From Image Conception To Creation, This Smartphone Makes It So Easy

The Android-based Sony Xperia 1 II makes creating and sharing your images a piece of cake.

Being able to visualize, capture, edit, and share your images instantly is incredible. Being able to do this on a phone that behaves like a traditional camera is even better. The Sony Xperia 1 II is an Android-powered smartphone with incredible amounts of power that can capture, edit, and share your images without breaking a sweat. We have spent the last two months creating with the phone. Thanks to its Sony Alpha-inspired interface, features, and dedicated shutter button, we’ve felt right at home with it. After the break, we’ll show you just how easy it is to create a workflow with the Xperia 1 II that will quickly and easily get your images in front of the masses.

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This Phone Does Street Photography The Justice It’s Needed

Street photography has really needed a more serious smartphone, and the Sony Xperia 1 II is just the item.

Street photography is one of the best ways for people to explore their city. When you’re traveling, it can help you understand what’s going on around you. And the Sony Xperia 1 II does that better than other phones. Sony created the phone from the ground up for the photography experience. Of any that we’ve used on the market, this one has surprised us the most. If you shoot street photography, then pay attention to this.

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Timothy Ozimec Shot Beautiful Milky Way Photos with Sony Xperia 1 II

Learn more about great Xperia Trade-In offers here.

“…it’s like I’m uncovering the secrets of the universe and seeing the impossible,” says passionate photographer Timothy Ozimec. “What appears to the naked eye as a few hundred white dots in a black sky are revealed to be a veritable sea of stars among the cosmic latte plane of the Milky Way.” What’s more, Tim gets these images using the Sony Xperia 1 II smartphone, announced earlier this year. It’s opened his eyes to what could be possible with a more serious camera.

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Cheap Photo: Sony A7 II + 28-70mm Lens for $999, a Sony A7R II for $1598 + Score Big Savings on Other Sony Camera Deals

Sony is putting out some of the best camera deals of the holiday season!

If you have been waiting to see what camera deals this Black Friday and holiday season brings, and you have been hoping that some of Sony’s excellent camera will be on sale, you’re in for a treat. Right now you can grab the Sony A7 II with the 28-70mm lens for just $999! You can also scoop up the A7r II (body only) for $1598, while the pocket sized powerhouse a6000 with two lenses can be yours for just $599! Continue reading…

Review: Gitzo Traveler Alpha Tripod and L Bracket (Sony FE Cameras)

The Gitzo Traveler Alpha tripod was designed specifically for Sony FE cameras, and it works well with them.

I never thought a tripod could be specifically designed for a certain camera series, but indeed the Gitzo Traveler Alpha Tripod is exactly that for Sony FE series cameras. The design has to do specifically with the plate which accommodates Sony FE cameras as long as they have a native FE lens on them. It was also designed to work in part with an L bracket on the Sony camera. With the L bracket attached, the camera becomes easier and faster to switch from horizontal to vertical mode. This way, you don’t need to manipulate the ball head. While it’s well built, I’m not sure it’s worth a price of just under $1,000.

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Photo Gear for the Landscape Photographer Who Wants to Carry Less

With fresh air and beautiful nature surrounding you, landscape photography can be quite rewarding. If you are a landscape photographer who desires to carry less, read on. 

Think of landscape photography as street photography in nature. The animals are not giving permission but we photograph them anyway, and the walk is good for you. If you’re like most street photographers, you don’t like to carry a ton of gear to make the photo. Check out our recommendation from smartphones to medium format digital.

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Review: Sony 35mm f1.4 (Sony Alpha)

If you were to look back at some of the quintessential lens options for the Sony Alpha lineup of lenses, then you’re sure to figure that the company would have updated their 35mm f1.4 by now; but they haven’t. Sony has a fantastic 50mm f1.4 lens for their Alpha lineup of cameras and considering that the A99 II is such a blow-me-away great camera, it would make a whole lot of sense that they updated their 35mm for the wedding and photojournalism crowd.

However, those photographers are understandable looking more towards the mirrorless camera world. So with that said, when Sony sent us the Sony 35mm f1.4 lens in Alpha mount to review with the Minolta a7, we decided to do something different: test the lens entirely on film.

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Film Ferrania Announces Their New FERRANIA P30 ALPHA, an 80 ISO Black and White Film

It’s yet another exciting day for film photography as Film Ferrania has introduced a brand new black and white panchromatic film rated at ISO 80. It’s called P30 Alpha and they’re claiming that it produces results that made the company famous more than 50 years ago. Indeed, if you’re a lover of high contrast black and white film, then you’re going to be awestruck. According to Emulsive, this could be very difficult to do simply because making a chrome film is tough. Indeed, we’ve known this and Kodak made us very aware. But we’ve also been seeing the rise of Analog come back.

The company’s press release is after the jump. I’m excited to try this in a studio.

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More Full-Frame E-Mount Lenses to Come in 2014, Including Zeiss Manual Primes

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.

Review: Sony RX10

julius motal the phoblographer sony rx10-4

In the pantheon of cameras that were, are, and will be, it is rare that a point-and-shoot will turn heads. That’s not to say that there haven’t been any, but so many compromises are made with cheaper cameras that it’s easy to forget about them altogether. Enter the Sony RX10, a point-and-shoot camera with an impressive lens and a DSLR aesthetic in the Cyber-shot line. It’s a bridge camera, and in Sony’s case, the halfway-point between its Cyber-shot and Alpha lines. Consider it a Cyber-alpha, really. Throughout the monthlong review period, I often forgot that I was working with a point-and-shoot, but I never completely forgot.

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Report Hints at New Full-Frame E-Mount Cameras Coming for Photokina

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7 A7r RX10 Zeiss Lenses (11 of 31)

Every other year, one of the world’s biggest photography fairs is being held in Cologne, Germany. We’re of course talking about photokina, which was last held in 2012 and is scheduled again for September this year. Since there was no photokina in 2013, Sony instead chose Photo Plus Expo in New York as the place to show off its brand new duo of 35mm full-frame mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras. Now reports are coming in that around photokina this year, Sony will introduce two more full-frame E-mount cameras.

Sony Alpha Rumors has received word from ‘multiple trusted sources’ that the launch of two new E-mount cameras with 35mm full-frame is planned within the next 5 to 6 months, which would put the announcement sometime between mid-August and mid-September, just ahead of photokina 2014. Which means that it is very likely that both cameras will be shown there. Whether or not visitors will be able to touch them remains to be seen. At photokina 2012, the then-new full-frame compact RX1 was hidden behind plexiglass.

As for details, little is known about the two new shooters, except that they are not going to replace the A7 and the A7R. This could in theory mean that we’ll either get to see higher-end models, presumably labelled A8 and/or A9, or lower-end models, or both–that is, one higher-end camera and one lower-end camera. What is certain is that the new full-frame Alphas will feature a more advanced hybrid autofocus system similar to that in the new A6000.

So, what kind of full-frame E-mount camera would you like to see? Do you dig the SLR-style of the A7 and A7R, or would you rather have a rangefinder-like A6 in the style of the NEX-6/7 and A6000? Or something entirely different? Let us know, we’re curious!

Review: Sony Zeiss 50mm f1.4 (Sony Alpha)

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony 50mm f1.4 product photos (5 of 5)ISO 1001-100 sec at f - 4.5

Sony’s older 50mm f1.4 lens was really a rebadged Minolta, and the company has been overdue on creating their very own version for the system. Earlier this year, they announced it. And Sony’s new 50mm f1.4 is really as glorious as we thought it would be to start with. The lens has been co-designed with Zeiss and features autofocusing, dust resistance, and a very sleek body.

But man, is it expensive.

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Tokina’s AT-X 11-16 F/2.8 PRO DX Type-II Is Now Available in Sony Alpha Mount


In January 2014, Tokina will start shipping the Sony Alpha mount version of their 11-16mm f2.8 lens. The lens has been available for both Canon and Nikon mounts for a while, but it only makes sense that the third largest (or in some cases second) camera manufacturer was going to receive some support.

The lens has two Super-Low Dispersion and aspheric elements along with the snap back manual focusing ring that is on many of their other lenses.

We’re still working on reviewing more of Tokina’s lenses–but many of you already love them a lot.

Tech specs are after the jump. No word yet on pricing.

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Report: Sony May Have a Full-Frame and an APS-C Alpha SLT in 2014


The alpha line isn’t dead. The fine folks at sonyalpharumors cite two trusted anonymous about A-mount prototypes in two flavors: full-frame and APS-C. The full-frame option will have a 36 MP sensor, but what separates it from the A7R is that it doesn’t have an “offset microlens design”. Having an offset microlens design improves pixel efficiency by having the light hit the sensor at a better angle, but it is needed only really in mirrorless models where light hits the sensor at much smaller angles than in DSLR/Ts. The APS-C option will have a 24 MP sensor, which is a souped-up version of the a77’s sensor. This rounds out the available details.

It’s comforting to hear that Sony’s bigger rigs aren’t dead. These cameras could arrive in early 2014, but we’ll keep our ears close to the ground for more information.

Could This Be One Of Sony’s New Full Frame NEX Cameras?


Editor’s Correction: This is a reader-made mock-up

We’ve been hearing rumors about this for a while and also reading into hints of it coming. Sony Alpha Rumors believes that the photo above is one of two full frame sensor NEX cameras that may be coming to us soon. The site is saying that the cameras will be called the A7 and A7r. They continue to state that, “Both have exactly the same design (with NEX-7 grip, EVF in the middle and RX1 size). The difference is in the sensor. The A7 has 24MP sensor, more fps and different AF speed. The A7r has a 36MP sensor and less fps (and I have been told a bit “different” AF).

Based on Sony’s naming conventions, this doesn’t sound right at all. When they released the RX1R, it was essentially the same camera as the RX1 but with no low pass filter. Perhaps, Sony is doing the whole Nikon D800/D800E approach?

We have yet to hear more about the full frame mirrorless lens patents; but with Photo Plus coming in just a couple of weeks, the rumors of the camera launching in October may be true.

Samyang Brings In The 85mm T/1.5 A-Mount Lens

The Korean brand Samyang has announced the imminent arrival of their 85mm lens for the A-mount. It plans to join its siblings, the 14mm, 24mm, 35mm, and 8mm fisheye, in the video lens family. The 85mm T/1.5 is a manual focusing lens that comes in at 72mm in diameter and features a silent aperture ring while adding 513g of weight to your overall shooting gear.

Samyang has hinted towards a late this year release and looks to make its mark in the videography scene. Their brother, Rokinon, has also been doing the same thing. We’ve reviewed the 8mm and 35mm lenses already. It will be interesting to see how this does on the Sony A99.

Via Sony Alpha Rumors

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Sony Announces New 55-300mm f4.5-5.6 Superzoom A Mount Lens

Today, Sony has pulled the veil off of the highly rumored 55-300mm f4.5-5.6 lens for Sony A Mount cameras (with an APS-C sized sensor.) The new lens features Sony’s SAM (Smooth Autofocus Motor), one ED lens element, and that really seems to be about it. The Sony 55-300mm f4.5-5.6 SAM lens will be available in September for $300.

Check out all the tech specs you care about after the jump. If you’re in the market for a Sony DSLR camera, check out our A37 and A77 reviews.

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Quick Review: Sony 16-50mm F2.8 for Sony A-Mount DSLRs

The Sony 16-50mm f/2.8, best known as the “kit” lens with the Sony A77, is among one of the finest “kit” lenses I’ve ever tested. I wrote briefly about this lens in my Sony A77 Review, but I thought I would go ahead and post a full-on review of the lens, because I really can’t get enough of it. The build, the image quality, and the versatility of this lens make it a clear winner among the Sony A-Mount choices. Read on for more details!

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First Impressions: Sony A37 DSLR

Sony’s A35 is today being replaced with the A37 DSLR. Being their new entry-level kid, it also sports many features that make it seem very entry level, but also make it extremely versatile for different types of users. Due to just how much power is really packed into here, it could very well win over the hearts of various Nikon and Canon users.

Take a look at how our hands on experience with the Sony A37 went.

Editor’s Note: Don’t call this a review at all. However, Sony has told us that the image quality that we got from the units at the event was final, though the camera’s firmware was not.

Update: B&H Photo has the A37 listed with the 18-135mm and 18-55mm lenses.

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First Impressions: The Sony A37 in Santa Monica

There is something special brewing with Sony. If you haven’t looked or if you are only paying attention to the big two (Nikon and Canon) then you should take a look at what I have to say.

Sony is a big name in electronics but is only a rising star in the camera market. They aren’t putting their feet up and relaxing, they are making big moves and just doing some honest listening to what their customers want.

With an introduction like that you are probably expecting me to spill the beans on some unreleased full frame camera goodness but this is quite the opposite. I am here to talk about the brand new entry level camera from Sony, the A37. I had a few hours with Sony’s new release and I wanted to share with you my honest opinion on it. Continue reading…