At the CES (consumer electronics show) event in Las Vegas, the new standard for USB has been presented: the 3.0, also called Super Speed USB. The differences with current 2.0 high speed USB is of course higher speed thanks to 5 lines/wires communication instead of 4 ones (it should be around 10 times USB 2!) and a lower power consumption.

We will sure see it soon in cameras, already 17 devices (mainly portable drives and high end portable PCs) seem to be USB 3 certified.

Apple has released Aperture v 3, its professional photo management and raw conversion application only for Mac.

Announced improvements/additions should be more than 200 (Apple said), where notable ones are the following:

  • a new non-destructive brush with automatic edge detection (similar to Adobe Lightroom brush with auto-mask feature);
  • adjustment presets;
  • full-screen view:
  • new slideshow with support of video (also HD), what is still missing in Adobe Lightroom v2 and beta1 of version 3;
  • a new Faces and Places option for respectively Face detection and geotagging.

The new version costs 199 $ (in the US) or 99$ for upgrade from previous versions.

Full announcement on Apple website at this link.

 

Canon has announced the new consumer level DSLR: EOS 550D / Digital Rebel T2i.

We have an overview in our articles section: look here.

Neat Image, popular Photoshop plugin and standalone application for noise removal, has updated to version 6.1 for Windows.

News of this upgrade from the site:

  • Improved compatibility with Windows 7
  • Added support for Photoshop Elements 8.0
  • Added support for Serif PhotoPlus X3
  • Improved metadata (EXIF) compatibility with the latest Nikon cameras: D3S, D3X, D300S, D3000, D5000, etc.
  • Several other corrections and bug fixes

Please see the history of changes for more details.

Download at this link if you are a registered user.

Manfrotto Distribution (formerly Bogen Imaging Inc.) will be the master distributor in U.S. for well-known Datacolor® (www.datacolor.com) monitor and print calibration products.

Bogen Imaging decided to rebrands internationally as Manfrotto Distribution effective as of January 1st 2010. Bogen has offices in the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, France, Germany and Japan.

Panasonic has started producing SDXC (Extended Capacity) memory cards with 64GB and 48GB sizes and data transfer speed up to 22MB/s. Initial price will be respectively around 600 $ and 450 $. This news must be considered together with Panasonic announcement of new SDXC cameras.

Sony has announced a new mid/entry level DSLR: the A450, as a cheaper version of the A5xx range.

With respect to the similar A550, the sensor is the same (14.2 megapixel CMOS) but it lacks fast-AF live view system and the tilt and flip LCD screen that I think to be quite a useful acquisition from compact cameras world. Despite this, it has some advantages like longer battery (since consumption is lower and battery is big).

Cost will be less than 1000 $.

Bibble Labs has announced the release of its RAW file converter and image catalog management: Bibble 5 Pro. It supports many operating systems (Windows XP, Vista and 7, Mac OS X 10.4 or greater, Linux Fedora Core 6 or later, Ubuntu 6.06 or later).

Main changes:

  • image cataloguing;
  • non-destructive application of local editing adjustments;
  • improved speed, the company website shows also impressive comparison with "other famous RAW converters" without naming them. We might guess one of those to be Adobe Lightroom or DxOptics that are not so fast.

Bibble 5 Pro misses some features of Bibble 4 Pro (like Perfectly Clear tool, the Heal & Clone brush, black / white / gray pickers in the curves tool, Web Gallery output) that should be added to version 5.1 (as a free update of course).

Upgrade from version 4 is free if purchased after September 1st 2006 or for $ 99 if purchased before.

Curiously, the Lite version of Bibble 5 Lite won't be ready for a couple of months, so in the meantime, owners of Bibble 4 Lite can use Bibble 5 Pro with their Lite license.

 

Nikon has announced that NASA has purchased 11 Nikon D3S cameras (full frame models) and 7 lenses AF-S Nikkor 14-24 mm f/2.8G ED to be put into the International Space Station.

A great estimation of Nikon quality...

The Panasonic Group has completed acquisition of SANYO Electric Co. Ltd. that will then become a subsidiary of Panasonic.