Samsung boosts storage of high-capacity SSDs to a hefty 2 TB

by JamesNYCJune 6. 2015 09:26

Samsung looked to usher in the consumer adoption of solid state drives (SSDs) back in 2013 with the launch of its speedy EVO series. It continues to forge ahead with its high-capacity vision for consumer-oriented, flash memory storage solutions with the addition of a pair of 2TB SSDs to its lineup.

The newest members of Samsung's SSD family are powered by the company's proprietary 3D Vertical NAND (V-NAND) technology, which it first unveiled in 2013. This brings the total range of products in its SSD lineup to 20, ranging in capacity from 120 GB up to the whopping new 2 TB options.

The drives are housed in the same 7 mm, 2.5-in aluminum casing as previous models and comprise 32 layers of 128 GB 3D V-NAND flash chips and an improved MHX controller to better support the 2 TB format. Also inside are four 20 nanometer-class 4Gb LPDDR3 DRAM chips.

Samsung has launched two versions, the 2 TB 850 EVO and 2 TB 850 PRO. The PRO variants have traditionally promised slightly better read/write speeds and reliability. Though Samsung is yet to release technical details on the new drives, it is guaranteeing the PRO model for 10 years or 300 TB written, and the EVO model for five years or 150 TB written.

The 2 TB 850 EVO is expected to cost US$800 and the 2 TB 850 PRO $1,000. There's no official release date yet, but they will be available to buy in 50 countries. Samsung also says that it has plans to extend the 3D V-NAND SSD lineups to include mSATA and M.2 form factors.

 

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SanDisk targets enterprise customers with world's first 4 TB 2.5-inch SSD

by JamesNYCMay 5. 2015 09:22

Flash-based solid state drives (SSDs) have historically been the poor cousins to platter-based HDDs in terms of storage capacity, making them a poorer option for enterprise applications. But SanDisk is looking to change things with its new Optimus MAX SSD, the world's first 2.5-inch Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) SSD packing 4 TB of storage capacity.

Touting the new drive as the first true replacement for legacy mission-critical data center SAS HDDs, SanDisk claims the 4 TB Optimus MAX SSD allows enterprises to maintain their current SAS storage infrastructures, while providing improved, cost-effective performance, and generating less heat and consuming less power than HDDs.

Just exactly how cost effective the new drive is remains to be seen as SanDisk hasn't revealed pricing details, but it is claiming sequential read/write speeds of up to 400/400 MB/s and random read/write speeds of up to 75,000/15,000 Input/Output Operations Per Second (IOPS) for the drive via its SAS 6 Gb/s interface.

Although the thought of slotting a 4 TB SSD into your laptop might sound appealing, SanDisk is targeting the drive at read-intensive applications with typical workloads made up of a read/write ratio of 90/10. This includes data warehousing, media streaming, web servers, video on demand (VOD), and web-based applications.

"Customers have been looking for a way to transition their data centers from HDDs to NAND flash, but have been forced to decide between cost and performance, or give up important functionality," says John Scaramuzzo, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Enterprise Storage Solutions at SanDisk. "We believe that the Optimus MAX will be a disruptive force within the storage industry, catalyzing many organizations to make the switch from their HDD-prominent data center infrastructures to SSDs."

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Broncolor FT-System Continuous Lights With New Parabolic Reflectors

by JamesNYCApril 21. 2015 12:57

Hot lights have become common place in the studio for some time now, especially with the advent of video DSLRs.

And While BRIESE Lighting has been the dominant player in the CONVERTIBLE LIGHTING sector for the last 18 years; it' appears that Broncolor is finally taking a cue from them and following suite with ere latest offering.

The newest Broncolor light is made to fit into one of Broncolor's new parabolic reflectors which are known for being pretty great, yet expensive. Although the prices have yet to be released it's far to say that these are for a select clientele and the new FT-System is fit for both pro photographers and videographers alike - giving a good deal of bang for your buck.

One of the biggest benefits of the new system is that the light is completely flicker-free, according to Broncolor. This is amazing news for blink-of-an-eye paced shooting as well as cinematography. There are two models for the new product, the 1600 and the 2000. The 1600 is a 1600 watt daylight balanced light, while the 2000 is the 2000 watt tungsten balanced light. Each head attached to an electronic ballast and has a lamp head and focusing device. 

The complete Broncolor FT System is set to start shipping September 2015

FULL PRODUCT SPEC HERE

 

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Motion Graphics Studio Creates Website to Help Amateurs Get Organized

by JamesNYCApril 10. 2015 12:54

WICHITA, KS APRIL 9, 2015 – Justin McClure Creative has launched Get Your Shit Together, a hub for animators, editors and motion-graphics artists. The website offers industry insight on creating project folder structures, project naming conventions and After Effects project folder scripts.

The site also offers free downloads from Justin McClure Creative and other top professionals in the industry including David Bennett of CMT, Jonathan Winbush of Winbush and Harry Frank from GrayMachine.com. 
“The way you structure and name your files might just be the biggest tip of the hat that you’re still a rookie,” said McClure.

“It wasn't until I landed a job as a designer/animator at CMT in Nashville that I really learned what it meant to be organized. From naming conventions to folder structures, I learned that everything had a place and a name.”

McClure hopes the site will help freelancers and rookies save time, headaches and possibly that next big gig. 

“It takes years to craft your style and technique,” stated McClure. “As designers and animators we have to keep track of many different types of assets, so the last thing you want to do is lose a client because you just didn’t have your shit together.”

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LEAF introduces a new 50-megapixel CMOS - Leaf Credo 50

by JamesNYCSeptember 8. 2014 10:24

The Leaf Credo 50, from Mamiya Leaf, is the latest medium-format shooter to feature a 50-megapixel CMOS sensor. As such, the new digital back follows in the footsteps of recently-released devices like the Phase One IQ250, Hasselblad H5D-50c and Pentax 645Z, by boasting a versatile wide ISO range, improved Live View, and faster continuous shooting than its predecessors.

The 50-megapixel medium-format (44 x 33 mm) CMOS sensor at the heart of the Credo 50 is manufactured by Sony, and is understood to be the same one used in a number of rival cameras. In this case it's paired with a new image processor, to offer faster read and write speeds, and help produce highly detailed images with classic Leaf colors, which tend to be more film-like than many other digital cameras.

With an ISO range of 100 to 6,400, the new digital back should be capable of delivering the photographic goods in a variety of lighting conditions. Its 14-bit RAW files also have an expanded dynamic range of 14 stops. Though it's certainly no sports shooter, the Credo 50 is capable of firing off 1.2 frames per second, and its exposures can range from 1/10,000th of a second to an hour.

While the Credo 50 digital back will be available in a number of mounts for use with different camera bodies, its makers would probably rather you use it with a Mamiya/Phase One 645 DF+. On its rear is a 3.2-inch touchscreen display with a 1.15-megapixel resolution. This can be used for improved Live View focus and framing, adjusting settings, as well as inspecting and editing shots.

As full-resolution RAW files can come in at around 50 MB, users might want to stock up on CompactFlash cards if shooting un-tethered. However, if studio-based tethered shooting is more your thing, you'll be pleased to know that the Credo 50 features FireWire 800 and USB 3.0 connectivity, and comes with Capture One software for image capture and editing. Unfortunately though, it lacks the built-in Wi-Fi of the Phase One IQ250.

The Mamiya Leaf Credo 50 digital back will be on show at Photokina 2014, and available later this month for US$27,000 or $31,000 as a system with a 645 DF+ body. There will also be a Wide-Spectrum back option for Near IR and UV imaging.

NEW SENSOR-NEW POSSIBILITIES

The new Leaf Credo 50 is the latest member to the very successful Credo line. It follows the course of delivering legendary image quality and by employing a new high-performance CMOS sensor, it brings high iso capabilities along with fast capture rate, high dynamic range and improved Live View performance.

HIGH RESOLUTION AND HIGH SPEED

The Leaf Credo uses high resolution SONY CMOS sensor with 50 Megapixel, measuring 44mm x 33mm. It can capture at 1.2 frames per second and provides an extended iso range of 100-6400 means more freedom in choosing locations, lighting conditions and capture parameters. For many photographers this means they no longer have to carry another camera for certain type of jobs.

UNCOMPROMISING IMAGE QUALITY

The Leaf Credo 50 delivers the stunning, film-like quality that has been Leaf’s trademark for many years. The new CMOS sensor delivers an unsurpassed 14 f-stops of dynamic range provides unmatched detail, richness of color, low noise and beautiful tonality.

HIGH QUALITY LIVE VIEW

The use of the new CMOS sensor allows for improved Live View image quality with faster refresh rate ald low noise at almost every lighting conditions.

LONG EXPOSURES

The New Leaf Credo 50 digital back can capture virtually noise free images with exposures of up to 1 hour long.

WIDE SPECTURM

The Leaf Credo 50 is available also in Wide-Spectrum version, where the standard IR-cut filter has been replaced with an optically corrected glass. This new back delivers amazingly clean detail in a wider wavelength range due to high NIR sensitivity, high iso capability and excellent long exposures performance. Read more about the WS backs.

CAPTURE ONE SOFTWARE

You are now able to leverage the unique features and workflow environment of Capture One workflow software to optimize and enhance your images, create web galleries and print contact sheets directly from the computer. Together, the Leaf Credo 50 and Capture One are essential tools in producing the results you expect The Leaf Credo 50 offers the best price-performance ratio of any high resolution, high iso single-shot capture device, enabling you to take your photography further by capturing the highest quality, single-shot images possible. The sensor provides the ability to record the finest detail, eliminating the need to use cumbersome multi-shot solutions.

TOTAL CONTROL FROM CAPTURE-TO-DELIVERY

The Leaf Credo 50 lets you shoot anywhere. Featuring a high resolution, touch 3.2” screen, enabling you t o view, inspect and edit your images under all kinds of challenging lighting conditions, both in-studio and outside, as well as offering a wide range of on-screen functions.

CAPTURE SPEEDS AS FAST AS 1.2 FRAMES PER SECOND

Providing the fastest image transfer speed through the use of advanced FireWire 800, USB 3.0 and UDMA CompactFlash technologies, the Leaf Credo 50 is built for speed.

 

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Dropbox Pro Users Now Get 1TB of Storage, Other features

by JamesNYCAugust 27. 2014 06:13

The cloud storage service Dropbox has added a number of new features to its Pro storage tier.

Headlining the changes is a more generous allotment of storage. Whereas the Pro tier was previously split between 100, 200 and 500GB tiers, Dropbox will consolidate a Pro membership around a single, 1TB offering for $9.99 a month.

Beyond more generous storage, the company has introduced view-only permissions for shared folders which will enable users to share files without worrying that their recipient will make unwanted changes or edits. Now shared folders will come with three permission levels (owner, editor and viewer) to better control who can do what with Dropbox files.

In addition to the price cut, Dropbox is bringing some new sharing controls to Dropbox Pro. For added security, you can now set a password and expiration date for a shared links. The change comes after Dropbox in May disabled shared links to fix a bug that caused users to unwittingly leak their own personal files online. You can also now specify whether recipients can edit or just view the files in your shared folder.

There's also a new remote wipe feature that lets you easily delete Dropbox files from a lost or stolen device while keeping them safely backed up in the cloud..

Launched in 2008, Dropbox now has 300 million users saving 1 billion files a day.

 

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Photographer Files Vague Patent, Sues Others for Shooting and Selling Photos of Sporting Events

by JamesNYCAugust 23. 2014 14:17

In the world of patents, some money, a lawyer and the carefully crafting a few hundred words can go a long way — for better or worse.

 

One such example is the case of Peter Wolf, owner of Photocrazy, a company that takes photos of sporting events such as triathlons, then offers prints to the participants by matching their race number to an internalized, searchable database.

And although this concept has been around for quite some time in various forms, EFF reveals that Wolf managed to get three patents on this generalized idea and is now attempting to squash other, smaller operations that use a similar method.

Specifically, 6,985,875; 7,047,214 and 7,870,035 are the patents Wolf has managed to secure with the help of some clever wording on behalf of his lawyer. The basis of the most vital component in primary claim — 6,985,875 — is the process of taking a photo of a sporting event, tagging and sorting the participants by their bib number and date of the event, then making available the photographs in an online search form using those variables.

Naturally, the patent filing explains it in far greater detail:

  1. A process providing event photographs of a sporting event for inspection, selection and distribution via a computer network, comprising the steps of:

taking photographs of at least one participant of a sporting event along at least one point of a course or field thereof;

associating identifying data with each photograph taken, wherein the identifying data is selected from at least one of: a number corresponding to a number worn by a participant, a participant’s name, a code acquired from a component worn by a participant, and a date and time, including hour and minute the photograph was taken;

informing the sporting participants of the identifying data;

transferring the photographs to a computer network server;

cataloging each of the photographs in a web-site server according to the identifying data;

accessing the server at a location other than the sporting event and searching for a photograph of a particular sporting event participant utilizing the identifying data; and

displaying the photograph of the sporting event participant for inspection and ordering.

This patent is drawing a great deal of criticism though, considering there’s nothing exactly proprietary within the filings — it’s a conglomeration of already-existing general concepts. With the patents in hand though, Wolf is able to effectively control this generalized idea and file lawsuits against other, smaller operations.

The first is a rather small company called Capstone, which has been using a similar workflow for their images for quite some time. Wolf is looking to sue them for doing so. Fortunately, two previous cases — Alice v. CLS ruling and Limelight v. Akamai ruling — make it seem like these patents could be rendered invalid for a number of reasons.

Even if the patents are determined invalid though, Capstone and any future company using a similar workflow aren’t quite off the hook.

Legal fees alone could collapse a small company such as Capstone, which is made up of almost completely part-time workers. Capstone is attempting to crowdfund support for the lawsuit, but only $5,000 has come through, which is just a drop in the bucket of the impending legal fees, regardless of whether the patent is ruled valid or not.

One way or another, cases like this show just how counterintuitive patents can be, when their original purpose was to create, not stifle, innovation.

To read up more on the patents filed, follow the respective links in the article above.

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Leica goes discreet with the improved M-P

by JamesNYCAugust 23. 2014 08:38

Photo Assistant

The Leica M-P will be available in silver chrome or black paint finishes

Leica has announced the launch of the M-P rangefinder camera. The new model improves on the original Leica M by featuring a bigger buffer, a sapphire glass display-cover, and a frame selection lever for subject framing. The German firm has also opted to make the M-P more discreet by omitting the iconic red dot.

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The Leica M-P (not to be confused with the film-shooting Leica MP) shares the vast majority of its features with the Leica M. As such the full-frame M-mount shooter features a 24 megapixel sensor, an ISO range of 200-6,400 and the ability to shoot Full HD 1080p video footage.

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The Leica M-P will cost US$7,950 and is due to start shipping by the end of the month

In much the same way as the Leica M9-P differed from the M9, changes to the M-P are modest, but could make all the difference to some users. The most performance enhancing improvement is a bigger buffer, which at 2 GB now makes it possible to shoot up to 24 full resolution images at a continuous speed of 3 fps.

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The Leica M-P has a sapphire glass cover on its rear monitor

While the three-inch rear LCD still just features a 920k dot resolution, it's now covered with sapphire glass, to offer better scratch resistance and durability. The M-P also gains a frame selection lever on the front, which can be used to show the framing of various focal lengths in the viewfinder. New versions of some protectors and ever ready cases will be released which accommodate the added frame selector.

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The Leica M-P features a 24 megapixel full-frame sensor

Another change, again in line with previous P-series cameras, is that the M-P is designed to be more discreet. What this means in practice is that it lacks either the M or Leica red dot branding on the front of the camera, which some users tape over. Instead there's the less attention-grabbing classical Leica script engraving on the top of the camera.

The Leica M-P will be available in silver chrome or black paint finishes and is expected to start shipping by the end of the month. It will set you back US$7,950, compared with the $6,950 price-tag of the Leica M.

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Product page: Leica M-P

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The Leica M-P has an ISO range of 200-6,400 and the ability to shoot Full HD 1080p video footage

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The Leica M-P a discreet variation of the M camera which lacks the iconic red dot

 

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Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera Films Through Pentax Viewfinder for Charming Short Film

by JamesNYCAugust 22. 2014 07:24

Mathieu Maury and Antoine Pai used the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera to film vignettes through the viewfinder of a Pentax 67 camera.

Mathieu Maury and Antoine Pai are two photography and filmmaking enthusiast who decided to launch a production and advertising company called Maison Carnot. They are passionate about finding new subjects and ways to explore what surrounds them. Based on this philosophy, they came up with the short film "Paris through Pentax".

Through the viewfinder images always seem to catch the eye and this video is no exception. The beauty of Parisian life is shown from start to finish. Here is a short interview with them to see how and why the film was made. From Antoine: 

It's interesting story, Mathieu passed by my place with the Pentax 67 and almost the same day I received the Blackmagic pocket camera and it just seemed obvious to us when the two cameras were lying together on the table. The depth and beauty from the Pentax is just hypnotizing. So, after some DIY brainstorming we ended up with the right set up.

This short film is shot in a few of the best spots around Paris, they cleverly used a mix of famous and not-so famous locations. Watching this film, it is quickly evident that there is a decent amount of dynamic range in the scenes - great use of the Black Magic Pocket camera's capabilities. They also created a wooden jig to hold the camera and black paper covered flag to get rid of any reflections or flares. This resulted in a relatively inexpensive setup that created expensive looking high-end finished product. When DIY is done right, you don't know it's DIY. Enjoy this quick trip around Paris.

Maison Carnon around the web: Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo.

DIY brainstorming we ended up with the right set up.

 

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Canon 5D Mark III vs. ,OnePlus One Android Phone

by JamesNYCAugust 21. 2014 07:03

In the below video, YouTube user EXIV compares footage taken from a Canon 5D Mark III with that taken from a OnePlus One Android phone.

He writes, "The aim of this test is exclusively to compare how the OnePlus One performs respect the Canon 5D Mark III in a ideal light condition. In this case I am pleased to notice that the OPO performed incredibly well, but no doubts that the Canon 5D Mark III is obviously still the best option for filmmakers for all the many reasons that make a DSLR what it is. But it is interesting also to notice that, in terms of dynamic range, the OPO performed incredibly well compared with the 5D, and I can tell you that with a similar exposure, there is almost no difference between the two."

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