News archive for September 2010
Kingston has announced the Ultimate 600x (90MB/s) UDMA CompactFlash memory card in 32GB and 16GB capacities. The fastest CF card from the company to date, it complements HD movie recording capabilities and continuous shooting speeds of the latest UDMA-enabled DSLRs. Kingston joins the list of manufacturers making 600x cards including a 64GB version from Sandisk.
Just posted! Our Samsung NX100 preview samples gallery. We were given a pre-production Samsung NX100 at Photokina last week and had a chance to shoot with the camera and the new 20mm pancake lens over the weekend. Unfortunately the German autumn skies were rather gray but we'll update this gallery with a few blue sky shots the next time we get to see the sun again here in London. In any case this gallery should give you an idea of what the NX100 has to offer in terms of image quality and help shorten the waiting time for the full review.
Cosina has announced Voigtländer-branded adapters to connect Nikon F and Pentax K mount lenses with Sony NEX-5 and NEX-3 camera bodies. They provide only a mechanical connection between the lens and body, so only lenses with a manual aperture ring will be fully compatible. Priced at ¥19,800 (~ $235), the F mount adapter is currently available, while the Pentax version will start shipping from October 10, 2010.
German based Foolography has released versions of its bluetooth geotagging modules for the Nikon D3100, D5000, D7000 and D90. The company's Unleashed modules slot into the GPS/cable release socket of Nikon's DSLRs and collect and embed location date from external bluetooth GPS receivers. The Unleashed Dx000 module fits the D3100, D5000 and D7000, while the Unleashed D90 fits only that specific model. They join the company's existing module for the D200 and upwards, and are both available now at retail price of €149.
Video accessory maker Redrock Micro has announced the microEVF electronic viewfinder for video-enabled DSLRs. The device attaches to the hot shoe and is compatible with any camera that provides an HDMI output while recording. It features a 1.2m dot LCD display with an LED backlight promising low power consumption, and the flexible eye-piece can be moved in various directions. The external viewfinder can also be used in combination with multiple external monitors. The microEVF will be priced at $595, and the release date that is yet to be confirmed.
ACD Systems has announced beta versions of its ACDSee Pro image workflow software for both Mac and PC. The forthcoming beta of version 4 for PC features metadata viewing and managing tools aimed at speeding workflow as well as improved geotagging support and enhanced raw conversion. Meanwhile a beta of version 1.4 for Mac is now available.
Panasonic has released firmware updates for its Lumix DMC-TZ10, DMC-FP1, DMC-FP2 and DMC-FP3 digital compacts. Version 1.2 for the TZ10/ZS7 improves the camera's GPS measurement speed. The latest firmware versions for the FP1, FP2 and FP3 improves the performance of the red-eye removal function. The updates are available for download from Panasonic's website.
Just posted! Our preview samples gallery featuring Olympus' brand new telezoom for the Micro Four Thirds system, the M Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm F4-5.6. This compact lightweight lens is designed to complement the company's Pen series cameras, and is due in the shops at the end of next month. Click through to get a flavor of its capabilities and image quality.
Photokina 2010: Pentax has announced its 645D medium format digital camera will start shipping globally from December 2010. The camera will sell at a retail price of $9999.99 for the body in the US. In the UK, it will be priced at £9000 for the body and £10000 for the kit with the DFA 55mm 645 SDM lens. The first digital version of the company's 645 medium format camera system, it features a 40MP, 44 x 33mm CCD sensor, 921k dot 3.0" LCD and is compatible with the existing 645 system lenses.
Photokina 2010: Hasselblad has introduced the H4D-31 medium format camera with a 31Mp sensor. It features the 'True Focus' AF system of the the H4D series and offers an optional CF-lens adapter to mount the company's V-System lenses (also available as part of a kit). The company has also introduced the CFV-50 medium format digital back with a 50Mp sensor. The H4D-31 camera and CFV-50 digital back are available at retail prices of €9,995 and €11,990 respectively. Furthermore, Hasselblad has also updated its Phocus image processing software to version 2.6.
Photokina 2010: Hasselblad has announced upgraded versions of its 120mm macro and 50mm HC series medium format lenses. Both the HC Macro 120-II and HC 50mm-II have been optimised for higher resolution shooting and deliver better close range performance. The company will also release a firmware upgrade for the H4D series of medium format cameras later this year which brings in a number of additional features in response to customer feedback.
Just posted! Our preview samples gallery from Olympus's latest DSLR, the E-5. In amongst all of the hustle and bustle of Photokina, we've managed to find time to take Olympus's new professional flagship out and about on the streets of Cologne to bring you a preliminary samples gallery. It includes shots taken across the full ISO range, and we've even tried out the new 'Dramatic Tone' art filter. Click through to take a look.
Photokina 2010: Sensor developer Aptina has launched a 16Mp APS-C CMOS sensor capable of full 1080p HD video at 30fps. The MT9H004 sensor uses the company's latest DR-Pix technology increasing signal-to-noise ratio under low-light conditions, delivering better image quality in high ISO photographs. The sensor can produce full resolution images at 10fps and is intended for use in DSLRs. The company has also announced a 14Mp CMOS sensor with full 1080p HD video recording capabilities for compact and hybrid cameras. Both sensors are scheduled to enter mass production in the first quarter of 2011.
Photokina 2010: Datacolor has announced the SpyderChekr color reference tool. The device consists of a set of 48 color patches and calibration software, which allows photographers to generate camera color profiles and perform more precise in-camera white balance. The results can then be applied to a raw workflow based on software programs such as Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Camera Raw. SpyderChekr is available as a standalone product or as a bundle with the company's SpyderCube color balance device at retail prices of $129 and $169 respectively.
Photokina 2010: Samyang has updated its 14mm F2.8 lens for Nikon F mount with an electronic interface. The manual focus lens' electronic contacts allows full support of automatic exposure modes of Nikon DSLRs and includes lens-related data in the EXIF. The AE 14 mm f/2.8 ED AS IF UMC is designed for full-frame cameras, but works with APS-C cameras as well.
Photokina 2010: Samyang has released a version of its 8mm F3.5 Fish-eye lens optimised for filmmakers. Designed for APS-C Canon and Nikon video-enabled DSLRs, the V-DSLR 8mm F3.5 Aspherical IF MC Fish-eye CS features the same optical construction as the still photography version, but has been adapted to the Follow Focus system for smoother focusing.
Photokina 2010: Lensbaby has introduced the 'Tilt Transformer' adapter that allows Nikon lenses to be mounted on Micro Four Thirds or Sony NEX cameras to give tilt effects. In addition, the company has also announced the 'Composer with Tilt Transformer' that allows users to mount the company's Optic Swap system lens and accessories on the Tilt Transformer. Priced at $250 and $350 respectively, they are available now for Micro Four Thirds cameras, followed by the the Sony version later this year.
Photokina 2010: Lowepro has announced it has redesigned the Street & Field modular carrying system. The series is designed for photographers who require quick access to swap and store gear. The company has redesigned what it calls its 'core' system that comprises of a Technical Belt, Light Utility Belt, Vest and Harness and has added new components including the Lens Exchange Case 200 AW lens case, Audio Utility Bag 100 audio gear bag and Laptop Utility Backpack 100 AW.
Photokina 2010: Panasonic has announced the DMC-GH2 Micro Four Thirds camera. The successor to the GH1 continues with its 'hybrid' stills/video philosophy but adds a host of tweaks and improvements, foremost of which is a brand new 18Mp multi-aspect ratio sensor offering 16Mp output and an ISO range of 160-12800. The GH2 also inherits many features from the DMC-G2, including a revised control layout and touch-screen control. We've had a pre-production GH2 in the office for a few days, so click through to read all about it in our hands-on preview.
Photokina 2010: Sigma has announced the SD1 digital SLR, which uses a brand new 46Mp 1.5x crop Foveon X3 sensor (4800 x 3200 x 3 layers). Designed as the company's flagship camera, the SD1 has a weatherproof magnesium alloy body, 3" 460k dot LCD, and new 11-point twin-cross AF system. Image processing is in the hands of a 'Dual True II' engine that promises improved speed and image quality, and the camera is compatible with the full range of Sigma lenses.
Photokina 2010: Ricoh has announced the GR Lens A12 28 mm F2.5 wideangle prime module for its GXR system. Its 18.3mm F2.5 lens (28mm-equivalent) employs an exotic nine element / six group design, including two aspherical elements, one special low-dispersion glass element, and several high-refraction-ratio elements, promising high image quality across the frame. This fourth module for the interchangeable unit system also features a 12Mp APS-C CMOS sensor, a faster GR Engine III processor and 720p HD video recording. It also comes with a manual focus ring for focus precision and an electronic level.
Photokina 2010: Leica has announced the D-Lux 5 premium compact camera. Successor to the D-Lux 4, it sports a feature list uncannily similar to the Panasonic LX5, incuding a 10Mp 1/1.63" inch sensor, 24-90mm equiv lens and 460K dot 3.0" LCD. Like the LX5 it can record 720p AVCHD Lite videos, offers multiple aspect ratio recording via a switch on the lens barrel, and allows fully manual control. Registered owners will be able to download a copy of Adobe Lightroom to process the camera's DNG raw files. Priced at £630, it will be available from October 2010.
Photokina 2010: Four years after the V-Lux 1, Leica has launched its second superzoom compact camera in the shape of the V-Lux 2. Bearing more than a passing resemblance to the Panasonic DMC-FZ100, it offers a similar feature set including a 24x zoom lens (25mm - 600mm equiv.), 14.1 MP CMOS sensor and 460K dot 3.0 inch tiltable LCD. Priced at £675, it also allows full 1080p AVCHD video recording, and offers continuous shooting speeds of 11 frames per second at full resolution.
Photokina 2010: Adobe has released version 9 of its Photoshop Elements image-editing software. Both the Windows and Mac versions feature an updated Spot Healing Brush (adapted from Photoshop CS5's Content Aware Fill tool), improved Photomerge options and direct upload tools. The 'Organizer' which was previously only available with the Windows version is now included for Mac OS. The software is available now at a retail price of $99.99, and US users can also install the Photoshop Elements 9 'Plus' at an additional fee of $49.99 per year, which adds 20GB of online storage and backup facilities. The company has also released version 9 of its Premiere video-editing software for Windows, which is now for the first time for Mac users.
Photokina 2010: Panasonic has released three lenses, the Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH wideangle, Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4-5.6 Mega OIS telephoto zoom, and Lumix G 12.5mm 3D lens. The 14mm F2.5 is an ultra-compact 'pancake' prime that will be available from mid-October at £349.99, whereas the 100-300mm F4-5.6 brings ultra-telephoto capability to the Micro Four Thirds system for the first time (from early November, at £549.99). The 12.5mm incorporates dual optical units for shooting 3D images designed for viewing on Panasonic's Viera 3D TVs, and will be in shops late November at £249.99. We've had the two 'conventional' lenses in the office alongside the GH2 and have incorporated 'first look' pages into our hands-on preview - follow the link to find out more.
Photokina 2010: Sony has announced a firmware update for its NEX-3 and NEX-5 APS-C mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. Version 03 addresses a number of widely-expressed concerns about the user interface as well as allowing autofocus using the 14 Sony SAM and SSM lenses with built-in focus motors. It also allows the aperture to be set for video shooting. Given that the update aims improve many of the things we criticized in our review, we will update our review to reflect the changes as soon as we've properly tested the camera's revised behavior.
Photokina 2010: Panasonic has announced a series of firmware and software updates. Version 1.3 for the Lumix G Vario HD 14-140mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS promises improved autofocus speed and reduced lens startup time, while Version 1.1 for the DMC-G2 adds compatibility with the new interchangeable 3D lens Lumix G 12.5mm / F12 (H-FT012) announced today. 3D is also the name of the game with the Version 1.1 update to the company's PHOTOfunSTUDIO 5.0 HD Edition software, which also adds compatibility and features for images shot with the 12.5mm lens.
Photokina 2010: Sigma has introduced the APO Macro 150mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM lens with optical image stabilization. It inherits many of the features of its predecessor, the 150mm F2.8 EX DG HSM, including Sigma's Hypersonic Motor for fast and silent autofocus, and a 1:1 maximum magnification ratio. Three SLD elements are used in its 19 element / 13 group design to minimize aberrations, and a 9-blade circular diaphragm promises attractive rendition of out-of-focus regions of the image.
Photokina 2010: Sigma has unveiled the 120-300mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM, a revised version of its fast telezoom featuring optical image stabilization and weather-resistant construction. The lens also offers ultrasonic-type HSM autofocus with full-time manual override, and employs both 'F' Low Dispersion and Super Low Dispersion glass to minimize chromatic aberrations. It employs a 9-bladed rounded diaphragm for attractive bokeh, and is fully compatible with Sigma's 1.4x and 2.0x teleconverters while maintaining autofocus.
Leica has announced a special edition of its M9 rangefinder in a titanium finish. Designed by automobile designer Walter De'Silva, it features an attached metal finger loop covered with leather for carrying and shooting purposes and a special lens hood with four slits to prevent obstruction of the viewfinder. The Titanium edition will be available at a suggested retail price of just £19,800.
Leica has announced its X1 compact camera will be available in black from October 2010, alongside the current steel gray option. It will come with the same price tag of £1,395, and offers a range of optional accessories. The camera features a 12.2 Mp CMOS sensor, 35mm-equivalent F2.8 semi-wideangle lens and and a 2.7 inch LCD.
Sony has issued a press release about the new product developments it's showcasing at Photokina 2010. Highlights include a firmware update for the NEX series (covered in a separate news story), a prototype of a new camera that will incorporate the latest Translucent Mirror technology, accessories for A-mount cameras including a flash and vertical grip, and upcoming lenses for both A and E mounts.
Photokina 2010: Sigma has announced two flashes, the first of which is the EF-610 DG Super. This adds advanced features such wireless TTL and modelling flash to the basic spec of the EF-610 DG, i.e. a maximum guide number of 61m (ISO 100, 105mm setting) and a bounce and swivel head. It's designed to work with the latest TTL autoexposure systems of all popular digital SLR systems, but also includes a manual flash mode with output adjustable by up to eight stops.
Photokina 2010: Sigma's second flash of the day is the EF-610 DG ST. Designed to work with the latest TTL autoexposure systems of all popular digital SLR systems, it has a maximum guide number of 61m (ISO 100, 105mm setting) and a bounce and swivel head. There's also basic manual control available, with a choice between full and 1/16th power output.
Photokina 2010: Olympus has released firmware updates for three of its SWD lenses. The latest firmware versions of the 14-35mm 1:2 SWD, 12-60mm 1:2.8-4.0 SWD and 50-200mm 1:2.8-3.5 SWD improves sequential shooting speed with the recently released E-5 digital SLR. The updates can be accessed via the company's Digital Camera Update software application.
Sony has launched an application to organize and view 3D images on the company's 3D Bravia televisions and PlayStation 3. The app supports images taken with Sony's recently released 3D Sweep Panorama enabled compacts and interchangeable lens cameras. It will be available as a free download from the PlayStation store from the end of of this month.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Pentax has announced the latest member of its DSLR line-up, the K-5. The new model is based on the Japanese manufacturer's current flagship DSLR, the K-7. Body design and control layout are identical but the K-5 comes with a new 16.3 megapixel CMOS sensor, faster continuous shooting and a very high maximum sensitivity of ISO 51200 (the highest in an APS-C camera so far). Click through to read the press release and our brief hands-on preview which gives you an overview of the differences between the new K-5 and the K-7.
Pre-Photokina 2010: In conjunction with its introduction of the K-5, Pentax has announced the smc DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6ED AL [IF] DC WR lens. With an equivalent focal length ranging from 27.5mm wide angle to 207mm telephoto, the weather-resistant lens is made up of 13 elements in 11 groups including ED glass, hybrid aspherical and glass-moulded aspherical elements. Priced at £599.99, the lens will be available from November 2010.
Photokina 2010: It's now less than 18 hours until the start of the Photokina 2010 exhibition and the dpreview.com team has just arrived. We're preparing for three days of live show coverage, during which time we'll be trying to get our hands on the latest models and mockups both for those products that have been announced and any that are still to come. So stay tuned and we'll try to bring you a taste of the show and the most exciting products being shown here.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Eight months after exhibiting a prototype in CES 2010, Casio has announced the Exilim EX-H20G with Hybrid GPS. The technology enables the camera to track the camera when indoors or away from the GPS satellite signals. It uses three-axis accelerometers and its three-way direction sensor to determine the location since it last received a signal. The H20G is built around the company's EX-H15 inheriting its 14.1MP sensor, 10x (24-240mm) zoom lens and 3.0" LCD . It can also record 720p HD videos with H.264 compression, and features a faster Exilim Engine HS engine.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Casio has introduced the Exilim EX-ZR10 with a 12.4Mp back-illuminated CMOS sensor. Powered by the latest Exilim Engine HS engine, it can record high-speed movies at up to 480 fps as well as 1080p full HD movies. It comes with a 28-196mm equivalent lens and 3.0 inch LCD, and features in-built HDR processing plus 360 degrees panoramic image capture with what it calls a 'Slide Panorama' mode.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Casio has introduced the Exilim EX-Z2300. Similar to the Z2000 introduced in January this year, it is built around a 14Mp sensor, 26-130mm optical zoom lens and 3.0" LCD, and records 720p HD videos. It features the company's latest Single Frame SR Zoom feature that extends the camera's zoom range while claiming to maintain high resolution image quality. Its 'Dynamic Photo' option enables users to add preset graphics to images, including a monkey doing a handstand and a dog riding a bicycle (yes really).
Pre-Photokina 2010: Casio has launched the Exilim EX-Z16 budget compact camera. Sporting an image-stabilized 12.1 Mp sensor, 2.7 inch LCD and 3x optical zoom (35.5 to 106.5mm equiv), it includes an Easy Mode, widescreen video recording and a YouTube capture mode. The Z16 will be available from the end of this month at retail price of $99.99
Leaf has announced the Aptus-II 12 and Aptus-II 12R medium format digital backs with the world’s highest resolution in a one-shot back. They offer 80MP 53.7 x 40.3mm CCD sensors, 3.5" touch screen LCDs, 12-stop dynamic range and 80-800 ISO range. The Aptus-II 12R adds an internal rotating sensor system where users can change from portrait to landscape orientation without removing the back. Both backs are compatible with most medium and large format cameras and are priced at $31,995/€23,995.
Photokina 2010: In just under 24 hours time Photokina, the world's biggest photography trade show, will get under way. As usual the lead-up has been long and drawn out with announcements of 'Photokina products' stretching back to the beginning of August. To help you make sense of these and the coming swathe of new products head over to our Photokina 2010 show report page. This provides you with an index of new product releases as well as our live 'from the show floor' reporting as it happens. We've also added a short preview / predictions list. Bookmark our show report page and you won't miss any of the action!
Pre-Photokina 2010: Olympus has announced it is developing an enthusiasts' compact camera that, for the first time, will have a Zuiko-branded lens. In addition to using the Zuiko name, long used to denote the company's top-end lenses, the camera will also have the accessory port that features on the PEN E-P2 and E-PL1. A mockup will be shown at Photokina so we'll try to get a picture as soon as we can.
We've added a couple of quick new feaures to dpreview.com. First - as you'd struggle to miss if you're looking at this page - is a simple news tagging and filtering system. The other new thing is Polls - you should be able to see one running on the right hand side. In other news we've also picked the iPad winner from our recent site survey. Click through to read more.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Fujifilm has announced the X100, a large-sensor compact camera aimed at professional and enthusiast photographers. Based around a 12Mp APS-C CMOS sensor, Fuji EXR processor and 23mm F2 Fujinon lens (equivalent to a 35mm semi-wideangle), the classically-styled camera features traditional analogue controls for shutter speed, aperture and exposure compensation. Of particular note is the new 'hybrid' viewfinder system which allows the user to switch between optical and electronic viewfinders and project detailed shooting information into the OVF. The spec is rounded off by 720p HD movie recording, a 460k dot 2.8" LCD, flash hot shoe, and magnesium alloy top and base-plate castings. The camera will be available from early 2011.
Just posted: Now that we've had a little more time to play with the Nikon Coolpix P7000, we've taken the opportunity to add 18 more images to our sample gallery, originally posted last week. The additional images are a mixture of JPEGs and in-camera NRW (RAW) conversions and should provide a better idea of what Nikon's new luxury compact is capable of.
Pre-Photokina 2010: German manufacturer Schneider-Kreuznach will be unveiling two tilt-shift lenses in Canon, Nikon, Sony Alpha and Pentax K-mount at Photokina 2010. The PC-TS Super-Angulon 2.8 / 50 HM and PC-TS Makro-Symmar 4.0 / 90 HM allow ± 12mm of lateral shift plus 8 degrees of tilt, with directions of the tilt and shift to be rotated independently of each other. The company has also announced a similar 120mm medium format TS lens for the Mamiya and Phase One systems.
Sigma Japan has announced its DP1x compact camera, announced in February, will be available from the end of this month. It features a faster True II processor and enhanced AF algorithms than the company's DP1 compact. There is currently no information regarding its availability in other markets. Sigma has also announced that that its 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM lens, that was previously available in Canon, Nikon and Sony mounts is now available for Pentax and Sigma mounts at retail prices of $980/£649.99.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Samyang Optics has announced a 35mm F1.4 lens in Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Samsung NX, Sony Alpha and Four-thirds mounts. This manual focus lens, with its large f1.4 aperture, is made up of 12 elements in 10 groups and uses floating focus mechanism for better image quality across the range of focus distance. Price and availability for the 35 mm F1.4 UMC lens will be announced at the end of this month.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Corel has announced the CorelDRAW Premium Suite X5, a collection of software applications designed for print, web and video, design and editing. Based around its Graphics Suite graphic design tools, it includes color management, website creation, image and video-editing, and file compression tools. The Premium Suite X5 is now available as an upgrade to existing users of Graphics Suite X5 at a suggested retail price of $299 or $699 for first time buyers.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Nikon has released the D7000 mid-level digital SLR. Housed in a magnesium alloy body, the feature-rich camera incorporates a 16.2Mp CMOS sensor, faster 'Expeed 2'-branded processor, 921k dot 3.0" LCD and can record 1080p24 full HD movies. It features the company's latest 39-point AF system with 3D tracking and 2,016 pixel RGB metering sensor. It will start shipping with the 18-105mm VR kit lens from October 2010 at a retail price of $1499/£1299.99/€1399. We've had a pre-production D7000 in the office for long enough for us to prepare an full hands-on preview looking at the camera, its features and where it'll sit in the range.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Nikon has introduced the AF-S NIKKOR 35mm f/1.4G wide-angle fast prime lens. Offering a large f/1.4 aperture, the lens is made up of 10 elements in seven groups, including one aspherical glass element. It comes in a weather-sealed magnesium alloy body and incorporates the company's Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for quieter auto-focusing, along with Nano-Crystal coating to reduce flare. The lens will start shipping from November 19, 2010 at a retail price of £1699.99.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Nikon has released an updated version of its 200mm F2 VR professional lens. Retaining the same lens construction as its predecessor, the AF-S Nikkor 200mm F2G ED VR II features the company's latest, second generation Vibration Reduction technology (VR II) and adds adds a new mode onto the AF switch. It also includes nano-crystal coating to reduce ghosting and flare. Priced at £5299.99, it will be start shipping next month.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Nikon has announced the Speedlight SB-700 flashgun. With a guide number of 28 (at ISO 100 at 35mm on an FX camera), it is a slightly less powerful replacement for the SB-600, though gains the operation and handling improvements introduced with the SB-900. Like the SB-600 it offers wireless control and similar recycle times. Its multi-step auto zoom offers extended reach from 24 to 120mm, rather than the 600's 24-85mm. Physical features includes a rotating head, built-in bounce card, a supplied diffuser and both incandescent and fluorescent filters.
Nikon is celebrating the production of its 55 millionth Nikkor lens for its SLR cameras. The total includes 20 million Silent Wave Motor (SWM) lenses, the company says. The lens series was introduced in 1959 with the launch of the Nikkor S Auto 5cm f/2, while SWM was first incorporated in the Ai AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/2.8D IF-ED in 1996.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Olympus has announced the E-5 professional DSLR, replacing the E-3. Almost three years after launching its predecessor, the company has refreshed its professional flagship to reflect the features of its latest E-series and Micro Four Thirds cameras. The E-5 is built around the weather-sealed body of the E-3 and offers a 12Mp Live MOS sensor, 3.0" 920k LCD, Live View with Contrast AF, HD video recording and shutter speeds of up to 1/8000th sec. It will be available from October 2010 at an estimated retail price of $1699.99. We've had a chance to look at a pre-production E-5, so have prepared a brief hands-on preview discussing its features.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Samsung has announced the addition of the NX100 to its NX series of mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. It features the same 14.6Mp sensor and 3.0" OLED screen as the NX10, which are built into a flat, 'compact camera style' body. It also offers the i-Function feature that allows the use of the focus ring to control various camera functions when using compatible lenses. To complement this feature the company has launched two lenses with i-Fn buttons - the 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED kit zoom and 20mm F2.8 pancake lens. There is also an electronic viewfinder, flashgun and GPS unit to accompany the NX 100. We've had a pre-production NX100 for a little while, so have produced a quick hands-on preview.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Canon has launched the PowerShot G12 premium compact, successor to PowerShot G11 released last year. Inheriting most of the core features of the G11, the latest model sees the addition of an EOS-style front control dial, Hybrid IS for close-up work, and 720p HD video recording. It also adds multi-aspect ratio shooting and SDXC card compatibility. The rest of the features remain the same including a 28-140mm equivalent lens, 2.8" tilt and swivel LCD, manual control and RAW shooting.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Canon has announced the PowerShot SX30 IS superzoom digital compact, successor to the the SX20 IS. Compared to its predecessor, it features a 24-840mm equivalent wide-angle 35x zoom lens (as opposed to the SX20's 28-560mm equiv.), a slightly larger 2.7" articulated LCD and a 14.1Mp sensor. It also includes Ultrasonic (USM) and Voice Coil (VCM) motors for faster and quieter zooming and focusing. The camera offers 720p HD recording, a Miniature effect movie mode, P/A/S/M shooting modes and a Zoom Framing Assist function that helps users quickly toggle between three preset zoomed-out positions at the longer end of the lens for better framing.
Phase One has released an updated version of its Capture One 5, PRO and DB RAW workflow software bringing in a host of improvements, additional features and bug fixes. Version 5.2 extends the programs' Lens Cast Calibration (LCC) feature that aims to remove lens casts to DSLR RAW files and adds LCC based dust removal. It also improves handling of a number of Nikon camera files and supports Leica X1 Raw files. The update can be accessed via Capture One's update feature for existing users or is available as a free 30 day trial.
Just posted! Our lens review featuring the first image-stabilized fast telezoom to appear from an independent lens maker: the Sigma 70-200mm 2.8 EX DG OS HSM. With an all-new optical design and Sigma's silent ultrasonic-type HSM focusing, it offers an interesting alternative to Canon and Nikon's latest designs at an attractive price, while providing Sony and Pentax users with the option of using in-lens stabilization.This is all pretty compelling on paper, so how well does it work in practice?
Panasonic is showing an engineering sample of its AG-AF100 series professional Micro Four Thirds HD camcorder and has released more details. Samples are on show at the IBC 2010 trade show in The Netherlands. It is capable of recording full 1080p HD videos at various frame rates from 12 to 60 fps. It includes HD SDI and XLR connectors, twin SDXC slots and is compatible with the company's line up of Lumix G lenses, filters and adapters. Priced at ¥837,900 (~ US $10000), it will be available from December 2010. A promotional website has more detail.
DxO Labs has updated its DxO Optics Pro raw converter software with 99 lens and cameras combinations for Canon, Nikon, Fujifilm, Pentax and Sony users. These new lens correction modules join the existing list of combinations. The modules are available for immediate download from the company's website.
Sigma is advising Sony users that its lenses are not compatible with the latest Alpha SLT-A55 and SLT-A33 'translucent mirror' cameras and it will fix them for free where possible. Specifically, the aperture may not operate correctly, giving an error message on the camera. The company says it will be offering to modify existing lenses free of charge, however this may not be possible for some lenses 'discontinued several years ago'. It advises owners affected to contact their nearest Sigma Service Station.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Pentax has announced the K-r, its latest mid-level DSLR. Initially sitting above the K-x in the range it offers more angular, K-7-esque styling. It offers 6 fps continuous shooting and HD movie recording and regains AF-point illumination in the viewfinder. It also features a high-res 920k dot (VGA) LCD display and the ability to shoot at up to ISO 25600. Unusually for a Pentax at this level it uses an rechargeable Lithium Ion battery pack but can be used with AAs via an optional adapter. We've had a chance to get to grips with the K-r and have prepared a brief hands-on article discussing its features and additions.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Pentax has released the SMC-DA 35mm 1:2.4 AL, a lightweight inexpensive 'normal' prime for its APS-C SLRs. With an angle of view roughly equivalent to a traditional 50mm standard lens, it becomes one of the lightest SLR lenses available at a mere 124g, and is also compact at just 45mm in length. The design includes a hybrid aspherical element to minimise aberrations, and has a minimum focus distance of 0.3m. It will be available from mid-October at a price of $219.95 / £179.99.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Pentax has announced the Optio RS1000, a compact camera with interchangable, user designable covers. It comes with a 28-110mm equivalent unstabilized lens and is built around a 14.1 megapixel sensor. It offers all this season's standard compact camera features such as 720p HD movie recording and digital filters such as fish-eye and toy-camera. The RS1000 is available in white or black with the option to download or create your own cover that secures behind a transparent front-plate.
Pre-Photokina 2010: Pentax has unveiled the Optio RZ10 compact superzoom digital camera. It features a 28-280mm equivalent stabilized zoom lens and 14 megapixel CCD sensor. It can shoot 720p HD video and up to 9.1 five megapixel frames per second. It also includes a 2.7" 230k dot LCD and comes in a variety of vibrant colors and is designed to be compatible with Eye-Fi wireless memory cards.
Photogaphy technique site diglloyd.com has published an online guide entitled 'Making Sharp Images'. Billed by author Lloyd Chambers as the 'missing guide' to understanding and combating the many possible sources of blur, it covers a wide range of topics while aiming to be both accessible to beginners and technical enough for experts. It's available by subscription only at http://makingsharpimages.com, priced at $44.95 for one year.
Nikon has launched the CoolPix P7000 high-end enthusiasts' compact camera built around a 1/1.7" sensor and featuring a 28-200mm equivalent image stabilized lens. Coming over two years after the P6000, the P7000 is a considerably larger camera featuring bulky, faux-rangefinder styling that is more than a little reminiscent of Canon's G Series. The P7000 has a 10MP CCD sensor, VGA-resolution fixed LCD and a usefully bright F2.8-5.6 aperture range. We've been able to borrow a P7000 and have prepared a hands-on preview.
Nikon has announced the CoolPix S80, a touch-screen card-style compact camera. It features a multi-touch OLED screen to offer both improved responsiveness and image contrast. The 17mm deep S80 is based around a 14.1MP sensor and a stabilized 5x optical zoom that offers a 35-175mm equivalent range. It also includes stereo microphones to complement its 720p movie recording capability.
Nikon USA has launched the Coolpix S8100. It closely resembles the S8000 but makes use of a 12MP back-lit CMOS sensor in the place of the 8000's 14MP CCD. In most other respects the cameras are similar, with the S8100 retaining the 30-300mm equivalent stabilized zoom lens and 3.0" LCD. The CMOS sensor helps it offer 10 fps shooting and 1080 HD movie recording. The model is currently only being released in the US.
Carl Zeiss has announced that its CP.2 compact cine lenses with interchangeable mounts will become available for the Micro 4/3 and Sony Alpha systems. The already announced Nikon F mount versions will be available in the fourth quarter of 2010, the company says. In addition to the seven focal lengths already publicized, Zeiss says it will introduce a 50mm T2.1 macro lens and a 100mm T2.1 in the Nikon F mount.
Just posted: our updated review of Sony's SLT A55. Following Adobe's launch of RAW support for the SLT cameras, we've taken an in-depth look at the noise, dynamic range and image quality of the camera's RAW output. We've also conducted tests and sifted-through our 1500+ real-world images to address the much-discussed 'ghosting' phenomenon caused by the A55's innovative semi-transmissive mirror design. With this work completed we're now able to round-off the review by giving the camera a final score.
The SD Association has announced an extension to the format that will allow SDHC and SDXC cards with transfer rates of up to 300 MB/s - three times faster than the theoretical maximum of the UHS-I cards that are starting to appear and sixteen times quicker than conventional cards. The as yet unnamed standard will use a second row of connection pins located behind the existing ones to allow the greater transfer rates. The association says the cards will be defined by the SD 4.0 specification expected in early 2011 and will be backwards-compatible with existing SD, SDHC and SDXC devices, albeit without the speed benefits.
Just posted! Our Sony SLT-A33 preview samples gallery. We've already treated the A33's bigger brother, the SLT-A55, to an in-depth review. Now we've had a chance to get out and shoot with the slightly lower-spec A33 as well. It lacks the GPS module of the A55 and comes with a slightly lower sensor resolution but is otherwise almost identical to Sony's top-of-the-range translucent mirror model. Have a look through our gallery and see for yourself what the Sony SLT-A33 has to offer in terms of image quality.
Toshiba has announced what it claims will be the world's fastest SDHC UHS-I and the world's first microSDHC UHS-I compliant memory cards. To be available in 32GB, 16GB and 8GB capacities, the SDHC cards will offer read and write speeds of up to 95MB/s and 80MB/s respectively. The microSDHC cards will be available in 4GB, 8GB and 16GB capacities with read and write speeds of up to 45MB/s and 20MB/s. The company says mass production of the SDHC UHS-I cards and sample shipments of the new microSDHC UHS-I cards will begin from November 2010.
Tamron has announced that it has cooperated with Adobe in the creation of profiles for the Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3's Lens Correction feature. The latest version of the image-editing software will automatically fix distortion, chromatic aberration and vignetting for all currently available Tamron lenses (no word yet on the latest 70-300mm F4-5.6 VC USD though).
Datacolor has announced the SpyderLensCal focus calibrator. The device allows photographers to measure the AF performance of their camera/lens combinations. On DSLRs with a micro-adjustment feature, this tool can be used to help determine the best values to set in the camera's custom settings menu to correct front or back focus. SpyderLensCal will be available from September 6, 2010 at a suggested retail price of $59.
Carl Zeiss has introduced the Distagon T* 1,4/35 wide-angle lens in Canon EF (ZE) and Nikon F (ZF.2) mounts. This manual focus lens, with its large f/1.4 aperture, is made up of 11 elements in 9 groups. With an equivalent focal length of 50mm on APS-C cameras, it can be used on both digital and analog SLRs. Priced at €1385.71, the lens will be available in the first quarter of 2011.
Panasonic has released 8GB and 16GB SDHC cards adhering to the SD association's latest UHS-I specification. Both memory cards have maximum read speeds of up to 60MB/s and Class 10 speed specification complementing 3D and full HD video recording features of recently released cameras. Like the company's 'Gold' line of memory cards, it features protection against power failures and a Super Intelligent Controller that cleans up errors preventing data damage. The memory cards will be available from November 2010.
Sony has announced the Bloggie Touch MHS-TS20K pocket camcorder. It is built around the company's 1/2.5" Exmor CMOS sensor, records Full HD video in MP4 format and captures 12.8Mp still images. It offers a 3 inch touchscreen LCD, 32mm F2.8 lens and a flip-out USB connecter that also charges the camera’s battery. It includes a 360 degree panorama lens adapter. Priced at $199.99, it will be available in pink, silver and black.
Sony has introduced the S-Frame range of digital photo frames. Top of the line are the XR100 and VR100 that offer 10.2 inch screens and AVCHD video playback with stereo sound. The XR100 also includes TruBlack technology for better playback quality. The rest of the models come with screen sizes ranging from 7" up to 10.2" and offer a number of slideshow modes, clock and calendar views plus smart orientation sensors that flip images for correct viewing of portrait or landscape images.
Kodak has announced the ESP 9250 Wi-fi-enabled all-in-one inkjet printer with print, copy, scan and fax capability. It includes the company's proprietary fade-resistant inks with what it claims the lowest total ink replacement cost in the industry. The printer features a 2.4-inch LCD, built-in templates and supports various memory card formats. The printer is now available at $249.99.