Archive for February, 2012

SLR v SLT

Posted: February 17, 2012 in Tech Rant
Tags: , , , , , ,

Are we shooting with the best gear available? That’s a question every professional has asked themselves. The debate between which camera technology is the best continues with SLR vs. SLT.

Digital single-lens reflex cameras (digital SLR or DSLR) are digital cameras that use a mechanical mirror system and pentaprism to direct light from the lens to an optical viewfinder on the back of the camera. -Wikipedia.com

Single-Lens Translucent (SLT) is a Sony brand name for cameras which have a mirror, but – unlike the one in DSLRs – it does not move, and it is semi-transparent, allowing the majority of the light to pass through to the sensor whilst reflecting a portion of it onto a phase-detection autofocus  sensor, this way allowing full time phase detection auto focus. -Wikipedia.com

Since there is no mirror or mechanical parts flipping one, the SLT camera will give you the fastest stills FPS and fastest video auto-focus. Due to the electronic viewfinder, you lose a third of the light entering the camera, therefore will get slighty lower ISO performance. These camera technologies are a close call in which one is more practical, but the victor goes to the SLT for any fast paced photography or video capture, due to the advantage of less mechanical parts speeding up the focusing process.

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The nominations for the Oscars are out but what happened to the digitally enhanced category? The highest grossing movie of all time, Avatar, was snubbed when it wasn’t nodded for Best Picture and the trend continues. Computer graphics and motion capture seem to be all the hype in the mainstream, but when it comes to getting acknowledged for something new and game changing, these movies are getting brushed under the carpet.

With movies like Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin, motion capture was the basis of the movie making process. Although they were incredible in their own ways, the Academy didn’t seem to think they were worth Oscar’s time.

“For whatever reason, boomer-age people, older Gen X-ers [in the Academy] are threatened by it,” journalist and Hollywood Elsewhere writer Jeff Wells told MTV News. “They feel on some level that they’re going to be lost, that they’re going to be digitally wiped out in the future.”

A negative energy has seemingly darkened the door of the photographic industry.  As a practicing member of the, I’ll term it, fraternity of professional photographers, I am witness to many industry changes may they be tech related or in the case of this article a social transmogrification.  The negative energy of which I write has origins in free trade and capitalism but echos through the halls of our democratic society.  Photographs, pictures and videos of all types are slowly being slipped from the hands of artists into the waiting grasp of societal sycophants wanting only to be paid for the effort of stealing a moment in time.  True photographers, professionals who have greatly earned the title are being set aside for the sensational and the fantastical.  Our work no longer hangs in the museums of contemporary culture but has been replaced by grotesque shades of what art should be.  Our work has lost the distinction of inspiring the onlooker rather, it is now evidence of the follies of the celebrity du jour or to prove that one of our superlative youth can indeed light afire his flatulence.

I find myself retreating into my studio of photography at times wondering if I will ever see the day that my colleagues and I are once again thought of as leaders of an indudstry instead of being members of hordes who mustered their quarters to make a trip to Verizon to purchase the newest camera/phone.  Perhaps one day soon I can peek out my studio door and see a horizon that consists of artists of all kinds being warmly lit by the setting sun and all of the members of the new TMZ Society were no where to be found…ah to dream.