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Photographer Edin Chavez shares his favorite Miami Beach photo spots

Digital Photography Review - vor 5 Stunden 44 Minuten
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When a nagging desire to unleash his creative juices wouldn't leave him alone, Edin Chavez left a successful self-made painting business to pursue photography. He's now a Miami-based commercial photographer with clients like Nikon, National Geographic and Corona on his resume. Photography has brought him all over the world, but it's Miami where he honed his skills and found his first go-to photo spots.

He recently shared ten of his favorites with Resource Travel, where you'll helpfully find embedded Google Map widgets so you can hone in on exactly the right spots. Head over to the full post – after all, it takes an insider to tell you that the Best Buy parking garage is one of the best places for a sunset view of the city.

Read '10 Best Photography Spots in Miami Beach' at Resource Travel

Kategorien: Fotografie

CP+ 2017: Updated Fujifilm GFX 50S sample gallery

Digital Photography Review - vor 5 Stunden 59 Minuten

We're in Yokohama Japan, where we've just added 25 images to our gallery of samples from Fujifilm's new GFX 50S mirrorless medium-format 50MP camera. We'll be adding to this gallery over the next few days.

See our Fujifilm GFX 50S sample gallery

Kategorien: Fotografie

Gallery update: getting vertical with the Nikon 70-200mm F2.8E FL ED VR

Digital Photography Review - vor 6 Stunden 44 Minuten

We tossed Nikon's new 70-20mm F2.8 workhorse on a D5 and sat on the sidelines for a University of Washington vs Arizona State NCAA basketball game. It proved to be an impressive combo, to say the least. Have a look through our updated sample gallery and see for yourself. All basketball images were processed in Adobe Lightroom CC with adjustments made to exposure and tone only.

See our updated Nikon 70-200mm F2.8E FL ED VR gallery

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Kategorien: Fotografie

Sony Q&A @ CP+ 2017: Insights from the design team behind the bokehlicious 100mm STF apodization lens

Imaging Resource - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 12:00
    With the annual CP+ tradeshow now under way in Yokohama, Japan's Pacific Convention Plaza, Imaging Resource founder and publisher Dave Etchells had the opportunity to sit down with executives from Sony Corp. to discuss the company's E-mount and A-mount optics, including the incredibly impressive FE 100mm f/2.8 STF GM OSS lens, an optic for which we just recently posted an in-depth field test. (If you've not already read our coverage of this interesting, apodizing optic which aims to provide luscious, creamy bokeh in...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

EHang uses 1000 GhostDrone 2.0 drones for massive light show in China

Digital Photography Review - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 10:00

Just a few days after Intel wowed audiences with a 300-drone aerial light show at the Super Bowl, Chinese drone company EHang raised the bar with a 1000-drone light show for audiences in China.

EHang performed its 'Meteor Sky' show in the city of Guangzhou in celebration of the traditional Chinese Lantern Festival on February 11. To create the spectacle, the company used 1000 of its GhostDrone 2.0 drones configured with color changing lights.

A long exposure captures the drone show near Guangzhou's Canton Tower.

Putting on a show of this scale requires some impressive logistics. Just arranging the drones prior to flight required an area 290m long by 19m wide, and over 30 EHang engineers and staff put in thousands of hours to develop, choreograph and test the show. The company also developed an advanced communication network and safety system which maintained a minimum 1.5m distance between drones during flight. Despite the complexity, the entire show was controlled by a single computer on the ground.

EHang staff arrange drones in preparation for its 'Meteor Sky' light show. The entire staging area was 290m x 19m in size.

EHang notes that the show also served as a trial to see if drones could provide an environmentally friendly alternative to fireworks.

What do you think about drone light shows? Tell us in the comments!

Kategorien: Fotografie

Lensrentals and the mysterious case of the Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM

Digital Photography Review - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 10:00
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One lens' bad fortune is our gain: the Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM's optical test results had been puzzling the team at Lensrentals, and when a customer dropped one recently a teardown was in order. The teardown took a total of six hours – twice the usual amount of time required – and along the way they found a lot of solidly constructed pieces, a mysterious component they dubbed the 'Southern Fairy Tale Ring,' and a great deal of silicone glue.

This article details the first part of the teardown, showing the disassembly of the first half of the lens up to the point where a snack break was needed. It's a long read but as always, thoroughly fascinating and entertaining. It turns out that construction of the FE 70-200mm F2.8 is a bit unconventional, and that's not a bad thing at all.

Read LensRentals' Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS Teardown (Part 1)

Kategorien: Fotografie

Tamron @ CP+ 2017: Hands-on with three new zooms, including the Japanese-only 70-300

Imaging Resource - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 09:21
    Lens manufacturer Tamron recently announced a pair of newly-updated lenses for the global market, the SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC G2, and the 10-24mm f/3.5-5.6, as well as debuting a refreshed SP 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di VC telephoto zoom that, as of now, is designed solely for the Japanese market. All three lenses were on display at Tamron's booth at CP+, so naturally we sauntered over to get a closer look! Both the 70-200mm f/2.8 G2 and 10-24mm II lenses follow the same modern design update as other recent Tamron lenses, which began back...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

Delkin introduces USB 3.0 multi-slot card reader that includes CFast port

Digital Photography Review - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 09:01

Memory and memory accessory company Delkin Devices has announced a new multi-format card reader that will be compatible with the CFast standard. DDreader-48 uses a USB 3.0 interface and can facilitate data rates of up to 500MB/s with CFast 2.0, SD UHS-ll and microSD UHS-l memory cards. While the SD and microSD formats can’t yet test the reader’s transfer speeds on their own the extra capacity in the pipeline allows the reader to read or write from or to each of three slots simultaneously to save users time. A fourth port allows users to connect a Flash Drive via USB.

Delkin Devices USB 3.0 CFast 2.0 Multi-Slot Memory Card Reader is compatible with Windows and Mac devices and will be available at the end of March for £39.99 (approx. $40) with a limited 5-year warranty. For more information see the Delkin Devices website.

Press release

Delkin Devices USB 3.0 CFast 2.0 Multi-Slot Memory Card Reader
  • Supports CFast 2.0, SD UHS-II, microSD UHS-I & Flash Drives
  • Data Transfer Speeds up to 500MB/s
  • Three Slots for Simultaneous Data Transfer
  • USB 3.0 Interface
  • Mac & Windows Compatible
  • Plug & Play

Part Number: DDREADER-48
UPC: 814373020219

Overview
The USB 3.0 CFast 2.0 Multi-Slot Memory Card Reader from Delkin Devices utilizes the full power of CFast 2.0 and SD UHS-II memory cards for accelerated transfer, while doing it in only a fraction of the time. Designed with four slots for (1) CFast 2.0 card, (1) SD card, (1) microSD card and (1) USB flash drive, the reader is specifically built to handle the high-performance demands of the latest generation of memory cards used in the broadcast, cinema, and photography industries.

Unparalleled Speed
Incorporating a SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface, the reader offers speeds suitable for professional photographers and videographers. Offload large files, such as high-res RAW images, 4K, 2K & 3D videos, quickly and efficiently at speeds up to 500MB/s (10x faster than USB 2.0)! The improved user workflow reduces transfer time dramatically and allows you to view and work on your files sooner. The reader also allows for simultaneous data transfer, giving you the ability to download all your files from multiple cards to your computer at the same time.

The CFast slot incorporates SATA III support, guaranteeing the fastest transfers to and from your CFast card. The SD slot is designed with a second row of connectors to utilize the super high-speed performance of UHS-II cards, while also allowing for backwards compatibility with non-UHS-II cards.

Compact & Travel-Friendly
At only 4 in. wide and weighing less than ¼ lb., the reader provides convenient, hassle-free portability. Bring it with you wherever you go; safely store it in backpacks, carrying bags, briefcases, and much more! Whether you are at home or travelling, the reader’s compact size allows you to access your precious files anywhere, anytime, while taking up minimal space.

Plug & Play
Access your files in seconds! No drivers or external power is required; simply plug the reader into any USB port on your computer and start viewing your photos and videos instantly. The reader is also backwards compatible with USB 2.0 and 1.1 ports, but will transfer data at slower rates.

Specifications

  • Compatible Memory Cards: CFast 2.0
  • SDHC / SDXC UHS-II
  • microSDHC / microSDXC UHS-I
  • Ports: 1 x USB 3.0 type-A ports
  • Computer Interface: USB 3.0
  • Data Transfer Rate: Up to 500MB/s via USB 3.0

In the Box
Delkin Devices USB 3.0 CFast 2.0 Multi-Slot Memory Card Reader
Limited 5 Year Warranty

Kategorien: Fotografie

CP+ 2017: Special enough for you? Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Digital Photography Review - Sa, 25/02/2017 - 03:26
CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Nikon is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, and as part of the celebrations, the company has unveiled special editions of its professional D5 and D500, alongside the 'holy trinity' of F2.8 zooms.

Here's the D5, in its special gunmetal finish and special gunmetal flight case, with special body cap, special shoulder strap and special booklet, full (presumably) of special information.

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

As special editions go, this one is admirably restrained.

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Here's a boring old normal D5 (yawn) pictured with the special 100th anniversary strap. Nikon hasn't released any information about any of these special editions and accessories as far as we can tell, so it's unclear whether this strap will be available for general sale. 

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Not to be left out, here's the D5's baby brother, the D500 in a matching gunmetal finish, inside a matching, but slightly smaller gunmetal flight case. So special. So limited. 

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Bow down before the 'holy trinity'. Here are the 14-24mm F2.8, 24-70mm F2.8 and new 70-200mm F2.8E, in matching special finishes, in a matching special flight case. Even the hoods look like they've been given a lighter finish, but its very hard to tell from behind the glass display case. At any rate, it's special. There's absolutely no doubt about that. 

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

Again, we have no idea whether this exploded 70-200mm F2.8E will be available to purchase as a collectable item, and if so how much you'll pay. We'd hope it will cost considerably less than the regular lens though, because this very special anniversary edition is entirely useless for photography. Why? Because it's been cut in...

Sorry, wrong article.

CP+ 2017: Nikon shows off 100th Anniversary D5 and D500

As part of its 100th anniversary, Nikon is (literally) showcasing some key products from the past 100 years. The original Nikon F is in there, alongside an F4 and a Nikonos, and of course the D1. Also included is a Df. Maybe by the time Nikon's 200th anniversary comes around they'll have released a Df2.

Kategorien: Fotografie

Ricoh’s “Multi-Imaging Technology” pairs a K-1 with a Theta S spherical panoramic camera

Imaging Resource - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 23:21
    Tucked away in the Theta camera section of Ricoh's booth at CP+ is an interesting demonstration highlighting a unique image processing technology that combines a Theta 360-degree camera and the full-frame Pentax K-1 DSLR. The result is a rather cool multimedia experience in which high-resolution K-1 photos are overlaid and placed into the full 360-degree scene captured by the Theta camera. First demoed at this year's CES expo in Las Vegas, nevertheless, this was the first time I'd come across the technology, and the large...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

UHS-III SD card interface capable of 624MB/s bursts announced

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 22:01

The SD Card Association has announced the UHS-III standard that allows for maximum data rates twice as fast as the current UHS-II interface. The new interface will allow cards to transfer data at up to 624MB/s and will be used in both SD and Micro SD cards.

The UHS-III interface on future devices will be fully backwards compatible with existing SD cards. The cards themselves will include a second row of pins, so will be physically identical to current UHS-II.

The adoption of UHS-III branding may cause further confusion with the U3 speed rating that appears on many current cards. This may be mitigated if UHS-III cards prove to be capable of higher guaranteed sustained write speeds, allowing them to wear the 'V60' or faster 'video speed class' branding announced in 2016.

Although an increasing number of cameras (including many recent Fujifilm models, the Olympus E-M1 Mark II and Panasonic GH5) can make full use of the faster maximum transfer speeds of UHS-II cards, we've not yet seen any cards that can promise to sustain writing of data at faster than the 30MB/s promised by U3 ratings. This means all the x-hundred megabyte per second write speeds promised on current cards are useful only for bursts of stills: any camera trying to record video at data rates of above 30MB/s (240 mbps) run the risk of stuttering during recording.

Kategorien: Fotografie

Uno II interchangeable camera backpack has four swappable interior panels

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 20:35

Bag maker NIID has launched a Kickstarter campaign in hopes of funding the Uno II, a backpack geared toward photographers and other creatives. It calls the Uno II the first ever interchangeable backpack, allowing owners to swap the interior bag component with an alternative ‘panel.’ A total of four panels are offered, one designed for a variety of camera gear, one for art supplies, one for work items (the standard panel) and one for sports gear.

Typically, different activities require different types of bags, and that can result in owning a few different backpacks that take up space. Uno II aims to solve that via a two-part design: an exterior zippered component that swaddles the interior panel, and the interior panel which contains pockets and slots for various items. When assembled and zipped, Uno II becomes an ordinary backpack with shoulder straps.

The camera panel can, for example, be used to transport a camera body and a couple lenses, a small tripod, and other smaller items like storage cards or spare batteries. Similarly, the work panel is made for holding items like tablets and laptops, while the sports panel can accommodate workout clothes and more. The art panel differs quite substantially, featuring elastic bands to hold brushes, pencils, paints, and similar things, as well as a mesh pocket for smaller items.

The Uno II is made with linen-textured Eco-polyester with a water-repellant coating, anti-theft zippers, a small hanging clip for attaching things like keys, a Flex Power Dock, and a rain shield for use in heavy rain. This model bag will also be offered, if the campaign is successful, in both a smaller 20L capacity and a larger 30L capacity.

Thus far, the company has exceeded its $15,000 goal with nearly $53k in funding and 27 days remaining in the campaign. NIID is offering backers a single early bird Uno II backpack with a standard panel in exchange for an $89 or greater pledge. Shipping to backers is estimated to start this upcoming June.

Kategorien: Fotografie

In 60 seconds, Here are seven ways to move sliders in lightroom

Imaging Resource - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 20:00
    Admittedly, there hasn't been a whole lot to discuss when it comes to Lightroom lately. It's a much-beloved platform, but it's been well over a year since there was something really interesting to talk about (remember Dehaze?). Still, the lack of new things to play with hasn't meant that folks aren't finding interesting ways to use the platform, as The Digital Picture has pointed out all seven ways to adjust the sliders in Lightroom.      Sure, you probably knew a few of these, but personally I had forgotten that one...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

Kamerar Lens Zoom Kit for iPhone 7 Plus review

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 13:00
Kamerar Zoom Lens Kit for iPhone 7 Plus review

If you're shopping for accessory lenses, for most iPhone models the choice can be overwhelming. The lenses on offer range from cheap plastic variants for very little money to hefty high-quality glass in metal bodies that require a three-figure investment. However, the situation is slightly different for Apple's current flagship, the iPhone 7 Plus. Because of the unique design of its dual-camera there are currently still very few attachment lenses on the market. That said, we've had a chance to have a closer look at one of the first available options, the Kamerar Zoom Lens kit

For $50 the kit includes a protective case for the iPhone, two lens modules that slide into the case and two small protective lens-cases. The first module combines a fisheye-adapter for the iPhone's wide-angle lens with a tele-converter for the longer lens in the dual-cam. The fisheye offers a 160 degree angle of view and the converter comes with a 1.5x zoom factor, giving the 7 Plus tele lens a total zoom factor of 3x when compared to the wide-angle. The second module has two macro lenses that apply a 10x magnification to both iPhone camera lenses. 

The complete kit consists of the phone case and two lens modules with a little protective case for each. Operation and build quality

Apart from the little plastic rails that the lens modules slide on, the Kamerar-case looks like most plastic phone cases and offers access to all ports. The case's slightly shiny tile design is pretty much a matter of taste, but with its understated gray tones should work for most. 

Build-quality is pretty much in line with the price point. The plastic material looks a little cheap but the construction of the individual pieces is solid. Attaching and removing the lens modules is very easy but moving them in position in front of the iPhone camera and back requires a little bit of force. When not in use the lens modules can be stored in their cases, protecting them from scratching.

One important thing to consider when shooting with the Kamerar kit has nothing to do with the lenses but with the iPhone camera. As we found in our review, below a certain brightness threshold the iPhone 7 Plus camera switches from its tele lens to the wide-angle and applies digital zoom. When shooting with just the phone this switch is hardly noticeable and you usually only find out when looking at images on a big screen or checking EXIF-data.

However, the impact is much more noticeable with the Kamerar lenses attached. If you are using the tele-converter in low light and the iPhone camera switches to the wide-angle, you end up with a 2x digitally zoomed version of the fisheye image, which isn't really what you want. To avoid this it's best to use the kit with a camera app that lets you force the camera to use the tele-lens, even in lower light, for example Camera+ or Manual Camera.

Image Quality

Image quality varies between the conversion lenses. The tele-converter is capable of producing surprisingly sharp images, but photos taken with the fisheye look noticeably softer when viewed up close. All pictures are perfectly usable for social media and similar purposes though. The macro converters produce decent results as well, though as you would expect, the tele-version offers visibly better magnification.

When using the macro lenses the challenge mainly lies in keeping the device as still as possible. You have to get very close to the subject for the lenses to focus and motion on any axis will lead to camera shake and/or focus shift, and therefore blurry images. Overall the Kamerar Zoom Lens kit offers good image quality, especially when considering the affordable price point. 

The two samples below illustrate how the fisheye allows you to capture large objects or the interior of small rooms when there is no space to go further back. The fisheye images look a little soft up close, but color and tonality hardly change compared to the standard image without attachment lens.

 iPhone 7 Plus wideangle, ISO 20, 1/2660  iPhone 7 Plus wide-angle with Kamerar fisheye, ISO 20, 1/3546

The tele-converter only offers a 1.5x zoom factor over the iPhone's built-in tele lens. The difference in terms of angle of view is not massive but the lens is certainly useful when photographing objects further away and the image output is surprisingly sharp. Again, the attachment lens doesn't noticeably alter tones and color. 

 iPhone 7 Plus tele lens, ISO 20, 1/595s  iPhone 7 Plus tele lens with Kamerar tele-converter, ISO 20, 1/736s

The Macro lenses allow you to get really close to your subjects and, with the right subjects, for some interesting shots. Just make sure you have plenty of light and / or hold the camera very still, otherwise you'll inevitably end up with shaky images. If the focus plane is in the right place, the macro lenses are capable of capturing detailed images though.

 iPhone 7 Plus wide-angle with Kamerar 10x macro converter, ISO 40, 1/17 sec   iPhone 7 Plus tele lens with Kamerar 10x macro converter, ISO 320, 1/50 sec

With the macro module, the fact that the the iPhone camera switches lenses in lower light can actually work in your favor. The wide-angle has a shorter minimum-focus distance and combined with a 2x digital zoom captures the subject larger in the frame than tele + macro. 

iPhone 7 Plus wide-angle with Kamerar 10x macro converter and 2x digital zoom, ISO 32, 1/25 sec Conclusion

The Kamerar Zoom Lens Kit is currently one of the few options for mobile photographers who want to use attachment lenses on the iPhone 7 Plus dual-camera. It's entirely made out of plastic but feels solid and is very easy to use. As far as smartphone accessory lenses go, the image quality is decent across all four lenses. The kit is currently available for $35 on Amazon.com. Whether attachment lenses have been part of your arsenal for a long time, or you just feel like trying them out, at this price point you can't go wrong with the Kamerar Kit. 

What we like:

  • Easy to use design
  • Affordable kit
  • Relatively good image quality

What we don't like:

  • Unexpected results when iPhone camera app switches to wide-angle in low light
  • A little force is needed to move lenses into position
  • Macro lenses require a very steady hand
Sample Gallery

There are 14 images in our Kamerar Zoom Lens Kit samples gallery. Please do not reproduce any of these images on a website or any newsletter / magazine without prior permission (see our copyright page). We make the originals available for private users to download to their own machines for personal examination or printing (in conjunction with this review), we do so in good faith, please don't abuse it.

Unless otherwise noted images taken with no particular settings at full resolution.

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Kategorien: Fotografie

Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 First Look: Pairing with the A7 II for portraits on a budget!

Imaging Resource - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 12:28
    Wake up with IR! Here's today's does of Caffeine Priority... Professional portrait photographers tend to spend big bucks for their camera and lens rigs, and justifiably so. They need a full frame sensor for one thing (or larger!) in order to maximize image quality, ensure good performance as ISO rises, and also to yield the highly coveted shallow depth of field when desired. Equally important to their work are quality portrait prime lenses, which work in tandem to provide good image quality and shallow depth of field. The focal...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

Huawei’s ‘Honor’ VR camera connects to smartphones, making it insanely portable

Imaging Resource - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 12:00
    Huwawei has announced the "Honor" VR camera, a 360 degree capture device that is operated via smartphone. Interestingly... that's all the information we presently have. We don't know how much it will cost, what phones it will support, or when it will be released. Essentially, we only know that Huawei has made it, will release it internationally, and that it's pretty compact. Specifically on that last point, take a look at how it fits in hand/on a phone:     Photo via...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

Nikon show off special edition gunmetal gray D5, D500, lenses and more for its 100th anniversary

Imaging Resource - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 12:00
    2017 marks the 100th anniversary of Nikon, whose official founding occurred on July 25th, 1917. Back in January of this year, Nikon announced a special 100th-anniversary microsite, complete with a detailed look back at the company's history, products and technical achievements. Now, Nikon is going a step further, showing offer a series of special edition cameras, lenses, camera straps and a pair of binocular to commemorate this historic year. Walled-off behind glass at Nikon's booth at the CP+ trade show, the special edition...
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Kategorien: Fotografie

CP+ 2017 - Fujifilm Interview: 'We hope that the GFX will change how people view medium format'

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 11:00
Toshihisa Iida, General Manager of Fujifilm's Optical Device and Electronic Imaging Products Division, posing with the new medium-format GFX 50S.

We're at the CP+ 2017 show, in Yokohama Japan where Fujifilm is preparing to ship its long-awaited medium format GFX 50S. 

We sat down with three Fujifilm executives, Toshihisa Iida, (general manager of Fujifilm's Optical Device and Electronic Imaging Products Division), Makoto Oishi, (manager of Fujifilm’s Sales and Marketing Group, Optical Device and Electronic Imaging Products division), and Shinichiro Udono, (Senior Manager for the Sales and Marketing Group of the Optical Device and Electronic Imaging Division), to learn more about the GFX, some of the challenges of creating a medium-format system, and future plans for GX and X series development.

Now that the GFX is ready, and about to ship, this must be quite exciting for you.

Yes, absolutely. For the past four or five years we’ve been concentrating on the APS-C format, and a lot of people were asking us when we’d enter the larger format market. Once some time had passed, and we’d produced a good number of APS-C lenses, we started to look more seriously at large format to attract more customers. That was about two years ago.

The GFX 50S is a mirrorless medium-format camera built around a 43.8 X 32.9mm CMOS sensor. Although the camera borrows a lot of design cues from its smaller X Series cousins, the GFX offers a very different handling experience. Despite being based around such a large sensor, the combination of camera and 63mm prime lens is surprisingly lightweight and very well-balanced. 

Since the development announcement at Photokina we’ve received a lot of positive feedback from photographers. We started a program called the ‘GFX Challenge’, where we loaned GFX cameras to photographers from various fields, in order to get feedback. Based on that feedback we refined the camera’s software. Now that we’re almost ready to ship, I can’t wait to get feedback from customers.

What kind of changes resulted from the Challenge feedback?

Most feedback was more or less as we’d expected. Photographers were surprised by how small and light the camera was. We made a few changes on the firmware side, mostly small refinements, like how the dials work, for example, to make it less likely that you’ll make an accidental control input (etc.)

What were the biggest technical challenges that you faced when moving from APS-C to medium format?

The sensor size is 4X as large, so speed and responsiveness were two major challenges. Readout speed, processing and autofocus.

Makoto Oishi shows off the 50MP medium-format sensor used in the GFX 50S. The GFX does not offer phase-detection - are the lenses designed to support this in the future?

Yes, definitely.

You’re joining Ricoh in the medium format market, and some long-established brands like Hasselblad and Phase One. Are you expecting other manufacturers to enter this market too?

We don’t know. Obviously, the other brands are focusing on full-frame at the moment. Obviously though we’d welcome any brand that joins this category, because it will increase awareness, and help the category as a whole.

When you were planning a product like the GFX, did you come up with any predictions about the growth of the medium-format market?

At the moment we’re just focusing on making the best product we can. We hope that the GFX will change how people view medium format, and this will help to grow the entire category.

What’s your medium-term strategy for growth in this product line? Will there be longer product cycles, for instance?

Obviously the sales volume will be lower, so the product life cycle will probably be longer. But whenever we have the right combination of the right hardware, the right sensor and the right processor, we’ll introduce a new camera.

When you were planning the GFX, what kind of photographers did you have in mind?

After our experience with the GFX challenge, we actually see a much wider potential audience than we’d originally thought. It will depend on what kinds of lenses we introduce. For example, we didn’t think that street photographers would use medium format much, but [based on feedback] we hope that we can reach a broader audience.

You have a six-lens roadmap for GFX right now - how will this lineup evolve?

After the announcement of the GFX we started to get a lot of requests from photographers about other lenses. For example a lot of photographers are asking us for telephoto lenses, in the 200-300mm range. Nature photographers for example. Also people are asking for a wide-angle, like a 15mm equivalent, and an equivalent to the 70-200mm on full-frame.

Fujifilm's recently updated lens roadmap for the APS-C X Series, including new lenses coming next year. We're told that ultra-wide and fast tele lenses have been requested for the GFX platform, too.  If you do develop those kinds of longer lenses, aimed at wildlife photographers, presumably the autofocus system will need to be able to keep up?

The autofocus algorithm in the GFX is the same as in the X Series, but performance is different. The readout speed of the sensor is critical, and that’s not the same. Compared to the X Series, the speed is more limited.

Is this something you’ll be working on in the future?

Yes absolutely.

When you started coming up with the concept for a medium format camera, did you ever consider using a non-mirrorless design?

When we started studying the possible design, we were aware that some of our customers wanted a rangefinder-style camera. ‘It’s a Fujifilm medium-format, it has to be a rangefinder!’ However, at least in our first-generation camera, we wanted to reach a wider audience. We concluded that a mirrorless design would be much more versatile. Mirrorless gives us more freedom, and more flexibility.

The GFX's 50MP sensor is 4X larger than the APS-C sensors in Fujifilm's X Series cameras. This entails a lot of extra processing power, which is one of the reasons why the GFX sensor has a conventional bayer pattern filter array.  Was it easier, ultimately, to design around a mirrorless concept?

There are fewer mechanical parts, which is simpler. No mirror or pentaprism also means smaller size and weight.

Did you design this camera with the intention that customers could use adapted lenses from other systems?

Yes of course. We made the flange-back distance short enough to accommodate mount adapters for legacy lenses. We are making two adapters, one for H (Hasselblad) mount, and one for view cameras.

When will we begin to see mirrorless cameras take over the professional market?

There are several things that mirrorless manufacturers need to focus on. Number one is speed, still, to attract sports photographers. Also viewfinder blackout, we need to innovate there. Maybe one more processor and sensor generation should be enough to make mirrorless beat DSLRs in every respect.

By the time of the Tokyo 2020 olympics, will there be mirrorless cameras on the sidelines?

I think so, yes.

From Fujifilm?

Hopefully!

Can you tell us about the new Fujinon cine lenses that you've released?

Yesterday we announced new Fujinon cine lenses, in what we’re calling the ‘MK series. Fully manual zooms, and manual focus. Initially we’re introducing them in E-Mount versions, but X mount will follow. They’re designed to cover Super 35. The flange-back distance of E and X mount are very similar, so we can use the same optics.

The new Fujinon MK18-55mm T2.9 and 50-135mm T2.9 cover the Super 35 imaging area (~APS-C) and are being released in Sony E and Fujifilm X mount.

We have an optical devices division, which markets broadcast and cinema lenses, and I really want to maximize synergies between the broadcast and photography divisions.

Fujinon is well-known in cinema lenses, but until now, the lenses have been very big and very expensive. But now we’re looking at a new kind of video customer, who’s getting into the market via mirrorless. Mostly they’re using SLR lenses, which aren’t perfect. So a lot of those customers are looking for more affordable cinema lenses.

Do you see most potential in the E-mount, for video?

Yes, we think so. But obviously we’re releasing these lenses in X-mount too, and increasing movie quality in the X Series is very important. Traditionally, Fujifilm has been more of a stills company, but when we introduced the X-T2, we had a lot of good feedback about the 4K video, especially about color. Of course we need to do more, and we need to develop more technology, but I think there’s a lot of potential.

For now, Fujifilm tells us that they see most potential in videographers using Sony's E-mount mirrorless cameras, but the company has ambitious plans to expand the video functionality of its X Series range.  Moving on to the X100F - what was the main feedback from X100T users, in terms of things that they wanted changed?

A lot of customers wanted improved one-handed operability. So we moved all the buttons to the right of the LCD, like the X-Pro 2. And the integrated ISO and shutter speed dial, for instance.

The lens remains unchanged - why is this?

We looked into whether we should change it, but it would have affected the size of the camera, and we concluded that the form-factor is one of the most important selling-points of the X100 series. Of course we evaluated the image quality, with the new 24MP sensor, but concluded that it was still good.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. The X100F features the same 23mm F2 lens as its predecessors, but Fujifilm ran the numbers and saw no reason to update the lens for 24MP. We do wish there was a 28mm version, though.   Do your customers ask you for an X100-series camera with a 28mm lens?

Yes, of course. That’s why we have the 28mm wide converter for the X100, and the X70. And there’s potential to expand the fixed-lens APS-C camera range more.

Will X-Trans continue in the next generation of APS-C sensors?

For APS-C, definitely. For the GFX format, we’ll probably continue with the conventional bayer pattern. If you try to put X-Trans into medium format, the processing gets complicated, and the benefit isn’t very big.

How big is the extra processing requirement for X-Trans compared to bayer?

X-Trans is a 6x6 filter arrangement, not 4x4, it’s something like a 20-30% increase in processing requirement. 

Editor's note:

It's exciting to pick up and use a production-quality GFX 50S, after writing about it for so many months, and Fujifilm's senior executives are understandably keen to get the camera in the hands of photographers. Due to ship in just a few days, the GFX looks like a hugely impressive product,. We'll have to wait for Raw support to take a really detailed look at what the camera can do, but our early shooting suggests that image quality really is superb. 

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It was interesting to learn a little about the feedback process, by which Fujifilm gathered notes, impressions, and suggestions from professional photographers after the launch of the GFX last year. The end result is a very nicely balanced camera, both literally (it's surprisingly lightweight) and figuratively. Although obviously very different to the X series APS-C models, the GFX is simple to figure out, and easy to shoot with. When Mr Iida says that he hopes that 'the GFX will change how people view medium format', part of this comes down to handling. 

It was also interesting to hear that Fujifilm considered other types of design for the GFX. Are there concept renderings somewhere of an SLR design, or a rangefinder? Probably. Will we ever see a medium-format SLR or mirrorless from Fujifilm? Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if the company releases a rangefinder styled medium-format mirrorless. An X-Pro 2-style camera with a medium-format sensor and a hybrid viewfinder? Yes please.

For now though, the GFX is quite enough camera to be getting on with. Beyond medium-format, indeed beyond still imaging, Fujifilm is eyeing the video market. While Fujinon cine lenses have been popular in the film industry for decades, Mr Iida has his eye on a new generation of videographers, who are growing up using mirrorless cameras like Sony's a7S and a7R-series. This makes sense, but it's interesting that the new Fujinon zooms will also be manufactured in X mount versions. This level of confidence from Fujifilm in its X series' video capabilities is good to see, and bodes well for future product development. 

Kategorien: Fotografie

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 09:22
CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Voigtländer announced three new manual focus lenses at this year's CP+ show in Yokohama, for the Sony E Mount. We're at the show, and we made our way to the Voigtländer booth earlier to take a closer look at the Nokton classic 35mm F1.4, Nokton 40mm F1.2, and Macro APO-Lanthar 65mm F2 (pictured above). 

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

This is the Macro APO-Lanthar 65mm F2, which like all Voigtländer primes, is finished to a very high standard. A physical aperture ring with well-placed 1/3EV detents is positioned - rangefinder style - at the far end of the lens, and a broad, knurled focusing ring further back, towards the camera. The red, green and blue flashes are a nod to the older and much sought-after 125/2.5 APO-Lanthar.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Electrical contacts communicate EXIF to the camera body, which is a big advantage in manual lenses.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

At its minimum focusing distance, the 62mm can achieve a maximum magnification of 1:2. Not quite 'true' macro, but not bad. As you can see though, despite its modest focal length, the lens extends considerably when in its near-macro focus range. 

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

At infinity on the other hand, it's a pleasantly compact short telephoto prime.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

The Macro APO-Lanthar 65mm F2 Aspherical was announced at Photokina 2016 as a concept, but is now moving towards production. Pricing and availability has yet to be confirmed.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Here is the Nokton 40mm F1.2 Aspherical - a fast, 'normal' prime lens for the Sony E mount. Cosmetically similar to the 65mm macro, the 40mm is more compact, obviously much brighter lens. 

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

The fastest 40mm ever made for full frame (in case you've been waiting for one) the 40mm Nokton is based on an older VM (Leica M) mount lens, but has been 'optimized' for Sony E mount.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Again, electrical contacts ensure that EXIF information is recorded to the camera. According to Voigtländer's (slightly imprecisely translated) press release, the 40mm Nokton features a 'weak aperture stop click release mechanism' for smooth, clickless aperture progression in video shooting. Full disclosure - we couldn't figure out how to engage it, but it's been a very long day. 

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

A close focusing distance of 40cm isn't amazing, but that's one of the tradeoffs of such a fast maximum aperture. Again, pricing and availability of the 40mm Nokton has yet to be confirmed, but we'll update this story if and when the information becomes available. 

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Another design adapted from an older lens, the Nokton classic 35mm F1.4 is an E-mount version of the M-mount Nokton that Voigtländer has been selling for some time. This lens was only on show under glass, so we didn't get to handle it. We'd expect it to be built to the same high standard as the older M-mount version though.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Another view of the Nokton 35mm, showing off its minimalist design.

CP+ 2017: Hands-on with new Voigtländer E-mount primes

Again, in the rangefinder style, the Nokton classic features a slim aperture ring positioned at the front of the lens. A broad focusing ring makes up most of the lens's length. 

Kategorien: Fotografie

Get your pictures in front of a NASA photo editor by entering Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017

Digital Photography Review - Fr, 24/02/2017 - 09:01
Serene Saturn Winner Planets, Comets & Asteroids 2016 © Damian Peach (UK)

The Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 competition is set to open next week offering space photographers the chance to have their work judged by a picture editor from NASA as well as to win the top prize of £10,000. The competition is open to professional and amateur photographers who can choose from nine categories in which to enter their images. Entry is free but restricted to ten images in total all of which need to have been taken since January 1st 2016.

The winner of each category will receive a £1500 prize while those in runner-up positions get £500 and Commended images win £250. There are an additional two special awards for The Sir Patrick Moore Award Best Newcomer and for Robotic Scope Image of the Year – both of which earn the photographer £750.

Joining the judging panel this year is photographer Rebecca Roth, the Image Coordinator and Social Media Specialist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. She will judge alongside a collection of astronomers and astro-photographers as well as presenters from the BBC Sky at Night TV program. Photographer Wolfgang Tillmans is also on the judging panel.

The competition is open for entries from Monday February 27th and closes on Friday April 7th. It is run by the Royal Observatory Greenwich in the UK along with the BBC’s Sky at Night magazine. The Royal Observatory is a charitable organization and has some terms regarding additional uses beyond the realms of the competition that entrants should acquaint themselves with before submitting their work.

For more information see the Royal Museums Greenwich website and the terms and conditions page.

Press release

INSIGHT ASTRONOMY PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2017 ANNOUNCES COMPETITION DATES AND WELCOMES REBECCA ROTH OF NASA TO THE JUDGING PANEL

The Royal Observatory Greenwich, in association with Insight Investment and BBC Sky at Night Magazine, announces the dates for the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 competition – its annual global search for the most beautiful and spectacular visions of the cosmos, whether they are striking pictures of vast galaxies millions of light years away, or dramatic images of the night sky much closer to home.

Now in its ninth year, the hugely popular competition will open to entrants on Monday 27 February giving them a chance of taking home the grand prize of £10,000. Entrants will have until Friday 7 April to enter up to ten images into the various categories of the competition via www.rmg.co.uk/astrophoto.

The competition also welcomes Rebecca Roth of NASA to the judging panel. Based in Washington D.C. Rebecca is a photographer, photo editor and social media specialist, currently working as the Image Coordinator and Social Media Specialist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. Rebecca has worked at NASA for nearly 8 years and is charged with sharing amazing images of our universe with the media and with the public through channels such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Prior to working at NASA, Rebecca worked as a photojournalist and photo editor for outlets including National Geographic Television & Film, Roll Call Newspaper, and USA Weekend Magazine. Of her latest role as a judge for the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017, Rebecca has said, “At NASA Goddard, we build spacecraft and instruments, and invent new technology to study the Earth, the sun, our solar system, and the universe – a favorite part of my job is sharing images of these spacecraft and the images they produce with the public. This will be an exciting and unique opportunity to see the spectacular images of space captured by the public themselves and discovering their photographic interpretations of the night sky and beyond.”

Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 has nine main categories:

- Skyscapes: Landscape and cityscape images of twilight and the night sky featuring the Milky Way, star trails, meteor showers, comets, conjunctions, constellation rises, halos and noctilucent clouds alongside elements of earthly scenery.

- Aurorae: Photographs featuring auroral activity.

- People and Space: Photographs of the night sky including people or a human interest element.

- Our Sun: Solar images including solar eclipses and transits.

- Our Moon: Lunar images including lunar eclipses and occultation of planets.

- Planets, Comets and Asteroids: Everything else in our solar system, including planets and their satellites, comets, asteroids and other forms of zodiacal debris.

- Stars and Nebulae: Deep space objects within the Milky Way galaxy, including stars, star clusters, supernova remnants, nebulae and other intergalactic phenomena.

- Galaxies: Deep space objects beyond the Milky Way galaxy, including galaxies, galaxy clusters, and stellar associations.

- Young Astronomy Photographer of the Year: Pictures taken by budding astronomers under the age of 16 years old.

There are also two special prizes: The Sir Patrick Moore Prize for Best Newcomer is awarded to the best photo by an amateur astrophotographer who has taken up the hobby in the last year and who has not entered an image into the competition before, and Robotic Scope, acknowledges the best photo taken using one of the increasing number of computer-controlled telescopes at prime observing sites around the world which can be accessed over the internet by members of the public.

Entries to the competition must be submitted by 7 April 2017, and the winning images will be showcased in the annual free exhibition at the Royal Observatory Greenwich from 14 September 2017.

Photographers can enter online by visiting www.rmg.co.uk/astrophoto and each entrant may submit up to ten images to the competition.

Kategorien: Fotografie