Sony a7R IV is Still a ‘Star Eater’ After a Certain Shutter Speed: Report

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Sony a7R IV is Still a ‘Star Eater’ After a Certain Shutter Speed: Report
Sep 162019
 

If you were hoping that Sony had finally completely removed the long-exposure noise reduction that causes its high-resolution a7R cameras to “eat stars,” you’re going to be disappointed. According to Jim Kasson, the Sony a7R IV eats stars to about the same degree as the a7R III.

Over on his blog, Kasson posted dark field spectra results for the Sony a7R IV at 1/8000 of a second, 2.5 seconds, and 3.2 seconds. The dark field spectra for each color “plane” at 1/8000 and 2.5 seconds look mostly flat: in other words, the way they’re supposed to.

But once you hit 3.2 seconds, as Kasson puts it, “all hell breaks loose” in every channel, and it’s particularly bad in the blue channel. You can see all the charts over on Kasson’s blog.

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Why I Bought the Sony a7R IV for Wildlife Photography

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Why I Bought the Sony a7R IV for Wildlife Photography
Sep 132019
 
Why I Bought the Sony a7R IV for Wildlife Photography

Before today’s launch of the Sony a7R IV in the U.S., I had the opportunity to use the new 61-megapixel camera on a few occasions. Ultimately, these hands-on experiences led me to purchasing it for animal photography and in this article I list a few reasons behind the decision.

First, a quick disclaimer. What I write below is not in defiance against any other camera system. Every major camera brand has absolutely killer options for bird and wildlife photography. My list consists of some features and specs I identified wanting in priority over other nice things to have in a camera, and everybody’s own personal requirements will be different.

Sony a7R IV, FE 200-600mm G, 1/1000 s at f/6.3, ISO 200. Crop mode active.

Megapixels

Hey, don’t laugh. I didn’t think a million megapixels would be a defining factor either. Yet here we are.

As all the headlines are quick to point out, the a7R IV has a 61 megapixel sensor. For some genres of photography, this is surely overkill. For me, I crop just about every single photo of wildlife I shoot to enlarge the animal in the frame. With the a7R IV, I’m never cropping down into the “danger zone” territory where the final resolution is pretty much only good for Instagram sharing.

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Fujifilm Unveils the X-A7, Its New $700 Entry-Level X Series Mirrorless

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Fujifilm Unveils the X-A7, Its New $700 Entry-Level X Series Mirrorless
Sep 122019
 

Fujifilm has announced the new X-A7 mirrorless camera, a $700 entry-level mirrorless X Series camera that replaces the X-A5.

“The X-A7’s compact, lightweight form factor, outstanding image quality, and multitude of new and enhanced features position it as an ideal and timely entry into Fujifilm’s popular family of X Series mirrorless cameras,” Fujifilm says.

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Sony a7/a7R III Firmware v3 Adds Real Time Eye AF, Animal Eye AF, Timelapse

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Sony a7/a7R III Firmware v3 Adds Real Time Eye AF, Animal Eye AF, Timelapse
Apr 152019
 

Sony has just released firmware version 3.0 for the Sony a7R III and a7 III mirrorless cameras. It’s a major update that adds Real-Time Eye AF, Animal Eye AF, and Time Lapse features to the cameras.

Real-Time Eye AF

In v3.0, the existing Eye AF technology has been upgraded further with an AI-powered eye-detection system that keeps focus on the eye, even in difficult situations.

“Through machine learning, Sony has created a system that can detect—and focus on—the human eye even if the subject is looking down, partially blocked in the frame, turning or backlit,” Sony says. “This feature is available in AF-C mode with a simple half-press of the shutter button.”

This is the same technology that was unveiled in the Sony a6400 in January 2019, promised for the a7 III and a7R III at the time, and added to the Sony a9 in a firmware update in March 2019.

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Here’s the Best Photo Gear of 2019 According to the TIPA Awards

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Here’s the Best Photo Gear of 2019 According to the TIPA Awards
Apr 032019
 

The Technical Imaging Press Association (TIPA) has announced the winners of its 2019 awards honoring the best products in the photography industry in 2019.

Founded in 1991, TIPA consists of 28 prominent photo industry publications based around the world. TIPA members meet at least once a year at the General Assembly to discuss photography and the industry, and one of the activities during the meeting is also to vote on the best photo products of the year — the winners are chosen by majority vote.

Editors from the magazines met in Bangkok, Thailand on March 17th and picked the winning products across 40 different categories. Here are some of the best products, as selected by TIPA members, in the more prominent categories (with TIPA’s description of each):

Best DSLR Camera: Nikon D3500

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Leica Q2: A 47MP, 4K Weather-Sealed Full-Frame Compact Camera

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Leica Q2: A 47MP, 4K Weather-Sealed Full-Frame Compact Camera
Mar 132019
 

Inside the magnesium alloy Leica Q2 is a new 47.3-megapixel full-frame sensor that offers the highest resolution for any camera in this class. Backed by a Maestro II image processor, the Q2 has an ISO range of 50-50000 and can shoot up to 10 frames per second.

On the front of the camera is a Leica Summilux 28mm f/1.7 ASPH lens that has “optimum picture quality” and “exquisite bokeh characteristics.”

If 28mm seems a little wide for an all-purpose compact camera, you’ll be happy to know that the camera features a built-in crop function that allows you to shoot with the equivalent focal lengths of 35m, 50mm, and 75mm. And when shooting cropped raw (DNG) photos, the Q2 still captures the full uncropped view, allowing photographers to under or change the crop they shot with.

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Fstoppers Compares the Fujifilm XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 and XF 16-55mm f/2.8

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Fstoppers Compares the Fujifilm XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 and XF 16-55mm f/2.8
Mar 102019
 

Fujifilm has become quite well known for it’s excellent APS-C lens lineup and now has enough lenses that several of them overlap significantly. One pair of lenses that bare consideration for many getting into the Fujifilm X system are the “kit” XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 R LM OIS and the “professional” XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR. Let’s take a look at the differences between them.

The XF 18-55mm is a renowned lens among the kit lenses of the world. It is known for being fast, silent, and having excellent image quality. But, just how good is it? How does it compare to the “professional” XF 16-55mm f/2.8? Could you potentially save yourself a lot of size, money, and weight if you don’t need f/2.8 at the long end of the zoom? Let’s find out.

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Will The Next Nikon Z Be An Entry-Level Camera?

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Will The Next Nikon Z Be An Entry-Level Camera?
Mar 102019
 

Now that Canon has recently announced the EOS RP, is the next Nikon Z camera on its way? And if it is, where will it fall in the Nikon Z lineup of cameras? If rumors are correct, the next Nikon Z camera will most likely be aimed at an entry-level full-frame user. Perhaps called the Nikon Z5?

Numerous sites are reporting that a Nikon executive has confirmed that a new Z series camera is being developed for the entry level user. It appears that Nikon is going to follow Canon’s lead of offering a mirrorless full-frame camera to the entry-level community. With the vast majority of the photography community panning the Canon EOS RP, will this be an opening for Nikon to grab a share of the entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera market? Or will Nikon succumb to the same reviews as the Canon EOS RP?

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Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II and TZ95 – New Bridge and Travel Cameras Announced

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II and TZ95 – New Bridge and Travel Cameras Announced
Feb 182019
 

Panasonic releases two new LUMIX consumer cameras – the LUMIX FZ1000 II and the LUMIX TZ95. The FZ1000 II is a 1-inch sensor bridge camera with a 16x telephoto zoom lens and a flip-out touchscreen. The LUMIX TZ95 is a new compact travel zoom camera with a very small body, 1/2.3-inch sensor, 30x zoom telephoto lens and a tilting LCD. Both cameras record 4K UHD video at up to 30fps. Ready for pre-order now.

Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II

The first generation FZ1000 was introduced already five years ago. Now the time has come to release its successor – the FZ1000 II. It is a bridge camera, meaning it has a rather bulky form with an ergonomic grip and a built-in long range lens. In other words – it is a fixed lens ultrazoom camera that looks like a DSLR.

The camera incorporates a 1-inch 20.1 megapixel CMOS sensor with 5-axis Hybrid O.I.S.+ (optical image stabilizer). The sensor should have improved lowlight capabilities, thanks to its high signal-to-noise ratio. Video recording is possible in 4K UHD (3840×2160) resolution at 30/25/24p. In the official press release, there was no information about 1080p modes, codec or bitrate. There is a 4K photo function, which can help users choose the best photo (frame) from a 30fps burst. Other 4K photo functions include Post Focus, Focus Stacking and the ability to combine multiple images for a “stromotion” effect.

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Fujifilm Unveils the XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR Lens

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Fujifilm Unveils the XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR Lens
Feb 182019
 

Fujifilm has announced the new XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR, a wide-angle prime lens for APS-C sensors that’s the equivalent to a 24mm lens in 35mm terms.

The weather-and-dust-resistant lens features an internal focusing system and a stepping motor that provide fast and quiet autofocusing.

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New FUJIFILM X-T30 Released – The X-T3’s Little Brother is Here

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on New FUJIFILM X-T30 Released – The X-T3’s Little Brother is Here
Feb 142019
 

Today FUJIFILM released their new X-T30 mirrorless camera with APS-C sized sensor. While housed in a more compact and more lightweight body than its bigger brother, the X-T30 sport the same sensor, the same processor and the same film simulations from the X-T3. Even F-log is on board!


The new FUJIFILM X-T30 comes in three colors. The one in the middle is called “charcoal silver”

FUJIFILM X-T30

This new model isn’t part of FUJIFILM’s premier league of mirrorless cameras. Its two-digit name puts it in the second devision, yet the pure specs speak another language: 4K 25p/30p, F-log, 4:2:2 10-bit output, FullHD 100p/120p @ 200Mpbs. Not bad! There’s a downside though as the recording times are pretty limited:

  • C4K (4096×2160) // 29.97p/25p/24p/23.98p // 200Mbps/100Mbps // up to approx. 10min
  • 4K UHD (3840×2160) // 29.97p/25p/24p/23.98p // 200Mbps/100Mbps // up to approx. 10min
  • Full HD (2048 ×1080) // 59.94p/50p/29.97p/25p/24p/23.98p // 200Mbps/100Mbps // up to approx. 15min.
  • Full HD (1920×1080) // 59.94p/50p/29.97p/25p/24p/23.98p // 200Mbps/100Mbps // up to approx. 15min.
  • Full HD (1920×1080) // 120p/100p // 200Mbps // up to approx. 6min.

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Micro Four Thirds Versus Full Frame: How Much Heavier Is Panasonic’s S1?

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Micro Four Thirds Versus Full Frame: How Much Heavier Is Panasonic’s S1?
Feb 102019
 

For those of us that like shooting on a mirrorless camera, we’ve probably become accustomed to the lightweight and easy to manage cameras. So are the S1 and S1R a step too far on the scales?

Now that Panasonic are entering the full-frame mirrorless market, they’ve created the heaviest camera of the bunch. The S1 weighs 2.25 pounds, with the S1R weighing basically the same at 2.24 pounds. Out of the competition, it’s only the Sony a9 that comes close with 1.48 pounds. All of this is with the battery inside the camera. Here’s a breakdown:

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Canon EOS RP Revealed in Leaked Photos and Specs

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Canon EOS RP Revealed in Leaked Photos and Specs
Feb 072019
 

Canon is gearing up to announce its second full-frame mirrorless camera following the EOS R. It you can’t wait for the official announcement just around the corner, today’s your lucky day: the upcoming Canon EOS RP has been revealed in leaked photos and specs.

From the photos, we see that the RP isn’t just the same R body with modified specs and features. We can see that the design and form factor are noticeably different (and the RP is smaller):

To scale: a size comparison between the EOS RP (left) and EOS R (right).

Nokishita, which first published the photos, reports that the Canon EOS RP will feature a 26.2-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor with Dual Pixel CMOS AF and a DIGIC 8 image processor.

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Fujifilm X-T30 Leaked Photos Show New Joystick

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Fujifilm X-T30 Leaked Photos Show New Joystick
Feb 072019
 

Fujifilm appears to be gearing up to announce the successor to the X-T20, and purported photos of the X-T30 have leaked onto the Web.

The Japanese camera rumor site Nokishita posted the photos today after receiving them from overseas sources.

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Sony a6400 Review – Is the End of Manual Focus Lenses Near?

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Sony a6400 Review – Is the End of Manual Focus Lenses Near?
Feb 032019
 

With the introduction of the Sony a6400, I had a chance to take the new camera for a short spin and after playing with it for a bit, I made up my mind. Sony’s latest offering is very different and interesting, BUT, is it worth the upgrade from its a6300 and a6500 siblings? (Same sensor but enhanced image processing engine). Is it really a Vlogger’s camera? What is its strongest selling point and last but not least, what is the real reason for Sony to introduce this camera in my personal opinion? Interested? Keep reading.

It is the middle of January. My short (and yet to be disclosed) assignment in Japan is almost over but before going back home, I’m lucky enough to put my hands on the new Sony a6400 to take it for a short spin. At first, my plan was to shoot a short documentary with it and by doing so, explore its video capabilities, but after noticing that most features and even technical specifications are very similar to the Sony a6300 and a6500 (which I reviewed and tested before), I decided to scrap my original plan and concentrate on testing a single feature, the one that captured my attention most.

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Panasonic hints at a future entry-level full-frame camera, by Phil Hall

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Panasonic hints at a future entry-level full-frame camera, by Phil Hall
Jan 042019
 

We know Panasonic is launching its professional-focused Lumix S1 and S1R full-frame cameras this year, but it looks like we could see a more affordable entry-level model as well.

In a wide-ranging interview with DPReview.com, the President of Panasonic’s Imaging Network Business Division, Yosuke Yamane, was questioned on whether the new full-frame S series will grow to include entry-level products.

Yamane responded that “the first generation will be specialized for professionals, but in the future, of course we’re also aiming to attract entry-level users”.

It appears, though, that for now the priority is to appeal to professionals, with Yamane stating that “our image to professional users is very important. That’s why we’re attacking this segment [initially]”.

Yamane also discussed aspects of the philosophy behind Panasonic’s first full-frame mirrorless cameras, from why the company chose to enter the sector to its decisions regarding the size of its cameras. 

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Sony a7/R III Firmware v2 Unlocks All AF Modes for Adapted Lenses

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Sony a7/R III Firmware v2 Unlocks All AF Modes for Adapted Lenses
Dec 032018
 

Two months ago, Sony released a major firmware version for its popular a7 III and a7R III mirrorless cameras. Version 2.0 brought new features and improvements… including the ability for a wide range of adapted lenses to make use of all the camera’s autofocus modes.

The update “Adds support for Zone, Expand Flexible Spot, and Lock-on AF focus areas when using the LA-EA3 mount adaptor,” Sony writes.

Sony specifically mentioned the LA-EA3 mount adapter, which is designed to let photographers use Sony A-mount lenses on E-mount cameras. But it seems the new feature goes well beyond that use case and includes all lenses, according to DPReview.

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Fujifilm says it will ‘never’ launch a full-frame mirrorless camera, by Trevor Mogg

 Gear, Mirrorless, News  Comments Off on Fujifilm says it will ‘never’ launch a full-frame mirrorless camera, by Trevor Mogg
Oct 242018
 

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