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Photography Workshops by Canon Northern Explorer of Light Christopher Dodds

 

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Entries in canon (13)

Tuesday
Dec222015

Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 Mini Review

Christopher Dodds (Nature Photographer, CANON Northern Explorer of Light and X-rite Photo & Video Coloratti) with the newly announced Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer.

I’ve always been an advocate for the print; my favourite images are never quite finished, until I make a large print. I currently own several printers; among them are the Canon Pixma PRO-1 desktop printer for everything up to 13” wide, and a Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6400 for everything up to 24” wide. The Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 will replace the Canon Pixma PRO-1.

If you have followed this blog and read my review of both the Canon Pixma PRO-1 and my Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6400, then it is no surprise that I am a perfectionist with a passion for the perfect image; it’s what keeps me out there perfecting my craft and drives my passion for the print. As a master printer, I used to have to spend countless hours pouring over printed images looking for ways to squeeze every ounce of colour gamut out of which ever printer I was using; that all changed when I switched to my Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6400, then added my Canon Pixma PRO-1, and now the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 will replace my Canon Pixma PRO-1 for everything up to 17" wide.

Full disclosure: My introduction to the Canon line-up of printers came after my being named the very first Canon Canada ambassador, or Canon Northern Explorer of Light, some four years ago. I had been using another popular brand of LFPs (Large Format Printers) until that time. I had invested so much time figuring-out workarounds for all of their shortcomings, I was foolishly reluctant to change; Each return to the studio was almost dreaded, as I knew it might be hours before I could start printing while waiting for cleaning cycles and head alignments. Those days are all in the past, and my experience with both of my beloved Canon printers has been nothing but a delight.

Although Canon has, and does, continue to sponsor me as a Northern Explorer of Light, I am under no contractual obligation to try to sell you anything. I am simply sharing my experience and making a personal recommendation to help you avoid the frustration of choosing the right printer, and avoiding the frustration of choosing the wrong one (because, after all, I had already done that to start with - smile). This is an updated testament to the printer(s) I choose for my print production.

What is it: Canon’s latest and greatest addition to their already impressive printer line-up is the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000. I was excited to put it to the test and offer my thoughts on this new model aimed at the serious amateur, semi-professional and professional photographers who produce professional quality colour and monochrome photographs up to 17” wide.

Initial impression: The Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer arrived and I couldn't wait to give it a try; The printer looks impressive and sports a new thin red line, which was traditionally only seen on L-series lenses and reflects their top-of-the-line quality. I was pleased to see an LCD display on the control panel; it was missed on my Pixma Pro-1. Set-up and instillation was fast and easy; remove the packaging and security tape, install the print head, then installing the new (larger) ink tanks was a breeze, thanks to the new ink tank configuration along the bottom front of the printer. One important observation was the inclusion of a full set of full 80ml inks; an important consideration while reflecting on the cost of upgrade (printers usually ship with only enough ink to prime the ink lines, the print head, preform set-up functions like head alignment and then only make a few prints. You usually never get more than half-full ink tanks).

As is typically the case with all of my reviews, I won't be listing all of the technical specs which can be found on the Canon website HERE. In a nutshell, the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 features a new design with all new specs here’s what is important to me:

NEW print head, Lucia Pro inks and image processor: The imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 combines a new print head, new inks and a new processor to achieve the highest quality prints, without compromise in performance or productivity. The new 80ml LUCIA PRO inks developed for the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 enable photographers to reproduce their images accurately in print. The wide dynamic range of colours allow for a high colour gamut (up to 19 percent larger than the PIXMA PRO-1 printer) and rich expression of detail in darker areas, with outstanding image permanence. The Chroma Optimizer ink helps achieve uniform glossiness when printing on glossy paper. By being applied over the printed image to cover the bumps between the ink droplets, Chroma Optimizer regulates the surface reflection to deliver natural colour reproduction in the finished print. This creates images with deep black density and prevents unwanted bronzing (scratch resistant). The new print head design (50% larger than the Pixma PRO-1) utilizes a sophisticated real-time ink ejection system which helps to maintain a consistent print head temperature allowing for consistent ink droplets to help limit clogs and reduce cleaning cycles and wasted ink. The new print head helps to further reduce the amount of wasted ink through anti-clogging technologies where ink ejection conditions are precisely checked with sensors, and if a clog is detected, another nozzle automatically provides backup. The new image processor provides optimal control of the printer, maintaining high-speed, accuracy and high-resolution printing while maintaining the balance of inks and the precise placement of ink droplets, carefully calculating best results for each print mode and media using various factors including colour reproduction, tonal gradations, black density, graininess, glossiness, anti-bronzing and elimination of metamerism”

NEW Larger Print Size: “Enjoy the ability to print striking images up to A2 (and 17” x 22”) without compromising quality. Take advantage of our fast print speeds and colour collaboration: with a plethora of media types supported from gloss, matte, fine art papers and canvas, you’ll get the look and feel you desire.”

NEW The Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 Is the only Canon desktop printer which incorporates the vacuum platen (formerly reserved only for Large Format Printers), it feeds paper with air suction, keeping the paper flat and preventing ‘floating’ and ‘edge-curl’ during the feeding / printing process allowing borderless printing on fine art papers.

NEW Software: Print Studio Pro v 2.0 works with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, and Canon’s Digital Photo Professional. “With 16-bit processing capabilities, fine details are dramatically improved, gradations are smooth and a highly accurate reproduction of the original captured image can be reproduced. Improving on the existing Print Studio Pro plug-in, the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 utilises the updated version 2.0.0. This features a new screen layout that makes it easier for you to adjust the printer, paper, layout and colour settings to help deliver the best quality prints. You can create favourite settings that you feel comfortable with, and come back to them time and time again. Colour management is easier than ever, with a simple box to allow ICC profile selection, rendering intent and a brand new feature to enable soft proofing.”

In conclusion: After set-up, I deliberately chose to print a colour image with a lot dark colours and tones; an image I knew could test the limits, and one that could really prove if the new Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 was capable of producing prints which can stand above it’s predecessor. I was immediately blown-away by the remarkable difference in colour depth and accuracy; all of the dark areas immediately opened-up and, though subtle, the difference in print quality very quickly had me making new prints of lots of older images; every one of them, to a greater, or lesser degree, was different from those I had previously printed; all of them were better.

The new Print Studio Pro V2.0 was easy to use, the printer preformed flawlessly and the prints are a testament to it’s abilities.
 

The hardest part of this review was running-out of sample ink, draining the remaining ink from the lines (to prepare for shipping) and packing the sample printer to send it back to my friends at Canon Canada. I will be placing my order to arrive when my Winter Snowy Owl Workshops finish at the end of February.

Economic Considerations: If you are wondering about the economics of investing in a Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer, consider this (very short-sighted approach, since the printer will last for years and make many thousands of prints over it’s life):

Suggested retail price for the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 is CAD$1,600.00, but it includes a complete set of 80ml inks which, after set-up, will likely make about 50 17” x 22” prints. If you manage to sell those for more than CAD$32.00 each (plus the cost of paper), then the printer has paid for itself. Now, the first set of inks primed the print head and filled the lines that feed the print head; the second set of inks will set you back CAD$863.88 at full suggested retail, but they will make about twice as many prints … see where I am going here; It makes perfect sense to upgrade, just from the cost/copy and quality standpoint.

Canon Canada Press Release:

NEW CANON imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 PROFESSIONAL, FINE ART INKJET PRINTER CAN RECREATE POWERFULLY VIVID IMAGES THAT WILL MOVE YOU

New 17-inch Large Format Printer Can Produce Sharp Images and Astounding Image Clarity for Pro Photographers and Design Professionals

MISSISSAUGA, ON., October 21, 2015 – Canon Canada Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 Professional Inkjet Printer, a 17-inch, large format solution packed with significant technological advancements, such as a new print head, new ink set and a new image processing engine, resulting in stunning image quality designed for photographers who are “equally obsessed" with the printed image.

This is the first in a new series of imagePROGRAF printers that are marked by the distinctive Canon red line across the body of the printer, echoing the same red line on Canon’s EF L-Series lenses. This feature-rich professional printer complements Canon’s professional line of DSLR cameras and lenses for an ideal pairing that can produce high-detail, high-quality images when printed on a variety of media, creating images that look as accurate printed as when they were captured.

“We designed a printer to give our customers incredible large-format image reproduction in a size that fits almost any home, studio, design and production departments, or in a classroom of photography students,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc.  “Knowing how important fine details and precise colors are to professional users, this printer is designed so that the final output is exactly what they envisioned. The launch of the first printer in the new imagePROGRAF PRO Series of printers further illustrates the commitment Canon has to providing the imaging community with solutions that help deliver superb output true to a photographer’s obsession.”

New Print Head
Improving upon the specifications of the Canon PIXMA PRO-1 printer, the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer features a 50 percent larger print head, which also expands the total number of nozzles to 18,432 for each of the 12 channels. The increased size of the print head helps produce faster print speeds†† while still maintaining high-resolution prints. This new print head design utilizes a sophisticated real-time ink ejection system which helps to maintain a consistent print head temperature allowing for consistent ink droplets to help limit clogs and reduce cleaning cycles and wasted ink. The new print head helps to further reduce the amount of wasted ink through anti-clogging technologies where ink ejection conditions are precisely checked with sensors, and if a clog is detected, another nozzle automatically provides backup.

New Inks
The new LUCIA PRO 11-color plus Chroma Optimizer ink system was designed specifically to meet the demands of the most critical photographer. An optimized resin-coating of each pigment allows for denser droplets to be applied to the media, resulting in an increased color gamut of up to 19 percent over the PIXMA PRO-1 printer. This dense ink-configuration also brings gloss uniformity for viewing conditions and image clarity that helps achieve anti-bronzing. The LUCIA PRO ink system also introduces an improved level of black density not only achieving deep, rich blacks but also helping to bring out incredibly fine shadow detail in the darker areas, creating works of art on fine art media. The imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer is designed to work seamlessly when changing media types, Photo Black and Matte Black inks have their own dedicated nozzles so no switching is necessary.  Users can print on glossy media then fine art media with no worries, no changes, and no waste. The new ink system includes matte black, photo black, gray, photo gray, red, blue, magenta, photo magenta, cyan, photo cyan, yellow and Chroma Optimizer. The size of the ink tanks is 80ml per tank, allowing for less frequent refills and reduced cost per print.

New Processing Engine & Printer Architecture
Demonstrating a rich understanding of optimum balance stemming from its expertise in camera technology, Canon offers precise placement of ink droplets ideal for vivid print results. The new processing engine, L-COA PRO, controls the balance of inks and the precise placement of ink droplets, carefully calculating best results for each print mode and media using various factors including color reproduction, tonal gradations, black density, graininess, glossiness, anti-bronzing and elimination of metamerism, all of which contribute to creating an amazing printed image. L-COA PRO, combined with an internal 1GB of memory, enables high-speed processing of massive volumes of image data for demanding workflows. To bring further accuracy to ink ejection and limitation of color unevenness, the imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer offers a two-way vacuum paper feeder, which keeps media flat and even, helping with accuracy of ink ejection. The imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer also has a built-in calibration function to help prevent variability of color output by aging changes or printer differences. This feature allows for a consistency in colors from PRO-1000 to PRO-1000 of under a Delta E of 2†††.  Reliability and quality are further maintained by the enhanced rigidity in the printer chassis allowing for even more improved dot placement, helping to produce sharper prints, including stunning borderless images.

New Software*
Enhancing the user experience with imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer is the intuitive software solution of Print Studio Pro v 2.0. With a focus on quality and ease of use, Print Studio Pro is a plugin for Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe Lightroom® and Canon Digital Photo Professional software that easily exports files directly to the printer.2 With 16-bit processing capabilities, fine details are dramatically improved, gradations are smooth and a highly accurate reproduction of the original captured image can be reproduced. Also set to be included is the Media Configuration Tool (MCT)*, enabling customization of the media in both the driver and printer. Additionally, MCT can make adjustments such as print head height and vacuum strength for each media, offering the flexibility needed in order to help achieve optimal quality across a broad range of media options. Accounting Manager* is set to be included for those looking to keep track of consumable costs such as ink and media, allowing users to manually enter in their costs in order to help determine their overall printing expenses. Whether it is an individual printing in their studio, or an administrator looking to centrally manage a number of users in a multi-unit networked environment, this tool can help you keep track of printing expenses.  Device Management Console* is an administrative tool which provides users with the means to manage multiple PRO-1000 printers by helping users monitor activity such as error messages and printer information such as the execution status of calibrations.

Availability and Pricing

CANADA: The Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 is scheduled to be available at the end of November 2015 for a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $1,599.99. MSRP of each colour ink is $71.99 and Chroma Optimizer is $65.99.**

USA:The Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 is scheduled to be available end of October 2015 for a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $1,299.95. MSRP of each color ink is $59.99 and Chroma Optimizer is $54.99.**

For more information visit:

CANADA: http://www.canon.ca
USA: http://www.usa.canon.com.

† Based on weekly patent counts issued by United States Patent and Trademark Office.

1Wireless printing requires a working Ethernet network with wireless 802.11b/g or n capability. Wireless performance may vary based on terrain and distance between the printer and wireless network clients. Wi-Fi is a registered trademark of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

*Certain software and utilities to be released post launch:

Device Management Console for PC estimated to be available December 2015, for MAC 3rd Quarter 2016,Media Configuration Tool for MAC estimated to be available 1st quarter 2016 and

Accounting Manager for MAC and PC estimated to be available for 1st Quarter of 2016.

2 Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe Lightroom® and Canon Digital Photo Professional software must be purchased separately.

††Photo print speeds are based on the standard mode driver setting using photo test pattern(s) and select Canon Photo Paper. Print speed is measured as soon as first page begins to feed into printer and will vary depending on system configuration, interface, software, document complexity, print mode, types of paper used and page coverage. See www.usa.canon.com/printspeed for additional information.

††† Delta E of 2 inches is guaranteed only Canon genuine media.

**Availability, specifications and pricing are subject to change without notice. Actual prices are set by individual dealers and may vary.

Wednesday
May132015

Gannets Galore Bonaventure Island Photo Workshop Update

Northern Gannet SEAWEED IN YOUR FACE (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 200-400mm F4 L IS USM XT, (@274mm). ISO 1,000, F4.5 @ 1/4,000s Manual. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

Northern Gannets of Bonaventure Island

Gannets Galore

Photo Safari & Expedition

June 5-7, 2015 (3 Days/4 Nights)

Sold Out!

June 8-10, 2015 (3 Days/4 Nights)

Sold Out!

June 11-13, 2015 (3 Days/4 Nights)

Only 2 Spots left!

A spectacle not to be missed! This is, by far, the very best workshop to master your birds in flight technique. I have invested well over a year of my life at this site, so I know the birds and I know the site intimately, and I know the best way to maximize the photographic opportunities in any wind or weather. I know, and work with, the people at the park & in the village, so from having our gear hauled to the colony in an ATV, to getting special access, I have all of the bases covered. I have hosted over one thousand photographers for this adventure and it  truly is my favourite and most productive workshop.

Join Canon's Northern Explorer of Light Christopher Dodds at the largest Northern Gannet colony in the world. Bonaventure Island, off the Gaspe Peninsula of Quebec, is home to more than 55,000 nesting pairs of Northern Gannets and it is such a beautiful place that National Geographic Traveler Magazine ranks Gaspé number three tourism destination in the world (Nov./Dec. 2009). You haven’t really seen a Gannet until you see the activity at a breeding colony. Bonaventure Island is perhaps one of the world’s best places to teach avian flight technique. Other photographic opportunities will include all aspects of breeding behavior; courtship display, bowing (territorial display), sky pointing, fencing (two mates clashing their bills together while pointing skyward), mutual preening and copulation. Most of the nests will be occupied and will contain babies at various stages of development. In June, we’ll be feet away from hatching eggs and adults feeding their young on their nests. The workshop is timed to coincide with the annual Caplin run in June, so we should have plenty of opportunities to photograph these magnificent birds diving; sometimes forming huge diving funnels containing thousands of birds. Other photographic possibilities include thousands of nesting Black-legged Kittiwakes, Common Murres, Black Guillemots, Rozorbills, Gulls, Grey Seals and various Whales. Highlights will include a daily four hour adventure on a 24 foot Zodiac Hurricane (weather permitting). We should have ample opportunities to photograph Gannets diving and feeding in large funnels.

More information and sign-up for Gannets Galore Bonaventure Island Photography Workshop HERE

Gannets Galore: A recent trip to the gannet colony on the Gaspe’s Ile Bonaventure with Chris Dodds proved to be all that I could have hoped for.  The colony is large, active and readily accessible, Chris’ familiarity with the birds and how they would react to the frequent changes in weather and wind direction gave us access to some pretty unique shooting opportunities, and his knowledge of the area and personal connections within the local community allowed us to get to the island when construction on the town’s only pier could easily have prevented us from getting there.  This, combined with Chris’ almost unique ability to teach the principles of photography at the simplest and most complex levels, made this a trip that should not be missed.
 
Steve Goodman Denver, Colorado
, USA

Read more TESTIMONIALS HERE

Tuesday
Oct212014

Canon 7D mark II 1,600 ISO image

Northern Gannet (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 7D MKII, 200-400mm F4 L IS USM XT, (@400mm). ISO 1,600, F6.3 @ 1/4,000s Manual. "Photograph made with a beta (non-final) sample of Canon EOS 7D Mark II. Image quality may not represent the final output from shipping cameras but is likely to be very close." - fine print courtesy Canon Canada Inc.

Here's a full frame Northern Gannet against a dark background in light fog from my recent short trip to Bonaventure Island. There is a flurry of activity in my inbox and on the internet from folks wanting more high ISO images from the 7D mark II, so I carefully chose this one made while testing the auto focus against the dark background which would make noise more visible. While there is some noise as expected, it certainly performs amazingly well. The level of detail in the white feather is awesome and the 13" x 19" print I made with my Pro 1 printer is fabulous.

Remember to minimize noise with any digital camera by exposing properly in camera and avoiding big crops.

Kudos

A friend I meet on a photography workshop in Alaska mentioned Chris Dodds as one of his favorite photographers. After doing a little research I booked the Ospreys of Lake Blue Cypress workshop with Chris. It was an action packed three days filled with many opportunities to photograph Ospreys nesting and in-flight from a pontoon boat. The workshop was first class and well organized. Chris is a great workshop leader and has a pleasant and easy going personality with unlimited knowledge of camera equipment, technique, post processing tips and nature. I learned so much and had such a good time meeting and photographing with Chris that when I returned home I signed up for my next workshop. Now I am looking forward to seeing him again for the Winter Snowy Owls of Quebec & Ontario workshop. Thanks Chris!

Eloy Castroverde Florida USA

Monday
May052014

Canon 1DX AF Settings Guidebook Update

Canon 1DX AF Settings Guidebook Update

Canon has produced a new version of its AF Setting Guidebook for the EOS-1D X DSLR designed for smartphones and tablets, which is now available for download on CPN.

As well as being designed specifically for smartphones and tablets this latest version of the Guidebook has been fully updated in line with the EOS-1D X firmware update Version 2.0.3 that enhanced the camera’s AF, exposure and customizable options.
Download your copy HERE.

Cape May Warbler (Setophaga tigrina, Paruline Tigree, CMWA) Point Pelee National Park, Leamington, Ontrario. Image Copyright ©Christopher DoddsPURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Point Pelee; it's not too late!

Canon Canada's Northern Explorers of Light program and Henry's have teamed-up to offer you some extraordinary events during spring migration at Point Pelee National Park of Canada. The cold spring and late arrival of the warmer weather is likely to make this spring's migration epic! These events are timed to coincide with the very best birding Pelee has to offer photographers; the highest possibility of a fallout (high number of birds), before the leaves obscure our view.

Events include an hour long slideshow, portfolio reviews, half day walking tours and full day walking tours. Not only will I help you improve your bird photography technique, I will share my strategy to maximize your opportunities during spring migration at Pelee. I can help beginners leap forward on the technical side and offer site guidance to advanced amateurs and pros.

The events are open to everyone and Canon equipment is not mandatory - I will be teaching bird photography that will improve your images regardless of the brand camera you own. Henry's will have both Canon and Nikon gear on site for rent.

Check it out and register at Henry's School of Imaging HERE

 

Saturday
May032014

Spring Migration Special Event with Canon Canada Northern Explorers of Light and Henry's School of imaging

Black-and-White Warbler (Mniotilta vary, Paruline noir et blanc, BAWW) Point Pelee National Park, Leamington, Ontrario. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds. Canon EOS Canon EOS 1DS II, 500mm F4 L IS, 2X Extender. ISO 640, f/8 @ 1/160s Manual mode. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

I am thrilled to announce that Canon Canada's Northern Explorers of Light program and Henry's have teamed-up to offer you some extraordinary events during spring migration at Point Pelee National Park of Canada. The cold spring and late arrival of the warmer weather is likely to make this spring's migration epic! These events are timed to coincide with the very best birding Pelee has to offer photographers; the highest possibility of a fallout (high number of birds), before the leaves obscure our view.

Events include an hour long slideshow, portfolio reviews, half day walking tours and full day walking tours. Not only will I help you improve your bird photography technique, I will share my strategy to maximize your opportunities during spring migration at Pelee. I can help beginners leap forward on the technical side and offer site guidance to advanced amateurs and pros.

The events are open to everyone and Canon equipment is not mandatory - I will be teaching bird photography that will improve your images regardless of the brand camera you own. Henry's will have both Canon and Nikon gear on site for rent.

Check it out and register at Henry's School of Imaging HERE

Friday
Jan102014

Canon announces new pro camera body

Juvenile American Bald Eagle WINTER'S FLIGHT (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 300mm F2.8 L IS USM with Jobu L-Bracket  Hand Held ISO 2,000, f/2.8 @ 1/3,200s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

Here's a juvenile Bald Eagle from last year's epic Bald Eagle workshop. There are still a couple of spots available for this trip of a lifetime from March 7-11, 2014. Both March 12-16 and 17-21 trips are sold-out. Learn more and sign-up for my Bald Eagles of Homer, Alaska Workshop HERE.


Canon announces new pro camera body

Well, not really a new pro camera body, but this firmware update sure will make the already awesome 1DX feel like a brand new camera - and it's a free upgrade!

Canon has released a firmware update for the EOS-1D X Digital SLR Camera.
Details
Firmware Version 2.0.3 incorporates the following functional improvements and fixes.

  • Auto focusing performance under low-light conditions has been enhanced when performing focusing before shooting in AI Servo AF mode. The enhancement comes from the improvement in tracking capability for the first image in the low-light conditions.
  • The number of release parameters settings for the “AI Servo AF 2nd image priority” AF function has been increased to enable improved AF tracking in low light or maintain consistent high frames rates during continuous shooting.
  • The number of parameters for acceleration/deceleration tracking in the AF Configuration Tool will has been increased.
  • Exposure compensation can be performed when using manual exposure and ISO Auto.
  • The minimum shutter speed limit for ISO Auto has been increased with shutter speeds up to 1/8000.
  • A new function to keep the exposure constant by altering the ISO or shutter speed in manual exposure, when the aperture value changes when zooming or changing lenses has been added. This is an awesome and very useful feature!
  • A new option has been added to orientation linked AF point to enable only the AF point to switch as you change orientation rather than both AF point/ AF area settings
  • A new option to continue to use the previously manually selected AF point as the initial starting AF point when switching to 61-point automatic selection has been added.
  • New customization of the Exposure metering and AF controls has been added for more flexibility.
  • The number of possibilities for controls to switch between one-shot AF and AI Servo AF using custom controls has been increased.
  • A function has been added to allow the playback and review of protected images only.
  • A phenomenon has been fixed in which the white balance may be disturbed by the timing of the shutter release when the drive mode is single shooting and a flash (E-TTL)is used.

This update truly makes an amazing camera even better. The update arrives at a time when many were expecting a new camera announcement and continues Canon's recent trend of offering substantial free firmware upgrades for current camera models and incorporating user feedback.

DOWNLOAD Firmware version 2.0.3 for the 1DX HERE

DOWNLOAD Updated users manual HERE Always a good idea to keep a PDF on your smartphone for reference

Read the Canon product advisory HERE

Tuesday
Nov262013

Great Grey Owl GEAR DOWN

Great Grey Owl GEAR DOWN  (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Quebec ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DII, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS. ISO 400, f/6.4 @ 1/650s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

I had a fabulous short visit to Halifax, NS to present my Canon Northern Explorers of Light slideshow to the Photographic Guild of Nova Scotia last Friday. The hospitality was first rate and the East Coast crowd was fabulous. Here's a note that I received after the event:

I just wanted to drop you a line in appreciation of your presentation Friday night in Halifax. From my perspective, of all the Canon Northern Explorers of Light, the Guild struck it lucky when it succeeded in recruiting you for a talk. The images you showed were terrific, but it was your interest in and knowledge of your subjects that made the event so worthwhile - captivating, in fact. No wonder you're a popular workshop and field instructor. Your enthusiastic engagement with the natural world is inspiring.

All of which is to say I enjoyed your presentation and I was glad of the opportunity to attend.

Kindest regards,

Betsy Chambers Halifax, NS, Canada

Thursday
Nov142013

Canon Northern Explorers of Light Presentation in Halifax

Great Grey Owl OLD MAN WINTER  (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Gatineau, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 500mm f/4 L IS USM with Jobu L-Bracket and Jobu Jr. 3 Deluxe  ISO 3,200, f/4 @ 1/3,200s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

Here's one from a very cold and windy day during last winter's Winter Owl Prowls. There is still two spots available for the winter 2014 season - more information about my Snowy Winter Owl Photographic Expeditions HERE

HELLO HALIFAX

I'm thrilled to announce yet another Canon Northern Explorers of Light event. On Friday, November 22, 2013 at 7:30PM I will be presenting to the Photographic Guild of Nova Scotia. Everyone is welcome and I hope to see you there if you are around the Halifax, Nova Scotia area next Friday evening. Lots of great door prizes and tons of valuable photo techniques!

Tickets are $15.00 at the door and only $10.00 if you order them in advance from Dean Hirtle tresurer@photoguild.ns.ca Get yours now to avoid disappointment.

Get more information HERE.

Thursday
Oct242013

Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6400 review

World Wildlife Photographer and Canon Northern Explorer of Light Christopher Dodds with Canon imagePROGRAF iPF6400. There's nothing like seeing a big print of one of your favorite images! Notice the X-Rite Colorchecker Passport in the background to help with color accuracy.

Canon IPF6400 Review

As a master printer in the traditional darkroom, I've been working hard over the last decade to master the art of the digital print; often struggling to squeeze every ounce of colour gamut out of the printer and paper I was using. I have owned more inkjet printers than I care to admit, and have spent an inordinate amount of time finding workarounds to each of their weaknesses. My quest to make the very best print has been a very long and often  frustrating journey.

It's no secret that I'm a perfectionist; I push myself to be better at my passion and craft each and every time I am out with my camera; from capture through to the print. I don't feel the image is finished until I have experienced the big picture; my own tactile response to my own work is, perhaps, the most rewarding part of the image making process to me.

Canon Canada sent me their flagship 24" Image PROGRAF IPF6400 printer back in August and I have been to the Canon LFP (Large Format Printing) Lab in Toronto for some training and product familiarization by some of the best in the business. I want to share a little about the printer with you, without re-writing the technical specification sheet (which can be found HERE); I wanted to write a hands-on review of the printer, it's extraordinary colour gamut, ease of use and the masterful prints it creates; Let's just say I have been blown-away by my first Canon LFP; this is an industry changing printer that truly is a turn-key solution for excellent prints without needing to be an expert print maker. I have finally found the perfect printer!

The unboxing and set-up was quick and easy, thanks to the single page set-up instructions. The included stand with built-in wheels makes it easy to move out of the way when not in use. The design is well though-out, with built-in paper bin and it certainly looks great in the studio/office.

The included software is, quite frankly, brilliant and easy to install and use; Canon was wise to develop a dedicated plug-in for Photoshop to facilitate easy 16 bit printing and a stand-alone software to manage print media called the MCT (Media Configuration Tool). The MCT allows you to add both custom and Canon paper types which will appear on the printer's LCD display when loading new media. Canon has made it easy to find profiles for their media HERE and compatible third party papers HERE.

The included ImagePROGRAF Layout Plug-in includes some pretty useful tools to minimize paper waste. If you print canvas and make gallery wraps, then the image expansion tool does a fabulous job of easily extending the edge of the image along the sides with choices that include black border, soft (or blurred) reflection; minimizing image loss during the wrapping process.

As a Mac user, I was disappointed to learn that the Accounting Manager was only available for the Windows platform; though more out of curiosity than needing to know the exact job cost (ink & media). This is much more useful to a print production house than a fine art studio - If you are a photographer trying to calculate exact print costs, then you are most likely not charging enough for your work!

The industry leading 12-color Lucia EX ink offers the widest colour gamut, finest detail and best print quality I have ever seen. The built-in sub-ink tanks built into the printer allow you to change ink tanks without interrupting printing and the new 330ml replacement tanks are a welcome change when doing large print runs.

The new PF-05 printheads have eliminated both clogging and banding; this, alone, is worth the investment. Optimized for speed and ink savings, the driver maintains the highest print quality while reducing ink use by ensuring fewer print head passes; resulting in a much faster print time.

Available features, upgrades and other models:

iPF 6450 - 24" Printer with built-in hard drive and optional X-Rite SU-21 spectrophotometer with automatic colour calibration and colour accuracy across multiple printers and multiple geographic locations.


iPF 8400 - 44" Printer


iPF 9400 - 60" Printer

Because these printers all use the same ink, print heads and mechanics; this review is relevant to them all.

Here is an overview of the printer from the Canon website:

The imagePROGRAF iPF6400, 24-inch large format printer was designed for professionals in the graphic, fine art, photography and proofing markets that seek the highest possible standards for quality-control and image reproduction. An incredibly large color spectrum is produced by the 12-Color LUCIA EX pigment ink set, which also provides better scratch resistance and smoother gradations. The new Multi-sensor included with this printer provides improved color density detection and allows for a full calibration to be completed within 15 minutes, with the ability to use non-Canon branded media. A new Color Calibration Management System allows for color calibration targets to be created using the iPF6450 with optional spectrophotometer and shared across all new iPFX400 12-color printers, and the included software allows for all printers on the network to be monitored from one central location. The printer supports ink tank sizes of 130ml and for the first time, 300ml, and the new sub-ink tank keeps some ink in reserve to allow for tanks to be changed without interrupting a print. In highest print mode, the order of ink application and layering is optimized to maintain the highest print quality with fewer passes, making this mode twice as fast compared to previous models.

To expand printing options and capabilities, the iPF6400 printer comes bundled with a Print Plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Digital Photo Professional, and Microsoft Office. The enhanced Print Plug-in for Adobe Photoshop includes a new Adjustment Pattern Setting which allows for multiples of an image to be printed at once with different color values implemented and displayed. Gallery wraps for canvas prints can now be created using the new Gallery Wrap Feature. To improve versatility, the iPF6400 has a media configuration tool which allows customers to not only utilize existing Canon-branded media, but also with third party media. Designed for efficiency, reliability, and above all quality, the iPF6400 is the professionals answer to superior quality large format prints.

Disclaimer: I am a Canon Northern Explorer of Light; paid and sponsored by Canon Canada. I do not write reviews of products that I do not use every day, and do not endorse products in lieu of sponsorship or payment. This review and endorsement is strictly my personal view.

Tuesday
Dec042012

Used Camera Gear for Sale

 

American Bald Eagles THE TANGO (Haliaeetus leucocephalus, Pygargue à tête blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay, Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS Canon EOS 1D MKIII, 500mm F4 L IS, 1.4X Tele-Extender, Tripod & Jobu Jr. 3 ISO 1,250, f/5.6 @ 1/1,2500s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

FACEBOOK

If you've been following my Christopher Dodds Nature Photographer Facebook fan page, you have probably noticed that you can view more of my work there than is posted here to my blog. Be sure to stop-by and LIKE my Fanpage HERE to see more.

MARCH BALD EAGLES WORKSHOP

Believe it, or not; there's still space for my Bald Eagle workshop in March. This workshop is designed to ensure that you will return with an impressive portfolio of Bald Eagle images. Be sure to check it out:

Bald Eagles of Homer, AK Photographic Expeditions / workshop / safari March 18-22, 2013 Five full days.

USED EQUIPMENT FOR SALE

I have a few items for sale as follows:

Canon 1Ds Mark III - used professionally with box and everything that came in  it. Perfect working order and minimal wear. 15 day guarantee CAD$4,500.00 OBO

Canon 1D Mark IV - used professionally with box and everything that came in  it. Perfect working order and minimal wear. 15 day guarantee CAD$3,500.00 OBO

Sigma 8mm f/3.5 EX DG Circular fisheye for Canon - Like new and hardly used.  15 day guarantee CAD$800.00 OBO

A friend has the following for sale:

2 x Canon 1D Mark IV - used with brassing (wear). Perfect working order. CAD$3,200.00 OBO each

Canon 400mm f/4 DO IS USM - used with box and everything that came with it. Optically perfect. CAD$3,900.00 OBO

SOLD - Canon 500mm f/4 EF IS USM Version I - used with box and everything that came with it. Optically perfect. CAD$5,500.00 OBO

Email me chris@chrisdoddsphoto.com if interested.