Benjamin Von Wong describes himself as a combination photographer, producer, artist, visual engineer and, perhaps more than anything, a storyteller. Few of the stories the Montreal-based shooter has to tell are as fantastic as the one that describes his own ascent to fame in the photo world. In part 1, we talk to Ben about his rapid rise to fame and how he transitioned from his day job to a full-time photography career. Learn more
We've come to the end of another week here at dpreview, and as our thoughts drift to weekend shooting opportunities, it's time to take things a little less seriously. Aaron Johnson's comic strip ‘What the Duck’ is just the thing, taking a gently satirical look through the lens of a photographically inclined waterfowl. You can find it published here (and in our newsletter) every week; we hope you enjoy it, and your weekend.
A few weeks ago we reported on the announcement of 500px 'Prime' a licensing service built into the popular photography website that was designed to allow users to make some cash from their images. Originally, the service was set to offer photographers a 30% cut of image sales at a minimum price per image of $250. A lot of photographers weren't happy with the 70/30 split but now Prime is live, the terms have changed and photographers are being offered 70%, with new 'flat rate $250 pricing. Click through for more details.
Sony has announced an upcoming firmware update for its Alpha 7 and 7R full-frame mirrorless cameras. Due on March 19th, the update promises faster startup speeds, improved image quality (in what respect is not clear), a pair of new downloadable apps, and 'smoother' transitions in time-lapse mode. The firmware will also add support for Fast AF (Hybrid in the case of the A7) and the focus hold buttons on the 70-200 F4 FE lens.
The Pentax O-FC1 FluCard offers quite a bit more than just Wi-Fi image sharing and transfers, but not quite as much as some wired tethering applications. This makes it a mixed bag as a general camera tool, but one that has been entirely out of reach for Pentax for quite some time.. In light of this, is it worth the $99 price tag? Find out in our review
Giotto's has announced four new lightweight and compact tripods designed for travel. Coming in both aluminum and carbon fiber models, they all feature four-section legs for portability, a Y-shaped center column and include a carrying case. The new 'Air' tripods will retail from £180-£334 ($301-$559). Learn more
Two weeks ago the makers of the photo app EyeEm started sending out email invitations to their users, offering to pre-register for the EyeEm Market in order to sell user images. Today EyeEm has announced on its blog that it will run the EyeEm Market in partnership with stock image giant Getty Images. Click through for more details.
Adobe has released an Android version of its Revel app. Previously the service had only been available on mobile devices running Apple's iOS operating system. Revel is a cloud-based image and video management service that allows you to set up group libraries that are shared between friends or family members. Revel focuses on privacy, and you have full control over who can see the contents of your library. Learn more on connect.dpreview.com
This week saw the successful launch of a new photography trade show in the UK. Called simply 'The Photography Show' and run by Future Publishing, the event ran from 1st to 4th March at the NEC in Birmingham. We spent a day there, talking to exhibitors and getting hands-on with the latest products. Click through for a selection of things we saw.
Lowepro has announced a new 'Passport Series' of camera bags. In addition to the existing Passport Sling bag, the line now includes a backpack and messenger-style camera bag. Each bag has a removable and customizable camera compartment, internal zipped pockets and storage for a laptop or tablet. Learn more
Update: Fujifilm UK has officially announced a service allowing certain X-series cameras to be customized with a range of different colors and body textures. The company showed customized cameras at The Photography Show earlier this week in Birmingham, UK, and partially functional pages for an 'X Signature' went up on its website, but the service is now live. Click through for more information.
Regular site visitors will have seen a series of interviews on dpreview over the past couple of weeks, during and after the CP+ show in Yokohama Japan. It's always interesting to speak to the people in charge of the companies that make the products we love and this year, what was most telling was the consistency of the themes that came out of our conversations. Click through for a distillation of the major themes that emerged from our CP+ interviews.
Getty Images has taken a major step towards addressing unauthorized image use by allowing low resolution embedding of images for no charge, with no watermark, on non-commercial 'blogs and social media'. Admitting that combatting widespread unauthorized image use by the world's Internet users is impractical, Getty is pitching the new embedding service, which is available for more than 35 million photographs as a legal alternative to image theft. Click through to learn more.
2014 is still young but the largest show for mobile devices and technology - the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona - has just shut its doors. MWC is an annual showcase of all that's new and trending in mobile technology, and we've been covering the big announcements at connect.dpreview.com. Now that the show is over, we've prepared a short article covering the highlights. Click through to read more.
Fujifilm's idea of a mid-range camera is a remarkably photographer-friendly affair, and the X-E2 is the latest example of that. It's superficially similar to its predecessor, the X-E1, but adds the X-Trans CMOS II sensor that includes on-chip phase detection elements to allow continuous autofocus. It also has a nicer rear screen and built-in Wi-Fi, along with a host of small operational and feature tweaks. Is the X-E2 a photographic tool that lives up to the promise of its classic looks and control layout? Find out in our full review
Born from the brief union between Google and Motorola, the Moto X bears several unique features worthy of both names, including instant activation when removed from a pocket and constant attention to voice commands. Two shakes of the handset brings up the Moto X's simplified camera interface, which is where we come in. How does the Moto X measure up? Read our Motorola Moto X review to find out
Hasselblad has started shipping the 50MP CMOS sensor camera that was first announced in mid-January. The new H5D-50c is a step away from the CCD sensors that have been standard in their medium-format digital cameras. Hasselblad says the H5D-50c can shoot up to ISO 6400 with dynamic range of up to 14 stops. What will the H5D-50c cost? A cool €20,900 (~$28,702).
Recently, editor Barnaby Britton had the opportunity to interview senior figures at Canon Inc. on two occasions, in Japan. The first meetings were held in late 2013 at Canon's headquarters in Tokyo, and a follow-up interview was arranged at the recent CP+ show in Yokohama. Topics covered include the future of Canon's mirrorless system, how Canon is innovating in its DSLRs and what 4K video means for photographers. Click through for the full interview.
Over the past few years, DxOMark's tests and scores have provided a numerical measure for the Raw image quality potential of cameras. They've therefore been debated at some length by enthusiasts looking to see where their favourite model stands in the rankings. Now there's a new DxOMark Sensor score champion, but perhaps surprisingly, the first camera to break the 100-point barrier isn't a full frame model from Nikon or Sony, but the RED Epic Dragon movie camera. Click through for details and a link to the full report.
In the spirit of making lemonade out of lemons, two photographers have re-purposed city potholes and put them to clever new uses in a slightly surreal photo series aptly titled 'Potholes.' Davide Luciano and Claudia Ficca took to the streets of New York, Los Angeles, Montreal and Toronto, turning ordinary potholes into fishing ponds, diving pools, rabbit holes and more. All photos were staged without interrupting traffic, and all scenes were created with models and props - nothing has been added in Photoshop. Take a look at their photos - they bring a whole new meaning to street photography.
Google has launched an update for its Google+ for Android app, which offers many features found in the popular editing program Snapseed. Most of the new features are imaging-related and make Google+ a more powerful image editing, storing and sharing platform. Integration with Google+ allows continuous editing across devices, and editing is non-destructive. See more on connect.dpreview.com.
We've been fans of Aaron Johnson's comic strip 'What the Duck' for years. 'WTD' is one of the best satirical comic strips in the world, and it's published here every week, as well as being included in our weekly newsletter. Barbed, topical and always amusing, we hope you enjoy WTD as much as we do. Click through for this week's strip.
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 was announced about a month ago, the third addition to the digital revival of the OM line. It lacks the weather sealing of its siblings but inherits a number of excellent features from the existing OM-D models. Sound enticing? We've gotten familiar with the E-M10 over the past few weeks. The full review is on the way but for now, read our shooter's report, and compare the E-M10 to a growing list of cameras in our new studio test scene.
After the CP+ show in Yokohama closed last week, editor Barnaby Britton journeyed out to Olympus's design facility in Hachioji to speak to executives and engineers. Among the people he spoke to was Hirofumi Imano, Division Manager of Product Strategy. In a broad-ranging interview, Mr. Imano explained the company's strategies for competing in a tough market, the genesis of the OM-D line, opportunities in video and why he thinks Canon and Nikon might not be making high-end mirrorless cameras.
Nikon has issued a worldwide technical service bulletin regarding 'dust' issues on its D600 DSLRs. Nikon says that it has evaluated user reports and has 'determined' that spots on the sensor are caused by dust particles which are visible in images taken in certain situations. The company will be offering all D600 owners a full inspection, cleaning, and replacement of the shutter mechanism in their cameras, free of charge and regardless of warrantee status. Read more and find out how to get your camera serviced.
Panning, tilting and sliding are essential actions in both photography and video. To elevate the quality of camera movement, particularly in video, you need professional-grade equipment, and it's usually very expensive. But the folks at Cinetics aim to bridge the gap with the Axis360, an affordable, motorized tripod head and slider to help photographers create dynamic video and time-lapse photography. Read our review
We first laid our hands on the Fujifilm X-T1 about a month ago when it was announced. Now that we've had some time to shoot with it, we've gathered our thoughts on using Fujifilm's latest X-Series camera. The X-T1 offers much of what the X-E2 does, including a 16 megapixel APS-C sensor with on-chip phase detection, but more than that, it offers an SLR-style sculpted handgrip and weather-resistant sealing. Find out what the X-T1 is like to use in the field.
Nikon's latest flagship body, the D4s, gets an updated 16 megapixel full-frame sensor, Expeed 4-level processing, 1080/60p video recording and can now autofocus at up to 11fps. Beyond that it boasts a laundry list of small (but potentially meaningful) improvements over its predecessor. After spending some brief time with the camera, we've prepared some first impressions of the pro-level body. For a detailed analysis of what's new in Nikon's top-of-the-line, take a look at our first impressions review.
Nikon has officially launched its new flagship DSLR, the D4s. Offering a number of improvements over its predecessor the D4, the D4s features greater ISO sensitivity in stills and video mode, a new 60p video capture option and some minor design changes. At the recent CP+ show in Yokohama, Japan editor Barnaby Britton was able to sit down with the new camera and two of the men responsible for creating it. Click through for a hands-on tour of the D4s and insights from its creators.
Nikon has released an update to their flagship D4 pro DSLR: the D4s. While not a major upgrade to the camera (hence the 's' in the name), the D4s packs more processing power, a refined autofocus system, faster continuous shooting, and more video features (including 1080/60p support). Two other items pros will appreciate are a 'small' Raw size and a noticeable improvement in battery life compared to the D4. The camera will be available in early March for $6499.95 / £5,199.99.
Nikon has released a beta version of an update to its Capture NX software, a product which has been relatively stagnant in recent years. Capture NX-D is the first version of Nikon's Raw converter to be made since previous developer Nik Software was bought by Google in 2012. The software features a new user interface, batch conversion and a non-destructive workflow that saves adjustments in sidecar files alongside the original image. Find out how to try Capture NX-D for yourself.
Chinese manufacturer Huawei has launched its 7-inch MediaPad X1 at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The MediaPad X1 comes with a 13MP Sony Exmor R BSI sensor in the rear camera and a 5MP front-unit. Imaging features include panorama shooting, 10-level auto-facial enhancement and voice-activated capture. Learn more on connect.dpreview.com
Samsung's latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S5, has been announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. It features a 16MP camera that shoots 4K video, a 5.1-inch screen and new water resistant shell. Also new is a fingerprint scanner for biometric screen locking and mobile payment. Learn more on connect.dpreview.com
Sony has launched the latest iteration of its Xperia Z-line of flagship Android smartphones. With a 20.7 MP 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor the camera specifications look identical to the Z1 but the new model is now capable of recording 4K video. Learn more on connect.dpreview.com
We've just returned from the CP+ show in Japan, where Fujifilm was kind enough to loan us a beta sample of its new 10-24mm zoom lens for the X-series interchangeable lens cameras. Although this is a beta (not final) sample, Fujifilm is confident enough about its performance to allow us to post images. We've prepared a gallery of sample images taken in various conditions at various ISO sensitivity settings on the X-T1 for you to take a look at. See gallery
Manufacturers are putting on brave faces as compact sales continue their decline and interchangeable lens camera sales fail to shine. Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon and Olympus have all put out their financial results covering the Christmas period, and there's little to be positive about, with falling sales of interchangeable lens cameras being reported by the industry's biggest players.
SanDisk has announced its new 128GB Ultra microSDXC UHS-I memory card. The new card increases storage capacity options for Android smartphones, tablets and other microSD enabled devices, while delivering Class 10 performance, with read speeds up to 30MB/s. It also ships with an SD adapter to use the card with digital cameras and computers. Learn more on connect.dpreview.com
The Nokia Lumia 1020 comes with one of the best smartphone cameras we have tested. After installing the Nokia "Black" firmware update you can now also capture images in DNG Raw format. Just how much more detail can you squeeze out of it? Find out on connect.dpreview.com Update: Added raw sample images for download.
Think you have a striking picture of vast galaxies millions of light years away, or a dramatic night sky scene taken much closer to home? The Royal Observatory Greenwich, in association with Sky at Night Magazine, has launched its 2014 Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition. Entries must be submitted by April 24. Learn more
Ever wonder who looks after at all the old photographs in National Geographic's archive? Well, now you can meet that man. His name is Bill Bonner and they call him 'The Archivist'. For 31 years he's worked mostly by himself in the basement of National Geographic’s Washington, D.C. headquarters and has handled hundreds of thousands of photographs. In total, Bonner is responsible for about eight million images in the vintage collection. See the video
Google has announced Project Tango, an initiative that aims to develop mobile devices that are capable of capturing 3D-maps of your surroundings. Formerly a division of Motorola, Google's Advanced Technology and Projects group (ATAP) has been working with academic and industrial partners from nine countries, and used research from the last decade in the areas of robotics and computer vision. According to Google the goal of the project is 'to give mobile devices a human scale understanding of space and motion.' Click through for more.
Adobe has updated Adobe Camera Raw, adding color profiles for Fujifilm cameras, as well as Raw support for some recent models. The Release Candidate versions of ACR 8.4 for Photoshop CS6 and CC are now better able to mimic Fujifilm's Film Simulation modes - at least in terms of color response. We've prepared a comparison to see how well Adobe's color profiles match those in the cameras. The camera and profile updates are available on Adobe Labs for CS6 customers, as well as Creative Cloud subscribers.
Fujifilm has announced firmware updates for five X-series cameras and three zoom lenses. It adds XF 56mm F1.2 lens compatibility to the following cameras: X-Pro1, X-E1, X-E2, X-M1 and X-A1. Improved optical image stabilization functions are added to the XC16-50mm, XF18-55mm and XF55-200mm lenses; the latter two also gain improved AF focus tracking on the X-E1 and X-T1. Get the updates
If you're looking for a Wi-Fi card that's simple to setup and blasts images off into cyberspace in a matter of seconds while you take advantage of your camera's far superior image quality (compared to a phone), you can't go wrong with the Eye-Fi Mobi. How does the Mobi stack up against the pricier Eye-Fi Pro X2 card? Find out in our review
GoPro's latest fleet of little action bricks are fortified with several advanced features that cannot be found elsewhere in the market. The GoPro Hero 3+ Black Edition ($399.99) is the newest flagship model, replacing the GoPro Hero 3 by adding some key upgrades. Having owned the first HD Hero and Hero2, our writer Mike Perlman wanted to know if the Black Edition was worth the extra cash. Read our review
Hosting the 2014 Winter Olympics, Sochi has absorbed an influx of athletes, fans and media for two weeks of competition. What isn't apparent from the coverage is what Sochi looks most of the rest of the year - a seaside, summer resort town. Since 2007 photographer Rob Hornstra and writer Arnold van Bruggen have been documenting Sochi as they saw it change from quiet summer getaway to a world stage. Take a look at a different Sochi, as seen through Hornstra's lens. See gallery
The Sony FE 35mm F2.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* is one of the first lenses for Sony's fledgling full frame mirrorless system, offering a classic moderate wideangle view. It's a small lens that nicely complements the Alpha 7 and 7R, but at around $800 / £680 it's distinctly pricey for a relatively slow prime. So is it worth the money See the lens test data and our analysis
The Miggo straps and grips bring a lot of innovation to the way we tote and transport our beloved investments. Their versatile multi-use designs combine a high quality camera wrap, a method of securing the camera to your person and lens cap pocket all in one. Are the days of traditional camera toting coming to an end? Find out in our review
Japanese optical company Kowa - best known for its spotting scopes and binoculars - has revealed that it plans to make three lenses for Micro Four Thirds cameras. The Kowa Prominar 8.5mm F2.8 MFT, 12mm F1.8 MFT and 25mm F1.8 MFT will all feature manual focus and aperture control, and use low-dispersion XD glass and aspheric elements to minimise distortion and aberrations. They're due to be released in summer 2014.
The CP+ show in Yokohama Japan has just closed, but in between visits to the various booths we made time to sit down with four senior Nikon executives to get their thoughts on the state of the market, future opportunities and the inevitable coming together of stills and video. Click through to read the full interview.