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Fujifilm Updates AF Performance of GFX100, Launches New SDK

Fujifilm announced a batch of major updates for the GFX100 Medium Format camera that includes some significant performance improvements for autofocus. The company also launched an updated pixel shift combiner and a new digital camera control software development kit (SDK).

The new SDK will “allow developers to initiate the automatic transfer of images from a supported Fujifilm camera to a computer using a Windows or macOS operating system and, support remote access to the basic controls of any supported Fujifilm camera.”

Fujifilm is somewhat known for not launching any updates until it has a list of major enhancements, and the 4.0 launch appears to follow that pattern. The new firmware for the GFX100 will launch a year after the last major update and contains some significant improvements including updating of the autofocus (AF) system to bring the GFX100 to the same level of the GFX100S, as well as coordinated control of the in-body (IBIS) and optical image stabilization (OIS), new “nostalgic neg” film simulation, and much more.

The 4.0 firmware available this June will include a boosted AF speed, improved face/eye-detection performance, and enhanced AF tracking and accuracy for all modes including the capture of movement. The IBIS and OIS will now work together to enable the optimum correction based on the amount of camera shake and frequency of the gyro sensors. Below are additional updates and improvements:

  • The level of “clarity” can be set in the range from -5 to +5.
  • The “tone curve” can be adjusted in the increment of 0.5 stop for both highlights and shadows.
  • The “focus limiter” function is added to specify any focusing range. Choose the default focusing distance or select it from the specified range.
  • Pictures can be enlarged in the magnification of 1x, 2x, 4x or 8x in playback. There is also an option to select the magnification used in the previous playback (from center).
  • Function button can be assigned to switch “shooting mode” between P, S, A and M modes.
  • The front and rear command dials can be set to rotate in a reverse direction.
  • The number of items in the Q menu can be selected from 4, 8, 12 or 16 for both stills and video. The items to display in the Q menu are customizable.
  • The Q button can be assigned as a function button.
  • The camera stays ON even when an SD card is removed.
  • Electronic image stabilization is available while shooting video.
  • It corrects camera shake that occurs when shooting video handheld. (1.1x crop when this mode is turned on)
  • Live View can be enlarged even while shooting video.
  • The Focus Check Lock can now also be set to ON/OFF to maintain focus check or not when starting to shoot video.
  • Video recorded in the SD card can be backed up to the SD card in another card slot.
  • The elapsed video recording time can be displayed on the LCD for checking.
  • The AF area size can be changed while shooting video.
  • Video files recorded with F-log can be played back in conversion equivalent to BT.709.
  • Added White Balance / ISO metadata to RAW footage, output to Atomos Ninja V HDR Monitor Recorder via HDMI. The footage is recorded as Apple ProRes RAW files and White Balance / ISO can be adjusted in Final Cut Pro.

As an important note, Fujifilm states that since the menu structure and many core functions have been changed or renamed in this upcoming release, many of the settings you may have customized will likely revert back to a factory default setting.

Fujifilm has announced these changes but the updates will not be available to download and install until June.

However, the SDK and Pixel Shift Combiner are available to download now. The 1.2.0.2 Pixel Shift Combiner will now support the Pixel Shift Multi-Shot function and adds a new “accurate colors” option to produce 100MP images with no false colors. Additionally, the software will let you check the combined RAW file details before processing, and automatically detect any errors when the images cannot be correctly combined due to issues such as camera shake, effectively speeding up workflow.

You can download the Pixel Shift Combiner software here and those interested in the new Digital Cameara Software Development Kit can do so here.

The Great @PetaPixel Instagram Revival (and How to Get Featured)

Instagram means different things to different photographers, whether that’s the place to search and be found for new work opportunities, the go-to spot for becoming inspired, or where to post photos and get feedback from the largest photography community on the Internet. At this point, it would be silly to not have an active account on Instagram, right? …Right?

The last time @PetaPixel posted to Instagram may have been nearly three years ago, but that is changing as we now go all-in on bringing our readers a rejuvenated presence on the platform.

We have so many talented photographers that visit our website daily, and this is one way that we can better connect and showcase the incredible work of those that support PetaPixel on the web. We will be featuring your photos, videos, behind the scenes, and whatever catches our eye when using the #petapixel hashtag on Instagram.

How to Be Featured

There are a couple of simple steps in order to have your work featured on the @PetaPixel Instagram account.

  1. First, as stated above, use the #petapixel hashtag. This is the easiest way to get your stuff in front of our eyes as we regularly monitor its use looking for great imagery to share.
  2. Second, follow our @PetaPixel account on Instagram. Not only will this make it simple for us to see you’re actually a fan of PetaPixel and not just somebody copying off a list of hashtags, but it will also make getting in touch with you for reposting permission go more smoothly as our direct messages won’t be filtered out.

Those are the basic steps to follow. However, there are more ways that can help us out in determining what to share. These may be no different than how you already post to Instagram. What we’d really like to see are detailed captions on how the photograph came to be, whether that’s the behind-the-scenes details, the gear information and lighting setup, interesting information about what went on during the shoot, or any other musings that add to the image. Another thing you could tag on to the above would be EXIF information such as focal length, shutter speed, aperture, and ISO.

If we see something we like using the #petapixel hashtag, expect a direct message from the @PetaPixel account asking for permission to share your work. You will keep all copyrights to your images and videos, of course. If for any reason you change your mind about the Instagram post, just let us know and we will take it down.

We’re looking forward to seeing all the amazing content flowing through #petapixel and sharing more from our incredibly supportive community of image-makers.

500px Relaunches Portfolios, Its Template-Based Website Builder

500px has announced Portfolios, which it describes as a simple, modern, and efficient way to build a website in a matter of minutes and included with the website’s Pro Membership plan.

The offering here looks similar to popular photography portfolio hosting options from companies like Smugmug, PhotoShelter, Zenfolio, or even Squarespace. What makes it more like the first three than perhaps the last is that it is a pared-down, tailored builder specifically designed with photographers in mind.

500px Portfolio advertises “photography first templates,” which basically means that its templates are designed to highlight imagery first and foremost. From what was visible on the company’s website, there are three templates to choose from right now: Moodie, Newton, and Adams.

Moodie is a grid-style format that will allow for an overview of your work that is easily visible on one page. Newton is a horizontal layout that displays large cover photos that might be a good fit for fashion or portrait photographers. Finally, Adams is a full-screen-focused layout that is designed to “immerse” viewers in the subject matter.

Moodie
Newton
Adams

All the templates are included, and swapping among them can be done at any time. Additionally, all the templates are mobile-optimized and are compatible in either dark or light modes.

500px supports a set of analytics and tracking tools for websites built with Portfolio and, gratefully, custom domains are also supported. 500px also says images are “copyright protected” to prevent right-click actions, but a quick test of the “inspect” tool in Google Chrome on one of the example templates showed that the original files can still be acquired for those who are dead-set on grabbing images from a Portfolio site.

The company says that its website builder is different from other options due to its simplicity, ease of maintenance, lack of an “intimidating maze” of configuration options, and that they are designed specifically for photographers. And while this appears to be the case, also note that simplicity can have the tendency to remove customizability that helps a website stand out. 500px also doesn’t note how its sites handle SEO or blogs, so it’s worth investigating before dropping money on a subscription.

Luckily, that is an option: anyone can test out a Portfolio website and see what it would look like before purchasing a 500px Pro membership and migrating your site. Since Portfolio is included with the $10-per-month Pro membership ($6 for the first year for new members), the asking price for this service is actually quite competitive when compared to the field. Though it is significantly pared down and simplified and there are a limited number of template offerings at launch, it’s a solid benefit to the Pro membership.

If the concept of “Portfolio” sounds familiar, it’s because it’s the latest iteration of the product that 500px has been developing since as early as 2013. Looking at what was originally announced, while Portfolio isn’t new, it certainly has changed since its inception.

One thing that has certainly changed is the price: in 2013, a Pro Membership could be had for $25 a year.

You can view all of the current options for a 500px Portfolio website here.

7Artisans Unveils Golden 35mm f/5.6 Pancake Lens for Leica M

The Chinese camera lens manufacturer 7Artisans has released a new golden 35mm f/5.6 full-frame manual-focus lens for Leica M cameras.

The metal lens is designed to be used for street photography, food photos, landscapes, and more.

On the front of the lens is a unique design that features a distance scale next to a focusing lever jutting out the side of the lens body.

Features and specs of the lens include 5 elements in 4 groups, a minimum focusing distance of 0.98 feet (30cm), a thickness of just 0.86 inches (21.75mm), and a weight of 4.5oz (128g).

In addition to a protective bag, the lens also comes with a miniature air blower for cleaning dust from the front and rear elements.

Here are some official sample photos captured with the lens:

The new 7artisans 35mm f/5.6 is available now on Amazon with a price tag of $199.

(via DC.Watch via DPReview)

Solarcan Colours: A Trio of Soda Can Cameras for Tinted Solargraphs

Three years after launching the original Solarcan, photographer Sam Cornwell has just unveiled Solarcan Colours. It’s a trio of new cameras that each captures solargraphs in a different tint.

The Solarcan is a unique camera shaped like a can of soda that allows anyone to easily capture ultra-long-exposure photos showing the path of the Sun over a span of days, weeks, months, or even years. The camera has been used to shoot everything from solargraphy timelapses to solargraphs from Antarctica.

The new Solarcan Colours cameras build upon the success of the original bring new looks to the game.

“We’ve redesigned the look of Solarcan for a more colorful appearance and made some adjustments inside, with each one producing a different result,” Cornwell says.

Here are the three new cameras and examples of the looks they create (in 6-month exposures):

Atlantis: Produces a cool blue finish.

Eldorado: A warm, golden appearance with solarised halos.

Nebula: A striking, duotone picture of the Sun and landscape.

Inside each can is a sheet of 5×7-inch photographic paper. Once you pull away the black tab, exposure through the pinhole lens begins. Due to the machine-sealed nature of the camera, only light passes through the opening — water is kept out.

When you’re done exposing your photo, perhaps months or years later, you simply remove the photographic paper inside to reveal the negative image on it. Finally, digitize it however you’d like (i.e. by taking a picture or by scanning it) and then invert the digital negative to see your final photo.

Cornwell is launching Solarcan Colours through a Kickstarter campaign, where a contribution of £39 (~$52) will earn you the trio of new cameras when they’re released.

If the company delivers on its promises, backers will receive their new cameras in January 2021.

Google Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a (5G) Add Ultrawide Cam, Night Sight Portraits

Google has unveiled the new Pixel 5 and 4a (5G) smartphones. Among other things, the new phones feature a new ultrawide lens as well as the ability to shoot Night Sight photos in Portrait mode.

New Ultrawide Camera

While the Pixel 4 featured a 16MP telephoto camera alongside the 12.2-megapixel standard camera, the Pixel 5 and 4a (5G) go the opposite direction, packing a 16MP ultrawide camera with a 107˚ field of view.

Instead of 2x optical zoom, the phone will continue to offer zoom capabilities through high-tech digital zoom.

“With a new ultrawide lens alongside the standard rear camera, you’ll be able to capture the whole scene,” Google says. “And thanks to Google’s software magic, the latest Pixels still get our Super Res Zoom. So whether you’re zooming in or zooming out, you get sharp details and breathtaking images.”

Before
After Super Res Zoom

Night Sight in Portrait Mode

Google Night Sight, which uses computational photography to let users shoot photos in near darkness, is teaming up with Portrait Mode, which uses computational photography to create a shallow depth-of-field in portraits.

“[T]hese phones bring the power of Night Sight into Portrait Mode to capture beautifully blurred backgrounds in Portraits even in extremely low light,” Google says.

Portrait Light

When shooting Portrait Mode portraits, you can use the new Portrait Light feature to drop in extra light to illuminate your subjects with the help of AI. The feature is also found baked into the updated Google Photos app.

Cinematic Pan

The new Cinematic Pan feature “gives your videos a professional look with ultrasmooth panning that’s inspired by the equipment Hollywood directors use.”

Other Features and Specs

The Google Pixel 5 features a 6-inch 432ppi Smooth Display of up to 90Hz, a >1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, Gorilla Glass 6 cover glass, 100% recycled aluminum back enclosure, water resistance, wireless charging, a 4080 mAh “all-day” battery, fast wireless charging, 8GB RAM, and 128GB storage.

The Google Pixel 4a (5G) features a 6.2-inch 413ppi display, a >100,000:1 contrast ratio, 3885 mAh battery (up from 3140 mAh in the Pixel 4), 6GB RAM, and 128GB storage.

The Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a (5G) both also boast 8MP front cameras, Android 11, HDR support, Snapdragon 765G with Octa-Core and Adreno 620 processors, full 24-bit depth for 16 million colors, 5G speeds for downloading and streaming, and Google’s Titan security chip for keeping data safe (with 3 years of updates).

The Google Pixel 5 will be available in the US on October 29th with a price tag of $699 and the Pixel 4a (5G) will be available in November with a price tag of $499.


Image credits: All images and videos by Google

Nikon is announcing the Z6II and Z7II on October 14th

Well, we new something was coming, but we were all a little wrong with the name. Instead of the Z6s and Z7s, they’re actually going to be the Z6II and Z7II and Nikon is planning to official announce them on October 14th – according to a new teaser that’s popped up on the Nikon website. […]

The post Nikon is announcing the Z6II and Z7II on October 14th appeared first on DIY Photography.

Meyer Optik Görlitz Unveils the Trioplan 50mm f/2.8 II

After unveiling the Lydith 30mm f/3.5 II and Trioplan 100mm f/2.8 II earlier this year, the revived Meyer Optik Görlitz today announced the new Trioplan 50mm f/2.8 II, a sharp normal lens with “soap bubble bokeh.”

“With our Trioplan 100 II and our Lydith 30 II, we have already been able to successfully revive two absolute Meyer-Optik-classics despite the current difficult situation,” says OPC Optics Managing Director Timo Heinze. “The customer feedback on these two lenses is very positive so far and we are very pleased to release the third lens, the Trioplan 50 f2.8 II, today.”

The Trioplan 50mm f/2.8 II features a new mechanical construction and a “significantly optimized” optical design that makes this new lens “considerably” sharper than its predecessor. The speed of the lens has also been slightly increased from f/2.9 in the original to f/2.8.

“The Trioplan 50 f2.8 II offers an extreme center sharpness as well as a beautiful bokeh,” OPC Optics says. “In appropriate shooting situations the Trioplan 50 f2.8 II draws the famous bubble bokeh and at the same time a rotating background (swirl).

“Of course, depending on the situation, both effects also occur separately and thus the Trioplan 50 f2.8 II offers many creative possibilities for your own image compositions.”

Here are some sample photos captured with the new Trioplan 50mm f/2.8 II:

OPC Optics says the next two classic Meyer Optik Görlitz lenses to be reborn will be the Primoplan 75mm f/1.9 II and the Primoplan 58mm f/1.9, noting that they’re “almost ready and will be released shortly.”

The Trioplan 50 f2.8 II is available now on the Meyer Optik Görlitz website and through select retailers with a price tag of €876.34 (~1,021).

Moment Unveils CineBloom Diffusion Filters for ‘Dreamy, Film-Like Vibes’

Moment has announced its new CineBloom Diffusion Filters. The lens filters are designed for both cameras and phones and help you capture “dreamy, film-like vibes” straight out of a camera.

“The CineBloom Diffusion Filter takes the edge off your digital sensor,” Moment says. “It not only catches and blooms light, but softens hard edges and has a smoothing effect on skin tones, making wrinkles less noticeable. Escape the clinical, ultra-sharp look of digital with this specialty glass.”

Made of premium Japanese optical glass surrounded by aerospace-grade aluminum, the rugged and lightweight filter boasts superior image clarity and resistance against scratches and dirt.

Here are some sample photos captured with the filter:

Here’s a 2-minute video introducing the new CineBloom line (with sample footage showing what the filters do for video):

The Moment CineBloom Diffusion Filters are available in thread sizes ranging from 37mm to 82mm in 10% and 20% densities for varying effect strengths. They’re available starting today from the Moment website with price tags ranging from $50 for the 37mm size to $80 for the 82mm size.