Product Review

Reviewing the Lowepro Flipside 400 AW

Lowepro has been known for great quality camera bags, especially for photographers who love the outdoors. Today, we are going to review one of their products geared for the outdoor-loving photographer, the Flipside 400 AW. Let’s see how well this bag stacks up.
ON THE OUTSIDE

The Lowepro Flipside 400 AW is a camera bag pack with external dimensions of 30.3 x 25.3 x 46 cm. (11.93 x 9.96 x 18.11 in. it only weighs 1.6 kg, (3.52 lb) so it does not contribute additional weight to whatever you will be putting in your bag.


It also offers contoured shoulder straps and padded waistbelt which help evenly distribute weight, especially if you will be putting a lot of gear in the bag, as well as provide extra comfort when you’re going from place to place for your photography.
There is also a body-side access for added security and quick access to gear at any time when you need reach out for something in your bag. And if you’re in the wild, where silence is very important so not to disturb the animals there, the Flipside 400 AW has silent zipper pulls that would provide quiet access around your surroundings, especially if silence is very much important.
In addition, the bag also has a built-in All Weather AW cover that is included to protect your gear from the elements like rain and harsh sunlight.
ON THE INSIDE

The bag has a very spacious body, designed to carry a full-sized DSLR with a 300 mm lens, as well as an extra camera body, 4-6 lenses, an external flash, and other accessories and small personal items. These items can be arranged in separate padded camera compartments that can be adjusted or personalized, depending on the gear you will be bringing in with your bag.
The bag also has a front storage where you can place those small personal items and other accessories. And if ever you need some extra space, the Flipside 400 AW have SlipLock attachment loops that serve to expand its carrying capacity.


If you will be bringing a tripod with you, the bag has a Hideaway Tripod Mount which serves to secure your tripod to the pack.
In addition to all this, Lowepro guarantees the longevity of this bag. In fact, it provides a lifetime warranty, making sure your bag is guaranteed to last as long as you use it.
FINAL THOUGHTS
The Lowepro Flipside 400 AW is not for everyone. But if you’re a professional outdoor photographer or even a Wedding Photographers Los Angeles who does work outdoors most of the time, this is one bag you should seriously consider to have as part of your gear. It has a huge capacity and can take on as much as you do in your work. It is one of the best camera bags out there in the market guaranteed to meet your needs in protecting something as precious and important as your camera gear.

What is the Best Camera Phone for 2015?

This year, we have seen some very impressive mobile phones offering some great camera functionality. But which of these phones are the best as far as photography is concerned? If you are on the lookout right now for a great camera phone, we have provided for you a list of the best camera phones in the market today that you should seriously consider having and give you as well a rundown of each camera’s features and see what each of them offer.

Samsung Galaxy S6

The latest flagship phone model of Samsung boasts of a lot of new and exciting features. As far as its cameras are concerned, the Samsung Galaxy S6 provides dual high resolution cameras: a 16 MP main camera at the rear and a 5 MP front facing camera for those detailed and clear selfies. Both cameras launch as fast as 0.7 seconds, allowing you to capture moments quickly.

Another feature which makes this phone stand out as a camera phone is its aperture of f1.9, which lets you take quality low light shots instead of looking grainy and optical image stabilization for those less blurry shots. Overall, the cameras take really high quality photos that make it a topnotch camera phone in the market today.

Apple iPhone 6 Plus

The iPhone 6 Plus is one of the two recent iPhone models released by Apple, not to mention the first phablet sized phone it has released. Of the two, the iPhone 6 Plus is the more advanced as far as camera features go, which we will detail in a bit. Otherwise, on paper, it bears the same 8 MP main camera and the 1.2 MP front camera as the previous iPhone.

What makes the Apple iPhone 6 Plus stand out are camera’s features, with an improved aperture of f2.2 for better low light shots and a faster autofocus system which Apple calls “focus pixels.” Unique to the iPhone 6 Plus is the optical image stabilization feature, which helps provide better quality and more stable photo through its lens.

LG G4

With Samsung and Apple dominating the mobile phone industry at the moment, LG comes out with an impressive phone to give the two a run for their money that is the LG G4. For one, it boasts of a 16 MP main camera and an 8 MP camera at the front, the highest resolution for a front-facing camera.

Inside, the camera boasts of an f1.8 aperture which provides very good performance even under low light conditions. It also has optical image stabilization and a manual mode which is the highlight of this camera as it provides more control of the photos you take with high quality results. It even allows you to shoot in RAW as well.

HTC One M9

HTC has put forth a good flagship phone with the HTC One M9, with a 20 MP main camera and a 4 MP front camera which is somewhat lower compared to the flagship Android phones of its competitors.

As far as the camera phones, it does the job well though again, it somewhat pales in comparison compared to the other flagship Android phones. The aperture at f2.0 is passable in quality. Image quality overall is good, however it lacks the definition that other cameras have.

Verdict

Based on features and real life performance, there is a consensus that the Samsung Galaxy S6 is the best camera phone in the market today. But the other phones are not far behind in terms of performance. Apple iPhone 6 still offers great photographic performance that has been a hallmark of iPhones since the introduction of the iPhone 4S years ago. And LG G4 offers some superior specs in some aspects while delivering camera performance at par with the others.

HTC One M9 seems to be on the losing end in the list. While it still provides good image quality, its performance is somewhat lacking compared to its competitors though it is not that far behind.

In the end, it all depends on user preference. All the phones listed here are very good camera phones. And if you are not looking in particular for any feature or capability, you will not go wrong with these phones.

A Review of the Fujifilm X-T1

Today, we take a look at mirrorless camera courtesy of Japanese camera manufacturer Fujifilm, the Fujifilm X-T1. With Fujifilm having a good reputation in its mirrorless cameras, we shall see in this review if the X-T1 would do just as well.

Exterior

With dimensions of 129.0mm (W) x 89.8mm (H) x 46.7mm (D) and a weight of up to 440 grams, the Fujifilm X-T1 is a bit larger and a bit heavier compared to a number of mirrorless cameras, though not as bulky and heavy as that of a DSLR. The camera body itself looks sturdy with a solid waterproof and dustproof build that is typical of many Fujifilm cameras. The controls are set up quite nicely in a way that you won’t feel overwhelmed seeing a lot of buttons especially at the back.

One feature going for ii is its built-in electronic viewfinder with its high magnification and a faster response time, something many professional photographers would find enticing. It also has a tilting LCD screen which is sadly not a vari-angle type.

The camera can shoot images of up to 16 megapixels and capture high definition videos of up to 1080p. It also has a built-in Wi-Fi capability which lets you add locations and share your photos instantly online. There is no built-in flash in the camera but an external flash is included in the package.

Photographic Performance

The Fujifilm X-T1 boasts of an APS-C X-Trans CMOS II sensor and an EXR II processor which allows you to capture images of stunning quality. Aside from this, the sensor also helps reduce the noise on your image more effectively.

The EXR II processor also plays a role in the camera’s speedy performance. Thanks to this processor, autofocus performance is fast as it is capable of shooting up to 8 full frame images per second.

The Fujifilm X-T1 also boasts of a feature called Intelligent Hybrid AF which is a quick, responsive autofocus system that uses contrast and phase-detection methods for better focus performance in a wide variety of lighting conditions and shooting situations. Manual focus is not left out as the camera also has an Enhanced Manual Focus feature that greatly enhances the manual focus accuracy.

The camera can shoot up to ISO 51200, though for RAW it is limited only up to ISO 6400. It also boasts of a built-in panorama feature which allows you to take extensive landscape photos, though it does not perform quite as well if there are moving subjects involved.

Speaking of RAW images, the camera has a built-in RAW converter that lets you modify some elements in the file like exposure and white balance before doing further processing on to your computer.

Video Recording Performance

The camera’s video capabilities allows you to shoot 1080p videos in 30 fps or at 24 fps. Video also has an autofocus tracking that will ensure the sharpness of the video even if the subject is moving.  For better video sound, you can connect an external microphone to the camera’s hotshoe via the external mic jack of the camera.

Other Features

The Fujifilm X-T1 has a range of filters to provide some additional effects or create some artistic renditions on your images. It also supports the usage of UHS-II memory cards which provide faster transfer speeds during shooting.

As this camera has WiFi capability, you can use it along with Fujifilm’s Camera Remote app. With this app, you can browse through the images stored on your camera over your iOS or Android phone and transfer photos and videos as well.

Final Thoughts

The Fujifilm X-T1 is a worthy addition to an already impressive lineup of cameras Fujifilm has introduced to the market in recent years. Overall photo quality is topnotch with the vivid and stunning images this camera produces. Automatic and manual focus performance is also topnotch, and this camera is one of the best focus performing cameras in the market these days. It also doesn’t hurt that the camera’s design looks good and sturdy, mimicking the look of classic cameras with modern features to boot. Its Wi-Fi capabilities are also impressive as well, especially with the app set up on your phone.

On the downside, there are a few I can note here. For one, the RAW capabilities of this camera is somewhat limited and the panorama function needs some improvement as well.

Overall though, the Fujifilm X-T1 is a very good camera. If you’re looking for a mirrorless camera, or a DSLR-like type of camera, this one of the best mirrorless cameras in the market that I would highly recommend.

Why I Love My Thinktank Airport 2 Carry-on Camera Bag

As a photographer who travels a lot quite often, it is important for me that I have a bag that is capable of carrying all of my photography gear without having to worry of either not being able to fit them all comfortably or worse, be subject to damage due to external elements that my bag would have to endure.

Thus, I was simply thrilled to know that ThinkTank Photo has come up with a bag that addresses my needs with the Airport Security V2.0 Rolling Camera Bag. Simply put, it is one of the best camera bags out there and let me explain why I think it is so.

Large Capacity

First thing to love about it is how much it can carry with its size. The bag can fit up to two camera bodies, 4 to 6 lenses, 2 or more external flashes and other accessories like chargers, rode microphones, whatever else you may need to put in. if you have a tripod, the Thinktank Airport Security V2.0 Camera Bag has a special compartment on the side where you can attach it to.

With so much capacity, the Airport Security V2.0 Camera Bag is not that big in size. In fact, with its dimensions at 14” W x 22” H x 9” D, it passes the standards as a carry-on luggage at the airport.

Keeps My Gear Well-Organized

Organizing stuff in this bag is not a problem with the included movable dividers that allow you to properly organize the contents of your bag whatever way you want it, depending on the gear you’ll be putting in and how you want them to be organized. In addition, the bag also has a front pocket organizer that allows you put in other items like pens, notepads, and other smaller items.

Keeps My Gear Protected

The Thinktank Airport Security V2.0 Camera Bag is designed to protect your valuable camera gear, something I appreciate with this product. Its exterior is designed to protect my gear from rain, abrasion, and other elements thanks to its water-repellant coating and a reinforced padding inside and out. There is also a waterproof cover included for a more sure and reinforced protection in the case of heavy rains.

Even its wheels are designed in such a way to keep your gear protected thanks to its unique design which makes sure your bag is stable and protected in instances where you have to go through curbs.

Security reinforced

This bag also employs a number of security features to keep your gear inside secure from thieves. For starters, it has a TSA combination lock which secures the zippers and deter anyone from opening it. On top of that, it also has a rear security cable which allows you to fasten the bag to an immovable object like a nearby post, preventing anyone from stealing your bag altogether while you are away.

As an added level of protection, the bag also has its own security plate, with a unique number you need to register so in the event the bag gets lost and someone finds it, the bag can be easily returned.

Sturdiness

Every element the bag is made out of is made from quality and long-lasting materials. In fact, Thinktank Photo provides a lifetime warranty for this bag, which goes to show how confident they are in believing this bag is made to last.

This warranty also covers the bag’s wheels as Airport Security V2.0 Camera Bag was built with mobility in mind. Even if you wear out the wheels, ThinkTank Photo will readily provide you replacement wheels for your bag.

Everything Else Is Covered

If in case you are taking the stairs or walking by a rocky surface, the bag also includes shoulder straps that you can attach to the bag, converting it into a backpack as the situation calls it.

 

You don’t have to take my word for it though. You can check out the Thinktank Airport Security V2.0 Rolling Camera Bag at your neighborhood photography shop and see for yourself all these features and why it is a popular bag of choice among many photographers out there.