Thursday, January 29, 2015

By Demand: The Gear I Use

Doc here, a man who some say has had enough minor surgery this month to last a lifetime, has something a little different for you, the good readers of The Journal.

As I sit here in my office, deep in The Valley, near the small women's liberal arts college, I am recovering from a second round of minor surgery from this morning. Hopefully this wraps things up and I will not look like a voodoo doll for much longer. 

What better time than to write something a little different. Maybe offer a different peek behind The Good Doctor's curtain. 

Several times a month, and in particular in the wake of my Good Doctor's Showcase report on the photo shoot with the amazing Hawaiian Eyeful, I would get technical questions from readers. Questions like "...what photo gear are you using?",  " you create your own artwork?", " you use Photoshop?"  I would always write everyone back individually and answer their tech questions, offer some advice, and move on. 

In the last month the tech questions came in much more frequently, due in part to the Hawaiian Eyeful shoot. My dilemma was how can I answer these questions and not get bogged down with the correspondence.

The answer finally hit me last week...

Ever since I jumped into the blogosphere back in 2009, some of my favorite blog owners have published a variation of the same themed article on the gear they use.  Hardware, software, peripherals,  and cameras. And those of you who know me personally are aware that beside being an unlicensed internet doctor,  I am a tech geek, and I love my toys. 

So allow me to share with you my gear that I use just about every day in delivering The Journal to you, the good readers of The Journal.  

Asus Q551L w/Intel CORE i7, 1TB HD, 12 GB RAM, Nvidia Geforce 840 graphics card, 15.6" screen.

The Good Doctor puts his laptops through a lot of wear and tear, and when I replaced my old Lenovo laptop in October, I needed something robust, fast, and durable. I decided on this Asus unit and could not be happier. Built like tank, performs like a champ, and looks good. 

The video performance is important to The Good Doctor, and this baby delivers. It drives my new 27" monitor effortlessly (more on that later).

Rating: 5 out of 5 mustaches.

Asus MX279H 27" IPS Monitor

The newest toy to The Good Doctor's newsroom is this awesome 27" monitor.  Connected up to my Asus laptop, this screen delivers crystal clear text, images, video, and most of all accurate colors. 

I did a ton of research before purchasing this bad boy from Amazon, and it was all I had hoped for and more. Looks great, performs great, and gives me all the detail I need when Photoshopping the latest adult theater related images, or creating new artwork for a report. That's why I went for an IPS monitor (my first one). 

Rating: 5 out of 5 lab coats.

Digital SLR Camera System:
Nikon D7100 Camera Body w/MB-D15 Battery Grip + Various Nikkor & Tokina Lenses

This 24MP digital SLR is quite the amazing machine, and it does all I could ask a camera to do for me. I purchased this body in 2013, and have used it for photo shoots at The Art Cinema in Hartford, The Westwood Theater Private Members Only Club in Toledo, The Oregon Theater in Portland, The Berlin News Agency in NJ, and 15th Ave. Adult Theater in Chicago. This was also my primary camera for the photo shoot with the very sexy Hawaiian Eyeful back in November, and two different shoots with my good friends The Sexual Athletes earlier in 2014. 

In terms of lenses, I use two primarily: An AF Nikkor 18-70mm ED lens, and a Tokina 11-22mm super wide angle lens for architectural interiors (like maybe an adult theater).   Both lenses are tack sharp and highly recommended.

Rating: 5 out of 5 aviator sunglasses.

Compact Camera:
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 Mark III

I can't say enough good things about this 20.1MP little dynamo of a compact camera. It has an extremely fast Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar 24-70mm (35mm equivalent) lens, allowing me to shoot in very dark situations where I can't practically use my Nikon gear. 

I shot about 1/3 of the Hawaiian Eyeful shoot with this camera, in particular the images that were back and white with the exception of her lingerie, which was rendered in bright red or blue.

This compact powerhouse has it all. It isn't cheap ($800), but neither is it's performance.

Rating: 5 out of 5 Bloody Marys.

The Good Doctor uses many different software and apps to give you content at The Journal, but here are the main software packages I use every day:

Photo Editing: Adobe Photoshop CS6, Adobe Photoshop Elements 10
Drawing: Adobe Illustrator CS5, MS PowerPoint
SFX App: Pixlr-o-Matic

So kids, there you have it. If you opened up The Good Doctor's medical bag, this is what you'd find in it. There are a few more things in the bag, but who cares what redundant back-up system I use now to store The Journal's files and online content. This is the cool stuff.

I hope you enjoyed this little break from our usual programming, and hopefully this answers any present or future tech questions.