GearComments Off on Should You Invest in Large Aperture Lenses That Have f/2.8 or Larger?
Buying a beautiful f/2.8 lens zoom is tempting. Large apertures are always better. If you’re using primes, a f/1.8 or f/1.4 is even better. But is that expensive large aperture lens really necessary for your photography?
The first lens I bought next to the one I got with my camera was the beautiful white Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM. Its name is a mouth full, basically meaning it has that amazing f/2.8 aperture over the complete focal range. It is white, it is large, it is heavy, it looked good on the camera, and people were impressed by this huge white expensive looking lens.
Gear, MirrorlessComments Off on Would You Buy an Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark III Instead of a Sony a7 III?
The launch of the new Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark III has reminded the world that micro four-thirds is not dead, and right now, it’s almost exactly the same price as the Sony a7 III. If you were in the market, which would you buy?
Over on B&H Photo right now, there’s a dollar difference in price between these two cameras, though if you opt for the Olympus, you are buying a camera with a much, much longer name. That said, in a world when full-frame offers so much, why would you ever want the smaller sensor? This entertaining video from Vistek makes a compelling case for the Olympus, and clearly it’s a tool that definitely fits well under certain circumstances.
GearComments Off on A Review of the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS Lens
We would all love to have the absolutely astounding supertelephoto primes that the pros use, but with prices well into five figures, they are simply not in the cards for most of us. Luckily, in the last few years, companies have been releasing better and better long zooms at more affordable prices. This great review takes a look at the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS lens.
Gear, MirrorlessComments Off on Is Fuji About to Release the X-T4 and Two Other New Cameras?
It appears that Fuji may have a busy couple of months coming up, with rumors that the X-T4, X100V, and X-T200 may be announced as soon as February 4. Is Fuji beginning to match Sony’s aggressive release schedule? Will we see some major changes to the successor of the incredibly popular X-T3?
FujiAddict reports that the X-T4 will be ⅓ of an inch thicker and up to 5 oz heavier than its predecessor, also touting 6K 60p with 10-bit internal recording and a fully articulating screen. The larger size would make sense, as the smart money is betting on the X-T4 having in-body image stabilization, one of the few features that videographers felt was missing from the X-T3. It would also accommodate a larger battery, which will be greatly welcomed by Fuji shooters used to carrying a handful of NP-W126S batteries with them, a model that’s been used across a wide range of Fuji bodies for several years now.
Canon’s mirrorless lenses have been quite successful for the company, offering impressive optical quality that sets the bar quite high. However, Canon fans are still waiting for a stronger mirrorless body that pushes the boundaries a bit more from the company. The good news is that it seems that will be changing soon, as the company is likely to release two new mirrorless cameras in the coming months.
GearComments Off on Zeiss Milvus 100mm f/2M ZF.2 Macro Lens Review
I couldn’t find a great deal about this lens online, so I thought I would film a review with a of mixture of test shots and looking at how I have used the lens in my own portfolio. Here are my thoughts.
From a Canon shooters point of view, the Carl Zeiss Milvis f.2m Macros lens is a more expensive offering than the own brand’s pro line. It doesn’t have as many features due to a lack of true 1:1 marco, autofocus, and image stabilization. So, this lens is certainly not a versatile tool. However, it does offer a lot for a certain type of photographer.
For me, the lens offers incredible details as well as a beautifully rendered image, especially when wide open. The lens gives the image a look that can’t be achieved with the Canon offerings, partially due to the f/2 aperture, but also due to the way that Zeiss constructs their lenses.
Although the test shots don’t show any huge gains over something like a Canon USM or L lens, when put to practical use, the rendering, colors, and build quality are superb. What is really impressive is how sharp the lens is wide open and the way that the lens can control highlights. It wasn’t something that I noticed until I shot the same scene with some Canon lenses and realized that it was the lens causing the highlight to blow out in a rather unpleasing way.
Gear, Mirrorless, NewsComments Off on The First Half of 2020 Will Brings Lots of Mirrorless Announcements From Canon
Canon is slowly filling out its mirrorless line, but there are still some cameras and lenses that photographers are waiting to complete their kits or to justify switching. The good news is that Canon seems to be planning a lot of releases for their mirrorless line in the first half of 2020.
GearComments Off on Tiny and Capable: A Review of the DJI Mavic Mini
The DJI Mavic Mini is a ludicrously small drone, but that does not necessarily mean it does not come without a set of professional features. This great review takes a comprehensive look at the new drone to help you decide if it is the right one for you.
GearComments Off on An Experiential Review of the Atomos Shinobi External Monitor for Photography
The use of external monitors in shooting stills at honestly seemed unnecessary at first, especially in shooting more pace-sensitive kinds of photography. But as an architectural photographer who generally has more room for precise compositions, it seemed more feasible.
External monitors are more commonly used in shooting videos than photos. There is a wide variety of external monitors that are compatible with most modern cameras (at least those with an HDMI port). Atomos is one of those brands most known for such, especially their bigger monitors that come with a built-in recorder such as the Atomos Ninja V. Given that architectural photography deals with very crucial precise composition and attention to details, the use of the Atomos Shinobi seemed sensible.
Build and Design
The Shinobi comes in a 5.94 x 3.6 x 1.24 inch polycarbonate body that weighs only 196 grams (battery not included). It has 1/4” female mounting threads on the top and bottom parts, a 3.5mm audio output port, HDMI port, and an SD card slot on the sides. The SD slot does not function as storage but works as a way to import color profiles instead. Personally, the only thing I would change about this is to give it a more rugged exterior probably with rubber protectors on the corners.
Gear, MirrorlessComments Off on A First Look at the Fujifilm X-Pro3 Camera
The X-Pro3 is the latest camera from Fujifilm in their highly lauded X Series, and with it comes a highly interesting design with lots of features and power to spare. Is this unique camera the right one for you? This excellent first look video will give you a pretty comprehensive overview that should help you decide.
Tamron really has their focus on the Sony mirrorless camera users. The existing Tamron lenses for Sony mirrorless, the 28-75mm f/2.8 and 17-28mm f/2.8 have been quite successful due to their superb quality and competitive pricing. That is why many users have been awaiting the lens that would complete this zoom lens trinity, a fast telephoto lens, certainly.
Today, Tamron announced the development of the Tamron 70-180mm F/2.8 Di III VXD. However, aside from that, a lot are still yet to be revealed by the third-party lens brand. In addition, however, they finally revealed the 3 new prime lenses for the Sony mirrorless line-up. The 20mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F050), 24mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F051), and 35mm F/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 (Model F053). The 24mm and 35mm lenses will be available on November 20th and the 20mm will be available in January 2020. All three prime lenses share the same price tag of $349.
GearComments Off on A Comprehensive Review of the Sony a7R IV
The Sony a7R IV brings the company’s latest innovations and improvements to the popular line of high-resolution full frame cameras. Along with its new sensor come a bevy of new upgrades and refinements to existing features, making it an interesting choice for a lot of photographers. This comprehensive and thorough review takes a deep look at the camera to help you decide if it is right for you.
Coming to you from Maarten Heilbron, this excellent review takes a look at the Sony a7R IV. The a7R IV features lots of upgrades over the a7R III, the most prominent being the new 61-megapixel sensor, an upgrade of almost 50% over its predecessor. Along with the new sensor comes a better EVF, more ergonomic grip, more powerful autofocus, better weather-sealing, and more. The capability to fire at 10 fps at 61 megapixels is certainly a boon for many photographers, particularly wildlife photographers, who retain vast cropping capabilities with enough speed to capture animals in action, all supplemented by the capable autofocus system.
Apple, GearComments Off on What Is Apple’s Semantic Rendering and How Does It Affect iPhone 11 Photos?
Apple has made a lot of noise with its camera-festooned iPhone 11 models, but beyond the lenses and hardware is a lot of interesting software. It’s arguably that software that’s driving the biggest changes to photography to date.
Some of that software isn’t available yet, such as “Deep Fusion” AI which Apple’s Marketing Chief described as “computational mad science,” or marketing speak for “I’m not really sure what this is yet, but it’s got a cool name.” But one of the technologies that is available right now is “semantic rendering,” which according to an article from Digital Trends is basically an editor in your phone touching up each individual part of your image.
Cinematography, GearComments Off on Large Format Is Still Completely Unrivaled: Canon 5DS R Versus 4×5 Large Format Film
Over the last couple of months, I’ve been getting to know a photographer called Adam French who lives in the same city as me. French is a photographer who primarily shoots with a large format film camera. I was utterly blown away by some of the work he produced, and I asked him if he’d be interested in working with us on a YouTube video.
In the video linked above, we decided to compare a 50-megapixel full-frame camera, the Canon 5DS R, to a large format 4×5 film camera. The lenses we used for the comparison were the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art on the Canon versus a 180mm f/2.9 lens on the 4×5 camera. If you’re interested in what the equivalents are, then the large-format lens would be somewhat similar to a 50mm lens with an aperture of around f/0.8 on a full-frame camera. This kind of depth of field is simply ridiculous, and currently, nothing like this exists for any digital camera produced by any of the well-known manufacturers. Even if you’re shooting with a digital medium format camera, it simply isn’t possible to produce that kind of depth of field natively.
GearComments Off on Canon Just Announced the EOS M200 and the Launch Video Is Fascinating
Canon has announced the launch of the EOS M200, a small camera featuring a 24-megapixel APS-C sensor, Dual Pixel autofocus and 4K video. Canon has also packed in a few features that make it more accessible to those without a deep knowledge of photography who are looking to produce and share content quickly on social media. What’s more interesting, however is the marketing video itself.
When watching the video above, a few things jumped off the screen at me.
Connected But Still App-alling?
Web-ready content is key in today’s media environment and Canon is keen to push the M200’s wireless and Bluetooth connectivity. However, users can but hope that Canon is also taking steps to improve its smartphone apps which don’t have a particularly good reputation. Given that the example in this video shows a camera with the nickname of “EOSM200_C64D7,” Canon might still have a long way to go when it comes to understanding how to make something user-friendly.
Action cams, GearComments Off on OCLU Action Cam: Delete Unwanted Footage on the Fly
Offering in-body stabilization that seems to compete well with other action cameras on the market, the OCLU also has an aerodynamic design and a wide selection of accessories. These attachments and casings are sold as “Bundles” that are geared towards underwater usage or attaching the camera to specific pieces of equipment.
Perhaps most appealing to extreme sports enthusiasts is the ability to delete footage on the fly using the camera’s “Live Cut” mode. When you’ve finished filming a specific clip that you don’t plan to use, instead of hitting the record button again to stop, you press a different button to delete the clip. This allows you to avoid fill-in up your micro-SD card with unwanted footage.
Dynamic range is sort of like the new megapixels in 2019: it is the camera spec that a lot of photographers use as a benchmark to compare different bodies. But how much does it really matter when it comes down to it? This great video examines the concept and if it is something you should obsess about.
GearComments Off on A Review of the Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD Lens
Tamron has been killing it with their lens releases in the last few years, undercutting the prices of first party manufacturers by significant amounts while still providing high optical quality and performance that have led to an increasing presence in the professional segment. This great review takes a look at the Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD lens for Canon and Nikon DSLRs.
GearComments Off on Godox AD200 Pro Versus Geekoto GT-200, the Two Best Value Strobes
The Godox AD200 Pro is considered by many to be the best value in photography strobes but Geekoto recently created their own competitor, the GT-200. Is this new strobe a better option? Let’s find out.
The Geekoto GT-200 is slightly smaller than the AD200 because it doesn’t have a removable flash head. If you don’t need the extra flashheads, you’ll appreciate the extra room in your bag.
The Godox AD200 Pro comes with two flash heads; one speedlight style head and one barebulb style head while the GT-200 comes with a fix speedlight style flash head. The Geekoto comes with a removable handle that makes holding it easier.
Geekoto does sell a larger package that includes a softbox, light stand, grid, gels, and dome for $120 extra. These accessories are quite good and I believe they are worth the extra money.
Gear, MirrorlessComments Off on 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.
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.