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Fujifilm Releases X100F, X-T20 and XF 50mm F2 WR

Fujifilm X100F

Seven years ago, Fujifilm released the X100, a retro-looking rangefinder-style digital camera that won the hearts of many photographers with its excellent out-of-camera image quality. It especially appealed to street photographers wanting a digital rangefinder but doesn’t want to pay the ridiculous premium for a Leica M system. The X100 featured a revolutionary hybrid viewfinder, giving the advantages of an optical as well as an electronic viewfinder. The X100 has since gone through a series of upgrades, with the S and T models, but while each offered noticeable improvements over the previous, particularly in the AF speed, the 16MP sensor is getting a bit long in the tooth compared to the likes of the X-T2 and X-Pro 2, as well as the competitors.

Fujifilm X100F Top Controls

Today, Fujifilm announced the forth generation of the X100, named the X100F. Following the X-Pro 2 and X-T2, the X100F uses the same 24.3MP X-Trans III CMOS image sensor and the X-Processor Pro, so image quality should be on-par. Fujifilm has increased the number of AF points on the X100F from 49 to 91, and improved the AF acquisition time to just 0.08s.

Fujifilm X100F Rear Controls

Like the X-Pro 2 and X-T2, the X100F has a joystick at the rear of the camera for controlling the AF point’s position, It has also taken on the style of the X-Pro 2’s combination shutter speed + ISO dial. Other minor tweaks include moving controls over to the right side of the camera for easier one-handed operation, and the addition of a front control dial. The hybrid viewfinder now offers image magnification when using the EVF mode. Also new to the X100F is the addition of the new ACROS film simulation mode for B&W lovers.

The X100F will be available from February 16th in black or silver for US$1299. Maybe there will be a graphite edition in future too, who knows?

X-T20

Fujifilm X-T20 with XC 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS

Fujifilm has also released the X-T20, an update to the X-T10 released in 2015. Just as the X-T10 was the “little brother” of the X-T1, the X-T20 is a baby X-T2. There is no weather-sealing unlike the X-T2, but it still retains several of the X-T2’s features. This includes the same 24.3MP sensor and X-Processor Pro image processor, advanced AF and 4K video shooting. One feature that the X-T20 has that the X-T2 doesn’t is a touchscreen which works in stills, video and playback modes. It also has a joystick control and a pop-up flash. The EVF however, only has a magnification of 0.62x (0.77x on the X-T2.) Just like their other newly released cameras, Fujifilm has added the ACROS film simulation mode to the X-T20 as well.

The X-T20 will be available from late February 2017 at a cost of US$900 for the body alone, bundled together with the XC 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS lens for US$1000 and with the XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 OIS for US$1200.

XF 50mm f/2 WR

Fujinon XF 50mm f/2 WR

Alongside the two new cameras, Fujifilm has added a new member to their weather-resistant (WR) line of lenses with the XF 50mm f/2 WR. Like the XF 35mm f/2 and XF 24mm f/2, the XF 50mm f/2 is a compact, lightweight and reasonably fast prime lens weighing just 200g. It offers dust and water resistance and is freezeproof to -10ºC.

On the Fujifilm APS-C cameras, it offers a 35mm equivalent of 76mm at f/2, making it an excellent lens for portraiture. It consists of 9 elements in 7 groups, and has one aspherical ED element. Autofocus is via a stepping motor.

The lens is available in February for around US$450 and is available in either black or silver.

 

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CES 2017: Fujifilm Announces Graphite X-T2 and X-Pro 2

Graphite X-Pro 2 with matching XF 23mm f/2 WR.
Graphite X-Pro 2 with matching XF 23mm f/2 WR.

Just like they’ve done for the X-T1, Fujifilm has applied the graphite treatment to their two latest cameras—the X-T2 and X-Pro 2. The graphite X-Pro 2 will also come with a matching XF 23mm f/2 WR lens. With a more silvery finish, the new X-T2’s colour is appropriately called “Graphite Silver”.

Fujifilm X-T2 "Graphite Silver"
Fujifilm X-T2 “Graphite Silver”

Both will ship in late January for US$2299 (X-Pro 2) and US$1799 (X-T2).

 

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CES 2017: Panasonic Officially Launches the Highly Anticipated Lumix DC GH5

Panasonic DC GH5
Panasonic Lumix DC GH5

Originally teased at Photokina, Panasonic has finally launched the Lumix DC GH5 during CES 2017. The camera has a 20.3MP Live CMOS sensor without an optical low-pass filter and an upgraded Venus Engine processor that claims to cut noise by 2 stops.

The EVF has been upgraded as well. It now has a resolution of 3.68M dots and 0.76x magnification (compared to 2.36M dots and 0.67x on the GH4.) It also has dual UHS-II SD slots, full-sized HDMI port and a fully articulating 3.2″ touchscreen LCD with 1.62M dots. it also has a 5-axis in-body image stabilisation with support for Dual IS 2.

The GH5 can capture 4K 60p and 50p using the full sensor with no cropping at 150Mbps. At 4K30P, you can get 10-bit 4:2:2 colour.

The GH5 will be available at US$2000 at the end of March.

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CES 2017 Panasonic Announces GX850 Compact and FZ80 60X Superzoom

Panasonic GX850
Panasonic GX850/GX800/GF9

Panasonic has announced the GX850—also known as the GX800 and GF9 in depending on the market (Seriously now, what’s with all these regional namings?) It is the smallest Panasonic camera to boast both 4K/30P video and a 4K Photo mode.

The camera is reminiscent of the super compact GM line and has a 16MP Live MOS sensor with no low-pass filter. This, in Panasonic’s words, delivers “crisp, high-resolution images in fine details with high-contrast, [and] impressive color reproduction.”

The GX850/GF9/GX800 also has a 3″ LCD with 1.04M dots which is able to flip 180º, perfect for selfie/wefie lovers out there. Photos are stored on a microSD card.

The camera will be available from February for US$550 bundled with a Lumix G Vario 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 lens. It is available in black or silver.

Panasonic FZ80/FZ82
Panasonic FZ80/FZ82

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ80

Like the GX850/GF9/GX800, the FZ80 also has multiple names depending on the region, it being called the FZ82 in some markets. The camera does 4K video and features a 60X zoom lens covering 20-1200mm with a variable aperture of f/2.8-5.9.

Other than shooting 4K video at 30fps, you can also shoot 120fps at 1280×720, or 240fps at 640×480. If you shoot 4K, you can shoot up to 15 minutes at any one time.

The camera will ship from March for US$400.

 

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CES 2017: Canon Announces PowerShot G9 X Mark II With 8fps RAW Burst

Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II
Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II

Canon has announced an update to the G9 X released in Oct 2015. The Mark II model uses the same 20MP CMOS sensor, 28-80mm equivalent lens and 3″ touchscreen LCD. However, the image stabilisation has been improved to give up to 3.5 stops of vibration reduction, and the burst shooting rate has been upgraded to 8.2fps (an 1fps increase from the Mark 1).

The camera will be released in February in black or silver/brown for US$530.

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Nikon Announces the Ultra-wide PC Nikkor 19mm f/4E Tilt-Shift Lens and Redesigned 70-200mm f/2.8

PC Nikkor 19mm f/4E
PC Nikkor 19mm f/4E

Architectural photographers using the Nikon system rejoice! Nikon has announced the PC Nikkor 19mm f/4E tilt-shift lens. For a long time, the ultra-wide tilt-shift lens market was dominated by Canons 17mm TSE while Nikon’s widest goes only up to 24mm.

The PC Nikkor 19mm f/4E offers a 97º field of view and can shift ±12mm and tilt ±7.5°. It contains three ED and two aspherical elements, and unlike the previous PC lens designs, the tilt and shift mechanisms can be adjusted independently from each other. This allows photographers to set the tilt either parallel or perpendicular to the shift.

The lens will be available from next month at US$3399.95.

AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm F2.8E FL ED VR

AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm F2.8E FL ED VR
AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm F2.8E FL ED VR

Nikon has also released an update to their 70-200mm workhorse lens with a new optical design, improved vibration reduction as well as an electromagnetic diaphram.

The lens has 6 ED, 1 fluorite and 1 high refractive index element, and a Nano Crystal Coat reduces flare and ghosting. The front and rear elements are fluorine-coated to prevent smudging. The newly improved VR gives a 4-stop advantage compared to 3.5 in the previous model.

The lens will be available next month at US$2799.95.

 

 

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Photokina: Olympus Announces E-PL8, Development of OM-D E-M1 II and Three New Lenses

Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-PL8

Not to be left behind, Olympus at Photokina announced two new cameras and three new lenses. The first is the E-PL8, an entry-level mirrorless camera with a Four Thirds sensor. This is basically an upgrade to the E-PL7, with a redesign to the body, along with a new grip and top plate. Like its predecessor, it features a 16MP sensor and in-body image stabilisation. The camera will be available at US$549.99 for the body, and US$649.99 for the 14-42 IIR kit.

Olympus OM-D E-M1 II
Olympus OM-D E-M1 II

Like Panasonic, Olympus has also announced the development of a new flagship—the OM-D EM1 II. The new camera has a 20MP sensor and is able to shoot at up to 18fps in RAW with AF, or at up to 60fps in RAW without AF.

Olympus says that they have spent 4 years developing the new flagship camera, and the dynamic range and noise performance have been improved. The EM-1 II has 121 cross-type AF points, spread over a wider area than the predecessor. The AF system is completely new and improved in terms of performance, precision and operation. The camera can shoot 4K DCI video at a bit rate of up to 236Mbps.

Finally, Olympus has announced three new lenses: M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm f/1.2 Pro, M-Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS Pro and M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f/3.5 Macro.

25mm
M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm f/1.2 Pro

The M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm f/1.2 Pro gives an equivalent of 50mm, and is splash and dust proof. This is Olympus’s attempt at making a “perfect” lens, which promises high resolution wide-open, fast AF and well-controlled chromatic aberration. The lens will be available from October from US$1,199.99.

12-100
M-Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS Pro

The M-Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS Pro is an all-round zoom, with a 35mm equivalent of 24-200mm. Used with the 5-axis IBIS of supported Olympus bodies, it offers up to 6.5 stops of image stabilisation. Minimum focus distance at the 12mm end is a mere 1.5cm and 27cm at the telephoto end. It is splash, dust and freeze proof, and will be available from November at US$1299.99.

30mm
M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f/3.5 Macro

Last but not least, the M.Zuiko Digital ED 30mm f/3.5 Macro is an affordable macro lens with a magnification of 1.25x. It will cost US$299.99 from October 2016.

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Photokina: Fujifilm Announces Development of the GFX 50S Medium Format Mirrorless Camera

Fujifilm GFX 50S
Fujifilm GFX 50S

Perhaps the most exciting camera announced at Photokina is Fuji’s GFX 50S. This is a medium format, mirrorless digital camera built around a new series of “G” mount lenses that includes both primes and zooms. It  has a 51.4MP CMOS sensor similar to the ones in the Pentax 645Z and the Hasselblad X1D. The camera looks somewhat like a large X-Pro II, and with the clip-on EVF, it looks like a large X-T1/X-T2. At 43.8×32.9mm, the sensor area is 1.7X larger than full-frame 35mm sensors, and 4X greater than Fujifilm’s APS-C cameras. The large sensor and pixel count allows the camera to shoot at various different aspect ratios.

Six lenses have been announced to go with the GFX 50S. They are:-

  1. Standard prime “GF63mmF2.8 R WR” (equivalent to 50mm in the 35mm format)
  2. Wide-angle standard zoom “GF32-64mmF4 R LM WR” (equivalent to 25-51mm in 35mm format)
  3. Mid-telephoto macro 1:0.5 “GF120mmF4 Macro R LM OIS WR” (equivalent to 95mm in 35mm format)
  4. Fast aperture mid-telephoto “GF110mmF2 R LM WR” (equivalent to 87mm in 35mm format)
  5. Ultra-wide “GF23mmF4 R LM WR” (equivalent to 18mm in 35mm format)
  6. Wide “GF45mmF2.8 R WR” (equivalent to 35mm in 35mm format)

Fujifilm says the camera will be available in the first half of 2017 at “under $10K” with the 63mm lens.

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Panasonic Announced a Slew of New Cameras at Photokina 2016—DMC-FZ2500/FZ2000, DMC-LX10/LX15, DMC-G85 and DMC-GH5

Panasonic has announced a slew of new cameras at Photokina 2016 at Cologne, Germany. Here are all of them:-

DMC-FZ2500 (also called the FZ2000 in some regions)

Panasonic DMC-FZ2500
Panasonic DMC-FZ2500

First off, I can never understand why camera manufacturers have to adopt different model numbers for the same cameras in different regions… anyway, the FZ2500 is an update to the FZ1000, with a new lens, larger EVF as well as a variable ND filter. This is a video-focussed camera with the ability to capture both DCI and UHD 4K video at 30p / 24p at a bit rate of 100Mbps. In Full HD, the camera can record at up to 60p with a bit rate of 200Mbps.

The camera uses the same 1″ sensor as the FZ1000, matched to a 24-480mm f/2.8-4.5 equivalent lens. After the initial lens extension upon power on, the lens zooms internally. Hence, the lens does not move, much like how a camcorder would work. The aforementioned variable ND filter is adjustable from -2EV to -6EV in 2EV steps. The EVF now has a magnification of 0.74x and a 3″ articulating touch LCD is also available on the rear.

The FZ2500 will be available for US$1199 from November.

DMC-LX10 (LX15 in some regions)

Panasonic DMC-LX10
Panasonic DMC-LX10

Another camera with a different model number in some regions. The LX10 is a enthusiast compact camera in the LX series lineup with a 20MP 1″ sensor. It features a 24-75mm f/1.4-2.8 equivalent zoom and a 5-axis Hybrid OIS+ which combines both digital and optical image stabilisation. Like other new cameras, the LX10 is able to shoot 4K UHD at up to 30fps. There is no EVF but there is a 180º tiltable touch screen with a resolution of 1,040K dots.

The camera will be available at US$699 from November.

DMC-G85 (G80 in some regions)

Panasonic DMC-G85
Panasonic DMC-G85

The different model numbers continue with the DMC-G85. This is an update to the G7, with a 16MP Four Thirds sensor without an anti-aliasing filter. There is also weather-sealing, an improved EVF with a magnification of 0.74x (0.70x on the G7), and a Dual IS 5-axis image stabilisation system. Another improvement is in the shutter, with a new electromechanical shutter, which together with the magnesium front plate, cuts down the shutter vibrations and sounds.

The G85 will be available from November at US$899 for the body only, or US$999 with the 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 Power OIS kit lens.

DMC-GH5

Panasonic DMC-GH5
Panasonic DMC-GH5

Finally, Panasonic also made a development announcement of the GH5. It will feature 4K/60p capability and will also provide 4:2:2 10-bit 4K video. There is also a 6K photo mode that extracts 18MP stills from burst footage, or 8MP stills from 4K/60p clips. No launch timing or price has been provided at this time.

 

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Canon Announced the EOS M5 Mirrorless Camera With EVF

Canon EOS M5 with EF-M 15-45mm IS STM
Canon EOS M5 with EF-M 15-45mm IS STM

Canon has announced the EOS M5, a new addition to the EOS M line-up with a much requested EVF. Like other contemporary mirrorless with EVFs, the one on the EOS M5 has a resolution of 2.36 million dots. There is no mention of the refresh rate, though.

The EOS M5 features a 24.2MP CMOS sensor, with image processing duties performed by a DIGIC 7 image processor. ISO range can be set between 100 and 25,600. With Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF, the M5 is the fastest focussing EOS M camera made to date. A Touch and Drag AF feature allows you to adjust the focus point by dragging the AF frame around the rear LCD, even when looking through the EVF. There is also focus peaking to assist in manual focussing.

The design of the camera has also been changed from the previous EOS M cameras. It now looks like one of the smaller Canon DSLRs instead of a large compact camera. On the back of the camera is a 3.2″, 162K-dot LCD screen which flips up 85º and down 180º, great for the selfie-loving crowd. Continuous shooting speed is up to 7fps (9 fps with AF lock). There is also an in-body, 5-axis digital image stabilisation for smoother video recording, even without IS glass. With compatible lenses, both in-body and lens stabilisation can be employed simultaneously.

eos-m5-ef-m15-45is-stm_03

eos-m5-ef-m15-45is-stm_07

On the connectivity side of things, the M5 features a low-energy Bluetooth Smart feature which maintains a persistent connection with your smart device. There is also NFC and WiFi as well.

Along with the EOS M10, Canon has also announced the EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens which features 4 stops of image stabilisation. Used on the EOS M10, it gives an equivalent of 29-240mm.

Like the Nikon 1 series, the previous EOS M series of cameras have been rather lacklustre, with Canon not wanting to cannibilise the sales of their DSLRs. On paper, this seems like a big improvement. This being Canon’s 5th version of the EOS M, it remains to be seen whether this will finally be as good as the mirrorless cameras from the likes of Panasonic, Olympus, Fuji and Sony.

The EOS M5 will be available from November 2016 at US$980 for the body alone, or US$1099 with a 15-45mm lens. It’s also available with the newly announced 18-150mm lens for US$1479 from December.

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