CES press conferences can be a bit overwhelming, especially when they're presented by companies that make lots of different things. Take Samsung for instance: a company with an incredibly diversified portfolio of consumer electronic products. Their press conference draws an enormous crowd of technology journalists and industry folks from vastly different fields. Compared to the Nikon press conference I attended earlier this morning, the Samsung one easily had 20x the number of attendees, eager to hear about everything from fridges to virtual reality headsets. Of course, DPReview was there in the hope of reporting on new photography-related products. Silly us.
The one-hour event opened with talk of Samsung’s wide range of products and went on to detail developments in everything from 8K televisions to smartwatches with Jean-Michel Basquiat’s artwork plastered on the face.
Somewhere in the middle of a presentation on space-age refrigerators with inward facing video cameras (so you can see just how moldy that peach you forgot about is?), I realized that Samsung’s line of mirrorless cameras had yet to come up. Hmmm. Looking at my non-smart watch with a mere 20 minutes to go, I figured there was still time for cameras to be at least mentioned. Even if only in terms of how they might work with other freshly-announced Samsung products. After all, Samsung impressed us enormously in 2015 with the ambitious, 4K-capable NX1 and NX500 and the company's camera division seemed to have built up a lot of momentum in the middle of last year.
|The Samsung NX1 is one of our favorite mirrorless cameras ever. But will there be an NX2?|
But sadly I was wrong. Aside from the space-age fridge with the video camera inside it, the closest thing to photography that was mentioned was Project Beyond, a 360-degree VR camera, which was announced a few months earlier. The press conference concluded without dedicated stills cameras being mentioned once.
Of course all of this is building up to the inevitable question: Is Samsung pulling out of digital cameras altogether? With the news back in November that Samsung was yanking the NX1 from European markets, the complete omission of digital cameras from a press conference at the world’s largest consumer tradeshow doesn't bode well.
As the press conference wrapped up, and high-tech washing machines and smartphone-connected stoves appeared on stage via floating platforms (no kidding), I wondered whether the lack of photography news was a blip, or whether Samsung has indeed decided to place its bets on the connected home and device being the future of consumer technologies, not digital cameras.
If so (and trust us, we know no more than you do) that's a real shame. The NX1 raised the bar for mirrorless camera technology considerably, and the two 'S' lenses released alongside it are outstanding. Some of this technology may live on in some form or another in other Samsung products of course, but we were really looking forward to seeing how the NX system evolved.
At the end of the day, the last thing I want to see in the world of digital imaging is a lack of competition, and the loss of even one player is a mighty blow. Still, business is business, and maybe - just maybe - consumer mirrorless cameras are no longer part of Samsung's long-term planning. We'll continue to ask that question and we'll let you know if we get a clear answer.
For now, pop open that Internet-connected Samsung fridge (you know, the one with the giant tablet built right into the door), grab an ice cold one and pour it on out for Samsung NX, because at this point, I would not be surprised if it's a thing of the past.
Hopefully I’m wrong.
We've already posted lots of images from the Sony a7 III launch event, but now we've had plenty of time with the camera around our home base in Seattle. Check out our updated gallery to see the cherry blossoms at the University of Washington, historic coastal lighthouses and more.
GoPro has inked a multi-year licensing deal with manufacturing services company Jabil that will allow Jabil to incorporate GoPro sensor modules and camera lenses into third-party products.
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Canon Rumors has reportedly "confirmed from a couple of good sources" that Canon's full-frame mirrorless camera is currently being tested in the field by select Canon pro photographers.
In a ‘the world’s gone crazy’ role-reversal Sheeba magazine's submission guidelines specifyl that photographers lucky enough to have an image selected for the cover will have to pay $860 for the privilege of having it used.
A Russian drone pilot took his little camera drone to an altitude of 10 kilometers (~33,000 feet), and while the flight didn't break any local regulations and was done in a remote region, it's still an incredibly reckless and stupid thing to try.
Zach Sutton over at Lensrentals has put together this very useful on-location lighting tutorial for beginners, complete with five sample lighting setups to experiment with as you get more comfortable using artificial light.
Instagram has revealed some interesting updates this week, including a return to a slightly more chronological newsfeed where "newer posts are more likely to appear first in feed."
The 10 Open category winners revealed this week will duke it out for $5,000 in prize money and the title of Open Photographer of the Year. The winner will be revealed on April 19th, alongside the Professional category winners.
The new Laowa 9mm F2.8 Zero-D is "the world’s widest rectilinear f/2.8 lens for mirrorless APS-C cameras." It boasts a 113° angle of view, fast F2.8 aperture, and a Zero-D design that promises "close to zero" distortion.
YouTuber Devin Graham recently got to do something very few of us will ever get to: he purchased and unboxed nearly a quarter million dollars worth of cinema lenses.
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If you're on a budget and looking to get into Fujifilm's X-system, the X-A5 is likely on your radar. We've been out shooting with this updated entry-level camera.
A report from the National Endowment for the Arts shows that photography and photo-finishing services contributed $10.2 billion to the US economy in 2015.
According to unnamed sources, Google will acquire Lytro's technology and patents, with Lytro employees already having left the company.
Our review of the Sony a7 III is well underway and, as part of this, we're publishing our studio test scene. We'll be building out the review in the coming weeks as we test and shoot the camera in a series of situations.
The new ExaDrive offers a three times higher capacity than the previous largest SSD, a 30TB model by Samsung.
A pair of images show what may be the upcoming DJI Phantom 5 drone featuring an interchangeable lens camera. Update: Comparing this image to the size of previous DJI lens mounts, and noting the 3:2 aspect ratio of the sensor, we're confident the leaked image shows a 1"-type sensor
We were saddened to hear of the death last week of Chuck Westfall, a 35-year veteran of Canon USA, and a legend in the photography industry.
Nikon looks to be positioning its D850 as a serious video rig with today's announcement of its D850 Filmmaker's Kit. The kit includes the body, 20/35/85mm F1.8G lenses, an Atomos Ninja Flame external recorder, two microphones and an extra battery.
Photographers shopping around for Lightroom alternatives have likely encountered Alien Skin's Exposure X3. Here's an overview of its organization and editing controls, and how they differ from the competition.
Alien Skin has released a significant update for its Exposure X3 image editor, adding greater precision to adjustment tools and more printing capabilities, among other improvements.
The FAA has ordered helicopter pilots and operators to halt certain doors-off flights in the wake of a tragedy that killed five passengers.
Analysts TechInsights have torn down a Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus to have a closer look at the device's internal components and their cost.
Oppo's new high-end phones bear an uncanny resemblance to the iPhone X, with features like face unlock to a portrait lighting mode.
Recently we visited the 2018 CP+ show in Yokohama, Japan and as usual, we booked interviews with senior executives from several major manufacturers, including Sigma.
At this year's CP+ show in Yokohama, we sat down with senior executives from several major manufacturers, including Canon. Topics of conversation included Canon's ambitions for high-end mirrorless cameras, and the importance of responding to the demands of the smartphone generation.
We were recently able to follow local frame builder Max Kullaway as he created one of his AirLandSea bikes. Here are our picks of the photos we got, as the project progressed from bare tubes all the way to rideable bicycle.
On paper, the Sony a7 III is a tempting option for photographers who've been considering a switch to full-frame mirrorless. But how does its image quality stack up? We compare it to the Mark II and a few of its other peers.
Erez Marom shares the details behind this beautiful aurora photograph, captured on Haukland Beach in the Lofoten Islands, Arctic Norway, on a moonless evening.