Latest Event Updates

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.

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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.

Fujifilm X-H1

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Billed by Fujifilm as the “highest performance camera” in its X-Series lineup, the X-H1 features a 24.3-megapixel APS-C-sized X-Trans CMOS III sensor and X-Processor Pro image processing engine. It is the first in the X series to feature in-body image stabilization (IBIS), a new Flicker Reduction mode that allows for stable exposure under fluorescent and mercury lighting, and DCI 4K video capabilities.

The X-H1 boasts a newly designed, robust and durable body, and a range of features that support shooting in various situations by professional and experienced amateur photographers, and videographers. When used in combination with Fujinon lenses and Fujifilm’s signature colour reproduction technology, the X-H1 produces outstanding image quality and video reproduction, says the company.

The X-H1, with in-body image stabilization, harnesses three axial accelerometers, three axial Gyro sensors, and a specially-developed dual-processor to achieve approximately 10,000 calculations per second. When combined with compensating mechanisms, the X-H1 is claimed to produce uncompromised image quality and precision. The 5-axis image stabilization is possible with all XF and XC lenses, with certain lenses capable of up to a maximum of 5.5 stops. In addition, a new spring mechanism has been added to reduce micro-vibrations caused by operation of the mechanical shutter. Photographers may also choose to use the electronic front curtain shutter or the electronic shutter, virtually eliminating the effect of vibrations to maximize the benefits of image stabilization, Fujifilm notes.

In addition to its dust and water-resistant properties and ability to operate in temperatures as low as -10°C, the X-H1 also features 25 percent thicker magnesium alloy than the X-T2. The camera also features a high quality, scratch-resistant coating and a compact, lightweight body that maintains high precision and strong resistance to impact shock torsion and other sources of deformation.

The X-H1 features a high-magnification and high-precision electronic viewfinder with a magnification ratio of 0.75 times and 3.69 million dot resolution, leading the class for APS-C mirrorless cameras, Fujifilm suggests. The viewfinder display is extraordinarily smooth, with a display time lag of just 0.005 seconds and a frame rate of 100 frames per second, allowing the user to instantly confirm the movement of the subject and position the focus with great precision. The X-H1 also features a 3-direction tilt, 3-inch electrostatic touch-panel LCD, which can be set to the desired angle. In addition, the 1.28-inch sub-LCD on the top of the camera, which emulates the design of the mirrorless medium format GFX 50S, allows for instant confirmation of shooting information.

The camera incorporates additional improvements which the company says are based on feedback from professional photographers, including a large grip design, leaf-spring switch for the shutter-release button, near-silent shutter sound, a new focus level, and a new AF-ON button and enlargements of buttons on the rear of the camera.

The X-H1 is the first camera in the X Series to include Eterna, a new film simulation mode that Fujifilm says is ideal for shooting movies. This mode simulates cinematic film, creating understated colours and rich shadow tones. The X-H1 boasts many functional and performance improvements to video image quality, including the 1080/120p high-speed video mode (1/2, 1/4 and 1/5 speed slow motion) for recording spectacular slow-motion footage; F-log SD card recording which aids smooth workflow; a DCI 4K shooting mode (4096 × 2160); a 400 percent dynamic range setting (approximately 12 stops); 200

Mbps high bit rate recording; a high-sound quality internal microphone (24 bit/48 kHz); and verbal time codes.

Also in the X-H1’s repertoire is a flicker reduction mode, allowing for stable exposure during burst shots even under fluorescent and mercury lighting. In addition, improvements to the autofocus (AF) algorithm have achieved a number of performance enhancements. Low-light limit for phase detection AF has been improved by approximately 1.5 stops – from 0.5EV to -1.0EV – raising the precision and speed of AF in low-light environments. The minimum aperture has been expanded from f/8 to f/11, and major improvements have been made to the AF-C performance while operating in zoom, ideal for shooting rapidly moving subjects.

The Vertical Power Booster Grip (VPB-XH1) is a weather-resistant grip capable of operating at temperatures as low as -10°C that fits two additional batteries to increase maximum number of shots to 900 (in normal mode) and increases the maximum period for shooting movies in 4K to about 30 minutes.

This grip features a shutter release button, focus lever, AE-L button, AF-ON button, command dial, Q button, and Fn button. The grip is equipped with a headphone socket to allow monitoring sound while recording, and includes recharging capability.

The Wide Eyecup EC-XH W covers a broad area around the eye, greatly reducing light interference. The eyecup can be rotated in 90° increments, making it adaptable for either eye and for shooting either vertically or horizontally.

The Fujifilm X-H1 will be available at the beginning of March. The body will be available for $2,449.99 and the body with power booster grip kit will be available for $2,799.99.

Panasonic GX9

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The Lumix GX9 from Panasonic is a compact Digital Single Lens Mirrorless camera featuring a 20.3-megapixel Digital Live MOS Sensor without a low-pass filter, and Venus Engine image processing.

The L.Monochrome D mode is newly added to Photo Style, making it easy to shoot detailed dynamic monochrome photos with emphasized highlights and shadows. Plus, Grain Effect can also be adjusted in all monochrome modes with Photo Style.

A 5-axis Dual I.S. (Image Stabilizer) in the GX9 is claimed to effectively suppresses blur. Combining an O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer, 2-axis) and a B.I.S. (Body Image Stabilizer, 5-axis), the Dual I.S. compensates for a wider range of movement to enable blur-free photo/video shooting from wide to tele, even in low-light conditions.

A new wide screen LVF (Live View Finder) tilts up approx. 90 degrees. Plus, the camera’s 3.0-inch high resolution static-type touch monitor provides nearly 100 percent of field of view and tilts up approximately 80 degrees and down 45 degrees.

The Contrast AF System features DFD (Depth From Defocus) technology is said to deliver autofocusing in approximately 0.07 sec. A range of AF functions include Face/Eye Detection AF, Pinpoint AF, One-shot AF and advanced Low Light AF. Live View Boost makes it possible to check composition even in total darkness by boosting sensitivity just for live view.

The GX9 records smooth, high-resolution 4K video in 3840 x 2160 at 30p or 24p in MP4. 4K PHOTO is said to be easier to use in more creative ways with Auto Marking and Sequence Composition, two new additions to Post Focus, Focus Stacking, Light Composition and 4K Live Cropping.

The Light Composition function, a new 4K Photo option, sees the camera synthesize images by choosing and saving a brighter pixel to easily produce more dramatic images of fireworks or night scenery in-camera.

The GX9 includes Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Lumix DC-GX9 with a Lumix 12-60 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens will be available in April with an MSRP of $1,300.

Panasonic ZS200

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The Lumix ZS200 is Panasonic’s new flagship camera in its Travel Zoom series. The camera comes with a 15X optical zoom (24-360 mm equivalent) Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens. The camera also includes 5-Axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilizer Plus to suppress hand-shake in both photo and video recording.

The company notes it has added a new L.Monochrome mode in Photo Style for monochrome images with rich B&W film gradation.

The camera’s 1-inch MOS sensor produces high-quality images with stunning details, says Panasonic.The combination of a High Sensitivity MOS Sensor and Venus Engine delivers up to ISO12,800. There’s also an upgraded Live View Finder (LVF). Both it and a 3-inch touchscreen display provide approximately 100 percent field of view.

Panasonic says the ZS200 boasts exceptional optical performance with stunning clarity with minimum distortion and flare. This new lens system also enables stunning close-up shots with its 3 cm macro capability.

Yes, there’s 4K video recording – QFHD 4K video in 3840 x 2160 at 30p or 24p in MP4. There’s also 4K Photo to extract single frames from 4K burst files shot at 30 fps to save as 8-megapixel equivalent images. In 4K Photo, Auto Marking and Sequence Composition are included in addition to Post Focus and Focus Stacking.

A Contrast AF System features DFD (Depth From Defocus) technology for ultra-fast auto focusing in approx. 0.1 sec.

The ZS200 includes Bluetooth and Wi-Fi® connectivity for instant image sharing.

The camera also features independent dials and a Control Ring located on the lens barrel.

The Lumix ZS200, in black or silver, will be available in April at an MSRP of $1,100.

Fujifilm X-A5

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The Fujifilm X-A5, sporting the new Fujinon XC15-45 mm lens, is the lightest camera-zoom lens combination within the X Series lineup, says the company. The new 15-45 mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens is the first electric powered zoom lens for X Mount digital cameras.

Available in three colours of synthetic leather, the X-A5 is equipped with the latest Bluetooth technology for quick and easy image transfer and allows for a broader range of video capabilities with its 4K output.

The camera features a 24.2-megapixel APS-C sensor equipped with phase detection autofocus and a newly developed image processing engine with a processing speed 1.5 times faster than that of previous models, says the company. The X-A5 is claimed to achieve outstanding image quality and outperforms previous models in its scene recognition accuracy and skin tone reproduction.

The X-A5 is the first in the X-A series to feature phase detection pixels, and an intelligent Hybrid AF system that focuses twice as fast as previous models to ensure capture of swiftly moving subjects. With an ISO sensitivity range now up to ISO12800 and extended sensitivity range up to ISO51200, camera shake and noise are significantly reduced.

The camera features a variety of 4K video capabilities. Utilizing the Burst Function, users are able to shoot 15 frames per second in 4K image quality. An HD video function records videos up to quad speed for slow motion clips and a Multi Focus Mode stacks 4K quality images and automatically changes the depth of field setting.

The camera allows for automatic transfer of images and videos to paired smart devices using the free Fujifilm Camera Remote app. The camera is compatible with Instax Share printers to instantly transfer and print images directly from the camera.

There are 11 Film Simulation Modes. In addition, the camera offers 17 variations of Advanced Filters including the new Fog Remove and HDR Art.

The large LCD screen uses new touch-panel GUI, facilitating intuitive operation and is capable of rotating 180 degrees, making the X-A5 perfect for taking high quality selfies. When the panel is rotated 180 degrees, the Rear Command Dial switches to the Zoom and Shutter Release function and automatically activates the Eye AF function for sharp focus on the subject’s eyes. Additionally, the Portrait Enhancer Mode allows for users to select from three levels of skin tone enhancement with easy touchscreen operation.

Also part of the package: in-camera RAW processing; improved battery life (approx. 450 frames)

The Fujifilm X-A5, with 15-45 mm lens, will be available in early February for $749.99. The lens will also be available separately beginning in March.

Fujinon 15-45 mm lens

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The first electric powered zoom lens for X Mount Fujifilm cameras is the Fujinon XC15-45 mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS PZ. It has a minimum working distance of about 5 cm (2 inches).

The XC15-45 mm lens will be available March 15 for $379.99.