Nikon’s newest super-telephoto is another addition to its PF series of lenses that use a phase fresnel lens element in order to reduce the size and weight of what would otherwise be a much larger lens similar to more traditional fast, super-telephotos. The maximum diameter of this 500mm f/5.6E PF lens is 106mm, and it’s just 237mm long. It weighs about as much as the AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR lens, which is quite a feat for a lens with such reach. Most fast 500mm lenses weigh about twice that much. Naturally, this lens features Nikon’s dust- and drip-resistance as well as a fluorine coat on the front element to help repel dirt and moisture (and to also make it easy to clean).
GearComments Off on Nikon Announces the Nikon Z6 and Z7 Mirrorless Cameras
Nikon is finally here with its first professional, full-frame mirrorless cameras: the Z6 and the higher-megapixel Z7.
UPDATE: Pre-orders now open. Order now to get in line before everyone else.
We’ve waited for a long time for this, and now, after watching Sony from afar, tonight Nikon announced its answer to Sony’s rather successful a7- and a9-series cameras. The Z6 is Nikon’s low-light, mid-resolution body, high frame-rate body while the Z7 is a high-resolution equivalent. Alongside the Z-mount system, Nikon also introduced a new AF-S 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR compact, super-telephoto lens with the standard F-mount. But let’s dive right into the specifications for the Z cameras.
Cinematography, GearComments Off on DJI Mavic 2 Pro & Mavic 2 Zoom Announced – Plenty of Improvements
Finally – today is the release day for the new DJI Mavic 2 drones. The DJI Mavic 2 Pro with integrated 1″ sensor Hasselblad camera and Mavic 2 Zoom, the world’s first foldable consumer drone with optical zoom capability. Both drones offer lots of smart features, flight time of up to 31 minutes and a more stable video transmission system.
The new DJI Mavic 2 Drones. Source: DJI
Every drone enthusiast was waiting for this. The day when DJI releases their new Mavic 2 drone. That day is today! As we already know since a month ago – DJI is not revealing one new drone, buttwo new drones. Number one: Mavic 2 Pro, the world’s first drone with an integrated Hasselblad camera. Number two: Mavic 2 Zoom, the world’s first foldable consumer drone with optical zoom capability. Both drones share the same foldable body design and offer a flight time of up to 31 minutes as well as a more stable video transmission system.
Brief History of the Mavic
When the original DJI Mavic Pro (our review here) came out in 2016, it caused a small revolution in the drone world – it featured an unprecedented combination of portability and image quality. With its foldable design it fitted in every bag and made drone shooting accessible to masses. Even despite its low bitrate of 60Mbps, and therefore not so great dynamic range, it carried much more strengths and is still a very popular product, to this day.
New DJI Mavic 2 Series Drones. Source: DJI
In january 2018 DJI presented Mavic Pro’s smaller brother – the DJI Mavic Air (hands-on video here, Mavic Procomparison here). It featured a higher bitrate of 100Mbps in a smaller, lighter and more affordable body. There were, however, some trade-offs when compared to the older Mavic Pro. For instance, the lower range due to different wireless technology used (OcuSync in Pro vs Extended Wifi in Air).
Both the Mavic Pro and the Mavic Air shared the same 1/2.3″ sensor. The field-of-view of the lens was 26mm (full frame equivalent) with the Pro and 24mm (full frame equivalent) with the Air.
DJI Mavic 2 Pro – Image Quality is Everything
The DJI Mavic 2 Pro features the brand-new camera module which DJI co-engineered with Hasselblad. The partnership with the medium format photography pioneer is very clear, as the Mavic 2 Pro proudly carries the Hasselblad logo right above the lens.
Cinematography, GearComments Off on PolarPro Quartzline ND Filter Review – a new Gold Standard?
I first got to know PolarPro cinema series ND filters about 1.5 years ago when I was conducting a GoPro Hero camera review fitted with their set of filters. (See my review here). Now they are venturing into the professional large diameter filter world (up to 82mm), essentially claiming a neutral color balance and near perfect optical quality. Is this claim true? Read on to find out.
In this review, I’m testing the new PolarPro Quartzline ND 64 filter and PolarPro ND16 / PL (polarizer) filter. Those filters are made of 99.9% fused quartz to ensure optical clarity with a very low refractive index. The frames are built from machined brass to ensure they thread on smoothly – very essential as I have experienced seized up filters from aluminium frames myself already. A very nasty experience …
PolarPro claims a neutral color balance, zero color shift and near perfect transmission by the optical coatings. For more information about the available filters and sizes, please head to Richard’s article.
GearComments Off on Canon IS vs Sony IBIS: Which Image Stabilization is Better?
The Sony a7R III is a feature-filled camera that I’m sure many of us would consider to be one of the best currently available on the market. One of its very useful features is IBIS or in-body image stabilization. This feature helps prevent motion blur in your images by moving the sensor to compensate for unintentional vibrations and movements.
In practical uses this means you can shoot with relatively slower shutter speeds and still produce sharp images, preventing the need to increase the ISO. The great thing about having stabilization on the sensor is that it’s effective on pretty much any lens you put on the camera.
Canon, on the other hand, does not currently offer any camera with sensor stabilization. Their reason for this is because they believe stabilization in the lens is more effective because it’s designed specifically for the lens in question. For that reason, I decided to compare Canon’s lens IS against Sony’s IBIS to see which one is actually better.
The XV adapter, which Hasselblad says “bridges its legacy and its future,” supports Hasselblad’s full lineup of C, CB, CF, CFI, CFE, F and FE lenses — it adds compatibility for over 60 lenses that range in focal length from 30mm to 500mm.
GearComments Off on Samsung’s New Galaxy Note 9 Points Out Flaws In Your Photos
Samsung today announced the new Galaxy Note 9 smartphone. Among its new features is Samsung’s “most intelligent camera yet” and a new Flaw Detection feature that will point out when your photos aren’t up to par.
The Note 9 features a dual camera on the back with a 12MP f1.5/f2.4 wide-angle lens (it has a dual aperture like theSamsung Galaxy S9) and a 12mp f/2.4 telephoto lens. Both lenses have built-in optical image stabilization. The front-facing camera is an 8MP f/1.7 unit.
“New revolutionary features make it nearly impossible to take a bad shot,” Samsung says. “The Galaxy Note 9 intelligently recognizes what you’re looking at, optimizing color settings like contrast, white balance, exposure, and more.”
And when you do snap a bag shot, the new “Flaw Detection” system will display notifications when it detects things like blinks, blurs, smudges (from dirty lenses), and backlighting.
GearComments Off on Sigma 135mm 1.8, 14mm 1.4, and 70mm 2.8 Art & Contemporary Lenses for Sony E-Mount Now Shipping
Sigma announced in February that their ART and Contemporary lenses would be coming to E-mount to a warranted level of excitement, but the wait for delivery has been rough on some. That wait, however, was over in June when Sigma started shipping the first 5 of the 9 announced E-mount lenses, and now three more are ready to go: 14mm F1.8 DG HSM, 70mm F2.8 DG MACRO, and 135mm F1.8 DG HSM Art lenses for Sony E-mount.
The Sigma Art lenses have been prized for their optical performance which should see no change in the native e-mount versions, but some of the other performance abilities have been dampened on Sony units due to the required Sigma Mount Converter MC-11. Sigma claims these abilities that should be realized in full with the new native models:
“…the new Sony E-mount models feature a newly developed control algorithm that optimizes the autofocus drive and maximizes the data transmission speed. In addition, these lenses are compatible with Sony’s Continuous AF (AF-C) and high-speed autofocus, which are not addressed by Sigma Mount Converter MC-11. Like MC-11, the lenses are compatible with in-camera image stabilization and in-camera lens aberration correction, which includes corrections for peripheral illumination, chromatic aberrations and distortion.”
GearComments Off on Snap On, Snap Off – Bright Tangerine Left Field Quick Release Bridge Plate
The Bright Tangerine Left Field 19mm Studio Quick Release Bridge Plate is a snap on, snap off bridge plate for ARRI Dovetail, compatible to ARRI and RED height standards.
High contender for the longest name in camera accessory history, the Bright Tangerine Left Field 19mm Studio Quick Release Bridge Plate initially surfaced around NAB last year, hidden under a few more-specific ARRI Alexa Mini accessories.
Bright Tangerine has now announced it as a stand-alone product, ready to pre-order.
What Makes it Unique
There’s a fair amount of Bridge Plates out there; the ARRI dovetail has been one of the industry-standard camera plates in the professional market for years.
Yet most conform to the old school way of slide on/slide off mounting.
Whilst the slide function is fantastic for fine (and broad) tuning the balance of the camera rig, it can be a bit of a fiddle to completely removing or mounting the camera.
Snap plates have the standard for other plates for ages (Euro, Arca Swiss, Sachtler, Manfrotto), it’s interesting to see the lack of snap on/off function in the ARRI Dovetail-compatible market.
This is exactly where the Bright Tangerine Left Field comes in, it’s a bridge plate that has full slide function for adjustment, but can be removed by turning the lever further and lifting the camera straight off.
GearComments Off on Canon 5D Mark IV & Canon 6D Mark II With $400 Rebates & Free Battery Grip | Ending Soon
In our field, gear matters, and you’d have to have a bank balance bigger than your bank account number for you to acquire all you likely would want when the whim takes you. However, if you keep your ear to the ground like we do, you come about the best photography deals currently on the market, and within our Deal Dashes, we share them with you:
Summer started with a bang when it came to gear deals, as we saw some of the best we’d seen off peak holiday times on everything from mirrorless and DSLR bodies to lenses and cases and all else. Some of the best deals were for top-tier Nikon and Canon DSLR bodies with big rebates that came (for a limited time) with free first-party battery grips, which on their own go for anywhere from $300-$450. This is on bodies like the Nikon D500, D750, Canon 5D MarkIV, and 6D Mark II.
GearComments Off on Leica and Others Investing in “Light”, Raising $121M
As part of a $121M series D funding round, German manufacturer Leica –among others– invests in Light. The startup tech company focuses on multi-lens cameras which make massive use of computational imaging. With fresh money and the renowed Leica brand in their back, new fields of products are in plain sight.
Remember the Light L16 concept camera which actually became a reality in 2017? This pocket-sized camera is able to capture 52 megapixel snaps with 16 lenses (and therefore 16 sensors). All the individual images will be combined into one single 52 MP picture using computational imaging. Now, with another $121M at their disposal, the company wants to drastically expand their lineup.
If you’re still not sure about what exactly the L16 camera concept is, this quote by SoftBank’s Partner Akshay Naheta (SoftBank led this Series D funding) might clearify things:
Light is a world leader in computational imaging. By replacing mechanical complexity with digital sophistication, they have been able to drastically reduce the size, weight, and cost of traditional cameras. This has paved the way for a whole new era of intelligent imaging applications.
As a first product, and after three funding rounds in which Light raised a total of $64.7M, the L16 camera was announced in 2015 and released in 2017. The L16 is a pocket-sized 52 megapixel beast of a camera. In terms of video it’s capable of shooting 4K video but it only uses single lenses out of its 16-lens arsenal. Choose between 28mm, 70mm or 150mm. No image-fusion in video mode, at least not yet.
GearComments Off on Fujifilm Unveils the Fujinon XF 200mm f/2 and 8-16mm f/2.8
Fujifilm has announced two new lenses for its X Series line of mirrorless cameras: an XF 200mm f/2 OIS telephoto lens and an 8-16mm f/2.8 ultra-wide-angle zoom lens. There’s also a new 1.4X teleconverter.
Fujinon XF200mm f/2 R LM OIS WR and 1.4X TC
The new Fujinon 200mm f/2 OIS is Fujifilm’s first super-fast telephoto lens in the XF stable. It has a maximum aperture of f/2.0 and a 35mm equivalent focal length of 305mm.
Cinematography, GearComments Off on Call to Action for All Sony Shooters: Test Your Lens Adapter for Sharpness
With the exodus of Canon users to Sony’s Alpha series, adapters have become incredibly important, particularly the Metabones V and the Sigma MC-11. Photographer Luis Gabriel Gerena has done a comparison and produced some slightly alarming — albeit very limited — results regarding sharpness when shooting with a wide angle lens.
It’s worth keeping in mind that Gerena’s results are based on just one comparison and one lens, so here’s our call to action: if you have access to both the Sigma MC-11 and the Metabones V, please perform your own test with your widest lens and post the results below.
GearComments Off on Nikon’s New 500mm f/5.6 to Offer High-Quality Super-Telephoto in a Handheld Package
Nikonannounced the development of a new AF-S 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR lens last month, but now we finally get a look at it thanks to an image posted to Twitter by PhotographerPavel Bednyakov, whose photograph makes it look like the new 500mm could be easier to hold than Nikon’s 200mm f/2.
If you’ve ever shot with the Nikon 200mm f/2G VR II (or the earlier version), you’ll likely remember how it was more or less at the limit of what could reasonably be handheld for longer periods of time. Essentially, the Nikon 200mm f/2 is to we normal humans as the 600mm f/4 is to Dwayne Johnson. But that’s what makes this new “PF” technology so exciting, as it enables this 500mm in development to be smaller and lighter than anything else before it.
GearComments Off on Mounting a 70-200mm Lens on the Ronin S
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to mount a longer lens like an 85-200mm on to a gimbal and get footage with it. I feel like a lot of video we see shot on a gimbal is from a wide angle lens, but in this video we see something a little more interesting.
My curiosity about mounting a telephoto lens to a gimbal came from a while ago when I saw that the Inspire could mount different lenses. Being so into drones, I really wanted to have that ability and create this new look from the sky. Once I ended up with my Inspire 2, I began to learn how to fly a 25mm and 45mm lens which both double in focal length because of the micro 4/3 sensor. After a good amount of practice flying, I was finally able to achieve the shots I wanted and have been using this for a lot of my work ever since.
Cinematography, GearComments Off on Panasonic EVA1 Guide by Barry Green now Available – For Free
Do you own a Panasonic AU-EVA1 camera? Tired of digging through YouTube and/or shady forums to get additional intel on how to squeeze the very last piece of performance out of it? Well, look no further. Barry Green has published a comprehensive e-book – An EVA1 Guide for free!
Almost every major camera manufacturer has its own industry specialist. One who knows every last detail of a given camera and spreads the word among the community. Sony has Alister Chapman, RED has Phil Holland and Panasonic? Well, Panasonic has Barry Green. And that exact Barry Green has just published an extensive e-book, an EVA1 guide.
Just as Alister Chapman’s guide to the Sony FS7 Cine EI mode, this EVA1 guide isn’t just a manual. It’s a comprehensive real-life guide to the camera. Since Barry Green is a professional in his line of work, this guide is far from real-life Youtube flicks which oftentimes come without too much insight.. This guide to the EVA1 covers everything there is: The camera body itself with all the connectors, buttons and dials, the menu structure, codecs and recordings formats, LUTs and looks, and everything else. All in one PDF. For a brief overview of the camera in question, watch the video below, also hosted by Barry Green:
GearComments Off on SLR Magic Anamorphot 65 Adapter Review – Your Alternative to Anamorphic Lenses?
Last month we reported about the new Anamorphot 65, an anamorphic lens adapter by SLR Magic that can mount to lenses with 82mm front thread like SLR Magic’s own micro cinema primes and FUJINON’s MK family of lenses. There is also a chance that by the time you read this review, this promising adapter will be available for preorder.
Nino, my colleague, caught up with Andrew from SLR Magic during this year’s CineGear to discuss the new product, yet it was time to actually test it and put it through its paces.
The Anamorphic Lens Routine
First thing first: Why should one actually consider “shooting anamorphic”?, well, the answer is clear. If you are looking to mimic the true aesthetic of cinematic looks, then shooting with an anamorphic lens is the way to go. As this is a product review I will not go deep into the subject anamorphic filming, but please consider heading to our cinema5D essentials episode where Li-Lian and I were aiming to explain what anamorphic filming is all about….
Ok, so if shooting with anamorphic lenses has the benefit of producing a unique look, why is it not too widely spread? In short: budget and training. TRUE high quality anamorphic lenses simply coast A LOT, far beyond the budget of most independent filmmakers. There are, of course, ways to track and purchase vintage anamorphic lenses, but this is not too easy. Speaking of anamorphic – I urge you to visit our friend and content contributor, Tito Fernandez’ YouTube channel, where he demonstrates a great deal of knowledge and shares valuable tips for anamorphic lens and adapter lovers.
GearComments Off on Canon Has Two Full Frame Mirrorless Cameras in the Works: Report
It’s not just Nikon. Canon is also reportedly planning to launch two different full frame mirrorless cameras in the very near future.
Canon Rumors is hearing that Canon will be releasing two full frame mirrorless cameras before the middle of 2019. And like Nikon’s rumored pair, Canon’s cameras will also arrive as a high-megapixel “flagship” model and a lower resolution, cheaper model.
The first camera to be announced will be a 30.4-megapixel mirrorless camera that could be “closely related” to the sensor found in the existing Canon 5D Mark IV, Canon Rumors writes. Canon said back in May that it’s finallywilling to cannibalize its DSLRs to play a bigger part in the growth of mirrorless cameras.
The second Canon full frame mirrorless body launched afterward will reportedly have a lower pixel count — possibly 24 megapixels.
GearComments Off on Magmod Launches Three New Revolutionary Lighting Tools for Photographers
MagMod has become known for pushing the boundaries of light modifier design. They always put quality, portability, and ease of use into all of their products. With the release of three new lighting tools, they don’t disappoint.
Magmod recently announced three new products to add to their lineup of existing products: a new MagBox, MagRing, and MagShoe.
MagMod’s past lineup of modifiers has always been extremely small and portable. The only problem is those small modifiers can’t produce the soft light found on larger modifiers. The MagBox aims to fix this. The MagBox is a 24-inch octabox that packs a number of revolutionary traits. The first is an integrated gel holder. So no more trying to tape gels to the inside of your softbox. The Magbox also has a built-in side zipper to make changing out gels simple and fast.
The most interesting feature of the MagBox though is in the diffusion panels. The first is a traditional cloth diffusion that you find on most softboxes. But the second is a new diffusion material they call the FocusDiffuser. This diffuser has a microstructure that focuses and directs the light forward. This minimizes spill similar to a grid but also increases the light’s effective output similar to a Fresnel lens. What you’re left with is a gridded softbox that now has a two-to-three stop increase in effective power.