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September 24th, Day Two
As predicted by the event managers, the second day of the Photokina show was much busier than the first one. Many consumers as well as photo dealers attended the show today, and all halls on the show’s floor, no matter how distant they are from the main entrances, were all pretty crowded.
The Underwater Imaging World was busy as well today, and many visitors attended the different underwater photography booths. The events stage, which is located at the middle of this section, hosted a few events which attracted even more traffic to this section. Many photographers and underwater photo exhibitors were interviewed on the stage, while fascinating underwater images and videos were projected on a large screen.
As promised by Dennis Wilson, visitors also got the chance to win free underwater photo equipment by diving into the aquarium that was filled with water and placed near the stage. During the afternoon, our events host officially declared that any underwater cameras that are thrown into the aquarium can be retrieved and then kept by visitors who volunteer to get a little wet. Volunteers were asked to enter the dressing room and put on a wetsuit and were then sent to the aquarium. However, after retrieving their free gift from the bottom of the aquarium, they discovered that they were still far from completing their diving career.
Press photographers who documented the event made these lucky visitors dive over and over again and did not allow them to exit the aquarium till they managed to hold their breath long enough for the photographers to capture the perfect image. This way or another, the new diver eventually walked out with a new private underwater camera!
Some news from Fantasea Line
Fantasea Line showcased for the first time their new underwater flash, which was specially designed for compact digital housings and hasn’t been given a name yet. The flash features four different pre-flash settings, to cover the needs of all compact digital cameras in the market, including Nikon, Canon, Sony, Olympus, Fuji, Kodak, Panasonic and more. It features a guide number of 20, and therefore is compatible for both macro and wide angle shots. The power output can be manually adjusted to provide the most accurate amount of light in all conditions and a short recycle time ensures quick responsiveness even when using the maximum power output. The new flash also features a built-in Y-S Mount for attaching a focus light on top of the flash, sparing the need for an additional arm.
Fantasea continued to showcase their new generation housings, which consist of an improved construction, are fully functional and feature an increased depth ratio of 60m/200 feet. Fantasea were especially proud to display their FP-6000 Housing for the new Nikon Coolpix P6000 camera, which hasn’t even hit the market yet!
In addition, Fantasea showcased their Nano LED Lights Point of Sale Display, which is the perfect way for Fantasea dealers to display and sell their LED Lights, as well as maximize their profit. Each carton contains 20 assorted Nano LED Lights, including the Nano Focus Light, Nano Spotter, Nano LED Pro Set and Nano Torch.
Fantasea also added a new macro lens to their product line, which features a 55 and 46mm thread. This lens is an aspherical one, which means that super sharp images can be taken with this lens. It is also made of plastic, and is therefore considered to be more durable.
Some news from SeaLife
Bjorn Harms, vice president of SeaLife, introduced me with some of the company’s new products and technologies. The SeaLife company is special in a way that it does not offer housings for popular compact digital cameras in the market, but it designs and manufactures special underwater cameras for divers, also featuring full accessory systems.
The most interesting camera would be the DC-800 waterproof camera, which is depth rated to 60m/200 feet. The camera’s case is rubber armored, which provides it with full protection and the camera itself features a metal body, 2.7 inch LCD screen, x4 optical zoom and a 28mm wide angle lens. Since the camera’s software is specially written to be suitable for underwater photography, it offers different underwater modes to provide the photographer with the opportunity to shoot in different underwater environments, such as lakes and rivers, blue oceans and green oceans. Another important feature is the External Flash mode, automatic or manual, which takes in account the use of the SeaLife external flash and sets the exposure accordingly. A white plate for manual white balanced is included in the kit and the camera also features a video mode. SeaLife offers a full accessory system for their waterproof cameras, which include a tray and arm system and an external flash with adjustable power output.
Another product I was introduced with is the Reef Master Mini, which is an ultra compact waterproof camera that requires no waterproof case. It features 6MP and is depth rated to 40m/130 feet. It is also rubber armored, made of stainless steel, features a 2.0 inch LCD screen and uses 2 x AA batteries. A push on x0.34 wide angle lens is also offered for this ultra compact camera.
Visiting the Nikon booth
Well, it’s hard to call it the “Nikon booth”, and it would be probably more proper to call it the “Nikon arena”. This Nikon section included of many stands, displaying different Nikon products and also offering visitors the opportunity of testing the new products themselves. Unsurprisingly, this section was so busy that you practically had to stand in line in order to put your hands on any of the new cameras.
At the entrance of this arena, Nikon established a fashion studio in which visitors were shown how Nikon most professional products can be used to capture fascinating fashion shots. A sexy model was brought for this matter, and the photographs taken by the professionals were displayed on a wide screen that was placed on top of this stand.
Nikon showcased their new Nikon D90 DSLR, which seemed to draw the most attention out of all other Nikon products introduced at the show. The camera features a new CMOS sensor and according to Nikon, this new sensor produces quality images, similar to those produced by the sensor of the D300. It is also the first DSLR camera that features a video mode and produces videos with 720p HDTV quality, which is considered to be high quality. . It makes use of a 3.0 inch LCD screen and a live view with contrast-defect AF. The 12.9 megapixel new DSLR also features an improved viewfinder of 96% frame coverage.
Another camera showcased was the Nikon D700 DSLR, which features imaging quality that is pretty much as the same as the D3. It shares the 12.1 MP full frame sensor and has the same processing engine. However, the D700 camera’s shutter release is good for 150,000 exposures, while the D3 camera’s shutter release is good for 300,000 exposures. Another difference between the two cameras is the viewfinder prism and the slower burst rate on the D700 camera.
Nikon also proudly displayed it’s Coolpix P6000 camera which features a 13.5 megapixel CCD, 4x wide-angle zoom lens (28-112mm equiv.) with optical stabilization and a hot-shoe connection for an external flash. The rumor says that this is going to be Nikon’s next star with respect to compact digital cameras. Did I mention that Fantasea already has a housing for this camera?!
Tomorrow I plan to visit the Canon section and find out what hot-from-the-oven products they are showcasing this year. Considering the amount of visitors I had to struggle with on the Nikon arena today, perhaps I should spend my time this evening by doing something efficient like making myself an armored coat!
-Sharon Rainis, Fantasea Line
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