Archive for August, 2007

Review: 50mm f/1.8D AF Nikkor

August 30th, 2007

Unfortunately, one of the few camera and photography shops near me is closing. On the bright side though they are selling off everything in the store, from neon lights and shelves to lenses and camera bodies. I happened to have been in the area on Saturday so I stopped in to see what they had. I found a couple of items at decent prices. One of those items was the 50mm f/1.8D AF Nikkor.

This is a pretty basic prime lens, that is to say it does not zoom at all. It’s a very small, light weight lens and quite fast as lenses go. One equally important fact is that it is also cheap, usually around $100.

The reason I was interested in this lens is for an upcoming trip to Nashville. I’ll be attending a conference that will take place partly in a darkened sanctuary. The area where the seats are will be very dimly lit with a bit of light happening on the stage. It’s going to be an ideal time to take pictures but a horrible time to actually take pictures. Cameras, as it turns out, like light…

New Cameras and Lenses From Nikon

August 25th, 2007

On August 23rd, Nikon released a number of new products. They added/replaced a number of thier professional lenses and released two new camera bodies. They replaced their current flagship cameras, the D2Xs and the D2Hs with the D3. The specs look great on paper and I can’t wait to see some reviews when they come out in November. In the mean time all of my drooling has been directed to Ken Rockwell’s preliminay look at the device. He seems pretty excited about it. For me, it’s falls in the ‘too expensive’ category. If you are a professional though this camera looks like it’s going to be a no brainer.

What really caught my interest though was the D300. This is a camera that I can get excited about. It’s much smaller, and much cheaper then the D3 and has a very similar feature set. It’s a camera that adheres to the ‘90%’ policy I use for most things technological. It’s basically the belief that you pay 90% of you money getting that last 10% of benefit from what you buy. So I buy the step below. I’d rather pay 10% of my money for 90% of the benefit. Nothing in life is quite that cut and dry but you catch my drift.

Review: Apple’s New .Mac Service

August 23rd, 2007

As far as I can tell .Mac (Apple’s Website describing the complete service) has been overhauled in a very big way and for the better. For a while now I’ve been aware of the .Mac service which was basically a somewhat expensive way to keep all of your macs up to date with each other. It offered a simple way to sync bookmarks, address books ect as well as offering 1GB of online storage to use between your iDisk and the IMAP email they offered.

The iDisk itself was and is a very cool system. Basically it’s a place that you can keep your files so that they are available to all of your macs. Each mac gets an iDisk icon on the desktop and you can use it like you would any other drive, drag and drop folders and files, save to it ect and anything you put into the iDisk would automatically be synced between all of the macs you have. The only problem was you had basically no space. 1GB. It was like some sort of sick joke. For $99/year (or $70/year if you signed up for the service when buying a mac) you had 1GB of space to share between your email and your iDisk. For me at least, it was not worth the money.

The Wheels of Progress

August 21st, 2007

Well, It’s been a while hasn’t it? Let me wipe the cob webs of the site (and the servers, but thats another post) and mention a couple of things I have in the works. First off, my Thecus N5200 has been having some trouble lately and I think it’s something that needs to be posted about. As it turns out the web interface for the product is severely lacking and does not in any way provide adequate data about the array’s health. Look for a scathing post about that coming up…

In other (better) news Apple has released some new software (iLife 08,iWork 08) and updated both the Mac Mini and the iMac. Something that should come as little surprise to anyone who reads my postings is that I have bought a new iMac. My first in fact and I’m quite impressed. It hasn’t been without a few hiccups but overall I am loving the machine. I’ll get a good post online about that in the coming days as well.