Latest Event Updates

Tokina 50 mm lens

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The Tokina Opera 50 mm f/1.4 FF is described by the company as a premium full frame lens for high-end DSLRs. In fact, the lens is the first in a new series of lenses from the company.

Opera series lenses are designed to “perfectly match” recent high-spec full-frame DSLR cameras, says Tokina.

The 50 mm lens adopts a ring-shaped ultrasonic motor for autofocusing. Weather sealing prevents dust and moisture from entering, the company notes.

For the first time in a Tokina lens the Nikon mount model incorporates an electric diaphragm mechanism. The lens also will be available in a Canon mount.

The Tokina Opera 50 mm f/1.4 FF is scheduled for summer availability.


Sigma 70 mm and 105 mm lenses

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70 mm

Sigma has unveiled two Art prime lenses, the 70 mm f/2.8 DG Macro and 105 mm f/1.4 DG HSM.

The 70 mm lens, according to the company, is designed to prioritize optical performance, not autofocus speed, delivering “stunning” resolution and “incredible” clarity that “greatly exceed” expectations for a macro lens.

The coreless DC motor further enhances image quality, while an optimized algorithm helps offer extremely smooth autofocus performance for a weightier, high-performance lens.

Sigma says this new lens is the old Macro 70 mm f/2.8 EX DG in a new, updated form.

The lens features an extending, floating, two-group focus mechanism. This configuration minimizes aberration to produce optimal results at any focus distance, says the company. To minimize axial chromatic aberration, the optical system incorporates two FLD glass elements, two SLD glass elements, and one element with a high rate of anomalous partial dispersion and a high index of refraction. In addition, two aspherical lens elements help increase resolution at close shooting distances.

Sigma says this optical system makes possible a razor-sharp in-focus area contrasted with a bokeh area free of colour streaking.

The focus-by-wire system eliminates the direct mechanical connection between the focus ring and the focus drive system. Controlled by a new algorithm, a newly developed coreless DC motor adjusts focus with optimal speed and low noise. Full-time manual focus is available even during autofocus. In addition, the focus ring’s large angle of rotation helps the photographer achieve the extremely precise focusing required for effective macro photography, notes Sigma

The version of this lens compatible with Sony E-mount mirrorless cameras contains the same optical system as for DSLRs. Sigma’s Mount Converter MC-11 is not required, as the lens performs the same functions as the converter, including in-camera image stabilization and in-camera lens aberration correction. In addition, the lens is compatible with Sony’s Continuous AF, which is not addressed by the MC-11.

The Canon mount lens is compatible with the Canon Lens Aberration Correction function. Matching the optical characteristics of the lens, this function performs in-camera corrections of peripheral illumination, chromatic aberrations, distortion, and more, further enhancing image quality. [Sigma does note this function is not available on all Canon camerasm and corrections may vary by Canon camera model.]

The 65 mm Macro Flash Adapter makes the lens compatible with the EM-140 Macro flash.

The lens has a 72 mm filter thread, and weighs 515 g / 18.2 oz.

Pricing and availability for the Sigma 70 mm f/2.8 DG Macro / Art have not yet been announced.

The second new lens from Sigma is the 105 mm f/1.4 DG HSM / Art lens.

The company says it has designed the lens to offer minimal optical aberration and deliver “incredible” resolution and “stunning” contrast.

The lens is claimed to combine “outstanding” resolution with a beautiful bokeh effect, with great care taken to ensure both the in-focus and out-of-focus areas of the photograph are equally satisfying to the eye.

This lens incorporates 17 optical elements in 12 groups. By including three FLD glass elements, two SLD glass elements, and one aspherical lens element, the optical system minimizes axial chromatic aberration to deliver extremely high resolution along with ample peripheral light volume, says the company.

The area in focus is said to be extremely sharp, while the area out of focus features a beautiful bokeh effect with highly natural colours. The optical system is said to also minimize sagittal coma flare, good for capturing starry skies.

There’s a big chunk of glass on the front of this lens, for a 105 mm filter size. This, notes Sigma, delivers a significantly greater volume of peripheral light than other lenses in its class.

The Sony E-mount version of this lens is compatible with Sony mirrorless cameras and contains the same optical system as the versions for other mounts. The Sogma Mount Converter MC-11 is not required, as the lens performs the same functions as the converter, including in-camera image stabilization and in-camera lens aberration correction. In addition, the lens is compatible with Sony’s Continuous AF.
The Canon mount version of this lens is compatible with the Canon Lens Aberration Correction function. Matching the optical characteristics of the lens, this function performs in-camera corrections of peripheral illumination, chromatic aberrations, distortion.

The lens weighs 1645 g / 58.0 oz.

Pricing and availability for the Sigma 105 mm f/1.4 DG HSM / Art have not been announced.

Sony alpha 7R III

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Sony has added to its full-frame mirrorless camera lineup by introducing the alpha 7R III. The camera combines a high-resolution 42.4-megapixel back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS image sensor with shooting speeds at up to 10 fps with full AF/AE tracking, as well as 4K video quality, 15-stop dynamic range, and high sensitivity with noise reduction of almost a full stop.

The image sensor utilizes a gapless on-chip lens design and AR (anti-reflective) coating on the surface of the sensor’s seal glass to “dramatically” improve light collection efficiency, says the company, resulting in high sensitivity with low-noise performance and wide dynamic range.

The camera also features a new front-end LSI that effectively doubles the readout speed of the image sensor, as well as an updated BIONZ X processing-engine that boosts processing speed by approximately 1.8 times compared to the 7R II, Sony notes.

These components work together to allow the camera to shoot at faster speeds while also enabling its ISO range of 100 – 32000 (expandable to ISO 50 – 102400 for still images) and 15-stop dynamic range at low sensitivity settings.

This new full-frame model was built without an optical low pass filter to maximize resolution, while also having the ability to output 14 bit RAW format even when shooting in silent or continuous mode.

The camera is equipped with a 5-axis optical image stabilization system that has been fine-tuned to support its high-resolution shooting capacity, resulting in a claimed 5.5 step shutter speed advantage, said to be the world’s highest compensation performance for an image stabilization system.

There’s also a new low-vibration shutter that reduces vibration and image blur in all modes, including the high speed 10 fps shooting, as well as several advancements in accurate colour reproductions of skin tones.

At 10 fps, the camera is said to deliver continuous, accurate AF/AE tracking for up to 76 JPEG / RAW images or 28 uncompressed RAW images. This high speed 10 fps mode is available with either a mechanical shutter or completely silent shooting. The camera can also shoot continuously at up to 8 fps in live view mode with minimal lag in the viewfinder or LCD screen, Sony says.

While large groups of burst images are being written to the memory card, many of the cameras key functions are operable, including access to the ‘Fn’ (Function) and ‘Menu’ buttons, image playback and several other menus and parameters including image rating and other functions that facilitate on-location image sorting.

Additionally, if there is fluorescent or artificial lighting present in a shooting environment, users can activate the Anti-flicker function to allow the 7R III to automatically detect frequency of the lighting and time the shutter to minimize its effect on images being captured.

The upgraded focusing system is comprised of 399 focal-plane phase-detection AF points that cover approximately 68 percent of the image area in both the horizontal and vertical directions. There are also 425 contrast AF points, an increase of 400 points compared to the 7R II. This is said to deliver AF acquisition in about half the time as the 7R II in low-light conditions, with tracking that is approximately twice as accurate as well. The Eye AF feature is also approximately twice as effective, and is available when utilizing Sony’s A-mount lenses with an adapter.

Additional improvements in focusing flexibility include AF availability in Focus Magnifier mode, focal-plane phase-detection AF support when using A-mount lenses, an ‘AF On’ button, a multi-selector or ‘joystick’ for moving focusing points quickly, and flexible touch focus functionality.

Sony says the 7R III is “exceptionally capable” as a video camera, offering 4K (3840 x 2160 pixels) video recording across the full width of the full-frame image sensor. When shooting in Super 35 mm format, the camera uses full pixel readout without pixel binning to collect 5K of information, oversampling it to produce high quality 4K footage with exceptional detail and depth.

A new HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) is available on the camera to support an Instant HDR workflow, allowing HDR (HLG) compatible TVs to playback 4K HDR imagery. Further, both S-Log2 and S-Log3 are available for increased colour grading flexibility. The camera can also record Full HD at 120 fps at up to 100 Mbps, allowing footage to be reviewed and eventually edited into 4x or 5x slow motion video files in Full HD resolution with AF tracking.

There are two media slots, with support in one slot for UHS-II type SD memory cards. Users have a variety of options for storing their content, including separate JPEG / RAW recording, separate still image / movie recording, and relay recording.

Battery life has been greatly extended as well, as the new camera utilizes Sony’s Z series battery that has approximately 2.2 times the capacity of the W series battery utilized in the 7R II.

The 7R III features an upgraded high-resolution, high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder with approximately 3,686k dots for what Sony calls extremely accurate, true-to-life detail reproduction. The Tru-Finder, also found in the alpha 9 camera, utilizes a Zeiss T* Coating to greatly reduce reflections, and has a fluorine coating on the outer lens that repels dirt. It also has a customizable frame rate, with options of either 60 fps or 120 fps.

The LCD screen has been upgraded as well, with a resolution of 1.44M dots and WhiteMagic technology that improves viewing in bright, outdoor conditions. “Standard” or “High” display quality settings are also available for both the viewfinder and monitor as well. “High” takes advantage of the large amount of data read from the sensor to provide extra fine viewfinder and monitor displays for a more natural view.  The new camera also offers a multi-selector joystick that provides a fast, efficient way to shift focus points, as well as an ‘AF ON’ button to activate autofocus when shooting stills or movies.

The 7R III allows for transfer of files to a smartphone, tablet, computer or FTP server via Wi-Fi, while also including a sync terminal, enabling external flash units and cables to be connected directly for convenient flash sync. A SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.1 Gen 1) USB Type-C Terminal is also available for increased flexibility in power supply or connected accessories, as well as a faster image transfer speed when connected to a PC.

New with the 7R III is a software suite called “Imaging Edge” that extends the creative capabilities of the entire shooting process – from pre-processing to post-processing. Imaging Edge provides three PC applications called ‘Remote’, ‘Viewer’ and ‘Edit’, available for free download, which support live-view PC remote shooting and RAW development.

Also making its debut on the 7R III is a new Pixel Shift Multi Shooting mode, which takes full advantage of the advanced 5-axis optical in-body stabilization to create super-high resolution composite images. In this mode, the camera precisely shifts the sensor in 1-pixel increments to capture four separate pixel-shifted images containing a total of approximately 169.6-megapixels of image data. These four images can be composited together and processed utilizing the new Imaging Edge software.

The Sony alpha 7R III will ship this November for about $4,000.

Canon EOS Rebel T7

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The Canon EOS Rebel T7 is the latest addition to the Rebel line of entry-level DSLRs, with an upgraded CMOS sensor to deliver sharp, high-resolution images, says the company.

The camera, featuring a 24.1-megapixel resolution sensor, is the successor to the Rebel T6. Offering easy sharing of high-quality photos and videos on social media sites, the EOS Rebel T7 provides continuous shooting up to 3.0 frames per second (fps), a nine-point autofocus system and a three-inch LCD monitor.

Additional features include built-in Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity; Scene Intelligent Auto Mode; and an optical viewfinder.

The EOS Rebel T7 is scheduled to be available in April, and will be sold as a lens-and-body kit with the EF-S 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II for an estimated retail price of $549.99.

Canon M50

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For those wanting to step up from a smartphone, Canon has a camera it thinks you’ll want, the EOS M50, an interchangeable lens camera with 4K video recording.

Canon describes the M50 as an “all-around,” entry-level camera with features that encourage users to broaden their creative visions.

Providing improved Dual Pixel CMOS AF, a 24.1-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor is said to deliver less noise and high definition in low-light situations.

Camera features include a new DIGIC 8 image processor; HD 120p High-frame video rate; built-in OLED electronic viewfinder with Touch and Drag Autofocus; a Vari-Angle LCD touchscreen; Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth connectivity; automatic image transfer to compatible devices while shooting; and a new Silent Mode.

The Canon EOS M50 is scheduled to be available in April for an estimated retail price of $779.99 for the body only. The camera will also be available with the EF-M 15-45 mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens in both black and white for an estimated retail price of $899.99. Additionally, the M50 will be sold with the EF-M 15-45 mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM and the EF-M 55-200 mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM in black only for an estimated retail price of $1,249.00. A Video Creator Kit will also be available for the M50 for an estimated retail price of $999.99.

Sony 24-105 mm lens

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Sony has introduced the full-frame, E-mount FE 24-105 mm f/4 G OSS lens, which the company says is the most lightweight design in its class.

The lens is claimed to deliver excellent corner-to-corner sharpness throughout the entirety of its zoom range, while also producing beautifully rendered bokeh (background defocus) at all focal lengths.

The 24-105 uses advanced optical design featuring four aspherical lens elements, two of which are high precision AA (advanced aspherical) lenses. There are also three strategically located ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements that work in combination with the aspherical lens elements to minimize chromatic aberration, says Sony.

The lens also has Nano AR coating to minimize flare and ghosting, and utilizes a circular aperture.

Weight is approximately 663 g (23.4 oz), minimum focus distance is 1.25 ft, and the lens includes built-in optical image stabilization.

This new standard zoom lens features a DDSSM (Direct Drive SSM) system that is capable of rapid positioning of the lens’ focus groups with high accuracy and very minimal noise, Sony notes.

The lens also features a customizable focus hold button, a dust and moisture resistant design and a fluorine coating on the front element to help minimize dust, water, oil and other contaminants.

The Sony FE 24-105 mm f/4 G OSS lens is scheduled to ship in November, at a price of about $1,700.

Panasonic Leica 50-200 mm lens

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Panasonic has unveiled the Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4.0 ASPH. lens (equivalent: 100-400 mm), with Nano Surface Coating technology to minimize ghosts and flaring, plus a rugged, dust/splash-proof design that is freeze-proof to -10F.

The Power O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) compensates for hand-shake movement. The lens works with Dual I.S. (Image Stabilizer) and Dual.I.S.2 when mounted on compliant Lumix cameras.

Comprising 21 elements in 15 groups, the lens system features two UED (Ultra Extra-low Dispersion) lenses, two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) lenses and two aspherical lenses.

The sensor drive at max. 240 fps takes full advantage of cameras with high-speed, high-precision Contrast AF for video recording performance, and an inner focus drive system ensures smooth, silent operation. A micro-step drive system in the aperture control helps the camera smoothly catch up to brightness changes when zooming or panning, sats the company. The optical design is said to provide exceptional barycentric stability to minimize image shifts during zooming.

The Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm will be available at the end of June.

Tokina FíRIN 20 mm lens

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Tokina has announced the Tokina FíRIN 20 mm f/2 FE AF lens, the second prime lens in the company’s premium lens series for mirrorless cameras. It’s the autofocus version of the existing Fírin 20 mm f/2 FE super wide angle lens for full-frame Sony E-mount, with the same optical design as in the manual focus model.

The optical design uses two aspherical elements and three lenses molded from Super-low Dispersion glass to significantly reduce any type of aberration including spherical aberration, distortion and chromatic aberration while assuring high resolution and what Tokina calls “stunning” performance even at wide open aperture.

For the AF drive system the lens uses a quick responsive and silent ring-shaped ultrasonic motor. Tokina says the lens is fully compatible with Fast Hybrid AF system and all AF function settings, providing the same AF performance as with common E-mount AF lenses. Fine manual focus adjustment is also possible.

The Tokina FíRIN 20 mm f/2 FE AF is tentatively scheduled for late May availability.

Pentax K-1 Mark II

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The Pentax K-1 Mark II full-frame DSLR is an updated version of the original K-1, delivering even higher image quality and enhanced performance, becoming the new flagship model in the process.

The Mark II uses the same full-frame Anti-aliasing (AA)-filterless CMOS sensor with 36.4 effective megapixels as its predecessor model. However, a new accelerator unit has been added, along with the camera’s PRIME IV image processor, enables the new model to produce high-resolution images with minimal noise, suggest Ricoh, up to ISO 819200.

The camera also incorporates Pixel Shift Resolution System II. This new technology uses the same in-camera shake-reduction (SR) mechanism and sensor-shift capabilities as the original Pixel Shift Resolution System found in the K-1, which captures four images of the same scene, and then synthesizes them into a single, super-high-resolution composite image.

A new feature in the Pixel Shift Resolution System II is Dynamic Pixel Shift Resolution mode. This, suggests Ricoh, allows photographers to produce crisp, ultra-high pixel shift resolution images without the need of a tripod.

The Pentax K-1 Mark II camera body will be available in April. The camera body plus HD Pentax-D FA 28-105 mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR will also be available.

Tamron 70-210 mm lens

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Tamron is launching the 70-210 mm f/4 Di VC USD lens, a compact telephoto zoom for full-frame DSLRs. The company says the lens provides “superb” optical performance throughout the entire zoom range and features a maximum magnification ratio of 1:3.1.

The design includes an internal zoom mechanism that provides solid mechanical construction and stable, reliable operation, notes the company.

The lens also employs a Dual MPU (Micro-Processing Unit) design, which enables high-speed and high-accuracy AF performance as well as powerful VC (Vibration Compensation) image stabilization.

The zoom is equipped with fluorine coating and moisture-resistant construction.

The lens is said to achieve superb optical performance with high contrast and resolution. The optical construction (20 elements in 14 groups) uses three LD (Low Dispersion) lens elements to effectively compensate for axial and transverse chromatic aberrations.

Compared to large aperture telephoto zoom lenses, this new model is lighter with a weight of 850 g (30.3 oz) and is more compact with a total length of 174 mm (6.8 in).

Nikon and Canon mount version of the Tamron 70-210 mm f/4 Di VC USD lens will be available in April.