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Archive for the ‘News’ Topic

2017.01.05

For their CES 2017 press conference, Fuji announced a new Graphite finish for their excellent X-Pro2 and X-T2 mirrorless cameras. They also unveiled a new waterproof digital camera available in 4 colors.

Fuji X-T2 Graphite

The Fuji X-T2 Graphite is  a Graphite Silver version of the original X-T2. Except for the new finish one the top and bottom plates, it is completely identical to the black version. The X-T2 Graphite is scheduled to be available this month for $1799 USD or $2199 CDN.

Fuji X-Pro2 Graphite

The Fuji X-Pro2 Graphite comes in a dark Graphite finish. Except for the new finish, this mirrorless is identical to the original black X-Pro2. For this one though, Fuji also introduced a Fujinon XF23mm F/2R lens of the same finish to be sold as a kit with the X-Pro2 Graphite. The X-Pro2 Graphite and 23mm lens are also expected to ship together this month, this time for $2299 USD or $2899 CAD.

Fuji Finepix XP120

The Fuji Finepix XP120 is the must rugged Fuji camera to date. It can be taken underwater to a depth of 20m, dropped from 1.75m or frozen to -10C and will still remain fully function. As such rugged cameras always are, the XP120 is also dustproof. The XP120 is built around a newly-developped 16 megapixels high-speed CMOS sensor which can capture full-resolution images at 10 FPS.

While Finepix XP120 is always driven by fully automatic exposure, it boasts a good amount of video capabilities: Full 1080p HD video capture at 60 FPS, High-Speed video at up to 320 FPS, Time-Lapse Video and a unique Cinemagraph mode which makes a short video with parts of it still. The Fuji Finepix XP120 is scheduled to ship at the end of next month for a retail price of $229 USD or $239 CAD.

Neocamera Blog Neocamera.com © Cybernium

2017.01.04

At some point past 30X, the zoom race started looking pointless. There is little difference between a 720mm and 750mm photo while both require truly fast shutter-speed, so good light in order to avoid increasing the ISO which causes very poor image quality on tiny sensors of ultra-zooms.

Panasonic today is changing this by introducing the widest ultra-zoom of all: The Panasonic Lumix FZ80 which features a 60X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 20-1200mm. This puts at 2mm ahead of its closest competitors which gives it roughly 10% wider field-of-view. Each mm is much more significant at the wide-end than at the long end of the zoom. At 20mm, the FZ80 shows a 94° field-of-view which is extremely useful for architecture. At 1200mm, it shows about 2° which is good enough to tightly frame almost anything which can be seen with the naked eye.

Panasonic Lumix FZ80

The new Panasonic Lumix FZ80 is built around an 18 megapixels high-speed CMOS sensor with 10 FPS full-resolution read-out and wide ISO 80-3200 sensitivity range. This is paired with an optically stabilized 20-1200mm F/2.8-5.9 lens. This camera can record 4K Ultra-HD video at 30 FPS too.

This mid-level ultra-zoom offers a tiny 0.2″ EVF with 1.2 megapixels and 0.46X magnification. The rear of the camera has one control-dial to help set parameters but offers a limited number of controls. The FZ80 this way remains relatively light-weight at 616g, much lighter than even most ultra-wide or long lenses alone.

The Panasonic Lumix FZ80 is schedule to ship the second half of March for a retail price of $399 USD. Adorama and B&H Photo are both ready to take pre-orders.

Neocamera Blog Neocamera.com © Cybernium

2017.01.04

At CES 2017 today, everyone expected Panasonic to unveil the Lumix GH5 and announce a new Leica DC 12-60mm F/2.8-4 lens. They also updated 4 more lenses with a new weatherproof construction and improved stabilization.

The surprise this morning though is the introduction of a new and very tiny Micro Four-Thirds mirrorless, the Panasonic Lumix GX850. This consolidates the naming of most Panasonic mirrorless under the GX branding with, presumably, a 3-digit series starting at the GX850, sitting below the larger GX85 added last year.

Panasonic Lumix GX850

The new Panasonic Lumix GX850 is positively tiny, measuring only 34mm (1.3″) thick and being barely taller than the lens mount. It is reminiscent of the GM-series which impressed with its performance-to-size ratio, competing with premium compacts while providing the versatility of interchangeable lenses. The GX850 offers the same proposition, only with an upgraded imaging sensor and processor.

A 16 megapixels Four-Thirds sensor without anti-alias filter promises to deliver extremely detailed images from a mirrorless camera which is barely larger than an ultra-compact. A fast processor in the GX850 allows it to capture 4K Ultra-HD video at 30 FPS and shoot continuously at 10 FPS when using an electronic shutter and 5.8 FPS with the mechanical one. Its shutter-speed range is an impressive 1/16000s-60s but there is no Bulb mode in this digital camera.

Ergonomics are at a premium in a form-factor this small, so the GX850 only has a single thin control-dial low on the back of the body, no grip and no viewfinder, nor any provision to add one.

The Panasonic Lumix GX850 is expected to be available within one month for a suggested retail price of $549 USD. Adorama and B&H Photo are already accepting pre-orders.

Neocamera Blog Neocamera.com © Cybernium

2017.01.04

Towards the end of 2016, Panasonic teased that their next flagship mirrorless camera would capture 4K at 60 FPS and shooting continuously at 6K or around 18 megapixels. This morning at CES 2017, they completed the launch of this new mirrorless which is to be available in late March this year.

The new Panasonic Lumix GH5 was unveiled as the ultimate Panasonic mirrorless. Boasting a new 20 megapixels Four-Thirds sensor without anti-alias filter and ultra-fast read-out, the GH5 can shoot continuously full-resolution images at 12 FPS with a mechanical shutter for up to 600 JPEG images or 60 RAW files! Dropping slightly down to 18 MP, the speed jumps up to 30 FPS using an electronic shutter. Going further down to 8 MP, which is 4K, the speed doubles to an impressive 60 FPS.

Panasonic Lumix GH5

Continuing their trend of adding image-stabilization to bodies, Panasonic has squeezed a 5-axis image-stabilization system into the GH5. This system works in cooperation with lens-based stabilization to deliver up to 5 stops of improvement over hand-holding. Unfortunately, they did not disclose how much of that stabilization comes from the body and how much comes from the lens.

The new Panasonic Lumix GH5 boasts an unprecedented amount of video features, taking everything the GH4 could do and doubling its speed, up to 4K at 60 FPS. Cinema 4K though, still maxes out at 30 FPS though. In-body stabilization is also available during video-recording. Speaking of which, the GH5 does not limit recording time before the memory card fills up. The GH5 is also the first Panasonic to feature dual UHS-II SDXC memory card slots.

The Contrast-Detect AF system in the GH5 offers 225 autofocus points. Thanks to the faster sensor read-out, the camera samples focus distance and measures defocusing at 480 Hz to deliver ultra-fast focus-acquisition times. Panasonic claims it can be 0.005s now while keeping its class-leading sensitivity of -4 EV.

Ergonomically, the GH5 looks very similar to its predecessor which is known to handle extremely well. All three control-dials, the classic mode-dial and drive mode-dial are all in the same place as before. Some buttons have moved a little but the layout remains essentially the same. A welcome improvement is the addition of a Focus-Point joystick. The most significant change is a new huge EVF with 0.76X magnification and a class-leading resolution of 3.6 megapixels! This is almost 50% more resolution than any of its peers.

Underneath its outer shell, the Panasonic GH5 boasts improved sealing which makes it weatherproof and freezeproof down to -10C, a Panasonic mirrorless first. Recall that earlier today Panasonic announced their first 3 freezeproof lenses but Olympus also makes some.

There is just not that many things the GH5 cannot do. This is a mirrorless with an extremely rich feature set which competes with top-of-the-line DSLRs. Even Bulb exposures are possible up to an hour. Panasonic knows this and has given this new mirrorless a price to match. The Panasonic Lumix GH5 is expected to ship next month for a price of $2000 USD. Adorama and B&H Photo are already accepting pre-orders.

Neocamera Blog Neocamera.com © Cybernium

2017.01.04

Panasonic is always one of the biggest announcers at CES and this year is no exception. They of couse go seriously beyond digital photography with everything from microwaves to giant illuminations being announced. Their digital camera division just unveiled 5 new Micro Four-Thirds lenses. The two big changes across the board are improved image stabilization with the new Power OIS 2 system, now fully working in conjunction with in-camera stabilization which is why they call it Dual IS 2, and weatherproof construction on all lenses. Several are also freezeproof down to -10C.

Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60mm F/2-4 ASPH Power OIS

The newest and most-improved lens is the Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60mm F/2.8-4 ASPH Power OIS. This one runs parallel to the older Lumix G Vario 12-60mm F/3.5-5.6 lens as a higher-end model given it is freezeproof and offers a brighter maximum aperture, from ½ on the wide end to 1 stop on the long end. Magnification has been improved slightly to 0.3X with a minimum focus-distance of 20cm at wide-angle and 24cm at the telephoto end. Panasonic also pre-announced future additions to the Leica DG Vario-Elmarit series: An 8-16mm and a 50-200mm lens.

Four second version of existing lenses were released this morning:

Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-35mm F/2.8 II ASPH Power OIS

The Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm F/2.8 II ASPH Power OIS is the new constant bright aperture standard zoom in the lineup. It is freezeproof down to -10C and offers better image stabilization than its predecessor, although Panasonic does not quote efficiency for lenses alone now, counting on them being used on a body with built-in image-stabilization.

Panasonic Lumix G Vario 35-100mm F/2.8 II ASPH Power OIS

The Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 35-100mm F/2.8 II ASPH Power OIS is the new constant bright aperture telephoto zoom in the lineup. It is freezeproof down to -10C offers improved image-stabilization. Labelled Lumix G X, this completes the pair of large aperture zoom which are part of Panasonic high-end offerings.

Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-200mm F/4-5.6 II Power OIS

The Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-200mm F/4-5.6 II Power OIS is another refresh, this time of the basic Lumix G series. This is one is weatherproof but not freezeproof. It also offers Dual IS 2 stabilization and is compatible with new high-speed focusing at 480 Hz.

Panasonic Lumix G 100-300mm F/4-5.6 II Power OIS

The Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F/4-5.6 II Power OIS provides exactly the same improvements as the previous lens: a weatherproof body and improved image stabilization.

While a lot of these changes are repetitive, it is great than Panasonic is pushing weatherproofing in its historically excellent lenses. This makes  weatherproof bodies much more versatile, particularly with the Lumix G X and Leica DG series which are most likely to be needed by professional photographers.

Neocamera Blog Neocamera.com © Cybernium

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