I overestimated the home field advantage yesterday. While shooting along the creek, my foot slipped and I splashed into the water with all my gear. The plan was to get a photo of a hunting kingfisher for today’s Photography News.
Instead, I made two observations that I would like to share with you. The Nikon 200-500mm f/5.6 lens has its limits when it comes to water resistance. On the other hand, the sealing of the Nikon Z9 did not disappoint and did not let a single drop get in. And what about you, have you ever managed to drown your photo equipment? How did it turn out? I’d love to hear about your experiences. But now, onto what has happened in the last week.
- Panasonic’s new Organic Sensor: After ten years of development, it seems to be ready. You won’t see it in any camera yet, so what can we look forward to in the future? The main feature that Panasonic mentions in their press release is reduced color crosstalk. In other words, each RGB pixel is only receptive to the part of the color spectrum that is assigned to it. This should lead to greater color accuracy, especially in difficult lighting conditions.
- Xencelabs Pen Display 24 Studio Series: Wacom tablets (for drawing or editing and retouching in photo editing programs) have a new competitor. This 24-inch tablet offers 1.07 trillion colors in 4K, wide viewing angles, programmable Quick Keys unit for keyboard shortcuts (detachable from the display), and more. Available from the second quarter of 2023 for $1,899.
- Zoner Photo Studio X Spring Update: With the new major update, ZPS X adds support for over 1200 camera lenses (automatic correction of distortion, chromatic aberration and vignetting). RAW processing speed has almost doubled. Multi-monitor support has been improved. The Video module has also received new features. A 30-day trial version is available for download here.
- Zhiyun MOLUS G60 and X100: A pair of lights for photographers and videographers on the go. Both lights can be powered by AC or battery. They allow continuous light adjustment from 0% to 100%. The color temperature is adjustable from 2700 to 6500K. A wide range of accessories can be attached to the light source to change the character of the light. For more information, visit the B&H PhotoVideo website, where the lights can be pre-ordered for $199 (G60) and $249 (X100).
The Rumor Mill
Rolleiflex: the return of a twin lens reflex legend?
The famous company of the same name may have declared insolvency in 2014, but the name still lives on as “Rollei GmbH & Co. KG“. Previously, Rollei was known for its twin-lens reflex (TLR) cameras, which had been in production since 1929. These cameras had a lower lens for shooting and a second lens above it for focusing. The focusing screen was on top of the camera, so when you focused, you stared downward. Remember that?
TLRs were eventually displaced by SLRs. It is rare to see someone using a TLR today. I have one myself (traditional Czech brand Flexaret) on my windowsill. But the last time it had film in it was very, very long ago.
Rollei no longer makes cameras, although that may change soon. An interesting post appeared on the Twitter posing as the official Rollei account. It announces that a new digital TLR Rollei might be introduced on April 20th (I double-checked if it is not the 1st). If this post turns out to be true, it will be one of the boldest releases in the photography industry in a long time.
Pentax on a wave of nostalgia
Not long ago, Leica revived production of its M6 35mm camera. Apparently, the traditional Japanese camera manufacturer Pentax is not lagging behind. Recently, the magazine Barfout! published an interview with several representatives of the Japanese photography industry. One of the interviewees was Takeo Suzuki, product planner and designer at Ricoh Imaging’s PENTAX Business Unit.
The interview reveals that in today’s electronic world, there is a growing demand for the good old analog experience. Open the camera door, load the film, manually rewind to the first frame. After 36 frames, you use a small lever to wind the film back into the cartridge. After developing the photos, a moment of excitement to see if they turned out well.
If you want to experience all that, you can buy a used Pentax K1000, Super A or even an LX for a few dollars. Or you can wait a while and maybe see a brand new model with manual rewind. If you need a refresher on the sound difference between manual and motorized rewind, the Australian Superb Lyrebird will remind you.
Will Canon surprise us with a fast 24-105mm lens?
It may not be as much of a surprise, since the rumor that a 24-105mm f/2.8 could be introduced in the first half of 2023 appeared on Canon Rumors a few days ago. In any case, it would be an interesting addition to Canon’s lens portfolio. After all, full-frame lenses in this focal length range tend to be f/4 at best. The 105mm at the long end would open up more possibilities for portraits, weddings, or street photography, where wide apertures are so desirable.
Photo Contest Corner
- Topic: Reflections is the theme for this competition.
- Fees: $12 to $36 (1 to 6 entries)
- Prize: Cash Awards up to $10,000 to the Top Three Photographers.
- Deadline: April 7
- Topic: There are 8 categories to apply for: People, Places, Nature, Abstract photography, Conceptual Photography, Still Life, Documentation, Plane.
- Fees: $10 per image (max 15 images).
- Prize: $1,000 for overall winner; at least $100 in goods and services for best in each category.
- Deadline: April 10
Good Deals and New Sales
Photographs by my friend and successful wildlife photographer Petr Bambousek or my colleague Nicholas Hess always reassure me that even with a small sensor you can do great things. It’s even more attractive when OM Systems’ best MFT camera, the OM-1, is now available for $1,900 (was $2,200).
You know what’s better for a photo expedition than one 2TB SSD? Two 2TB SSDs! That’s in case one fails or ends up in someone else’s bag. Personally, I travel with a SanDisk 2TB Extreme Portable SSD V2. It is now available at B&H for the very interesting price of $140 (was $450). With all these SSD sales I show in my weekly Photo News articles, you better not be buying them at full price.
This lens is not on sale, but it is in stock. Even that can be considered good news these days. What lens am I talking about? The Nikon Z 85mm f/1.2 S. You can order it from our trusted partner B&H PhotoVideo for $2,797.
Other Pages of Interest
Spring has arrived in the temperate northern hemisphere, and with it, the nesting season. Caring for chicks is hard work, as you may have experienced. The parents of the little falcons in San Diego not only have to provide enough food for their chicks, but they also have to protect them from all kinds of threats. Photographer Decker Nomura beautifully captured a peregrine falcon attacking a pelican that got too close to the nest. Pelicans may normally eat fish, but as this video taken by a BBC team on the African coast shows, the falcon probably was right to be wary.
Here you can see a python dealing with a human intruder in Cairns, Australia. No, don’t worry, this is not a tragic accident where a python swallowed a hapless farmer. Think of this post more as a reminder that even in the heat of the moment, it pays to treat animals with respect. Especially when their mouths are armed with needle-like teeth.
Sudan is not just the name of a country in central Africa. It is, or rather was, the name of the last male northern white rhino. Sadly, he died in 2018, and with him the chances of a natural recovery of the species. Photographer Ami Vitale is the author of the short film Remembering Sudan, the trailer of which you can watch on the Vital Impacts website. Sudan’s taxidermied body traveled from the National Museum in Prague, Czech Republic, back to his original home in Kenya last week. His skeleton will remain on display in Prague. See photos of the move here.
And a final note – there is a Change.org petition to keep Amazon from closing DPReview. At Photography Life, we consider DPReview and other photography websites not to be competition, but fellow photography instructors who help expand the art. Although it’s likely too late to convince Amazon, give it a signature if you can. You never know.