Jul 11, 2014 - 2:51 PM - by ggibson
My test shoot DP2 Quattro arrived the other day and I've played around with it and grabbed some shots--enough to give a first-look impression of the camera and the images it can produce.
The camera itself is a strange, modern design, that much is plainly obvious from just looking at it. I think Sigma wanted this camera to look as different on the outside as they feel it is on the inside! Ergonomically, the design is pretty poor, in my opinion. The "grip" does not really fit the hand well, and is shorter than I would really like it to be to get a firm hold on it. It's usable enough, but don't imagine that it conforms to your hand in some unforseen way. On the plus side, the dials are relatively accessible with one hand (more the front dial than the rear) and operate with nice clicks. In fact, despite the awkward shape, the camera feels extremely well-made. The material has a coarse, but high-quality feel to it, and the camera has a nice heft to it. Unfortunately, the weight of the Quattro combined with the unstable grip means it's pretty difficult to operate one-handed. That's fine though, since this is not a run & gun camera...
So what's it like in use? Pretty much like all Sigma cameras have been, in my experience (I had a DP1X at one time). Slow to focus and slow to take the shot, and slow to take the next one. In practice just for walking around, the shot-to-shot is fine, but compared to anything else on the market this camera doesn't know what "burst rate" is. Make no mistake, this camera will dissappoint you many times if your subject is moving around at all. Like all Sigma cameras, this camera asks if you would please slow down and just take your time?
If you do move at Sigma's pace however, the camera will reward you with what can only be described as stunning image quality. Rich colors, amazing details, and creamy "bokeh"! The 30mm f2.8 lens on this camera is incredibly sharp and provides nice... [Read More]
Today Panasonic announced the FZ1000, the latest in their long, well-respected line of megazoom cameras. It is the second megazoom with a 1" sensor and costs far less. Compared to the Sony RX10, the Panasonic has a much longer zoom (25-400e vs 24-200e), significantly slower lens (2.8-4 vs 2.8 constant), and lower price ($899 vs $1299)
- 20.1MP 1" High Sensitivity MOS Sensor
- Leica DC Vario-Elmarit 16x Zoom Lens
- 25-400mm f/2.8-4 (35mm Equivalent)
- 4K QFHD Video Recording at 30 fps
- 0.39" 2,359k-Dot OLED Live View Finder
- 3.0" 921k-Dot Free-Angle LCD Monitor
- Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC
- HYBRID O.I.S. 5-Axis Image Stabilization
- Light Speed AF with LUMIX DFD Focus
- ISO 25600 and 50 fps Continuous Shooting
Panasonic DFD Focus is making very strong impressions with the GH4. You can read more about DFD at Imaging Resource: http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...ic-gh4TECH.HTM
For a long time I've been thinking of picking up a megazoom to complement something like my E-M5 plus Pana Leica 25/1.4 or Leica M plus 35/1.4. A two-camera bag that can pretty well do it all without lens changing. The FZ1000 certainly has my interest.
Adorama: ... [Read More]
Refocusing: Could Software Solve the Depth of Field Problem on Small Sensors?
This was shot on 4 megapixel cellphone camera.
Cameras get better. Every generation, features are added. Every two or three generations, sensors improve dramatically. Resolution, noise levels, dynamic range, and color fidelity have reached a point that many photographers feel they don't need a large sensor to get image quality that's "good enough" for their uses. But there's one area photography has refused to budge on: depth of field. Unfortunately, physics is stubborn; the wider your field of view and further your subject, the bigger your sensor or the brighter your lens needs to be if you want to have any sort of shallow depth field.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be this way. After all, virtually every recent compact camera and mirrorless system incorporates some type of software correction to compensate for the physical limitations of its optics: chromatic aberrations, distortion, vignetting, etc. Perhaps a related technology could be used to not just correct flaws, but actually enhance a sensor and lens combination.
Of course, adding bokeh in post isn’t a new idea. Before I bought my first real camera, I was using Photoshop plugins to imitate a shallow depth of field look on my cellphone pictures. Sometimes, the effect would turn out surprisingly realistic—indeed, I still sometimes add just... [Read More]
Today Sony announced the third iteration of its RX100 series, and it seems like they have a winner on hand. While the older RX100 II was a just minor upgrade to the already excellent original model, the new RX100 III brings a host of new features that are sure to make fixed-lens compact camera shooters excited. Heck, interchangeable lens users too. All this, without significantly increasing the camera's volume.
First and most obvious: that's not a second flash you see up there, that's a pop-up viewfinder. At an 800x600 resolution (1.44 million dots, but that's an unhelpful unit) and a magnification of 0.59x, the EVF is nearly identical in size and resolution to those on the Olympus E-M5 and E-M10. Once again, you have to commend Sony's engineers for being able to pack a ton of features into tiny bodies.
Furthermore, and arguably more importantly, Sony has also changed the Zeiss lens from a 28-100mm F1.8-F4.9 to an impressive 24-70mm F1.8-F2.8. While some users will lament the lack of reach on the new glass, I think most will appreciate the added brightness and wider minimum focal length. After all, you can always crop, and the faster tele end of the new lens should compensate for DoF differences in portraiture.
Other notable new features include the ability for the LCD to flip 180 degrees to photograph or film yourself, a 3 stop ND filter for lowering shutter speed in bright daylight or video, 50Mbps XAVCD recording, clean HDMI output, and more.
The RX100 III is available for ... [Read More]
You can now choose your own maximum image viewing dimensions by selecting the corresponding forum style from the drop-down menu in the far bottom left corner of any forum page.
If you choose one of the default/standards styles, then any image posted at greater than 1024px size will automatically be resized to 1024px for your viewing. This has been the case for some time now. However, now there are two other options. The options marked "for H-Res displays" will only resize images for viewing if they are larger than 2048px, whereas those designated "for smaller displays" will display images only to a maximum dimension of 512px.
The idea is for everyone to be able to view images as high-res as possible without having to do horizontal scrolling to read forum posts. I'm planning to embed my Flickr photos at the 1600px size going forward.
Hope you enjoy this change!
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