Five Reasons to Shoot Tethered

Posted by: on May 27, 2010 | 8 Comments
Photo courtesy of Dustin Snipes
Photo courtesy of Dustin Snipes

1. A Large LCD monitor is a much better viewing medium than the small screen on the back of the camera. A vertically oriented image viewed full screen on a 23″ Apple Cinema display is the equivalent of an instant 11×14″ print.

2. Immediate feedback of focus, exposure and color. This is hard to see on the 2″ camera LCD with the limited set of processing tools provided in camera.

3. Speed is increased when you are writing data to large fast hard drives in the computer instead of to small CF cards. The camera buffer isn’t filled as often because the data travels faster and takes the load off of the camera’s internal processor.

4. Instant automatic backups using RAID or scripting. Mirrored drives (RAID 1), three drives striped into one (RAID 3 or 5), OS scripting and utilities like Synchronize Pro X all provide a way to automatically backup your images as they are written to a hard drive.

5. Instant processing. The images can be processed immediately and delivered to the client before they leave the shoot. No waiting on 20 CF cards to load before exposure/color adjustments can even start.

These five advantages to shooting tethered all provide an amazing client experience. The client sees what is being shot and is better able to collaborate with the photographer. Providing the tools for this level of service creates happy clients.

Photographers who shoot tethered realize these advantages every day. Photography is a very competitive field and shooting tethered provides an extra level of service that the clients will remember. The next time a job comes up and the client is choosing between two photographers who do you think they will pick? The photographer who shows them 2 inch previews on the back of their camera, or the one who provides a seamless shooting experience with instant viewing and editing capabilities?

This is the reason that as Image Mechanics capture specialists, we roll in with a customized cart loaded with a super-fast Mac Tower, 21-30″ LCD monitor, battery backup etc. The photographer and client experience are definitely worth the extra baggage. We bring CF cards and laptops as backups but the experience is so different shooting to card or to portable that we rarely do a full shoot with them. Believe me, if we could get away with VR goggles and a mac-mini in our back pocket we would be tempted to leave the cart full of equipment at home. But a great experience provides that extra edge needed in a competitive field like photography.

Next: Choosing the Right Tethering Software


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8 thoughts on “Five Reasons to Shoot Tethered”

  1. Useful information. Thanks!

    Just one little thing. Where in reason 4 you have” three drives stripped into one”, you actually mean “striped”, laying data in stripes across multiple disks being a feature of the RAID standard.

  2. This is a great article highlighting important points but needs to be updated and the Mac centered writing needs to be eliminated. As if many photographers these days don’t use Windows and non-Apple hardware which is so limiting. Now that 27″ monitors are so inexpensive this also opens up hardware options unavailable to so many before.

    Mac hardware is never used by people only using Windows. This proves that Mac hardware is grossly overpriced. If you want to use OS X you can do that on PC hardware having the best of both worlds.

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