Tuesday, March 25, 2014

HTC One (M8) Hands-on Photos

Mark Goldstein | Camera Phones
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Want to see exactly what the new HTC One (M8) smartphone looks like in the flesh?

Check out our extensive hands-on gallery of photos of the HTC One (M8) smartphone.

HTC One (M8)

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Camera Phones
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HTC today launched its new flagship Android smartphone. The HTC One (M8) offers a 5-inch Full HD display and a new camera module with faster auto focus and an intriguing UFocus feature that allows you to shoot first and focus later, quasi-Lytro style. The technical solution employed is completely different, though: the HTC One (M8) is not claimed to have a light-field camera - instead, it has a separate depth sensor, which collects distance information about the various elements in the frame, making it easier for the on-board software to achieve a credible background blur at the postprocessing stage. Like its predecessor, the HTC One M8's main camera has a 4-megapixel, 1/3-type BSI sensor with a 2-micron pixel pitch, and a 28mm (eq.) f/2 lens - but it no longer features optical image stabilisation. The 16GB version will set you back $199, while the 32GB variant will cost $249 (or $649/£530 unlocked).

Nikon Coolpix L830 Review

Jack Baker
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The Nikon Coolpix L830 is a budget super-zoom compact camera with a 34x zoom lens. The 16 megapixel bridge-style Nikon L830 has a tilting 3-inch LCD screen, 1080p movies and uses AA batteries. Read our Nikon Coolpix L830 review to find out if this is the right super zoom camera for you...

Ilex Photo Launches New Photography Books

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Books
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This Spring, Ilex Photo are launching a range of photography books in the US and Canada. The first two titles are The Ilex Introduction to Photography by Haje Jan Kamps - a back-to-basics guide that explains the fundamentals of photography whilst using contemporary examples to illustrate each concept - and The Weekend Photographer by Chris Gatcum. Both volumes are scheduled to be published on 30th March.

Capa - Europe 1943-1945

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Events, Photographers
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Capa - Europe 1943-1945 is a new exhibition of vintage Robert Capa prints, hosted by the Daniel Blau Gallery in London. Many of these prints will be exhibited here for the first time, and some are newly recognised as Capa's work. The gallery is located at 51 Hoxton Square, London, N1 6PB. The exhibition will be on display from 4th April until 10th May.

Fujifilm Partners with Globe-Trotter

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital
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Fujifilm has announced its second collaboration with luxury British luggage manufacturer Globe-Trotter. Harrods Technology will be the sole retailer for Fujifilm’s exclusive X Series Globe-Trotter cases and camera sets. The kits include X-E2 in Beige and Navy Blue Lizard in a Globe-Trotter 16” Slim Attaché Case, with a Fujinon XF23mm lens, standard hand grip, EXF-20 flash, RR-90 Remote Release, leather half case, 23mm lens filter and ‘Harrods Exclusive’ luggage tag (£2999); the Fujifilm X100S in Red Lizard, a Globe-Trotter 9” Mini Utility Case in Black and Red and ‘Harrods Exclusive’ luggage tag (£1700); the X-Pro1 Yellow Lizard CSC kit (pictured), presented within a Globe-Trotter 16” Slim Attaché Case, with XF18, 35, and 60mm Fujinon lenses, a standard hand grip, an EF-X20 Flash, 3 lens filters, and a ‘Harrods Exclusive’ luggage tag (£4499) and the Fujifilm X20 in Brown Snakeskin Effect, in a Globe-Trotter 9” Mini Utility with a ‘Harrods Exclusive’ luggage tag (£1099). The range is now available to buy from Harrods Technology Department, Level 3.

One Hundred Years of Leica Photography

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This year, Leica Camera AG is celebrating the 100th birthday of Oskar Barnack's 'Ur-Leica.' "On the occasion of this very special anniversary, 2014 will see not only numerous events, but also a series of centennial editions," the company promises.  The first of these special centennial editions is the Leica S 'Edition 100' (pictured), a kit that comprises a Leica S medium-format system camera and two of the most popular S lenses, each featuring a leaf shutter - the Leica Summarit-S 70 mm f/2.5 ASPH CS and the Leica Elmarit-S 30 mm f/2.8 ASPH CS. The second special edition is the Leica D-Lux 6 ‘Edition 100'. This centennial edition set includes a Leica D-Lux 6 compact camera in a two-colour finish with a silver lens and a high-gloss black camera body, featuring the centennial logo on the front plate.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH.

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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Panasonic has unveiled a new Micro Four Thirds lens, called the Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH. Equivalent to a 30mm lens on a 35mm camera, the new Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 Asph. features 9 elements in 7 groups, including 3 aspherical elements. Panasonic's Nano Surface Coating technology is adopted to minimise reflections. The lens will be available separately for £549.99, or in a kit with the new Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 compact system camera, priced at £999.99. Availability is slated for June.

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Sample Images

Mark Goldstein
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Ahead of our full review, here are 48 sample photos and a Full HD 1080p movie taken with the new Olympus OM-D E-M10 compact system camera and the M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm f3.5-5.6 EZ kit lens.

Panasonic HX-A500

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital Video Cameras
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Panasonic today unveiled the world’s first 4K Ultra HD/25p wearable camcorder, the HX-A500. Enabled by a new high-speed image processor, the Crystal Engine Pro+; the Panasonic HX-A500 provides 4K video recording at 25 frames per second (fps). The HX-A500’s Levelling Correction function automatically detects when the recording is at a tilt and levels out final images, while the new slow motion function means the HX-A500 is also ideal for analysing sporting techniques, such as your golf swing, at one of three speeds: 200 frames per second (at 848x480 pixels); 100 frames per second (1280x720); or 50 frames per second (1920x1080). A new colour, 1.5 inch LCD monitor has been incorporated into the HX-A500’s main body so you can check the camera’s field of view during recording. Available from May 2014, the Panasonic A500 will be priced RRP £379.99.

Rare Hasselblad 500 EL DATA Fetches €682,000 at Auction

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Film
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A Hasselblad 500 'EL DATA CAMERA HEDC' - a modified Hasselblad EL designed for NASA's Apollo missions - was sold for €682,000 at a WestLicht auction. "Jim Irwin took exactly 299 pictures with this Hasselblad 500 'EL DATA CAMERA HEDC' during his 3 days stay on the lunar surface and 96 more on the way to the moon and back again," Westlicht says. The camera, which was sold together with a 200-exposure silver film magazine and a special NASA Biogon 3.5/60mm lens featuring control tabs designed for use with space gloves, was reportedly purchased by Terukazu Fujisawa, founder of Japanese retail chain Yodobashi Camera.

Two Hasselblad Lunar Cameras Go Under Hammer in Florida

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Compact System Camera
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A duo of Hasselblad Lunar cameras with a joint retail value of around $14,000 were sold for $54,500 at a charity auction in Florida. The deal also included a unique set of classic motorsport photographs shot over decades with a Hasselblad camera by Concours Show founder and chairman, Bill Warner. Michael Hejtmanek, President of Hasselblad Bron said: "We knew our new, retro-look Lunar range was compelling - especially the rich-veined olive wood edition with its advanced technology and supreme ergonomics - but for a pair of them to raise $54,500 for Spina Bifida Jacksonville at this auction is just outstanding."

Phase One iXU 150

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital
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The new Phase One iXU 150 is billed as the World’s smallest and lightest integrated digital medium-format aerial camera. The iXU's 50-megapixel CMOS sensor offers 8280 pixels cross-track coverage and a sensitivity range of ISO 100/21° to ISO 6400/39°. The Phase One iXU 150 utilises the central leaf shutters built into the wide range of compatible Schneider-Kreuznach lenses (28 mm, 55 mm, 80 mm, 110 mm, 150 mm and 240 mm). The camera is easily integrated into new or existing setups with its USB 3.0 connectivity for storage and control, and direct serial communication to GPS/IMU systems. The Phase One iXU 150 will be available in either visible light or Near-IR configurations. Available from July, the camera has a list price of €30.000 / $40,000.

WPO Disqualifies ‘Youth Culture’ Category Winner

Zoltan Arva-Toth
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The World Photography Organisation (WPO) has disqualified Borhan Mardani, the winner of the 'Youth Culture' category of the prestigious Sony World Photography Awards, due to a violation of the contest rules. "Following his entry into the Youth competition Mr Mardani confirmed to the WPO, in writing, that he was 19 when he took the winning image.  This has now been shown to be incorrect," the organisation says. "Unfortunately the WPO must rely on the warranties provided by the photographer and we regret that in this case the warranties provided to us have been false." The new winner is Anastasia Zhetvina aged 19 from Russia, for an image entitled "Young Talents" (shown above).

LifePrint WiFi Printer for Smartphones

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Camera Phones, Printers
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Los Angeles-based LifePrint has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for the commercialisation of its new product, a Wi-Fi/Bluetooth-enabled photo printer for smartphones. Measuring roughly 6.5" long x 4.5" wide x 1.5" thick and weighing in at approximately 1.5 lbs, the LifePrint wireless smartphone printer produces prints of standard 3"x4" size. "Beautifully designed and smaller than an iPad Mini, the LifePrint photo printer lets you instantly print photos from wherever you are - simply open the LifePrint app (iOS & Android), select a photo and hit print," the company says. "Take LifePrint with you to print on-the-go or send a photo directly to a friend’s LifePrint printer so they can instantly hold that special photo in their hands." Interested readers are encouraged to visit the project's Kickstarter page.

Sony Self-Leaks New A3500 Camera

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital
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Sony Australia has posted product images and full specifications for a new camera called the Sony α3500. Launching just half a year after the A3000, the new Sony A3500 promises better battery life and comes with a new Sony E 18-50mm f/4-5.6 (SEL1850) lens. Otherwise, its headline specifications appear to  be identical to those of the Sony A3000 (read review). The manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) is AU$499.

Via PR

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Saturday Spotlight: The Sony A7/A7R and the Metabones Canon EF Adapter

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In our second Saturday Spotlight feature, we take a look at using Canon EF lenses on the Sony A7 / A7R compact system cameras - yes, it really is possible...

Friday, March 21, 2014

Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Review

Mark Goldstein
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The Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar T E 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS is a premium standard zoom lens for the Sony NEX / Alpha E-mount system. The Carl Zeiss 16-70mm lens offers a focal range of 24-105mm in 35mm terms, a constant aperture of f/4, and a 4-stop image stabilisation system. Retailing for £850 / $999, read our Sony E PZ 16-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS review to find out if it's worth the money...

Samyang 12mm f/2 NCS CS

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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Samyang have announced a new, wide-angle 12mm lens designed for compact system cameras with APS-C sized (or smaller) sensors. This is a rectilinear, manual-focus lens with a diagonal angle of view of 98.9° (when mounted on a camera with an APS-C sized imager) and an optical formula that comprises a dozen elements arranged in ten groups. These include 1 aspherical, 1 hybrid aspherical and 3 extra-low dispersion lens elements. Nano-crystal anti-reflective coating is applied to the elements to improve contrast, reduce reflections and enhance light transmission. The product comes with a removable lens hood and 67 mm filter mount. Availability and pricing have yet to be confirmed.

Samyang 8mm T3.1 UMC Fish-eye II

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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Samyang has announced the new Samyang 8mm T3.1 UMC Fish-eye II V-DSLR lens. Also sold under the Rokinon brand name, the Samyang 8mm T3.1 UMC Fish-eye II is an updated, faster version of the Samyang 8mm T3.8 UMC Fish-eye CS II. The new lens features 11 elements in 8 groups (as opposed to 10 in 7 in the older version) courtesy of an extra aspherical lens element; and is available in Canon M, Fujifilm X, Samsung NX and Sony E mounts.