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Some news here and there from the digital photography world.
Adobe has released Lightroom 2.7, Camera Raw 5.7 and DNG Converter 5.7.
The Lightroom update adds support for nine cameras (Canon EOS 550D, Olympus E-PL1 and others), increases the cache size limit to 200GB (more previews stored) and fixes a slideshow bug (sometimes a crash occurred).
The Camera Raw plugin for Photoshop v5.7 incorportates a demosaicing algorithm compatible with settings applied in the Lightroom 3 beta.
Canon USA has expanded its Professional Services (CPS program) to Videographers, Cinematographers And Filmmakers, since DSLR cameras are becoming more and more also video tools.
The CPS program will keep the same three levels of membership (Silver, Gold and Platinum) to qualifying professional video customers (you need to have specific equipments in a range to be able to qualify). New members are able to sign-up and join the expanded CPS program since April 9th, 2010.
Today Adobe has announced Photoshop CS5 (standard and Extended versions), together with new versions of all Creative Suite products (Adobe Premiere, etc.).
Main improvements of this release:
- lens correction automation: apart from being extracted from the Filter - Distort menu to be more visible, now it is automatable with lens profiles, that is chromatic aberration, distorsion and vignetting can be automatically corrected using a database of lens profiles! Some will be included in the product, others can be added by users (since there are so many lens models around...).
- new Adobe Camera Raw: shared with Lightroom Beta, a new RAW engine with enhanced capability on detail extraction and noise suppression.
- content aware retouching: completely new algorthms to remove unwanted objects, also large ones by automatically replacing the object with patterns from other areas of the same image (like trees, wall, sands) giving (apparently) magic effects. The spot healing brush and the fill function benefit from this interesting addition.
- improved HDR: better combination of multiple images into a high dynamic range one, also with a welcome "remove ghost" feature that suppressed objects that moved from one shot to the next ones.
- manipulation of part of an object: a so called "puppet warp" feature enable to anchor points of an image corresponding to specific parts (like a leg of a person, a tail of an animal) and then the user, by moving the anchor points, warps/manipulates the image. To be tried.
- a so called "mini-bridge" that is a reduced version of Adobe Bridge embedded into Photoshop for easier file browsing.
Apple has released a plugin, called E1, to transfer video content directly into Final Cut Pro v6 or higher (famous video editing software) from some Canon EOS DSLR models: currently supported models are Canon EOS 5D Mark II, EOS 7D and EOS 1D Mark IV.
The video plug-in is a free download at this link: http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/finalcutstudio/.
Canon has updated Digital Photo Professional software to version 3.8.0 (Win) / 3.8.1 (Mac), EOS Utility v 2.8.1, Picture Style Editor v 1.7.0, WFT Utility v 3.5.1, Original Data Security Tools v 1.8.0.
Main updates for DPP are the support for the next EOS 550D / Rebel T2i and (finally) the addition of an horizon correction function to the Trimming Tool - before just 90° rotations were supported!
The updates can be downloaded from this link (click the "Drivers & Downloads" tab and select your operating system).
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.
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