The Pros and (Mostly) Cons of Upgrading to a 4K Monitor

I'm in the process of getting back into photography which will mean a new camera, more on that in a later post. But the first step for me was a new computer, one with the horsepower to handle a modern day camera and its RAW files. Along with the computer comes a new 4K monitor. 4K is great for media consumption, right? Your characters on your favorite show or movie really look detailed and realistic. Scenery looks wonderful. Everything looks great, right? Wrong. You know what doesn't look great? That photo I took in 2012 that I thought was sharp but is very much not. I transferred over my past catalogs of photos over to Lightroom Classic and eagerly began opening up some of my favorite photos. At first I was happy with how the colors looked and how the scene was composed. Then I noticed it was a little soft. Well I had just gotten a new contacts prescription so that must be it. Changed to my glasses and the photos were even blurrier! I went through photo after photo and most ca

The Coming Storm

I came across  this MacWorld article about HDR time-lapse photography (or is that videography?) the other day, which inspired me to give time-lapse another go. I wanted to capture sunset to sunrise, ideally, so I could catch the motion of stars. I know it's the rotation of the Earth, but it sure doesn't look like that in the video. Anyway, I happen to live in an area which gets pretty dark and I have no problem seeing stars at night, so I figured it would work out. Well the first try I scouted out a spot on the top of a shed in the back yard to put the tripod and camera on, climbed up using the ladder, and even fashioned a Zip-Lock bag to keep the camera free from moisture. It wasn't going to rain, but we often get fog so just wanted to be safe. So using the excellent CHDK Canon hack I set my camera up, hit the shutter button and climb back down. I figured I'd be replacing batteries about every 4 hours to be safe, so it wasn't until about 9:00 when I realized I hadn't hit the shutter. First night fail. Last night was try #2. It didn't quite come out the way I had hoped, but this time it wasn't stupid user error. In order to get the stars to actually show I'll need to adjust shutter speed; long enough to get the stars but short enough to not get the star trails. I'll try again, but probably not tonight. I wonder if I can program a script in CHDK to automatically change aperture and shutter values while it's continually shooting. That's something to look into.
Anyway, since last night was a bust I decided to sit in on a Topaz Labs webinar. And afterwards, feeling only slightly more educated in how to use it, I thought I'd work a bit on a photo that was showing up on my desktop lately. The shot started off as a 3 shot HDR of the Halfmoon Bay coast line, and was one of my first attempts at HDR. It's handheld, which is usually a no-no for HDR. I'm pretty happy with the feel of the photo, but I don't like what I think is noise in the middle brighter white cloud. I tried using Aperture, Topaz's own DeNoise, and another de-noisifier that I've got in Photoshop Elements to no avail. Think it might just be an issue with shooting JPG instead of RAW. But still, I like it.


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The Pros and (Mostly) Cons of Upgrading to a 4K Monitor