DSLRs are amazing apparatus in modern day photography world. Some of these modern digital cameras now come with user-friendly setup and their prices are not as high as they used to be. While DSLRs help create art, choosing the right lens is important to get the perfect shot. Two most important elements to consider are focal length and depth of field. Different lenses have different purpose, and hence you need to ask yourself what you want to capture – portraits, landscapes, architecture, action sports etc. Here are some of the key lenses that are meant for different situations and address specific photography needs.
Prime lenses are mostly helpful while capturing portraits where you require sharp focus and wide aperture. These lenses have one focal length, which means you can’t zoom in or zoom out. But their simple design provides you refined visuals and higher quality images. The standard 50mm lens does the basic job of capturing portraits, close-ups with shallow depth of field and good bokeh effect. There are other lenses as well like 35mm, 85mm which are not that expensive. While these lenses may not provide zoom feature and require you to physically move to take the correct shot, but limiting yourself to fixed focal length allows you to experiment, explore and add effects that standard lenses won’t let you.
Wide-angle lens have small focal lengths (18-30mm) and are useful when you are trying to capture broader area.
Landscape shots perfectly fit in the wide-lens frame where you try shooting scenic beauty, interiors and pull more of the subject in the photograph. These lenses extend the possibility to capture more in an image but they have a few shortcomings as well. For instance, if you are taking a shot of a building from low angle with the subject in horizontal alignment you can experience distortion. A few expensive wide-angle lenses can rectify this issue or alternately, you can use photo editing tools to make the corrections.
Telephoto lens removes the barricade of physically getting closer to a subject to capture it. These lenses are ideal for wildlife photography where you try capturing animals, birds etc. from a distance. Telephoto lens, however, flattens depth and at times makes the subject appear artificial. But these lenses do a perfect job of isolating individual subject and keep the foreground sharp. Lenses from 100mm and above are suitable for capturing subject far away.
But while these lenses magnify everything, it is necessary that they have optical image stabilisation to avoid motion blur when you hold the camera in your hand rather than using a tripod.
Macro lenses come in handy when you are trying to shoot small objects from up close. These lenses magnify small subject and offer close focusing distance. Some macro lenses provide magnification of up to 10x. Lenses with a focal length between 90mm to 105mm are best suited to shoot extreme close-up shots. These lenses have ‘convenient minimum focus distance’ and adds a natural effect to the image. Like prime lenses, these lenses are also capable of taking pleasant portraits. Macro lens with an aperture around f/2.8, good auto & manual focus and image stabilisation can perform the trick of capturing a buzzing bee, insects etc., up-close.
Fish-eye is the ultra wide-angle lens that is useful when you are trying to fit in almost everything possible in the frame. These lenses are popular in the area of artistic photography, extreme sport, wide panorama etc. The fisheye lenses have very large depth of field which means the images that you take will appear sharp from foreground and background as well.
Fish-eye Lens These lenses are popular in the area of artistic photography, extreme sport, wide panorama etc
These lenses, however, suffer from barrel distortion (curved edges) making the subject at the centre look bulged out.
Further, it produces high distortion. You can make the most of these lenses while shooting crowds, architecture etc. The fish-eye lens can capture shots with a field view of 180 degrees and some can even cover close to 360 degree.
Xiaomi has been working on improvements for in-display fingerprint scanning
By Nancy Cohen
Fingerprint sensors—modern tools of convenience or awkwardly placed tools that are just plain difficult for instant use?
Aamir Siddiqui in XDA Developers is no stranger to the shortcomings in present-day in-display fingerprint scanners. He thinks they have “a long way to go before they can completely and perfectly replace the conventional fingerprint scanners,” but he foresees change.
“In-display fingerprint scanners are fast gaining popularity, and we are surely going to see a lot more of them in 2019. While the current generation in-display scanners may not be quicker or even more reliable than the conventional fingerprint scanners, future generations of this tech will continue to improve on these areas to provide a better experience.”
Better news does seem to be in the wings; The Verge’s Sam Byford, who covers Asia happenings, reported on in-display fingerprint sensors being worked on by Xiaomi.
The news revolves around a new type of in-display fingerprint scanner technology which has been confirmed by Xiaomi President and co-founder, Lin Bin. GSMArena similarly described a “next gen under display fingerprint scanner.”
The new sensor will solve one big issue, and that is being unable to unlock the phone without having to look at the screen. User to fingerprint sensor: Hey, you’re reading one tiny tiny area of my screen. Just.
“This means you have to be very specific about where you tap your finger, and makes it almost impossible to unlock your phone without looking at the display,” wrote Hadlee Simons in Android Authority.
Byford reported on a video demonstrating a prototype phone with a new fingerprint sensor that has an active area of 25 x 50mm. Translation: users could unlock it more easily by tapping, Byford said, “within a much larger region than the thumbprint-sized scanners found on several phones released last year.”
Siddiqui similarly noted that “Xiaomi claims that you can unlock the phone without looking at the screen now, which shows off their confidence in the larger recognition area.”
Bam-boom. “You can set up your finger with only one tap and then unlock the locked screen with pressing pretty much everywhere,” said GSMArena. Since the active authentication area is 25mm x 50.2mm, said Simons in Android Authority, “it’s an exponentially bigger area than that found on commercially available in-display fingerprint sensors right now.”
GSMArena added, “According to Lin Bin, the unlocking area is 50 mm by 25 mm, which is more than five times the UD area now and over 15 times the standard scanner on the back, used by Xiaomi.”
On Friday, Ajaay Srinivasan, The Mobile Indian provided some background: “The news comes from a video posted on Bin’s Weibo account which revealed the latest implementation of the advanced in-display fingerprint scanning technology. The video reveals a Xiaomi prototype device feature a new fingerprint unlock sensor which spans for an area that measures at 50 x 25 mm.”
Dates? Byford said Xiamoi president Lin Bin did not mention when such a device would become a shipping product.
GSMArena noted what Bin had to say moving forward. If it has a “great reception among fans, the company will consider placing the scanner in future devices.”
If you have ever fumbled around trying to access your fingerprint scanner, you will appreciate this video, posted on January 15, showing Xiaomi’s improved access design where unlocking does not mean you are required to look at the screen.
Beyond the obvious advantage of being able to access the scanner more easily on the screen, there is another plus that was noticed by Sahil Kapoor in iGyaan: “Notably, the fingerprint sensor appears to be very fast and accurate.”
Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K With 150-Inch Virtual Screen Launched in China
Although ordinary projectors are still a popular option, laser projectors have been gaining prominence in the last couple of years. These projectors are designed differently, allowing for a shorter throw area and the ability to project even in a well-lit room. The latest laser projector to make the news comes from Chinese electronics company Xiaomi through its Mijia brand. The company has launched the Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K in China, priced at CNY 9,999 (approximately Rs. 1,05,000). As the name suggests, the projector sports a 4K resolution on its virtual 150-inch screen projection.
The new Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K is the successor to the previous Mijia Laser Projector, which was previously priced at CNY 9,999 but came with a full-HD resolution. The latest product keeps the price and virtual screen size the same, but bumps up the resolution to 4K (3840×2160 pixels).
For now, the product is available as a pre-sale offer, and can be booked for an advance payment of CNY 100 (approximately Rs. 1,050). As with other laser projectors, the Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K can be placed near a wall or projector screen, and directly project onto it from a short throw. This allows for easier placement as compared to traditional long-throw projectors, along with a virtual screen size of up to 150 inches.
The Xiaomi Mijia Laser Projector 4K comes with built-in speakers, three HDMI ports, one USB port, and sockets for audio and Ethernet cables. You also get smart connectivity with the MIUI TV interface and a remote to control the projector. Unlike the TV range, the projector is a part of the Mijia brand from Xiaomi.
Ultimate Ears Boom 3 Wireless Speaker with ‘Magic Button’ Launched in India
Wireless speakers come in all shapes, sizes and prices, but there has been a tendency for certain products and brands to stand out from the competition. One such popular brand has been Ultimate Ears (UE), the personal audio manufacturer owned by Swiss computer peripherals manufacturer Logitech. The Boom range from Ultimate Ears has been among its most popular lines, and the latest product from the line is the Ultimate Ears Boom 3. The new wireless speaker has been launched in India, priced at Rs. 15,995.
The Ultimate Ears Boom 3 is set to go on sale on Amazon India starting January 17. The product will be available in three colour options – Black, Blue, and Red. The speaker comes with an IP67 water resistance rating, which means that it is certified to survive significant exposure to water and dust, and can therefore be used safely outdoors. Interestingly, the Ultimate Ears Boom 3 floats in water, a feature that would appeal to a lot of buyers.
Another new feature on the UE Boom 3 is the ‘Magic Button’, which is said to make music control and playback easier. The speaker does retain the cylindrical design of its predecessors, although the styling has been refreshed. However, the familiar ‘plus’ and ‘minus’ physical volume buttons are still there. The USB port has also been repositioned to make charging the speaker a bit easier.
As the successor to the capable Ultimate Ears Boom 2, the UE Boom 3 was launched in August last year globally, and has taken a few months to see a launch in India. Interestingly, the UE Boom 2 is also still on sale for around Rs . 10,000.