We're back with the WiFi HiFi holiday gift guides! Each week, we'll release new themed gift guides, chocked-full of great tech gift ideas for different people on your list. This week, we're looking at great gifts for photographers.
Panasonic Lumix G95 Rugged Mirrorless Camera
This rugged digital single lens mirrorless camera has a 20.3MP sensor and Venus Engine, and an optimum gradation setting to provide a wide dynamic range for smoother gradation; a tuned three-dimensional colour control to detect hue, saturation, and brightness to apply optimal control according to the value of each factor; and a Tuned Multi Process NR to boast high noise identification accuracy and preserve details even after the noise reduction process. The Digital Live MOS Sensor and Venus Engine achieve clear image rendering with minimum noise even in low-lit situations and at a maximum ISO 25600. Additional features include a 5-axis Dual Image Stabilizer (I.S.); Contrast AF System features Depth From Defocus (DFD) technology; new buttons for adjusting exposure, ISO, and white balance; large Live View Finder (LVF); 3" LCD rear monitor; 4K video recording; and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. MSRP $1,800 Panasonic.ca
Shimoda Expore 30 Camera Bag
Great for adventure photographers, the compact and durable Shimoda Explore 30 camera bag has an adjustable harness so the pack's weight doesn't put pressure on the wearer's shoulders, distributing it to the hips and front torso instead. A removable belt feature lets you convert from a mountain pack into a minimalist daily commuter or urban explorer. The adjustable torso height offers three size options allowing approximately three inches in vertical torso adjustment, comfortably fitting short or tall, male or female torso heights. Each shoulder strap features a fast access sleeve for items. Unfasten the belt and slide it out when you have lighter loads or city adventures. It accommodates Small, Medium DSLR and the new Medium Mirrorless and Large DSLR size Core Units; or double the configuration by stacking and shifting how the Units are placed. With a 30-litre capacity, it has a 13" laptop sleeve as well.
Nikon Nikkor Z 85mm f/1.8 Fast Prime Lens
This lens with a classic medium telephoto focal length is ideal for headshots, fashion photography, wedding/event photography, and tight video shots. The lens diaphragm consists of nine rounded blades that produce smooth, natural bokeh. Firmware 2.0 and Eye-Detection autofocus offers more control and capabilities when capturing portraits and candids. Using a new optical design of 12 elements in eight groups, two Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) elements help ensure minimal aberration, while Nikon's patented Nano Crystal Coating offers superior control of ghosting and flare. It has a high-speed Multi-Focus System, Nikon's professional-grade dust and drip resistance, ultra-quiet focus motor, minimized focus breathing, customizable control ring for smooth adjustment of aperture or exposure compensation, and full compatibility with the in-body five-axis VR found in the Nikon Z 6 and Z 7 full-frame mirrorless cameras. MSRP $1,119.95.
Panasonic Lumix S1R Full-Frame DSLR Mirrorless Camera
Panasonic Canada's Lumix S1R full-frame digital single lens mirrorless camera has a 35mm 47.3MP full-frame CMOS sensor, and 4K 60p/50p video recording capability. A High-Resolution mode enables 187MP ultra-high precision photo shooting. An AR coating applied on the sensor minimizes ghost and flare even in backlighting. Features include a Body I.S. (Image Stabilizer) for handshake correction; high-speed, high-precision AF system; high speed burst shooting at 9 fps (AFS) or 6 fps (AFC); -6EV*4 luminance detection performance with Low Light AF; Eye AF for portrait shooting; and AI technology that detects specific subjects. Use 6K PHOTO to capture moments at 30 fps by extracting the frame with the best timing out of a 6K burst file to save as an approximate 18MP equivalent high-resolution photo. The 4K PHOTO enables 60fps high-speed captures in approximate 8MP equivalent resolution. MSRP $5,000 (body only).
Nikon Z Series Z 50 Mirrorless Camera
The Z 50, Nikon's first DX-format mirrorless camera, delivers a more compact lightweight system to those upgrading to mirrorless or discovering the Nikon Z mount system. The easy-to-carry, compact and lightweight 15.9-oz body of the Z 50 is designed with intuitive controls and an agile yet durable magnesium alloy frame. Since it's mirrorless, you can activate the silent shutter function for low-profile shooting in sensitive situations. The DX-format 20.9MP CMOS sensor delivers superior image quality, sharpness, colour and tones, even in low light. The EXPEED 6 image-processing engine helps achieve low-light performance and the highest standard sensitivity in its class for still-image shooting - ISO 51,2001 - so you can capture high-resolution photos in challenging lighting conditions, like concerts or night street photography. It quickly locks focus with a 209-point Hybrid AF System that enables broad coverage of approximately 87% of the frame horizontally and 85% vertically. It's also the first Nikon DX-format camera to employ Eye-Detection AF, which makes portrait photography simple by recognizing and instantly focusing on a subject's eyes, even if they are moving. What's more, with fast 11 fps (with AF/AE) continuous shooting, you can keep up with fleeting moments. The Z 50 features an easy to use interface with a 3.2-inch LCD flip-down touchscreen that's ideal for selfies and vlogging. The LCD features familiar soft keys and icons, and intuitive controls. Selfie Mode automatically disables all but essential controls while the LCD is flipped down to make it easy for the photographer to turn the camera on themselves and capture flattering photos and videos without worry of accidental changes in settings. There's also built in 120p slow-motion, time-lapse, and interval timer, as well as in-camera video trimming and 20 Creative Picture Controls. Scene modes automatically adjust settings to optimize performance for beginners. For smooth footage, the camera also incorporates additional built-in stabilization while shooting Full HD or 4K video. Built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity along with support for the new SnapBridge version 2.6 app allows you to seamlessly share still images and videos. In addition to automatically sending images to your phone, you can now also easily transfer video to smart devices quickly. The latest version of SnapBridge also supports RAW image transfer and advanced remote capture functions. Get the body only for an MSRP of $1,169.95, or grab it with a lens for someone special. A one-lens kit with the Nikkor Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR is $1,399.95, or a two-lens kit with both the Nikkor Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR and Nikkor Z DX 50-250mm f/4.5-6.3 VR for $1,879.95.
Fujifilm X-Pro3 Mirrorless Digital Camera
This camera, part of the X Series, is ideal for street photographers and photojournalists. It employs a hybrid OVF/EVF and hidden, tilting LCD touchscreen, along with a durable camera body via an exterior made from titanium. Two colorr variations are available with additional Duratect (DR) surface- hardening technology for extra toughness and premium finish. The X-Pro3 uses the back illuminated 26.1MP X-TRANS CMOS 4 sensor and the X-Processor 4 image processing engine, first seen in the X-T3 and then the X-T30. Using this combination and new firmware, the phase-detection AF now works down to a luminance of -6EV; close to absolute darkness. Also new is CLASSIC Neg. Film Simulation mode, which is designed to simulate colour negative film that was normally used for everyday snapshots. When the LCD is closed, all that can be viewed is a mini-display showing essential settings, removing the distraction of a full screen while shooting. It is available in black for $2,400, or $2,700 for the black or silver version with Duratect.
Epson FastFoto FF-680W Photo Scanner
For the photographer looking to bring new life to old photos from the pre-digital days, this scanner makes it easy to do so in big batches. Load tons of photos at once and it will scan each photo in about a second - really! You can also apply auto enhancements and colour restoration. Once digitized, work on further tweaking the pics with software like Adobe Photoshop. The scanner can accept all types and sizes of photos, including postcards, Polaroids, and panoramas. $800
SanDisk Extreme Pro Memory Card
Get the avid photographer om your list this high-capacity, rugged memory card that can withstand the elements and store tons and tons of photos, including large RAW photo files. With speeds of 170Mb/s, you can grab a 1TB card for $400 for the serious photographer, or opt for 128GB for US$40 which can still hold tons of photos and videos.
Joby Gorillapod 5K
Yes, the Joby Gorillapod flexible tripod is available for heavier DSLRs as well as smaller point & shoot and mirrorless cameras. This model in particular can accommodate a DSLR with zoom lenses weighing up to 11 lbs. combined. It featured a rubberized ring and foot grips to keep it stable when used on difficult terrains. Get an optional ballhead 5K with Arca-Swiss quick release plate as well. As with other Gorillapods, it's totally flexible so you can position it upright on a table or other flat surface, wrap it around a pole or tree branch, use it as a monopod, or however else you deem fit to get the perfect shot. $100
Western Digital My Passport Ultra External Hard Drive
Photographers will love this SSD, which comes in 1TB, 2TB, or 4TB capacities for US$60 up to US$120 and can hold pretty well every photo you have ever taken and want to store. It features USB-C technology and is Windows 10-ready. To keep your precious photos protected, it comes with password protection and hardware encryption. Use the included WD Discovery software to back up photos, videos, and documents, or even import from social media and cloud storage services including Facebook, Dropbox, and Google Drive. It comes in two finish options.
Peak Design Shell Rain Cover
This summer during a reunion barbecue with old friends, I set up a camera and tripod outside with photo props for everyone to take fun pics. Sadly, for part of the day, we were stuck in a downpour of rain. I had to grab a bag to tie around my camera to protect it from getting wet until the rain subsided. Now imagine a professional photographer shooting on the road, during adventure hikes and other scenarios where rain could happen at any time. Rather than put the gear away and miss the potentially winning shot, a rain cover can help protect your camera while you continue shooting in the rain. This cover, which comes in small, medium, or large sizes to accommodate different camera and lens combinations, is made of four-way stretch fabric and is seam-taped to resist rain, snow, dust, and abrasion. $54