Cool Gear

Love the latest Lumix, sharpen your scans, flash photos on your rims, and more.

Cool-Gear
Cool-Gear

Bright Star
Lenscaps are de rigueur with EVFs, but when was the last time you met a point-and-shoot with a big, bright lens that warranted one? The Panasonic DMC-TZ1's Leica lens does, and with its pronounced finger grip, this camera may remind you of an old-fashioned compact rangefinder (albeit without the optical viewfinder, but the LCD can be adjusted for bright sunlight). We had a lot of fun making stop-motion videos with the "Flip Book" mode. You can read the full test and check out our attempt at stop-motion at www.popphoto.com

Backup your Backpack
You might not think you need a portable picture viewer-that is, until you imagine yourself trucking around Rome or the Galapagos Islands with a $2,000 laptop on your back. Jobo's new GIGA Vu PRO doesn't weigh much, and will back up and display up to 120 GB of images (including those hefty RaW files). The CF card slot is built-in, and you can offload when you get home via Hi-Speed USB 2.o. Estimated street prices range from $550 (for 40GB) to $900(120GB). (Jono; www.jobo-usa.com)

Color Fast
We hate waiting more than a minute and 30 seconds for our 13x19-inch pictures to pop out of the printer. (Five-minute prints are so 2005.) That's one erason the new HP Photosmart Pro B9180 has won us over. The other is the Vivera archival inks (HP says they'll last up to 200 years) and their new wider gamut (which means tru color). We'll give you our full test as soon as we get our hands on one. And, like we said, we hate waiting. (www.hp.com)

Super Scanner
Instead of spending big money to have your negatives digitized on a $20,000 drum scanner (or waste time with piles of film waiting for pro-caliber scans), take a look at Epson's new $800 flatbed model. The Perfection V750-M Pro has a fluid-mount system for sharper scans, and does 35mm and medium-format negatives up to 6400 dpu. (www.epson.com)