Nikon Rumors has received word that the Nikon 1 V3, successor to the 1 V2, will be announced next week, alongside a new 10-30mm kit zoom and the 70-300mm super monster telephoto zoom lens that we recently reported on. The new kit lens is said to be an f3.5-5.6 PD VR, which means it’ll be stabilized and it’ll feature an electric zoom motor–which indicates that it might be a bit smaller than the current 1-series kit lens. In addition to the camera and the two lenses, Nikon will reportedly present a new accessory light, but no information is available on it so far.
The Nikon 1 V3 will feature a completely redesigned body, and it’ll be the first V to come without an integrated viewfinder. Instead, there will be an optional accessory EVF with a very high resolution of 2.4 million dots. On the rear, there’ll be a swiveling screen that can be tilted 180°. The sensor will also be new, with a significantly increased resolution of now 18 megapixels. The V3 will sport a pop-up flash that can be used as a wireless commander, plus a regular hot shoe compatible to Nikon’s speedlights. Finally, there will be an accessory grip for the 1 V3.
That’s quite a lot of significant changes over previous 1-series models–provided the information that Nikon Rumors received is true. While the V3 will be closer to its J and S siblings in terms of general body styling, it is also clearly aimed at the more demanding photographers with its high-resolution EVF, swiveling screen and additional hand grip. It remains to be seen how the new 18 megapixel sensor performs in terms of high ISO and dynamic ranger. But since it is–reportedly–only a week until the camera gets announced, we’ll soon know for sure.
When we first heard about Getty making the majority of its photographs free to share, without watermarks, our initial reaction was, “now they’ve lost it completely.” Without further explanation, this sounds almost as if the stock agency were giving away the work of its contributors for free, essentially generating even less income for working photographers–who already in many cases have a hard time making a living from their chosen craft. However, digging into the story a little deeper, we realized that this move is actually pretty clever.
For years, Getty has seen the copyright of its photographers being infringed on the internet, mainly due to image sharing via social networks such as Twitter or Tumblr, but also by blogs and other websites. In most cases, the persons or websites sharing the images weren’t generating any profit from them. But the pictures were often acquired by means that disregarded copyright, that is by screenshot or by grabbing from other websites that happened to host them–and were often free of Getty’s watermark.
Since Getty’s images were being used in this way already, the agency figured the best solution would be to officially make its stock photos available for anyone to embed, free of charge, and without watermark. The clever trick here is that Getty is providing the embed code itself, which means that the agency has a certain amount of control over the images that are being used–which so far wasn’t the case. This also opens up the possibility to monetize the content, for example via ads, although currently there don’t seem to be any fix plans for doing so.
In essence, what Getty is doing here is comparable to the legalization of cannabis use: it is decriminalizing what is already a common practice. And instead of seeking legal action against those using its images, the agency embraces the fact that its photos are being shared and tries to gain control over how the content is spread. And in addition, this is very helpful for small, non-commercial or non-profit publications without a budget for stock photography, as it will allow them to use Getty’s material without having to pay fees, and most importantly without infringing on the photographers’ copyright.
With the four-digit P-series, Nikon has had a number of high-end compact cameras in its setup for some years now. However, simply putting all the latest point-and-shoot tech into a body with lots of buttons and dials doesn’t cut it anymore these days. With its relatively small 1/1.7″ sensor and medium-fast zoom lens, the current P7800 isn’t really up there with the best of the bunch, and so a replacement can be expect to come soon. According to Nikon Rumors, the P7800′s successor will be the P8000, and it will up the ante just enough to make it a more attractive option to potential buyers.
The P8000 will reportedly sport a larger 1″ sensor, which is the same size as in Nikon’s 1-series of interchangeable-lens cameras. In addition to the larger sensor with its better overall image quality, the P8000 will also sport a slightly faster 5x zoom lens, which still starts at f2 but only goes down to f3 at the telephoto end, as opposed to the P7800′s f4. Speaking of telephoto, the P8000′s lens will be a 24-120mm equivalent, so this is a significant step down from the P7800′s 28-300mm equivalent.
Additional features of the P8000 will be a maximum shutter speed of 1/8000 second, Expeed 3 image sensor, a magnesium body, and of course the ever-present 3″ screen on the back. The camera is reported to appear some time between April and May, so we won’t have to wait much longer until we can be certain whether it’s real.
There’s also news for users of Nikon’s 1-system, which might soon see the addition of a 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 VR zoom lens. To put things into perspective, due to the 1″ sensor’s 2.7x crop factor, this lens would be equivalent to a 190-810mm lens on a 35mm full-frame camera! That’s quite a lot of telephoto. In order to keep the size of the lens down–after all, it must fit with the tiny 1-series cameras–, it’s going to sport a collapsible design just like the recently announced 18-55mm DX kit lens. Unlike the P8000 camera, the 70-300mm 1-Nikkor will already be announced this month, according to Nikon Rumors.
If you’re a reputable camera manufacturer, especially one serving a more demanding selection of customers, then you have to have an in-house customization program. Leica has had one for years, called ‘Leica à la carte,’ which would let you customize your camera’s button design, color, and leatherette, among other things. Hasselblad lets you choose how overpimped you’d like your new Lunar or Stellar camera to be. And now it seems that Fujifilm has decided it was about time to offer custom design options for its X-series cameras.
On a new microsite, Fujifilm offers current owners as well as prospective buyers of select X-series models to have their camera equipped with a customized leatherette. There’s a vast selection of different colors and materials, including some with the names of animals in their designation–we assume that ‘Beige Lizard’ and ‘Black Croc’ merely describe the look of the leatherette, and not its actual provenance. However, judging from the price tag at which the customizations are offered, we’re not entirely sure.
Currently, it seems the program is only available in the UK, and if you’d like to get your X-series camera officially pimped by Fujifilm, then you can order a skin of your choice for as little as GBP 129.99–that’s US-$ 217 at current exchange rates. Quite honestly, we don’t think any of the (presumably) synthetic leatherettes look good enough to warrant such a high price tag.
In our humble opinion, you’d be much better off ordering a third party leatherette from eBay and applying it to your camera yourself. Not only does that give you many more (and nicer) options, it’ll also cost you less. And if you absolutely must spend that much money on a new skin for your camera, you can at least get one made from actual crocodile leather. Or better yet, leather from a python that recently devoured a crocodile. Yeah, that sounds very manly, doesn’t it.
In today’s fast-paced technology world, six-month spans between the announcement of a product and its successor is nothing out of the ordinary, and a life cycle of a year is common for many products. So when a device is older than a year, people start wondering when the successor will be announced. For the Olympus E-PM2, the digital life span is already way over its due date, as the camera has been on the market for almost 1 1/2 years. Its bigger sibling, the E-P5, hasn’t been around quite that long–it’s only been introduced last May. Still, a new report claims that both cameras have been discontinued by Olympus, with successors to arrive some time this summer.
Both cameras share much of the same technology, first and foremost the Sony-made 16 megapixel CMOS sensor from the OM-D E-M5. Considering that the E-M5, and with it the sensor, is now almost two years old, and that the OM-D E-M1 is right now the only camera sporting the latest 16 megapixel sensor, it seems to be about time that the PEN series receive an upgrade.
Unfortunately, there is no detailed information available at this point. 43rumors, who first reported about the discontinuing of the two PEN models, mentions that the PEN series is much less successful than the OM-D series, so maybe well see some completely updated and rethought models this summer. One possibility would be to include an EVF in the top-level PEN model, in a rangefinder-style similar to the Panasonic GX7 or Fujifilm X-E1, though that would pit the next PEN directly against the mid-level OM-D.
Another possibility would be to reduce the number of PEN cameras from three to two, and drop either the PEN Mini or the PEN Lite. But there could be even more changes to the series in order to make it more attractive to customers once again, and in a sense revive the success of the original PEN E-P1 and E-PL1 models. At this point, this is all speculation, and to be certain we’ll have to wait until more information becomes available.
Red has been teasing the photography and videography world for along while before the release of their new Epic camera sporting the Dragon sensor. Right from the beginning there was word that this new sensor would be revolutionary in terms of image quality, especially concerning dynamic range. And indeed, when first footage taken with the Red Dragon surfaced, we were stunned by the quality it delivered. It seemed as though Red hadn’t promised too much.
Now that the latest-generation modular cinema camera is nearing availability, everybody wants to know how it really performs. Lucky for us, the people over at DxOMark had the chance to play with a prototype unit and put it throught their regular testing procedures–with amazing results. Usually, DxOMark only tests still cameras, so for testing the Red Dragon’s performance, they had to extract stills from the 6K raw footage the Red Dragon records.
What they then found when they analyzed the resulting images is nothing short of spectacular. DSLR fanboys hold your breath, because what comes now might totally shatter your beliefs. The Red Epic Dragon’s sensor scored an overall 101 points in DxOMark’s test, the highest score any camera tested by DxOMark has ever achieved. But it’s getting even better. In both dynamic range and color depth, the Dragon sensor managed to outperform the both the Nikon D800 and D800E, while in color depth it even managed to outperform top-level medium format models from Phase One.