Lightroom 5.2 and Camera RAW 8.2 RC Update

Today Adobe announced the availability of Lightroom 5.2 and Camera RAW 8.2 release candidates. A number of bugs that were present in Lightroom 5 were fixed, and new camera and lens profiles have been added. In addition, some new features features have been added to Lightroom, including a smoothness adjustment slider, refinements to the spot healing tool and local adjustment brush. Preliminary RAW support for the recently announced Canon EOS 70D and Sony RX100 II is also provided. The Adobe team skipped Lightroom 5.1 version and jumped directly to 5.2, to keep up with the Camera RAW naming convention.

Lightroom 5

Camera and Lens Support

Here is the list of newly supported camera models:

  • Canon EOS 70D *
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR800
  • Fujifilm FinePix HS22EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix HS35EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix S205EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix F805EXR
  • Fujifilm X-M1
  • Phase One IQ260 *
  • Sony DSC-RX1R
  • Sony DSC-RX100 II*

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Fuji Gear is Here!

Our readers have been asking us about reviewing Fuji cameras and lenses. Since Fuji has been on the roll lately, releasing the X-E1, X-M1, X100s and a bunch of new lenses, we decided that it would be a good idea to review all of Fuji gear that is out there. Although I reviewed the Fuji X-Pro1 a while ago, I decided to update my review, because the new firmware addressed a lot of the issues that I talked about in the review, including some of the autofocus issues. Here is everything I received yesterday:

Fuji Cameras and Lenses

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Latest Nikon Firmware Updates

If you own a Nikon DSLR, this is a good time to perform a firmware update, because Nikon has just released new firmware that contains distortion control data for most of its current and older generation DSLRs, including Nikon D4, D90, D600, D800, D800E, D3100, D3200, D5000, D5100, D5200, D7000 and D7100. The distortion control data is used to correct barrel and pincushion distortion exhibited by Nikkor lenses. Please keep in mind that this data is only useful for correcting JPEG images. Distortion control data is not applied to RAW images (only to JPEG previews stored in RAW images) and if you use external image editors such as Photoshop and Lightroom, they will completely disregard this data when the RAW file is imported.

Nikon D4 Menu - Firmware Update

Still, it is a good idea to run the latest and greatest firmware on your camera. Also, this distortion control firmware is not a full firmware update for most cameras – it adds lens profiles to the existing camera database (firmware “L”). Before you apply the above update, I highly recommend to update your camera firmware (firmware “A” and “B”) to the latest version first. I wrote a detailed article on how to update firmware on Nikon DSLRs a while ago.

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Nikon, Fuji and Sony rebates end tomorrow

A quick reminder to those of you who were planning on purchasing new photographic equipment from B&H. Instant rebates from Nikon, Fujifilm and Sony will end tomorrow (06/29/2013). A quick recap on the rebates programs. If you buy a Nikon DSLR body, you have the option of purchasing as many lenses or speedlight units (SB-700 and SB-910) with up to $300 off per each product. While this means that you have to purchase at least one camera to qualify for additional lens rebates, some lens rebates are significant and were not part of any rebates in the past (like the new Nikon 70-200mm f/4G VR lens that I reviewed earlier this year). So this will be a great program for those that want to buy a new DSLR or want a backup camera.

Nikon More Buy More Save Rebate

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Nikon D7100 Firmware Update

Nikon has recently released a new firmware update for their current DX camera lineup flagship, the D7100. It’s a camera we really liked (read our review), but there were some concerning niggles, such as limited buffer and crippled video mode. With its latest C 1.01 firmware update, Nikon chose do add improvements to the latter.

Nikon D7100

One of the biggest concerns with video mode was that when shooting in 1080p24 in manual mode – something most aspiring videographers would tend to do – the camera’s live view failed to display changes in exposure when a different shutter was set. This problem has been addressed. Unfortunately, one other serious problem has not been fixed yet. You still can’t change the aperture on G type lenses when in video mode, and that is a serious setback. Videographers using the D7100 will just have to wait for the next firmware release. Read on for the list of all firmware version C 1.01 improvements and download link.

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Fuji 27mm f/2.8 and 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS Lens Announcements

Previously, Fujifilm lens line-up wasn’t exactly very extensive, with a small number of well thought-out, high quality lenses. With the two latest additions, Fujifilm seeks to not only make the camera system more attractive, but also suitable for most needs. Along with the new Fuji X-M1 mirrorless camera, Fujifilm has also announced two new X-mount lenses – the Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 and the Fujinon 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS.

Fuji XF-27mm and XC 16-50mm

Overview and Press Release

Not so long ago, with the launch of the original X-Pro1, Fujifilm X lens line only consisted of three prime lenses. Though great performers, the 60mm f/2.4 macro, 35mm f/1.4 normal and 18mm f/2 wide-angle primes didn’t exactly make the system complete for most people. Ever since, though, Fujifilm has been working on new optics relentlessly. We saw three more lens announcements afterwards with two zoom lenses to add to the superb prime lens line-up. And today, with the launch of the 27mm f/2.8 and 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS, Fujifilm X system now offers 8 distinctive lenses for various needs.

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Fujifilm X-M1 Announcement

As many may have hoped, Fujifilm has finally brought out a mid-range X series compact system camera. The newest member of the desirable system is called the X-M1. Lots of good news here – it’s gorgeous, comes in three colors and with the same great 16.3 megapixel APS-C X-Trans sensor as its older siblings, the X-Pro1, X-E1 and X100s. What you may like even more is the low (for a Fujifilm camera) price of $700 body only. But good looks alone is obviously not enough for that price. What else is there about this camera?

Fujifilm X-M1

Fujifilm X-M1 Overview and Specifications

We at Photography Life are big fans of Fujifilm X cameras. We believe they brought some fresh air into the market. Dashing looks and photographer-friendly ergonomics, but also innovative sensor technology and focus on quality prime lenses have made the X series very desirable among photographers. That said, Fujifilm X series have had their share of problems and quirks. As a matter of fact, this is probably the most quirky camera system out there right now. You could even call it “character”. Fujifilm has been spending a lot of effort and time fixing these quirks with firmware updates. Also, with every generation, their cameras seem to be getting better and more complete than before. X-M1 continues that trend, at least on paper.

Fujifilm X-M1 Rear

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The Case of the Disappearing Professional Media Photographer?

Cause the good ole days weren’t always good,
And tomorrow ain’t as bad as it seems.”

Keeping The Faith
- Billy Joel

The Chicago Sun-Times’ decision to lay off its staff of photographers and editors (~28 total), including a Pulitzer Prize winner, sent shock waves throughout the photography industry. Some cried foul. Some expressed disbelief. Others lamented the changing times and the commoditization of the professional media photography field. Many mocked the paper’s suggestion that it would rely on reporters to take their own photos using iPhones and DSLRs. The Sun-Times did not eliminate using professional photographers, since it plans on using some freelancers to fill some of the void created by the departure of the full-time professional crew. But the Sun-Times’ announcement was a clear indication that it believe something had fundamentally changed and it was willing to take radical action to do what it thought best for the immediate and long-term health of the business.

G20 Pittsburgh Job

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Mary Poppins With a Camera: Vivian Maier

We received a short video from one of our readers, Christopher Tobutt, who wanted us to share the photographic work of an ordinary nanny from Chicago. Vivian Maier turned out to be quite a secret street photographer, even before the term existed. Her work was discovered right before she passed away. Take a look at some of the great shots from her below.

Vivian Maier (13)

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Leica X Vario Announcement

Today Leica announced the new X Vario compact camera with a fixed Vario Elmar 18-46mm f/3.5-6.4 zoom lens. Sporting a 16.1 MP CMOS sensor, this camera comes with a similar sensor used on Leica’s X2 compact camera. The major difference between the two is the lens – the X series have the fixed Elmarit 24mm f/2.8 lens, while the new X Vario has a 18-46mm zoom lens. Just like the X1/X2, the X Vario does not have a built-in viewfinder, but you can get an optional EVF separately. The X Vario adds 1080p video recording support @ 30p and you can buy all kinds of accessories, from leather strap to beautiful leather case to “complement the elegance of the X Vario”, as Leica states. The camera has a price tag of $2,850, something one would expect from the “boutique” Leica.

Leica X Vario

With such feature-rich cameras as Fuji X100s (APS-C), Nikon Coolpix A, Canon G1X and Ricoh GR that are much cheaper and better, you might be wondering what Leica is thinking by introducing the X Vario to the market. Even the full-frame Sony RX1 at this point costs less than the X Vario. On top of that, the new Vario Elmar 18-46mm f/3.5-6.4 is a joke – the lens is equivalent to a 28-70mm lens and the slow aperture of f/3.5-6.4 just makes this camera a glorified point and shoot. Forget about being able to isolate subjects with this lens, especially on the long end: the f/6.4 aperture on the long end is equivalent to f/9.6 on a full-frame camera.

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