Canon Product Availability: WFT-E2A Wireless File Transmitter; 16-35mm f/2.8L II; 580EX II

Amazon is now accepting pre-orders for several of the new products announced at PMA. All products will be released on March 31 and should ship then or shortly thereafter.

The EF 16-35 f/2.8L II is available to pre-order for $1,599.

Pre-order the WFT-E2A Wireless File Transmitter for $799.99.

Finally, the 580EX II can be pre-ordered for $499.99.

No word yet on the Canon 1D Mk III. I’m on email alert and I’ll be sure to let you know when it becomes available.

Heavy lifting

Heavy lifting

Originally uploaded by Kelly Turner.


How about that Sigma f/2.8 200-500? Holy cow! That’s a constant f/2.8 throughout the zoom range! Word is that its 35 lbs and will cost something like $9,000 (US) when released.

You got a monopod for that?

TAMRON SP AF70-200MM F/2.8 DI LD (IF) MACRO

Tamron 70-200 f/2.8Looks like Tamron is joining the popular and crowded 70-200 f/2.8 market. If it’s priced in the same range as the Sigma (about $800), this may be another good alternative to the pricey 1st party 70-200 f/2.8 lenses out there. For the details on the new lens, read the press release below.

Mr. Morio Ono, President of Tamron Co., Ltd., has announced the development of the SP AF70-200mm F/2.8 Di LD (IF) MACRO, a lightweight, high-performance and fast tele-zoom lens designed for SLR cameras with full-size image sensors.

The new SP AF70-200mm Di LD (IF) MACRO (Model A001) is an F/2.8 fast tele-zoom designed for full-size format SLR cameras. It inherits the product concept of the award-winning SP AF28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di (Model A09) standard zoom lens that is highly acclaimed for its compactness and speed, which lets photographers enjoy a high cost to performance uniqueness.

While overall dimensions are confined to the absolute minimum, the new SP AF70-200mm F/2.8 Di LD (IF) MACRO zoom lens is packed with features that allow stress-free photography: a versatile MFD (minimum focusing distance) of just 0.95m (37.4) over the entire zoom range; an excellent maximum macro magnification ratio of 1:3.1 at f=200mm; and an advantageous internal focusing (IF) system. The new tele-zoom lens enables the user to cover a desirable focal length range of 70mm medium telephoto to 200mm telephoto when mounted on full-size format SLR cameras and a focal length range from 109mm to 310mm equivalent* ultra telephoto (7°59′ angle of view) when mounted on a DSLR camera with an APS-C sized imager.

(*) The ratio Tamron uses to convert from full-size to APS-C focal length is 1.55X.

MAIN FEATURES
1. 0.95m (37.4) MFD over the Entire Zoom Range for 1:3.1 Maximum Magnification Ratio
This zoom lens, designed for use with full-size format SLR cameras, boasts a fast maximum aperture of F/2.8, yet it allows close-focusing down to 0.95m (37.4) over the entire zoom range. The maximum magnification ratio is 1:3.1 at the 200mm tele-end. The filter diameter is confined to φ77mm as a result of the use of an advanced optical design pursuing optimum optical power distribution.
2. Soft Out-of-Focus Effect and Sharp Depiction
In order to realize soft out-of-focus effect and sharp depiction performance at the same time, the zoom lens uses three LD (low dispersion) elements. As a result, the optical system effectively compensates for lateral and on-axis chromatic aberrations that are major image-degrading factors in telephoto photography, in order to provide edge-to-edge sharpness and high-contrast image quality with flat-field characteristics over the entire zoom range in various photographic situations.
3. Lightweight, Yet Fast F/2.8 Maximum Aperture
The lens features a fast maximum aperture of F/2.8, yet it weighs a mere 1,112.6 grams (39.2oz.)*, since it uses barrel parts made of engineering plastic materials having excellent dimensional stability and sufficient strength for professional use and even industrial applications.
(*) As of February 2007, based on Tamron’s research of lenses in the same class, excluding the tripod base.
4. Internal Surface Coatings Minimize Ghosting and Flare
Through the use of “Internal Surface Coatings (i.e., multiple-layer coatings on cemented surfaces of plural elements) and multiple-layer coatings to prevent reflections from lens surfaces, ghosting and flare due to reflections that occur when light enters through the front element as well as reflections caused by the imager itself in the mirror box are reduced to the absolute minimum.
5. One-touch AF/MF Switchover mechanisms (for Canon and Nikon only)
The models for Nikon and Canon cameras are equipped with AF/MF switchover mechanisms to allow one-touch switchover from AF mode to MF mode or vice versa electronically and mechanically by simply sliding the button. (Sony and Pentax systems require AF/MF switchover operation on both the camera and lens.)
Since the lens uses an IF (internal focusing) system, the focusing ring does not rotate during focusing, which ensures good holding balance at all times. In the MF mode, focusing is performed as easily and comfortably as with an MF lens. Since the overall length of the lens does not change due to zooming or focusing, it offers excellent operability and holding balance.
6. Detachable Tripod Grip Ring
The lens is supplied with a lightweight and rigid aluminum removable tripod socket.
7. Flower-shaped Lens Hood
A flower-shaped lens hood is included as a standard accessory. The special hood provides optimum shading of superfluous light rays that enter from the rectangular frame outside the image field.

SPECIFICATIONS

Model Name A001

Focal Length 70-200mm

Maximum Aperture F/2.8

Angle of View 34°3′ – 12°3′

Lens Construction 18 elements /13 groups

Minimum Focus Distance 0.95m (entire zoom range)

Maximum Mag. Ratio 1:3.1 (at f=200mm, MFD=0.95m)

Filter Diameter φ77mm

Overall Length 194.3mm *

Maximum Diameter φ89.5mm

Weight 1112.6g* (without tripod holder)

Diaphragm Blades 9 blades

Minimum Aperture F/32

Standard Accessory Flower-shaped Lens Hood

Compatible Mount Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony

 

* values given are for Nikon AF-D cameras.

* The cosmetic design and specs are subject to change without notice.

 

Tamron 28-300 VC (Vibration Compensation)

Tamron 28-300 VCLooks like Tamron is jumping on the super-zoom image stabilized band wagon the new Tamron 28-300 f/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC lens that was announced today. Bob Atkins has a handy preview article. You can also check out the features in the press release below.

PRESS RELEASE

Mr. Morio Ono, President of Tamron Co., Ltd., has announced the successful development of the AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC LD Aspherical (IF) MACRO zoom lens, a high power zoom lens designed for SLR cameras with full-size format(Model A20), now equipped with a Vibration Compensation (VC) mechanism. The AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC is the ultimate high power zoom lens that covers everything from wide-angle to telephoto and macro. Tamron has incorporated a Vibration Compensator, an anti-shake mechanism developed by Tamron, into the highly versatile zoom lens. The new AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC LD Aspherical (IF) MACRO zoom lens offers the convenience, comfort and versatility of a high power zoom lens and the capability to reduce hand-shake blur on SLR cameras using either APS-C size or full size format imagers.

When the AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC is used with a full size format SLR camera, it covers the tremendous focal length range from 28mm in wide angle to 300mm ultra telephoto. When mounted on a DSLR with an APS-C sized imager, the lens covers a 43mm wide angle to 465mm equivalent ultra telephoto* (full size format equivalent, in a diagonal angle of view of 5°20′).

(*) The ratio Tamron uses to convert from full size format to APS-C focal length is 1.55X.

MAIN FEATURES

1. VC (Vibration Compensation) Mechanism Reduces Hand-shake

The proprietary VC (Vibration Compensation) mechanism developed by Tamron features a triaxial configuration using three pairs of driving coils and slide balls around the compensator group of the lens’ optical system. Since the compensator lenses are supported with rolling friction of the balls, the response performance is enhanced and the construction is simple, which results in the compactness of the lens. The lens incorporate a highly accurate gyro sensor for detecting hand-shake, which, combined with a 32-bit RISC CPU, offers comfortable anti-vibration effects.

2. Outstanding Design Realizing High Zoom Power, VC Mechanism and Compactness

The AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.5 XR Di VC integrates optical technologies that Tamron has accumulated as the pioneer and leader of high power zoom lenses in order to realize the desired compactness even while incorporating the VC mechanism. The optical system uses a number of lens elements made from special optical glass materials including XR (high refraction index) glass elements, GM (glass-molded aspherical lens) elements, hybrid aspherical elements, LD (low dispersion) glass elements to compensate for on-axis and lateral chromatic aberrations and AD (anomalous dispersion) glass element. The lens offers high contrast, high resolution performance and flatness of the image field as a one-does-it-all zoom lens designed to match the characteristics of DSLR cameras.

3. Revolutionary MFD of 0.49m (19.3″) throughout the Zoom Range Provides 1:3 Macro Magnification Ratio

The AF28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di VC LD MACRO boasts an MFD (minimum focusing distance) of 0.49m (19.3″) over the entire zoom range, a top-class closing focusing capability among high power zoom lenses for full-size format SLR cameras, which provides the remarkable maximum macro magnification ratio of 1:3 at the 300mm telephoto end.

4. Internal Surface Coatings Minimize Ghosting and Flare

Through the use of “Internal Surface Coatings” (i.e., multiple-layer coatings on cemented surfaces of plural elements) and multiple-layer coatings to prevent reflections from lens surfaces, ghosting and flare due to reflections that occur when light enters through the front element as well as reflections caused by the imager itself in the mirror box are reduced to the absolute minimum.

5. Ultra-high Zoom Power, yet Lightweight and Compact Design Thanks to New Mechanical Devices

Tamron has reviewed the roles that respective barrel parts play in order to achieve the high power, compactness and light weight. As a result, dimensional increases are confined to a mere 17.8mm (0.7″) in overall length and about 5mm(0.2″) in diameter, when compared with the existing AF28-300mm (Model A061), despite the incorporation of the VC mechanism.

6. Zoom Lock Mechanism for Enhanced Portability

The zoom lock prevents unwanted barrel extension when carrying the lens/camera combination over the shoulder.

7. Flower-shaped Lens Hood

A flower-shaped lens hood is included as a standard accessory. The special hood provides optimum shading of superfluous light rays that enter from the rectangular frame outside the image field.

SPECIFICATIONS

Model Name A20

Focal Length 28-300mm

Maximum Aperture F/3.5-6.3

Angle of View 75°23′-8°15′

Lens Construction 18 elements /13 groups

Minimum Focus Distance 0.49m (entire zoom range)

Maximum Mag. Ratio 1:3 (at f=300mm, MFD=0.49m)

Filter Diameter φ67mm

Overall Length 99mm *

Maximum Diameter φ78.0mm

Weight 550g*

Diaphragm Blades 9 blades

Minimum Aperture F/22-F/40 (28mm – 300mm)

Standard Accessory Flower-shaped hood

Compatible Mount Canon and Nikon

* values given are for Nikon AF-D cameras.

* The cosmetic design and specs are subject to change without notice.

Two Editions of Photoshop CS3

Photoshop CS3

Photoshop CS3 will be distributed in two editions. One for photographers, graphic designers, etc. and an “Extended” edition for Film, video, and multimedia professionals; Graphic and web designers using 3D and motion; Manufacturing professionals; Medical professionals; Architects and engineers; and Scientific researchers. Visit the product page for the two versions here. Check out Jack Nack’s rundown on the goods.  Read the Press Release below. [Read more...]

Nikon D40x Press Release

MELVILLE, NY, MARCH 5, 2007 – Nikon today introduced the new D40x digital SLR camera that is designed to allow users take spectacular photographs with very high-resolution at the touch of a button. The D40x maintains the same compact size, portability and ease-of-use as its already successful sister camera, the D40, and adds features like higher 10.2 megapixel resolution, faster continuous shooting capability and wider ISO sensitivity. Digital SLR cameras are the tool of choice among the majority of professional photographers but some people have found them to be complex or bulky. With the D40x, consumers don’t have to sacrifice the quality of their pictures anymore. The D40x inherits many advanced technologies from Nikon’s professional models, but was designed specifically to make taking outstanding pictures easy and fun for everyone.“The D40 has become a runaway success for Nikon because it effectively addresses so many of the concerns shared by those who take pictures to preserve family memories and for all-around fun. The D40 and the new D40x eliminate common annoyances such as shutter lag and inaccurate viewfinders, while answering our customers’ needs for superb image quality, fast handling, compactness and, most important of all, simplicity. Now with the D40x, anyone has the choice of higher resolution so they can do even more with their pictures,” said Edward Fasano, general manager for Marketing, SLR System Products at Nikon Inc. “Whether people want to make poster-sized prints or make special enlargements from a smaller (cropped) area of a picture, the D40x can produce images that have superb clarity, outstanding detail and vibrant colors. Even regular 4×6 inch prints, and pictures reduced in size for e-mailing, are visibly better when captured with a more capable camera”.

The Nikon D40x is able to capture special moments instantly, virtually eliminating the frustrations of shutter delay typically associated with point-and-shoot digital cameras. The D40x powers-up in a near-instant 0.18 second and can shoot up to 3 pictures per second, non-stop for up to 100 shots. With such great speed, you’ll never need to wait for the camera to get ready for the next shot. The camera reacts instantly when the shutter button is pressed ensuring you never miss a special moment. The images are immediately recorded to the camera’s SD memory card.

The D40x’s 10.2-effective megapixel CCD imaging sensor is complimented by Nikon’s exclusive 3D Color Matrix Metering II and an improved Nikon Image Processing Engine that together ensure breathtaking picture quality with analyzed exposure, refined details and natural, accurately rendered colors.

The increased image sensor capacity of the D40x isn’t its only advantage. In addition to shooting three consecutive shots per second (versus 2.5 pictures per second with the D40), the D40x also features design efficiencies that allows up to 520** images per charge) and wider ISO sensitivity of 100-1600, plus HI-1 (200-1600 plus HI-1 for the D40).

The back of the D40x is dominated by a refreshingly large and bright 2.5-inch color LCD screen that displays everything from menu options, pictures in playback mode and Nikon’s new visually-intuitive information display system that presents camera and shooting information in a user-friendly, graphically represented way. The camera also features a built-in help menu that can be accessed at the touch of a button and new Assist Images that help you select appropriate settings for many camera features by displaying a sample image typical of that setting.

The D40x’s automated, scene-optimized Digital Vari-Program modes allow users to capture nearly any type of scene without needing to understand the fine points of photography or fumble with camera settings. The D40x includes eight preset modes, including a new Flash Off mode that shuts off the camera’s flash and boosts its ISO so users can easily take pictures in places where flash photography is not allowed, inappropriate or when they prefer the look of naturally lit pictures. As users gain experience with the camera, the D40x offers advanced controls such as Aperture-priority and Shutter-priority modes that offer greater creative control over the look and feel of their pictures.

The D40x’s new Retouch menu offers exclusive in-camera image editing features that add to the D40x’s “fun factor” by providing greater creativity without the need for a computer. Included in the Retouch menu is Nikon’s D-Lighting, which brightens dark pictures and Red-eye correction that automatically detects and corrects red eye – a common condition that occurs in flash photography. Image Trim allows for creative cropping of an image and creates smaller files for easy e-mailing. Other creative features include Image Overlay, Small Picture, Monochrome (Black-and-white, Sepia, and Cyanotype) and Filter Effects (Skylight, Warm filter, Color balance).

The D40x comes packaged with the new 3X 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lens that assures superb picture sharpness and optimum contrast, along with the versatility to capture everything from candid portraits to wide-angle landscapes. The D40x is also compatible with all of Nikon’s AF-S and AF-I Nikkor lenses***, including the remarkably versatile 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lens and the new 55-200mm f/4-5.6G IF-ED AF-S DX VR Zoom-Nikkor lens.

For flash photography of subjects at greater distances, the light and ultra-compact SB-400 Speedlight proves to be a perfect companion to the D40x, providing a simple solution for adding more power and bounce flash capability. Keeping with the D40x’s remarkable ease of use the, SB-400 Speedlight is as simple as sliding it on, turning it on and shooting.

The D40x will be available throughout the United States beginning April 2007 for an estimated selling price of $729.95* for body only or $799.95*, packaged with the 3X zoom 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lens. For more information, please visit www.nikondigital.com.

Nikon, At the Heart of the Image™. Nikon Inc. is the world leader in digital imaging, precision optics and photo imaging technology and is globally recognized for setting new standards in product design and performance for its award-winning consumer and professional photographic equipment. Nikon Inc. distributes the Nikon Total Imaging System of consumer and professional digital SLR cameras, Nikkor optics, Speedlights and System Accessories; Nikon COOLPIX® compact digital cameras; COOLSCAN® digital film scanners; 35mm film SLR cameras; Nikon software products and Nikon sports and recreational optics. At the heart of every Nikon camera is Nikon’s In-camera Innovations, making it easy for anyone to take amazing digital pictures. Through the Nikon Spirit Initiative™, the company plays an active role in supporting aspiring and advanced photographers through a variety of philanthropic organizations, educational programs, events and workshops. For more information, dial (800) NIKON-US or visit www.nikonusa.com, which links all levels of photographers to the web’s most comprehensive photo learning and sharing communities.

* Estimated selling prices listed are only an estimate. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time.

** CIPA standards, with Built-in Flash used for 50% of the shots

*** Autofocus is supported only with AF-S and AF-I CPU lenses, which are equipped with built-in motors.

It’s Official: Nikon D40x is here

Nikon has officially announced the release of their new 10MP follow-up to the 4 month old D40, which is 6MP. Talk about short product cycles! It’s $799 (US) retail with the 18-55 DX lens. You can already pre-order a D40x at Amazon.
The tech specs are here for your review. Note the 3 frames per second, 1/200s flash sync and continued limitation of autofocus with AI-S and AF-S lenses. If you want to browse the brochure, it’s here (.pdf).


DPReview has a detailed hands-on review of the D40x. You can find several different shots of the D40x from various angles and showing off the body features in the product gallery.  Ken Rockwell has a nice preview too and points out why you should buy the D40 over the D40x or just jump up to the D80 instead.
In addition to the D40x, Nikon has also announced a new lens: the Nikon AF-S DX VR 55-200mm IF-ED lens. That’s right, another VR lens to choose from. Nikon is making quite a stable of VR lenses now. What’s most impressive to me though is that the retail price is $250! Don’t believe me? Read the press release.

I’m really wondering about the Nikon D3 now.