Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Sony introduces three new A-mount lenses plus A-mount and E-mount accessories. They include 70-400mm F4-5.6 G SSM II telephoto zoom, Carl Zeiss Planar T* 50mm F1.4 ZA SSM and DT 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM II standard zoom lenses, compact HVL-F20M flash and RM-VPR1 wired remote. The new Sony lenses and accessories will start to become available in the UK from March 2013.
Friday, February 8, 2013
In celebration of the 80th anniversary of the Nikkor brand, Nikon has released an interesting behind-the-scenes video allowing a glimpse into how its lenses are manufactured. The three-and-a-half-minute movie guides viewers through the entire process from start to finish. Click through / scroll down to see the video.
Thursday, February 7, 2013
The new Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.5 Aspherical VM is the improved edition of a classic M-mount rangefinder camera lens. Described as an “inexpensive” alternative to the faster Nokton 50mm f/1.1 VM, the improved Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.5 Aspherical is constructed of 6 elements in 5 groups and comes equipped with a 10-bladed iris diaphragm. The closest focusing distance is 70cm, a 20cm improvement over the lens’ predecessor. Available in black and silver, the new Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.5 Aspherical VM lens takes small 49mm filters. The exact launch date and pricing have yet to be confirmed.
Cosina Voigtländer have announced an ultra-fast manual-focus portrait lens for Micro Four Thirds (MFT). Equivalent to a 85mm f/1.9 lens (in terms of angle of view and depth of field), the Voigtländer Nokton 42mm f/0.95 comprises eleven elements in eight groups and comes with a stepless 10-blade diaphragm. The lens takes standard 58mm filters and focuses down to 23cm. Availability is slated for Summer 2013, with pricing to be communicated.
Sony has posted firmware updates for the Sony NEX-F3, NEX-5R, NEX-5N, NEX-6 and NEX-7 (pictured) compact system cameras and a couple of E-mount lenses. Fast Hybrid AF lens support for Sony’s NEX-5R/6 cameras has expanded to include six new lenses. The NEX-5N firmware upgrade also expands its Exposure Bracketing range and updates its raw format version. The upgrades for the NEX-F3/5N/7 cameras add auto compensation for use with the 16-50mm power zoom lens. New E-mount lens firmware for the E 30mm f/3.5 Macro and the E 50mm f/1.8 OSS lenses enable Fast Hybrid AF with the Sony NEX-5R and Sony NEX-6 cameras. You can download these firmware updates - along with those released for the Sony A37, A57, A65 and A99 - through the website below.
Website: Official Sony Blog
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
LockCircle has announced the new Prime Circle XT-F prime lens series in Nikon fit. Built around the world-class optics of the Carl Zeiss ZF.2 lenses, the Prime Circle XT-F lineup spans focal lengths ranging from 15mm to 135mm. Prime Circle XT-F lenses are custom mounted ZF.2 lenses offering “in-house” assembling by professional and passionate technicians. Each Prime Circle XT-F lens boasts an ultra-lightweight Ergo-Focus gear for follow-focus, a Front Mount 95mm standard ring-mount for matte-boxes and cine-style accessories plus an aluminium cap with clear graphics displaying the lens’s focal length and maximum aperture. The X-Circle F-Mount stainless steel heavy-duty bayonet features “Side Index View” for focus and aperture scales on the side for comfortable focus-puller work. The lenses can be ordered now, with worldwide delivery within 3 to 4 weeks.
Intro 2020 has been appointed the sole UK importer and distributor of Samyang lenses. The Korean optics company currently manufactures a range of 25 lenses covering focal lengths from a 7.5mm fisheye to a 650-1300mm super zoom telephoto lens. Their newest product was announced just before Photokina 2012: the Samyang T-S 24mm 1:3.5 ED AS UMC is a wide-angle, full-frame lens fitted with perspective control and tilt-shift functions, making it an ideal tool for architecture and landscape photography with high-resolution full-frame digital SLR cameras. Like all other Samyang lenses, the Samyang T-S 24mm f/3.5 ED AS UMC is covered by a 3 year guarantee.
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Olympus has unveiled a redesigned and more affordable edition of its M.Zuiko Digital ED 75-300mm f/4.8-6.7 Micro Four Thirds lens. Equivalent to a 150-600mm optic in 35mm terms, the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 75-300mm f/4.8-6.7 II is now styled to match the distinctive OM-D E-M5, as seen in the photo above. Benefiting from “new and advanced” ZERO lens coating, the new version retains the MSC (Movie and Stills Compatible) auto focus mechanism, extra-low-dispersion and high-refractive-index lens elements and circular iris diaphragm of its predecessor. Weighing 5 grams less than the older model, the new edition carries a much more budget-friendly MSRP of £499.99 (the first version cost £799.99 at launch).
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Tamron has just announced the development of its first superzoom lens for Micro Four Thirds. The Tamron 14-150mm F/3.5-5.8 Di III VC has a 35mm equivalent focal range of 28-300mm, and features 17 lens elements in 13 groups and an aperture diaphragm with 7 rounded blades. Supplied with a flower-shaped lens hood, the new Tamron 14-150mm lens boasts the manufacturer’s Vibration Compensation technology, a minimum focus distance of 50cm and a filter attachment size of 52mm. Pricing and availability to be announced.
The Tokina AT-X 70-200 f4 PRO FX VCM-S is a new telephoto zoom lens for 35mm film and digital SLR cameras. Featuring a ring type focus motor and optical image stabilisation, the Tokina AT-X 70-200 f4 PRO FX VCM-S has 19 elements in 14 groups and offers a minimum focus distance of 1m throughout its zoom range. Weighing in at a little over 1kg, the Tokina 70-200mm f4 measures 167.5mm x 82.0mm and takes 67mm filters. Availability and pricing to be confirmed.
Source: Kenko Tokina Japan
At CP+, Kenko Tokina is showcasing the prototype of a new ultrawide-to-wide zoom lens designed for digital cameras with APS-C sized sensors. Intended to replace the critically acclaimed but somewhat shorter AT-X 12-24mm f4 PRO DX, the brand new Tokina AT-X 12-28mm f4 PRO DX offers users a 35mm equivalent focal range of 18-42mm on Nikon and ~19-45mm on Canon dSLRs. Weighing in at 600 grams, the Tokina AT-X 12-28mm f4 PRO DX features 14 elements in 12 groups and boasts a minimum focus distance of only 25mm from the sensor plane. Furthermore, the lens sports Tokina’s exclusive one-tocuh focus clutch mechanism that allows the photographer to switch between AF and MF simply by snapping the focus ring forward for AF and back toward the camera to focus manually. Pricing and availability to be announced.
Source: Kenko Tokina Japan
The Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC HSM is a new standard prime for digital SLR cameras with APS-C sized sensors. With an optical formula comprising nine elements in eight groups and an iris diaphragm with nine rounded blades (and no “EX” designation in the name), this lens features a completely different design to the older Sigma 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM, which was introduced back in 2005. It also has a shorter close-focusing distance of 30cm and a higher maximum reproduction ratio of 1:6.8. The filter attachment size is unchanged at 62mm, as is the 30mm focal length that translates into 45mm on Nikon and newer Sigma bodies, 48mm on Canon and 51mm on older Sigma digital SLRs. As part of the manufacturer’s ‘Art’ line, the new 30mm f/1.4 DC HSM is compatible with Sigma’s separately sold USB dock accessory and Sigma Optimisation Pro software.
The Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN is a new mid-range telephoto lens for Micro Four Thirds and NEX system cameras. Offering a 35mm equivalent focal length of 90mm/120mm (NEX/MFT), the Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN boasts a rounded aperture diaphragm and a minimum focus distance of 50cm. The lens benefits from a linear AF motor which moves the lens unit directly without the need for gears or other extra mechanical parts. This system ensures accurate and quiet focusing, the company says. The Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN lens takes small 46mm filters and comes supplied with an LH520-03 lens hood (see picture).
Panasonic has announced a new standard zoom for Micro Four Thirds cameras. The Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 II has an optical formula comprising nine elements in eight groups, including two aspherical lenses plus Panasonic’s “Mega” Optical Image Stabiliser. Other highlights include an internal focus mechanism, a minimum focus distance of 20cm in the 14-20mm rangeand an iris diaphragm with seven rounded blades.
Nikon has introduced a redesigned, AF-S version of its 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5 lens. This ultrawide-to-wide zoom lens can be used on the company’s FX-format dSLRs as well as its more recent film SLRs. With up to a 100º angle of view, the AF-S Nikkor 18–35mm f/3.5–4.5G ED offers advanced and amateur photographers an affordable way to experiment with the unique perspectives that wide-angle zoom lenses can achieve, the company says. The newly designed optical formula comprises a dozen elements in eight groups, including two ED glass and three aspherical elements and Nikon’s Super Integrated Coating. The minimum focus distance is 28cm (measured from the film/sensor plane rather than the front lens element). The AF-S Nikkor 18–35mm f/3.5–4.5G ED lens weighs in at 385 grams, and takes standard 77mm filters. On a DX body - or an FX camera operating in DX crop mode -, the lens offers a 35mm equivalent focal range of 27-53mm. The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED will be available in March 2013 for the SRP of £669.99/$749.95.
Nikon has launched its AF-S Nikkor 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR lens, whose development was announced in the summer of 2012. Already tested by professional sports photographers at the London Olympics, the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR is a super-telephoto lens featuring twenty elements in thirteen groups - including two ED and two fluorite elements -, an iris diaphragm with nine rounded blades and electromagnetic diaphragm control (hence the new “E” designation), and Nikon’s critically acclaimed Vibration Reduction system. Every Nikon AF-S Nikkor 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR lens is supplied with the also-new TC-800-1.25E ED teleconverter - the first teleconverter to employ an ED glass element to correct chromatic aberration. The suggested retail price of the new 800mm Nikon lens is £15,599.99/$17,899.95.
Monday, January 28, 2013
This year, Nikon is celebrating the 80th anniversary of the Nikkor brand. The brand’s history began in 1933 with the first shipment of Nippon Kogaku’s Aero-Nikkor aerial photographic lenses. Twenty-six years later, the company released its first SLR camera, the Nikon F as well as its first lens for Nikon SLR cameras, the Nikkor-S Auto 5cm f/2. Since then, Nikon has been at the forefront of lens development. The OP Fisheye-Nikkor 10mm f/5.6 fisheye lens for SLR cameras, released in 1968, was the world’s first lens to incorporate aspherical lens elements. The Ultra Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8, released in 1962, served as the template for projection lenses employed in Nikon IC steppers and scanners. Total production of Nikkor lenses for cameras with interchangeable lenses reached 75 million in November 2012. Nikon’s lineup of lenses for cameras with interchangeable lenses currently consists of more than 80 types of lenses, including fisheye lenses, ultra wide-angle lenses, super-telephoto lenses, zoom lenses, micro lenses, PC-E lenses, and 1 NIKKOR lenses.
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Sony has expanded its E-mount lens range with a pancake lens, the 30mm equivalent Sony E 20mm f/2.8. Featuring an optical formula comprising six elements in six groups and a seven-bladed iris diaphragm that stops down to f/16, the lens weighs in at a mere 69 grams. Claimed to produce “excellent contrast, resolution and clarity across the frame for both still image and full HD video shooting,” the Sony E 20mm f/2.8 SEL20F28 wide-angle prime lens will be available this April for about $350.
Furthermore, Sony has announced that the 18-200mm OSS power zoom, originally offered only as a kit lens for the NEX-VG30 camcorder, will now be available for purchase as a stand-alone product, starting this March for about $1200.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
Pentax has updated its roadmaps for Q-mount, K-mount and 645 format lenses. Published on Pentax’s Facebook fan page, the updated roadmaps indicate three new Q-mount lenses, four new K-mount optics (plus a teleconverter) and three new zooms for the Pentax 645 system. The Q-mount lens range shall be expanded with a wide-angle optic, a telephoto macro and a body cap lens. The four new K-mount lenses planned for 2013 and later include a DA wide zoom, a DA telezoom, a DA Limited zoom and a DA* standard zoom (possibly a 16-80mm). For its medium-format system, Pentax is planning to release new wide, telephoto and standard zoom lenses that will more or less complement each other.