You will like recognize that these results are not from the standard Canon EF 200mm f/2L IS USM test lens we tested the Sony a7R II and most Canon cameras with. The plan was to test the a9 with the same lens, but unfortunately, our FotodioX Canon EF Lens to Sony E-Mount Camera Pro Fusion Smart AF mount adapter is apparently not compatible with the a9 (known adapter-compatible Canon lenses did not work on the a9). So, we went with plan b, testing the a9 with Sony's premier FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS Lens at a low-distortion focal length.
Keep in mind that the lenses used in these comparisons are different:
Photomatix Pro Version 6 adds a new rendering style option, corrects perspective problems, and gives more control over color.
Brighton, United Kingdom – HDRsoft announces the release of Photomatix Pro version 6. The latest version of their software application that helps photography pros and enthusiasts create HDR (High Dynamic Range) photos in a large range of styles, from realistic to artistic.
Key benefits in the new release include:
Photomatix Pro merges photographs taken at different exposure levels into a single HDR image with options for automatically aligning hand-held photos and for removing ghosts or visual artifacts when moving objects are present in the scene. Merged images can then be adjusted with a range of precise controls and settings or with one-click presets. Photographers can quickly get the look they desire from natural-looking results to painterly images, from surreal and dreamy photos to ultra-realistic images with increased details.
Photomatix Pro can also be used to enhance a single photo to boost its shadows and enhance its highlights. The program includes a plugin for Adobe Lightroom for users who want to integrate Photomatix Pro into their Lightroom workflow.
"What's unique about Photomatix Pro is the full range of styles it offers to render HDR photos, and version 6 makes this even better," said Geraldine Joffre, HDRsoft Managing Director. "Unlike other apps which rely on one HDR rendering algorithm, Photomatix comes with several. Each algorithm can give an entirely different look with enhancing tones and details or fusing multiple exposures together. Photographers will find it useful to have several alternatives for processing HDR photos as things change with different subjects or lighting conditions."
Photomatix Pro 6 is available now for $99 USD for a single-user license. Customers who purchased Photomatix Pro 5 will receive a free upgrade. Earlier versions of Photomatix Pro can be upgraded for $29 USD.
Changes from Version 1.0.2 to 1.0.3
In this short video, Canon uses a dry erase board animation to explain the difference between its traditional optical viewfinder, dedicated sensor based AF and sensor based AF systems.
Want to know more about the AF systems in specific Canon cameras? We've got you covered.
More to come regarding this lens.
When a unique weather pattern arrived with numerous little rain storms showing on the radar, it seemed like a good time to go trail running with the lightweight Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens. After photographing some distant storms from a high vantage point, I took a direct hit from one of them. But, that was good news. Rain storms make rainbows and this one delivered superbly.
Also delivering superbly was the Sigma 100-400. While a telephoto zoom may not seem like a first choice for landscape photography, this focal length range is excellent for that purpose (and many others of course). And, using a telephoto lens for rainbow photography is often a good idea.
It was a good night for a run with the camera. In addition to some intense rainbow images, I brought home a large number of nice dramatic sky images including at sunset – and got some exercise.
Image quality (results from 5Ds R, 1Ds III and 7D II included), vignetting, flare and distortion test results along with specs, measurements and standard product images have been added to the Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus Lens page.
I expected better from this lens. It has the same optical design as its predecessor, but ... it is not performing quite as well as the Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Classic Lens I owned and loved for years. Typically, if we think a lens is not performing optimally, we test another copy. But, this is the third copy of this lens we have tested and this one has the most-equal corner performance – it is the best of the three.
Here are some comparisons:
Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus compared to Classic Lens
Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus compared to Rokinon SP 14mm f/2.4 Lens
Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus compared to Samyang 14mm f/2.8 IF ED UMC Lens
Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus compared to Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM Lens
Zeiss 15mm f/2.8 Milvus compared to Irix 15mm f/2.4 Lens
From the Tested YouTube Channel:
Sean works on a quick project to improve our camera lens storage using the shop's Universal Laser Systems laser cutter. This custom Pelican Case storage topper helps label our gear and protect the breakout foam from wearing down over use!
From the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom YouTube Channel:
Lightroom tips and tricks in 60 seconds or less from longtime Lightroom team member Benjamin Warde.
Sony has just released a slew of firmware updates for its Alpha series mirrorless cameras, including a fix for the a9's premature overheating warning. Details are below.
Sony a9 Firmware v.1.01
Download: Sony a9 Firmware v.1.01
Download: Sony a7R II Firmware v.4.0
Download: Sony a7S II Firmware v.3.0
Download: Sony a7 II Firmware v.4.0
Image quality (results from 5Ds R, 1Ds III and 7D II included), vignetting, flare and distortion test results along with specs, measurements and standard product images have been added to the Rokinon SP 14mm f/2.4 Lens page.
Is the Rokinon SP 14mm f/2.4 Lens worth over 3x the price of the Samyang/Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 IF ED UMC Lens? That is a question I wanted to answer. Here is the Rokinon SP 14mm f/2.4 vs. Samyang 14mm f/2.8 IF ED UMC Lens image quality comparison. There are more differences, but ... let me know what you think in the comments.
Here are some other comparisons:
So. Burlington, VT – June 7, 2017: LPA Design, manufacturers of PocketWizard Photo Products, the global leader in reliable wireless control of cameras, flash lighting and light meters, announces today a new update to its ControlTL firmware for Nikon MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 radios. Firmware version 3.900 for Nikon includes compatibility with the Nikon D5, D500, D7200 and D5500 DSLR cameras as well as compatibility with the Nikon SB-5000 Speedlight.
Any current owner of the MiniTT1 or FlexTT5 for Nikon can easily install this version via USB and update for free using the PocketWizard Utility.
With Nikon firmware version 3.9, Nikon FlexTT5 radios can now have custom IDs installed. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in having Custom IDs installed on your Nikon FlexTT5s. The new Nikon firmware also addresses minor bug fixes including improved HyperSync and Auto FP / High Speed Sync performance with the D750.
For the complete release notes, please click here.
To update your MiniTT1 or FlexTT5 to firmware version 3.9, click here.
From the Canon Digital Learning Center:
So far in our eclipse series we’ve discussed camera bodies and lenses that can be used to photograph the upcoming total solar eclipse. This article covers solar filters, the most important consideration for solar photography and direct viewing of the solar eclipse.See the entire article on the Canon Digital Learning Center.
It is never safe to look at the sun without proper eye protection when any part of it is visible behind the moon!
This also includes not looking through your camera’s viewfinder when photographing the eclipse – use a solar filter on the front of the lens, and look through your LCD screen instead of the viewfinder!
The release of the Sony a9 introduced yet another intriguing option in the pro sports photography market. As such, you may be curious as to how Sony's first sports-oriented mirrorless full frame camera stacks up against Canon's top-of-the-line full frame DSLR, the EOS-1D X Mark II.
Let's first take a look at some of the high level features where the two cameras differ to see how they contrast with one another:
|Canon EOS-1D X II||Sony a9|
|Resolution||20.2 MP||24.2 MP|
|Image Processor(s)||Dual DIGIC 6+||BIONZ X|
|AF Type||TTL secondary image-forming phase-difference detection system with AF-dedicated CMOS sensor||Fast Hybrid AF(phase-detection AF/contrast-detection AF)|
|AF Points||61 points (Cross-type AF points: Max. 41 points)||693 points (phase-detection AF)|
|AF Working Range||EV -3 – 18||EV -3 – 20|
|Metering||Approx. 360,000-pixel RGB+IR metering sensor, 216-zone metering||1200-zone evaluative metering|
|Metering Range||EV 0 – 20||EV -3 – 20|
|Shutter Speed||30 - 1/8000||Mechanical Shutter: 30 - 1/8000, Electronic Shutter: 30 - 1/32000|
|LCD||3.2" (8.11cm) Clear View LCD II, approx. 1620K dots||Tilt type 2.95" (3.0-type) TFT drive, approx. 1440K dots|
|Continuous Shooting (Max Frame Rate)||14fps. with full AF / AE tracking||AUTO/Electronic Shutter: High max. 20 fps; Mechanical Shutter: High Max. 5 fps|
|Wireless||n/a||Wi-Fi, NFC & Bluetooth|
|GPS||Built-in||Can be synchronized with connected mobile devices|
|Memory Card Slots||CF Card (Type I; compatible with UDMA 7 CF cards) & CFast Card (CFast 2.0 supported)||Memory Stick PRO HG-Duo/Memory Stick PRO Duo (High Speed) & SD/SDHC/SDXC|
|Battery Life||Approx. 1210 (at 23°C, AE 50%, FE 50%) 1020 (at 0°C, AE 50%, FE 50%)||Approx. Approx. 480 shots (Viewfinder) / approx. 650 shots (LCD monitor)|
|Size||6.22 x 6.6 x 3.25" (158.0 x 167.6 x 82.6mm)||5.0 x 3.8 x 2.5" (126.9 x 95.6 x 63.0mm)|
|Weight||53.97 oz (1530g)||23.7 oz (673g)|
Size, Weight and Battery Life
As indicated by the table above, the Sony a9 is smaller and lighter than the Canon 1D X II. And as also evidenced by the table above, a downside to the smaller body is the inability to house a large battery. In other words, you can likely shoot more than twice as many images with the [significantly larger] 1D X II before the battery is exhausted. Adding a battery grip to the a9 doubles battery capacity and adds the extremely useful vertical control buttons, but inevitably reduces the size and weight advantages of the camera.
Native Lens Lineup
Consider that the EOS-1D X II is Canon's 11th 1-series digital SLR, the long-standing camera maker has had plenty of time to fill out its product line with a wide variety of lenses ideal for sports photography. Aside from the general purposes lenses sometimes used for sports photography, Canon telephoto (and telephoto zoom) lenses often used for sports photography include:
Compare the lens selection above to the Sony E-mount lenses available now with a focal length of 300mm or greater:
Sony likely has several long telephoto lenses currently in development. However, it's very difficult [i.e., impossible] to take great sports images with lenses that are simply unavailable. For the meantime, Canon likely has a lens to cover your sports needs, no matter what sport you're photographing.
Of course, you can use non-native lenses with the Sony a9 when adapters are thrown into the mix. However, expect the AF performance of adapted lenses to be negatively impacted.
Viewfinder implementations differ significantly between the Canon 1D X II and the Sony a9, where the Canon body offers a traditional optical viewfinder (with customizable overlays) and the Sony body features an electronic viewfinder. Each type of viewfinder has benefits and drawbacks compared to the other (such as an EVF's elimination of viewfinder blackout times), and Bryan shared his thoughts on the advantages/disadvantages of electronic/optical viewfinders in his article, "Comparing Electronic Viewfinders to Optical Viewfinders" . Be sure to check out the preceeding information to determine which of these systems you may prefer.
Durability & Reliability
With Canon's tendency to be relatively conservative regarding its 1-series updates, it's safe to say that you can expect their top-of-the-line series to perform reliably in the field, with robust weather sealing keeping the camera operational in adverse conditions.
Indeed, the a9 isn't Sony's first foray into the full frame digital camera market. However, it is the first camera Sony has designed specifically for sports photography and the rigors that pursuit entails. The Sony a9 may prove to be as reliable as the 1D X II, but... the first iteration of a company's product line is rarely as refined a competitor's benefitting from many more years of experience in design and manufacture.
While we didn't stress test the camera, the Sony a9 with its magnesium alloy frame and weather sealing is designed for the rigors that professionals encounter. Three hours of clay dust created at a dirt track sprint car race turned the camera red, but this issue was completely mitigated by an air blower.
Based on our tests, the Sony a9 focuses in extremely low light, similar to the 1D X II. Focus accuracy in One Shot mode/ AF-S single focus lock is also very similar between the cameras, although the 1D X II is noticeably faster in One Shot AF mode as the a9 defocuses before focusing again even when the subject has not moved. With subjects moving at a constant rate of speed, the a9 does an excellent job of tracking subjects. However, from our experience, the 1D X II tends to track erratic subjects better and maintains subject tracking as those subjects get closer to the camera.
Of course, it's impossible to perform a complete, exhaustive, apples-to-apples comparison between the two cameras' AF systems because conditions are never precisely repeatable. It's possible that either camera’s AF performance could be situationally improved by adjusting the focusing parameters from the default settings.
Canon is widely recognized as having an excellent support system, including (not not limited to) Canon Professional Services, the division which specifically caters to those who make a living with their imaging gear. The support we have received from Canon USA and Canon Professional Services has over the years has been very good. Canon USA's Customer Service Technicians have been eager to help and knowledgeable when we have needed phone support, and our experience with Canon's repair department (in the few times we've needed a repair) has been equally satisfying.
On the other hand, Sony is still in the building process when it comes to customer support for their E-mount camera system. As such, they don't necessarily have a reputation for exemplary customer service [yet]. And that reputation (or lack thereof) is seemingly appropriate, at least considering our own [minimal] experience with Sony Support.
At the time of this comparison, the Sony a9's MSRP is 25% lower than the Canon EOS 1D X Mark II's MSRP, and that translates to a not-so-insignificant savings. If you're ready for the Sony a9 ecosystem, that savings will certainly be appreciated. For a more versatile, similar-to-a-1D-X-II setup, you may wish to use some of the savings to pick up the Sony VG-C3EM Vertical Grip and an extra battery for increased shooting time and better handling with larger lenses.
Unfortunately, your savings experienced by purchasing a Sony a9 may be negated as your lens kit grows, as comparable Sony lenses tend to be more expensive than their Canon counterparts. Check out the Sony a9 vs. Canon EOS 1D X II vs. Nikon D5 price comparison table near the end of the a9 review.
So which pro sports camera body is best for your needs? Well, if you're planning on making a living shooting sports imagery in the very near future, or you've already invested heavily in a Canon system, the EOS-1D X Mark II would likely be the best choice.
However, if you're a semi pro or enthusiast sports shooter, and you haven't already invested heavily in a particular camera system, the Sony a9 shows obvious potential and is definitely worth considering if its current lens lineup is appropriate for your needs.
What’s New with Version 1.31.0
Download: Nikon NEF Codec v.1.31.0
From Phase One:
Capture One 10.1.2 brings lots of bug fixes for Mac and Windows versions of Capture One 10.1.
Bug fixes: Mac
Bug fixes: Win
Download: Capture One 10.1.2
Image quality, vignetting, flare and distortion test results along with specs, measurements, standard product images and eye candy have been added to the Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens page.
Completing the review of this lens is one of my priorities right now.
The Sigma 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary Lens is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Thank you for purchasing and using our products.
Sigma Corporation would like to announce a firmware update for the SIGMA 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM | Contemporary for Canon and SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 EF-E is now available.
By updating the firmware, the lens will offer improved AF performance. Also, the latest firmware of the SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 EF-E will not only offer improved AF performance, but also enables the OS mechanism to start operating faster than before.
For customers who own the SIGMA USB DOCK, please update the firmware via SIGMA Optimization Pro. For those who own the SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 EF-E, please update the firmware via SIGMA Optimization Pro by connecting it to a computer using a supplied USB Cable.
* Before updating the MC-11 firmware, please ensure SIGMA Optimization Pro has been updated to ver. 1.4.1 or later for Windows, and ver. 1.4.0 or later for Macintosh from the following download page.
SIGMA 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM | Contemporary for Canon
Benefits of This Firmware Update
SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 EF-E
Benefits of This Firmware Update
A tiny lens with a mighty performance, Samyang AF 35mm F2.8 FE is ideal for daily photography as well as travel photography. This new compact and lightweight lens, together with the existing AF 14mm F2.8 FE and AF 50mm F1.4 FE lenses, now expands Samyang’s autofocus lens line-up to three.
The AF 35mm F2.8 FE weighs just 85g and measures 3.3cm in length, without the hood and rear cap. Thanks to Samyang’s exceptional optical technology, its compact size is packed with features for outstanding image quality. Featuring seven elements in six groups, two aspherical lenses and one high refractive lens plus Ultra Multi Coating to minimise aberration and unnecessary light dispersion, the lens delivers high resolution from the centre to the corners of the image.
Perfect Partner for Everyday Photographers
This new lens is specifically designed to work in harmony with full frame mirrorless cameras in Sony E mount. For full frame sensors, the focal length resembles the human eye the most. For APS-C types for Sony alpha 6000 and 5000 series users the lens is equivalent to approximately 52mm, which is also one of the most popular focal lengths among photographers.
Portability with mighty performance and a 35mm focal length makes this lens the best choice for daily photographers who want to capture every memory as a high quality image. The autofocus is fast and accurate and is ideal for the capture of outdoor events such as hiking, sports events and landscape photography. It also has a minimum focusing distance of 0.35m and is ideal for street, portrait and close focus photography.
|Aperture Range||f/2.8 - f/22|
|Optical Construction||7 Elements in 6 Groups|
|Minimum Focus Distance||0.35m (1.1ft)|
|Maximum Magnification Ratio||0.12x|
|Aperture Blades||7 (Rounded)|
|Dimensions (DxL)||Approx. 2.43 x 1.30" (61.8 x 33 mm)|
|Weight||3.02 oz (85.64 g)|
From Canon USA:
Two New Videos, “See Beyond Darkness” and “See the Light” Highlight Rare Biofluorescent Turtles, Bioluminescent Creatures Under the Sea, the Aurora Borealis and More
MELVILLE, N.Y., June 5, 2017 – Expanding viewers’ horizons through technology, Canon U.S.A., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is pushing its creative boundaries with two new “Canon See Impossible” videos that celebrate Canon’s commitment to making the seemingly impossible possible. Available for viewing now on the Canon U.S.A.website, these two new videos – “See Beyond Darkness” and “See the Light” – showcase the capabilities of Canon imaging technology which enables researchers, professional photographers, cinematographers and enthusiasts to shoot impactful clear and crisp imagery, even when masked in darkness due to extremely low-light conditions.
In “See Beyond Darkness,” the impossible assignment for Director of Photography Andy Casagrande was to record images of a rare biofluorescent turtle found only in the remote, unspoiled reefs of the Solomon Islands. The low-light capabilities of Canon’s ME20F-SH Multipurpose Camera and EOS-1D X DSLR camera enabled researchers to capture vivid images without disturbing the natural environment.
“To have Canon step in and facilitate an expedition like “See Beyond Darkness” is incredible. It’s the perfect marriage of cinema and science,” said Casagrande. “When you pair those two together, the opportunities are endless. You can inspire the world to care about the planet.”
“This technology allows us to see things that are beyond human perception. We’re seeing creatures and coral and turtles that we never knew existed,” said Klaus Obermeyer, Director of “See Beyond Darkness.” “We always knew the underwater world is something mysterious, but when you’re taking a camera in that can see in the dark, it’s truly, truly a rare opportunity.”
In “See the Light,” Canon’s technology captured the beauty of bioluminescent creatures under the sea, the grandeur of the extremely difficult-to-photograph Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights), and the wonder of the earth from far above it.
Each video cinematically illustrates Canon’s dedication to developing leading-edge technology that can provide creative thinkers the tools needed to teach, show, and capture for the world some of its most unexplored locations. The technology used by Canon to create these videos takes viewers to seemingly impossible dark places that were previously beyond what the human eye could see and technology could perceive. Specifically, the remarkable advancement in low-light technology found in the Canon ME20F-SH Multi-Purpose camera plays a feature role in the two new videos. Furthermore, Canon’s EOS C300 Mark II, ME20F-SH, and EOS C500 were used to capture all of the imagery in “See The Light.”
“Canon is proud to create products and technologies that support its customers in pushing the limits of what’s possible,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “It is our responsibility to our customers and our planet to look beyond today and imagine a better tomorrow.”
See the videos:
Learn more about Canon DSLRs and lenses here.
From the LensRentals Blog (article by Roger Cicala):
Well, I’ve written (with some misgivings because it has a tendency to create rioting in the streets) several articles about protective filters. Articles that say sometimes you shouldn’t use protective filters, and others that say sometimes you do need to use protective filters, and most recently, one showing how cheap filters can ruin your images.See how the filters performed on the LensRentals Blog's full post.
Because no good deed goes unpunished, the result of all this has been about 762 emails asking if this filter was better than this other filter. I answered most with I don’t know for sure because I don’t test filters and, of course, everyone asked me to test filters. To which I said no. Life is too short.
Even Drew, who I sort of work for, asked me to test filters and write up the results. I told him I’d need at least $1,500 worth of filters to make even a basic comparison, which I thought would end the conversation. But next thing I know Drew was ordering $1,500 worth of filters. I told him I’d get around to it some day.
Then Brandon, who sort of works for me, emailed and said he could build a gadget to measure transmission and polarization through filters if I wanted to start testing filters. I told him I’d get around to it some day. Then he said it would have lasers. "Someday" became "right now" because of lasers. We’ve got lots of cool toys at Olaf and Lensrentals, but no lasers.
So today I will show you the results of testing a couple of thousand dollars worth of clear and UV filters using a couple of thousand dollars worth of home-made laser light transmission bench and a lot of thousand dollars worth of Olaf Optical Testing bench. So that we get this out of the way now: please don’t email asking me to test your favorite $6 UV filter. I’ve opened up Pandora’s Filter Box with this, and it’s already going to lead to way more work than I wanted to do. I’ll maybe do some testing of circular polarizing filters later, and maybe some testing of variable neutral density filters after this. Maybe not. I’ve got ADD, and I get bored easily. Even with lasers.
I like to keep these articles, well, no geekier than they just have to be. But I also want our methods to be transparent. So I’m going to give an overview of methodology in the article and put the geekier stuff in a methodology addendum at the bottom.
I've been using the a9 over the last week and can say with certainty that Sony has made some considerable improvements over the a7R II. While these cameras are not targeting the same uses, there is a lot of overlap in design. What is my favorite a9 improvement so far? The viewfinder blackout reduction makes tracking action possible with the a9's EVF.
How does the Sony a9 compare to the Sony a7R II?
In the Sony a9 and a7R II noise comparison, we see the a9 showing significantly less noise, at least in part capitalizing on its lower resolution. At the same time, we see that the Sony a7R II has modestly higher dynamic range than the a9. That link shows a comparison of images captured at a 3 stop higher exposure setting than the standard results and processed to -3 stops. Notice the a7R II holding the highlight color better in the top-left two monochrome blocks? Also, notice the a7R II's better bright yellow block.
How does the Sony a9 compare to the Canon EOS 1D X Mark II?
In the Canon 1D X Mark II and Sony a9 noise comparison (Canon results showing on top/left), we see the Sony pipeline being used for this testing creating slightly brighter results and the Canon pipeline producing slightly sharper results. Equalize those two attributes and the two cameras deliver similar noise levels. That the a9 has a 4 megapixel advantage over the 1D X II tips the scales in the Sony direction.
In the +3 EV capture, we see that the Sony a9 has a very slightly higher dynamic range than the 1D X II, keeping some color where the 1D X II does not.
Watch as this video reveals 10 tricks used by professional food photographers for creating appetizing imagery.