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This is The Digital Story Podcast #653, Sept. 18, 2018. Today's theme is "iPhone XS: It's Nice, But I Don't Need It." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Last Wednesday during the Apple event, I pulled the iPhone X out of my front pocket, examined the screen and camera lens, and said to myself, "I'm good." The device is doing exactly what I need it to do: take good pictures, help manage my life, and provide a little entertainment. And other than a few minor tweaks, the iPhone XS does the same thing. Am I missing something by not upgrading? We'll explore further on today's show.

iPhone XS: It's Nice, But I Don't Need It

After 10 months of very enjoyable use, my iPhone X still has 216 GBs of free space. The battery life is excellent, lasting me a full day when needed. (I don't charge it all night anymore, only as needed during the day.) And other than its one weird quirk of taking screenshots when I don't intend to (opposite button syndrome), I truly enjoy using it.

But to be empirical as well, I looked up the specs and comparisons for the just-announced iPhone XS to evaluate my opinion. Here are the highlights.

Apple-Pres-1024.jpg

  • Size and Weight: They are virtually the same.
  • Screen type and resolution: same. But the XS has better dynamic range.
  • Processor: A12 vs A11: iPhone XS - Apple A12 'Bionic' chipset: Six-Core CPU, Six Core GPU, M12 motion coprocessor, 4GB RAM. iPhone X - Apple A11 'Bionic' chipset: Six-Core CPU, Six Core GPU, M11 motion coprocessor, 3GB RAM
  • Camera resolution: same (12MP/7MP) - But the XS has a new sensor with bigger photo sites.
  • New computational photography offerings on the XS, such as Smart HDR, enhanced bokeh effect, and depth control.
  • Speakers: XS has 25 increase in speaker volume and stereo support
  • SIM support: XS has eSIM to share work/home or home/roaming numbers in a single device. The X does not.
  • Slightly better battery life for XS
  • Gold case offering for XS.

So, since my iPhone X is in such good shape and performing well, I'm good. Plus, I kind of like having the 10 year anniversary handset. If I had an older iPhone, I would indeed be tempted by the iPhone XS.

The Portfoliobox Featured Image

Have you visited our TDS Facebook Page in the last few days? If so, what do you think of the beautiful image from Morocco by Jay Tuttle as the featured banner? Maybe yours will be next?

Each week for the month of September, I'm going to feature a PortfolioBox Pro image as the banner for our TDS Facebook Page. I will select the image from my list of TDS PortfolioBox Pro users, and include the photographer's name and link.

If you've signed up for a Portfoliobox Pro account, and have published at least one page, then send me the link to that site. Use the Contact Form on the Nimble Photographer and provide your name, the link, and the subject of the page or site you've published. I will add it to our PortfolioBox Pro Directory.

I love using Portfoliobox for these reasons:

  • My images look great, both on my computer and on my mobile devices.
  • It's easy to use. Without any instruction, I'm adding a high quality page in just minutes.
  • It's affordable. There's a free plan and a Pro version. The Pro version is only $82.80 per year or $8.90 per month USD, and that's before the 20 percent TDS discount.

In addition to unlimited pages, you get a personalized domain name, web hosting, and up to 1,000 images.

Get Started Today

Just go to the TDS Landing Page to get started with your free account, or to receive the 20 percent discount on the Pro version. And if you want to see the page that I've begun, visit www.derrickstoryphotography.com.

Cleaner Audio with SoundSoap

Here is a nifty application for vloggers who need to process and post their content quickly. SoundSoap can help you with:

  • Fix background noises
  • Fix low volume
  • Fix hum problems
  • Fix low/rumble sounds
  • Drag & Drop popular formats
  • No loss of video quality
  • Works automatically

I was up and running immediately with it. The learning curve is about 5 minutes. And for audio processing software, it's affordable. There are different versions of the app, but I'm using SoundSoap Solo 5 (Mac and Windows) that costs $79. You can purchase it from their website. I downloaded mine from the Mac App Store because it's a more convenient way to manage my software.

The bottom line is that for fast-moving video projects where you want the best sound possible, SoundSoap is an essential component of the workflow. It's fast, affordable, easy to use, and works great.

Inner Circle Members: New York Fine Art Greeting Cards

My latest printing project is creating a set of 6 fine art greeting cards from my trip to New York. Inner Circle members, not only can you help me choose the final images, but by doing so, you become eligible to win a free set of the cards.

Starting last week, I published two images on our Inner Circle site. Post a comment as to which one you prefer best, and you are automatically entered in the drawing. We'll do this once a week throughout September. At the end of each week, I'll randomly choose a name from the comments and send them a completed set of fine art cards once they are finished. This week's winner is: Bill Riski.

If you want to participate, you can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

Updates and Such

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

fujifilm-xf10-front.jpg

This is The Digital Story Podcast #652, Sept. 11, 2018. Today's theme is "The Fujifilm XF10: A Remarkable Compact." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

It may seen crazy to create an ultra-compact camera to go up against premium smartphones. But no-one ever accused Fujifilm of being timid. And after the first dozen shots with this 9 ounce wonder, I realized that the engineers at Fujifilm had worked their magic once again. Join me today as I explain why the XF10 should be in every nimble photographer's pocket.

The Fujifilm XF10: A Remarkable Compact

If my iPhone X were the dimensions of a box, the Fujifilm XF10 ($499) would fit inside of it. Yet, the XF10 houses a 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor that is 14 times larger than typical smartphone chips. It has a razor sharp f/2.8 FUJINON aspherical lens, low-energy Bluetooth 4.1, and WiFi. And even though its images are superior to my iPhone X, it was designed to humble it, rather complement it.

After pairing the two devices, they are like brothers. The iPhone provides realtime GPS data so that all of my images are geotagged. It's always listening for downloads from the XF10. If I need to share an image, I can go from camera to Internet in just moments. The iPhone can also serve as a remote release and command center for the XF10.

Top Floor, Barn Tierra Vegetables in Santa Rosa, CA - www.tierravegetables.com. Captured with a Fujifilm XF10 in Jpeg Fine mode, unedited. Photo by Derrick Story

The Fujifilm imagery is gorgeous. Vibrant colors, superb detail, and 6000x4000 resolution. That's more than my E-M1 Mark II that weighs in at 5184x3888. And just like my mirrorless cameras, the XF10 has every trick in the book from time-lapse to HDR, plus features such as 4K burst and Fuji film simulations. Before we go any further, let's take a look at the specs.

  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor (Bayer type sensor with no low pass or AA filter - Not X-Trans)
  • Fujinon 18.5mm f/2.8 Fixed Lens (28mm equivalent)
  • 35mm and 50mm digital teleconverter (Jpeg only)
  • 3" 1040k-Dot LCD Touchscreen
  • Max ISO: 12800 (51200 Extended)
  • 11 Film Simulations, 19 Advanced Filters
  • Bluetooth 4.1 and WiFi
  • 4K and Full HD Video Recording
  • External mic jack (2.5mm) and HDMI out
  • Sophisticated flash with rear curtain and slow sync
  • New Snap Focus and Square Mode
  • Mechanical and electronic shutter up to 1/16000th
  • Two command dials, one command ring, mode dial, two function buttons, and four more function swipes on the touchscreen
  • Excellent battery life, NP95 model

What the Camera Does Not Have

  • Articulating screen
  • Electronic viewfinder
  • Accessory hot shoe
  • Accessory filter ring
  • No ACROS film profile (But it does have Classic Chrome)

Brian the Welder "Brian the Welder" - Tierra Vegetables in Santa Rosa, CA - www.tierravegetables.com. Captured with a Fujifilm XF10 in Jpeg Fine mode, unedited. Photo by Derrick Story

If you want a 9 ounce, finely-machined 24MP APS-C camera, there's really only one option: the Fujifilm XF10. The only other game in town is the Ricoh GR II that costs $100 more and doesn't have the modern connectivity. As for me, I'm really happy the XF10 came along.

The Portfoliobox Featured Image

Have you visited our TDS Facebook Page in the last few days? If you, what do you think of the infrared image by Dan Horton-Szar as the featured banner? Maybe yours will be next.

Each week for the month of September, I'm going to feature a PortfolioBox Pro image as the banner for our TDS Facebook Page. I will select the image from my list of TDS PortfolioBox Pro users, and include the photographer's name and link.

If you've signed up for a Portfoliobox Pro account, and have published at least one page, then send me the link to that site. Use the Contact Form on the Nimble Photographer and provide your name, the link, and the subject of the page or site you've published. I will add it to our PortfolioBox Pro Directory.

I love using Portfoliobox for these reasons:

  • My images look great, both on my computer and on my mobile devices.
  • It's easy to use. Without any instruction, I'm adding a high quality page in just minutes.
  • It's affordable. There's a free plan and a Pro version. The Pro version is only $82.80 per year or $8.90 per month USD, and that's before the 20 percent TDS discount.

In addition to unlimited pages, you get a personalized domain name, web hosting, and up to 1,000 images.

Get Started Today

Just go to the TDS Landing Page to get started with your free account, or to receive the 20 percent discount on the Pro version. And if you want to see the page that I've begun, visit www.derrickstoryphotography.com.

Flickr Rolls Out a Fresh Look to its Galleries

As reported by The Phoblographer:

"Heads up, Flickr users! The platform has recently revamped its galleries, so you might want to take a look what has changed if you haven't been around making galleries of your favorite works by your favorite creatives.

According to the Flickr blog post announcing the long overdue revamp, the all new galleries now showcase photos and videos in a much larger layout to take advantage of today's new screen sizes and resolutions. The limit on photos that users can add to galleries have also been increased from 50 to 500. They also added a new modal batch for adding photos straight from our Faves.

The galleries list page has also been given a nice refresh, where we can now see a triptych of photos with the cover photo being slightly larger than the next two most recently added ones. The gallery metadeta at-a-glance also comes in a new card style that Flickr uses in the gallery itself."

And if you really want to see a treat, visit the TDS Member Photo Galleries on Flickr. Here's where I curate our outstanding Member Photo of the Day images. This new gallery interface really shows them off. It's a visual treat!

Inner Circle Members: New York Fine Art Greeting Cards

My latest printing project is creating a set of 6 fine art greeting cards from my trip to New York. Inner Circle members, not only can you help me choose the final images, but by doing so, you become eligible to win a free set of the cards.

Starting last week, I published two images on our Inner Circle site. Post a comment as to which one you prefer best, and you are automatically entered in the drawing. We'll do this once a week throughout September. At the end of each week, I'll randomly choose a name from the comments and send them a completed set of fine art cards once they are finished. This week's winner is: Edward J Shields.

If you want to participate, you can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

Updates and Such

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #651, Sept. 4, 2018. Today's theme is "Photography and Philanthropy - The Story of Home Alone." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Social networks have seen their share of user abuse over the last few years. But like so many things in life, the headlines often focus on the bad instead of the good. And as storytellers, we have an incredible opportunity to balance this narrative, and yes, even help others, by applying our skills online. Today, I share one such story that involves a sentimental photographer and an abandoned cat. I hope you enjoy the show.

Photography and Philanthropy - The Story of Home Alone

"Home Alone" is the name I gave to the sweet tuxedo kitty that lived next door. She was abandoned by the renters who picked up and moved away, leaving behind furniture, a non-operative truck, and this cat.

Home-Alone-TDS.jpg

I heard her meowing one morning as I was getting ready to leave for work. The renters had been gone for a couple days. She had a water and food bowl on the front porch. That was it.

I fed her and filled her water bowl, and thought to myself, "Who could do this?" She was a great cat: cute, friendly, light on her paws. I began a morning ritual of reading my email on her front porch while she ate and rubbed up against my legs. But I knew I had to find her a home.

I already had a territorial feral cat living in the backyard, rescued from the fire kitty in the house, and Dibs at the studio. So we were going to have to get the word for Home Alone.

Here's what I came up with, and how it worked. (You can visit the Facebook post that I created for Home Alone.)

Tips for Posting a Piece to Help Another

  • Leverage your existing platform. People who follow you will listen to your story.
  • Capture a good image. The picture is so important. It will garner viewers' attention and help tell the story.
  • Keep your post pithy and on target. Don't ramble on.
  • Don't be too emotional. Regardless of how you feel, don't intentionally pull at the heartstrings of others. Let them come to their own conclusions.
  • Follow up and provide closure.

The Portfoliobox Featured Image

Over the summer, I've received many notes from new PortfolioBox users who are thrilled with this platform for curating their images. And now, I want to shine a light on some of those best photographs.

Each week for the month of September, I'm going to feature a PortfolioBox Pro image as the banner for our TDS Facebook Page. I will select the image from my list of TDS PortfolioBox Pro users, and include the photographer's name and link. Each week, I will select a new image and feature it.

If you've signed up for a Portfoliobox Pro account, and have published at least one page, then send me the link to that site. Use the Contact Form on the Nimble Photographer and provide your name, the link, and the subject of the page or site you've published. I will add it to our PortfolioBox Pro Directory.

The Best Laid Plans - My Rocky Nook Webinar on Photos for macOS

Here's the sad tale of last week's webinar that I had planned so carefully for.

Inner Circle Members: New York Fine Art Greeting Cards

My latest printing project is creating a set of 6 fine art greeting cards from my trip to New York. Inner Circle members, not only can you help me choose the final images, but by doing so, you become eligible to win a free set of the cards.

Starting later this week, I'm going to publish two images on our Inner Circle site. Post a comment as to which one you prefer best, and you are automatically entered in the drawing. We'll do this once a week throughout September. At the end of the month, I'll randomly choose four names from the comments and send them a completed set of fine art cards.

If you want to participate, you can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

Updates and Such

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #650, August 28, 2018. Today's theme is "The First Shoe Dropped - The Nikon Z7." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Since our last show, Nikon officially announced the Z6 and Z7 full frame mirrorless camera bodies with three new Z Mount lenses. This is the news that many Nikon users have been waiting for, not to mention thousands of other curious photographers, myself included. So how does the new camera stack up to the competition? We'll take a closer look at it in today's TDS photography podcast.

The First Shoe Dropped - The Nikon Z7

The Nikon Z7 ($3,546) and it's little brother, the Nikon Z6 ($2,146) have given us lots to think about over the last week. The bottom line for me is that they represent a bold, yet delayed move by Nikon. And as a mirrorless shooter, there are many things that I appreciate about this tandem. Let's take a closer look.

nikon-z7-front.png

  • 45.7 MP FX-Format BSI CMOS Sensor
  • EXPEED 6 Image Processing Engine
  • UHD 4K30 Video; N-Log & 10-Bit HDMI Out
  • 493-Point Phase-Detect AF System
  • Built-In 5-Axis Vibration Reduction
  • 0.80x 3.6m-Dot EVF with NIKKOR Optics
  • 3.2" 2.1m-Dot Tilting Touchscreen LCD
  • 9 fps Continuous Shooting; ISO 64-25600
  • Top-Panel Dot-Matrix OLED; XQD Card Slot
  • FTZ Mount Adapter in the kit for $3,546

What I Like

At the top of the list is the built-in to the body is a 5-axis sensor-shift Vibration Reduction mechanism for up to 5 stops of stabilization regardless of the lens used. This system also works with adapted lenses when using the optional FTZ Adapter where 3-axis stabilization is used.

I'm also a big fan of the EN-EL15b rechargeable lithium-ion battery providing approximately 330 shots per charge with in-camera charging is supported. This camera is also compatible with EN-EL15 and EN-EL15a batteries, however do not support in-camera charging.

I'm impressed with the 3.6m-dot electronic finder for comfortable eye-level viewing. It has a high 0.80x magnification and uses NIKKOR optics to guarantee a sharp, clear image. The finder also has a Fluorine coating for easier cleaning. I'm also liking the 3.2" 2.1m-Dot Tilting Touchscreen LCD.

And finally, the overall Nikon quality factor for ruggedness and weather resistance makes this a camera that you can work with in the most demanding situations. The robust magnesium-alloy chassis is both dust- and weather-resistant to benefit working in harsh climates and inclement conditions.

What I Don't Like

The single XQD memory card slot that is compatible with CFexpress, enabling support for future media. I think there should be two slots, with the second one being SD. Just as the FTZ mount adapter helps photographers migrate to the new Z Mount system, an SD slot would allow the same thing for removable memory.

The overall size and weight with lenses mounted is substantial, and not that great savings over many DSLRs. Without lens, the dimensions are 5.3 x 4.0 x 2.7" / 134.0 x 100.5 x 67.5 mm with a weight of 1.29 lb / 585 g. Add the smallest lens available, the Nikon Z Mount 35mm f/1.8 ($846), and you add another 3.4" and 13 ounces. That's a lot of camera.

And finally, it is an expensive camera, costs $200 more than the Sony a7R III and $100 more than the Nikon D850. Its battery life is half of what Sony offers, and it is a larger camera as well.

Bottom Line

I'm thrilled that Nikon finally has a serious entry into the mirrorless space. Both the Z7 and the Z6 look like top shelf cameras that should appeal to existing Nikon DSLR photographers. I could see the Z6 making a excellent second camera for D850 photographers.

But I don't see Sony shooters jumping ship over these cameras, and I doubt many Olympus, Panasonic, or Fujifilm photographers will either unless they have a compelling need for full frame. And even then, it's going to be hard to choose the Nikon over the Sony offerings.

Panasonic Unveils the Lumix LX100 II with a 17MP Sensor and Touchscreen

Via Petapixel - Panasonic has announced the new Panasonic Lumix LX100 II, a new high-end compact camera (the seventh in the LX series) that succeeds the 12.8MP LX100 with a 17-megapixel Four Thirds sensor.

On the front of the camera is a LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMILUX 24-75mm (35mm equiv.) f/1.7-2.8 lens. Coupled with the relatively large sensor (for a compact camera), the camera is able to achieve shallow depth of field and beautiful bokeh. Photographers can directly control the aperture with the ring on the lens, which is suitable for things ranging from portraits to landscapes to macro (the minimum focusing distance is just 3cm/1.2in).

The built-in Live View Finder (LVF) has a 2.76-million-dot resolution, a roughly 100% color reproduction, a 16:9 Wide Screen aspect ratio, a 1.39x/0.7x (35mm equiv.) magnification, and a 100% field of view. Eye Sensor AF makes the camera start focusing as soon as you start looking into the LVF.

This looks like a solid upgrade. I'm disappointed, however, that there isn't a tilting LCD as part of the improvements.

Free Webinar! Building a Powerful Digital Darkroom in Apple Photos

My publisher, Rocky Nook, is sponsoring a free webinar so that I can show you how to leverage the amazing editing extensions created by companies such as Skylum, DxO, and others to build your own custom digital darkroom right inside Photos for macOS.

It's an impressive workflow, really. Your iPhone images are automatically added to the app via iCloud, and it's so easy to include images from your mirrorless and DSLR cameras as well. You can process RAWs or Jpegs, it makes no difference. And once you perfect the image using extensions such as Luminar, DxO OpticsPro, RAW Power and others, the changes are automatically saved to your other devices and computers.

It's powerful and easy. But the part that I really like is that it's fun. Join me on Wednesday, August 29 at 11am PDT to see for yourself. You can Register Here. See you then!

Updates and Such

A big thanks to Marshall Lew, Bill Armon, Bob McCarney, and Ed Spenser for contacting me about film camera donations. I've already received some of the gear, and I'm working on those pieces to prepare for the store.

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #649, August 21, 2018. Today's theme is "Inside Skylum - A Visit with Scott Bourne." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

Skylum Software, creators of Luminar and Aurora HDR, has established its U.S. headquarters in Bellevue, WA. I stopped by on my way to New York for a visit with Scott Bourne, Alex Tsepko, and the rest of the Skylum team who were there for the grand opening of the new office. And I thought you might also enjoy a peek behind the curtain. That's the top story on today's TDS photography podcast.

Inside Skylum - A Visit with Scott Bourne

I've been a big fan of Luminar since day one. So much so, that I wanted to be a part of the Skylum team as they continue to evolve it and their other products.

Among my responsibilites, I'm the moderator for the Skylum Photography Public Group on Facebook, the redesign project for their marketplace, and developing new outreach initiatives for them.

To share with you some of the things that I've learned during my time of working with Skylum, I sat down with Scott Bourne, President, to talk about where we've come and where we're headed.

IMG_2896.jpg Bellevue, Washington. Photos by Derrick Story.

P8161078.jpg Skylum U.S. HQ Photo Studio.

P8161068.jpg Team work area with break room in the background.

P8161083.jpg Scott Bourne, President (center), Alex Tsepko, CEO (right), and Scott M. Smedresman, lawyer (left).

Lexar Memory Cards are Coming Back from the Dead

Via Petapixel - "Back in June 2017, Micron announced that it would be discontinuing its entire Lexar removable storage business that included memory cards, readers, flash drives, storage drives, and more. A few months later, the Chinese company Longsys swooped in and acquired the brand. Longsys now says that Lexar will be returning from the grave.

Now a Longsys-owned business, Lexar announced this week that it's resuming full production of its products and will begin shipping to major retailers again this fall.

The product lineup will include memory cards, card readers, solid state drives (SSDs), and USB flash drives geared toward professional photographers and other creators.

You may recall a reference to this possibility back in June when I interviewed Wes Brewer, ProGrade CEO for the Fascinating ProGrade Digital Story.

Do You Have a Film Camera that Needs a Good Home?

Over the last year, I've received donations from TDS members who have film cameras that need a good home. What I do is inspect the items, repair and clean as I can, then list them in TheFilmCameraShop where I can find a good home for them. If you're interested in donating, please use the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. And thanks for you consideration!

Updates and Such

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #648, August 14, 2018. Today's theme is "Is the Panasonic TS7 as Smart as it is Tough?." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

When I first laid eyes on the Panasonic TS7 digital camera, I knew I had to get my hands on it. And once I did, it felt every bit as good as I imagined. But once you get past its rugged good looks, how does it perform? Does it have the brains to match the body? This is the question that I'll address in today's TDS Photography Podcast.

Is the Panasonic TS7 as Smart as it is Tough?

The Panasonic Lumix DC-TS7 is no lightweight, that's for sure. It feels like a crush-proof camera that can be submerged 100' below the surface of the ocean. And it packs some pretty powerful specs as well. But in the field, does it live up to its promise?

Lumix-TS7-1024.jpg

Here are some of the features of the Panasonic TS7 that got me excited:

  • 20.4MP High-Sensitivity MOS Sensor
  • 4.6x Zoom Lens, 28-128mm (35mm Equiv.)
  • UHD 4K 30p and 24p Video Recording
  • 1.17m-Dot Electronic Live View Finder
  • 3.0" 1.04m-Dot LCD Monitor
  • 4K Photo Modes and Post Focus

Now, let's talk about how those features actually worked. And if you're an Inner Circle Member via Patreon, I have a fun video waiting for you that shows you more of what I've discussed here. Jump over there and take a look.

Photographer Typecasting

I was reading a Steve Huff article titled, Amazon 1dX II Scam Update where he was following up to an earlier article about being scammed via Amazon for a Canon 1DX order. But a funny thing happened along the way that caught my ear.

How the Original Canon 5D Stacks Up Against the 5D Mark IV

Via Petapixel, they write:

Photographer Pablo Strong recently did a shootout to see how the original Canon 5D from 2005 stacks up against the latest Canon 5D Mark IV from 2016. The 7.5-minute video above is a report of his findings.

The Canon 5D, which Strong calls "arguably the best deal in photography" when paired with the 50mm f/1.8 II lens, was a camera that helped full frame cameras break into the mainstream. It was the first full-frame DSLR in a smaller, standard camera body and its price tag of $3,300 also set a new standard for how affordable full-frame cameras could be.

The camera is 13-years-old now and can be purchased used for about $350 these days. Pair it with the 50mm f/1.8 II (which costs about $75 used) and you have yourself a full-frame DSLR kit for around $400.

Do You Have a Film Camera that Needs a Good Home?

Over the last year, I've received donations from TDS members who have film cameras that need a good home. What I do is inspect the items, repair and clean as I can, then list them in TheFilmCameraShop where I can find a good home for them. If you're interested in donating, please use the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. And thanks for you consideration!

Updates and Such

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #647, August 7, 2018. Today's theme is "Digitizing, Printing, and More!." I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

I guess you could say that I'm a 2-way photographer. In one direction, I'm keenly interested in making prints from my digital images. Going the other way, I'm fascinated by methods for digitizing my analog shots. And in today's TDS podcast, I talk with Peter Krogh, author of "Digitizing Your Photos". Plus I share my first experiences with the Canon Pro-100 and Red River's Polar Luster Metallic paper. What a show!

Interview with Peter Krogh

Peter's book, Digitizing Your Photos with Your Camera and Lightroom is a cornucopia of helpful information for developing an efficient and high quality workflow for scanning analog content.

I sit down and talk with Peter during the first segment of today's show.

Use this link for a 10 percent discount. I also have a coupon code that you can use at checkout as well: AFFstory

Setting Up and Testing the Canon Pro-100 Printer

Now that I have my rebate, it's time to start printing with the Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Wireless Professional Inkjet Photo Printer . It's still on sale until the end of August with a $250 rebate, resulting in a final price of $119.99.

After my first day of printing with it, here are my pros and cons.

The Amazing Red River Polar Luster Metallic 255 Inkjet Printing Paper

Prints-1024.jpg

I've never used inkjet stock like the Red River Polar Luster Metallic 255. The luster surface with the metallic base create a compelling look that is magical under direct lighting.

In fact, I'm adding a new light set up to my studio just for these prints. More on this during this segment of the show.

Updates and Such

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #646, July 31, 2018. Today's theme is "Sony RX100 VI: You Can Have it All" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

A subcompact camera with a 1" sensor is a luxury indeed. And for that reason alone, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 VI Digital Camera is worth a look. But then add a relatively fast Zeiss Vario-Sonnar 24-200mm zoom, popup electronic viewfinder, and 4K video recording, and you have to ask yourself, "What the heck is going on here?" We're going to answer that question in today's TDS photography podcast.

Sony RX100 VI: You Can Have it All

There is a lot to like about this camera... so much so, that it would probably take me two more articles to cover all of the stuff that I didn't get to here. And if you're looking for an ultra-compact all-in-one capture device, it's going to be hard to find a more capable machine.

P7256358-gear-RX100.jpg

That being said, the one thing that was missing for me was the physical experience of holding a more substantial camera. In other words, I missed the feeling of taking pictures with a camera that feels great in the hands.

This is not a knock on the RX100 VI. It was designed to serve as a marvelous compact for those who need a small form factor. And as such, Sony knocked it out of the park. And if that's what you need for business travel or vacation, I can easily recommend this camera...

... except for the one thing that I haven't talked about yet: its cost is $1,200. On one hand, it's totally worth the steep price tag. Combine the features, image sensor, and exceptional zoom lens, and you have a deluxe package that should command a premium price. But the fact of the matter is, $1,200 is a lot of money for a compact camera. And if you invest that amount of money, you'd better get your shots out of it, and that means using it more often than just during travel.


Read the full review! "The Sony RX100 VI - A Compact Beast" - The RX100 VI is a pricy, no-holds-barred compact camera. Does its extensive feature set and fantastic image quality justify the price? Here's my take - http://thedigitalstory.com/2018/07/Sony-RX100VI-review.html.


So, then, what is the answer to the question: Is it worth it? I can say, "Yes it is." But, is the Sony RX100 VI for you? Well, that depends on your credit card balance, disposable income, and yes, the most important person in your life who might see you using it and ask: "Oh, that's a cute camera. How much did it cost?"

Nauticam Releases Underwater Housing for Sony RX100 VI

F-Stoppers reports: "While the pocket-sized camera is clearly ideal for travel, the NA-RX100 VI housing is just as practical. Weighing 2.3 pounds (1.05 kilograms), you'll be happy to hear the system will take up very little space and weight in your carry-on or checked baggage.

If you like deep dives, the underwater housing can be taken to a depth of 380 feet (100 meters). It's a nice selling point, but how many divers go to such depths? The housing ships with a standard interchangeable port, which was not found on earlier versions of the Sony RX100 underwater housing line. The standard port allows use of the full zoom range -- up to 200mm -- and can be equipped with the M67 Flip Diopter Holder, which allows photographers to add the SMC-1 Super Macro Converter for shooting the tiniest ocean critters.

The new NA-RX100 VI is priced at $1,100 and is available to order now through the Nauticam website.

No Longer Waiting for my Canon Rebate

On the June 11, 2018 TDS Podcast I mentioned that "I'm Taking the Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Rebate Challenge" and had mailed in all the required documents for my $250 rebate. And I'm happy to report that I now have my rebate. Here's the final chapter.

Nikon counts down to new mirrorless

DP Review reports: "Following an earlier leak, Nikon has officially started the clock on a countdown to its upcoming 'special event', widely assumed to be the launch of a new mirrorless system. The timer is counting down to 1pm, on the 23rd of August (Tokyo time). That's midnight in New York, 5am in London and 9pm on the previous day for the DPReview office here in Seattle."

Do You Have a Film Camera that Needs a Good Home?

Over the last year, I've received donations from TDS members who have film cameras that need a good home. What I do is inspect the items, repair and clean as I can, then list them in TheFilmCameraShop where I can find a good home for them. If you're interested in donating, please use the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. And thanks for you consideration!

Thanks to Bill Armon, and others who have previously contributed their gear to TheFilmCamerasShop.

Updates and Such

I've updated our Directory to Portfolios by TDS Photographers page. Stop by and see what your peers are publishing.

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #645, July 24, 2018. Today's theme is "FOPS and the New Mirrorless Revolution" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

It makes total sense that the mirrorless revolution began without Canon and Nikon. On one level, that's what made it a revolution. FOPS - Fujifulm, Olympus, Panasonic, and later, Sony - previous underdogs, blazed the trail that many of us journey on today. But it was only a matter of time until the lords of the manor realized that they too must travel this road. And after a few notable detours, Canon and Nikon appear to be catching up. And when they do, the mirrorless revolution will enter phase two. But for reasons different than you might think. And that's our topic on today's TDS Photography Podcast.

FOPS and the New Mirrorless Revolution

2018 is a Photokina year, and the perfect stage for both Canon and Nikon to show off their full frame mirrorless cameras. Nikon has already begun to tease their release. And I'm sure that Canon isn't far behind.

So what does this mean for mirrorless photography? For enthusiasts, I don't think much. Many Canon and Nikon ex-patriots have already found new homes. And I doubt most of them would ever go back. Pros who had previously dismissed mirrorless bodies, however, should be keenly interested in these new offerings.

But don't expect Canon and Nikon to release anything truly innovative. That's not their gift to the community. Their machines will be powerful, robust, and feature excellent image quality. Something a pro can depend on.

mirrorless-v2.jpg

The real change will be led by FOPS (Fuji, Olympus, Panasonic, and Sony) and their response to the increased competition introduced by Canon and Nikon (Cankon). What might those changes look like? Here are 5 theories.

  • More Artificial Intelligence - This actually fights the battle on two fronts: smartphones and Cankon.
  • Seamless Smartphone Communication - We evolve from sending our images to our smartphones to just having them there.
  • Lower Price Points - FOPS already has a bigger mirrorless community base, so they should be able to leverage those numbers to offer more affordable hardware.
  • More Creative Modes - When you look at applications such as Luminar featuring alluring filters such as Image Radiance and Orton Effect, imagine if those filters were built into your camera?
  • Innovative Body Design - Mirrorless brought back the retro look. But they have other design opportunities as well, especially MFT bodies that can use smaller form factors.

Canon and Nikon re-entering the mirrorless space with quality products does not signal phase two of the mirrorless revolution in of itself. What they have already done with their saber rattling is to reenergize FOPS to take more risks and push their innovation envelope even further. And those four companies will lead the second wave of mirrorless.

Still Waiting for my Canon Rebate

On the June 11, 2018 TDS Podcast I mentioned that "I'm Taking the Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Rebate Challenge" and had mailed in all the required documents for my $250 rebate. I just checked the mail today, July 23, and still no rebate in sight. Here's what did happen this week.

I was urged by some listeners to visit the rebate site and check my status. I couldn't figure how to do that exactly, so I initiated a chat with one of their staff members. I was instructed to send an email to canonrebates@acbcoop.com - I did so only July 18. On July 20, I received the following response from them:

"Good Afternoon, You claim was received and approved. Please allow 1-2 weeks for card to mail." I'll keep you posted.

Testing the Sony RX100 VI

I had a nice surprise last week when the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 VI ($1,200) showed up at my door. It's a beautiful little camera with a 1" sensor and a 24-200mm zoom lens with a max aperture of f/2.8.

I'm shooting with it now, and I'm hoping to have a report as early as next week. Stay tuned.

Thanks for the Podcast Reviews

I recently asked folks to post a review on iTunes if they were so inclined to freshen up our list. Big thanks to Murlach, flatmacsurf, JohnF from CT, Fastidious 1, and Brook Craven for chiming in. Each wrote informative comments that will be truly useful to potential listeners. Awesome!

Do You Have a Film Camera that Needs a Good Home?

Over the last year, I've received donations from TDS members who have film cameras that need a good home. What I do is inspect the items, repair and clean as I can, then list them in TheFilmCameraShop where I can find a good home for them. If you're interested in donating, please use the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. And thanks for you consideration!

Thanks to Bill Armon, and others who have previously contributed their gear to TheFilmCamerasShop.

Updates and Such

I've updated our Directory to Portfolios by TDS Photographers page. Stop by and see what your peers are publishing.

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

This is The Digital Story Podcast #644, July 17, 2018. Today's theme is "The Filter Box" I'm Derrick Story.

Opening Monologue

I'm not one to hang on to unused items. If a camera or lens isn't seeing action, then I move it along to someone who will put it to use. I do have one exception to this rule: filters. I store them in a large shoebox at my studio. And they are the one photography accessory that I seldom part with. Why is that? I answer that question on today's TDS photography podcast.

The Filter Box

I remember when I bought my first brand new polarizer. It was a 55mm Contax circular model. It cost some godly amount of money, even for day that was decades ago. I was fine spending $300 for lens. But then to turn around and add another $100 for a filter? That seemed crazy.

It was then, all those years ago, that I decided to protect and save my investment in filters. I knew that if I stuck to this approach, that it would save me thousands of dollars over my career.

IMG_2689.jpg

My photography is still going strong. And my filter investment is looking smarter than ever. Here are five reasons why.

  • Filters are brand independent - Over the years, I've jumped from Contax, to Canon, to Pentax, Olympus, Samsung, Panasonic, and others. The lenses are tied to the camera brand. But the filters are not. I can use a Canon filter on a Pentax lens no problem. And I do it all the time.
  • Filters cost a lot - Think about it: most filters are a cookie-cutter circle of optical glass, that's coated and usually mounted in a brass ring. Relative to the complexity of a camera lens, their price is way too high.
  • Filters last a long time - I have filters that date back to the 1960s that still perform well. I've read that they lose their effectiveness over time. To some degree, maybe. But not so much that they compromise my work. The thing about filters is that there is not focusing mechanism, aperture blades, or f-stop ring to break. So unless you strip their threads, they function.
  • Creative filters help shake up your photography - Whether it is a Zeiss Softar, Tiffen cinematic effects, or a rotating graduated filter - when I retrieve one from the box and pack it in my bag, fun just seems to follow.
  • Filters provide a sense of security - I'm always a little over protective when I get a new lens. The first thing that I do is put a good filter on it before I hit the road. And I always feel more secure after doing so.

Bickering over whether or not to use filters has been going on as long as photography itself. One thing that I do know is that quality, multicoated, filters have virtually no adverse impact on my images, and often provide some enhancement. Just like with lenses, get quality glass, and your investment will be rewarded.

Still Waiting for my Canon Rebate

On the June 11, 2018 TDS Podcast I mentioned that "I'm Taking the Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Rebate Challenge" and had mailed in all the required documents for my $250 rebate. I just checked the mail today, July 16, and still no rebate in sight. I will keep you posted....

My Incredible Scouting Trip to Lassen Volcanic National Park

I'm back from my scouting trip for Burney Falls and Lassen Volcanic National Park workshop and I had an amazing time. Here's the recap.

We have one seat open. This is the last opportunity to reserve before I go public next week. You're not going to want to miss this!

Review Copies Available for the Apple Photos Book for Photographers

I have 5 signed copies of the Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition, available. If you can post a review by August 15th, then send me your shipping info via the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. I'll get that book out to you right away. First come, first served.

Do You Have a Film Camera that Needs a Good Home?

Over the last year, I've received donations from TDS members who have film cameras that need a good home. What I do is inspect the items, repair and clean as I can, then list them in TheFilmCameraShop where I can find a good home for them. If you're interested in donating, please use the Contact Form on TheNimblePhotographer site. And thanks for you consideration!

Thanks to Bill Armon, and others who have previously contributed their gear to TheFilmCamerasShop.

Updates and Such

I've updated our Directory to Portfolios by TDS Photographers page. Stop by and see what your peers are publishing.

You can become a member of our Inner Circle by clicking on this link or by clicking on the Patreon tile that's on every page of The Digital Story.

B&H and Amazon tiles on www.thedigitalstory. If you click on them first, you're helping to support this podcast. And speaking of supporting this show, and big thanks to our Patreon Inner Circle members:

And finally, be sure to visit our friends at Red River Paper for all of your inkjet supply needs.

See you next week!

More Ways to Participate

Want to share photos and talk with other members in our virtual camera club? Check out our Flickr Public Group. And from those images, I choose the TDS Member Photo of the Day.

Podcast Sponsors

Red River Paper - Keep up with the world of inkjet printing, and win free paper, by liking Red River Paper on Facebook.

Portfoliobox - Create the site that your best images deserve by visiting Portfoliobox. And get a 20 percent discount by using our landing page!

The Nimbleosity Report

Do you want to keep up with the best content from The Digital Story and The Nimble Photographer? Sign up for The Nimbleosity Report, and receive highlights twice-a-month in a single page newsletter. Be a part of our community!

Want to Comment on this Post?

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.