable than before, as well as supporting the latest version of the Mac operating system. The software will sell for $69 but it’s on sale at $49 for the launch.

If you already have the old version, I’m not sure if its worth upgrading or not. To be honest, I haven’t even opened it in a while so I’m no sure if the old version still works. Either way, it’s a step in the right direction, and DXO have committed to continue to develop the software so that’s a good thing. If I get some time in the near future, I’ll go back and check it out.

Inexpensive 8TB Hard Drive on Amazon UK

People have been asking me a lot lately about how I mange to deal with a lot of large raw files, especially if I use X-Transformer a lot. I have a lot of storage, but even so I am always running out. recently I bought a new external drive, and I found a really great deal on Amazon UK.

It’s for a LaCie 8TB drive. They still seem to have a lot of the older 2016 model in stock, and they’re selling it really cheaply. I got mine for £167. Even the newer 2018 model is only £200. When you consider how much this amount of storage used to cost, this is pretty good value. It seems to be a pretty good drive too. I’ve had mine for about two months now, and its working perfectly, and it’s pretty fast too. If you’re looking for more storage, it’s a pretty good deal. It’s also available on Amazon US, where it comes with 2 months free of Adobe CC Photography subscription.


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