A signature feature of all DIR’s convention coverage is our exclusive Product Showcase. Along with our special coverage of WPPI, we present the 2020 Wedding Photography Product Showcase. It highlights the latest noteworthy gear for the wedding and portrait photographer.
WPPI 2020 Wedding Photography Showcase
Canon EOS-1D X Mark III DSLR
The weather-resistant Canon EOS-1D X Mark III features a new 20.MP full-frame sensor and high-detail low-pass filter. They work with the Digic X processor to achieve an ISO range from ISO 50 to 819,200 (stills). Using a Digic X processor with a Digic 8 dedicated for AF/AE, its processing performance surpasses its predecessor’s and reduces power consumption.
The camera internally records 5.5K RAW video and uncropped 4K 60p from the 5.5K readout in Canon Log with 10-bit 4:2:2, enabling users to record with 12 stops of high dynamic range; an HDMI terminal transmits 4K 60p data to another device. An overhauled, faster AF system has 191 points with 155 all-cross-type points to track subjects. The redesigned AF sensor boasts 28x higher resolution at the center. And Dual Pixel CMOS AF has 3,869 manually selectable AF positions and 525 automatic areas. In live view, it supports face, head and eye detection AF tracking. AF/AE tracking is supported during high-speed burst shooting in live view, enabling capture at 20 fps in RAW and RAW + JPEG (mechanical or silent shutter). Other features: built-in gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi/Bluetooth; a digital lens optimizer; and dual CFexpress slots. $6,499.
Sigma 14–24mm f/2.8 DG DN Art Lens
This wide-angle Sigma zoom for full-frame mirrorless cameras employs a cutting-edge 18-element, 13-group design. It has one FLD (fluorite equivalent), five SLD and three aspheric elements, including one large-diameter lens, to reduce chromatic and spherical aberrations. The lens achieves exceptional sharpness, clarity and color accuracy over a versatile focal-length range. In addition, super multilayer and Nano Porous coatings are effective in suppressing flare, to yield high-contrast images even under challenging light.
A stepping AF motor helps achieve fast, precise, quiet AF in still and video applications. It also provides full-time manual focus and an autofocus lock (AFL). In addition, a rounded 11-blade diaphragm enhances its inherently smooth bokeh that’s especially striking at wide apertures. Other features: a rear filter holder; weather resistance; and a brass bayonet mount to ensure precision alignment and long-term durability. In Sony E and Leica L mount, $1,399.
ProMaster 170SL Speedlight
Distributed by the PRO Group and sold through member stores, this high-spec, high-value unit automatically adjusts its exposure and light beam to match camera and lens settings. The articulating head is adjustable for a variety of swivel and bounce positions. It tilts from -7º to 90º and also swivels right 180º and left 90º.
Compatible with many light modifiers, the 170SL offers a respectable guide number of 171 combined with a 180mm zoom head that can illuminate subjects from afar. It covers a 24–180mm range, or 18mm with a wide panel diffuser. Moreover, its built-in wireless TTL system provides expanded off-camera lighting options and functions as a master or slave. Other features include: a stroboscopic mode; rear curtain sync; and wireless flash that syncs with Nikon or Canon’s optical pulse systems. The flash has a recycle time of 0.2–4.55 (alkaline) and 0.15–2.5 secs (NiMH). Four AA batteries supply power. In Nikon, Canon and Sony versions, $189.95.
Rokinon 85mm f/1.4 FE
Ideal for portraiture, theater photography and general low-light work, this impressive Rokinon full-frame lens also provides a 127.5mm-equivalent focal length on APS-C-format cameras. Moreover, the manual focus, manual aperture lens excels at depth-of-field control, shallow depth-of-field effects and selective focus. That’s thanks to its wide f/1.4 maximum aperture and a rounded 9-blade aperture. It also focuses down to 3.3 feet for frame-filling headshots.
The lens is constructed with a hybrid aspheric element that helps reduce aberrations. It also utilizes UMC (ultra-multilayer) coating to minimize ghosting and flare, contributing to crisp imaging. Other specs include: two linear ultrasonic motors to achieve fast, quiet, precise focus; internal focusing; an AF/MF switch; and a weather-sealed metal body. In addition, it comes with a bayonet mount lens hood to facilitate shooting in high-glare lighting. Sony E mount, $699; Nikon F mount, $799; Canon EF mount, $599.
Sony GP-VPT2BT Wireless Grip
The new Sony GP-VPT2BT cable-free shooting grip works as a flexible wireless remote commander. Sony says the grip “offers optimum stability and comfort combined with cable-free connectivity and a reliable dust- and moisture-resistant design.” The GP-VPT2BT grip is compatible with Sony’s latest cameras, including the α9 II, α9, α7R IV, α7R III, α7 III, α6600, α6400 and α6100 (some require firmware updates).
The grip connects via Bluetooth wireless technology. As a result, it allows visual creators to aim and shoot without interfering cables or exposed inputs. The device also includes a tilt feature that enables vertical angle adjustment and the ability to switch quickly from normal to self-shooting mode. In addition, the grip has an adjustment wheel that photographers can loosen or tighten to permit operation with cameras of different sizes and weights. It also includes a flip button; an indicator light; and a lock switch. Another useful feature is that the grip can quickly transform into a tripod. $140.
Nikon Nikkor Z 85mm f/1.8 S
The Nikkor Z 85mm f/1.8 S adds a fast prime with a classic medium telephoto focal length for Nikon Z full-frame mirrorless cameras. Whether shooting headshots, fashion, wedding/event photography or tight video shots, it takes advantage of the wider, brighter, faster Z mount.
Integrating the latest Nikkor optical technologies, it benefits both photographers and videographers with quiet focus motors and minimized focus breathing. It’s an option for capturing portraits as well as tight interview shots or B-roll footage. Its fast f/1.8 maximum aperture lets users shoot in low light and capture shallow depth of field. A nine-blade rounded diaphragm provides natural-looking bokeh. Two extra-low dispersion elements minimize aberrations, while Nikon’s Nano Crystal coating controls ghosting/flare. A customizable control ring permits smooth adjustment of aperture or exposure compensation, and the lens works with the 5-axis vibration reduction (VR) image stabilization in Nikon Z cameras. $799.95.
DNP Imagingcomm America Dye-Sub Printers
DNP makes a line of professional dye-sublimation printers for on-site photography, photo booths and amusement park attractions. DNP’s flagship printer, the DS620A, measures 10.8×14.4×6.7 in. Its small footprint makes it easy to stack printers for higher print volume. It produces 2×6 photo strips and up to 6×8 prints, including 5×5 and 6×6 square prints. It also prints 6×14 and 6×20 panoramic photos.
In addition, DNP just announced the “most compact and lightweight dye-sublimation printer on the market.” The new DNP QW410 weighs less than 13 lbs. and has lower power consumption. It is a solution for photo booths, event photographers and even ID photo services.
Moreover, the DNP DS80 and DS820A make images as large as 8×12. The DS820A also features the latest generation thermal heads and handles multiple print sizes from 8×4 to 8×12 inches. The DS80 prints only 8×10 and 8×12 images, with a protective lamination layer to resist fingerprints, water and fading.
Nikon D780 FX-Format DSLR
Nikon’s D780 full-frame DSLR inherits pro features from the flagship D5 and from Nikon’s mirrorless Z cameras. It captures 4K UHD full-frame video with phase-detection AF and full pixel readout. Its 24.5MP BSI full-frame sensor achieves high dynamic range and accurate color reproduction. The Expeed 6 processor enables increased speed and energy efficiency as well as improved low-light and ISO performance to 204,800. It boasts full-res 7-fps bursts and shutter speeds of 1/8,000. When the electronic shutter is operated in live view, it shoots at 12 fps without shutter noise.
When using the OVF, Nikon’s 51-point AF system pairs with an enhanced algorithm from the D5; 15 cross-type AF sensors maximize accuracy. Further, the camera improves on focusing in challenging light, to -4 EV. For the first time, a Nikon DSLR uses the same 273-point focal plane hybrid AF system employed in the Z 6, with 90% frame coverage and fast, smooth, accurate AF in live view and when recording video. Another Nikon DSLR first is eye detection AF. Also adopted from the Z 6, it offers 10-bit output with N-Log or Hybrid Log Gamma support; focus peaking; zebra stripes; interval timer; and time-lapse movies. Other features: focus shift; multiple exposure creation; Wi-Fi/Bluetooth; a tilting, 3.2″ touch LCD; weather sealing; and two UHS-II SD slots. $2,299.95 body.
Artpoint Handmade Flush-Mount Photo Albums
The Artpoint photo album printing and binding company was established in 1992 in Thessaloniki, Greece. It has since expanded into many other countries. Today, the company makes a variety of products ranging from albums and prints to presentation boxes and wall art. Artpoint offers an extensive album lineup, including flush-mount albums in their Simplicity, Elegance, Exquisite, Timeless and Vintage collections.
The lay-flat opening albums feature full-page spreads printed on photographic, fine art or digital press paper. Handmade covers are offered in a wide range of styles. In addition, the books are placed in a handmade standard box or in an optional high-quality fine case. The Elegance collection includes acrylic and faux leather or lacquered wood—materials that evoke a sense of luxury. The high-end Exquisite albums feature leather, silk, velvet or acrylic materials. Timeless album options include faux leather, linen or fabric; and the Vintage collection comprises retro-style albums. In addition, Artpoint has a comprehensive portfolio of wedding guest books that cater to any style.
DxO PhotoLab 3 Photo-Editing Software
DxO’s advanced photo-editing software, DxO PhotoLab 3, has a redesigned HSL color adjustment feature, for pro-level colorimetry control. With a visual approach to color management, its HSL (hue, saturation and luminance) tool gives users control to create more natural-looking images. Its color adjustment mode is based on a chromatic circle, the DxO ColorWheel. Users select a color range from eight channels; fine-tune the value; select a replacement color; and adjust transitions. Also, a uniformity setting lets photographers adjust color variations within a range. The saturation and the luminance sliders operate more independently, so there’s more flexibility when converting from color to black and white or creating partially desaturated images.
Another update for local adjustments is the repair tool; it acts as a brush that erases unwanted elements. Also, PhotoLab 3 integrates clone mode, allowing users to directly replace the area being edited. Feathering and opacity levels are adjustable. Other enhancements include a local adjustments palette and better keyword management. DxO PhotoLab 3 Essential, $129; Elite, $199.
Lexar Professional CFexpress Type B Card
To meet the demanding needs of today’s videographers and photographers, the Lexar Professional CFexpress card performs to capture high-quality images and RAW 4K video. Moreover, the CFexpress card leverages the capabilities of next-generation HD cinema and DSLR cameras. As a result, the rugged card supports both PCI Express Gen 3 and NVMe protocols.
The card features high-speed performance, durability and reliability, with a read transfer speed of up to 1,750MB/s. The Lexar Professional CFexpress Type B card has the following SRPs: $199.99 for the 128GB card and $399.99 for the 256GB card. Lexar will release 64GB and 512GB versions of the card at a future date. In addition, the card comes with a lifetime limited warranty.
Canon Video Content Creator Kits
Canon answered the call to make it easier to produce and distribute quality video content. It released new content creator kits for its EOS 90D, PowerShot G7X Mark III and EOS M200 cameras. Each video kit includes a new Canon accessory. For instance, the compact DM-E100 stereo microphone doesn’t require a battery; it is powered when it’s plugged into the microphone jack of the EOS 90D. The new HG-100TBR tripod grip includes the BR-E1 wireless remote that snaps into the tripod to allow creators to release the shutter and start/stop recording remotely. The grip rotates 360º and 90º for recording vertical video.
EOS 90D Video Creator Kit. For the advanced video creator, this kit includes the EOS 90D; the EF-S 18–55mm STM lens; the DM-E100 stereo mic; and a 32GB SD card. $1,449.
EOS M200 Content Creator Kit. For social media mavens, this kit bundles the EOS M200 ILC; an EF-M 15–45mm lens; the HG-100TBR tripod grip; and a 32GB SD card. $649.99.
Canson Infinity Photo and Fine Art Papers
Canson Infinity is the brand name of digital fine art and photo papers crafted in the Canson mill. The company offers a vast array of options, from museum-quality fine art and photo inkjet papers to canvas. Moreover, Canson Infinity Baryta Photographique II Satin is a 310 gsm next-generation paper. It offers the opportunity of creating a photograph with the true look and feel of a traditional darkroom print but with improved handling and finishing characteristics. Baryta Photographique II has a 100% barium sulphate layer (baryta) for exceptional contrast and detail, as well as a wide color gamut.
It has an extremely high D-Max (black point) to produce black-and-white images with depth and clarity, as well as intense color images. The new generation has a more structured surface aspect that is reminiscent of traditional fiber-based darkroom papers and a satin finish. Baryta Photographique II comes in both sheets and rolls up to 60″ wide. In addition to its extensive media, Canson offers a line of archival photo storage boxes.
Litra LitraStudio Compact Light
LitraStudio is a mobile RGBWW photo and video light. It delivers professional, studio-quality color lighting anywhere, including rugged environments. The portable light provides up to 3000 lumen of continuous light; 6000 lumen of flash; and 97 CRI/TLCI quality light. Additionally, it produces millions of custom and programmed color combinations. It operates in several use modes: CCT (warm to cool); HSI (color wheel); RGBWW (precise color coordinates); gel presets; user-defined presets; and effects. CCT mode provides 2,000–10,000K adjustable bicolor lighting. In HSI mode, users control hue, saturation and intensity; they can select precise color preferences from one million+ combinations. Gel mode provides commonly used gels with simulated daylight or tungsten light sources. Effects mode imitates complex scene lighting, like fireworks, paparazzi and candle.
The LitraStudio can be controlled manually via an intuitive OLED panel; wirelessly via its Bluetooth app; wired/wirelessly with a DMX module to tie into industry standard studio systems; and via camera flash sync. The flicker-free light, display, mounting and battery weigh 33.5 ounces and measure 5.5×3.9×2.9 inches