Technically Speaking

Sort By: Post Date | Title | Publish Date
Seth Shostak  |  Jun 18, 2018  |  0 comments

Among the most aesthetically satisfying features of a good lens is the lovely color of the front glass. Check out the ads trying to lure you to new optics, and you’ll see come-hither hues of blue, purple, or yellow—as tempting as a new car’s snazzy finish.

Seth Shostak  |  May 16, 2018  |  0 comments

It’s time to sharpen up your pix. Modern DSLRs generally rely on what’s called phase difference autofocusing: basically, a rangefinder scheme updated with new technology. But as we described last month, this technology uses a second optical path within the camera, independent of the lens-to-sensor path used to make the photo.

Seth Shostak  |  May 03, 2018  |  0 comments

It’s a commandment brought down from the mountain: spend less on the camera if necessary, but don’t skimp on the lenses.

Seth Shostak  |  Apr 10, 2018  |  0 comments

It won’t surprise you, although it could make you uneasy. Most photos today aren’t shot with a camera—at least if you define “camera” as hardware solely used to record images. You know: something with a tripod socket.

Seth Shostak  |  Mar 06, 2018  |  0 comments

Of all the components of a camera, few are as iconic as the shutter. The name of this magazine is testimony to that.

Seth Shostak  |  Jan 11, 2018  |  0 comments

It’s a choice between Scylla and Charybdis. Do you shoot Raw or JPEG format images?

Seth Shostak  |  Dec 14, 2017  |  0 comments

Remember f-stops? Not everyone does. Millennials shoot their selfies with automated smartphones that have sent f-stops to steampunk heaven. Old-timers who began with box cameras were spared the fear factor of f-stops until later in life, and may never have fully adjusted to these adjustments.

Seth Shostak  |  Nov 15, 2017  |  4 comments

Have you ever checked out the battlefield photos made by Mathew Brady’s studio during the Civil War? They’re great, right?

Seth Shostak  |  Oct 18, 2017  |  2 comments

When it comes to camera bragging rights, what makes you most proud? My guess: pixel count. In a world where mobile phones can make shots good enough for billboards, nothing seems to make you feel better about yourself than to flog your camera’s megapixel horsepower.

Seth Shostak  |  Sep 07, 2017  |  0 comments

Before you bought your last camera, did you weigh the pros and cons of the sensor’s aspect ratio? My guess is no—not in the face of more solemn considerations such as style, trim, and a boastful shoulder strap.

Seth Shostak  |  Aug 09, 2017  |  0 comments

It sounds like a reference to dull Halloween costumes, but I’ve always regarded unsharp masking as the Cadillac option for beefing up the acutance of my photos. Admittedly, this is probably just a reaction to the fact that unsharp masking has a complicated dialog box in Photoshop, and my reptilian brain is dazzled by lots of controls.

Seth Shostak  |  Jun 23, 2017  |  0 comments

If you use anything more capable than a smartphone for making photos, then you know all about sharpening. Well, at least you can find a menu item that, in a fraction of a second, turns “acceptable” photos into snappier snaps. It’s like flush toilets: you may not understand exactly how they work, but you know how to use them.

Seth Shostak  |  Jun 02, 2017  |  0 comments

It wasn’t so long ago when every camera came with what’s called a normal lens. This, of course, didn’t refer to its mental health, but to the fact that it was the default lens that every photographer would find useful or, in the days before interchangeable lenses, would be stuck with.

Seth Shostak  |  May 04, 2017  |  0 comments

Soon enough, your camera will join the ranks of the well connected. That’s not to say it will be invited to A-list parties, but only that it will become a participant in the highly touted Internet of Things, now coming ’round the mountain.

Seth Shostak  |  Mar 17, 2017  |  0 comments

The first time I came across a reference to bokeh in a lens review I found it a bit pretentious. Bokeh may sound like a Japanese dessert, but it’s actually the out-of-focus behavior of your lens. The term is said to come from the Japanese word “boke,” which translates as “blur” or, in some cases, “senility.” Confused? It’s understandable.

Pages

X