It is a big day today at Nikon, since the company is celebrating its 100th year anniversary. Nippon Kogaku K.K. was founded on July 25th 1917 and the company has been making everything from consumer cameras to industrial optical equipment ever since. As part of this important day and celebration, Nikon’s president Kazuo Ushida gave an important statement that reassures the future of the company, particularly when it comes to addressing the “rapidly changing consumer needs”. With the announcement of the development of the Nikon D850, the company wants its customers to know that it is working on a next generation DSLR that will exceed their expectations. That’s a bold claim for sure, and many of us Nikon shooters cannot wait to see what Nikon is planning with the D850. There is a lot of excitement surrounding the camera and we at PL really hope to see a true D810 successor! And let’s not forget that Nikon has also promised to release a mirrorless camera, something many of us also are very excited about. For now, sit back, relax and enjoy some of the great videos Nikon put together for its 100th year anniversary.
Earlier this year, I published an article with a long wishlist of features that I would like to see on the Nikon D820. Since Nikon decided to skip this model number and jump directly to D850, I figured it was time to revisit that article with more realistic goals and features many of us would be willing to upgrade our D810 DSLRs for. I think as a large community of Nikon shooters, we should do our best to reach out to Nikon directly and put in our requests, so that the company knows what its dedicated user base expects from the future generations of their cameras.
Tomorrow is the 100th year anniversary of Nikon. While we have been patiently waiting for the company to announce something new for this big date, it looks like we will only be seeing a teaser in the form of the Nikon D850 “development announcement”. Unfortunately, aside from the teaser video (see below) that does not reveal much aside from the ability to shoot 4K video and 8K timelapses, no additional information is provided as part of this development announcement, which is quite unfortunate! Perhaps Nikon is still going through some changes to the camera features, or perhaps there are other reasons for not giving us any further details, but it will be a painful few months of waiting for additional details on this highly anticipated camera…
With the release of high-quality modern lenses that are made to satisfy our insatiable appetite for sharpness, it seems that they also come with a curse. Unlike older classics that shone with their stunning look and feel, along with their beautiful rendition qualities that resulted in particularly attractive photographs with subjects popping out of the scene (also known as “3D pop”), it seems like modern lenses are no longer equipped to give us this magic – they are made to look flat and dull, lacking the character of the old classics. In this article, we will go through a number of different images shot with modern lenses and compare them to their classic counterparts and see how they do. Grab a cup of coffee, sit tight and put on your glasses, because you will need them. And yes, that even applies to those with 20/20 vision.
Note: Since this is a rather controversial subject, I highly recommend that you read the whole article through, especially the last paragraph.
Color calibration should definitely be an essential part of every photographer’s workflow. Otherwise, it is impossible to tell whether the colors that are displayed by your monitor are truly accurate and whether what you see will match the print. There are many ways to do it and the process can be fairly simple or complex, depending on how accurate you want to reproduce the colors and whether you are also printing your work in-house. The simple method involves a hardware colorimeter for color profiling your monitor for everyday photo editing and image viewing, and there is also an end-to-end professional-grade color profiling that requires very concise calibration of all display and output devices, such as printers. In this article, I will only focus on simple methods to make your monitor show more or less accurate colors, so that you could rely on it for everyday photography needs.
One of the most frequently asked questions from our readers and friends is related to picking a good monitor for photography needs. It seems like the market is over-saturated with all kinds of choices, whether you visit a local store or browse through an online catalog. There are all kinds of monitors for different budgets and some models might leave you wondering why they are so expensive compared to others. Since there is no simple answer to this question, I decided to write a detailed article with my personal recommendations.
Hasselblad created quite a bit of buzz when it released the Hasselblad X1D-50c in June of 2016. With its 44x33mm image sensor, 2.36 MP electronic viewfinder (EVF), dual SD card slots, 3″ touchscreen LCD, built-in Wi-Fi, GPS, leaf shutter, a super lightweight construction weighing only 725 grams with a battery and a very compact size, the X1D-50c looked absolutely stunning both in terms of its specifications and its stylish design. Hasselblad priced the camera at $8,999 MSRP at introduction, which when compared to the traditional Hasselblad prices, looked like a bargain for the first time. Hasselblad called the X1D a “groundbreaking” camera and a game changer – pretty bold, but valid statements given “the world’s first medium format mirrorless” status. Despite the fact that the X1D-50c was delayed a number of times since its announcement due to high demand, I was able to get a hold of a sample unit back in March of 2017. So this review is based on 4 months of heavy shooting with the camera in different shooting environments.
If you are a Nikon shooter, you might have found the announcement of the 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E VR AF-P puzzling. While it looks great on paper, the lens seems to be ahead of its time, since the only cameras the lens is fully compatible with are the recent DX cameras. What is the point of announcing a full-frame lens, if it is limited to only a few DX cameras and practically no FX cameras? To me, it shows that Nikon is getting ready to announce something really big, something many of us Nikon shooters have been waiting for – a full-frame mirrorless camera. As I was looking at the details of the new 70-300mm VR AF-P, I realized that this lens would be an ideal candidate for a mirrorless camera. It is small, sharp and lightweight, which is exactly what a lightweight and compact Nikon mirrorless system needs. On top of all this, Nikon’s president has already hinted at an upcoming mirrorless release (link in Japanese, use Google Translate), although nothing was said about the format / sensor size. While this is my personal speculation, the release of the full-frame 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E VR AF-P to me is an indication of a full-frame mirrorless coming to the market.
Today Nikon revealed its first pulse motor (AF-P) lens designed specifically for full-frame cameras, the AF-P NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6E ED VR. This is a very interesting release for a number of reasons. First, it improves the already great 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR budget telephoto lens by making it sharper, faster and lighter. Second, it vastly improves the image stabilization system on the lens, capable of compensating up to 4.5 stops when shooting hand-held, in addition to adding a Sport VR mode for panning. Third, the new 70-300mm gains an electronic diaphragm and its new optical design allows to get even closer to subjects with a minimum focus distance of 1.2 meters. And lastly, its $700 price tag puts it just $100 above its predecessor, making it a great choice for budget conscious photographers. Being such a lightweight and compact lens, it seems like an ideal choice for travel photography.
While the previous Nikon camera and lens rebates are now over, Nikon has just introduced a few more lens-only rebates. The list of lenses has changed considerably this time, probably based on demand. Interestingly, Nikon included the recently announced Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR as part of this rebate program (see my in-depth review) with $200 off its MSRP, just like the 24-70mm f/2.8E VR last time. It is definitely not normal for Nikon to include such new lenses in its rebates – this shows just how much pressure Nikon is getting from third party lens manufacturers. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights from this rebate program.