From Think Tank Photo:
Think Tank Photo has just released their new The Essentials Convertible Rolling Backpack. This rolling backpack goes where other rollers can’t. Roll it easily over smooth surfaces, or simply deploy the backpack straps to carry it over rough terrain.
Sized to meet most airline carry-on requirements, the Essentials fits two DSLR or Mirrorless bodies, a mounted 70–200mm, multiple lenses, and a 16-inch laptop. And because it’s from Think Tank, the bag will roll long into the future.
Use our link to get the detail and to receive a free Think Tank product and free U.S. shipping on all orders over $50.00.
Update: Canon USA has published a press release that does not require translation:
Canon U.S.A. Announces Three New Industrial Imaging Sensors
MELVILLE, NY, October 19, 2020 – As imaging sensors continue to be an essential component of industrial processes, Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is excited to announce three new CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductors) sensors: the ultra-high-resolution LI8020 series, the ultra-high sensitivity LI3030 series, and the LI7050SAC. These sensors help expand the company’s lineup of industrial vision products while offering integrators and end-users additional capabilities when developing solutions for various applications.
The LI8020SAC (color)/LI8020SAM (monochrome) ultra-high resolution CMOS sensor features a pixel pitch of 1.5 µm (micrometer) and a resolution of approximately 250 million pixels, which provides detailed images in a wide range of applications and situations. The sensor will help meet the needs of manufacturers to inspect flat panel displays, which frequently exhibit 4K and sometimes even 8K content. The sensor can also be a tool for video production, digital archiving, wide-area monitoring, and the medical industry by providing ultra-high resolution and ultra-high-speed signal readouts. Due to the ultra-high pixel count of the sensor, images can be captured that maintain incredible image quality, even if an area of the moving or still image has been cropped and enlarged using an electronic zoom.
The new sensor can capture video at an ultra-high-resolution that is approximately 125 times higher than Full HD (1920 × 1080 pixels) and about 30 times higher than 4K (3840 × 2160 pixels). Still images can be captured at a speed of approximately five frames per second even when reading all the pixels. A fast signal readout of 1.25 billion pixels per second helps to avoid the potential of any signal delay or deviation. The rapid signal readout is achieved by advancing circuit miniaturization and signal processing technology. When the Read Return on Investment (Region of Interest) feature is utilized, the frame rate of the sensor can be increased by selecting an area and reducing the amount of information to be read. If a user doesn’t need the input of every pixel, the ROI readout function allows you to read every pixel at five fps, 8K at 24 fps, 4K at 30 fps, and Full HD at 60 fps. The sensor also features a "thinning-out read function" that enables high-speed readout by reducing the number of vertical pixels to be read out of the full shooting area, allowing selection of an output data format that suits users’ needs.
The LI3030SAI (RGB-IR)/LI3030SAM (monochrome) sensor is a 35mm full-size ultra-high sensitivity CMOS sensor with a large pixel size of 19 µm that allows for image capturing in low-light environments where it can difficult for the naked eye to identify the subject. The sensor can read 2160 × 1280 pixels, which is wider than Full HD (1920 × 1080 pixels), enabling it to be a suitable solution for astronomical observation applications and the monitoring and industrial applications that require high-resolution images with a specific aspect ratio.
Compared to similar Canon models, the sensitivity of the LI3030SAI and LI3030SAM sensor is approximately 2.3 and 3 times higher in the near-infrared range, respectively. The sensitivity capabilities of the LI3030SAI allow users to see the pupil of a human-eye through sunglasses. The LI3030SAM sensitivity capabilities enable users to capture monochrome moving images and can reduce the appearance of dust, enhancing astronomical observation. By assigning one pixel of the color filter as a pixel for the near-infrared region, it is possible to simultaneously acquire color and near-infrared motion images with a single sensor even under low-light conditions. In addition, since the differences in the reflectance and absorbance of light in the near-infrared region can be detected from weak signals and the state of the inside of a substance can be observed, the sensor can be used in a wide range of industrial and medical fields. Use-case examples include long-distance monitoring at night, observation of crop growth in a wide area, inspection of foreign matter contamination in food factories, and visualization of biological tissues.
The LI7050SAC is a high resolution CMOS sensor that is ideal for security camera use because of its high sensitivity and price point. Featuring a pixel pitch of 4.1 µm and a resolution of approximately 2.12 million pixels, the sensor provides a High Dynamic Range (HDR) of equivalent to up to 20 stops with frame rates of 30fps and 60fps. What’s more, the sensor features a 54,000 green sensitivity level and can read 1936 × 1096 pixels, which is slightly higher than HD resolution.
For more information on Canon sensors including how to talk to a sales representative, please visit canon-cmos-sensors.com.
Released "LI8020SAC / LI8020SAM", an ultra-high resolution CMOS sensor with approximately 250 million pixels
October 19, 2020
Canon Marketing Japan Inc.
As a new product of APS-H size (about 29.4 x 18.9 mm) CMOS sensor, Canon will release "LI8020SAC (color) / LI8020SAM (monochrome)" capable of imaging about 250 million pixels (19,568 x 12,588 pixels) in 2020. It will be released in late October of the year.
LI8020SAC / LI8020SAM
The new product is an ultra-high resolution CMOS sensor with approximately 250 million pixels, which enables you to capture detailed information in an image while shooting a wide range. In addition, by setting the pitch of one pixel to 1.5 µm (micrometer), we have achieved approximately 250 million pixels in APS-H size, making it possible to use it for various purposes. It can be used for various purposes such as FPD (flat panel display) inspection, which has become higher definition due to the development of 4K / 8K video technology, industrial inspection, video production, digital archive, wide area surveillance, microscope, etc. Meet the needs of users.
Get detailed information even in a wide range of shooting with ultra-high resolution of about 250 million pixels
The new product is capable of imaging at ultra-high resolution of about 250 million pixels, which is about 125 times that of full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) and about 30 times that of 4K (3,840 x 2,160 pixels), and can be taken in any shooting range. Sufficient resolution can be obtained by trimming the area and enlarging it with an electronic zoom.
Achieves ultra-high-speed signal reading of approximately 1.25 billion pixels / second
With CMOS sensors, the amount of signal increases as the number of pixels increases, causing signal delays and slight timing deviations. The new product has an ultra-multi-pixel structure of approximately 250 million pixels, but by refining the circuit and advancing signal processing technology, it has achieved an ultra-high-speed signal readout of approximately 1.25 billion pixels per second. This enables ultra-high resolution imaging at a speed of approximately 5 frames / sec even when all pixels are read out.
Supports data output according to user needs with "ROI read function" etc.
The new product is equipped with a "ROI (Region of Interest) read function" that selectively reads only an arbitrary area. If you want to read only a specific area at high speed, you can use the "ROI read function" at 24 fps for 8K (7,680 x 4,320 pixels), 30 fps for 4K (3,840 x 2,160), and 60 fps for full HD (1,920 x 1,080). Video recording is possible. It also has a "thinning out reading function * " that thins out the entire image area in the vertical direction to read out, so you can select the data output method that suits your needs.
* 4 patterns of thinning are possible. 1/3 is about 15fps, 1/5 is about 25fps, 1/7 is about 35fps, and 1/9 is about 45fps.
CMOS sensor market trends
Digital technologies such as image processing are also undergoing rapid evolution as high-definition technology is advancing for FPD inspection equipment. High resolution is also required for CMOS sensors, which are the eyes of inspection equipment, and manufacturing sites are demanding inspection equipment equipped with ultra-high resolution sensors. In addition, ultra-high resolution sensors are expected to be used in applications such as wide area monitoring. (Research by Canon)
In my Canon EOS R5 and EOS R6 Setup Guide, I indicated that "Focus bracketing" and "Number of bracketed shots" were included on the My Menu tab 2. The R5 is my first daily-use camera to have this feature (one of the first Canon EOS cameras to get it), and I've been anxious to put this feature to use in the field. Remembering that the feature is now a couple of button presses away is the first in-the-field challenge.
The Mount Desert Island Historical Society beautifully maintains the Somesville Bridge, Selectmen's Building, and the surrounding grounds. This includes planter boxes that always hold attractive flowering plant arrangements in the fall. These planters beg to be included in the frame, but including the plants, the bridge, and the building in the same frame requires extreme depth of field for all details to be sharp. Extreme depth of field generally requires a very narrow aperture, and a very narrow aperture generally results in a diffraction-softened image.
Focus bracketing solves this problem.
For this picture, the focal length that best composed the scene was first selected, and the Really Right Stuff TVC-24L Mk2 Tripod with an RRS BH-40 Ball Head was moved into a somewhat awkward position to lock the composition down. ISO 100 was selected for the least noise, f/11 was selected to gain a significant depth of field for each image (f/8 would have been a good alternative in hindsight), and the shutter speed, 1/10 sec., was selected for the final exposure brightness, just bright enough to cause minor overexposed highlights on the bridge (blinking during image review). The R5's "Focus bracketing" was enabled and the "Number of bracketed shots" was set to 15.
With the lens in AF mode, the focus spot was placed over the closest subject, the ornamental cabbage flower. When the shutter release was pressed using the 2-second self-timer mode, the camera took a series of images. While I selected 15 bracketed shots in the menu, the camera knew that only four were required for this scenario.
In Canon Digital Photo Professional (DPP), the four RAW images were selected, and the Tools > Depth Compositing > Start depth compositing tool menu option was selected. The default settings were used to output a 16-bit TIFF file that only required minor adjustments unrelated to focus.
My wife thinks the cabbage is too big relative to the background elements, but moving into the street to capture a more distant view was not a good idea from a safety perspective, and that perspective would have resulted in sidewalk and other less attractive elements being included in the frame. Harder to argue against is that the flowers provide lots of color in the frame. Regardless, hopefully the ease of creating a focus bracketed image with the Canon EOS R5 and EOS R6 is illuminated.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
Earlier this week (I just returned from leading a photo workshop in Acadia National Park and am catching up), DJI announced a pair of new gimbals:
DJI’s Ronin Series Grows Stronger, Lighter, and Smarter with New DJI RS 2 and RSC 2 Gimbals
Two Stabilization Systems Offer Reworked Designs and New Creative Functions to Become Workhorses for Filmmakers and Content Creators
October 14, 2020 – DJI, the global leader in civilian drones and creative camera technology, today expands the legacy of the highly popular and prestigious DJI Ronin series, by introducing the rebranded DJI RS 2 and DJI RSC 2. Redesigned and reimagined, both systems offer the filmmaking and content creation community an extremely robust, versatile, and professional 3-axis camera gimbal for their various needs. DJI RS 2 brings added strength and agility to creators using heavier camera systems such as DSLR and compact cinema cameras. At the same time, DJI RSC 2 was created to be more portable, meeting the needs of mirrorless and more compact camera operators.
“DJI’s first Ronin-S and the original Ronin-SC created so much excitement when they launched that we immediately went back to the drawing board to figure out how to make our products even better,” said Paul Pan, Senior Product Line Manager. “Just like with the first version, we took time to research how our professional customers use their Ronin products and what new features they wanted in the next generation of a handheld gimbal. Yet again, the result is the culmination of user feedback, years of design and development, and significant advancements in stabilization technology. Now we are excited to showcase two new filmmaking tools designed to meet the needs of a wide array of filmmakers. From cinema cameras to mirrorless systems, we have a solution for you.”
DJI RS 2: Masterfully Crafted
Considering a tremendous amount of feedback from professional operators, DJI RS 2 incorporates carbon fiber in vital structural components, reducing weight down to 1.3 kg (2.86 lbs) while remaining highly durable. Pushing the innovation of single-handed gimbal technology even further, DJI RS 2 now supports a tested dynamic payload of 4.5 kg (10 lbs) for creators to use heavier camera and lens combinations while still achieving up to 12 hours of battery life. A new quick-charge function directly to the battery handle has been added for urgent situations, providing an extra two hours of battery life with just a 15-minute charge.
DJI RS 2 continues pushing gimbal technology forward with the ability to support heavier payloads while capturing ultra-smooth cinematic footage. Based on years of experience developing predictive technology, a newly optimized Titan Stabilization Algorithm reduces the need for manual user input while compensating for user movement and optimizing the gimbal tilt and angle. Additionally, a new SuperSmooth mode provides another level of camera stability, especially for compensating longer focal length lenses of up to 100mm.
Simple to set up, easy to operate, and highly customizable, DJI RS 2 was created to allow filmmakers to adapt their system to their filming needs while feeling confident it will easily integrate into their workflow. Axis locks enable easier transportation and balancing, while a dual-layer camera mounting plate is compatible with both the Arca-Swiss and Manfrotto standard. A fine-tune balancing knob allows for even more precise balancing of the camera payload. The built-in 1.4” color touchscreen can display camera data, gimbal settings, or a live feed from the camera. Supporting 11 different languages, the ultra-bright screen can also initiate key functions such as ActiveTrack and intelligent shooting modes. The built-in front dial above the trigger allows for precise focus control and complements a DJI Focus Wheel mounted on the RSA port to create two-channel focus and zoom. DJI RS 2 also turns into a versatile tool that can be attached and used with other systems such as jibs, car attachments, and sliders. Two RSA ports double as NATO ports so that users can mount accessories and attachments such as grips and a remote controller.
DJI RSC 2: Filmmaking Unfolds
A completely new and portable folding design makes DJI RSC 2 easy for creators to carry everywhere without adding additional weight to the gear list. Additionally, the folding design provides creative ways to use the gimbal such as vertical filming without additional accessories, as well as a new Briefcase mode, where the main gimbal arm can be loosened and slung forward to provide unique shooting angles. Durable materials like steel are used on vital and frequently used components, while lightweight materials such as aluminum reduce overall weight. DJI RSC 2 weighs in at 1.2 kg (2.65 lbs), nearly 35% less than the original Ronin-S, and has a folding footprint of 180×190 mm, the same size as a sheet of A5 paper. The built-in battery offers an impressive 12 hours of battery life and – like DJI RS 2 – the new quick-charge function directly to the battery handle has been added for urgent situations.
DJI RSC 2 remains lightweight and portable, featuring stronger motors to support a tested payload of up to 3 kg (6.6 lbs). This increased dynamic payload supports popular mirrorless cameras along with heavier combinations like the Panasonic S1H and a 24-70mm lens. Using the same advanced technology as DJI RS 2, the newly optimized Titan Stabilization Algorithm generates a new level of stability – smoothing out fine details in conjunction with the motorized gimbal for some of the most advanced stabilization on the market. DJI RSC 2 is compatible with a wide array of camera models so users can get the most out of the system. Axis locks enable easier transportation and balancing, while a dual-layer camera mounting plate is compatible with both the Arca-Swiss and Manfrotto standard. A 1” built-in OLED screen displays camera data with the ability to adjust settings directly.
Multifaceted Gimbals Supported by an Advanced App and Accessories
DJI RS 2 and RSC 2 were designed to expand beyond single-handed stabilization into tools that can be customized with additional accessories to achieve the desired shot. These accessories include a cheese plate, Focus Wheel, 3D Focus System, Twist Grip Dual Handle, RavenEye Image Transmission System, Tethered Control Handle, counterweight systems, and more. For remote operation, both DJI RS 2 and DJI RSC 2 can use ActiveTrack 3.0 when the RavenEye Image Transmission System is connected, sending a 1080p/30fps low-latency feed to a mobile device using the Ronin app from up to 200 meters away.
Vital features and functions can now be controlled and adjusted over long distances with the Ronin app such as gimbal movement using the virtual joystick and Force Mobile, where the gimbal mimics the mobile device’s movement. For solo operators using manual-focus lenses, the 3D Focus System uses state-of-the-art TOF sensors mounted above the camera to provide autofocus. This enables a single shooter to capture smooth and cinematic footage using a manual lens, without relying on a second camera operator or focus puller.
Pre-Programmed Movements and Features That Make Stories Come to Life
DJI RS 2 and RSC 2 expand on their predecessors’ suite of creative modes, movements, and features with tools to help capture content that stands out, including:
DJI Care Refresh
DJI Care Refresh is now available for both DJI RSC 2 and RS 2. For an additional charge, DJI Care Refresh offers comprehensive coverage as well as up to two replacement units within one year. Receive your replacement even sooner with DJI Care Refresh Express. DJI Care Refresh also includes VIP after-sales support and free two-way shipping. For a full list of details, please visit https://www.dji.com/service/djicare-refresh.
Price and Availability
DJI RS 2 and DJI RS 2 are available for purchase today from authorized retailers and on www.store.dji.com. Each product offers purchase options for a standalone gimbal and a combination pack that includes additional accessories. The standalone DJI RS 2 is available for the retail price of $849 USD, and the standalone DJI RSC 2 is available at the retail price of $499 USD. The Pro Combo includes additional accessories such as a phone holder, Focus Motor, RavenEye Image Transmitter, dedicated carrying case, and more. The DJI RS 2 Pro Combo is priced at $999 USD, and the DJI RSC 2 Pro Combo is priced at $739 USD. Full details on this can be found below.
Learn more at B&H Explora
 Compatibility varies by camera model. Please check the Ronin Series Compatibility Search at www.dji.com.
 The 3D Focus System will be available at a later date after launch.
 Time Tunnel for DJI RSC 2 will be available at a later date via firmware update.
From Think Tank Photo:
With every good story, there’s often a better backstory.
The same is true with the BackStory Series of camera backpacks.
The BackStory’s rear-panel opening offers complete access to your gear while a top panel provides quick access to your camera and speeds your workflow. A deep front compartment with zippered mesh pockets has ample room for personal gear, including a 10” tablet and laptop (size specific). And with its plush shoulder harness and removable waist belt, the BackStory is comfortable enough to wear all day.
Think Tanks Photo's gear is top quality, and now is your chance to score some awesome gear at a big discount.
You'll get a free gift and free shipping when using our links for your purchase ($50.00 minimum purchase required).
The day before my arrival, still late summer, Rocky Mountain National Park received a wintry weather blast that included a snowstorm. With a clearing storm forecasted for the next morning, heading to a high elevation mountain lake for a dramatic landscape image seemed the right plan. That excitement ended abruptly. Instead of an amazing set of landscape images, I was delivered dense cloud cover, continuous snow, and brutal winds.
However, the sunset conditions easily made up for the AM troubles. The wind became still, and the remaining clouds took on great color.
There are times in the field when you know that you are capturing an image that you will be excited about. This was one of those times. I quickly shot a variety of images from my rock perch, capturing bracketed exposures, varying the focal length, and fine-tuning the composition. This selected image was a single exposure captured at an extremely wide 12mm focal length, enabling the large rocks on the lower right side of the frame to be included along with the high clouds and their reflections. A fully-level camera keeps especially the trees on the left side of the frame straight.
What do I like least about this composition? The wide-angle focal length makes the distant mountain appear small in relation to the foreground. I decided that there was enough valuable supporting detail in the frame to offset that deficit (and I zoomed in to capture that image also).
Unknown to me this evening was that the snowstorm had cleaned the air of wildfire smoke and that this would be the last time I would see an even marginally photogenic sunrise or sunset for the duration of my time in Colorado.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
Is the Canon EOS R5 a good wildlife camera? Absolutely.
I had the opportunity to select any camera available for an over-two-week wildlife photo trip. My choice? The pair of Canon EOS R5 bodies already in my kit, and I am left extremely impressed as I review the images from this trip.
Here are 7 reasons why I find the Canon EOS R5 to be the ultimate wildlife camera:
1. The AF System Rocks, Especially the Animal Eye AF Feature
Most notably, the eye-in-focus rate from the EOS R5 was considerably higher than my experience with any camera prior. Keeping a wildlife subject's eye in focus is a critical challenge of wildlife photography, and keeping the ideal focus point on a wildlife subject's eye is a key to that challenge. When a bird or animal turns its head, the ideal composition typically changes just as fast as the head turned, often requiring the AF point to be moved completely across the frame. Swimming ducks can change directions almost instantly. Too often, the subject changes position again before the AF point is in the required new position. Hence, the shots are missed.
In a large percentage of scenarios, the R5's animal eye AF system eliminates the AF point challenge, permitting the photographer to concentrate on proper scene framing with the eye being tracked throughout nearly the entire frame. I have photographed a variety of birds and animals with the R5, including whitetail and mule deer, elk, moose, coyote, ground squirrels, turkeys (ever try to focus on a feeding turkey's head?), green herons, magpies, whistling swans, frogs, and even stuffed animals. The only subject in that list to confound the R5's animal eye AF enough for me to not trust using it nearly 100% of the time was the moose, and with the dark hair surrounding that animal's eye, it is hard to fault the R5 for that one.
Even when not using eye AF, this camera's AI Servo AF tracked moving subjects very accurately
2. The Frame Rate is Fast
Animals move, and capturing the ideal body, leg, and wing position can be critical. The challenge is even greater when multiple subjects are in the frame. Capturing the movement sequence can also be desired. Even when the subjects are standing still (or bedded), there can still be movement in the frame. A drip of water falling from a duck's bill can make the difference between a good shot and a great shot. A moose's big eyebrow lifting even slightly can allow a catchlight or a larger catchlight, increasing the value of the image. If the eye goes closed during a blink (I'm amazed at my ability to time a single shot with a bird closing its necessitating membrane), the image is not likely as attractive to me as an alert, open eye. A fast frame rate can catch the pinnacle point in time.
Fully supporting the fast frame write is the deep buffer coupled with the fast card write speed. Even when writing to SD cards, I barely reached the buffer full state only once.
3. The EVF is Excellent with Lack of Blackout
When shooting in continuous mode, electronic viewfinders typically freeze or blackout while each frame is being captured, and it is very difficult to track a moving subject without being able to see it. The R5 does not have that problem. In addition, the resolution of this EVF is high enough to be able to see when a catchlight appears in the animal's eye along with other important details.
4. The Image Quality is Excellent, Ultra-High Resolution Included
The R5 delivers crisp, high-resolution image quality that is ready to be printed large, and when focal length limited in the field, the EOS R5 provides adequate resolution to crop deeply.
5. The Grip is Adequately-Sized and Comfortable
Spending many hours a day with the camera in hand was not unusual on this trip, and having a significantly-sized, expensive lens hanging from it was the norm. A sore hand developing could cause problems for the remaining days, and a grip slip could spell doom for especially the lens, a big problem when a replacement is not readily available. I find the R5 grip to be comfortable and sure.
6. The Weather Sealing and Build Quality can Save the Day
While the R5 is not built up to the standard of Canon's 1-series cameras, it is solidly built with good weather sealing. The weather is not controllable, and when photographing wildlife, unfavorable conditions are not uncommon. I photographed in a snowstorm in CO, and while photographing moose in Alaska, it was raining lightly nearly the entire time. Sometimes I used a rain cover in AK, but not always.
That this camera is relatively light is a definite bonus when it is being carried for many hours and many miles.
7. The Controls are Intuitive and Customizable
The faster I can adjust the camera settings that are important to me, the faster I can get back in the game. The set of controls provided on the R5 are just right for changing the important wildlife photography-related settings, especially with the M-Fn button programmed to provide the ideal subset of options.
I was fortunate to spend nearly 7 hours with the Rocky Mountain National Park bull elk in the image accompanying this post. Few elk have antlers that are larger, more symmetrical, and more perfectly shaped than his set. My time with this brute included the dreaded mid-day hours where harsh shadows and heat waves tend to rule. Amazingly, the edge of a large cloud remained still, blocking the sun during nearly this entire time. The provided light was bright and soft while the heatwave issue was significantly reduced. In this case, the denser portion of the cloud darkened the background, providing a high contrast that, along with the shallow depth of field from the Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS III USM Lens, makes the subject stand out.
I prefer to photograph wildlife at their level and often like to be even lowered than eye level to give them a larger appearance (and increase the odds of a catchlight appearing). The low flora in this meadow accommodated a squatted shooting level nicely.
Is the R5's battery life adequate? The pair of Canon LP-E6NH packs in the Canon BG-R10 Battery Grip delivered 4,300 images before giving up on this day. It is easy to add another battery or two to a pocket if this volume is not adequate for your needs.
How do EF lenses perform on the Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R? After mounting the adapter, I forgot that it was there. The lens seemed normal during use, and the R5 delivered a considerably higher in-focus rate than I am used to.
Get your Canon EOS R5:
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr where it looks considerably better.
I've just returned from 17 days of field testing in some great locations with the Canon EOS R5 (best camera ever), Canon RF 100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM Lens (awesome lens), and an assortment of other gear.
A solid set of images of this huge Alaska Yukon moose was the reward for packing gear nearly three miles into the Alaska mountains. On this afternoon, the cloudy sky created soft, shoot-from-any-direction lighting, and the light rain saturated the fall-colored foliage and hemlock backdrop. I couldn't have scripted a scenario much better than this.
Working in the thick forest meant a zoom focal length was required clear obstructions while facilitating ideal framing that included, at times, a significant amount of the environment around the subject(s). The need to move and work fast meant there was no time for tripod setup. While the RF 100-500 does not have the widest aperture, its image stabilization system coordinating with the R5's in-body image stabilization meant that nearly all of my images were sharp. I came away very impressed and have been re-training my brain to shoot handheld at longer shutter speeds throughout the trip. That is when the animal was motionless.
When photographing wildlife, I usually use manual exposure mode with the aperture wide open (unless the scenario dictates otherwise) along with auto ISO. These settings enable the top dial to be quickly rolled to the minimum shutter speed required to stop any camera or subject motion (or until ISO 100 is reached) in the current shooting scenario. Often, after getting the insurance shots with a relatively fast shutter speed, I capture images at progressively longer exposures attempting to better what has already been captured. Exposure compensation was adjusted as appropriate as moose are very dark animals, encouraging the camera to overexpose the scene.
For this shoot (and for most wildlife photography), AI Servo AF was used, readying the camera for any movement the animal makes. For the moose photos, touch and drag AF was used with the small AF point selected. While this camera's animal eye AF is awesome (game-changing for most wildlife photography, including birds), the black around the moose's eye caused animal eye AF challenge enough times that I opted for the also-good alternative selection method. When I did my job correctly, nearly all images were focused correctly.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr (with the catchlight in the eye much more visible).
We don't cover Olympus products here at this time, but it is still interesting to keep up on the industry news. From Olympus:
September 30, 2020
Olympus Agreed on Transfer of Imaging Business with JIP
Tokyo, September 30, 2020 – Olympus Corporation (“Olympus”) today concluded a definitive agreement with Japan Industrial Partners Inc. (“JIP”) regarding the transfer of the Olympus Imaging business. Under the agreement, Olympus will transfer its Imaging business to a newly established wholly-owned subsidiary of Olympus (the "New Imaging Company"), through an absorption-type split. This is to be followed by transferring 95% of the shares of the New Imaging Company on January 1, 2021, to OJ Holdings, Ltd., a special purpose company established by JIP.
Olympus began the manufacture and sale of cameras using the Zuiko lens in 1936 and became one of the world’s leading camera makers. Olympus was among the first companies to make small, lightweight compact cameras with professional quality, such as the award-winning Olympus ‘OM’ and ‘Pen’ series. Driven by the desire to make people's lives more fulfilling around the world, the company applied innovative technology and unique product development to distinguish itself in a highly competitive industry.
In recent years, however, the market has shrunk rapidly due to the evolution of smartphones, leading to a significant downturn for the digital camera market globally. Despite taking various steps to improve its cost structure and efficiency, Olympus’ Imaging business recorded operating losses for three consecutive fiscal years up to March 2020.
Under such circumstances, Olympus concluded that, by carving-out the Imaging business and operating the business under JIP, its business structure would become more compact, efficient, and agile, and it is the most appropriate way to realize self-sustainable and continuous growth. With a loyal following and long history of innovative products, the New Imaging Company would be committed to building on Olympus’ accumulated expertise and to continue providing customers with innovative, high quality cameras under the new business structure.
“I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to all our customers for their patronage and support of Olympus products, and for their passion devoted to photography. I have the utmost confidence that this transfer is the correct step forward in sustaining the value of our products and services,” said Yasuo Takeuchi, President and CEO of Olympus Corporation.
“At the same time, I am certain that this opportunity is the best choice for our long-time patrons, new customers and photography enthusiasts. Under the new company, the development, manufacturing, sales and service functions will continue tight collaboration to introduce new products that will satisfy customers,” Takeuchi added.
The agreement applies to Olympus’ global Imaging business, which includes all R&D and manufacturing facilities currently dedicated to its Imaging business. The New Imaging Company will continue to provide high-quality, highly reliable products. Built on a solid foundation, including the Zuiko and OM brands, which are grounded in optics and digital imaging technologies cultivated by Olympus over many years, the New Imaging Company will be appropriately positioned to further pursue new developments.
Head of sales and marketing, R&D and designing departments for imaging products will be relocated to the headquarters of the New Imaging Company in Hachioji, Tokyo. Production will continue at the location in Dong Nai province, Vietnam, where imaging products are currently manufactured. The New Imaging Company will continue to provide customer support for the imaging products which have been manufactured and sold by Olympus.
Following the transfer of the Imaging business, Olympus will concentrate on Medical and Scientific Solutions, in our ongoing efforts toward making people's lives healthier, safer and more fulfilling.
Information on the New Imaging Company is as follows.
For the details about the company split and the transfer of shares, please refer our corporate disclosure “Signing of Definitive Agreement for Divestiture of Imaging Business.” (https://www.olympus-global.com/news/ir/2020/)
On my last afternoon in Alaska, I spent some time with professional photographer Michael Mauro. Check out our conversation in the latest, just-released edition of the Wild and Exposed podcast.
While there, sign up for a free Wild and Exposed podcast subscription, featuring "Tales from the Wilderness".
Friend of the site Manuel Delgado shares: LaCie 1big Dock SSD Pro Review
When speed is important, this drive is a great option.
From the "Interesting" department:
"Crews at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have taken the first 3,200-megapixel digital photos—the largest ever taken in a single shot—with an extraordinary array of imaging sensors that will become the heart and soul of the future camera of Vera C. Rubin Observatory."
Learn more about this expensive camera here. (thanks Trent)
I recently shared an adapter modification that permitted Canon RF extenders to be used behind all (most?) Canon EF lenses — and Canon EF lens and EF extender combinations. The next idea was to push the overall focal length using double extenders.
The image shared with this article shows the following setup, from right to left, then down:
Doing the math:
600mm x 2 x 2 = 2400mm
That is an impressive focal length.
I originally inserted a Canon EF 12mm Extension Tube II behind the EF 2x, enabling a Canon EF 1.4x III Extender to be added to the optical path. That addition would have resulted in an awesome 3360mm lens, but the extension tube broke the electronic connection required for this lens to focus, even manually. The resulting combination was useless, aside from looking amazing.
Back to the 2400mm setup. The second equation this combination creates is considerably less exciting:
F/4 - 2 stops - 2 stops = f/16
The first equation results in an incredible number that is offset to some extent by the result of the second equation. Remarkable is that the EOS R5 focuses this combination very quickly in good light, avoiding focus hunting if the subject is not too significantly out of focus. Keeping a 2400mm lens still enough for sharp images remains a challenge, and with two 2x extenders in the optical path, this rig is not too sharp. Here is a 100% crop processed from a RAW image in Canon Digital Photo Professional (DPP) using the Standard Picture Style with Sharpness = "1" (0-10 scale).
On the fun side of the equation, the awkwardly-shaped 92.7% waning moon nearly fills the 2400mm frame. At this magnification, the thermal irregularities in Earth's atmosphere are apparent even in the viewfinder. And, the moon has to be tracked continuously to keep it centered in the frame (after the challenge of finding it in the frame has been met).
Photos often represent our most important memories—from everyday moments to the biggest events in our lives—and it should be easy for you to access them in Google Photos and beyond. Since launching our Google Photos partner program two years ago, we’ve worked with hundreds of partners to build high-quality and secure integrations so that you can enjoy your photos and videos in more of the products and services you use. With Google Photos you can create prints and photo books with Popsa, digitize your memories with YesVideo, display your photos on a Nixplay Smart Photo Frame and more.
If you own a DSLR or point-and-shoot camera, you know that getting your photos backed up can be a process. You often need cables or adapters to take them off of your camera or SD card and save them, and it might take a number of steps to get it all done. We’ve worked with Canon so you can easily upload the moments captured on your Canon devices directly to Google Photos over Wi-Fi—no plugging in your camera or taking out your SD card.
With the latest version of the image.canon app (available on Android or iOS) and a compatible Canon camera, you can choose to automatically transfer original quality photos to Google Photos, eliminating the hassle of using your computer or phone to back them up.
In addition to a compatible Canon camera and the image.canon app, you’ll also need a Google One membership to use this feature. To help get started, Canon users will get one month of Google One free, providing access to up to 100 GB of cloud storage, as well as other member benefits, such as premium support from Google experts and family sharing.
So whether you’re backing up your photos from your Canon camera, printing with Popsa or digitizing your memories with YesVideo, Google Photos can help. Head over to our Works with Google Photos site to learn about the hundreds of apps and services you can use to get the most out of your photos.
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The Canon EOS R5 arrived just in time to capture the spectacular night show Comet NEOWISE was providing. Sorry that the noise test results for this camera were delayed by a day, but this was an opportunity I couldn't pass up (at least I waited until after the R5 review was finished to process this image).
The first challenging comet photography decision to make was the desired composition. Including landscape or filling the frame with the comet were the options, and the latter option was chosen. After determining that NEOWISE would nearly fill a 200mm frame, the Canon EF 200mm f/2L IS USM Lens was the chosen lens. The wide f/2 aperture is excellent for use in the dark, and the impressive sharpness of this lens at f/2 means that stars (over 7,000 software-recognized in this frame) remain pin sharp.
The next decision was whether or not to utilize an equatorial tracking mount. A 200mm lens directed at the comet's location in the sky with an ultra-high-resolution imaging sensor behind the lens meant that relatively short images, about 2 seconds, were the limit before star trails became noticeable. On the equatorial mount, 13-second images showed no motion, and this was the option taken. Though the 200 f/2L is rather heavy for the Sky-Watcher Star Adventurer Astro Package, this affordable mount along with the Star Adventurer Mini Latitude (EQ) Base and Counterweight Kit were up to this task. With that much weight riding on it, this mount works best on a solid tripod, and the Robus RC-8860 Vantage Carbon Fiber Tripod was a perfect choice. B&H had just sent me a Robus RTH-1050 Ball Head. It works great, so that option was mounted on the Sky-Watcher.
The R5 was set to manual exposure with 13 seconds, f/2, and ISO 1250 selected. High-speed continuous shooting in 1st curtain shutter mode (this is where I learned that the full electronic shutter does not allow exposures longer than 0.5-seconds). A Canon Timer Remote Controller TC-80N3 was plugged in, and its shutter release was locked on. With the Star-Watcher Star Adventurer polar aligned, the lens framing the comet, including the extensive tail that was not readily seen in the viewfinder, and the camera continuously capturing images, I walked away, watching the comet through binoculars and enjoying a bowl of ice cream.
Despite the night having a clear forecast, clouds showed up in the frame a significant amount of the time prior to the comet setting (while the rest of the sky remained clear). Fortunately, 45 images captured contiguously were able to be made cloud-free with slight cropping. 45 x 13 seconds = 9.75 minutes of exposure, long enough to produce a nearly noise-free image and long enough to capture the color in the ion tail.
While the air traffic is not currently as strong as usual, more satellites than ever are in the sky. Nearly every image had at least one satellite, and some photos had as many as three satellites streaking through. I opted to crop out the clouds before processing the RAW image into 16-bit TIFF files and then removed the streaks using the healing brush tool in Photoshop.
The next task was to stack the images. Stacking comet images is a level of challenge higher than stacking star images due to the comet moving at a slightly different rate than the stars. I know, it is the earth that moves the most, but from an earth-bound perspective, the stars and comet are moving. Stack the comet, and the stars become streaked. Stack the stars, and the comet is stretched. Fortunately, some very smart people created DeepSkyStacker software with an option to align both the comet and the stars.
DeepSkyStacker does a superb job, but you would not know that when looking at the default image created. The low-contrast 32-bit image requires "stretching", contrast significantly increased with colors pulled out. The only adjustments made to this image were contrast (levels and curves to stretch the low contrast 32-bit stacked image), saturation (+10 and -60 in PS), and a white balance adjustment (cooled the image slightly).
I love NEOWISE's colored ion tail, pushed away from the sun by solar winds and separated from the dust tail. BTW, the name NEOWISE uses all capital letters because it is an acronym, named after the device that discovered it.
Now, NEOSWISE is gone, effectively, forever. Comet NEOWISE was awesome but will not be seen again for another 6,800 years. Hopefully, another comet will entertain us in the night sky long before that.
The larger version of this image available on Flickr looks considerably better.
Evil has found Canon USA. Bleeping Computer is reporting that Canon USA has suffered a significant ransomeware attack. Read the full report here.
Affected Canon USA websites include:
I recommend reading this one — Breakthrough always supports its claims. Also, be sure to compare prices.
From Breakthrough Filters:
“Breakthrough R” Drop-In Filter System for Canon R-series cameras.
San Francisco, California – Breakthrough Filters today unveiled a new drop-in filter system called “Breakthrough R”, comprising 27 filters designed specially for Canon R-series cameras, such as the Canon R5 and R6. Every filter manufactured by Breakthrough Filters is now available as a “R” drop-in filter, including a number of all-new filters such as the world's first Variable ND which covers 2 to 11-stops, without an "X Pattern", Black & White Polarizers and Infrared.
“Breakthrough R” Drop-In Filters feature a rugged, weather-sealed construction designed to withstand the elements with dust and water resistance. And to make identifying filters fast and easy, each filter is color coded. Multiple “Breakthrough R” filters are easily stored in an all-new compact travel friendly cases that fits up to 5 filters. And an improved, larger adjustment wheel makes fine tuning polarization smoother than before.
Largest Selection of Drop-In Filters
The new “Breakthrough R” Drop-In filter system has a wide range of 27 filters to choose from – Neutral Density, Polarizers, Dark CPLs, Infrared, Night Sky, VNDs and Black and White Polarizers.
X4 CPL Performance: Highest Transmission, Lowest Color Cast
Performance is critical to pros, whether they’re shooting detailed landscape images or 8K video. The X4 CPL is the most color neutral polarizer, with an unrivaled light transmission of 50.24%.
When compared to industry leading filter manufacturers of both circular and drop-in polarizers, the X4 CPL R ranks number one for light transmission and color cast performance, followed only by the Canon Drop-In CPL at 43.06%.
The result of a higher light transmission is faster shutter speeds, which can translate into sharper images and the ability to use a lower ISO when shooting video.
X4 Neutral Density Performance: Sharpest and Most Color Neutral ND Filters
Canon does not currently offer solid ND drop-in filters, however, optical performance of the X4 ND exceeds industry leading manufacturers such as Singh-Ray, B+W, Lee and many others. The X4 ND has the most neutral color transmission throughout the visible range and well into infrared.
X4 ND R filters are available individually or as part of a set and come in 3, 6, 10, 15 and 20-stop densities.
Dark CPLs, Night Sky and Infrared
Breakthrough Filters is announcing a number of other “Breakthrough R” filters available for pre-order, including Dark CPL R in 3, 6 or 10-stop densities. The Night Sky R drop-in filter eliminates artificial light pollution between 570 and 610 nanometers within the visible light spectrum and the Infrared 720 R drop-in Infrared filter cuts visible light up to 720 nanometers.
Breakthrough VND-R: World's Largest Density Range
Breakthrough Filters is announcing a VND filter system with the largest density range of 2 to 16-stops, which comprises two filters: VND-R and Dark VND-R.
The VND-R is the first Variable ND to feature 2 to 11-stops in one filter – without the "X Pattern". The effective density range of the Dark VND-R is 10-16-stops, with one stop of overlap between VNDs.
To limit the negative consequences of the "X Pattern" caused by cross-polarization, brands of Variable ND filters make numerous VND filters, each with a small density range, thereby requiring numerous VNDs to cover a large density range.
For the first time, the VND-R Filter System allows photographers and filmmakers to make exposure changes faster and more conveniently without the need to constantly change filters.
Comparing color and transmission performance of the many Variable ND filters on the market, the Canon Drop-In VND performs impressively, easily outperforming every Variable ND on the market for color cast and overall transmission performance, ranking second only to the Breakthrough VND-R.
Even on super-wide lenses such as the Canon 11-24mm, Sigma 12-24mm, Tamron 15-35mm, the VND-R and Dark VND-R perform exceptionally well without any visible "X Pattern".
The VND-R and Dark VND-R are available for pre-order individually or as a "VND-R Set".
Black & White Polarizers
In Black & White photography a circular polarizer is often stacked with colored filters, however with the all-new Black & White Polarizers the photographer is able to achieve the same result with a single filter.
Yellow, Red, Orange and Green Polarizers can be purchased individually, or bought as a set, and is available for pre-order.
Pricing and Availability
Watch for this: Breakthrough Photography will soon be introducing a weather sealed EF to RF Drop-In Filter Mount Adapter.
Canon and Sony have both introduced new instant savings promotions today. The best time to buy new Canon and Sony gear is when instant savings is available, and made obvious in this round is that promotions (especially on lenses) can change.
Canon R-series camera owners (and those planning to be an R-owner) should pay special attention to the four RF lenses included in this promotion.
|Canon EOS-1D X Mark II||$1,500.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 5Ds||$200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 5D Mark IV||$150.00 - $200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 6D Mark II||$200.00 - $400.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 7D Mark II||$250.00 - $450.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 90D||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 80D||$100.00 - $550.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS 77D||Up to $600.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS Rebel T7i / 800D||$100.00 - $350.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS Rebel T6 / 1300D||$150.00 - $200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS Rebel SL3 / 250D||$100.00 - $200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS R||$200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EOS M50||$50.00 - $120.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM Lens||$220.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 11-24mm f/4L USM Lens||$300.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM Lens||$300.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Lens||$280.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM Lens||$50.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM Lens||$50.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM Lens||$20.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM Lens||$50.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens||$70.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8 L IS USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon RF 24-240mm F4-6.3 IS USM Lens||$200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon RF 35mm F1.8 IS STM Macro Lens||$50.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony a7R IV||$300.00 - $600.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony a7R III||$300.00 - $600.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony a7R II||$400.00 - $600.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony a7 III||$100.00 - $300.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS Lens||$200.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Sony FE 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G OSS Lens||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon Speedlite 600EX II-RT Flash||$100.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
|Canon Speedlite 430EX III-RT Flash||$50.00||B&H | Adorama | Amazon|
Manfrotto has announced a pair of new gimbals and a boom using their new Fast technology.
Check these out at B&H:
Also check out the new Manfrotto Fast Tripods.
From Nikon USA:
EMBARK ON THE FULL-FRAME MIRRORLESS JOURNEY: NIKON UNVEILS THE Z 5, AN INNOVATIVE AND FEATURE-RICH MIRRORLESS FX-FORMAT CAMERA FOR EMERGING CREATORS
Nikon Expands the NIKKOR Z Lens Lineup with the Addition of the Extremely Compact and Versatile NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 as well as the new Z TELECONVERTER TC-2.0X and TC-1.4X; Nikon Also Announces Free Webcam Utility
MELVILLE, NY –
Today, Nikon Inc. announced the Z 5, the new full-frame (FX-format) entry-point into its award-winning lineup of Z series mirrorless cameras. The Nikon Z 5 combines sophisticated features inherited from the Z 7 and Z 6 with the benefits of Nikon’s next generation Z mount at an unprecedented value. For those new to mirrorless or creators looking to push the limits of their craft with the power of full-frame, the compact Z 5 will exceed expectations. With an incredibly robust feature set, including in-camera vibration reduction (VR) image stabilization (IBIS) and the perfect balance of seamless automation and full manual control, creators can effortlessly share their artistic passions, travel adventures and so much more.
Nikon also unveiled the new NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3, the shortest, lightest and most affordable full-frame zoom lens in the NIKKOR Z lineup. Designed for on-the-go creators, the 24-50mm lens is the ideal companion for Z series users who want to capture it all – from vast landscapes and cityscapes, to street photography and striking portraits.
“The Nikon Z 5 offers the next generation of creators a gateway into the full-frame Z series lineup, opening the door to the limitless possibilities of mirrorless photo and video capture, while providing the means to share their creativity with others,” said Jay Vannatter, Executive Vice President, Nikon Inc. “With the addition of the NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3, Nikon is introducing the smallest full-frame NIKKOR Z lens to date, providing an extremely lightweight, versatile option to help users pursue all creative endeavors, regardless of which Z series camera they use.”
Nikon Z 5: The Full-Frame Journey Starts Here
As the new entry point to Nikon’s full-frame mirrorless lineup, the Nikon Z 5 offers a lot of power and capabilities at an attractive price, empowering the next generation to begin their journey with the confidence to learn and grow as creators.
Incredible Image Quality: Featuring a powerful FX-format 24.3-megapixel CMOS sensor, the Z 5 is the gateway to the benefits of full-frame, helping creators to capture intensely detailed images, ultra-shallow depth of field and clean low-light shots with unrivaled consistency. From portraits that flatter, nighttime landscapes that astound and street shots that impress, the gorgeous tones, faithful colors, minimal noise, and revered Nikon color science all play a part to help users capture images that are true to their vision.
High Speed Performance and Processing: Engineered with the EXPEED 6, Nikon’s fastest image processor to date, the Z 5 is a dependable, high-performance tool designed for content creation. EXPEED 6 allows for a boost in processing power and energy efficiency while rendering subtle textures and small details with amazing results.
Stellar Low-Light Performance: With an ISO range up to 51,200 (expandable to 102,400), the camera effectively reduces noise, maintaining both high sensitivity and resolution to excel in low-light situations, making it ideal for shooting everything from low-light events to an all-nighter under the Milky Way.
Capture with Speed: With shutter speeds up to 1/8000, the Z 5 can capture fast-moving subjects with clarity including fast-action sports and wildlife. This higher maximum shutter speed enables photographers to better tame even the brightest mid-day light to unleash the potential of fast-aperture NIKKOR glass. When the moment strikes, the camera can also capture full resolution bursts at 4.5 fps with full AF/AE.
Silent and Smooth: The combination of the camera’s silent photography mode and In-Body 5-Axis VR stabilization provides quiet, stable shooting to document sensitive moments without distractions.
Vast Lens Selection: Whether shooting glamorous portraits from a studio on the sidewalk, long-distance wildlife, epic wide landscapes in the field or street photography, the growing lineup of NIKKOR Z lenses provides Z 5 users the versatility to capture incredible shots with sharpness across the frame and superior light gathering in any situation. For even more flexibility, the vast array of traditional F-mount NIKKOR lenses can be used via the Mount Adapter FTZ to enhance images with a unique focal length or beautiful bokeh, while gaining the benefits of in-body stabilization.
Dual UHS-II SD Card Slots: Equipped with two UHS-II card slots for overflow, backup or separating RAW and JPEG photos, the Z 5 enables photographers to shoot with extreme confidence when using widely available consumer SD cards.
Simple Yet Sophisticated for Expanding Creativity
A great option for emerging creators getting started, the Nikon Z 5 is packed with powerful tools and user-friendly controls to help users explore and capture their artistry with ease.
Focus Anywhere: The Z 5 boasts 2731 on-sensor AF points, to quickly and accurately track subjects throughout the frame, while Eye-Detection AF capabilities help precisely capture the eyes of humans and animals. The wide array of AF points covers nearly the entire frame, and multiple AF modes allows the user to have pinpoint control or fully automatic assurance to easily lock onto a subject.
Easily Shift Gears: The Nikon Z 5 offers the ability to effortlessly switch between manual mode for the ultimate in control, as well as a large variety of automatic creative modes to help mirrorless users capture truly distinct images and video.
Creativity Built-in: Equipped with 20 Creative Picture Controls, and advanced features like Focus Shift Shooting and multiple exposure mode, users can compose unique images, produce extraordinary depth of field, or combine several shots and layer images on top of each other with the in-camera image overlay function.
Advanced Video Capture: The Z 5 makes it easy to document any creative vision in 4K UHD/30p2 or in 1080/60p (full-frame). When recording video, the PDAF system is rapid to react, allowing users to quickly lock critical focus on subjects, and is fully customizable to fit any production style. In-camera VR image stabilization and electronic VR reliably eliminate the shake when shooting video, plus users get the added benefit of focus peaking and the ability to capture stills while recording.
Flexible Recording Modes: In addition to the traditional interval timer and in-camera time-lapse modes, the Nikon Z 5 is equipped with a new Time-Lapse Movie mode that gives users the best of both worlds for more streamlined movie making – the ability to use images from interval timer mode and create a time-lapse in-camera.
Unique Lighting Options: For enhanced creative control, the camera features a hot shoe, and is fully compatible with the Nikon Speedlight wireless lighting system.
Get Connected: The Nikon SnapBridge3 app makes it easy to remotely control the Z 5 or seamlessly transfer and share content to a smartphone, tablet, Mac, or PC thanks to built-in Wi-Fi®4 and Bluetooth®5
Rugged Reliability and Engineered for Versatility
In addition to providing high-quality imaging capabilities, the Nikon Z 5 is compact and comfortable in-hand while promising the rugged reliability as well as innovative features and controls that Nikon is known for.
Legendary Nikon Build: Designed with a durable, weather-sealed exterior for worry-free use, the Z 5 employs the same magnesium alloy shell and robustness as the Z 6 and Z 7. Both the camera and NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 lens are built with consideration for dust and drip resistance and are ready to tackle the next adventure.
Functional Operability: The camera sports a powerful, high-resolution 3.2-inch LCD monitor with the capabilities to tilt, touch, tap, swipe, and pinch for an intuitive and flexible user-experience. Meanwhile, the 3.6M-dot Quad-VGA EVF ensures users can see exposure, ISO, white balance and creative picture controls in real time, making the transition from optical viewfinders seamless for new mirrorless shooters.
Packed with Power: Powered by the new EN-EL15c battery, the Z 5 offers significant advancements in the number of shots per charge and is the first Nikon camera to enable constant power through the USB port, even with select portable USB power banks6. For added power and grip, the camera is also compatible with the MB-N10 hot-swappable battery pack.
Webcam Ready: When connected via the USB-C cord, the Z 5 can be used as a webcam, making the camera a great option for modern vloggers, influencers and gamers looking to improve their livestreaming capabilities.
NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3: Portable, Yet Powerful
The NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 is the latest addition to the rapidly expanding lineup of NIKKOR Z lenses and is the smallest FX-format NIKKOR Z lens yet. Optically designed to take advantage of the advancements of the wide Z mount, this lens delivers sharpness across the entire frame and a versatile zoom range for everyday use. The 24-50mm is less than three inches long when retracted, making it the perfect lens for shooters seeking a versatile yet compact option for lightweight travel and street photography. When used together, the Z 5 and 24-50mm lens are the ideal discrete travel kit that can easily be packed and carried for all-day adventures. This compact NIKKOR Z lens is also an enticing option for Z 6 and Z 7 users who want a small all-around lens for portraits, landscapes, and street photography.
New Z Teleconverters Take NIKKOR Z Lenses to New Lengths
Designed for photographers and videographers who need more telephoto reach in their kit, the new Z TELECONVERTER TC-1.4X and Z TELECONVERTER TC-2.0X bring added versatility with 1.4x and 2.0x magnification to select NIKKOR Z lenses. These lightweight teleconverters are great tools for those photographing sports, wildlife and aviation, reducing the need to crop images and allowing for tighter compositions with maximum resolution.
The new TC-1.4X and TC-2.0X teleconverters maintain superior rendering performance and minimize various lens aberrations, while retaining focusing speed, VR functionality and minimum focusing distance. As an added benefit, the new teleconverters allow Nikon Z series cameras to retain functionality on all focus points up to f/11, making it easy to focus on and track subjects throughout the entire frame. Featuring the same robust construction as NIKKOR Z lenses, the teleconverters are designed with a fluorine coating on the front and rear elements to resist dirt and smudges, and offer a durable, weather-sealed body to protect against the elements.
When the teleconverters are used with the NIKKOR Z 70-200mm f/2.8 VR S (availability scheduled for late August), the focal length on the telephoto end is extended to 280mm (1.4x) or 400mm (2.0x) producing a significant expansion of this telephoto lens' shooting range. These new teleconverters will also be compatible with applicable interchangeable lenses for Nikon Z mount mirrorless cameras that Nikon will release in the future.
New Webcam Utility Software for Nikon Cameras
In August, Nikon will release a beta version of the Webcam Utility software for many Nikon DSLR and Z series mirrorless cameras, including the new Z 5. Initially available for Windows 10, the free software will allow compatible Nikon cameras to be used as webcams. When connected via USB, this free software will provide users with incredible sharpness, clarity and flattering depth of field for all of their livestreaming needs including teleconferencing and gaming.
For more information on how to use your Nikon camera as a webcam, please visit https://www.nikonusa.com/en/learn-and-explore/live-streaming-with-nikon-cameras.page
Pricing and Availability
The Nikon Z 5 will be available in August in several configurations, including body-only for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $1,399.95*, a one-lens kit with the new NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 for an SRP of $1,699.95* and a one-lens kit with the NIKKOR Z 24-200mm f/4-6.3 VR lens for an SRP of $2,199.95* for those seeking extra reach when photographing wildlife or travel adventures. Also available in August, the NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 lens can be purchased separately for an SRP of $399.95*. The new Z TELECONVERTER TC-1.4X and TC-2.0X will have an SRP of $549.95 and $599.95 respectively and will be available in late August.
# # #
Specifications, equipment, and release dates are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.
*SRP (Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.
With recording of still images using the FX-format image area and single-point AF. 231 focus points with movie recording.
When using this mode, the frame is cropped approx. x1.7.
Using the SnapBridge App System Requirements:
Android 5.0 or later or 6.0.1 or later
A device with Bluetooth 4.0 or later (i.e., a device that supports Bluetooth Smart Ready/Low Energy) is required.
The SnapBridge app is available for compatible iPhone®, iPad® and/or iPod touch®, and for smart devices running the AndroidTM operating system. The app can be downloaded free of charge from Apple’s App Store® and GooglePlayTM. SnapBridge can be used only with compatible cameras.
This camera’s built-in Wi-Fi® capability can only be used with a compatible iPhone®, iPad®, and/or iPod touch® or smart devices running on the Android™ operating system. The Nikon SnapBridge application must be installed on the device before it can be used with this camera.
The camera’s built-in Bluetooth® capability can only be used to connect the camera to a compatible smart device running the SnapBridge app, and to take advantage of SnapBridge features.
Anker PowerCore+ 26800 PD 45W is the recommended portable charger. Use a USB cable with two Type-C connectors supplied with the portable charger. For more information about the portable charger, please visit the manufacturer’s website: Anker.com/support
-Wi-Fi and the Wi-Fi logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance. N-Mark is a trademark or registered trademark of NFC Forum, Inc., in the United States and/or other countries.
-Bluetooth® word mark and logos are registered trademarks owned by Bluetooth SIG, Inc., and any use of such marks by Nikon Corporation and its Affiliates is under license.
-All trademarks and trade names are those of their respective owners
Back to the future. I didn't see this one coming, though we talked about this lens design after the Canon RF 600mm F11 IS STM Lens and Canon RF 800mm F11 IS STM Lens announcement. From Kenko Tokina Co., Ltd.:
Kenko Tokina Co., Ltd. is pleased to announce the sales release of Tokina SZX SUPER TELE 400mm F8 Reflex MF lens.
Sales will commence on August 7, 2020.
Tokina SZX SUPER TELE 400mm F8 Reflex MF is a 400mm super tele lens that adopts catadioptric type optical design with a constant F8 aperture. The lens offers compact alternative to standard tele photo lenses as more and more photographers are looking for easy-to-carry gear. 400mm F8 Reflex MF is designed keeping in mind active travel photographers seeking for outdoor landscape, wild nature or birds by providing compact and lightweight lens to be rediscovered in the new era of also compact but high-tech mirrorless cameras.
Tokina SZX SUPER TELE 400mm F8 Reflex MF adopts 0.75mm pitch and 42mm thread mount standard, that allows this lens to be attached to any camera by using different mount adapters.
Tokina SZX SUPER TELE 400mm F8 Reflex MF can be required in Solo and Kit packages as below:
Mount adapters can be also purchased separately:
For those of us residing in the USA, today we celebrate our country's independence.
Take some time to study the history, including what our forefathers said, did, and wrote on this day, one that is foundational to our country.
Independence Day (aka, the 4th of July) is often celebrated with friends, family, grilled food, and fireworks. The effect seen in this fireworks image is from manually adjusting focus during a long exposure. Check out the following tips articles and the gear list below them.
Fireworks Photography Tips
Interesting news from Olympus:
Olympus Corporation ("Olympus") and Japan Industrial Partners, Inc. ("JIP") hereby announce that, today, the parties signed a memorandum of understanding to carveout Olympus’s Imaging business to a new company (“NewCo”) and subsequently transfer its shares to a fund managed, operated or otherwise handled by JIP (the "Transaction").
After the due diligence and further discussions and negotiations, the parties are aiming to sign a legallybinding definitive agreement for the Transaction (the "Definitive Agreement") by September 30, 2020. We will promptly make further announcement if any matters relating to the Transaction that needs further announcement occur.
1. Background and Purpose of the Transaction
Olympus's Imaging business began with the manufacture and sale of a camera using the photographic lens Zuiko in 1936. Through innovative technology and unique product development capabilities, Olympus has developed and launched various products, aiming to contribute to make people’s lives more fulfilling. Those products include: Olympus Pen, the innovative half-sized camera; Zuiko Pearlcorder, the world's first micro-cassette tape recorder; and Olympus OM-D series, the mirrorless interchangeable lens camera.
Olympus has implemented measures to cope with the extremely severe digital camera market, due to, amongst others, rapid market shrink caused by the evolution of smartphones; Olympus has improved the cost structure by restructuring the manufacturing bases and focusing on high-value-added interchangeable lenses, aiming to rectify the earning structure to those that may continue generating profit even as sales dwindles. Despite all such efforts, Olympus’s Imaging business recorded operating losses for 3 consecutive fiscal years up to the term ended in March 2020.
Under such circumstances, Olympus considers that, by carving-out the Imaging business and by operating the business with JIP, the Imaging business’s corporate structure may become more compact, efficient and agile and it is the most appropriate way to realize its self-sustainable and continuous growth and to bring values to the users of our products as well as our employees working in the Imaging business. Olympus therefore has decided to sign the memorandum of understanding for the Transaction.
JIP has strong track records in supporting strategic carve-outs that realize growth potential and encourage autonomous growth. By adding support from JIP, the NewCo, as the successor of reputable brands such as “OM-D” and “ZUIKO,” will utilize the innovative technology and unique product development capabilities which have been developed within Olympus, and will realize continuous growth of the business by bringing better products and services to the users and customers and by making itself a productive and rewarding work place for its employees.
2. Imaging Business after the Transaction
NewCo will succeed and maintain the research and development functions and manufacturing functions globally as reformed under the contemplated structuring reforms to continue to offer high-quality, highly reliable products; and also continue to provide supports to the imaging solution products that have been distributed by Olympus.
3. Outline of the Transaction
The specifics of the Transaction shall be decided in the Definitive Agreement after careful examination and consultation between the parties. The parties currently consider the outline of the Transaction shall be as follows.
The parties will proceed with the actions and procedures for Transactions in full compliance with applicable laws including consultation obligations and other requirements under local employment laws.
(1) Structure : (i) Olympus’s Imaging business will be transferred to the NewCo by way of company split or otherwise, and then, (ii) shares in the NewCo will be transferred to a new company to be established by JIP.
(2) Signing of Definitive Agreement : Scheduled to be signed by September 30, 2020
(3) Closing : Olympus and JIP strive to close the Transaction by December 31, 2020.
4. Structuring Reform
Prior to the closing of the Transaction, Olympus plans to implement structuring reforms to the Imaging business aiming to change the business structure of Imaging business to be more profitable and sustainable. We are currently investigating costs and other impacts of the structuring reform. If any future event which requires disclosure arises, Olympus will announce it promptly.
From Kenko Tokina Co., Ltd.:
Dear customers. Thank you all for supporting Tokina brand.
On March 6, 2020 in commemoration of the 70th Tokina anniversary we made a development announcement of Tokina new lens line-up 2020 that thankfully attracted great attention of amateur and professional photographers. We received a lot of supportive messages from all around the world that is greatly appreciated.
The development process is constantly changing, so here we would like to update the lens roadmap as below. We are doing our best to introduce our new products to the market as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.
Notes: The release schedule is tentative. Product design may be changed without preliminary notification.
Tokina atx-i 11-20mm F2.8 CF worldwide sales date announcement
Jun 18, 2020
Kenko Tokina Co., Ltd. is pleased to announce the sales release of Tokina atx-i 11-20mm F2.8 CF. The Tokina atx-i 11-20mm F2.8 CF is the third renewed long seller AT-X 11-20 F2.8 PRO DX (11-20mm f/2.8) model to fit contemporary DSLR cameras in newly launched atx-i series.
Sales will commence on July 10, 2020.
The Tokina atx-i 11-20mm F2.8 CF is designed as an ultra wide angle zoom lens for APS-C sensor DLSR cameras. It is the only f/2.8 fast ultra wide angle zoom lens for APS-C sized DSLR cameras on the current market*.
Focal length 11-20mm that covers equivalent angle of wide prime 18mm, 21mm, 24mm, 28mm lenses makes this lens attractive to be chosen after standard zoom lens or initially possessed wide angle zoom kit lens.
A constant maximum aperture of f/2.8 throughout the entire zoom range is realized to achieve great results in low light conditions, for depth of field control and easy manual shooting, while maintaining a reasonable size and weight.
* At present time April, 2020
"Regarding SD memory cards of SF-M series, SF-M series TOUGH specification, and SF-G series TOUGH specification, recorded data on the card may be damaged or data may not be recorded correctly when shooting video on a camera* in video speed class mode.
* The camera compatible with video speed class V60/V90 etc. as recommended recording media."
Visit Sony's service notice page to identify and replace affected cards.
Much is said about using photography to tell stories, but another great aspect of photography is creating stories. I'm not talking about deceptive reporting and the like, but setting the goal to be photos, and enjoying an adventure unfolding, the story, while capturing them.
There was an exceptionally long off-trail hike in north-central PA involving a couple of deep canyons and lots of waterfalls that I had been planning to take for a long time. The schedule for this spring looked favorable for making that adventure happen, and I selected what appeared to be the perfect waterfall photography day. The weather forecast indicated full cloud cover and some light rain could be expected.
Then my youngest daughter asked if she could go along, and after my enthusiastic, positive response, I was then asked if three of her friends could also come along. After warning them over the duration and exertion this hike entailed, all were set on going. All four of the girls were distance runners, so I expected they were physically up to the hike. They were advised to bring the appropriate gear and supplies for an entire day that could include rain, and I welcomed the additions to the adventure.
We arrived at the start location late in the morning, and a beautiful waterfall greeted us a short distance into the forest. I hurriedly set up the camera (four girls were waiting for me), established the right settings, and captured some nice images. We then bushwhacked, rock-hopped (including creek crossings), and hung on the side of very steep terrain for, according to my daughter's Garmin watch, three miles until we arrived at another impressive waterfall. I captured more images, and we ate lunch.
That was the last time the camera came out of my MindShift Gear BackLight 26L. The rain started and quickly exceeding the forecasted slight-chance volume. The sky became very dark, and the rain didn't relent until it was nearly dark out.
Waterfalls require a cliff for the water to fall over, large falls require big cliffs and the falls that we continued to encounter had larger-than-needed cliffs. Getting around waterfalls meant moving downstream a distance until the wet sides were climbable (without ropes). How steep were the canyons, and how much time did we spend on them? At the end of the adventure, the girls were complaining that their arms hurt more than their legs, a sure sign that a good adventure happened.
At about 8 miles into the hike, a key landmark was missing. I had spent hours researching the hike, but this missing landmark was a key to finishing the hike as planned. There was no signal to locate ourselves via a smartphone, so I relied on a previously downloaded topographic map and a conventional compass to continue our route. While I knew we wanted to go east, I was not precisely sure how far north we had traveled. If I didn't guess correctly, we could miss the canyon we needed to find. Hedging enough to be safe, we walked southwest across the vast, densely forested, flat mountaintop. Note that walking through such terrain under a cloudy sky without a navigational aid is a sure way to get lost.
About 2 miles into the compass-directed portion of the dark and rainy adventure, the girls were becoming nervous, and one member of our team was staying immediately behind me. Eventually, we encountered a swampy area with a little flowing water, and I relented to traveling due east following that flow as the water had to be going down into the canyon we were hunting.
After a considerable distance down the steep mountain, we arrived at the targeted creek. While there was some relief among our group, deep, forested canyons are dark, and the what if we don't make it out before dark question began to be raised — repeatedly. I assured the group that we would light up the dark (I like the Black Diamond Spot 325 Headlamp BTW), and that we had the supplies necessary to make it out.
Still, the challenge of hiking the sides of the waterfall canyons increased while the light levels decreased. Finally, I declared that everyone had to begin wading across the streams. Yes, building rock bridges was fun, but it was time-consuming, and darkness was approaching.
Amazingly, we arrived back at the first waterfall at the precise time I had guessed to the group to expect to return. My distance estimate was not quite as accurate, with the Garmin indicating 13.1 miles of distance with 3,500' (1.07 km) in elevation change. The excitement brought on by the accomplishment and relief hitting the girls simultaneously made the adventure worthwhile, and all were ready to sign up for the next adventure. Interesting is that the next day their arms were sorer than their legs — due to holding onto trees and rocks while navigating the steep terrain.
No girls were harmed in the creation of this image, but photographically, the adventure was not so productive, with most of the waterfalls being from the sky. However, I know where some great images are, and will likely return for at least a partial repeat hike.
What will your story be? Use photography as a purpose for creating a story!
Here is one of the last photos I captured on this journey: Girl on a Waterfall Adventure.
Delkin First to Market with 2TB CFexpress Memory Card
POWAY, CA, JUNE 10, 2020 - Delkin Devices, a manufacturer of flash storage solutions and camera accessories, announced today the newest addition to their ever-growing line of memory-based products: CFexpress™ Type-B memory cards. The latest high-speed memory card format, Delkin CFexpress™ cards deliver unrivaled performance at speeds suitable for professional photographers and videographers, while meeting the extensive demands of today's broadcast, cinema and photography industries. Delkin now boasts a complete line of memory card choices for nearly every type of camera/camcorder in the market.
Utilizing a 3rd generation PCI Express interface (as well as supporting NVM Express), Delkin's CFexpress™ memory cards boast recording speeds surpassing 1430MB/s for flawless cinema-quality video capture, including 8K, 6K & 4K at high frame rates and bitrates. They also support RAW continuous-burst shooting without delay, never missing those precious split-second moments! This is especially valuable during special events like weddings, sporting events, concerts and other situations that can't be redone.
"4K is standard today, 6K is on the rise, and now we're making our way to 8K" says Jenn Sherry, Delkin's Retail Sales & Marketing Manager, "Technology is constantly evolving and as cameras become more advanced, so will the storage solutions associated with them. The possibilities of what CFexpress™ can offer are exciting, and we're looking forward to see what our cards will enable both photographers and videographers to capture.
Each CFexpress™ card has undergone extensive testing to ensure full functionality and performance in today's high-end cinematic hosts, including ones from Canon (C500 Mark II & 1D X Mark III), Nikon (Z6 & Z7), and Panasonic (Lumix DC-S1 & S1R). Testing is currently ongoing in the Canon C300 Mark III & R5, as well as the Nikon D6. Data-intensive capture modes, such as Raw video, would require memory cards like CFexpress™ in order to guarantee continuous recording and safe storage. It is important to note though that CFexpress™ cards are not backwards compatible with either CompactFlash or CFast 2.0 hosts.
As a bonus, every CFexpress™ card is serialized, like your camera, and backed by Delkin's "48-Hour Replacement Guarantee" policy for the ultimate coverage. Not offered anywhere else in the world, Delkin will replace any non-working CFexpress™ card within 48 hours or less (not including weekends), prior to receiving the non-working card. Cards can also be replaced over-the-counter at any authorized Delkin CFexpress™ reseller.
Delkin CFexpress™ Type-B memory cards have the most extensive capacity coverage, ranging from 64GB to 2TB, and are sold through authorized camera stores worldwide. For more information on Delkin CFexpress™ or other memory products, please visit www.delkindevices.com.
Sean's recent Filming an ISS Transit of the Moon article reminded me to check for an upcoming locally-viewable International Space Station transit. Amazingly, there were two ISS solar transits scheduled for the next week, with my back yard being the perfect location for the alignment I wanted for both transits.
Sean's How to Photograph an International Space Station Lunar Transit article was directly applicable, with a solar filter being an additional requisite.
Only the sun was going to be illuminated in the frame, and the space station is especially small. I combined the longest focal length lens combination I have, the Sony FE 600mm f/4 GM OSS Lens and Sony FE 2x Teleconverter, with the highest resolution ILC camera available, the Sony a7R IV. This combination was then mounted to the most solid tripod and head in my kit, the Wimberley WH-200-S Sidemount Head on a Robus RC-8860 Vantage Carbon Fiber Tripod.
The ISS moves across the sky very rapidly, leading me to select a 1/2000 shutter speed to avoid motion blur. With the transit duration predicted to be a mere 0.52 seconds, timing the shot was crucial. From testing, I knew this camera with a V60 SDXC card loaded would capture an over-four-second burst before the buffer filled. At just under two seconds before the transit start time, I pressed and held the release button on the Vello ShutterBoss Remote Switch.
The a7R IV's high speed+ mode netted three images that included the ISS in front of the sun. That count seemed a little weak in the composite (the space stations were "spaced" too far apart), so some additional space stations were cloned into the final image.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.
From ProGrade Digital:
PROGRADE DIGITAL ANNOUNCES FASTER CFEXPRESS™ TYPE B MEMORY CARDS AND HIGHER CAPACITIES WITH READ SPEEDS OF 1,700MB/S AND REFRESH PRO™ SOFTWARE SUPPORT*
CFexpress Cobalt Cards Provide Minimum Sustained Write Speeds of 1,400MB/s plus ability to monitor card health and refresh cards to factory-fresh condition
San Jose, CA June 09, 2020, 8:00 am —ProGrade Digital, Inc., founded with a mission to provide the highest quality professional grade digital memory cards and workflow solutions, announces its new CFexpress™ Type B cards. First demonstrated by the company in April 2018 at the National Association of Broadcasters Show (NAB) Las Vegas, CFexpress Type B offers next generation memory card performance by leveraging PCIe, Gen 3 interconnect with NVMe 1.3 host controller interface. ProGrade Digital CFexpress cards provide read speeds up-to 1,700MB/s, and burst write speeds up-to 1,500MB/s. Two performance levels are available: Cobalt label: delivers minimum sustained write speed of 1400MB/s for both 325GB and 650GB cards – specifically designed for high resolution video capture and long, sustained burst image capture applications; Gold label: delivers minimum sustained write speeds up to 400MB/s depending on card capacity – ideally suited for a broad range of still and moving image capture applications.
ProGrade Digital CFexpress Gold label cards are available now at progradedigital.com, B&H Photo and Video, Adorama.com and Amazon in most countries around the world. Cobalt label cards will be shipping by late June.“Since demonstrating the capabilities of CFexpress in early 2018, ProGrade Digital has been evolving this technology from the first cards introduced at the end of 2019 to these new, fasterand lower power cards we are shipping today,” said Wes Brewer, founder and CEO of ProGrade Digital. “We are now able to offer the widest range of CFexpress card choices to meet both current and future needs of all leading-edge imaging applications. Coupled with our new CFexpress Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.2 Gen 2 high speed readers and our Refresh Pro performance restoration and health monitoring software application, our customers have a complete solution for capturing and downloading still and video images as well as enhancingtheir digital imaging workflow.”
ProGrade Digital CFexpress portfolio:
CFexpress Type B Cobalt and Gold both deliver:
The CFexpress Type B form factor is gaining broad industry adoption due to its backward compatibility with XQD, and its open industry standard support from major device manufacturers.
All ProGrade Digital memory cards have a laser-etched serial number on the back and readers have a printed serial number. A customer can register their serial number at https://progradeditigal.com/register to stay up to date on the latest technology developments.
*Refresh Pro functionality requires ProGrade Digital Refresh ProTM software application and a ProGrade Digital card reader.
by Sean Setters
Bruce, a site visitor, forwarded us a post by weather.com – ISS Crosses in Front of the Moon Captured in Rare Video. Coming across the weather.com post, Bruce had been reminded of an article we posted 2 years ago offering tips for photographing the International Space Station as it crosses the moon. And after seeing the video, I was eager for my own opportunity to film the ISS transiting the moon.
As luck would have it, an ISS transit of the moon visible from a location near me (about 1/2 mile away) was scheduled to occur the very next evening at 10:44 PM Eastern Time. With a calendar entry set to remind me an hour before the event, I was ready to narrow down what gear to take.
As the Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM is the longest telephoto lens I own, using it was an easy choice. But my previous experience photographing an ISS transit with a 300mm lens left me wanting for a longer focal length/closer view. Since then, I had picked up two key pieces of gear that would help me get a more magnified view of the moon in my video – a Canon EF 1.4x II Extender (predecessor to version III) and a Canon EOS R.
But how would an EOS R help me get a more magnified view? The 4K crop factor (1.75x), a bane to those who desire ultra-wide angles of view, is a big benefit when one is focal length deficient for a particular endeavor. The setup left me with a manageable 725mm equivalent focal length (300mm x 1.4 x 1.75).
Unfortunately, a limitation of utilizing 4K for capturing the event would be the 30 fps frame rate. I seriously considered setting the camera to high frame rate recording (120 fps), but the camera can only record at a max resolution of 720p in that mode and movie cropping (to provide a similar magnification) is unavailable. In other words, I was faced with a choice of either capturing high resolution video at a higher magnification or lower resolution video at a lower magnification but with a 4x faster frame rate (useful for creating a slow-motion effect). In the end, I opted for shooting in 4K to record the moon as large in the frame as possible with a resolution that would enable me to scale the video with decent quality.
Because it was so close to my home, I arrived at the shooting location only about 15 minutes before the event. I set up my Induro tripod, attached the EOS R to the tripod's Arca Swiss Z1 ball head, and proceeded with adjusting the camera settings accordingly. Up until that moment, I hadn't yet decided on what shutter speed strategy to use. Typically speaking, your shutter speed should be set to a reciprocal of double the frame rate (for 30 fps video, a 1/60 sec is optimal). However, I at that time I wasn't absolutely certain that I wouldn't want to slow down the 30 fps video a bit in post. Knowing that the transit would occur very quickly, I was concerned that if I did slow down the video, the ISS's fast motion would leave little of its detail remaining if using a 1/60 sec shutter speed. However, using a much faster than twice-the-reciprocal-framerate shutter speed can lead to an unnatural look. In a spur of the moment decision (and with transit time quickly approaching), I set my camera to the following settings to gain the desired exposure while maintaining a near multiple of my 30 fps frame rate: f/6.3, 1/250 sec, ISO 100.
About a minute before the transit was scheduled to take place, I hit the record button and anxiously awaited the ISS's crossing. Roughly a minute after the event time, I stopped the recording. Even though I had been watching the moon throughout the recording, I never saw the transit take place until I was processing the video in Premiere Pro a short time later.
And speaking of processing, I actually produced two versions of the video. The one below is the first option I produced. The ISS's fast motion and shape reminded me of an Imperial TIE Fighter from Star Wars, so I thought the dramatic music seemed appropriate:
However, knowing the cinematic-style music may not be for everyone, I created the second version (featured at the top of this post) with different music. I recommend watching the embedded videos full screen on the highest resolution setting using the largest display available to you. Otherwise, you may not be able to see the transit in the normal magnification portion of the video.
So which version do you prefer? Let us know in the comments.
Firmware update for SIGMA 14-24mm F2.8 DG DN | Art for Sony E-mount
Thank you for purchasing and using our products.
We are pleased to announce that a new firmware update for the SIGMA 14-24mm F2.8 DG DN | Art for Sony E-mount is now available.
Benefit of the update
To update the firmware, please refer to this link.
Want a really strong, high-quality tripod for a reasonable price? The RC-8860 might have your name on it.
The Robus RC-8860 Vantage Series 5 Carbon Fiber Tripod is in stock at B&H and Amazon USA
With a front/dual channel toggle switch, microphone input, and a low price point, this microphone will soon be the favorite of many vloggers.
That is a lot of stairs.
I previously shared a Hudson Yards Vessel image (with a longer story) but decided to add another to the RF 15-35 gallery. The Vessel is full of symmetry, and the elevator provides an eye-catching contradictory element. In the other Vessel image shared, using the elevator rails compositionally was suggested, and this image illustrates that suggestion. Aside from some background subjects and incidentals, the elevator rails are this image's only non-symmetrical element, and being different stands out.
Being different also makes the Canon RF 15-35mm F2.8 L IS USM Lens a standout.
Nikon has released its year-end financial results for the year ending March 2020, and from a business standpoint, the results aren't pretty. As usual, the Presentation Material provides an easily digestible overview of the situation (download below or see the Video of the Financial Presentation).
Portland, OR – Lensbaby – makers of award-winning DSLR & mirrorless lenses, optics and accessories announces today that it is launching into summer with a creative bang, giving away over $7,500 in prizes in its “#shootextraordinary Summer Giveaway."
Michael Anthony, VP of Sales and Marketing, says “As a brand, we feel like now more than ever we have a responsibility to bring some light and inspiration to creatives. This contest is not only about doing something fun, but supercharging someone’s creative life and challenging photographers everywhere to capture the extraordinary.” #shootextraordinary Summer Giveaway partners, along with Lensbaby, include Sony, Holdfast, Level Up, Magmod and SLR Lounge.
Entry begins Tuesday, May 26 through June 19th at 11:59 a.m. Winners will be announced on June 20th, the first day of summer. Enter via the contest page here.
Grand Prize (One Winner):
No purchase is necessary to win. Winners will be selected by random draw. Must be 18 to enter. Prizes cannot be redeemed for cash or exchange.
From Canon USA:
YOU ASKED, CANON DELIVERS: THE EOS WEBCAM UTILITY BETA SOFTWARE* NOW AVAILABLE FOR MAC OS1 USERS
MELVILLE, N.Y., May 27, 2020 –– After tens of thousands of downloads and comments from Canon brand loyalists, the EOS Webcam Utility Beta software* has expanded, and is now available for macOS users. Unveiled today by Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, for select EOS Interchangeable Lens Cameras (ILC) and PowerShot cameras, this beta version solution converts a compatible Canon camera into a webcam through a simple USB connection. Users were heard through multiple Canon social media channels, customer comments and media inquiries.
Similar to the Windows operating system version released April 28, the new macOS compatible software solution requires one single USB plug (which may need to be purchased separately) to connect the compatible camera to the computer. Once the software is downloaded and the camera is configured within a video conferencing application, the user will have improved video appearance while participating in video conferencing and virtual meetings.
To learn more, including whether your Canon EOS ILC or PowerShot camera is compatible, and to download the EOS Webcam Utility Beta software for both macOS and Windows, visit Canon.us/eoswebcamutility.
If you’d like to ask questions or provide feedback pertaining to the EOS Webcam Utility Beta software for macOS, please visit our forum, Canon.us/forum-eoswebcamutilitymac.
* EOS Webcam Utility Beta software is a Beta version and it may contain errors. This Software is for use in the United States of America only, and will not be supported outside that area.
1 The following macOS versions are supported: macOS 10.15 Catalina, macOS 10.14 Mojave, macOS 10.13 High Sierra
View the step-by-step tutorial.
Roger Cicala and the team over at LensRentals recently disassembled a Nikon AF-S Nikkor 120-300mm f/2.8 FL ED SR VR to remove dust from within the lens. Here's a summary of what they found:
So, What Did We Learn Today?See the entire illustrated disassmbly here.
First, like every law, Roger’s Law that Zooms Are Never as Good as Primes has at least one very expensive exception. At one of its focal lengths. This zoom is ‘prime good’ at 300mm.
Second, we learned that the Nikkor AF-S 120-300mm f/2.8 lens is spectacularly good optically, particularly at the long end, which is probably the most important place to be spectacularly good optically.
Third, we learned that Nikon F lenses, at least at this point in time, are not incorporating the new electrical and mechanical designs of the Z lenses. This probably matters to Nikon F shooters not at all since this is the same technology their other lenses use. It matters a bit to us, who will work on them. At no time during this teardown were the words “Elegant Engineering” ever spoken.
What does it mean, though? That’s just speculation. Creating a lens takes several years, so this is a look at what Nikon was doing a few years ago. I don’t know, and neither do you (unless you’re reading this post from Nikon Corporate HQ, in which case feel free to leave a comment).
Perhaps Nikon will merge lens technologies in the future. Maybe they will maintain separate design and manufacturing teams for as long as they continue to make F-mount lenses.
From the Adobe Photoshop YouTube Channel:
Learn how to improve your layer effects and styles with these 10 tips. For more in-depth tutorials, training, techniques, and shortcuts for working with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, check out Julieanne’s blog.
From Nikon on May 12, 2020:
NIKON CORPORATION (hereinafter “the Company”) expects to post extraordinary losses and to reverse a part of deferred tax assets in its non-consolidated financial statements, which are prepared in accordance with Japanese GAAP, for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020.
Using the future plan that reflects the impact and more caused by the spread of COVID-19 to business activities, the Company has assessed an indication that fixed assets may be impaired, performed valuation of financial assets, and examined the recoverability of deferred tax assets.
As a result, the Company has decided to post an impairment loss of 5.7 billion yen for the fixed assets held by Imaging Product Business. And for Nikon Metrology NV, the Company’s consolidated subsidiary, a loss on valuation of the investments in subsidiaries and affiliates and provision for loss on business of subsidiaries and affiliates will be recognized 6.7 billion yen and 9.2 billion yen, respectively. The Company has also decided to reverse a part of deferred tax assets and post deferred tax expenses of 20.6 billion yen. However, the losses associated with the subsidiary mentioned above will have no impact on the consolidated financial results, as those losses will be eliminated in the consolidated financial statements.
Just posted: Robus RCM-439 Carbon Fiber Monopod Review.
No-brainer. Just get one.
I've wanted to refresh the site's logo for a long time and recently was able to make that happen. I know, this isn't the most timely post (the new logo went up a bit over a week ago), but for those who have not been on the site for the last week, check it out.
Additional (ongoing) site changes have also been made, primarily to improve the mobile experience. There's always much more to do.
From the Adorama YouTube Channel:
Feathering a light is so much more than simply turning it away from your subject. In this video photographer, Gavin Hoey takes you through why feathering light is an essential studio lighting skill and how he uses it to control light in his small home studio.
Although the most common way to feather a light is to move it horizontally, Gavin also shows you how vertical feathering can open up more lighting options. He also bursts a popular portrait myth that feathering a light will give a softer light.
From the Adorama YouTube Channel:
In this video, Pye shows you 5 great tips for photographing portrait subjects in urban locations using nothing but natural light. You can create these shots using any gear!
Production Equipment Used: