web analytics

News

Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 8.51.07 AM

DxOMark is announcing their Sigma 50mm f1.4 Art lens findings today. According to what they did in the lab, the company concludes that the lens is outperformed by the 55mm f1.4 Zeiss Otus lens only in terms of light transmission, distortion control, and vignetting control. Otherwise, they’re basically exactly spot on when it comes to sharpness numbers. The even more fascinating news is that they both wipe the floor with Canon’s f1.2 L offering–and hopefully will dispel the myth that someone should only go for all L glass when building their Canon kit.

The company didn’t test the lens on the Nikon D800E and we figure that this is mostly because the units going around right now are Canon mount.

More findings are after the jump.

[click to continue…]

julius motal the phoblographer sony a7 product image

When Sony’s full-frame E-mount system was first launched last year, it comprised four dedicated lenses for the A7 and A7R cameras. These were the two primes, the FE 35mm f2.8 and FE 55mm f1.8, and the two zooms, the FE 24-70mm f4 and the FE 28-70mm f3.5-5.6. An FE 70-200mm was also announced along the cameras, and will be available soon. While five lenses is quite a solid setup for a brand-new photographic system, these particular ones offer too little choice for demanding photographers.

The good news is, though, that Sony has been promising more lenses for the system, including a wide-angle zoom, another fast prime lens and a macro lens. Zeiss also announced that they are working on new lenses for the full-frame E-mount system, and theirs will be manual primes just like they made for various DSLR systems in the past. Another fast, manual prime lens has recently been announced by Chinese manufacturer Mitakon and should also soon be available.

Sony Alpha Rumors now heard from an anonymous source that over the course of this year, a total of fourteen lenses for Sony’s full-frame E-mount system will become available. This means that in addition to the five lens previously announced by Sony, there will be nine more coming this year including the ones from Sony and Zeiss that we mentioned above. Together with the Mitakon lens, these will make for a total of 15 lenses.

That’s actually not too bad for a system that by the end of the year will be just over a year old. Also, among these 15 lenses, there should be enough choice for most photographers that are contemplating switching to the A7, A7S or A7R. And let’s not forget, because these cameras are mirrorless E-mount cameras, you can adapt almost any full-frame lens to these cameras, and even use autofocus with some when you have the right adapter. So overall, the lens choice for these cameras is already pretty huge.

Canon 24-70mm f4L IS

Canon better come out with a new image stabilization version of its 24-70mm f2.8 lens already. Canon Watch has spotted the fourth patent in a row that illustrates the Japanese Camera company is planning to develop a new IS version of the ever popular 24-70mm f2.8 lens.

As of late Canon has been putting out patents on IS versions of all its lenses from the other extremely popular 17-40mm f4 lens, long telephoto lenses, and even its standard nifty fifty. The 24-70mm f2.8 however seems like the most likely lens candidate to get the IS treatment as it’s one of Canon’s most sought after lenses.

What’s more, third party lens makers are starting to catch up. Last year Tamron introduced its 24-70mm f2.8 SP VC complete with vibration compensation. We’re also still hanging onto earlier rumors of a Sigma 24-70mm f2 lens, which will probably come with image stabilization. Sigma’s already crammed optical stabilization into the 24-140mm f4 DG OS HSM—which isn’t available on official Canon glass—so it is extremely its new 24-70mm lens will also feature IS.

Via Canon Watch

Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 3.30.15 PM

Considering that Instagram had the tilt-shift ability for a while, it’s pretty nice that now Google has updated their main camera app to include the new lens blur tool–meant to simulate the look of bokeh. According to their research blog, their inspiration came from the bokeh that an SLR can deliver. Of course though, one should NEVER think that the digital bokeh simulated by Google can outdo the organic stuff straight from a real lens and big sensor.

When you start the use the tool, they tell you about bokeh and some of the simulated effects. They recommend that you stand no more than five feet away from your subject but that the closer you are the better your results will be. They then recommend that you take the photo and then pan the phone upward. The image then gets processed to deliver the bokeh.

When you’re done, you can choose the edit the level of blur. If you’re an Android phone or tablet user, go right ahead and update the app. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Update: In low light, you need to pan upward very slowly.

Canon Rebel SL1 white edition

After the recent sensor debacle–as a reminder, two Canon cameras in a row scored poorly in DxOMark’s sensor tests–it appears that the brilliant marketing geniuses over at Canon World Headquarters decided that it was time for a new approach at winning new customers. Looking into the history books, they must’ve found a reference on Leica somewhere, more precisely on how Leica effectively re-launched one and the same camera over and over again for decades by making one special edition after the other.

Something like this must’ve happened for sure, as we have no other explanation for what Canon has just done: they launched a white edition EOS Rebel SL1 / EOS 100D + 18-55mm kit lens. Yes, both camera and lens are clad in exclusive Canon Polar White, which is just a little bit whiter than the white Nikon uses in their 1-series cameras. We’re joking of course. About the white, that is. Not about the white camera. That one’s real. And the lens.

If we’ve got you all excited now, better calm down and put that credit card back where it belongs: it appears the super special white Rebel SL1 will only be available on European markets. That’s too bad, because let’s face it, who wouldn’t fancy a white Rebel! Owning one of these would surely make you stand out from the crowd of DSLR users. That is, until some Japanese bloke comes along with his multi-colored Pentax

Via Canon Watch

Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 8.32.11 AM

The Panasonic/Leica DG Summilux 15mm f1.7 lens for Micro Four Thirds was only announced very recently, but DxOMark has apparently already gotten their hands on a copy of the lens. According to the tests that the company announced today, the sharpness of this lens beats the pants off of Olympus’s 17mm f1.8 and Sigma’s 19mm f2.8 Art lens. Additionally, it shows less chromatic aberration than the Sigma lens but not the Olympus lens. Overall though, the 17mm f1.8 is scoring slightly better than Panasonic’s option.

If you haven’t purchased either lens yet, know that both of them have retroness built into their designs. The Panasonic lens has a working aperture ring while the Olympus lens has a snap back manual focus with a working depth of field scale. Street photographers would value either one, but they’d probably lean more towards the Oly.

While these tests are interesting, we don’t think that they’ll mean that much of a difference in real life shooting situations given that modern software is just so good at fixing these problems. And even if you’re a JPEG shooter, the cameras have a way of correcting any issues. Additionally, when you post the images online we highly doubt that everyone you know will try to go in and pixel peep.

Still though, this is interesting to note about how the technology is advancing. We got to try out the 15mm f1.7 and we reviewed the 17mm f1.8 a while back as well as a comparison to the 20mm f1.7. Be sure to check out both of those reviews.