SLIDESHOW

10 cool creative tech treasures at CES 2017

ces 2017
Credit: CES
Creative inspiration

CES is always heaven on earth for the gadget obsessed. While glitzy car tech, virtual reality, home automation, and wearables tend to dominate the headlines, consumer tech companies didn’t forget about visually-oriented parents and teachers, students and photographers, and the artistically-inclined among us seeking that hidden gem that solves problems and boosts creativity. Here are some of the cool visual treasures launched at CES 2017, which promise to be available sometime this year.

Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II
Credit: Canon
Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II

With Canon’s new PowerShot G9 X Mark II, big pictures come in small packages. The new G9 X is small—3.9 x 2.3 x 1.2-inches at 7.3 ounces—which means it’s a pocketable point and shoot with high quality output.

Its attractive vintage-style body, which comes in black or silver-tan, features a 20MP sensor, three-inch touch display, and 3x optical zoom, but no 4K video shooting. Its portability is further enhanced with built-in Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and NFC connectivity. Its updated DIGIC 7 image processor promises better performance in low light, less noise at higher ISOs, and 8 fps when shooting raw.

The camera will be available in February for $529.

ExoLens Case for iPhone 7
Credit: ExoLens
ExoLens Case for iPhone 7

iPhoneographers intent on using pro add-on lenses to enhance their shots, will soon be able to attach their Zeiss lenses to a specialty iPhone 7 case made just for them. The new ExoLens protective case is designed as a low profile, impact resistant, highly protective case with or without the lenses. The ExoLens Case will allow photographers to alternate between ExoLens Pro (Zeiss lenses), designed for photo pros and journalists, as well as the new ExoLens Prime lenses, which are intended for creative snapshots for all mobile shutterbugs.

The company says it is also designing a new case for the dual-lens iPhone 7 Plus. Pricing and release date aren’t yet available.

Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate GT Flash Drive
Credit: Kingston Digital
Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate GT Flash Drive

There’s more storage on this flash drive then there is on most external hard drives, not to mention laptops. And therein lies the great utility of Kingston’s new DataTraveler Ultimate Generation Terabyte (GT) flash drive, which comes in 1TB or 2TB capacities. Made of a shock resistant zinc alloy metal casing at 72 x 26.94 x 21 mm, and connecting via USB 3.0, it’s a storage beast that can hold up to 70 hours of 4K video (on the 2TB model). It’s compatible with MacOS 10.9 or higher and has a five-year warranty with free technical support.

Both models ship in February at prices yet to be announced.

Kodak Ektachrome Color Reversal Film
Credit: Kodak Alaris
Kodak Ektachrome Color Reversal Film

If you’re a photographer of a certain age, the resurrection of a classic slide film will make you smile. Kodak Alaris announced it is launching Ektachrome E100 35mm, 36-exposure color reversal film, famous for its extremely fine grain, saturated colors, and balanced contrast and tonal range. The original Ektachrome was discontinued in 2012 due to poor sales.

Ektachrome is a color reversal or positive film that produces slides (transparencies) as opposed to negatives, which can be viewed or projected after exposure and E6 processing. It’s great for high-resolution projection, presentations, scanning, and printing.

When available for sale in the fourth quarter, the Kodak Professional Film app will be updated to include labs where E6 processing is available. The film will also be available in Super 8 format for filmmakers, designed for use with Kodak’s planned Super 8 movie camera, which the company announced at CES last year.

Mangoslab Nemonic printer
Credit: Mangoslab
Mangoslab Nemonic printer

Want to print your face—or a notation—on a sticky note? The idea is kind of cute, and soon you will be able to do just that. Mangoslab’s Nemonic, a mini Bluetooth thermal black and white printer with a twist, connects to a mobile app, letting you organize and print text or images on adhesive sticky notes. The company envisions it for creative and lifestyle applications as well as traditional uses for notes, poems, selfies, and portraits for home, office, and school.

The special paper cartridges, which come in five colors, are cheap, costing around $4 for some 200 notes.

The device, which prints without ink or toner and within about five seconds, will be available in the U.S., South Korea, and Japan in the first half of the year for $120.

Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5
Credit: Panasonic
Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5

Panasonic’s hotly anticipated Lumix DC-GH5, the company’s new flagship compact mirrorless micro four-thirds camera, promises to be a hit with budget filmmakers—it delivers many of the features over the current GH4 that its customers were pining for. The camera, which is now dust, splash, and freeze-proof, captures 4K video at 60fps, features both 4K and a new 6K Photo mode, and sports a 3.2-inch, articulating LCD.

The new model boosts the pixel count 25 percent over the previous version to 20.3MP with an updated Venus Engine processor. The camera uses 802.11ac for Wi-Fi, supporting the 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands, plus low-power Bluetooth.

It will arrive on the shelves in March for $2,000 (body only).

Polaroid DRW100 3D pen
Credit: Polaroid
Polaroid DRW100 3D pen

The Polaroid DRW100 3D pen and a wireless DRW101 3D model both promote creativity by letting users easily construct detailed 3D models. Available in white, black, blue, pink, and yellow, the pen’s ergonomic design features a comfortable grip for creating school and family arts and craft projects. The pens are compatible with both PLA and ABS filaments, while a built-in LCD display indicates the filament and temperature mode. An anti-jamming system with auto eject and variable speeds promote ease-of-use and precise control. Both pen models come with 10m of starter filament. The wireless version has a built-in battery and charging stand. The company also markets a line of universally compatible filament kits in PLA or ABS in five color combination kits.

The pens will be available across the U.S. and Canada in March for $129 and $149.

Polaroid PLN1 3D printer
Credit: Polaroid
Polaroid PLN1 3D printer

Polaroid brings 3D printing to the home and office with a brand new series of easy-to-use models. The introductory PLN1 3D unit has a square 10.6 x 10.6 x 10.6-inch footprint and a 4.7 x 4.7 x 4.7-inch print size, targeted to home, small office, and 3D print novices. This consumer-friendly model is available in four colors: pink, black, blue, and white.

Designed for the more advanced user, the PLG1 3D printer, is quite a bit larger at 16.5 inches square with a print size of 8.6 inches square and comes in matte black. This model sports a built-in camera, letting you view your printing progress and send images to your smartphone for immediate sharing.

The most advanced model, the PLG1Pro builds in all the features of the PLG1 but has a dual printing head for dual-color models.

The 3D printers will be available in the U.S. and Canada in July, ranging in price from $499 to $799.

Wacom Intuos Pro Paper Edition
Credit: Wacom
Wacom Intuos Pro Paper Edition

The digital workflow often enhances the joy of creativity, but what if you like to work the old fashioned way with pen and paper? No problem with the new Wacom Intuos Pro Paper Edition. This pen tablet lets you draw in ink on your favorite paper with its Finetip Pen or optional Ballpoint Pen and then convert sketches into digital files for editing without scanning. Wacom’s Inkspace software syncs and exports paper sketches to PSD, JPG, PNG, and SVG file formats either by USB or built-in Bluetooth for editing in your favorite graphic or art software.

The Intuos Pro Paper Edition comes in medium (13.2 x 8.5 x 0.3 inches) and large (16.8 x 11.2 x 0.3 inches) and is priced at $400 and $550, respectively. Wacom is also shipping an updated version of its all-digital Intuos Pro tablet with the Wacom Pro Pen 2, priced at $350 and $500 for the medium and large models. All pen tablets ship this month.

YI 4K+ Action Camera
Credit: YI Technology
YI 4K+ Action Camera

If you leap off tall buildings in a single bound—or you just like to capture your slick, snow boarding self—check out the new YI 4K+ Action Camera, a fierce GoPro competitor, capable of capturing 4K video at 60 frames per second, an industry first. (The GoPro Hero 5 Black does 4K at 30fps.)

YI’s use of the Ambarella H2 System-on-Chip processor for this update to its 4K model means the 12-megapixel 4K+ can offer a maximum bitrate of 120 Mbps for sharp, detailed video—and the hefty files that go with it. The camera will feature USB 3.0 and USB-C connectivity, electronic image stabilization, live streaming, enhanced outdoor audio, and VR support.

Availability and pricing are not yet released, but the smart money is betting on a $300 to $350 range, as the current model currently sells for $250.