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Equipment

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VI: What you need to know

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 4:50pm

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VI: What you need to know

The sixth and latest in Sony's popular RX100-series, the RX100 VI is (unsurprisingly) the most powerful yet. Still pocketable, but now offering a longer zoom than any of its predecessors and an updated AF system, the RX100 VI promises to be a highly versatile camera. We've been poring over the specs for a while - click through this article for a closer look.

New 24-200mm (equiv) F2.8-4.5 lens

Perhaps the most obvious addition to the RX100 VI compared to its predecessors is a substantially longer zoom lens, with a claimed 4EV of optical image stabilization. Whereas the RX100 V's zoom topped out at a modest 70mm, the RX100 VI's lens reaches all the way to 200mm (equivalent).

In one sense, this should make the RX100 VI a more versatile camera than its predecessors, but that additional zoom range doesn't come for free. The RX100 VI's maximum aperture is F2.8-4.5, which is significantly slower than the F1.8-2.8 of its predecessor, and it does not include the useful built-in ND found in earlier models.

New 24-200mm (equiv) F2.8-4.5 lens

As you can see from our equivalent aperture graph, the RX100 VI's lens offers an equivalent (in DoF terms) maximum aperture of around F8 at 24mm, and it only gets darker from there. Whether this matters depends on several factors, not least ambient light. It's worth noting though that subject/background separation will be more challenging with the RX100 VI compared to previous-generation RX100-series cameras. That being said, it should be noted that beyond 50mm (equivalent) the RX100 VI's lens is significantly brighter than both the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200 and the older ZS100. The maximum F12 equivalent aperture on the long end should mean less diffraction-induced softening than the F16 equivalent offered by the Panasonics.

The lens itself is comprised of 15 elements in 12 groups, featuring two ED (extra-low dispersion) aspherical glass elements and eight aspherical lens elements including four AA (advanced aspherical) lenses. Sony claims that this results in 'outstanding sharpness from corner-to-corner at all focal lengths' and we'll be sure to test this for ourselves as soon as possible.

Upgraded tracking and better buffer

The RX100 VI incorporates an upgraded BIONZ X™ image processor and Front-end LSI. This has resulted in several improvements, including to autofocus speed (Sony claims an AF response time of 0.03 seconds) and superior Eye AF tracking, to the tune (again, claimed) of a 2x performance increase compared to the RX100 V.

The maximum stills capture rate of 24fps is unchanged compared to the RX100 V, but the new camera can shoot for up to 233 images, compared to around 150 in the earlier model.

Full-width oversampled 4K video

As we've come to expect from Sony's RX-series as a whole, the RX100 VI offers impressive video specifications, in addition to its stills capture features. The new camera can capture 4K video at up to 30p, at a maximum bitrate of 100 Mbps. 4K video is oversampled from 5K, and the entire sensor area is utilized, resulting in very clean, detailed footage. High definition 1080p footage is also possible, at up to 120fps. High frame rate modes are available, with up to 960 fps capture.

New in the RX100 VI is an HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) gamma curve option within Picture Profiles, which in Sony's words offers 'an instant HDR workflow solution'. HLG gamma fits the entire dynamic range of the sensor into your video. While footage will look flat on a standard display like the rear LCD, plug the camera into an HDR display and enable its HLG mode and you'll see your high dynamic range footage, from preserved highlights to detailed shadows, with the more lifelike contrast modern TVs offer. The use of HLG and zebras in stills also allows you perfectly expose your Raws, as we covered in our a7R III review.

Sadly, the RX100 VI omits a microphone socket, meaning that external recording will be necessary for any kind of serious filmmaking.

Touch-sensitive, tilting LCD

Oh happy day! The RX100 VI is the first RX100-series model to offer a touch-sensitive LCD. This enables touch to focus and touch shutter - both nice features that we've been enjoying for several years on competitive cameras. It's particularly important for the RX100 series, which has always had limited controls and particularly cumbersome methods for selecting your AF point.

Touch-sensitive, tilting LCD

The tilt angle of the screen has also been expanded, to up to 90 degrees downwards and 180 degrees upwards. You know - for selfies.

Updated Menus

Not only have menus been updated to the far more organized structure we've come to expect on a7/a9 cameras, a My Menu has been added. You can populate it with your most accessed menu items, in your preferred order. This, combined with the customizable Fn menu accessible on-screen during shooting, should make it easy to quickly access your most used settings. This is particularly important on a camera with so few controls.

Redesigned 'one push' EVF

The RX100 VI's XGA OLED pop-up EVF is similar to previous models in the series, but once popped-up, the finder optics no longer need to be manually extended for use. This might sound like a minor upgrade, but missing a shot because you forgot to pop out the finder window is an annoyance that will be familiar to many RX100 IV/V owners.

Categories: Equipment

Fujifilm GetPix DASH photo kiosk is designed for mobile devices

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 2:19pm

Fujifilm has unveiled GetPix DASH, an inexpensive photo kiosk platform for printing images from a mobile device. The GetPix DASH, which resembles a tablet on a pole, doesn't require a mobile app or cable, instead using a companion website where customers upload their images.

According to Fujifilm, anyone can use the GetPix DASH photo kiosk by uploading images to mygetpix.com and then retrieving them at the kiosk using a unique code. Fuji chose the ASK-300 dye-sublimation printer for the platform, which it says offers lab-quality prints in seconds while keeping costs low.

Fujifilm will begin selling the GetPix DASH photo kiosk on July 2 for $1,999 USD.

Via: Fujifilm

Categories: Equipment

Apple improves photo search and sharing, adds Camera Effects in iOS 12

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 2:12pm

At its WWDC developer conference in San Jose, Apple has showcased the beta version of its iOS 12 mobile operating system, which will be officially released this fall. And the new software comes with a few imaging-related improvements.

Photo search has been updated and now comes with search suggestions. If you are searching a photo on your device, even before you start typing, you’ll see suggestions for recent events you have attended, people you have photographed, and places you have been to. The suggestions are refined as you start typing and search results get even more precise if you use multiple keywords.

Photo sharing has been overhauled as well and the camera roll now features a new 'For You' tab. In the latter the best moments and events from your photo library are displayed. If people are detected in your images, the system suggests sharing the image with them. If your contacts are running iOS 12, they'll also be prompted to share their photos from the same events with you.

Lastly, there is Camera Effects. This new feature allows you to create and share images and videos, directly in the Messages and FaceTime cameras, using Animoji, Memoji, filters, animated text effects, stickers, and other effects.

For a full list of all new features in iOS 12 head over to the Apple website.

Categories: Equipment

Kodak teases first sample photos of Ektachrome

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 10:42am
Kodak

Kodak Professional has posted a video to its Instagram page and a few sample photos to its Facebook page teasing the first test images taken with its revived Ektachrome slide film, as well as images of what the packaging will look like.

Back in January 2017, Kodak Professional announced it was bringing back its beloved Ektachrome slide film from the dead. Since then, the only major update we’ve heard is from back in 2017, when a few higher-ups at Kodak Professional detailed the progress it had made on bringing the film back from the dead on the Kodakery podcast.

Now, we finally have something to look at. Alongside a video that slideshows through 12 different images, including color cards, sample shots, and photos of the packaging material, the Kodak Professional Instagram account writes, ‘Ektachrome 100: Our Development team is still working hard on the update! In the meantime, here are some successful test photos from our pilot-scale equipment.’

As a few Facebook and Instagram commenters have pointed out, the sample images appear a bit grainy in the video. Kodak Professional replied, saying the video did appear to make the photos appear more grainy and less impressive than the stills. They said to see more accurate samples, to check out its Facebook post, embedded above, which includes three sample images seen in the Instagram video.

There’s still no definitive date on when the public launch will be, but seeing test photos means we’re one step closer to seeing it back on the shelves.

Categories: Equipment

Sony announces Cyber-shot RX100 VI with 24-200mm zoom

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 10:17am
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Sony has announced the Cyber-shot RX100 VI, a 1"-type compact camera with a 24-200mm F2.8-4.5 zoom lens, 315 phase detection points covering approximately 65% of the sensor, and the ability to shoot at 24 fps with autofocus.

The RX100 VI becomes the first in the Cyber-shot RX100-series to gain a touchscreen, allowing both touch shutter and touch focus. The screen can tilt up to 180 degree upwards and 90 degree downwards, extending shooting flexibility. The new camera is essentially the same size as its predecessor the RX100 V, but its depth has been increased slightly, by 1.6mm.

The RX100 VI includes the latest Bionz X processor with front-end LSI, as used in the most recent Alpha cameras

Sony says that the RX100 VI contains processing and experience developed in the creation of the a9 sports camera. It includes the latest Bionz X processor with front-end LSI, as used in the most recent Alpha cameras. This helps give what the company says is the world's fastest AF (measured at 0.03 seconds) and with twice the EyeAF tracking performance of the Mark V.

The RX100 VI's Hybrid AF system includes 315 phase detection points, covering approximately 65% of the sensor for 'high-density tracking'.

The RX100 VI's 24-200mm lens comprises 15 elements in 12 groups, featuring two ED (extra-low dispersion) aspherical glass elements and eight aspherical lens elements including four AA (advanced aspherical) lenses. Sony describes the pocketable camera as having "two lenses worth of interchangeable lens", incorporating the range of a 24-70mm lens and a 70-200mm in one "do anything" camera. Meanwhile, it offers a claimed 4EV of image stabilization. An ND filter is built-in.

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The RX100 VI's XGA OLED pop-up EVF is similar to previous models in the series, but once popped-up, the finder optics no longer need to be manually extended for use.

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On the video front, the RX100 VI is capable of full-width, oversampled 4K video with support for 8-bit HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) for easy HDR capture. The RX100 VI is also able to record superslow motion video at either 250, 500 or 1000 fps.

The new Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VI will ship next month, priced at $1200 (£1,150 in the UK).

Press release:

Sony’s New RX100 VI Combines Versatile 24-200mm Large Aperture, High Magnification Zoom Lens with World’s Fastest AF Speed

  • Maintains compact body size of acclaimed RX100 series while adding a ZEISS® Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm F2.8 – F4.5 Large Aperture High Magnification Zoom Lens
  • World’s Fastest 0.03 seconds AF speed combined with 315 focal-plane phase-detection AF points covering approximately 65% of frame
  • 1.0-type stacked 20.1 MP Exmor RS™ CMOS image sensor with DRAM chip and upgraded BIONZ X™ image processor and Front-end LSI
  • High-speed continuous shooting at up to 24 fps with full AF/AE tracking
  • Optical image stabilization equivalent to a 4.0-stop faster shutter speed
  • High Resolution 4K Movie Shooting with full pixel readout and no pixel binning plus 4K HDR for instant HDR workflow

NEW YORK, Jun.5, 2018 – Sony – a worldwide leader in digital imaging and the world’s largest image sensor manufacturer – has today announced another exciting model for their popular Cyber-shot RX100 series of compact cameras, the RX100 VI (model DSC-RX100M6).

The innovative new RX100 VI camera is the first of all the RX100 models to include a high magnification zoom lens, as it packs in an impressive ZEISS® Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm F2.8 – F4.5 lens yet doesn’t sacrifice the pocket-size portability, fast responsiveness and high image quality that has become the hallmark of Sony’s RX100 lineup. It’s extensive zoom, impressive image quality and versatility for both still images and video make it an ideal choice for capturing daily life, cityscapes, portraiture, sports, wildlife and everything in between.

The new model is equipped with a 20.1 MP 1.0-type stacked Exmor RS™ CMOS image sensor with DRAM chip and an upgraded BIONZ X™ image processing system with a front-end LSI that maximizes processing speed and optimizes image quality in all shooting environments. Additionally, the RX100 VI features an incredibly efficient Fast Hybrid AF system with 315-point phase-detection AF points on the sensor that can acquire focus in as little as 0.03 seconds, the world’s fastest AF acquisition time for 1.0-type sensor cameras. It can also shoot at up to 24 fps at full resolution with continuous AF/AE tracking and produces beautiful 4K video with full pixel readout and no pixel binning.

“We’re continuing to innovate our RX camera lineup, providing our customers new and different ways to capture what they’ve never been able to capture before,” said Neal Manowitz, Vice President of Digital Imaging for Sony Electronics. “The new RX100 VI is the latest example, delivering extensive reach, extremely advanced autofocus, high-speed shooting and more, while still being able to slip easily into your pocket. It’s the ultimate pocket travel camera.”

New High-Magnification 24-200mm Zoom Lens plus Outstanding Image Quality

A first for Sony’s RX100 series of cameras, the new ZEISS® Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm F2.8 – F4.5 lens packs the power of both 24-70mm and 70-200mm focal lengths into a singular compact design. This is achieved thanks to its unique design featuring two ED (extra-low dispersion) aspherical glass elements and eight aspherical lens elements including four AA (advanced aspherical) lenses. All pieces work together seamlessly to deliver outstanding sharpness from corner-to-corner at all focal lengths, maintaining the acclaimed image quality of the RX100 series.

The impressive new lens on the RX100 VI maintains a large aperture throughout the entire zoom range, ensuring portraits can be created with beautiful background defocus, fast moving subjects can be captured with crisp focus and no blurring, and much more. Additionally, the lens has built-in Optical SteadyShotTM image stabilization that is equivalent to a 4.0-stopvifaster shutter speed, helping to prevent camera shake or blurry imageseven in a low-light condition or at telephoto zoom range.

Lightning-Fast AF Performance and Shooting Speeds

The new RX100 VI model features a Fast Hybrid AF system that ultimately allows the camera to lock focus in as little as 0.03 seconds. This innovative AF system combines the respective advantages of 315-point focal-plane phase-detection AF points that cover approximately 65% of the sensor and contrast-detection AF. This high speed focusing complements the versatile 24-200mm range of the lens, ensuring all subjects can be captured with precise detail and clarity.

Additionally, a first for the RX100 series of cameras, the RX100 VI includes Sony’s advanced High-density Tracking AF technology, which concentrates AF points around a subject to improve tracking and focus accuracy. The popular Eye AF technology is also available with approximately 2x the tracking performance of the current RX100 series model[ix]. Further, the camera has LCD touch focusing and touchpad focus point control for users that would like to drag their fingers to ideal focus points of their choice.

An ideal complement to the AF system, the RX100 VI offers continuous high-speed shooting at up to 24 fps with full AF/AE tracking, with an impressive buffer limit of up to 233 images. The display lag of the EVF has been substantially reduced compared to prior models, allowing shooters to capture the decisive moment with ultimate confidence. Also, for convenience during image playback, continuously shot images can be displayed in groups instead of individual shots.

The RX100 VI also has a high speed Anti-Distortion Shutter (maximum shutter speed of up to 1/32000 second) that reduces the “rolling shutter” effect commonly experienced with fast moving subjects, and can shoot completely silently in all modes, including continuous high speed shooting, when electronic shutter is engaged. A mechanical shutter mode is also available as well if required by the user.

Advanced Movie Capabilities Including 4K HDR

The pocket-friendly RX100 VI is packed with a variety of video capabilities that will satisfy even the most demanding video enthusiasts.

With Fast Hybrid AF, the focal-plane phase-detection AF points ensures accurate focusing and tracking performance, even for the severe focusing requirements of 4K movie shooting. AF drive speed and AF tracking sensitivity can also be adjusted via the menu system, giving shooters plenty of flexibility based on their focusing preferences.

In 4K mode, the new RX100 VI utilizes full pixel readout without pixel binning to ensure that all the finer details of 4K video are captured with minimal moire and ‘jaggies’.

For the first time in a Cyber-shot camera, the RX100 VI features 4K HDR compatibility thanks to its new HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) picture profile that offers an instant HDR workflow solution. Additional professional caliber video features include S-Log3/S-Gamut3, 120p Full HD mode, Picture Profile, proxy recording and more. The RX100 VI is also able to record super slow motion video at either 240fps, 480 fps or 960 fps.

Premium Design, Control and Convenience

The new RX100 VI is equipped with a high-contrast 2.35 million dot XGA OLED Tru-Finder™ with ZEISS®T* Coating, ensuring true-to-life image preview and playback functionality. The EVFitselfretracts in and out of the camera body based on user preference, and can be activated instantly by asingle One-push Access button.

A first for Sony’s RX series, RX100 VI has a touch shutter that can be activated by tapping the back LCD screen, a zoom lever with customizable zoom speeds and an LCD that can be rotated 180 degrees upward or 90 degrees downward for a variety of shooting angles for the creator. There is also aMonitor Auto OFF function that boosts max number of still images by up to 30%, and the camera is also Wi-Fi®, NFC™ and Bluetooth® compatible.

Pricing and Availability

The new Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VI compact camera will ship next month for about $1,200 US and $1,600 CA.

Categories: Equipment

Here's what happens when you attach a 70-200mm F4 to a Game Boy Camera

DPReview.com - Latest News - Tue, 06/05/2018 - 7:00am
Why? The better question: Why not?

There's an unlikely vintage camera enjoying something of a resurgence these days: 1998's 0.5MP Game Boy Camera. Attached to a game cartridge, Game Boy Camera brought digital photography to the youth 2 bits at a time. Lately, its legacy has continued to evolve as clever DIYers repurpose it for astrophotography and motorsports photography, and have even trained neural networks to convert the camera's low-res monochrome images into photorealistic color.

Clearly, it was time for somebody to step up and work out how to attach EF lenses to the thing. And that's just what Bastiaan Ekeler did. He's a designer and self-proclaimed tinkerer, and feeling inspired by recent projects reviving the Game Boy Camera, saw an opportunity for a little fun. His 3D-printed adapter fits to a partially disassembled camera, and with a 1.4x teleconverter and 70-200mm F4 attached, produces an impressive 3026.8mm equivalent view.

With all of the parts in place he took a stroll on the beach to put the rig to use, and even managed a few photos of the full moon despite contending with a dim screen and a 1 fps refresh rate in low light.

Long Beach Bar "Bug" Lighthouse. (Canon 70-200 f4 + Canon 1.4x extender). Photo by Bastiaan Ekeler.
A Seagull at Norman E. Klipp Marine Park (Canon 70-200 f4 + Canon 1.4x extender). Photo by Bastiaan Ekeler.
The full moon on 2018-05-30 in Greenport, NY. (Canon 70-200 f4 + Canon 1.4x extender). Photo by Bastiaan Ekeler.

Head to Ekeler's website for a full-write up of the project and more sample images. You can also follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

Categories: Equipment

First pictures of rumored Samyang 24mm F2.8 AF lens

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 06/04/2018 - 8:04pm
Image via Nokishita

Japanese rumor site Nokishita has published images it claims are of the forthcoming, as yet unannounced, Samyang AF 24mm F2.8 lens for the Sony E mount. If accurate, the lens will look very similar to the company’s existing AF 35mm F2.8, and will share its 49mm filter thread.

The lens in the leaked images is marked with a closest focus distance of 0.24m/0.79ft, and features a rubberized close-ribbed focus ring.

There is no word at the moment from Samyang regarding when this lens will appear.

Categories: Equipment

Nokia 8 update adds new Pro Camera mode with manual controls

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 06/04/2018 - 2:26pm

Last week, HMD Global released a software update for the Nokia 8 smartphone that added a new Pro Camera mode. The mode, which resembles the camera controls offered on older Nokia handsets, gives users manual control over five camera functions: shutter speed, ISO, white balance, focus, and exposure.

Take control of every photo. I’m glad to announce that Pro Camera mode is now available for #Nokia8 ! pic.twitter.com/q2sTWh3IvU

— Juho Sarvikas (@sarvikas) May 31, 2018

The Nokia 8 Android handset features dual rear 13MP cameras with Zeiss optics, optical image stabilization, PDAF and a dual tone flash. The handset supports 4K video recording with 360-degree audio. With the newly added Pro Camera mode, users can view the changes each manual adjustment makes to the final image in real time.

The update is currently rolling out globally.

Categories: Equipment

Leica announces SF 60 Flash Unit and SF C1 Remote Control Unit for M and SL cameras

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 06/04/2018 - 1:48pm
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Leica has announced a new flash and remote control flash unit for its Q, SL/CL and M-series digital cameras. The Leica SF 60 flash offers TTL metering, and high-speed sync up to 1/8000sec. The SF 60 has a guide number of 60 at ISO 100, and also features tilt and zoom, with a built-in diffuser and reflector card.

The Leica SF C1 remote control unit enables wireless control of SF 60 flash units across up to seven channels, in three groups. The SF C1 incorporates a Micro SD card slot for future firmware updates.

The SF 60 flash and SF C1 controller will be available later this month, for $595 and $350 respectively.

Press Release:

Leica Camera Announces Leica SF 60 Flash Unit and Leica SF C1 Remote Control Unit For On- and Off-Camera Flash Photography

Both compact and versatile, the new flash system allows for
supreme quality light control in any situation

June 4, 2018 - Leica Camera presents the new SF 60 flash unit and the SF C1 remote control unit as perfectly complementary additions to the Leica S, SL and M systems. The two units can also be used in combination with the Leica Q and the Leica CL. While the flash unit provides an extensive range of options for flash-photography in a compact form, the remote control unit enables off-camera flash with the SF 60, providing for endless creative opportunities.

Leica SF 60 Flash Unit

Despite its low weight of 10.8 ounces and a height of only 9.8 cm, the Leica SF 60 offers numerous professional functions. The Leica SF 60 is an extremely powerful and versatile mobile solution for all photographers who appreciate the advantages of excellent light-management in any situation, with impressive features such as TTL-flash, HSS (High-Speed Sync) to 1/8000s, a flash head with tilt and swivel function, a zoom reflector, an integrated diffuser and a reflector card, as well as master-slave capability, as well as an impressive guide number of 60 meters (at ISO 100).

The SF 60 also provides continuous LED light output, adjustable in nine steps, as a source of light for spontaneous video recording of subjects in low light. All settings can be conveniently made via two dials and the color LCD panel of the flash unit. The Leica SF 60 is powered by four AA cells. For longer shooting sessions, the unit can also be connected to a Power Pack as an external power supply, which, in addition to higher capacity, also enables even faster flash recycle times and simultaneous power supply to up to two SF 60 flash units. If required, other devices with USB charging ports, e.g. smartphones or tablets, can also be recharged from the Power Pack.

Leica SF C1 Remote Control Unit

The Leica SF C1 remote control unit adds a multitude of creative options. It is mounted on the hot shoe of the camera and enables wireless remote control of SF 60 flash units in the 2.4-GHz frequency band. The flash units can be organized in up to seven channels, each with three groups, and controlled either together or separately with the same or different settings. Photographers can use all functions of all the flash units, just as if they were mounted on the camera. This opens up countless options for professional lighting set-ups with system flash units.

As is the case with the Leica SF 60 flash unit, all settings can be viewed and easily changed on the clearly laid-out color LCD panel of the Leica SF C1 remote control unit. Alongside reserves sufficient for around 3,000 exposures from its two AAA cells, the future-proof SF C1 remote control unit also features a microSD card slot that allows the latest firmware updates to be uploaded to keep the unit at the cutting edge of technology.

Both units will be available worldwide in Leica Stores, Boutiques and Dealers later this month. The SF 60 Flash will retail for $595 and the SF C1 Remote Control will retail for $350.

Categories: Equipment

SeaLife DC2000 sample gallery

DPReview.com - Latest News - Mon, 06/04/2018 - 9:00am
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The SeaLife DC2000, known as the (much cooler-sounding) Sea Dragon in Europe, is a waterproof, rugged compact camera with a large 1"-type sensor and a fixed 31mm-equivalent F1.8 prime lens. You'd be forgiven for not being aware of this camera's existence; it's almost exclusively marketed toward hardcore divers, with the retail kit including an additional case that takes its waterproof rating from 18 meters (60 feet) on its own to 60 meters (200 feet) when safely tucked inside the enclosure.

A quick search across the interwebs turns up no shortage of stunning underwater photography that's been captured with this camera, but remarkably little from its use above land as a large-ish sensor point-and-shoot that's both easy to carry around and will withstand a knock or two. So, we took it upon ourselves to create that gallery. After all, it's the only camera with a 1"-type sensor and fast, fixed prime lens currently on the market.

The SeaLife DC2000 on its own is very well-built, and could be considered pocketable. When inside its additional case, it is of course not pocketable, but going to 60 meters of depth is impressive.

We'll be writing more on the SeaLife DC2000 / Sea Dragon soon, going into its image quality in greater depth as well as what it's like to use. But for now, enjoy our selection of photos taken near the water, if not beneath it.

Categories: Equipment

DPReview TV: Fujifilm X-T100 Review

DPReview.com - Latest News - Sun, 06/03/2018 - 9:00am

The new Fujifilm X-T100 includes some impressive features at a budget-friendly price. So, how does this Bayer sensor camera stack up? Chris and Jordan have been shooting it since launch day, and it won't surprise you to find out they have an opinion on the matter. Tune in to this week's episode to find out what they think of this new camera.

Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to get new episodes of DPReview TV every week.

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Categories: Equipment

Underwater macro photography in Anilao, the Philippines

DPReview.com - Latest News - Sat, 06/02/2018 - 9:00am
1/160, F20, ISO100, diopter 12.5 This Emperor shrimp is about 1.5 cm long, shut using a 12.5 diopter.

A few months ago, a friend invited me to try underwater photography and join a macrophotography workshop in Anilao, the Philippines. I've been shooting above the water for more than five decades but had no experience shooting underwater. I decided to take up the challenge, renewed my diving license, acquired the necessary photography gear and took a few dives with an underwater photography guide in the Red sea, Eilat, preparing myself for the workshop.

The workshop was conducted in Anilao, Batangas province of the Philippines, with full diving service, dive masters, boat riding, etc. provided, as well as an excellent camera room to take care of the photo gear. Anilao is considered an ideal place for macro photography. The diversity is incredible – rich reefs, a wide variety of fish, unexpected critters and nudibranchs are all over. The beachfront resorts are nestled against the jungle and provide exotic scenery while riding to and from dive sites.

1/160, F9, ISO100. Face to face with a yellow Cubicus boxfish.

The workshop schedule is quite intense: Breakfast at 0630, Review of the previous day photos between 0700 and 0830, two morning dives between 0900 to noon. Lunch break at 1200; a theoretical learning session (light, macro photography, use of strobes and more) at 1400 to 1500, two afternoon and evening dives between 1530 and 1900, dinner, photo editing and submitting some images for the next morning review, and falling asleep.

I use all full-frame cameras when shooting above the water: the Nikon D850, D5 and Sony a9 mirrorless. For my underwater excursion, I have decided to use the Sony a9 for two reasons: It is smaller and therefore the housing is smaller, and one can review the photos without removing the eye from the viewfinder. The latter is of paramount importance, especially when shooting miniature critters from a distance of less than five centimeters. If you have to move the camera to review a photo on the back screen, the subject gets out of your sight and finding it and focusing again is time consuming.

I exclusively used the Sony FE 90mm F2.8G macro lens, sometimes with a 12.5 diopter wet lens attached in front of the lens port for shooting critters that are smaller (and some are much smaller!) than a centimeter. Each photo provided here includes the main exposure parameters in the caption, and the use of the diopter is noted as well.

The Nauticam housing I used holds two powerful strobes. Below the surface, most of the sunlight is absorbed by the first few meters of water. At depths of 5 meters and more, all critters look almost colorless and it is the light of the strobes that brings back the colors. Even the light of the most powerful strobe is absorbed by the water and therefore underwater the distance from the camera to the (main) subject is usually less than 1.5 meters. Macro photography distance is less than 50 centimeters and super macro (magnification ratio above 1 – the recorded image size on the sensor is larger than the actual size of the subject) distances can be as close as 2 centimeters.

For our diving sessions we were usually three photographers to a boat, accompanied by a local dive master who knows the waters very well and finds the critters for us. We were also accompanied by two boat drivers to handle the boat and help with the diving and photo gear and getting in and out of the water.

1/160, F14, ISO100, 12.5 diopter. Glossodoris Cincta Nudibranch

The diversity of the creatures in this area is reach and unique. Colorful and beautiful Nudibranches populate the waters, ranging in size from 4mm to 600mm. Most we encountered were between 10 to 60mm in size. They can be identified by the pair of rhinophores, on which it makes sense to focus.

But it's not all serene beauty underneath the water. Survival is a continuous daily battle, and every critter has developed a unique method of protection against predators. There are many such methods, but below are a few in particular that we saw in use:

  • Using a deadly poison and flashing bright colors warning potential predators
  • Camouflage
  • Hiding in small hard to reach holes
1/200, F13, ISO1000. This wire coral shrimp on top of the coral is about 1.5 cm long uses camouflage to protect itself.
1/160, F14, ISO100. Blue-ringed Octopus, one of the world's most venomous marine animals. If provoked, it will change color quickly as a warning.
1/200, F14, ISO100. 12.5 Diopter. The Pink Hairy Squat Lobster, about 1.5 cm long, hiding under the projections on the sides of sponges.

The underwater world is rich with life. It is so beautiful and exciting and I am sure going to put more time and effort into exploring this new (at least for me) amazing world.

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About the Author: Ze’ev Kirshenboim, an Electronic Engineer by trade, is a seasoned amateur photographer of 52 years and makes his living as the president of ACS Motion Control Ltd which he founded 33 years ago. He likes shooting sport, wildlife and people, and lately has combined his photography hobby with scuba diving, the results of which are depicted in this article.

Categories: Equipment

Olympus launches blue edition of the Pen E-PL9 for denim lovers

DPReview.com - Latest News - Fri, 06/01/2018 - 6:18pm

Denim lovers will be delighted to know that there is soon to be a camera that will go with all of their outfits. In honor of this ubiquitous fabric "that suits everyone" Olympus has launched a denim-blue version of its new Pen E-PL9 compact system camera to appeal to fashionable photographers everywhere.

The camera will sit alongside the existing white, black and brown models, but will be a special edition likely to be available from a limited number of retailers in each market. It will feature a blue leatherette on the front and back of the body, along with the silver top plate and accents around the buttons on the rear, and will come with a silver barreled lens.

In the UK the blue E-PL9 will only be sold through John Lewis stores, at the same price as the standard colors – £649.99 with the 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 pancake lens – and will be available early this month.

Press release

Recently launched Olympus PEN E-PL9 now available in blue, white, black and brown

Denim love: Olympus launches special edition of their latest PEN camera model in blue

London, 01.06.2018 – To quote the British Elle Magazine in March, “denim is a fabric that suits everyone”.* To celebrate the ongoing love affair with this perennial material, Olympus is introducing a special blue edition of their recently launched PEN E-PL9 camera.
This special edition of the compact and lightweight PEN E-PL9 not only takes great pictures and movies but is also an easy and stylish addition to any denim outfit.

Already a firm favourite with the blogging community, the Olympus PEN series combines performance, superb build quality, and discrete take-anywhere size with a visual style that makes it as much part of an outfit as any key accessory. The new special edition blue version joins the existing white, black and brown models launched in March.

We sent lifestyle blogger and photographer Debs Stubbington of @bangonstyle to Miami with fashion photographer Jay McLaughlin to bring the blue colour to life:

“Miami’s sunny skies and blue waters were the perfect backdrop for the blue Olympus PEN. With all the incredible features and image quality of the
E-PL9 but a new bold colour, the blue model has fast become my new favourite”

Pricing & availability
> Olympus PEN E-PL9 blue with M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 EZ Pancake lens at £649.99 RRP** from early June 2018

Categories: Equipment

More information released on Yongnuo YN 50mm F1.4 II

DPReview.com - Latest News - Fri, 06/01/2018 - 4:16pm

Yongnuo has unveiled a new version of its 50mm F1.4 lens - the upcoming YN 50mm F1.4 II. The new model follows an update to the company's 50mm F1.8 offering (predictably called the 50mm F1.8 II), giving photographers a new and inexpensive alternative to Canon's venerable EF 50mm F1.4.

Yongnuo's new lens features a USB port for firmware updates, support for live view focusing, electromagnetic aperture, and a new external design. The company emphasizes the 50mm F1.4 II's bokeh capabilities.

The YN 50mm F1.4 II features 9 elements in 7 groups, electromagnetic aperture with support for M/Av/Tv/P/B modes, gold-plated contacts and a metal mount, glass optics with a multilayer coating for better light transmission with controlled glares/ghosting, as well as both manual and auto focus, a focus distance indictor, and the same DC motor drive system found in the original model.

The Hong Kong company detailed the new lens on its website, but pricing and availability have yet to be announced.

Via: PhotoRumors

Categories: Equipment

Lemuro launches line of high-end iPhone accessory lenses

DPReview.com - Latest News - Fri, 06/01/2018 - 2:56pm

With a few exceptions, like Moment or Zeiss products, accessory lenses for smartphones tend to be rather cheap and more often than not, produce low quality images. For those photographers who don't mind spending a bit more on high-quality accessory lenses, there is now a new alternative: German brand Lemuro has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund mass production of its line of iPhone accessory lenses.

Currently four Lemuro lenses are on offer: a 60mm equivalent tele "portrait" lens, a 25mm 10X macro lens, a 18mm equivalent wide angle lens and an 8mm equivalent fisheye.

The lens bodies are crafted from aluminum and attach to a leather-clad protective case via a metal lens mount. Currently cases are available for the iPhones X, 7, 7 plus, 8 and 8 plus but Lemuro says Android cases are in the making and should be expected later in 2018.

Lemuro's campaign is already fully funded, so, barring any unforeseen complications, production will go ahead. You can still pre-order on Kickstarter until June 22 and a pledge of of 75 Euros (approximately $88) will get you the starter kit with one case and lens. The pro kit with case and all four lenses will set you back 225 Euros (approximately $262). Delivery of the Kickstarter orders is scheduled for November 2018.

You can find more information and sample images on the Lemuro Kickstarter page.

Categories: Equipment

PNY launches 512GB microSD card

DPReview.com - Latest News - Fri, 06/01/2018 - 1:55pm

Camera and smartphone users who want to make the most of their device's microSD card slot have a new option. PNY today announced a new 512 GB microSD card, equaling the capacity of Integral's latest offering and surpassing the 400GB SanDisk model launched in August 2017.

In terms of speed, PNY quotes a 'transfer speed' of 90MB/sec, which makes the PNY 512GB Elite slightly faster (at least on paper) than the Integral which maxes out at 80MB/sec, but if absolute speed is a priority, at 100MB/sec the SanDisk still leads the pack. All three cards carry the UHS-I, U1 label with Class 10 and V10 speed specification.

Priced at $349, the new card isn't cheap but offers heaps of storage capacity. According to PNY, it holds up to 80 hours of Full HD video recording or up to 100,000 18MP photos. This should make it an attractive option for anyone who likes to carry entire media libraries on their phone but could also be useful for drone photographers and other professionals.

More information is available on the PNY website.

Categories: Equipment

Letter from the reviews editor: Pentax K-1 Mark II studio scene re-shoot

DPReview.com - Latest News - Fri, 06/01/2018 - 10:01am

Introduction

Back on May 7, we published our review of the Pentax K-1 Mark II. For our studio scene analysis we used the SMC Pentax-D FA 50mm F2.8 Macro lens, rather than the SMC Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited that we'd used for the original K-1 review. This isn't ideal (we try to shoot our studio scene as close to 85mm as we can, on full-frame bodies) but we did this because after some comparison tests, we found that the 50mm F2.8 was slightly sharper than our copy of the 77mm in the central portion of the frame, and that's where we're looking when we draw our conclusions.

While the center looked better, as many of you noticed, the top right corner of the scene shot with the 50mm F2.8 was soft; softer than the same area in images shot with the K-1. However, given the sharper central area (and the lack of a better sample of the 77mm at the time), we opted to publish the review regardless, since we don't draw any sharpness or resolution conclusions from the edges of our studio scene.

Unfortunately, after the review was published we discovered a processing error with one of the K-1 II's studio files, taken at ISO 12,800. This was swapped out, with an editors' note added as soon as we became aware of it. More seriously, we also discovered that the K-1 Mark II's JPEG profile had been incorrectly set to 'Auto'. This resulted in differences in color and saturation compared to the K-1, which had been set correctly to the default: 'Bright'.

See the updated K-1 Mark II
image quality page

Upon considering the cumulative effect of these differences, we spoke to Ricoh, who were kind enough to send us a second K-1 II, a K-1 and a hand-picked 77mm F1.8 Limited, so that we could re-shoot. Now that we've had a chance to compare the results of both cameras with the new 77mm F1.8 (which is noticeably sharper than the lens with which we originally tested the K-1), I wanted to share our findings with you.

The re-shoot and the results

First and most notably, it's still clear that the accelerator unit in the K-1 Mark II is applying noise reduction to Raw files that the user cannot disable or remove. At high ISO values this still results in a loss of detail and contrast, but we have to acknowledge that a portion of our assessments were based on the incorrectly processed ISO 12,800 file. Our impression of JPEG color has also improved markedly as a result of using the correct 'Bright' profile.

As a result, we have adjusted both our scoring and some of the wording throughout the review to reflect this. It's important to note that scoring and our overall assessment of the camera are not significantly changed, though; here's why.

Most notably, it's still clear the K-1 Mark II is applying noise reduction to Raw files

Despite the two-year gap between them, the K-1 Mark II still represents a minor upgrade over the K-1. Yes, you can now choose ISO 819,200, but the quality and therefore the utility of this setting is questionable. Autofocus tracking is improved, but still uncompetitive. Noise reduction in Raw does reduce visible grain at high ISO values, but its value to demanding users of such a high-end, high-res camera who are likely to want complete control over their images strikes us as suspect. The K-1 II's lagging video capabilities look increasingly amiss in today's market, and lastly, the Dynamic (hand held) Pixel Shift does not actually align images moved by a single pixel, instead approximating a super resolution technique that's been around for years.

Read the full Pentax K-1 II review

All of this is certainly not to say the K-1 Mark II is a bad camera. Both the K-1 II and its predecessor are built like tanks, come with a bevy of unique features and are capable of absolutely outstanding image quality. We aim to give credit where credit is due, but as always, our first obligation is to help photographers spend their hard-earned money wisely. The fact remains that, despite our reassessment of the K-1 II's image quality and JPEG color in particular, there are many ways in which the K-1 Mark II is simply outclassed by the competition.

Because of this, it's still difficult for us to recommend the K-1 Mark II over competing models, and still difficult to recommend existing K-1 users pay $500 for the upgrade.

The final word

In the end, we are beholden to our readers and endeavor to hold all information that we publish on DPReview to the highest standards of accuracy. We fell short of that goal in this instance, and I apologize wholeheartedly for that. I hope that in fixing our mistakes with the K-1 Mark II, we've provided some additional and useful value to our review. We will take what we've learned from this experience to improve our future reviews in the hopes that we can continue to provide the most detailed and useful photography content on the internet.

As always, thanks for reading.

Carey

Categories: Equipment

Kamlan 28mm F1.4 APS-C lens unveiled with upcoming Kickstarter campaign

DPReview.com - Latest News - Thu, 05/31/2018 - 2:25pm

Chinese company Machang Optics is preparing to launch its new Kamlan 28mm F1.4 MFT lens on Kickstarter, where the company currently has its project listed in draft. The latest Kamlan lens is billed as an inexpensive alternative to pricier lenses while offering the same "premium optical quality" paired with a versatile focal length, super-low chromatic aberration, and a full metallic body.

The Kamlan 28mm F1.4 APS-C lens features 7 groups in 8 elements, 11 circular blades, 0.25m minimum focusing distance, 0.15x max magnification, manual focus, 52mm filter thread, and a 348g / 12oz weight. Machang Optics says the manual aperture ring is de-clicked for smooth changes during video recording.

Despite its budget-tier cost, Machang claims its new Kamlan lens provides a "neutral, accurate color rendition" and excellent center sharpness. The company plans to offer its latest model in Canon EOS M, Micro Four Thirds, Sony E, and Fuji XF mounts.

Once live, Kickstarter backers will able to pledge $149 USD to the campaign for a single Kamlan 28mm F1.4 lens. Shipping to backers is expected to start in August, and the lens has an anticipated $199 USD retail price.

In addition to its new 28mm offering, Machang has revealed a product timeline for future lenses it plans to launch: 21mm F1.8 APS-C, 50mm F1.1 Mark2, 32mm F1.3 APS-C, and 15mm F1.8 APS-C. The company indicates it will launch these new lenses later this year.

Via: 43rumors

Categories: Equipment

Tamron acknowledges 28-75mm F2.8 Di III RXD autofocus issue

DPReview.com - Latest News - Thu, 05/31/2018 - 12:53pm

Autofocus issues with Tamron's new 28-75mm F2.8 for E-mount have been reported by some users, and the company has issued an official acknowledgement of the problems. While there's no fix just yet, Tamron says it is 'evaluating the cause of the error' and researching a solution. The company says it will issue a firmware update, which thanks to the open nature of Sony's E-Mount standard, users will be able to apply the new firmware directly through the camera.

The issue specifically manifests itself as a complete autofocus freeze or fail, and though Tamron states that it primarily occurs in video shooting, users have reported issues in stills shooting as well. It's worth noting that in our experience with the lens so far, we have not noticed any focus problems to the degree we've seen from users on YouTube.

View our Tamron FE 28-75mm F2.8
sample gallery

We did have a handful of images that were slightly front-focused throughout the course of shooting our sample gallery, but nothing terribly out of the ordinary or resembling a complete focus fail that required restarting the camera or removing and re-mounting the lens.

Notice about 28-75mm F/2.8 Di III RXD (Model A036) Operation

Dear Tamron product users and potential purchasers.

Thank you for your interest in Tamron products.

We would like to announce that we discovered some issues with the auto focus of our new lens, 28-75mm F/2.8 Di III RXD (Model A036) for Sony E-mount, 35mm full-frame mirrorless cameras, released on May 24, 2018. The issues occur primarily when using the camera in video recording mode.

Rest assured, we are evaluating the cause of the error and for the solution to this matter. We expect this issue to be resolved very shortly and we will release a firmware update at that time.

Regarding the firmware updating process, please be assured that the process is accomplished directly through the Sony camera and supported by the Sony firmware updating function. As soon as the process is finalized, we will explain the process in detail on our website.

We sincerely apologize to all users and potential purchasers for any inconvenience this issue may cause.

Categories: Equipment

Xiaomi Mi 8 launches with tele-camera and AI-powered portrait mode

DPReview.com - Latest News - Thu, 05/31/2018 - 12:21pm

Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi today announced its latest high-end smartphone, the Mi 8. The new model comes with very similar camera specifications to the Mi MIX 2S, featuring a wide/tele dual-camera setup.

The main camera uses a 1/2.55" Sony IMX363 Sony sensor with a 1.4µm pixel size, F1.8 aperture lens and a 4-axis optical image stabilization system. The longer lens offers approximately a 2x zoom factor. The sensor comes with smaller 1.0µm pixels, and at F2.4 the aperture is not quite as fast as the main camera's.

The camera uses PDAF to focus and a LED-flash helps illuminate your subjects in very low light. Artificial intelligence offers auto enhancement for more than 200 types of scenes and there is also an AI-enhanced portrait mode, similar to the iPhone X's portrait lighting. The latter is also available on the 20MP / F2.0 front camera.

Xiaomi Mi 8 portrait effect Xiaomi Mi 8 portrait effect

Images can be framed and viewed on a 6.21-inch Samsung AMOLED display with 18.7:9 aspect ratio and Full HD+ resolution and the device is powered by Qualcomm's top-end chipset Snapdragon 845. For those relying on their phone's GPS when out shooting images, it's worth noting that the Mi 8 is also the first smartphone with Dual GPS, combining L1 and L5 frequencies. This should provide faster and more precise location services than most devices.

Pricing starts at CNY2,699 (approximately $420) for the 6/64 GB version and go all the way up to CNY3,299 (approximately $515) for the 6/256 GB model, which, compared to some direct competitors, represents pretty good value. The Mi 8 will be available online and offline from June 5th.

Categories: Equipment

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