News / New Cameras & Lenses
Sony has published the instruction manual for a camera called the NEX-C3 on its Czech website. The manual shows the camera as being smaller than the existing NEX-5 model but with a 16MP sensor and a series of Picture Effect modes including Toy Camera and Retro Photo. The camera retains a similar button arrangement to the NEX-3 and 5 but appears to offer greater control over the function of those buttons than the existing models. The manual was placed on a password-protected directory but with the login details publicly posted elsewhere on the site.
Nikon has formally announced the AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G lens for both DX and FX DSLRs. The lens, whose details had previously been revealed by the company, features a totally new optical formula featuring an aspherical element - an unusual feature for this type of optic. The 50mm F1.8G features a built-in AF-S focus motor to allow autofocus with all Nikon DSLRs. The company says it expects the lens to retail for around $219.95/£199/€229 including a lens hood, pitching it around the same level as the Nikkor AF-S 35mm F1.8G and making it an accessible (if slightly short) portrait lens for owners of Nikon's APS-C DSLRs.
Samsung has announced the ST93 compact camera. The 16MP CCD-based camera offers a 5x optical zoom lens starting at a useful 26mm equivalent. Its features include 720p HD video recording, a Panorama mode, the company's latest Smart filters and Magic Frame templates. Further specifications are not currently available.
Pentax has released a series of multi-colored variants of its K-r DSLR for the Japanese market. A collaboration with music store Tower Records results in a rainbow-themed version, including colorful Pentax logo and candy-colored handgrip. Meanwhile the company has also introduced a series of camouflaged grips for Japanese customers. These range from the traditional militaristic khaki through to a red and white mélange that will presumably blend in perfectly with the strawberries and cream at Wimbledon. The grips can be ordered with new camera or retro-fitted to existing purchases.
Nikon has published details of an AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G lens on its US website. With a built-in Silent Wave focusing motor, this not-yet-formally-announced design should autofocus on all entry-level Nikon DSLR bodies, including the recently-released D5100. It uses an all-new optical design with 7 elements in 6 groups, including one aspherical element. The lens can be used on both FX and DX format DSLRs, with a short-telephoto 75mm-equivalent angle of view on the latter. The web page has now been removed from the Nikon site.
Pentax has partnered with Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP) to offer the limited edition DC Super Heroes-inspired RS1500 compact camera. Priced at £119.99, the special edition pack will include seven DC Super Hero skins, a 4GB SD card and a protective case based on the forthcoming Green Lantern movie. The 14MP compact features a 27.5-110mm equivalent lens and 720p HD movie recording capabilities.
Fujifilm has unveiled the FinePix Z900EXR premium ultra-compact incorporating the company's latest 16MP EXR CMOS sensor. Featuring the same the 460K dot 3.5" LCD of the Z8000EXR, it offers a more useful image-stabilized 28-140m equivalent lens and full 1080p HD movie capture in the H.264 (MOV) format. The camera will be available from May 2011, at a price of $279.95 / £219, in Brilliant Black, Gloss Red, Hot Pink and Royal Blue
Nikon is celebrating the production of its 60 millionth Nikkor lens for its SLR cameras. 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. This closely follows a similar announcement marking its 55th million lens in September 2010.
Lensbaby has announced the Composer Pro version of its selective focus lens. Available for Canon, Nikon, Sony Alpha, Pentax and Olympus DSLR mounts, the 'Pro' version uses a metal ball-and-socket assembly with refined focus mechanism for smoother operation. The manual focus lens with tilt control is currently available with either the company's Sweet 35 or Double Glass optics for $400 and $300 respectively.
Sigma has announced its DP2x large-sensor compact will start shipping from late April at a suggested retail price of $800 in the US markets and £516.65 in the UK. A revised version of the DP2 camera that captures three-color information at 4.7M positions (14M total data points) it features a new AF algorithm for faster auto focus, first seen in the DP1x.
Fujifilm Japan has announced it has now resumed production of its X100 large-sensor compact. The company says that, after a brief interruption caused by the combined earthquake and tsunami that hit its Japanese plant, it has now resumed production and the camera should reach stores from the first week of April.
Pentax has announced the Optio RS1500 compact camera with interchangeable, user designable covers. Identically specced to the RS1000 launched last year, it features a simpler, snap-on system for attaching different covers, rather than the screw-on system of the older model. The RS1500 ships with 10 skins, with the option to download or create your own cover that secures behind a transparent front-plate. Features include a 14MP sensor, a 27.5-110mm equivalent lens and 720p HD movie recording capabilities.
Fujifilm Japan has announced a shortage of its FinePix X100 large-sensor compact camera and accessories because of higher than expected demand. The company says it is attempting to boost production to meet demand. The latest word from Fujifilm USA is that cameras will be available in the US during the last week of March or first week of April.
Samyang Optics has shown a prototype 7.5mm F3.5 fisheye lens for the Micro Four Thirds system at the Focus on Imaging trade show in Birmingham, UK. The new lens is considerably more compact than the company's existing 8mm fisheye designed for SLR cameras. In a brief press release, the company also reveals that this lens is intended to be the first in a new series of optics designed specifically for interchangeable-lens compact system cameras.
Samyang Optics has released the final version of its 35mm F1.4 lens in Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Samsung NX, Sony Alpha and Four-thirds mounts. Announced at Photokina 2010, the company said it has revised its design since then. It retains the underlying 12 element in 10 group design announced at that time. It will sell at a recommended retail price of €379.
Pentax has launched the Optio S1 digital compact camera in three apparently 'gem-like' finishes. Sporting a 14MP sensor, 2.7" LCD and 5x optical zoom that starts at a wide 28mm equivalent, it features 720p HD video recording, sensor-shift image stabilization and a High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode. The camera also comes with the latest set of image-processing filters including Miniature and HDR filter.
Olympus has announced the SZ-30MR compact, which allows simultaneous capture of 1080p HD videos and full resolution stills. The 24x superzoom is built around a 16MP CMOS sensor and is capable of 9 fps full-resolution continuous shooting and can generate 3D images. It features a 3.0" LCD and zoom lens stretching from 25 to 600mm equivalent. The spec is rounded out with the company's Magic Filters for both stills and videos, AF tracking and image stabilization. Also announced is the UK-only SZ-20, which houses a 12.5x (24-300mm equiv.) zoom in a slightly smaller body. The SZ-20 loses the multi-record function but is otherwise essentially the same specification.
Olympus has released the Tough TG-810 rugged compact featuring built-in GPS, electronic compass and manometer (air/water pressure gauge). It features the same 14MP sensor, 28-140mm equivalent zoom lens and 920K dot 3.0" LCD of the recently released TG-610, but in a tougher body. It is dustproof, waterproof to 10m (33 ft), shockproof to 2m (6.6 ft) and freezeproof to -10 C (14 F). The camera features 720p HD video recording and a two-shot 3D option that can even be used in underwater mode. It will be available from April 2011 at a retail price of $399.99.