Recently, I was thinking about what I consider to be the greatest evolution in photographic technology in recent years, and I can’t decide. Automatic eye detection across the entire viewfinder ranks very high. A blackout-free viewfinder is highly appreciated, as well. And I also see a huge leap forward in high-ISO quality, although here I have to give credit to the software developers more than the camera manufacturers. What about you – what do you see as the biggest leap forward?
- Canon RF 200-800mm F6.3-9 IS USM: Wide range of focal lengths, super long reach traded for a narrow maximum aperture (especially at the long end). Still, probably Canon’s best affordable option at the moment for shooting distant and small subjects like birds. You can read a more detailed analysis by Jason here. Now available for pre-order at $1,899.
- Canon RF 24-105mm f/2.8 L IS USM Z: A pioneering lens that breaks through the decades-old 70mm wall of midrange zooms with a maximum aperture of f/2.8. In addition to its unique reach, the lens also offers a power zoom function when paired with the PZ-E2(B) adapter. You can read Spencer’s more detailed analysis here. Available for pre-order at $2,999.
- Canon RF-S10-18mm F4.5-6.3 IS STM: The third new Canon lens, which is somewhat overshadowed by the previous two (literally). It is a small (69 x 44.9mm) and light (150g) wide-angle zoom designed for Canon RF-mount APS-C cameras (where it’s a 16-29mm equivalent). In addition to the miniature size, the lens’s close-up capabilities are also interesting – maximum magnification of 0.23x in AF mode and 0.5x in MF mode. The lens can be pre-ordered for $329.
- Canon PZ-E2 and Canon PZ-E2B: A pair of power zoom adapters designed for videographers. Currently only compatible with the 24-105mm f/2.8 L, they give this lens the ability to smoothly change focal length with two “W” and “T” buttons. The zoom speed is controlled by a dial on the adapter. Version B is equipped with a 20-pin port, making it compatible with Canon’s cinema and broadcast lens accessories. Available for pre-order at $999 (regular version) or $1,299 (B version).
- Think Tank Photo Cable Management Pouches: Think Tank has just introduced four sizes of pouches (5, 10, 20, 30) for organizing photography essentials. Unlike most gear pouches, these are see-through, so you can see your gear at a glance without needing to open each pouch. Prices start at $20.
The Rumor Mill
Sony – Days to the upcoming announcements
A new 300mm f/2.8 GM lens is expected to be announced on November 8th. This is a classic focal length and aperture combination, and usually one that pairs well with teleconverters. It completes Sony’s trinity of super-telephoto primes with the existing 400mm f/2.8 and 600mm f/4.
Also on November 8th, there’s a chance that Sony will announce the successor of the a9 II. The a9 II was introduced about 4 years ago, and rumors about its successor have been leaking out for quite some time, but it’s not a guarantee it will be announced at the same time as the 300mm f/2.8.
Perhaps unrelated is that Sony has already announced a livestream for a “special event” which will likely include a product announcement. The stream goes live on November 7th at 9AM Eastern time.
Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 DG DN OS Sports about to be announced
Last month, Sigma announced the development of the latest addition to its trio of large-aperture zooms. Following the SIGMA 14-24mm F2.8 DG DN Art and the SIGMA 24-70mm F2.8 DG DN Art, Sony and Leica users will now have the opportunity to complete the trio of classic zooms.
These lenses are aimed at photographers and videographers alike. The latter will appreciate the ability to smoothly change the aperture via a dedicated ring on the lens. In addition, the 70-200mm will get a more powerful high-speed autofocus, image stabilization with Sigma’s latest “OS2” algorithm, and an updated optical design.
The usual pain of the Sigma Sport series lenses has been their weight and size. It looks like Sigma managed to break this trend, and the new lens will be almost half a kilogram lighter than its predecessor. The filter diameter also returns to the previously standard professional size of 77mm. You can check the availability here.
Via Sony Addict
Good Deals and New Sales
B&H Photo is running a big sale on Fujifilm products, which are currently available for up to $400 off. The discounts apply to both cameras and a number of interesting lenses.
- Fuji XF 150-600mm f/5.6-8 R LM OIS WR (was $1,999, now $1,599)
- Fuji XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR (was $1,599, now $1,449)
- Fuji XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR (was $1,199, now $1,099)
- Fuji XF 56mm f/1.2 R WR (was $999, now $899)
- Fuji XF 90mm f/2 R LM WR (was $949, now $849)
- Fuji XF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR (was $1,899, now $1,499)
- Fuji XF 18-120mm f/4 LM PZ WR (was $899, now $699)
- Fuji XF 80mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR Macro (was $1,199, now $1,099)
- Fuji XF 8-16mm f/2.8 R LM WR (was $1,499, now $1,299)
- Fuji XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR (was $999, now $899)
- Fuji XF 50mm f/1.0 R WR (was $1,499, now $1,199)
- Fuji XF 200mm f/2 R LM OIS WR Lens with XF 1.4x TC F2 WR Teleconverter (was $4,999, now $4,499)
Other Pages of Interest
In European culture, there are several fairy tales in which the unhappy prince or princess is turned into a frog. Such a frog is usually simply kissed and the slimy amphibian is instantly transformed into a handsome prince or princess. I doubt these fairy tales could have arisen in other parts of the world. For example, some South American species have skin soaked in highly toxic batrachotoxin, and kissing them could be a fatal experience. A little-known fact is that some birds also produce potent poisons that are chemically very similar to the poisonous frogs. This year, two new species were added to the list of poisonous birds – the Regent Whistler (Pachycephala schlegelii) and the Rufous-naped Bellbird (Aleadryas rufinucha). Both are from Papua New Guinea. You can read more about them here.
But now we turn our attention to a universe 6,500 light-years away. The Crab Nebula, a supernova remnant in the constellation Taurus, has drawn the attention of astronomers for nearly a thousand years. In a new photo taken by the Webb Space Telescope, you can see details that the 18-year-old Hubble Space Telescope image doesn’t show. In addition to the science, you can also enjoy the aesthetic quality of this space object on NASA’s website.
Before you take a look at the results of our Photo Theme Challenge, I have a selection of the best images from two very prestigious photography competitions. Winning a contest with 189,000 entries from more than 80,000 individual photographers from 191 countries and territories is quite an achievement. See the winning images from The Nature Conservancy 2023 Photo Contest. The European Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2023 contest is also one of the absolute pinnacle contests. The quality of the winning photographs reflects this.
Photo Theme Challenge, Week #21
Last week’s theme was reflections, and you can see the results in this thread. Thank you to everyone for your submissions! This week’s theme is leisure, and you can submit your results in this thread by November 10!
Week #20 Results
Let’s take a look at a couple of the submissions for the reflections theme. Wow, there were quite a lot of submissions for this theme. Let’s start with a photo by Myotis:
I thought there was quite a nice contrast between the leaves and the shimmering reflections, hinting but not actually showing the scene above the water.
Kwongphotography showed us a very interesting reflection not using water:
This shot has a very attractive composition that is minimalist and has just enough detail to show what is going on. I also thought it was very interesting how the reflection and the view of the two people show something slightly different, producing a compliment between the two views.
I really enjoyed this shot. It’s hard to tell where the reflections start, and it produces a bit of a hypnotic effect.
Lastly, we have a beautiful image from PizzaGuy:
The sky’s reflection in the glassy water has some beautiful colors that form a beautiful backdrop to the rest of the scene.
Thanks everyone for submitting their photos to the challenge! I enjoyed looking at all of them!