Blog

  • Process Time

    Kikkerland Retro Clock // Sony RX1-R

    New addition to my home office, the Kikkerland Retro Clock + Alarm. Walked through Nathan and Co in Rockridge before dinner and saw this clock, and knew it would be a great addition. Sits perfectly on my Herman Miller Airia desk.

  • Roads in the Sky

    2014 Audi S5 at Mount Tamalpais, CA // Sony RX1-R and Nikon D800e

    Spontaneously headed up to Mount Tamalpais with the 2014 Audi S5. I have been working on this car for a couple of months now, with the help of awesome friends like Lawrence and Melissa, as well as specialized shops for doing the really crazy work like Elite Auto Films and Griffin Motorwerke.

    Many years ago, I fell in love with the Audi brand and the beautiful intricate details of their cars. Everything seemed so classy, and the design just lead itself towards being incredibly photogenic. I knew that eventually, I would get one when the time came.

    Alas, my trusty 2003 Honda Accord V6 6spd Coupe never had a single problem. It was in mint condition at 125K miles and 11 years. There was no way to justify it, but then the new S5 came out, and I knew it had to be mine.

    I ordered the car early January 2014 to be built and shipped from Germany. In the meantime I researched, collected, and planned the first stage of work to be done on the car.

    I’m an engineer and a photographer, and because of that combination I had an urge to tinker with the car’s performance as well as the aesthetics inside and out.

    Before the car even had a ship date, I already had a garage full of modifications, a brand new automatic glass garage door (for the natural light and photos!), and a big road trip planned out with friends.

    After 3 full months, I took delivery of the car. That day was pretty epic. 30 minutes after I got in the car, and having less than 30 miles on it, I dropped it off at Elite Auto Films in Fremont to get a full XPEL Ultimate wrap. This film is completely transparent, but adds a layer of protectant film that auto heals. So take metal key, and carve your name. It’ll be gone in an hour. Kind of crazy huh? Well it was pricy, but worth it. I also had them install a very light 3M Crystalline tint, just to keep the heat out but kept the classy transparent look.

    A week later, I picked the car up, and started working on the car. Fast forward two weeks and still less than 200 miles on the car: it was ready for the world.

    For those who are interested, here’s the specifications and modifications:

    2014 Audi S5 Prestige 6 speed Manual Coupe
    Brilliant Black
    Black Optics Package
    Sports Differential w/ Quattro
    Fully loaded
    Other stock specifications

    Modifications:

    DEVAL Carbon Fiber Rear Diffuser/Valence
    Roc-Euro Intake
    3M Crystalline 50% Tint with EliteAutoFilms
    XPEL Ultimate Full Wrap with EliteAutoFilms
    WeatherTech FloorLiner, Sunshade, and Trunk Liner
    TunerDomes Interior LED Kit
    Bilstein Ride Control Coilovers (PSS10 + Electronic Controlled Dampening)
    Tein Spring Silencers (2 medium, 2 large)
    Eurocode Meisterwerk Adjustable Short Throw Shifter (1/2 height, shortest throw)
    Apikol Rear Differential Mount (cleaner and tighter shifts)
    034Motorsports Transmission Mount (even tighter)
    Alu Kreuz Billet Aluminum Drivetrain Stabilizer
    Eurocode ÜSS Adjustable Stabilizer Bars (sway bars)
    Eurocode ÜSS Billet Aluminum Adjustable End Links
    SPC/EuroCode Adjustable Control Arm Kit (Motorsport Edition)
    Hawk HPS Brake Pads (less fade, better braking)
    Stoptech SS Brake Lines (less slop in braking)
    Motul 600 Brake Fluid (better heat performance)
    Milltek Resonated Exhaust (polished quad tip)
    RS5 Grill + Foam + Trim (looks way better)
    BlackVue Dashcam DR550GW-2CH (russian dash cam basically, front and rear cameras)

    Big shoutout to Eurocode Tuning for the majority of the parts. They have top-notch products and have the most helpful and straightforward service I’ve encountered in the world of car tuning. If you have a German car, especially an Audi, definitely go to them for the world’s most quality and performant parts.

    Overall, this car rocks. Chasing light will never be so much fun or comfortable. Having AWD and plenty of power gives me the confidence I need to get the shot.

    I’ll write more about it soon. Hope you enjoy the photos!