A trend in photography has been to add the GPS data to photos – be it on Flickr or in the newest version of iPhoto. Until recently I did my Geo-Tagging only for parts of my photos on Flickr (using Flickr Export for Aperture and Google Earth) but then I did a roadtrip, taking me to five different US states, with lots of photos in every city we visited and even more photos on the road. I know which photos were taken in which city but it would be cool to also know the street/actual location. It would be even more great for the pictures taken on the road… but like most cameras, mine does not have a GPS chip in it but I knew that there were external options, so I decided to take a first look at prices. When I was in Germany over Christmas someone showed me their Jobo photoGPS tracker, which gets attached to the flash mount but uses its own batteries and still forces you to use a software to attach the GPS data to your photos. When I looked up the price, I decided against any immediate purchases… Then a few weeks back, Scott Kelby posted a review of the Jobo photoGPS on his Photoshop Insider blog. That one brought me even further away from buying it – but he recommended another option, the di-GPS, which I found relatively easily on the Internet. Then Macworld posted an article on Geo-Tagging your photos, listing a whole bunch of options, including a small device (Gisteq PhotoTrackr) you can put into your backpack/bag and then use with a software to add the GPS data to your Metatags. I thought about going with that one but then I saw on their website that their Mac software does not allow you to embed the GPS data into RAW files – and lets be honest, that is the main thing I want to do… before I found that, I saw on amazon that there is another, similar device (Amod AGL3080 GPS DataLogger) that will work with both Mac and Windows since it saves the GPS data in a standard open-source format, so that you only need a software that can read this file format. Since it was also cheaper than the other options, I decided to buy this one.
I received it on Friday and can’t wait to try it out. But the main thing I wanted to say with this article is: Read very careful before buying a GPS tracker to see that it actually does what you need it to. Important criteria might be that it can write the GPS to the existing metadata (and does not create its own sidecart file or overwrites your metadata) in your most used format (jpg will work almost always but be sure to check for your RAW-File type before buying!) and what kind of power it needs and how/if it needs to be connected to your camera. Also, if you need to use their software and how easy it is to get the files back to your photo app/organizing system.