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13 steps to perfect snapping

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LG’s latest flagship smartphone, the G5 gives users the opportunity to fully experience the joy of photography. Here are 13 ways to get you snapping like a pro.

Cartier-Bresson is widely regarded as one of the greatest photographers of all time and once said, “To photograph is to hold one’s breathe, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.”

Here are 13 ways to get you snapping like a pro, provided by LG:

1. Accessing the manual mode

One of the best ways to start capturing those significant moments with the LG G5 is by accessing the manual mode.  To access the manual mode, you’ll have to tap the 3-dot icon at the top-left of the screen, which brings up the three main modes: Simple, Auto and Manual.

The manual mode allows you to control the white balance, focus, exposure, ISO, shutter speed and AE-L.  The white balance allows you as the user to alter the colour tone, compensating for unnatural lighting or to create skewed colour effects.

The purpose of the ISO is that it determines the sensitivity of the sensor. When choosing darker environments to take pictures, you will need to use a higher setting. The AE-L, locks the exposure, letting you use the light level as a creative effect, making shots either much brighter or darker than the G5 would normally use.

2. How to use manual mode to get noise free shots

All you’ll have to do is set the ISO to 200 (it goes down to ISO 50), then use the shutter speed control to see how slow you need to go for low-noise results. The benefit of using the G5 is that it has optical image stabilisation (OIS), you can make the shutter go fairly slow and still get sharp photos.

3. Shooting RAWs

RAW files are what you get when you take the ‘raw’ information from a camera sensor, before reducing the noise level and smoothing things out. Using RAWs allows you to do your own processing, often ending up with a finer detailed image.

The G5 allows you to shoot RAWs by simply accessing the manual mode and tapping the second icon from the bottom of the screen, over on the left column. This will allow for the shooting of RAW and JPEG files, rather than just JPEGs. RAWs come out as a file known as DNG (Digital NeGative file).

4. Using the second camera as “zoom out”

The G5 has dual cameras (16 MP f1.8 main camera has 78-degree angle view and the 8MP additional camera captures a 135-degree super wide-angle image) to take your digital photograph to the next level. It has a new, unique feature like pop – out photo, capturing more with the zoom out.

In the camera app you can switch between lenses via a button, and when using the digital zoom the camera switches seamlessly between the two modules. The autofocus is assisted by a laser that measures the subject distance.

5. Use the main camera for the best image quality

The 16MP wide angle camera of the LG G5 is the best Android camera on the market giving users a fish-eye effect in every shot. What it means for the users is that the camera allows you to fit much more of the scene into a single photo.

6. Changing photo and video resolution

Should users want to play with different size images for that perfect selfie, they can switch to 4:3 or 1:1 images by tapping on the cog icon at the bottom-left of the screen and selecting the top option in the menu that pops up.

As well as changing the shape of photos, they can also alter the video resolution.  The G5 normally shoots 1080p video users can level-up to UHD (the exact resolution of ‘4K video’).

7. Video stabilisation

For that perfect steady shot users can find the option for video stabilization near the bottom of the camera settings menu, which you access by tapping the cog icon. Tapping on this flicks between SteadyShot stabilisation and OIS, if you’re using the standard camera lens in Auto mode.

The former is what most phones use, a digital enhancer that uses the edges of the frame as a buffer to smooth-out any movements. This leaves you with a slightly more ‘zoomed-in’ view than you get when taking photos. That’s one reason why you might use OIS instead, which uses the little camera stabilisation motor to keep your footage smooth.

8. Simple mode is great for simple photography

Simple mode is found by tapping the 3-dot icon at the top-left of the camera app.

Simple mode takes away almost all custom features you get with the other options. All you do is tap on the object on which you want to focus and the LG G5 camera app both focuses and takes a shot as quickly as possible.

9. Shortcut key for instant photos

In the main phone Settings menu, go to the General tab and then select Shortcut key. In here you’ll see a flick switch for Quick Shot. Make sure it’s switched on. This lets you press the volume down button twice quickly when the phone is off to fire-up the camera and take a photo.

10. Timelapse + wide-angle camera = cool movies

The G5 has several ‘creative’ modes in its camera app and Time Lapse is one of the more interesting ones. This shoots video, but at 1/15 the normal speed. That means it takes two frames a second rather than the usual 30.

Use this with the wide-angle camera and you’ll get footage that resembles some of the stuff GoPros are used for in action sport footage.

11. Use the grid display for landscape photography

The G5 has a grid option to stop those uneven photos and help you align or center pictures properly. What it means for the user is that you get another reference point of where to line-up the horizon, as well as helping you work out what you want the focus of the picture/image/photo to be.

You’ll find Grid at the very bottom of the camera app Settings menu, accessed by tapping on the cog icon.

12. Use 30sec exposure to make something special

The G5 can keep its shutter open for up to 30 seconds.  What it means for the user is that it merges all the light information from that half-minute stint into a single image.

What one can do while using the 30sec long-exposure photography is shoot a road where car lights turn into streaming neon lines, and create noise-free night shots that almost look like daylight photos.

13. 360 Cam

The G5 is the only Android smartphone on the market that comes with a series of module accessories (Friends) that fit onto its bottom and one in particular where users have been raving about is the 360 Cam.

The LG 360 CAM provides 2K video and 5.1 surround channel recording on three microphones to help users effortlessly create high-quality 360-degree contents. Having secured a partnership with Google, images taken with the 360 CAM can be uploaded to Google Street View and YouTube360, adding the fun of sharing creative content with others.

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AppDate: DStv taps Xbox, Hisense for app

DStv Now app expands, FNB gets Snapchat lens, Spotify offers data saver mode, in SEAN BACHER’s apps roundup

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DStv Now for Xbox and Hisense

Usage of DStv Now, the online DStv service available free to DStv customers, is increasing rapidly with more than two million plays of live and Catch Up content per week. In addition to using DStv Now to watch TV on tablets and smartphones, an increasing number of DStv customers are also opting to use it as their primary method of getting DStv on additional TVs in the house. This is set to increase with the release of two new big-screen TV apps, one for Xbox gaming consoles (Xbox One, Xbox One S, Xbox One X) and another for Hisense smart TVs (2018 and newer models).

Expect to pay: A free download.

Platform: Any of the Xbox One range of gaming consoles and 2018 or later Hisense smart TVs.

Stockists: Visit the store linked to your Xbox console or HiSense smart TV.

Santam Safety Ideas

Start-up businesses that have a FinTech or InsurTech business venture brewing are called to enter the third annual Santam Safety Ideas competition. Safety solutions or InsurTech ventures that are ready for piloting could win up to  R150 000 worth of incubation support and R200 000 in seed funding. 

The Safety Ideas competition was launched two years ago in partnership with LaunchLab,  Stellenbosch University’s startup incubator that facilitates valuable connections for corporates and startups sourced from the startup ecosystem and partner universities in South Africa. The previous winners are Herman Bester and Anton Swanevelder, co-founders of MyLifeLine – a wearable panic device that won the competition last year; and Ntsako Mgiba and Ntandoyenkosi Shezi, co-founders of Jonga – a cost-effective security system for low income families, which won the competition in 2017.

Entries close on 28 February 2019. For more information on how to enter, visit: www.santam.co.za/safetyideas/

Click here to read about the FNB Snapchat lens, Spotify Free with data saver, and 00:37.

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Fortnite fixes hackers’ hole

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Epic Games has repaired a vulnerability that exposed Fortnite, the world’s most popular game of the moment, to hackers. The hole, which was left in Epic’s web infrastructure,  allowed hackers to target players with email that appeared to come from Epic Games, but would have led them to a phishing site, where their log-in details would have been stolen.

Researchers at cyber security solutions provider Check Point Software alerted Epic to vulnerabilities that could have affected any player of the hugely popular online battle game.

Fortnite has nearly 80 million players worldwide. The game is popular on all gaming platforms, including Android, iOS, PC via Microsoft Windows and consoles such as Xbox One and PlayStation 4.  In addition to casual players, Fortnite is used by professional gamers who stream their sessions online, and is popular with e-sports enthusiasts.

If exploited, the vulnerability would have given an attacker full access to a user’s account and their personal information as well as enabling them to purchase virtual in-game currency using the victim’s payment card details. The vulnerability would also have allowed for a massive invasion of privacy, as an attacker could listen to in-game chatter as well as surrounding sounds and conversations within the victim’s home or other location of play. 

While Fortnite players had previously been targeted by scams that deceived them into logging into fake websites that promised to generate Fortnite’s ‘V-Buck’ in-game currency, these new vulnerabilities could have been exploited without the player handing over any login details.

Click here to read how the Fortnite hack worked

To win a set of three Fortnite Funko Pop Figurines, click here.

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