The PhotoPlus Expo is a huge show with hundreds of vendors, both big and small. There are also a number of different educational classes and hands-on labs (for an additional fee) with some of the best photographers in the business presenting. If you enjoy photography, this New York City show is a must-see.
My plan for tackling the show floor was to make strategic visits to the vendors I was most interested in before exploring the rest of the floor. Drobo (Data Robotics), Nikon, Epson, Nik Software, B&H Photo and ThinkTank Photo were my first-visit choices. The big ones, Nikon and Epson, were quick trips to see what was going on and to check out their latest offerings. Nikon was a huge booth with all types of equipment to check out. From the D3 to the Coolpix line and 600mm f4s to 10mm fish eyes Nikon’s booth had it all to see. Since most of their announcements were made a few months back, there was nothing brand new to see. Epson was the same way (and no paper samples!). Both were interesting with lots of hands on equipment and short-subject presentations.
At Data Robotics I really enjoyed speaking to Mark Fuccio, the VP of Sales. Mark is an interesting guy. A true engineer at heart, Mark’s sense of the market and how to grow Drobo’s was an interesting discussion. Drobo has made fantastic inroads in the photography market. It’s simple to set up, easy to use and provides data protection and expandability that any photographer, or anyone with substantial data storage needs, would find useful. With the introduction of Drobo-specific applications (for instance limiting the amount of space Time Machine uses) and the introduction of cheaper and larger hard disks, this company is in a great position to take off.
Nik Software is the company behind great products like Viveza, Color Efex Pro and Capture NX. I won’t go into detail on all their products – you can go to their website for that. I’ve looked at their software and played with the demos for some time and was interested in seeing what show specials they offered. While certainly not “must-have” software for the casual photographer, the “extra touch” their products provide make your images really stand out. Sure enough, there was a “new” collection for Aperture – a complete collection of all their products as plug ins for Aperture. With very little hesitation, I made the jump. I’m very anxious to use these products. I’ll be sure to post my thoughts as I use each tool.
ThinkTank is another company with fantastic products. They’re known for their great line of bags and their belt system that allows you to attach various pouches and storage pieces to store lenses, extra batteries, filters, etc. It allows a photographer to walk around with a number of extra pieces while keeping their hands free to take pictures. Again, see their website for a list of all the attachments. Of course there was another show special – a set of five attachments and a free belt. Yep, I made the jump. I can’t wait to use them!
I’ll talk about the classes in another post. I’m very pleased with my choices and the information I’ve learned. Tomorrow, I’m meeting with Derrick Story for an interview for Inside Aperture. I’m excited.