iPhone Photography

BlueSLR Blues

When I first saw an article about the release of the BlueSLR, I thought that it was a totally cool idea, and more then I was actually looking, the remote shutter and intervalometer were just bonus, when all I wanted was the geotagging pulling the data from my iPhone… The initially announcement was that the device was compatible with both my D90 as well as my D7000, but that was to change due to a unforeseen change in the connector on the D7000, and I’m ok with that…

I told my wife about this great little gadget, and she decided to get it for me as a Christmas present, totally cool, but reality being reality, the unit did not show up until 3 weeks after Christmas (why does it take so long to get stuff shipped from Canada), and as luck would have it, it got here while I was on a business trip…

I get the unit mounted to my D90, and I am not really impressed with how the BlueSLR unit hangs off the camera, not a real deal killer, but not the greatest looking set up. With the device mounted I’m ready to go, fire up the camera, go to pair the BlueSLR device with the iPhone, it rejects the pairing a couple of times but eventually it pairs all is happy, and on to the BlueSLR app. Yes it technically does what  it says it does, it fires the shutter and I think autofocus worked once or twice, but not consistently, the intervalometer worked as far as I could tell. As I was playing with the app, trying the different features, I noticed that the time stamp is not changing, its static, I hit the GPS button, and the time started updating, but the GPS data stopped updating and then the app says the  GPS disconnected  I go to the bluetooth section of the iPhone settings and it says it is disconnected, then it connects as I’m looking at it, I go back to the BlueSLR app says its connected, I fire off a picture and then it says it’s disconnected again. This is the point where I l0ok again at how far the unit hangs off the camera and I think maybe its not all the way in, so I go to remove the device in an effort to reseat it and maybe resolve the bluetooth dropping issue, but as I pull the device out of the socket the unit comes out but the metal shield around the connector stays in the camera. This is the point where I am no longer a happy camper, and after spending a bunch of time pulling the metal shield out of my camera, making sure I didn’t do any damage to my camera. This is the point where the BlueSLR device went back in the box, and will be on its way back to canada early next week.

I really wanted the BlueSLR to work, and I was really planning on getting one for the D7000 when they worked out their issues with the inverted connector, but I think I’ll wait a lot longer and read a few more reviews before pulling the trigger on another.

The idea is really good, but the implementation is where things go wrong…

I guess for the time being I’ll continue to carry my GPS, and tag my pictures with PhotoLinker from Early Innovations…


Nikon P6000 Unhappiness…

So I have been putting my Nikon P6000 through its paces for the past couple weeks, and I am pretty happy with it for the most part, except for 2 things….

The battery life on this when using the GPS and an Eye-Fi card is abysmal, and that would not be an issue if the battery didn’t take forever to charge. Of course Nikon doesn’t provide a real charger, the battery has to be charged in the camera, unless you have the optional $30 MH-61 charger, which I understand only takes about an hour or so to fully charge the battery, then to make things easy I’ll probably end up getting another battery as well. There are a couple things that add to this problem, internally the camera get get hot with the Eye-Fi card, and since it is right next to the battery it makes the battery too hot to charge for about 20 minutes.

The other thing that annoys me is that there is no easy way to close the lens and keep the camera on, something like a standby mode. There are a couple of reasons this would be nice, keeping the GPS happy, because it makes me unhappy when I have to wait a minute or 2 for the GPS to sync because the camera has shut off and lost sync, it doesn’t happen all the time only when it is inconvenient. A stand by mode would also be nice to deal with things like the Eye-Fi card, the D90 and D5000 have a setting to tell the camera to not go to sleep until the Eye-Fi card is done doing its uploads.

Other then those 2 issues, the P6000 is a great little camera, and it fits the bill when an SLR is too much.


Nikon D5000 Overheat Problems….

I did several searches on this problem. and I am still wondering if it is just me, because I couldn’t find a similar issue posted anywhere…

I went to the Delaware State Fair on Friday, and i had my Nikon D5000 with me, shot a lot of pictures or so I thought, because today I upload the pictures to my computer, and there is at least an hour of pictures missing. I know I took them, I have witnesses, and every-time I hit the button I could hear and see the shutter go. I wasn’t using the screen, and I was getting glare off of it so I had it turned around, so I don’t really know if the pictures were actually ever there.  It problem occurred shortly after I mentioned to my wife that the camera and lens felt a bit warm, and I started hanging out in the shade, and I thought that if there was an overheat problem the camera would shut itself off, so I felt I was good to go. The weather was sunny and 82, so the temperature wasn’t overly hot (and well within the D5000’s specs of 102), but it was sunny, and we were on concrete, so there was not a lot of relief from the heat or sun.

While I was searching for the a possible cause to the problem, I found several references that mentioned that the camera would shutoff the sensor if it overheated and you were shooting video in live view, but not reference to shooting stills. I honestly feel that this may be a related issue.

So a word of warning, if you are out on a sunny day with your D5000, and it feels warm, check and see if it is actually recording the data.

If you have experienced this particular problem shooting stills, please let me know….


New Camera

I have had my Olympus E-500 for about a year now, and I really like it. It has plenty of features, does what it is supposed to do, but where I primarily use a camera is while kayaking, changing lenses is not advisable.

The E-500 was my first choice, and I do not regret that choice at all. My second choice was the Olympus SP-550UZ, mainly because of the versatility of the lens.
So I was at the local Wally World the other day, and they had the SP-550 for about $100 or so lees then it was going for last year, and I had some extra money for various reasons, so I broke down and bought it. This is a nice little camera, and it has a lot more features then I expected. When I looked last year I was more interested, and I guess focused on the 18x zoom capabilities, then I was on any of the macro capabilities. Had I thought about it more, I might have gone with the SP-550UZ.
I had the chance to use the camera today in conditions similar to when I am kayaking and I am pretty impressed with the results. I do have a bit of a learning curve, but I think I have a grasp of the basics. I thing I’ll be in real good shape when I get the “My Mode” features set up with what I normally use on the water, and can easily switch between them. 
Here are 2 pictures taken together, and I think it only took 2 button pushes to go from the Macro Mode to the the Telephoto full zoom mode.

This picture was taken from about 2 feet away, and the flowers were about a half an inch in size.
This was taken very shortly after the picture above, from about 60 or so yards away
I am very happy the results so far, and will probably have the SP-550 as the quick draw camera, and use the E-500 for the heavy lifting.