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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Canon Acquires Lifecake

Canon Europe today announced that it is acquiring London-based digital start-up Lifecake, the company behind the Lifecake photo-sharing app for families, which allows parents to store, organise, share and relive key moments of their children’s lives.  With the app, parents can create photo and video timelines that the whole family can experience on smartphones, tablets, computers and in printed photobooks. Lifecake is currently available in English, French, German, Spanish and Italian.

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Sony 16-35 and 24-70mm f/2.8 Lenses Announced

Sony have unveiled two new A-mount lenses at a press event in London - the Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM II and the Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM II.

Both the SAL1635Z2 and the SAL2470Z2 are updated versions of current lenses, offering significant improvements in image quality, ghost reduction and AF performance, together with a new dust and moisture- resistant design.

Pricing and availability are still to be announced.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Pentax K-3 II

Ricoh has launched the Pentax K-3 II digital SLR camera. Following in the footsteps of the award-winning Pentax K-3, the new model delivers exceptionally high-resolution images supported by state-of-the-art technologies including an enhanced shake reduction system — the most highly effective in the K series — and a newly developed super-resolution technology; the Pixel Shift Resolution System. This innovative system delivers super-high-resolution images with far more truthful colour reproduction and much finer detail, while significantly lowering the level of high-sensitivity noise. Like its predecessor, the Pentax K-3 II also features: an APS-C-size CMOS image sensor with approximately 24.35 effective megapixels; an AA-filter-free design for high-resolution image reproduction; a high-performance 27-point AF system; high-speed continuous shooting at approximately 8.3 images per second; and a dustproof, weather-resistant construction ideal for capturing shots outdoors. It even incorporates a GPS module for the accurate recording of shooting locations and simplified, high-precision tracking of celestial bodies, to eliminate the need for an optional GPS unit. The body-only price is £769.99, and the camera is also going to be available in a number of kit configurations from 22 May 2015.

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Zeiss Batis 2/25 and Batis 1.8/85

Zeiss has announced their first full-frame autofocus lenses for Sony's E-mount cameras. "The Batis family of lenses is the first time we have launched autofocus lenses for Sony's full-frame E-mount cameras which are Zeiss through and through – in other words exclusively developed and distributed by us," says Dr. Michael Pollmann, Product Manager at Zeiss Camera Lenses. The lenses feature an OLED display that shows the distance between the camera system and the plane of focus, as well as the depth of field. The Zeiss Batis 2/25 and 1.8/85 lenses will be available for purchase in April and start shipping in July 2015. The 25mm lens comprises 10 elements in 8 groups, and offers a maximum reproduction ratio of 1:5.2. The Zeiss Batis 1.8/85 is an 85mm telephoto prime comprising 11 elements in 8 groups. The recommended retail prices are $1,299/€1092 for the Zeiss Batis 2/25 and $1,199/€1008 for the Zeiss Batis 1.8/85.

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Nikon D4S Firmware Update 1.20

Nikon has posted a firmware update for its professional Nikon D4S digital SLR camera. Version 1.20 adds full support for the SB-500 flash unit, improves AWB consistency and removes the limit on the number of shots that can be taken in a single burst when a continuous-release mode is selected in M and S modes. The new firmware also changes how focus points are displayed in the viewfinder if the camera is rotated between portrait and landscape orientation, and fixes bugs. Click through / read on for the details.

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Polaroid Zip Mobile Photo Printer Now Available Globally

The Polaroid Zip, one of the smallest and lightest portable printers ever made, is now available worldwide. Connecting wirelessly to any smartphone or tablet, the Polaroid Zip mobile printer allows users to instantly print 2x3-inch colour photos from virtually any image on their Apple or Android device. Approximately the size of a smartphone, the Polaroid Zip weighs just 186g (.41lbs) and can be taken anywhere. The device measures 2.91” x 4.72”, just less than one inch thick and boasts a striking high-gloss finish augmented by the iconic Polaroid logo. Despite its wealth of features, the only physical control is a power button which has been seamlessly integrated into the unit’s simple design. The Polaroid Zip mobile printer features a free app for iOS and Android and connects to mobile devices via Bluetooth 4.0 or NFC. The Polaroid Zip is currently available for $129.99 in the US at Photojojo.com and online at B&H Photo, and internationally on Amazon.

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ReaConverter 7 Lite

ReaConverter 7 Lite is a free version of ReaConverter, ReaSoft's batch image conversion and editing program for Windows. The Lite edition supports 5 most popular formats: BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, TIFF both for reading and for writing, and all editing options of the full version including colour and position alteration, watermarks, retouching and other features. The full version supports over 400 image file formats and offers a range of automated functions not found in ReaConverter 7 Lite.

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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Nest Hiker Bags Now Available in the UK

Joining the existing Explorer and Athena ranges, the new Hiker line-up from Nest includes three shoulder bags and two backpacks. All of these bags are available in a camouflage 600D waterproof nylon version as well as a black 210D waterproof rip-stop nylon edition which has a stylish patterned finish. The Hiker 10, 20 and 30 shoulder bags offer an integrated padded shoulder strap and rain cover. The Nest Hiker 100 backpack has two sections, one for camera gear and one for everyday items. The Hiker 200 is a dedicated photo backpack with a separate compartment for a 15" notebook. Pricing starts at £49.99 for the shoulder bags and £99.99 for the backpacks.

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Yongnuo YN35mm F2

Yongnuo has announced a new full-frame 35mm prime with auto focus. The Canon-mount Yongnuo YN35mm F2 lens has a minimum focus distance of 25cm, and a maximum magnification of 0.23x. The optical construction features 7 elements in 5 groups and an iris diaphragm witrh 7 rounded blades. The lens takes 52mm filters, and will be available from Yongnuo's Amazon and eBay stores.

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Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC

Adobe today announced a major update to its Creative Cloud Photography plan with the release of an all-new Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC. This is a subscription-based desktop application that boasts a number of new features including HDR Merge, Panorama Merge, Face Recognition, advanced video slideshows and various performance/GPU enhancements. Automatically synced with Lightroom CC on the desktop, Lightroom on mobile devices lets users access and edit their catalogue of photos across a full range of iOS and Android devices. This release includes a major enhancement for Android with DNG raw file support on compatible Lollipop-enabled devices. The Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan (£8.57/$9.99 per month) includes Lightroom CC across desktop, Web and mobile, Photoshop CC and Photoshop Mix (for iPhone and iPad). All products are also available as part of Creative Cloud complete plan.

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