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Datacolor launch colour management survey

The survey aims to capture a snapshot of the UK photography community and explore their colour management usage and knowledge.

 Zurich, Switzerland – 30 May 2018 – Datacolor, a global leader in colour management solutions, has launched a survey to explore UK photographers’ usage and knowledge of colour management in their photographic workflow. The survey aims to capture a snapshot of the UK photography community in order to detail insights into how colour management is incorporated into their workflow and discover their opinions on the impact it has on the quality of their work.

Survey participants will be entered into a prize draw to win a Spyder5 upon completion of the survey.

To complete the survey, visit www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/datacolorsurvey

Save on perfect colour

Until June 6th, customers can save over £130 on Spyder products through qualified retail stores as well as Datacolor’s online shop. The promotion runs in conjunction with the FUJIFILM Fotoservice pro product, where customers can save 50% on a FUJIFILM Fotoservice pro product when they purchase a qualifying Spyder product.

Spring promotion information can be found here.

 FUJIFILM Fotoservice pro promotion information can be found here.

Renewal: Life after the First World War in Photographs

Copyright IWM

 

IWM London
21 September 2018 – 31 March 2019

Free exhibition
#MakingANewWorld

New exhibition of black and white photography reveals the optimism and ingenuity of a post-war world

In the years following the First World War, countries, cities, societies and individuals had to regenerate and rebuild themselves on an unprecedented scale – but from devastation and loss, a new world emerged.

Exploring the theme of renewal in relation to individual, societal and global recovery, Renewal: Life after the First World War in Photographs (21 September 2018 – 31 March 2019) highlights the ways in which lives, landscapes and national identities recovered, evolved and even flourished in the aftermath of war. Examining the complex processes of reconstruction, this major exhibition at IWM London includes over 130 black and white photographs, documents and objects from the museum’s extensive collection.

The exhibition charts the initial optimism that followed the end of the First World War, as well as the realities of displacement, demobilisation, social change and the fall of empires. Many individuals found themselves in new nations as borders were re-drawn and empires disbanded, but while the devastating effects of war were felt on both sides, developments in materials and new technologies also led to innovations. Military equipment was repurposed for civilian use and advances in medicine and plastic surgery enabled the reconstruction of the human body.

From images of refugees returning to ruined homes, through the reconstruction of Ypres, to battlefields depicting the villages that ‘died for France’ and were never rebuilt, these rarely seen photographs from this little-explored time period reveal the extent of destruction and change in war-torn Europe and beyond.

Alan Wakefield, Head of First World War and Early 20th Century Conflict at IWM, said: “Drawing primarily on IWM’s rich and varied photography archive, this new exhibition presents images from both official and personal collections, giving insight into the innovation, opportunism and resourcefulness that shaped the rebuilding and regeneration of the post-war world. Both surprising and inspiring, the exhibition highlights the resilience and ingenuity of the human spirit in a time of unprecedented social and political change.”

Renewal: Life after the First World War in Photographs is part of Making a New World, a season of innovative exhibitions, installations and immersive experiences taking place across IWM London and IWM North between 27 July 2018 and 31 March 2019. The free season will explore themes of remembrance and how the First World War has shaped the society we live in today.

PNY to launch microSDXC ELITE 512GB at Computex 2018

 

Computex 2018 will take place in Taipei from 5th – 9th June 2018. PNY Technologies will showcase several new products at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, including the PNY microSD Elite 512GB card. This microSDXC card will offer a powerful solution for users looking for expanded storage capacity and fast transfer speed.

London (UK), 24th May, 2018 – PNY Technologies, a global consumer electronics and data storage technology leader, announced today the expansion of its microSDXC card line-up by introducing the PNY Elite 512GB microSDXC™ card. The card’s 512GB capacity is the highest available in the market today. The development of such capacity is needed due to today’s demand for expanded storage, whether for videos, high-resolution images, or music and document storage.  

Thomas Climer, Senior Director of Marketing at PNY, said: “Our ongoing focus is to provide our customers with the product and performance needed to fully live life-on-the-go. Our lives today are more mobile than ever before – the need to continuously record videos, take photos and store data anytime, anywhere and without stopping for downloads is so vital. Simply put, we want to provide our customers with the ability to continuously create new memories, without worrying that they’ll run out of space.”

Ideal for Android™ smartphone and tablet users, drones, action cameras, dash cameras and more, the world’s highest-capacity card can hold up to 80 hours of Full HD video content1 or over 100,000 photos2. PNY Elite 512GB microSDXC card is rated U1 and performs at up to 90MB/s transfer speed3.

“With the ever-increasing demand for storage and minimised media transfer speeds, users require the highest possible performance,” said Samy Benarfa, PNY EMEA Senior Director Sales & Marketing for Consumer products in Europe. “Placing these requisites at the forefront, we have enhanced our portfolio with the Elite 512GB microSDXC card, currently offering the largest storage capacity in the market, to satisfy customer needs.”

Sean Parker, a PNY Photo ambassador, commented: “In my field of work, I often find myself in extreme environment conditions! I need to make sure I am prepared and ready to capture the moment regardless of these external conditions. The PNY Elite 512GB microSDXC card brings me this confidence, knowing that I can record over 80 hours of Full HD video, transfer over 100,000 photos at speeds of up to 90MB/s. PNY Elite 512GB microSD card is my memory card of choice as I know that I will not ‘miss the moment’”.

Find the new microSDXC Elite 512GB on pny.com.

1GB = 1 billion bytes. User-available storage may be less than total listed.
1Based on data-rate of 13Mbps.
2Based on 18MP estimated at 4.7MB file size. Results may vary based on host device, user settings, file attributes and other factors.
3Up to 90MB/s  read speed, write speed is lower. Based on PNY internal testing; performance may be lower depending on the host devices and user’s settings and configurations.
©2018 PNY Technologies Inc. All rights reserved.

PNY, PNY logo, and PNY Elite are registered trademarks or trademarks of PNY Technologies Inc in the U.S. and/or other countries. Android is a trademark of Google Inc. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

About PNY Technologies

Established in 1985, PNY Technologies®, Inc. celebrates over 30 years of business excellence as a leading manufacturer and supplier of Flash memory cards, USB Flash drives, solid state drives, cables, computer memory upgrade modules, NVIDIA® GeForce® consumer graphics cards and NVIDIA® Quadro® professional graphics cards. The company’s Photography-Videography, Mobility, 3D Gaming-Visualisation and Business solutions are widely available from major retail, e-tail and wholesale outlets internationally. Headquartered in the USA, PNY maintains facilities in North America, Europe, Middle East, Asia and Latin America.

Panasonic offers enhanced LUMIX performance with firmware updates

May 2018 – Panasonic is announcing exciting new firmware updates for three LUMIX models – the DC-GH5, DC-GH5S and the DC-G9. These updates offer users enhanced performance and usability, such as improved Autofocus performance, new monochrome Photo Styles and upgraded sound quality for video shooting.

LUMIX DC-GH5 – Firmware Version 2.3

  • Improved AF performance – increased tracking AF performance, allowing users to easily follow their subject while recording movies
  • Monochrome D & Grain effect – The new L. Monochrome D captures even darker tones and greater contrast, with grain effects available in different strengths for all monochrome settings – a fantastic addition to the many black and white options of LUMIX cameras
  • Live View Boost – viewfinder screen and LCD monitor can be displayed brighter than the image recorded, allowing users to check the composition in low-light environments and helping to frame their perfect shot
  • MF Assist – more accurate manual focusing for stills or moving images, thanks to up to 20x magnification available in MF Assist mode
  • Night Mode – camera screen displays all information in red, so photographers and subjects are not disturbed by white light emission
  • Like 709 & V-LogL improvements – Like 709, V-LogL* and V-LogL* View Assist in Photo Style can now be used for still photo shooting and time lapse video. [LUT Monitor Display*] and [LUT HDMI Display*] can be used in playback mode to check the appearance.
  • Enhanced sound quality – sound quality has been improved by optimising the performance of the internal noise cancelling microphone

*Upgrade Software Key DMW-SFU1 is required – sold separately.

LUMIX DC-GH5S – Firmware Version 1.1

  • Improved AF performance – the autofocus for lowlight and low-contrast photo shooting has been improved
  • Monochrome D & Grain effect – The new L. Monochrome D captures even darker tones and greater contrast, with grain effects available in different strengths for all monochrome settings – a fantastic addition to the many black and white options of LUMIX cameras
  • Enhanced sound quality – sound quality has been improved by optimising the performance of the internal noise cancelling microphone
  • Better Control of Video Settings – Vector Scope can be displayed on the screen while adjusting white balance

LUMIX DC-G9 – Firmware Version 1.1

  • Improved AF performance – enhanced tracking AF performance allowing users to easily follow their subject while recording movies
  • Monochrome D & Grain effect – The new L. Monochrome D captures even darker tones and greater contrast, with grain effects available in different strengths for all monochrome settings – a great addition to the many black and white options of LUMIX cameras
  • Live View Boost – viewfinder screen and LCD monitor can be displayed brighter than the image recorded, allowing users to check the composition in low-light environments and helping to frame their perfect shot
  • MF Assist – more accurate manual focusing for stills or moving images, thanks up to 20x magnification available in MF Assist mode
  • Improved High Resolution Mode – photographers will appreciate the expanded aperture range of the G9’s high resolution mode – from F8 to F11 – and the improved motion correction
  • Enhanced sound quality – sound quality has been improved by optimising the performance of the internal noise cancelling microphone

Further details and downloads

To update the LUMIX DC-GH5, DC-GH5S and the DC-G9, the following links will be active from May 30th, 1:00 UTC to download the firmware:

LUMIX DC-GH5 Firmware Ver.2.3
http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/gh5_firmware.html

LUMIX DC-GH5S Firmware Ver.1.1
http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/gh5s_firmware.html

LUMIX DC-G9 Firmware Ver.1.1
http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/g9_firmware.html

Billingham introduces the Hadley Small Pro

New addition to Billingham Hadley photographic bag range provides outstanding protection for compact system cameras

14 March 2018: Billingham has added the Hadley Small Pro to its renowned Hadley camera bag range, offering exceptional protection for small mirrorless system cameras, rangefinders and mid-sized DSLRs. Precision-engineered at Billingham’s manufacturing facility in the West Midlands, the Hadley Small Pro builds upon the successful Hadley Small – one of the company’s most popular bags – with the addition of several practical new features designed for professional photographers.

Rugged, weather-resistant yet extremely compact and light, the Hadley Small Pro is perfect for travelling, or for carrying smaller equipment on location shoots or daily photographic work. The new bag will be available in six classic colour combinations from the end of March 2018 from authorised Billingham stockists and www.billingham.co.uk, and will have a suggested retail price of £200 including VAT.

Colour combinations available from launch:

– Khaki Canvas/Tan Leather
– Khaki FibreNyte/Chocolate Leather
– Sage FibreNyte/Chocolate Leather
– Burgundy Canvas/Chocolate Leather
– Black Canvas/Tan Leather
– Black FibreNyte/Black Leather

As with all Billingham products, the Hadley Small Pro is made in England, and crafted from the company’s highly durable canvas or colour-fast FibreNyte material. These hard-wearing textiles are bonded to Stormblock material: two layers of fabric fused with butyl rubber for ultimate weather resistance. Due to its special composition, Stormblock never requires ‘reproofing’, remaining water-resistant for its entire life.

Following feedback from Billingham customers, the bag has been enhanced with a number of new features. A strong, padded, leather-reinforced handle has been added to the top cover to provide extra comfort and a secure grip. The adjustable, shuttle woven polyester shoulder strap is now detachable, transforming the Hadley Small Pro into a stylish, compact messenger bag when removed, ideal for photographers wishing to use it as carry-on luggage. A handy rear pocket, featuring a water-repellent zip for protection against adverse conditions, allows owners to stow important documents such as passports or tickets for quick and easy access when on the move.

A durable rear luggage strap enables the bag to be conveniently retained on a trolley suitcase handle for fuss-free transportation.

The Hadley Small Pro’s premium quality fittings and buckles have been manufactured from solid brass, while the trims and straps are made from the finest full-grain leather. Each bag has been carefully finished and numbered by an individual Billingham team member and carries a unique serial code, and the signature Billingham logo has been embossed into leather on the front main flap.

Its sculpted top cover protects the contents from the elements, while inside the bag, a generously padded full-sized insert delivers excellent impact protection for valuable equipment, which can be unclipped and removed if required, to convert the Hadley Small Pro to a work bag, compact travel holdall or day bag for personal belongings.

For additional flexibility, within the insert are two removable, repositionable padded vertical dividers that run the height of the bag, plus two smaller dividers for stacking lenses. The top of the insert features a padded flap, further safeguarding possessions from rain, and delivering added protection in the event of a fall or knock.

Two spacious, expanding front pockets provide extra capacity for storing lenses or accessories, and incorporate studs that can be unfastened or closed for increased versatility. The leather front straps with Quick Release System ensure fast and discreet access to the equipment inside the bag, and can be effortlessly opened or secured with one hand. Two high quality brass buckles allow the photographer to adjust the leather straps to fit snugly around the front pockets and their contents.

The Billingham Hadley Small Pro comes with a five year manufacturer’s guarantee.

Billingham Hadley Small Pro specifications

External dimensions (W x D x H)

Internal dimensions (W x D x H)

330mm x 140mm x 260mm

260mm x 80mm x 190mm

Weight (inc shoulder sling and padded insert) 0.9kg
Main compartment capacity 3.5 litres
Front pockets (x2) capacity 0.5 to 0.75 litres each
Included accessories Removable full insert

Divider set (2 x small and 2 x large dividers)

Front straps

Removable shoulder sling

Optional accessories Fine leather shoulder pad (SP40)

Fine leather luggage tally

Replacement insert, dividers and straps as above

 

Harry Billingham, director, said, “Once again, we have listened to the feedback and specific requests from our loyal customers, and have integrated the most-wanted features into this newly-designed model. Created with mid-sized DSLRs and CSCs in mind, the Hadley Small Pro is deceptively spacious and versatile, and can be configured with the supplied accessories and inserts to suit the individual photographer’s needs. We believe users will welcome the additional functionality, comfort and convenience of the Hadley Small Pro, which has been painstakingly engineered for ultimate portability and protection.”

A family business, Billingham thoroughly sources and tests all materials, ensuring that every bag is built for maximum strength and reliability, using the most innovative, durable and authentic components. Manufacturing is carried out to meticulous standards of technical precision, and once the product passes the company’s rigorous quality checks, an individual laser-engraved woven label containing a unique 10-digit barcoded serial number is applied. This represents the Billingham seal of excellence, and allows the bag to be registered, identified and tracked throughout its life.

More information on the Billingham range can be found at www.billingham.co.uk.

Availability

The Billingham Hadley Small Pro will be available from www.billingham.co.uk and authorised Billingham stockists from the end of March 2018. Price includes VAT.

Why Are Our Images Stolen Online? Expert Lawyer Explains

Press release from Copytrack:

Author Jonathan Appleby, Copytrack.com 2018

Copytrack know all too well that managing content online can seem like nothing but a mess. 85% of online images are used without a licence showing serious work needs to be done to combat digital image theft. Internet users are often left confused when talking about copyright online, especially when trying to get their heads around rights of use – “It’s free to use, right?” It’s vital to understand when you can and can’t share images online to prevent digital theft. This leads to interesting excuses created to deny digital image theft.

But why is digital image theft online so common? Why is little done to prevent it? Despite it being easy to obtaining digital content, it is copyrighted and has to be paid for- shock horror. To help us understand what the hell’s going on, new author and long-time lawyer Marie Slowioczek-Mannsfeld has come to the rescue. Together with Robert Golz she has written the book How to use Photos Legally Online (Fotos Rechtssicher Nutzen Im Internet) that finally outlines all the dos and don’ts when it comes to obtaining and using content online. This is what Marie had to say to Copytrack about image theft online.

Do we all have to pay for images that we share online?

Whoever earns money only should be sure that they’re not infringing on other’s rights. This is especially valid for someone who is using the images on products. It’s just not a question about being fair to the photographer, but also infringing copyright can be expensive, annoying, and take time to resolve. This is where the book comes in, it helps ensure image users avoid these issues, when you know the rules.

The biggest misconceptions when it comes to digital content

The biggest misconception is that everything available on the Internet is for free. Many internet users think that everything they find on Google can be copied and used without further ado. A common misunderstanding is also that copyright notice is needed to protect a picture. That is not true. A photo is also protected without copyright notice. Another common misconception is that you can use an image if you give the source. This is true in a few exceptions, but in most cases, it is not correct.

Why is content online stolen so often?

Because it’s so easy. On the Internet you have constant access to everything 24/7. All you have to do is enter a search term in Google and you will get the image you are looking for, which can then be downloaded quickly and in good quality. You don’t have to register, you don’t have to pay anything. And all this takes just a few minutes. And often there is a lack of knowledge that images are also protected by copyright online.

Why do you think digital theft isn’t taken as seriously compared to theft in the real world?

I think that’s because of two things. On the one hand, image theft is very widespread on the Internet – it is considered a trivial offence. On the other hand, this is in the nature of the digital world. If you steal a carpenter’s furniture- it’s gone. He worked for nothing. If you steal a digital image from a photographer’s website, at first glance they don’t have any damage at all. The picture’s still there, he can sell it on. It’s just a copy after all. One can already imagine: Why does the photographer act like this in the first place? The fact that the photographer makes a living selling prints or copies of his photos is often not thought of.

What are your top tips for business looking to utilize images for their businesses?

Do not rely on free image databases on the Internet. If you want to use photos commercially, spend some money and purchase a license from a reputable agency. If there is something wrong with the rights to the image, you can take recourse at the agency if necessary. And if you buy images from an agency, make yourself familiar with the license terms. Agencies are subject to severe penalties for violating the license terms. Often there are also good overviews, which summarize the rights of use in detail.

“The internet/technology is developing faster than the laws that govern it.” In the future, do you think the law will ever be able to govern the internet affectively without restricting its users?

The legal system is a lengthy one, especially if it works internationally, for example at European level. That is why the legislature cannot react so quickly to any change or new invention. I am positive, however, that one day it will be possible to regulate the Internet in a sensible way. If we look at what has happened in recent years, we are probably on the right track. In addition, there is also the further development of the law by the courts. However, as long as there are still questions about the tolerability of framing, so there is still a lot to be done.

“…no one likes it

when they’re proven wrong. 

A lot of digital image theft is

not committed with intention,

but instead a result of a lack

of knowledge.”

Law varies from country to country; however, the internet is a global body. What kind of issues does this create and what can be done to resolve them?

A picture that is used illegally on the Internet can be accessed around the clock from anywhere in the world. That begs the question: Where did the infringement actually happen? The answer to this question is important, because it determines not only the law under which the use of images must be examined, but also which court has local jurisdiction. However, the question is often not so easy to answer. This is definitely a problem of the global nature of the Internet. Once the applicable law has been determined, the principles of copyright law are internationally similar, but the laws differ in detail. A clearly infringing act in Germany, for example, can be completely legal in the Netherlands. Finally, of course, the question of the amount of damages is also open. For example, Austrian copyright law stipulates that the author may claim twice or their appropriate remuneration as compensation for damages. German law does not recognize such a doubling. All this requires special knowledge, which can often only be assessed correctly by an expert. This often makes cross-border enforcement of copyright infringements cumbersome and expensive.

It would be great if copyright law were to be standardized internationally. But this should remain a dream. It would already be helpful, if the copyright law would have been as evolved as the trademark law, which has been harmonised throughout Europe. When it comes to copyright law, there are some approaches and guidelines at European level, but we are far from being standardized.

Will the internet ever be a safe place to share work, or is the risk just part of the internet’s nature?

Pictures will always be stolen on the internet. However, I think that the advantages of presenting and offering your own pictures to a photographer on the Internet outweigh the disadvantages of digital image theft. It is not the case that photographers are completely unprotected. There are technical possibilities to prevent image theft in different ways. It’s there at the photographer to figure it out. You don’t leave your front door unlocked.

At copytrack we work to try to make the internet a fairer place, and help ensure photographers get paid for their work. However, we’re often met with a lot retaliation, and called scammers, why do you think people react in this way?

Firstly, no one likes it when they’re proven wrong. A lot of digital image theft is not committed with intention, but instead a result of a lack of knowledge. This means many image users have no guilt about using the images and become a little sceptical when someone tells them that they have broken the law. As well as that there are many scammers online, who are always trying to convince gullible people out of their money.  So actually, it’s completely understandable that people are sceptical when a service like Copytrack approach them asking them for money. Often, however, even after the explanation of the facts of a case, there is a lack of the empathy and understanding. There is still a lot of educational work needs to be done.

Marie Slowioczek-Mannsfeld, is the Head of Legal at Copytrack, and has been working with intellectual copyright for over 4 years.

More information and a sample reading of her book can be found on the publisher’s homepage (German only): Fotos rechtssicher nutzen im Internet 

Contact COPYTRACK:

Jonathan Appleby, Oranienburger Straße  4, 10178 Berlin
jonathan.appleby@copytrack.com, Tel: 00 49 30 809 332 962

About Copytrack:

Copytrack (www.copytrack.com) was founded in 2015 by Marcus Schmitt and currently employs around 25 people from legal, IT, customer service and finance. The service supports photographers, publishers, image agencies and e-commerce providers. It includes a risk-free search of the global Internet for image and graphics data uploaded by users at Copytrack are found with a hit accuracy of 98 per cent. The customers define if images are used without a license and even determine the amount of subsequent fees supported by an automatic license calculator on the portal. Copytrack is fully responsible for an out-of-court solution in over 140 countries as well as a legal solution in the areas relevant to copyright law. If the image has been successfully licensed, the rights holder receives up to 70 percent of the agreed sum. The pure search function is free of charge.

 

Snap-Grip aims at Smartphone and Action Camera photographers

INTRODUCING THE SNAP-GRIP: A LIGHTWEIGHT AND VERSATILE MOUNTING SOLUTION FOR DYNAMIC SHOOTING

Key Features:

• The Multi-mount clamp has three mounting options allowing for various setups to suit your style of image making
• Modular construction with PICA-POD components for ultimate versatility
• Available soon in a range of materials to suit your lifestyle

With mobile photography and filmmaking on the rise (and rise), mounting and accessory solutions are becoming more crucial for mobile journalists, vloggers and consumers alike.

Ultimate versatility

Supplied exclusively by specialist distributor, InfinityX, the brand-new Snap-Grip from Pica-Gear is built from the very same modular components as the popular Pica-Pod. Demonstrating the same tough qualities and versatility as its big brother, the Snap-Grip comes complete with three camera screw points, which means that it can be extended, giving ultimate flexibility in a wide range of shooting situations.

• Snap Grip is an extendable system supporting both action cameras and smartphones
• Configure digital devices around your action cam to improve image quality or connectivity into social media
• Handle mode: creates steadier blur-free images

Whilst other mounting solutions in the market incorporate a handle, the Snap-Grip’s handle adapts to form a mini tripod. Complete with solid brass screw inserts and aluminium anodised tripod legs, the Snap-Grip is perfect for use in the following scenarios:

Whilst other mounting solutions in the market incorporate a handle, the Snap-Grip’s handle adapts to form a mini tripod. Complete with solid brass screw inserts and aluminium anodised tripod legs, the Snap-Grip is perfect for use in the following scenarios:

• With tripod: Capturing group shots
• Take a break and set your device down for convenient Image playback/browsing with smartphones
• The multi-mount clamp has a wide reach to support even the larger smartphones

Steve Cumbers, Managing Director, InfinityX, said: “The Snap-Grip represents a giant leap in possibilities for photographers and filmmakers shooting with mobile devices and action cameras. The product is exceptional in terms of its versatility and its build quality will reassure users that they will be able to trust the Snap-Grip for many years to come.”

Steve added: “With various extension kits and accessories in the pipeline, users can be assured that the Snap-Grip ecosystem will only continue to grow, ensuring users a reassuring and increasingly capable range of compatible products.”

About Pica-Gear

Designed and produced to military standard, Pica-Gear products offer image-makers the most versatile, reliable and robust products currently in the specialist imaging market.

Pica-Gear products have designed specifically for ‘run & gun’ filmmakers, photojournalists and vloggers, but with the ability to adapt to any situation for both videographers and photographers. They have been meticulously engineered for professional and durable use; offering limitless options for setting up all kinds of cameras, monitors, power and audio solutions; giving the user a distinct advantage in their ability to adapt to any given shooting situation and from hand-grip to mini tripod in seconds.

About InfinityX

InfinityX is a brand-new, dynamic, UK-based distributor, serving the specialist imaging and sports markets. Carving a niche in the growing action and mobile image-making markets, InfinityX stand alone in offering exceptional products, coupled with UK support and warranties.