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How to shoot stunning infrared photos & make them digitally too
VISUAL MUSINGS
David de Souza on perception, society, art and pornography

EXCLUSIVE TESTS Sony Alpha 99 BenQ G1 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus 17mm f/1.8

GREAT MASTERS

Shahidul Alam on his crusade for social & political change

PROFILE

Rediscover Syria through the eyes of Jaber Al Azmeh

10 women who have made a huge impact on photography

HistorY

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EDITORIAL

Which Is The Best Camera?


After years of lugging around several hundred kilos of photographic gear all over the world for his commercial asignments, ChaseJarvis says, the best camera is the one thats with you, referring to his iPhone. A cell phone camera may not be your immediate preference. Yet, almost all the biggest photographers I have met so far expressed how they want to leave their top-of-the-line cameras behind once the day is done, and simply have fun with photography. Whilehobbyists aspire to buy the very best equipment, professionals seem to prefer tiny, no-nonsense compact or mirrorless cameras to record moments closest to them. Firstly, remember that photography is all about previsualisation. Apart from making the picture in your mind before you release the shutter, you need to know what you will eventually do with the image. This again depends on the type of photography you do and its purpose. Do you imagine an exhibition of your work, with huge prints on display? Or is it for capturing your familys most important moments for posterity? The set of features and functions you need in your new camera will depend on how you see your photographs being used in the future. Secondly, with digital cameras, there is always a trade off between size (lower weight and greater portability), speed (faster processing speeds, frame rates and AF), resolution (larger images with more detail), image quality (optics, sensor size, low light shooting capability, colours, and dynamic range) construction (stronger, weather-sealed bodies), and other features (zoom range, customisability and fun features). Depending on what you intend to do with the photographs, you need to decide which one of these is most important. Themoment you add a second set of functionality to the rst, the price of the camera is bound to increase substantially. The Top 30 listing in this issue contains the very best of what is currently available in India, categorised by price. Once you know what kind of a photographer you are, simply make a choice from this list. Rest assured that you will not go wrong. Happy shooting and may you have a great year ahead!

Photography is all about previsualisation and knowing what you want to do with the image.

K Madhavan Pillai

editor@betterphotography.in

Hungry ood victims awaiting relief, Gaforgoan, Bangladesh, 1988


by Shahidul Alam
A love for humanity makes Shahiduls camera a potent weapon for social and ideological change. Photographyis not something I worship. I am very fond of the medium, but if tomorrow, it ceases to be effective, I would have no qualms giving it up and picking up any other tool, be it picking up a gun, he says.

To read more about Shahidul Alams extraordinary struggle, Great Masters


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Share your best images, tips and techniques with us and get your work noticed. Follow these simpleguidelines:

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Views and opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Network18 Media & Investments Ltd (Network18)*, its publisher and/or editors. Weat Network18 do our best to verify the information published but do not take any responsibility for the absolute accuracy of the information. No part of this magazine can be reproduced without prior written permission of the publisher. Printed by Mohan Gajria and published by Lakshmi Narasimhan on behalf of Infomedia18 Limited and printed at Network18 Media & Investments Ltd Plot No. 3, Sector No. 7, Off Sion Panvel Road, Nerul, Mumbai - 400 706, and published at Network18 Limited, Ruby House, A Wing, J K Sawant Marg, Dadar (W), Mumbai - 400 028. Readers are recommended to make appropriate enquiries before sending money, incurring expenses or entering into commitments in relation to any advertisment appearing in this publication. Better Photography does not vouch for any claims made by advertisers, products or services. The printer, publisher, editor or members of the publication shall not be held liable for any consequences in the event of such claims not being honoured by the advertisers. Editor K Madhavan Pillai Published by Network18 Media & Investments Ltd
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Book Review Circus Girl by Saibal Das Look Whos Shooting


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TEST

Sony Alpha 99 Is the worlds rst full frame SLT different simply for the sake of being so? Fujilm X-E1 The best image quality that you will get at this price point

Olympus 17mm f/1.8 The most practical prime lens for the Micro Four Thirds system yet

Visual Musings by David de Souza

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FEATURE

ON THE COVER
10 FEATURES TO IMPROVE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY INSTANTLY WHAT CAMERA DO YOU NEED?
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Olympus PEN E-PL5 Fine tuning the PEN concept, but at a price BenQ G1 Held a lot of promise on paper, but then the story took a different twist

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BP EXCELLENcE AWARDS 2012 ................................ 40 DO I rEallY nEEd THIS caMEra nOw?......................50 TOP 30 CAMERAS .................................................. 52

CAMERAS
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X-E1 JIFILM FUIS MOST S THIS THE
MIRRORLES EXCITING AY? TOD

E
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How to shoot stunning infrared photos & make them digitally too
VISUAL MUSINGS
David de Souza on perception, society, art and pornography

EXCLUSIVE TESTS Sony Alpha 99 BenQ G1 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus 17mm f/1.8

BP Exellence Awards

VOL. 16 NO. 8 JANUARY 2013

GREAT MASTERS

Shahidul Alam on his crusade for social & political change

PROFILE

Rediscover Syria through the eyes of Jaber Al Azmeh

10 women who have made a huge impact on photography

HISTORY

2012

DESIGN: SaNTOsH D KaMble

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InFocus

104
BetterPictures ShowCase

110
PhotoFinish
ON ASSIGNMENT

86

A Surreal Glow Discover the magic of shooting beautiful infrared incamera

104 Jaber Al Azmeh


PrOfIlE

Leads you into his exploration of Syria


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181

DIFFERENT STROKES

All-in-one Photography
HISTORY

110

182 10 Women Who

Shahidul Alam Explains his relentless drive for social justive through his images

Changed The Way WePhotograph Saluting those who have made a signicantcontribution
STORY BEHIND THE PICTURE

184 The Controlled Crashes 90 96


DIGITAL TECHNIQUE

Infrared Made Visible Learn how to recreate this effect in software


TIPS & TRICKS

INdias biggesT weddiNg pHOTOgrapHy awards reTurN!


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Learn how to shoot butteries, vacations and special occasions

118

PHOTOFEATURE

INDIAs BIGGEST PHOTOGRAPHY AWARDS!

Furqan Khan tells us exactly why he thinks Ladakh is extraordinary

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Regulars
FEEdback.............................................................12 PHOTOCRITIQUE................................................... 92 Q & A..................................................................100 1000 WORDS........................................................ 116 YOur PIcTurES................................................... 122 BP BuYErS GuIdE............................................... 174

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Feedback

Send your feedback to The Editor, Better Photography, Network 18 Publishing, Ruby House, A Wing, J K Sawant Marg, Dadar (W), Mumbai-400 028, India Email: feedback@betterphotography.in

dedicated to help amateur photographers turn professional. Rohan Dasgupta, Kolkata, via email

Excellent Customer Service


I renewed my subscription to BP in early October 2012. In spite of that, Ihad not received the November edition of the magazine. I sent an email to the subscription department and to my surprise, I received a reply the very next day. Within four days, I had a copy of the November edition in my hands. Theexcellent service, prompt reply and efciency has ensured that I am now a lifetime loyalist. Anurag Pandey, via email

The photographer was inspired by Aneta Ivanovas images to create multiple exposure self portraits of her own.

Neha Mithbawkar

Portraits with a Story


The moment I saw the cover of the December 2012 issue of BP, I was curious about how the photographer had captured such a stunning image. Theimages in the series offer an interesting perspective of the attachment people share with places and things around them. Inspiredby the images of Aneta Ivanova in the On Assignment article, Spaces Within People, Iattempted to try out something similar. I used a self portrait of myself and an abstract image of a painting to create this multiple exposure in Adobe Photoshop. Neha Mithbawkar, Mumbai, via email

Where is the Buyers Guide?


Better Photography magazine has served as a key tool for comparing equipment and a great guide to keep track of technology. Unfortunately, I have noticed that the Buyers Guide does not include the lens section anymore. Withthe wide range of lenses that are available in the market, the BP ratings, specications and details in the lens, this section was a great help in comparing multiple lenses across different companies. I am looking forward to seeing the lens catalogue back in the magazine soon and urge you to keep updating itregularly. When it comes to buying, I must say that I am a little tired of seeing photographers around me buying DSLRs costing more than a lakh, but with no idea or inclination on using them. Has a camera become a status symbol, I sometimes wonder. Kantilal Shah, Ahmedabad, via Facebook

12

For the Professional


With reducing costs of digital cameras, there has been a tremendous increase in the number of people interested in photography lately. Everywhere you go, you see people with DSLRs clicking away on their camera. While a lot of them start photography as a hobby, many of them eventually turn it into their profession. However, due to lack of knowledge, they are often lost on how to handle photography as a business. Ithink that BP needs to address this issue. Currently, Market Sense is the only section in the magazine which deals with it. Alot of hobbyist photographers owe their skills and learning of photography to BP. Hence,it only makes sense that your magazine is the one to help them understand the business side of photography. I think that it is high time that you come up with an issue The Buyers Guide is a comprehensive list of all photography equipment that is available in theIndian market.

Hobbyist photographers might learn the skills, but they often get lost in the business of photography.
B etter P h O t O G raph Y

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Dening Photos, Dening Yourself


I was touched when I read the editorial in the December 2012 issue of Better Photography magazine. Mostphotographers shoot a few pictures and immediately decide what kind of photographer they are. The editorial shows a new and unique way of understanding who you are as a photographer and what really amuses you. It is interesting how by dening photography in a few words, you can dene your own self. The exercise of creating a diary seems to be an excellent way to document your own photography journey. And only when we identify who we are ourselves as people, will we be really able to gure out where we are headed in our photographic journey.

Write in to Better Photography with your feedback, and if your letter wins the Letter of the Month, you will get a Envie Speedster charger!

Ashok Saxena, Chandigarh, via email

Photography is being awake for the rst time. Photography is feeling it. Photography is me.

14

records colour photos and from a technical standpoint, one is not advised to shoot Monochrome within the camera. So how does one get out of this? Dowe go back to nostalgia and enter the darkroom? Or should we tune our minds and force them to see? Karuna Jadhav, Pune, via email

Buying Older Pocket Guides?


I found the Street Photography Pocket Guide very informative. The concept of a small-sized book is so cool... it t into my camera bag! I have missed previous Pocket Guides and look forward to nding, or even buying older versions separately. Ayush Rai, Bengaluru, via email

Black and White Magic


The last time Better Photography came up with an exclusive Black & White special was in August 2010. I still have a copy of that magazine on my work desk and cherish the beautiful matte cover of the issue. I think that another B&W special edition is now highly due. Nowadays especially, we do not seem to value the black and white medium anymore. A friend of mine dismissed it, saying that B&W is too easy. Anothertrend I observe is that photographers resort to black and white only because the colour photograph lacks impact. Maybethat is because of digital... when we use black and white lm, our mind is striving to see the world in shades of grey. A digital sensor

POCKET GUIDE

The August 2010 special edition of Better Photography was completely dedicated to black and whitephotography.

PocketGuide
SECRETS OF SHOOTING STREETS AROUND YOU

Supplement with Better Photography November 2012 issue

STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

Capturing the beauty and vigorous spirit of street life


Gear and lenses you will need How to make a spy lens Learn to deal with the law 16 Handling a mix of locations T PAGES IPS & Shoot the decisive moment TR

Dowe go back to nostalgia and enter the darkroom?


B etter P h O t O G raph Y

The Secrets of Shooting pocket guide on street photography that was bundled with the November 2012 issue.

BET TER PHOTOGRAPHY

ICKS

Interviews with Gaurav Sawn, Sanjay Hadkar and Kaushal Parikh

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Carbon One Mini


In terms of looks, the new digital camera from Carbon is based on the iconic Polaroid SX-70. The5MP Carbon One Mini is a pocket-sized camera that allows users to shoot Polaroid-like images, without the cumbersome process of using lm. It consists of a prefocused lens that makes sharp images of everything beyond 1.2 metre. It is compatible with the PictBridge Printer and can be used for both Mac and Windows.

Better Photography Celebrates Excellence! T


he annual BP Excellence awards applaud the very best camera equiment that managed to constantly score well in our equiment tests during the past one year. Wemeticulously rate and review a number of cameras, lenses and accessories to nally reach a unanimousdecision. The Camera of the Year and Advanced Compact Camera of the Year were both awarded to Sony RX100. Coincidentally, it was another compact camera which won the Camera of the Year category in 2011. Is this a growing trend towards leading camera manufacturers making smaller

cameras, that can give bulky DSLRs a run for their money? Well, as the world becomes smaller and smaller; perhaps even the cameras will. Wecan only guess! To read the complete coverage of the Excellence Awards, turn to page 40.

Nikon Digiscoping Adapter


Digiscoping is a technique that is popular amongst nature and wildlife photographers, and allows telescopes to make pictures. Nikons DSA-N1 Bracket and DSB-N1 Adapter are designed to make shooting with a super telephoto lens, a much simpler process. Both these accessories are compatible with Nikon 1 System cameras with interchangeable lenses. While, the DSA-N1 will be available for USD219 (approx. Rs. 12,000). The DSB-N1 will cost USD 169 (approx. Rs. 9,000).

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Drik Photo Agency Wins Asia Publishing Award B


angladesh-based Drik Photo Agency who tells the story. But the visual record is won the Asia Publishing Award for a testament to the resilience, the powerful The Birth Pangs of a Nation, a book which spirit of the people who were caught in this, celebrates four decades of Bangladeshs said Shahidul Alam, editor of the book. unyielding history. Thebook was shortlisted in the Best Insights into Asian Societiescategory. The Birth Pangs of a Nation is a valuable visual record. Itfeatures works of a number of veteran photojournalists, such as Raghu Rai, Kishore Parekh and Marc Riboud. The Bangladeshi War of Liberation, like all other wars, has a contested history. Thenumber killed, the Raghu Rai raped, the number number displaced, are all gures that change depending upon This book was edited by photographer Shahidul Alam.

Canon Wireless Photo Printers


With the initiation of wireless photo printing, Canon has redened digital imaging. Canon added three wireless Prixma Photo Printers to its line up of imaging products. While the Pixma MG6320 and MG5420 are two-in-one scanners and printers, the Pixma iP7220 is a standalone wireless photo printer. Allthe printers are compatible with wireless Canon DSLRs and will be launched later this year.

Microsoft Camera Codec Pack


The upgraded Camera Codec Pack is compatible with Windows Vista, 7, 8 and RT. It is specically designed to handle RAW les. However, the pack only caters to 34 cameras, and it will prove to be of little help to especially those who have older DSLRs orcompacts.

If a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it is as though I have neglected something essential to myexistence;asthough I had forgotten to wake up.
RICHARD AVEDON (19232004)
Richard Avedon was an American photographer who became synonymous with portraiture and fashion photography since the 1960s. Hebegan photographing his parents clothing store with a brownie camera, since the age of 12. He worked as a staff photographer for reputed magazines such as Vogue and The New Yorker, and photographed Hollywood celebrities like Charlie Chaplin to Marilyn Monroe.
Image source: www.tumblr.com

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SNApSHOTS

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Adieu, Gabriel Fuchs! F
or the last ve years, Gabriel Fuchs, a Switzerland-based IT consultant, has been contributing to BP by writing a column called Different Strokes. However, Gabriel has decided to take a break from writing for the time being. We wish him the very best for all future endeavours! Having said that, BP would like to take this opportunity to highlight Gabriels achivements of the past ve years. Hisdistinctive sense of humour has made us laugh, cry out in disbelief, ignite our curiosities. and much more. In more ways than one, Gabriel managed to change our

w H aT S n E w

Samyang 85mm f/1.4 Asph IF


The Samyang 85mm f/1.4 is a welcome addition and a convenient alternative for the comparatively costlier Nikkor lens of the same focal range. With an international market price of GBP 399 (approx Rs. 26,500), the lens can be available for even less at select online websites. It is a high quality portrait lens that makes shooting closeups fairly easy for any amateur photographer. Interms of handling, the lens consists of a rubberoid grip and hence provides a staple and secure grip. Additionally, the lens is covered with an anti-reection coating, thus enabling sharp images. It is compatible with Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Four Thirds, Samsung NX and Canon EOS mounts.

perspectives about photography itself. Thanks to him, we can all laugh about it; while still making some great photos. Additionally, we would like to mention that Gabriel has generously contributed his magazine earnings, a sum of approximately 2.5 lakhs to a charity inMumbai. We have thoroughly enjoyed Gabriels writings. His efforts to understand and decipher the mad community of photography are truly appreciated. Indeed,the escapdes of Gabriel and his friend Anita will be missed.

Lytro Living Filters


The tube-shaped Lytro camera updated its function set by introducing Perspective Shift. This option allows the users to change and manipulate the standpoints of an image, after it has been shot. Moreover, the company also launched nine new Living Filters, including Film Noir Filter, Carnival Filter and so on. Both the features are available as a free update for Lytro users, and can be used to work with already existing images.

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Adobe Creative Cloud Upgrades


Adobe has opened access to a dozen new features of Adobe Photoshop for the users of Adobe Creative Cloud. The new features that will be now be available for Creative Cloud members include support for Retina display for Apple MacBook Pro, Crop Tool renements, 3D enhancements including live OpenGL, and so on. Additionally,Adobe introduced the Creative Cloud service for teams that will make collaboration easy for groups.

Ittook the satellite three weeks and 312 he rst iconic photograph of the Earth was captured by NASA in orbits to collate 2.5 terabytes of imagery! 1972, and was called The Blue Marble. Afteralmost three decades, NASA hasonce again photographed the Earth from space and created a set of jaw-dropping photographs called The Black Marble. However, unlike the previous set of images, these showcase the planet at night. These are not your average nighttime shots of the Earth. In fact, these are amongst the most detailed night time images of the Earth that we have ever seen! says Rebecca Roth of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. These highly detailed photographs were recorded by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership Satellite, Parts of the Eastern Hemisphere, such as Cairo and Italy between April and October 2012. were reported to be the brightest by NASA.

NASA Photographs Earth at Night! T

Google+ Communities
Google+ is increasingly replacing photo sharing websites such as Flickr and Facebook, and vying for the photographic database of these social networks. In its latest announcement, Google+ launched interest specic communities or groups. The service will allow users to join a group either privately or publicly, and encourage discussion divided by topical categories. For instance, ThePhoto Community, Street Photography and Photo Tips have already begun to attract thousands of members from around the world.

ipa, the leading French Photo Agency, announced its plans to le for bankruptcy. While, the companys future plan is unclear at this moment, it has been speculated that it will be either liquidated orreorganised. The companys 127 employees, which include at least 30 photojournalists, were told to quit work in December, and received only half of the months pay.

Sipa Press Files for Bankruptcy S

Additionally,the two sister companies of Sipa News and FLS Ltd, which are part of the Sipa group, led for bankruptcy aswell. Sipa was founded by Turkish photojournalist Gkin Sipahiolu in 1973. Sipahiolu launched the careers of many photographers, such as Abbas, Luc Delahaye, Alexandra Boulat and Patrick Chauve. He had intended Sipa Press to rival agencies such as the Agence France-Presse.

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Image Source: NASA

Ev E n TS
112 January

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P ro Tal K Cobra Flash orFlip-up Flash is Kodaks patented ash mechanism that creates a distance between the ash and the lens in order to reduce red eye.

A Phrase, Not aWord


Nature Morte, New Delhi

An exhibition of photographs, large-scale prints, sculptures and sound installations will be held by the Raqs Media Collective. Theexhibition is being held after a gap of six years and also showcases a few rareartworks.
36 January New Delhi

Chobi Mela 2013 Kicks Off! T

CEIF 2013
CEIF or Photofair is a biannual event that is organised in the capital by the All India Photographic Trade & Industry Association. It is the third largest photography expo in the world that features the latest photography equipment and top manufacturers.
525 January Bengaluru

Inner Space
20
Patrizia Guerresi

Nepal Memory Project , along with Photo he 7th edition of Chobi Mela, an Circle from Nepal international festival of photography 29 January: Artists talk by is scheduled to begin from 25 January7 MortenKrogvold February 2013. The festival is held once every two years in Dhaka and features print 30 January: A presentation of exhibitions, digital presentations, artists photographs by Francoise Callier talks, workshops and so on. Here are a few 31 January: A panel discussion on interesting highlights from the event that Chinese photography you can look forward to: 1 February: A discussion with Shahidul Alam and Shumon Ahmed l 26 January: A panel discussion on Photographic Education and Contemporary Curatorial Practice and Photography by Jody Haines and PatriciaMendoza 27 January: Adiscussion on Archiving Project in India with ChristopherPinney 28 January: Adiscussion For a more detailed schedule of the event, you can visit Better and book launch of The Photographys website at www.betterphotography.in

Call for E n T ri E S
alike, and offers an opportunity for budding photographers to cater to a global audience. Categories: Open Competition, Youth Awards, 3D Awards and Professional Competition Prizes: Winning entries will be published in the annual Sony World Photography Awards book Website: www.worldphoto.org Deadline: 4 January 2013

A collection of photographs by the Italian photographer Patrizia Mamouna Guerresi are going to be displayed in the city. Guerresis photographs are on display in India for the rst time, and showcase a new series especially modeled on an Indian theme.
713 January

Professional Photographer of the Year 2012


The competition: The competition is open to photographers worldwide. However, it only accepts digital submissions. All participants can enter the competition via the ofcial website. Categories: Medium Format, Black and White and 11 more Prizes: Winning photographs will be featured in a Professional Photographer of the Year 2012s special supplement in June 2013 Website: www.professionalphotographer.co.uk Deadline: 16 January 2013

Kokrajhar Photojournalism Workshop


Kokrajhar, Assam

You can submit your photographs to the Leica Awards from 15January 2013.
Srinivas Kuruganti

Leica Oskar Barnack Award 2013


The competition: This is a prestigious competition which offers the winners great exposure into the world of professional photography. It invites submissions from newcomers and professional photographers alike; thereby segregating the contest into two distinct categories. The competition will ofcially start accepting entries by 15 January 2013. Categories: Professional and Newcomer Prizes: The winning entries will be showcased at Leica galleries throughout the world. Website: www.leica-oskar-barnack-award.com Deadline: To be announced shortly.

World Press Photo Contest 2013


The competition: The 56th World Press Photo Contest will be chaired by Gary Knight, UK, founder photographer of VII Photo Agency. It will accept entries online online and participants need to generate a distinct username and password. Categories: General News, Nature and nine others Prizes: The prizewinning images will be presented in an exhibition that will travel through more than 100 cities in over 45 countries Website: www.worldpressphoto.org Deadline: 17 January 2013
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This is the rst edition of the workshop. It will be taught by photographers Srinivas Kuruganti, Vivek Singh and Harsha Vadlamani. To register, you can visit: www.parkhana.org

Sony World Photography Awards 2013


The competition: The Sony World Photography Awards are widely recognised as one of the leading global photographic awards programme. The competition invites entries from professionals and enthusiasts

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E V en Ts
716 January

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P R O TA L K Stopping Down is the process of changing the aperture from alarger to a smaller f-stop. Itincreases the depth-of-eld and reduces the light entering the lens.

Hikari
Kolkata

A selection of images by Japanese photographers that explore the notion of hikari or light. Someof the photographers featured in this unique exhibition include Yuji Obata, Tokihiro Sato, Shiho Kito and Ken Kitano. The exhibition is travelling throughout India and has already been exhibited in Delhi and Mumbai.
814 January

he photograph of 58-year-old Ki Sun Han, merely meters away from an approaching train in a New York underground, has once again stirred a debate regarding ethics of photojournalism. The photograph was made by photographer R Umar Abbasi, and published on the front page of The New York Post. Abbasi, along with the paper, have been severely criticised in a number of online forums. In fact, many have likened Abbasi to Kevin Carter, who became infamous for

The New York Post Publishes Controversial Image T


photographing a strarving child next to a vulture. However, after the incident, Abbasi defended himself by claiming to alert the train by using his camera ash. While Ki Sun Hans family mourns his death, The New York Post struggles to publicly clarify its actions and editorial decisions.
Image Source: www.thespec.com

Kimoko Yoshida

63rd All India Exhibition of Photography


Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

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The Photographic Society of India is going to organise the All India Salon of Photography 2013. The exhibition will showcase an eclectic mix of imagesfrom monochrome, colour and nature prints to sports and photojournalism.
17 January

Happy 25th, Graphic Interchangeable Format! T


he year 2012 marked the 25th anniversary of the Graphic Interchangeable Format or GIF, as it popularly called. GIF was introduced in 1987 by Steve Wilhite of CompuServe and was one of the rst two le formats to be used on the Internet. In 25 years, GIF has undergone a number of changesfrom

being developed as an alternative for JPEG, to being originally termed as 87a.If you want lossless, compressed graphics, there is nothing better than GIF, said Alexander Trevor, Former Chief of CompuServe. Additionally, GIF was declared Oxford USAs word of the year in 2012. It beat words such as superstorm, and Eurogeddon.

Look On The Bright Side


UNHATE Foundation, United Colours of Benetton and the Salaam Baalak Trust organised a 10-day long photography workshop and exhibition in New Delhi from 21November11 December 2012. It was dedicated to street children living in the capital and was an attempt to celebrate their efforts. The theme of the exhibition, Home, explored the idea of a home for street children living on the streets and in various Salaam Baalak Trust shelters in the city.

Film and Photography Festival


TFAC Studio, Mumbai Source:TFAC

in totalityfrom the narrow lanes of Old Delhi to the modern spaces of Delhis industrial zones.

Future Cities
Studio X in Mumbai organised an exhibition by John Gollings, Australias leading architectural photographer on 11 December 2012. Gollings showcased the past, present and future of global cities. He photographed these images by using stereoscopic photographic techniques. The exhibition was titled Now & When: Australian Urbanism and was part of Studio Xs event that explored the art of 3D photography and mapping.

The 10-day long festival explores a variety of themes within the visual arts. It will include workshops, artist talks and presentations by amateurand established photographers.
31 January3 February

The City Improbable


Photographs by Delhi-based Amit Bhatia were displayed at the India Habitat Centre in New Delhi from 131 December 2012. The images portrayed the city of Delhi through Bhatias unique perspective. Moreover,the exhibition brought to life the historical richness of the capital. Bhatia explored the city spaces

The Heritage
A collection of 32 photographs by Bhawana Jaiswal were exhibited from 1214 December 2012 in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. Jaiswals work is eclectic which includes a variety of themes such as nature, culture, people, and places and so on. The Heritage was her 12th photographic exhibition and focused on her most recent work called the Chhaya Kumbh.

India Art Fair


New Delhi

The Nikon Photo Contest International


This image was part of a collection of 53 award-winning photographs at the Nikon PhotoExhibition.
55 selected photographs were exhibited at the Piramal Art Gallery, NCPA in Mumbai from 1224 December 2012. The images were selected from a number of countries from all around the world, including India, Japan, Iran, Portugal and so on. Some of the photographers whose work was showcased in the 12-day long exhibition include Marlies Plank, Martin Stranka and Debarshi Duttagupta.

It will provide a platform to upcoming contemporary art. The 5th edition of the India Art Fair will bring together 105 galleries from 24 countries, and showcase around 1000artists.
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I n D U sT RY VO ice

In 2013, we are planning to icnrease our presence in Tier II and Tier III cities.
The year 2012 was a growth year for Sandisk and we witnessed a considerable growth in the demand for ashmemory. However, we witnessed a particularly disappointing growth of pointandshoot Manisha Sood cameras. Theincreasing Country Manager & Director India & SAARC, SanDisk growth of high Corporation performance mobile phones has intensied the competition against compact cameras. As a result, we noticed that the overall growth of compact cameras was less than 10% in 2012. Nonetheless, the growth of Sandisks high-performance quality products was robust, and 2012 was a good year for thecompany. A lot has changed in a period of six years since Sandisk entered the market of ash memory in India. Today, the Indian market is far more organised. However, this organisation can be seen only in the top 1415 cities in the country. There is a lot of work still to be done in the smaller towns and cities, as there is a lack of awareness about authorised products. Sandisk is present in more than 400 cities in India. In 2013, we are planning to increase our presence in Tier II and Tier III cities. For instance, Sandisk introduced the Memory Yatra, which is geared towards promoting the concept of ash memory in smaller towns. Additionally, we are going to strengthen our the companys online activities. We are geared to specically design promotions targeted for Tier II and Tier III cities. As told to Priyanka Chharia

ryce Bayer, the inventor of the iconic Bayer Filter died at the ripe age of 83 in Bath, United Kingdom. Bayer was an ex-Kodak employee who worked with the company for more than two decades. In 1974, he completed the design for a device that enabled capturing detailed colour images. His invention came to be known as the Bayer Filter hence. Without his invention we would still be getting only B&W images from our digital cameras. In fact, 99.9% of all digital camerascellphones, pocket cameras,

webcams and consumer digital video cameras use the Bayer pattern to produce colour photographs, said Larry Scarff, a former chairman of the Camera Phone Image Quality Standards Group.

Bryce Bayer created the Bayer Filter while still at Kodak.

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he year 2012 was more than just disastrous for the 132-year-old company, Eastman Kodak. However, the company seems to be in the process of recovery and reorganisation, with the hope to exit the state of bankruptcy by early 2013. It revealed its plans to completely change its focus from photography to enterprise services and functional printing. Meanwhile, rival companies Apple and Google have reportedly teamed up to buy Kodaks patents. The 1100 imaging patents will be sold for more than USD 500 million (approx. Rs. 5000 lakhs).

Google and Apple Circ Offers Unlimited BuyKodaks Patents Free Storage! T E

ye-Fi, the SD card maker company, announced its brand new photo storage app called Circ. Unlike other such apps, Circ provides unlimited free storage space to users. The app is compatible with iOS, Android, Windows and Mac, and allows users to sync more than one device. We did not want to build just another cloud service, said Yuval Koren, CEO of Eye-Fi. We did not want the customer to have to think about the technology behind it, or worry about how much storage space they had left before needing to upgrade or dump photos.

B O O K Re V ie W

Title: Circus Girl Author: Saibal Das ISBN: 978-1-906-49733-0 Publisher: Seagull Books Price: Rs. 1595

The Backyard of Magic


Circus Girl was borne out of Saibal Das year long project of the same name. Dastravelled for a year, visiting and working with a number of well-known circuses in India. From the illustrious Gemini Circus in Kerala to the formidable Samrat Circus in West BengalSaibals extensive ground work for the book makes it a thoroughly researched piece ofwork. In fact, before I even began reading the book, I was curious about its contents. I anticipated an informed perspective along with photographs that would be sensitive to the chosen theme. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. Saibals B&W photographs are composed with meticulous perfection. He manages to capture the little moments from the lives of his subjects, which eventually come to dene his work. Moreover, his focus on the circus girls makes this book and his perspective distinct from others who have photographed the circus. Additionally, corresponding text by Nola Rae, a renowned mime artist, lends a magic to this book that would have been impossible otherwise. The combination of Raes experience as an insider with Saibals dexterity as an outsiderthe Circus Girl truly unlocks a universe of magic.
Priyanka Chharia

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www.indiephotobooklibrary.org
How often have you wanted to read your favourite photobook, but found it to be either too expensive or out of stock? Well, the Indie Photobook Library might just be what you are looking for. It was founded by Larissa Leclair in 2010, and is a one of its kind archive of self-published and independently published photobooks today. It includes DIYs, photobooks, photography exhibition catalogs, photographs magazines and so on. The website is easy to navigate. It allows users to search by image, title and author; thereby rendering the archive highly inclusive. Additionally, it lists down a few books under Recommended Reading, which can be especially useful for rst time visitors to the website. Overall, the website works as an excellent virtual public library. While, users can purchase books from the wide selectionthe Indie Photobook Library also invites upcoming photographers and writers to submit their work and get published. Priyanka Chharia

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S O f T WA R e O f T he m O n T h

Photo 505
If you are an amateur photographer, then Photo 505 is probably the ideal online photo editing tool for you. It offers an abundance of fun photo effects. For instance, you can choose from effects like Valentines Day, Dark Knight and Megan Fox and so on. Photo 505 is fun and easy to work with. In fact, it only takes a few minutes to transform your photos completely. Additionally, what makes it a workable choice for photographers is that the software is available free of cost. What is more, it does not require users to register beforehand as well. Afeature that is unique to this software is that it allows the user to rate the edited image, after the processing. However, one needs to keep in mind that Photo 505 is not for advanced photographers. All that is offers is a few enjoyable photo effects that can hold your interest only for a short time.

fter almost100 years of the sinking of the last century. The photograph is now the Titanic, RR Auction, an American part of a range of Titanic memorabilia. auction house sold the only surviving photograph of the iceberg that killed the legendary passenger ship. The photograph is in particularly good condition and is reported to fetch a price of more than USD 10,000 (approx Rs. 5,50,000). It was captured by Captain W F Wood, and is titled The Iceberg that Sunk Titanic. Wood made the photograph two days prior to the sinking of the ship. He was aboard a streamer called the SS Etonian, when he recorded the image. Additionally, what makes the photo unique is the accompanying handwritten Captain Wood This is the only surviving photograph of the iceberg that sunk text by Captain Wood, that dates back to

Only Photo of Titanics Killer Iceberg Sold A

Priyanka Chharia

Visit www.photo505.com to edit your photos.


Priyanka Chharia

oel Meyerowitz, veteran street photographer, who single-handedly initiated an era of colour photography, openly expressed his displeasure with the working style of his contemporary and Magnum photographer Bruce Gilden. He is an aggressive bully. I despise the work, I despise the attitude, all his pictures look alike because he only has one idea, said Meyerowitz, in an interview with

Gilden is a Bully, says Meyerowitz J

The Observer, a British newspaper. Gildens style of photography is intrusive, and can be a little intimidating for some. This is one of those rare occassions where we have seen one legend of photography openly criticise another. That said, while it is worthwhile to ponder over the merits and demerits of their individual styles, one cannot deny that there is a lot to learn from both these masters.
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he ever increasing pool of images and their consequent circulation on the internet had led 500px, a photo sharing website, to include Creative Commons licensing. Users of the photo sharing website can now share their images for non-commercial use with credit, and not worry about the misuse of their creative work. Conversely, researchers, students and fellow imagemakers can make use of the content without being hassled over infringing copyright laws or illegal sharing. Copyright is often a challenge for artists and creators. Creative Commons licensing gives our photographers more LO O K Wh O s sh O OT in G

500px Introduces Creative Commons Licensing Astronaut Conducts Ultimate Gear Test! T D
options to let others share and reuse their work. It provides the 500px community with greater exibility on usage and photo attribution, said an ofcial statement by the company.

Creative Commons licensing safeguards artists rights. a makeover. The website recently

id you know that there are 12 Hasselblad cameras left on the surface of the moon? Moreover, did you know that one of these cameras was left there, just to test the durability of the camera? I left my Hasselblad camera there with the lens pointing up at the zenith, the idea being someday someone would come back and nd out how much deterioration solar cosmic radiation had on the glass, said Eugene Cernan, ex-Apollo 17 Commander and the last man to have walked on the surface of the moon.

Sudipto Das
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Photographer Awarded by The Royal Photographic Society


to photograph people and culture. His photograph, titled Prayer, was shortlisted amongst 60,000 entries, and eventually was awarded The Royal Photographic Societys Jubilee Time Capsule Award. I came to know about the contest from one of my friends living in the United Kingdom. I think that awards of this nature are always encouraging for photographers living in developing countries, such as India. It is important to gather sound feedback from time to time because genuine acknowledgement of this kind helps one to evaluate his or her work in a positive way, he says. project called Connecting Cultures. The project is called Connect: UK-India and will be on display in the United Kingdom in 2013. I want to establish a cross-cultural essence, as it is the central focus of my project. During my stay in the United Kingdom, I documented Indians living in the continent. I was able to carry out this project with support from The Royal Commonwealth Society and The Royal Photographic Society of England, he says. Written by Priyanka Chharia

Kolkata-based photographerannounced Sudipto Das is an releasedSudipto is currently documenting the Anglo-Indian and a new interface lickr, Yahoos popular photo sharing avid street photographer. He is constantly driven population in his hometown Kolkata, for a thematic called Liquid Layout. XX XXXXXXXX site has once again gone through

Genuine acknowledgement of this kind helps one to evaluate his or her work in a positive way.

Sudipto Das

Sudiptos image shows people celebrating the Chhath Puja in Agra, UttarPradesh.

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VISUAL MUSINGS

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At What Stage Does Art Become Pornography?


ave you wondered at what point can nude photography be considered art, as opposed to pornography? Pornography in the pejorative, is associated with explicit depictions of the sexual act. Alice Walker had once said, Deliver me from writers who say the way they live doesnt matter. Im not sure a bad person can write a good book. If art doesnt make us better, then what on earth is it for. Having said that, there have been terrible people whove made great art. Sothat, in essence, is the polarity. All of us have resident within us, the human, the animal and the divine or sacred. Individualor mob violence is a tendency that comes out of our animal side, compassion from the sacred, staying non committal, neutral is perhaps our human, sitting on the fence, side. Thedifference and similarity would be akin to love and lust. Ifwe can remove morality for a minute, it might get a little simpler to understand. Human beings have a heritage of making judgments and often what has been handed down as good and bad remain our sacred tenets. Friedrich Nietzsche in Twilight of the Idols exhorts us to examine our values and see if they ring true. A lot has to do with motives. Why are you making the photograph to start with? So even at the concept, ideological, wish level, it is crucial to know ones motives. Before anyone else has seen the photograph, it could be art or vulgarity depending on that single test. But that is not the end of the line, just the start. A photograph when it becomes public has to t into a sensibility. One culture would consider a photograph vulgar or pornographic, while another may not. Subjectivity comes with its own lters, morality, social mores and prejudice. The point at which the photograph shifts from art to pornography could be several depending on who is viewing it. Ageneral rule of societal thumb is when a group of people at a certain space and time become offended, the object of their disdain, for them, becomes vulgar. If a photograph is exploitative, it veers towards the pornographic, regardless of space, time or society. The recent Aseem Trivedi cartoon controversy seems to have highlighted a few aspects of how we can subvert the main issue depending on our own pomposity. At that point in time, it was not up to the TV channels and their experts to ordain whether the cartoon was art or porn. That was not the issue of contentionwhat wasdid it merit being seditious? Thereseemed to have been total agreement that it didnt. Atanother point in time when debating what is art and what is not, the cartoon could have come up for scrutiny then. M F Husains Saraswati and Bharatmata along with Andreas Serranos Piss Christ have a common element. The museum in Melbourne was vandalised by right-wing fundamentalist Christians, in protest of a not-too-brilliant image of a crucix in

David de Souza

an amber liquid. But go beyond the obvious, what if Serrano did not have a title to his photograph, some devout Christian might even have thought it worthy of veneration in their home, what if the image was called Honey Christ? What if it was dipped in honey and called Piss Christ? Many what ifs and as the answer oscillates from art to offensive, notice that the image has not changed at all... only ones perception. It might be crucial to check on Sorennos antecedents and his track record, would it change things to discover that he might be a devout and practising Christian? Ifyou saw a pair of perfect, sensuous breasts in a magazine, half the population could swing either way, but what if you then discover a sign at the bottom that reads, Early examination prevents cancer, would the context change the content? Eventually art is not necessarily to be liked, art and artists roles are to challenge our perceptions of the world and ourselves. It holds a mirror to us and often, our warts and our insecurities show up. Shall we be content to be unaware of our isness and bury our heads in the sand? Most often historically, it is politics and those vested interests that create schisms and intolerance of one set of people over another. If we could borrow the sensibilities of the other, would our world view be that much more enhanced or diminished? The nude human form is the most challenging subject there is. Because its all to do with perception. The human form laid bare of time and space, suddenly becomes eternal, divested of pretensions and fashions. Its got the emotional quotient that anyone from anywhere can relate to and identify with. Thephotograph does not need a title and explanation. It might be difcult to get emotional or attached to a pressure cooker, but the human form is quite another issue. How one deals from behind that eyepiece with ones humanity is the process to greater potential. There are several countries in Europe and South America and even some in Asia that have pornographic channels along with porno magazines and DVDs that are free to view and buy, if you are above legal age. Pornography has become so undeniable that reputed universities offer a study of the subject. It is such a far cry from our country where mere sex education is such a hotly debated subject in the Parliament, where the objectors to the education outnumber those who are for it. If a proper scientic, sexual survey was done in our country it would then expose what everyone sort of surmises, that our sexual misconduct and crimes would then show us up and dent our ersatz pride for who we truly are, and that would not be acceptable. Hypocrisy is one of our many legacies. Hypocrisy can be pornographic.

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David enjoys making photographs of subjects of special interest to him, entirely for his own delectation. Many ask him what he intends to do with these photos and he most often only manages an incoherent answer. An active educationist with a unique teaching style, his recent interests have been as varied as mythology, dreams and 3D.
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BP Excellence Awards

2012

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E XC E L L E N C E AWARDS

And The Award Goes to... M


onth after month, the BP team tests, inspects and introspects how the latest technology will help you chronicle the most important moments in your life. We appreciate some of this equipment, despise others and occasionally, test cameras that make us fall in love. With these awards, we recognise the gear that has scored the highest ratings in our tests. For the Camera of the Year and Innovative Product of the Year awards, we weigh the pros and cons of each gadget, and then decide the best. Like last year, the most exciting camera we tested in 2012 was not a high-end DSLR, but actually a compact camera! That just goes to show that an expensive camera is not necessarily the best one... with the way technology is racing, there has never been a better time to be a photographer.

The BP Excellence Awards are a stamp of quality, and our way of celebrating cameras and lenses that have earned the highest rating on our test bench, in the past one year.

Camera of the Year


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Sony Cyber-shot RX100


The Sony RX100 is not only rewriting history, but has also transcended categories and changed the way we will see future cameras at this price point. After all, this is no ordinary compact camera. For those who can live without the ability to change lenses, the Sony RX100, with its giant sensor and fast lens, is a far more versatile package than some higher-priced mirrorless cameras and DSLRs as well. Just think about it... with fantastic quality at ISO 3200 and a fast f/1.8 lens, the RX100 is a better low-light machine than your regular entry-level DSLR with its kit lens. Oh, and hey, it ts into your pocket!
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Basic Compact Camera of the Year

Fujilm FinePix F660EXR


With 15x zoom and complete manual control, this is a camera you will want to carry, whether you are setting out for a casual vacation or starting photography as a serious hobby. Besidesimportant photo features like a 1/2-inch EXR sensor, Film Simulation modes and the ability to shoot multiple exposures, the F660EXR also does well in terms of shooting Full HD video and capturing 360 Motion Panoramas.

Advanced Compact Camera of the Year

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Sony Cyber-shot RX100


Why is the RX100 so revolutionary? Let us ponder over a simple fact. Sony has successfully taken the ergonomic excellence of a tiny camera like the Canon S95 and managed to stick in a much faster lens and signicantly larger sensor... in the same-sized, pocketable body! This is probably the only camera of its kind, which scores equally high marks in pocketability, stills quality, video capabilities and on-eld handling.

Consumer DSLR Lens of the Year


Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG ASP HSM II
The widest rectilinear full frame lens in the world strikes all the right boxes in terms of performance. It is sharp, not too expensive and has extraordinary control over distortion. Do remember that a focal length this wide is not for everyone... it is actually quite difcult to get close enough to make a good frame at 12mm. But when done right, the impact is spectacular.
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Pro DSLR Lens of the Year

E XC E L L E N C E AWARDS

Nikkor 16-35mm AF-S f/4GED VR


The 1635mm is one of the sharpest wide angles we have seen, better than some of the best primes in the market. The lightweight nature of this lens makes it far better for landscape, travel and street photography than its more expensive f/2.8 peers. The biggest highlight of this optical marvel is that the combination of a wide focal length and VR brings forth new possibilities that no other lens is capable of. One can shoot handheld photos at one second, or experiment with ultrawide panning shots of slow movement. Our best pro lens, this year, actually helps you see the world in a new way.

Consumer Mirrorless Lens of the Year

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Olympus M. Zuiko Digital17mm f/1.8


Thenew 17mm f/1.8 may not be as small as the older pancake lens, but it is a huge step forward in every other aspect. It has a distance scale, is sharp at the widest aperture, and remarkably free of optical aberrations. At an affordable price point, this is the best way for an Olympus or Panasonic user to get into the disciplined zone of using a small camera with a xed lens.

Pro Mirrorless Lens of the Year

Fujilm XF 35mm f/1.4


Normal lenses are usually very good in terms of optics, but this one is even better. The Fujilm XF 35mm f/1.4 gives Leica lenses a run for their money, at a mere fraction of their price. Exemplary sharpness, beautiful bokeh and distortion free, this is the lens that does most justice to the fantastic Fujilm X-Trans sensor.
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Consumer DSLR of the Year

Nikon D3200
We were a little apprehensive about the D3200 when we tested it. It is an excellent camera, no doubt, but does an entry-level user really need 24MP, we wondered. Since then though, we have seen the same sensor in other, far more expensive cameras. Whether you are a rst-time DSLR buyer or a pro who needs a backup body for his D800/D600, the D3200 gives you image quality that has never been seen before at this price point.

Full Frame DSLR of the Year


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Nikon D4
The 36MP D800 almost won this crown, but the D4 has a bunch of small renements that will be appreciated by a pro on eld. Backlit buttons, the ability to shoot lower resolution photos at 24fps, completely silent working, Ethernet connectivity, top-of-the-line video features, several AF renements and a crazy buffer capacity of over 100 frames (unmatched by any camera)... the D4 adds all this to the D3S, which probably was one of the best cameras we have ever tested.

Consumer Mirrorless Camera of the Year

Olympus PEN E-PL5


A tough ght between the Panasonic GX1 and the E-PL5, the Olympus sneaked ahead with slightly better quality, due to the lack of an AA lter and a superior JPEG engine. The initial Indian pricing is higher than we expected, but there is no doubt that the new sensor (borrowed and tweaked from the OM-D E-M5) makes the Olympus E-PL5 the best PEN, to date.
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Consumer DSLR of the Year of the Year Advanced Mirrorless Camera
Fujilm X-E1

E XC E L L E N C E AWARDS

We fell in love with the X-Pro 1, but surprisingly, it has been beaten by its younger sibling, the X-E1. The best quality ever seen at less than a lakh... the X-E1 may not have a full frame sensor, but it has better dynamic range, noise performance and detail than several full frame DSLRs in the market.

Innovative Product of the Year

Nokia 808 PureView


The 808 is an ordinary smartphone if you compare it to the best iOS and Android devices around, but lets put it this way... it is the worlds best camera that can also make calls and share pictures instantly. Its massive 1/1.2-inch sensor ensures that the stills and video quality exceeds most compact cameras! Most importantly, the ingenious way in which Nokia has used its 41MP sensor can well lead the way for future imaging technology.
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S WorldMags.net BUYER SPECIAL

DO I REALLY NEED
peak to a photographer on his or her birthday and their gift wishlist would almost always be the same. More cameras, more lenses... what we have never seems to be good enough. The compact camera user yearns for a DSLR, the DSLR owner wants to go full frame and the full frame pro, tired of his bulky camera, wants something small. Quitea circle of confusion this, but do you actually need all these cameras?

You may want a new camera, but do you actually need it? Confused about lm or digital, This issue of Better Photography will tell you about the best cameras currently available,

Should I Just Get a Mirrorless Instead?


But then, do you see yourself lugging around a DSLR everywhere you go? A lot of enthusiasts make great photos when they rst get into photography (while using a compact camera). They then buy a DSLR, but feel too lazy to carry it. If you fall in this bracket, maybe you should continue using a compact and use it to its fullest, or alternatively, step up to a mirrorless camera.

Buying the latest and best camera will not, in any way, make you a better photographer. Gear cannot replace vision.

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I Want a DSLR, But Do I Need it?


Almost everyone seems to think that a DSLR is that magic bullet that will suddenly transform their photos and make them interesting. But are you actually shooting anything beyond owers, sunsets and random snapshots at the weekend party? DSLRs are preferable if you regularly shoot in low light and wish to experimenting with different settings and lenses. Do not eye that Nikon D3200 or Canon EOS 1100D if you simply want to use it in the Auto mode.

What Will I Use a Small Camera For?


Mirrorless cameras fall into two broad categories. Some target the point-and-shoot user who simply wants better image quality. Others are meant for advanced users who may have a DSLR, but also want a small camera for inobtrusive shooting. Make a choice, depending on whether you want more automation or external control.

Whats the Big Deal About Full Frame?


Let us put it this wayunless you are regularly shooting at ISO 6400 and above, you probably do not need a full frame.

Lets Do a Recap... Find Out What Kind of a Camera Will Work For You Best

Basic Compact Camera


Smartphones today are more than enough for a casual audience. Butcompacts still make sense for those who value manual settings, better optics and the feel of a regular digicam.

Superzoom Camera
Phones cannot match compacts, when it comes to zoom capabilities. Budgetcompacts often have 10x zoom, and for amateur wildlife lovers, superzoom cameras go up to 50x too!

Smartphone Camera
In this age of convergence, nothing works better than a smartphone to help This is the rst you put your picture online, instantly. ever drawing that Android and iOS users can also benet illustrated the working of from a wealth of photography apps.

Advanced Compact Camera


If your photos usually fall in the 28105mm range, you may not even need interchangeable lenses. Somecompacts have fast lenses, larger sensors and are great on the go.

aprojector.

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bUYERS SpEcIAL

THis cAMERA NOW?


DSLR or mirrorless? Is your cell phone good enough or should you invest in a real camera? but before that, lets see what kind of camera you need to look for. Raj Lalwani helps you choose.
Cropped sensors nowadays are so good that they match or surpass the pro full frame cameras of yesteryears. Only some kind of professionals actually do the kind of photography that needs a full frame camera. smartphone sensors have come a long way. If most of your photography takes place in the daytime (or at night, with ash) and if you do not intend to print your photos, do you really need anything more than a phone? Smartphones also make far more sense for those who are heavily into social media, photo sharing and wish to make use of creative photo apps.

Im a Pro, But Do I Need to Change Lenses?


If you are someone who has never bothered with ultrawide or super telephoto focal lengths, you can consider a pocketable compact with a fast lens, or a camera that has a xed lens of a single focal length.

Unique Photos with Weird Cameras

Is Film the Answer?


You are disciplined enough to not shoot a 100 frames in an hour. Youalso have the curiosity, seriousness and patience to appreciate what photography used to be (and still is, for some). Go away from the herd, pick up lm camera from the secondhand market (they barely cost anything). Shoot analogue and learn to process it. Youwill either fall in love, or just come away with a richer mindset. Does it really matter as to what camera you use? Remember that the best camera is the one that is in your hand, but gets out of the way when you look, see and create. 51
In the analogue world, hipsters endorse cameras like the Lomo and Holga because of the crazy colours, heavy vignettes and attractive aws they produce. You could use Instagram and do this digitally, but there is a certain charm about the real thing.

Zoom is What I Want


If you love shooting subjects that are really far off, a superzoom compact camera is far more affordable than trying to buy a DSLR with equivalent lenses. A love for zoom could also be the sole reason for you to move beyond your smartphone.

Wait... Do I Even Need a Camera?


Sure, if you want zoom, manual control and all-round functionality, a compact camera is still the answer. But today,

Entry-level Mirrorless Camera


Ideal for those who point and shoot, but value image quality, theyrarely have viewnders as they are targetted at compact camera users who do not mind using the LCD.

Entry-level DSLR
One big reason to buy a DSLR over a mirrorless is if you wish to get into action photography. Most mirrorless cameras are still not very good at tracking fast moving subjects.

Full Frame DSLR


If you love crazy high ISOs or crave to get the best possible dynamic range, a full frame may make sense. But for almost everyone else, a regular DSLR or mirrorless is more than enough.

High-end Mirrorless Camera


These cameras are ideal for those who value portabilty, but do not wish to give up the experience of peering through a viewnder and the hands-on control offered by a high-end DSLR.

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On the previous two pages, we told you how to determine what kind of a camera you need. Raj Lalwani analyses the pros and cons of every single camera out there, to make a list of

P
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hotography is all about choices. Should the subject be sharp or would a blur convey the story better? Should the background be out of focus or not? And of course, should you make the picture or wait for another moment? But where does it all start,

this question of choicealmost always, at the camera store. Our list of the top 30 cameras has something for everyone. Whether you are a beginner or pro, have deep pockets or on a budget,we will help you make a choice. The following pages are also an interesting reection of market trends.
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B U Y E R S Sp ECIAL

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But even after this, the number of choices that are there in the market can be a little intimidating. the 30 best cameras that are currently available, for varied purposes and at different price points.
Forinstance, there is no mirrorless camera less than Rs.40,000, sadly because the best inexpensive ones are not being sold in India. There are some noteworthy omissions. The 5D Mark II and D700 exit the list after ve years with an end in life cycle. TheOM-D, NEX-7 and 6D miss out, despite
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being very good... mainly because there is something better at that price point. If your camera is not a part of this list, do not worry. This is meant to help you plan your next investment. Almost every camera today is capable of making fantastic photos, as long as you use it to its fullest.
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BUYERS Sp ECIAL

BelOW Rs. 20,000

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Nikon COOLPIX S30
995 Rs. 3
10MP, 720p HD video, Announced in February 2012

Canon PowerShot A1200


12.1MP, 720p HD video, Announced in January 2011

990 Rs. 4

Who Should Buy It?


Families and casual users who are looking for the least expensive way to step into the digital world.

Who Should Buy It?


Anyone who wants a budget rugged camera, especially for kids.

Why?
It may lack image stabilisation, but that does not take away from the fact that there is a very competent camera for its price. The images up to ISO 800 are quite good, the 4x zoom (28112mm) is ideal for day-to-day use and Creative Filters like Toy Camera and Super Vivid minimise the need for postprocessing.

Why?
Waterproof and shockproof, it is a fraction of the price of other rugged compacts, which usually start at Rs. 15,000. With children being the primary audience, the S30 may get you some curious stares, but if you are a serious photographer who wants something that will survive rain, the easy functionality and excellent lens in this camera offer great value for money.

Nikon COOLPIX S3300


16MP, 720p HD video, Announced in February 2012 54

Sony Cyber-shot W630


950 Rs. 6
16.1MP, 720p HD video, Announced in April 2012

990 Rs. 7

Who Should Buy It?


A casual user who wants to experiment with low light photography.

Who Should Buy It?


Landscape photography hobbyists and video enthusiasts on a budget.

Why?
The functionality is not great and there is no manual control, but if you are prepared to make good use of the Program and Scene modes, you should denitely consider this camera. The 6x zoom range is useful as it starts at arather wide 26mm. A High-contrast Monochrome mode gives good results and the camera is one of the few, at this price, to boast of optical VR.

Why?
The optical stabilisation in this camera is optimised for video shooting and the quality of the footage, though not Full HD, is quite crisp. Signicantly, this is the least expensive camera in the current market to boast of a Sweep Panorama mode. This generation of Sonys compacts also allows these panoramas to cover a complete 360 rotation.

950 Rs. 9

Nikon COOLPIX S6300


16MP, Full HD video, Announced in February 2012 Who Should Buy It?
Stills and video enthusiasts who can sacrice manual control, but want a lot of features at a reasonable price.

Why?
Besides being the cheapest camera to shoot Full HD footage, the S6300s 10x zoom stabilised lens starts really wide, at 25mm. Easy Panorama, optical VR and 6fps shooting are all very useful on eld and the Multi-shot 16 mode is an addictive way of making eyecatching portraits. USB charging, Eye-Fi support and 3D functionality are other reasons to get this feature-rich COOLPIX.
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Samsung DV300F
990 Rs. 9
16MP, 720p HD video, Announced in January 2012

B U Y E R S Sp ECIAL

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-SZ1


16.1MP, 720p HD video, Announced in January 2012

0,190 Rs. 1

Who Should Buy It?


Those who value good looks and want a camera that is truly sleek.

Who Should Buy It?


Social media addicts who pay a huge emphasis on immediate photo sharing.

Why?
For those who want a camera as a fashion accessory, there are several options in the market, including ultraslim offerings from Nikon and Sony. Butthis Panasonic scores past them with a 10x zoom Leica lens that starts at 25mm and excellent autofocus performance. Also, the optical stabilisation of this camera is superior to the competition.

Why?
The 5x zoom and image quality are not as good as other cameras at this price, but this is the cheapest camera to have WiFi, a highlight that immediately separates it from its peers. Considering that the Android cameras from Nikon and Samsung are way more expensive (and not perfect, by any means), the DV300F is a natural progression for a cell phone photographer who wants a little more.

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LZ20


16.1MP, 720p HD video, Announced in July 2012

0 2,49 Rs. 1

Nikon COOLPIX P310


14.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in January 2011

0 6,95 Rs. 1

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Who Should Buy It?


Photography and travel enthusiasts who do not need a pocketable camera, but appreciate zoom and manual settings.

Who Should Buy It?


Serious hobbyists who appreciate external control and wish to shoot in low light, but do not need the advantages of RAW shooting.

Why?
21x zoom at this price is an absolute bargain. The extensive manual control is what makes this camera stand out amidst its peers. If you want to learn photography and crave zoom, the LZ20 is the most versatile and value-formoney option you have. The only caveat... it is a little bulky.

Why?
The extensive Picture Controls borrowed from the companys DSLRs produce excellent JPEGs. The f/1.8 lens, combined with a good sensor and VR, make this a great budget camera for low light. The lens shows fringing though, so ignore the P310 if you are critical about making large prints.

9 9,99 Rs. 1

Fujilm FinePix F600EXR


16MP, Full HD video, Announced in August 2011 Who Should Buy It?
Landscape, travel and nature photographers who do not mind shooting JPEGs and want a compact camera with excellent optics and good dynamic range.

Why?
It may lack RAW shooting, unlike the more expensive F770EXR, but the dynamic range of the EXR sensor produces excellent JPEGs. The lens is slower than the P310s, but you gain 15x zoom and superior optical quality. And while there is no WiFi, you can mark the images you like within the camera, so that they are automatically uploaded to Facebook, when connected to a PC.
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BUYERS Sp ECIAL

RS. 20,00050,000

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Canon PowerShot SX50 HS
12.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

Canon EOS 1100D


12.2MP, 720p HD video, Announced in February 2011

0 6,99 2 . s R (Kit)

5 9,99 Rs. 2

Who Should Buy It?


Budget users who want the versatility of changing lenses.

Who Should Buy It?


Amateur wildlife enthusiasts who want the best reach possible.

Why?
Its features are not class leading and the Nikon D3200 has far superior image quality, but the 1100D continues to offer a great bargain. No other DSLR or mirrorless camera comes at this price (apart from a few that are at the end of their life cycle). If you do not need the 24MP of the Nikons, it is best that you save some money, get the 1100D and probably invest the remainer in a fast normal lens.

Why?
Does someone really need 50x zoom is, of course, debatable, but that does not stop the Canon from being a very good camera. A hot shoe, complete manual control, RAW shooting, a tilt-and-swivel screen and 13fps shooting make this a very high-end camera. And while it may seem pricey, a DSLR with lenses that go up to 1200mm will cost lakhs more.

Nikon D3200
24.2MP, Full HD video, Announced in April 2012 56

Sony Cyber-shot RX100


20.2MP, Full HD video, Announced in May 2012

0,750 Rs. 3 nly)


yo (Bod

0 4,99 Rs. 3

Who Should Buy It?


Budget resolution fanatics and anyone who is willing to invest in good lenses.

Who Should Buy It?


Those who want pocketablity but do not wish to make any compromise in terms of stills and video quality.

Why?
Up to ISO 3200, the D3200 produces better image quality than any non-full frame DSLR. Considering it is so cheap, it is an absolute bargain. If you are buying your rst DSLR though, remember that a camera of such a high resolution needs an investment in optics, discipline and technique.

Why?
The RX100 is an astonishing product that actually transcends categories. For a lot of people who buy a DSLR or mirrorless camera and stick to just using its kit lens, we would actually recommend the RX100 higher.

0 4,99 Rs. 3

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ200


12.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in July 2012 Who Should Buy It?
Zoom lovers who want to experiment in low light and use shallow DOF.

Why?
The FZ200 is an engineering marvel. It is the worlds rst and only camera that has a large amount of zoom (24x, 25600mm) and a maximum aperture of f/2.8... all throughout the zoom range! The sensor of this RAW-shooting camera may not be as good as the price suggests, but the fast aperture reduces the need for using high ISOs in most situations. If you do not need the 50x zoom of the competition, this one is far more versatile.
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RS. 20,00050,000

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Olympus PEN E-PL5
16.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

B U Y E R S Sp ECIAL

Nikon D5200
24.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in November 2012

0 1,45 ) ly Rs. 4 n ody o


(B

0 4,99 Rs. 4(Kit)

Who Should Buy It?


Serious photographers who do not mind sacricing build quality and hands-on ergonomics to gain a fantastic AF system and excellent image quality.

Who Should Buy It?


Street and travel photographers who want a small and lightweight camera, but want the exibility of being able to change lenses.

Why?
The amount of external control is not perfect, but the D5200 has denitely raised the bar when it comes to entry-level DSLRs. It has inherited the 39-point AF system from the D7000 (a version of which is also seen in the expensive full frame D600). This makes it the rst ever camera at this price point to have such sophisticated autofocus functionality. An improved version of the D3200s sensor and a tilt-andswivel screen are the crowning glories of this value-for-money package.

Why?
The E-PL5 is the rst PEN camera to have the 16.1MP sensor that was seen in the OM-D E-M5. The OM-D itself may seem overpriced, but this PENs cost makes the sensor a lot more attractive. The one change from the OM-D is that the E-PL5s sensor does not have an AA lter and so, it actually gives sharper results with the excellent Micro Four Thirds lenses. Other than that, it has all that we love about the PENsArt Filters, good handling and in-body IS.

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7,990 Rs. 4 Kit)


(

Panasonic LUMIX G3
15.8MP, Full HD video, Announced in May 2011 Who Should Buy It?
Travellers who want a budget mirrorless camera, but are too used to framing photographs at eye level.

Why?
Consider this. For a little more money than the E-PL5 and for far lesser than the OM-D, you get a mirrorless camera that has an in-built viewnder, an excellent AF system and high quality sensor. The G3 may not have the rangenderesque body of the PEN, but it is still very small. Videographers will appreciate the quality of the footage, but the lack of an external mic input is something that may hinder serious lmmakers.

5 9,99 Rs. 4(Kit)

Canon EOS M
18MP, Full HD video, Announced in July 2012 Who Should Buy It?
Video enthusiasts and serious lmmakers.

Why?
Canons rst foray into the mirrorless world shines when it comes to the video capabilities. The quality of the footage, amount of video control and the overall functionality are as good as DSLRs like the 650D, and the fact that the M is a lot smaller (and cheaper) is a deal clincher. For still shooters, it is not completely smooth sailing though. The ergonomics are a mixed bag, with no buttons but an excellent touchscreen. Autofocus is a big disappointment, but the APS-C sensors quality is better than its Micro Four Thirds counterparts.
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BUYERS Sp ECIAL

RS. 50,0001,50,000

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Fujilm X-E1
0 4,45 Rs. 6dy only)
(Bo
16.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

Nikon D7000
16.2MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2010

0 0,00 ly) Rs. 7 n o y od


(B

Who Should Buy It?


Serious hobbyists or professionals who want the reach of an APS-C sensor.

Who Should Buy It?


Those who want fantastic low light quality on the go, but do not need an OVF.

Why?
As long as you do not need 24MP, the D7000 is the best non-full frame DSLR in terms of low light quality, ergonomics, speed and value.

Why?
The X-E1 produces the same high quality images as the more expensive X-Pro 1, and also has a built-in ash. You lose out on a Hybrid nder, but the EVF is very sharp.

Fujilm X100
12.3MP, 720p video, Announced in September 2010

Fujilm X-Pro 1
9 6,99 Rs. 7
16.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in January 2012

9 4,99 0 , 1 . Rs

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Who Should Buy It?


Street photographers and portraitists.

Who Should Buy It?


Those who want full frame quality in a small package that has an optical eyepiece.

Why?
If you enjoy the 35mm eld of view, ignore the Fujilm X-E1 and X-Pro 1 and buy the non-interchangeable lens X100 instead. The Hybrid viewnder and old-school controls are excellent and the image quality, quite good.

Why?
After the X-E1s announcement, the Hybrid viewnder remains the only reason to spend extra money for the X-Pro 1, but considering the analogue philosophy of the X cameras, an optical way of seeing the world just has a lot more charm.

Nikon D600
24.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GH3


16.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

0 5,95 3 , 1 . Rs

90 ,49,)9 1 . s R (Kit

Who Should Buy It?


Full frame aspirants who do not need 36MP.

Who Should Buy It?


Filmmakers who dont mind spending a premium for ease of use with pro video.

Why?
Its ergonomics are not perfect, but the image quality and photo-video features are good enough for almost every kind of professional use.
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Why?
Video fanatics will love the 14140mm kit lens, but the camera is very overpriced in India. Stills are good, but if you are not into movies, invest this huge sum elsewhere.
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AbOVe Rs. 1,50,000

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Sony Alpha 99
50 ,63,9 1 . ly s n R (Body o )
24.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in September 2012

B U Y E R S Sp ECIAL

Nikon D800
36.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in February 2012

00 ,79,9 1 . ly s n R Body o )
(

Who Should Buy It?


Professional photographers dealing with any genre as long as it does not involve massive volumes of shooting.

Who Should Buy It?


Professionals who want quick AF during video and wish to make use of the advantages of a full frame sensor.

Why?
36 megapixels are not for everyone, but it is incredible that Nikon managed to t in so many, and yet maintain the lofty high ISO standards set by the D700. The D800 is one of the most complete cameras in the market for both still and video pros, but do remember that it needs a lot of investment in optics and storage.

Why?
If you are a stills photographer, the Alpha 99 is competent, but not as good as the Nikon D600 that is far cheaper. Video professionals, though, can consider this to be the pinnacle of video technologynot only is the video focusing fast, the A99 is one of the only cameras to shoot 1080p60 with AVCHD 2.0.

Canon EOS 5D Mark III


22.3MP, Full HD video, Announced in March 2012

Nikon D4
95 ,06,n0ly) 2 . s R ody o
(B
16.2MP, Full HD video, Announced in January 2012

50 ,49,n9 3 . ly s R (Body o )

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Who Should Buy It?


Pros who do not need a large body, but wish to shoot action.

Who Should Buy It?


Action professionals who want the ultimate in low low light performance.

Why?
The dynamic range and resolution are not as good as the competition, but there is no doubt that the 5D Mark III is a maestro in terms of autofocus, speed, low light performance and video. The most all-round option for someone who has Canon optics, it is the subtle handling changes that make this camera a joy to use.

Why?
Not only does the D4 match Canon in terms of video, it also has unique still features like backlit buttons, Ethernet connectivity and silent shooting. The ability to shoot at ISO 2,04,800 and 12fps shooting mean that you will get your shot, no matter what. The buffer capacity is the best in the worldover 100 RAWs at one go!

95 ,29,9 Rs. 4 ody only)


(B

Canon EOS 1D X
18.1MP, Full HD video, Announced in October 2011 Who Should Buy It?
Sports photographers and photojournalists who want a rugged camera that can survive (and capture) any situation.

Why?
The 1D X is one of Canons most signicant DSLRs. It is the rst time that the company has decided to use a full frame sensor in a sports camera, thus enabling them to catch up with Nikon in a market that the latter had dominated with the D3 and D3S. The 1D X matches the D4 in almost every aspect, falls behind in dynamic range, but sneaks ahead in terms of burst rate (14fps) and AF speed.
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TEST

GearGuide

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HOW WE TESt
Product Categorisation
We rst segregate products into categories for the purpose ofequitability in testing. The DSLR is divided into entry-level, semi-professional and professional categories. For compacts, we distinguish between advanced and basic compact cameras. Similarly,we also test consumer and pro lenses, ashguns, printers, and other photographic accessories andgear.

The Process
We primarily test for features, performance, build, ergonomics, warranty and support. Whilethis remains constant, the weightage we give to these parameter differs from category to category, because different types of consumers have diverse expectations from products.

Final Ratings
Under each main parameter, 62 welist out hundreds of individual variables (for eg. colour accuracy for individual colours in different lighting, individual features, dynamic range, center-to-edge denition, light falloff, etc) against which we either give points or simply mark yes or no. Thus,we arrive at a score for that parameter, and then, the nal score, denoted as a percentage. Additionally, based on the current pricing of a product, astar rating for Value for Money is considered. Value for Money does not affect the nal percentage, because prices for products change constantly.

Sony Alpha 99

Quite an Oddball
WeIGHtaGe of paraMeters 5% 15% 15% 20% 45% Features Performance Build Quality Ergonomics Warranty & Support ames Bond must be using a Sony Alpha 99. I dont know if it is just me, but from the time I started using this new Alpha full frame, Istarted imagining it to be a gizmo from a 007 thriller movie. It packs in a lot of innovation, isnt really what it looks, and can perform neat tricks with a sense of air. But photographers usually prefer cameras and not gadgets. There is a denite difference between the two, and a feature-packed camera is of no use to a pro, if the promises do not translate to oneld performance.

Our Seals of Approval


Any product that scores 80% or higher in individual tests gets BP Recommendeda seal of approval from our team. Incomparison tests, we also tag products as BP Best Performer and BP Best Value for Money.

The rst ever full frame DSLT is unique, but then, is the Sony Alpha 99 different simply for the sake of being so? Raj Lalwani ponders.

BP Excellence Awards
At the end of the calendar year, the highest rated products in each category automatically win the Better Photography Excellence Award. This is BetterPhotographys recognition of the very best products launched in the course of the year, and the companies that madethem.
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Features
So that is what I decided to nd out, when I rst started using this full frame camera with a difference. The 24.3MP Alpha 99 takes on a completely unique path as compared to Nikon and Canons full frames, and that is what makes it so interesting. After all, have you ever seen a full frame camera that shoots Full HD 60p video, with continuous autofocus? Or one that has a tilt-and-swivel LCD? Maybe one with in-body stabilisation? A full frame that can make panoramas without postprocessing? Orhas Picture Effects like Toy Camera that
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TEST

Fujilm X-E1 Good looks and excellent quality

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OlympusE-PL5 OM-Dqualityin acheaperpackage

TEST

TEST

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Olympus 17mm f/1.8 T E ST Another impressive lens from the MFT stable

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When using the High Contrast Monochrome Picture Effect, the highest ISO settings look really good.
Exposure: 1/60sec at f/16 (ISO 25,600)

are usually seen in compact cameras? Orof course, a full frame DSLR-style camera that is not a DSLR... the camera adopts the SLT technology that Sony has been using for the past few years. The new Depth-map Continuous AF function speeds up tracking AF, as long as you tell the camera at what distance you expect your subject to be. The 102 points seem impressive on paper, until one realises that these are accessible only while using six particular Sony lenses. Itsregular 19-point AF system is good, but certainly not the best at this price point. Moreover,even while using 102 focusing points, the sensors are so packed in near the centre of the frame, that the practical application seems rather restricted. Like all SLTs, the cameras viewnder is electronic. Unfortunately,Sony has decided to exclude an onboard ash. Like its peers, the camera allows you to transfer uncompressed video via

HDMI. One can monitor sound using headphones and the camera also has Real-time and Lip-sync settings to further control the output. It is, in a way, a unique set of video features. The autofocus functionality ensures that the camera can be used efciently by a video newbie as well, but professionals will be more than happy in terms of the amount of control they get.

Handling
Like the RX100 and NEX-7, the camera has focus peaking, which is extremely useful for manual focus. The overall handling is decent, but with the sheer number of buttons (some of which are weirdly labelled), one needs to spend quite a bit of time with the camera to fully understand it. Once I got a little comfortable, I started enjoying certain things. There is a useful joystick and as many as ve customisable buttons! An innovative Silent Control WHats IN tHe boX Alpha 99 camera Li-ion battery Charger USB Cable AV cable Camera strap Body cap Accessory shoe cap USB cable clip Software CD-ROM 63

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All photographs by Raj Lalwani

TEST

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The AF is fast and the in-body stabilisation is quite useful when using telephoto focallengths.
Exposure: 1/100sec at f/8 (ISO 1000)
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T E ST

Ring is ideal for videographers as it allows them to change settings without affecting the audio of the footage. It can help adjust still photo functions too, but in practice, it is a little difcult to use since the ring is quiteloose. Battery life is a serious problem with the Alpha 99. It is better than the other DSLT models, but when compared to full frame DSLRs, the Sony falls short signicantly, probably due to the fact that either Live View or the EVF are continuously switched on. If you are a professional, you would want to invest in extra power. The camera may not score too high on looks, but it feels good. It is also quite lightweight, despite a solid magnesium alloy construction. The mode dial has a lock, but unlike cameras like the D600, this lock actually works quite well.

Performance
My problems started after I had customised the camera. Idecided to set one of the shortcut buttons to Quality, to switch between RAW and JPEG. I did this because I wanted to use the High Contrast Monochrome Picture Effect. Now, Picture Effects get disabled while shooting RAW, so customising a button to toggle between RAW and JPEG was actually a neat trick to switch between colour and B&W. All this was perfect until the battery levels fell. As a power conservation practice, Istarted switching off the camera when Iwasnt using it. But whenever I would switch it on, it would take a long time to start up! Despite the fact that the camera was set to RAW (and hence, colour), the initial preview in the EVF showed a black and white feed. After struggling for four seconds, the camera identied the fact that it was actually set to RAW and then showed the colour feed! This was a quirk that I experienced only while using Picture Effects, but it is still shocking performance from a pro camera. The autofocus is pretty good, especially when combined with the lenses that allow you to use the Dual AF system. However,one must remember that the 102 AF points do not cover a large part of the frame though, a problem that is there even with the Nikon D600. So while it may sound
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TEST

Test Shots

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An Excellent Sensor, But Does It Reach Its Full Potential?


This ISO 6400 image retains detail well, but the noise in the shadows is more than that seen in the D600surprising, considering they are said to have the same sensor.

Quick Response Time and Accurate Focusing


Its startup time is nowhere close to ideal, but the A99s shot-to-shot time is admirably quick. Autofocus is not as good as, say, the D800 or 5D Mark III but it is very accurate.

aLSO LOOK FOR Nikon D800 Nikon D600 Canon EOS 6D

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astounding on paper, it does have its caveats. That said, when the subject falls within the AF sensors, the focusing is blindingly fast and accurate. Sonys excellent and often underrated range of optics help capture fantastic, sharp photos. Dynamic range is stunning and the RAW les have a great amount of latent detail. I was relieved to see that unlike previous Sony SLTs, the JPEG engine is a lot more rened. Afterall, this is the rst Sony SLT that allows you to switch off noise reduction, which was something that badly affects the JPEG les of the cheaper SLTs. However, I was surprised to see that the high ISO photographs consistently had more noise than the

D600. I am making the comparison because the Nikon is said to have a very similar sensor, and is lesser in price. Thelight loss that takes place due to the SLT technology, while minimal, does seem to have affected the resultant quality to a certain degree. And that brings me to something that I have been pondering about, ever since I rst read about the camera. Sonys SLTs have charmed us in the past, but was it necessary to have a translucent mirror in their agship camera? It may have the best EVF in the world, but it still does not even come close to the experience of using a full frame optical viewnder. When we see SLT cameras like the A57 and A77, even purists would not mind

P LU s Excellent video Lightweight Usable images at the highest ISOs MINUs Poor battery life Overpriced

ErGoNoMIcs Front
AF-assist lamp Light for top LCD

Top

Rear

Customisable Function button

Deep grip

Magnesium alloy camera body

Customisable Silent Control Ring

The Silent Control Ring can be accessed by the left hand while shooting, and helps change settings. Since there are no hard buttons to press, it is invaluable while shooting video, but a little confusing to use for stills.
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Hot shoe Useful joystick controller As a welcome change, Sony does not have the same proprietary hot shoe as previous cameras. Now, you can mount standard ashguns with slightly limited control. The mode dial lock is smooth and useful, without being an irritant. Convenient mode dial lock

Button to help High resolution lens focus gauge Customisable tilting LCD distance Function button This is the only full frame camera in the market that has an onboard Electronic Viewnder. It is denitely a different experience from conventional OVFs, but an EVF can be very useful to gauge the nal result of the photo.
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the EVF because it is bigger and more practical than the tiny OVFs seen in entry-level DSLRs. In a full frame arena, this viewnder falls short. Also, while SLT technologys highlight is supposed to be speed, with continuous autofocus activated, the camera only shoots 6fps, which even cheaper full frame cameras manage. The 12fps mode seems like a gimmick in a camera that is so expensive, because the A99 takes a long time to write the les to the card. It is obvious that the SLT technology has been implemented because of only one reasonautofocus in video. And eventually, with the several still photography quirks that the camera has, the excellence in video is the saving grace... the raison dtre.

T E ST

ISO 6400

Model name MRP Effective pixels Max. resolution Sensor size, type Sensor cleaning Focusing modes

Sony Alpha SLT-A99 Rs. 1,79,990 24.3MP 6000 x 4000 Full frame, Exmor HD CMOS Yes Phase Detect, Multi-area, Selective single-point, Tracking Single, Continuous, Face Detection, Live View Single-shot, Auto, Continous, Depth Map Assist selectable 19 (102 with 6 lenses) Multi, Center-weighted, Spot 301/8000sec -5 to +5 EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV steps sRGB, Adobe RGB Auto, 5025,600 Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Flash and Kelvin Yes, 6fps or 2.5fps No Yes, hot shoe Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync, High Speed Sync, Rear Curtain, Fill-in, Wireless NA 1/250sec 3-inch 12,28,800 pixels Electronic (100% coverage, 2.36million dots OLED) JPEG (Extra Fine, Fine, Standard), RAW, AVCHD Yes Yes Yes, Optional Yes, 2 or 10sec Memory Stick PRO Duo/Pro-HG Duo; SD, SDHC and SDXC No Yes Yes Yes, mini HDMI Type C Lithium-ion 147 x 111 x 78mm 812g

ISO 12,800

AF type AF points Metering Shutterspeed range Exp. compensation Colour space ISO White balance

Conclusion
There is no doubt that the Sony Alpha 99 is a fantastic video product. The quality of footage is better than any other full frame, and the utility of autofocus during video recording is something that will make this cexpensive amera a favourite amongst multimedia journalists and documentarystorytellers. But in trying too much, the A99, for stills, comes across as an overtly enthusiastic contender who is trying to crack one punchline too many. Make no mistake, it is a good camera. But in 2012, when even entry-level DSLRs serve well for most kinds of photography, is good good enough? In this age of cutthroat technology, it is important to rate a camera in comparison to its peers on whether it really makes sense to invest so much money. The Sonys image quality is competent, but not as good as that of the D600, a camera that costs signicantly lesser. Letsnot even start comparing it to similarly priced models like the D800 or 5D Mark III. TheSLT decision, which actually makes this the video powerhouse that it is, is also counterproductive, and might be the one reason to steer away stillphotographers. At Rs.1,79,990, it remains the best video camera that a professional would want. For stills though, in trying to be too different, the Sony Alpha 99 stands out a bit like a sorethumb.

ISO 25,600
The noise performance of the Alpha 99 is excellent, with good detail up to ISO 12,800 and barely usable ISO 25,600 les. But it is surprisingly inferior to the D600s high ISO capabilities. Both cameras are supposed to use the same sensor, but the Nikon has obviously got better processing algorithms.

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Drive modes Built-in ash External ash Flash modes

FINALRATINGS
Features
Dual card slots, no ash, 102 points only available with few lenses, SLT technology

Flash range Flash sync speed LCD size LCD dots Viewnder File format Image stabilisation Live View Remote control Self-timer Storage types Timelapse recording Movie clips USB HDMI Battery Dimensions Weight
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12/15 37/45 13/15 15/20 3/5

Performance
Poor battery life, excellent video quality, slight lag in EVF, inconsistent metering

Build Quality
Strong chasis that is made of magnesium alloy, weather sealed

Ergonomics
Lightweight, complicated array of buttons, useful Silent Control Ring for video

Warranty & Support


Two-year warranty, widespread service network in India

OVERALL 80%
Who should buy it? Professional lmmakers and
multimedia journalists. For still photographers, the Alpha 99 may be alright, but it is more expensive and nowhere near as good as the competition. In terms of video, this is the best that there is!

Environmentally sealed Yes

Why?

Value for Money


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The Sexy One


WEIGHTAGE Of PARAMETERS 5% 15% 15% 20% 45% Features Performance Build Quality Ergonomics Warranty & Support
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Fujilm X-E1

ix months ago, I met someone called the Fujilm X-Pro1. It was love, or so I thought, and though the camera did test my patience with her idiosyncracies, there was magic in the air. But then, love affairs are often shortlived... the camera went back to the manufacturer. A few weeks ago, it was time for deja vu. The X-E1 brought back old memories, but I wondered if it would feel the same. Here is her story.

S
Features

Saying hello to the Fujilm X-E1 is like rekindling an old love affair. Raj Lalwani discovers that the romance is still the same.
X-Pro 1. They are very similar, no doubt, but the X-E1 seems to have all the nice qualities of her predecessor, and then some more. An identical 16.3MP X-Trans sensor is the brain behind this gorgeous camera as well, and let me get straight to the pointthis APS-C sensor is special. It is special because when one sees the photographs made by the Fujilm cameras, one does not even realise that the camera is not full frame. Both in terms of noise performance and dynamic range, the X mirrorless cameras are fantastic. There is no AA lter, but unlike regular sensors, the Fuji has rearranged the pixels

Maybe it is because I have just met her, but the X-E1 seems more interesting than the

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to ensure that the removal of the lter does not cause moir. Simply put, this is something that dramatically improves sharpness and helps do complete justice to the fantastic lenses of the X system. One of these lenses is new, and is included as a part of the cameras kit. It is the 1855mm f/2.8-4 OIS lens, and for good reasons and bad, it was an important factor in terms of the way I perceived the X-E1. It is surely admirable how Fujilm managed to design this lens. It has the same eld of view as a DSLR kit lens, has a faster aperture, but is the same size! Butit made the X-E1 seem like a different person, and that was something that Ididnt quite enjoy. Though it is small, the lens came in the way of the ash! Even without using the lens hood, the ash causes a shadow when shooting at the wide end of the lens. I think this was inexcusable, especially considering that this is a lens that is bundled with the kit. Of course, the fact that there is a ash is a welcome change. A lot of people feel that the inclusion of a ash makes a camera less professional, but it just makes it versatile. She can add a spark when ones required, and help you see the light in situations that might be dark and dreary otherwise. The X-Pro 1 was vintage in design. The X-E1 is someone who combines her traditional values with a bit of modernity. The retro, analogue controls are there and you can use an old-school threaded cable release, but the X-E1 also allows you to use an electronic release. The emphasis is still on pure photographyvideo features are kept to a minimum, but the X-E1 shows off her new thinking by adding a 2.5mm stereo microphone socket.

T E ST

WHATS IN THE BOx Camera body 1855mm kit lens Battery Charger USB Power cable Software CD Neck strap

The X-E1 helps you see differently by simply getting out of the way.
Exposure: 1/60sec at f/11 (ISO 6400)

Handling
Being in love is a lot about the experiences that one shares, and the way we see the

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All photographs by Raj Lalwani

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The Magic of Fuji Colours


Fujilms colour reproduction may not be completely realistic, but the tones are pleasing and have a characteristic look that just brings back the lm days.

Excellent Dynamic Range and Discreet Nature


When people assume you are using a lm camera, it is either a conversation starter or something they simply ignore, thus being themselves. Highlight detail is superb.

ALSO LOOK FOR Sony NEX-7 Olympus OM-D E-M5

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world when we are with the other person. In that regard, the X-E1 is quite different. TheX-Pro 1 has a fantastic Hybrid Viewnder, which can switch between optical and electronic at will, but the X-E1 is a little different. Shehas only one line of thinking, but there is more clarity in her vision. So gone is the optical viewnder option... but the EVF is a lot sharper than the one seen in the older camera. In fact, the 2.36 million dot OLED nder is as good as the best in the world. The LCD resolution though, sadly, has dropped to 4,60,000 dots. The Quick Menu gains the ability to save as many as seven Custom proles. Everysingle camera setting within each

prole can be customised, so while I set C1 to Standard photos, C2 gave me vibrant, slide lm-like results with Velvia Film Simulation, Cloudy WB and contrast further bumped up. I made both C3 and C4 into B&W proles. By playing with Film Simulation, Shadow Tone and Highlight Tone, I could simulate low and high contrast lm. I also set the highest ISO allowed in Auto ISO differently, to vary the amount of grain. The Auto ISO functionality itself, though, continues to remain poor. There is no way of setting the minimum shutterspeed, and considering that the old X100 allows this, Fujilm should address the issue with a rmware update.

PlU S Excellent sensor A lot of useful external control MINUS No focus peaking Inefcient Auto ISO

ERGONOMIcS Front
Shutterspeed dial

Top

Rear
Inferior 4,60,000 dots LCD screen Cable-release thread Quick Menu button

Lens-release button AF-assist lamp AF mode switch Hot shoe Onboard ash Exposure compensation dial High-resolution OLEDEVF

The camera is actually smaller than the X-Pro 1 and more similar in size to something like the X100. I was pleased to see that it retains the AF mode switch, an important element that some recent pro DSLRs have excluded because of an overt emphasis on video.
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The X-E1 has an onboard ash that works well, but casts a shadow with the kit lens. The kit lens has a variable maximum aperture and hence, there are no aperture markings. It can still be adjusted by turning a ring.. just that you have to see the value in the camera.

The 2.36 million dot OLED viewnder is the brightest, sharpest and highest resolution electronic viewnder in the market and gives a true rangenderesque experience while shooting. With a camera like this, I never found myself using the LCD, so the lower resolution did not pinch.
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Performance
Besides her stunning good looks, the X-E1 has a heart of golda sensor that produces fantastic looking images. More importantly, her modern-day outlook means that she acts a lot faster than the X-Pro 1. The AF speed is much improved, as is the shot-to-shot time and write speed. Vibrant and energetic, the battery life is also far better. MF is still not perfect focus peaking is missingbut at least, it does not take the entire day trying to activate the y-by-wire focusing. Third-party RAW support for the X-E1 is there, but does not give you the best possible results. In fact, I will urge you to process RAW les within the camera or even shoot JPEG, since the loss in quality is minimal. The quality of the kit zoom lens is quite good, but I will advise you to buy the body-only option. A camera like this is best appreciated with a xed lens... not only is the form factor more intuitive, the discipline enforced by a prime is invaluable.

T E ST

ISO 6400

Model name MRP

Fujilm X-E1 Rs. 70,000 (body only) Rs. 90,000 (with 1855mm f/2.8-4 OIS lens) 16.3 million 4896 x 3264 pixels 23.6 x 15.6 mm/ CMOS 3:2 (default), 16:9, 1:1 Multi-area, Center, Single, Continuous, Live View Single, Continuous AF, MF Distance Indicator 49 Multi, Center-weighted, Spot 30-1/4000sec -2 to +2 EV in 1/3 EV steps Auto, 200 to 6400 8 Presets Auto, Fine, Shade, Daylight, Warm White, Cool White, Incandescent light, Underwater. 1 Custom: Kelvin Yes, 6fps Yes Yes, hot shoe Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync, High Speed Sync, Rear Curtain, Fill-in, Wireless Guide no 7 1/180sec 2.8 inch 4,60,000 dots Electronic (100% coverage), 2.36 million dots OLED JPEG (Fine, Normal), RAW Yes Yes Yes, Optional Yes, 2 or 10sec SD, SDHC and SDXC No Yes Yes Yes, mini HDMI Lithium-ion

Effective pixels Max. resolution Sensor size, type Aspect ratio Focusing modes AF type AF points Metering Shutterspeed range Exp. compensation ISO White balance

ISO 12,800

ISO 25,600
The X-E1 is the best APS-C sensor in the market when it comes to low light performance. In fact, it easily rivals some full frame DSLRs and delivers high quality photos all through its ISO range. One cannot use RAW above ISO 6400, which is not that big a problem, considering how good the JPEGs are.

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Conclusion
Unless you are shooting moving subjects (and no mirrorless camera apart from the Nikon 1s are great at that), the X-E1 is the queen of the mirrorless world. In fact, Icannot think of any other camera that costs Rs. 70,000 or less, and even come close to this Fujis image quality. In a day and age when even entry-level DSLRs produce excellent images, what makes a camera truly special is the way she feels. Even if you skip the romance and talk about pure functionality, it is important that a camera gets out of the way and allows you to connect with the world. The X-E1, like the X-Pro 1 is not perfect, but every time I held her, I felt inspired to go out there and make the picture of my life. The ash, improved EVF, Custom proles and improved autofocus are all signicant reasons to buy the X-E1 over the X-Pro 1, apart from the fact that you save a lot of money. Progress is natural, but what Iappreciate most is that Fujilm stuck to absolutely everything that made the X-Pro 1 so good, and improved many aspects that were lacking. The charm is intact, but the X-E1 adds a sense of spunk and allure that just makes you want to call it the sexyone.

Drive modes Built-in ash External ash Flash modes

Flash range Flash sync speed LCD size LCD dots Viewnder File format Image stabilisation Live View Remote control Self-timer Storage types Timelapse recording Movie clips USB HDMI Battery

FINALRATINGS
Features
OLED EVF, no AA lter, excellent sensor, video functionality is strictly okay

12/15 44/45 13/15 18/20 3/5

Performance
Fantastic, class-dening image quality, improved AF speeds

Build Quality
Durable magnesium alloy body, imsy ash

Ergonomics
Seven Custom proles, analogue controls, poor Auto ISO functionality, smaller body

Warranty & Support


Two-year warranty, limited service facilities

OVERALL 90%
Who should buy it? Stills and video enthusiasts who
are willing to buy lenses from abroad. The camera itself is quite good, though a little outdated. However, the lens availability in India, is not that good and does not do any justice to the NEX-7s sensor.

Environmentally sealed No

Why?

Dimensions (W X H X D) 129 x 75 x 38 mm Weight (inc. batteries) 350g

Value for Money


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TE sT

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The Lite Heavyweight


Who is the Olympus PEN LITE E-PL5 aimed at? A DSLR user looking for a smaller body? Or a compact upgrader? Ambarin Afsar nds out.
WEIGHTAGE Of PARAMETERS 5% 20%

Olympus PEN E-PL5

20% 15%

40%

Features Performance Build Quality Ergonomics Warranty & Support


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ringing big camera speed and image quality to a compact body has been a part of Olympus plans for a while, what with the slew of releases they had when they announced the E-PM1, the E-PL3 and the E-P3. Thetiny, cost-effective E-PM1 had the same sensor as the E-PL3 and the E-P3. And at Photokina 2012, Olympus did it again by announcing the E-PL5 and the E-PM2. Both cameras feature the OM-D E-M5s 16.1MP sensor and the TruePic VI image processing engine. According to the US pricing, they have been priced a 100 dollars apart. So what does the E-PL5 have that the E-PM2 does not? A mode dial, an extra button, a ip-up LCD and a screw-on front grip.

We have heard that Olympus may not introduce the E-PM2 to India any time soon. So for users looking for the OMDs quality, the E-PL5 turns out to be their best bet. Billed at quite lesser than the OM-Ds price, what do you get when you choose this diet version?

Features
Besides the sensor and the image processing engine, the E-PL5 also the same capacitative touchscreen capability of the E-P3 and the OM-D. The screen also gains the ability to pivot through 170 for people who wish to make self portraits. WhileI did not use the screen for this feature, I certainly enjoyed having the ability to tilt the screen up for waist-

The E-PL5 is the diet version of the OM-D E-M5. But is it an affordable diet?
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level shooting. This is great for those discreet captures or for nding a better angle without having to twist around toomuch. Sadly, though the LCD is a 3-inch, 16:9 aspect ratio based screen. While this sort of a screen is great for shooting video, it leaves a lot of unused real estate in the form of two thick black bars, when you are shooting in the native 4:3 aspect of the sensor. So,ultimately, the useable area of the screen is closer to 2.5 inches, which I found to be a little annoying. Additionally, the LCD clocks in at 460k dots instead of the OM-Ds more lush 610k dot OLED screen. A very interesting thing about the E-PL5 is that it does not have an Anti Aliasing lter at all. This helps the camera retain extra detail. However,the downside is that the camera might be subject to moir, though I personally did not observe any such aberration that affected image quality. Besides the usual P, S, A, M modes, the camera has 12 Art Filters, including a couple of new ones like Watercolour and Key Line. As usual, the Filters are a delight to use and one can even bracket them using the Art Bkt option. Now, the OM-D offers something called 5-axis image stabilisation that corrects for roll, and for up/down and left/right translational motions. On the other hand, like most image stabilisation systems, the E-PL5 only corrects for pitch and yaw. The camera offers Full HD video along with stereo sound and does a great job of allowing users to adjust focus while shooting, by simply tapping on the desired areas of the screen. The Touch AF in video is quick, and one can even switch between Art Filters while recording! Youjust need to switch Movie Effects on,

T E sT

WHATS In THE bOX Camera body 1442mm kit lens Battery Charger Clip-on ash Screw-on grip HDMI cable Camera strap

The 16MP sensor exhibits great dynamic range and gives far better quality than the previous PENs.
Exposure: 1/60sec at f/3.5 (ISO 2000)

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All photographs by Ambarin Afsar

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A Sharp and Efcient Lens


The corner performance of the lens is not perfect, but it still produces very sharp images. The optics are denitely better than the usual kit lens standards.

Fun Filters that are Customisable


Each of the Art Filters can be customised to your hearts content. Fromadding vignettes to making colours pop out radically, you can play endlessly!

ALSO LOOK FOR Panasonic G3 Nikon D5200 Sony RX100

and you will be able to fade in and fade out between the Filters.

Handling
The camera is decidedly tiny. Some might even call it too tiny. It did slip out of my hands a couple of times (thank heavens for camera straps), and I have tiny hands. The build is denitely plastic, but the camera feels sturdy enough to withstand a fewknocks. What I love most about it is its touchscreen experience. Despite being a 460k dot screen only, it was a complete joy to review my photos. The images looked crisp and the colours looked bright. I also

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did not have any trouble viewing the LCD in bright sunlight. What I also appreciate, is the fact that Olympus has given important functionalities to both, the touchscreen and the buttons. So you are not being forced to use the touchscreen. While the E-PL5 comes bundled with a clip-on ash, it is something I have always found a little too imsy. The buttons are responsive and the dials rotate smoothly. Ergonomically, the camera is pretty simple to use and quite light. The menu system is extensive and exhausting. I felt a little intimidated, but this system is pretty standard to Olympus cameras. Simply put, the menu system

PlU S Excellent sensor Great image quality Capacitative LCD MInUS Poor lens system No viewnder

ERGOnOMICS Front
Mode dial

Top

Rear
Thumbpad On/off switch

Direct record button Screw-on grip Lens Menu button

Lens-release button

Playback button Hot shoe

Fn button

170 tilting LCD

The front of the camera is quite simple, featuring just a lens release button and a plastic screw-on grip, which is bundled only with the E-PL5. The grip feels solid enough to hold the camera steady. Without the grip, too, the camera is comfortable enough to hold.
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The top features a hot shoe which can be tted with either a clip-on ash or a viewnder. The only disadvantage is that you can use only one of them at a time. It would have been better if the camera had an inbuilt viewnder with the option to attach a ash.

The LCD dominates the back, and I found it useful to tilt it at waist level for discreet shooting. However, while Olympus has provided a groove for the LCD to t snugly beneath the hot shoe, the clip-on ash obstructs a small part of screen when it is tilted upwards.
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would be heaven for geeks and for someone who loves customising. But, simplifying the interface would be a good idea.

T E sT

Performance
Model name MRP Effective pixels Max. resolution Sensor size, type Sensor cleaning Focusing modes AF points Metering Olympus PEN Lite E-PL5 Rs. 44,990 (with 1442mm kit lens) 16.5 megapixels 4608 x 3456 pixels 17.3 x 13mm, Live MOS Sensor Yes S-AF, C-AF, MF, S-AF + MF, AF Tracking 35 Digital ESP, Center Weighted Average, Spot, Spot with Highlight Control, Spot with Shadow Control 601/4000sec, Bulb +/- 3EV (in 0.3 EV steps) sRGB, Adobe RGB Auto, ISO 20025,600 Sunny, Shadow, Cloudy, Incandescent, Tungsten, 8fps (focus and exposure locked, IS off), 3.6fps (IS on) No Yes, clip-on, included Flash Auto, Redeye, Fill-in, Flash Off, Red-eye Slow sync (1st curtain), Slow sync (1st curtain), Slow sync (2nd curtain) Guide no 7 3-inch Tilting Touchscreen 460k dots Optional RAW, JPEG, MPEG-4, AVI Yes Yes Yes, 2, 12sec, Custom SD/SDHC/SDXC card Yes Yes, Full HD Yes Micro HDMI, Type-D Lithium-ion

Shutterspeed range Exp. compensation Colour space ISO White balance Drive modes Built-in ash External ash Flash modes

Flash range LCD size LCD dots Viewnder File format Image stabilisation Live View Self-timer Storage types Timelapse recording Movie clips USB HDMI Battery

The image quality of this camera is far better than previous PEN cameras. Thereis nothing really to complain about. The high ISO performance is quite impressive and very workable. Rightfrom ISO 2006400, the camera does not disappoint. There is some chrominance noise at ISOs 2000 and above, but it is nothing that cannot be corrected. Thedynamic range is superior to previous PENs. And as with all PEN cameras, the colours are vibrant and crisp. The E-PL5 also does a great job of blending available light with ll ash. I had overexposed a few images by nearly about two stops and when I saw the RAW les, I was quite surprised. The RAW les had recorded data even in the areas which I thought would be completely blown out, that were irrecoverably white in the JPEGversions. The AF is blazing fast. The E-PL5 inherits the 35-point AF system of the OM-D, and the AF points can be made larger or smaller, depending on your preference. Combine this with extremely intuitive Touch AF and Touch Shutter, and you can make images in an instant. C-AF is fast while recording video, and you can simply tap the screen to focus on a different area!

ISO 3200

ISO 6400

ISO 12,800
Personally, I love grain, and I am very happy with the image quality of the camera even at ISO 6400. Above this, however, the colours begin to bleed, though you can still use the les at a small size.

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FINALRATINGS
Features
16MP, 12 Art Filters, in-body stabilisation, Touch AF, no inbuilt viewnder

27/30 28/30 16/20 12/15 3/5

Conclusion
The E-PL5 is a lightweight camera that is completely customisable, lled with features, and has great image quality. It is everything that made the original Olympus PEN series of cameras work. Olympus has always had a great lens system. But, where they fell short of matching up to APS-C cameras, was in the sensor quality. With the E-PL5, the company certainly seems to be catching up. If you want an inbuilt viewnder, the Panasonic G3 is available for just a little more. But the E-PL5 has several other advantages including in-body IS, Art Filters and similar quality to the OM-D. We are disappointed that there is no body-only option and that the kits price (Rs. 44,990) is even more than the price of the E-P3.

Performance
Best image quality seen in a Micro Four Thirds camera, fast AF, good battery life

Build Quality
Feels sturdy, imsy ashgun

Ergonomics
Lightweight, perhaps a little too compact, wordy menu system, 460k dot screen

Warranty & Support


Three-year warranty, wide service network

OVERALL 86%
Who should buy it? Anyone who values a small
camera with good ergonomics and interchangeable lenses. Considering that the budget NEX cameras are not available in India, this is the cheapest mirrorless option that combines an excellent sensor with good autofocus.

Environmentally sealed No

Why?

Dimensions (W X H X D) 110.5 x 63.7 x 38.2mm Weight 325g

Value for Money


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Not a Superhero
Ambarin Afsar tests the BenQ G1 on a variety of parameters and nds out that it falls short of most expectations.
hen I found out that Iwas testing a compact with an f/1.8 lens and a tilt-and-swivel LCD, I was quite excited. Add to that the claim of being the worlds slimmest compact to have both, and my eagerness reached new levels. I also realised that besides the trend of packing more zoom into affordable cameras, companies are also moving towards providing better low light shooting. But, with the BenQ G1, Idiscovered that a fast aperture cannot be the only saving grace of a camera.

BenQ G1

W
Features

WEIGHTAGE Of PARAMETERS 5% 30%

15% 15%

35% Features Performance Build Quality Ergonomics Warranty & Support


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A resolution of 14MP, a 3-inch 920k-dot swivel screen, an f/1.8 lensthe camera seems to offer a lot, on paper. But, it is hard to ignore the fact that for a slightly cheaper amount, you get a 16MP camera that offers

an f/1.8 lens with a roughly similar optical zoom of 4.2xthe Nikon COOLPIX P310. Itis the main competitor of the G1. Theonly thing that the Nikon P310 lacks, is a swivel screen. If we take a look at the feature set, the G1 offers the P, S, A, M modes along with Background Defocus, Handheld Night Shot and Filter modes. TheDefocus mode involves adding an unnatural amount of gaussian blur to the photo. Oddly enough, effects like Lomo, Fisheye and Toy (the Miniature effect) have been put into the Scene mode list instead of Filters. The camera features 20 Scene modes, most of which are the usual suspects like Sunsets, Pets, Party, Text and so on. Moving on, the camera features optical IS and can make macros at about 3cm from the lens. It also has a stereo microphone and and offers 1080p Full HD video.

WHATS IN THE BOX BenQ G1 8GB SD card Camera manual USB cable Battery charger Leather pouch Instructional CD
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Handling
The rst thing that struck me about the camera was that it was rather boxy. I have also been testing a mirrorless camera, and strangely enough, both are roughly the same size! What I cannot understand is how a camera with a compact sensor and with lesser functionality than a mirrorless can be roughly of the same width. Whilethe G1 might be slim, it could have had a better design to make it truly pocketable. The LCD swivels out easily enough, but feels imsy. Also, there is nothing to hold it in place when it is shut. The camera features a dedicated mode dial, along with an exposure dial situated right below the mode dial, on the back of the camera. Thewheel allows you to access shutterspeeds in the Manual mode and exposure compensation or Scene Modes in others. The four-way controller, too, has a dial that can be rotated. Ittakes a little while to get used to both the wheels, and not be confused, but they functionsmoothly. The G1 has a video recording button and a Q button that can be customised to settings like ISO, WB, metering, AF areas and so on. it has made a batch of 13 photos, it takes a good 1520 seconds to write them to the card! Forthis duration, the camera freezes and you cannot do anything but wait. Theplayback time taken between shots is also quite slow. The AF is very sluggish and keeps hunting. The image quality is where the camera really shocked me. When there is bright source of light in the frame, besides blowing out, it turns into a weird blotch! Thelens ares terribly and there is quite a bit of fringing. While the shot might look good overall, when you view it at 70 or 80%, you realise how much loss of detail has occured, with JPEG artefacts at even base ISOs. With an aperture of f/1.8, you might not nd yourself using ISO 1600 and above. Anyway, beyond ISO 800, the shots get too noisy. S P E C I f I CAT I O N S

T E ST

Model name MRP Sensor size, type Resolution LCD Focal range ISO range Aperture range Optical zoom Metering modes Shutterspeed Battery Storage File Formats Weight

BenQ G1 Rs. 18,990 1/2.3-inch, CMOS 14MP, 4288 x 3126 pixels 3-inch, 920k dot, swivel 24110mm Auto, ISO 1006400 f/1.88 4.6x Matrix, Spot, Center Weight 151/2000sec Lithium-Ion SD, SDHC, SDXC JPEG, MOV 195g

Conclusion
The G1 starts out ambitious, but messes up horribly. For f/1.8 and a swivel LCD, a price of Rs. 18,990 seems okay, till you realise that the Nikon P310 is priced at Rs. 16,950. Whilethe P310 lacks a swivel LCD, it more than makes up in functionality and image quality. Or, you could pay a little extra and get the Nikon P7100, which has a hot shoe, RAW and far better image quality.

Dimensions (W x H x D) 114 x 62.5 x 25.5mm

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Performance
The camera is slow. It takes a few seconds between each shot. In the 6fps mode, once

FINALRATINGS
Features
An f/1.8 lens, Full HD video, manual control

27/30 20/35 11/15 12/15 2/5

Performance
Sluggish AF, poor buffer, extreme aring

Build Quality
Lightweight, mostly plastic, LCD feels imsy

Ergonomics
Customisable buttons, swivel 920k-dot LCD, too boxy a form factor

Warranty & Support


Two year warranty, limited service centres

OVERALL 72%
Who should buy it? Avoid, unless you wish to spend
a considerable amount of money for compromised quality.

The lens ares so badly that any light source in the frameturns into a blotch.
Ambarin Afsar JA N UA RY 2 0 1 3 Exposure: 1/1800sec at f/8 (ISO 80)

Despite having excellent features on paper, this BenQ camera does not even come close to the performance of its peers, and it is more expensive.

Why?

Value for Money


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TEST

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As Good as it Gets
K Madhavan Pillai nds out if the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 delivers all that Olympus promises it to be... a lens with no compromises.
WEIGHTAGE Of PARAMETERS 5% 15% 25% 20% 35% ith the recent addition of the M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8, Olympus builds on its line-up of high-quality block lenses for Micro Four Third cameras. Theonly other lens with the same focal length is Olympus own 17mm f/2.8 pancake (launched mid-2009). Anothercomparable lens belongs to Panasonic, the Lumix G 20mm f/1.7 ASPH pancake (launched late 2009). However,this lens provides a full frame equivalent eld of view of 40mm (as opposed to the 34mm of the 17mm f/1.8). Whilesome may feel that the difference in focal length is small, serious street shooters will nd the moderately wider 17mm a more attractiveproposition.

Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8

W
Features

Features Performance Build Quality Ergonomics Warranty & Support


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The 17mm f/1.8 is of a fairly complex design as compared to either the 17mm f/2.8 or the 20mm f/1.7, comprising nine lens elements

in six groups. These elements include three aspherical lenses, including a Dual Super Aspherical element. The lens also includes a High Refractive index element. Theseare meant to reduce chromatic and spherical aberrations. The lens surfaces are coated with Olympus proprietary ZERO (Zuiko Extra-low Reection Optical) coating, used in the manufacture of Olympus microscopes, to prevent are and ghosting when shooting against the light. The lens features a new, internal focusing mechanism (MSC or Movie Still Compatible) which is silent enough for shooting movies and yet quick enough for still photography. Thefocus ring uses a push-pull method to actuate AF or MF. Pulling back the ring for MF operation reveals the focus distance and DOF scale, akin to old, manual SLR lenses. Olympus calls this the Snapshot Focus mechanism. Considering that the depth-of-eld produced by the lens is
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respectably large at smaller apertures, seriousstreet photographers will nd this feature extremely useful for quickly setting hyperfocal distances whileshooting. The f/1.8 aperture helps shoot in lower lightconditions and blur out backgrounds if the subject is close enough to the lens. The closest focusing distance is 0.25m, at which, the magnication ratio of 0.08x (35mm equivalent of 0.16x)which is good for a moderate wide angle lens. Thelens features seven circular aperture blades and standard lter diameter of 46mm.

T E ST

Performance
In our eld tests, this lens excelled. AFwas wonderfully quiet and responsive, even in low light. Center to edge sharpness was superbly high from f/4 to f/16. Atthe widest apertures, there was a drop in sharpness especially at the corners, but it was still quite good. The difference was visible only at the lowest ISO settings of the E-M5. Against the light, both aring and fringing were superbly controlled. Coupledwith the high level of sharpness, high-contrast picture situations turned out beautifully. Therewas no visible distortion. Lightfalloff was minimal. Inshort, the performance of this lens was nothing short of exemplary.

S P E C I f I CAT I O N S

DED MMEN RECO

Model name MRP Lens construction Max Magnication Diaphragm blades Filter diameter Dimensions Weight

Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 Rs. 28,000 9 elements in 6 groups 0.08x (35mm equivalent: 0.16x) 7 46mm 57.5 x 35.5mm 120g

Handling
Though not as diminutive as the 17mm f/2.8 or the 20mm f/1.7, the all metal 17mm f/1.8 is solidly constructed and feels good to use. On the Olympus OM-D E-M5, the lens balances rather well. The focus ring is nicely ridged and the Snapshot Focus mechanism makes a big difference in the overall handling. Pulledback for MF operation, the ring has just the right amount of resistance. Thenumbers marked on the distance and the DOF scale stand out nicely against the silver nish and are easy to read. The front element of the lens does not rotate while focusing. There is no lens hood supplied with the lens. After everything that Olympus has done to enhance its performance, this is certainly an oversight.

Min focusing distance 0.25m

Conclusion
If you are an avid street photographer, the M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 is the lens to buy. What differentiates it from its competitors is its fantastic optical quality and its ability to quickly switch to MF while allowing the user to easily set hyperfocal distances. Inthis, the 17mm f/1.8 is quiteunique. The lens is priced at Rs. 28,000. Whilethis may not be the most inexpensive option, at this point, it remains the best combination of focal length, features, optics and handling for a Micro Four Thirds systemuser.

P LU S Snapshot Focus Optical quality MINUS No lens hood Price

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FINALRATINGS
Features
Excellent optics, Movie Still Compatible, f/1.8

18/20 34/35 23/25 12/15 2/5

Performance
No distortion or are, exemplary sharpness

Build Quality
All-metal construction, inspires condence

Ergonomics
No lens hood, Snapshot Focus mechanism works exceptionally well, balances well

Warranty & Support


Two-year warranty

OVERALL 89%
There is no visible distortion and the lens produces excellent conrast andsharpness.
Exposure: 1/15sec at f/5.6 (ISO2500) K Madhavan Pillai

Who should buy it? Why?

Street photographers who enjoy working with a moderate wide angle prime lens. Apart from its all-metal construction and superb optical quality, the 17mm f/1.8 also has great functionality for working quickly with MF and hyperfocal distance settings.

Value for Money


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F e At U R e

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Camera Features to Improve


When you get a new camera, you explore its various functions and settings. But once potential of your camera. Ketan Kundargi tells you about a few such features that you
Find it difcult to gauge the lighting and get the right exposure? This feature helps you shoot images at different exposures, so that one of them is at least perfect. You can also merge these shots to create a stunning HDR.

Exposure Bracketing

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If you are still nding it tricky to get the exposure, switch to Spot metering and meter off the subject. Thisway, the subject will be perfectlyrendered.

Spot Metering

Ask yourself if you need ash. It can be a useful tool to remove harsh shadows or freeze the subject. Adjust the power if the ash is overpowering ambient light.

Flash Compensation

The Grid Getting the horizon straight can often be a problem. Most cameras overlay a grid on the LCD screen in LiveView which solves this. It also acts a reference guide for the Rule of Thirds.

AF-assist Beam
Photographing in low light and the camera will just not focus? Switch on the AF-assist lamp which emits a ray of light and helps your camera focus better. If you do not want to disturb your subject, use Manual focus instead.
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F e At U R e

Your Photography Instantly


you decide your favourites amongst these, you get comfortable and stop using the full may have missed, but are guaranteed to improve your photographic skills, instantly.
Image Stabilisation
Camera shake causing a blurry image? Switch on the image stabilisation in your camera or lens to get sharper images when shooting handheld.

Picture Controls

If your images look dull or if you nd it hard to postprocess many images, this is a great solution. It lets you customise parameters such as contrast and saturation for better results in camera.

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Burst Mode

Often miss the moment? The Burst mode increases your chances of capturing candids. While using slow shutterspeeds, this mode also increases your chances of getting one sharp photo.

Focus Conrmation

Every camera needs to lock focus before the shutter is released. Ifyou are getting out-of-focus images, half-click the shutter-release button and wait for conrmation. Lookfor a small beep or a green signal before you press it all the way down.

Exposure Compensation

There are situations when the exposure set by the camera might not give the best results. Use the +/- button to override the cameras setting and control exposure yourself.

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Rick W Berg

B ette R P H O t O g R A p H Y

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O N A S S I G NM E N T

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Deadwood Walking: I planted a large piece of driftwood in shallow water, facing the sun.

A Surreal Glow
ometimes, I point my camera at a branch that is hidden underwater in such a way that you can barely see it. A little bit of magic is all it needs and lo, it suddenly emerges as a white sabre in infrared! That kills me! The experience has been one of wonder, and is the main reason why I started seeing the world through infrared vision.

Anne Cutler takes you on a journey into the infrared world where everything is alive with a hidden glimmer.

My Assignment
Description
To photograph the hidden infrared world.

Duration
An ongoing project that has lasted several years.

Notes
Forget shooting on cloudy days or capturing anything that would look good in colour!

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DIGITAL TECHNIQUE

Infrared Made Visible Recreating the B&W infrared effect

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Your photographs reviewed by our panel of experts

PHOTOCRITIQUE

TIpS & TRICKS

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Shoot holidays, decorations &butteries

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My Perspective
Since I am a bit of a technology geek, the science of capturing invisible light fascinated me. Ghostly porcelain faces, eerie landscapes, black oceans, skies and white foliage suddenly appear and stun the humaneye.

The Process
Of course, the rst infrared (IR) photographs I made were a complete disaster. I had shot in the evening and as I realised, evening light is not so good for IRthose early photos were dark andmurky. Then, I shot in bright sunlight and gradually began to understand how the sky reacts to IR. It dawned on me that to get a really dark, almost black sky, you need to look for an area away from the sun. This is where the colour of the sky

Mt Vision: Photographed from a low angle, the tree stands out starkly against the deep black hues of thesky.

Assembled Crab Claw and Bull Kelp: A small hill that had formed helped me capture the shadow.

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Infrared photographs help the human eye see what it cannot usually perceive.

looks deeper. I also realised that I would need an extremely low angle to ll the entire frame. So, when I would shoot at the beach, I would dig a hole in the sand

and keep the camera inside it! Doing this also made the driftwood, seaweeds or rock formations loom much larger than they actually were. The natural life around me is quite captivating and so I am constantly inspired by it. I especially like to work near water. There is something primordial about being by the waters edge. Once I have identied my subject, Iactively look for ways to separate it from its background. Since I use a camera that has specially been converted for infrared, calculating exposure is easy. While I have become better at imagining what something will look like in IR, I still

Mare Tail: One of my colleagues told me this cloud formation is called a Mare Tail. Like most thin clouds, it wasnt as pronounced in real life as it is in IR.

The Essential Ingredients for Dream-like IR Photos


Get a converted digital IR camera: With a screw-on IR lter, the exposure times

Glowing Horsetails: Shot from the other side the grass seemed at and lifeless, but when the dark green stalks were backlit, they appeared to glow from within.
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will be long, and your patience short. It is worth converting a camera into an IR-only device.The website www.lifepixel.com has some very helpful tutorials.

Experiment with Filters: You can use plastic IR lters for compact cameras.
They are inexpensive, easy to cut and let in more visible light.

Go Beyond Photoshop: Try toning your images with selenium and gold tints. Also,
printing IR photos on metallic paper makes them look luminescent.

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My Equipment
I started with a Nikon COOLPIX 950 and currently use a Canon EOS 30D. Compact cameras have weaker IR lters, which is why Ihave converted one and carry it on bike rides. I even have an IR lter for my cell phone camera.

O N A S S I G NM E N T

nd myself being occasionally surprised. For instance, I discovered that seaweed, which usually appears dark brown and merges with the sand, can look gleaming white in IR! The driftwood that we often nd lying on the beach begins to resemble human-like creatures! Often, plentyof people have come up to me and told me that they see certain things in work, things that even I have not seen and noticed. Ultimately, while working on a series such as this one, I have realised that at some occasions, I have a plan. At other times, mostly, Iam open to discovering what the day has in store for me. To see more of Annes surreal infrared work, visit www.geckographics.com

Yoga: The combination of subject, shadow and reection are all represented here, as well as the unexpected surprise of seeing a person doing yoga on my monitor when Irst opened the le inPhotoshop.

Japanese Fractal: Taken at the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, I just loved the manner in which the foliage glowed in IR.

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DIGI TAL TEcHNIQUE

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Before

After

Infrared Made Visible


Ambarin Afsar helps you recreate the black and white infrared effect in the digital darkroom.
Tools Used
Channels Gaussian Blur lter Channel Mixer Noise lter (in Adobe Photoshop 6.0 or above) ave you seen surreal black and white photographs, in which foliage appears to be glowingly white instead of being in shades of grey? These photographs, known as infrared photographs, record the spectrum of light that is not visible to the human eye. Trees and other forms of foliage, for instance, reect a great amount of infrared light and hence, appear to be glowing in these photographs. Warmobjects like humans or even heaters radiate light in the infrared region of the spectrum. The greater the wavelength of a photon of infrared light, the lower its energy. The warmer the object becomes, the more energy it radiates and the shorter the peak wavelength of the radiation that it emits. Traditionally, infrared photography has been done using visible light blocking,

After

infrared passing lters. However, in the digital world, we can try a few tricks in Photoshop to simulate the effect. Since foliage reects the greatest amount of IR light, an image that is dominated by greenery will work best for this technique. However, you can experiment with a range of images and observe the magic unfold.

A Few Fun Infrared Facts


Infrared photography is also known as near-infrared photography because of its position on the visible light spectrum. When you feel the warmth from a re or a heating element, part of what you are feeling is the infrared radiation emitted by the hot re. Infrared movie lm was used to create the day-to-night effect in movies. A few animals like pit vipers can detect warm-blooded prey by sensing the infrared light that their prey emits.

Skill Level
1 2 3 4 5

Infrared photographs record the spectrum of light that is not visible to the human eye.
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Emily Cahal

Six Simple Steps to Convert Your Image into a Stunning B&W Infrared Photo

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D I G I TA L T Ec H NIQUE

DUPLicaTe The LaYeR: Open the photograph that you wish to edit. Go to the Layers palette and select the Background layer. Now, go to Layer > Duplicate. Duplicating the layer helps you blur the Green Channel of the image in a nondestructive manner.

SeLecT The GReen ChanneL: With the duplicate layer selected, go to the Channels Palette and click on the Green Channel to toggle it on. You need to toggle this channel on mainly because most of the colour information you wish to modify, is a part of this channel.

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BLUR The GReen ChanneL: With the Green channel still selected, go to Filters > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Input a value that allows you to see basic shapes in the image. Here, we used a value of 8.0, but various images might require a lesser or a greater value.

AdJUsT The OPaciTY: Adding a blur lends a surreal glow characteristic foliage to infrared images. This is known as the Wood effect named after British inventor, Robert W Wood, who discovered it. Adjust the Opacity slider so that the effect is not unrealistically pronounced. We used a value of 35%.

Add an AdJUsTMenT LaYeR: Click on the Create Adjustment Layers icon located at the bottom of the Layers palette. Select Channel Mixer, and in the dialog box, tick on the Monochrome option. Reduce the values of the Red and Blue Channels to -50. Increase the Green Channels value to +200.
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Add Noise: Since B&W infrared lm is very sensitive and grainy, you might want to simulate more noise in your image as well. Go to Filters > Noise > Add Noise. Change the Amount to approximately 20% and select Uniform. Ensure that Monochromatic is selected and apply the lter.
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PhotoCritique

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Want your photographs reviewed? Send your photographs to

The Editor, Better Photography, Network18 Publishing, Ruby House, A Wing, J K Sawant Marg, Dadar (W) Mumbai - 400 028, India E-mail: photocritique@betterphotography.in

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The lines formed by the pinched cloth and the clothesline form great tension.

The bright out-of-focus areas keep drawing attention away from the child. A slight vignette would have helped.

This kind of a portrait begs tack sharpness. Instead of f/1.8, you could have chosen a narroweraperture.

The childs tiny face seems lost among all the busy elements in the frame. Atighter crop could havebeen better.

The cloth forms a great frame around the child, guiding the viewers eye through the photo.

By Anant Agarwal, Dehradun


Camera: Nikon D90 Aperture: f/1.8 Shutterspeed: 1/1000sec ISO: 320

Great timing, great expression, great moment! The central placement of the child works very well.

Peek-a-boo
Mahesh Bhat: There is a sense of wonder in the childs eyes, which the photographer has captured well. However,the composition makes me wonder whether the photographer could have moved closer to the girl. Perhaps, he could have looked at the frame from another angle, from where one could get a better view of the environment around her. A subtle shift in position or a slightly different angle can radically alter the frame. Ultimately, this is a good effort, but one that makes me wonder if it could not have been done differently. Raj Lalwani: Children make great subjects because of their candid expressions and their eveready nature to strike a pose. Butthen, while I appreciate the bond one can see between the photographer and the child, I wish the frame was a little tighter. Sometimes,the true test of an image is what it looks like in thumbnail size. Does it grab you? Does it make you want to double click and view the image in a larger size, possibly to discover a lovely expression? Taking two steps closer would have helped this photo pass the thumbnail test, where unfortunately, it currently falls short.

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The Panelists A Slice of Life
Mahesh Bhat: When I look at this image, Ind myself thinking that the photographer could have easily moved a little bit to the right. This would have helped him avoid the door. Only a part of it is seen now, and this incomplete view does not add any value to the frame. Alternatively, he could have moved to the left and included all of the door. The inclusion or exclusion of small things like these can make or break a photo. The image also seems a bit overprocessed for me. It seems like he has tried to make an HDR, which is not in harmony with this particular frame. I have noticed that these days, it is a tendency to go overboard with processing, which could be avoided. Ambarin Afsar: I like the distortion in the image, and the slight are. These add to the feel of the image. However, the image has been processed a little too much. While it is good to want a decent amount of contrast or sharpness in your images, you need to make sure that you do not end up compromising on the overall natural avour of the frame. I love the doorway where the children are standing, choosing a wide angle approach has let you convey a rustic sense of place. The expressions of the children are also quite interesting, where two children are looking straight at the camera, while the others are lost in their own world.

makes photos that are full of storiesthose of the people inside them, and of the experiences he goes through while making the photos. His book, Unsung, pays tribute to people who have made extraordinary contributions to society against personal odds.

Mahesh Bhat

This childs hands peeking out from behind the boy in the foreground create a great point of interest. The distortion could have easily been corrected to avoid this slanting portion of the roof. Cropping out the door and the slanting roof would have made for a tighter composition.

While the image does look overcooked, the earthy tones are very pleasing. The are adds a nice touch to the image, however the out-of-focus circle of light is a little distracting.

By Saptajit Paul, Kolkata


Camera: Fujilm FinePix S3300 Aperture: f/3.1 Shutterspeed: 1/10sec ISO: 64

This discolouration has occurred due to are and has looks worse due to overprocessing.

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is a senior member of the BP team. Heoften disregards the conventions of picturemaking as he considers photography to a far more personal journey. According to him, inspiration lies in the fantastic, the ordinary and in love.

Raj Lalwani

is a writer with the BP team. Sheexudes an infectious zest for almost everything around her. Consequently, everything is a possible subject for photography and she is more than happy to appreciate new ways ofseeing.
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Ambarin Afsar

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pHOTO cRITIQUE

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This bit of empty space provides some welcome relief from the cluster of faces.

The manner in which their hands are placed, and the way in which they are getting cropped, seems a little unnatural.

The eyes form a striking, almost hypnotic pattern throughout the frame. This fact grows on theviewer.

All their expressions are spot on and the composition is as tight as it could have been.

The shapes, lines and contours of the faces lead the viewer through the frame.

By Shashank Shekhar Pandey, New Delhi


Camera: Fujilm FinePix S2950 Aperture: f/5 Shutterspeed: 1/150sec ISO: 64

Correctly estimating hyperfocal distance would have ensured a sharp foreground.

Excitement Contained
Mahesh Bhat: This is a pretty good composition, but, in terms of brightness and contrast, perhaps it could have been processed better. While the foreground lacks sharp focus, I still like the overall feel of the image. With the advent of digital, the common trend is to strive for increasingly sharp images. But I do not believe in this, for instance, while shooting photojournalistic images, sharpness is not a critical factor, the moment is. Ambarin Afsar: Truly, this image portrays the exuberance and excitement of children. The faces are so close to the camera that I am left wondering about how close you must have been standing to them. Theperspective actually makes the viewer feel like he is a part of this enthusiastic group. However, this sort of a frame makes me wonder how it would have looked in colour. The skin tones of the various faces and the clothes they are wearing could have also contributed to a certain kind of mood.

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Uproarious Celebration
Mahesh Bhat: This is the best photograph of the entire lot. Itis a lovely composition and the photographer has managed to capture the moment very well. Sucha kind of an image tells a vivid story without the help of any caption. While it may not be a awless image, it has its own strengths that make it a perfect photo! What I nd very interesting are the cool sunglasses worn by a couple of people in the frame. Those really add a twist to the entire image! Choosingto include people wearing them, has acted like that little extra bit of an ingredient, which makes the dish tastier! Raj Lalwani: When I rst saw this photograph, I thought that here we go again, yet another Holi image from around Mathura. But I looked closer and spotted an absolute superstar of a reveller wearing crazy sunglasses while being drenched in colour! I am actually reminded of a surreal movie with weird characters because of the props, expressions and colour (and rarely has a festival photo triggered such associations). But then, was this the best possible frame, considering that the two superstars are at the extreme edges? Maybeyou could have been in the midst of the action more, shot with a wider focal length and got a more impactful photo.
The largely monochromatic orange feel of the image further establishes a festive mood. This out-of-focus stick is a little disturbing and obstructs the viewers eye as it moves across the frame. It was a good idea to ll the frame only with gures and faces, thus eliminating all otherdistractions. Including this group of men facing away from the camera is a good decision, and one that introducescontrast.

p H OTOcR I T I Q UE

Critics Choice Award


Send your pictures to us, to be featured in the PhotoCritique section. If our judges select yours as the best photograph, you can win the Critics Choice Awarda Sony USB Portable Power Supply of 4000mAh!

By Dr Harsh Wardhan, New Delhi


The sunglasses worn by the performers and their expressions make this a tongue-in-cheek capture!
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II Aperture: f/5 Shutterspeed: 1/160sec ISO: 400

It is interesting how each performer is facing in a different direction. Great timing!

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Want to share your ideas and tips? Write to The Editor, Better Photography Network18 Publishing Ruby House, A Wing J K Sawant Marg, Dadar (W) Mumbai-400 028, India E-mail: editor@betterphotography.in

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Suraj C

FOLLOWING BUTTERFLIES Explore Early Mornings


Since butteries are very mobile and animated, people usually believe that it is difcult to photograph them. But, simply setting out to shoot at the right time can help you make buttery photos with ease. Step out early in the morning around 78am. Atthis hour, the air is cooler and butteries stay onto leaves or owers because they are unable to utter their wings in the cold. Once the suns warmth reaches them, they will start ying around.

The contrasting colours of the buttery and background make this a striking picture.

Have Lots of Patience


Often, a buttery will sit still while you are composing your shot, but by the time you release the shutter, it might y away. This is because butteries are very perceptive of sudden movement in their surroundings. So stand or sit as still as possible and wait. It will take awhile for the butteries to get used to your presence and hover around you. They also love the sun, so if you are casting a shadow on them, they will usually y away.

It is always good to have another element like a ower or a leaf to complement the buttery.

Notice Colours and Patterns


The most striking features of a buttery are the patterns and colours of its wings. Entera nature park or a buttery park and you will nd specimens of various beautiful colours. The best way to photograph these colourful wings is by using a macro lens. But if this is not feasible, there is always the option of a using a fast telephoto, a macro lter or even an extension tube. In addition to this, the Macro mode in a compact camera delivers good results most of the time.

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Look for an Uncluttered Background
Considering the natural habitat of butteries, it is quite easy to end up with a background cluttered with twigs or foliage. Shoot at a wide aperture to throw petals, leaves or even branches out of focus. You will also need to pay attention to the colours in the background. Keep your camera ready to capture candid portraits, especially while visitingmonuments.

Vivek Nigam

A VACATION STORY Create a Storyline


Think of your family vacation as a movie. Start making pictures from the beginning of the journey itselfthat is when the kids and other family members are busy packing and preparing for the trip. Youcan then go on to photograph the journey as it unfolds. Whether you are travelling by plane, bus, car or train, try to capture the madness you share with your family. Fromarriving at the destination to

packing your bags and ultimately, reaching homelet your pictures complete a full circle.

Capture Funlled Moments


Always have a camera with you because you never know when a family member indulges themselves in a funny situation. Theymay start dancing unexpectedly at the bonre, or someone might just suddenly jump into the pool! Instead of simply making your family stand in front of monuments and popular tourist spots, try various vantage points, and look for hitherto unexplored views.

QUICK TIP
Instead of a lter, you can use colourful gelatin paper in front of the lens to get some interesting results.

Group pictures need not have people in them! You can photograph shadows, feet or even rows of footwear andbags. 97

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Ask your family to loosen up and simply walk around the place, while you make candid photos of them. This will help you avoid touristy photos.

Decorations & Celebrations Focus on One Subject


During any celebrations, festival or occasion, the city is lit up. Paper lanterns, candles, decorative lights and so on, adorn not only houses, but also the streets. Thesedecorations are not isolated but found in groups or strings. In such a busy situation, look for certain kinds of shapes patterns and lights that you can photograph.

Photograph while you are on a rollercoaster or on a ride yourself for an unbeatableview.

Be Childlike Around Kids


Kids are lled with excitement on vacations. Observe them and capture their movement. You will most likely nd them jumping, dancing and enjoying their holidays. They are also very likely to play pranks, discover unexpected knick-knacks or even set off on their own scavenger hunts. Allthese occasions can provide you with great candids! Having photographed only the reindeer part of the decoration keeps the interest of the viewer.

Bring Out the Local Flavour


Look out for interesting neon signs or scenery that brings out the local avour of the place. For instance, if you are going to spend the day at the beach, you will surely be surrounded by trinket sellers. Talkingto residents or even shopkeepers can help you make insightful photos. Moroever, you can even take a picture of other tourists enjoying their vacation. Another interesting thing to do is to photograph local foodstuff. Every place has food preparations peculiar to that particular region. For instance, coastal areas will offer an array of seafood dishes.
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For instance, photograph just rows of fairy lights, or focus only on glowing neon signs that say Happy New Year or Merry Christmas. You can also choose to photograph just the bauble decorations or the gifts placed near a Christmas tree.

Experiment with White Balance


Some light decorations look really good when they are orange in colour. Otherslook pleasing with a white or blue cast. Whilemaking pictures where the decorations are lights or brightly lit sign boards, its good to be creative with your white balance settings. Set the White Balance to Daylight/Cloudy for warmer results, or Tungsten to override the orange colour of the street lights.

Explore Bokeh and Zoom Bursts


The point of photographing decorations is to have fun. So try blurring out the lights to attain colouful bokeh. Youcan achieve this by switching to manual focus and choosing a wide aperture like f/1.8. Then, all you need to do is simply rotate the manual ring until all the lights are blurred. You can even create a bokeh lter out of black chart paper! Cut out a heart or star shape and place the paper in front of the lens, such that the cutout is centred.

QUICK TIP
On your daily commute, make pictures without looking at the viewnder or LCD. Lookat them only once you are done. You will get a picture with a heart-shaped or star-shapedbokeh! On the other hand, using a tripod, try the zoom burst technique, by zooming in or zooming out during a long exposure.

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Release the shutter, wait and then change the focal length. This way the image will be sharp and you will get the right amount ofstreaks.

READErS TIP Challenge Yourself with B&W Portraits


With digital photography becoming more and more popular, B&W analogue photography is becoming obsolete. But no matter how much colour appeals to us, there is also something very striking about the absence ofcolour. Black and white is wellsuited for portrait photography because monochrome photographs tend to have a timeless feel to them.Moreover,they appear as though they have more substance and character. Another advantage of stripping the colour from a photograph is that it removes any other distractions, and establishes the main subject in the image. Additionally, the kind of light also plays a strong role, effectively drawing attention to or from a specic subject. The key to making a B&W portrait is to visualise the frame beforehand. You can also choose the B&W or Monochrome mode of your DSLR and switch to Live View to see the frame in B&W.

Indrajit Bhattacharya
Indrajit Bhattacharya

Keeping this image in B&W has enhanced the pattern of the staircase and drawn attention to the boy.

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Broken TV
Every time I try to capture an image of my old TV, I nd black streaks running across the screen. However, the problem does not persist when I try doing the same with an LCD TV. Is there a specic technique to shoot clear pictures fromatelevision? Anand Ramaswami, Trichy, via email Before starting with shooting techniques, letus take a quick look at the technical side of atelevision. Every television has a certain frame refresh rate which species the time taken for a complete image to appear on the screen. Incase of traditional televisions, the refresh rate can vary from 24 to 30 frames per second, whereas in case of an LCD TV, this rate is much faster. The change happening on the screen is difcult for the human eye to perceive, but not for acamera. So, using a shutterspeed of 1/25 sec or 1/30 sec will ensure an unbroken image of the TV screen.

What is bracketing?
Bracketing is the the technique of shooting pictures with variation in a particular camera setting. Traditionally used with exposure settings, bracketing can also be used to bring variations in the WB and focus of the camera.

Portraits like these can be made even by using simple compact cameras that offer awideangleview.

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and hence is called a portrait lens. They are preferred because of the degree of shallow DOF that they offer. Having said that, even the kit lens of a DSLR or a compact camera can make great portraits, provided that you learn to work with limitations like shorter focal lengths and narrow apertures. ShallowDOF is not the benchmark of a good portrait. You can convey a sense of place by using a wide focal length and including the environment.

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Special Lenses
Recently I came across the term portrait lens. What does this term mean? Also, is it possible to make good portraits without using a portrait lens? Priyanka Singh, Noida, via email Any lens with a eld of view between 70mm and 130mm (in 35mm parlance), and a reasonably wide aperture opening, is ideal for portraiture,

Long Exposure Aftermath


Very recently, I came across a blog post that said that while making long exposure shots, the image sensor heats up. The post went on to say that the sensorcould suffer permanent damage if the exposure duration is beyond a limit. Is this true? Sudarshan Trivedi, Surat, via post The post that you read is partly true, butmisleading. While the sensor does heat up

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Time-lapse Photography?
Time-lapse photography refers to shooting multiple images of a constant frame after regular intervals of time. Using time-lapse photography, one can capture the gradual change or progress in a subject and its environment, that happens over a period of time. The end result can be a series of images, a stop-motion video or even a single merged image of the event you shot. suchchanges. Before deciding on your subject, have a clear idea on the duration of the event you want to shoot. balance and shooting mode throughout theseries. Finally, always remember that time-lapse photography is only a technique that you can use to complement a wide array of creative ideas.

The Technical Side


Most of the videos we usually see are played at a speed of 2430 frames per second. Forexample, If you want to create a video with a duration of 30 seconds at a frame rate of 24fps, you are going to need a total of 720 images. Themore number of frames you add, the smoother your video playback will be. Even though many high end DSLRs offer time-lapse shooting mode, one can practice this technique even with a simple compact camera. Make sure that you stick to using a single white

Capturing Time Progression


Documenting the change in your subjects has never been easier with the advent of digital cameras. With the right choice of subjects and a tripod, anyone can create wonderful time-lapse works that depict

Geraint Otis Warlow

Four different images, shot at regular intervals of time, were merged to make the above photograph.
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Need for Postprocessing


The December 2012 edition of BP had published the news of a photographer who was stripped of his title as the winner of a photo contest, fordigital manipulation. I would like to know if postprocessing is against photography ethics. Nandita Bhattacharya, Kolkata, via email Unlike what people think, postprocessing is not restricted to the digital age. Even during the lm camera era, developing the lm in a darkroom for a nal output was a necessity. However, the extent to which images have been processed has always raised questions on the ethics of photography. Whileit can help in enhancing the look and feel of an image, editing and extreme manipulation of pictures is considered unethical in certain photography competitions and genres likephotojournalism. You are always free to explore the vast possibilities of postprocessing in terms of ne art photography. However,when documenting an event or a situation, theresultant images are expected to depict the reality and truth. Always remember that processing is a technique that can be used when necessary, but it is not anecessity itself in the modern day. Hence, consider the end result and your target audience before deciding the extent to which you are going to process your images.

Send in your queries to Better Photography. If your letter wins Question of the Month, you stand to win a Lexar 8GB 100x SDHC media card!

Similar images can be made with exposure durations of several hours without any damage to the camera. 102

when subjected to long exposures, this only results in excessive noise in your images even if the ISO used is low. Onewill only make long exposures in conditions where the available light is very less... and less light means less heat in the atmosphere preventing the sensor from heating up beyond a point. Even if your

exposure lasts for a few hours, chances of your equipment suffering any damages are highlyunlikely.

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Annoying Distractions
I recently noticed small black spots on all my photographs. The dots are a huge distraction in some of my pictures. Whatcould be wrong with my equipment? Bhavik Choudary, Pune, via email Black spots or dust orbs start appearing on images as a result of dust accumulation on the camera sensor. One way to prevent this is to make sure that the camera is facing downwards while mounting and dismounting the lens. Despite your best efforts, when shooting at places like beaches or playgrounds, dust might still settle on the sensor. Such spots are more visible in pictures shot at narrow apertures. Mostcameras also come bundled with a sensor cleaning feature, which, while useful, may not be completely effective in eliminating dust. After using this feature, you may still need to carefully clean the sensor using specially designed brushes. But,since manually cleaning the sensor involves risk of damaging it, the best way to get this done would be through an authorised servicecentre.

What does the term exposure triangle refer to?


The exposure of an image depends on three factorsISO, shutterspeed and aperture. Since a triangle is the easiest way to keep these points in mind while shooting, it is called an exposuretriangle.

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Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

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He is a Syrian photographer, born in Damascus in 1973. He has a Bachelors degree in Fine ArtsVisual Communication from the University of Damascus. Jabers view of photography is that the challenges that come with creating the work should be resolved before releasing the shutter. He is also passionate about painting. 104

Jaber Alazmeh

In Metaphors, Jaber has attempted to recreate the Syrian landscape through the lines created by the body of the horse.
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Shahidul Alam on what drives hiswork

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Furqan Khan shares his love for the Ladakh landscape

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A selection P Rof Of I L E our readers best photographs

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Metaphors, Traces and Wounds

Jaber Al Azmeh takes Conchita Fernandes on a journey to Syria, where he depicts the countrys duality with the help of his photographs.

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magine having to leave everything behind and relocate to a new place. When Jaber Al Azmeh ed from Syria, he took with him his images that best reminded him of a place he had called home for most of his life. Despitemoving, he was rm about showing the world the Syria that he grew up in.

Creating from Visual Memory


In Metaphors, Jaber has acted on his visual memory to create a reection of the valleys, hills and horizons of the scenery through the body lines of horses. However, this reection is not something that strikes you immediately when you see the series. Whenasked about this, Jaber simply said
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106 In Traces, Jaber has managed to capture symmetry in the oddest of places. that he wanted to bring out something beyond what there was to see. To those who know the Syrian terrain and landscape well, Metaphors will not appear to be a stark contrast in terms of subject matter. he has investigated the rubble and ruin in Syria. This series was created well before the Syrian Revolution which broke out in 2011, and he felt that in a way, the series served as a kind of prelude to Wounds. Jaber has managed to weave beautiful stories of people that lay beneath the surface of Syrias landscape through old run-down doors and metal scraps. At the time I made Traces, everyone still existed

The Other Side of Syria


After the elegance and grace of Metaphors, Jaber transports you to a landscape that was once beautiful. It is through Traces that

GADgEts & GEAR Jaber has worked with a range of cameras, namely, the Minolta X-700, Yashica 6x6, the Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III among many others. However, he does not really have any kind of attachments when it comes to camera gear.

Through rundown buses and metal scraps, Jaber has portrayed waste in a visually compelling manner.
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The situation in Syria is such that the feelings associated with it have a different sense of urgency.

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Through dilapidated objects, Jaber has thrown a different light on the Syrian landscape. in a state where speaking out was not an option. In a way, Traces was like the quiet before the storm. through the deliberate use of the colours black and red. He also features himself quite prominently in these images. Unfortunately, while he was in the process of creating Wounds, he had to ee the country. Speaking out about your political opinions in Syria was unheard of in the past. Suddenly, when you are surrounded by people speaking out, it is a

Despite its rundown nature, the image manages to capture the subjects unique and once beautiful past.

Turmoil and Hopelessness


Jaber then brings the Syrian storm to you through his most striking work, Wounds, where he has managed to capture the feelings of hope, freedom and struggle

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If there is no idea, there can be nophotograph.

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This image reects the people of Syria and their pain and struggle ghting the revolution.

surreal and overwhelming experience. The series therefore became an enactment of the emotions of the individuals who chose to participate in the revolution. In terms of technique, he has used one source of red light and a very slow shutterspeed to create multiple black shadows of human gures with several exposures and prefers to keep his work as close to his original concept as possible.

What the Future Holds


As the events surrounding the revolution escalated, Jaber found himself morph

from being merely a social observer to being a social activist. This metamorphosis culminated into a photo series, A Small Group of Syrians which is at its nal stage. The photographs records people from the intellectual and creative sphere of Syria, summing up their visions, hopes and aspirations for the revolution. It is very apparent that Jaber is driven by what affects him the most. Which is why all of his work revolves around his country. He believes that his home country will continue to be his muse for sometime, at least. When a country is so rich in history

T i Ps BY JA B E R Do not get carried away in the process of imagemaking. Rather, concentrate on the people or theme you are representing. The camera has a very small role to play; it is your eye and mind that you should really invest in.

Here, he has tried to be very symbolic and has portrayed creation, while still managing to associate it with the bloody revolution.
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Contemporary art is actually the social commentary of our time.

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This image brings out the hopes and aspirations of the Syrian people despite their ongoing struggle. and culture, the stories that emerge from it and its people are endless. It is very unfortunate when the work you have created goes unnoticed by the very people who you have represented in your photographs. Jaber remains hopeful about exhibiting his work in Syria, in the near future. I think it is only then, what he set out to do will reach a complete circle. To see more of Jabers photographs, you can visit his website www.jaberalazmeh.com 109

Jaber has managed to cleverly use the colours black and red to emphasise extreme human emotions.

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This is Khaleda Zia at a pre-election rally, Manik Mia Avenue, Dhaka, in 1991. Thiswas before Zia was elected as the Prime Minister. She was also the rst female PM of thecountry.
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G R E AT M AST E RS

Shahidul Alam

Photographer, curator, writer, activistShahidul Alam is a man who dons many garbs. Ambarin Afsar interviews one of the worlds most inuential photographers in an attempt to discover what drives him.

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A woman wades through ooded streets near Kamlapur Railway station, Dhaka, Bangladesh. This was in 1988, during one of the worst oods of the lastcentury.
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G R E AT M AST E RS

Made in Gaforgoan, Bangladesh, 1988, this image shows ood victims who have not eaten for three days. They are waiting in the rain for relief wheat, wondering if it will runout.

hat is the difference between a good photographer and a great photographer? Agood photographer is someone who can speak clearly and crisply through his images. Agreat photographer, on the other hand, is someone who not only makes himself heard, but also inuences some sort of change in the functioning of the world around him.

social justice... I think that is what holds everything together for me. Photographyis not something I worship. I am very fond of the medium, but if tomorrow, it ceases to be effective, I would have no qualms giving it up and picking up any other tool, be it picking up a gun. Iam a pacist, but if resistance of a physical nature is required, Iwill resist by a physical nature.

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The Changebringer
I made a trip to the tumultous, vibrant city of Dhaka, Bangladesh with the intention of meeting one such personality. ShahidulAlam, 57, is the founder of a photo agency, Drik, a photo school, Pathshala, a photo collective, Majority World, and a photo festival, Chobi Mela. I see my role more as a catalyst in various spaces, as opposed to being someone who makes the change himself. What I am looking for is being able to strategically intervene in places where Ican perhaps change the coursebe it of the photographic mindset, legal reforms, structural changes within the system and certainly, political changes.

The Resistance of the Majority World


The reason why Drik, Pathshala and Majority World came about is because Alam felt he was waging a war on mindsets, against biases. I needed soldiers, and Ineeded a battleground. A woman raises her st at a rally at Shahid Minar (Martyrs Tomb), Dhaka, in 1994.

In a country where most people can neither read nor write, A Relentless Drive images remain a Amongst various roles and initiatives that powerful tool of change with time, there needs to be one communication. constant in his life. A relentless drive for
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A girl looks on from an earthquake-stricken area of Pakistanoccupied, Kashmir, in2005.

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G R E AT M ASTERS

115 Political repression is accompanied by fanaticism, says Alam. This is at the Bishsho Istema, at Tongi, Gazipur, Bangladesh in 1989. It is now the worlds second largest religious gathering of Muslims. Alam comes from a country that was classied as a part of the Third World, aworld that he has long since christened the Majority World. While we may not use the term Third World any more, all the replacement terms reected the same Western bias that classied a country based on what it lacked, rather than on the basis of what it possesed. My term highlights that we are, indeed, the majority of humankind. photographer and the least knowledgeable is the photo editor from, say, New York Times. The person who is the most powerful in the entire chain! So these power dynamics needs to change for imagery to change. I realised that in a world where the dialogue is constantly changing, Alam and everyone with him are on the brink of a very crucial movement. We have divided ourselves, our issues, our ethos, our pathos, and even our ways of seeing the world. Nowis the time to erase distinctions of third and other. Now is the time for us to speak, and for us to listen.

A Bias Inuenced by the West


In terms of the aesthetic, there is also an inherent bias in the way in which photographers in Asia and the majority world countries approach a certain issue. There is a very interesting statement by Stuart Hall that goes, A black man with a black camera will not necessarily make black pictures. So it is not the colour of my skin that determines what I do, it is my politics.

This was on 10 November 1987, Dhaka Siege Day. Motijheel,the commercial centre, was empty as opposition parties united to oust adictator.

A Market that Demands Certain Imagery

I look back and merely feel the ineffectuality of my images.


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There is another reason for the building of stereotypes. The photographer is still driven by market forces. When a Bangladeshi is photographing a villager in Bangladesh about farming issues, the most knowledgeable person in this case is the farmer. The next, perhaps, is the

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A selection of some of the best images from the Indian mainstream media

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Satyajit Desai,
Mid Day

The King of Hearts


A large crowd gathers outside Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khans home in Mumbai to wish him on his birthday on 2 November. The image is a wonderful representation of how fans go out of their bounds to capture a glimpse of their favourite idols.

Justice Delivered
People outside Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), Mumbai, put up an efgy of Ajmal Kasab, who was nally hanged for his role in the 26/11 terror attacks. Thephotographer has captured a scene that serves as a closure to all those affected by the attacks. Kalpak Pathak,
Hindustan Times
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Saying Goodbye
Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray was cremated at Shivaji Park in Mumbai on 18 November 2012. Here, his son Uddhav is seen performing the last rites. By including Bal Thackerays image in the background, the photographer has captured a sorrowful moment between a son and his late father. Bipin Kokate,
Mid Day

An Oasis of Lights
This wide angle shot of the illuminated Gurudwara Bangla Sahib in New Delhi makes for a stunning image on the auspicious eve of Gurpurab. Celebrated on 28 November this year, Gurpurab marks the birthday of Guru Nanak Dev and is an important day in the Sikh calendar. 117 Vipin Kumar,
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FeATuRe

Furqan Khan is an Udaipurbased landscape photographer. Hisunending love for travel takes him to Ladakh time and again. Healso enjoys shooting monuments in different parts of India.

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Exploring the Unexplored


Furqan Khan throws some light on Ladakhs beautiful landscape and elaborates on his love affair with the regions glorious vistas.

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adakh is famous for its rugged, colourful and barren landscapes. Around 15 years ago, certain portions of its land were opened to the public, and since then, Ladakh has become a major tourist attraction. Now people are able to enjoy its mystical festivals and breathtaking landscapes. Ladakh receives heavy snowfall in the month of November, which sometimes stretches up to March. Most tourists visit

the region during this time. A thick white sheet covers the entire scenery and gives an impression of lifeless habitat. Duringthis period, Mother Nature manifests itself in many beautiful ways, from snow-covered peaks to crystal clear skies. However, I have tried to capture this mesmerising land through continuous pursuit of its snow-clad terrain and shooting its landscape through variousdimensions. My focus was to
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P H O T O F E AT U R E The large vistas of the Ladakh landscape are a delight to shoot. Thepresence of people in this photo convey the grandeur of the place.

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120 I keep an eye out for natural formations like this, where the snow and the stones complement theblue sky.

shoot frames created by nature and showcase the lands pristine beauty. Due to the different weather conditions and the ever-increasing human activity, the landscape is constantly changing

itscharacter. Yet, each time, the place exudes a sense of calm, that transports me to a place, not far from home. It is no wonder I nd myself in this haven, on several occasions.

Two Ladakhi women make their way through a road deserted because of military activity.

Ladakh is often covered in a blanket of snow, which is considered its unique identity.
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Photographing Ladakh is quite a challenge. The landscape can be as unforgiving as it is breathtaking.

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Tips on Photographing Snow


The manner in which the houses are fenced, form a beautiful patternamongst a blanket of snow.
For perfectly exposed snow photographs, boost your cameras exposure compensation by one stop. Alternatively, use the cameras Snow mode. A complete whitewash will not make for a very appealing photograph. Include elements like barren trees, foliage or rocks in your snow photographs to make the frame stand out. Avoid using ash when photographing snowfall. Theash light will reect off the snowakes, making it look like you have shot white blobs!

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Y ourPictures
The Garden Ant
Ramkumar S, Pilani
I happened to see an ant in the garden. My curiosity led me to follow it through its way. After a few pictures, the ant crawled upon a ower and Imade this photograph. Camera: Nikon D5100 Aperture: f/11 Shutterspeed: 1/50sec ISO: 100

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Want your photographs showcased? Send in your photographs to


The Editor, Better Photography, Network18 Publishing, Ruby House, A Wing, J K Sawant Marg, Dadar (W) Mumbai-400 028, India Email: entries@betterphotography.in

Yellow Wonder
Sunny Kharwa, Vadodara
This marigold was in its last stage of life. Interestingly, most yellow petals had feathered away in a symmetrical pattern. Ifound this quite unique and photographed it. Camera: Canon EOS 550D Aperture: f/4.5 Shutterspeed: 1/40sec ISO: 100

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Colour Bloom
Arun S N, Hassan
Photographing owers can become mundane, and it can be a task to make interesting frames. Ithought this frame worked well since the ower looked pleasing against an entirely greenbackdrop. Camera: Canon EOS 550D Aperture: f/2.8 Shutterspeed: 1/200sec ISO: 100

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A Colour Abstract
Muhammed Sa, Malappuram
Instead of capturing the entire ower in the frame, Iopted to make a close-up. The varied colours and the water droplets on the petals made the picture look like anabstract. Camera: Canon EOS 1000D Aperture: f/5.7 Shutterspeed: 1/60sec ISO: 100

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In Lotus Land
Alan Varghese, Thiruvananthapuram
The leaves in the background were dark and each lotus ower looked as though it had been lit by professional lights. Theentire image gives out a feeling as though it was shot in astudio. Camera: Canon EOS 1000D Aperture: f/8 Shutterspeed: 1/500sec ISO: 200

125

Vintage Nature
Sourav Majumder, New Delhi
When I made the picture, I noticed how the sunlight created a are near the edge of the frame. Toenhance the are and make the image more interesting, I added a retro effect to it. Camera: Samsung ES10 Aperture: f/4.8 Shutterspeed: 1/350sec ISO: 100

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S INDiA HENSiVE E R P M DE CO S Gui R BuYE

BuyersGuide
Sensor Size (mm) Shutterspeed (sec) Weight (Grams) Resolution (MP) Lens Thread Sensor Type IsO Range Breadth Length Height Width 10.1 12.2 18 20.2 18 18 18 22 22 18 18 18 16.3 16.3 12.1 12.3 14.2 24.2 24.5 16.2 16.2 24.1 24.3 12.1 16.2 36.3 36.3 12.3 10.1 10.1 12.3 12.3 12.3 12.3 16 16 12.1 12.1 16 14.6 22.2 22 22.3 35.8 22.3 22.3 22.3 36 36 22.3 36 22.3 23.6 23.6 36 23.6 23.1 23.1 35.9 36 23.6 23.5 35.9 36 23.6 35.9 35.9 23.6 13.2 13.2 18 18 18 18 18 17.3 17.3 12.1 17.3 23.4 14.8 14.7 14.9 CMOS CMOS CMOS 100-1600 100-3200 100-6400 30-1/4000 30-1/4001 30-1/4000 Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF Canon EF-M Fujilm X Fujilm X Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon F Nikon CX Nikon CX Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Micro Four Thirds Samsung NX Mount 450 495 530 675 675 515 575 850 950 820 NA 262 350 450 1240 840 455 505 1260 1340 509 505 850 995 690 1000 1000 620 277 383 265 313 369 344 425 392 265 267 272 353 126.1 97.5 129.9 99.7 128.8 97.5 23.9 CMOS 14.9 14.9 14.9 24 24 14.9 24 14.9 15.6 15.6 CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS 100-25600 30-1/4000 100-6400 100-6401 100-6400 30-1/8000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 144.5 110.5 144.5 105.8 133.1 133.1 152 152 133.1 99.8 114 116.4

Cameras
Interchangeable Lens Camera
Price-Body only (Rs.) These cameras offer serious enthusiasts many features like speed, great image quality, and the option of changing lenses. Dimensions (mm) Storage Media Camera Name Review Month Sep 08 May 11 May 10 Jan 11 Jun 10 Sep 12 Mar 09 Jun 12 Dec 09 Jun 12 Jan 10 Nov 09 Nov 10 July 12 Mar 09 May 12 Jun 11 Nov 12 Oct 08 Jan11 Dec 08 Jun 12 Sep 10 Aug 09 July 12 May 12 Aug 10 MicroDrive Rating (%) 86 88 86 87 82 81 87 90 93 90 95 91 90 83 96 93 83 87 90 91 90 85 75 87 80 85 79 CF Type II Micro SD CF Type I

Depth

SDHC

MMC

SD

Canon EOS 1000D Canon EOS 1100D Canon EOS 550D Canon EOS 6D Canon EOS 60D Canon EOS 600D Canon EOS 650D Canon EOS 5D Mark II Canon EOS 5D Mark III Canon EOS 7D Canon EOS 1D X Canon EOS M Fujilm X-E1 Fujilm X-Pro1 Nikon D3S Nikon D300S Nikon D3100 Nikon D3200 Nikon D3X Nikon D4 Nikon D5100 Nikon D5200 Nikon D600 Nikon D700 Nikon D7000 Nikon D800 Nikon D800E Nikon D90 Nikon 1 J1 Nikon 1 V1 Olympus PEN E-PM1 Olympus PEN E-PL3 Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-PL1 Olympus OM-D E-M5

25,295 K 29,990 K 30,995 1,24,995 56,295 35,990 55995 1,27,000 2,06,950 87,995 4,29,995 49,995 72,009 1,04,999 2,89,950 84,950 24,250 32,250 5,24,950 3,49,950 34,450 41,450 135,950 1,29,950 64,450 1,69,950 1,84,950 43,450 24,950K 38,950K 24,990 K 34,990 K 41,990 K 22,990 K 66,990

61.9 77.9 75.3 71.2 78.6 79.7 78.8 75 76.4 73.5 82.7 32.3 38.3 42.5 87.5 74 74.5 76.5 88 90.5 78.7 78 82 77 77 81.5 81.5 77 29.8 43.5 34 37.3 34.3 41.5 43 75.8 32.8 37 39 39.8

100-25600 30-1/8000 100-25600 30-1/8000 200-6400 100-51200 100-12800 200-6400 200-6400 30-1/8000 30-1/8000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000

148.2 110.7 158 163.6

108.6 66.5 129 74.9

139.5 81.8 159.5 157 147 124 125 160 160 128 129 141 147 132 146 146 132 106 113 114 96 96 157 156.5 96.9 98 113 123 105 123 123 103 61 76

23.9 CMOS 15.8 15.4 15.4 24 CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS

200-12800 30-1/8000 200-6400 100-3200 100-6400 100-3200 100-12800 100-6400 100-6400 100 - 6400 200-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-3200 100-3200 30-1/8000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/8000 30-1/8000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/8000 30-1/8000 30-1/8000 30-1/8000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000

23.9 CMOS 15.6 15.6 24 CMOS CMOS CMOS

23.9 CMOS 15.6 24 24 15.8 8.8 8.8 13.5 13.5 13.5 13.5 13.5 13 13 13.0 13 15.6 CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS CMOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS Live MOS CMOS

200-12800 60-1/4000 200-12800 60-1/4000 200-12800 60-1/4000 200-12800 60-1/4000 200-12800 60-1/4000 160-12800 100-6400 100-6400 160-12800 100-3200 60-1/4000 60-1/4000 60-1/4000 60-1/4000 30-1/4000

109.5 63.7 109.5 63.7 122 114.6 122 124 69.1 72.2 89 89.6

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GH2 1,09,990 Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GF2 29,990 Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GF5 40,990 Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GX1 45,900 K Samsung NX10 44,990 K

112.8 67.8 108 116 123 67 68 87

BP Recommended, NA: Not Applicable, NR: Not Reviewed, K: Price with Kit Lens (Mount C: Canon, M: Minolta, N: Nikon, Q: Manual Film Cameras, S: Sigma, So: Sony, X: Fujilm)
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Using the BP Buyers Guide:

This directory is a handy reference to more than 500 products from 15 manufacturers currently available in the Indian market. You will nd information on various cameras, lenses, ashes, tripods, and tripod heads. If you wish to read in-depth reviews of these products, refer to the Review Month. Products have been listed in an alphabetical order for easy reference, and all the relevant information related to the product category is available alongside.

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500+ PRODUCTS LISTED HERE


Storage Media Review Month Aug 12 Review Month May 12 Dec 10 Dec 11 MicroDrive Rating (%) 84 Rating CF Type II Micro SD

Interchangeable Lens Camera


Price-Body only (Rs.) Resolution (MP) Camera Name

DLSRs offer serious enthusiasts a host of shooting features, speed, good image quality, and the option of changing lenses. Dimensions (mm) Weight (Grams)

Shutterspeed (sec)

Sensor Size (mm) Sensor Type

Lens Thread

IsO Range

CF Type I

Breadth

Breadth

Length

Length

Height

SDHC

Sony Alpha 37 Sony Alpha 57 Sony Alpha 65 Sony Alpha 77 Sony Alpha 99 Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony Alpha NEX-7

35,990 K 45,990 K 59, 990 K 69,990 1,79,270 19,990 K 24,990 K 79,990 K

16.1 16.1 24.3 24.3 24.3 14.2 14.2 24.3

23.4 23.5 23.5 23.5 35.8 23.4 23.4 23.4

15.6 15.6 15.6

CMOS CMOS CMOS

100-16000 100-12800 100-16000 100-16000

30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000

Sony A Sony A Sony A Sony A Sony A Sony E Sony E Sony E

448 539 543 653 812 297 287 291

124.4 92 132.1 132.1 97.5 97.5

84.7 80.7 80.7 80.9 78 33 38 42.6

25.6 CMOS 23.8 CMOS 15.6 15.6 15.6 CMOS CMOS CMOS

142.6 104 147 117 111 119.9 111 63 59 66.9

100-25600 30-1/8000 200-12800 30-1/4000 200-12800 30-1/4000 100-16000 30-1/4000

Advanced Compact Camera

A bridge between DSLRs and compact cameras, these cameras allow you to shoot in RAW and/or have a hot shoe for an external ashgun. Focal Range in mm (35mm equivalent) Maximum Image Size Sensor Size (Inches) Storage Media Shutter Speed (Sec) External Hot shoe

Aperture Range

Resolution (MP)

Breadth (Pixels)

Length (Pixels)

Camera Name

Raw Shooting

Memory Stick

MS Pro Duo

Price (Rs.)

CF Type II

CF Type I

Battery

SDHC

MMC

IsO

SD

xD

MMC

SD

Canon Powershot G1X Canon PowerShot G12 Canon PowerShot SX40HS Canon PowerShot SX30 IS Fujilm FinePix HS20EXR Fujilm X10 Fujilm X-S1 Fujilm FinePix X100 Nikon COOLPIX P7100 Olympus XZ-1

47,995 31,995 22,995 24,995 26,999 44,999 59,999 76,999 22,950 26,990

14.3 10 12.1 14.1 16 12 12 12.3 10.1 10.1 14.1 14.1 10.1 20.2

4352 3648 4000 4320 4608 4000 4000 4288 3648 3648 4320 4320 3648 5472

2904 2736 3000 3240 3456 3000 3000 2848 2736 2736 3240 3240 2736 3648

1.5 1/1.7

28-112 28-140 24-120

100-12800 80-3200 100-3200 80-1600 100-12800 100-3200 100-3200 100-12800 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 80-12,800 80-6400

60-1/4000 15-1/4000 15-3200 15-1/3200 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 60-1/4000 60-1/200 60-1/2000 60-1/2000 60-1/4000 30-1/2000

f/2.8-16 f/2.8-8 f/2.7-8 f/2.7-8 f/2.8-5.6 f/2-2.8 F/2.8-11 f/2 f/2.8 - 8 f/1.8-2.5 f/2.8-5.2 f/2.8-5.2 f/2-8 f/1.8-f/11

Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No Yes No

Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion

84 86 85

175

1/2.3 1/2 2/3 2/3 APS-C 1/1.7 1/1.63 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1

24-840 24-720 28-112 24-624 35 28-200 28-112 25-600 25-600 24-90 28-100

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ40 20,990 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 29,990 Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 29,990 34,990

A Few Things to Think of Before You Buy


1. 2. 3. 4. Always remember that your cameras, lenses and accessories are all tools: The picture is eventually made by you. Perfect composition, using light well, and capturing just the right moment is far more important than the kind of camera you use. Some of the worlds most renowned photographers use very basic equipment to capture the most beautiful frames. The photography you do most dictates the kind of equipment you buy: There is no reason to purchase equipment for things you intend to do in the future or just because it seems to be a good buy. Photographic equipment improves in quality and technology every few months. When you feel continuously constrained by what you have: First, try moving beyond your constraints by using every possible feature and function of your existing equipment, and by being creative. Once you exhausted your options, it is time to make your next purchase. Spend on the right accessories: While you can make your own accessories, some of them are quite important for a serious photographer. For instance, spend on a light but sturdy tripod, or a good set of creative lters, or a small ashgun, or a lenshood. They will radically improve your photography and offer you a range of creative techniques you can try out with them.

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Basic Compact Camera
This compact shooting device offers automation and numerous creative features for basic, everyday shooting situations. Maximum Image Size Sensor Size (Inches) Storage Media Focal Range in mm (35mm equivalent) Shutter Speed (Sec) Breadth (Pixels) Aperture Range Resolution (MP) Length (Pixels) Camera Name Review Month Memory Stick MS Pro Duo Price (Rs.) IsO Range

CF Type II

CF Type I

Battery

Canon Digital IXUS 115 HS Canon Digital IXUS 1100 HS Canon Digital IXUS 125 HS Canon Digital IXUS 220 HS Canon Digital IXUS 230 HS Canon Digital IXUS 240 HS Canon Digital IXUS 310 HS Canon Digital IXUS 510 HS Canon PowerShot A1200 Canon PowerShot A2200 Canon PowerShot A2300 Canon PowerShot A2400 IS Canon PowerShot A3200 IS Canon PowerShot A3300 IS Canon PowerShot A3400 IS Canon PowerShot A4000 IS Canon PowerShot A800

8,495 12,995 16995 10,995 13,995 18995 10,995 22,995 4,495 5,495 6995 7995 5,995 7,495 9995 11995 3,995 5995 9,995 19,995 22,995 5,499 5,999 5,499 6,499

12.1 12.1 16.1 12.1 12.1 16.1 12.1 10.1 12.1 14.1 16 16 14.1 16 16 16 10 16 14.1 12.1 12.1 14 14 14 14 12 12

4000 4000 4608 4000 4000 4608 4000 3648 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 4000 3648 4000 4000 4000 4000 4288 4288 4288 4288 4000 4000 4608 4608 4608 4608 4608 4288 4288 4288 4288 4000 4288 4288 4288 4288

3000 3000 2592 3000 3000 2592 3000 2048 3000 3240 3456 3456 3240 3456 3456 3456 2736 3456 3240 3000 3000 3216 3216 3216 3216 3000 3000 3456 3456 3456 3456 3456 3216 3216 3216 3216 3000 3216 3216 3216 3216

1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3

28-112 28-336 24-120 24-120 28-224 24-120 24-105 28-336 28-112 28-112 28-140 28-140 28-140 28-140 28-140 28-224 37-122 28-140 28-336 28-392 28-392 32-96 33-165 33-165 27-270 27-270 24-360 24-360 24-360 24-360 24-720 24-720 36-108 28-140 26-130 25-200 28-504 28-504 28-504 24-624 24-720

80-1600 100-1600 100-3200 100-1600 100-1600 100-3200 100-3200 100-3200 80-1600 80-1600 100-1600 100-1600 80-1600 80-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-800 100-1600 80-1600 100-3200 100-3200 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-3200 100-3200 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 64-1600 100-1600 64-1600 100-1600 64-1600 64-1600

1-1/1500 1-1/4000 15-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 15-1/2000 1-1/1600 15-1/4000 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 15-1/2000 15-1/2000 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 15-1/2000 15-1/2000 1-1/2000 15-1/2000 1-1/2500 1-1/3200 1-1/3200 8-1/1400 8-1/1400 8-1/1400 8-1/1400 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 30-1/4000 30-1/4000 8-1/1400 8-1/1800 8-1/1400 8-1/2000 8-1/200 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000

f/2.8-8 f/3.4-6.3 f/2.7-17 f/2.7-8 f/3-9 f/2.7-17 f/2-8 f/3.4-9 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-20 f/2.8-20 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-20 f/3-18 f/3-9 f/2.8-20 f/2.8-8 f/3.1-8 f/3.1-8 f/2.9-5.2 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.6 f/3.5-5.3 f/3.5-5.3 f/3.5-5.3 f/3.5-5.3 f/2.8-5.6 f/2.8-5.6 f/2.9-5.2 f/2.6-6.2 f/3.5-6.3 f/2.9-5.9 f/3.1-5.6 f/3.1-5.6 f/3.1-5.6 f/3.1-5.9 f/3.1-5.9

Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA AA AA AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA AA AA AA AA

176

Canon PowerShot A810 Canon PowerShot SX150 IS Canon PowerShot SX240 HS Canon PowerShot SX260 HS Fujilm FinePix AV200 Fujilm FinePix AX300 Fujilm FinePix AX500 Fujilm FinePix AX550 Fujilm FinePix F80EXR Fujilm FinePix F300EXR Fujilm FinePix F500EXR Fujilm FinePix F550EXR Fujilm FinePix F600EXR Fujilm FinePix HS20EXR Fujilm FinePix HS25EXR Fujilm FinePix JV200 Fujilm FinePix JX300 Fujilm FinePix JX500 Fujilm FinePix JZ100 Fujilm FinePix S2500HD Fujilm FinePix S2950 Fujilm FinePix S2980 Fujilm FinePix S3300 Fujilm FinePix S4000

18,999

16 16 16 16 16

6,499 7,499

14 14 14

8,499

14 12.2

10,999

14 14

15999 18,999

14 14

BP Recommended, NA: Not Applicable, NR: Not Reviewed, K: Price with Kit Lens (Mount C: Canon, M: Minolta, N: Nikon, Q: Manual Film Cameras, S: Sigma, So: Sony, X: Fujilm)
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Rating

SDHC

MMC

SD

xD

Basic Compact Camera


Camera Name

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This compact shooting device offers automation and numerous creative features for basic, everyday shooting situations. Sensor Size (Inches) Shutter Speed (Sec) Maximum Image Size Breadth (Pixels) Resolution (MP) Length (Pixels) Storage Media Aperture Range Review Month Focal Range in mm (35mm equivalent) Memory Stick Price (Rs.) MS Pro Duo IsO Range CF Type II CF Type I Battery Rating SDHC MMC SD xD

Fujilm FinePix S4200 Fujilm FinePix S4500 Fujilm FinePix SL260 Fujilm FinePix SL300 Fujilm FinePix T200 Fujilm FinePix T350 Fujilm FinePix Z800EXR Fujilm FinePix Z900EXR Fujilm FinePix Real 3D W3 Nikon COOLPIX P500 Nikon COOLPIX P300 Nikon COOLPIX P310 Nikon COOLPIX P500 Nikon COOLPIX P510 Nikon COOLPIX P7000 Nikon COOLPIX P7100 Nikon COOLPIX P7700 Nikon COOLPIX S1200Pj Nikon COOLPIX S2500 Nikon COOLPIX S2600 Nikon COOLPIX S30 Nikon COOLPIX S100 Nikon COOLPIX S9100 Nikon COOLPIX S9200 Nikon COOLPIX S9300 Nikon COOLPIX S8200 Nikon COOLPIX S6200 Nikon COOLPIX S6300 Nikon COOLPIX S6400 Nikon COOLPIX S800c Nikon COOLPIX S8100 Nikon COOLPIX S6150 Nikon COOLPIX S4150 Nikon COOLPIX S4300 Nikon COOLPIX S3100 Nikon COOLPIX L120 Nikon COOLPIX L24 Nikon COOLPIX L23 Nikon COOLPIX L25 Nikon COOLPIX L26 Nikon COOLPIX L310 26,999 20,950 14,950 16,950 20,950 23,950 19,950 22,950 24,950 14,950 5,950 5,950 4,990 12,950 18,950 15,950 16,950 15,450 10,950 9,950 12,950 20,950 13,450 9,950 7,950 7,950 6,950 13,950 5,450 4,490 4,490 5,450 11,950 11,999

14 14 14 14 14 14 16 14 10 12.1 12.2 16.1 12.1 16.1 10.1 10.1 12.2 14.1 12 14 10.1 16 12.1 16 16 16.1 16 16 16 16 12.1 16 14 16 14.0 14.1 14.0 10.1 10.1 14.1 14

4288 4288 4288 4288 4288 4288 4608 4608 3648 4000 4000 4608 4000 4608 4608 3264 4000 4320 4000 4320 3648 4608 4000 4608 4608 4608 4608 4608 4608 4608 4000 4608 4320 4608 4320 4320 4320 3648 4000 4320 4320

3216 3216 3216 3216 3216 3216 3456 3456 2736 3000 3000 3456 3000 3456 3456 2448 3000 3240 3000 3240 2736 3456 3000 3456 3456 3456 3456 3456 3456 3456 3000 3456 3240 3456 3240 3240 3240 2736 3000 3240 3240

1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2 1/2 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/1.7 1/1.7 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1//3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.9 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3

24-576 24-720 24-720 24-576 24-720 28-280 28-140 35-175 35-105 22.5-810 24-100 24-100 22.5-810 24-1000 28-200 28-200 28-200 28-140 27-108 26-130 29.1-87.3 35-175 25-450 24-450 25-450 25-350 28-196 25-250 25-300 25-250 25-300 28-196 26-130 25-156 26-130 25-525 37-134 28-140 28-140 26-130 37-134

64-1600 64-1600 64-1600 64-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-3200 100-3200 100-1600 160-3200 160-3200 100-3200 160-3200 100-3200 100-6400 100-1600 80-3200 80-6400 80-3200 80-3200 80-1600 125-3200 160-3200 125-1600 125-1600 100-3200 80-3200 125--3200 125--3200 125--3200 160-3200 80-3200 80-3200 80-3200 80-3200 80-6400 80-1600 80-1600 80-1600 80-1600 80-1600

8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 8-1/2000 1-1/1000 2-1/1500 4-1/2000 1-1/2000 2-1/1500 1-1/4000 60-1/4000 1-1/4000 1-1/4000 1-1/1500

f/3.1-5.9 f/3.1-5.9 f/3.1-5.9 f/3.1-5.9 f/3.1-5.9 f/3.4-5.6 f/3.4-5.6 f/3.9-4.7 f/3.7-8 f/3.5-5.7 f/1.8-4.9 f/1.8-4.9 f/3.5-5.7 f/3-5.9 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-5.6 f/2-4 f/3.9-5.8 f/3.2-5.9

AA AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion

177

1-1//2000 1-1//2000 1-1/1500 1/1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/1600 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000

f/3.2-6.5 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.9-4.8 f/3.5-5.9 f/3.5-5.9 f/3.5-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.2-5.8 f/3.2-5.8 f/3.1-6.5 f/3.2-5.8 f/3.5-5.6

1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000

f/3.2-5.8 f/3.2-6.5 f/3.5-6.5 f/3.2-6.5 f/3.-5.8 f/3.1-6.7 f/2.7-6.8

Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion AA Li-ion AA Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion

1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000

f/2.7-6.8 f/3.2-6.5 f/3.1-6.7

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Basic Compact Camera
Camera Name This compact shooting device offers automation and numerous creative features for basic, everyday shooting situations. Sensor Size (Inches) Shutter Speed (Sec) Maximum Image Size Breadth (Pixels) Resolution (MP) Length (Pixels) Storage Media Aperture Range Review Month Focal Range in mm (35mm equivalent) Memory Stick Price (Rs.) MS Pro Duo IsO Range CF Type II CF Type I Battery Rating SDHC MMC

SD

Nikon COOLPIX L810 Nikon COOLPIX S01 Nikon COOLPIX AW100 Olympus SH-25MR Olympus SP-620UZ Olympus SP-720UZ Olympus SP-810UZ Olympus SZ-14 Olympus SZ-31MR Olympus VG-150 Olympus VG-160 Olympus VG-170 Olympus VR-350 Panasonic Lumix DMC-S1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-S3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH5

13,950 9,950 14,950 21,990 12,990 12,990 12,990 16,990 25,990 4,990 6,490 8,990 9,990 5,990 6,990 7,990 8,990 11,990 9,990 10,990 15,990 17,990 17,990 27,990 8,900 12,400 6,400 15,990 6,490 8,490 11,990 14,900 7,900 12,400 12,900 15,900

10.1 10.1 16 16 14 14 14 14 16.0 12 14 14 16 12.1 14.1 14.1 16.1 16.1 14.1 16.1 14.1 14.1 12.1 12.1 16 16 14 16.1 14.2 14.2 14.2 14.2 16.1 16 14.2 14.2 10.1 12.1 12.1

3648 3648 4608 4608 4320 4320 4320 4320 4608 4000 4320 4320 4608 4000 4320 4320 4608 4608 4320 4608 4320 4320 4000 4000 4608 4608 4320 4608 4320 4320 4320 4320 4608 4608 4320 4320 3648 4000 4000

2736 2736 3456 3456 3240 3240 3240 3240 3456 3000 3240 3240 3456 3000 3240 3240 3456 3456 3240 3456 3240 3240 3000 3000 3456 3456 3240 3456 3240 3240 3240 3240 3456 3456 3240 3240 2736 3000 3000

1/2.9 1/2.9 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3

28-140 29-87 28-140 24-300 25-525 26-676 24-864 25-600 25-600 27-108 26-130 26-130 24-240 28-112 28-112 28-112 28-112 28-224 35-140 35-140 28-448 29-464 24-120 28-128

80-1600 80-1600 125-3200 100-6400 80-1600 80-1600 80-1600 80-1600 80-6400 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-1600 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 100-6400 80-1600 80-3200

1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/1500

f/2.7-6.8 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.9-4.8

Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion

8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 8-1/1600 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/2000

f/3.1-6.5 f/3.1-6.5 f/3.1-6.5 f/3.1-6.5 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/2.5-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.5-5.9 f/2.5-6.3 f/3.5-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.5-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9 f/3.3-5.9

Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH25 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FP5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FP7 Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ18 Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX78 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3 Samsung DV100 Samsung DV300F Samsung ES90 Samsung MV800 Samsung PL20 Samsung PL120 Samsung PL210 Samsung SH100 Samsung ST66 Samsung ST200F Samsung WB150F Samsung WB700

27-135 26-130 27-135 26-130 27-270 26-130 26-416 24-384 25-500 27-870 36-105 35-105 28-112

80-3200 100-3200 80-1600 80-1600 80-3200 80-3200 80-3200 100-12800 100-12800 100-12800 100-3200 100-3200 100-3200

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-S2000 6,490 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-S2100 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W310 6,990 7,990

1-1/2000 1-1/2000 1-1/1600

f/3.1-5.6 f/3.1-5.6 f/3-5.8

AA AA Li-ion

UPDATED INDiAS MOST COMPREHENSiVE BuYERS GuiDE


BP Recommended, NA: Not Applicable, NR: Not Reviewed, K: Price with Kit Lens (Mount C: Canon, M: Minolta, N: Nikon, Q: Manual Film Cameras, S: Sigma, So: Sony, X: Fujilm)
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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W320 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W350

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9,990 14.1 4320 3240 1/2.3 26-105 80-3200 1-1/1600 f/2.7-5.7 Li-ion 11,990 12,990 14,990 22,990 14,990 13,990 12,990 14,990 24,990 13,990 14.1 14.1 10.2 10.2 10.2 14.1 14.1 14.1 9.1 16.1 18.2 18.2 18.2 14.1 14.1 14.1 16.1 16.1 16.1 18.2 18.2 4320 4320 4320 4608 4608 4608 4608 3240 3240 3240 3456 3456 3456 3456 4320 4320 3648 3648 3648 4320 4320 4320 3456 3240 3240 2736 2736 2736 3240 3240 3240 2592 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.4 1/2.4 1/2.4 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.4 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 1/2.3 26-105 26-105 35-140 25-100 24-120 24-120 34-238 25-250 28-560 28-140 28-140 25-500 27-870 28-140 28-140 28-140 25-250 25-125 26-156 25-125 25-125 80-3200 80-3200 125-3200 125-3200 160-3200 80-3200 80-3200 80-3200 125-3200 100-3200 100-3200 100-3200 80-3200 100-3200 100-3200 100-3200 80-3200 80-3200 80-3200 100-12800 100-12800 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 1-1/1600 2-1/1600 2-1/1600 2-1/1250 2-1/1600 2-1/1600 2-1/1600 2-1/1600 30-1/1600 1-1/4000 30-1/1600 30-1/1600 30-1/1600 30-1/4000 f/2.7-5.7 f/2.7-5.7 f/3.5-7.1 f/3.5-4.6 f/2.4-5.9 f/2.4-5.9 f/3.6-5.6 f/3.5-8 f/2.8-8 f/2.6-8 f/3.3-8 f/3.2-8 f/2.8-8 f/3.2-9.1 f/2.8-8 f/2.8-5.9 F2.6-8.0 f/2.6-3.6 f/2.6-8 f 2.6-6.3 f/3.2-3.3 Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion Li-ion 85 Aug 09 76 Apr 10 77 80 Dec 09 May 10

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W360 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX1 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX7 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX1 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W380 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W370 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H55 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX1 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H90

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX10V 17,990 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX20V Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX200V Sony Cyber-shot DSC-S5000/B Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W610 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W620 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W630 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W670 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W690 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX50 22,990 27,990 5,490 6,490 7,990 8,990 7,990 10,990 11,990

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX150 14,990

Camera Myths Busted!


The Best Cameras are the Most Expensive Ones: There is no best camera. Depending on the kind of photography you wish to do, a certain camera may be the most appropriate one for your needs. Higher the Megapixels, Better the Quality: A higher-megapixel camera is not
always better than a lower-megapixel one. The only thing that the megapixel count refers to, is the largest print size one can make using the camera. Even an 8MP camera is good enough to make an 12 X 18-inch print.

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There are times when simple facts about cameras and lenses are overlooked or misunderstood. We list out a few common myths that are often propagated by the marketing releases of camera manufacturers.
Digital is Better than Film... or Vice Versa: Both lm and digital have their
advantages. While lm offers better resolution and dynamic range, digital scores highly in terms of convenience and low light shooting.

Automatic Modes are Good Enough: Auto modes are reasonably intelligent and
can help make good pictures. However, if you wish to get really creative, you ought to look beyond the Auto mode.

Sensor Size Does Not Matter: A camera that has a larger sensor has larger pixel
sites, which basically ensures better quality, dynamic range, as well as better image quality at higher ISOsettings.

You Should Shoot Only in RAW: Shooting in RAW is a worthwhile option if you are able to spend a good amount of time, editing the images so that they can be converted to usable JPEG or TIFF les. Higher Frame Rates Are Needed for Action: You do not need an 8fps or 10fps to shoot sports and action. It is all about anticipation and timing. Moreover,the frame rate of a camera is not entirely indicative of its speed. Other factors like startup time, responsiveness, general ergonomics and AF speed are alsoimportant. You Need High Speed Storage: For most general users, even an Extreme III card is an overkill. Before you buy a new memory card, try borrowing memory cards of different speeds from friends. This will help you evaluate if a slower card really slows down your camera. Third-party Products are Inferior: Every company has some good and bad products. Sometimes, a third party lens may actually be superior to the one produced by the original camera company!

Compact Cameras Cannot Make Good Pictures: Some of the best photographs
in the world are shot with point-and-shoot cameras and even cell phones! Also,they are convenient and discreet.

Digital Zoom is Better: All that digital zoom does, is crop the image to a slightly closer frame, and interpolate causing a severe loss of image quality. Stabilisation Helps Shoot Sharper Images in Every Situation: Image Stabilisation
only reduces camera shake, and does not have any effect on motion blur. It does not freeze moving subjects.

You Need a High ISO Machine: If you are someone who enjoys shooting from dawn to dusk, an ISO setting up to 1600 is good enough for most situations.

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CaptiON This!

Provide a caption for this picture, photographed by Naveen Krishnan, to get a chance to win Camelion batteries and charger worth Rs.1455. The selected entry will be published in the February 2013 issue of BetterPhotography.

! N I W

Last months winning entry

The dancing shadows Sanil Churi via SMS

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Send your captions to


E-mail: entries@betterphotography.in, or SMS BP Jan <your caption> <your name> to 51818 (for eg. BP Jan The nerd from the wild Rahul Hota) Last date to receive entries

5 January 2013

B LO G O F T H E M O N T H

DId YOU KNOW?

Wonderful Images, Everywhere


Daily Walks is the creation of Diane Varner, an award-winning photoblogger. The blog is a visual journey of her everyday walks along the northern coast of California, USA. Her images range from stunning macros to dramatic landscapes and covers a wide variety of photography techniques. Through her simple, yet interesting, photographs, Diane stresses on bringing out the beauty in nature around her. She believes that the mundane becomes the magical through a camera. While text content on the blog has been kept to a bare minimum, the image count adds up to a few hundred, as she updates it on a regular basis. A simple slideshow of the images and a well arranged gallery makes for a great browsing experience. Also featured on the blog are postprocessing techniques that she uses to enhance her pictures. The blog is an interesting read for anyone wanting tips on photographing their everyday lives.
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Amusing Cat Photograph Date Back to the 1870s


Funny pictures of cats with quirky captions have quickly become viral on the internet in the recent past. Apparently, this is nothing new. In the 1870s, English photographer Harry Pointer was one of the rst photographers to capture images of cats in amusingposes. He began his career making natural pictures of cats, but soon changed his technique after realising that his photography had more success when the cats were in ridiculous poses. He even added captions to the images as he found this made the photos more successful. By1872, he came up with a series called The Brighton Cats that consisted of over 100 images of his pet cats which were exhibited all over London and Ireland.
Source: Wikimedia Commons

www.dianevarner.com

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DIFFERENT STROkEs

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FUcHs

All-in-One Photography

magine being able to do nature photography, tourism photography, portrait photography, photojournalism, architecture photography, and wildlife photography, all within three hours. Where can one do that? Easy. The Mumbai-Pune highway. Rarely has three hours of driving offered so much of beauty, social realism, and mayhem. The Mumbai-Pune highway itself is not more than 100 kilometers, but add the ride out of Colaba in Mumbai and the entry into Pune, and the ride will be closer to 150 kilometers. I have had the pleasure of having been driven the Mumbai-Pune highway on numerous occasions. During the monsoon. Leaving Mumbai, one passes by the classically built, the newly built, and the illegally built. If one wants to do some serious tourism photography mixed with photojournalism and architecture photography (a rather unusual combination indeed), all this can be done during the rst hour while leaving Mumbai. More, if there are trafc queues, a rather likely possibility. See how people change with the architecture, and see how the trafc changes (well, actually, the trafc seems to be the one thing constant here). See how cars with Gujarati license plates get stopped by the police while other cars whisk by. And see the diversity of the people. It is all like some kind of ethnological confetti. Take photos of it and you have enough for a book on Mumbai today. Once having left Mumbai, and by now being on the actual highway, the landscape changes. It becomes hillier and during the monsoon, very green. The light during the monsoon, with its combination of clouds and the sun sticking out in between, also adds drama. Add to this a rather common fog and the scenery is set for some really cool nature photography. On top of the hills are some quite interesting private villas, and so nature photography can be combined with architecture photography, tourism photography and photojournalism. Keep on driving and some animal life enters the scenery. Monkeys are likely to hit the road, as are snakes, as well as those small furry things that are too quick to be properly identied. Even a tiger has been sighted according to the local police. With this, you shall be able to get enough photos for a book on nature and animal life outside of Mumbai. At around this time, the driver of the car is likely to be either smiling at the crazy photographer asking the car to stop every ten minutes, or being utterly bored. No matter what, take a photo of the driver and you can thus add some portrait photography to all the other photography you are doing. Take some portraits of the truck drivers stopping for breaks along the way now that you are at it.

Continue on the Mumbai-Pune highway and the road continues to ascend between the hills. Now is the moment for some mayhem. Ihave not taken this road one single time without having seen a truck having slid off the road. Social realism and photojournalism all in one, combined with more portraits of an upset truck driver having quite some explanation to do. Portrait photography can also be part of some serious social realism, and so another book on the working class around Mumbai can be prepared. You are now on your way to build up a whole library with your own photo books. Get closer to Pune and the landscape attens out. Drive into Pune and see the immense difference in atmosphere compared to Mumbai. See the more at city of Pune. See how different things can be from Mumbai. See how normal Pune feels compared toMumbai. See how calm a 5-million people city can feel all of a sudden. See how even a small Indian 5-million city can have its fair share of trafc queues. And take photos to prove it. And while you are at all this photographing, make another photo book, now that you have the habit. Yup, the Mumbai-Pune highway can be quite a sight. Fewother stretches of road offer so many different photographic opportunities. It is almost surrealist how much this tiny stretch of 150 kilometers of curvy asphalt called the Mumbai-Pune highway, offers in terms of photography. But hey, I suppose that in order to combine nature photography, tourism photography, portrait photography, photojournalism, architecture photography, and wildlife photography, surrealism is a minimum. How surrealist is it? Penguin! And that in turn will make for some serious photography.

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Naveen Krishnan

Gabriel Fuchs is a Swiss-based IT and management consultant, as well as a keen hobby photographer. Gabriel is also a procient writer of more or less serious industry articles, both on IT and photography.
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HISTORY

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182 Dorothea Lange takes a break from photographing and strikes aplayfulpose inCalifornia, USA.

10 Women Who Changed The Way We Photograph


Priyanka Chharia pays tribute to a few spectacular women who altered the course of photography.
id you know that the BP team is predominated by women? But,when we take a larger overview of photography, we end up asking the quintessential question: where are thewomen? Whilethe eld is lled with great men and their achievements, the women have had to grapple with the predominantly male idea of the master. And so, here is an abridged history of a few women who, despite all odds, managed to permeate photography with their accomplishments.

D
1

rst woman to ever make a photograph. Anna was trained as a botanist and was the rst to combine the use of science and photography. She worked with John Herschel and became the rst person to self-publish an illustrated book of cyanotypes in 1843.

Being a woman can change the way you see and hence; photograph.
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Anna Atkins (17991871)

She was born in the English countryside and is speculated to be the

Julia began photographing at the ripe age of 49. She is known to be the rst photographer to introduce the use of soft focus while making portraits. She made pictures of several renowned gures, including scientist Charles Darwin and poet Lord Tennyson. She was also the great-aunt of the famous writer Virginia Woolf!
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Julia Margaret Cameron (18151879)

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Rondale Partridge

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Most women photographers used the camera as a means to an end. Theyfound unparallel emancipation and freedom inphotography.
Unlike other photographers of her time, Dorothea became synonymous with the portrayal of human suffering. Herphotograph, Migrant Mother, became one of the most iconic images from the Depression period. Moreover, she also co-founded the renowned photography magazine called Aperture in 1952.

HISTORY

Dorothea Lange (18951965)

Elizabeth I. Always dressed in a plain saree, Homai had picked up photography skills from her then boyfriend Maneckshaw Vyarawalla, who she later married.

Fondly referred to as the Queen of Leica, Ilse Bing was a German photographer who gained prominence in the surrealist Parisian epoch of the early 1900s. Whileworking in Paris, Ilse was one of the rst professionals to make use of advanced camera equipment and represented the new age of technology-savvy women.

Ilse Bing (18991998)

One of the founders of the New York School of Photography, Diane is today remembered for her distinctive voice. Forinstance, her portrayals of dwarves and transvestites and have come to deem her as one of the most controversial womanphotographers.

Diane Arbus (19231971)

Despite the fact that Margaret was selftaught and took up photography as a hobby; she became a woman of many rsts. She was the rst woman to cover war zones, and the rst foreign photographer to document the USSR during the 1930s. Her iconic images were the rst by any woman photographer to grace the cover of magazines such as Fortune and LIFE.

Margaret Bourke-White (19041971)

Inge was the rst woman to become afull member of the Magnum Photos Agency in 1955. A woman of exceptional talent, she worked briey with Henri Cartier-Bresson and Robert Capa.

Inge Morath (19232002)

It is tough to categorise Vivian into boxes. A nanny, street photographer and a ercely independent womanshe was an ultimate closet genius. She was the rst woman to master the art of street photography, as we know it today.

Vivian Maier (19262009)


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Nicknamed Mummy and Dalda 13, she was the rst lady of Indian photography. She photographed the likes of Jawahar Lal Nehru, Jackie Kennedy-Onassis and Queen

Homai Vyarawalla (19132012)

Besides being Henri CartierBressons wife, her contributions to photography are widely acknowledged. She was one the rst women members of Magnum Photos and with her daughter, kept the legacy of her husband alive.

10 Martine Franck (19382012)

Some Other Signicant Women Achievers in the Field of Photography

Mary Ellen Mark (1940)


She is an American photographer known for her distinctive style of photography. Her images of Indian sex workers reect her vociferous persona as a woman and an imagemaker.
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Annie Leibovitz (1949)


Annies portrait of singer John Lenon was one of the most iconic records of the legendary artist. Additionally, she was the rst woman to photograph an array of famous Hollywood celebrities.

Sally Mann (1951)


In 1992, Sally rose to instant acclaim. Herwork titled Immediate Family, portrayed nude photographs of her three children, and created a stir in the world ofphotography.

Nan Goldin (1953)

Cindy Sherman (1954)

Dayanita Singh (1961)


She changed the way photo books were made and conceived in India. Her book, Myself Mona Ahmed (2001), was the rst of its kind that was authored by the subject, and not the photographer.
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She has come to Cindys conceptual epitomise an edgy self-portraits and use of and grungy style of metaphor in photography photography, since the was groundbreaking second halfis ofthe therst 20th in the early 1960s. This century. images of Shepioneered a number ever Her drawing that of visual forms including American subcultures are of illustrated the working the historical portrait. unlike any other. aprojector.

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184

Photograph by: Unknown Image Source: US Department of Defence

The Controlled Crashes

he invasion of the Gilberts Islands by Japan in 1941 was the rst large scale amphibious assault during the Second World War. Aircraft carrier ships were vastly used to haul ghter planes and bombers across the Pacic Ocean. Theabove image shows the crash landing of a Hellcat F6f-3 ghter plane, into the carriers weapons gallery. Lieutenant Walter L Chewning is seen climbing up the plane to evict the pilot from the inferno. Technical glitches and wet landing tracks were major factors that contributed to the adverse landing conditions, making the deck an action packed zone. Planes would often miss their designated landing area and crash on the deck or hit the water. Such landings were called controlled crashes. During times of war, the US carriers always used to sail with a photographer on board. Theirvantage point was an area called vultures row on the deck. The pilots would take a quick look at the photographer before touching down. If the photographer looked bored, then the pilot knew that his landing approach was ne. But if he had his camera up against his face, it was the sign of a crash to come. What makes this picture unique is that this is the only image from a series of similar plane crashes which shows a person climbing up the burning wreckage.

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