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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony 24-240mm f3.5-6.3 product images (1 of 6)ISO 16001-40 sec at f - 2.5

“If you’re looking for a great option for traveling, then it’s the lens that you want to have.” I told the reps at Sony when they asked me about my feelings on the company’s 24-240mm f3.5-6.3 lens that I was reviewing at the time. Indeed, I was honest–and there is of course a caveat.

The Sony 24-240mm f3.5-6.3 FE lens is designed for the company’s full frame A7 camera bodies. It has weather resistance (splash and dust-proofing), a massive zoom range that is equally as massive as its size, and a metal exterior that adds to its beefy build quality. It isn’t a Zeiss lens–but rather a Sony G series lens that is aimed at those who reach for higher hanging fruit.

As good a lens as it is though, Sony has much better options that don’t have the same zoom range.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sigma 24mm f1.4 review product lead image (1 of 1)ISO 8001-20 sec at f - 1.4

By this point in the game, it’s common knowledge that Sigma is at the top of their game–the lens game that is. With the announcement of the company’s 24mm f1.4 DG lens, folks were naturally excited. DSLR users now know that their 24mm, 35mm, and 50mm lenses will all be the sharpest on the market for the price. Indeed, they’re all beautiful and are bound to make any consumer or even professionals very happy.

So what makes the Sigma 24mm f1.4 DG so special?

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7r Mk II first impressions (1 of 8)ISO 8001-60 sec at f - 6.3

The Sony A7r Mk II has been talked about now for a while on the rumor sites, but today the company is officially announcing the camera. The Sony A7r Mk II features a brand new 42.3 MP full frame sensor, can shoot up to ISO 102,400, and boasts 399 focal plane phase detection autofocus points that Sony states covers 49% of the imaging sensor. Beyond this, the company claims that the camera will have a much faster responsiveness rate: up to 3.5x faster which is up to 40%.

We had some hands on time with the camera during Sony’s press briefing.

Update; we’ve added in an autofocus test video, and a video with the Canon 24-105mm f4 L IS

Update II: Now available for pre-order from B&H Photo, Adorama and Amazon.

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Review: Leica Q

by Chris Gampat on 06/10/2015

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Leica Q camera product shots (2 of 13)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

Every time I enter a Leica meeting, I always hope and pray for the same thing: a digital Leica CL. After reading none of the rumors around the web, I wondered if Leica had finally done it. “What? Is this a digital CL? I’ve been asking for this for years.”

To my slight dismay, the product I was seeing was the Leica Q–a fixed lens full frame digital camera with a 28mm f1.7 lens and an EVF that is around 3MP is resolution.

Then I got the opportunity to try it for four days–and like almost every product similar to the M series, I liked it. M cameras are very precise instruments that make you incredibly particular about the image that you’re taking–and I’d argue that it forces you to create better and more calculated images. The Q isn’t exactly an M–but it shares lots of the same characteristics. The camera has an EVF, an option to enable frame lines that crop the image automatically, WiFi connectivity, a 28mm f1.7 lens that can be switch into macro mode, and most of all: autofocus capabilities.

Not only can this camera autofocus–but (and I never thought that I’d be typing this) this camera has the fastest focusing capabilities of any Full Frame 35mm mirrorless and point and shoot camera that I’ve ever tested. In fact, the speed is almost to Micro Four Thirds capabilities.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm 16mm f1.4 review lead image (1 of 1)ISO 4001-125 sec at f - 6.3

The Fujifilm 16mm f1.4 is a lens that makes a lot of sense in the company’s lineup. Fujifilm’s strengths are with their primes, though their zoom lenses have started to become spectacular in the higher end category. However, very little else will appeal to the retro-smitten photographer like Fujifilm’s prime lenses–and the 16mm f1.4 is no exception. With nine aperture blades, a weather sealed body, metal exterior, a clicky aperture ring, and a depth of field scale that you can use for zone focusing, what’s not to like?

While you can surely start off by saying that it costs a heck of a lot, you can also point out to a single major flaw that we found with the image quality. But overall, that’s just about all that you can hate about this lens. Even then, it’s very easy to stay in love with it.

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Chris Gampat the Phoblographer Panasonic G7 first impressions images (1 of 7)ISO 4001-80 sec at f - 2.8

It seems like Micro Four Thirds cameras are never really big secrets; at least that’s what Four Thirds rumors seemed to have right on point with the Panasonic G7. This is the company’s latest camera in their G series and is targeted at enthusiasts by combining the best of come of their other cameras and putting it all into this one. The G7 has the sensor of the GF7 and the processor of the GH4, shoots 4K video, and has improved autofocus performance that Panasonic claims works down to -4 EV.

We put a big emphasis on the word claims there; especially since we spent less than five minutes with the prototype that we handled at the company’s headquarters. The big feature that Panasonic seems to be pushing is the new 4K Photo mode that essentially just snaps full 4K video sized photos.

Providing this camera really can perform like this, it’s bound to win awards and drop jaws–but this camera still has some weird ergonomics.

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