Thursday, February 7, 2013

Nikon 1 V1 Firmware Update 1.21

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Compact System Camera
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Nikon has posted a firmware update for the Nikon 1 V1 compact system camera. Version 1.21 addresses the following issue: Immediately after the camera was turned on after attaching a lens, shooting display in the camera monitor or electronic viewfinder (view through the lens) sometimes appeared to move. You can download the firmware upgrade from the website below.

Website: Nikon 1 V1 Firmware Update 1.21

Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.5 Aspherical VM

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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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.

Voigtländer Nokton 42mm f/0.95 for MFT

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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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.

Super Bowl Gigapan

Zoltan Arva-Toth | General
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Sports Illustrated photographer David Bergman and Josh Lehrer have created a zoomable 3.8-gigapixel photograph during Super Bowl XLVII. Madeup of 220 photos captured in a matter of 38 minutes, the composite image boasts a resolution of 101,800 x 37,419 pixels. To view the Super Bowl Gigapan, head for the Sports Illustrated website.

Website: Sports Illustrated

Argraph Introduces Sirui Multi-Function Photo/Video Monopods

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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The new Sirui P-324X and P-424X photo/video monopods have three fold-down support feet for combining the stability of a tripod with the convenience of a monopod. When not needed, the support feet fold flush and lock in place against the monopod leg, allowing it to be used as a conventional monopod. The large, slip-free rubber foot lets you work on any surface, the company says. The Sirui P-324X monopod ($274.95) weighs 2.6lbs and offers a load capacity of 22lbs. The Sirui P-424X ($299.95) weighs a bit more - 2.9lbs - but holds up to 33lbs. Sirui products are distributed in the USexclusively by Argraph, and are available from photo retailers nationwide.

Official Sigma DP3 Merrill Samples

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital Compact Cameras
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Sigma has posted forty-two full-resolution sample photos taken with the Sigma DP3 Merrill large-sensor compact camera. Evidently aimed at demonstrating resolution, accutance and colour, all of these official Sigma DP3 Merrill samples were taken at low sensitivity settings (ISO 100/21° and ISO 200/24°). You can download the sample images from the website below.

Website: Sigma DP3 Merrill Sample Images

Sony Posts Firmware Updates for NEX Bodies and Lenses

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Compact System Camera, Lenses
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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

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ35 Photos

Mark Goldstein
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Ahead of our full review, here are 50 sample JPEG photos and a 1080i movie taken with the brand new Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ35 compact camera.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ35 is a travel zoom compact camera with a 16.1-megapixel sensor and a 20x, 24-480mm equivalent zoom lens.

Lastolite Strobo Starter Kits

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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The new Strobo Starter Kits from Lastolite are designed to introduce photographers to the Lastolite Strobo system of light modifying products. These starter kits are stripped-down versions of the original Strobo Ezybox Hotshoe and Strobo Direct to Flash bundles. In addition to these kits, the company has now made the components which make up the Strobo system available to purchase individually, allowing the photographer to customise their own kits and modify their own existing equipment for use with Strobo. Click through / scroll down for the recommended retail prices.

New Photo Competition on the Sustainable Thinking Platform

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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VinylPlus has announced that a new photo contest has been launched on its Sustainable Thinking Platform. Running until 30 April 2013, the competition is open to young adults around the world, aged 18-30. All entries must address the question, “Smart, sustainable and inclusive growth for Europe and beyond. How do we make it happen?” Each participant may submit up to 3 pictures. The winner will be awarded with an Apple iPad mini tablet. You can enter the contest through the website below.

Website: Sustainable Thinking

East End Faces

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Events, Photographers
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British photographer David Bailey will be returning to his birthplace to exhibit intimate photographs of the East End at Walthamstow’s William Morris Gallery (pictured). East End Faces will run from 23 February to 26 May 2013 and complements Bailey’s recent East End exhibition that ran as part of the Create Festival in August last year. East End Faces will include previously unseen pictures from the 1960s, featuring streetscapes, characters and scenes of east London life. Visitors can also listen to David Bailey in conversation with Sandy Nairne, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, on Wednesday 13 March at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £12, with booking essential as places are limited (entry to the exhibition itself is free). The recently refurbished William Morris Gallery is located in Forest Road, London, E17 4PP.

Prime Circle XT-F Custom Lenses for Nikon

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories, Lenses
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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.

Samyang Lenses Now Distributed by Intro 2020 in the UK

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses
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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.

Sony Issues Firmware Updates for SLT Cameras

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital SLR Cameras
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Sony has issued firmware updates for its range of “SLT” - Single Lens Translucent - cameras, including the SLT-A37, A57, A65 and A99. The updates add automatic distortion compensation for a number of lenses. Version 1.01 for the SLT-A99 additionally incorporates support for a range of Dual AF function compliant lenses. You can download the firmware updates from the website below (after specifying your camera model and operating system).

Website: Sony Support

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Fujifilm FinePix T400 Review

Matt Grayson
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The Fujifilm FinePix T400 compact camera offers a 10x zoom, 16 megapixel sensor, 3 inch LCD screen and 720p movies, all for a street price of just £70 / $90. Read our Fujifilm FinePix T400 review to find out if it's a genuine bargain or one to avoid...

Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II Photos

Mark Goldstein
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Ahead of our full review, here are 50 sample JPEG photos taken with the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II lens.

The Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II is a premium telephoto lens for Nikon full-frame DSLRs, perfect for sports, photojournalism and wildlife photography. The Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 lens retails for £2085.99 / $2,399.95

Canon EOS-1D X Firmware Update 1.2.1

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital SLR Cameras
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Canon has issued a firmware update for the Canon EOS-1D X digital SLR camera. Version 1.2.1 incorporates the following bug fixes and improvements:

1. The function to disable the Image size selection button has been added.
2. Fixes a phenomenon in which Err 70 and Err 80 may occur during certain shooting conditions.

Website: Canon U.S.A.

Photocrati Fund Offers $5000 Photography Grant

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Competitions
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The 4th annual Photocrati Fund competition is now open for entries. The Photocrati Fund offers a $5,000 grant to one photographer each year to undertake an environmental or humanitarian photography project. At the completion of the project, the grant winner’s images will be displayed as a photo essay on Photocrati.com. Applications for the 2013 Photocrati Fund competition will be accepted through 30th April (11:59pm Mountain Time). To apply, submit a one-page project statement (including a rough budget) and biography, along with a link to an online portfolio of 20-30 themed images to: fund@photocrati.com.  For complete Photocrati Fund rules and guidelines, visit the website below.

Hahnemühle Photo Inkjet Photo Paper

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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Hahnemühle FineArt has introduced a new line of resin-coated papers for inkjet photo printing. The Hahnemühle Photo Luster offering features a: bright white, smooth, lustre surface with a pearlescent finish, while the Photo Glossy paper boasts a super smooth, high-gloss bright white surface for vivid results. Both papers feature an “extremely large” colour gamut and a weight of 290gsm. Photographers will get a chance to see these new products at the SPE Conference in Chicago, March 7-10 at the WPPI Expo in Las Vegas, March 11-13. Availability is slated for March with pricing to be communicated.

PocketWizard G-Wiz Vault

Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories
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LPA Design today announced the new G-Wiz Vault bag. Designed for use with the PocketWizard MultiMAX, Plus II or FlexTT5 Transceivers and accessories, this padded gear bag is also the perfect size to protect a “full-sized” SLR camera, the company says. The new PocketWizard G-Wiz Vault bag holds up to six MultiMAX or Plus II radios with connector cables, ten FlexTT5’s, or one SLR camera body. Available in three colours, the G-Wiz Vault opens from the top, and features three movable or removable hook-n-loop padded dividers. The PocketWizard G-Wiz Vault bag is priced around $28.