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Posts tagged ‘NAB 2011’:

More from NAB 2011: Heliopan Vario ND Filters and Good Times at the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum

While at NAB, I spent some time with Bob Salomon at the HP Marketing booth. The company has been around a long time and is well-known as the distributor for Novoflex and for Heliopan filters, among other quality products. I’ll be writing about some of them in coming posts. But at the top of my list was borrowing Heliopan’s Vario ND filter.

Heliopan ND Filter effect

In an earlier post, I wrote about using filters with the Canon G-series camera, using the adapter that Canon makes (and which too few photographers knew about until recently). So when our Northern California sales rep, Bill Hodges, sent me a press release about the Heliopan filter, I knew I had to get a sample for a field test.

The primary use of NDs is to allow greater control of depth-of-field, particularly in the field and in strong light. They are also essential if you’re looking to shoot subjects like moving water and need longer shutter speeds. So the idea of being able to ‘dial in’ the exact amount of ND without carrying a wide range of filters (and having to change them in the field) has great appeal. So stay tuned — I’ve got the filter in a 58mm screw-in, with plans to shoot some tests in the next couple of weeks. I’ll post the results.

Let’s return to the diversions that have nothing to do with NAB —

Here’s one that seems to be purely for Las Vegas locals — the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum. Located off The Strip, it’s a warehouse-like space with what seem to be more than 100 working machines from the 50’s (my era) to the 90’s. All the machines work and the price per play ranges from a quarter to 50 cents. Just as important, the Hall of Fame is operated as a non-profit and makes significant contributions to local charities like the Salvation Army.

One of the tables at the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum in Las Vegas

I grew up playing pinball, and I’m sure I put a lot of nickels into many of these same machines. Back then, pinball was very much a male recreation. Just how much so is clear if you look at the graphics on the ‘back glass’ and on the playing surface. Another reason to have my Canon G11 with me at all times. No efforts at apologies, those were different times. Thanks here again to my son for a ‘find’ that he knew we would both enjoy.

By the way, we made a return visit on Sunday, with Russ Carswell (VDL’s Sales Director), and once he saw they had Track & Field, the arcade addiction of his earlier years, it was ‘Game Over.’ Tim and I could have left him there and come back hours later without being missed.

One of the tables at the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum in Las Vegas

NAB 2011: Great Noodles in Vegas and New LED Lights from Dedolight

I’m back from this year’s NAB show in Las Vegas, where it seems the year (if not the decade) of the DSLR continues. Once again, the video production part of the show was filled with cameras (Canon), accessories (Red Rock Micro and Zacuto), and a whole host of established companies anxious to show their track-mounted dollies, jibs, lenses, portable lighting, monitors, tripods and heads, etc. all supporting the EOS 5D and its kin.

We’ll get to equipment in a bit… but first, a word on other diversions. I flew out a couple of days early to meet my son, Tim (a lawyer in San Francisco) for a weekend devoted to food and amusements that are not part of what most people go to Vegas for. Tim is a big fan of Yelp.com when it comes to finding great restaurants, and his research did not disappoint. Since he arrived a few hours before me, Tim had already found (and had lunch at) a Japanese noodle restaurant, Monta, that is an absolute knockout. It has fewer than 30 seats, a short menu revolving around ramen that is the equal of any place in New York or L.A., and prices that are extremely reasonable. It’s located, as so many great places are in Las Vegas, in one of dozens of drab little strip malls that it would be just as easy to drive past.  Another reason to have a portable GPS with you.

Ramen at Monta Las Vegas

Back to NAB, there are more and more companies each year who are showing and selling LED lighting for studio and location use. But this year, I was very happy to see Dedolight’s new entry into the field, which Dedo himself has named Felloni.

Initially, production will be of the 1×1 size (12″x12″) in a very wide range of output levels and color temperatures, as well as multiple beam angles. There are daylight, tungsten, and bicolor units (variable from daylight to tungsten) — all dimmable, with the ability to be powered by battery as well as line voltage. Great specs on output and power consumption, and some very clever built-in docking of popular battery modules.

Dedolight Felloni

We’ll have all the key information on the site shortly, along with PDFs you can download. And if you’re wondering about price, it will be very pleasant surprise. Of course, Dedolight’s current tungsten and HMI lighting range also continues to expand. All the new products are about making sure that film, video, and still shooters have all the lighting tools they need whatever the assignment.

Finally, there is an infrared version of LEDZilla, the very successful on-board LED light introduced a couple of years ago. This one is called iREDZILLA. Primary applications will be for infrared (night) photography and surveillance. Specs indicate it can be used at a range of up to 130′ (based on tests with Sony’s Nightshot camcorder). Considering the popularity of recent online feeds of nesting eagles and other nature videos, I predict strong demand from nature and scientific shooters.

Dedolight iREDZILLA

Check back next week for more impressions from this year’s NAB show!