Check out more of reddo the redneck’s amazing photos and imagery in his Flickr photostream.
There are some purported sample images taken with a beta version of the Pentax K20D floating around on DPReview forums right now. You shouldn’t put too much credit on this one; however, I promised to keep you posted on the K20D rumors. You can follow all of the K20D news and rumors on this page.
[tags]pentax, k20d, sample, pics, images, photos[/tags]
TAIPEI, TAIWAN, January 7, 2008 – BenQ today announces the launch of the world’s slimmest 8 mega pixel camera at 9.8mm. Equipped with a bright 3” LCD display, Prism Type 3x optical zoom lens, Face-Tracking and Super Shake-Free mode, the BenQ X800 allows consumers to capture precious memories with high quality pictures. The portable media player function also allows consumers to watch video and listen to MP3s, and is an ideal travel partner wherever you go.
The super slim BenQ X800 features a bright 3” LTPS LCD and a prism-type lens which is housed entirely in the camera body, making the thinnest design possible. When zooming in on an image, all of the lens’ movement takes place inside the camera. In particular, the BenQ DSC X800 can capture close objects with its 1cm micro shooting function. It also features a steel breast plate that is matted and cozy to hold and a glossy black/red steel cover in hair-line finishing for an added touch of elegance. [Read more…]
Peted1 over in the DPReview forums says the Canon 5D Mark II is for sure slated for PMA:
I was speaking to a canon rep on Saturday and he told me the 5D mark II will be out at the PMA. He did not have any details but assured me of it coming. He also said there are a few suprises as canon will be bringing out a lot of other new product etc.
I spoke to my Belgian rep and he also confirmed the new camera will be ANNOUCED soon. However he does not expect to have any in until the summer. (via)
These rumors are always hit and miss with regard to what camera reps really know, but I thought I would pass it along. We’ve only got a couple of weeks left before the real info from PMA starts hitting the
Heard something from your Canon rep? Pass it along. In the mean time, keep an eye on this page for updates on the Canon 5D Mark II rumors.
[tags]canon, 5d, mark ii, rumor[/tags]
The Sony A900 was officially unveiled on September 9, 2008. The A900 is the first 24.6 megapixel DSLR, making it a class leader at the time of its release. The DSLR-A900 body will be available in November for about $3,000.
It is available from the following trusted online retailers:
Editor’s Note: Although Photography Bay was promised delivery of a review copy of the Sony A900 prior to launch of the camera, none has been provided and, therefore, I have yet to publish a review of the A900. Sony has not communicated a reason why they have failed to deliver one and I’m afraid I will not be able to provide a proper review of the camera in the foreseeable future as my most recent inquiries have essentially gone unanswered. I do hope that this situation is unique to us and does not indicate some development or shipping issues with Sony. From what I’ve read and seen thus far, the A900 appears to be a capable first endeavor in the pro-level arena for Sony. I apologize to Photography Bay readers and, hopefully, this situation will rectify itself before long. In the mean time, I have provided for your consideration links to a number of reviews of the A900 below.
Sony A900 Key Features
- 24.6 Megapixel Full Frame CMOS Sensor
- Dual BIONZ Image Processing Engine
- Intelligent Preview
- 100% Viewfinder, 0.74x Magnification
- 3.0″, 921,000 Dot Xtra Fine LCD
- 9-point Center Dual-cross AF
- 5 fps Continuous Shooting
- SteadyShot Inside
Sony A900 Reviews
In the end, what the A900 does, it does exceptionally well,and in my opinion is the finest Sony camera ever made (as of todays date). I hold no reservation in that conclusion.
Overall, noise is probably one of the A900’s weakest areas considering that anything beyond 400 means a visible decline in image quality as a result of obvious noise.
The Sony A900 delivers excellent image resolution at 24.6-megapixel resolution, paving the way for substantial cropping and large-format prints.
No other camera aside, perhaps, from the 21.1 Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III has produced such rich, luscious, and true-to-life tones in good lighting as the A900.
Its viewfinder is the best you’ll find south of medium format, the build is incredibly robust, the controls are intuitive, with some of them – such as the dedicated Histogram button, the metering mode knob or the well-implemented rear joystick – being close to pure genius.
A good first try at a pro-level camera, the Sony Alpha DSLR-A900 has the high resolution but unfortunately lacks some of the performance and usability you expect from a model in its price range.
For those without major lens commitments to other brands the Sony A900 offers tremendous value for the money. In almost every objective test criteria measured on DxOMark the A900 comes in in the top two or three, and in many categories does so against camera either costing twice as much or offering half the resolution.
For an experienced photographer not married to another brand’s system, the A900 deserves a look. If you have even a modest stockpile of Konica Minolta lenses, then it demands your attention.
No doubt about it, there is much to like about the Alpha 900 – from the quality of images it produces to the extensive control over image parameters and, as I’ve already mentioned, the excellent, intuitive and uniquely user-friendly handling.
There’s no doubt the Sony Alpha DSLR-A900 delivers an impressive specification for the money, and one which stands-up well against its rivals. You get very high resolution images, quick continuous shooting, a superb viewfinder and built-in image stabilisation which works with any lens you attach.
Sony’s first full-format camera is designed to meet the needs of ambitious amateurs and semi-professionals. JPEG compression is perfectly balanced, and input dynamic range at high ISO speeds is excellent. Tonal reproduction focuses on instant image appeal (rather than something more neutral, which you see with more pro oriented cameras), and the sharpening is OK.
Bright, vivid and spacious viewfinder. Excellent in-camera image stabilization system. Easy no-menu adjustments with Fn button and multi-selector toggle. Killer price for the highest resolution, high functioning, easy to use DSLR.
If you want the most pixels in a small package, the Sony A900 is where you’ll find it. It’s bulky, but less so than the more expensive 1Ds Mark III, and that makes it easier to bring along. I enjoyed shooting with the 24-70mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss so much that I recommend it if you can afford it.
Luminous Landscape (field report)
All things considered I’d have to give this camera a big thumbs up.
PopPhoto (hands-on preview)
All told, with the Alpha 900, Sony solidifies itself as a serious player that’s here to stay. So, we can definitely look forward to Sony building out its lines of lenses and accessories as it reaches for the same footing as Nikon and Canon.
Cnet (hands-on preview)
The bottom line is that when you look at shots from a camera in this class you should have at least a few “wow” moments and that hasn’t happened yet.
DP Review (hands-on preview)
As we started to dig a little deeper, pore over the fine print and actually use the Alpha 900 we were, however, increasingly surprised – and almost always pleasantly so – at some of the decisions made by Sony’s engineers when designing its flagship SLR.
Sony A900 Press Release
Sony introduces Alpha A900
The world’s first full-frame 24.6 megapixel DSLR:
A900 delivers the unmatched image quality, creative expression and performance demanded by professional photographers
- Superlative, detail-packed images from full-frame 24.6 effective megapixel CMOS sensor ExmorTM
- Bright optical glass pentaprism viewfinder with 100% coverage
- Enhanced SteadyShot INSIDE offers up to 4.0 steps anti-shake performance with α lenses
- Ultra-sharp shooting responses and flawless, low-noise images from dual BIONZ image processor
- Review images on High Resolution 3.0-inch Xtra Fine LCD
- Fast, high-accuracy 9-point AF with 10 focus assist points
- 5fps continuous shooting at full resolution 24.6 megapixels
The A900 digital SLR from Sony sets a new benchmark for serious photo enthusiasts who demand the unrivalled quality and creative possibilities of full-frame imaging.
The flagship of the Alpha digital SLR camera range features the industry’s first ever 24.6 effective megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor. Developed by Sony, this groundbreaking sensor’s ultra-high pixel count and large size – equivalent to a 35mm film frame – deliver extraordinary image detail and wide dynamic range.
The new-generation sensor captures flawless images with unprecedented fidelity, characterised by vibrant colours, ultra-real textures and subtle tonal gradations. Complementing the extremely high native resolution of the sensor, Exmor performs on-chip analogue/digital (A/D) signal conversion and two-stage noise reduction. This guarantees ultra-low noise image files that take advantage of the superb resolving power of high-precision α lenses.
Realising the immense creative potential of the 24.6 megapixel full-frame sensor, the new advanced dual BIONZ processors handle massive amounts of image data at extremely high speed. Powerful noise reduction algorithms are applied prior to RAW data conversion and then again during image processing, yielding flawless, detail packed images with an absolute minimum of noise. The dual BIONZ processors also underpin the camera’s razor-sharp shooting responses, allowing sustained 5fps continuous shooting at full 24.6 megapixel resolution.
Serious photo enthuasiasts will appreciate the ground-glass optical pentaprism viewfinder that offers exceptional brightness and a field of view covering 100% of the full-frame sensor’s imaging area (approx.).
The camera’s uncompromising credentials are underlined by a fast, high-accuracy 9-point AF system to ensure fewer missed shots. It’s supplemented by 10 focus assist points to assist subject detection, improved out-of-focus detection to reduce focus hunting and a dedicated F2.8 sensor for enhanced AF accuracy with wide aperture lenses.
The A900 digital SLR camera is also the world’s first full-frame camera to feature SteadyShot INSIDE. This enhanced in-body optical stabilisation system delivers up to 4 steps of anti-shake correction with all compatible lenses*, opening up even greater creative possibilities when shooting handheld.
Shots can be evaluated critically on the 3.0-inch Xtra Fine LCD with an exceptionally high resolution (921k dot) that offers sharp, clear viewing – even outdoors or in bright ambient light. There’s a wide choice of index view options to simplify best-shot selection, plus a full-featured RGB histogram and shooting information display.
At the touch of a button, the LCD display switches to Quick Navi mode, allowing rapid on-the-fly adjustment of camera settings without disturbing your creative workflow.
A new Intelligent Preview function simulates the effect of White Balance, D‑Range Optimiser and exposure level on the LCD screen without actually taking a picture. By simple confirmation on the camera, all the new settings are applied to take the next picture. This simplifies precise control over the final image in complex setups.
Shots can also be viewed on a connected HD television. PhotoTV HD mode provides optimised still image viewing with breathtaking clarity and lifelike colours on compatible BRAVIA televisions. The HDMI terminal also give acces to HD picture viewing on any compatible TV.
Built for years of unstinting service in challenging environments, the A900 digital SLR camera is ruggedly constructed from a high-tensile aluminium chassis with magnesium alloy body panels. Viewfinder, card slots, controls and other sensitive areas are protected from dust and moisture by rubber seals for worry-free shooting. The inside of the camera is also protected by an anti-dust system that safeguards the full-frame sensor from the effects of dust entering the body during lens exchange.
Allowing stable, comfortable handling in portrait or landscape orientations, the optional VG-C90AM Vertical Grip holds up to two high-capacity batteries for extended shooting time and all the major controls are available in vertical holding for easy operation. The grip has also been designed in same high quality material as the A900 with magnesium alloy and rubber parts.
There’s now wide range of compatible α lenses to fully realise the incredible imaging potential of the camera’s full-frame sensor.
The choice of premium G series optics by Sony is joined by the high-power 70-400mm F4-5.6 G SSM telephoto, featuring a High-torque Super Sonic wave Motor for fast, silent AF operation.
Also from Carl Zeiss, the Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM is a fast, high-performance wide angle zoom that’s ideal for interiors, landscapes and challenging photo-reportage applications.
The complete α system is further strengthened by the new HVL-F58AM – a high-power flash (GN 58) featuring Sony’s innovative ‘Quick Shift Bounce’ system that offers even more creative control over lighting, flash and bounce angles. It’s unique ‘Quick Shift Bounce’ design make the flash head able to rotate instantly in portrait mode to keep the bounce direction for much more natural and beautiful subject lightning. For those using studio setups, Wireless Auto Flash Control also computes power ratios for up to three groups of flashes, simplifiying the management of complex lighting set-ups.
* Automatic crop factor is applied when DSLR-A900 is used with DT format lenses. Exposure accuracy is not guaranteed with DT lenses in certain shooting situations.
The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM is a high performance, water-resistant, and ultra wide-angle Canon L-series lens. It has been specifically designed for improved edge-to-edge image quality that will meet the strict requirements of professional and high-end amateur photographers. It features 3 high-precision aspherical lens elements, each of a different type: ground, replica and GMo for even better image quality than the original EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM. The circular aperture produces a beautiful and natural background blur when shooting at wider apertures. Other features include internal focusing, a ring type USM (Ultra Sonic Monitor), and new AF algorithms for fast and quiet autofocusing. (Canon)
I’m very pleased with the image quality I’m getting from this lens. Wide open results are very sharp in the center and improve only slightly stopped down. Wide angle full frame corners, though not perfect, are very good for a lens this wide – the best full-frame Canon wide angle lens yet.
I was hesitant about spending over twice the cost of the 17-40, but in the end I opted for this nice piece of glass. I am impressed with the wide view it has (even on a 40D) and I am really looking forward to using it on a full frame body. I have noticed that when I have the center focus point active (only) wide landscape shots turn out magnificently sharp. Once you get used to manipulating this precision instrument into doing what you want it too, it does not let you down. The 2.8 aperture is quite fun and, even though it is a wide angle, can create beautiful background blur and really emphasize what you want to stand out most in the frame.
What can’t be shown by MTF graphs and pictures of lens test charts is the amazing quality of the images from this lens. They have that certain something you can’t quite put your finger on. A beautiful rich colour and contrast coupled with a sharpness that just oozes the ‘L’ factor. I found myself Oooing and Ahhing over the test prints which is not something I make a habit of I can assure you.
Where to Buy
First off, consider going to your local camera store (and I don’t necessarily mean Wolf Camera at the mall). By going to your local camera store, you’re supporting your community and you just might build a lasting relationship with people you can rely on when you need some help or answers. If you’re buying online, I recommend sticking with Amazon, B&H Photo or Adorama. These three vendors are reliable, trustworthy and generally have the best (legitimate) prices. Additionally, purchasing your gear through these links helps support this site.
[tags]Canon, EF, 16-35mm, f/2.8L, USM, lens, review[/tags]
You learn something new everyday, right? Today, Minox is my lesson. I had never heard of Minox until I saw the press release below. It’s not this particular camera that really intrigued me though. Minox has a pretty cool company history:
There’s always a clever mind behind every classic design. And the MINOX story must always be told with reference to the name, Walter Zapp. The legendary designer who wrote photographic history with his revolutionary invention of the first Ur-MINOX in 1938. The ingenious idea was to be seen in its dimensions. A camera smaller than a cigar and weighing less than a cigarette lighter. And featuring an excellent lens. This was a stroke of lasting genius – as the MINOX ECX and the MINOX CLX Special Edition still proof today. And of course, it was no surprise to see these miniature cameras with the 8 x 11 mm film format go on to become world famous as espionage cameras.
The MINOX DC 7022 Slim brings a stylish new dimension to compact digital cameras, literally and figuratively. It measures just 3-¾” x 2-1/8”, it’s less than one inch thick, and it weighs only 4.4 oz. Despite its small size, it has an extra-large display monitor.
Dressed in a smooth, black-anodized aluminum body, the DC 7022 is a very stylish, attractive pocket-friendly companion, with technical qualities to match.
Resolution to 7 megapixels ensures razor-sharp images, and the large 3-inch TFT display, which takes up almost all of the camera’s back, makes it a cinch to frame your shots just right. And when reviewing what you shot, the images are easy to see from various angles. The auto-focus 28mm wide-angle MINOCTAR lens, with 4X optical zoom, delivers exceptionally sharp and brilliant images. And you will appreciate the very short shutter delay.
Even at its full telephoto range, there’s no need to worry about camera shake – this MINOX camera has an electronic stabilization system. An integrated flash program offers a range of functions, and you also can adjust the sensor sensitivity from ISO 50 to 1600. Shutter speeds range from a full second to 1/1500, so you know that you can freeze even fast-action scenes, crisp and clear.
In addition to its 32-megabyte internal memory, the MINOX DC 7022 takes SD memory cards up to 4 gigabytes. It’s powered by a rechargeable lithium ion battery, and the camera comes with a wrist strap and a convenient carrying case. MSRP is $399.
[tags]minox, 7022, slim, digital camera[/tags]
Minox has announced the DC 6033 WP point & shoot digital camera in conjuction with PMA, which occurs later this month. The key feature of the Minox DC 6033 WP is in the “WP”. The 6 megapixel camera is waterproof up to 33′ submersions. More details below.
There are many small digital cameras today, including some very good ones from MINOX/USA. But if you are into serious outdoor activities or work in a tough job situation, you should be sure to check out the very rugged new MINOX DC 6033 WP digital camera.
Its sturdy, rubber-armored body is watertight to 33 feet and its built to withstand not only water but dust, dirt, sand and salt, and has been specially designed with impact-resistance for use in any tough environment. So, whether you’re into extreme sports or other outdoor activities, or work in challenging conditions, the DC 6033 WP can handle the job. And it’s backed-by a two-year warranty.
Rugged, yes, and also a very high-quality camera, with a 6-megapixel CCD sensor that provides the resolution for pin-sharp images, rich in detail. The multi-coated MINOCTAR lens, which delivers neutral color rendition, has a 42mm fixed focal length (in 35mm format terms) and lets you take macro shots as close as 24”. There’s even a 4X digital zoom capability to pull in distant images.
Compact (3”x4-3/4”x1-3/4”) and lightweight (just over 8 oz.), the DC 6033 takes up very little space, whether it’s in your luggage, your backpack or your pocket on the job. And the rubber coating provides a solid, comfortable grip, even in wet conditions.
You can take your shot underwater, and view the result too, on the 2-inch TFT color monitor. An integrated electronic flash unit automatically illuminates the scene, or can be eliminated if you want. There are various exposure programs to meet special situations – underwater, portraits, sports, landscape or night shots. Or, if you prefer, the automatic mode takes over all adjustments and produces perfect image results.
It takes an SD memory card up to 2 gigabytes, and has its own 16-megabyte internal memory. By using AA alkaline or rechargeable batteries, it’s easy to re-power no matter where you are. MSRP for the MINOX DC 6033 WP digital camera is $299.
[tags]minox, dc, 6033, wp, digital camera[/tags]
Previously, Sony revealed the A700 and the A900 (rumored name) at PMA 2007. We were promised one of the cameras in 2007 and the other to follow in 2008. Sony released the A700 in fall 2007. Now, 2008 is here. Surprisingly, Sony launched the entry-level A200 at CES on January 6, 2008. The A200 didn’t make it to the second page before rumors of an A300 (with leak shots) were in full swing.
What we know from Sony about the “A900”:
Flagship model (body)
- The highest-end α (Alpha) product
- Achieves high level of overall picture quality through development of new image sensor and
- Bionz™ image processing engine
- Super SteadyShot® image stabilization inside
- Realizes high performance that lives up to even professional users’ demanding requirements.
- One of the two prototypes stated above will be on sale within this calendar year.
This info comes from Sony’s press sheet at PMA 2007. Everything else is rumors at this point, including the pretty ad above (which has been floating around the internet). The Sony gearheads believe (wish?) that the A900 will feature a full-frame sensor that’s 20+ megapixels, which will compete directly with Canon’s flagship 1Ds Mark III.
Updated: Sony has announced that it will release a full frame DSLR this year featuring its 24.81 megapixel imaging sensor, which was announced at PMA 2008.
That’s all for now. Stay tuned to this page for more on the A900 (or whatever it will be called).
[tags]sony, a900, rumors, news, pma, 2008[/tags]