Looking for the right holiday gift for another photographer? Here are some products sure to make others jolly.
a. The release of LEXAR's (www.lexar.com) LockTight CompactFlash security system is official. The combination of a CompactFlash card and Lexar's custom LockTight software is the perfect gift for photographers who want to protect their digital images and information from unauthorized use. The system is capable of restricting access to the card's content to approved users and cameras through card-level, 160-bit authentication. Once the card has been registered, it will only work in the specified cameras and can only be accessed by those users with the login information established by the system administrator.
b. Give your photographer friends the whole Kit 'n' Kaboodle with the COKIN (www.cokin.com) Digital Filter Kit. Comprised of a filter holder, adapter ring, and a Sunset 1 filter, Cokin's new kit fits a variety of digital cameras. Digital SLR photographers will enjoy their newfound ability to add, change, or rotate filters instantly to get the results they want on the spot. The five available kit and ring sizes include: Canon, 58mm; Nikon, 67mm; Konica Minolta, 77mm; Olympus, 58mm; and Pentax, 52mm.
c. Since a model's outfit can make or break an image, consider what a great gift BARNES COSTUMES' (www.barnesclothing.com) new Victorian Reversible Cape would be. This delicate balance of Dupioni Silk and Moiré Satin is one of those items most child portraiture photographers would consider a welcome addition to their wardrobe collection. Embellished with antique heirloom lace, the cape is available in all sizes and comes in a variety of colors including Ivory (shown) and Toffee.
d. The gift of convenience and portability now comes in "government olive." TENBA's (www.tenba.com) new PM-17C Messenger Bag is an urban-influenced, multipurpose satchel with over 20 pockets, organizers, and compartments for everything from pens and pencils to CDs and other digital media. A large, padded section accommodates a laptop (up to 17"), which can be quickly accessed through the top of the bag without having to open the main flap. Other features include a generously padded, no-twist shoulder strap, rubberized bottom panel, 3M Scotchlite reflective trim, and contoured, reinforced hand grip.
e. Whether they typically shoot under bright studio lights or the desert sun, you might want to consider giving them the perfect case for "just in case." SEAPORT DIGITAL's (www.seaportdigital.com) i-Visor Pro case not only protects laptop computers, it doubles as a visor hood that guarantees high-quality monitor viewing under even the brightest lighting conditions. A slightly modified, lighter-weight version is also available for casual use.
f. Make the holiday memories last forever by recording them on video DVD or let the season's sounds ring them in crystal clear year after year with VERBATIM's (www.verbatim.com) newest storage solutions. Among them: Video Guard discs make videos and other recordings 40 times more resistant to damage and retro-looking Digital Vinyl CDR's that won't degrade or lose sound fidelity every time the discs are played. Also new from Verbatim: DVD+R Double Layer media, DigitalMovie DVDs that look like a classic Hollywood movie reel, and Store 'n' Go USB Drives.
g. MAC GROUP is rolling out Multicart (www.multicart.com) equipment transporters. The carts, available in five sizes, feature a patented design that allows them to be quickly transformed into any of eight configurations using rails, load bars, and handles that hinge and slide into a variety of positions. Its "off-road" tires and tubular steel frame make it ideal for moving large equipment or cases from location to location, while its adjustability enables it to be folded down to a compact size for easy storage. Configuration possibilities include: two-wheel hand truck, four-wheel cart, furniture dolly, and platform cart.
h. The new OLYMPUS (www.olympusamerica.com) EVOLT E-500 makes capture so easy, with its 15 easily selectable scene modes and 10 exposure modes. Other features include a 2.5" Hypercrystal LCD; dual media slots for an xD-Picture Card, Compact Flash, or both; a TruePic TURBO Image Processor for high-speed image capture; and a Supersonic Wave Filter that eliminates dust spots. Each of its available Zuiko digital-specific lenses is perfectly matched to the camera's image sensor and features internal CPU for direct communication with the camera.
i. If an external hard-disk drive with a half-terabyte capacity wasn't on your holiday gift list before, it might be now. MAXTOR (www.maxtor.com) just released their 7200 RPM MaXLine Pro 500, Quickview 500, and Diamond Max 11 drives. The 500GB drives come with a 16MB buffer and are available with 3.0GB SATA II features including native command queuing (NCQ), staggering spin up, hot-plug, and asynchronous signal recovery.