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Instagram Adds Multi Account Support - FINALLY

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Starting this week, you can quickly and easily switch between multiple accounts on Instagram! 🎉

Go to your profile settings to add an additional account. From there, tap your username at the top of your profile to switch between accounts. Once you have multiple accounts added, you’ll see your profile photo appear in places throughout the app so you can always tell which one you’re using at the moment.

To learn more, check out the Instagram Help Center.

Account switching will be available as part of Instagram version 7.15 for iOS and Android.
— Instagram Blog

Beginning this week Instagram will start to roll out one of the longest awaited features in the photo sharing platform's history: multiple account switching.

This is a godsend feature update for many users, (and more specifically businesses) who make heavy use of Instagram in their personal lives, as well as for marketing their businesses. Instagram has exploded in popularity over the past couple of years, especially in the brand marketing sector, and this will save the hassle of having to sign in and out different accounts while having to remember multiple logins and passwords.

Assuming you are running the latest version of Instagram (v7.15): 

  1. Simply go to the PROFILE page.
  2. Click the GEAR ICON in the top right corner.
  3. Scroll down to the ADD ACCOUNT tab.
  4. Enter the username and password for the account you'd like to add.
  5. DONE!
 
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Once you've done this, switching between accounts is easy - you just select the account you'd like to use from your profile page. Now we can quickly switch between our Elevate Visuals account, our personal accounts and our clients accounts for the social media content we create for them on a regular basis, with just a few taps. 

#AWESOME.

 

Blackmagic Video Assist - Firmware Update 1.2

 
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As anticipated, Blackmagic Design has just released a firmware update (v1.2) for their very affordable Video Assist monitor that adds a couple of welcome, albeit, overdue features.

This isn't exactly the "WOW!" kind of firmware update that Video Assist owners were looking for, but the closer the devices gets to actually being able to do what it says it can do on the box, the better.

The update includes a couple features, as well as bug fixes.  For example, before this 1.2 firmware, the monitor couldn't even retain the date entered by the user, and would revert back to the default date, as if it was reset. Really?

Sure, I can absolutely understand that this is an incredible value for the price ($495), and the fact that the monitor doesn't have false color, LUTs, etc (yet?) is fairly reasonable, but to not be able to effectively input the correct date? It just seems a bit absurd that it even shipped to customers like that, and then took months to get a firmware update out to "fix" it. 

But I digress...the new features include:

  • Adds DNxHD codec
  • Adds extended Zebra range
  • Adds SD card record time remaining on status overlays
  • Adds clip playback information panel
  • Adds HDMI record trigger

While this isn't the most exciting update, its certainly welcome. I'm fairly confident this monitor will end up with features added in with future firmware updates that were never even promised, just as Blackmagic has done before with other products - but how long it takes to get to that point is anyones guess. Hopefully Blackmagic Design can ramp up the speed with which they release firmware, to both add more features and squash more bugs, and can shake the stigma of slow response and poor communication with customers. If they can achieve that, this monitor is well on its way to being the best monitor value on the market, if it's not already.

This new 1.2 firmware update is available from Blackmagic Design on their product support page.

 

Update: This update also covertly added support for the Lexar 1000 SDXC cards, that are great speed/value for the money, but for whatever reason, didn't work in the  BMPCC or Video Assist.

 

Sony Releases a6300 Camera - A7s II Performance for only $1000!

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Sony continues to blow minds with the low light performance of their recent cameras. While the new a6300 will likely not disappoint in that department, I think the value for the money offered in this new camera might be even more amazing than those sky high ISO's. It's nearly a Sony A7s II for $1000!

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First of all, this camera may look a bit "amateurish" with it point and shoot style body, but the specs tell a different story. The sensor records UHD 4k internally (XAVC-S) using a Super 35 crop at 100Mbps, with no pixel binning. It writes this (as well as HD) to the internal SD card, just like the A7s II. The ISO maxes out at 25,600, which is not quite the lofty heights of the A7s II, but also is about $2000 cheaper. Of course something has to give to get to this price point, and the sensor stabilization technology from the A7s II is sadly missing. Overall, not a bad trade off though.

The truly amazing specs for this price range, in my opinion, are the autofocus and slow motion. The autofocus has 425 AF points, easily putting it up there in the upper camera echelon. The feature is officially known as Sony 4D Focus - and the results in the demo video look pretty awesome. Hopefully they can be translated to real life.

I could see this being the ultimate vlogger (Casey Neistat) camera if its flip out screen flipped out 180*, but alas, it's more of a tilt than a flip. On the other hand, it has a lot to offer, like being small and light, recording to cheap SD media, having 4k internal recording and the video autofocus feature to keep everything in focus while in "selfie mode" - even without the flip out screen. While the Canon Dual Pixel AF is pretty impressive, can you imagine someone holding a C300 at arms length away and filming themselves all day? Me either.

The slow motion feature comes in at 120 frames a second in HD resolution. It achieves this with a slight crop of 1.1x in this mode, which is pretty amazing for a camera this size. Hopefully it doesn't suffer from over heating issues!

The inclusion of S-Log 2 and S-Log 3 is also pretty amazing considering the price point. It's definitely a sign that this camera isn't aimed at the soccer mom demographic. Sony claims a 1300% wider dynamic range while using these LOG modes, which bodes well for being able to push and pull the image in post production and color grading. Other video centric features include Zebras, timecode and Display Assist.

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The HDMI port allows a clean 8-bit 4:2:2 signal out, which obviously will allow you to use external recorders, although since its only 8-bit out, and will make the very small form factor a lot larger, I don't really see the appeal. It's possible the 30 minute record limit could be overcome with this method though, which is nice for certain applications.

The camera also lacks a head phone jack, which is a bummer, as this seems like the perfect camera for run and gun interview and news gathering type of projects, thanks to its diminutive form factor, yet high resolution and great low light performance.


Video Specs

UHD: UltraHD XAVC S3840 x 2160p / 30 fps (100 Mbps) / 30 fps (60 Mbps) / 25 fps (100 Mbps)/ 25 fps (60 Mbps) / 24 fps (100 Mbps) / 24 fps (60 Mbps)

HD: XAVC S 1920 x 1080p / 120 fps (100 Mbps) / 120 fps (60 Mbps) / 100 fps (100 Mbps)/ 100 fps (100 Mbps) / 60 fps (50 Mbps) / 50 fps (50 Mbps)/ 30 fps (50 Mbps) / 25 fps (50 Mbps) / 24 fps (50 Mbps)

HD: AVCHD 1920 x 1080p / 60 fps (28 Mbps) / 50 fps (28 Mbps) / 25 fps (24 Mbps)/ 25 fps (17 Mbps) / 24 fps (24 Mbps) / 24 fps (17 Mbps)

HD: AVCHD 1920 x 1080i / 60 fps (24 Mbps) / 60 fps (17 Mbps) / 50 fps (24 Mbps)/ 50 fps (17 Mbps)

HD: MP4 1920 x 1080p / 60 fps (28 Mbps) / 50 fps (28 Mbps) / 30 fps (16 Mbps)/ 25 fps (16 Mbps)

HD: MP4 1280 x 720p / 30 fps (6 Mbps) / 25 fps (6 Mbps)

The camera should be in March 2016 for around $1000.