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A few weeks ago we visited an animal adoption center in Seattle, to shoot some portraits of the dogs (and cats) awaiting owners at The Motley Zoo. When we published our video feature recently, many of you wanted a little more information about how we shot the images, so we've put together a slideshow of some of our favorite shots, including some bonus images not used in the video.
Click through to see the photos, and for those of you who were curious, we've included more information on the lighting and setup we used on the shoot. Also, they're pictures of pets, what more do you want?Lighting
For lights we used three Sony HVL-60M flashes, two of which were attached to softboxes and positioned on stands.
The flash on the camera played the role of TTL trigger, while the other two off-camera flashes fired through the softboxes to provide illumination.Lighting
The key light, which was placed just slightly above eye-level for the dogs and off to the left, was fired through a Westcott Rapid Box 26" Octa Softbox.
The second light was an overhead fill bounced off the silver inside of a 60" umbrella, to save space in the relatively small room in which we were working. This light was placed off to the right of the setup, aimed to cover both the backdrop and the subject, to provide a bit of fill light and illuminate the backdrop.Get their attention
When working with animals it's very important to bring something to grab their attention.
For dogs, treats are always a great way to have them look wherever you want, as long as they're well behaved. With Ginger Rogers, the sweet little blind Poodle pictured above, we borrowed a squeaky toy that the shelter calls the 'Photo Pig'. They call it that because it's shaped like a pig. And they use it to get the dogs' attention for photos.Photo Pig. Shoot from eye-level
Shooting from a pet's eye level helps in a few ways.
First, it's a better angle for classic 'head and shoulders' shots when combined with a longer focal length, presenting the dog as a more 'human' subject, giving the image more personality.
Second, it can help with intimidation, or rather avoiding intimidation, especially with smaller breeds. Just watch out, some dogs love to give kisses when you squat down to their level. Keep your front element covered, or have something handy to clean it.Posing your pet
Profile shots are a great way to add variety in sets of shots taken at the same time.
Be sure to keep the subject facing the side that the light is on, so their face isn't lost in shadow and they still get 'catch lights' in their eyes.What about cats?
Cats are a bit more tricky than dogs. We tried, but our hit-rate wasn't quite as high as we needed it to be. It's harder to get a cat's attention, and they can get aggressive and skittish if they're not in a co-operative mood.Toy with them
Getting cats to sit still can be a nightmare. Sound tends to startle cats, so for this kitten portrait we ditched the Photo Pig in favor of feathers attached to a string on the end of a pole. Dangling it just out of shot kept his chin up for the picture.Watch your settings
We were using the Sony a6300 for this shoot, and overall the camera worked well. Off-camera TTL lights made setting up the exposure quite easy.
When using flash on a mirrorless camera, make sure you're not in exposure preview mode, otherwise, at typical flash exposure settings you'll just be looking at a completely dark, underexposed preview image.
Also, be aware that battery-powered flashes can have quite long recycle times, especially when fired through modifiers. The modifiers, while necessary for this soft diffused look, sap light, requiring the flash to be used at a higher power level.Focus tips
When stopped down past F8 the a6300's switches to contrast detection in AF-C mode, slowing down the ability to keep up with skittish pets. To avoid this, we switched the camera to AF-S to get rid of the distracting hunting. Inevitably, this left us with some shots that aren't entirely sharp in the right place. But with a bit of processing, even the shots that aren't 100% sharp on the animals' eyes are still perfectly usable for a web gallery.Pet Portraits
If you're interested in adopting any of the animals you've seen here, we're sure The Motley Zoo would love to hear from you. We hope you enjoyed this quick look behind the scenes of a fun photo shoot. Check out the video, if you haven't already and share your tips for pet portraits in the comments!
The folks at Lensrentals had high hopes for the construction of Nikon's new ultra-fast 105mm F1.4, and in some many ways were satisfied with what they saw inside the lens. Take a look at a few images from the process above, and head to Lensrentals' blog for the full teardown. It's well worth your time as Roger Cicala picks a bone with Nikon's marketing department, identifies the lens-repair equivalent of 'crossing the streams' and ultimately offers a look inside a very high quality, well-made lens.
A new patent suggests Canon’s engineers might be working on a curved sensor design to reduce vignetting. Japanese blog Egami reports on a patent that was released on the 24th of November and describes an image sensor design with a flat central portion, where light fall-off from the lens is not much of an issue, and curved edges, where fall-off is generally more noticeable. This approach, rather than using a sensor that's totally curved, would avoid making the whole unit much thicker.
Such a sensor design could potentially be applied in mirrorless camera models where, due to short flange-back distances, vignetting is generally more of a problem than on conventional DSLRs. Software processing can correct for the effect but only to a certain degree, so it would not be a surprise that manufacturers are looking for hardware solutions.
As with all patents, it's impossible to know if the technology will ever make it into a production model but it's good to know manufacturers are looking at innovative ways of improving image quality.
Think Tank Photo has launched a new online Outlet Center offering discounted camera bags. These items, as is sometimes the case with outlet stores, are new products that may for one reason or another lack their original packing material and/or their sales tags. The Outlet Center currently lists 16 bags, though no doubt the number will fluctuate based on inventory. Price reductions are steep, and include the Shape Shifter bag, originally priced at $264.75, for $149.75.
Via: Imaging Resource
Olympus OM-D E-M1 owners are reporting issues using their cameras after updating to firmware version 4.2. Forum member Denjw reports problems with focus stacking and corrupted image files after updating to 4.2, echoing comments from German blogger Pen-and-Tell. Firmware 4.2 in part added support to the E-M1 for focus stacking with the 300mm F4, 8mm F1.8 fisheye and 7-14mm F2.8 Pro lenses. We've reached out to Olympus for comment and will update this story with any further information.
Ricoh has released firmware updates for its K-3 and K-50 DSLRs which add support for the company's K-AF4 lenses. K-AF4 lenses electromagnetically control aperture rather than using a mechanical linkage to the camera body. At time of publication, only the 55-300mm F4.5-6.3 ED PLM WR RE uses this system.
The firmware also improves overall camera stability.
Like many photographers, I spend a lot of time working in the field away from my office. By extension, that translates into a fair amount of time in front of my laptop computer backing up, organizing, and working with my images and videos before I get home.
For years my workflow depended on portable hard drives, but thanks to increased camera resolution and the need to shoot more video, particularly 4K video, I discovered that I was spending increasingly more time waiting around while bits moved across wires. And when I wanted to work with those files, the experience kept getting slower. I also worried a lot about spinning drives getting damaged in transit.Portable SSDs are available in every shape and size to meet your needs.
A couple years ago I switched to using external solid state drives, or SSDs, for all my mobile work. Back then there weren't a lot of off-the-shelf products to solve my problem, so I took a DIY (do-it-yourself) approach and made my own. Times have changed, and there are now a proliferation of external SSDs to meet your needs.
Despite this, I still run into a lot of photographers who haven't made the switch, and I'm continually surprised at how many of them have never even considered external portable SSDs, despite the fact that they often have one in their laptop.
Fortunately, we've reached a point where SSDs strike a reasonably good balance between price and performance. In this article I'll take a look at some of my favorite portable SSDs that I've used over the past year, each of which appealed to me for a different reason, and let you know what I like about each one.The portable SSD solutions featured in this article: (L to R) The do-it-yourself solution, Samsung T3, SanDisk Extreme 510, OWC Envoy Pro EX, Glyph Atom, Glyph Atom RAID The DIY Solution
For those willing to get their hands dirty, the DIY (do-it-yourself) solution is a viable option. SSDs designed for laptops are plentiful online and there's a huge selection of brands and sizes. At the time of publication, it's possible to get a 1TB SSD for under $240, which is probably enough portable storage to meet the needs of most mobile photographers.
Turning a bare SSD into an external peripheral is surprisingly simple; all you need is an inexpensive hard drive case, like this one from Anker, and a USB cable. Snap the SSD inside, connect it to your computer, and format the drive.The DIY (do-it-yourself) approach is the most economical method, and is also a great way to recycle an old SSD when you upgrade a laptop. Total assembly time: about 2 minutes.
There are plenty of cases available for around $10, and you can reuse them if you get a larger SSD later. I've been using the Anker case mentioned above for about two years and have upgraded the SSD inside three times. An external case is also a great option if you've upgraded the SSD in your laptop and want to recycle the old one as external storage.Samsung T3
The Samsung T3 first caught my attention at CES in January, and I've been using one almost since then. The T3's most compelling feature is that it's small; a bit shorter than a credit card, and only 1cm thick. It also weighs close to nothing, making it great for travel. It uses a USB-C plug, but ships with a USB-C to USB-A cable so you can plug it into the existing ports on your computer right out of the box.
The T3 has become one of my go-to SSDs when I'm traveling really light, as in 11-inch Macbook Air light. I barely notice it in my bag, and often carry it around in a shirt or pants pocket when I'm out working. In fact, this is the SSD that people ask me about most often when they see it, once they realize it's not a card reader for my camera. This is the SSD to take with you if you want compact size, speedy performance, and a bit of style.The Samsung T3 is a bit shorter than a credit card and 1cm thick. Put it in your pocket and you'll barely know it's there.
The T3 is also comes in a variety of capacities ranging all the way up to 2TB of storage, making it an incredibly compact way to store a lot of data. It's available in several sizes including 250GB ($119), 500GB ($199), 1TB ($399), and 2TB ($799)SanDisk Extreme 510
The SanDisk Extreme 510 gives the Samsung T3 a run for its money when it comes to portability, being just slightly larger due to its square shape. However, the difference in size is negligible when you consider how small they both are.
What sets the Extreme 510 apart from the T3 is that it's designed for slightly more rugged use, with an IP55 rating for water and dust protection, including an integrated cap that fits over the USB port. It also has a rubber bumper around the edges to protect against drops, and it really works. Finally, there's a small metal loop on one corner in case you want to attach a lanyard or clip the drive to your other gear.
This has turned into my favorite SSD when I need to travel light in potentially adverse conditions, such as during our Nikon D810 Field Test where dust seemed to get everywhere. I've even found myself using the metal loop to clip the drive to an attachment on the inside of my pack for security. My only complaints about the Extreme 510 are that the rubber cap over the USB port comes off a little too easily, and that it's currently only available in one size (480GB).The SanDisk Extreme 510 might look unconventional, but it's a great choice for mobile use thanks to its water and dust resistance, and rubber bumper to protect against drops.
One interesting note about the Extreme 510 is that in my performance testing it had slightly slower than average write speeds, though I didn't really notice this in practical use. The 480GB SanDisk Extreme 510 costs $249.OWC Envoy Pro EX
Other World Computing (OWC) is known for high quality products with a focus on the Macintosh market, so it comes as no surprise that the OWC Envoy Pro EX's case is a perfect match for a MacBook computer, right down to the anodized aluminum case. (Well, the silver variety at least.) That said, it should work with any computer as long as you format it correctly.
The Envoy Pro EX is in the middle of the pack when it comes to size, but leads the way when it comes to style, and its build quality is excellent, right down to the smallest details. I would almost call it Apple-esque, which I suppose is the point. I've received lots of comments about this drive, particularly from other Mac users.
The Envoy Pro EX is a great choice if presentation and appearance are of importance, particularly if you're a Mac user. Whether you're visiting clients or just trying to project a professional image, it does the job well. Or, if you just want a SSD that will match your MacBook's style, and potentially outlast it as well, the Envoy Pro EX is a great choice.The OWC Envoy Pro EX is a well-built, stylish SSD that's relatively compact. It's also a perfect visual match for a silver MacBook or MacBook Pro.
The Envoy Pro EX is available in a range of sizes including 240GB ($195), 480GB ($339), and 1TB ($559).Glyph Atom and Atom RAID
The Atom and Atom RAID from Glyph Technologies are a bit heavier than the other SSDs in this article, but that simply reflects their build quality. These things are solid. Really solid. As in, I'm pretty sure I could run over them with my car and they would still work, solid. Both are enclosed in a very sturdy aluminum housing which is encased in a rubber sleeve to add some shock protection.
The Atoms are also the only SSDs in this article that feature support for USB 3.1, Gen 2. In a nutshell, this means they have twice the theoretical maximum data transfer rate of the other devices in this article (10 Gbps vs. 5 Gbps). The Atom comes in a candy bar shaped case similar in size to the OWC Envoy Pro EX.The Glyph Atom is one of the most solid portable drives I've ever come across and is a great fit for serious production use where things get banged around a lot.
The Atom RAID includes two SSDs in a RAID 0 configuration to provide even greater speed when transferring data, and it can deliver. Physically, it's about 50% wider than the standard Atom and a bit heavier, but otherwise similar in design.The Glyph Atom RAID is every bit as solid as the Atom, but includes two SSDs in a RAID 0 configuration for even more speed.
Both Atom devices use a USB-C connection and ship with native USB-C to USB-C cables as well as USB-C to USB-A cables. It's a nice touch that Glyph provides cables for both types of connections out of the box. My only complaint about the design is that the LED status light on these drives is bright enough to illuminate the corner of a room in the dark.
The Atom and Atom RAID are hands-down the most durable SSDs I've tried, and the ones I would choose for a production environment where they get used, abused, and banged around every day. I've been using them non-stop for several weeks, shoving them in and out of bags with other gear, and am consistently impressed with how rugged they are. Whether the additional speed of the RAID model is justified depends on your requirements, but it's there if you need it.
The Atom is available in capacities of 275GB ($129), 525GB ($229), and 1TB ($399). The Atom RAID is available in capacities of 1TB ($419) and 2TB ($819). You pay a bit of a premium for the RAID version, but if you need the speed it will probably cost you one way or another.Performance
DPReview doesn't do in-depth performance testing of products like hard drives. There are other sites that do a great job of things like that. However, in addition to using all these drives over the past several months, I put them all through some real world use tests on a 5K iMac using a Lightroom library with about 10,000 photos, as well as a 250GB Final Cut Pro X project. I also ran some common benchmarking software for a baseline comparison.
In real world use there was very little noticeable performance difference between any of the drives, with the exception of the DIY solution, which seemed just a bit slower when importing large amounts of data. Of course, this will depend on what SSD you use for a DIY build, so results may vary.
For slightly more objective results I ran speed tests on all the SSDs using Blackmagic Disk Speed Test and AJA System Test, both of which provided almost identical results. I also included a popular portable spinning hard drive, the WD My Passport, in the test for comparison.
Capacity TestedWrite Speed Read Speed DIY solution* 250GB 253 MB/s 266 MB/s Samsung T3 1TB 383 MB/s
406 MB/sSandisk Extreme 510 480GB 285 MB/s 420 MB/s OWC Envoy Pro 960GB 378 MB/s 409 MB/s Glyph Atom** 1TB 472 MB/s 431 MB/s Glyph Atom RAID** 2TB 804 MB/s 572 MB/s
WD My Passport 5400 rpm portable hard disk2TB 69 MB/s 104 MB/s
* Average results for two SSDs: a Samsung EVO 840 and SanDisk Extreme Pro. (Results for both drives were similar.) Actual performance for DIY solutions will depend on the SSD used, and possibly the enclosure as well.
** Tests for the Atom drives were performed using a new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, which has Thunderbolt 3 ports capable of supporting the drives' USB 3.1, Gen 2 interface.
When looking at these numbers, keep in mind that it's possible to get slightly different results by adjusting the test parameters, though when I did so the overall trend stayed the same between drives. The take home message here is that all the drives are insanely fast compared to a portable spinning hard drive. That in itself shouldn't be a surprise, but the table shows just how much faster the SSDs can be.
There are some interesting things to note from the data, however. I was surprised that my home-built DIY drive was consistently slower than the commercial offerings, especially since it's basically just a bare SSD plugged directly into a USB 3.0 interface. It's possible that different SSDs would have performed better in the same enclosure.
It's also possible to see the advantages of the newer USB 3.1, Gen 2 transfer rates on the Atom drives, especially when you throw a RAID 0 configuration into the mix. Of course, to take advantage of these speeds you'll need a computer that supports the new standard as well.Conclusion
If you're still using regular hard drives for your mobile photo work, there's never been a better time to make the switch to portable SSDs. Of course, there are compelling reasons to stick with spinning hard drives; they deliver huge amounts of storage at low cost. Every photographer has their own price/performance threshold, but that ratio is getting better all the time.
From a performance perspective, almost any portable SSD will likely meet the needs of most photographers. The most economical solution is the DIY approach. It's incredibly easy to assemble your own portable SSD, and prices for bare drives have come down a lot, especially if you're willing to pick up a recently discontinued model.
When it comes to commercial SSD models, the best choice will likely come down to your specific needs. Do you need fast and light? Style? Rugged build? Each one has a sweet spot. Finally, don't limit yourself to the SSDs included in this article. There are lots of options on the market today, and some may meet your needs better than these. If you haven't made the switch, go online, see what's available, and take the plunge!
Fujifilm has added a new entry-level model to its X-series of mirrorless interchangeable lens compact system cameras in the shape of the X-A10. The camera will use a 16 Megapixel APS-C sensor (with a Bayer color filter, rather than X-Trans) and will come equipped with a flip-over rear screen designed to make taking selfies easier.
The company says that it has designed the grip so that it will be comfortable to hold with the camera facing towards as well as away from the photographer’s face, and that when shooting self-portraits the rear command dial can be used to focus and trigger the shutter. Flipping the rear screen to the 180° position also activates eye-detection AF so that the camera will prioritise focusing for faces. It has six film simulation modes are on offer along with a collection of filters and effects, including Portrait Enhancer for better skin reproduction.
The X-A10 is claimed to deliver 410 shots per charge due to 'energy efficient design,' can shoot Full HD video at 30p, 25p or 24p for up to 17 minutes. The camera’s top shutter speed in electronic shutter mode is 1/32000 sec.
The X-A10 will come bundled with a XC16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS II lens, and will cost $499/£499 when it goes on sale in January 2017.
For more information see the Fujifilm website.
UK Press Release:
The X-A10 delivers the X Series’ premium image quality in any shooting conditions with ease, making it the ideal choice for a first interchangeable lens camera.
FUJIFILM Corporation (President: Kenji Sukeno) has announced that it will launch the mirrorless digital camera, the FUJIFILM X-A10; a new addition to the X Series range of cameras that deliver outstanding picture quality.
Despite its compact and lightweight design, the X-A10 combines a 16.3 megapixel sensor with the company’s colour-reproduction technology, refined over more than 80 years, to deliver the premium image quality synonymous to the X Series with ease. This makes the X-A10 an ideal first interchangeable lens camera.
Combining a 16.3 megapixel sensor and Fujifilm’s colour-reproduction technology, refined over more than 80 years, to deliver premium picture quality
The X-A10 combines a 16.3 megapixel APS-C sensor with the image processing engine that achieves Fujifilm’s excellent photo quality. Sharp FUJINON lenses that boast ultimate image resolution, and the proprietary colour-reproduction technology, refined over more than 80 years, allows users to capture premium quality images in any shooting conditions. Fujifilm is particularly renowned for accurately reproducing skin tones, and the X-A10 is built with this advanced skin tone reproduction capability, allowing you to produce high-quality portraiture.
180-degree slide-and-tilt LCD with 100% visibility for facilitating “self-portraits”
The rear LCD employs the slide-and-tilt mechanism so that even when it is tilted by 180 degrees, the LCD is not blocked by the camera, allowing for 100% visibility. The grip is shaped to accommodate both normal shooting and self-portraits. When taking a self-portrait, you can focus and release the shutter by pressing the vertical command dial found directly below your index finger to minimise camera shake. Rotating the tilting LCD upward by 180 degrees activates the Eye Detection AF to automatically adjust the focus on the subject’s eyes. The X-A10 also features the Portrait Enhancer mode for natural and beautiful skin-tone reproduction.
Compact and lightweight camera body with retro design and intuitive operability
The compact and lightweight X-A10 sports a retro design. The use of two Command Dials means you only need a thumb to quickly adjust aperture, shutter speed and exposure settings. Frequently used functions such as white balance, continuous shooting and the self-timer can be assigned to standalone function buttons, eliminating the need to go through the Menu screens to change settings.
Inheriting FUJIFILM X-A2’s popular performance features
Its energy-efficient design means the X-A10 is capable of shooting approx. 410 frames on a single battery charge. When fitted with the standard zoom kit lens “XC16-50mmF3.5-5.6 OIS II,” the camera offers the class-leading minimum working distance of approx. 7cm from the front edge of the lens, allowing close-up macro photography.
- Outstanding image quality, made possible by the newly-developed 16.3 megapixel image sensor
- Fujifilm’s colour reproduction technology, nurtured through the development of photographic film, captures accurate, warm skin tones, clear blue skies and lush green foliage in tones exactly as you remember them.
- The APS-C sensor delivers beautifully smooth bokeh effects for portraiture and macro shots when using a shallow depth of field.
- The X-A10 offers a total of six Film Simulation modes, namely the true-to-life colours of PROVIA (standard), the vibrant tones and saturated colours of Velvia (vivid), the soft tones of ASTIA (soft), the documentary-style deep colours and soft shades of CLASSIC CHROME, as well as Monochrome and Sepia.
- The normal sensitivity range covers ISO200 to ISO6400, while extended sensitivity settings of ISO12800 and even ISO25600 can be selected when you want to minimise camera shake. The X-A10 produces clear images with astonishingly low noise, even on low-light nightscapes and indoor shots where high ISOs are essential.
- Advanced Filters help you easily produce creative effects. A total of ten Advanced Filters are available, including the new “Fisheye” and “Cross Screen” as well as Toy Camera, Miniature, Dynamic Tone, Pop Colour, Soft Focus, High Key, Low Key and Partial Colour.
Designed for perfect self-portraits
The screen has a slide-and-tilt mechanism so when it is tilted 180 degrees into “selfie-mode”, it can slide out further to ensure the camera body doesn’t block the view.
The grip is shaped to accommodate both normal shooting and self-portraits alike. The final shape, based on ergonomic design, was decided through prototype testing involving hundreds of photographers
Automatic shooting modes
When taking a self-portrait, you can take photos by pressing the vertical command dial found directly below your index finger to minimise camera shake. The Self Timer function offers Smile Detection, that take photos automatically when the subject smiles, Buddy Timer which shoots when two people come close together, and Group Timer mode that automatically shoots when a specified number of people come into the frame.
Rotating the tilting LCD upward by 180 degrees activates the Eye Detection AF to automatically adjust the focus on the subject’s eyes.
The X-A10 features a Portrait Enhancer mode, which makes the human skin look smoother and brighter. Enjoy the beautiful skin tonality that only the X Series offers also when shooting selfies.
Extended battery life of approx. 410 frames per charge
The energy-efficient design has extended the battery life to a class-leading level, allowing you to concentrate on shooting pictures without having to worry about remaining battery power.
The camera also supports charging via USB for maximum convenience, especially while travelling.
Class-leading minimum working distance
When fitted with the standard lens “XC16-50mmF3.5-5.6 OIS II,” the X-A10 can focus on subjects as close as approximately 7cm from the front of the lens allowing you to explore the fantastic world of close-up macro photography.
Super Intelligent Flash
The built-in pop-up flash supports the Super Intelligent Flash system that accurately controls light output according to individual scenes. When shooting indoor portraits in low-light, small items or food, the flash system reduces highlight clipping to produce images exactly as your eyes see them. Natural colours and brightness are also achieved when shooting backlit scenes or photographing a person under intense sunlight that casts strong shadows on the face.
Full HD video recording
Press the dedicated Video Recording button on the rear to easily start recording full HD (1080/30p, 25p, 24p) video.
The Film Simulation function, popularly used for still images, can also be applied to video recording for a diverse range of creative effects, which can be combined with smooth bokeh, made possible with the APS-C sensor and FUJINON lenses to produce professional-looking, creative movies.
Turning on the electronic image stabilisation function delivers the five-axis image stabilisation that combines optical and electronic stabilisation, significantly reducing a variety of camera shakes that could occur during video recording. This function allows you to record high quality video with reduced camera shake while walking around with the camera in your hand.
Versatile shooting functions including the electronic shutter with the maximum speed of 1/32000 sec
When using the ultra-fast electronic shutter, even under clear skies or other bright conditions, you can use large aperture to achieve a shallow depth of field without over-exposing the image. You can capture a scene exactly as intended without having to use an ND filter.
As a result of answering the requests from many users, the X-A10 now features the Panorama and Time Lapse functions.
Other new functions include the interlocking of Metering and AF areas, support for the Adobe RGB colour space, and choice of different colours in Focus Peaking for assisting MF.
Wireless communication functionality enables remote shooting from smartphones and tablet devices
Install the free FUJIFILM Camera Remote app on your smartphone or tablet and use the Wireless Communication function to transfer photos and videos to your device with a simple one-touch operation. You can view and select photos and videos in your camera or on your smartphone and then easily import them to your device. You can even attach GPS location information, obtained by your smart device, to your images.
The Remote Shoot function lets you adjust exposure and other settings, focus and take photos from your smartphone or tablet device. With Remote Shooting, the app not only offers basic operations such as Touch AF and shutter speed adjustment, but also lets you adjust a variety of shooting settings or initiate video recording. It’s great for group photos, self-portraits and even wildlife photography where you might want to compose your shot from a distance.
Images can also be sent directly from the camera to the Instax SHARE smartphone printer for instant printing.
AVAILABILITY AND PRICING:
FUJIFILM X-A10 with XC16-50mmF3.5-5.6 OIS II kit will be available from January 2017 with a Suggested Retail Price of $499/£499.00
Intro 2020 has launched its Slik Lite series, a line of tripods that feature a built-in removable LED light. The series is comprised of five models, three made of aluminum and two made of 8-layer carbon fiber. According to Intro 2020, all five models can be compactly stored and transported thanks to Rapid Flip Mechanism locks for inverting the tripod’s legs 180-degrees.
The Slik Lite series tripods all feature rubber feet and a ball and socket head. The aluminum models, which include the AL-420, AL-420M, and AL-20S, feature lever-locking four-section legs. The CR-422 carbon fiber model, meanwhile, has four-section twist-locking legs, while the CF-522 carbon fiber model has five-section twist-locking legs.
The series’ most notable, feature, however, is the removable LED light powered by two AAA batteries built into the bottom of the center column. The LED light aids in viewing camera bag gear in low light and dark settings, and can also double as a flashlight when needed.
- Slik Lite AL-420S tripod: £121.99 inc VAT / $89.95 USD
- Slik Lite AL-420M tripod: £131.99 inc VAT / $104.95 USD
- Slik Lite AL-420 tripod: £142.99 inc VAT / $119.95 USD
- Slik Lite CF-422 carbon fibre tripod: £439.99 inc VAT / $304.95 USD
- Slik Lite CF-522 carbon fibre tripod: £415.99 inc VAT / $274.95 USD
Google's Pixel smartphones come with a range of innovative imaging technology and currently occupy the number one spot in the DxOMark smartphone ranking. However, shortly after the device launch some users reported a strong tendency of the Pixel camera to produce lens flare, and now it appears some devices are having trouble with the camera app, as well.
In the Google Product Forum a number of users are reporting that their camera app is frequently crashing, sometimes showing pink and purple vertical lines. It appears the issue is mainly impacting international devices when the phone is in an area with poor signal reception. The error does not occur when flight mode is activated.Source: Google Product Forum
Google support staff has been instructing users who are experiencing the issue to clear the cache and data, and factory reset the device. However, none of these measures has solved the problem. It appears performing a soft reset by holding the volume down and power keys is currently the only way to get your device up and running again when the issue occurs.
We are currently testing the Google Pixel XL for our full review and, luckily, have so far not experienced the problem. That said, we hope Google can come up with a quick solution, possibly a software update, to help the affected users.
Selfie and budget-friendly: Fujifilm announces the X-A10 mirrorless ILC, 16.3 megapixels and tilting display
Canon is on a roll with its updated Mark II lenses and scoring bullseyes with pretty much every shot. New versions of key focal lengths are being rolled out across the range, with fully revised optics and mechanical construction. Most are class leading, often setting new standards in one area or another, and the Canon EF 35mm F1.4L USM MkII is no exception - it is sharp, very, very sharp!
The MkII model launched last year replaces the elderly MkI of 1998. That lens was originally designed for film SLRs, but it won many digital hearts, including some on the DPReview team and several articles have already been published, looking back at the old lens and forward to the MkII with sample galleries, user reports and comparisons.
One thing missing from those articles though, is the close scrutiny of DxO Mark's lab tests, with full analysis of MTF (Modulation Transfer Function) sharpness performance, and other important aspects of image quality that can only be properly assessed under controlled conditions. So now we're putting that right, and the resolution of this lens on a 51 megapixel Canon 5DS R is something to behold. The new Canon 35mm F1.4 MkII shares headline specifications with the MkI, and most key features are the same or similar. It's all-change under the skin though, with more of everything in the quest for quality, including a significant increase in size, weight and cost.Key specifications
- New optical design with 14 elements in 11 groups (MkI version has 11 in 9)
- One UD glass element added, and two aspherical surfaces (MkI has one aspherical)
- New BR Optics layer reduces CA
- Nine rounded aperture blades (MkI has eight)
- Weight goes up 31% and length 23% (compared to MkI)
- Sealed, weather resistant construction (MkI is not weather resistant)
- Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price $1799USD (MkI $1479)
Canon has paid close attention to the optical redesign and the mechanical construction, and both raise the bar. No stone has been left unturned, and just about the only thing that stays the same as the MkI is the 72mm filter size, and the minimum focusing distance is also very similar at 28cm (11in).
There is no image stabilization, with that option already very effectively covered by the Canon 35mm F2 IS USM. Purists will welcome the decision to concentrate on sheer optical quality, and it helps to keep complexity and the burgeoning weight in check.Angle of view 35mm focal length delivers a 63° field of view on full frame cameras, measured conventionally across the diagonal, from corner to corner. Image corrected for lateral CA, distortion and vignetting in Lightroom, at default sharpening. Canon 5DS R (51mp), 1/2500 sec, F4, ISO 100, mirror lock-up. On APS-C format, the 35mm focal length's field of view is narrowed to 42° (56mm equivalent). This is a digital simulation, cropped 1.6x (20mp) from the full frame image above. Shire Hall, Cambridge, UK. Previously published content
- 1.4 and More: Canon EF 35mm F1.4L II comparison (comparative review)
- The new Canon 35mm F1.4L II will be a thing of beauty (opinion)
- Canon 35mm F1.4L II: a photojournalist's perspective (opinion)
- Canon 35mm F1.4L II Real-World Samples (gallery)
Back in the early days of consumer digital photography, I was a bit of an Olympus fanboy. My first camera was the D-300L (launched in 1996 for around $900), which had a resolution of just 786k pixels. A year later I stepped up to the D-600L ($1299), which increased the resolution to 1.4MP and had a 3X zoom lens and, in a first for consumer cameras, a TTL optical viewfinder.
Then, in the year 2000, a really interesting camera arrived and, as you may have guessed, it was an Olympus. That camera was the E-10 and, after shelling out two grand, it would be mine.Throwback Thursday: Olympus E-10
Even if you ignore its hallmark feature (described later), the E-10's specs were amazing for its time. It had a 4MP 2/3" CCD, fast and very high quality lens with manual focus and zoom rings, twin control dials, an articulating LCD and much, much more.
In the above image alone you'll notice its numerous collection of I/O ports, which included flash sync, remote control, USB and A/V output. There were plenty of direct controls, too, which kept you at an arm's-length from the camera's menu system.
The body was super-solid - perhaps more than some DSLRs of that era – and was weather-sealed.Throwback Thursday: Olympus E-10
Oh, that lens. The E-10's 35-140mm equivalent lens has a maximum aperture range of F2-2.4, both aspherical and ED elements, and excellent sharpness. The zoom could be adjusted just like on an SLR - no buttons needed to be pressed. Focusing, on the other hand, was 'fly by wire.' The lens was threaded and Olympus offered some pretty crazy conversion lenses for it.
The E-10 had a pretty advanced AF system for that era. It first used infrared light (from a transmitter seen here) to get a rough idea as to the distance of the subject. Once that was done a more traditional contrast-detect system was used for fine-tuning.Throwback Thursday: Olympus E-10
Another nice feature on the E-10 was its articulating LCD (look how thick that enclosure is!). The 1.8" screen could tilt upward 90° and downward about 20°. The E-10 also had a large optical viewfinder with 95% coverage, though DPReview founder Phil Askey had some issues with it.
Rear controls were conventional and could've come off of any camera made that year.Throwback Thursday: Olympus E-10
A number of things that made the E-10 feel a bit 'pro' were its dual control dials and backlit LCD info display. That SM/CF switch is how you toggled between memory card slots. Yes, the E-10 had two; one for SmartMedia and the other for CompactFlash. Looking back, I still have to laugh at the dedicated spots on the mode dial for connecting to a printer or computer. Those were the days (or not.)Throwback Thursday: Olympus E-10
I've covered many of the things that made the Olympus E-10 such an impressive camera, but I've been saving what makes it unique for the end. The E-10 was the first camera to allow photographers to use live view at the same time as the optical viewfinder. It does so via a 'beam splitter' which sent a TTL view of the scene to the camera's large OVF and directly to that 4MP CCD.
This was all very impressive, though the live view resolution was poor. And, for those wondering, the E-10 could not capture video. Can't have everything, I guess.
Overall, though, the E-10 was a heck of a camera, and one that I used for many years (and still have today.) For those who wanted an SLR camera that didn't require carrying around extra lenses, there was nothing else like it on the market.
Camera, lens and software manufacturer Phase One has introduced a new version of its image manipulation software package that it says improves the speed at which it runs and which adds a collection of new editing tools – as well as compatibility with additional cameras and lenses. Capture One Pro 10 features faster browsing, zooming, image scrolling and magnified view comparisons after what the company describes as ‘under-the-hood tuning’, while a new design makes the interface easier for those new to the application.
Phase One has also added new sharpening tools that between them counter softness caused by diffraction, reduce the effects of haloing and which allow localized sharpening of selected areas. A further sharpening control provides the means to create output sharpening parameters for raw images as they are converted for particular purposes – such as for different print sizes or for web use. For images going to print the tool allows users to specify how far away viewers are likely to be so the program can generate suitable sharpening levels.
On the organizational side Version 10 allows users to move folders within a catalogue and allows filtering of images by their orientation. Those shooting with a Sony or Phase One camera tethered get a new ‘camera focus tool’ that helps users make critical focusing adjustments directly from the software without having to touch the camera.
The new application is also compatible with Tangent editing products. These are mixing-desk-like tools that provide an alternative to traditional keyboard-and-mouse operation of software. These panels are said to make editing software more intuitive and faster to use.
New hardware supported with this upgrade includes the Olympus OM-D E-M1 ll and the Sony A99M2 and A6500 cameras as well as Sony FE 70-200 mm F4 G OSS, Sony 70-200 mm F2.8 G, and Sony E 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 OSS lenses.
Capture One Pro 10 is available now and costs $299/€279. Users of version 8 or 9 can upgrade for $99/€99, though if you bought version 9 after 1st November you can upgrade for free. Subscribers can just download the latest version as part of their package.
For more information visit the Phase One website.
Press releasePhase One Releases Capture One Pro 10
Ready for the Future of Image Editing – A Faster, More Powerful Experience
COPENHAGEN, December 1, 2016 – Phase One today released Capture One Pro 10, a major release of the world’s premiere raw conversion and image editing software. Designed to support wide ranging workflows of both professional and passionate photographers, Capture One Pro is known and trusted for rendering the finest image color and detail from more than 400 digital camera models. Now, based on customer feedback, Capture One Pro 10 puts superior user experience center stage – with interface improvements, under-the-hood tuning, and exciting new features that furnish the fastest, most reliable and most powerful performance yet.
What’s New with Capture One Pro 10:
Enhanced User Experience. Faster browsing, zooming, panning, and ease in switching between images even at 100 percent view. Also, a new default workspace offers a more intuitive experience for new users, with examples for getting started.
Greater control, with a three-stage image sharpening process:
- A new lens tool option corrects lost sharpness caused by diffraction;
- User-defined creative sharpening (utilizing a new Halo Suppression slider and a new blending algorithm) allows the photographer the option to sharpen an entire image, or just various elements within it;
- User-defined output sharpening in the recipe tool. For print sharpening, users can also specify the distance from which the final output image should be viewed.
On-screen proofing. An enhanced proof mode takes the guesswork out of the raw conversion process. From the viewer panel, users can now simulate the final size, resolution, color, compression artifacts and sharpening of images. This is especially useful for live assessment of files – particularly small files for the web and for optimizing image compression quality.
A look into the future of image editing: Inspired by video grading processes, users can now access Capture One Pro directly through a Tangent panel system. This fully integrated panel is literally a new interface into image editing – for deep dive color and image adjustment –– allowing fast, multiple input commands simultaneously, while viewing the master monitor as the editor “feels” input into the application.
A camera focus tool module for tethered cameras -- especially useful for product, still life, macro, and Cultural Heritage photography projects.
“We have developed Capture One Pro 10 to greatly improve users’ experience so they can achieve the results they want much faster and with greater confidence,” said James Johnson, software product manager, Phase One. “Image adjustment options are now at a whole new level. We believe that with this release, we are delivering the most powerful, responsive, and user customizable image processor available.”
The Complete List of New Features:
- Three-phase sharpening tools (see above)
- Output proofing (see above)
- New default and intuitive workspace (see above)
- Camera focus tool module for tethered cameras (see above)
- Tangent panel: full integration (see above)
- New filter option: search by orientation of images
- Optimization of Jpeg output for size/quality
- Move folders in catalogs
- Auto masking extended to any editable file type (including Xtrans)
- Improved compressed RAW and Fuji support
- Hardware acceleration – OpenCL is now enabled by default
- Stripe reduction LCC for 100MP
- Optimized LCC creation
- Computer ID in license for activation management
- Apple script – new properties (Mac only)
New camera and lens support
New camera support includes: Olympus E-M1 mkll, Sony RX100M5, Sony A6500 and A99M2.
New lens profile support includes: Sony FE 70-200 mm F4 G OSS, Sony 70-200 mm F2.8 G, and Sony E 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 OSS
For a complete list of newly supported cameras and lenses, please go to: www.phaseone.com/download.
Availability and Pricing
Capture One Pro 10 is available now for the Mac and Windows operating systems online at www.phaseone.com/store and from Phase One authorized partners worldwide www.phaseone.com/partners.
Owners of Capture One Pro 8 and 9 may upgrade for 99 USD or 99 EUR. For customers who have purchased Capture One Pro 9 since November 1, 2016, Phase One is offering a grace period, exempting them from the upgrade fee. Eligible customers can download their upgrade today at phaseone.com/download and reuse their license key.
New customers can purchase Capture One Pro 10 for 299 USD or 279 EUR. Capture One Pro is also available by subscription. Capture One Pro (8 and 9) subscribers can simply download the new Capture One Pro 10 release. A single-user subscription is 15 USD / 12 EUR per month for a 12-month plan. Please see all subscription options at www.phaseone.com/store.