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Updated: 59 min 6 sec ago

Updated firmware for Fujifilm X-T100 and X-A5 include two new filters, square capture mode

Thu, 08/30/2018 - 11:45am

Fujifilm has new firmware updates for its X-A5 and X-T100 mirrorless cameras. The updates include new and updated features in addition to a number of bug fixes.

First up is the Fujifilm X-A5. Firmware version 1.20 adds two new Advance Filters called 'Rich & Fine' and 'Monochrome [NIR].' The 'Rich & Fine' filter is made for food and still life photography, with an emphasis on saturated colors and a slight vignette. As the name suggests, the 'Monochrome [NIR]' filter simulates the look of a near-infrared camera through selective toning of the scene.

Also included in the update is a new Square Mode, which enables 1:1 format capture and improved autofocus accuracy in AF-C mode when the shutter is half-pressed. A bug that caused the highlight warning not to show in the Info display has also been squashed, alongside a few others.

Onto the X-T100, firmware version 1.10 adds the same two new Advance Filters, Square capture mode, improved autofocus accuracy in AF-C mode present in the X-A5 firmware update. Fujifilm has also made the default ISO setting when switching between P, S, A, M, Adv modes 'Auto.'

Fujifilm also fixed an issue with the autofocus frame shifting when zooming in on the focus position display. Other bug fixes, including the aforementioned highlight warning issue, have been included as well.

You can download firmware version 1.20 for the X-A5 and firmware version 1.10 for the X-T100 on Fujifilm's website. Installation instructions are found on the bottom of the respective update pages.

Categories: Equipment

Raw conversions added to Nikon Z7 pre-production gallery

Thu, 08/30/2018 - 10:00am
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Ever since getting our hands on a pre-production model of the new Nikon Z7 mirrorless camera, we've been very eager to play with the Raw files. Now, our wishes (and maybe yours) have finally come true: click through for a large selection of Raw conversions made using a beta version of Adobe Camera Raw 11.

Categories: Equipment

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III, which is the better buy? Hint: it's too close to call

Thu, 08/30/2018 - 7:00am

Battle of the ‘budget’ full-frame mirrorless

The Nikon Z6 and Sony a7 III are two cameras with much in common including 24MP full-frame sensors. If you're looking to sink your teeth into the world of full-frame mirrorless, these two represent the most-affordable current models on the market, with body-only MSRPs of around $2000.

But the Z6 is a first-generation product for Nikon, while the a7 III is Sony's third go at a 'budget' full-frame offering. How much does this matter? Let's dig in!

Note: Our impressions on the Z6 are largely based on limited experience of using (but not shooting with) a pre-production model, plus significant time spent shooting with pre-production samples of the higher-resolution but operationally very similar Z7.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Image quality

Both of these cameras make use of 24MP full-frame sensors. The Sony a7 III's sensor offers excellent low-light image quality, excellent dynamic range and best-in-class JPEG noise reduction. Our full review also notes improvements to color – specifically skin tones – over past Sony full-frame cameras.

We've yet to test the Z6's sensor, but if past Nikon 24MP full-frame sensors are any indication, we also expect excellent image quality. Generally speaking we prefer Nikon colors to Sony colors but the Sony may have an advantage when it comes to retaining detail while reducing noise at high ISOs. Still, it's too soon to tell which camera will end up with the upper hand, so for now, it's a toss up in the IQ department.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Video

Neither of these cameras is a slouch when it comes to video. In fact, the two have more in common than not, including: over-sampled 4K/24p video using full sensor readout, useful tools such as focus peaking, microphone and headphone jacks, in-body stabilization for hand-held shooting and a 1080/120p mode for slow motion work.

For more experienced filmmakers, there are some important differences though: The Z6 can output 10-bit log over HDMI, while the a7 III cannot. On the other hand the a7 III can record 8-bit HLG and S-Log2 in-camera, while the Z6 cannot.

Another area where the two cameras might vary is AF tracking in video. As noted in our a7 III review, the tap-to-track function uses Sony's old Center Lock-on AF algorithm, which is somewhat unreliable and requires a combination of unintuitive button presses to engage. Conversely, based on our impressions shooting video with the Z7, Nikon's tap-to-track is both easy to use and very reliable. Whether that proves true in use (bearing in mind that the Z6 features a slightly different AF system to the Z7) is something we'll establish once we receive a reviewable camera.

Overall, both the a7 III and Z6 offer compelling video packages, but provisionally, we're going to give the Nikon the nod for what's likely to be more usable video AF.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: AF

Both the Nikon and Sony offer impressive on-sensor autofocus point coverage. The Z6 has 273 PDAF points covering 81% of its sensor, the Sony has 693 PDAF points covering 93% of the frame. In terms of usability, both have AF joysticks making point selection painless. But the Nikon AF points are illuminated in red, making them substantially easier to see than that of the Sony's (which only illuminate slightly when focus is confirmed).

Face detection modes are offered in both cameras, but only the Sony offers Eye AF which locks focus on a subject's eye with incredible precision. For stills mode, we also prefer the Sony's through-the-viewfinder subject tracking, which is easy to use and very reliable. The Z6 on the other hand does not inherit Nikon's excellent 3D Tracking. Tracking through the EVF is clunkier than it is on Nikon DSLRs and requires pressing the OK button to reset and switch subjects – this is annoying and can cost you shots.

We're calling it in favor of Sony when it comes to autofocus through the EVF. If Nikon manages to squeeze 3D Tracking into the Z6 via firmware, we'll reconsider. Until then, the Sony's seamless tracking, excellent Eye AF and more precise AF point spread give it the advantage.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Usability

We realize that a camera's usability or lack thereof depends on the photographer operating it and their needs. But there are some notable UI differences between the Z6 and a7 III.

The a7 III has Sony's latest menus, which have been cleaned up over previous versions, but we still find them a bit confusing and redundant. The camera offers a good level of customization, but requires a decent amount of time spent setting it up to really get the most out of it. The touchscreen is a disappointment: it has limited use when it comes to changing camera settings/navigating the menu and is overall, unresponsive.

The Z6 inherits its (also pretty complex and often confusing) menus from Nikon DSLRs and largely functions like a Nikon DSLR except for its AF modes, which are inherited from the Coolpix line. Like the a7 III, it also offers a good level of customization, but in our opinion it's an easier camera to simply pick up and shoot with. The Z6 also offers a top plate info panel – the a7 III does not. And unlike the Sony, its touchscreen can be used to change camera settings and navigate the menus.

Overall, both cameras are very usable, but the Nikon's better touch operation makes it the winner.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Body design

The Nikon Z6 and Sony a7 III are remarkably similar in terms of size and weight – the Sony is 25g lighter, 7mm narrower, 5mm shorter and 6mm thicker. And while both cameras are weather-sealed, the Sony lacks proper sealing on its bottom battery door (the Nikon battery door is well-sealed) which is something to consider if you shoot in wet conditions.

Grip preference is obviously very subjective, but as a staff, we prefer the Z-series grip to that of the a7 III. However, the Sony offers dual SD card slots, (only one is rated for faster UHS-II memory cards), while the Nikon offers a single XQD slot (but will support CFexpress media in a future firmware update). Does this matter? That depends on how and what you shoot. Judging by the comments on our Z7 launch content, for a lot of you it's a deal-breaker.

Overall, we really like Sony's dual slots, but appreciate the Nikon's comfier grip, top plate info panel and more robust sealing. Still, we're calling this one a toss up.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Lenses and mount

At launch, the Nikon Z6 will have three available native lenses, shown above.

Nikon's new Z mount is larger than Sony's E mount by a good margin (55mm vs 46.1mm) and has a shorter flange distance (16mm vs 18mm). So what does this actually mean? Well, in theory it means that Nikon will be able to put out faster glass because their lenses will be less constrained by the limitations that the E-mount's comparatively narrow throat imposes. This also means the Nikon Z might become the most adaptable camera ever, since it has the shortest flange distance we've ever seen.

On the other hand, right now there are only three native Z lenses available for the Nikon Z6 whereas the a7 III can make use of 25+ native Sony lenses as well as an ever growing list of third party lenses. Then again, thanks to the $250 FTZ adapter ($150 for a limited time if bought with a Z camera) the Z6 will work with most F mount lenses, autofocus and all.

Again, though, this one is also a toss up. The Nikon clearly has the more versatile lens mount for those looking to invest in a system today – the Sony has more native glass to offer, sans adapter.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: EVF & LCD

The Nikon Z6 has a a 3.68M dot electronic viewfinder with 0.8x magnification, compared to the Sony a7 III's 2.36M dot EVF with 0.78x magnification. That difference in EVF resolution gives the Nikon a crisp and clear advantage. It's also worth noting the Nikon doesn't appear drop its EVF resolution when in shooting mode, while the Sony does.

And while both cameras have tilting LCDs, the Nikon has a larger, higher-res screen: 3.2" and 2.1M dots compared to 3" and 922k dots. Overall, Nikon is the winner when it comes to EVF and LCD.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Performance

In terms of speed, both cameras offer solid burst rates for anyone wishing to capture sports or action. The Sony a7 III can shoot up to 10 fps with AF compared to 12 fps on the the Nikon Z6. But the Sony has the Nikon beat when it comes to battery life, pumping out 710 shots per charge (CIPA rated) compared to a measly 330 shots per charge (CIPA rated) on the Nikon. We assume that like the Z7, the Z6 will be able to shoot for a great many more photos than that on a single charge for most people's normal use, but so does the a7 III.

Due to the better battery life Sony gets the nod in the performance department.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony a7 III: Conclusion

It's almost as if Nikon developed the Z6 intending to match the a7 III spec for spec. Of course, we know this isn't true since the Z system has been in development for years. Still both cameras make a compelling case for your cash – such a compelling case, in fact, that picking a winner is far too difficult until we've fully tested the Z6. Until then, here's a quick recap of how they stack up:

Both cameras should be capable of excellent image and video quality. But the Nikon Z6 has a better EVF, more responsive/high-res touchscreen, probably better video AF and a more versatile lens mount, including excellent near-native support for legacy F-mount lenses. On the other hand the Sony a7 III appears to offer a better autofocus experience for stills shooters, better battery life and obviously far more native lenses at launch.

Categories: Equipment

Nikon D3500 gets smaller and cheaper, battery life gets a boost

Thu, 08/30/2018 - 12:00am
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Nikon has replaced its entry-level D3400 DSLR with the aptly named D3500. The main change is that the body is similar to that of the even-smaller D5600, minus the articulating touchscreen display. The D3500 is also cheaper than its predecessor, with a list price of just $499 with an AF-P 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 VR lens, compared to $649 for a D3400 kit.

Nikon has also managed to increase battery life by 30% to 1550 shots per charge, despite using the same processor and battery as the D3400.

The D3500 has the same 24MP DX-format CMOS sensor, 11-point AF system, easy-to-use Guide Mode, 1080/60p video and Bluetooth-only connectivity as the D3400.

As mentioned above, the D3500 will sell for $499 with an 18-55mm kit lens. A two-lens kit which includes the 18-55 as well as a non-VR AF-P 70-300 F4.5-6.3G ED lens will be priced at $849. Both kits will ship in September.

Press Release

THE NEW NIKON D3500: CAPTURE AND SHARE YOUR TREASURED MOMENTS WITH THE LIGHTEST, FRIENDLIEST NIKON DSLR YET

The Redesigned Nikon D3500 is the Most Portable Entry-Level Nikon DSLR Ever, and the Easiest Way to Capture the Moments that Matter Most

MELVILLE, NY (AUGUST 30, 2018 at 12:01 A.M. EDT) – Today, Nikon unveiled the new Nikon D3500, a compact, entry-level DSLR that makes capturing the world easier and more convenient than ever. The 24.2-megapixel D3500 features an updated CMOS image sensor and Nikon EXPEED image processor to capture sharp details and vivid colors, and is packed with easy-to-use features that help first-time DSLR users start capturing better photos and video right away.

With its ergonomic and lightweight body, approximately 1,550 shots on a single charge and convenient features like Nikon SnapBridge1 and helpful Guide Mode, the Nikon D3500 is a great option for parents, travelers and photo enthusiasts who are eager to take their photography to the next level.

“The Nikon D3500 is ideal for consumers who are looking to easily capture the kinds of images that their smartphone simply cannot match, and share them seamlessly with family and friends,” said Jay Vannatter, Executive Vice President, Nikon Inc. “The D3500 reaffirms our commitment to releasing convenient DX-format DSLR options for those just discovering photography.”

Capture Stunning Images and Video with Ease

The Nikon D3500 is bursting with high-performance features that help first-time DSLR users capture amazing images in a variety of situations. The camera’s broad ISO range of 100-25,600 makes it easy to capture sharp, clear images in low-light shooting situations with very little noise, while the 11-point autofocus (AF) System locks onto subjects, even fast-moving pets or children to help ensure that fleeting moments aren’t missed. The D3500 also features built-in Effect Modes to help entry-level users discover and express their personal creative vision.

Additionally, the Nikon D3500 is capable of continuous shooting up to five frames-per-second (fps), helping to capture candid moments with ease. The Nikon D3500 is also equipped with Full HD 1080/60p video capability. Users can switch from shooting photos to video at the press of a button, allowing them to capture spur-of-the-moment memories that will last a lifetime with stunning sharpness and clarity.

To further expand creativity, the in-camera Guide Mode gives new DSLR users the tools they need to learn about their new camera’s capabilities and become better, more knowledgeable photographers.

All these amazing features have been incorporated into a new ergonomic and lightweight design featuring a more comfortable, deeper grip and the slim monocoque body design similar to the Nikon D5600. The new design also features a more beginner-friendly and intuitive control layout, with a larger playback button and the most frequently-used controls all relocated to the right side of the camera’s LCD where they are easiest to access.

The redesigned Nikon D3500 is ideal for a fast-paced on-the-go lifestyle, making it the perfect companion for any family event or travel adventure.

Always Connected for Easy Sharing

Sharing photos with the ones you love is easier than ever with the Nikon D3500 and Nikon SnapBridge app. The D3500 uses Bluetooth2 to create an always-on3 connection between the camera and a compatible smart device, making it possible to seamlessly share 2MP images to social media as they are captured. Additionally, D3500 users will now be able to trigger their camera remotely via Bluetooth using SnapBridge. Nikon SnapBridge users can also access Nikon Image Space4, a free online image sharing and storage service that preserves memories in the cloud.

Pricing and Availability

The Nikon D3500 will be available in a two-lens kit option, including the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR and AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED, for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $849.95* in September 2018. A Nikon D3500 single-lens kit with the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR will also be available for (SRP) of $499.95* in September 2018. For more information on the new Nikon D3500, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

Nikon D3500 specifications

Price
MSRPBody w/AF-P 18-55mm VR lens ($499), body w/AF-P 18-55mm VR and 70-300 F4.5-6.3 non-VR lenses ($849)
Body type
Body typeCompact SLR
Body materialComposite
Sensor
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Other resolutions4496 x 3000, 2992 x 2000
Image ratio w:h3:2
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors25 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorExpeed 4
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
Image
ISOAuto, 100-25600
White balance presets12
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, Normal, Basic
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
  • NEF (RAW, 12-bit)
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Digital zoomNo
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points11
Lens mountNikon F
Focal length multiplier1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3″
Screen dots921,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeOptical (pentamirror)
Viewfinder coverage95%
Viewfinder magnification0.85× (0.57× 35mm equiv.)
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Shutter priority
  • Aperture priority
  • Manual
Scene modes
  • Auto
  • Auto [Flash Off]
  • Child
  • Close-up
  • Landscape
  • Night Portrait
  • Portrait
  • Sports
  • Special effects
Built-in flashYes (Pop-up)
Flash range7.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flashYes (via hot shoe or wireless)
Flash modesAuto, Auto slow sync, Auto slow sync with red-eye reduction, Auto with red-eye reduction, Fill-flash, Off, Rear-curtain sync, Rear-curtain with slow sync, Red-eye reduction, Red-eye reduction with slow sync, Slow sync
Flash X sync speed1/200 sec
Drive modes
  • Single-frame
  • Self-timer
  • Quiet shutter-release
  • Quick response remote
  • Delayed remote
  • Continuous
Continuous drive5.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2, 5, 10, 20 secs (1-9 exposures))
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot AF-area
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Videography features
Resolutions1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50 fps), 640 x 424 (30, 25 fps)
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
Modes
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 50p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 25p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 60p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 30p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
MicrophoneMono
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
USB chargingNo
HDMIYes (mini-HDMI)
Microphone portNo
Headphone portNo
WirelessBuilt-In
Wireless notesSnapBridge (Bluetooth only)
Remote controlYes (via smartphone)
Physical
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionEN-EL14a lithium-ion battery and charger
Battery Life (CIPA)1550
Weight (inc. batteries)365 g (0.80 lb / 12.87 oz)
Dimensions124 x 97 x 70 mm (4.88 x 3.82 x 2.76″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingNo
GPSNone
Categories: Equipment

Microsoft introduces AI-powered audio and video transcription for OneDrive

Wed, 08/29/2018 - 4:47pm

Managing media files, especially when sharing them across a group of people is not always an easy task. This is especially true for video files. Today Microsoft has launched a new AI-powered media search function for OneDrive that should help simplify things.

The new feature is capable of transcribing audio and video files and displaying timestamped quotes alongside the media viewer, which is compatible with 320 file types. The new feature is an addition to Microsoft's already available AI-powered photo screening system that can detect location, objects and text in image files.

As an end result all media files become fully searchable. For example, you could search for a scanned receipt by typing one of the items listed on it, or use a piece of dialogue or voiceover to search in video or audio files.

The new feature is designed to facilitate collaboration across larger groups but could certainly also provide benefits for photographers and especially videographers with large archives. The automated transcription services will be natively available for video and audio files in OneDrive later this year.

Categories: Equipment

Blackmagic releases first Pocket Cinema Camera 4K footage

Wed, 08/29/2018 - 3:50pm

Blackmagic Design has released three videos demonstrating the performance of its upcoming Pocket Cinema Camera 4K. It updates the Pocket Cinema Camera introduced in 2013, was revealed at NAB 2018 in April and is expected to launch next month.

Ahead of that launch, Blackmagic Design has published the videos "Nature" by Mark Wyatt, "Models Walking at Night" by John Brawley, and "Models Walking in Daylight" also by John Brawley, each showcasing the upcoming camera's capabilities. This is the first time footage from the camera has been published.

Both Wyatt's and Brawley's experiences with the camera are provided in each video description. In describing his time with the Pocket Cinema Camera 4K, Wyatt said:

I had the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K for only a few days, but overall I was really impressed by it. The weight of the camera is very liberating, especially when you are used to using larger camera systems. The screen is big and bright enough to use in daylight, which I found great for judging focus and exposure. And, the colors too on the screen, were also nicely represented. In fact, I would argue it is Blackmagic’s best screen yet.

The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K features a full size Four Thirds HDR sensor offering a native 4096 x 2160 resolution and 13 stops of dynamic range. The upgraded model also features dual native ISO, a USB-C expansion port with direct support for external storage drives, a new multi-function grip design, and much more.

Categories: Equipment

Nikon Z7 pre-order deliveries will be delayed for some buyers

Wed, 08/29/2018 - 2:40pm

Nikon Japan has issued an apology advising Nikon Z7 buyers that some pre-ordered deliveries will be delayed. The company plans to start delivering its newly announced full-frame mirrorless camera to early buyers in September, but Nikon says high demand for the model will result in some customers receiving their products at a later date.

The apology also warns that Nikon Z7 orders placed in the future may take some time to deliver, though Nikon didn't offer specific timeframes; the 500mm F5.6 PF ED VR lens will also be impacted. A recent report published by Myzaker claims Nikon is producing 20,000 of its Z7 mirrorless cameras per month at a factory in Sendai, Japan.

Categories: Equipment

Adobe won't support older operating systems with its next major Creative Cloud update

Wed, 08/29/2018 - 10:59am

If you're not one to update your computer gear often, you might want to reconsider. Adobe has issued a notice future releases of Creative Cloud programs will no longer support older versions of MacOS and Windows operating systems.

'As we prepare for our next major release of Creative Cloud, we wanted to share some information on updated operating system requirements,' says Adobe. 'To take advantage of the latest operating system features and technologies, the next major release of Creative Cloud will not support Windows 8.1, Windows 10 v1511 and v1607, and Mac OS 10.11 (El Capitan).'

Adobe notes all past and current versions of Creative Cloud applications will continue to work on the aforementioned operating systems. Creative Cloud Desktop — the management application for all Creative Cloud apps — will continue to be supported on Windows 7 or later and MacOS 10.9 (Mavericks) and later.

According to Adobe, 'focusing [its] efforts on more modern versions of Windows and Mac operating systems allows [it] to concentrate on developing the features and functionality most requested by members, while ensuring peak performance that takes advantage of modern hardware.'

Categories: Equipment

Which is better: Nikon Z7 vs Sony a7R III

Wed, 08/29/2018 - 9:00am

Mirrorless compared: Nikon Z7 and Sony a7R III

Nikon has finally announced its first full-frame mirrorless camera, the Z7, and it probably won't come as any surprise that it's poised to take on the current high resolution mirrorless king: the a7R III. But, as closely as these cameras may appear on a spec sheet, there are some notable differences in addition to the similarities.

At a high level, both models offer the maximum resolution within their respective product lines, with the Z7 capturing 45.7MP while the a7R III captures 42MP. Each is also designed with both still photography and video in mind, with Nikon leveraging its new mirrorless platform to include video features not found on its DSLRs. Even their prices come in at a similar point, with the a7R III body retailing for $3200 while the Z7 lists for $3400.

On the following pages we'll look at some specific comparisons between these two models to see where the similarities end and the differences begin.

Body and design

One of the things Nikon has done very well on the Z7 is to make the camera feel like... a Nikon. Its build quality is on par with the company's mid-range DSLRs, it includes a large comfortable grip that should make most Nikon users feel right at home, it has well-placed buttons and includes as a joystick controller on the rear of the camera.

Sony's mirrorless Alpha series has now gone through three generations of design and has reached a point where it's feeling pretty mature. In particular, the a7R III gained a larger, more comfortable grip than earlier models and also includes a joystick controller on the back. But among our team the consensus is that the Z7 is more comfortable to use, not the least because Sony's bigger grip is still far too small in height to fit most hands, causing increased fatigue over extended periods of use.

Both cameras claim to be weather-sealed, but the Nikon's weather-sealing feels more substantial all around; It also includes seals around the battery door, something notably absent on the Sony.

The Z7 also includes a top plate information display, a feature carried over from Nikon's DSLR designs, though now it's an OLED panel instead of LCD; It's something which may appeal to users moving over from a DSLR body.

We're inclined to give the nod to Nikon in this particular comparison, though we realize that ergonomics represent a highly personal preference.

User interface

Nikon tells us one of its design priorities on the Z7 was to provide a seamless transition for Nikon users migrating from its DSLRs, and this is clearly reflected in the Z7's user interface. The camera inherits its menu system directly from Nikon's DSLRs, and the Z7's menus are virtually identical to those on the D850, which we found generally easy to operate. In contrast, although Sony's menus have evolved and are easier to navigate than in the past, they can still be a bit confusing or occasionally leave you searching for that one feature you know is hidden somewhere. Both cameras offer customizable 'My Menus', mitigating this issue.

Both cameras also include a rear touchscreen. The Z7 embraces its touchscreen, letting you use it for numerous functions including setting the AF point, interacting with the menu, and smoothly zooming and navigating through images in playback mode. It also enables a touch-friendly version of Nikon's customizable 'i' menu, which lets you quickly change settings by tapping the screen. One curious omission is that the rear LCD can't be used as a touchpad to control the AF point when holding the camera to your eye. Overall, however, we're impressed with Nikon's touchscreen implementation, which feels as though it's an integral part of the camera's design.

In contrast, the a7R III's touchscreen feels like an 'add on'. Sony's decision to disable it by default only speaks louder to the issue that the touchscreen on Sony cameras is, currently, almost a nuisance. It doesn't offer enough benefit to outweigh the negatives of accidental to touch operation.

Sure it includes a touchpad mode for moving the AF point with the camera is to your eye, but it's cumbersome and unintuitive at best. Yes there's the ability to tap on the rear screen to set the focus point but, again, it's unresponsive and unintuitive at best, giving the sense that it's been bolted onto the system rather than designed to be part of the user experience from the product's inception.

Both cameras provide numerous options for customization, though we think most people will find the Nikon easier to pick up and use without spending a lot of time setting up the camera. However, the Sony certainly gets points for very deep features and customization options to meet your needs. There's not a clear winner here – each provides advantages depending on how you plan to use the camera - but if we were forced to choose one overall implementation, it would be the Nikon.

Image quality

It's hard to find fault with either camera when it comes to image quality as both are capable of delivering extremely high quality images when paired with good lenses, and from a practical standpoint the difference in resolution is negligible. Nikon tells us the Z7 uses a very similar sensor to the one found in the D850 (including its ISO 64 mode), and based on our experience so far we expect image quality and dynamic range performance to be similar to that camera. Of course, the a7R III is no slouch when it comes to dynamic range, either, performing similarly to the D850 despite having a base ISO of 100 and receiving a bit less light.

Generally speaking, we still prefer Nikon colors, though Sony has made significant improvements to its color science of late. However, Sony's high ISO noise reduction is a step ahead, leaving behind a nice random noise pattern while Nikon's JPEG engine can leave behind 'rice grain' artifacts.

We'll be able to provide an in-depth comparison of image quality once we've completed our studio scene tests using Raw image files, however most users should be able to extract beautiful, high resolution photos from either of these cameras, particularly when working from Raw files.

Autofocus

Both cameras provide autofocus using on-sensor phase-detect autofocus systems. The Z7 features 493 phase-detect AF points with an impressive 90% horizontal and vertical coverage of the frame. It also features face detection technology plus body movement (designed to continue tracking a subject even if they turn their face away from the camera), and is rated down to -1EV with an F2 lens attached (-4 EV if you enable 'Low Light AF', albeit at the cost of much slower autofocus). Nikon also gets credit for its bright AF points which are easy to see in the viewfinder, compared to Sony's grey AF points that can be difficult to see against, well, most backgrounds.

The a7R III has 399 phase-detect AF points, which cover a smaller area of the frame than the Nikon, but it also utilizes 425 contrast-detect AF points to provide greater coverage. It also includes Sony's very effective 'Eye AF' system, one of our favorite features on the camera. Using Eye AF, the a7R III identifies and focuses on a subject's eye, tracking it tenaciously if it moves within the frame. The Z7 doesn't offer an Eye AF mode. The a7R III is rated to focus, with F2 lenses, at lower light levels than the Nikon (outside of Nikon's 'Low Light AF' mode): an impressive -3EV in fact.

Although Nikon did a good job of translating its DSLR user experience to a mirrorless camera, one feature that didn't make the transition is its 3D Autofocus system, which we consider best-in-class. Instead, the Z7 inherits a version of the AF system used by Nikon's DSLRs in live view mode. Instead of simply placing an AF point over your subject and initiating focus, the Z7 requires you to press OK to enable subject tracking, and to press it again to change subjects. By comparison, Sony's Lock-on AF provides a more seamless experience for subject tracking: like Nikon DSLR 3D Tracking, you simply place your AF point over your subject and half-press to initiate tracking. Eye AF even works in a similar way. This simple method of quickly selecting your subject on the fly is, sadly, completely missing from Nikon's debut mirrorless, and that will undoubtedly impact fast-paced shooting with high demands on AF performance.

Overall, the a7R III wins here, despite the fact that Nikon has one of the best AF systems on the market in its DSLRs. If it can bring that system, or something similar, to its mirrorless cameras it may well change the equation.

Video

While Sony has a history of including a lot of video features on its cameras, video has typically been a secondary feature on Nikon's DSLRs. With the Z7, that changes: Nikon is making a statement that it can do video, and do it well.

Both the Z7 and a7R III can record video up to UHD 4K/30p, as well as 1080/120p for slow motion (though the Nikon can only do this from a Super 35 region). One challenge common to both cameras is processing video from very high resolution sensors, though Nikon and Sony have essentially taken the same approach to solving the problem. Each camera can capture 4K using the full width of its sensor, but with limited sampling (line skipping on the Z7 and pixel binning on the a7R III). For best results in 4K, both provide the option to record from an oversampled Super 35 (APS-C) region of the sensor, which adds a crop factor to your focal length but results in very high quality 4K video.

Resolution isn't everything, however, and the Nikon displays more rolling shutter in its full-frame 4K footage compared to the Sony. Both cameras offer Log gamma curves to support video shooters. In particular, Nikon has added its own Log gamma curve to the mix, and can output 10-bit 4:2:2 N-Log over HDMI. Internal recording is limited to 8-bit 4:2:0 at up to 100Mbps, and internal N-Log recording is not supported. In contrast, the a7R III supports internal Log capture using the S-Log2 and S-Log3 gamma profiles but only in 8-bit 4:2:0 color. HDMI output is also limited to 8-bit 4:2:2 signal, unlike the 10-bit found on the Nikon. The Sony offers an 8-bit implementation of Hybrid Log Gamma for capture and display on HDR TVs and monitors, which is particularly helpful because it's not as extreme as other log profiles and, therefore, a bit more friendly with 8-bit capture. Furthermore, Sony's HLG capture mode allows for perfect Raw histograms/zebras, so you can optimally expose your Raws.

Both models also offer an array of features designed to assist video shooters, including focus peaking, zebra warnings, and internal LUTs for use when shooting Log gamma ('view assist' on Nikon and 'gamma display assist' on Sony).

On the hardware side of things, both the Nikon and Sony include sensor-shift 5-axis image stabilization systems, as well as microphone and headphone jacks for recording and monitoring audio.

Thanks to on-sensor phase-detect autofocus, both cameras have very effective AF when shooting video. While we've come to expect excellent video AF from Sony cameras, this represents a significant step for Nikon and we're very impressed. Video AF on the Z7 is among the best we've seen on any camera, dependably focusing on and tracking subjects, matching or even outclassing the a7R III. More importantly, the ease with which you can specify who or what you want to track on the Nikon Z 7 is far superior to what's offered by any Sony camera, period.

We'll call this a draw for now since it depends on your specific video requirements and workflow, but we will say that for ease of use, the Nikon Z 7 wins without question.

EVF and LCD

When it comes to electronic viewfinders, the Z7 and a7R III both deliver a high quality experience with 3.68M-dot OLED EVFs, though with minor differences in magnification (0.8x on the Nikon and 0.78x on the Sony).

However, despite the similar specifications, both EVFs are not created equal. The a7R III delivers the full resolution to the EVF in playback mode, but not when shooting, and resolution drops when shooting in burst mode. The Z7, on the other hand, maintains full resolution even while shooting, and uses a relatively complex optical design with aspheric elements and a fluorine coating. In its effort to provide a seamless experience to DSLR shooters, Nikon has created a bright, sharp display that provides an extremely lifelike experience. The Sony, though, has a slightly deeper eye-point, meaning its full extent can be seen from slightly (2mm) further away.

Both cameras also have tilting rear touchscreens, though the Nikon is the clear winner here with a 2.1M-dot screen vs. a 1.44M-dot screen on the Sony. As we've mentioned elsewhere, Nikon has also done a better job of integrating the touchscreen into the camera's overall user experience, giving the impression that it was an integral part of the camera's design from the ground up rather than a feature bolted on later.

Nikon wins this one.

Card slots and media

One of the more controversial aspects of the Z7's design is Nikon's decision to include a single card slot in the camera at a time when dual card slots have been considered an expected feature, particularly among premium models. The a7R III, in contrast, includes dual card slots with a variety of configuration options, including the ability to save all files to both cards for backup, using one card for overflow, or storing Raw files on one card and JPEGs on the other. Though it's worth mentioning that Sony's confusing interface for setting up the dual card slots might make you wish it only had one card slot to begin with.

Additionally, the two cameras use different card formats, with the Nikon relying on XQD cards while the Sony utilizes the more common SD format, though only includes support for UHS-II cards in one of its slots. Although Nikon may be somewhat forward-looking in going XQD-only (it tells us the camera will also support CFexpress media in a future firmware update,) if you've been using SD cards up until now you may need to budget for some additional memory along with the camera body.

Furthermore, the Z 7 doesn't write all its files to the XQD card as fast as, say, a D5 - possibly due to the increased processing overhead of large 46MP images - hence the XQD experience on the Z 7 may not feel as finessed as with the D5. That may make you question the advantage of XQD on the Z 7, but it's fair to say that, for now, XQD is more future-proof performance-wise than SD.

Lens mount and lenses

Nikon's new Z-mount has a very short 16mm flange distance, slightly shorter than the 18mm distance on Sony's E-mount, and both cameras have the potential to serve as 'universal lens' platforms for adapting older or third party lenses. However, while the E-mount has a relatively svelte 46.1mm diameter, the Z-mount is much larger at 55mm. In theory, this gives Nikon an advantage as it will be able to design fast lenses in the future without working around the constraints of the narrower E-mount.

At the moment Sony does have the advantage. Sony has been rolling out E-mount lenses for a number of years, and several third-party companies, including Sigma, have jumped on the bandwagon. There's also a healthy ecosystem of E-mount lens adapters that have grown up around E-mount. However, the Z-mount has the potential to be the most adaptable mount ever thanks to its short flange distance, and in theory you could even adapt E-mount lenses to it. Unfortunately, Nikon isn't sharing technical details of the mount, so third party makers will need to reverse engineer it.

Nikon has presented an impressive roadmap of Z-mount lenses, though only three have shipped to date. However, that doesn't mean Nikon users will need to wait around for more lenses to appear. The company's FTZ adapter will allow you to mount over 350 of its F-mount lenses to the system, including over 90 more recent lenses that will retain full functionality when mounted with the adapter. So, even without native Z-mount lenses, Nikon users should have plenty of options to choose from.

Sony probably comes out on top here today, but Nikon's forward-looking Z-mount may give it a leg up in the future.

Extra features

While there are many differences between the Z7 and a7R III, many of them ultimately come down to different ways of implementing the same or similar features. However, each also has unique features not found on the other.

The Z7 includes built-in focus stacking and multi-frame mode, which provides an overlay of your existing frame as you take a second shot. It also includes an intervalometer for shooting time-lapse sequences and creating 8K time-lapse footage in-camera. This is a bit of a sore point for some a7R III users as there's no built-in intervalometer and the camera does not have access to Sony's PlayMemories store to add one.

While the a7R III lacks those features, it does have a pixel shift mode which combines four shots captured while shifting the sensor one pixel at a time. This can produce incredibly detailed images since it essentially eliminates the Bayer pattern on the sensor, ensuring full color data for every pixel, and also has the inherent noise and dynamic range benefits of combining four shots – though it has limited utility with moving subjects.

Performance

The Nikon Z7 can shoot 5.5 fps in continuous drive with live view updated between shots. If you need to shoot higher frame rates it's possible to do so in High+ mode, which captures 8 fps in 14-bit Raw or 9 fps in 12-bit Raw. High+ maintains autofocus between shots, but locks exposure settings after shooting the first image. By comparison, the a7R III can shoot up to 10 fps with continuous AF/AE.

Speed matters, but so does a camera's buffer, and the Z7 doesn't have a large one. It fills up after 23 12-bit Raw files, 18 14-bit Raw files, or 25 fine quality JPEGs. Even though its fast XQD card can clear the buffer fairly quickly, you still notice the limit when you hit it. The a7R III's buffer can store 28 frames of uncompressed Raw files or 76 frames when shooting compressed Raw, giving it an edge over the Nikon.

Of course, battery performance is important as well, and there are some big differences here. The a7R III uses Sony's new NP-FZ100 battery, which has a CIPA rating of 650 shots, though in practice we typically see much better battery life than that. The Z7 uses Nikon's EN-EL15b battery, an updated version of the D850's battery which is capable of charging over USB. (Nikon says the older EN-EL15a will work in the camera as well, but won't support USB charging.) Although we appreciate Nikon's desire to keep a consistent battery format across cameras, there's a cost to maintaining compatibility with earlier models: the Z7 has a CIPA rating of only 330 shots. We'll get a better sense of how it performs in the real world as we continue testing, but the advantage definitely tilts in Sony's direction, by a large margin in this case.

Conclusion

Sony's early adoption of full-frame mirrorless means that it has owned the category until now, but the Z7 is a shot across the bow from Nikon. Overall, it's matched very well against the a7R III, and some might argue that it even follows some of the Alpha's design cues while still feeling distinctly Nikon-like in your hands. Both cameras are capable of delivering stunning image quality when paired with good lenses, so the main differences come down to other factors.

Nikon has done an excellent job of creating a good user experience on the Z7, despite it being a first-generation product. Ergonomics are generally quite good, the EVF is bright, crisp, and responsive, and the touchscreen is well integrated into the overall experience. It also steps up Nikon's game with respect to video, including very good 4K video, support for 10-bit 4:2:2 N-Log via HDMI and potentially the best video AF we've seen on a mirrorless camera. What we really miss, however, is the 3D Tracking system found in Nikon's DSLRs, which has consistently been best-in-class.

The a7R III has its advantages as well. In our opinion, it still has a better AF experience than the Nikon thanks to Eye AF and Lock-on AF, and its dual card slots will be a significant differentiator for a lot of users. It also boasts superior performance when it comes to continuous shooting and battery life. Sony has a much larger lineup of native lenses for its system, and the ecosystem of third-party adapters that has evolved around E-mount is impressive. Of course, Nikon's Z-mount has a lot of future potential, but its decision not to share technical details of the mount means third parties will need to reverse engineer it.

The good news is that we now have two companies committed to full-frame mirrorless systems, and that should mean more competition and, ultimately, better products and more choices for consumers.

Categories: Equipment

Sony launches new line of rugged SD memory cards

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 1:48pm

Sony today announced its SF-G series TOUGH specification UHS-II SD cards. The new memory cards are targeted at "photographers who are reliant upon their photographs remaining safe when their SD cards are removed from the camera" and combine ruggedness with fast read/write speeds.

The SF-G cards are bend proof to 180N, drop-proof to 5 meters, waterproof with an IPX8 rating and dustproof with an IP6X rating. To achieve these characteristics the cards feature a one-piece molding structure and a ribless and switchless design. In addition, they are X-ray proof, magnet proof, anti-static and temperature proof.

Top read speeds of up to 300MB/s and write speeds of up to 299MB/s should allow for swift burst shooting, and the cards also support the V90 video speed class, making them a good option for video shooters.

The SF-G cards come with Sony's SD Scan Utility and File Rescue Software. They will be available in 32GB, 64GB and 128GB capacities and will launch in Europe from October. No information on availability in other regions has been provided yet. More information can be found on the Sony website.

Press Release:

Sony introduces the world’s toughest and fastest SD Card

  • World’s toughest[i] SD card is 18x[ii]bend proof[iii] and drop proof[iv]
  • World’s first[v] one-piece molding structure for strength and hardness
  • Ribless and switchless design ensures there are no fragile components
  • World’s fastest[vi] read speed up to 300MB/s and write speed up to 299MB/s[vii]
  • Waterproof and dustproof world-class ratings of IPX8and IP6X respectively[viii]
  • Keep your work safe with the SD Scan Utility and File Rescue Software

Sony today announced a brand new innovation in storage media with the launch of the “SF-G series TOUGH specification”UHS-II SD card. Addressing the needs of photographers who are reliant upon their photographs remaining safe when their SD cards are removed from the camera, the new SF-G series TOUGH specification range combines the world’s fastest read and write speeds with an ultra-rugged design that is bend proof to 180N, and drop proof to 5 metres. For photographers who are fighting against the elements to get the perfect shot, the SF-G series TOUGH specification range of SD cards are also waterproof with an IPX8 rating and dustproof with an IP6X rating.

The new SF-G series TOUGHspecification range of SD cards are 18 times stronger than the SD standard[ix] with world’s first monolithic structure (one-piece molding, no empty space in the card) and materials of high-grade hardness, unlike conventional SD cards with a thin, 3-part ensemble. They areprotected against typical physical damage that can affect conventional SD cards such as a broken plastic casing, broken data protection lock and broken connector ribs. This has been achieved through a new means that it is the world’s first rib-less SD card with no write protection switch. These developments ensure that the SF-G series TOUGH specificationis more resistant to bending and easy to break parts are removed entirely and has been engineered by Sony to deliver the best balance of hardness and toughness. Completely sealed with one-piece molding structure, no waterdrop, dust or dirt is not allowed to come into the card, meeting highest grade of waterproof (IPX8) and dustproof(IP6X).

Unleash the power of the camera

In an industry trend, driven by Sony, full-frame mirrorless cameras such as the α9 and α7 series are packing in more and more performance in both stills and video performance. These high-end cameras rely on fast memory cards to maximise their performance and with professional photographers now using SD cards more frequently, users are demanding the levels of reliability and durability associated with other professional card types. With the world’s fastest write speed of up to 299MB/s, buffer clearing time is minimised. This allows the photographer to shoot many frames per second and capture the action that they want. The SF-G series TOUGH specification range also supports V90, the highest standard of video speed class, making it an ideal companion for shooting high resolution video.

Furthermore, transferring high capacity photo and video files is made simple with the SF-G series TOUGH specification, thanks to a read speed of up to 300MB/s. This is another world’s fastest which dramatically enhances workflow efficiency after the shooting is all wrapped up. In a further acknowledgement of the practical needs of photographers, the SF-G series TOUGH specification range feature bright yellow banding design, making the card easier to spot in dark shooting conditions.

Ultimate Assurance

SF-G series TOUGHspecification SD cards offer a series of further features, designed to give photographers peace of mind. These include an ‘SD Scan Utility’ which allows the user to check that the card is good condition and File Rescue Software[x] which can recover data and photos that might have accidentally been deleted. Furthermore, SF-G series TOUGH specification SD cards are also X-ray proof, magnet proof, anti-static, temperature proof and feature UV Guard.

Pricing and Availability

The SF-G TOUGH series of memory cards will be available in 32GB, 64GB and 128GB capacities. They will launch in Europe from October. Full product details are available at: http://www.sony.net/sfgt/

[i]As a consumer SD card, Sony investigation as of August 2018.

[ii]Performance is 18x stronger compared to SD bending test specification of 10N

[iii]Bend proof to 180N

[iv]Drop proof to 5m

[v]As a SD card of 2.1mm thick. Conformance to ribless card specifications of Standard Size SD Card Mechanical Addendum 6.0. Sony investigation as of August 2018.

[vi]As of August 2018, Sony investigation.

[vii]Based on Sony internal testing. Transfer speeds vary, and are dependent on host devices, the OS version or usage conditions. To effectively utilize the product’s high-speed capabilities, your compatible device must support UHS-II. Sony investigation as of August 2018.

[viii]Conformance to IP68 standard. We cannot guarantee against damage to record data or card in all situations and conditions.

[ix]SD standard withstands 10N force, while this card withstands 180N force.

[x]Downloadable from the Sony Support site

Categories: Equipment

DPReview on TWiT: Nikon Z Mirrorless

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 9:00am

As part of our regular appearances on the TWiT Network show 'The New Screen Savers', our Science Editor Rishi Sanyal joined host Leo Laporte to discuss Nikon's entry into the high-end mirrorless market. In this episode, we cover everything from DPReview's initial impressions of the Z 7 camera based on hands-on testing of the camera and lenses over multiple days of shooting, to the broader question of what Nikon's serious entry into mirrorless means for the camera industry at large.

The entry of one of the camera industry giants into the full-frame mirrorless ILC segment signals, in our opinion, significant winds of change. Just two short years ago Nikon advertised the benefits of DSLR over competitor mirrorless cameras during its D5 launch, citing the immediacy of the optical viewfinder and higher frame rates during burst shooting.

But shortly thereafter the Sony a9 showed us that mirrorless technologies could not only overcome but surpass these shortcomings. Now in its mirrorless launch, Nikon is introducing cameras with higher burst rates, wider AF coverage and far superior video autofocus than any of its previous full-frame, non-pro-grade DSLRs. And mirrorless' reliance on fast-evolving image image sensor technology means that, just maybe, we can expect faster, far reaching improvements with each generation.

Have a watch of our discussion, and then let us know your thoughts on the launch of the Nikon Z cameras in the comments below.

Categories: Equipment

The PureView trademark is now owned by HMD Global

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 7:00am

Nokia's PureView moniker used to stand for innovation in mobile imaging and excellent smartphone camera performance. With their large sensors and Zeiss-designed lenses devices like the Nokia 808 PureView or the Lumia 1020 PureView were a step ahead of the competition at the time.

Unfortunately, that wasn't enough to keep the Nokia smartphone division afloat and not too long after it was sold to Microsoft in 2013, smartphone production was ceased completely. Today the Nokia smartphone brand is owned by HMD Global and now it has emerged that the Finnish company has also secured the rights to use the PureView trademark.

More recently HMD Global has launched several Nokia phones with a retro twist, for example redesigns of the legendary Nokia 3310 and 8110 phones. So could we see an updated version of the 808 PureView or Lumia 1020 at some point in the nearer future?

A 2018 version of the 808 or 1020 would likely not come with one large sensor but could, according to some rumors, feature a circular multi-lens setup. IFA in Berlin, where we will likely see several new Nokia models, is around the corner. Hopefully there'll be a PureView-branded model among the new offerings.

Categories: Equipment

Phase One XF IQ4 digital backs offer up to 150MP and 'Capture One Inside'

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 7:00am
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Phase One has announced its new 'Infinity Platform,' which has built the core of the company's Capture One software into the processors of three new XF IQ4 54 x 40mm digital backs. According to Phase One, having 'Capture One Inside' brings "unprecedented image editing and processing - once possible only in the Capture One software." The new processor also provides improvements in JPEG quality, live view and frame rates.

The Infinity Platform includes three digital backs, including two 150 Megapixel, Sony-designed BSI-CMOS models (IQ4 150MP and IQ4 150MP Achromatic) as well as a 100MP Trichromatic model. The backs now include three new tethering options, via Wi-Fi, USB-C and Ethernet. All three models have dual card slots, supporting XQD and SD.

The three XF IQ4 backs will ship in October and include the camera body and prism and the Blue Ring prime lens of your choice. Prices range from from $47,990 for the IQ4 100MP to $54,990 for the IQ4 150MP Achromatic.

Press Release

Phase One’s New XF IQ4 Camera Systems Introduce ‘Capture One Inside’ and Enable Unmatched Workflow Flexibility and Resolution

COPENHAGEN, Aug. 28, 2018 – Phase One today announced a giant leap forward in photography: Phase One XF IQ4 Camera Systems are built upon the new and expandable Infinity Platform. Three full frame medium format camera systems, based on the Infinity Platform, include the IQ4 150MP (151-megapixels), the IQ4 100MP Trichromatic (101-megapixels), and the IQ4 150MP Achromatic (151-megapixels). Each delivers a flexible and customizable photographic solution designed to evolve and adapt over time. The IQ4 features a new level of workflow optimization, integration and support for all photographic applications.

With the Infinity Platform, Phase One has moved the core of Capture One’s imaging processor into the IQ4 itself. ‘Capture One Inside’ offers unprecedented RAW file control. Image editing and processing – once possible only in the Capture One software application – can now be controlled within the IQ4. The Infinity Platform also allows Phase One to challenge fundamental imaging concepts, such as the limitations of dynamic range. Additionally, the IQ4 delivers new tethering and storage options, wireless integration, and performance improvements.

“Our customers drive us to break down barriers and keep pushing forward,” said Henrik O. Håkonsson, CEO & President, Phase One, A/S. “With the Infinity Platform we are completely dedicated to grow the IQ4, adapting and expanding incrementally to match the pace of technology – making it unique in the photographic world – a camera investment that pays back with years of cutting-edge operation. We dedicate the new XF IQ4 Camera System to these individuals whose passion for perfection is unlimited.”

Phase One is widely known for its modular, open-platform approach. Like the Phase One XF camera body, introduced in 2015, the Infinity Platform of the IQ4 has been engineered to anticipate developments in technology, and expand functionality to support customers’ changing workflow demands.

Key Features and Future-Forward Innovations

Building on 25 years of digital imaging innovation and the success of the XF Camera System, the IQ4 introduces:

151-Megapixel Backside Illuminated (BSI) Sensor

The IQ4 150MP and IQ4 150MP Achromatic models feature an ultra-efficient pixel design that delivers unprecedented image quality and detail. A world first in full frame medium format photography.

‘Capture One Inside’

The core of Capture One’s RAW imaging processor has been integrated into the Infinity Platform, opening a multitude of customizations and imaging possibilities. Key for expanding workflow efficiency, images can now be processed by the camera itself. ‘Capture One Inside’ enables:

  • Improved preview quality
  • JPEG processing
  • IIQ Style integration
  • Improved live view, faster frame rate, and new tools

Three New Tethering Options

Wireless, USB-C, and Ethernet offer greater control of connectivity and workflow. In addition, users will be able to interface directly with accessories such as hard drives, NAS storage, network solutions, mobile devices, etc. New ports (Ethernet and USB-C) can offer charging capabilities of the camera system or sustained power from compatible devices. Each tethering option brings its own unique workflow benefit, such as speed, extended cable length, evolving camera control and freedom from cabling.

Dual Storage

Support for both XQD and SD memory cards can be combined with the above tethering options to provide a multitude of workflow solutions.

Open Platform

Time-lapse and bracketing tools now operate independently of the camera body, enabling sequencing options across other camera bodies such as technical cameras.

More information about the IQ4, Infinity Platform and supported XF Camera System configurations can be found here: www.Phase One.com/IQ4

Availability and Pricing

The XF IQ4 150MP, IQ4 100MP Trichromatic, and IQ4 150MP Achromatic Camera Systems, will be available in October 2018 through Phase One
Partners: www.Phase One.com/partners.

The Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price for the XF IQ4 Camera Systems (including XF camera body and prism, a Blue Ring prime lens of your choice, 5-year warranty and 5-year uptime guarantee) are:

  • XF IQ4 150MP Camera System: $51,990 USD
  • XF IQ4 100MP Trichromatic Camera System: $47,990 USD
  • XF IQ4 150MP Achromatic Camera System: $54,990 USD

For more information, please go to: www.Phase One.com or book a demo on: www.Phase One.com/DemoSignup

Categories: Equipment

The PureView trademark is now owned by HDM Global

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 7:00am

Nokia's PureView moniker used to stand for innovation in mobile imaging and excellent smartphone camera performance. With their large sensors and Zeiss-designed lenses devices like the Nokia 808 PureView or the Lumia 1020 PureView were a step ahead of the competition at the time.

Unfortunately, that wasn't enough to keep the Nokia smartphone division afloat and not too long after it was sold to Microsoft in 2013, smartphone production was ceased completely. Today the Nokia smartphone brand is owned by HMD Global and now it has emerged that the Finnish company has also secured the rights to use the PureView trademark.

More recently HMD Global has launched several Nokia phones with a retro twist, for example redesigns of the legendary Nokia 3310 and 8110 phones. So could we see an updated version of the 808 PureView or Lumia 1020 at some point in the nearer future?

A 2018 version of the 808 or 1020 would likely not come with one large sensor but could, according to some rumors, feature a circular multi-lens setup. IFA in Berlin, where we will likely see several new Nokia models, is around the corner. Hopefully there'll be a PureView-branded model among the new offerings.

Categories: Equipment

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