MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack by Think Tank Photo

MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack by Think Tank Photo

Announcements

The MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack Delivers both Protection and Comfort in a New Compact Size

Introducing the MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack by Think Tank Photo

Adventure photographers need a camera bag that’s as tough as they are. With its rugged materials and faceted design, the MindShift PhotoCross 13 backpack from Think Tank Photo will protect your gear from another punishing trip into the wild. The PhotoCross 13 is built to withstand the elements, yet comfortable enough to wear on long days in the field. The extralarge side access point gives you complete access to your gear when you’re ready to take the shot.

Available in two colorways, Orange Ember and Carbon Grey, the PhotoCross 13 features waterproof zippers and is constructed from durable, abrasion-resistant materials, including a heavy-duty tarpaulin bottom panel. Wide, body-conforming shoulder straps give superior support for long days on the trail, and the wide, removable waist belt and breathable 320G air-mesh back panel will keep you comfortable and cool.

Get your MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack here

Key Features:

• Weather proof zippers and materials

• Durable materials provide abrasion resistance

• Extra-large side-access point gives you complete access to all your gear

• Tripod or jacket carry with included straps

• Dedicated 13” laptop pocket is padded

• Waist belt is wide and removable providing flexibility depending on the shoot

• Tarpaulin bottom panel is heavy duty and waterproof

• Wide shoulder straps give superior comfort from body-conforming design

• Water bottle pocket locks in most 1 liter bottles

• Back panel with breathable 320G air-mesh keeps the back cool during long days

• Internal zippered pockets for batteries, memory cards or other small accessories

• Front pockets for filters, snacks, or a light layer are easily accessible

• T-pulls are easily gripped with or without gloves

• Top and side carry-handles

• Fully-customizable interior dividers for photo or personal gear

• Seam-sealed rain cover included for downpour conditions

Get your MindShift PhotoCross 13 Backpack here

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer is the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.

Introducing the Canon 90D

Introducing the Canon 90D

Announcements

The Latest

The Canon 90D will officially be released by Amazon on September 12, 2019.

You can pre-order now, $1199 USD: Preorder Canon 90D from Amazon.

Canon 90D DSLR

The new Canon 90D was announced today by Canon and it appears to be aimed at the advantaged amateur who prefers wildlife and sports photography. This is a logical replacement to the popular Canon 80D

From the Canon Press Release:

The EOS 90D DSLR camera is ideal for the advanced-amateur photographer who values the look-and-feel of the DSLR body and benefits such as an optical viewfinder, 3.0-inch vari-angle touch screen LCD, addition of the multi-controller and a shutter button feel of professional EOS cameras. Now capable of shooting up to 10 frames-per-second (fps), a drastic increase from the 7.0 fps with the EOS 80D, users can capture all of the action on the sidelines of a football game or wildlife while on safari. Assisting in a photographers’ ability to capture the action is the 45-point all-cross type AF system, 100 percent viewfinder coverage and now supports up to 27 points in f/8 metering. In addition, the new AE sensor boasts an impressive 220,000 pixels and utilizes EOS iTR AF (face priority) detection. Together, these two features allow for the detection and tracking of faces in various environments and shooting situations while using the viewfinder.

Canon 90D Specs:

  • 32.5 Megapixel Image Sensor
  • 45AF all cross-type points
  • DIGIC 8
  • 10fps
  • 4K/30p/25p
  • FullHD at 120p/100p
  • Optical viewfinder & face detection
  • 100% viewfinder coverage
  • 220K dot RGB + IR metering (including iTR AF – face detection through the optical viewfinder)
  • Touchscreen Vari-Angle LCD
  • Dust & water-resistant
  • AF Joystick
  • Battery grip BG-E14

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer is the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.


Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens Review

Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens Review

Announcements

The Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens

Back in January of this year, the good people at Irix USA sent me a new 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly lens to try out, use, and review. I’ve photographed with it a handful of times over the past few months and I’m just now getting around to offering some opinions. My opinions are POSITIVE! In fact, I couldn’t find one thing I didn’t like about the lens. Honest.

Here’s a summary of what I liked about the newest Irix lens: It’s manual focus, which all macro lenses should be. There is no practical need for autofocus with a macro lens. The highly rubberized focusing ring is smooth and adequately damped for fine-tuning the focus. In fact, everything about the lens says “solid” and “quality” to me. It’s the perfect focal length for a macro lens as well. At 150mm, the angle-of-view is narrow enough to easily control the background, which is really important when doing macro photography. Even though the lens is relatively small and compact, Irix has added a lens collar so transitioning from horizontal to vertical and back is quick and easy. And there’s a Arca Swiss mount built into the lens foot! I hope this catches on and becomes standard practice.

Image quality is superb, which is what I’ve come to expect from Irix. My experience with the Irix wide-angle primes (11mm and 15mm) prepared me for this result. It’s incredibly sharp and contrasty. The bokeh, something pretty important when it comes to macro photography, is smooth and creamy at large apertures, even at 1:1 true macro reproductions. The large f/2.8 maximum aperture on the lens allows a lot of light for focusing, especially in live view.

The Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly lens can be ordered with the Canon EF (pictured here), Nikon F, or Pentax K mounts. Let’s hope it’s updated later for the new mirrorless mounts. The lens barrel is composed of metal alloys with a polished, satin anodized metal finish and it’s packaged with a very stylish molded case that protects the lens well when transporting. Everything about how the lens looks and performs is first class.

Get yours here on Amazon: Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens

The Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens Specs

I just received the new Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens from Irix USA. I’ll do an in-depth review once I have the time to actually use this telephoto macro lens, but my first impressions are the following: The lens is solidly built. It feels cool, heavy, and dense in my hand. 150mm is the perfect focal length for a macro lens, in my opinion. The telephoto perspective really allows you to control the background much better than shorter focal lengths. I absolutely love the fact that the lens has a detachable tripod collar (to make it much easier to go from horizontal to vertical and back) with a built-in Arca Swiss mount. Why don’t other lens manufacturers do this as well considering this is the industry standard?

Specifications:

  • Covers full 35mm frame, for Nikon F, Canon EF, Pentax K mounts
  • Manual focus
  • Weather-sealed construction (Dragonfly finish)
  • 12 elements in 9 groups, 3 ED, 4 HR elements
  • f/2.8 to f/32, 11-blade diaphragm
  • 77mm filter ring
  • 12” (0.345m) minimum focus, 1:1 maximum magnification ratio, focus lock ring
  • 3.9” (135mm) long, 4.5” (87mm) diameter
  • 20.5 ounces (840g) weight
  • Detachable tripod collar with Arca Swiss mount; includes lens hood
  • Black
  • USD$ 595
  • Announced by Irix September 24, 2018

Get yours here on Amazon: Irix 150mm f/2.8 Macro 1:1 Dragonfly Lens

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer in the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.


Think Tank Photo Releases Urban Access Backpack

Think Tank Photo Releases Urban Access Backpack

Announcements

Introducing the new Think Tank Photo Urban Access Backpack for photographers on the go!

Introducing the Think Tank Urban Access Backpack

Easy to pack and even easier to access, the Urban Access™ Backpack from Think Tank Photo enables you to get to your gear quickly – whether on the run or in the studio. Access panels on both sides allow you to sling the backpack left or right to access your camera gear without taking off the backpack. The rear-panel provides complete access to your gear when working directly out of the bag, so you can see all your gear at one time.

A center tripod mounting system balances even large tripods securely while still allowing access to your gear. The plush harness is shaped for all day comfort and fit, and includes load lifters, a removable waist belt and sternum strap. Available in two sizes, 13 and 15, the Urban Access™ Backpack is ready for your next adventure.

Get your Think Tank Urban Access Backpack Here

Urban Access Backpack Key Features:

• Two quick side-access panels with full-access rear panel

• Dedicated laptop pocket

• Tripod attachment on front secures a small or large tripod with deployable cup

• Access a 70–200mm f/2.8 attached without taking off your bag (15 ONLY)

• Deep front pocket fits a light jacket

• Robust shoulder harness with load-lifters help to adjust the weight of the pack

• Removable sternum strap and waist belt

• Luggage handle pass-through

• Top compartment fits snacks and personal gear

• Expandable water bottle pockets on both sides

• Customizable divider system

• Top compartment mesh pockets help keep small items organized

• Internal organizer pockets give you quick access to filters, batteries, cards, etc.

• Seam-sealed rain cover included

Get your Think Tank Urban Access Backpack Here

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer is the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L Backpack Review

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L Backpack Review

Announcements

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L

The MindShift BackLight Elite 45L.

The MindShift BackLight Elite 45L

Get deeper into the backcountry with the MindShift BackLight Elite 45L from Think Tank Photo. 45 liters of internal volume provides ample room for a combination of photo/personal gear and dedicated laptop/tablet. External attachment points accommodate adventure equipment such as a static rope, set of axes, snowboard/skis, and of course, a tripod. Weather-resistant zippers and materials protect your gear when trekking in extreme environments. And like the other BackLight backpacks, rear-panel access adds security when traveling since your camera gear is protected behind your back. Built “Mountain Tuff” for protection against the elements, the BackLight Elite 45L features YKK® AquaGuard® zippers and waterproof/tearproof sailcloth, robust lumbar padding, and a quick-dry back panel for increased ventilation.

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L

The MindShift BackLight Elite 45L camera backpack being enjoyed in it’s natural habitat, Torres del Paine National Park, Chile. Photo © Richard Bernabe

Key Features

  • Storm-resistant construction with YKK® AquaGuard® zippers and
    waterproof/tearproof Sailcloth
  • Superior Fit: Robust lumbar padding, hip-hugging waist belt, quick-dry back
    panel, and foam ridges for increased ventilation
  • Back and top panel access to all of your camera gear, allowing you to work out
    of your bag without getting your harness dirty or wet
  • Meets most international and U.S. carry-on requirements
  • Hydration reservoir ready
  • Removable camera compartment with emergency shoulder straps to avoid gate check
  • Removable waist belt for ease when traveling

Specifications

  • Exterior Dimensions: 12.99 x 23.5 x 7.99″ / 33 x 59.7 x 20.3 cm
  • Exterior Material: Foam, Nylon, Polyurethane, Tarpaulin
  • Water Resistance: Rain Cover, Water-Resistant Material
  • Interior Material: Foam, Nylon, Polyester, Polyethylene
  • Maximum Volume: 11.89 gal / 45 L
  • Weight: 3.97 lb / 1.8 kg (Empty)
  • Camera Compartment Dimensions: 11.4 x 19.3 x 6.8″ / 29.0 x 49.0 x 17.3 cm
  • Laptop Compartment Screen Size: 17.0″
MindShift BackLight Elite 45L
MindShift BackLight Elite 45L
MindShift BackLight Elite 45L
MindShift BackLight Elite 45L

My Personal Observations

MindShift Gear gave me one of these backpacks prior to a recent trip to Argentina and Chile while leading my Epic Patagonia Photography Workshop and Tour, just to try it out and give it a good working over. My conclusion after two weeks of hard use was that it could possibly be the ultimate photo backpack, particularly for outdoor, nature, landscape, and wildlife photographers. I love the modular design (the internal camera compartments can be removed or switched out with larger or smaller versions), the snug, comfortable fit for long walks or hikes, and the rear entry design which is consistent with all backpacks in MindShift Backlight series.

The pack also fits in the overhead compartment of most commercial airlines, which is super important to a travel photographer like myself. This is quite the engineering and design feat considering this is a 45 liter pack! And if it happens to not fit and the crew is demanding that you check your camera gear as a regular piece of luggage, you can simply pull the camera compartment out of the pack and slide it under the seat in front of you before handing them the empty frame and shell. 

But overall, I was impressed with the attention Mindshift gave to all the small details: the waterproof zippers are but one example. I have owned and used literally dozens of photo backpacks over the past 15 years and I can honestly say that the MindShift BackLight Elite 45L backpack is the best I’ve ever worked with and will be my primary photo backpack for years to come.

Get Yours Here

The MindShift BackLight Elite 45L backpack goes on sale today (April 30, 2019) and can be ordered here:

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L (MindShift Gear)

MindShift BackLight Elite 45L (Amazon)

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer in the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.


Breakthrough Photography Filters

Breakthrough Photography Filters

Announcements

I just recently ditched my Lee Filter system and adopted Breakthrough Photography Filters as my preferred filter line for landscape and travel photography. The choice was actually pretty simple: Better glass, better coatings, better color fidelity, better build quality, and a 25-year warranty on their filters. Here’s more information:

 

  • WORLDS SHARPEST AND MOST COLOR NEUTRAL NEUTRAL DENSITY FILTERS: Breakthrough Photography’s X4 ND filter maintain a very well controlled and flat transmission all the way throughout the visible light spectrum and into IR, delivering the worlds most color neutral results.
  • MRC16 OPTICAL COATING: 16 Layer Multi-Resistance Coated to significantly reduce lens flare and ghosting while making the filter Anti-Scratch, Reduce Reflection, Water Repellent, Increase Surface Durability, Oil & Dust Resistant. These attributes are essential for working effectively outdoors. Our proprietary MRC coating is structurally harder than the glass itself and the reduced reflections improve the efficiency since less light is lost. 
  • NANOTEC: In addition to state-of-the-art MRC, their optical engineers developed new nano coating layer technology, called nanotec, from the ground up to repel dirt, water and other elements by beading rather than absorbing and smearing. Set in our workhorse and built to withstand extreme wind, salt water, dust and other abrasive conditions and elements.
  • 25 YEARS SUPPORT: Guaranteed to be free from craftsmanship defects for 25 years. When you activate your 25 Year Ironclad Guarantee online we associate your X4 serial number to you, so any future discussions on this unique filter are tracked, issues recorded and all that stuff which goes into future product design.

At top: The Breakthrough Photography X4 3-stop ND Filter slowing down the motion of the water in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Bottom: The finely crafted Breakthrough Photography’s X4 Circular Polarizing Filters with blackened brass frames and traction grooves for easy handling in cold weather or with gloves.

Polarizing Filters

Breakthrough Photography advertises its 4X CPL Circular Polarizer as the “world’s most advanced circular polarizer.” The construction is made from blackened brass (less likely for the filters to stick together) with deepened traction grooves on the rim for an easy grip, even with cold, wet, fingers or gloves (although I’ve been told that these grove may interfere with your lens hood. I don’t use a lens hood so I’ve not experienced this). The glass is SCHOTT Superwhite B270® optical glass with nanotech® and multi-resistant coatings. The best part about these proprietary coatings is that rain and moisture slide right off the surface of the filter. With other filters, you might try to wipe off the rain or splashes and it just get smeared around. I tried it and it’s true! I’m amazed.

Neutral Density Filters

For years I have been using Lee Filters’ Little and Big Stopper ND filters (6- and 10-Stop respectively) for long exposure photography (see tutorial on using ND Filters for Long Exposure Photography). The quality of the Lee glass has never been an issue with me but it’s long been known by landscape photographers that these Lee filters impart an obvious and acknowledged blue color cast to affected images. See the examples above. The Breakthrough Photography 4X ND filters are truly color neutral and the glass and coatings are better than Lee’s. Formatt Hitech pushes the colors toward the cyan while B&W goes reddish-orange. These problems can be fixed in post-production (sometimes relatively easily and sometimes not so much) but why bother with that anymore?

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer is the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.