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Equipment

Metz mecablitz M400 flash unveiled at Photokina

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 3:53pm

As promised earlier this month, Metz has launched a new flash at Photokina, the Metz mecablitz M400. This model is the flagship for the company’s new line of compact flash devices; it is more than 30-percent smaller than ‘traditional flash units,’ says Metz. Despite its compact size, the M400 is said to offer high-performance for all varieties of photographers and videographers.

The mecablitz M400 flash offers Auto TTL mode, an adjustable LED video light, a max guide number of 40 (ISO 100), a 24-105mm motor zoom function, a 12mm integrated wide-angle diffuser and a completely pivotable reflector including a removable reflector card. The flash also includes an integrated OLED display with what Metz says is a simplified user interface for viewing and adjusting settings.

The flash is available in variants for Sony, Nikon, Canon, Fujifilm, Pentax and Olympus/Panasonic/Leica cameras. Though the M400 is currently listed on Metz’s website, pricing and availability information hasn’t yet been provided.

Via: Metz

Categories: Equipment

Sigma adds the 85mm F1.4 Art, 12-24mm Art, 500mm F4 Sport lenses to its Global Vision line

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 2:20pm
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Sigma has announced three new lenses for its Global Vision Line. The long-rumored and long-awaited 85mm F1.4 Art, the 12-24mm F4 Art, and the 500 F4 DG OS HSM Sport.

Press Release

Sigma Adds the 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art, and 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport Lenses to Its Global Vision Line

Outstanding optical performance, ultra-wide zoom range, and versatile flagship sports lens headline the Sigma line-up at Photokina 2016

Cologne, Germany – September 19, 2016 – Sigma Corporation of America, a leading camera, DSLR lens, flash and accessories manufacturer, unveiled its new 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art and 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport Global Vision lenses at the Photokina 2016 event (hall 4.2, stands B020, B028 and C029).

“We are thrilled to announce three state-of-the-art additions to the Global Vision line. The Sigma 85mm 1.4 Art has been a highly requested lens and we are very confident those customers who have been waiting for us to deliver this lens will be more than pleased with the superior optical performance and zero compromise,” states Mark Amir-Hamzeh, president of Sigma Corporation of America. “In addition, the re-engineered 12-24mm F4 and highly competitive 500mm F4 Sport lens both embody the world-class performance our Global Vision lenses are known for. We look forward to seeing the incredible images our customers will create using these new Sigma lenses.”

Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art – The Ultimate Portrait Lens
Delivering the ultimate in creative expression, the new Sigma 85mm F1.4 Art lens is engineered to support the highest resolution sensors on the market with an exceptional degree of sharpness. The high-performance optical system is purpose-built by Sigma R&D to produce the attractive bokeh effect sought after by discerning photographers. The lens’ advanced architecture features two SLD (special low dispersion) glass elements and one glass element with a high rate of anomalous partial dispersion and refraction. A re-engineered AF system brings 1.3X the torque of its predecessor, while other features such as a full-time manual focus override have been added, which can be controlled when the focus ring is rotated, even during continuous AF.

The Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature a brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 85mm F1.4 Art lens will be available in late October and retails for a recommended street price of $1199.00 USD.

Sigma 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art Ultra-Wide Angle Zoom for the Era of Ultra-High Resolution Digital Cameras
Boasting the renowned Global Vision image quality from center to edge, the new Sigma 12-24mm F4 features the largest aspherical glass mold in the industry, offering photographers an ultra-wide angle zoom with virtually no distortion, flare or ghosting. Encompassing the long history of Sigma wide angle lens development expertise, the new 12-24mm F4 performance highlights include constant F4 brightness and the brand new Sigma AF system with 1.3X torque boost. The 12-24mm F4 features lens elements made with FLD (“F” Low Dispersion) glass, which is equivalent to calcium fluorite in performance. Combined with an optimized power distribution, the result is outstanding image quality from center to edges. With a minimum focus distance of 9.4 inches at 24mm, photographers can compose incredible close-up shots with expansive backgrounds.

The all new Sigma 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art lens supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature the brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 12-24mm F4 Art lens will be available in late October and retails for a recommended street price of $1599.00 USD.

Sigma 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport Lens - Pro Fast-Aperture Prime Super Telephoto
The flagship Sigma super telephoto 500mm F4 Sport lens incorporates the very latest in Sigma optical technology and innovation. Designed for the professional sports and wildlife shooter, the ultra-durable lens features magnesium alloy components, a carbon fiber hood, a water and oil resistant front element, and is dust and splash proof. The 500mm F4 features a drop-in rear filter slot for polarizers, UV and other critical filters. To help prevent damage during shooting and maintenance, the lens is also compatible with the exclusive SIGMA Protector LPT-11 (sold separately).

The lens incorporates two FLD and one SLD glass elements, while the optimized power distribution helps minimize spherical aberration and axial chromatic aberration. The optical system also effectively minimizes transverse chromatic aberration, which can affect the edges of the shots taken in the telephoto range. In addition, image quality remains exceptional when the lens is used with a Sigma Telephoto Converter (sold separately).

Other key performance features include Sigma's two-mode Optical Stabilizer for enhanced performance when shooting handheld for still subjects or panning and tracking for moving subjects. There is also a customizable AF "return" function for setting the focus position of one's choice and returning to that preset distance.

The all new Sigma 500mm F4 supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature the brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 500mm F4 Sport lens, in Canon and Sigma mounts, will be available in late October. The Nikon mount will be available in late November. The 500mm F4 will retail for a recommended street price of $5999.00 USD.

All Sigma Global Vision lenses, including the new 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art, and 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Global Vision lenses, can be updated with the latest lens firmware from a workstation or laptop using the Sigma Optimization Pro software and Sigma USB Dock (sold separately).

Tested for Optimum Performance
Sigma lenses are born of well thought-out design concepts, exceptional Japanese craftsmanship and manufacturing, and advanced lens performance testing and evaluation. To this end, Sigma has developed its own A1 proprietary MTF (modulation transfer function) measuring system using 46-megapixel Foveon direct image sensors. Even the most elusive high-frequency details are within the scope of Sigma’s quality control inspections. Every Global Vision lens is A1 tested, analyzed and approved before leaving the factory, ensuring maximum performance out of the box.

For more information on Sigma’s industry leading testing, please visit http://blog.sigmaphoto.com/2012/a1-mtf-testing-for-new-sigma-lenses/.

About Sigma Corporation
Craftsmanship. Precision. Dedication. Since 1961, Sigma has been devoted the pursuit of advancing photographic technology. Unique to the industry, the family-owned business produces its high-quality, award-winning camera lenses, DSLR cameras, flashes, filters and accessories from its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility located in Aizu, Japan.

In 2012, the company introduced the Sigma Global Vision with three distinct lens lines: Art, Contemporary and Sport. Designed for industry camera mount systems including Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, Sony and Sigma, each lens is handcrafted and tested in Japan to ensure a high-performance, premium product that is purpose-built to last.

Sigma continues its tradition of imaging excellence with the mirrorless sd Quattro, sd Quattro H and the compact dp Quattro camera line. Leveraging the ultra-high resolution Foveon sensor, the Sigma Quattro cameras are designed to produce the highest quality image with every shot.

For information about Sigma, please visit www.sigmaphoto.com or follow the company on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Categories: Equipment

Foldable GoPro Karma drone comes with detachable stabilizer

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 2:18pm

GoPro has today announced its much-rumored Karma drone, which the company calls an 'end-to-end storytelling solution.' The quad-copter is compatible with all HERO 4 and HERO 5 cameras and foldable for convenient transport in a backpack. GoPro's objective was to create a package small enough to always take with you, no matter the activity you want to film.

Included in the box is the Karma grip which can hold the drone's detachable 3-axis stabilizer, allowing for the shooting of smoothly stabilized hand-held footage. It can also be mounted to vehicles or other objects and controls shutter and shooting modes.

The Karma's controller comes with an integrated touch display that can be used for parameter setup but during flight also lets you see what the camera is recording. GoPro says the Karma has been designed with beginner pilots in mind. There is an automatic one-button takeoff and landing function and built-in no-fly zones prevent the drone from flying into restricted areas. The Karma also flies back to you when it is out of range, loses connection or when the battery is low. Built-in Auto Shot Paths allow for the easy shooting of drone selfies. The GoPro Karma will be available October 23 for $799.99 without camera, for $999.99 in a bundle with the HERO5 Session or for $1099.99 with the HERO5 Black.

Categories: Equipment

GoPro unveils HERO5 Black and HERO 5 Session cameras and GoPro Plus subscription service

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:46pm

GoPro has today announced two updates to its action cam line-up. The HERO 5 Black is GoPro's new flagship model and is waterproof down to 33 feet (10 meters) without a housing. Its 1/2.3" sensor is capable of shooting video up to 4K resolution at 30 frames per second or 12MP still images in JPEG or Raw format. 

The camera features and parameters can be controlled via a 2" touch display or a range of voice controls. There is also a button to start and stop recording. Stereo sound is recorded via three built-in microphones that feature GoPro's advanced wind noise reduction. The electronic video stabilization has been further improved and the camera comes with a built-in GPS module. The new model is compatible with all existing GoPro mounts and will be available October 2 for $399. 

The HERO 5 Session comes in the same ultra-compact display-less form factor as the original Session but has been upgraded all around and offers many of the same features as the HERO 5 Black. Like its top-end sibling, the HERO 5 Session is waterproof without a housing to 33 Feet (10 meters) and features voice control. It can record 4K video at 30 frames per second but still images are, compared to the HERO 5 Black, captured at a slightly lower 10MP resolution and the Raw format is not supported. The HERO5 Session will be available October 2 for an MSRP of $299.99.

Both cameras can be used with the new GoPro Plus subscription service. When the cameras are plugged in to charge content is uploaded to the cloud and can then be edited and shared from any device. GoPro Plus also gives you access to a music library for editing, a 20% discount for accessories at GoPro.com and premium support. The service starts on October 2 and will will cost $4.99 per month after a free trial.

Categories: Equipment

Olympus announces development of E-M1 Mark II flagship camera

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:06pm

Breaking news: Olympus has announced the development of the E-M1 Mark II flagship OM-D product. Able to shoot at up to 18fps in Raw, with autofocus or 60 frames per second at full-res Raw if you don't need autofocus.

The camera will come later this year, the company says, having spent four years in development.

The camera has 121 cross-type AF on-sensor phase detection points, spread over a wider area than its predecessor. It also has a new algorithm that should be better at tracking.

The autofocus system is completely new, the company says. 'Improved in terms of performance, precision and operation.'

'Pro Capture' mode starts shooting full-res images when you half-press the shutter and retains the last 14 shots leading up to you fully depressing the shutter.

A revised EVF runs at 120fps with a reaction time of 6ms.

Higher capacity battery with faster charging.

Grip is more secure to work better with larger lenses.

Dual UHS-II SD slots.

'The core value of Olympus's cameras: 1/3rd lighter, 1/3rd smaller. Add to this image quality, lens technology and image stabilization. Mobility and Reliability, Image Quality and, probably the most important innovation tonight: speed.'

Sensor size is the other point, they say. 'Our system is good at mobility but not at speed. With the new flagship OM-D will exceed the APS-C camera in overall value.'

We'll be updating this story as the event continues.

Categories: Equipment

Olympus PEN E-PL8 First Impressions Review

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm

E-PL8 Key Specifications

  • 16MP Four Thirds CMOS sensor
  • 8 fps continuous shooting
  • 3-axis image stabilization
  • Tilting 1.04M-dot touchscreen LCD
  • 8.5Wh battery
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Enhanced controls for shooting self-portraits

The E-PL8 valiantly takes place at the bottom of Olympus' Micro Four Thirds lineup, though don't assume that it's low-end. It replaces the E-PL7 as Olympus' 'gateway' camera into its ILC system for people who have discovered their love of photography through their camera phone and want to take the next step up.

With this customer in mind, the E-PL8 has tried to bring together the best of both worlds, offering features that are useful no matter which way the camera is pointed and that should appeal to the young hip crowd that is ready to improve the quality of their images.

First and foremost, this customer most likely already owns a cleanly designed, trendy personal electronic device that works just as much as a fashion accessory as a piece of technology. Knowing that, the E-PL8 has gone through a bit of a design clean-up when compared to the E-PL7. A new set of optional color-coordinated cases and straps indicate as much thought was put into aesthetics as performance for this update.

Second, with the E-PL7, Olympus wagered that their customer would be as interested in pointing the camera at themselves as often as away, since that is one of the primary ways phone cameras are used. The E-PL7 was therefore equipped with a rear screen that could angle 90-degrees upward or 180-degrees downward to face the front of the camera, allowing a photographer to effortlessly frame a self-portrait. For the E-PL8, the touchscreen configuration remains the same but receives some updates to make taking self-portraits or video easier.

The E-PL8 also inherits the ability process both JPEG and Raw files in-camera. With JPEGs, adjustments are limited to things like cropping, shadow adjustment, red-eye correction, and color saturation. Raw processing, however, is much more in depth and offers the ability to change any image parameter that can be adjusted while shooting, like highlights and shadows or the application of the extended bank of art filters that first appeared in the E-M10 II. 

The good news is the hardware found in the E-PL8 is known to be a decent piece of kit, as it has been lifted from the Silver award winning E-M10 II. All the E-PL8 doesn't include is the E-M10 II's electronic viewfinder, although one that attaches to the hot shoe is available as an accessory.

Included are color coordinated strap lug covers and camera strap.
The E-PL8 also comes in brown... ... and black.

The E-PL8 comes in either black, white or brown leatherette over a silver matte chassis finish. Prices will start at $549.99 for the body only, and $649 for the kit that includes the 14-42 IIR zoom lens. Those prices are $50 lower than what the E-PL7 cost when it was introduced. 

Categories: Equipment

Pinnacle Prime: Olympus ED 25mm F1.2 Pro sample gallery

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm

The new Olympus 25mm F1.2 is a ground-up design where Olympus engineers aimed to build the perfect lens. Quick autofocus and new coatings are certainly a plus, but how good is 'perfect'? We took the new prime out to try and find out.

Categories: Equipment

Miser's Macro: Olympus 30mm F3.5 Macro sample gallery

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm

The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm F3.5 Macro is a new design that claims to provide good performance and 1.25x magnification without too much price. We took it out for a little shooting and found, even handheld, it produces some pleasing results. Our first impressions are very good, with the bokeh and sharpness both being a nice surprise.

Light was low and tripods were not permitted in the conservatory where a large amount of these photos were taken. While acceptably sharp, some photos are taken at shutter speeds that make it likely that even sharper results would be possible with more light and proper support. That said, anyone interested in casual handheld macro shooting should expect results like these. Also, some image's exposures were lifted, adding noise.

Categories: Equipment

Olympus announces PEN E-PL8 entry-level mirrorless

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm
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Olympus has announced the PEN E-PL8, an entry-level mirrorless interchangeable lens camera with a 16MP sensor and in-body image stabilization. While most of the hardware is shared with the E-PL7, the body has gone through an extensive redesign, with a new grip and top plate. Prices start at $549.99 for the body, and $649.99 for the 14-42 IIR kit.

Read our First Impressions Review

{PressRelease}

OLYMPUS PEN E-PL8 CREATES BRILLIANT PHOTOGRAPHY AND SELFIES IN STYLE

The new PEN E-PL8 packs stunning image quality and creative control into a camera designed with the sophisticated, stylish shooter in mind

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., September 19, 2016 — Olympus introduces the Olympus PEN E-PL8, a compact interchangeable-lens camera featuring stunning image quality, simplified selfie functions and creative control, all in a stylish design that’s perfect for every occasion. As the newest model in Olympus’ renowned PEN® lineup, the Olympus PEN E-PL8 combines a sophisticated, lightweight body with Olympus imaging technology and multiple creative functions to deliver photographic expression beyond a smartphone for those looking to capture the brilliant details of their active lifestyle. To further enhance users’ creativity, the new Olympus Image Palette (OI.Palette) smart device app brings popular creative features from Olympus interchangeable lens cameras to smartphones and tablets.

The Olympus PEN E-PL8’s distinctive look is highlighted by modern, rounded body lines, an embossed Olympus PEN logo, intricately detailed metal dials, and premium metal and leather-grained finishes that perfectly complement each color option — white, black and brown. Each color palette is tailored to suit the user’s personal style, whether it is vintage, elegant and sophisticated, traditional or relaxed.

The 180-degree flip-touch LCD monitor takes the guesswork out of selfies, with a straightforward user interface that automatically switches the camera to Selfie Mode when the LCD monitor is flipped downward to its front-facing position for easy stills and video. With high-speed Touch AF, the Olympus PEN E-PL8 instantly focuses and shoots with a simple touch of the monitor. Use e-Portrait Mode to automatically smooth skin tones or one of 14 Art Filters to capture unique and creative shots, then wirelessly upload and share them using the Olympus PEN E-PL8’s built-in Wi-Fi® and the Olympus Image Share smartphone app.

Enhancing the Olympus PEN E-PL8’s stylish design and ease of use is the Olympus imaging technology inherited from the acclaimed OM-D® series. The TruePic VII Image Processor is paired with a 16 megapixel Live MOS sensor to deliver beautiful stills with high resolution, superior color reproduction and excellent low-light performance for stunning nighttime images.

In addition to the Olympus PEN E-PL8’s robust creativity functions, the new OI.Palette free photo editing app provides popular features from Olympus interchangeable lens cameras, including Art Filters, Art Effects, Color Creator, and Highlight and Shadow Control, for convenient use on smartphones and tablets with intuitive controls. Joining the existing Olympus apps OI.Share® and Sweet Photo, OI.Palette will be available for download beginning September 20, 2016 and includes all 28 Art Filter options that may also be combined with eight Art Effects. Features included for the first time on a smart device app include Color Creator, which lets users control hue and color saturation, and highlight and shadow control, which makes it possible to adjust highlights and shadows that are difficult to control with exposure compensation. Users can directly post edited images to social networks using OI.Palette.

Main Features

Premium PEN Design

The Olympus PEN series is highly regarded for its compact and lightweight bodies, excellent operability and premium design. The Olympus PEN E-PL8 carries on the features of the Olympus PEN series with a sophisticated design that’s perfect for every occasion.

The camera’s soft, modern body lines are incorporated into a rounded shape that fits perfectly in the user’s hand. The embossed Olympus PEN logo[1], aluminum finish on the upper part of the body and metal dials show Olympus’ commitment to detail.

The front of the body features synthetic leather and carefully selected grained finishes for each color option. The bundled strap and the triangular split ring color compliments the body color[2] for a cohesive premium look and feel.

The camera body is available in three colors, including white, black and brown. The white is elegant and sophisticated with contrasting beige tones, the black provides a traditional camera look with silver accents, and the brown offers relaxed vintage appeal. Pick the color that best suits your style.

Downward-Opening 180-Degree Flip-Touch LCD Monitor and Creative Shooting Functions

Selfies are easily captured as both still images and videos with the Olympus PEN E-PL8’s tilt-touch LCD monitor. A wide range of shooting functions provides high-quality selfies with unique and creative expressions.

  1. Downward-Opening 180-Degree Flip-Touch LCD Monitor

The Olympus PEN E-PL8 is equipped with a large high-definition touch-enabled LCD monitor that rotates downward 180 degrees to enable simplified operation without accidentally capturing the user’s finger in the shot. The compact grip on the front makes holding the camera more comfortable.

The optional Fisheye Body Cap Lens, BCL-0980 (9mm f8.0 Fisheye), can capture the entire background in the shot, perfect for group photos and selfies while traveling.

  1. Selfie Mode

When the LCD monitor is flipped downward, Selfie Mode is automatically activated and the image shown on the monitor turns into a mirror display. In addition to the e-Portrait[3], shutter release, custom self-timer and brightness adjustment buttons[4], video Clips and movie recording buttons have been added to the monitor display for a variety of touch operations. The video Selfie Mode makes recording selfie movies smooth and easy, and displays a movie effect button as well as a movie recording button, brightness adjustment button and video Clips button.

The shutter release button is designed to capture a photo one second after it’s touched so you can shift your eyes from your finger to the lens for better selfies. e-Portrait makes skin look smoother in photos. When an electronic zoom lens is attached to the camera, it automatically switches the zoom to a wide-angle setting[5] for quick selfie shooting with the optimal wide angle.

  1. Creative Shooting Functions

Art Filters may be used with selfies for expanded expressions. Users can check the effects in Live View while selecting filters for shots that perfectly fit their image. Art Filter options may also be applied to each frame[6] in Photo Story, a feature that allows users to combine multiple shots into a single image for a greater variety of expression. 

Built-In Wi-Fi for Remote Shooting and Wireless Uploading and Sharing

The built-in Wi-Fi and dedicated Olympus Image Share smartphone app allows users to wirelessly connect the Olympus PEN E-PL8 to their smartphone for instant sharing of high-quality images on social networks. Users avoid troublesome initial settings by simply scanning the QR code that appears on the camera monitor with their smartphone to complete the connection with a few easy steps. Remote shooting allows users to use their smartphone as a remote control. They can adjust camera settings and compose on a smartphone screen to capture the best shot.

Clips and Art Filter Movie

Users are increasingly posting videos to social networks. To meet this need, the Olympus PEN E-PL8 is equipped with enhanced movie recording features.

  1. Clips

This feature combines multiple short video clips and adds background music and effects to create a single video. With Clips, users can easily turn everyday scenes into impressive short movies. They can also download and add background music that suits users’ tastes[7].

  1. Art Filter Movie

Art Filters are available for video capture, just as they are for still-image capture. Everyday scenes and precious moments can be captured with an artistic finish in videos for lasting memories.

  1. Movie Effects

Four different Movie Effects can be applied to videos. The Old Film Effect allows users to record videos that look like antique films and Art Fade Effect provides smooth transitions from one effect to another. 

Excellent Imaging Performance

The camera’s high image quality, inherited from the Olympus OM-D series of interchangeable lens cameras, allows for quality and performance that satisfies professional needs. The 16 megapixel Live MOS sensor retains details in shadow and faithfully represents night scenes and dark indoor scenes. The wide dynamic range provides smooth transitions from light to shadow to beautifully capture high-contrast scenes. The TruePicVII Image Processor (also used in Olympus’ flagship OM-D E-M1) brings out the best of the excellent optical performance and quality of M.ZUIKO® Digital lenses for high resolution and vivid color reproduction. The powerful VCM in-body image stabilization makes it possible to capture sharp, blur-free images even in low light.

Other Features

  • iAUTO captures beautiful shots with a simple press of the shutter release.
  • Live Guide lets users capture photos exactly as they imagine with easy-to-understand on-screen displays.
  • Nighttime Live Composite Mode allows users to capture impressive trails of light.
  • Fast AF instantly focuses when users touch the monitor.
  • 5 fps[8] high-speed sequential shooting captures every moment.
  • The Quick Start Guide is bundled so you can start shooting immediately even if you are a beginner.

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Olympus PEN E-PL8 will be available in black, white and brown beginning in October 2016 for an estimated street price of $549.99 USD / $649.99 CAD for the camera body only and $649.99 USD / $749.99 CAD for the 14–42mm IIR kit. For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website: http://www.getolympus.com/digitalcameras/pen/e-pl8.html

[1] Logo is embossed in gold on the white and brown bodies, and embossed in silver on the black body.
[2] The color of the triangular ring split cover is beige for the white and brown bodies, and black for the black body.
[3] When set to iAUTO.
[4] Except for iAUTO, SCN, and M modes.
[5] After automatically switching to the wide-angle setting, you can manually change the zoom setting.
[6] Only when Layout is selected.
[7] Download page URL: http://support.olympus-imaging.com/bgmdownload/index.ja.html. “Happy Days” (new track) is set as a default track. Users can download 14 tracks from the website, including three new tracks.
[8] With IS off.
[9] When Protection Filter PRF-D37 or PRF-D37 PRO is attached, the Automatic Opening Lens Cap LC-37C does not work correctly.
[10] There are some limitations to which lenses can be stored in the case while attached to the camera.

Categories: Equipment

Olympus announces 25mm F1.2 Pro, 12-100mm F4 IS Pro, 30mm F3.5 macro lenses

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm
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Olympus has announced three new lenses: the M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm F1.2 Pro, the M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm F4 IS Pro, and the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm F3.5 Macro.

The M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm F1.2 Pro is a bright standard (50mm equiv.) prime that is Olympus' attempt at making a 'perfect' lens. The ground-up splashproof and dustproof design promises high resolution wide-open, as well as fast autofocus and well-controlled chromatic aberration. Prices start at $1,199.99 and will be available in October.

The M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm F4 IS Pro is an all-around zoom lens (24-200mm equiv.) that offers incredible versatility in a relatively small package. Combined with Olympus' 5-axis IBIS, it can offer up to 6.5 stops of image stabilization. On top of that, the minimum focus distance at the 12mm end is a miniscule 1.5cm from the front element of the lens, and 27cm at the telephoto end of 100mm. All of that power is housed in a splashproof, dustproof, and freezeproof body. Prices start at $1299.99, with a November ship date.

Lastly, there's the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm F3.5 Macro, an affordable macro lens that features a maximum magnification of 1.25x. It is claimed to autofocus faster than previous Olympus macro lenses, and offers decent performance for a small price of $299.99. Shipping begins October 2016.

Press releases:

OLYMPUS M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 25MM F1.2 PRO LENS REDEFINES WIDE OPEN SHOOTING

New M.ZUIKO Professional Lens Delivers Excellent Resolution Performance and Beautiful Bokeh from the PRO Series’ Widest Aperture Yet

CENTER VALLEY, PA., September 19, 2016 — Olympus expands its award-winning M.ZUIKO PRO lens lineup with the breakthrough M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO (50mm focal length in 35mm equivalent). This Micro Four Thirds® system lens boasts a superior optical design with 19 lens elements in 14 groups that thoroughly prevents aberration, distortion and fringing to achieve superb resolution and beautiful defocusing effects from its widest aperture setting of f1.2. 

The fixed-focal length M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO minimizes chromatic aberration at the plane of focus and beyond, creating a stunningly smooth transition from the subject to defocused backgrounds. This design provides the perfect balance between high resolution and beautiful bokeh for a natural, three-dimensional appearance of the subject.

The M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO features a lightweight internal focusing mechanism that uses a single thin lens element for extremely fast and accurate focus point acquisition. The advanced MSC (Movie and Still Compatible) autofocus mechanism provides silent and smooth focusing and aperture performance, ideal for video capture. When combined with the powerful in-body 5-Axis Sync Image Stabilization of the Olympus OM-D and PEN cameras, the M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO provides outstanding resolution and blur-free images under almost all lighting conditions.

The M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO features dustproof, splashproof and freezeproof (down to 14°F/-10°C) construction, making it the go-to lens for professionals and photo enthusiasts looking to capture brilliant images in all types of shooting conditions.

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The M.ZUIKO Digital ED 25mm f1.2 PRO will be available in October 2016 for an estimated street price of $1,199.99 USD and $1,499.99 CAD. For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website: getolympus.com

Main Features

  1. Excellent resolution performance from the widest f1.2 aperture

To ensure high-resolution performance from the center to the edges of the image, even at the widest aperture of f1.2, 19 lenses have been used in an effective layout to suppress all types of aberrations. Color bleeding (on-axis chromatic aberration) is suppressed by using a Super ED lens and two ED lenses. When combined with the color-canceling effects of an E-HR (special high refractive index) lens and HR (high refractive index) lens, peripheral color bleeding (magnification chromatic aberration) is effectively corrected. 

Z Coating Nano lens coating technology maintains sharp, clear image quality. This advanced coating significantly reduces flare in backlit situations, optimizing shooting when strong light sources are present in the frame.

  1. Beautiful defocusing effects

The lens design effectively eliminates chromatic aberration in focused areas as well as defocused areas to achieve a smooth transition from the subject to the background. When paired with the lens’s shallow depth of field and beautiful circular bokeh at the maximum aperture, images have a natural, three-dimensional appearance.

  1. Fast and accurate focus point capture

The advanced optical design provides a single focusing lens element for fast and accurate focus point capture. The MSC mechanism enables high-speed, high-precision still image autofocusing and silent, smooth autofocusing for video. Even in shooting situations with a shallow depth of field, quick, accurate focusing allows for beautiful defocusing effects by accurately focusing on faces and eyes when users select Face Detect AF or Eye Detect AF on Olympus OM-D and PEN camera bodies. When combined with compatible OM-D and PEN cameras’ Silent Mode, users are able to photograph musical performances and piano recitals without making a sound. 

  1. Limits comatic aberration to depict points clearly and accurately

This lens is capable of depicting points of light accurately, a necessary feature when photographing stars with the f1.2 aperture setting. Aspherical and high-resolution lenses placed near the aperture effectively correct for comatic aberration. These elements enable both the brightness of f1.2 and a high level of optical performance, making it possible to capture points of light without distortion.

Other Features:

  • This lens features dustproof and splashproof construction, with hermetic sealing in 11 locations. When combined with the dustproof, splashproof, freezeproof body of the Olympus OM-D series, users can take advantage of all types of shooting environments.
  • This lens boasts the same high-quality metal exterior design as the other lenses in the M.ZUIKO PRO series. It is equipped with the Manual Focus Clutch mechanism, which makes switching to manual focus possible by pulling the focusing ring toward you. A depth of field scale is included on the lens for pan focusing. And the L-Fn button on the lens barrel allows you to pause autofocus and assign other custom settings.
  • Close-up performance is supported by a minimum focusing distance of 30 cm (working distance of 19.5 cm) and a maximum shooting magnification of 0.11x (35mm equivalent: 0.22x).

Excellence from wide-angle to telephoto: Olympus m.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm F4.0 IS Pro Lens

New Professional High-Magnification Zoom Lens Achieves Superior Resolution and Constant Aperture Throughout the Entire Zoom Range 

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., September 19, 2016 — Olympus once again challenges conventional lens design with the new Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO (24-200mm focal length in 35mm equivalent), a compact, lightweight, high-magnification zoom lens that maintains a constant aperture of f4.0 from wide angle to telephoto. The latest addition to the M.ZUIKO PRO series incorporates powerful image stabilization (IS) and covers a focal length range that typically would require two zoom lenses to deliver unrivaled mobility for professionals looking to capture outstanding images in an expanded array of handheld shooting situations.

The Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO combines multiple special lens elements to produce a high magnification factor and excellent resolution packed inside a small body. DSA (Dual Super Aspherical) lenses, HR (high refractive index) lenses, and Super HR (super-high refractive index) lenses are combined to effectively correct aberration and minimize the number of lens elements in the configuration, reducing the overall length of the lens. By using multiple ED lenses, color fringing that tends to appear in telephoto shooting is thoroughly reduced, maintaining high resolution and edge-to-edge sharpness across the entire zoom range.

The in-lens image stabilization works in concert with Olympus’ in-body 5-Axis Image Stabilization of the OM-D and PEN camera ranges to create 5-Axis Sync IS, the world's most powerful image stabilization, with 6.5 shutter speed steps*1of compensation performance. Camera shake commonly associated with handheld telephotography is eliminated, enabling users to capture sharp images and smooth video without the use of a tripod.

In addition to its broad focal range, this high-magnification zoom lens boasts outstanding close-up performance with a minimum working distance of 1.5 cm and a maximum shooting magnification of 0.6x (35mm equivalent) at the 12mm wide-angle setting.

The Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO features lightweight, weatherproof construction, providing dustproof, splashproof and freezeproof (down to 14°F/-10°C) performance to meet the needs of professional photographers in any shooting situation.

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO will be available beginning in November 2016 for an estimated street price of $1299.99 USD and $1599.99 CAD. For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website: getolympus.com

Main Features

  1. Compact, lightweight, high-performance, high-magnification zoom lens

The Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO has been added to the high-performance M.ZUIKO PRO series to meet the needs of professional photographers. Multiple special lens elements provide a high-magnification factor and superior resolution in a compact lens body.

The DSA (Dual Super Aspherical) lenses, HR (high refractive index) lenses, and Super HR (super-high refractive index) lenses have been combined to effectively correct chromatic aberration and minimize the number of lens elements in the configuration, reducing the overall length of the lens. The use of glass materials with a higher refractive index than that of previous DSA lenses has resulted in smaller lens diameters. This makes it possible to build a single lens that covers the focal length of two typical professional zoom lenses.

By using multiple ED lenses, the color fringing that tends to occur in telephoto shooting is thoroughly reduced, maintaining high resolution and edge-to-edge sharpness across the entire zoom range. Olympus Z Coating Nano lens coating technology provides sharp, clear image quality by virtually eliminating flare in backlit situations and maintaining resolution when strong light sources are present in the frame.

  1. 5-Axis Sync IS, the world's most powerful image stabilization of 6.5 shutter speed steps of compensation performance*1

The Olympus M.ZUIKO 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO is equipped with a built-in image stabilization system for blur-free shooting across the entire high-magnification zoom range. By pairing the lens with a compatible Olympus OM-D or PEN camera, the lens stabilization works in sync with the camera’s in-body stabilization to create 5-Axis Sync IS, the world’s most powerful stabilization system providing up to 6.5 shutter speed steps of compensation performance.*1 Because the in-lens image stabilization alone provides up to 5 shutter speed steps of compensation performance,*[1] the lens can be used even with other camera bodies not equipped with image stabilization. 

  1. Macro capabilities with a minimum working distance of 1.5 cm and a maximum shooting magnification of 0.6x (35mm equivalent)

The close focusing distance of 15 cm at the 12mm wide-angle setting makes it possible to take close-up shots up to 1.5 cm away from the end of the lens, while the maximum shooting magnification of 0.6x (35mm equivalent) opens up new possibilities of expression. The lens design features superb close-up shooting performance even at other focal lengths, with a minimum working distance of 27 cm and a maximum shooting magnification of 0.42x (35mm equivalent) at the 100mm telephoto setting. 

Other Features

  1. The lens features dustproof and splashproof construction, with hermetic sealing in 12 locations. When combined with the dustproof, splashproof and freezeproof body of an Olympus OM-D series camera, users can take advantage of all types of shooting environments.
  2. This lens boasts the same high-quality metal exterior design as the other lenses in the M.ZUIKO PRO series. It is equipped with the Manual Focus Clutch mechanism, which makes switching to manual focus possible by pulling the focusing ring toward you. The lens barrel features the Image Stabilization activation switch and the L-Fn button to pause autofocus or assign other custom settings. 

*[1] As of September 2016. CIPA guideline compliant, when correction is carried out on two axes (yaw and pitch), focal length: 100mm (35mm equivalent focal length: 200mm).

YOUR CLOSE-UP IS READY: OLYMPUS M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 30MM F3.5 PREMIUM MACRO LENS CAPTURES BEAUTY IN THE EVERYDAY

New Premium Micro Four Thirds® Lens Features the Highest Magnification in Its Class1 and High-Speed AF for Impressive Easy-To-Capture Close-Up Shots

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., September 19, 2016 – The new M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro (35mm equivalent: 60mm) Premium lens is designed for exceptional optical performance and image quality in a lightweight compact form. This macro lens is the latest addition to the award-winning M.Zuiko family of Micro Four Thirds lenses that deliver crystal-clear image quality and exquisite bokeh for entry-level and advanced users looking to produce flawless, professional-quality images and videos of everyday subjects.

The new M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro helps users capture unique images with a maximum image magnification of 2.5x (35mm equivalent), the highest in its class. With the minimum focusing distance of 95mm (14mm from the end of the lens) and a minimum shooting field of 13.9 x 10.4mm, the lens enhances the beauty of everyday details like dew on a blade of grass or the eyes of a sleeping baby.

The lens’ superior AF performance makes capturing fleeting moments effortless, with an increase in focusing speed of 20 to 30 percent over previous Olympus macro lenses. When paired with an OM-D® or PEN® camera body, the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro delivers crisp and clear images courtesy of Olympus’ advanced in-camera image stabilization, which can eliminate the motion blur commonly associated with high-magnification macro photography. Macro performance can be further enhanced through the PEN-F and OM-D’s Focus Bracketing feature, which allows users to automatically capture the entire focus range within a preset number of shots.

For underwater enthusiasts, the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro is compatible with select Olympus underwater housings and lens ports. The lens’ internal focusing system helps novice shooters capture impressive underwater macro shots without the worry of disrupting their subject. In addition, the lens is equipped with an MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism for practically silent and smooth autofocus and aperture operation for both still shots and video. 

Main Features 

  1. Maximum image magnification of 2.5x (35mm equivalent), highest in its class1

With the highest image magnification of 1.25x (35mm equivalent: 2.5x) in its class1 and a minimum focusing distance of 95mm (14mm from the end of the lens), this macro lens is an affordable way to enter the world of high-quality macro photography. The minimum shooting field of 13.9 x 10.4mm allows users to magnify and capture minute details like never before. 

High-magnification macro photography is prone to motion blur caused by movement of the camera. When this lens is paired with the advanced in-camera image stabilization of OM-D and PEN camera bodies, motion blur is virtually eliminated.

  1. Premium construction with excellent image quality

This macro lens is designed to be compact and lightweight while offering outstanding optical performance, making macro photography enjoyable for photographers of all skill levels. DSA2 and EDA3 lenses are utilized to provide high resolution and a maximum image magnification of 2.5x.4 The optical design minimizes vignetting, even at close distances, and the 7 blade circular aperture creates beautiful bokeh beyond the plane of focus.

  1. High-speed autofocus performance

The lens is equipped with a MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism, which makes autofocus speed for still images and video faster and quieter. By designing the focusing lens group to be small and lightweight, autofocus speed is improved by 20 to 30 percent over previous Olympus macro lenses. High-speed AF enables users to perfectly capture precise moments, even when shooting macro subjects. This lens utilizes an internal focusing system, eliminating the worry of accidentally touching the subject since the length of the lens does not change while focusing.

Lens Accessories

Protective Filter, PRF-D46 PRO

This ultra-lightweight, thin protective filter with a diameter of φ46mm is finished with multicoating to protect the lens from scratches. Because the lens coating is transparent and colorless, it does not affect visible light.

 Lens Case, LSC-0811

This pouch-style lens case protects lenses with three-layer construction. It may be used to store the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm F3.5 Macro with the lens cap and protective filter attached.

Focus Gear, PPZR-EP07

This specialized focus gear for the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro works with a compatible Olympus underwater camera housing.5 It enables fine-tuning of manual focus during underwater shooting.

Antireflective Ring, POSR-EP11

This is an antireflective ring specialized for the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro. When using it with an underwater camera housing5 it helps prevent reflections during underwater macro shooting.

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f3.5 Macro lens will be available in black beginning in October 2016 with an estimated street price of $299.99 USD and $399.99 CAD. For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website: http://www.getolympus.com/lenses/m-zuiko-ed-30mm-f3-5-macro.html

Olympus 25mm F1.2 Pro / 30mm F3.5 Macro specifications

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm F1.2 ProOlympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm F3.5 Macro
Principal specifications
Lens typePrime lens
Max Format sizeFourThirds
Focal length25 mm30 mm
Image stabilizationNo
Lens mountMicro Four Thirds
Aperture
Maximum apertureF1.2F3.5
Minimum apertureF16F22
Aperture ringNo
Number of diaphragm blades97
Optics
Elements197
Groups146
Special elements / coatings3 HR, 2 ED, 1 E-HR, 1 HR, 1 Super-ED elements + Z Coating Nano1 aspherical, 1 ED, 1 dual super aspheric
Focus
Minimum focus0.19 m (7.48″)0.10 m (3.94″)
Maximum magnification0.11×1.25×
AutofocusYes
Motor typeMicromotor
Full time manualYesNo
Focus methodInternal
Distance scaleYesNo
DoF scaleYesNo
Physical
Weight410 g (0.90 lb)128 g (0.28 lb)
Diameter70 mm (2.76″)57 mm (2.24″)
Length87 mm (3.43″)60 mm (2.36″)
SealingYesNo
ColourBlack
Filter thread62.0 mm46.0 mm
Hood suppliedYesNo
Hood product codeLH-66B
Tripod collarNo

Olympus 12-100mm F4 IS Pro specifications

Principal specifications
Lens typeZoom lens
Max Format sizeFourThirds
Focal length12–100 mm
Image stabilizationYes
Lens mountMicro Four Thirds
Aperture
Maximum apertureF4
Minimum apertureF22
Number of diaphragm blades7
Optics
Elements17
Groups11
Special elements / coatings1 DSA lens, 3 Aspherical lenses, 5 ED lenses, 2 Super HR lenses, 1 HR lens
Focus
Minimum focus0.15 m (5.91″)
Maximum magnification0.3×
AutofocusYes
Full time manualYes
Focus methodInternal
Distance scaleYes
DoF scaleNo
Physical
Weight561 g (1.24 lb)
Diameter78 mm (3.05″)
Length117 mm (4.59″)
SealingYes
ColourBlack
Zoom methodRotary (internal)
Power zoomNo
Zoom lockNo
Filter thread72.0 mm
Hood suppliedYes
Hood product codeLH-76B
Tripod collarNo
Categories: Equipment

Olympus announces weather-sealed FL-900R flash

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 1:00pm
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Olympus has announced their new external flash unit, the FL-900R. It features a guide number of 58m, a firing angle of 24-200mm, and a splash and dustproof body. Recycle time at full power has been reduced to approximately 2.5 seconds, and also features a built in LED light for video shooting. The user interface has also received a facelift and is much more intuitive than on previous models.

LIGHT FOR THE SPEED OF LIFE: THe NEW HIGH-INTENSITY FLAGSHIP ELECTRONIC FLASH FL-900R

New high-intensity flash has a maximum guide number of 58[1] and the fastest sequential shooting tracking performance in its class[2]

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., September 19, 2016 — Olympus responds to the needs of advanced photographers with the new flagship FL-900R Electronic Flash, a high-intensity flash with a maximum guide number of 58 and 10 fps sequential shooting tracking speed when paired with the new OM-D® E-M1 Mark II camera body, the fastest in its class. The compact, lightweight Micro Four Thirds® system-compliant flash is dust-proof, splash-proof and freeze-proof (-10°C)[3] and pairs with the weatherproof E-M1 Mark II, E-M1, E-M5 Mark II cameras and M.ZUIKO® PRO lenses to give users peace of mind when shooting in a wide variety of extreme conditions.

The FL-900R Electronic Flash produces optimal lighting even in challenging environments when combined with the camera’s built-in TruePic image processor and TTL metering. Photographers are able to cover an angle of view for a focal length range of 12–100mm (24–200mm in 35mm equivalent) and 7mm–10mm (14–20mm in 35mm equivalent) when using the built-in wide panel. 

Charging time has been reduced to approximately 2.5 seconds, which provides fast sequential shooting and tracking performance that enables split-second capture of fast-moving subjects. When paired with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, the FL-900R is compatible with various Olympus shooting modes, including Wireless RC mode High-Res Shot, Focus Stacking, Focus Bracketing, Movie Mode (with LED light) and Multi-Flash Mode, for a wide range of photographic expression.

Main Features Details

  1. Flagship flash with a maximum guide number of 58m

The Olympus FL-900R Electronic Flash, a high-intensity flash with a maximum guide number of 58m, makes use of an Olympus camera's TruePic image processor and TTL metering to provide optimal lighting in a wide variety of shooting conditions. When using the built-in wide panel, the flash covers an angle of view for a focal length range of 12–100mm (24mm–200mm in 35mm equivalent) and 7–10mm (14–20mm in 35mm equivalent).

  1. 10 fps sequential shooting tracking performance, the fastest in its class

Charging circuits have been optimized for nickel metal hydride (Ni–MH) rechargeable batteries to reduce the recycle time to approximately 2.5 seconds, enabling 10 fps sequential shooting and tracking performance to capture split-second motion and fast-moving subjects. 

  1. Compact, lightweight, weather-resistant performance with excellent mobility and reliability

The FL-900R is dustproof, splashproof and freezeproof (-10°C) and, when combined with the E-M1 Mark II, E-M1, E-M5 Mark II and M.ZUIKO PRO lenses, users can take advantage of its compact, lightweight design to shoot in a range of harsh environments.

  1. Versatile shooting features

Wireless RC Mode

Wireless control capabilities make high-intensity, multi-flash photography seamless. From the camera, you can control up to four flash groups, select whether or not a group fires, compensate for flash output, and adjust various settings. The flash is also equipped with a wireless remote function and may be attached to the hot shoe of a camera to be used as the commander flash when using the commander function. An IR filter is also included for when visible light from the commander flash is not necessary.

Multi Flash Mode

Multi Flash Mode is available on the new E-M1 Mark II for capturing subject motion. When the FL-900R is paired with the E-M1 Mark II, users are able to set the flash output, the interval and the number of times the flash fires to capture subject motion in a single image.

Compatible with High-Res Shot, Focus Stacking and Focus Bracketing

The FL-900R also supports unique Olympus functions including High-Res Shot, Focus Stacking and Focus Bracketing. Because the FL-900R recycles so quickly, shorter shooting intervals are now available on these functions.

LED light for video capture

The built-in LED light with a maximum power of 100 lux at 1m supports video capture and is compatible with lenses with a focal length of 12mm (24mm in 35mm equivalent) or higher. 

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Olympus FL-900R Electronic Flash will be available beginning in October 2016 for an estimated street price of $579.99 USD and $729.99 CAD. For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website at: http://www.getolympus.com/accessories/fl-900r.html

[1] In meters at ISO100.

[2] As of September 1, 2016, based on Olympus internal research, when using the OM-D E-M1 Mark II at a flash ratio of 1/32, with a clip on flash with a guide number of 50 or higher guide number powered by AA batteries.

[3] Low temperatures may reduce battery performance and duration.

Categories: Equipment

Fujfilm announces development GFX 50S medium-format digital

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 11:23am

Breaking news: Fujifilm is getting (back) into medium-format. A major player in the days of film, Fujifilm has announced its first medium-format digital camera, the GFX 50S. The camera is built around a new 'G mount' that will include zoom as well as prime lenses.

The first three lenses, expected in 'Early 2017' will be: the GF 63mm F2.8 R WR, a GF32-64mm F4R LM WR and GF 120mm F4 Macro. The 0.79x crop means these are a 50mm, 25-50mm and 95mm equivalent, respectively.

These will be followed by a GF23mm F4 R LM WR and GF110mm F2 in Mid 2017 and a GF45mm F2.8 R WR in late 2017

Fujifilm says its target price for the GFX 50S with 63mm standard prime will be 'well under $10,000.'

Based around a 51.4MP CMOS sensor that sounds a lot like the one we've seen in the Pentax 645Z and Hasselblad XQD, Fujifilm says it's newly developed with their engineers. The camera looks like an upsized X-Pro II but comes with a clip-on EVF 'prism'. A slot-in accessory will allow the EVF to be tilted and rotated.

With a sensor area around 1.7x larger than 135 'full frame' and 4x greater than that used in the company's APS-C X-series cameras, the camera promises high quality, high resolution capture.

The large sensor and high pixel count allows plenty of resolution to be maintained while cropping to multiple different formats, with Fujfilm talking about offering multiple crops to offer unhindered creativity.

The camera uses a mirrorless design, both to keep size down and avoid mirror shock. Fujifilm calculates that the high resolution and large mirror would result in around 15% resolution loss if implemented in this camera.

'X is focused on compactness, GFX allows different aspect ratios and the ultimate image quality. X and GFX: two systems that complement each other.'

Categories: Equipment

Nikon unveils two new KeyMission action cameras, 360 version to finally ship

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 10:30am
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It was all the way back at CES in January when Nikon first unveiled the KeyMission 360, a shockproof and waterproof spherical 360-degree action camera. Now Nikon is adding two new action cameras to the KeyMission lineup: the 4K UHD-capable KeyMission 170 which, you guessed it, offers a 170 degree field-of-view, and the KeyMission 80, a small 1080p-capable wearable/lifestyle camera with an 80° field-of-view.

One of the big selling points of the KeyMission 170 is its water/shock/freezeproof design without the need for a case, a rarity in the 4K-action camera market. And while it can't shoot optically-stabilized 4K video like the Sony X3000, it can use electronic stabilization when shooting up to 1080/120p. It uses a 12MP 1/2.3" CMOS sensor and has a built-in LCD (non-touch), stereo mic, a standard tripod socket and a the Nikon EN-EL12 battery.

The KeyMission 80 uses a 12MP 1/2.3" sensor and has a 4.9MP rear 'selfie-cam.' It is intended to be used in the vertical orientation and comes with a holster to mount on clothing or a backpack. It is waterproof to 1M, and shockproof to 1.5M.  It features a variety of time-lapse and interval timer functions for documenting important life experiences, as well as a touch LCD.

Nikon also announced a new SnapBridge 360-170 app and desktop utility. The app pairs with KeyMission devices and can be used to shoot remotely and change settings. The desktop utility can be used to trim clips and push them to Youtube.

All three KeyMission action cameras will be available in October. The KeyMission 360 will retail for $499, the KeyMission 170 will sell for $399 and the KeyMission 80 will go for $279.

Press release:

WHAT’S YOUR MISSION? EXPERIENCE THE CAPTIVATING JOURNEY OF DISCOVERING, FULFILLING AND SHARING YOUR LIFE’S MISSIONS WITH NIKON’S NEW LINE OF KEYMISSION CAMERAS

The New Nikon KeyMission 360, KeyMission 170, and KeyMission 80 Enable Storytellers and Adventurers to Break Traditional Boundaries and Tell Stories Through Captivating Content

COLOGNE, GERMANY (September 19, 2016) – Today, Nikon Inc. announced the new line of KeyMission action cameras that encourages users to discover, capture and share their personal missions from an entirely new perspective. Rooted in Nikon’s legendary excellence in imaging innovation, this new camera lineup offers users a hands-free way to push the limits and document their adventures through high-quality immersive video that puts the viewer in the middle of the action. Previewed at CES 2016, the rugged KeyMission 360 is the first Nikon camera capable of full 360° video in 4K UHD, providing users a unique way to create engaging content like never before. Also introduced today is the new Nikon KeyMission 170, an adventure-ready camera capable of amazing stills and 4K UHD video at a wide-angle point of view, as well as Nikon’s KeyMission 80, a compact and lightweight camera for capturing the spontaneous moments of everyday life.

Nikon’s KeyMission line is based on the belief that life is about discovering new people, new places, new knowledge and new purpose – that each individual is on a journey to find their personal mission that brings out the best version of oneself. The world is a better place when we experience and share our adventures, our stories and our loves; The KeyMission line provides a new way of seeing and sharing these missions with the world.

“The KeyMission series introduces amazing new tools for everyday storytellers eager to find and pursue their personal missions while sharing their loves with the world,” said Kosuke Kawaura, Director of Marketing and Planning, Nikon Inc. “History is full of stories told from behind the camera – the KeyMission 360, KeyMission 170 and KeyMission 80 will challenge tradition and invite users to embark on a journey to share their missions from entirely new, immersive perspectives.”

Nikon KeyMission 360 – Fulfill your mission in full, immersive 360° video

Challenging the traditional boundaries of content capture, the Nikon KeyMission 360 gives storytellers the ability to explore, experience and share their missions like never before. The entire environment becomes one’s canvas, with Full 360° video ready to preserve an immersive chronicle of the moments that matter. Whether capturing a first skydiving experience, preserving an epic underwater adventure or immortalizing a child’s first birthday party, the KeyMission 360 allows users to see the world differently and easily share what they love.

Key Features:

  • Capture amazingly sharp, true 360° video in 4K UHD at 24p [3840 x 2160]1 or Full HD (1080p) that puts the viewer at the center of your journey
  • Two f/2.0 lenses and two 20-megapixel CMOS sensors combine to create stunning videos and photos without blind spots2
  • Automatic in-camera stitching cuts down on the previously daunting editing process while eliminating the need for multiple cameras or specialized, expensive rigs, making it easy to share on supported 360° content platforms
  • Customize videos with shooting modes like Superlapse, Time-Lapse or Loop Movies that help provide unique perspectives of any story - or capture 360°, 30-megapixel still images
  • An in-camera stereo microphone helps provide crisp and clear accompanying audio, while Electronic Vibration Reduction (VR) is available after-capture to help steady playback
  • Extremely compact and waterproof (98 ft.), shockproof (6.6 ft.) and freezeproof (14° F) rugged design, no housing required, helps ensure you are ready to fulfill your mission, wherever the journey takes you
  • Share completely stitched, immersive content in full 360° from either a compatible smart device or desktop computer:
    • The new Nikon SnapBridge 360/170 app3 for iOS and Android devices4 allows users to access camera settings, simple editing functions or live view and share content directly
    • For more advanced editing functions, the KeyMission 360/170 Utility program for PC and Mac users opens up a new world of editing options for more discerning visual storytellers
    • Included alongside the camera are a variety of accessories and mounting solutions that will help visualize a variety of activities, including a Base Mount Adapter, two Base Mounts, Silicone Jacket for added grip and protection, two lens protectors and a cardboard-style head mounted display that, alongside a compatible smartphone, allows for fully immersive playback
    • The KeyMission 360 uses a standard 1/4 in. tripod socket to which a variety of different mounts and accessories can be used with the included base adapter. It is also compatible with an optional remote control

Nikon KeyMission 170 – Experience life’s missions from a true POV experience

In a visual world where we learn through both our own personal experience and the shared experiences of others, the Nikon KeyMission 170 lets users tell stories from an individual’s point of view. It’s easier than ever to relive life’s adventures in fantastic quality, and transport the viewer right into the action to enjoy the moment as if they were there. Tethered to a surfboard or mounted to a backpack on the family hike, the KeyMission 170 helps bring any incredible journey to life.

Key Features:

  • A super-wide 170° angle-of-view, f/2.8 lens and 8.3-megapixel CMOS sensor combine to capture brilliant 4K UHD or 1080p Full HD video
  • Creative tools help users create unique and engaging content for sharing, including Highlight Tagging which helps create a highlight reel montage of the user’s favorite content, slow motion movies, Time-Lapse and Loop Recording
  • Capture high-quality still images during video recording, while in-camera Electronic Vibration Reduction (VR) (1080p HD) helps minimize camera shake
  • The compact and rugged KeyMission 170 is waterproof (33 ft.), shockproof (6.6 ft.) and freezeproof (14° F) without a housing, always ready for your next adventure
  • The camera sports a rear LCD that helps frame shots in live view, play back video and change settings with ease
  • Users can utilize the Nikon SnapBridge 360/170 application for simple editing, framing and sharing, while the KeyMission 360/170 Utility program for PC or Mac offers more advanced editing capabilities
  • The camera features a standard 1/4 in. tripod socket which alongside the supplied base mount adapter, connects to all other KeyMission accessories
  • The KeyMission 170 also comes with a remote control accessory, useful for stopping and starting recording or creating tags while capturing exciting new content
  • Optional Waterproof Housing available to extend underwater performance to 131 ft.

Nikon KeyMission 80 – Live your mission and let the camera do the rest

Life is full of spontaneous moments, and the wearable Nikon KeyMission 80 is always ready to capture life’s everyday adventures, making sure you enjoy the moment while the camera takes care of saving the memory. Whether conquering your next hike, exploring the streets of Rome or simply playing catch in the backyard, the KeyMission 80 is there to easily and effectively capture your mission.

Key Features:

  • Using the camera’s Time-Lapse recording and interval timer functions will allow users to chronicle life’s journeys with hassle-free high-quality stills or Full HD 1080/30p video
  • Beautiful stills and video are made possible utilizing a 12-megapixel CMOS sensor and 25mm (80° angle-of-view) f/2.0 lens
  • A secondary front-facing 5-megapixel camera with a 22mm (90° angle-of-view), f/2.2 lens helps users seamlessly snap selfies on the go
  • Small, rugged and lightweight, the KeyMission 80 is ready to capture fleeting shots at a moment’s notice. Easy to use one-handed, it turns on immediately after being unclipped from its camera holder ensuring users don’t miss out on their next precious memory
  • Waterproof (3.2 ft.), shockproof (6 ft.) and freezeproof (14° F), the KeyMission 80 will go with you almost anywhere
  • Versatile 1.75-inch touch LCD display lets users easily change settings, frame shots or play back captured content
  • Use Nikon’s SnapBridge app for seamlessly sharing via Bluetooth5 or Wi-Fi6

KeyMission Mounts and Accessories

Introduced alongside Nikon’s KeyMission line of action cameras are numerous optional mounts and accessories that will help users creatively capture unique content from a variety of different perspectives. Available accessories include:

  • Compatible with all KeyMission Cameras – KeyMission Tripod7, KeyMission Extension Arm7, KeyMission System Case (soft case for accessories and cameras), KeyMission Hard Case (hard case for accessories and cameras)
  • Compatible with KeyMission 360 and 170 – Remote Control Accessory (supplied with KeyMission 170), Helmet Strap, Wrist Mount, Handlebar Mount, Chest Mount, Surfboard Mount, Backpack Mount, Suction Cup Mount, Handy Grip
  • Compatible with KeyMission 170 – Waterproof Case (extends underwater performance to 131 ft.)
  • Compatible with KeyMission 80 – Tripod Adapter

Price and Availability

The new Nikon KeyMission products will be available starting in October 2016. The KeyMission 360, KeyMission 170 and KeyMission 80 will be available for suggested retail prices (SRP) of $499.95*, $399.95* and $279.95*, respectively. Accompanying mounts and accessories, the Nikon SnapBridge 360/170 application and KeyMission 360/170 Utility program for PC will also be available starting in October 2016. For more information on these new Nikon products and pricing for optional accessories, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

1 Data is recorded in 4K UHD (3840 × 2160) resolution, but the resolution of videos when viewed differs depending on the type of display or display magnification.

2 The camera may be unable to capture subjects within about 60 cm/2 ft. from the camera’s top, bottom, or sides because the subjects are outside the angle of view (i.e., the area visible in the frame). Point the lens toward important subjects when shooting. Under some shooting conditions, the boundaries of the composited areas may be misaligned.

3 Since KeyMission 360 doesn’t have a monitor, the dedicated app “SnapBridge 360/170” is required to set up this camera, use remote photography, play back images, change settings, and more. Before setting up the camera, install the dedicated app on your smartphone or tablet. Wireless communication is not available when the camera is underwater.

4 This camera’s built-in Wi-Fi® capability can only be used with a compatible iPhone®, iPad®, and/or iPod touch® or smart devices running on the Android™ operating system. The Nikon SnapBridge 360/170 (for KeyMission 360 and 170 cameras) or SnapBridge (for KeyMission 80 camera) application must be installed on the device before it can be used with this camera.

5 The Bluetooth® word mark and logos are registered trademarks owned by Bluetooth SIG, Inc. and any use of such marks by Nikon Corporation is under license.

6 Wi-Fi and the Wi-Fi logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

7 Compatible with KeyMission 80 when used with optional Tripod Adapter

*SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

Categories: Equipment

Sony announces full-frame a99 II at Photokina

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 9:42am

Sony has announced its top-end full-frame Alpha-mount camera, the a99 II. Featuring a 42.2MP sensor, 79-point hybrid AF system and 12 fps shooting, the a99 II sounds like an impressive beast. As with its predecessor, this is a Translucent Mirror camera (it's semi-transparent, actually), which splits incoming light between the sensor and an AF module near the EVF. As with all SLTs, this design reduces light to the sensor by about 1/2EV. 

The 42.2MP BSI-CMOS sensor, likely the same as the one in the a7R II, is paired with Sony's BIONZ X processor, allowing for 12 fps burst shooting with continuous AF/AE and a top ISO of 102,400. The sensor lacks a low-pass filter, maximizing resolution. All Sony Alpha-mount cameras have in-body image stabilization, and the a99 II one-ups previous models by offering 5-axis IS, with Sony claiming 4.5-stop shake reduction. The effects of the stabilizer can be seen with a half-press of the shutter release button.

The camera uses a Hybrid Phase Detection AF system that combines 399 points on the focal plane with 79 all cross-type points on the sensor. Sony says this allows for ultra-fast AF speeds and sensitivity down to -4EV.  The camera is able to shoot continuously at 8 fps with continuous AF and very little EVF blackout.

Body-wise, the a99 II is 8% smaller than its predecessor and is made of magnesium alloy. A newly redesigned shutter has a lifespan of 300,000 exposures. It has a large XGA OLED viewfinder with a magnification of 0.78x. A fluorine coating helps to keep fingerprints and oil off of the outer element. Its LCD display can tilt in 3-axis. The 'silent Multi-Controller' on the front of the camera now offers a click on/off feature. As with the a99, the Mark II has dual SD card slots. In an act of mercy, Sony has also redesigned the a99 II's menu system. 

Video is, of course, also a big deal. The a99 II can capture 4K at 100Mbps (using XAVC S) with full sensor read-out and no pixel binning. A Super 35 option is also available, with 1.8x oversampling. A 'Slow and Quick' mode lets users jump between 1 and 120 fps at the push of a button. All of the capture tools you'd expect are available, including zebra patterns, time code, S-Log2 and S-Log3 profiles and 4:2:2 output over HDMI. 

The a99 II will hit retailers in November for $3199.

Press release:

Sony Announces New Full-Frame α99 II A-mount Camera

Flagship A-mount camera Features Ultra-Fast 4D FOCUS with 79 hybrid cross AF points1 plus 12 fps continuous shooting2, High Resolution 42.4 MP Exmor R® CMOS sensor, 5-axis in-body image stabilization and more

COLOGNE, Germany, Sept. 19, 2016 – Sony Electronics, a worldwide leader in digital imaging and the world’s largest image sensor manufacturer, has today introduced their new flagship A-mount camera, the α99 II.

Reaffirming Sony’s commitment to produce industry leading A-mount cameras, the impressive new camera combines the best of many of their latest digital imaging innovations including a new Hybrid Phase Detection AF system with exclusive Sony A-mount features such as Translucent Mirror Technology™. The result is a supremely specified, professional level camera that will be appealing to a variety of professional and enthusiast photographers.

“We are continuing to innovate with each new camera body, lens and accessory that we bring to market, offering compelling choices to both existing and prospective users of the Sony α system” said Neal Manowitz, Vice President of Digital Imaging at Sony Electronics. “With the α99 II, we’re delivering an industry-leading level of performance to A-mount owners and enthusiasts. Its powerful combination of speed and resolution is simply unmatched in today’s market.”

Redefining Autofocus and Speed

The new α99 II camera is Sony’s first full-frame camera to feature the acclaimed 4D Focus system, bringing a supreme level of AF performance to Sony’s A-mount line-up. The Hybrid Phase Detection AF system is enabled by combining a precision 79-point3 dedicated phase detection AF sensor with 399 focal plane phase detection AF points4 to produce a 79 hybrid cross AF point1 array. This enables incredibly precise autofocus performance and advanced subject tracking of any high-speed moving objects across the frame. In addition Translucent Mirror Technology, with no moving mirror, ensures steady, continuous AF operation and live image preview during both still image and video shooting. The precision AF system also performs exceptionally in low-light conditions, as it will function properly in brightness levels as low as EV-45 and in dark locations where most other cameras struggle.

In addition to its advanced autofocusing, the α99 II has been designed to allow for high resolution, continuous shooting at high frame rates. The camera features a new front-end LSI that works with the image sensor, BIONZ X® image processing engine and a newly designed shutter unit to enable continuous shooting at impressive speeds of up to 12fps2with AF/AE tracking6. Thanks to a large buffer, these shots can be viewed immediately after shooting, even when in high-speed continuous shooting mode. Additionally, if these high-speed shots are being taken indoors under artificial lighting, the camera can automatically detect flicker and time the shutter accordingly to minimize its effect on the resulting images7.

The new α99 II also has the ability to deliver continuous live shooting at up to 8 fps 8 with AF/AE tracking and minimal display lag thanks to overall improvements in the EVF algorithm. This offers photographers a shooting experience that closely mimics that of an optical viewfinder, while still offering all of the benefits of an electronic viewfinder including a live preview of exposure, white balance and several other camera settings. This continuous live view shooting can be set in 3 stages to match a variety of subjects: 8 fps, 6 fps and 4 fps.

Pixel Power

The back-illuminated full-frame 42.4MP9 Exmor R CMOS sensor in the new α99 II model features a gapless-on-chip design that allows for fast readout of large volumes of data and maximizes light gathering ability. The net result is very high sensitivity with low noise, wide dynamic range and 42.4MP resolution across an ISO range of 100-25600, expandable to ISO 50 – 102,40010.

The new camera has also been designed without an optical low-pass filter, ensuring that all of the finest natural details and textures can be captured with unprecedented depth and realism. Both compressed and uncompressed RAW files are readily available based on user preferences.

5-axis SteadyShot™ INSIDE Image Stabilization

Sony has designed a new in-body 5 axis image stabilization system for A-mount cameras that debuts for the first time in the α99 II model. Having proven to be incredibly popular in the ɑ7 II series of cameras, this five axis system effectively detects and compensates for movement in all axes including X and Y, pitch and yaw and camera roll, and ensures that all captured content is crisp and blur-free. The new stabilization system provides a shutter speed advantage of 4.5 steps11, ensuring the full potential of the 42.4MP sensor can be realized. Also, with a simple half press of the shutter button, the effect of this the image stabilization can be monitored in the viewfinder or on the LCD screen, allowing framing and focus to be accurately checked and continually monitored.

Improved design and operability

Based upon feedback from professional users, the design of new α99 II has noticeably evolved compared to its predecessor. The new model is 8% smaller than the original ɑ99 and features a newly designed grip, magnesium alloy body, dual SD card slots12 and dust and moisture resistance13.

The α99 II also features a new shutter unit that has an estimated life of more than 300,000 operations14, as well as an XGA OLED Tru-finder with a ZEISS® T* Coating that offers a powerful 0.78x magnification and delivers outstanding clarify from corner to corner. The viewfinder also has a fluorine coating on the outer lens to prevent fingerprints, dust, water, oil and dirt from sticking, ensuring a clear view.

The silent Multi Controller introduced in the original ɑ99 has been improved as well, as it now offers a click-stop ON/OFF switch in addition to allowing control of aperture, shutter speed, ISO, exposure compensation, AF area, AF mode and other settings. The α99 II also offers location data acquisition via a Bluetooth15 connection to a compatible mobile device and an updated menu structure to deliver a smoother navigational experience.

Movie Magic

For the first time in a Sony A-mount camera, the α99 II has the ability to record 4K video internally16 with full pixel readout and no pixel binning17 through usage of the professional friendly XAVC S format. The camera is capable of recording high quality footage at 100Mbps for 4K recording, and utilizing the full width of the large, full-frame image sensor in doing so. It also offers a new ‘Slow and Quick’ mode18 (S&Q) that supports both slow motion and quick motion. In this mode, frame rates from 1 fps to 120 fps can be selected in 8 steps for up to 60x quick motion and 5x slow motion recording19.

A host of other features for professional movie production workflow are also included in the α99 II such as picture profiles, time code and clean HDMI output as well as gamma assist for real time S-Log monitoring and a zebra mode for easier exposure adjustment. S-Log3 and S-Log2 gamma are both included as well.

Pricing and Availability

The Sony α99 II full-frame interchangeable lens camera will ship this November to authorized Sony retailers throughout North America and will be sold for about $3,200 US and $4,000 CA.

Notes:

1. Hybrid Phase Detection AF active. The dedicated phase detection AF sensor or focal-plane phase detection AF sensor may be used independently in certain photographic situations.
2. Continuous shooting mode set to ‘Hi+’
3. The number of usable AF points may depend on the lens and shooting mode
4. The number of usable AF points may depend on the lens and shooting mode. Up to 323 focus points are selectable. Not available for movie recording
5. Central focus point
6. The supported focus area will depend on the shooting mode and lens used. Furthermore, when “Continuous Shooting: Hi+” is selected, focus will be fixed at the first frame shot when Hybrid Phase Detection AF is active at aperture settings of F9 or higher, or when Hybrid Phase Detection AF is not active at aperture settings of F4 or higher
7. When Anti-flicker Shoot.is ON. Flicker detection at 100 Hz or 120 Hz only. Continuous shooting speed may decrease. Does not function during bulb exposure or movie recording.
8. Continuous shooting mode set to ‘Hi’
9. Approx. effective megapixels
10. Expanded ISO. Still images only.
11. CIPA standards. Pitch/yaw shake only. SAL135F18Z lens. Long exposure NR off.
12. One slot can hold an SD card or a Memory Stick.
13. Not guaranteed to be 100% dust and moisture proof
14. Electronic first curtain shutter activated
15. Requires pairing with compatible mobile devices running the PlayMemories Mobile app. Supported devices are Android smartphones running Android 5.0 or later and compatible with Bluetooth 4.0 or later. iPhone/iPad: iPhone 4S or later/iPad 3rd generation or later
16. Class 10 or higher SDHC/SDXC memory card required for XAVC S format movie recording. UHS-I (U3) SDHC/SDXC card required for 100Mbps recording.
17. In Super 35mm recording mode
18. Sound cannot be recorded. SDHC/SDXC memory card of Class 10 or higher is required
19. In NTSC system

Categories: Equipment

Sony announces 42MP a99 Mark II with 5-axis stabilization

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 9:07am
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Sony has announced the a99 II, an 42MP A-mount SLT camera to mark the tenth anniversary of the Alpha series. It features 5-axis image stabilization and 4K video capture with no pixel binning. The camera will sell for $3200/€3600, body only, when it arrives in November.

The camera will be capable of shooting at 12 frames per second with AF/AE tracking and 8 fps with 'minimal' EVF blackout. It has 79 AF points on its dedicated PDAF sensor, which work in conjunction with 399 on-sensor PDAF points to create what Sony calls 'Hybrid Cross AF points.'  The system is able to focus down to -4EV.

The camera's 5-axis image stabilization is rated to 4.5EV by CIPA testing. Its shutter is rated to over 300,000 shots.

The camera's 42.MP sensor (most likely similar to the one found on the a7R II) uses BSI-CMOS technology with copper wiring for ultra-fast readout. The camera also has a newly-developed front-end LSI (processor) to cope with the speed of the sensor.

Body-wise, the a99 II is 8% smaller than its predecessor and is made of magnesium alloy. A newly redesigned shutter has a lifespan of 300,000 exposures. It has a large XGA OLED viewfinder with a magnification of 0.78x. A fluorine coating helps to keep fingerprints and oil off of the outer element. Its 3" (non-touchscreen) LCD display can tilt in 3-axis. The 'silent Multi-Controller' on the front of the camera now offers a click on/off feature. As with the a99, the Mark II has dual SD card slots. In an act of mercy, Sony has also redesigned the a99 II's menu system.

Video is, of course, also a big deal. The a99 II can capture 4K at 100Mbps (using XAVC S) with full sensor read-out and no pixel binning. A Super 35 option is also available, with 1.8x oversampling. A 'Slow and Quick' mode lets users jump between 1 and 120 fps at the push of a button. All of the capture tools you'd expect are available, including zebra patterns, time code, S-Log2 and S-Log3 profiles and 4:2:2 output over HDMI.

Kimio Maki VP of Digital Imaging Group said: the market is changing. The move is towards an increased proportion of enthusiast photographers, he said. These customers demand sensitivity, resolution and speed.

Press release:

Sony Announces New Full-Frame α99 II A-mount Camera

Flagship A-mount camera Features Ultra-Fast 4D FOCUS with 79 hybrid cross AF points1 plus 12 fps continuous shooting2, High Resolution 42.4 MP Exmor R® CMOS sensor, 5-axis in-body image stabilization and more

COLOGNE, Germany, Sept. 19, 2016 – Sony Electronics, a worldwide leader in digital imaging and the world’s largest image sensor manufacturer, has today introduced their new flagship A-mount camera, the α99 II.

Reaffirming Sony’s commitment to produce industry leading A-mount cameras, the impressive new camera combines the best of many of their latest digital imaging innovations including a new Hybrid Phase Detection AF system with exclusive Sony A-mount features such as Translucent Mirror Technology™. The result is a supremely specified, professional level camera that will be appealing to a variety of professional and enthusiast photographers.

“We are continuing to innovate with each new camera body, lens and accessory that we bring to market, offering compelling choices to both existing and prospective users of the Sony α system” said Neal Manowitz, Vice President of Digital Imaging at Sony Electronics. “With the α99 II, we’re delivering an industry-leading level of performance to A-mount owners and enthusiasts. Its powerful combination of speed and resolution is simply unmatched in today’s market.”

Redefining Autofocus and Speed

The new α99 II camera is Sony’s first full-frame camera to feature the acclaimed 4D Focus system, bringing a supreme level of AF performance to Sony’s A-mount line-up. The Hybrid Phase Detection AF system is enabled by combining a precision 79-point3 dedicated phase detection AF sensor with 399 focal plane phase detection AF points4 to produce a 79 hybrid cross AF point1 array. This enables incredibly precise autofocus performance and advanced subject tracking of any high-speed moving objects across the frame. In addition Translucent Mirror Technology, with no moving mirror, ensures steady, continuous AF operation and live image preview during both still image and video shooting. The precision AF system also performs exceptionally in low-light conditions, as it will function properly in brightness levels as low as EV-45 and in dark locations where most other cameras struggle.

In addition to its advanced autofocusing, the α99 II has been designed to allow for high resolution, continuous shooting at high frame rates. The camera features a new front-end LSI that works with the image sensor, BIONZ X® image processing engine and a newly designed shutter unit to enable continuous shooting at impressive speeds of up to 12fps2with AF/AE tracking6. Thanks to a large buffer, these shots can be viewed immediately after shooting, even when in high-speed continuous shooting mode. Additionally, if these high-speed shots are being taken indoors under artificial lighting, the camera can automatically detect flicker and time the shutter accordingly to minimize its effect on the resulting images7.

The new α99 II also has the ability to deliver continuous live shooting at up to 8 fps 8 with AF/AE tracking and minimal display lag thanks to overall improvements in the EVF algorithm. This offers photographers a shooting experience that closely mimics that of an optical viewfinder, while still offering all of the benefits of an electronic viewfinder including a live preview of exposure, white balance and several other camera settings. This continuous live view shooting can be set in 3 stages to match a variety of subjects: 8 fps, 6 fps and 4 fps.

Pixel Power

The back-illuminated full-frame 42.4MP9 Exmor R CMOS sensor in the new α99 II model features a gapless-on-chip design that allows for fast readout of large volumes of data and maximizes light gathering ability. The net result is very high sensitivity with low noise, wide dynamic range and 42.4MP resolution across an ISO range of 100-25600, expandable to ISO 50 – 102,40010.

The new camera has also been designed without an optical low-pass filter, ensuring that all of the finest natural details and textures can be captured with unprecedented depth and realism. Both compressed and uncompressed RAW files are readily available based on user preferences.

5-axis SteadyShot™ INSIDE Image Stabilization

Sony has designed a new in-body 5 axis image stabilization system for A-mount cameras that debuts for the first time in the α99 II model. Having proven to be incredibly popular in the ɑ7 II series of cameras, this five axis system effectively detects and compensates for movement in all axes including X and Y, pitch and yaw and camera roll, and ensures that all captured content is crisp and blur-free. The new stabilization system provides a shutter speed advantage of 4.5 steps11, ensuring the full potential of the 42.4MP sensor can be realized. Also, with a simple half press of the shutter button, the effect of this the image stabilization can be monitored in the viewfinder or on the LCD screen, allowing framing and focus to be accurately checked and continually monitored.

Improved design and operability

Based upon feedback from professional users, the design of new α99 II has noticeably evolved compared to its predecessor. The new model is 8% smaller than the original ɑ99 and features a newly designed grip, magnesium alloy body, dual SD card slots12 and dust and moisture resistance13.

The α99 II also features a new shutter unit that has an estimated life of more than 300,000 operations14, as well as an XGA OLED Tru-finder with a ZEISS® T* Coating that offers a powerful 0.78x magnification and delivers outstanding clarify from corner to corner. The viewfinder also has a fluorine coating on the outer lens to prevent fingerprints, dust, water, oil and dirt from sticking, ensuring a clear view.

The silent Multi Controller introduced in the original ɑ99 has been improved as well, as it now offers a click-stop ON/OFF switch in addition to allowing control of aperture, shutter speed, ISO, exposure compensation, AF area, AF mode and other settings. The α99 II also offers location data acquisition via a Bluetooth15 connection to a compatible mobile device and an updated menu structure to deliver a smoother navigational experience.

Movie Magic

For the first time in a Sony A-mount camera, the α99 II has the ability to record 4K video internally16 with full pixel readout and no pixel binning17 through usage of the professional friendly XAVC S format. The camera is capable of recording high quality footage at 100Mbps for 4K recording, and utilizing the full width of the large, full-frame image sensor in doing so. It also offers a new ‘Slow and Quick’ mode18 (S&Q) that supports both slow motion and quick motion. In this mode, frame rates from 1 fps to 120 fps can be selected in 8 steps for up to 60x quick motion and 5x slow motion recording19.

A host of other features for professional movie production workflow are also included in the α99 II such as picture profiles, time code and clean HDMI output as well as gamma assist for real time S-Log monitoring and a zebra mode for easier exposure adjustment. S-Log3 and S-Log2 gamma are both included as well.

Pricing and Availability

The Sony α99 II full-frame interchangeable lens camera will ship this November to authorized Sony retailers throughout North America and will be sold for about $3,200 US and $4,000 CA.

Notes:

1. Hybrid Phase Detection AF active. The dedicated phase detection AF sensor or focal-plane phase detection AF sensor may be used independently in certain photographic situations.
2. Continuous shooting mode set to ‘Hi+’
3. The number of usable AF points may depend on the lens and shooting mode
4. The number of usable AF points may depend on the lens and shooting mode. Up to 323 focus points are selectable. Not available for movie recording
5. Central focus point
6. The supported focus area will depend on the shooting mode and lens used. Furthermore, when “Continuous Shooting: Hi+” is selected, focus will be fixed at the first frame shot when Hybrid Phase Detection AF is active at aperture settings of F9 or higher, or when Hybrid Phase Detection AF is not active at aperture settings of F4 or higher
7. When Anti-flicker Shoot.is ON. Flicker detection at 100 Hz or 120 Hz only. Continuous shooting speed may decrease. Does not function during bulb exposure or movie recording.
8. Continuous shooting mode set to ‘Hi’
9. Approx. effective megapixels
10. Expanded ISO. Still images only.
11. CIPA standards. Pitch/yaw shake only. SAL135F18Z lens. Long exposure NR off.
12. One slot can hold an SD card or a Memory Stick.
13. Not guaranteed to be 100% dust and moisture proof
14. Electronic first curtain shutter activated
15. Requires pairing with compatible mobile devices running the PlayMemories Mobile app. Supported devices are Android smartphones running Android 5.0 or later and compatible with Bluetooth 4.0 or later. iPhone/iPad: iPhone 4S or later/iPad 3rd generation or later
16. Class 10 or higher SDHC/SDXC memory card required for XAVC S format movie recording. UHS-I (U3) SDHC/SDXC card required for 100Mbps recording.
17. In Super 35mm recording mode
18. Sound cannot be recorded. SDHC/SDXC memory card of Class 10 or higher is required
19. In NTSC system

Categories: Equipment

Sony announces alpha 99 Mark II

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 9:07am

Sony has announced the a99 II, a 42MP A mount SLT camera to mark the tenth anniversary of the alpha series. It features 5-axis image stabilization and 4K photo with no pixel binning.

The camera will be capable of shooting at 12 frames per second with AF/AE tracking. It has 79 AF points on its dedicated PDAF sensor, which work in conjunction with 399 on-sensor PDAF points.

Kimio Maki VP of Digital Imaging Group said: the market is changing. The move is towards an increased proportion of enthusiast photographers, he said. These customers demand sensitivity, resolution and speed.

Categories: Equipment

YI M1 Mirrorless ILC First Impressions Review

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 8:59am

Key Specifications

  • 20MP Four Thirds sensor
  • 3" 1.04M-dot touchscreen LCD
  • 81 Point Contrast Detect AF system rated to -4EV
  • Touch to focus and one touch image capture
  • 5fps continuous shooting
  • 4K/30P video recording capability
  • Built in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth LE

This is unexpected: The YI M1, a 20MP Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera.

YI, or Young Innovators, is a China-based company that has already made its mark in the action cam market, earning a recommendation in our recent roundup. But it clearly has ambitions beyond this and has announced its entry into the consumer-level compact ILC market.

We were lucky enough to get our hands on a prototype model of the YI M1, the company's first ever mirrorless camera. YI has attempted to capitalize on an already well-established camera mount, but decided to put a new spin on it in the form of an almost entirely touchscreen-based user interface. YI's target demographic is a group that is looking to move on from their smart phone based camera, but perhaps isn't ready or interested in, taking the plunge into the realm of a traditional DSLR or mirrorless platform.

 The YI M1 features an all-metal lens mount and a 20MP CMOS sensor.

The YI M1 is built around a Sony-designed 20MP Four Thirds CMOS sensor that boasts Raw capability in the form of DNG output files and the ability to shoot 4K/30P video. As with its action cameras, YI publicly lists where its key components come from and the Sony IMX269 instantly suggests good things about the camera's potential.

The big news is the all-touchscreen interface (the body only has two physical buttons), which aims to give a simple, more smartphone-like user experience. However, the company doesn't treat these users as undemanding, just because they don't want a conventional camera.

The camera comes with two lenses, a camera strap, USB charging brick and a Micro-USB cable. While the camera sports a hot shoe for an external flash, the current kit doesn't have a flash included.

Lenses

The two lens choices that come in the kit were a bit of surprise for us, and in a very good way. It's not too often that a camera company decides to include a prime lens and a zoom in an ILC starter kit, but that's just what YI has done. There's a macro-capable 42.5mm F1.8 prime as well as a more conventional 12-40mm F3.5-5.6 zoom in the box, both equipped with image stabilization, since the body itself does not offer any..

The 42.5mm F1.8 prime lens can be seen on the left and the 12-40mm F3.5-5.6 can be seen on the right. The focus ring on the 42.5mm prime doesn't actually move - it's just for show.

The lenses are constructed of a mostly plastic body and are extremely lightweight. I definitely wouldn't suggest getting them wet, as they don't appear to have any sort of weather-sealing. The lens mounts are made of a plastic composite material.

Oddly, the 42.5mm prime doesn't offer manual focus – the 'focus ring' is purely cosmetic. In any case offering a prime lens, particularly a portrait-friendly 85mm equivalent one, is a really nice touch and is sure to please folks moving from a fixed-lens smartphone to an ILC platform.

The YI M1 offers five JPEG shooting modes: a high contrast black and white mode, a standard black and white mode, portrait, vivid, and lastly a standard shooting mode. Unfortunately you currently aren't able to shoot Raw + JPEG, so you will have to decide which format you would like to shoot in before heading out with the camera (though this could be easily fixed through a firmware update).

Autofocus

In terms of autofocus the YI M1 has an 81-point contrast detect AF system with touch to focus and touch shutter. It also offers face detection and both AF-S and AF-C shooting modes. It's also important to note that the AF also lacks any sort of subject tracking outside of face detection. 

Autofocus is possible during video capture; AF-C is automatically enabled while shooting video. Unfortunately, the YI lacks a dedicated AF control switch, which makes switching AF shooting modes a bit difficult. Novices coming to the YI may find they'll need to pay more attention to their autofocus point placement than they did with their smartphone. 

Video

The M1 has several video shooting modes- the highlight of which is its ability to shoot in 4K/30P. It also offers 2K/30P, Full HD 1080 and 720 at 60, 30 and 24P. Autofocus is available while shooting video in the form of single point AF-C, but if you're using the 12-40mm F3.5-5.6 zoom lens you will also have the ability to use manual focus with focus peaking, which can definitely come in handy because the autofocus is fairly slow to lock focus while in video mode. 

Pricing and Availability

U.S. pricing and availability has not been announced.

First Impressions review based on a pre-production camera running firmware v1.0.6

Categories: Equipment

YI enters the mirrorless race with the M1

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 09/19/2016 - 8:49am

YI, or Young Innovators, is a China-based company that has already made its mark in the action cam market, earning a recommendation in our recent roundup. But it clearly has ambitions beyond this and has announced its entry into the consumer based compact ILC market.

YI has introduced the M1- a mirrorless ILC with 20MP Sony designed CMOS sensor that boasts Raw capability in the form of DNG output files and the ability to shoot 4K/30P video. As with its action cameras, YI publicly lists where its key components come from and the Sony IMX269 instantly suggests good things about the camera's potential.

The M1 comes with two lenses; a 42.5mm F1.8 prime and a 12-40mm F3.5-5.6 zoom, a camera strap, a USB charging brick and a micro USB cable.

U.S. pricing and availability has not been announced.

Read our Yi M1 First Impressions Review

Yi M1 specifications

Body type
Body typeRangefinder-style mirrorless
Body materialComposite and Metal
Sensor
Max resolution5184 x 3888
Image ratio w:h1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels20 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors22 megapixels
Sensor sizeFour Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
Image
ISOAuto, 100-25600
White balance presets4
Custom white balanceNo
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsSuperfine, fine, normal
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
  • DNG
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points81
Lens mountMicro Four Thirds
Focal length multiplier
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3″
Screen dots1,040,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeNone
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed60 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Panorama
  • Program
  • Shutter Priority
  • Aperture Priority
  • Manual
  • Scene
  • Super Professional Guide (used w/ app)
Scene modes
  • Portrait
  • Landscape
  • Sport
  • Night Scene
  • Candle
  • Sunset
  • Fireworks
  • Beach & Snow
Built-in flashNo
External flashYes (Hot-Shoe)
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Slow Sync, Red-Eye Slow
Flash X sync speed1/125 sec
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Self-timer
Continuous drive5.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 secs)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing (3 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes (3 frames up to 6 shots)
Videography features
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
Modes
  • 4096 x 2060 @ 30p / 75 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 30 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 15 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 15 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1280 x 720 @ 60p / 15 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1280 x 720 @ 30p / 10 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
  • 1280 x 720 @ 24p / 10 Mbps, MOV, H.264, AAC
MicrophoneStereo
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC card
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (Micro HDMI)
Microphone portNo
Headphone portNo
WirelessBuilt-In
Wireless notes801.11b/g/n with Bluetooth LE
Remote controlYes (via smartphone)
Physical
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionBXM-10 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)450
Dimensions114 x 64 x 34 mm (4.49 x 2.52 x 1.34″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes (JPEG)
GPSNone
Categories: Equipment

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