Sony a9 Versus Nikon D5 and Canon 1D X II in Dynamic Range Tests

Photons to Photos has updated its Photographic Dynamic Range versus ISO Setting test database with results from the new Sony a9, and it found that the a9 holds its own against the flagship Nikon D5 and Canon 1D X Mark II DSLRs. The Sony a9 “performs very well against its competitors up till 3200 ISO, where the Nikon D5 just edges it out,” writes Sony Addict. “The Sony a9 beats the Canon 1D X Mark II across the board, but falls just behind the Nikon D5 in low light, while besting it in maximum dynamic range.” Here’s a
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How an $80 1000mm Lens Performs on a $1,400 Sony a6500 Camera

Let’s say you spent pretty much all of your camera budget on a shiny new $1,400 Sony a6500 mirrorless camera, yet you want a super telephoto lens for getting way up close to subjects. Here’s a thrifty option you could consider: buy a cheapo 500mm lens, Sony adapter, and 2x teleconverter for just $80. That’s what photographer Christopher Burress tried out recently, and he documented his experiment in the 9.5-minute video above. The lens is a Opteka 500mm kit, which can be found on Amazon (it costs $120 right now due to price fluctuations, but Burress got his for
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The 6D Mark II Will Be Canon’s First Full Frame DSLR with an Articulating LCD

If you’re a Canon photographer and you’ve been longing for a full frame DSLR with an articulating LCD screen, your wait will soon be over. The upcoming Canon 6D Mark II will reportedly be the company’s first camera of that category to offer the flexible display. Canon Rumors reports that a Vari-Angle LCD is a known feature in the upcoming camera now. Other specs/features include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, a larger (taller and deeper) form factor than the original 6D, and a new battery grip. The introduction of an articulating screen in Canon’s full frame lineup will likely attract both
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This Basketball Demo Shows the Sony a9’s Blazing Fast Autofocus

Sony is touting its new a9 camera as a sports camera with blazing fast autofocus and shooting speeds. If you weren’t impressed with the camera tracking a pole vaulter at 20fps, check out the demo in the video above: the camera accurately keeps its focus locked on a basketball being tossed back and forth near it. The video is by the Mandarin-speaking camera review channel NTimage. At 5:13, the hosts test the a9 by having it track two basketball players tossing a ball near the camera.
Despite the relatively small ball moving pretty quickly across the frame at an
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The Garmin VIRB 360 is a Waterproof 360° Camera That Shoots 5.7K

Garmin has unveiled the VIRB 360, a waterproof and dustproof camera that records both audio and video in 360 degrees, taking 15-megapixel spherical stills and video in 5.7K at 30fps. With a retail price of $800, it is not cheap, but the money buys you industry-leading resolution.
Bringing many of the features from the Ultra 30 action cam Garmin released last year, the new VIRB 360 is Garmin’s first foray in to 360° video. The camera bests most other 360° cameras by offering 5.7K video, and Garmin has also built-in 4 microphones to record 360° audio. The
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Shooting a 35-Year-Old Roll of Kodak Film

What do you do when you find a roll of film that expired 34 years ago? Shoot with it, of course! Colin Wirth of This Does Not Compute shares the results of a recent experiment in this 8-minute video in which he shoots with some ancient Kodak Plus-X black and white film. If you grew up shooting digital only, you may not know that film has an expiry date on it – usually a few years after it was manufactured. Film degrades over time, but it can still be developed long after the expiry date. The most exciting part of shooting with expired
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Arsenal is a Camera Add-On That Uses AI to Pick Optimal Settings for You

Arsenal is a new attachment for your DSLR or mirrorless camera that suggests the best settings for your shot using artificial intelligence, while also enabling you to fully control your camera using a smart phone. The recently announced Kickstarter campaign for the device reached its $50,000 goal in just 9 hours, and at the time of writing has surpassed $300,000. Arsenal’s most basic functions look quite similar to the Pulse, which we covered back in 2015. It connects to your camera over USB and then with your Android or iOS device via wifi. You’ll be able to see a live
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This is What You Can Capture with the World’s Smallest GoPro Drone

Video effects specialist Robert McIntosh wanted a tiny but powerful camera drone, so he built himself the world’s smallest high-definition drone. It’s a drone that can squeeze through the smallest of spaces, as you can see in the unusual 2-minute video above. “This is without a doubt the world’s smallest HD camera carrying drone seen capturing this epic continuous shot of the infamous Muscle Beach CA,” McIntosh writes. “Smaller, lighter, better.” His drone weighs just 94.7 grams with a stripped down GoPro camera mounted on it, and about 120 grams with a flight battery and foam roll cage.
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The Prynt Pocket Turns Your iPhone into an Instant Camera

Small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, the Prynt Pocket is a new device that attaches to your phone and enables you to instantly print your images on ink-free ZINK sticker paper. The device, which retails at $149, connects to the iPhone via the Lightning port and doubles as a grip with a physical shutter release and zoom wheel. It can print any photo on your device, but using the Prynt app to take the photo comes with an added benefit: it allows you to embed video data in to the print. The app allows users to
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Ricoh’s New WG-50 is a Quiet Update to the Rugged Waterproof Camera Line

Ricoh has just updated their WG line of cameras for the first time in a few years to include the new WG-50. At $280, the 16-megapixel rugged compact camera is a more affordable option for underwater photography down to 46 feet (14 metres). With a familiar robust design, the WG-50 has almost identical specs to the WG-4, which was announced in 2014. However, it’s a direct replacement to the WG-30 — the WG-40 was only released in Japan. The waterproofing rating remains the same, as does the ability to shoot in cold weather down to 14°F (-10℃), although the
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Hands On With the New DJI Spark

Now that DJI’s new mini Spark drone has been officially announced, the early reviews are starting to appear. Photo industry personality Kai Wong got his hands on a pre-release prototype, and his video provides a great early look at the drone. Kai’s humor (note: there’s some strong language) makes this an entertaining demo of DJI’s new “ickle, little” quadcopter. He seems impressed with the drone as he kicks off the video with some beautiful panning shots at Mam Tor in northern England, showing just how well the 2-axis stabilization works. As Kai shows, the Spark is tiny. Unfortunately, the props
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Startup Behind Panono 360° Camera Ball Files for Bankruptcy

The German start-up behind the Panono panoramic ball camera has filed for insolvency proceedings in Berlin, making it very unlikely that backers of their $1.25 million Indiegogo campaign will ever get their hands on their camera. The Panono is a spherical device comprising 36 separate cameras encased in plastic. Each camera uses a 1/4” sensor, which results in a 108MP 360-degree image when the photographs are combined. Although Panono reportedly applied for the bankruptcy filings over a week ago, according to German media reports, there is no mention of this yet on their website or any such communication to
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Reality Check: What Counts as ‘Pro’ Photography Gear?

The short answer: whatever works for you. In this short video/soliloquy, photography educator Matt Granger takes a break from looking at the best pro photo gear, to help define what exactly “pro gear” means to him, and what it should mean to you. We call this a “reality check” because, given the frantic pace of camera gear releases, it’s easy to get sucked into the trap of thinking you have to use a certain camera, or lens, or accessory in order to capture a certain genre of photography. In other words: if you wanna be a professional photographer, you need
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This Laowa Adapter Magnifies Full Frame Lenses for Fuji Medium Format

If you’re intrigued by the medium format Fuji GFX 50s, but don’t like the idea of throwing away all of your full-frame glass once you buy it, Laowa has a solution for you. It’s called the “Magic Format Converter,” and it will magnify your Nikon and Canon full-frame lenses to fit a Fuji GFX. The MFC is, by all accounts, a ‘world’s first.’ While other adapters simply attach a Canon or Nikon lens to your new GFX, leading to vignetting, this converter uses its own internal optics to magnify to image circle so that it fits
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DJI Unveils the Spark, A ‘Mini Drone’ You Can Control with Hand Gestures

There’s a new DJI drone taking to the skies, and it’s the smallest, easiest-to-use quadcopter the Chinese company has ever created. Meet the DJI Spark, a tiny drone that’s packed full of easy-to-use features that make it perfect for the drone novice and aerial selfie enthusiast. The headline feature of this little drone—beyond its diminutive size, that is—is that you can control it using hand gestures with “Gesture Mode.” It can launch from and land back in the palm of your hand, you can move it like Magneto controlling a piece of metal, and making a portrait gesture
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Profoto Recalls Its New B1X Monolight Battery

Citing a “potential safety issue”, Profoto is recalling the battery of their powerful B1X monolight, which was announced only 10 days ago. The flash unit itself is not being recalled, but this is an embarrassing debacle for the Swedish manufacturer. The issue effects a subset of the batteries with manufacturing dates as specified in the recall notice:
Unfortunately, we have discovered a potential safety issue with our new Li-Ion Battery MkII for B1 and B1X (product number 100399). We have therefore decided to execute a product recall for product number 100399 with manufacturing dates 2017-09 and 2017-16 (YYYY-WW).
If you
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Microsoft Tempts Photographers with Powerful Surface Pro and Surface Pen

Microsoft’s popular, portable Surface Pro tablet computer is getting a major update. Combine that with a new, souped up Surface Pen, and the Seattle company’s newest release is looking really tempting for photographers on the go. In the past, we’ve largely ignored Surface Pro announcements. The tablet computer—which simultaneously competes with Apple’s stripped down MacBooks and the iPad Pro—were capable, but most photographers required a bit more juice. Photographers tend to buy MacBook Pros or the Microsoft Surface Book for the added umph. But the latest release packs some serious power under the hood with new processors, better battery life,
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This Gorgeous 10-Second Milky Way Photo Was Shot Hand-Held

In an attempt to one-up photographer Aurel Manea, who shot these hand-held Milky Way photos with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II last week, New Zealand photographer Jonathan Usher took his own EM-1 II out for a hand-held long exposure. That’s how he shot this unbelievable image: a hand-held 10 second exposure of the Milky Way. It seems we may have started some sort of Internet ‘challenge’ with our post about Manea’s Milky Way photos. He had used a super fast f/0.95 lens to shoot his, and said he couldn’t do better than a 4-second exposure hand-held. Usher
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Why I Only Use One Lens

After many years of experience using different lenses, I now have resorted to only using a single prime lens. I started with a 50mm, then added an 85mm, 35mm, 100mm, and 28mm to my collection, and I’ve played around with zooms. But now I exclusively use a 50mm lens. No more zooms and no more choices. But why would I volunteer to limit myself?

Why would I limit myself from the start?

Why would I choose to only use one lens for all my work? There are a few things that might be freeing to you if you decide to
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Hands On with GNARBOX for Storing and Editing RAW Photos On the Go

First unveiled to the world back in July 2015, GNARBOX is a new storage device designed to allow photographers and videographers to back up, edit, and share their RAW photos and 4K videos without having to haul around a laptop. The project received a considerable amount of attention when it was announced and went on to raise over half a million dollars through its Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign. The first production units started shipping out to the nearly 3,000 backers in November 2016, and today is the first day the GNARBOX is available to the general public. We got our hands
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