Sunday, October 25, 2020

iPhone 8 Plus: Is it the best camera you can own?


The latest smartphone cameras, in particular that in the new iPhone 8 Plus, are so easy to use effectively and definitely flatter the user. It's a good thing and it creating tens of thousands of new camera addicts. But is the iPhone 8 Plus the only camera you would want to use? Is it taking over?

Sensor Size: Are we just being dense?

Is a sensor with more pixels “larger” than its predecessor or “denser”. Should we clearly differentiate between sensor area and pixel density and avoid the sloppy descriptions often bandied around the internet?

Leica X1 and X2: A monochrome duo

Leica's little X1 and X2 are on their way to becoming digital classics. How do they perform as Monochrom substitutes? I decided to find out.

Hot-rod Girls: Never say never

Unaccustomed as I am to photographic bling, my outrageously processed shot of the hot-rod girls has proved a hit with competition judges. I probably won't do it again, but never say never

Bento file location gripe


LISTENING to Leo Laporte's Tech Guy netcast today, I was reminded of a long-standing gripe when applications save data to places other than the Documents folder. Leo was talking about Windows at the time and he mentioned that there were still some badly behaved programs which save data to the Program folder. In Macspeak this would be the Applications folder and I have not come across any apps which insist on doing this. 

But I have come across a number of applications which save their datafile to an Application Support folder inside the user Library folder. I don't like this and I prefer to have all my data stored somewhere easily accessible, usually in the Documents folder. Apart from other considerations, this also helps with backup since it is quick and easy to copy the Documents folder. The Library folder tends to be quite large and contains a lot of stuff that doesn't change daily.

Fortunately, in most cases you can simply move the datafile to a location of choice and it will be found there next time you load the program. Recently, I've taken to storing regularly accessed data in my Drobox folder on the desktop so it is accessible on any of my computers.Box_bento2_grande

I do have one application, Bento from Filemaker, that does not allow a change of database location. Data is automatically saved to the Application Support folder and cannot be moved (at least, not without Bento refusing to find it afterwards). 

In the early days of Bento, which is otherwise an excellent simplified database program, I took this up in the Filemaker forum. The problem was recognised but no solution was promised. So I was disappointed to find that the updated Bento 2 still insists on choosing a data location with no option for change. 

As a result of this I am using Bento less and less and am gradually changing over my records to spreadsheet format in Numbers so that I can store the data in Dropbox. I've improved my efficiency as a result because I can view and adjust the data from any computer. I am still mystified why Bento, probably alone, stick to this unusual restriction. 

In-camera charging: Leica misses out on an essential feature

Are you a fan of in-camera battery charging? I believe it is now a must-have feature for all cameras. Have your say....

Pressure in the full-frame mirrorless market

Competition is hotting up in the full-frame mirrorless market. The new Panasonic S1 offers fierce competition for Leica's elderly SL but at a bargain price. No red dot, though.

Travel Tip: In-camera battery charging can save your bacon

Every forgotten to pack your Leica battery charger? Or, worse still, ever lost it while travelling? USB in-camera charging gives you a safety net but, unfortunately, it is available on only one German-made Leica, the new SL2. It's almost worth upgrading from the SL just for that....

L-Mount Alliance transforms lens map for Leica SL and CL/TL

The influx of new lenses for the L-Mount turns Leica's system into one of the most attractive full-frame systems on the market. With a wide range of lenses, at various prince points, and two camera manufacturers to date, the system is now has a bright future.

Leica cameras of the 20th Century: A video presentation from noted expert, William Fagan

William Fagan's presentation to LHSA members on old Leicas from the mid-1920s to the end of the century has been a great success. Macfilos readers now have the chance to watch the video. We also include a special membership offer and the opportunity to take part in a competition to win a Leica M10-R body.