More camera, less clams. More prints, less printer. More files, less wires.
And more ways to have fun with photography.
THE PRICE IS RIGHT
All the competition in compact cameras is great for photographers -- we get more features for less money. Take Fujifilm's new FinePix A920. Hot: $150 street price, 4X optical zoom, 9-megapixels, IrSimple wireless transfer so you can send your images to other cameras, as well as to PDAs and photo kiosks. Not: Highest ISO is 800, which is good, but why not go up to ISO 1600, as on other Fujifilm's cameras? (www.fujifilmusa.com)
Want to be the hit of the party? Bring along Hewlett-Packard's Photosmart A626 Compact Photo Printer ($179, street) the next time you go out with friends, and hand out instant souvenirs. Hot: More than 200 options include frames, graphics, and effects that are a scrapbooker's dream. At 4.8 inches, the touchscreen LCD is pretty neat, with its 3.5-inch picture area. It prints lots of sizes, including 5x7 and panorama. Wireless and Bluetooth connections are optional. Not: Stock up on ink -- it comes with only an introductory cartridge that prints 10 to 20 shots. (www.hp.com)
WIRELESS IS MORE
What if offloading your shots were as easy walking in the front door? That's the idea behind the Eye-Fi Card, a wireless 2GB SD memory card ($100, estimated street). Hot: Transfers shots from any digital camera to a PC, Mac, or online photo site automatically when the camera is within receiving distance of your configured computer. Not: Your camera has to be on while the photos are transferred, so expect battery drain. (www.eye.fi)
HOW TO ...
Learn About Yourself There's no shortage of sites for uploading and rating photos, but one, www.likebetter.com, will tell you what your preferences say about your personality. Click though a couple of choices, and the brain at the bottom of the page will glow pink, then produce uncannily accurate interpretations.
Tint Your Flash Sometimes the simplest ideas are the most brilliant. Take Sticky Filters. For $50 (direct from www.stickyfilters.com) for two sets of standard-size filters or $30 for two sets of small filters, you get basic color gels that can be cut to stick on any flash or light, and will match the color of your flash to the light in the room. The best part? Lifetime replacement.