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2017 Readers' choice polls: High-end ILC of the year - break the tie!

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 17:38

For the past few weeks we've been running six polls, to find out what you, our readers think was the best gear of 2017. Several of the polls are pretty close, but one is still too close to call, with literally only a handful of votes between the front-runners and runners-up.

With only six hours left to vote, we need your help to break the tie! Or we could just give everyone a prize, like school sports day. Your choice.

Click here to view all six polls
(voting ends at midnight PT)

Have your say$(document).ready(function() { Poll({"pollId":"1348290628","openForVoting":true,"mainElementId":"poll0","slot":null,"isSingleChoicePoll":false,"minNumberOfChoices":1,"maxNumberOfChoices":3}); })Have your say: Best high-end ILC of 2017Your answers1. Required2. Optional3. OptionalYou need to login to voteFujifilm GFX 50SLeica M10Nikon D850Panasonic Lumix DC-G9Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5Sony Alpha a7R IIISony Alpha a9
Categories: Photo News

10 simple DIY gifts for the photography lovers in your life

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 12:33

Christmas is nearly upon us, stores are overcrowded, and inventory is running low. The solution? A DIY gift that is both unique and easy to make! And thanks to the team at Cooperative of Photography (COOPH), you've got a ready-made tutorial that will show you how to do just that.

The video highlights 10 simple DIY gifts anyone can make for the photographers and photo lovers in their life. Projects include transforming a Rubik's cube into a photo cube, a DIY candle holder, unique photo hanger, and lots more. Check out the full video above.

Categories: Photo News

Photojournalist Andrew Grimm sues Ohio deputy who shot him

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 11:08

In September, New Carlisle News photographer Andrew Grimm was shot by Clark County Sheriff's Deputy Jacob Shaw when the officer mistook Grimm's camera for a firearm. The incident, which was captured by Shaw's body camera, happened while Grimm was setting up his equipment to photograph Shaw, who was in the middle of a traffic stop.

The body camera footage shows Grimm, who was shot in the chest and grazed in the shoulder, telling Shaw that he had both flashed his car lights and waved in order to alert the deputy to his presence. Shaw, who knew Grimm, was recorded by his camera saying, "Andy, I'm sorry, brother. Listen, dude, you pulled that out like a gun out of the back of the Jeep. I thought it was a freaking gun, Andy."

Shaw reportedly failed to provide Grimm with any warnings before opening fire, which is said to have happened within seconds of Shaw exiting his cruiser. As reported at the time, the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation opened an investigation into the matter.

Though Grimm had said shortly after the shooting that he hadn't wanted Shaw to lose his job, the photographer and his wife, plus KBA News, have since filed a lawsuit against the Clark County Board of County Commissioners, the City of New Carlisle, Ohio, and Sheriff's Deputy Jacob Shaw. The lawsuit accuses Deputy Shaw of violating Grimm's civil rights and using excessive force, seeking at least $75,000 in damages for a variety of claims.

Since the shooting, the lawsuit claims Grimm experiences both psychological and physical issues, including nervousness when around law enforcement officers, disturbed sleep, anxiety, and headaches. It also accuses the local Sheriff's Office of having "ratified" Shaw's actions by allowing him to return to work—despite the ongoing Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation probe, Deputy Shaw has been given role in the Clark County Jail—and that the Sheriff's Office failed to properly train and supervise Shaw.

The suit was filed in the Ohio Southern District Court in Cincinnati with Judge Timothy S. Black presiding.

Categories: Photo News

Idaho gets the first International Dark-Sky Reserve in the United States

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 10:38

The United States has established its very first International Dark-Sky Reserve—one of 12 found around the globe, and now third largest in the world. The designation was granted to the Central Idaho Dark-Sky Reserve by the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA), which says the region offers 3600km² / 1400mi² of "exceptional or distinguished quality of night sky, view of the stars and nocturnal environment."

The Central Idaho Dark-Sky Reserve IDA designation is a milestone for American conservation, not only protecting wildlife in the region from the negative effects of artificial light, but also giving visitors from around the world another place to view the pure night sky.

The US reserve and its international designation is the by-product of about 20 years of policy and hard work by Idaho residents, businesses, and officials, according to the IDA. The collective worked to reduce artificial light in central Idaho and agreed to manage artificial light in the region henceforth.

The boundaries of the Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve. Image from Idaho's IDA application.

To get the special designation, Central Idaho land managers formed partnerships with IDA, committing to help preserve the quality of the pure, unadulterated nighttime environment. Ketchum, Idaho Mayor Nina Jonas talked about that, saying in a statement to the IDA:

This is the culmination of a lot of work, important policy decisions and commitment by so many to manage our light pollution. We're pleased what this says about the commitment our communities have shown to protecting our environment and spectacular window to the universe.

Central Idaho didn't only win an International Dark-Sky Reserve designation, though. IDA says it has granted this reserve its Gold Tier rating, meaning that the reserve offers one of the darkest night skies among all Dark-Sky Reserves. Information on the Central Idaho Dark-Sky Reserve, including a clear sky chart and map, are available here.

Categories: Photo News

Calgary police catch suspected Camera Store thieves, recover most of the stolen gear

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 08:51
Photo: The Camera Store

Earlier this week, we reported on a high-profile burglary at Calgary's well-known camera shop "The Camera Store"—best known for its popular YouTube channel. Well, thanks to sharp-eyed tipsters and the fast-acting Calgary police, it only took 48 hours from when the store was robbed to catch two suspects and recover most of the stolen gear.

As we reported on Monday, the thieves made away with over $27,000 worth of cameras and lenses, including a Hassleblad X1D, three Hasselblad X lenses, and a limited edition Leica M-P Edition Safari. This is the first time The Camera Store has experienced a break-in in over 20 years of business, and owner Julian Ferreira was both upset and determined: offering a $3,800 shopping spree "for any information that leads to a conviction."

Fortunately for Ferreira, he need not have worried too much about the break-in. The same day that the story was spreading like wildfire across the blogosphere, the police were already tracking down the majority of the stolen gear.

Photo: The Camera Store

According to The Calgary Sun and The Camera Store's own website, once the story went live on local news last weekend, tipsters alerted Calgary police of a Hasselblad X1D and three Hasselblad X lenses that had just been put up for sale on the website Kijiji. Undercover officers responded to the listing, meeting with two men—60-year-old Tan Bui and 36-year-old Justin Ross—at a Calgary mall on Monday afternoon, and taking them both into custody after it was confirmed the camera and lenses 'for sale' were the same ones stolen from The Camera Store.

Both men have been charged with possession and trafficking in stolen property, although it is unknown if police believe Bui and Ross are also responsible for the break-in. The $10,000 special-edition Leica M-P Edition Safari has not been recovered... at least not yet.

As for that promised shopping spree, The Camera Store writes:

Multiple tips from the public lead Calgary police to the Kijiji listing that helped them recover our equipment and to arrest the two suspects. Once convictions are made, we will contact the person who was first to provide the information to CPS that allowed them to take action quickly, to collect their $5000 [CAD] shopping spree reward.

Categories: Photo News

German publisher Steidl ordered to pay $77k after losing photographer's prints

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 08:12

German publisher Steidl has been ordered to pay photographer Lawrence Schwartzwald €65,000 / $77,000 after losing his portfolio prints. According to Artnet News, Schwartzwald sent the prints to Steidl in September of 2014 for inclusion in a book project. The photographer was reportedly told in June of 2015 that the project wouldn't proceed, and that he'd get his photos back... but that never happened.

Despite repeated requests, Schwartzwald never did receive his portfolio. And so, after a year of waiting, he filed a lawsuit in a German court against Steidl for the return of his prints, which he valued at $1,200 each. That lawsuit has now culminated in a ruling that Steidl must pay Schwartzwald €65,000 in compensation for the lost prints, plus legal fees.

Gerhard Steidl, the company's founder, gave Artnet News a different version of events, claiming that Schwartzwald's photos had been selected for print publication, but the photographer grew impatient with the duration of the process and requested that his prints be returned.

Regardless of which version of events is true, however, the outcome is the same: Schwartzwald's portfolio went missing.

Steidl acknowledged this in his statement to Artnet, explaining that it was an accident and that the portfolio couldn't be located. "Someone probably packed it incorrectly and it ended up somewhere else, but it's not there anymore," said Steidl. "It just happened, in my opinion I don't deserve the death penalty."

Categories: Photo News

Hasselblad unveils XPan lens adapter for the mirrorless medium format X1D

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 07:23

Hasselblad has announced an adapter that will allow owners of its XPan film camera to mount their old lenses onto the mirrorless medium format Hasselblad X1D. The new adapter’s launch coincides with yesterday’s v1.2 firmware update for the X1D, which introduced an XPan crop mode to the viewfinder and rear LCD.

The adapter is purely mechanical and transfers no data to the camera. It is designed to accept Hasselblad’s 30mm, 45mm and 90mm XPan lenses, but will of course also take the lenses of the Fujifilm TX-1 and TX-2. All lenses in use will need to have apertures manually adjusted; focus is manual too, of course.

Interestingly, the company that manufactured the XPan lenses also manufactures the lens for the X1D, and the covering circle of the XPan models is slightly wider than those designed for the X1D, as the film the XPan lenses had to cover was wider than the sensor of the X1D.

The adapter will go on sale mid-January and will cost €180 / US $180 / £160 including VAT. The company says it also plans to make an adapter that will allow V system lenses to be used on the X1D, but hasn't revealed when that adapter might see the light of day.

For more information, visit the Hasselblad website.

Press Release

Hasselblad Launches XPan Lens Adapter for the X System

Hasselblad expands its range of accessories for the X System with the new XPan Lens Adapter, allowing photographers to use their legacy XPan lenses on the award-winning X System

The Hasselblad XPan lens series was released in 1998 and the new adapter bridges the iconic optics with the latest imaging capabilities from the mirrorless X1D system, just recently benchmarking the highest score by DxO Mark. The sleek new adapter is lightweight, compact, and works seamlessly into the setup.

“The original XPan lenses inspired us when we introduced the current X1D lenses,” said Ove Bengtsson - Product Manager. “The new XPan Lens Adapter speaks to two major aspects of Hasselblad, our drive to innovate and push medium format technology such as the X1D and also to our respect for the legacy equipment that many photographers still rely on to this day. This adapter is the merger of those ideas and that’s what makes this announcement so exciting.”

Customers utilizing the new XPan Lens Adapter first are advised to update their X1D to Firmware 1.20, launched on December 19, 2017. This update also includes a new Selectable Crop Mode that features the classic proportions of the XPan system. Hasselblad will continue to support its legacy and new products alike with plans to create a V to X system adapter and a dual battery charger for the X1D.

The XPan Adapter will be available in mid-January and will retail at €179 / US $179 / £159 / RMB ¥ 1,580 / JPY ¥ 21,999 incl. VAT.

Supported XPan lenses:

  • 30mm f5.6
  • 45mm f4
  • 90mm f4

XPan Lens Adapter:

  • Diameter: 73mm
  • Height: 21.4mm
  • Weight: 112g

*XPan lenses are no longer manufactured nor sold by Hasselblad.

Categories: Photo News

2017 in review: a look back at January

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 06:00
Perhaps the biggest product to be launched in January was the Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5, which offered amazing 4K video capabilities and a solid stills photography feature set.

A lot of things happened this year, both in the photography industry and the world in general. And like every year, 2017 seems to have flown by. As December draws to a close, we wanted to take stock. Over the next 12 days, we'll be looking back at the major product launches and photography events which took place in each month of the year, starting today with January.

2017 kicked off with the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Traditionally a showcase for new consumer audio/visual technologies, in recent years CES has also seen the launch of several major cameras. This year, the biggest announcements were the Fujifilm X100F and Panasonic's flagship 'hybrid' camera, the Lumix DC-GH5.

Meanwhile, Ricoh released the Pentax KP, which inherited a lot of features from the flagship K-1, in a smaller-format body. Leica's M10 – also released in January – is a flagship of a very different kind.

The USA got a new president in January and Pete Souza, the outgoing White House photographer, was there to capture Obama's last day

In local news, the USA got a new president in January (not sure if you heard). Pete Souza, the outgoing White House photographer, was there to capture Obama's last day. Cue much wailing and gnashing of hashtags. On the other side of the (same) country, a bunch of Canadian filmmakers pleaded guilty to trampling all over Grand Prismatic spring in the Yellowstone National Park. Silly billies.

In even more local news, and speaking of silly Billies, our writer Carey Rose took one of our favorite lenses of 2016, the Olympus M.Zuiko 25mm F1.2 Pro to Thailand, to see what it would be like to shoot his entire trip at a single focal length.

Tomorrow – February! Because that's how this is going to work.

See all January 2017 content

CES 2017: Full show coverage

The CES show in Las Vegas back in January was the usual combination of the weird and wonderful, showcasing everything from a fish-finding underwater drone to Panasonic's flagship DC-GH5. DPReview was all over it.

Complete CES 2017 show report content

Ultimate travel kit - Thailand with Olympus' E-M1 II & 25mm prime lens

Thailand has incredible landscapes, delicious food and warm and friendly locals. DPR staffer Carey Rose came to realize that documenting a trip like this equipped with only a 50mm equivalent lens was a lot more difficult than he anticipated.

Read the full article

Filmmakers who walked on Grand Prismatic in Yellowstone get jail time and fines

Last year, four Canadian filmmakers were arrested after photos and a video were published showing them walking on off-limits geothermal features in Yellowstone National Park. Three of them pleaded guilty and will receive fines, community service and a little jail time.

Read the full article

Pete Souza captures Obama's last day in the White House

Pete Souza, the official photographer for President Obama, posted a series of photos on his Instagram account showing the Obamas' final departure from The White House.

Read the full article

Categories: Photo News

2017 Buying Guide: Best cameras for landscapes

Wed, 12/20/2017 - 04:00

Landscape photography isn't as simple as just showing up in front of a beautiful view and taking a couple of pictures. Landscape shooters have a unique set of needs and requirements for their gear, and we've selected some of our favorites in this buying guide.

Categories: Photo News

FAA bans drones from flying near 7 nuclear facilities

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 13:40

The Federal Aviation Administration has officially designated seven Department of Energy (DOE) facilities as drone no-fly zones, restricting UAVs from being operated within 122m / 400ft of any of the following sites:

  • Hanford Site, Franklin County, WA
  • Pantex Site, Panhandle, TX
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM
  • Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID
  • Savannah River National Laboratory, Aiken, SC
  • Y-12 National Security Site, Oak Ridge, TN
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN

All seven sites are nuclear facilities (though not all of them are active), including multiple research facilities. The FAA has established the no-drone designation at the DOE's request, doing so under its Title 14 authority. The FAA refers to these new bans as UAS National Security restrictions, and they'll become effective on Friday, December 29. The agency will soon update its B4UFLY app to show the new restricted airspace.

According to the FAA, there will be select instances in which a drone operator could get a permit to fly within one of these restricted regions, though the operator will need to get permission from the FAA and/or the facility itself. The cases in which these permits may be granted weren't specified. These new restrictions follow similar ones applied to Department of Interior facilities and military bases.

Via: Engadget

Categories: Photo News

Annie Leibovitz teaches photography in new MasterClass

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 10:37

MasterClass has announced the launch of a new course from master photographer Annie Leibovitz. The course is composed of 14 video lessons from Leibovitz herself, as well as a workbook with things like lesson recaps, resources and assignments. As part of the MasterClass, Leibovitz will offer office hours via video and participate in Q&A with students.

This is the first time Leibovitz has offered an online course, which is priced at $90 for just the course itself or under an all-access pass for all MasterClass courses at $180/year. Class lessons include topics like "Working With Light," "Portrait Photography," "Working With Your Subject," and "Creating Concepts," among others.

The MasterClass introductory lesson will introduce students to Leibovitz and her more than 40 years as a photographer. Over the course of her career, Leibovitz has established herself as one of the world's most iconic photographers, her work having appeared in many notable publications, including Rolling Stone and Vanity. She has received numerous honors throughout her career, including a Library of Congress "Living Legend" designation, an International Center of Photography Lifetime Achievement Award, and more.

More information about the Annie Leibovitz MasterClass is available here.

Categories: Photo News

The Voigtländer Nokton classic 35mm F1.4 for E-Mount ships in February, will cost $750

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 08:26
The Voigtlander Nokton Classic 35mm F1.4 FE at CP+ last February. Photo by Barney Britton

Sony shooters will have a new manual-focus lens to play with soon. After announcing the lens as 'in-development' way back in February, Cosina Japan has revealed pricing and availability for the E-Mount Voigtlander Nokton classic 35mm F1.4 lens. According to the translated webpage, the lens is scheduled to ship in February of 2018, at a price of ¥ 85,000, or approximately $750 USD.

This, just a couple of weeks after announcing pricing and availability for another E-Mount Nokton that was "in-development" in February: the Nokton 40mm F1.2.

The Nokton classic 35mm F1.4 is an E-mount version of the M-mount Nokton that Voigtländer has been selling for many years, and we actually got to see this lens in person at CP+ last February. Unfortunately, the 35mm was the only lens under glass that day, so we couldn't get a true 'hands-on,' but we expect it to be built to the same high standard as the older M-mount version.

Another photo from our through-the-glass 'hands on' at CP+. Photo by Barney Britton

To learn more about this lens, head over to the Cosina website, read the translated Cosina Japan page, or check out our 'hands-on' impressions from last February.

Categories: Photo News

Adobe has released the final standalone version of Lightroom

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 08:00

If the release of Lightroom Classic CC and Lightroom CC on October 18th was the beginning of the end for standalone Lightroom, today marks the end of the end. Adobe has released the final standalone Lightroom, version 6.14, adding some bug fixes and camera and lens compatibility, but otherwise using the opportunity to encourage users to jump on the subscription bandwagon.

To their credit, Adobe isn't hiding this fact. They announced that this final update was coming all the way back in October, and today's update announcement notes state the facts plainly:

Lightroom 6.14 is the last perpetual, standalone version of Lightroom.

While you may continue to purchase and use Lightroom 6 with a perpetual license, Adobe will no longer provide updates to the software. Consider upgrading to the Creative Cloud Photography plan to get the latest updates in Lightroom Classic CC and the all-new Lightroom CC, and ensure that the software works with raw files from the newest cameras.

As of today, Lightroom 6 becomes an 'unsupported product.'

Of course, that's okay if you plan to use it with a camera you currently own and don't intend to upgrade any time soon. Problems—or, rather, inconveniences—arise with your next camera purchase. That camera won't be supported by Lightroom 6, and you'll be forced to use Adobe's DNG converter before importing your images.

Not to mention the OS compatibility issues that will inevitably arise as Microsoft and Apple continue releasing new operating systems.

If that all sounds like too much of a hassle, and a Creative Cloud subscription is simply out of the question, it might be time to check out some of the popular alternatives that we've been testing and writing about recently.

Click here to download the latest (and last) version of Lightroom 6.

Categories: Photo News

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III review

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 07:10
Introduction

The Canon PowerShot G1 X III is a high-end compact camera with a 24MP APS-C sized sensor, Dual Pixel autofocus and a 24-72mm equivalent F2.8-5.6 zoom lens. It's Canon's new flagship for the PowerShot G-series, and the sensor is the largest they've ever fitted to a fixed-lens camera. It also has the company's latest DIGIC 7 processor, Wi-Fi with Bluetooth connectivity, and promises a degree of dust and water resistance.

While sales of compact cameras at the low end continue to evaporate, manufacturers are still churning out premium, high-end models in an attempt to lure enthusiasts and amateurs with deep pockets. The G1 X III is certainly an interesting proposition in this segment - indeed, it's the only compact on the market with an APS-C sensor and a lens that zooms, and it claims weather sealing to boot.

Key Features
  • 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Dual Pixel autofocus for stills and video
  • DIGIC 7 processor
  • 2.36M-dot electronic viewfinder
  • 3" fully-articulating LCD
  • 9fps burst shooting (7fps with continuous AF)
  • 1080/60p video recording
  • Wi-Fi and NFC with Bluetooth
  • 200 shot-per-charge battery life (CIPA standard testing)
Processed and cropped to taste in Adobe Camera Raw.
24mm equiv | ISO 125 | F2.8 | 1/1000 sec
Photo by Carey Rose

There are, of course, sacrifices to be made when shoehorning such a large sensor into such a small body. First, the MSRP is pretty high, even for this market segment. Though the lens has a respectable range, its maximum aperture range isn't exactly impressive, and battery life is just plain bad. Regardless, as an overall package, the G1 X III is likely to attract the interest of a wide variety of photographers.

Compared to...

That the G1 X III is a unique offering makes it difficult to really draw comparisons to other models; regardless, those shopping for a fixed-lens pocketable compact at this price are likely to stumble across the RX100 V and the older RX100 IV. They offer much smaller sensors, but come with similar zoom ranges and brighter maximum apertures for their lenses.

Canon G1 X
Mark III
Sony RX100 V Sony RX100 IV MSRP $1299 $999 $899 Sensor 24MP APS-C CMOS 20MP 1"-type
stacked BSI CMOS 20MP 1"-type
BSI CMOS Lens 24-72mm equiv. F2.8-5.6 24-70mm equiv. F1.8-2.8 24-70mm equiv. F1.8-2.8 ISO range
(native) 100-25600 125-12800 125-12800 AF system Dual Pixel on-sensor phase detect On-sensor phase detect Contrast detect EVF 2.36M-dot 2.36M-dot 2.36M-dot LCD 3" 1.04M-dot fully articulating
(720 x 480 RGB) 3" 1.28M-dot tilting
(640 x 480 RGBW) 3" 1.28M-dot tilting
(640 x 480 RGBW) Touchscreen Yes No No Burst rate with AF 7fps 24fps 5.5fps Video 1080/60p 4K/30p 4K/30p Wireless WiFi w/NFC + Bluetooth WiFi w/ NFC WiFi w/ NFC Battery life (CIPA 200 shots 220 shots 280 shots Dimensions 115 x 78 x 51 mm 102 x 58 x 41 mm 102 x 58 x 41 mm Weight 399 g 299 g 298 g

It's worth noting that there are older options (in some cases, discontinued) that may be of interest. The Panasonic LX100 comes with a 4/3-type sensor and similar zoom range, but only offers 12MP of resolution. Fujifilm's X70 and Ricoh's GR II both have 16MP APS-C sensors and are even smaller than the Canon, but both have fixed 28mm-equivalent prime lenses.

In terms of other current cameras that aim to strike a balance between being pocketable and taking decent photos, Panasonic's LX10 comes with a 24-72mm equiv. F1.4-2.8 lens in front of its 1"-type sensor, and Canon's own G7 X Mark II has a 24-100mm equiv. F1.8-2.8 lens in front of its 1"-type sensor. And they're all much cheaper than the G1 X III.

The lens

What's likely to cause the most consternation for serious photographers considering the G1 X III is the lens. The camera is impressively compact, but as noted earlier, at the expense of its maximum aperture range. This limits the usefulness of the larger sensor, particularly in terms of depth of field control (blurry backgrounds) and low light capability - though you should retain a dynamic range advantage in bright light.

Let's see how it compares to some of the other zoom-equipped models we've mentioned here.

LensEquivalentApertures(["Equivalent focal length (mm)","Canon G1 X II","Panasonic LX100","Canon G7 X II","Panasonic LX10","Sony RX100 V","Canon G1 X III"], [[24,3.84,"Canon G1 X II at 24mm: F3.8",3.7434,"Panasonic LX100 at 24mm: F3.7",4.90909090909091,"Canon G7 X II at 24mm: F4.9",3.8181818181818183,"Panasonic LX10 at 24mm: F3.8",4.90909090909091,"Sony RX100 V at 24mm: F4.9",4.5170606663860564,"Canon G1 X III at 24mm: F4.5"],[25,4.224,"Canon G1 X II at 25mm: F4.2",3.9636,"Panasonic LX100 at 25mm: F4.0",null,"",4.0909090909090917,"Panasonic LX10 at 25mm: F4.1",5.454545454545455,"Sony RX100 V at 25mm: F5.5",null,""],[26,4.8,"Canon G1 X II at 26mm: F4.8",4.1838,"Panasonic LX100 at 26mm: F4.2",null,"",4.90909090909091,"Panasonic LX10 at 26mm: F4.9",6.0000000000000009,"Sony RX100 V at 26mm: F6.0",5.1623550472983508,"Canon G1 X III at 26mm: F5.2"],[27,5.3759999999999994,"Canon G1 X II at 27mm: F5.4",4.404,"Panasonic LX100 at 27mm: F4.4",null,"",5.454545454545455,"Panasonic LX10 at 27mm: F5.5",null,"",null,""],[28,null,"",4.6242,"Panasonic LX100 at 28mm: F4.6",null,"",6.0000000000000009,"Panasonic LX10 at 28mm: F6.0",6.8181818181818183,"Sony RX100 V at 28mm: F6.8",null,""],[29,null,"",null,"",null,"",6.8181818181818183,"Panasonic LX10 at 29mm: F6.8",null,"",5.646325832982571,"Canon G1 X III at 29mm: F5.6"],[30,6.144,"Canon G1 X II at 30mm: F6.1",4.8444,"Panasonic LX100 at 30mm: F4.8",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[31,null,"",null,"",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Panasonic LX10 at 31mm: F7.6",null,"",null,""],[32,null,"",null,"",6.0000000000000009,"Canon G7 X II at 32mm: F6.0",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Sony RX100 V at 32mm: F7.6",6.4529438091229379,"Canon G1 X III at 32mm: F6.5"],[34,null,"",5.0645999999999995,"Panasonic LX100 at 34mm: F5.1",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[37,null,"",5.2848,"Panasonic LX100 at 37mm: F5.3",null,"",null,"",null,"",7.2595617852633048,"Canon G1 X III at 37mm: F7.3"],[39,null,"",null,"",6.8181818181818183,"Canon G7 X II at 39mm: F6.8",null,"",null,"",null,""],[40,6.72,"Canon G1 X II at 40mm: F6.7",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[41,null,"",5.505,"Panasonic LX100 at 41mm: F5.5",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[44,null,"",5.7252,"Panasonic LX100 at 44mm: F5.7",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[45,null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",8.0661797614036725,"Canon G1 X III at 45mm: F8.1"],[52,null,"",6.1655999999999995,"Panasonic LX100 at 52mm: F6.2",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[54,null,"",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Canon G7 X II at 54mm: F7.6",null,"",null,"",null,""],[57,null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",9.0341213327721128,"Canon G1 X III at 57mm: F9.0"],[70,null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Sony RX100 V at 70mm: F7.6",9.0341213327721128,"Canon G1 X III at 70mm: F9.0"],[72,null,"",null,"",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Panasonic LX10 at 72mm: F7.6",null,"",null,""],[75,7.4879999999999995,"Canon G1 X II at 75mm: F7.5",6.1655999999999995,"Panasonic LX100 at 75mm: F6.2",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""],[100,null,"",null,"",7.6363636363636367,"Canon G7 X II at 100mm: F7.6",null,"",null,"",null,""],[120,7.4879999999999995,"Canon G1 X II at 120mm: F7.5",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,"",null,""]], {"isMobile":false})

As you can see, both Panasonic models offer larger aperture diameters at the widest end of their zooms, meaning greater scope for low-light work. Meanwhile, the Canon G7 X II offers more subject isolation and potential for low light image quality once you pass 29mm - all of this is in spite of the fact that the G1 X Mark III's sensor is the largest, by a fair margin. It speaks volumes to the trade-offs that have been made in getting the G1 X III to fit in your coat pocket.

Categories: Photo News

Hasselblad adds X-Pan mode and EVF preview to X1D, plus AF to H lenses on the X system adapter

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 04:00
The X-Pan crop mode with the XCD 30mm F3.5

Hasselblad has released new firmware for its X1D mirrorless medium format camera that brings it as close to a digital X-Pan (you can read Hamish Gill's writeup of the 35mm X-Pan II here) as we can sensibly hope for. Firmware v1.20 adds a series of crop modes that includes the 65:24 X-Pan ratio, as well as classic 1:1 square and other well-known medium format proportions.

The update also brings the much needed instant image preview mode to the camera’s EVF as well as the ability to review captured pictures via the viewfinder. And now autofocus can be used with certain H system lenses when they are fitted to the X1D via the XH adapter.

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During a recent trip to Hasselblad's factory I was able to shoot with a camera loaded with the new firmware to try out the new features. I have to say I was disproportionally excited to use the X-Pan crop mode, and once I’d set it I had trouble switching it off because it makes everything look so good.

The camera had been set so the different crops could be cycled through using the front custom button, and with 50 million pixels on hand on the sensor I wasn’t too worried about a heavy crop leaving me with no resolution. Even with the dramatic crop that the X-Pan mode makes we are still left with an image area of 8272x3062 pixels – or 25.3MP.

Only the Raw files show the crop, and the crop isn't permanent - at can be shifted, altered and undone entirely so the full image can be used.

While we get to see the crop in the viewfinder and on the rear screen of the camera, even the JPEG files are captured as whole 4:3 images. The crop only appears on the Raw files when they are displayed in Hasselblad’s Phocus software – and even the crop can be adjusted, shifted around or switched off.

Of course, you can crop any image you want to 65x24 using any software, but the fun here is in seeing the letter-box in the viewfinder and in the atmosphere composing with this anamorphic-style format creates. The unused area of the viewfinder is blacked out, but users can adjust the density of the mask so the whole scene can be viewed to make composition easier.

The new crop modes:

  • X-Pan Ratio (65:24),
  • 1:1
  • 7:6
  • 5:4
  • 3:2
  • 16:9
  • 2:1
  • A4
  • US Letter

The new preview mode in the viewfinder is nothing special, but shows Hasselblad catching up with a feature offered by every other mirrorless camera. The new option to back-up images from one SD card to the other in slot two is hardly revolutionary either, but very useful all the same.

Ove Bengtsson, Hasselblad product manager, explains that the HC lenses are designed for a phase detection system, but that they can now be used with AF on the X1D

What will be interesting to existing H system users is the ability to use contrast detect AF with certain HC lenses with the XH adapter. Ove Bengtsson, Hasselblad’s product manager, explained that while the AF would be fast enough for a hand-held portrait it won’t be quick enough to shoot sport or action.

‘Our AF system is designed to be accurate rather than quick’ he told me. ‘These are lenses designed for phase detection systems, and we have to move a lot of glass. We don’t use internal focusing systems with small AF groups as these will, at some focus positions, compromise image quality. We often have to move the whole lens construction during focusing, so when working with a contrast-detection system the most difficult thing is to stop the lens after it has passed the peak and bring it back to the correct position. But as I said, image quality is our priority – not AF speed.’

The X1D can now provide contrast detection AF with certain H system lenses when they are mounted via the XH adapter.

To bring AF to the HC series the lens needs its firmware updates as well as the camera. The following lenses will be compatible:

  • HCD 4/28mm
  • HC 3,5/35mm
  • HC 3,5/50 mm
  • HC 3,5/50 mm II
  • HC 2,8/80 mm
  • HC 2,2/100mm

New v1.20.0 firmware for the H6D brings many of the updates that the X1D received, including the crop modes in Live View, dual card back-up and the lens data inserted into image EXIF information. Both cameras also have a new display mode when the spirit level is active that includes basic exposure information instead of just showing a blank screen.
For more information see the Hasselblad website, where you can download the X1D firmware and the H6D firmware.

Press release

HASSELBLAD FIRMWARE UPDATE 1.20 FOR X AND H SYSTEMS

Hasselblad continues to push the development of their systems further with new features in the 1.20 Firmware update.

Hasselblad continues to expand on the capabilities of its highly unique and renowned camera systems with the latest firmware update. The 1.20 Firmware brings exciting new updates and functionality to the X and H Systems that allow photographers and artists help capture their creative vision.

These new features include Instant Preview and Imaging Browsing through the X1D EVF, a beneficial utility that many photographers rely on. Firmware 1.20 also offers creative Selectable Crop Modes including the popular X-Pan Ratio (65:24), 1:1, 7:6, 5:4, 3:2, 16:9, 2:1, A4, US Letter and more.

“Hasselblad is a company that designs and creates tools for photographers. We have released many firmware updates in the past year. It shows our dedication to our customers and that we are listening to their feedback on how to improve.” said Ove Bengtsson, Product Manager.

Hasselblad is pleased to also announce contrast autofocus compatibility using the XH lens adapter with a select group of HC/HCD lenses. A full list of updates for the X and H Systems can be found below along with compatible lenses for the XH lens adapter.

https://www.hasselblad.com/x1d/firmware/
https://www.hasselblad.com/h6d/firmware/

X1D: v1.20.0

  • Instant preview and image browsing in EVF
  • Selectable crop modes
  • Back-up to secondary card
  • Added EXIF tag: Lens Model
  • Spirit level overlay: More info added (Exposure time, Aperture value, ISO)
  • Touchpad: Pan in zoomed-in EVF live view
  • Touchpad; Move focus point with HDMI attached screen
  • Contrast auto focus with XH adapter*
    *works now with following lenses:
    HCD 4/28mm
    HC 3,5/35mm
    HC 3,5/50 mm
    HC 3,5/50 mm II
    HC 2,8/80 mm
    HC 2,2/100mm

The lenses need to be upgraded to lens firmware version 19.0.2
More info here: https://www.hasselblad.com/x1d/firmware/

H6D: v1.20.0

  • Selectable crop modes in Live View
  • Back-up to secondary card
  • Added EXIF tag: Lens Model
  • Spirit level overlay: More info added (Exposure time, Aperture value, ISO
Categories: Photo News

2017 Buying Guide: Best cameras for students

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 04:00

If you’re looking to learn more about photography there are some great cameras available. We’ve chosen a handful of models that offer an affordable way into photography, but give you plenty of scope to grow as you develop your skills.

Categories: Photo News

Struggling owl takes home top prize in 2017 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 14:43
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After showing off 40 chuckle-inducing finalists early last week, the 2017 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards have revealed their overall winners in each category. The results were unveiled last Thursday, but a Monday evening seems like the best possible time to share some photos that'll make you smile.

The overall winner is a photo of an owl struggling to stay on a branch, part of a sequence of four shots by photographer Tibor Kercz that he aptly titled "Help." Meanwhile, the category prizes—On the Land, In the Air, and Under the Sea—went to Andrea Zampatti, John Threlfall, and Troy Mayne, respectively. You can see all 7 winning photos in the gallery above.

Of course, these 7 are far from the only images worth a laugh. So in addition to naming its winners, the CWPAs also named 10 Highly Commended images, which we've included in the gallery below. You're welcome...

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In addition to making us smile once a year, The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards also works with The Born Free Foundation, which "works locally, nationally and internationally to end wild animal cruelty and suffering, and protect threatened wildlife." To that end, they've put together a photo book of comical photos submitted to the CWPAs over the years, which helps to raise funds for the Foundation.

If you like what you see above, consider purchasing the book and supporting the Foundation. And if you want to learn more about the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards head over to the CWPA website where you'll find all of the finalists and winners from the past three years—a little inspiration for your entry to next year's competition, perhaps?

Categories: Photo News

KUVRD Universal Lens Cap protects any lens from dust and water

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 12:40
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KUVRD has launched a one-size-fits-all Universal Lens Cap (ULC) designed to protect lenses from hazardous elements, including dirt and water, as well as minor drops. Simply called the KUVRD Universal Lens Cap, this ULC is made with silicone that can stretch to accommodate various lens shapes and sizes, including both the front and rear of the lens.

Here's a quick intro, not that the concept isn't pretty self-explanatory...

In addition to being water- and dust-proof, KUVRD explains that its ULC "never falls off" and helps absorb shocks.

One cap will absorb a little bit of a drop, but photographers who desire a greater degree of bump/drop protection can layer several KUVRD ULCs, placing one lens cover over another until you have several very snug layers of rubber between your lens and the elements. When not in use, KUVRD can be folded and stored in a compact area, such as a pocket or wallet.

KUVRD is seeking funding for its Universal Lens Cover on Kickstarter, where it has very quickly exceeded its $2,500 funding goal with about $72,000 in pledges. Backers who pledge at least $30 and share the campaign on social media are offered two Universal Lens Covers. Shipments will be available globally and are expected to start in March 2018.

Categories: Photo News

Canada's 'The Camera Store' robbed of $27,200 in high-end camera gear

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 12:09
Photo by The Camera Store

Calgary camera shop The Camera Store—known for their fun YouTube reviews of various camera gear—was robbed over the weekend. In what the owners are calling a "very targeted" break-in, thieves made away with $35,000 CAD (~$27,200 USD) worth of high-end camera kit, including a limited edition Leica M-P Edition Safari.

The owners are offering a $5,000 CAD (~$3,880 USD) reward to anyone who can help catch thieves or recover any of the stolen equipment, which includes:

Hasselblad X1D camera body silver #UQ27014288

Hasselblad XC 30mm F3.5 lens #2WV10784

Hasselblad XC 45mm F3.5 lens #2UVT10447

Hasselblad XC 90mm F3.5 lens #2VVT10265

Leica MP Safari Edition #09008593

It’s thought the thieves forced the stores shutters apart in the early hours of Saturday morning, December 16th, and smashed a window to gain entry. Tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment was ignored by the thieves, who went directly to display cabinets to take very specific models.

The limited edition Leica stolen in the heist.

Canada’s CBC news service reports that store owner Julian Ferreira said it is the first time he has suffered a break-in during the 21 years The Camera Store has been open. Ferreira has offered a $5,000 shopping spree in the store to anyone who comes forward with information that leads to a conviction.

Please call police at 403-266-1234 or if you wish to remain anonymous call crime stoppers at 1-800-222-8477

Categories: Photo News

CopyTrans brings native HEIC support to Windows with free plugin

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 11:40

CopyTrans has launched a free piece of software that brings High Efficiency Image Format (HEIC / HEIF) image support to Windows, enabling PC owners to view the popular new image format that has replaced JPEGs in iOS 11.

Windows doesn't natively support HEIC images at this time, instead receiving JPEG versions of HEIC images when they're transferred from an iOS 11 device. And while we've seen other programs build HEIC support into their own Windows versions, CopyTrans' program is the first to bring native support.

In other words, as CopyTrans software developer Niki Minkov explained to us over email:

That is, when you browse your files with Windows, HEIC files will display thumbnails just as JPEGs, double clicking will display them full size with Windows Picture Viewer, and the right-click-on-file context menu will now include a "Convert to JPEG" feature.

In fact, our plugin is using the same integration technology that Nikon and Canon used to make Windows compatible with their respective RAW formats.

CopyTrans HEIC for Windows also supports Microsoft Office, and it retains the images' original EXIF data.

The HEIC format allows for much smaller file sizes than their JPEG counterparts, enabling a greater number of photos to be saved to a device's built-in storage. Other advantages of the format include the ability to store burst photos, focal stacks, and exposure stacks in a single file, the ability to store image editing operations, and more. Thanks to CopyTrans HEIC, you don't have to give those advantages up just because you own a PC.

To learn more or download the software for yourself, head over to the CopyTrans website.

Categories: Photo News

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