canonrumors puts a date on a possible announcement of the long awaited Canon 5D MK III (MK3): announced around the end of March or early April 2012, "availability will probably happen before the summer begins in 2012. No specs were given at this time. This is a very solid [CR2]. The NAB show is April 14-19 in Las Vegas.".
The Canon EOS 7D Mark 2, northlight-images amongst other blogs report, "will be one of the big items Canon shows at Photokina 2012 in Cologne, Germany". Reports about the camera being APS-C are rumored, even though there is some info out there about it being APS-H. (dpreview, canonrumors)
Currently, the Canon EOS 5D MK II sells starting at $1,980.00 on Amazon US and EUR 1.679,95 on Amazon Germany. The Canon EOS 7D starts at $1,298.49 (Amazon US) and EUR 1.229,95 (Amazon Germany). Since there were recent price drops, it is unclear if the prices will further slide down, once a new product will be introduced. Our recommendation is to get a Camera now, if you really need it, possibly refurbished. The second hand value will still be high, so it's currently a good time to buy, although new models might be around the corner.
Amazon Warehouse Deals has an offer of -10% of the existing "warehouse deals" until 31st of december 2011. Warehouse Deals are B-ware, such as opened boxes or refurbished items, all with full warranty. The different amazon country-stores offer different products, so make sure you check Amazon Germany, Amazon UK, Amazon US (or the other partner programs), as they have different offers.
Here is a roundup of the best deals:
Canon EOS Rebel T3 12.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR with 18-55mm IS II Lens for $417,05
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 with 14-42mm Hybrid Lens $832.35
Apple MacBook Air MC969LL/A 11.6-Inch Laptop (NEWEST VERSION) for $990,92
Apple MacBook Air MC506LL/A 11.6-Inch Laptop (OLD VERSION) for $753.69
I am still going through all the offers and I will make myself some late christmas presents ;) happy shopping to you all!
Magic Lantern Unified looks promising: High Dynamic Range VIDEO for Canon cameras:
============== UPDATE ================
available for download now!
Demonstration of the new and free High Dynamic Range VIDEO feature for control over ultra contrast situations.
Discussion, workflow, RAW footage, FAQ:
Magic Lantern is a custom firmware add-on for Canon dSLR cameras. It is not a hack, or a modified firmware, but it runs alongside Canon's own firmware, booting from the card every time you turn the camera on. The only modification to the original firmware is the ability to boot software from the card.
HDR Video: what does it mean? It does not output pre-processed HDR video from the camera, rather it blends the alternative high ISO / low ISO frames together in post (see this discussion thread at Vimeo). There is of course a difference if you use two Canon 5D MKII for generating a HDR movie (as this guy did) compared to this "hack", although the development of Magic Lantern continues to impress!
Keep on rocking! We can't await clean HDMI output for the 5DMKII to use it with the Atomos Ninja (if this hack is possible at all...)
DigiTimes reports that Intel has notified partners that the company will "fully release" its Thunderbolt technology (previously known as "Lightpeak") in April 2012. Intel is reportedly preparing to launch Thunderbolt-supported motherboards, notebooks and desktop PCs at that time, other mainboard suppliers such as Gigabyte and Asus will follow.
Intel and Apple originally partnered on the new technology which has become standard across Apple's MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, Mac mini, and iMac. Digitimes reports that the cost of Thunderbolt technology is expected to drop in the second half of 2012, allowing more widespread adoption. While this sure is great for Windows users, that also means Thunderbolt will be available for hackintosh users!
While Apple does offer Thunderbolt across most of its product line, the first Thunderbolt products have been limited to relatively high end devices, such as the Blackmagic Ultrastudio 3D, the Magma Expressbox 3T or the Promise Pegasus Thunderbolt RAID. More widespread adoption should help drive adoption by accessory makers that will benefit both Mac and PC users that use the Thunderbolt technology.
Thunderbolt is not competing against USB3 (Intel said they see both USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt as complementary technologies) - furthermore there will be USB3 support for Apple devices, since there will be breakout boxes that offer USB3 connectivity.
Minicraft is the new game from Markus Persson, the developer of the successful online game Minecraft. It was developed for the contest Ludum Dare, where the aim is to create a new game from scratch within 48 hours. Markus Persson just recently stepped back from further development of the Minecraft game, handing all the responsibility to an employee of his company Mojang.
Minicraft is an 8-bit game written in Java (playable in the Browser or via a downloadable version) where resources and materials have to be collected to craft and create something new. Persson told, the higher aim of the game is to kill the only other creature with "consciousness" to be alone forever.
Since the Mozilla Foundation got 300 Million US$ per year from Google to implement Google's search engine as the default one, two new releases of the Firefox Browser have been presented: Firefox 10 (stable) and Firefox 11 Aurora (Version 11). The mobile Android version of the Android implementation gets a new, native UI. That makes the browser faster and it needs less memory besides other improvements and fixes. Firefox Aurora and Beta can be downloaded from Future of Firefox.
According to the report, workers at several iPad component suppliers as well as manufacturing partner Foxconn will have limited time off during the usual Lunar New Year holiday. The Lunar New Year holiday itself falls on January 23rd next year, with workers generally receiving a number of other days off from work around that date.
Sources have been reporting a variety of rumored dates for an iPad 3 introduction, with some claiming a debut in the March-April timeframe while others have pointed to a February launch being in the works.
Apple last year launched new MacBook Pro models on Jobs' birthday, although that unusual Thursday introduction was likely a convenient coincidence driven by the debut taking place during the Presidents Day holiday week.
[original via macrumors.com]
#1: Give awesome games and help charity: The Humble Indie Bundle #4 includes these Games (even with Steam coupons to import the games to your Steam account): Super Meat Boy, Shank, Jamestown, Bit.Trip Runner, NightSky, Cave Story+, Gratuitous Space Battles,
Crayon Physics Deluxe, Cogs, VVVVVV, Hammerfight, And Yet It Moves.
#2: Give some digital stuff, such as Kindle eBooks, or Steam Gifts to gamers.
You would need to know for sure, if the person already got that present, though. There's nothing worse than getting digital content twice.
#3: Order something online and print out the picture of it.
I know, this is cheesy, but after all you can all blame it to the parcel service: "The shipping time was more than a month!". Make sure, if your item is from ebay, that the real purchase date can not be found out.
To all Nanofunk readers: merry christmas! Hope you have nice and relaxing days.
Caution with Promise Pegasus Thunderbolt RAID 6x3TB (18TB) or 6x4TB (24TB) modification. 6x5TB (30TB) possible as of January 2012?
Nanofunk reported on a possible modification of the Promise Pegasus Thunderbolt RAID to host 6x3TB Hard Drives for a total of 18TB storage back in July 2011. While we did not have any issues with Hitachi Deskstar 3 0F12450 and Western Digital 3 TB SATA II Intellipower 64 MB Drives, other people repeatedly reported issues and even failures when the drives hold more than 11TB of data.
Currently, with the announcement of the Hitachi Deskstar 7K4000 4000GB, SATA 6Gb/s (0F14681) and the 4TB Deskstar 5K4000 as well as the 4TB Seagate Barracuda XT 7200RPM a total of 24TB could be reached when modding the Promise Pegasus just replacing the 2TB drives it comes with.
Tomshardware even reported on 5TB HDDs arriving in January 2012, so a modification to fit 30TB into the Promise Pegasus would be possible theoretically.
While all the drives are not available at the current time of writing of this article, please do consult the Promise Support if you are planning to do modifications or already did! Judging from the current feedback on modifications, updating the Promise Pegasus before an official answer or statement from Promise Technology is NOT RECOMMENDED!
Please send emails to Promise directly and ask them to react on the current limitations. I already did so - still waiting for response.
Since I had to reinstall my MacBook Pro after an SSD Drive fail, I stumbled upon a list I made, containing software essentials and basic application that everyone needs when reinstalling the OS. I compiled an up to date list: which applications are the essential apps in 2011/2012 when reinstalling Mac OS X.
This handy little app is a free un-packer, replacing Archive Utility that comes with Mac OSX. The Uninstaller does not only support .sit and .zip files, but also .rar, .7z and many other archive formats. This app is essential when working with archives and downloads.
A replacement for Quicktime and also for VLC. It has a nicer interface than VLC and supports the same file types (codecs) that quicktime does not: .h264, DivX, XVid, MVK, etc. mPlayerX recently became my favorite Media Player.
An awesome Mail.app replacement with great interface and actually improving the mail reading-experience: Sparrow has many features, such as perfect GMail integration, multiple accounts, avatar syncing from facebook, and many more. Recommended!
The best To-Do application out there. Best of all: Wunderlist is not only free, but it also synchronizes automatically via the web and your ToDo-Lists are available via web-interface as well as on any operating system (iOs, Android, Windows, etc.)
Best way to keep your Mac de-cluttered at all times: Clean My Mac from MacPaw deletes cache files as well as leftovers (junk from previously installed apps, etc.), Language files and so on. A perfect tool to keep the OS snappy at all times.
VoodooPad (former VoodooPad Pro) is an awesome offline desktop Wiki. I am using VoodooPad to store and interlink my ideas, texts and written content. It can hold RTF data: text as well as files from your hard disk can be directly linked. Images can be embedded or referenced. Highly recommended!
Apple Xcode is a free download via the appstore. It is not only needed for creating iOS and Mac OS Applications, but also to compile unix applications and to get other developer applications, such as Quartz Composer installed on your system.
Apple is selling Mac OSX on a Thumb Drive, but you can save some bucks and roll your own as simple as this:
1. Preparation: USB Stick
Insert an USB Stick that is big enough to fit the whole Mac OSX Lion installer. I can recommend the SanDisk Cruzer Blade 8GB, which you can get for less than $5.
2. Mac OSX Lion 10.7
get Mac OSX Lion from the App Store and download it.
3. Extracting the Install Data
Right click (option-click) on the just downloaded file and select "Show Package Contents". Get the file Contents/SharedSupport/InstallESD.dmg and copy it to your Desktop.
4. Disk Utility
Open "Disk Utility" and drag InstallESD.dmg from the desktop to the left sidebar. Select the attached USB from left side and click on “Partition” tab. Select "1 Partion" and from choose “Mac OS Extended (Journaled)” as partition type. Click on “Option” at the bottom, select “GUID Partition Table” and press OK -> Apply.
After formatting is done, select "Restore" and choose the USB Drive as destination and InstallESD.dmg as source. Click on "Restore" to have your Mac OSX Lion Boot drive created.
Since I had this problem several times when installing Mac OSX Lion 10.7.2, here is the simple solution: remove any RAM over 4GB. Keeping only 4GB RAM in the Mac (in my case a MacBook Pro) made the installer run flawlessly. It's as simple as that.
After almost 9 months with the OCZ Vertex 3 SATA-6GBPs (read about my OptiBay two-drive setup) and mostly no issues, the drive died on me. Starting with several GSOD (Grey Screens of Death) on my OSX Lion MacBook Pro, the drive became more and more unreliable.
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 9852)
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs_swap_HFSPlusBTInternalNode: catalog key #54 too big
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs: Runtime corruption detected on SSD, fsck will be forced on next mount.
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 10370)
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs_swap_HFSPlusBTInternalNode: catalog record #22 keyLength=32 expected=65568
Nov 28 18:30:42 mbp kernel: hfs: node=10965 fileID=4 volume=SSD device=/dev/disk0s2
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel: hfs: Runtime corruption detected on SSD, fsck will be forced on next mount.
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel: hfs: FindNextLeafNode: Error from hfs_swap_BTNode (node 14503)
Nov 28 18:30:43 mbp kernel: hfs_swap_BTNode: record #55 invalid offset (0x9B46)
It was getting slower and slower, reporting tons of errors in the Console.app. Then, it did not reboot anymore. Even in an external USB drive enclosure the drive did not mount anymore. Contacting OCZ about this issue, they sent me an RMA number right away and told me they will replace the drive. Does this mean our data is not safe in SSD? What can we learn from this?
First of all, it is a myth that SSDs are more reliable than hard drives. Secondly, they are not even fully supported on OSX yet (see Should I use Trim Enabler on Lion for the OCZ Vertex 3? No!) - at least if you install the drives yourself (which is also what I would suggest, since Apple does not offer any decent SATA 6GBPs drives yet).
So where is the proof, you ask?
Proof #1: The Hot/Crazy Solid State Drive Scale (via Coding Horror)
Super Talent 32 GB SSD, failed after 137 days
OCZ Vertex 1 250 GB SSD, failed after 512 days
G.Skill 64 GB SSD, failed after 251 days
G.Skill 64 GB SSD, failed after 276 days
Crucial 64 GB SSD, failed after 350 days
OCZ Agility 60 GB SSD, failed after 72 days
Intel X25-M 80 GB SSD, failed after 15 days
Intel X25-M 80 GB SSD, failed after 206 days
As a commenter put it: "Average life of SSD = 227.375 days (based on Wills' data)" - which is also what I can confirm.
SOLUTION: Backup early, backup often. Don't rely on the SSD and make two local backups plus one backup in the cloud.
Proof #2: long-term study of SSD failure rates (via Tomshardware)
SOLUTION: Buy drives that come with a very long warranty. Be prepared to let your drive replace for several times.
I am still waiting for my replacement OCZ Vertex and I will benchmark how fast it will die again. Since OCZ told me, it can take up to three weeks for my replacement to arrive, I bought myself a Seagate ST750LX003 750 GB SATA 600, Momentus XT, 8 GB SLC - it's a hybrid 750GB HDD with an 8GB SLC cache. The drive shifts data that is used often in the 8GB SLC SSD space automatically. While the SSD part of this hybrid drive can also fail, the data won't be lost and it will suffer just some minor speed loss (if it fails, since SLC is said to be more reliable than MLC chips). While this disk is now my main startup disk, i will go back to using the OCZ Vertex 3 again, once the replacement arrives. I just need to backup regularly - the speed gain is really worth the trouble.
The early 2011 MacBook Pro is Apple's masterpiece, no doubt: besides the overheating problems that many of us reported (but which seem to be solved as of now). Core i7 MPBs are super-fast with a Geekbench score of over 10.000 points for the i7 quad-core version - this was and still is an awesome performance for a notebook.
If you are planning on buying a new MacBook Pro 15", keep in mind that newer does not necessarily mean better: the early 2011 MacBook Pro is currently the best deal you can get ($1,549.99 for a new, $1,499.99 for refurbished MC721LL/A 15.4-Inch quad Core on Amazon) especially since they fixed all the flaws people reported about. I was complaining about issues a lot, but after Apple replaced the two notebooks we had, the run smootly ever since.
So a clear winner for buying a new MacBook Pro in 2011/2012 is the Apple MacBook Pro MC721LL/A 15.4-Inch early 2011 model that performs better in most of the situations compared to the late 2011 version (review and benchmarks by anandtech).