About the Author

Jeff Benjamin

@JeffBenjam

Jeff produces videos, walkthroughs, how-tos, written tutorials and reviews. He takes pride in being able to explain things in a simple, clear and concise manner.

 

Jeff Benjamin's Favorite Gear

September 4

Recently I endeavored to create an overhead camera rig for unboxings, reviews, and everything in between. I’ve been wanting a rig like this for years, but only now decided to follow through with its creation.

I’m extremely satisfied with the end result, which allows for easy top down photos and videos, and has the flexibility to fit inside a small office or bedroom. The rig also works as a truss to mount additional cameras, lights, flags, microphones, and whatever else you need. Watch our hands-on video for a brief walkthrough that shows how to make a DIY overhead camera rig yourself. expand full story

August 28

If you take photos or videos with standalone cameras, chances are you have to deal with SD Cards on a regular basis. That’s because, like it or not, SD Cards are by far the most popular medium for photo and video storage on standalone cameras.

SD Cards have advantages: they are small, easy to acquire, and relatively cheap, but they also have some major issues. For instance, the achilles heel of an SD Card is its lack of durability. For a medium that stores memories of events that are often impossible to replicate, SD Cards are way too fragile for my tastes.

Sony is looking to change this with its new Tough-branded lineup of speedy UHS-II-enabled SD Cards. The branding is apt, because these cards are bend-proof, drop-proof, water-proof, and dust-proof. expand full story

August 9

I recently got my hands on the latest release from SmallHD, the Focus OLED camera monitor. One of the primary benefits of having an OLED display is that it provides an incredible contrast ratio with deep blacks. Watch our hands-on unboxing and first impressions of the new SmallHD Focus OLED. expand full story

May 18

Anker is probably best known for its power-related smartphone accessories, but it also makes a whole host of other useful items like Bluetooth speakers. Anker’s most popular speaker, the SoundCore is a constant fixture on Amazon’s best seller list. Is it worth checking out? Watch our video for a brief hands-on look. expand full story

May 3

A typical quick release plate attached to your camera is useful for connecting to a tripod in a fast manner, but you can gain a lot more flexibility by teaming a quick release plate up with a ball head. Watch our hands-on video for more details on how it’s done. expand full story

April 26

I use a pair of trusty Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod legs combined with a 701HDV Manfrotto fluid head for video work. While both of these items have been replaced with updated versions, this tripod setup has remained a workhorse for me for almost a decade.

Tripods are useful for all sorts of things, but at their core, they’re an essential way to stabilize a camera for photos or video. Combined with a video-centric fluid head, a tripod can be used to to pull off smooth pan and tilt moves, things that can add a dynamic element to your videos. Although fluid heads can do a decent enough job on their own, there’s one trick that I’ve used consistently over the years to improve my pans, and it involves a simple and inexpensive rubber band. Watch our brief hands-on video for more details. expand full story

April 20

On this week’s edition Best Sellers, we showcase the Vello Universal White Balance Handheld Disc. This handy photography and videography tool allows users to acquire proper custom white balance in a unique way. Watch our hands-on video inside to briefly see why it’s a B&H Photo best seller. expand full story

April 5

Have you ever wondered why a product ends up being a best seller on Amazon? We have too. Best Sellers explores the good, bad, and strange best sellers on Amazon.

This week’s edition considers the Fintie Apple Pencil cap holder/nib cover. As the name implies, it’s an attachment for your Apple Pencil to help prevent you from losing its cap and for protecting the nib. Watch our brief video walkthrough for a hands-on look. expand full story

March 29

Have you ever wondered why a product ends up being a best seller on Amazon? We have too. Best Sellers explores the good, bad, and strange best sellers on Amazon.

This week’s edition considers the GouQing Bluetooth Earbud, or what I like to call the ‘Fake AirPod’. While this product looks an awful lot like an oversized AirPod, it’s a far cry from Apple’s wireless earbuds. expand full story

January 23

expiredHow to score an iMac Pro for $500 off: $4,494 shipped (Tax NY/NJ only)

Although it’s unlikely that an iMac Pro deal will ever surpass Micro Center’s ridiculous $1,000 off it recently ran, this one comes closest. B&H is offering any available iMac Pro SKU with $500 off. To take advantage of this deal, apply the promo code AIBHIMACPRO1 during the checkout process. Once applied, it will remove $500 off your iMac Pro purchase. That means that you can potentially score a base model 8-core iMac Pro, for $4494.00 out the door.

January 16

Today Western Digital revealed two new external storage solutions from its G-Technology product line. The G-Speed Shuttle with Thunderbolt 3, is one that will probably interest iMac Pro and MacBook Pro owners the most. It’s an external storage unit with dual Thunderbolt 3 ports and up to 48TB of storage in RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 in a 4-bay transportable form factor. expand full story

January 13

Behind the Screens is a new weekly 9to5Toys series that takes you through our writers’ setups, be it mobile, desktop, gaming or home theater. Next up is Jeff Benjamin, producer of video content at 9to5.

In my first Behind the Screens post, I take a look at some of my favorite items that are a regular part of my desktop editing workspace. Software like Final Cut Pro X and ScreenFlow are two essential tools that I use every day for video editing, and obviously the cameras play a big role as well. But my desktop editing workspace is essential to providing a comfortable and productive area to get stuff done. Have a look at some of my favorite items in this latest Behind the Screens. expand full story

January 8

Low light shooters who find the GH5’s low light capabilities a bit underwhelming might find their needs met by the just-announced GH5s. Panasonic, who announced its new camera at CES 2018, has created a Micro Four Thirds shooter featuring a new 10.28MP Multi Aspect Ratio MOS Sensor, dual native ISO 400 and ISO 2500, and built-in V-Log L. expand full story

December 1, 2017

As a big fan of Atomos products, I was enthralled when the company revealed the Sumo 19 — its biggest monitor yet. The Sumo 19, as its name alludes to, is massive when compared to most Atomos monitors/recorders. It features a 19-inch (diagonal) touch screen, with a partially aluminum chassis, and plenty of input and output options.

The Atomos Sumo is quite a load when compared to the smaller 7-inch monitors in Atomos’ portfolio. The Sumo weighs in at 12 pounds without the included metal feet attached, and features dimensions of 19.8″ x 12.2″ x 2.5″.

It’s the size of the unit, and its sheer growth potential as a multi-input machine that makes the Atomos Sumo worth considering for in studio work. In my short time with the Sumo, its become the primary way for me to monitor each camera that I use. It’s also what I use to record high quality ProRes 422 HQ footage directly to an SSD, making it super-easy to edit footage in post. expand full story

November 16, 2017

We previously rounded up several wireless chargers for Apple’s latest iPhone Kit, including the Belkin and Mophie chargers sold in Apple Stores. Yet, Satechi’s Wireless Charger is one of the best-looking wireless chargers that we’ve seen thus far.

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November 2, 2017

After recently acquiring the Atomos Sumo Studio Monitor/Recorder (hands-on coming soon), I was looking for a way to connect two HDMI camera sources to the unit without having to unplug one cable to plug in another. The Sumo features a single HDMI input, so unless I wanted to convert from SDI to HDMI, a switcher was my best bet.

I opted for this sub-$12 DotStone HDMI Switcher 2 Ports Bi-direction Manual Switch. It may not sound like much on the surface, but I’ve been extremely satisfied with the unit’s performance. It allows me to easily switch between HDMI camera inputs with a single button press. Best of all, it requires no power adapter. Watch our brief hands-on video for more details. expand full story

October 26, 2017

Panasonic’s 12-35mm f/2.8 is my go-to native GH5 lens for every day shooting. It features a 35mm equivalent range of 24-70mm, and is fast enough to provide nice bokeh when needed. Yet, sometimes you need an even faster option, and for those cases, the Mitakon Zhongyi Speedmaster f/0.95 25mm prime is an excellent budget lens. expand full story

October 25, 2017

If you’ve been wondering why the a7R II has been on sale for such a good price lately, then here is your reason: Sony just announced the a7R III, and preorders start tomorrow at 10am EST. What can you expect from the next generation of Sony’s highly-respected 42MP full-frame flagship? expand full story

October 20, 2017

How to: Connect a Synology NAS to your network wirelessly [Video]

I use a Synology NAS in my daily workflow to store high quality versions of my YouTube videos for archival purposes. Yet, I’ve been wanting to relocate the NAS to a shelf in the back of my office to save space on my desktop. Unfortunately, access to Ethernet from my shelf wouldn’t be easy. I didn’t want to go through the process of running cable from my router to my NAS, so a wireless solution seemed like the obvious choice.

October 10, 2017

As expected, the SNES Classic Edition has been hacked to allow users to load more games on the miniature console, effectively turning it into the ultimate SNES machine. By utilizing a Windows utility called hakchi2, users can quickly backup the SNES Classic Edition kernel, and replace it with a modified kernel that can be customized with different games, backgrounds, and box art. Have a look at our hands-on walkthrough inside to see how easy it is to supercharge your SNES Classic Edition. expand full story

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