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DPReview TV: How to get correct exposure when shooting video

12 hours 23 min ago

Have you experienced frustration when using your camera to shoot video? Confused about T-stops, ND filters and the right shutter speed to use? This week, Chris and Jordan take a break from gear reviews to discuss the things you should know to get proper exposure when shooting video. Get some practical tips and learn about Chris and Jordan's exposure square... or is that an exposure trapezoid? Tune in to find out.

You may also want to read our article, A photographer's intro to the world of video, for more useful tips.

A photographer's intro to the world of video

Finally, make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to get new episodes of DPReview TV every week.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Categories: Photo News

Not your ordinary camera bag: Rhake waterproof pack with Camera Capsule insert review

Sat, 05/26/2018 - 06:00
The Rhake Weatherproof Bag + Camera Capsule
$365 (bag) + $130 (insert) | MissionWorkshop.com The Rhake pack has a roll top giving it a decent degree of expansion.

The Rhake waterproof backpack by Mission Workshops doesn’t look like an ordinary camera bag – instead it looks a lot more like a high quality bike messenger pack or something you might take on a weekend trip when packing light. And that’s the point. The bag’s 22L main compartment is designed to be multi-functional. Once you slide the Capsule Camera insert ($130) into the Rhake you have a camera bag with a utilitarian design, albeit with a very high price tag.

The Capsule Camera insert that slides into the Rhake pack.

Though this pack is not designed specifically with photographers in mind, I was intrigued to find out just how functional it could be.

Specifications
  • Exterior: 21 x 13 x 5 in / 53 x 33 x 13cm
  • Interior Volume: 22L
  • Capsule Insert: 9.75 x 17.75 x 4.25in / 25 x 45 x 11cm
  • Laptop Compartment: Dedicated 17in Exterior Pocket
  • Weight: 3.1lbs / 1.4kg
Design & construction

The first thing I noticed about the Rhake was the high quality construction – Mission Design guarantees their products for life – which makes me believe that this thing was built to last. The bag is made of weatherproof nylon fabric called HT500 that is apparently exclusive to the company. It gives the pack an understated look and a good degree of water and stain resistance.

The Rhake pack's laptop compartment can fit up to a 17" computer. The pack also has a dedicated tablet compartment.

The second thing I noticed about this bag was the amount of organizational pockets. There are technically two zippered compartments that are large enough to fit a laptop (a dedicated exterior pocket, shown above left, and a second one within the 22L main compartment). On the back of the bag, opposite the exterior laptop pocket, there is a mesh water bottle pocket that tucks away when not in use.

There are numerous options for organization within this bag to suit your tastes

The front of the Rhake features a dedicated 10” tablet pocket and two accessory pouches (one at the top of the bag and one at the bottom) for stashing chargers, spare batteries or other items that need to be accessed quickly.

There are two zippered front pockets with plenty of room to organize smaller odds and ends. There are also two accessory pouches, one at the top (accessible via the roll top) - and one at the bottom (accessible via zipper).

There are also two larger zippered front pockets, one of which is filled with three smaller interior zippered mesh pockets. In short, there are numerous options for organization within this bag to suit your tastes.

The straps are well-padded and a horizontal strap offers added stability.

The back of the Rhake is made of perforated foam and there is a luggage handle pass-through for use with roller bags. The straps have a nice amount of padding and feature an additional horizontal buckled strap.

The camera insert can be accessed from the top of the bag. A look inside the Rhake pack once the camera insert has been removed.

The Camera Capsule insert is accessed from the top of the Rhake pack. The inside can be customized to your taste using the padded partitions. There’s also a back pocket in the insert where you can slide in an 11" laptop or tablet.

A close-up look inside the Camera Capsule insert. I was able to fit two bodies, several lenses and a flash. In the field

All of my photographer friends who saw the Rhake in action immediately complimented the style of this bag. It looks good, and it can comfortably hold a large amount of gear. I loved the many organizational pockets and those tiny mesh interiors were a great place for all of my miscellaneous items that I end up with at a shoot.

Once it’s packed, the front is snapped together and the top rolled shut, the Rhake pack is a surprisingly compact gear bag with the ability to expand to hold a large amount of equipment.

Its compact silhouette made it a good for riding the subway (even during rush hour) and hauling it around didn’t make me feel like I was in danger of destroying a shoulder.

There's no way to access most of the gear stored within the Camera Capsule insert unless you completely remove it from the bag

Unfortunately, there is one glaring design flaw with the Rhake: there's no way to access most of the gear stored within the Camera Capsule insert unless you completely remove it from the bag. For some photographers, this might seem like a minor oversight; after all the Rhake is a multi-functional bag, but I found this design element to be really inconvenient. It was easy enough to access my main camera body through the top zipper, but if I wanted to switch lenses I needed to totally unpack the 22L compartment – which is kind of a pain when working in the cramped quarters of a dark music venue.

When the bag is fully packed it also takes a little bit of elbow grease to remove the Camera Capsule from the main compartment. I imagine that with more use the bag’s structure will become less tight, but on the shoots I took the Rhake to I found myself having to spend a few extra moments safely removing the capsule from the bag. The Camera Capsule essentially fills the 22L compartment, making it difficult to stash anything else in there (a jacket, supplies for an overnight trip, etc.). I’d be curious to see how the Rhake would function with smaller camera inserts like the Topo Camera Cubes.

What’s the bottom line?

The Rhake’s construction is high quality, the design is aesthetically pleasing and it can hold a good deal of gear without looking bulky, making it great for everyday use. But the bag is pricey and the multi-functionality aspects make certain elements of the design inconvenient for photographers. Ultimately, if you're looking for a dedicated camera bag, there are other more cost-friendly and functional options out there. However, if you want a pack that can pull double duty as a bike bag or a weekend travel pack, the Rhake might be for you.

What We Like:
  • Utilitarian design
  • Durable construction
  • Slim profile
  • Ample organizational pockets
  • Holds a lot of equipment
  • Multi-functional bag, could be used as a camera bag or for something else
What We Don’t Like:
  • High price tag
  • Inability to access lenses in Camera Capsule without unpacking
Rating:
Categories: Photo News

Video: How Tony and Chelsea Northrup won $40,000 in image theft lawsuit

Fri, 05/25/2018 - 08:16

Well-known photography educators Tony and Chelsea Northrup have published a new video that details the saga of a stolen photograph, and the eventual $40,000 settlement they received as a result of going after the offending party.

The image, a portrait of Chelsea originally taken for a book cover, was used by an Australian company to promote a smartphone selfie case with built-in LEDs. According to the duo, they became aware of the unauthorized usage in 2016 after someone who recognized the image alerted them. Tony sent the company an email requesting information, he explains in the video, but instead received a letter from a lawyer hired by the company.

The lawyer's letter claimed that a graphic designer hired by the company to design the product packaging had acquired the image "from a website" and used it as a stock image without the company's knowledge. As the Northrups note, a high-resolution version of the image is the first result on Google when searching for "ring light portrait."

The company, via the lawyer's letter, had stated that it would recall all of the products with that packaging and cease use of material containing the image. However, Tony explains that the duo continued to receive images from followers showing the cases—complete with the pilfered portrait—being sold in Australian and New Zealand stores.

That ultimately set in motion a long legal tussle that involved hiring an Australian attorney willing to deal with an international copyright case. The duo explain everything that went into this process and the eventual $40,000 in settlement payments that resulted, with Tony estimating the company spent around $60k total when including fees.

Categories: Photo News

Sigma announces price and ship date of 105mm F1.4 'bokeh master' Art lens

Fri, 05/25/2018 - 07:47

Sigma's special 'bokeh master' 105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens made quite a splash when it was first announced back in February, and now Sigma is finally revealing when it will ship and how much it will cost. If you're in the market for this behemoth of a lens—seriously, we got a hands on at CP+... it's huge—for either Nikon, Canon, or Sigma mounts, you'll have to pony up $1,600 USD and wait until "late June" to get it.

For Canon and Sigma shooters, this is a whole new speed of lens that you've never had access to before. For Nikon shooters, it's an opportunity to save $600 on the Nikon 105mm F1.4E ED lens, which is currently going for $2,200.

To learn more about this lens, check out our hands-on coverage from CP+, read the full pricing and availability press release below, or visit the Sigma website.

Press Release

Sigma Announces Pricing and Availability for Its 105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art Lens

The “Bokeh Master” will begin shipping in Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts in late June for a retail price of $1,599.00 USD

Ronkonkoma, NY – May 25, 2018 – Sigma Corporation of America, a leading still photo and cinema lens, camera, flash and accessory manufacturer, today announced that its 105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens will be available in Canon, Nikon and Sigma camera mounts in late June for $1,599.00 USD through authorized US dealers. The Sony E-mount availability will be announced later.

The “Bokeh Master” with Longest Focal Length Among Sigma Wide-Aperture F1.4 Art Lenses

The Sigma 105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art is the ninth lens in the Sigma F1.4 line-up designed for full-frame cameras. To combine outstanding wide-aperture, mid-telephoto performance with F1.4 brightness at maximum aperture, this lens incorporates 17 optical elements in 12 groups, including three FLD glass elements, two SLD glass elements and one aspherical lens element. This optical setup minimizes axial chromatic aberration to deliver ultra high resolution along with ample peripheral light volume, which minimizes vignetting. As a result, the area in focus is extremely sharp, while the out-of-focus area features a beautiful bokeh effect with highly natural colors, making this a desired lens for portrait photography. The optical design also minimizes sagittal coma flare, making it an excellent choice for capturing starry skies.

Featuring the Sports line level dust- and splash-proof design, this lens can be used in varying weather conditions. The high-speed, high-accuracy autofocus helps photographers react in an instant to capture those special moments.

Other lens highlights include carbon fiber reinforced plastic hood for durability and compatibility of the Canon mount lens with the Canon Lens Aberration Correction function.

Categories: Photo News

Nikon D5 firmware update adds useful 'recall shooting functions' feature

Fri, 05/25/2018 - 06:33

Nikon has released firmware version 1.30 for its D5 professional DSLR, and the new camera software offers a new feature that's potentially very useful: recall shooting functions.

The "recall shooting functions" option is now available for Custom settings f1 (custom control assignment) and can be configured so that pressing and holding specific controls will recall previously saved exposure settings (including shutter speed and aperture). The function is designed to allow for quick changes of shooting parameters in variable light conditions.

The function can be assigned to the Preview button, Fn1 button, Fn2 button, AF-ON button, Sub-selector center, AF-ON button for vertical shooting, or Lens focus function buttons. If you are using a WR-1 or WR-T10 remote control, it can also be assigned to the Fn buttons on those controls. An addendum to the camera manual that explains the new function in more detail can be downloaded on the Nikon website.

All other changes in this update are fairly minor. The focal lengths of some AF-S and AF-I lenses that are displayed with a teleconverter attached to the camera have been updated, and the time zone display in the Setup Menu only shows the names of major cities in the currently selected time zone. There are also a couple of minor bug fixes.

To read the full change log or download the new firmware for yourself, head over to the Nikon website.

Categories: Photo News

Zeiss launches new lineup of lightweight and compact 'Supreme Prime' lenses

Fri, 05/25/2018 - 06:10

Zeiss has announced a new lineup of 13 'Supreme Prime' lenses for large format cinematographers who want smaller and lighter glass that still produces top-quality results. The kind of lenses that'll make your salivary glands work... and your wallet groan.

The Supreme Prime range will comprise focal lengths from 15mm to 200mm, and Zeiss says that most of those lenses will have a maximum aperture of T1.5. In fact, ten of the focal lengths will offer a maximum aperture of T1.5, while the 15mm and 150mm will be T1.8, and the 200mm will be a T2.1.

Despite their diminutive size, Zeiss stresses that the Supreme Primes are designed for high-end advertising work and movie production; consequently, they will be compatible with large format (full-frame) movie cameras such as the Sony Venice, ARRI Alexa LF, and the RED Monstro. Zeiss says the lenses will be versatile and able to create different looks because of their "gentle sharpness, the aesthetic focus fall-off, and elegant bokeh" which the company claims makes them suitable for a wide range of production styles.

Communication between the lenses and the camera will be performed via the Zeiss eXtended Data and Cooke’s /i metadata protocols. These record optical characteristics and lens settings to every frame recorded to assist post-production processes, especially when visual effects need to be added to the footage.

The 25mm, 29mm, 35mm, 50mm, and 85mm lenses will be released in August 2018 and the 100mm will be ready in December. All six can be purchased together as a set for $108,000, but you’ll have to wait until 2019 for the 15mm, 18mm, 21mm, 65mm, 135mm and 150mm focal lengths to finish drip-feeding into the range. The 200mm T2.1, meanwhile, will arrive in 2020.

To see the new Zeiss Supreme Prime lenses in action, check out the sample film below shot with these lenses on the Sony Venice, Phantom 4K, and RED Monstro VV. And if you want to learn more about the lenses, head over to the Zeiss website.

Press Release

New High-End Cinema Lens Family ZEISS Supreme Primes

With its 13 high-speed, full-frame, prime lenses for high-quality film productions, ZEISS is focusing on maximum quality, low weight, and significant versatility when it comes to creating superb visual imagery.

ZEISS has introduced a new family of high-speed lenses for high-end film production: The ZEISS Supreme Prime family consists of 13 lenses with fixed focal lengths between 15 and 200 millimeters, the majority with a maximum aperture of T1.5. “The lenses are designed for film productions of an extremely high quality,” says Christophe Casenave from ZEISS. “They are perfect for high-budget advertising or feature films, for example.” ZEISS Supreme Primes are designed to cover cinematic large format camera sensors and are compatible with all of the latest camera models, such as the Sony Venice, ARRI Alexa LF, and RED Monstro. According to Casenave, the versatility of the Supreme Prime lenses to create different visual looks is due to the gentle sharpness, the aesthetic focus fall-off and elegant bokeh. The lenses are extremely flexible and can be used equally well for science fiction thrillers as well as for dramas.

Compact and Lightweight

"Weighing an average of 1600 grams (3.5 pounds), ZEISS Supreme Primes are significantly lighter and smaller than comparable lenses on the market,” says Casenave. With these compact and lightweight lenses, ZEISS is responding to many camera operators’ desire for compact equipment that stills meets the highest standards of quality. “ZEISS Supreme Primes are unbelievably rugged and reliable. Regardless of whether filming in the desert or in the Arctic, the lenses perform flawlessly. And in the event that something should ever break, our worldwide service network provides fast and professional help.”

ZEISS eXtended Data Metadata Technology

The ZEISS Supreme Primes are equipped with the ZEISS eXtended Data metadata technology. Introduced in 2017, ZEISS eXtended Data provides frame by frame data on lens vignetting and distortion in addition to the standard lens metadata provided using Cooke's /i technology1 protocol. This greatly speeds up the entire film production’s workflow. When using visual effects for example, with only a few clicks, the lens properties can be removed so that computer-generated effects imagery can be accurately applied to the captured imagery. The lens properties can then be reapplied with the same click of a button and combined with the film material to create a realistic image. Previously, all of the data had to be measured manually so that it could be corrected in post-production. But ZEISS eXtended Data eliminates this time-consuming job.

Price and Availability

The first ZEISS Supreme Primes lenses with focal lengths of 25, 29, 35, 50, and 85 millimeters will be available starting on August 1, 2018. The ZEISS Supreme Prime 100 millimeter will be available in December 2018. The set of six lenses, consisting of the focal lengths mentioned above, is available from ZEISS Cinema lens dealers for 108,000 USD. The remaining focal lengths will be released successively until 2020.

Categories: Photo News

HP unveils DesignJet Z6 and Z9+: faster, more efficient large-format photo printers

Thu, 05/24/2018 - 08:38

During the FESPA Global Print Expo in Berlin last week, HP unveiled two new DesignJet Z Series large-format printers: the DesignJet Z6 and Z9+. Both models will be available in 24-inch and 44-inch formats with onboard vertical trimmers, new HP Pixel Control color technology, and a redesigned poster application.

According to HP, the new Z Series printers are able to print 2.5 times faster than the DesignJet Z3200 Photo Printer while utilizing fewer inks, the end result being improved performance and reduced costs. The company claims these new large-format printers offer the "fastest printing capabilities available on the market today."

The DesignJet Z6 printer is designed specifically for Geographical Information Systems (GIS) users and creators, as well as anyone else in need of water- and fade-resistant large-format prints. The Z9+ model, meanwhile, is targeted at consumers and retailers in need of "amazing photographic quality prints."

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HP explains that its Pixel Control technology coupled with HP Nozzle Architecture (HDNA) results in true-to-color prints made using nine instead of 12 inks; there's also support for HP Professional PANTONE Emulation. Other features include dual drop technology, HP Secure Boot and JetAdvantage Security, and HP PrintOS for remote printer management.

HP plans to release the DesignJet Z6, Z6x10, and Z9+ large-format printers on June 1st, with the larger 44-inch models with dual roll and the vertical trimmer not arriving until around July 1st. The company didn't specify which markets the printers will launch in, or how much they will cost when they do.

Press Release

HP Launches State-of-the-Art Large Format Photo Printers

BERLIN, May 15, 2018 – HP Inc. unveiled its new DesignJet Z Printer series at FESPA Global Print Expo to showcase innovative large format technologies offering amazing image quality and fast, simple output for print service providers (PSPs), retailers, and creatives to deliver beautiful photos, impactful graphics and technical applications.

The market for large photo merchandising grew seven percent in 20171 with nearly 1.3 trillion photos taken in the same year2. The demand for simplicity and unrivaled photo quality is growing, fueling the need for printing solutions that remove bottlenecks and increase time savings.

The new HP DesignJet Z6 and Z9+ Printer series is designed to easily maximize printing performance for amazing photo output. By tightly integrating the materials, hardware, and software together, the new printers offer amazing photo quality and print permanence with fewer inks to simplify manageability and reduce costs. New vertical trimmer is featured on select models to optimize output in addition to other innovative technologies for rapid high-quality production from professional photo quality prints to retailer signage. The result is printing 2.5 times faster3 and post-production 20 percent faster4.

"The new DesignJet Z Printer series radically enhances the customer experience and reinvents printing possibilities for both professional photo and signage to ignite business growth and adapt to future needs,” said Guayente Sanmartin, General Manager and Global Head, HP Large Format Design Printing, HP Inc. “We thoughtfully designed the new printers to deliver impressive photo quality without compromising time resources and output speeds with the new vertical trimmer and innovative color technologies.”

The DesignJet Z Printer series will debut at FESPA 2018 at HP Booth 3.2 C20.

Simple and fast output for high-quality vibrant photos

HP DesignJet Z Printer series, both available in 24- and 44-inch formats, are built to give PSPs a competitive edge by enabling the fastest printing capabilities available on the market today. As an industry first, the HP DesignJet Z6 and Z9+offer a premium option with onboard vertical trimmer for fast and efficient production. New color technology, HP Pixel Control, now for the first time manages colors in a truly digital way to help customers embrace new opportunities for color-rich and dynamic printing.

For print service providers who rely on amazing professional photographic quality prints, the HP DesignJet Z9+ printer allows for a broad range of graphics and technical applications.

The DesignJet Z6 Printer series is designed for Geographical Information Systems (GIS) creators and users, print service providers, and retailers who require a simple to use solution for high-quality technical and graphics applications with water/fade resistance. The new print series is designed to handle even the most complex files with powerful processing architectures and the Adobe PDF Print Engine.

Specific technologies and features include:
  • HP Pixel Control: Achieve true-to-color prints and an expanded color gamut with RGB HP Vivid Photo Inks, featuring chromatic red, chromatic green, and chromatic blue, the i1 embedded spectrophotometer5 and HP Pixel Control. HP Pixel Control is truly digital color pipeline designed for outstanding, consistent image quality delivered by controlling every print-ready pixel. Combining HP HDNA with HP Pixel Control, users get amazing image quality with just nine inks versus 12 compared to the previous generation HP DesignJet. The new printers also offer HP Professional PANTONE Emulation to match Brand identity colors.
  • Dual drop technology: Produce prints with clear details and high-contrast color with dual drop technology powered by HP Nozzle Architecture (HDNA) and high-definition printheads. The HP DesignJet Z9+ features an upgradable configuration for a higher gloss output6.
  • Tools to create: Simplify large format printing with a redesigned poster application in the HP Applications Center7, which also includes Adobe Stock, Unsplash, Vecteezy, and Pattern Design, offers customers access to the necessary tools for creating beautiful, original signs, and posters. The HP Applications Center also embeds augmented reality (AR) technology to ignite the creation of more meaningful and engaging content for print.
  • Indoor and Outdoor Durability: Create prints with highly-stable pigment HP Vivid Photo Inks that provide water-resistant, fade-resistant prints8 for long-term indoor display and, when printed on suitable water-resistant media, outdoor display. HP Vivid Photo Inks gives PSPs the assurance that the prints they make for their customers will last as long as possible.
  • Security: Take advantage of the industry’s most secure printers with HP Secure Boot, whitelisting, authentication solutions, and HP JetAdvantage Security manager to safeguard printers and data for enterprise and government.
  • HP PrintOS: Remotely manage the print production environment from anywhere at any time with HP PrintOS now offered on the HP DesignJet Z Printer series.

HP is also announcing enhanced HP DesignJet Z6x10 Printers for a better user and output experience. Boasting a new fresh design, the new printers have new labeling indicating the printer colors to simplify ease-of-use. The printers have new printheads and Chromatic Red Ink formulation to deliver sharp detail and precise line quality. Optimized fast and normal print modes for heavyweight coated, polypropylene and canvas to speed-up production and enhance image quality. Lastly, the new printers will have 500 GB HDD with more virtual memory to process complex and graphic intensive prints.

HP offers a wide variety of innovative media including the new:

  • HP Recycled Satin Canvas is a 17.4 mil (443 micron), 370 gsm crack-resistant canvas for HP aqueous inks, made from 100% recycled water bottles making it the first of its kind in the HP Wide Format Media Portfolio.
  • HP Everyday Blockout Display Film with a unique construction of three layers of polypropylene, polyester, and polypropylene film for an added suppleness and superior lay-flat properties. HP Everyday Blockout Display film is a thicker film compared to 100 percent polyester, costs less, and has a coating for dual ink technology.

Follow HP Graphics on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.

Availability9

The HP DesignJet Z6, Z6x10, and Z9+ Printers are expected to be available on June 1, 2018. The 44-inch HP DesignJet Z6 and Z9+ with dual roll and vertical trimmer are expected to be available on July 1, 2018.

1. Source: Photo Merchandising report from Infotrend

2. Source: New York Times

3. Based on internal HP testing April 2018, tests done on mechanical printing time. Up to 2.5 times faster printing compared to the HP DesignJet Z3200 Photo Printer series. May vary depending on print mode and media type.

4. Vertical trimmer and dual rolls included with the HP DesignJet Z9⁺dr 44-in PostScript® Printer with V-Trimmer only. Up to 20% reduction in post-processing labor time based on internal HP testing compared to HP DesignJet Z9⁺dr series printers without built-in vertical trimmer.

5. Embedded in the HP DesignJet Z9⁺ Printer series is an i1 spectrophotometer from X-Rite. Close collaboration between HP and X-Rite ensures a reliable solution that’s been thoroughly tested to meet customer demands for ease, quality, and dependability.

6. Based on internal HP testing April 2018, tests on mechanical printing time, comparing to HP DesignJet Z9⁺ series printers without gloss enhancer. HP Gloss Enhancer can be used on photo paper, except for matte-finish papers. Optional upgrade available second half 2018.

7. Requires an HP Applications Center account, Internet connection, and connected Internet-capable device. For more information, see http://www.hpapplicationscenter.com.

8. Performance may vary based on writing system differences. Print permanence estimates by HP Image Permanence Lab based on the same formulation of HP Vivid Photo Inks used with the HP DesignJet Z6200 Photo Production Printer, using 6 inks. Water resistance performance varies based on printer and print profile. Water resistance testing by HP Image Permanence Lab on a range of HP media and follows ISO 18935 method. Display permanence rating for interior displays/away from direct sunlight by HP Image Permanence Lab on a range of HP media. For more information, see http://www.HPLFMedia.com/printpermanence.

9. Pricing and availability subject to change.

Categories: Photo News

RED simplifies cinema camera lineup, dramatically drops prices

Thu, 05/24/2018 - 07:03

If you’re in the market for a new RED camera, you’re in luck. The California-based cinema camera company has announced that it’s both simplifying its product lineup, and dropping prices on all of its cameras.

Starting today, RED’s product lineup has been pared down to just three cameras: the DSMC2 Monster, the DSMC2 Helium, and the DSMC2 Gemini. The prices are now $54,500, $24,500 and $19,500, respectively, which amounts to a savings of over $25,000 for the Monster and Helium, and a savings of more than $5K for the Gemini.

Each of the cameras are now available in aluminum alloy and the Helium is capable of being outfitted with RED’s Helium 8K S35 Monochrome sensor:

As for why this change is happening, RED says the change is being made to "[simplify] our portfolio." The company says it "found efficiencies, and [we’re] passing along the benefits to our users."

RED also notes that the names of cameras will be changed when upgraded to firmware v7.0.3 or later. The different naming scheme is seen in the below image.

For people who have already placed an order that hasn’t shipped for an older camera that’s no longer offered, RED will update the ordered camera to the DSMC2 Brain with the exact same sensor for no additional cost. There are also upgrade options available.

You can read the full documentation of the product line simplification and changes on RED’s product support page.

Categories: Photo News

Fujifilm X-T100 offers large EVF and phase-detect AF for $600/€600

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 22:00
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Fujifilm has announced its latest X-series camera, the X-T100. The camera takes the innards of the entry-level X-A5, including its 91-point phase-detect AF system, and adds a fully articulating LCD and high resolution OLED electronic viewfinder (borrowed from the X-T20).

As with the X-A5, the X-T100's 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor uses a traditional Bayer color filter, rather than the X-Trans filter found on pricer X-series cameras. The X-T100 has the usual Fujifilm feature set, including the much-loved Film Simulation Modes.

The camera can shoot continuously at 6 fps and can capture 4K UHD video, albeit at a why-did-they-bother 15 fps. Battery life is rated at an impressive 430 shots per charge. For sharing photos the X-T100 includes Bluetooth to speed up the Wi-Fi connection process.

The X-T100 is available with or without the Fujinon XC 15-45mm F3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens, priced at $599/€599 and $699/€699/£619, respectively. It will be available in mid-June in your choice of 'dark silver,' 'champagne gold' and black.

Press Release

FUJIFILM INTRODUCES THE NEW FUJIFILM X-T100 TO X SERIES MIRRORLESS CAMERA LINEUP

A stylish interchangeable lens camera featuring automatic scene recognition, a three-way tilting touchscreen and Bluetooth® technology

Valhalla, N.Y., May 24, 2018FUJIFILM North America Corporation today announced the debut of its new FUJIFILM X-T100, a compact interchangeable lens camera with a sleek design. Available in Black, Dark Silver, and Champagne Gold, the new X-T100 offers a host of features including a high magnification electronic viewfinder, horizontal tilting rear LCD screen, built-in Bluetooth® technology for quick and easy image sharing and an extended battery life allowing up to 430 frames per charge. In addition, the X-T100 weighs just 448g with anodized coating on aluminum top cover, delivering a simultaneously retro and luxury feel.

“We are excited to announce the X-T100 as the latest addition to the X Series lineup,” said Yuji Igarashi, General Manager of the Electronic Imaging Division & Optical Devices Division at FUJIFILM North America Corporation. “This mirrorless camera is a perfect fit for photographers looking for an easy to use, compact and versatile camera, offering excellent image quality with a variety of enhanced features with the familiar design of previous FUJIFILM X-T series cameras.”

Equipped with a powerful 24.2 megapixel APS-C sensor and high-speed image processing engine, the X-T100 is compatible with the full X Mount lens lineup of 26 FUJINON high quality lenses which cover focal lengths from 15mm to 1200mm (35mm equivalent). Combining Fujifilm’s renowned outstanding image quality with the company’s proprietary color reproduction technology, the X-T100 is stylish, portable, and highly versatile - making it the ideal companion for everyday photography.

Fast Autofocus, Automatic Functions, and Sleek Design Offer Ease of Use

The X-T100 uses a Phase Detection Autofocus system and algorithm originally designed for flagship X Series models, to ensure quick and precise capture of images even when photographing fast-moving subjects. Adding to its ease of use, the camera also features an advanced SR+ Auto shooting mode that is capable of detecting the subject and scene simultaneously, and selecting the optimum settings accordingly to provide intelligent, fully-automatic shooting. This mode is perfect for situations where it is difficult to select the right settings, or when a series of quick shots is what the photographer is after.

The X-T100 features a three-inch touch panel display to make composition easy. Featuring

1.04-million dots for a crystal clear view of the action, this screen swings out horizontally to almost 180 degrees. Not only does this help to compose shots at awkward angles, it also makes it possible to take selfies or shoot video blogs with a clear view of what’s in the frame.

Although the X-T100 has the look of a timeless classic, the camera body weighs just 448g with battery and memory card, so it’s small and light enough to accompany photographers wherever they go. It also comes with a shoulder strap and a detachable grip for added security and comfort.

Artistic Expressions for Everyday Creativity

The X-T100 offers 11 variations of unique FUJIFILM Film Simulation modes and 17 variations of Advanced Filters—all of which provide photographers with the ability to add greater artistic expression to images. Setting adjustments on the X-T100 is quick and easy with one-step operation that is made possible via the function and exposure compensation dials on top of the body, and the touch-and-flick function available on the rear LCD monitor.

Not only can the X-T100 produce breathtaking stills, but with 4K and the option to shoot in slow motion, it’s great for video too. Full HD movies can be shot at speeds of up to 59.94fps for super-smooth footage. To help maximize sound quality, the X-T100 is equipped with a microphone port so videographers can record audio from a compatible external microphone (sold separately).

Bluetooth® Technology for Quick and Seamless Image Transfer

The X-T100 features the latest Bluetooth® low energy technology, allowing users to quickly and seamlessly transfer images using the free “FUJIFILM Camera Remote” app. This function enables constant image transfer, even while in shooting mode, so images can be uploaded and shared within moments.

FUJIFILM X-T100 Key Features:

  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor and high-speed imaging processor equipped with Phase Detection AF system
  • 3” (approx. 1,040K-dot) high resolution LCD touchscreen can be tilted 3 ways
  • Standard output sensitivity of ISO200 – ISO12800
    • Extended output sensitivity: ISO100 – ISO51200
  • 4K video recording up to approx. 30 mins
    • Full HD 1920 x 1080 59.94p / 50p / 24p / 23.98p, Continuous recording up to approx. 30 min.
    • HD 1280 x 720 59.94p / 50p / 24p / 23.98p, Continuous recording up to approx. 30 min.
    • High Speed Movie 1280x720 / 1.6x / 2x / 3.3x / 4x, Continuous recording up to approx. 7 min.
  • Bluetooth® version 4.1 low energy technology
  • Wi-Fi® image transfer and remote camera operation
  • Improved battery life for still images - approx. 430 frames
  • Start-up period:
    • 0.4 sec., when High Performance mode set to ON
    • 0.8 sec., when High Performance mode set to OFF
  • Photos can be sent to instax SHARE printers using the free “instax SHARE” app
  • Accessories include:
    • Li-ion battery NP-W126S
    • AC power adapter
    • Plug Adapter
    • USB cable
    • Shoulder strap
    • Body cap
    • Owner's manual
    • Detachable Grip

Availability and Pricing

Kits and cameras will be available in Black, Dark Silver, and Champagne Gold. Dark Silver and Champagne Gold are two exciting colors new to the X Series lineup, seen for the first time in the X-T100.

The new FUJIFILM X-T100 will be available as a kit with the FUJINON XC15-45mmF3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens on June 18, 2018 in the U.S. and Canada for USD $699.95 and CAD $899.99.

The new FUJIFILM X-T100 body will be available on June 18, 2018 in the U.S. and Canada for USD $599.95 and CAD $749.99.

Fujifilm X-T100 specifications PriceMSRP$599 body only, $699 w/16-50mm lensBody typeBody typeSLR-style mirrorlessBody materialComposite/MetalSensorMax resolution6000 x 4000Image ratio w:h1:1, 3:2, 16:9Effective pixels24 megapixelsSensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.7 mm)Sensor typeCMOSColor spacesRGB, AdobeRGBColor filter arrayPrimary color filterImageISOAuto, 200-12800 (expands to 100-51200)Boosted ISO (minimum)100Boosted ISO (maximum)51200White balance presets7Custom white balanceYes (3 slots)Image stabilizationNoUncompressed formatRAWJPEG quality levelsFine, normalFile format
  • JPEG (Exif 2.3)
  • Raw (RAF format, 14-bit)
Optics & FocusAutofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lampYesManual focusYesNumber of focus points91Lens mountFujifilm XFocal length multiplier1.5×Screen / viewfinderArticulated LCDTiltingScreen size3″Screen dots1,040,000Touch screenYesScreen typeTFT LCDLive viewYesViewfinder typeElectronicViewfinder coverage100%Viewfinder magnification0.93× (0.62× 35mm equiv.)Viewfinder resolution2,360,000Photography featuresMinimum shutter speed30 secMaximum shutter speed1/4000 secMaximum shutter speed (electronic)1/32000 secExposure modes
  • Program
  • Shutter priority
  • Aperture priority
  • Manual
Built-in flashYesFlash range5.00 m (at ISO 100)External flashYes (via hot shoe)Flash modesAuto, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro, Rear-curtain Synchro, CommanderFlash X sync speed1/180 secDrive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous H/L
  • Self-timer
Continuous drive6.0 fpsSelf-timerYes (2 or 10 sec, smile, buddy, group, face)Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Average
  • Spot
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)AE Bracketing±3 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)WB BracketingYesVideography featuresFormatMPEG-4, H.264Modes
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 15p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 24p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 60p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 50p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 24p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
  • 1280 x 720 @ 23.98p, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
MicrophoneStereoSpeakerMonoStorageStorage typesSD/ SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I compatible)ConnectivityUSB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)USB chargingYesHDMIYes (Micro HDMI)Microphone portYesHeadphone portNoWirelessBuilt-InWireless notes802.11b/g/n + Bluetooth 4.1 LERemote controlYes (via smartphone or wired remote)PhysicalEnvironmentally sealedNoBatteryBattery PackBattery descriptionNP-W126s lithium-ion batteryBattery Life (CIPA)430Weight (inc. batteries)448 g (0.99 lb / 15.80 oz)Dimensions121 x 83 x 47 mm (4.76 x 3.27 x 1.85″)Other featuresOrientation sensorYesTimelapse recordingYesGPSNone
Categories: Photo News

Leaked Panasonic firmware update is made official

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 16:06

Panasonic had been planning on a May 30th announcement and release of firmware updates for its GH5, GH5S and G9 models, only to have that plan foiled by a leak of the announcement in Japan today. So while you can't download the actual firmware updates themselves until next week, here's a high-level look at what you can expect from the new software.

Autofocus performance is said to be improved on all three models for both stills and video shooting along with an improvement of the quality and performance of sound recording during video. For the G9 and GH5, the image stabilizer has been tweaked, and there have been some refinements of the high-resolution mode for the flagship G9.

Unfortunately, the web pages with all of the nitty gritty details for each camera (see the links in the press release below) aren't yet live, so we can't comment on what exactly the 'New Functions' and 'Other Improvements' will be for each model. That said, we're certainly looking forward to seeing how effective these AF enhancements will be when they land next week.

Firmware Update Service for DC-GH5, DC-GH5S, DC-G9 To Enhance Performance and Add New Functions

Newark, NJ (May 23, 2018) - Panasonic is pleased to announce new firmware updates for the DC-GH5 (Firmware Version 2.3), DC-GH5S (Firmware Version 1.1) and DC-G9 (Firmware Version 1.1) to further enhance their performance and usability. The firmware will be available on May 30, 2018.

The new firmware includes following upgrades:

LUMIX DC-GH5 Firmware Ver.2.3

  1. Improvement of AF performance
  2. Improvement of Body I.S. (Image Stabilizer) performance
  3. Improvement of sound recording performance
  4. New functions5. Other improvements

LUMIX DC-GH5S Firmware Ver.1.1

  1. Improvement of AF performance
  2. Improvement of sound recording performance
  3. New functions
  4. Other Improvements

LUMIX DC-G9 Firmware Ver.1.1

  1. Improvement of AF performance
  2. Improvement of Body I.S. (Image Stabilizer) performance
  3. Improvement of High Resolution Mode
  4. Improvement of sound recording performance
  5. New functions
  6. Other improvements

The new firmware programs will be available at LUMIX Customer Support Site on May 30, 2018 at: http://av.jpn.support.panasonic.com/support/global/cs/dsc/download/index.html

The details of each firmware programs will also be available at the following pages:

LUMIX DC-GH5 Firmware Ver.2.3: http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/gh5_firmware.html

LUMIX DC-GH5S Firmware Ver.1.1: http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/gh5s_firmware.html

LUMIX DC-G9 Firmware Ver.1.1: http://www.panasonic.com/global/consumer/lumix/g9_firmware.html

*Specifications are subject to change without notice

To learn more about Panasonic’s line of LUMIX Digital Cameras and other consumer electronic products please visit www.shop.panasonic.com and www.lumixlounge.com. You can also follow Panasonic on Twitter (@mypanasonicNA) and Facebook.

About Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company

Based in Newark, NJ, Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company is a division of Panasonic Corporation of North America, the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation. The company offers a wide range of consumer solutions in the U.S. including LUMIX Digital Cameras, Camcorders, Blu-ray players, Home Audio, Technics, Cordless Phones, Home Appliances, Beauty, Grooming, Wellness and Personal Care products and more. Panasonic was featured in Fortune Magazine's 2016 ranking of 50 companies that are changing the world and doing well by doing good. Specifically cited were its smart and sustainable technologies, including its contributions to smart cities and the electric vehicle revolution.

Follow Press Updates for Panasonic Consumer Products:

Internet - http://us.panasonic.com/news

Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/panasonicusaconsumerpress

Instagram - http://www.instagram.com/panasonicusa_consumer_press

Press Resource Contacts:

Panasonic North America Corp. Consumer Press consumer: press@us.panasonic.com

Blair Riley (Porter Novelli): blair.riley@porternovelli.com

Categories: Photo News

Video: There's no such thing as lens compression, it's just perspective distortion

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 13:17

We've been saying for years that the term "lens compression" is misleading, but Lee Morris over at Fstoppers has put together a useful video that explains exactly why this is the case, and demonstrates it with two easy-to-understand examples.

The main issue with the term "lens compression" is that the distortion the term refers to has nothing to do with the lens itself. The issue is simply perspective distortion, caused by the distance between your camera and your subject, as well as the distance between your camera and the background.

Put another way: if your subject is 1 meter away (or feet: it doesn't really matter), and your background is 50 meters away, moving back 1 meter will double the distance between you and your subject, while barely changing the distance between you and the background—the perspective on your subject changes drastically, while the perspective on your background barely shifts at all.

This diagram, from the FStoppers video, shows why changing your perspective appears to compress the background... When you double the distance to your subject you halve its size, but you've barely moved in relation to the background, so it remains roughly the same size in your image.

To show this concept in action, Morris uses two examples. First, he shows you how you can get the exact same perspective using a 24mm lens that you can with a 400mm lens by simply cropping the wide-angle shot. Then, he does the opposite, creating the same perspective as a 15mm shot by stitching multiple shots taken at 70mm.

Of course, that doesn't mean you should go throw out all of your lenses and just pick one focal length to either crop or stitch with. Physical limitations apply: like how much room you have to back up, how much resolution you're willing to sacrifice by cropping, and how much sanity you have to spare if you're trying to create a 15mm shot by taking a thousand shots with an 800mm lens.

The demonstration is just that: a demonstration of a concept that is often misunderstood because of the language we use to describe it. The compression you get using a long lens isn't a result of the lens, so much as the distance between your subject, your background, and the camera.

Categories: Photo News

DJI debunks rumor: Leaked 'Phantom 5' was just a custom-built Phantom 4 Pro

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 13:00

Last week, some 'leaked' photos and hand-drawn schematics were published online that purported to show an upcoming drone from DJI: a Phantom 5 with interchangeable lens camera and several prime lenses. The rumor was widely reported and the photos looked real enough, but DPReview has learned that those images do not, in fact, show a Phantom 5 at all.

We spoke to DJI, who clarified on the record that the drone in the images above and below is not an unreleased DJI Phantom 5, but a specialized Phantom 4 Pro designed by DJI for an enterprise client—something that it is not at all unusual for DJI to do.

Here's the full statement:

The Phantom 4 drone with interchangeable lenses sighted in some online publications is not a DJI product for public sale. To clarify, this was a modified Phantom 4 Pro drone designed for an enterprise client to serve specific application needs.

Of course, this doesn't mean a Phantom 5 isn't in the works, but that leak from a couple of weeks ago seems to a have been a hoax.

Categories: Photo News

Vivo teaser shows bezel-free smartphone with pop-up camera

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 11:22

In February, Vivo introduced a concept phone called Apex that featured a bezel-free display and pop-up front-facing camera, among other things. That handset may be more than just a concept, though, based on a teaser included with Vivo's latest event invitation and a video advertisement it recently published.

Originally pointed out by The Verge, Vivo has released a 2018 FIFA World Cup advertisement that includes shots of what appears to be the Apex phone. In addition to the advertisement, Vivo has also released an invite for the company's June 12th event in Shanghai, China.

The invite, below, features an image of a smartphone with a full bezel-free, notch-free display.

In addition to both of the aforementioned features, Vivo's Apex concept phone also included an in-display fingerprint sensor that worked on the entire bottom half of the phone's screen. We see hints of that feature in the FIFA advertisement above. Earlier this year, Vivo unveiled the X20 Plus UD, the first smartphone to hit shelves with an in-display fingerprint sensor.

In the event invitation, Vivo merely stated that the production phone unveiled next month "continues Vivo's vision with Apex FullView Concept Smartphone." Assuming the production phone mirrors the Apex concept, the pop-up camera will be front-facing only.

Categories: Photo News

Skylum announces creation of 'Skylum AI' artificial intelligence lab

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 10:34

Skylum Software, formerly known as MacPhun and the developers of the Luminar photo editing application, today announced the creation of a research and development division dedicated to artificial intelligence in imaging. The division is called the Skylum AI Lab, and it is a collaboration between Skylum and its sister company, Photolemur, makers of an AI-powered image editor.

The team at Skylum AI Lab, which will be headed by former Let's Enchance CEO Alex Savsunenko, is already working on a number of new AI solutions. These include artificial intelligence- and machine learning-powered image upscaling, tagging and segmentation, as well as automated image enhancement systems.

As Skylum CEO Alex Tsepko explains:

By using AI-based technologies in our products, our customers save time vs. manual editing, and can often get better results. Our neural networks are being trained on millions of images taken by cameras from Fujifilm, Sony, Olympus, Nikon, Canon and many others, which means outstanding results for all photographers, regardless of what style they shoot and what gear they are using.

There is clearly a lot of buzz around artificial intelligence in imaging lately, and the possibilities do seem endless. It's still early days, but with most major smartphone manufacturers implementing AI-powered functions in their smartphone cameras, it only makes sense to push the technology on the desktop and other platforms as well.

Whether it's improved auto-tagging or lossless upscaling of images, we're looking forward to the ideas and solutions coming out of Skylum AI lab in the future.

Press Release

Skylum Software doubles down on Artificial Intelligence by creating new Skylum AI Lab and joining forces with leading AI-based image editor, Photolemur

Skylum also hires Alex Savsunenko, former CEO of Let’s Enhance, to lead AI-based photo technologies to the next level.

May 22, 2018 — Bellevue, WA — Today, Skylum Software announced the formation of a new research and development division dedicated to the advancement of artificial intelligence technologies in image processing. The Skylum AI Lab leverages the company’s prior work developing smart filters in its award-winning Luminar software, as well as technology from its “sister company” Photolemur, which was founded in 2016 by Dima Sytnik and Alex Tsepko, co-founder and CEO of Skylum respectively.

“Clearly, AI can simplify our lives. By using AI-based technologies in our products, our customers save time vs. manual editing, and can often get better results,” said Alex Tsepko, CEO at Skylum. “Our neural networks are being trained on millions of images taken by cameras from Fujifilm, Sony, Olympus, Nikon, Canon and many others, which means outstanding results for all photographers, regardless of what style they shoot and what gear they are using.”

To spearhead the new Skylum AI Lab, the company has hired Alex Savsunenko, former CEO of Let’s Enhance, a leader in machine learning for visual content. Savsunenko will manage all research and development for technologies based on artificial intelligence, machine learning, and neural networks. Promising results will ultimately be implemented in Skylum products and solutions for image and video enhancement, with the aim to help users make their workflow faster, smarter and more efficient.

Currently, the Skylum AI Lab is testing over a dozen of new solutions, including:

  • Image upscaling:uses deep convolutional neural networks to improve low-resolution images and scale them up for superior viewing and printing.
  • Tagging: generates tags that describe the image and its objects based on image recognition.
  • Segmentation: smart recognition of image areas that can be automatically enhanced using different filters and corrections based on the type of object.
  • Automatic enhancement: applies smart image corrections to photos based on a variety of issues

To further reinforce its AI prowess, Skylum has also joined forces with Photolemur, creator of the world's first fully automatic photo enhancement solution. Photolemur app has been sold for several years, with hundreds of thousands of customers worldwide. It enhances images utilizing artificial intelligence without the need to use any manual controls. Development will continue on Photolemur, with the next evolution of the app likely to be a cloud solution that helps high-volume users enhance images as batch process.

About Skylum Software

Skylum Software (formerly Macphun) is a Washington-based photo software developer with the mission to make complex photo editing simple and user-friendly. Thanks to its innovative approach and high-end proprietary technologies, Skylum products have won dozens of various awards, including “Best of the Year” awards by Apple for six straight years. Luminar was honored with the “Best Imaging Software 2017” award by TIPA and “Best Software Plugin” in October 2017 by the Lucie Technical Awards. Aurora HDR was selected as the “Best Mac App of 2017” by Apple.

To learn more about Skylum, please visit http://skylum.com/.

Categories: Photo News

Using four Godox EC-200 extension heads as a quad-flash for beauty and close-up lighting

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 09:42

Flashpoint/Godox have just announced the EC-200 extension head, adding an effective and extremely low-cost tool for cosmetic and macro photography. These heads are exclusively designed for the Evolve 200 / AD200 pocket flash, a widely popular and highly efficient product, operated by long-lasting lithium batteries.

Throughout my career I have used various types of ring flashes and parabolic umbrellas. I also collaborated with Swiss lighting manufacturer Broncolor for over a decade on countless marketing and promotional projects, and shot their launch campaigns for the original Para 330 and Ringflash C.

Super model Iman for DeBeers global campaign (2003), shot with Broncolor Para330, and Fujifilm GX680III, on Fujifilm Provia film.

These types of lights are often used by fashion photographers, as they are both easy to work with and offer many options—the Broncolor Paras in particular, which range from the 88 to 330, can produce a wide variety of effects. However, neither types are ideal for extreme close up work when balanced, even front-lighting is required.

The new remote heads from China on the other hand, are small and light enough to allow for several of them to be mounted on a camera flash bracket and rail.

Selecting tiny but wide-angled reflectors, the resulting light is much less harsh, and more feathered than the output from a ring flash, in very close distance. The total weight of, let's say, four extension heads with the small reflectors and including the bracket/rail set is just about 24 ounces, making handheld shooting is easy.

This new kind of 'Quad Ring' set up offers also the additional advantage over traditional ring flashes of allowing individual control of each of the flash heads in turn, which permits me to limit the output of the flash hitting the model's face from underneath.

This is not as easily achieved with a ring flash.

Placed on tripod, the four extension heads are still mounted on the bracket and rail, but the camera is hand-held, so the four lights hit from a slight angle.

Fujifilm GFX 50S, GF 250mm lens, F8, 1/4000 sec, ISO 100

The Evolve 200 / AD200 pocket flash performs extremely well and reliably in HSS (High Speed Sync) mode, and when used for this 'Quad Ring' arrangement, provides output powerful enough to completely black out direct midday sunlight.

This four-light arrangement also makes an excellent off-camera light by simply setting the contraption on a tripod and shooting from various angles around it.

The 'Quad Ring' is also off-centered in this image. This time it's placed to the camera angle, resting on a tripod.

Fujifilm GFX 50S, GF 120mm macro lens, F11, 1/125 sec, ISO 100 As evident by the unusual catchlights, the four extension heads are mounted on bracket and rail around the lens here.

Fujifilm GFX 50S, GF 120mm macro lens, F11, 1/125 sec, ISO 100

The announcement of the new remote heads is timely. The recent release of new macro extension tubes by Fujifilm for the mirrorless medium format GFX 50S (and the release of the GF 120mm macro lens) have ushered in a new era for macro photography. One can now easily shoot 1:1 handheld, with very fast and reliable autofocus, or manually focus while zoomed in.

Compared to previous systems, macro photography with medium format mirrorless cameras has become easy and accessible. Adding the creative options created by the convenient new remote heads, it has never been more fun to shoot close up!

About the Author: Markus Klinko is an award-winning, international fashion/celebrity photographer and director, who has worked with many of today's most iconic stars of film, music, and fashion.

Klinko has photographed the likes of Beyonce, Lady Gaga, David Bowie, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears, Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey, Kanye West, Anne Hathaway, Kate Winslet, Will Smith, Eva Mendes, Kim Kardashian, Naomi Campbell, and Iman. His editorial clients include Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, Harper's Bazaar, and Interview magazine.

You can find more of his work on the Markus & Koala website or by following him on Instagram.

Categories: Photo News

Sony reveals camera strategy: aims to be the top camera brand by 2021

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 07:42

In a recent presentation at its investors relations day in Tokyo, Sony was not shy about its ambitions in the photography market. According to the presentation, Sony intends to occupy the top slot in the overall camera market by the end of 2020 by boosting its interchangeable lens systems to beat back Canon and Nikon.

Already doing quite a good job of grabbing market share, the company has told investors that it plans to expand its lens business and push towards the professional market while ‘strengthening products’ in the interchangeable lens camera segment.

Despite predicting only very modest growth in 2018 and acknowledging that competitors are becoming more aggressive, the company told investors that it will "win in an increasingly competitive market and continue to generate high profit" in the mid-term. Citing its crop of awards from TIPA, EISA and Camera GP Japan to back up the claims, Sony stated that it intends to broaden the range of lenses it offers and to expand its professional support services worldwide.

According to figures shown at the event, Sony achieved a 20% share of the still camera market in 2017 by value, and managed to rank third behind Canon and Nikon. It says it was the number one brand in the mirrorless market, and was number one in the premium compact business.

To learn more about Sony's plans, check out the whole Sony Imaging Products and Solutions Segment presentation here.

Categories: Photo News

HTC unveils the U12+: Brings back the dual-camera and adds 4K 60p video

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 06:57

With the release of the HTC One M8 in 2014, HTC was a true dual-camera pioneer; unfortunately, that phone was also slightly ahead of its time. The One M8's camera only had a lukewarm reception, and overall the device did not prove to be particularly popular. As a consequence, HTC dropped the dual-camera concept after the M8... until now. HTC has finally rejoined the ranks of dual-camera proponents with the launch of the brand new HTC U12+.

Building on the camera performance of last year's U11+, the new model appears to have a lot to offer mobile photographers.

The main camera features a 1/2.55″ 12MP sensor with stabilized F1.75 aperture lens and 27mm-equivalent focal length. The secondary 2x optical zoom camera features a 16MP pixel count and 54mm equivalent focal length. The aperture is F2.6. The autofocus combines PDAF and laser technology and there are also a “Pro” photography mode for manual control and RAW-support, as well as a background-blurring portrait mode.

On the video side of things, the HTC U12+ is capable of capturing movies at 4K resolution and 60 frames per second which is still quite an unusual feature on a smartphone. 240 fps slow-motion is available at 1080p Full-HD resolution. The front camera also comes with a dual-camera setup. However, unlike the main shooter it is not optimized for zooming but instead designed for creating a natural-looking bokeh effect in portrait mode.

Here's a quick video into to the new smartphone and all its "bigger, bolder and edgier" features:

Other specifications include Qualcomm's latest and greatest Snapdragon 845 chipset, 6GB of RAM and a 18:9 6-inch Super LCD6 display that supports HDR10 and DCI-P3 and comes with a 1,440 x 2,280 pixel resolution. The phone comes with 64GB or 128GB of storage that can be expanded via microSD card, and all components are housed in an IP68 certified body.

With the addition of the secondary tele-camera, on paper the new HTC looks like a very solid upgrade over its predecessor. We'll have to wait and see what the camera is capable of in real-life shooting situations.

Categories: Photo News

You can now favorite images in Google Photos

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 06:37

Google Photos is the default online image management platform for many mobile and desktop users, but until now, it's been lacking one pretty basic feature that is available in most comparable applications: the ability to favorite photos.

Today Google closed this glaring gap in the Photos feature set, announcing via Twitter that it is rolling out a feature that allows users to tap a star in the upper right corner of any photo in their library. This automatically adds the image to the new Favorites album, making it easier to manage your most cherished images.

It’s OK to play favorites. Rolling out this week, tap the ⭐️ button to mark a photo as a favorite. Head to the Albums tab and view all your favorites in one place. pic.twitter.com/eWnSMDKQ72

— Google Photos (@googlephotos) May 21, 2018

Additionally, you'll soon be able to "heart" photos that have been shared with you. This is essentially the Google Photos equivalent to a Facebook-like, and adds a social network element to the service.

These features come in addition to improvements announced at Google's recent I/O developer conference, and should help develop Google Photos into a service that has something to offer for everyone—from casual shutterbugs to seasoned enthusiast photographers.

Categories: Photo News

Apollo app for iOS uses dual-cam depth map to create impressive lighting tricks

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 06:00
Apple's dual-camera setup can create a depth map to simulate background blur - but now, someone's figured out how to simulate lighting effects with an impressive level of control.

Apple's dual camera devices (the 7 Plus, 8 Plus and X to be precise) generate a depth map to create the effects of Portrait Mode and Portrait Lighting that we've all come to know well. Whether you love, hate or feel generally 'meh' toward fake background blur, things get interesting when Apple makes that depth map information available to third party app developers. Enter Apollo: Immersive illumination, a $1.99 iOS app with an unusual name and a few interesting tricks up its sleeve.

Apollo uses the depth map not for background-blurring purposes, but to allow users to add realistic lighting effects to photos after they're taken. Up to 20 light sources can be positioned throughout an image, with the ability to adjust intensity, color and distance. With the depth information provided, light sources interact with subjects in a three-dimensional fashion, and can even be positioned behind a subject to create a rim light.

It's hard not to be a little taken aback the first time you drag a light source around your image and see how it interacts with your subject

It's essentially an interactive version of Apple's Portrait Lighting, which applies different light style effects to images. Apollo's effects are highly customizable, and with so many parameters to play with it's naturally quite a bit more complicated to use than Apple's very simple lighting modes.

In use

We've been messing around with the Apollo app (for an admittedly short period of time), and have to say we're impressed with what it's capable of - but that doesn't mean we don't have a few requests for the next version.

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Click through to see the images full-screen and see how many lights were used in the Apollo app.

It's hard not to be a little taken aback the first time you drag a light source around your image and see how it interacts with your subject(s). You are able to adjust the color, brightness and spread of your source, which are all fairly self descriptive.

You can also change the 'Distance' of your light, or it's position in Z-space; this means you can move the light to be closer to you, the photographer, or further away into the background of your scene.

Lastly, there are two global adjustments, 'Shadows' and 'Effect Range.' Shadows essentially controls overall image brightness, though it biases toward the darker tones. Effect Range adjusts the brightness of all of your lights simultaneously in the image, though keeping the brightness ratios between them constant as it does so.

Along the bottom are the parameters you're allowed for each light source you create (up to 20). Two global adjustments are 'Shadows' which adjusts overall brightness and Effect Range which adjusts the brightness of all lights simultaneously.

Overall, it's an incredibly neat - and kind of addictive - first effort. But there are a few things that we'd like to see addressed in future versions.

Currently, every new 'light' you create starts out with a certain set of default parameters. This is alright, except for the fact that the default color is a yellowy tungsten sort of thing; it should really just begin as 'white.'

Also, if I've already tuned in a 'light' and just want another one based on those, it'd be nice to be able to duplicate one that I've already created instead of having to start from scratch each time.

And once you've finished with your new creation, you can save it out as a JPEG - but there's no way to save the lights themselves so that you can come back and tweak later. Each time you exit to tackle another image, the app asks you, 'Close photo and discard all changes?' Well, I'd rather not discard them, but if I have to, then I suppose that's that.

Lastly, it doesn't look like there's any way to preserve the blurriness of the background once you've added your lights. It'd be great to be able to still take advantage of the depth map and progressive blurring while adding in your own lighting sources.

Wrapping up

Okay, so those are some fairly major requests on our part. But we make them because we're really blown away by what the app already offers, and are excited to see how it evolves. It wasn't so long ago you'd need a powerful workstation and some serious software skills to manipulate lighting in the same way that this app does with a few taps and drags.

If you have a dual camera iPhone and want to give the Apollo app a try, head on over to the App Store yourself and take it for a spin.

Categories: Photo News

The new ASUS ZenBook Pro 15 features a 100% Adobe RGB 4K display

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 13:10

ASUS has unveiled its new ZenBook Pro 15: a lightweight laptop that packs some seriously impressive specs, including a 4K factory-calibrated display and, despite its thin 18.9mm frame, up to an 8th-generation Intel Core i9-8950HK hexa-core processor.

The model offers excellent hardware options targeting video and photo professionals, in addition to gamers. The new ZenBook Pro 15 offers a 15.6-inch IPS multi-touch display in 1080p and 4K 3840 x 2160 resolutions, both of which feature 100% Adobe RGB color space and 95% NTSC color gamut, integrated ASUS Calibration, and the promise of "pin-sharp accuracy."

If the Intel Core i9 chip—which is fairly uncommon in laptops—is a bit too rich for your blood, buyers can choose a quad-core Core i5 or six-core Core i7 processor instead. RAM can be customized to either 8GB or 16GB, and storage maxes out at 1TB SSD. Finally, graphics are delivered via an NVIDIA GTX 1050 with up to 4GB of GDDR5 memory, and a dual-fan cooling system with three heat pipes promises to efficiently keep the laptop cool during a heavy editing session.

Despite the high-end hardware, the company claims the model's 71Wh battery coupled with "clever ASUS thermal engineering" results in a runtime of up to 9.5 hours per charge. The laptop also features fast charging for bringing the battery from 0 to 60% in 49 minutes.

Other key features include two Thunderbolt 3 ports, a microSD card slot, HDMI, two USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports, dual-band 802.11ac WiFi, Harman Kardon audio, a NanoEdge ultra-slim bezel and aluminum unibody, silver keyboard backlight, integrated fingerprint sensor, and an overall weight of 1.86kg / 4.1lbs.

Though ASUS has unveiled the new ZenBook Pro 15, it hasn't yet revealed the price. While we wait for that, you can learn lots more about the new laptop over on the ASUS website.

Categories: Photo News

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