Thursday, 26 September 2013

YouTube Audio Library

The Verge reports: [edited]

YouTube includes a number of simple production tools to help film makers improve their projects, and today it's launching a library of royalty-free music that can be used in any video. The YouTube Audio Library is launching with 150 tracks in genres spanning from funky dance and electronic to sappy country tunes, all of which can be streamed and downloaded as 320kbps MP3 files.

Tthere are some gems within the collection that do a great job representing their genre without feeling like a knockoff product, giving filmmakers easy access to royalty-free music.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Free Flat Design Icons

abduzeedo reports: [edited]

With the release of iOS7 I took the time to find some line icons packs that you can download and use for free.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Archive of Book Cover Designs & Designers

Creative Pro reports: [edited]

Next time you feel the need for a little visual inspiration, head directly to and be prepared to spend some time browsing over 1300 cover designs.

Click on a cover to get a close up view with info about the designer, publisher, author. You can also choose to view covers by a specific designer.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Ricoh Theta

The Inquirer reports: [edited]

Ricoh has unwrapped what it claims is 'the world's first mass-produced' 360 degree imaging device. The device features a twin lens that captures the scene around, above and below the device in one shot for fully spherical images.

Weighing 95g, the device links up to smartphones so that images can be uploaded via WiFi and viewed in a free Ricoh app. The app allows users to then pinch, swipe or rotate the images they have taken, editing the size, shape and composition if they like before sharing online

Ricoh said the Theta will work with Apple iOS 6.0 devices and newer. Android compatibility is expected before the end of the year.

The handheld device will be sold for £329 and will go up for pre-order this month.


Thursday, 12 September 2013

Olympus O-MD E-M1

Digital Photography Review has released a hands-on preview of Olympus' recently announced flagship Four Third/Micro Four Third hybrid.

Snippets follow:

"There are two distinctions that set the E-M1 apart from its little brother (the E-M5) - a more sophisticated autofocus system and a 'buttons for everything' design approach."

"The biggest technological step forward on the E-M1 is the addition of on-sensor phase detection elements, giving the camera two distinct focus modes. The phase-detection system is used when lenses from the original Four Thirds system."

"The E-M1 gains the 2.3m-dot electronic viewfinder panel we first saw as the VF-4 accessory for the PEN E-P5. The optics give a viewfinder with magnification of up to 1.48x, which puts it only a fraction behind the 0.76x viewfinder in Canon's 1D X and ahead of Nikon's pro-grade D4 DSLRs.

"There's a more advanced processor in the E-M1 that conducts a variety of lens corrections, when creating JPEGs, including correcting for chromatic aberration and correcting sharpness on a per-lens basis.

"The biggest difference between the E-M1 and the E-M5, though, is the degree of direct control on offer. We really liked the E-M5's twin-dial control system, but the E-M1 goes beyond that by providing button-and-dial combinations for quickly changing almost every imaginable setting on the camera, quickly."

For early reviews, visit ePhotozine, Robin Wong and Ming Thein.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013


uncrate reports: [edited]

Sure, your smartphone has the ability to record voice memos, but using it means you have to know ahead of time about something you'll want recorded.

Kapture is an always-on audio-recording wristband — so any time you feel the need to capture the last 60 seconds of audio, all you have to do it tap it, and it instantly saves. And, with the included smartphone app, you can store, edit, share, and replay your old audio clips for as long as you want.

To find out more, visit the Kickstarter page.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

A week with Google's Chromebook

If you're thinking of purchasing Google's £1,049 Chromebook Pixel, Jeffrey Van Camp's Living with a Chromebook for a week is like 7 minutes of heaven, then 7 days of hell" article is worth a read.

In case the title isn't too much of a clue, here are some excerpts from John Gruber.

"The biggest realization came for me when I turned on my MacBook Air after a week. (I had to because I needed to take a Skype call.) It was so... fast. And I could use every Chat service I wanted. And the battery life was much better than the Pixel. And it was so much lighter. And I could run the full version of Spotify. And I could open iTunes. And I could edit Microsoft Office documents without a lengthy conversion process. And I could use Dropbox. And it didn’t slow down for me. And, best of all, I could use the Chrome browser, and every Chrome app I had installed, on my Mac. It was wonderful and such a relief to not have to think about what I couldn’t do, or worry if my next email attachment will open or not."

"Some readers say I’ve expected too much out of Chrome, but wanting to edit some documents, chat outside a browser window, and use common services is not excessive."

To anglicise Gruber's conclusion... "How can someone 'expect too much' from a £1,049 notebook?

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Nokia Lumia 1020

Digital Photography Review Connect has published an in-depth report on the Lumia 1020's 41 megapixel camera.

The 'Final Word'

The Nokia Lumia 1020’s innovative zoom and impressive image quality set it apart from all competitors. By nearly every metric, it takes better pictures than any other phone on the market.

Its imaging Achilles heel is its camera app’s sluggish shot-to-shot and start-up times. While many phones feel nearly instantaneous on both fronts, the 1020’s four-second delays can feel very long. Whether you find this negligible or nauseating depends on your personal style of photography.