$35 or $399 microphones and what you really need for a quality audio setup

I cannot say I’m completely new to video and I also cannot say I’m a video pro. I’m somewhere in between like most of us photographers navigating this video trend that is going to stay here. Last week, I reviewed the LED lights that seemed like an appropriate starter kit for someone getting into video. I’ve seen many people do just fine with that minimal setup. But as soon as you talk video, microphones and audio recording takes front and center. Many people say that your clip may not be perfect, but if the audio is horrible, you are completely …

3 Awesome Entry Level LED lights reviewed

I have a hard time getting into video, and for me, like for many others, this journey begins with purchasing some necessary gear. Sometimes it ends up being not so necessary. Today I want to focus on the three lights I got to test and review. This review won’t have any videos, there are plenty of them on YouTube. I wanted to do a review where you don’t have to pause anything to see a certain angle of the construction. So, in my usual fashion, I’m doing a review full of photos. I’ve got three LED lights, all I consider …

My 3 days with Sony a9 and recap of the Sony Kando Trip in Santa Barbara

This week you probably ran across hundreds of Instagram accounts with tags #sonykandotrip. Sony organized an epic 3 day getaway for its Artisans and Alpha Collective and created a playground like no other for us to try out any cameras and any lenses we wanted. I shot with Sony a9 for all those days and here are my thoughts on the camera, new lenses that I haven’t shot with before, and Kando trip recap. Lightroom doesn’t support Sony a9 yet, so all the shots here are wifi transferred to my phone and edited with the VSCO app on my phone. …

Travel Tripods for under $125. MeFOTO vs. Vanguard. What you really get

2016 has been an extremely interesting and even more fast paced earthen I could have imagined. Phones are taking over the world and there is no more question that mirrorless cameras and what comes after them are the future. With all that, we’ve also seen a crazy shift to everyone being a photographer and this whole category of influencer/traveler accounts just exploding over the last 12 months. With all that, I just had to understand what the new travel tripods had to offer. So I got MeFOTO BackPacker Air Travel Tripod  and Vanguard VEO 235AB Aluminum Tripod for review and took …

Peak Design Everyday Tote Camera Bag Review

This year we’re seen some pretty exciting releases from camera gear companies. I think we’re getting to a point where another major breakthrough is going to happen with cameras. But right along the big camera brands, we also have companies like MindShift Gear, Peak Design, and others who push the status quo of the typical camera bag. I’ve read this somewhere, but it’s 100% true – the key to success is to know how to evolve a brand. I think Peak Design so far has been doing it really well. They just funded a series of new bags, which in …

Black Anchor Camera Bag Review

There is a combo of three things that gets me incredibly excited about camera bags: Horween leather, waxed canvas, and “Handcrafted in the USA.” After this, you pretty much have me on the hook. There are a few companies in camera bag world that do really well with some of these pieces. Ona Bags is probably the most famous one and what they do is now a golden standard. There is also Tanner Goods, whose casual camera bag is an awesome addition to their lineup of other products. And now there is also Black Anchor, who is a new company …

ikan DH5 HDMI On-Camera Monitor Review

Something major is happening with our world. Or maybe I’m just living through such major market transformations for the first time. I was too little to remember what was going on with the film world when digital cameras started hitting the market. Now we’re on the verge of not one, but three major changes: shifting to mirrorless, blending photo and video work because often it’s necessary for your career, and social influence on the marketplace. Somehow this dramatic first paragraph felt right, but let’s lighten things up a bit. We’re not alone, there is always something that can make our …

ikan Beholder DS1 Gimbal for Mirrorless Cameras Review

Only a few years ago only the select few video and photo shooters would consider having a stabilizing gimball in their everyday carry. Just a few weeks ago we celebrated 25 years since the internet was born and look how far we’ve come. I can run my online stores and be anywhere in the world for that. Cameras are more affordable than ever. It’s easier to make a name for yourself on a budget so to speak through the power of blogging and social media. So it the scope of all that I keep trying out new things as I head …

Lowepro StreetLine Series Camera Bags SH180 and BP250 Review

It’s exciting to see more people exploring the field of photography as a fun spare time and also as a possibility of a career. The lines are blurring for most, and probably are not making too many of the pro shooters happy. But however you see it, the importance of casual urban look, small size, universal design, and accessibility have become key on our market. Lowepro is long known for making some of the most popular camera bags on the market, but they never really focused on the urban shooter who wants a stylish bag that looks like a casual …

DJI Osmo Review. Photographer’s Perspective

I think it’s been about two years since I started eyeing a camera stabilizer system. I never owned one, they seemed heavy, with all these weights you had to balance and then carry around. And the price tag didn’t seem friendly either – $ 300-800 on average. Now we live in a different era – where you can be light and portable, and even have a lens on your gimball. You don’t normally see many videos from me, but I realize that it’s one of those areas of many opportunities, even if just backstage little snippets into my work and …

Peak Design Everyday Messenger Camera Bag Review

The world of camera and gear brands is not that huge. There is only a handful of companies who shape the look, feel, and functionality of what we use. Last year there was a bit of anomaly with the crazy spike of attention to one gear brand – Peak Design out of San Francisco. They launched a Kickstarter campaign that I’m pretty sure every other photographers heard about. Today I am reviewing the product they launched. The hype slowly starting to go away and we can really focus on what this bag does differently and why it was so successful …

Sony a6300 First Thoughts. Shooting Ballet Auditions.

At this point I think we’re all pretty clear that Sony is set to make history with its mirrorless cameras. I own quite a nice lineup of Sony cameras and a few weeks ago got the brand new a6300 in my hands. I never owned an a6000, I decided to get an RX100IV instead. So this is my first camera in the a6xxx lineup. This is not meant to be a full-blown review, just my initial thoughts on the camera and what it can do for you. To be honest, I think the hardest question at this point is not whether …

Palette Aluminum Expert Kit Review

There are many interesting gadgets on the market to make editing images faster, more precise, and fun. I typically don’t use Wacom tablets to edit my images, it’s all just the standard Mac keyboard and mouse and it seems to be enough. After seeing Palette and its kickstarter campaign, I couldn’t get it out of my head for weeks. I knew there will be a time when I give it a try. It was a popular holiday gift and I am guessing many people are curious about the gadget and if it’s something that’s needed for everyday editing. Here are …

Aide de Camp’s Madison Female Camera Bag Review

The search for the perfect camera bag is never really over. For some people it’s like watches or sunglasses where you get a new one each year or season. Female camera bags have been quite popular over the last few years and there are several brands that focus specifically on female camera bags. I go through the news of the photo world on a daily basis and a few months ago ran into this really cool company out of Singapore called Aide de Camp. It was the first time I really wanted to try out a women’s bag. So I emailed the …

Introduction to Lens Filters, Type Options, and Filter Pouches and Holders Review

In the last few months everyone has been writing quite a bit about filters. There is a lot to say and the level of depth can be very broad on the topic. I have been using filters for many years. I typically have a UV protective filters on every lens I own, but that was about it. Then I decided to get a little more into it and got some ND filters for video and creative effects. At some point I realized it’s time to put a big overview together with some essential options, their purposes, and how to keep …