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Review: MagMod MagSnoot Modifier

Overview : The MagSnoot is a versatile modifier that instantly collapses into 4 different stages to give you 4 unique beam patterns for precise control over your light. With its integrated gel slot, the MagSnoot can also hold up to 2 MagMod gels to further control the color, density, or hue of your flash.

The MagSnoot delivers never-before-seen versatility from such a simple design thanks to its singular molded rubber construction that is compact, flexible, and highly durable. Product, commercial, and portrait photographers now rejoice.

*A MagGrip is required to use with your flash*

Features :
  • 5-in-1 modifier gives you precision control combined with an integrated gel slot
  • Collapsible design delivers precise control with 40°, 20°, 15° and 13° beam patterns
  • Flexible rubber construction squeezes into tight spaces in your bag
  • Integrated gel slot holds up to 2 MagMod gel sheets
  • Instantly magnetizes to almost any size flash using our patented MagGrip design
  • Simple, beautiful design that has no straps or accessories that can get lost
  • Doubles as a durable funnel if you need to change your motor oil in a pinch!

Quality/Usability : The MagMod MagSnoot was a late add-on to the Kickstarter campaign that was for the MagSphere and MagBounce. Snoots offer a more directional control of light.

How does the MagSnoot compare to the MagGrid?
Both the MagGrid and MagGel Slot will continue to be a staple in any photographer’s bag, as they are far more compact and quicker to use. They both require less thinking and tinkering when shooting in fast paced environments, and if you own multiple MagGrids and MagGel Slots, you also increase redundancy and flexibility in your modifier kit.

The MagSnoot will primarily be best suited for commercial photographers that shoot product, food, fashion, or wherever any photographer needs tight precision with their lighting. Studio and portrait photographers will also find it incredibly handy for use as a great hair-light or rim-light modifier.

With the comparison out of the way, let's take a look at the MagSnoot.

Nothing much is included with the MagSnoot other than the MagSnoot itself and a carry case.

The MagSnoot collapses into a portable size. The back houses two neodymium magnets that allows you to attach the MagSnoot to the MagGrid.

There are four levels. With each collapse, the MagSnoot delivers precise control with 40°, 20°, 15° and 13° beam patterns.

Conclusion : Overall, the MagMod MagSnoot Modifier offers a lot of control of how much light and beam pattern you would want. The use of neodymium magnets makes using any of the MagMod system easy.

Deal: Square Perfect Backdrop Support Stand

Discount Tommy via Amazon offers the Square Perfect 1040 SP2000 Backdrop Support Stand for $48.88 with free shipping. It includes two aluminum tripods, four support bars, and a carrying case. The telescopic cross bar extends to approximately 10 feet, and the stand adjusts from 4 feet to approximately 8.5 feet.

Deal: Sandisk Memory Cards on Sale at B&H Photo

B&H Photo currently has a big sale on Sandisk memory cards. All memory cards listed below come as 2 pack (2 memory cards).

Review: MagMod 2 Magnetic Modular Speedlite Modifiers for Hot-Shoe Flashes

Overview : MagMod is a magical flash modifier system that frees your speedlite flashes from velcro, straps, and adhesives by geniously incorporating the invisible powers of magnetism.

Each modifier is a single molded piece of high-quality silicone rubber that is sleek, compact, easy to use, and dead simple.

Features :
  • No velcro, straps, or adhesives!
  • One-size-fits-all compatibility. Works with Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, and just about every prosumer hot-shoe flash ever created.
  • Instantaneous attachment method using Neodymium "rare-earth" magnets
  • Strong grip on your flash prevents from accidentally falling off!
  • Sleek and compact so you can always leave it on your flash
  • Durable elastic silicone band is incredibly resilient against impact and snapping
  • Sleek and elegant design
  • Compact size makes for easy storage, takes up less space in your bag!
  • Completely modular, stack as many grids + gels as you want!
  • No loose pieces to misplace, magnets come pre-assembled

Quality/Usability : This review is an update to the original MagMod Magnetic Modular Speedlite Modifiers for Hot-Shoe Flashes.

The design and concept is the same. Only difference are the minor aesthetic changes that I will discuss below.

The MagMod Basic Kit now includes everything in one box. The original MagMod had individual boxes for each item.

Just like the original MagMod Basic Kit, it includes: (1) MagGrip, (1) MagGrid, (1) MagGel Kit (MagMod 2 now includes 9 gel sheets). Also included is a Carrying Pouch and a MagMod Transmitter Band (black and not yellow) with each kit. Everything can be purchased individually with the exception for the MagMod Transmitter Band and Carry Pouch.

MagGrid 2

The MagGrip looks exactly the same and identical. Size, shape or form has been changed. I did notice that the neodymium magnet used in MagGrid 2 is smaller in height. I know with the original MagMod, it had an issue of slightly tearing due to the edge of the magnet being so close to the opening. This didn't affect performance or anything but MagGrip 2 fixed that issue.

Left: MagGrip 2 | Right: Original MagGrip

Installation of the MagGrid is the same. Simply slip the MagGrid over the flash head and you're done.

MagGrid 2 and MagGel 2

MagGrip 2 and MagGel 2 had a minor design change. Rather than the neodymium “rare-earth” magnets being inserted from the back, they are now inserted from the sides. This prevents the magnets from accidentally coming out. It also makes it look more cleaner without exposing the magnets.

Left: MagGrid 2 | Right: Original MagGrid

Left: MagGel 2 | Right: Original MagGel

Top: new gel sheets | Bottom: original gel sheets

The gel sheets also look to be the same. 8 gel sheets were included with the original MagMod but with MagMod 2, 9 gels are now included. Quality wise, I actually prefer the originals. I don't know if they changed the method but when I went to load a few gels into the MagGel, one of the gels peeled a little on the edge but is still covered by the MagGel. With the original gels, I didn't have any issues. Maybe I got a weak one?

Even though this picture is from the original MagMod, the concept and design is still the same. You can stack multiple MagGrids and MagGels as you want. Nothing has changed except for how the neodymium magnet is inserted.

Conclusion : Overall, the MagMod 2 Magnetic Modular Speedlite Modifiers for Hot-Shoe Flashes still works the same as the original MagMod. The minor aesthetic changes helps make the MagMod look cleaner.

Deal: Panasonic Eneloop Pro Power Pack

As one of its daily deals, Amazon offers Prime members the Panasonic Eneloop Pro High Capacity Power Pack, model no. K-KJ17KHC82A, for $34.99 with free shipping. Non-members can spend $35 or more to qualify for free shipping; otherwise, shipping adds $7.15. It charges up to four batteries simultaneously, LED display with status indicator lights, and overload protections. Eight AA batteries and two AAA batteries are included. Deal ends today.

Press Release: Canon Introduces New EF 50mm F/1.8 STM Lens

Canon’s new EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens is official. The new Canon EF 50mm f/1.8mm STM standard prime lens is scheduled to be available by the end of May for an estimated retail price of $125.99.

Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM $125: Amazon | B&H Photo | Adorama
Canon ES-68 Lens Hood: Amazon $29.00 | B&H Photo $26.95 | Adorama $34.95
Canon 49mm Protect Filter $29.95: Amazon | B&H Photo | Adorama

Continue reading for full press release.

Deal: Sekonic Litemaster Pro Light Meter Bundle

As one of its daily deals, B&H Photo Video offers the Sekonic Litemaster Pro L-478DR Light Meter bundled with the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport for Windows or Mac and the Sekonic Gray Balance Card, model no. 401-479CCPP, for $369 with free shipping. The light meter profiles camera exposure, calibrates meter to camera, and purportedly captures more accurate color and simplifies post-processing. It features a rotating dome head, 5-degree viewfinder, PocketWizard triggering, and wireless flash power control. The ColorChecker Passport acts as a white balance target, creative enhancement target, and color control target for post-processing consistency; the balance card enables reflected-light meter calibration. Deal ends today.

Deal: New Canon USA Mail-In Rebates

Canon USA has started a new round of mail-in rebates. These new rebates are on top of the recent price drops on various Canon L lenses. Mail-in rebates lasts until May 30, 2015.

$100 on EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$100 on EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$100 on EF 17-40mm f/4L USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$100 on EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$200 on EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$100 on EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM II: B&H Photo | Adorama
$100 on EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$150 on EF 35mm f/1.4L USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$50 on EF 50mm f/1.2L USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$50 on EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$50 on EF 135mm f/2.0L USM: B&H Photo | Adorama
$50 on EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM: B&H Photo | Adorama

Deal: X-Rite ColorChecker Passport for $59

B&H Photo offers the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport, model no. MSCCPP, for an in-cart price of $59 with free shipping (shows $99 on the site but add to cart for discounted price). It features a creative enhancement target, classic target, white balance target, camera calibration software, and protective case.

Kickstarter: CyPhy LVL 1 Drone

As drones become more and more popular, more are also popping up. The latest one to hit the crowdfunding scene is CyPhy LVL 1. LVL 1 is actually created by Helen Greiner who is the co-creator of the little autonomous robot vacuum known as the Roomba.

One of the features that makes the LVL 1 different from other drones on the market is the ability to stabilize the camera without a special gimbal. Other multi-rotor drones have to tilt in order to move. This creates swaying motion in the video which requires elaborate, expensive, and fragile mounts in order to stabilize.

Worse, because in these drones the camera— the most expensive part of the drone— is the closest to the ground, any hard landings hit the camera first.

Enter, Level-Up. This revolutionary technology changes everything. The drone never tilts, allowing it to snap perfect pictures and stable video every time. By eliminating tilting, the drone handles intuitively, with an unrivaled out-of-the-box experience.

You can also turn it off if you want to pull some maneuvers.

Thanks to its special shape, our LVL 1 simplifies aerial photography. There’s no complex, expensive stabilization mount or vulnerable camera. You’ll take stunning pictures with ease.

The built-in camera shoots 8-megapixels stills and 1080p video.

You can also put up Geo-Fences, which act as invisible walls that block the drone from going where it’s not supposed to go.

If you buy in now during the Kickstarter campaign, the drone costs $495. Unfortunately, all the early birds are sold out. Of course, that means you’ll be relying solely on your smartphone for controlling the device and will need to spend a solid amount of cash to get a real RC-style remote for the craft.

Don't like the white? For $1,000, you can get the Diablo-edition of the drone which is black and red, but you get a more high-performance version of the craft that includes upgrades like carbon fiber rotors.

Kickstarter: StabCam - Motorized GoPro Stabilizer

More and more companies are releasing motorized stabilizers whether it be for DSLR, handhelds for smaller cameras or even the GoPro. One of the newest ones to hit the market soon, at least on the crowdfunding site, Kickstarter, is the GoPro-specific StabCam. It can be attached to any existing GoPro mount. As an added bonus, it can automatically track a moving subject.

StabCam is a 3-axis motorized GoPro stabilizer. Thanks to its motors and sensors, it will capture smooth videos hands free. StabCam has a GoPro mount, you can plug it on any GoPro accessory (helmet, suction cup, rod...). Since it works with a GoPro and its weatherproof, any accessory should also be. So you can use this in the snow or rain and it shouldn't be a problem.

Power is provided by a removable (and thus swappable) battery that's reportedly good for approximately two hours of pitch, yaw and roll-compensating action.

One of the new features that are starting to be included especially with drones is a follow me mode. This setting will lock onto a moving person's smartphone using the phones GPS and accelerometer to gauge where they are located. The StabCam will pan and tilt the camera in order to keep your subject centered in the shot. I personally would like to see this manually selected in the app without the use of connecting to someone's smartphone. I guess this would also make it more precise in terms of tracking.

As mentioned, this will be on Kickstarter. You can sign up for the Early Bird (EB) special for $179 USD pledge rate by signing up for their newsletter at or for an early invite. It will retail for $279 after the Kickstarter campaign.

Check out some of the videos on the StabCam:

Review: GoWing Lens Flipper Holder for Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony E and A Mount Lenses

Overview : Think of the Lens Flipper as a double sided locking lens cap with a strap! The Lens Flipper serves two purposes. The first is to carry an extra lens, and the second, to make it easy to swap out lenses. It makes a lens change quick, easy, and safe.

Features :
  • GoWing Lens Flipper for Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony E and A Mount Lenses
  • Two-Sided Locking Mount
  • Attach a Lens to One or Both Sides
  • Enables Quick Lens Switches
  • Sturdy Adjustable Shoulder Strap
  • GoWing 1 Year Limited Warranty

Quality/Usability : GoWing Lens Flipper originated from South Korea but I never heard of the product until I saw them at the New York PhotoPlus Expo 2014. During my visit at the booth, it gained a lot of interests and attention from attendees.

The Lens Flipper allows you to swap lenses quickly and easily without fear of trying to juggle your gear or putting your gear down to swap lenses.

The Lens Flipper comes with the holder, strap and booklet. It is available for Canon EF mount lenses, Nikon F mount lenses as well as Sony E and A mount lenses.

The GoWing Lens Flipper has the same mount that you'll find on your camera body. So taking two lens caps and supergluing them together. That's pretty much what a Lens Flipper is but sturdier and better looking. It's made from durable plastic so it's lightweight and strong enough to hold your lenses.

The lenses are locked into place. To release them, there is a button on each side that lets you release the lens which will allow you to twist the lens off like you would on a camera body. The one I received was for the Canon EF mount lenses.

You can mount one or two lenses. Which ever lens is the heaviest will be the one aimed down. It's just the law of physics.

It has eyelets similar to those that are found on Nikon cameras. This allows you to attach a strap.

The strap shown is Peak Design Leash. There's nothing wrong with the included strap but I opted for the Peak Design because of the quick disconnects. Since it's on a strap, it will swing around and bump against your body.

Swapping out of lenses is convenient because you don't have to carry a bag to hold your lenses. The lenses are right next to you.

Conclusion : Overall, the GoWing Lens Flipper Holder for Canon EF, Nikon F, Sony E and A Mount Lenses does a good job of holding up to two lenses. It's convenient and gives you easy access to your lenses. I would like to see maybe a belt clip or something like a waist strap to help prevent the lens from bouncing all over the place. A simple detaching from the belt or waist would allow you to easily swap lenses.

The price may scare some potential buyers away. I think a $50-$60 is where the price range should be for this.

Manufacturer: GoWing
Site: Buy from Amazon / Buy from B&H Photo / Buy from Adorama

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