Friday, December 6, 2013

Samyang 10mm f/2.8 ED AS NCS CS

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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The Samyang 10mm f/2.8 ED AS NCS CS is a new manual-focus, rectilinear ultra-wide angle lens for cameras with APS-C and FourThirds sized sensors. With an optical formula comprising fourteen elements in ten groups, the Samyang 10mm f/2.8 ED AS NCS CS offers an angle of view of 109.5° on Fuji, Nikon, Pentax, Samsung and Sony bodies, 105.9° on Canon DSLRS and CSCs, and 93.4° on (Micro) Four Thirds models. Other key features include a nano-crystal anti-reflex coating, a manual aperture ring, an integrated hood, one extra-low dispersion and two aspeherical lens elements, a close-focus point of 25cm and a six-bladed iris diaphragm. The lens will be available from the end of January 2014. The suggested retail price for the Nikon version, which has a CPU to enable open-aperture metering and the use of various non-manual exposure modes, is £469.99. All other fittings carry a suggested retail price of £429.99.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55mm F1.8 ZA Review

Mark Goldstein
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The Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55mm F1.8 ZA is a fast standard prime lens for Sony's new 35mm full-frame E-mount camera system. The FE 55mm offers an extra-bright F1.8 maximum aperture, 9-blade circular aperture, dust and moisture resistance, and a unique T* surface coating. Is the Carl Zeiss FE 55mm the perfect partner for the Sony A7/7R cameras? Read our Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55mm F1.8 ZA review to find out...

Sony A7 vs A7R

Mark Goldstein | Compact System Camera
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After extensively reviewing both cameras at the same time, here's our real-world comparison of the exciting new Sony A7 and Sony A7R full-frame compact system cameras. We've outlined the main differences between the two models, both on paper and in reality - you might be rather surprised by our findings...

Sony A7 Review

Mark Goldstein
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The Sony A7 is the second mirrorless camera in the World to offer a full-frame sensor, but this time it's a slightly more modest 24 megapixels, rather than the A7R's 36 megapixels. The cheaper Sony A7 also offers a more innovative and potentially quicker hybrid AF system, faster flash sync and burst shooting speeds, and a quieter electronic shutter. Is the Sony A7 just as good as its big brother? Read our Sony A7 review to find out...

Picture Porter Advanced

Zoltan Arva-Toth
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Digital Foci, creator of Picture Porter Advanced, a portable digital picture management tool and high capacity storage device, has launched a campaign entitled, Picture Porter – Essential Digital Photo Manager, to raise $63,000 by 14th December. Picture Porter Advanced boasts a 5" TFT-LCD screen, up to 1 TB of storage via HDD or SSD, and USB connectors for devices ranging from laptops to USB flash drives and external hard drives. Photographers will benefit from the unit's compatibility with a wide variety of memory cards. "This device will change the way people back up, protect, organise, view, and share all of their digital photos," said Charles Huang, Chief Designer of the Picture Porter Advanced. "It is designed to improve every aspect of one’s photo management routine." Interested readers are encouraged to visit Picture Porter Advanced's Kickstarter page.

Landscape Photography Magazine Issue 34

Zoltan Arva-Toth | General
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Issue 34 of Landscape Photography Magazine is now available to download. This edition includes a tutorial on photographing winter landscapes, a review of the book "Colours of the Earth" by David Hay, a free article on women in landscape photography, a guide to starting a photography business, a free advice on the art of concealment, and much more. Do note that the full contents of Landscape Photography Magazine are available to subscribers only.

Eizo Gets Animated Over Christmas

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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Eizo has launched a 40-second animated film on its global YouTube channel to help promote its ColorEdge range of monitors. Animation designer Katy Beveridge says, "The inspiration for the Eizo Christmas animation, initially came from early Russian Stop-Motion animation films which used built models and small scale sets. I often find inspiration from the rich and diverse history of the animation industry which extends far beyond the more popular cell, or drawn animation”. Click through / scroll down to view Eizo's Christmas animation.

Christmas Offers from Cities at Dawn Photography

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Events
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Cities at Dawn Photography have announced their Christmas offers on a number of workshops planned for 2014. Those booking a place for one of their £245 London at Dawn workshops will get a complimentary copy of Anthony Epes's book, London at Dawn. Photographers enrolling for the company's £850 Paris at Dawn workshop, held from 19-22 June 2014, will get copies of London at Dawn and Paris at Dawn plus a place on a one-day London at Dawn workshop, for free. The same offer applies to the £850 Venice at Dawn workshop scheduled for 15-18 March 2014.

Thomson Reuters Foundation – Nokia Photography Award

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The Thomson Reuters Foundation and Nokia have launched a new international photography contest aimed at empowering women around the world through the power of images. Photo entries will be submitted to the public vote and judged by a distinguished line-up of experts from the world of photography, journalism and women’s rights, including: Reuters Photographer and World Press Photo Winner Finbarr O’Reilly; Journalist, Author and Chime for Change Managing Editor Mariane Pearl, Thomson Reuters Foundation Editor-in-Chief Tim Large, and Nokia Imaging Technology Marketing Manager Kristina Bjorknas. Ten finalists will be chosen from the pool of entries and asked to put the new Nokia Lumia 1020 to the test by using the smartphone to create a portfolio of photos that capture the empowerment of women..The winner will receive the first Thomson Reuters Foundation–Nokia Photography Award.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Sony A7R Review

Mark Goldstein
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Big sensor in a small body - that's the USP of the new Sony A7R camera. Offering a 35mm full-frame sensor inside a relatively compact body that takes interchangeable lenses, the A7R is a truly unique and genuinely exciting proposition. Is the Sony A7R the ultimate fusion of DSLR technology and compact system camera size? Read our Sony A7R review to find out...

EyeTime 2013 Winners

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The winners of the EyeTime 2013 contest have been announced. EyeTime 2013 was assembled as a means to publicly promote the research, exploration and investigation currently happening amongst today's emerging talent. Winners include Dean West, Simon Chang, Edward Neumann, Tiberio Ventura, Michael Santiago and Nicholai Go. Jessica Lum Awards winners include Alessandro Falco and Tiberio Ventura. Public winners include Javier Corso and Rainer Weston.

Alayer 1.1 for iOS

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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Delix Software has released version 1.1 of Alayer, an iOS app that promises to "give anyone unprecedented control over the aesthetics of their [smartphone] photos." Now you can clone/duplicate the photo you are working with as a new layer, and choose from  over 100 presets and 15 different blending modes to manipulate the image. Alayer is available for $0.99 on the iTunes App Store.

Celebrating Nature

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The Society of International Nature and Wildlife Photographers has launched its newest competition entitled ‘Celebrating Nature.’ The challenge this month is to enter stunning images that reflect the beauty of nature and capture the true essence of the world around us. The judges will be looking for  a strong and interesting narrative as well as the highest technical skills. The deadline for entries is 31st December.

iResizer 2.4

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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TeoreX has updated iResizer, a simple yet capable utility designed to resize pictures and remove undesired objects. Version 2.4 adds a feature enabling users to automatically resize their photos for Instagram without cropping. You only need to mark areas on the photo you would like to preserve, and run Instagram resizing. iResizer is available for Windows and Mac OS, priced at $19.99.

DxO FilmPack 4.5

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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DxO Labs have just launched version 4.5 of their photographic film emulation software, DxO FilmPack. This update adds Agfa Scala 200X and Kodak Ektar 100 film renderings, provides new creative looks, and improves its palette of special effects. "Thanks to DxO Labs’ exclusive calibration technologies, the two new film renderings achieve an unrivaled level of quality and fidelity," the company claims. "DxO Labs perfectly reproduced the grain, quality, and style of these two films by following a rigorous scientific process: taking carefully-controlled photos with the analog films; developing the photos using two renowned professional photo development laboratories; and carefully scanning, digitizing, and analyzing the developed shots." This upgrade is free for all owners of DxO FilmPack 4, as well as for photographers who acquired a DxO FilmPack 3 licence on or after 1 March 2013.

DxO Optics Pro 9.1

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Software
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DxO Labs have released version 9.1 of its image processing software, DxO Optics Pro. This update enhances the application's PRIME denoising technology that restores the finest details in images even at the very highest sensitivities; provides support for eight new cameras; integrates the features of new DxO FilmPack v4.5 in plugin mode; and includes a new Export to Facebook option. This upgrade is free for all owners of DxO Optics Pro 9, as well as for photographers who acquired a DxO Optics Pro license on or after 1 September 2013.

PocketWizard Announces Instant Rebates

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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The MAC Group has announced a Winter Holiday instant rebate of $25 for US customers that purchase one or more PocketWizard MiniTT1 and/or FlexTT5 radios. Likewise, purchasers of PocketWizard PlusX and/or Plus III radios are eligible for a $15 mail-in rebate for each radio they buy. The instant rebate is available only for new inventory purchased from authorized PocketWizard Dealers in the US. The promotion will run throughout this month.

Sigma Issues Product Advisory to Nikon Df Users

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital SLR Cameras, Lenses
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Sigma has issued a product advisory stating that the current firmware of its Nikon fitting interchangeable lenses may not work properly with the Nikon Df digital SLR camera. More precisely, Optical Stabilisation (OS) and auto focus do not function as intended. This affects lenses with and without an internal AF motor, necessitating a firmware update which will be available later today.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Review

Gavin Stoker
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At first glance the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 looks like an up-market compact camera, but it's actually a tiny interchangeable lens model. Small enough to fit into a coat pocket yet still offering a large Micro Four Thirds image sensor, the diminutive Panasonic Lumix GM1 is taking aim at not just the obvious CSC competition, but also the growing premium compact market too. Read our full Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 review, complete with full-size JPEG and RAW sample images...

SWPP Announces Winner of its Love Themed Photo Contest

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers (SWPP) have announced the winners of their ‘Love’ photographic competition. Gilchrist Yeo from Johor, Malaysia was chosen as the overall winner from over 240 images entered, for his photo reproduced above. Phil Jones The Societies CEO says “The image portrays a beautiful feeling off togetherness and harmony between two people who are very much in love." The runners-up are Elizabeth Ann Roberts from Inverness, and Leighton Bainbridge from County Durham.