The Basics: Choosing Your First Good Zoom Lens for Your Camera

In the past couple of years, photographers have finally been able to pick up their first good zoom lens. By that we mean lower end zoom lenses have become much better at delivering high quality photos. For years, photographers turned to higher end zooms and prime lenses for good quality optics. When you combine these new zoom lenses with high quality sensors though, you’re able to create photos that really stand out to you and others around you.

So we’re going to take a closer look at how you determine what your first zoom lens should be.

Continue reading…

The Nikon 28mm f1.4 E May Be the Perfect Walkabout Lens for Nikon D750 Owners

The rumors of the Nikon 28mm f1.4 E lens have been going around, and yes–they’re true. In fact, Nikon is announcing a number of seriously cool lenses for their DSLR cameras. The most exciting of these is the Nikon 28mm f1.4 E lens offering that has 9 aperture blades, two ED elements, three aspheric elements, nanocrystal coatings, dust and water resistance (not sealing) and a price tag of $1,199.95. Then there are a number of other really fantastic lens offerings that Nikon is releasing soon.

Oh yeah, and then there’s a tough Nikon W300 waterproof camera…

Continue reading…

The Pentax KP is a Super Compact, Weatherproof DSLR, 27 AF Points

Editor’s Note: in a previous version of this article our title stated that the camera has 67 AF points. It has 27 AF points and 67 weather seals.

The rumors have been around the internet, and it seems like the cat is out of the bag: the Pentax KP is a new DSLR designed to be super compact yet packs a lot of the features the Pentax K-3 series boasts. For example, Pentax is saying that it’s Weatherproof, has 5-axis image stabilization (called Shake Reduction II), and a brand new 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor at the heart. But most notably, Pentax is talking about the Pentax KP’s super compact body. Indeed, it looks like an old school DSLR with some retro looks–and that’s something I seriously digg.

But the biggest thing is how small it is: The specs say approximately 131.5mm/5.1 inches (W) x 101.0mm/ 4 inches (H) x 76.0mm/3 inches (D) (excluding protrusions).

Continue reading…

Will The Pentax K-1 Still Work if You Run it Under a Faucet?

For years, Pentax has made very well-built DSLRs. With the K-1 out, we asked for permission from Pentax to be able to do the same durability tests that we’ve done with their previous cameras–running it under a faucet. Pentax gave us the go ahead, but also said to be sure that certain ports and enclosures were all sealed.

So did it continue to work? Check out our video after the jump.

Continue reading…

Fujifilm Explains the Difference between the 23mm f2 Lens on X100 vs the Weather Sealed Version

Since the announcement of the new Fujifilm 23mm f2 R WR lens for X series cameras, photographers have been wondering what some of the big differences are between the new lens and the one found in the X100 series of cameras. Of course, one has weather sealing and the other is pancake sized. But what else? So we spoke to Fujifilm about it. And here’s their response.

Continue reading…

Review: Zeiss 18mm f2.8 Milvus (Nikon F)

Along with recent announcement of the 135mm f2 and 15mm f2.8 Milvus lenses, we were also treated to the Zeiss 18mm f2.8 Milvus lens. This lens is the company’s offering in-between their 15mm and 21mm focal lengths that are supposed to deliver architecture, Real Estate, Cityscape and landscape photographers a different experience. Like the others out there, this lens is weather sealed and characterized with the blue ring towards the back of the lens–which aids in weather sealing overall. Additionally, it boasts manual focusing, a rubber focusing ring and an all metal body.

Indeed, it’s one heck of a lens designed for the outdoor photographer.

Continue reading…

Review: Sony A7s Mk II

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7s Mk II extra product images (2 of 4)ISO 8001-160 sec at f - 11

With the release of the Sony A7s Mk II around a year after the original, one has to wonder how can Sony make the A7s series any better?

That was the major question going through my head during this entire review process. It’s a specialized camera that serves its target audience really well. The Sony A7s Mk II doesn’t have the resolution of the Sony A7 Mk II or the Sony A7r Mk II, but what it has is the ability to deliver usable images at nuclear high ISO results that end up throwing the laws of exposure right out the window. This is due to the 12.2MP full frame 35mm sized sensor at the heart of the camera. Further, this camera can see better than the human eye in the dark.

With the Sony A7s Mk II, the company decided to add an uncompressed RAW shooting ability new ergonomics to match that of all the other Mk II cameras, new features for video shooters, and improvements to the autofocus that makes it able to autofocus in situations where other cameras simply scratch their heads.

Sure, the Mk II won’t be for everyone: but will it be for you? Do you really need to shoot at ISO levels not even thought of years ago?

Continue reading…

First Impressions: Olympus 7-14mm f2.8 PRO and 8mm f1.8 Fisheye

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

A while back, Olympus took a bunch of journalists on a trip to Whistler, CA and allowed them to play with two new lenses: the 7-14mm f2.8 PRO and 8mm f1.8 fisheye for its Micro Four Thirds system. Both of these options are on the wider end of the spectrum and when you consider the 2x crop factor then you get 14-28mm and 16mm accordingly. We don’t exactly consider 16mm to be a fisheye these days, but in the right situations it surely did perform like a fisheye lens.

Please note that these images were taken with prototype lenses, and that they weren’t the final production, though they were darn close.

Continue reading…