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Nikon Z6 Review

Mon, 01/14/2019 - 06:58
88%Overall scoreJump to conclusion

The Nikon Z6 is one of two full-frame mirrorless cameras introduced by Nikon in August of 2018. It's very similar to its big brother, the Z7, with the main differences being the sensor (24MP vs 46MP) and the decrease in resolution that comes along with it. The Z6 also has fewer phase-detect autofocus points (273 vs 493) due to the lower-res sensor. Otherwise, you're getting the same rugged body, the same (mostly) familiar controls and access to a small but soon-to-grow collection of Z-mount lenses.

Specs aside, the Z6 is for a very different audience than the Z7. The latter is for those seeking ultra-high resolution and would also be considering cameras like the Sony a7R III and Nikon D850. The Z6, on the other hand, is intended to be be more appealing to those looking to upgrade from crop-sensor cameras or previous-generation full-frame DSLRs.

The Z6 will ultimately be compared to its DSLR sibling, the D750 (which is getting on in years, but still very capable). While the two cameras have different designs, they operate similarly, with autofocus modes and video being the the most significant differences.

Key specifications:
  • 24.5MP full-frame BSI-CMOS sensor
  • Hybrid autofocus system w/273 phase-detect points
  • Up to 12 fps burst shooting (Raw + JPEG)
  • 3.69M-dot OLED viewfinder
  • 2.1M-dot tilting touch LCD
  • OLED top plate display
  • Single XQD card slot
  • UHD 4K capture up to 30p
  • 10-bit 4:2:2 N-Log output over HDMI
  • Up to 100Mbps H.264 8-bit internal video capture
  • SnapBridge Wi-Fi system with Bluetooth
Out of camera JPEG | ISO 7200 | 1/250 sec | F1.8 | Nikkor Z 50mm lens
Photo by Dan Bracaglia

If those specs look familiar, it's because they're almost identical to that of the Z7, with resolution and the number of AF points being the main differences. You do reap the benefits of the lower resolution sensor when shooting bursts, with a top frame rate of 12 fps (versus 9) and the ability to capture more photos per burst. Otherwise, you're getting the same design and innovations found the Z6's big brother, which is significantly more expensive.

The Z6 is sold body-only for $1999 or with the Nikkor Z 24-70mm F4 S lens for $2599. If you buy the $249 FTZ (F-to-Z mount) adapter at the same time, Nikon will knock $100 off of the price.

What's new and how it compares

The Z6 uses the all-new Z-mount along with a full-frame 24MP sensor with 5-axis image stabilization built in, along with a hybrid AF system and oversampled 4K video.

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Body and handling

The Z6 has excellent build quality, familiar controls and a lot of customizability, though some favorites from Nikon DSLRs didn't make the cut.

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Operation and controls

The Z6 can be customized in numerous ways, and we appreciate its ability to have separate settings for stills and video.

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What it's like to use

The Z6 is extremely versatile and can handle nearly any shooting situation that comes up.

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Image quality

The Z6's 24MP sensor has excellent resolution and high ISO performance, though on rare occasions you may see banding if shadow areas are brightened.

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Autofocus

Nikon has put a lot of work into the hybrid AF system on the Z6, and the results are impressive for both still and video shooting.

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Video

The Z6 offers the best video quality and capability of any Nikon camera to date.

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Conclusion

While not a perfect camera, the Nikon Z6's design and build along with superb image and video quality make it strongly worth your consideration.

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Sample Gallery

See how the Z6's photos look in our extensive sample gallery.

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Categories: Photo News

DPReview TV: The Yashica Y35 looks like a camera that would be fun to shoot.. until you try shooting with it

Mon, 01/14/2019 - 06:00

What do you get when you combine an iconic camera brand from the past with a crowdfunding campaign for a 'rangefinder' camera? The Yashica Y35, that's what. Watch Chris and Jordan try to make lemonade out of a lemon.

Get new episodes of DPReview TV every week by subscribing to our YouTube channel!

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Categories: Photo News

First samples: Nikon's new Z 14-30mm F4 is shaping up nicely

Sun, 01/13/2019 - 07:00
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Photographer Jimmy McIntyre has been working with Nikon, shooting a pre-production sample of the new Z 14-30mm F4 S lens. This compact wideangle zoom weighs just 485g (17oz) and supports screw-in (82mm) filters, making this dust and moisture-sealed lens it a potentially useful addition to Z shooters' kitbags when it becomes available later this year.

Jimmy took these photos using a Nikon Z7 and at Nikon's request, we're only showing out-of-the-camera JPEGs. Watch out for more samples from a production lens as soon as we can get our hands on one.

If you liked his shots, be sure to check out Jimmy's photo tutorial website.

Categories: Photo News

Video: Shooting landscapes on the Fujifilm GFX 50R with Nigel Danson

Sun, 01/13/2019 - 06:00

Photographer Nigel Danson recently had a chance to use the new Fujifilm GFX 50R for one of his landscape shoots. In this video, he shares his thoughts on the benefits and challenges of using a medium format camera like the GFX 50R for his work. Additionally, he shows us a few prints made from the camera.

For more great content from Nigel, please visit his YouTube channel.

Visit Nigel Danson's YouTube channel

Categories: Photo News

DPReview TV: Looking back at the Nikon D1H and Canon 1D

Sat, 01/12/2019 - 06:00

2019 is DPReview's 20th anniversary year, so we decided to take a walk down memory lane and shoot with a couple cameras that helped usher in the digital era for pro photographers: The Canon EOS 1D and the Nikon D1H. Join Chris and Barney for some camera nostalgia as they take these former flagships for a spin around Seattle.

Get new episodes of DPReview TV every week by subscribing to our YouTube channel!

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Categories: Photo News

Man v Dust: video highlights trials of Leica’s in-house sensor cleaning service

Sat, 01/12/2019 - 05:35

The International Leica Society has posted a video of a camera sensor being cleaned at the Leica service centre in the Wetzlar factory in Germany.

The video, taken by member Hari Subramanyam on his iPhone, shows the process of checking for dust on the sensor of his M (Typ 240) and then its removal. Well, that was what it was supposed to show, but after 20 minutes and 25 seconds the video finishes with the dust victorious and the Leica service engineer frustrated and wishing he wasn’t being recorded.

The engineer starts by cleaning the mount of the camera before using a vacuum cleaner to suck dust and debris from the shutter blades. Once that is done the in-camera dust checking function is used to detect a number of dust spots. The rubber-on-a-stick Pentax Sensor Cleaning kit is used to remove the dust as the engineer explains the process needs patience and can take anything from ten minutes to an hour.

We don’t get to see the sensor finally dust-free, as it takes a few goes and the cameraman has less patience than the engineer, but the video shows some useful steps in the process.

Categories: Photo News

2018 Wildlife Photographer of the Year People's Choice Award Shortlist

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 14:33
2018 Wildlife Photographer of the Year LUMIX People's Choice Award Shortlist

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year has been running for fifty four years now. Created and operated by the Natural History Museum, the competition is meant to 'showcase the world's best nature photography.'

As part of its LUMIX People's Choice Award, the Natural History Museum has released a shortlist of 25 images that showcase some of the best images to be submitted thus far — more than 45,000 in total from professionals and amateurs across the globe.

Voting for the LUMIX People's Choice Award is open through Monday, February 5th, 2019 on the Natural History Museum website. An accompanying exhibition of entries is open at the Natural History Museum in South Kensington through June 30th, 2019. Tickets cost at £8 for children, £13.50 for adults and between £28-£38 for families.

DPReview has compiled the shortlist photos in addition to the captions from the artists behind the photographs.

Above: Isolated by Anna Henly, UK

Snapped from a helicopter, this isolated tree stands in a cultivated field on the edge of a tropical forest on Kauai, Hawaii. The manmade straight lines of the ploughed furrows are interrupted beautifully by nature’s more unruly wild pattern of tree branches.

Canon EOS 5D Mark II + EF70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM lens used at 130mm; 1/2500 sec at f2.8; ISO 400.

Ice and Water by Audun Lie Dahl, Norway

The Bråsvellbreen glacier moves southwards from one of the ice caps covering the Svalbard Archipelago, Norway. Where it meets the sea, the glacier wall is so high that only the waterfalls are visible, so Audun used a drone to capture this unique perspective.

DJI Phantom 4 pro + 24mm lens; 1/120 sec at f 6.3; ISO 100. Panorama of 3 images.

Family Portrait by Conner Stefanison, Canada

A great grey owl and her chicks sit in their nest in the broken top of a Douglas fir tree in Kamloops, Canada. They looked towards Connor only twice as he watched them during the nesting season from a tree hide 50 feet (15 metres) up.

Canon 1D Mark IV + Canon 500mm f4 IS lens; 1/200 sec at f7.1; ISO 1250; Manfrotto monopod.

Curious Encounter by Cristonbal Serrano, Spain

Any close encounter with an animal in the vast wilderness of Antarctica happens by chance, so Cristobal was thrilled by this spontaneous meeting with a crabeater seal off of Cuverville Island, Antarctic Peninsula. These curious creatures are protected and, with few predators, thrive.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV + Canon EF 8-15mm f4L Fisheye USM lens; 1/250 sec at f8; ISO 160; Seacam housing and flash.

Bond of Brothers by David Lloyd, New Zealand/UK

These two adult males, probably brothers, greeted and rubbed faces for 30 seconds before settling down. Most people never have the opportunity to witness such animal sentience, and David was honoured to have experienced and captured such a moment.

Nikon D800E + 400mm f/2.8 lens; 1/500th sec at f4.8, ISO 500.

Clam Close-up by David Barrio, Spain

This macro-shot of an iridescent clam was taken in the Southern Red Sea, Marsa Alam, Egypt. These clams spend their lives embedded amongst stony corals, where they nest and grow. It took David some time to approach the clam, fearing it would sense his movements and snap shut!

Nikon D7100-105mm lens + Saga 10 diopters wet lens; 1/180 sec at f27; ISO 200; Isotta housing; 2xStrobes.

Painted Waterfall by Eduardo Blanco Mendizabal, Spain

When the sun beams through a hole in the rock at the foot of the La Foradada waterfall, Catalonia, Spain, it creates a beautiful pool of light. The rays appear to paint the spray of the waterfall and create a truly magical picture.

Canon 5D Mark III + 24-105mm f.4 lens; 30 sec at f9; grey neutral filter, tripod.

Ambush by Federico Veronesi, Kenya

On a hot morning at the Chitake Springs, in Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe, Federico watched as an old lioness descended from the top of the riverbank. She’d been lying in wait to ambush any passing animals visiting a nearby waterhole further along the riverbed.

Nikon D810 + 400mm f2.8 lens; 1/1000 sec at f5 (-1e/v); ISO 140.

Teenager by Franco Banfi, Switzerland

Franco was free diving off Dominica in the Caribbean Sea when he witnessed this young male sperm whale trying to copulate with a female. Unfortunately for him her calf was always in the way and the frisky male had to continually chase off the troublesome calf.

Canon 1DX Mark II + 8-15mm f/4 lens; 1/100 sec at f16; ISO 640; Seacam housing.

Resting Mountain Gorilla by David Lloyd

The baby gorilla clung to its mother whilst keeping a curious eye on David. He had been trekking in South Bwindi, Uganda, when he came across the whole family. Following them, they then stopped in a small clearing to relax and groom each other.

Fox Meets Fox by Matthew Maran, UK

Matthew has been photographing foxes close to his home in north London for over a year and ever since spotting this street art had dreamt of capturing this image. After countless hours and many failed attempts his persistence paid off.

Canon EOS 5D Mark III + 70-200mm f2.8 IS II USM lens; 1/500 sec at f4.0; ISO 800.

Shy by Pedro Carrillo, Spain

The mesmerizing pattern of a beaded sand anemone beautifully frames a juvenile Clarkii clownfish in Lembeh strait, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Known as a 'nursery' anemone, it is often a temporary home for young clownfish until they find a more suitable host anemone for adulthood.

Nikon D4 +Nikkor 70-180mm f4.5-5.6 D ED AF Micro lens at 78mm; 1/250 sec at f16; ISO 100; Seacam housing; two Seacam Seaflash 150TTL.

The Extraction by Konstantin Shatenev, Russia

Every winter, hundreds of Steller's sea eagles migrate from Russia, to the relatively ice-free northeastern coast of Hokkaido, Japan. They hunt for fish among the ices floes and also scavenge, following the fishing boats to feed on any discards. Konstantin took his image from a boat as the eagles retrieved a dead fish thrown onto the ice.

Canon1DX + EF300 f4IS USM lens; 1/1250 sec at f13; ISO800.

Otherworldly by Franco Banfi, Switzerland

A school of Munk's devil ray were feeding on plankton at night off the coast of Isla Espíritu Santo in Baja California, Mexico. Franco used the underwater lights from his boat and a long exposure to create this otherworldly image.

Canon 5DS + 8-15mm f/4 lens; 1/4 sec at f11; ISO 160; Isotta housing; Seacam Seaflash 150; two strobes.

The Orphaned Beaver by Suzi Eszterhas, United States

A one-month-old orphaned North American beaver kit is held by a caretaker at the Sarvey Wildlife Care Center in Arlington, Washington. Luckily it was paired with a female beaver who took on the role of mother and they were later released into the wild.

Canon 1DX + 24-70mm f2.8 lens; 1/200 sec at f3.5; ISO 1600.

Red, Silver and Black by Tin Man Lee, USA

Tin was fortunate enough to be told about a fox den in Washington State, North America, which was home to a family of red, black and silver foxes. After days of waiting for good weather he was finally rewarded with this touching moment.

Canon 1DX Mark II +600mm f4 lens; 1.4x teleconverter; 1/1600 sec at f11; ISO 2000.

Sound Asleep by Tony Wu, USA

This adult humpback whale balanced in mid-water, headon and sound asleep was photographed in Vava’u, Kingdom of Tonga. The faint stream of bubbles, visible at the top, is coming from the whale’s two blowholes and was, in this instance, indicative of an extremely relaxed state.

Canon 5D Mark III + Canon 15mm f2.8 fisheye lens; 1/200 sec at f10; ISO640; Zillion housing; Pro-One dome port.

Three Kings by Wim Can Den Heever, South Africa

Wim came across these king penguins on a beach in the Falkland Islands just as the sun was rising. They were caught up in a fascinating mating behaviour – the two males were constantly moving around the female using their flippers to fend the other off.

Nikon D810 + Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 lens at 40mm; 1/250sec at f11; Nikon SB910 flash.

All That Remains by Phil Jones, UK

A male orca had beached itself about a week before Phil’s visit to Sea Lion Island, Falkland Islands. Despite its huge size the shifting sands had almost covered the whole carcass and scavengers, such as this striated caracara, had started to move in.

Canon 1Dx Mark I + Canon 15mm f2.8 fisheye lens; 1/1250 sec at f16; ISO 1600; Joby gorillapod; Hahnel wireless remote shutter release.

Gliding by Christian Vizl, Mexico

With conditions of perfect visibility and beautiful sunlight, Christian took this portrait of a nurse shark gliding through the ocean off the coast of Bimini in the Bahamas. Typically these sharks are found near sandy bottoms where they rest, so it’s rare to see them swimming.

Canon 5D Mark II + 16-35mm f2.8 lens; 1/200 sec at f9; ISO 200; Aquatica housing.

A Polar Bear's Struggle by Justin Hofman, USA

Justin’s whole body pained as he watched this starving polar bear at an abandoned hunter's camp, in the Canadian Arctic, slowly heave itself up to standing. With little, and thinning, ice to move around on, the bear is unable to search for food.

Sony a7R II + Sony FE 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 GM OSS lens; 1/200 sec at f10; ISO 800.

Unique Bill by Rob Blanken, The Netherlands

The pied avocet has a unique and delicate bill, which it sweeps like a scythe, as it sifts for food in shallow brackish water. This stunning portrait was taken from a hide in the northern province of Friesland in The Netherlands.

Nikon D500 + AF-S Nikkor 200-500mm f1:5.6 E ED lens at 250mm; 1/200 sec at f6 (+ 2 2/3); ISO 800.

One Toy, Three Dogs by Bence Mate, Hungary

While adult African wild dogs are merciless killers, their pups are extremely cute and play all day long. Bence photographed these brothers in Mkuze, South Africa – they all wanted to play with the leg of an impala and were trying to drag it in three different directions!

Canon EOS-1DX Mark II; 200-400mm lens (35mm equivalent: 197.2-394.3 mm); 1/1800 sec at f4.0; 4000 ISO.

Under the Snow by Audren Morel, France

Unafraid of the snowy blizzard, this squirrel came to visit Audren as he was taking photographs of birds in the small Jura village of Les Fourgs, France. Impressed by the squirrel’s endurance, he made it the subject of the shoot.

Nikon D7200 + Nikon 300mm f4 lens; 1/1600 sec at f4 (-0.7e/v); ISO 500.

A Bat's Wake by Antonio Leiva Sanchez, Spain

After several months of field research into a little colony of greater mouse-eared bats in Sucs, Lleida, Spain, Antonio managed to capture this bat mid-flight. He used a technique of high speed photography with flashes combined with continuous light to create the ‘wake’.

Canon7D Mark II + Tamron 18-270mm f3.5-6.3 lens; 1/13 sec at f10; ISO 200; Infrared barrier; Metz 58 AF-1 flash; E-TTL flash cable.

Categories: Photo News

Indemnis Nexus parachute for DJI drones is first to achieve crowd safety standard

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 10:53

Indemnis has announced its Nexus parachute system designed for DJI drones is the first to be certified as compliant with the ASTM F3322-18 standard. The system is designed to prevent a faulty DJI drone from free-falling to the ground by deploying a small parachute, which slows the drone's descent for a safer, more gentle landing.

Both the US and UK require drone operators to get permission before operating a small UAV (sUAV) above a crowd, a limitation that intends to protect innocent bystanders from injury in the event of a drone crash. Waivers are offered on a case-by-case basis by both the US's FAA and the UK's CAA, but require operators to show how people below will be protected if the drone experiences a failure mid-flight.

The FAA granted its first waiver in October 2017, when it gave CNN permission to fly a Vantage Robotics Snap drone featuring protective rotor cages over a group of people. A parachute system like the Indemnis Nexus offers a different type of protection, one that is the first ever to meet the international ASTM F3322-18 standard for small UAVs.

The standard covers deployable sUAV parachute systems, including design, fabrication, and testing, and was designed to help drone operators get permission for flying over crowds from agencies like the FAA and CAA.

According to Indemnis, it was required to pass a series of 45 functionality tests spread across five drone failure scenarios. Testing took place at New York's Griffiss International Airport in a controlled airspace; the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance oversaw the process.

The Indemnis Nexus system is designed to strap onto existing DJI drones, which it monitors using sensors. If the sensors detect a flight disruption, a ballistic launcher deploys a parachute at 90MPH / 144kmh. The tube containing the parachute is designed to inflate in order to protect the parachute from the drone's rotors and body.

The drone was validated for use with the DJI Inspire 2, but may be offered for the Matrice 200 and 600 series, as well, by the end of the year.

Categories: Photo News

Western Digital releases MyPassport Go SSD portable storage

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 09:01

Running out of digital storage while out on an extended photographic shooting session is never a good thing and Western Digital's latest MyPassport Go SSD, which was formally introduced at CES, looks like an easy solution for avoiding such situations.

The portable SSD features a rugged case that comes in blue or yellow. Rubber bumpers allow for a 2m / 6.5ft drop resistance and Western Digital claims read speeds of up to 400MB/s which according to the manufacturer makes the MyPassport Go SSD 2.5x faster than conventional drives.

An integrated USB 3.0 cable is on board for easy connection to your PC computer or Mac. The drive comes with an automatic backup software for Windows and is also compatible with Apple's Time Machine. The new My Passport Go is available now and will set you back $90 for the 500GB variant. The 1TB version is $170.

Categories: Photo News

Sigma 28mm F1.4 Art lens now available for pre-order on Canon, Nikon, Sigma and Sony mounts

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 08:46

Sigma has officially opened up pre-orders for the 28mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens it first showed off at Photokina in September 2018.

The lens, which Sigma said would be available in Canon EF, Nikon F, Sigma SA and Sony E mounts, is listed as pre-order for $1,399 USD at both Adorama and B&H.

As a refresher, the 28mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens has a 17-element optical design including two F Low Dispersion (FLD), three Special Low Dispersion (SLD) elements and three aspherical elements. It has a minimum focusing distance of 28cm / 11.02in, a nine-blade aperture diaphragm, maximum magnification of 0.19x and a 77mm filter thread — the same as Sigma's 24mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens.

Update (January 11th, 2019): It appears the Sony E-mount version of the Sigma 28mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens is now available for pre-order as well at both Adorama and B&H. The article has been updated accordingly to reflect this change.

Categories: Photo News

The Sony FE 24mm F1.4GM goes to Sedona

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 06:00
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The Sony 24mm F1.4 GM is an impressively compact, high quality lens. In fact, it earned our 2018 DPReview annual award for best prime lens, when we described it as follows: "It's uncannily sharp edge-to-edge wide open with little to no coma, bokeh is smooth, and longitudinal chromatic aberration - that purple and green fringing we loathe on many fast wide primes - is well controlled." Yep, good things do come in small packages.

So, when DPReview contributing writer Jose Francisco Salgado had a chance to shoot with it in beautiful Sedona, Arizona, he jumped at the opportunity. Click through to the gallery to see his photos.

Want to learn more about this lens? Watch our hands-on shooting experience on DPReview TV:

Categories: Photo News

Moza Mini-S 3-axis gimbal smartphone stabilizer revealed with advanced shooting modes

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 13:41

During CES 2019, Moza revealed Mini-S, a new compact, highly portable handheld 3-axis gimbal stabilizer designed for smartphones measuring 55mm to 88mm wide. The stabilizer can be extended up to 17.2in / 43.6cm and folded into a compact 5.12 x 2.68 x 7.68in / 13 x 6.8 x 19.5cm form-factor when not in use.

Though designed exclusively for smartphones, the Moza Mini-S packs several advanced features, including numerous physical controls, support for vertical and horizontal orientations, multiple follow modes, and object tracking.

The stabilizer's base, which has a 10-degree tilt for ergonomic reasons, includes a 1/4-20" port and a removable miniature tripod. Physical controls include a joystick, dedicated playback and Inception Mode buttons, focus control, one-button zoom, and a recording button. The internal 2200mAh battery provides 8 hours of use per charge.

The Mini-S stabilizer's shooting modes include support for tracking objects, time-lapse, a Vertigo Mode zooming effect, and an Inception Mode that imitates the world rotation seen in the movie Inception. When paired with the Moza Genie mobile app, the phone displays a mixture of controls and camera settings for enhanced usability.

Pricing and availability haven't been revealed yet, though News Shooter reports that Moza expects to start shipping in March.

Categories: Photo News

Canon exec says an 8K mirrorless camera is on the 'EOS R-series roadmap'

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 13:24

In an exclusive interview with Dave Etchells of Imaging Resource Canon's top product-planning executive, Yoshiyuki Mizoguchi, shared a number of interesting details regarding the future of the Canon R series.

Considering his position in the company, Mizoguchi-san is the foremost expert in terms of understanding where Canon is currently at and where it anticipates on going with the EOS R lineup in the future.

The interview is full of smaller tid-bits regarding the Canon EOS R series, but the stand-out detail from the lengthy interview is the mention of an upcoming EOS R camera that's capable of recording 8K video.

When inquired by Etchells as to how video plays a roll in the EOS R series — both in terms of lenses and cameras — and how important it will be within the product lineup, Mizoguchi-san had the following to say:

Video will play a huge role in the EOS R System for sure. For example, an 8K video capable camera is already in our EOS R-series roadmap. And we are not just looking at video from a camera perspective, we are also working on how to make RF lenses better for video capture as well. [Emphasis provided by Imaging Resource]

The answer continues on with Mizoguchi-san saying the RF 24-105mm F4L was designed, in part, with Nano USM technology due to its 'silent and smooth autofocus while shooting video.'

Mizoguchi-san wraps up the answer saying 'Paired with Dual Pixel CMOS AF, a wide range of Nano USM equipped RF lenses will promise video creators great image quality as well as impressive autofocus together in the R-series.'

As Imaging Resource pointed out in an editorial note underneath this specific question and response, the phrase 'on the roadmap' could mean later this year or within the next decade. However, the fact Mizoguchi-san even mentioned it shows it's very likely a sooner-rather-than-later sort of deal considering how conservative and quiet Canon tends to be when talking about future technologies.

There is plenty to dig into within the full interview, but a few other notable mentions include Mizoguchi-san saying 4K without crop factor, faster frame rates, and in-body image stabilization (IBIS) are all features Canon '[is] aware of and are working on.' Mizoguchi-san also confirms that Canon is very much focused on 'satisfying' both the DSLR and mirrorless market, at least for the time being.

To read the full interview, head on over to Imaging Resource. It's a fantastic dive into the EOS R system and its future with the man who would know best.

Categories: Photo News

Canon ranked in top five for US patent awards for 33 consecutive years

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 12:27
The Canon Sure Shot Delsol used solar panels on its front cover to power some of the camera's functions. Solar power drove the AF system, the electro-magnetic shutter unit, film advance and even the flash. A secondary lithium battery was used as a back-up. C1995

Canon has proudly announced it ranked third in the world for the number of patents awarded to it by the US Patents Office during 2018. The company is quite used to being at the top of the table though, and has managed to remain in the top five every year for the last 33 – since 1985. The company also says that it has ranked as the number one Japanese company in the charts for the last 14 years.

Canon explains in a statement that the US is an important market not only for its products but also for its technologies. The company says its innovations ‘serve society’ as they lead to better products, more convenience and improved manufacturing techniques.

It is important to remember the photography is just a part of Canon’s business, but it would be interesting to know what proportion of its 3000+ awarded patents last year came from its photographic operations.

Press release

Canon places top five in U.S. patent rankings for 33 years running and first among Japanese companies for fourteen years running


TOKYO, January 8, 2019—Canon Inc. ranked third for the number of U.S. patents awarded in 2018, becoming the only company in the world to have ranked in the top five for 33 years running, according to the latest ranking of preliminary patent results issued by IFI CLAIMS Patent Services. What's more, Canon once again ranked first among Japanese companies.

Canon actively promotes the globalization of its business and places great value on obtaining patents overseas, carefully adhering to a patent-filing strategy that pursues patents in essential countries and regions while taking into consideration the business strategies and technology and product trends unique to each location. Among these, the United States, with its many high-tech companies and large market scale, represents a particularly important region in terms of business expansion and technology alliances.

Canon promotes the acquisition and application of intellectual property rights, not only for fundamental technologies required for next-generation products, but also such technologies as the wireless communication and image compression technologies shared by next-generation social infrastructure. Canon contributes to the realization of technology that serves society by continuing to provide even better products, greater convenience and by contributing to the development of manufacturing.

Categories: Photo News

Vello LW-500 Extendá Plus wireless controller brings remote control to select pro cameras

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 10:23

Camera gear company Vello has announced its new LW-500 Extendá Plus Wi-Fi Camera Controller for remote camera control. The new controller supports select Canon and Nikon, as well as most Sony cameras, making it possible to wirelessly control them using a Windows, Mac, Android or iOS device from as far away as 60m / 197ft.

The Extendá Plus brings remote access to select cameras, enabling users to browse, select, stream and share content from a smartphone, tablet or Windows PC. As well, the controller provides remote access to camera settings, enabling photographers to adjust white balance, exposure, shutter speed, and more with a real-time preview from a distance.

The LW-500 has a 10MB/s transfer rate, rechargeable lithium-ion battery, intervalometer with bulb mode and support for touch focus and live view. The controller is compatible with the following Canon and Nikon cameras:

Canon 1Dx Mark II, 1D X, 5DS R*, 5DS*, 5D Mark IV, 5D Mark III, 5D Mark II, 6D Mark II*, 6D, 7D Mark II*, 7D, 80D, 70D, 60D, 50D, 77, T7i, T6s, T6i, T5i, T5, T4i, T3i, T3, T2i, T1i, SL2 and SL1

Nikon D5*, D4S, D4, D3x, D3s, D3, D850*, D810*, D800*, D800e*, D500*, D750*, D610, D600, Df*, D7500*, D7200*, D7100*, D7000*, D90, D5600, D5500*, D5300*, D5200*, D5100*, D3400, D3300* and D3200*

* Use the USB cable that is supplied with your camera

Though most Sony Alpha cameras are supported, Vello warns some cameras don't support all of the controller's functions. The company provides a list [PDF] with each model's compatibility.

The Vello LW-500 Extendá Plus wireless camera controller is available to preorder for $299.99. B&H Photo currently shows an expected availability date of January 16.

Categories: Photo News

Nikon, Atomos team up to offer 4K Raw capture over HDMI to the Ninja V external recorder

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 09:59

Atomos has announced it's working alongside Nikon to develop PreRes Raw recording with Nikon's Z6 and Z7 mirrorless cameras. This marks the first time any mirrorless camera will be able to output 4K Raw video over HDMI to an external recorder, in this case the Atomos Ninja V.

'Capturing Apple ProRes RAW video with the Ninja V unlocks complete control of the video image at the highest quality possible,' says Atomos in the press release. 'The maximum dynamic range, color accuracy and detail is preserved, while at the same time every aspect of the video image can be controlled with precision for maximum creativity.'

Atomos explains the Raw video capture works by streaming Raw data across an HDMI cable to the Ninja V external recorder. That footage is then repacked into the ProRes Raw format and stored to a removable SSD drive inside the Ninja V.

When the SSD drive is full or shooting is completed, the drive is then removed and connected to a computer for post-processing. The resulting footage is decoded (debayered) on the computer, as it's quite a processor-intensive process, and ready to be edited accordingly.

As previously noted, this is the first time 4K Raw video over HDMI has been seen in a mirrorless camera. The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K offers Raw output both internally and over USB Type-C, but not over HDMI.

Atomos and Nikon are currently showing off the new 4K Raw recording feature at CES 2019 (Booth #14006), but there's no official timeframe on when we'll see this new capability publicly.

Categories: Photo News

Lomography expands Kino Films line with new Potsdam 100 monochrome film

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 08:49

Lomography has expanded its Kino Films product line with its new Potsdam Kino 100 ISO 35mm black and white film. The new product joins the Berlin Kino 400 ISO B&W film Lomography introduced in November, its new Potsdam likewise inspired by the New German Cinema that experienced high popularity in 1960s Europe.

All of the maker's Kino Films products are 'extracted from rolls of cine film produced by a legendary German company that has been changing the face of cinema since the early 1900s,' according to Lomography.

The triacetate-based Potsdam Kino Film is designed for scenes that require an attention to detail, as well as sunny environments. Resulting images have a fine grain structure coupled with 'subtle contrast,' making this what Lomography calls a 'poetic film.' The company promises Potsdam film development is 'a breeze,' but it has also launched the Lomography B&W Potsdam Kino Cookbook to help photographers get started with the film.

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Shipping won't begin until April or May 2019, but Lomography is offering preorders through its online shop now. Each pack contains a single roll with 36 exposures for $7.90; buyers can also get a 5-roll bundle for $39.50 and a bundle of 10 rolls for $79.

Categories: Photo News

Redmi 7 smartphone offers Sony 48MP Quad-Bayer sensor at budget price point

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 07:10

We've seen Sony's IMX586 1/2-inch 48MP sensor appear in several higher-end devices in recent months but the Redmi 7 is now the first budget device to offer the chip. The sensor isn't really meant for outputting medium-format image resolution image files. Instead a quad-Bayer filter array allows for high-quality 12MP images with low noise levels and real-time HDR processing. The main chip is accompanied by a 5MP depth sensor for bokeh and similar effects.

Redmi, which used to be the budget line within the Xiaomi smartphone portfolio, has now been promoted to a proper sub-brand, similar to what Honor is to Xiaomi competitor Huawei. The 7 is the first device launched under this new sub-brand and does not only offer impressively looking main camera specs for the money.

You also get a 13 MP front camera, 6.3-inch Full-HD+ LCD display, Snapdragon 660 chipset a massive 4,000 mAh battery with quick charge support and a microSD slot.

In terms of RAM and storage you can choose between 3/32 GB, 4/64 GB, and 6/64 GB combinations. and there is a microSD slot as well.

The cheapest option will set you back $150 (CNY999) and even the largest memory version is only $210 (CNY1,399). Pre-orders have already started in China and shipments are scheduled for January 15. We'd expect the Redmi 7 to make the jump into the US and other regions in the nearer future. We'll have to wait for the first samples but it looks like the Redmi 7 should be high up the list of those who want good smartphone image quality at budget pricing in 2019.

Categories: Photo News

Nikon Z7 and Sony a7R III offer similar results in our image stabilization test

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 06:00
Battle of the high-res mirrorless IS systems

Both the Nikon Z7 and Sony a7R III feature 5-axis in-body image stabilization. When tested against one another at 24mm, 55mm and 200mm both cameras' IS systems proved similarly useful. Users can expect around 2 to 3-stops IS advantage when shooting with wide angle lenses, 3 to 4-stops when using normal lenses and 4 to 5-stops when shooting with telephotos (helped by both cameras making use of in-lens IS at 200mm).

Nikon Z7 vs a7R III IS test results: 24mm 55mm 200mm Nikon Z7 2.3-stops 4-stops 4-stops Sony a7 R III 2.6-stops 3.3-stops 4.6-stops

These results correlate pretty similarly to our Sony a7 III IS test. That camera is rated as being 0.5EV less well corrected than the a7R III, so it's not surprising to see that it performed about 1 stop behind its high-res counterpart at 200mm.

How we test and why

Our standard image stabilization test is performed by shooting 10 frames of our test target, starting with a shutter speed of 1/focal length and working our way downward in intervals of 2/3-stops using a neutral density filter (to maintain the same aperture). The test is done at 24mm, 55mm and 200mm, since the challenges of stabilization change with focal length and exposure duration.

We first do this with IS on, and then with IS off. The images for both are then assessed to the following standard:

Excellent Some softness Noticeable blur Unusable

1) Excellent - the best the camera is capable of
2) Some softness - only distinguishable from Excellent by comparison
3) Noticeable blur - blur can be perceived without reference to another image
4) Unusable - significant motion perceptible

After each frame is assessed, we plot the results in the graphs you see below. We then compare the lowest shutter speed at which the camera was able to maintain a 50% or greater hit rate with IS on and off at a given focal length (images that are acceptably sharp are those rated 'Excellent' or 'Some softness'). This allows us to determine how effective the IS system is in real world shooting.

Our results compared to CIPA

CIPA offers a good baseline to compare cameras, but CIPA tests tend to use focal lengths around 50mm (which are relatively easy to stabilize) and do not include any rolling motion, which can give very high numbers. For instance, the Sony a7R III's in-body stabilization is quoted as offering a '5.5-stop shutter speed advantage,' according to CIPA testing (the Nikon was rated at 5-stops). That suggests you can get usable shots, consistently, at 0.8 secs (5.3-stops below one over focal length), which we could not reproduce: at 1/2 sec (4.6-stops below) we were only about to get one usable shot in ten with IS on.

Nikon results 24mm Equivalent 55mm Equivalent 200mm Equivalent Stabilization On Stabilization On Stabilization On Stabilization Off Stabilization Off Stabilization Off

For 24mm and 55mm we tested the Z7 using the Z 24-70mm F4. At 200mm we used used an adapted Nikon 70-200m F2.8E FL ED VR.

At 24mm with IS on, the Z7 maintains a 60% acceptable hit rate at 1/5 sec and a 40% at 1/3 sec, which indicates 1/4 sec would likely be where it'd hit the 50% acceptable threshold. With IS off, the acceptable rate is 60% at 1/20 sec and plummets to 10% thereafter. The results indicate about a 2.3-stop IS advantage at 24mm.

With IS on, the 50% acceptable hit rate at 55mm should be 1/4 sec - the Z7 maintains an 80% acceptable rate at 1/5 sec and a 40% at 1/3 sec. With IS off, we weren't able to hit the 50% acceptable threshold at 1 over the focal length (40%), but it's safe to assume at a third a stop faster (1/60 sec), 50% should be manageable. 1/60 sec off vs 1/4 sec results in a 4-stop IS advantage at 55mm.

At 200mm, the Z7 maintained a 50% or greater hit rate down to 1/8 sec, our lowest speed on the graph. We pushed it an additional 2/3rds stop slower in testing (down to 1/5 sec) and found it dropped to a 30% hit rate. With IS off we were able to get 50% or greater usable down to 1/125 sec. The result is a 4-stop IS advantage at 200mm. This is helped by the use of a VR lens: Nikon says the pitch and yaw corrections are handled by the lens, where possible.

Sony results 24mm Equivalent 55mm Equivalent 200mm Equivalent Stabilization On Stabilization On Stabilization On Stabilization Off Stabilization Off Stabilization Off

At 24mm we tested using the Sony 24-70 F4 OSS, at 55mm we used the Sony 55mm F1.8 and at 200mm we used the Sony 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS.

At 24mm with IS on, the a7R III maintains a 60% hit rate down to 1/5 sec and 40% hit rate at 1/3 sec, meaning 1/4 sec is where it's likely to hit the 50% threshold. With IS off this threshold is reached around 1/25 sec. This gives the a7R III about a 2.6-stop advantage at 24mm. Note that this result includes the use of a lens with its own stabilization (though sensor shift is usually better-suited to the corrections needed for wide-angle lenses).

At 55mm we opted to de-couple the Sony's sensor IS from lens IS by using a non-stabilized lens (the same we tested on the a7 III). With stabilization on, the hit rate was 60% at 1/8 sec and 40% at 1/4 sec meaning 1/6 sec is the likely 50% point. We weren't able to get a 50% hit rate with IS off at one over the focal length, but it's safe to assume we would have by 1/60 sec (and surely by 1/80 sec). This gives us at least a 3.3-stop advantage at 55mm using sensor IS alone.

Like the Z7, we tested the a7R III at 200mm with IS on down to 1/5 sec. Good thing we did: it's not until this speed that a7R III's IS system also drops below the 50% acceptable threshold with 2 images rated 'some softness.' This means you can expect a 50% or greater hit rate down to 1/8 sec with IS on vs 1/200 sec with IS off, providing a 4.6-stops advantage at 200mm. Like the Nikon, this is helped by the use of a lens with IS, which is able to provide the large movements needed to correct long focal lengths.

Categories: Photo News

Olympus posts second teaser for upcoming sports camera

Wed, 01/09/2019 - 22:00

Last week, Olympus published a teaser about a sports-oriented mirrorless camera set to launch on January 24th. The video didn't reveal much, giving just a quick glimpse of a DSLR-shaped body with a built-in battery grip taking photos at volleyball and water polo matches.

There's not a whole lot new in this video, aside from someone taking photos at an auto race. The camera is still well-hidden, with Olympus offering a very quick glimpse of the back.

Categories: Photo News

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