Published On: Tue, Jan 21st, 2014

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Buying a Used DSLR Kit for $80: Here’s What You Get for the Money

Posted on October 13th, 2017

Cameras and lenses are expensive. Really expensive. Even the cheapest entry-level DSLR kit today costs $500 or more. But what if you buy the cheapest possible used DSLR? A camera that’s over 10 years old? How would it stack up against today’s modern cameras? I was curious about this, so I decided to find out for myself.

After two weeks of watching classified ads closely, and missing a couple of good bargains because I wasn’t fast enough, I finally managed to purchase a Canon 400D (also known as Rebel XTi) with a battery grip and a Canon 50mm f/1.8 II lens on it. All this for only $80. It seemed like a great deal to me. It even came with a 2GB CF card!

I took the camera for a long walk the same day I bought it, and to summarize my experience: I was amazed by how good it was!

The sensor outputs 10-megapixel photos, meaning that they measure roughly 3900×2600 pixels. This is more than enough for posting on social media or viewing photos on a computer screen. And what amazed me even more was that with a fairly good lens, which the Canon 50mm f/1.8 is, these pixels get utilized very well.

A 100% crop looks very crisp and sharp in most cases.

The only major downside with using an 11-year-old camera is that the dynamic range in the sensor is bad compared to my modern Sony A7. If you do not nail the exposure really well when you take the photo, you have fewer options to correct it later. With my modern cameras, I just shoot everything slightly underexposed and lift the exposure later in Lightroom. That would not be a good idea with the Canon 400D.

This camera’s weak dynamic range also makes it hard to capture scenes with strong light and deep shadows in the same frame. But other than that, this camera kit has already after a couple of days given me a lot of photography joy for the money. I will definitely keep this camera, it is a fun tool to take out once in a while to add some variation to my photo walks.

This little experiment taught me that if you just want a good camera to take nice looking photos in your everyday life and you don’t have professional needs (e.g. 50-megapixel files) $80 will get you surprisingly far. An added benefit is that 10-megapixel files give you such a fast editing experience in Lightroom.


About the author: Micael Widell is a photography enthusiast based in Stockholm, Sweden. He loves photography, and runs a YouTube channel with tutorials, lens reviews and photography inspiration. You can also find him on Instagram and 500px where his username is @mwroll.

Review: Ikelite Housing is a Watertight Option for Underwater Photos

Posted on October 10th, 2017

As a young kid, I loved the ocean. I was amazed at everything surrounding it and knew I wanted to work in it somehow. It wasn’t until many years later I found photography. I knew one day I would be taking my camera into the ocean to shoot the amazing landscapes and animals who call it home. I’m happy to say, after several long years, I finally have a dive housing in my bag.

This is my review of my new Ikelite housing for the Nikon D500.

Why Ikelite?

For being such a niche market, there are a bit more companies supplying housing and underwater gear then most would think. For the DSLR Shooter out there, Nauticam, Sea and Sea, and Ikelite come to mind as some of the top names. All of them are different in their own ways and are great for their own reasons. Why did I pick Ikelite? Well, two main reasons:

1. Price: Ikelite really fits in a great price point. The housing, plus the dome, along with a few other small things to get up and running is about $2,300. (This price is before add on’s like strobes and arms). While that is not something everyone has just lying around, it’s not bad for an underwater system. Other systems out there run around the $3,500 price point, just for the housing with no ports. This is not to say they are bad – just different. Everybody who shoots with underwater gear has a certain set of requirements which need to be checked off for them. Look closely before you buy. For some of you, the features the housing offers may be something you need to do your job so the price comes second for you.

2. Style: The second reason I went with Ikelite is due to the style of the new DL housings. Ikelite has now made their new DL style housing into both a Surf and Dive Housing system for people who need a hybrid system. If you’re wanting to shoot shallow water and surf, you can get the housing you need with a 50ft depth rating back to save weight. Then when you want to go diving, you can get a second backplate for your housing to handle up to 200ft of diving. I chose the 50ft back to start with since most of my shooting at the moment is not at the 50ft limit. As time goes on, I will for sure be getting the 200ft back.

Overview of the Housing

I shot some photos to show some of the features I like, along with just basic overview photos so you can see different angles.

The back-plate latching system with a safety switch is solid. Even when bumped by accident, there is no risk of it popping open underwater.

The On/Off switch along with top controls are easy to use and press easily, even with gloves. Photo shows the flash bulkhead taken off, which allows use of a sync cable to fire your strobes. There is no fiber optic on this housing.

The back of the housing features easy to read labels for those times when you forget what each button does. The text is large enough to read at a glance. A nice touch is the words being engraved, not painted on.

The new DL housings come standard with a vacuum system already installed. You need to buy the vacuum pump. It is an extra expense. I’ve found it works well and am happy it comes with the housing.

The controls on the outside of the housing translate into plastic gears on the inside. They keep low profiles in order to help cut down on weight and size, while still working smoothly.

If you’ve used Ikelite before, the new port takes advantage of your old zoom lens collars. It will help you save money when making the move, but you will need to buy new ports made for DL housings.

Time to Get in the Water

The Pros

  • I love the camera tray which is built into the housing. It fits the camera snugly, allowing me to shoot confidently, instead of worrying about a button slipping or moving.
  • The dome is an acrylic, well-made, and exceptionally light dome, that provides great image quality.
  • The system of locking the back-plate is fantastic. I like that it has three different snap clips to secure the back with even pressure, along with the safety mechanism on each of them so they don’t get snagged on a dive.
  • The new Dry lock port is a great system and a main reason why I felt secure in purchasing this housing. The old Ikelite housing had four clips that
  • I just didn’t like or would trust, but that’s just me.
  • The new handle system at the bottom allows me to have one handle on either side or add both handles, allowing me to customize the experience. It’s a very versatile system; it suits a multitude of various types of underwater photography, whether you’re going snorkeling, diving, or top-side.
  • The shutter release is form-fitting, spring loaded, and easy to use with gloves or not. It makes using this housing simple and fun.
  • The big zoom knob with the different shape, size, and material is also easy to find and use without looking. It is built into the housing in the perfect place – you don’t have to search or even reach for it, it’s right at your fingertips.
  • The build quality of the entire housing is mighty impressive. All of the buttons are easy to push and use.
  • The O-ring system is easy to care for and clean.
  • Last but not least is the included vacuum system. Great to see this come stock and ready to go, though you will need a pump.

The Cons

Now there isn’t much to be said that is bad about this housing.

  • One of the biggest problems I’ve found is once the camera is in the housing and locked up you can’t change your AF setting from point to group. It’s even worse since Ikelite could have made the lens release button work for both. I had my housing fixed with an aftermarket part that now makes it possible to use it both ways.
  • I have a love-hate relationship with the DL Dome. It’s really nice and light, but if you’re not using a port extension and are just putting the port right into the housing, the three screws used to hold it in place are hard to get to and tighten or loosen.
  • The next thing is just for those who have the 50ft back: the viewfinder is crap. It’s just a clear plate. You need to get the 200ft back to get a magnified viewfinder or invest in an aftermarket viewfinder. I plan on getting the 45-degree finder next year when I upgrade to the 200ft back.

Since I have had the housing for only a few months, there isn’t much more I can say that is bad about the housing.

Photos Taking with the Housing

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking to getting into any type of water-based photography, take a good look at Ikelite. I’m beyond happy with the housing and dome I have. Even if you don’t have a DSLR camera, there are housings for point-and-shoots, along with most of the new mirror-less options on the market. If you plan on doing different types of underwater work, such as surfing, snorkeling, or diving all during one trip, the DL housings are great. The two different backs help save on weight and there are new ports for long primes coming soon.

I will say, though, if you specialize in something like surf photography, a surf housing might fit your needs better.

At the end of the day, I’m really happy with this housing and can see it lasting many years of shooting. The Nikon D500 makes a perfect companion for this housing. Next year, I will be upgrading the back of the housing for deep dives and will also add a 45-degree viewfinder to make it easier to shoot.


About the author: Russell Johnston is an outdoor adventure photographer based in San Diego, California. You can find more of his work on his website, Facebook, 500px, Twitter, and Instagram. This post was also published here.

Nikon D850 Best DSLR Ever, Gets First Full 100 Score at DxOMark

Posted on October 6th, 2017

The Nikon D850 was just awarded the first full 100 overall score ever given out to a DSLR by the testing lab DxOMark. The D850 now sits alone in the top spot on the camera leaderboard, with the full-frame mirrorless Sony a7R II sitting at #2 with a score of 98.

This is the first time a full-frame backside-illuminated sensor has appeared in a Nikon camera, and it’s a sensor that “breaks new ground for image quality,” DxOMark says. The D850 has the best color and dynamic range at base ISO among all commercially available cameras tested by the lab — it’s so good it rivals medium format sensors in some aspects.

“At base ISO, the Nikon D850 image quality for color is unrivaled for a DSLR, although the mirrorless Sony A7R II and full frame compact RX1R II comes pretty close,” DxOMark writes. “The D850’s color is on par with the best results we’ve seen on medium-format sensors, such as the Phase One IQ180 digital back, and fractionally ahead of the Phase One P65.”

The new ranking of top 10 cameras ever tested by DxOMark.

The D850’s low-light ISO performance isn’t as top-notch as its other attributes, but DxOMark says it’s “still a very acceptable result” that “fares pretty well.” The camera produces fairly low noise up to ISO 3200 and can be pushed further with noise reduction software during post-processing.

“The first DSLR to hit 100 points […] puts the Nikon D850 in a class of its own for image quality,” DxOMark concludes. “At base ISO, it’s unrivaled for color in the DSLR class, and its headline dynamic range score is outstanding, too.

“So if you’re looking for the best image quality at low ISOs, at significantly less cost than a digital medium-format camera, the Nikon D850 looks like the camera you’ve been waiting for.”

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Beats the iPhone 8+ at Still Photos: DxOMark

Posted on October 4th, 2017

The iPhone 8 Plus’ reign as the sole top tested camera at DxOMark didn’t last long. The camera testing lab just published its review of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, which now joins the iPhone 8 Plus with the same highest-ever overall score of 94. The Note 8 also has the highest-ever still photo score of 100, beating the 8 Plus’ 96.

The Galaxy Note 8 is Samsung’s first dual-camera smartphone offering — there are 26mm f/1.7 and 52mm f/2.4 12MP camera modules — and DxOMark says the company passed this initial test with flying colors. The camera was found to have the best zoom capabilities (2x optical) of any smartphone tested thus far.

Other features of the phone/camera include phase detection autofocus, optical image stabilization, auto HDR, and a 6.3-inch Super AMOLED screen.

While the Galaxy Note 8 trails the iPhone 8+ in video capabilities (the scores are 84 vs 89, respectively), it trumps the 8+ in shooting still photos (100 vs 96, respectively).

“A phenomenal photo sub-score that breaks new ground as the first smartphone to hit 100 points makes the Note 8 the current class-leader for stills, thanks to excellent zoom quality, good noise reduction and detail preservation, as well as fast and accurate autofocus,” DxoMark writes.

DxOMark praises the Note 8’s zoom performance, low noise in low light, autofocusing abilities, details in a diverse range of lighting conditions, and bright/vivid colors. Negatives noted by DxOMark include a limited dynamic range that often clips highlights, a lack of bokeh even in bokeh mode, and frequent white balance casts.

“The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 comes out as an outstanding choice for the smartphone photography enthusiast, matching the top overall score of 94 points of the iPhone 8 Plus,” DxOMark concludes.

GoPro HERO6 vs. HERO5: Should You Upgrade?

Posted on October 2nd, 2017

The GoPro HERO6 is finally here and many of you are probably wondering if it’s worth the upgrade or not. In this 13-minute video, the Canadian camera store Vistek compared the HERO6 with the HERO5 and came up with some startling results.

First, the stabilization. The comparisons between the two cameras showed a huge difference in the stability. The HERO6 is just super smooth, whereas the HERO5 still shows wobble at times.

Stabilization on the HERO5 is only available in 2.7K resolution, introducing a 10% crop to the image. For the HERO6 though, that improved stabilization is available in 4K resolution (although not at 60p) with only a 5% crop factor.

Comparing the color profiles, the HERO6 seems to retain details by an entire stop, possibly a little more, than the HERO5. The dynamic range really seems to have improved.

Interestingly, the video creators thought that the 240 fps footage at 1080p is “pretty terrible” and more of a “novelty.” They say that there is a “tonne” of aliasing and artifacts in the footage, particularly around areas of hard edges.

At 1080p 240fps aliasing and artifacts were visible, particularly around areas of hard edges.

But the stabilization is available at 120fps at 1080p, and that is a “huge win for GoPro.”

Areas of highlights, particularly shiny areas, seem to pick up some purple fringing, too.

The QuikStories feature received a bit of a hammering in the review. It seems that it chooses the footage more randomly than expected and doesn’t provide interesting cuts, like going back to previous bits of footage.

“The HERO6 is what the HERO5 should’ve been,” says Vistek. “This is the first GoPro I actually want to own.”

(via Vistek via ISO 1200)

A Close Look at the Quality of iPhone 8 Plus RAW Photos

Posted on September 28th, 2017

A few weeks back I ran some tests on the RAW files taken with the latest iPad Pro. Frankly, I was pretty impressed, the quality was indeed considerably better than what’s possible on my “soon to be replaced iPhone 6S Plus”. Those test results got me quite excited because I fully expected to find the DNGs produced by the new iPhone 8 Plus would be a small step further step up the quality ladder.

As far as I can tell the modules on the iPad Pro and iPhone 8 plus are pretty similar, save for the lack of stabilization on the iPad, but like all things Apple it can be quite difficult to get any definitive answers on what’s going on under the hood. Anyhow, I’d have been happy if the iPhone 8 Plus DNG files were as good as the iPad Pro since it seems they’re actually a bit better I’m pretty chuffed. For comparison the shot below is one of the test images I took with the iPad Pro converted to monochrome, the overall quality is rather nice.

Sometimes test shots work out nice in themselves and quite like this one, perhaps it is the layered effect. Anyway it shows how the deep shadows (under the bridge) hold up pretty well. Nothing is clipped either.

And so here we are just a few days after the iPhone 8 release with a peek beneath the DNG hood. First off, consider this a preliminary test: it’s my wife’s iPhone and it only arrived Friday morning, so my time with it was a very limited, basically an hour or so on Sunday afternoon. Frankly dragging any new Apple device from Wendys’ hot hands when she’s in the first blush of Apple love is harder than getting our Border Collie to give up a bone. But Wendy, being a lovely lady and terrific wife, agreed to let me have a little free time with her new 8 Plus baby.

Note also, I only tested with the wide angle lens, not the telephoto, there’s no point comparing apples to oranges and then coming up with grapes, the 6S Plus has no telephoto lens option.

You still can’t shoot DNGs using the standard iPhone camera app, I imagine Apple decided the great majority of iPhone shooters will just want to deal with compressed finished JPEGs, except of course they’re not JPEGs anymore but rather the new HEIF and a big hooray for that. It’s certainly long past time when that clunky, chunky old JPEG format needed to be replaced with something much more modern.

If you want to know about the HEIF format here is a link for you to check out.

This review is not about the fancy schmancy modes that the standard app offers, you’ll find plenty of info in other places if you want to know the ins and outs of the portrait mode or that cool photo lighting mode, suffice to say I reckon they are pretty cool. Wendy gave those headline features a big workout over the weekend with our 8-month-old Grandson Milton and apart from having a lot of fun she found the results were actually pretty good most of the time.

This test is just about the potential of this DNG files but later I intend to explore the other options in depth, once I get my own iPhone X in a couple of months.

I actually think the iPhone 8 Plus DNG files have more relevance to the new iPhones that the previous versions because the general capabilities of the new cameras are much better all around. Now that might sound an odd thing to say since traditionally we shoot RAW/DNG to overcome the limitations of JPEG capture but bear with me. I reckon a lot more people are going to choose the iPhone as their only camera, I can easily see DSLRs and Mirrorless cameras being left behind sulking in cupboards while owners pop off for two weeks of R and R. That improved shallow depth of field effect will be enough to sway the choice for many casual and semi-serious users, most folk care little about how the result is achieved and just love the fact it can be done at all, much to the chagrin of many old-school shooters.

I can also imagine a lot of folks will still take their DSLRs on holidays and then faced with the choice of carting the gear around some foreign city for a day will decide…nah….leave it in the motel room, I’ll just slip the iPhone into my pocket. Next holiday the DSLR won’t even make it to the front door!

Think about that for a moment, iPhone pics have been fine for many needs for years now but the new features and HEIF format raise the bar to a point where many more photographers will see the iPhone as “perfectly sufficient”. What else out there combines lighting effects, great panorama modes, synthetic depth of field, slow-mo, great 4K video, time-lapse, perfect connectivity etc in the regular camera world? And of course you can shoot pretty good DNGs as well if you want an imaging edge.

At times more serious users will certainly want the wholesome goodness and flexibility that DNG capture offers, which brings us back to the question at hand: just how good or bad are the iPhone 8 Plus DNGs?w

While the following test pics are not fully comprehensive and nor are they great works of art, (but then what can you do when you only have the device for an hour or so), I reckon they give a pretty solid insight into the iPhone 8 Plus DNG option and its potential.

I always test with everything locked down with optimal exposure and focus control, I think when we test we should test “exactly” what we say we are testing, which means we need to eliminate the variables as much as possible. You can be pretty confident these pics are a valid representation of what you can expect from the DNG files if you take care shooting and spend some time doing proper edits.

As for the shooting, I use and recommend two applications, Lightroom Mobile and ProCamera, (both of which are covered in detail in my iBook “Ultimate iPhone DNG”, available on the iBooks store) between these two apps you can do pretty much anything you’d reasonably expect to be able to do when shooting with DNG on your iPhone.

The exposures were optimal and some were captured using a UNiWb method on both the iPhone 6S Plus and 8 Plus, read the book if you want to know about that.

The editing? I edited them in three applications, first Lightroom Mobile to get an insight into what’s possible by using only the Raw converter on the iPhone and then I carried out some post DNG tuning in the new version of Snapseed (which is very nice by the way). On the Mac, I used Iridient Developer, followed by some Photoshop CC time to check for iPhone DNG edit-ability.

Just so you know, nothing extracts detail from files like Iridient does — it represents the ultimate and additionally there are an absolute plethora of ways the files can be processed within the application, including alternative noise reduction and sharpening methods. I came up with a few workflows for the files based on what I’ve done in the past with iPhone DNGs, these worked a treat but it’s worth adding that given some serious exploration time I can probably get more a little more out of the DNGs using more refined workflows.

My general principle with Iridient is to render out a result that can be fine-tuned in Photoshop. Some folk might say my approach is not relevant to them — likely true — but they can always use Lightroom Mobile. On the other hand if like me you really want to know what the iPhone 8 Plus DNG limits are then this is the way to do it.

You’ll find I refer to the iPhone 6S Plus as a comparison, I think that’s totally valid as most people buy their iPhones on two-year contracts or keep them for the two-year period, meaning the most likely customers for the new 8 series iPhones will be the 6 Series updaters who’ve skipped the 7 series models.

Alrighty, let’s get down to it….

A very high contrast scene but the 8 Plus DNG format holds detail throughout the entire range. The lens shows no obvious distortion despite the relatively wide view.

Angle of View

The focal length of the lens on the 8 Plus is slightly shorter than the 6S Plus, I assume the actual sensor dimensions are the same, (Maybe not, I haven’t been able to track down a definitive answer). From the comparison pics, it looks like the 8 Plus has a slightly wider angle of view but I’d need to lock both down on a tripod and shoot them side by side to be sure.

The 6S was 29mm equivalent and I’d say the 8 Plus is 27.5mm equivalent or so but I’ll need to confirm this.

Depth of Field

While the difference is not much the wider aperture on the 8 Plus does seem to give slightly more separation when you shoot scenes that include near and distant objects, this is to be expected of course but it looks a little more pronounced than I had anticipated.

I assume that the higher level of overall lens/sensor performance in all measurable parameters is more important in changing that apparent depth of field rendering than the wider aperture. Basically slightly out of focus areas always look more out of focus if the in-focus areas are rendered truly sharply in comparison, which they are with the 8 Plus camera module.

Distortion

The distortion characteristics of the 8 Plus are benign, that is to say, I couldn’t see any change when I turned the lens correction on/off in Lightroom Mobile, even in Iridient Developer I couldn’t really see any distortion in the uncorrected files.

I’d need to run further tests on a tripod with fixed straight edged subjects to say with conviction that there’s no distortion but at this point that looks to be the case, which is quite impressive.

Compared to the 6S Plus

The 6 series modules have some pincushion distortion which in uncorrected files is just visible, so a win to the 8 Plus, I’m just not sure by exactly how much.

The DNG has been edited in Iridient Developer for a slightly filmic look, the iPhone 8 Plus doesn’t seem to have strong colour biases, making it easy to liberate any rendering style you want.

Color

With Raw files the color rendering is mainly a product of the choices you make when extracting the files, the white balance, tint, saturation, and vibrance are all adjustable but it’s also true that the sensor design and the processing chain will have an effect on how the final files respond.

Of all the criteria this is the hardest to qualify, I think Lightroom Mobile produces lovely color with the 8 Plus but it’s pretty terrific on the 6S Plus files as well.

Colour can be fine-tuned in RAW converters or photo editors in post and the rendering of colors is not baked into DNG/RAW files in the way it is with compressed formats, at best I can make a couple of comments as to how the files look and responded when edited.

If anything the yellows are a little more dominant than ideal and blues are slightly cyan shifted, greens can end up a little yellow/green. All colors seem to accept selective editing really well and fine-tuning white balance is very easy. Really I’d need an opportunity to shot a wide array of shots including portraits and indoor lighting plus color checker images to be able to make any meaningful judgment.

I did try a mixed lighting shot in my Daughters kitchen that had filtered window light and tungsten and overall the resulting image looked rather good, in other words, the tungsten lit elements were warm but controlled and the window lit areas not overly blue. Generally, the result was much better than what I saw with the 6S Plus.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

The 8 Plus seems to be a little less prone to accentuating certain colors. Basically, it’s easy to get neutrals looking neutral and artificial light sources don’t seem to cause “runaway” color tints. I”d judge the 8 Plus an improvement but I need to investigate further.

I took this rough shot in my daughters kitchen to see how the iPhone 8 Plus DNGs handles mixed colour temperature lighting. Very well in fact, the tungsten is not over powering and the filtered blue daylight through windows is not overly blue. It’s a win.

Noise

I expected the noise levels would be reduced compared to the iPhone 6S Plus as the 7 series modules produce RAW files that are definitely better in this regard.

So what did I find? No competition here at all.

For those shooting in the standard camera format, JPEG and now HEIF, noise is usually a non-issue as the iPhone processing pretty much blurs all the noise away along with the fine detail. On the other hand with DNGs we have total control and can play the trade-offs against one another, that alone could be reason enough to shoot DNG.

The 8 Plus DNG noise is much lower than the older modules and especially the 6 series, you can see it everywhere in the image, but it’s especially obvious in blue skies and shadows. If the file is correctly exposed at the lowest ISO (as a RAW file, not as if it were a compressed processed file) you can turn off all noise reduction in Iridient, no qualms at all.

Initially, when noise appears it’s low-level chrominance noise showing up in neutrally toned areas, but I found it to be very acceptable at the low test ISOs and there’s almost zero luminance noise in smooth tones areas if the file is optimally exposed, i.e. at 20 ISO.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

No contest, the 8 Plus easily bests the 6S plus and importantly this means you can push the sharpening and microtonal contrast adjustments more aggressively.

This home has seen better days, looking at this downsized image its obvious that the clarity across the entire frame is excellent, detail is held right out to the corners and the tonal range looks natural, it looks like it could have been taken with any high quality camera. It should be noted too that the afternoon light was highly contrasty.
This small 100% crop from the Verandah shot earlier in the article gives a good idea of the sort of detail the iPhone 8 Plus DNG files liberate. Textural information in particular is well expressed and should look nice in print.
Here we have a 100% crop (approx) of the home, the detail rendering is excellent with the DNG files and you can even see the twist in the barbed wire on the top of the fence, look even closer and you can see the nail holes in the timber on the side of the verandah. Detail and resolution are certainly not an issue.

Detail

The DNG files from the 6S plus are vastly better than the JPEGs. The JPEGs always show unpredictable mushiness, lack of very fine detail and sometimes look very watercolour-like. I expected the new HEIF format would be much less damaging to the files and thus the difference between DNG and compressed capture under normal shooting would not be as significant. So how did that assumption pan out?

Well, although not covered in this test, I did look at the compressed standard files and there’s no doubt they hold much better fine detail than the old mushy JPEGs on the 6S Plus, there’s far less of that watercolour rubbish I detest.

Frankly, I was not expecting a big improvement in detail rendition with the DNG files on the 8 Plus, the 6S DNGs were already capable of very well resolved results providing the exposure was nailed correctly. DNGs converted in Iridient extract about as much detail as you could ever reasonably expect from any 12-megapixel image. So are the 8 Plus better? In the center of the frame it’s a pretty close call, the native files showed little difference in detail but the win goes to the 8 Plus…just.

But, there is much more to it, the 8 Plus shows a higher level of clarity across the entire frame because the lens is simply better and more importantly the native noise level is much lower, meaning you can apply correspondingly higher levels of image sharpening without the noise becoming obvious and degrading the image.

The lower noise level pays off, particularly when applying very low radius sharpening to bring out textural details. With earlier models, you really had to back off early as you’d get a combination of ugly color flecking and rough grain. The 8 Plus files beg to be texture sharpened and respond really well to it.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

Better, but not a chalk and cheese difference, in the end, you have more sharpening flexibility with new camera, that will be a big bonus for those wanting to crop the frames or blow up to larger sizes, in particular, the improvements in the corners of the frame are obvious.

Dynamic Range

The Raw files on the iPhone 6S Plus have considerably better dynamic range compared with the JPEGs, especially if they are captured using optimal UniWB exposure, (read about that in “Ultimate iPhone DNG). I’ve always felt iPhone DNGs did a much better job with the highlight end than the shadows, which despite all sensible efforts usually still ended up lacking good detail and tonality. Ultimately highlights are far more important than shadows so it was a fair trade-off, but now I don’t have to trade anything…cool!

I really need to run some comprehensive tests on this but I’m confident the iPhone 8 Plus will provide details with better highlights and much-improved shadow detail under almost all conditions. It boils down to this, even if the true dynamic range was no wider, (and I think it is) the shadows have far less noise and record more recoverable detail than the 6S Plus ever did meaning for DNG captures you can reduce the exposure to protect the highlights more, knowing you’ll be able to brighten the image in post without it turning it into an ugly noise-fest.

The 8 Plus will still clip highlights, it is a small sensor after all, but I noticed that the highlight the recovery tools in Iridient worked a little better with the 8 Plus files, tending to give a more neutral colour rendering and avoiding the harsh tonal breakup I’m used to seeing with clipped 6S Plus files.

Compared to the iPhone 6S

The 8 Plus is better but probably mainly due to the lower shadow noise levels. Neither device is going to be as flexible as a regular DSLR or Mirrorless cameras but if you’ve only ever shot JPEGs on a smartphone you’ll be quite amazed at how good these DNG files can be.

This 100% crop from the Tea Towel shot above gives a pretty good idea of degree of detail and micro tonality on offer with the DNG files. Really there is nothing to make you think that this is shot with a smart phone camera.
Taken late in the afternoon just before sunset near Gundagai NSW. Even in this downsized version you can see the DNG file holds a lot of fine detail in the grass. That ability makes photos look more 3 dimensional. Clarity in the close corners looks spot on too.

Lens Quality

I thought the lens quality of the 6S Plus was pretty good though mine at least would sometimes render corners randomly soft, it might be the top right in one shot, bottom left in another and so on. I suspect this is due to weird interactions with the 6S Plus image stabilization but I’ve never been able to conclusively prove that. Generally, the 6S Plus edges and corners are noticeably less well resolving than the center.

The iPad Pro lens with its 7 series camera module is much better performing than the 6S Plus, this might be due to less diffraction as a result of the wider aperture or it could just be a better design, regardless the lens on the iPad Pro eats the 6S Plus for dinner, resolving very well across the entire image and my iPad Pro doesn’t show any uneven corner softness at all.

It makes more sense, in this case, to compare the lens performance of the 8 series to the 7 series module as it’s a given the 8 Plus will easily best the 6S Plus version.

So the answer? The DNG files look to have a little bit better edge definition on the iPhone 8 Plus when compared to the 7 series modules. Like most lenses the corners aren’t exactly equal in resolution, the bottom left is the softest on the test sample, but honestly, it’s still very very good. Let me put it this way, the cross frame performance is much better than any kit lenses I’ve ever tested on DSLRs or Mirrorless cameras when set at the wider end of the range, you certainly don’t look at the 8 Plus DNGs and think, “damn I wish that corner was sharper”.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

The improved corner definition compared to my 6S Plus is very obvious, especially when you look at the DNG files in their native state, no competition here, a knockout for the 8 Plus and it looks a bit better than the 7 series modules as well, but this could be down to other processing chain factors rather than optics.

Taken from the extreme top right corner of the derelict home image a couple of points are obvious. First there is no chromatic aberration and second very little purple fringing, bear in mind this is exactly the circumstance where you would expect see both. Additionally the shadows hold tonality and with selective editing more detail could be brought out. Also note that there is no noise in the blue sky and this image has been processed with all noise reduction turned off! It’s really only the very outside corner area where clarity falls off a bit but honestly this is quite excellent compared to pretty much any lens and who really pixel peeps the extreme corners anyway.

Chromatic Aberration

Just so we a clear, we’re talking about magenta/green and yellow/blue color fringing here, not the purple fringing you can see around dark lines set against bright light sources, the later is not regular CA and has a different cause.

I’m very sensitive to CA, I find it visually disturbing and even little bit of CA gets me queasy. CA messes with the color as you move towards the edges and corners of the frame and also reduces peak sharpness. Most photographers will argue, “yeah but it can be fixed in post”, that’s true but a CA fixed image will never be as sharp as one created with a lens that exhibited no CA at all. Give me optically corrected CA any day.

Now up front, I have to say that iPhone lenses since the 5S have been pretty good in this regard, each iteration seems to have reduced CA a bit and but frankly, it’s never the bothersome issue it is on most regular camera lenses (even expensive ones).

And now, I present with great fanfare…tadaa….the first lens I have ever tested where I could not actually find any Chromatic Aberration when zoomed in to a 200% view on an uncorrected RAW/DNG file. Just pause for a second and ponder that, I said none, nada, nothing.

Yes you’ll get a little purple fringing if you push the exposure hard enough but that’s a horse of an entirely different colour, literally, regardless the purple fringing is really well controlled, basically a non-issue, all of which tells me the lens must have pretty high native contrast, excellent coatings, and superb design.

Anyhow folks, you can forget about worrying about chromatic aberration and also be confident that any residual purple fringing when it shows up can be easily sorted out in the RAW convertor or Photoshop (or something similar) with a fringing correction tool. Lightroom on the desktop computer does a great job of sorting this for example.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

The 6S Plus always performed well in this area, but zoomed in the 8 Plus is much better, in particular, the high contrast purple fringing is not as well controlled on the 6S Plus.

Just One Thought

Killing chromatic aberration with lens design is very difficult for a whole array of tech reasons, most kit lenses don’t even get close to sorting the CA within the lens itself, that’s done in software when making the JPEG or via a profile in the RAW converter.

I checked the DNG files without any corrections enabled and found zero CA, this raises a question I can’t answer. Has Apple found some way to perfectly correct the CA before the DNG file is written and bypassed profile corrections in the RAW converter later on or is it just the lens is incredibly well corrected for CA? I don’t know but the results are great.

Color Banding

Colour banding has been a real bugbear of mine with iPhone images since the first iPhone I owned, a 3GS. I hate it banding, loathe it, detest it, I don’t like it and it makes me want to throw up, well not quite…. but you get the idea. Banding is also devilishly hard to correct in post editing without causing other flow on problems.

Banding or posterization particularly show up in blue skies and on bright skin tones, but it’s also common on yellow objects with many cameras including iPhones. What complicates the matter is that some of the visual banding in the past was not due to issues with the files and inadequate bit depth but rather the display panel. I often found apparently banded images were quite OK when extracted and viewed on my desktop 5K Mac.

The iPhone 8 Plus has a much better display, not as good as the X promises but still much better than the 6S Plus, in fact as soon as you look at the images on the iPhone 8 Plus it’s obvious the display is way better so I expect that that display induced banding will cease to be an annoyance.

It’s a bit early for me to pass a definitive judgment, I really need the chance to shoot a lot more photos with large areas of blue sky, yellow cars, portraits in bright light etc to be sure….but it certainly looks like the banding issues are significantly reduced or eliminated. None of the quick test pics showed any tendency towards banding and breakup no matter how hard I looked or pushed them in editing!

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

Again it’s hard to be sure but the DNG performance looks to be much better, the real test will be when I can get the phone back off my wife later this week and torture test for banding using Lightroom Mobile HDR feature, I’m quietly confident that the “banding is on the run”, both for the files and the display! BTW its pretty easy to get the “bands” when pushing 6S Plus files in editing.

Vignetting

All iPhone/iPad raw/dng files I’ve tested have shown red tinted vignetting in the native state. JPEG shooters are likely unaware of this as the standard processing deals with it automatically, most Raw converters also deal with the worst of the issue via a built-in profile but sometimes you still see it in skies and smooth tones areas near the edges of the frame.

The red/vignetting shift is mainly caused by issues within the sensors design and the way it interacts with the lens, it’s diabolically tricky to eliminate the issue if present. In the case of past iPhones the red shift in the DNG files became much worse as the ISO was raised.

The truth of the vignetting matter is revealed by taking DNG files and viewing them with all profile adjustments turned off, you can’t do this on the iPhone nor is it possible with many desktop editing apps but it’s easily done in Iridient Developer.

Does it matter? Absolutely, that vignetting not only causes color shifts in the corners but increases the noise levels, reduces corner shadow detail and limits your ability to get the best possible results from the files. For example, you’d need to dial back the sharpening levels and increase the noise reduction if you don’t want messy corners and edges, it also means you need to perform advanced radial edits to get the most out from your DNGs. Red shifted vignetting might not be a big issue to many of you out there in interweb land but to me, it’s massive pain.

So….the iPhone 8 Plus has much less native corner vignetting than the 6S plus models and a little less than the 7 series modules as well, additionally the vignetting is far more colour neutral, there’s a very slight colour shift but nothing like the horrible red shift on previous models and it’s only seen on plain blue skies if at all. With the 6S module, you could see it on every uncorrected frame and it even ran well in towards the center of the image if the ISO was raised just a bit.

This is what your iPhone 6S Plus DNG file looks like when you turn off all adjustments and profiles in the RAW converter, in this case I used Iridient Developer on my Mac. A couple of points to note, the DNGs were shot with the exposures set right to the clip point using UNiWB in ProCamera, for the iPhone 6S Plus this renders a darker image as the sensor cannot accept as much light before clipping. Next, have a look at the vignetting, it’s far greater than the following 8 Plus frame and also shows a significant red shift in the corners which gets much wrote as the ISO is raised.
This is the unprocessed DNG from the iPhone 8 Plus, apart from being lighter the most obvious difference is the file has much lower vignetting and very little red corner shift, it also looks a bit better resolved.
This is a basic extraction process of the iPhone 6S Plus DNG file using Iridient Developer, I’ve left the lens profile turned off so you can see just how much that red/magenta colour shift effects the corners of the frame. It really has a pronounced effect right in towards the central 30% of the frame. Even properly processed files (and that includes JPEGs) will often display this red shift problem, especially if the ISO is raised beyond about 100.

Response to Editing

This is where the rubber hits the road for DNG files, JPEGs are just so damned brittle, push the tones and colors or try to re-sharpen and all sorts of nasty things happen, I haven’t tested the HEIF files for edibility but the specs of the format tell me it should be pretty flexible.

The 8 Plus files edit very well in both Lightroom Mobile and on the computer in Iridient Developer. Shadows can be pushed, highlights recovered and selective edits applied without getting horrible tonal breakup. The files can be sharpened easily and the noise being much lower means you have greatly improved options for shadow recovery.

As a little test, I shot an image along an old railway bridge in Gundagai NSW after sunset, it’s an extremely contrasty lighting situation and the phone wasn’t level either as I was shooting through a crooked wire fence.

Looking at the original DNG capture you could easily decide all is lost, it looks hopelessly dark and honestly if this were a DNG shot on the 6S Plus there’d be no hope, but take a look at the recovered edited and cropped image, it actually looks pretty reasonable.

The processing was done via a combo of Iridient Developer and Photoshop CC, yes it has some luminosity noise but truly it’s far better than I expected.

The DNG Torture Test. I shot this image straight into the light just after sunset and exposed to try and keep some color and detail in the highlights. By the way, I did the same with the 6S Plus file but the image was beyond recoverable. You’re looking at the unprocessed image, all I did was open it in Iridient Developer and then click export JPEG. Yep, it’s pretty terrible.
Extracted File. This is the image that came out of Iridient Developer once I had tweaked and fiddled to get the shadows recovered, I left the noise reduction turned down low as I was interested in seeing just how terrible it could be. This version looks much better but not great and don’t you just love the crooked stance!
So after a spin through Photoshop CC and some selective edits we get this, oh and of course I straightened it a bit as well, though it could use more. Now this is quite acceptable and certainly much better than I expected would be possible. This is a downsized pic but even the full-size version is nicely sharp and nowhere near as noisy as you might expect from such an extreme edit. The HDRs taken in Lightroom Mobile should work really well with the 8 Plus, this test also shows why the lighting modes on the 8 Plus work as well as they do…basically, the shadow recovery is much better and that makes for a more flexible post-capture approach.
Just to finish off on the edibility aspect, this monochrome image was extracted in Lightroom Mobile and then turned into mono in Snapseed. I added a film grain effect while in the app. Anyway, I found the files easily converted to monochrome and provided plenty of creative flexibility. That is not always the case with smartphone images. And just in case you are wondering, it’s a vacant shop in the main street of Coolamon NSW, Coolamon has lots of vacant shops.

Compared to the iPhone 6S Plus

Not even in the same ballpark. Net result then, the 8 Plus DNG files edit better period!


About the author: Brad Nichol is the owner of iPhoneRAW and Braddles Photo Blurb and the Author of “Ultimate iPhone DNG” you can purchase 400 page ebook on the iBooks store here. Check out his dedicated iPhone Instagram site here and see what can be done with iPhone DNG. This article was also published here.

Nikon D850 Autofocus Tracking Not as Good as D5, Test Finds

Posted on September 27th, 2017

Nikon’s marketing says the $3,300 D850‘s autofocus components are the same as the $6,500 D5, but how do the two cameras stack up in real-world autofocusing? Photographer Matt Granger decided to put the systems to the test, doing a shootout to see how the two cameras’ focus and tracking abilities compare.

First, Granger made sure both of the cameras were set up exactly the same way, shooting 7 frames per second.

For his first test, he shot in low light (with 4-figure ISO speeds) in the studio as his model kicked and spun around. He gave both cameras 2 attempts, and while the D5 retained sharp focus across both, the D850 only kept up with her on 1 of the 2 occasions.

The outdoors testing was even more interesting. Running straight at the camera, the D850 only got about 60% of the shots in sharp focus – 40% of them were just missed slightly. The D5, however, nailed the focus perfectly on 80-90% of the frames.

Then he tried handholding the lens, following model Steph around who was running in a zig-zagging motion.

For the D5, there was a 100% hit rate — all perfectly in focus. The D850 lost it pretty much immediately, and never caught up again.

Granger notes that the D850 needs to start tracking in good light but just seems to lose it when moving between areas of good and bad light. However, for the D5, this just doesn’t pose a problem.

Check out the full video above to see the test in action, including a view straight into the viewfinder of each camera to see it “live.” You can also find more of Granger’s videos by subscribing to his YouTube channel.

Shootout: A $3,000 Canon 80D Kit vs. the $80,000 Arri Alexa

Posted on September 26th, 2017

The Canon 80D is a popular enthusiast-level video-capable DSLR. The Arri Alexa is a professional video camera that is commonplace on many Hollywood feature film sets. Here’s a 7-minute shootout by Potato Jet that compares what you get from a $3,000 camera kit versus a $80,000 one.

First off, the color of the skin tones is noticeably better from the Arri Alexa camera.

During the blue hour, however, the differences become really apparent. With the Canon DSLR, everything just looks a bit… rubbish, really.

The Arri Alexa, however, has a gorgeous blue tone all over. This isn’t because of a mismatch in white balance, as they were set manually before the video was even shot.

The Alexa “makes people look alive and natural, no matter what crazy lights you throw at it.” Even under fluorescent lighting, the $80,000 monster doesn’t even bat a proverbial eyelid.

That’s thanks to Alexa’s unique color science, an aspect of the camera that helps makes colors look true to reality during grading.

And then there’s the dynamic range. This is where the Alexa just completely blows the DSLR out of the water, retaining incredible amounts of detail in the highlights and shadows throughout the film. It’s prominently featured in this comparison — just look at those flames:

But DSLR cameras are sometimes used to shoot feature films these days. In Whiplash, a number of short clips were shot on a Canon 7D. In Mad Max: Fury Road, several Canon 5D Mark II cameras were destroyed during the action scenes, which is much cheaper than the destruction of Arri Alexas, that’s for sure.

Check out the full video above to see the two cameras in action. You can also find more content by Potato Jet by subscribing to their YouTube channel.

(via Potato Jet via DPReview)

Meet the Canon PowerShot G1 X III

Posted on October 16th, 2017

The Canon G1 X Mark III is what would happen if someone crammed a Canon 80D or M5 into a Powershot G5 X body, which is pretty cool. The body is impressively small and light weight, given its large sensor and useful 24-70mm equiv. zoom range, even if the F2.8-5.6 aperture is a tad slow. We're excited to get it in and get shooting, but for now, here's a look into some of its main features and specs.

MeFOTO launches MeVIDEO brand with new GlobeTrotter travel video tripod

Posted on October 16th, 2017

Manufacturer of colorful travel tripods MeFOTO is launching its first video tripod via a Kickstarter campaign, and there's a new brand name to along with it. The MeVIDEO GlobeTrotter will be the first of this 'new' company’s tripods, and will feature a new leveling head design and a choice of aluminum or carbon fibre legs.

With a maximum payload of 8.8lbs/4kg, this travel tripod is aimed at the serious video market, including those using large DSLRs and lower end dedicated professional video cameras.

The MeVIDEO GlobeTrotter comes with an aluminum ball and socket-style leveling platform, and a head that offers a long panning handle. The handle can be switched for left or right-handed users, and the four-section legs spread to three positions as well as reverse folding for storage.

For low angled shooting, the center column can be split in two so the shoulders can be dropped close to the ground, and the top half of the column can be attached to one of the tripod legs to create a monopod. MeVIDEO also allows the head to be completely removed from the shoulders and leveling platform, so it can be used on other accessories such as a slider or crane.

The GlobeTrotter will have a maximum height of 65.7in/166.8cm and packs away to 21.9in/55.7cm. It will weigh 6.06lb/2.75kg in carbon fibre and 6.64lb/3.01kg in aluminum.

Users will have a choice of black or ‘titanium’ finishes, both of which are expected to cost $500 for the aluminum version, and $700 for the carbon fibre version although there are, of course, special deals for those pledging support for the campaign at an early stage. The company expects to ship in January 2018.

For more information or if you'd like to put down a pledge of your own, visit the MeVIDEO Kickstarter page.

Press Release

MeFOTO Announces Launch of MeVIDEO Offering First-Of-Its-Kind Travel Video Tripod

MeVIDEO’s sleek design and unmatched usability provides on-the-go filmmakers with an exceptional video tripod experience.

MeFOTO, the innovative tripod manufacturer, today announced the launch of MeVIDEO, a new sister company focusing on the film and video market with a travel video tripod available now on Kickstarter. Incredibly durable, lightweight, thoughtful and intuitive, MeVIDEO is the ultimate high-quality and full-featured travel video tripod.

"We created MeVIDEO with one simple goal: to create the best compact, travel-friendly, user-friendly video tripod ever for today’s on-the-go filmmakers and videographers. We wanted to create a tripod that makes sense from the moment you put your hands on it; something detailed, yet approachable - and then, to make it incredibly beautiful"
Brian Hynes, MeFOTO + MeVIDEO Brand Marketing Manager.

MeVIDEO GlobeTrotter features include:

  • Reverse folding legs to allow for a more compact folded form that makes it perfect for traveling
  • Integrated Leveling Platform for precise, intuitive positioning of your camera on the center column without needing to adjust legs.
  • Removable Flat Base Head featuring ratchet-style metal adjustment knobs for leveling.
  • Head can be used on other flat surfaces such as certain sliders, jibs, half ball adapters and more.
  • Split/center column allows for maximum flexibility as well as providing the ability to get very low to the ground.
  • Support for multiple cameras ranging from the Sony A6500, Panasonic GH5, Sony A7SII, Canon 5D Mark IV to the Canon C100.
  • Independent locking positions for the legs allow for easy setup on any terrain.
  • Integrated, stainless steel spikes can be expanded or retracted into the rubber feet for stability on any surface.
  • Converts to a monopod. Simply unscrew the center column and combine with the padded leg.
  • Available in anodized aluminum or carbon fiber in black or titanium and comes with a padded canvas carrying case for additional protection when traveling.

Kickstarter

MeVIDEO launched their Kickstarter campaign today, with the goal of raising $50,000. Kickstarter contributors will receive a discounted rate of $349 for the aluminum and $499 for the carbon fiber model. When MeVIDEO publicly launches in early 2018, the retail price is expected to be $499 for the aluminum and $699 for the carbon fiber model.

About MeFOTO:

MeFOTO offers two styles and multiple sizes of strategically designed travel tripods in both aluminum and carbon fiber in a variety of colors. They are ideal for on-the-go photographers, and now filmmakers, at every experience level. www.mefoto.com and www.mevideo.co

Polaroid Moto Mod leaked, straps an instant printer to your smartphone

Posted on October 16th, 2017

Leakster Evan Blass has tweeted an image showing two Moto Mods, one of which is said to be a Polaroid instant print camera module for printing photos directly from your smartphone. As with any Moto Mod, this particular module will be compatible with the Moto Z handsets, including the Moto Z Play and Moto Z² Force Edition.

The Polaroid module is a device that connects to the back of a compatible Motorola smartphone to give it extra functionality—in this case, printing small instant prints and essentially turning your phone into an 'instant camera.' Blass didn't provide details about the module, but presumably it would use the same ZINK (Zero Ink) inkless printing technology as Polaroid's existing instant digital camera.

For now this is just a leak, but it's not the first time we've seen the Polaroid Moto Mod; late last month, two images of the same device appeared on the website Technoblog. So it does appear that this attachment is the real deal.

DJI 'AeroScope' tech shares your drone's ID and location with law enforcement

Posted on October 16th, 2017

DJI has launched a security solution that enables law enforcement and other 'authorized parties' such as aerospace agencies to receive identifying information and location data from DJI drones being operated nearby.

The company calls this solution AeroScope, and explains that it is based on existing communication technologies. Put simply, AeroScope uses the communications link between a DJI drone and its remote control to broadcast telemetry data and either a serial number or registration number to anyone with an AeroSpace receiver. In addition to location and ID, the data that is being broadcast includes details such as altitude, flight speed, and direction.

AeroScope is already in use at two unspecified international airports and DJI says that testing is underway in other environments.

During a demonstration last week, DJI explained that AeroScope receivers automatically detect when a related drone powers on nearby, plotting the drone's location on a map alongside its serial or registration number. With this information, officials can determine who the device's registered owner is; however, DJI was adamant that this system does not broadcast personally identifiable data (though that could change in any jurisdiction that establishes regulations requiring such info).

AeroScope is DJI's way of addressing growing concerns from law enforcement and governments around the world over the ability (or lack thereof) to identify and track drones that violate UAV regulations. There have been, for example, instances of drones flying in restricted airspaces, at too high of altitudes, over crowds, and over prison yards. Identifying the owner and operator of these drones remains difficult.

On the other side of the debate are concerns over privacy, which is why DJI decided to use existing communications tech to locally transmit info—rather than the Internet. This, explains DJI, prevents governments from automatically cataloging this data in a database. Only authorized parties will have access to the AeroScope receiver.

The receiver is already compatible with all current DJI drones, but other drone makers can configure their products to transmit ID information that can be picked up by AeroScope, in case law enforcement decides to set this up as some sort of 'standard.'

Press Release

DJI Unveils Technology To Identify And Track Airborne Drones

AeroScope Addresses Safety, Security And Privacy Concerns While Protecting Drone Pilots

12 October 2017 – DJI, the world’s leader in civilian drones and aerial imaging technology, today unveiled AeroScope, its new solution to identify and monitor airborne drones with existing technology that can address safety, security and privacy concerns.

AeroScope uses the existing communications link between a drone and its remote controller to broadcast identification information such as a registration or serial number, as well as basic telemetry, including location, altitude, speed and direction. Police, security agencies, aviation authorities and other authorized parties can use an AeroScope receiver to monitor, analyze and act on that information. AeroScope has been installed at two international airports since April, and is continuing to test and evaluate its performance in other operational environments.

“As drones have become an everyday tool for professional and personal use, authorities want to be sure they can identify who is flying near sensitive locations or in ways that raise serious concerns,” said Brendan Schulman, DJI’s Vice President for Policy and Legal Affairs. “DJI AeroScope addresses that need for accountability with technology that is simple, reliable and affordable – and is available for deployment now.”

DJI demonstrated the system today in Brussels, Belgium, showing how an AeroScope receiver can immediately sense a drone as it powers on, then plot its location on a map while displaying a registration number. That number functions as the equivalent of a drone license plate, and authorities can use it to determine the registered owner of a drone that raises concerns. In March 2017, in response to growing calls by governments worldwide for remote identification solutions, DJI released a white paper describing the benefits of such an approach to electronic identification for drones.

AeroScope works with all current models of DJI drones, which analysts estimate comprise over two-thirds of the global civilian drone market. Since AeroScope transmits on a DJI drone’s existing communications link, it does not require new on-board equipment or modifications, or require extra steps or costs to be incurred by drone operators. Other drone manufacturers can easily configure their existing and future drones to transmit identification information in the same way.

Because AeroScope relies on drones directly broadcasting their information to local receivers, not on transmitting data to an internet-based service, it ensures most drone flights will not be automatically recorded in government databases, protecting the privacy interests of people and businesses that use drones. This approach also avoids substantial costs and complexities that would be involved in creating such databases and connecting drones to network systems.

This system is consistent with DJI’s problem-solving approach to drone regulation, which aims to strike a reasonable balance between authorities’ need to identify drones that raise concerns and drone pilots’ right to fly without pervasive surveillance. DJI has led the industry with safety and security advances such as geofencing and sense-and-avoid technology, and believes the rapid pace of innovation provides the best means to address new policy concerns.

Drone identification settings will be included in DJI’s initial drone software to allow customers to choose the content of their own drone’s identification broadcast to match local expectations both before and after identification regulations are implemented in different jurisdictions. To protect customers’ privacy, the AeroScope system will not automatically transmit any personally identifiable information until regulations or policies in the pilot's jurisdiction require it.

“The rapid adoption of drones has created new concerns about safety, security and privacy, but those must be balanced against the incredible benefits that drones have already brought to society,” said Schulman. “Electronic drone identification, thoughtfully implemented, can help solve policy challenges, head off restrictive regulations, and provide accountability without being expensive or intrusive for drone pilots. DJI is proud to develop solutions that can help distribute drone benefits widely while also helping authorities keep the skies safe.”

For more information about AeroScope, please contact aeroscope@dji.com.

Nikon D850 Review

Posted on October 16th, 2017

Nikon D850 Review

The Nikon D850 is Nikon's latest high resolution full-frame DSLR, boasting a 46MP backside-illuminated CMOS sensor. But, in a fairly radical departure for the series, it is also one of the company's fastest-shooting DSLRs. This combination of properties should significantly widen the camera's appeal to high-end enthusiasts as well as a broad range of professional photographers.

Key Specifications:

  • 45.7MP BSI CMOS sensor
  • 7 fps continuous shooting with AE/AF (9 with battery grip and EN-EL18b battery)
  • 153-point AF system linked to 180,000-pixel metering system
  • UHD 4K video capture at up to 30p from full sensor width
  • 1080 video at up to 120p, recorded as roughly 1/4 or 1/5th speed slow-mo
  • 4:2:2 8-bit UHD uncompressed output while recording to card
  • 1 XQD slot and 1 UHS II-compliant SD slot
  • Battery life rated at 1840 shots
  • 3.2" tilting touchscreen with 2.36M-dot (1024×768 pixel) LCD
  • Illuminated controls
  • 19.4MP DX crop (or 8.6MP at 30fps for up to 3 sec)
  • SnapBridge full-time Bluetooth LE connection system with Wi-Fi
  • Advanced time-lapse options (including in-camera 4K video creation)

High resolution

The use of a backside illuminated (BSI) sensor means that the light collecting elements of the sensor are closer to the surface of the chip. This should not only increase the efficiency of the sensor (improving low light performance) but should also be expected to make the pixels near the edges of the sensor better able to accept light approaching with high angles of incidence, improving peripheral image quality.

Like the D810 before it, the D850 continues to offer an ISO 64 mode, that allows it to tolerate more light in bright conditions. The D850 promises the same dynamic range advantage as the D810, meaning it should be able to compete with the medium format sensors used in the likes of the Fujifilm GFX 50S and Pentax 645Z.

A BSI sensor with ISO 64 setting should be able to match the D810's low ISO DR while also offering improved performance in at high ISOs.

The D850 has gained a more usable electronic front curtain shutter option (EFCS), which can now be used quiet shutter modes, as well as live view and Mirror-Up mode. To get the full benefit, though, you need to turn on exposure delay (which has had two sub-second delay settings added). However, exposure delay persists across all shooting modes. Thankfully, and presumably thanks to a redesigned shutter and mirror mechanism, mirror/shutter shock doesn't seem to be much of an issue, even without engaging EFCS.

The D850 has no anti-aliasing filter, which should allow for slightly finer detail capture but with added risk of moiré, if any of your lenses are sharp enough to out-resolve a 45.7MP full-frame sensor. There's still no sign of the clever design Nikon patented so, unlike the Pentax K-1 or Sony RX1R II, you can't engage an anti-aliasing effect if you do find false color appearing in densely patterned areas.

High Speed

In addition to the increased speed, the D850 also gains the full AF capabilities of the company's flagship sports camera: the D5. This includes all the hardware: AF module, metering sensor and dedicated AF processor, as well as the full range of AF modes and configuration options, which should translate to comparable focus performance combined with high resolution.

Given the D5 possessed one of the best AF systems we've ever seen and could continue to offer that performance in a wide range of conditions and shooting scenarios with minimal need for configuration, this is an exciting prospect.

As part of this system, the D850 gains the automated system for setting an AF Fine Tune value. It only calibrates the lens based on the central AF point and for a single distance, but it's a simple way to ensure you're getting closer to your lenses' full capabilities, which is handy given you'll now be able to scrutinize their performance with 46MP of detail.

Add the optional MB-D18 battery grip and an EN-EL18b battery, and the D850 will shoot at 9 frames per second.

Impressively, the D850 can shoot at nine frames per second if you add the optional MB-D18 battery grip and buy an EN-EL18b battery, as used in the D5. As well as increasing the camera's burst rate, this combination also ups the battery life to a staggering 5140 shots per charge. You don't get this same boost in speed or endurance if you use a second EN-EL15a in the grip, though.

An MB-D18 plus an EN-EL18b is likely to set you back over $580 over and above the cost of the camera body ($399 for the grip, around $149 for the battery, $30 for the BL-6 battery chamber cover plus the cost of a charger).

The D850 also includes a sufficiently deep buffer to allow fifty-one 14-bit losslessly compressed Raw files, meaning the majority of photographers are unlikely to hit its limits.

Video capabilities

In terms of video the D850 becomes the first Nikon DSLR to capture 4K video from the full width of its sensor. The camera can shoot at 30, 25 or 24p, at a bitrate of around 144 Mbps. It can simultaneously output uncompressed 4:2:2 8-bit UHD to an external recorder while recording to the card. The camera subsamples to capture its video, lowering the level of detail capture and increasing the risk of moiré, along with a theoretical reduction in low light performance. We'll look at how significant this impact is, later in the review.

At 1080 resolution, the camera can shoot at up to 60p, with a slow-mo mode that can capture at 120 frames per second before outputting at 30, 25 or 24p. The 1080 mode also offers focus peaking and digital stabilization, neither of which are available for 4K shooting.

The D850's tilting rear screen will make video shooting easier, though we doubt many will use its contrast-detection tap-to-focus system when they do.

The D850 doesn't have any Log gamma options for high-end videographers, but it does have the 'Flat' Picture Profile to squeeze a little extra dynamic range into its footage, without adding too much to the complexity of grading. It also offers full Auto ISO with exposure compensation when shooting in manual exposure mode, meaning you can set your aperture value and shutter speed, and let the camera try to maintain that brightness by varying the sensitivity.

As you'd expect from a camera at this level, the D850 also includes the Power Aperture feature that allows the camera to open and close the lens iris smoothly when in live view mode. There's also an 'Attenuator' mode for the camera's audio capture, that rolls-off any loud noises to avoid unpleasant clipping sounds.

Huawei unveils Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro with Leica dual-cam and AI-powered features

Posted on October 16th, 2017

Chinese manufacturer Huawei launched its latest flagship smartphone, the Huawei Mate 10, at an event in Munich today. And like previous high-end Huawei models, the Mate 10 comes with a camera that has been developed in cooperation with Leica—this gets you not only a Leica badge on the device’s back plate but also a very promising looking dual-cam setup that combines a 12MP RGB sensor with a 20MP monochrome chip. 4K video and an 8MP front camera are on board as well.

Both of the dual-cam lenses feature a fast F1.6 aperture and optical image stabilization is on board as well. The high-resolution setup allows for what Huawei calls a 2x lossless zoom, and PDAF combined with laser and depth sensors enables fast and precise autofocus.

Huawei isn't relying on hardware alone though—AI and neural networking are applied to improve the quality of the fake bokeh mode, and object recognition for automatic scene selection also relies on some AI magic. Finally, motion detection is being used to reduce motion blur in low light conditions.

The large 5.9” display comes with a conventional 16:9 aspect ratio, 2560 x 1440 resolution and RGBW HDR technology for high dynamic range and low power consumption. Battery life is further enhanced by a very large 4,000 mAh battery.

In the processor department, Huawei is employing its latest and greatest Kirin 970 chipset—Huawei's first with integrated neural networking capabilities—combined with a generous 4GB of RAM, which should allow for smooth operation of the Android 8.0 ‘Oreo’ OS and Huawei’s EMUI 8.0 software.

All the components are wrapped up in a full-metal body with IP53 rating for splash and dust resistance, and will be available for 700 Euros ($825 USD) globally in a range of colors starting in November.

Huawei Mate 10 Key specifications:

  • Leica-branded dual-camera
  • Dual 12MP RGB / 20MP Monochrome
  • F1.6 aperture
  • OIS
  • 2x lossless zoom
  • 4-in-1 AF with depth, contrast, PDAF and laser
  • dual-LED flash
  • 4K video
  • 8MP front camera
  • 5.9-inch AMOLED, 2560 x 1440 pixels, 16:9 ratio, RGBW HDR
  • Corning Gorilla Glass
  • EMUI 8.0 / Android 8.0 (Oreo)
  • Hisilicon Kirin 970 CPU Octa-core
  • 64GB storage, 4 GB RAM
  • microSD, up to 256 GB
  • Hi-Res 32bit audio
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • 4000 mAh battery with fast charging

One More Thing

Along with the standard Mate 10, Huawei also launched the Mate 10 Pro. The Pro model shares the camera and most of the standard Mate's characteristics, but comes with an 18:9 6" 2160 x 1080 OLED HDR display and thinner bezels packed into a much sturdier IP67 water and dust resistant body. Memory has also been upped to 128GB storage and 6GB RAM.

The Mate 10 Pro will set you back 800 Euros ($945). We have our hands on a Mate 10 Pro test unit, so look out for further details and a full camera review in the near future.

DxO offers Android model, adds Facebook Live support and battery grip to One camera

Posted on October 16th, 2017

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DxO has announced version 3.0 of the iOS app for its 'One' connected camera as well as a beta USB-C Android version of the device. This significant upgrade adds support for Facebook Live broadcasting, with the ability to utilize the iPhone's built-in camera(s), as well as the one on the One (no pun intended). The new software allows users to monitor each camera separately, adjust settings as needed and then effortlessly switch from one to another.

The update also brings with it support for video and still time-lapses. The One uses 'Auto Ramping' to maintain white balance and exposure throughout the sequence in order to avoid 'flicker.' Still images can be saved in Raw format and can also be combined to create a 4K video.

New accessories include a battery pack, which holds up two batteries (each adding 1 hour of 'life'), a tilt stand and a 'cable back door' that allows for extended shooting when using the outdoor housing.

Android users who have been waiting for a One of their own, take note. DxO has developed a One for tablets and smartphones and will be starting an 'Early Access' program in the next several weeks. The Android version uses a USB-C connector that limits compatibility to those with the newest smartphones - a microUSB adapter will not work.

The new firmware for iOS is available immediately from the App Store. The battery pack is $50 while the tilt-stand and cable back door are available at no charge.

The DxO ONE now supports Multi-Camera Facebook Live and Time-Lapse features as well as new accessories and an Early Access Program for Android

The latest free iOS app update, available free of charge, opens up a number of new opportunities for using the DxO ONE remotely and autonomously, transforming the camera into the perfect photo and video accessory for your iPhone

PARIS – October 16, 2017 – DxO, a key player in digital image technologies, announced a major update to the DxO ONE, its miniaturized and connected professional-quality camera for smartphones and tablets. Available immediately and free of charge, version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS app offers the first pro-quality multi-camera solution for Facebook Live and a new time-lapse option featuring exclusive Auto Ramping technology. The DxO ONE ecosystem of accessories now includes an external Battery Pack that doubles the camera’s battery life as well as a Cable Back Door for the device’s waterproof case, allowing you to use the DxO ONE outside or even underwater for extended periods.

“While smartphones have made significant progress in terms of image quality, they don’t come close to the photos and videos a real camera like the DxO ONE can offer. Most importantly, you have to hold them in your hand, and you constantly need them for other things, like making calls, sending messages, or checking your social networks,” explains Jérôme Ménière, DxO’s CEO and founder. “The DxO ONE is the first photo and video camera designed to operate as both a handheld and remote device. It’s even able to function remotely over a long period of time — for example, you can use it outside to record a time-lapse or Facebook Live video. Because it works in perfect harmony with your smartphone, it is the ideal photo and video assistant for this device.”

Multi-Camera Facebook Live capabilities: the ultimate solution for broadcasting professional-quality videos

With its iOS application update to version 3.0, the DxO ONE revolutionizes video publication using Facebook Live by allowing users to instantly and easily create a live video stream. Its revolutionary Multi-Camera mode, which leverages the DxO ONE and both iPhone cameras, gives users the ability to experiment with shots that can’t be captured with the iPhone’s cameras alone, making it easy to create professional-quality video streams.

DxO ONE’s Live Facebook solution offers a set of advanced controls, including a mini-control panel that allows the user to preview all three views to compose shots, adjust lighting, or prepare the subject before shooting and streaming live from different angles. Just like filmmakers, users can switch from one camera to another at the touch of a fingertip, as well as record sound from the DxO ONE’s or the iPhone’s built-in microphone, and switch the sound source during playback.

Wi-Fi control also allows users to control the camera remotely while also sending videos over Wi-Fi or 4G, making it easy to experiment with new compositions. And with its large sensor and ultra-bright optics, the DxO ONE offers a natural bokeh that allows users to capture high-quality video.

Stunning, ready-to-share time-lapse videos

Version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS application’s Time-Lapse feature lets you capture stunning videos and share them without going through a complex post-processing process. The easy-to-use interface guides users through the appropriate settings — duration, interval, and time of shooting — and warns them if their selected settings are incompatible. DxO ONE’s unique Auto Ramping technology avoids flicker effects by providing consistent exposure and white balance across all images. Once the settings are established, the phone can be used normally while the camera continues to take pictures. The videos it produces can then be shared immediately.

In addition, the DxO ONE iOS 3.0 application’s Time-Lapse feature uses an intervalometer, transforming the camera into an automatic camera that periodically takes professional-quality images in RAW format at a user-defined rate. Advanced users can also create 4K videos in post-processing.

For long-term use no matter the weather and even underwater, the Cable Back Door connects the DxO ONE to an external battery when the camera is used with the Outdoor Shell — a must-have combination for superb outdoor video and time-lapse imaging.

New accessories for optimizing the DxO ONE experience

The new Battery Pack extends the DxO ONE’s battery life. It includes a Cradle, two rechargeable batteries, and a USB adapter. The Cradle attaches to the bottom of the DxO ONE once the back door has been removed so you can connect either one of the two batteries or the USB adapter. Each battery adds up to one hour of battery life, and the USB adapter allows the DxO ONE to be recharged directly from an external battery.

The new Tilt Stand lets you hold the camera on any surface and choose between five different tilt directions as well as different angles of view, greatly facilitating use of the DxO ONE in standalone mode, or for hands-free remote use when controlled by Wi-Fi.

DxO seeks out Android users

Building on the success of its DxO ONE for iOS, DxO has developed a DxO ONE for Android equipped with a type-C USB connector, making it compatible with recent Android smartphones and tablets.

The DxO ONE Android will be offered in the coming weeks via an “Early Access” program that is open to all. It will allow users to preview the DxO ONE Android and receiving regular updates with the latest application features. The Early Access program will be an opportunity for participants to share their feedback and help improve the DxO ONE experience on Android.

“Since its launch, we have added dozens of features to the DxO ONE, thanks to feedback from users,” said Jean-Marc Alexia, Vice President of Product Strategy. “Today, DxO is responding directly to one of the most frequent requests by launching the Android version, and we will continue to listen to market needs. "

Price & availability

Version 3.0 of the DxO ONE iOS application, along with the application for the Apple Watch, are immediately available for free via the iTunes App Store.

Version 1.0 of the DxO ONE Android will be available for free in the coming weeks via the Google Play Store, as part of the “DxO ONE Android Early Access program”.

The Battery Pack ($59,99 | £49.99 | 59,90 €) will be available at dxo.com.

The Cable Back Door will come with any purchase of a waterproof Outdoor Shell from DxO’s online store.

The Tilt Stand will be provided with the DxO ONE free of charge.

Canon's PowerShot G1 X Mark III is a 24MP APS-C compact with DSLR-like autofocus

Posted on October 16th, 2017

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Canon has introduced the PowerShot G1 X Mark III - the third and latest model in its premium G1 X-series. The G1 X Mark III borrows its 24MP APS-C sensor, Dual Pixel AF system and DIGIC 7 processor from Canon's ILCs, such as the EOS 77D and EOS M5, but adds a fixed 24-72mm equivalent F2.8-5.6 zoom and combines them into a relatively compact body weighing just 400g/14oz. In other words, you're essentially getting a fixed-lens version of the EOS M5 that fits in the palm of your hand.

We're already familiar with the sensor and the Dual Pixel AF system and as such, we're hoping for good results from both. The lens has nine elements, three of which are double-sided aspherical, a built-in three-stop neutral density filter and image stabilization with up to four stops of shake reduction.

The Mark III can shoot continuous bursts at up to 9 fps with AF/AE locked on the first shot or 7 fps with continuous AF. The buffer fills up after around 19 Raw or 24 JPEGs, depending on which mode you're using. Battery life is disappointing, with a CIPA rating of only 200 shots per charge (which assumes you're using the flash 50% of the time). So, while you'll usually get more than this number from the camera, you're still likely to appreciate a second battery or get used to constantly worrying about where your next top-up is coming from.

The Mark III moves away from the blocky design of its predecessors, and now looks nearly identical to its baby brother the PowerShot G5 X, which uses a much smaller 1"-type sensor. The G1 X III has an SLR-style design, featuring dials on the front and back, a built-in flash, an OLED viewfinder and fully articulating LCD. Canon says that the shutter release has been designed in such a way to make it feel similar to a DSLR. The body is sealed against dust and moisture.

Other features include 1080/60p and time-lapse video capture, Wi-Fi with NFC and Bluetooth, and (long overdue in our opinion) a Panoramic Shot Mode.

The PowerShot G1 X Mark III is set to ship in November at $1299. Optional accessories include a dedicated lens hood ($59), underwater housing ($499) and leather case ($99).

CANON ANNOUNCES THE NEXT EVOLUTION OF ITS POPULAR G-SERIES CAMERA – THE POWERSHOT G1 X Mark III

The New Flagship G1 X Mark III PowerShot Camera Features the Largest Imaging Sensor Ever in a Canon Point-and-Shoot Camera

MELVILLE, N.Y., October 16, 2017 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced a new flagship addition to its acclaimed G-series of premium compact cameras, the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III. Lightweight and portable without sacrificing the very best in Canon digital imaging technologies, the new G-series flagship features a 24.3- megapixel* APS-C CMOS sensor and Canon’s revolutionary Dual Pixel CMOS AF (Auto-Focus) technology, both firsts for a Canon point-and shoot compact camera offering.

“As we continue to evolve the popular Canon PowerShot G-series line, we remain committed to incorporating both our latest innovations and the features photographers are looking for in an advanced, compact camera,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A. “With the new PowerShot G1 X Mark III, users will appreciate the quality and overall performance made possible using a APS-C sensor, alongside upgraded capabilities that can enable the capture of amazing photo and video, even in lowlight conditions.”

Ultimate in Compact Image Quality

The new Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III offers dramatic improvements from the series’ previous flagship, the PowerShot G1X Mark II, headlined by a larger, 24.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, resulting in fantastic image quality in both stills and video. This dramatic sensor upgrade pairs with a wide-angle 24-72mm** (3x zoom) lens with Optical Image Stabilization featuring a wide f/2.8-5.6 aperture to allow for maximum brightness and increased sharpness in images and an ISO range of 100-25,600. This provides users with the versatility to shoot in low-light scenarios like a dimly lit restaurant which can frame subjects with beautiful background blur.

Technology commonly found in Canon DSLRs and advanced cameras has now arrived for the first time in the PowerShot G-series, as the G1X Mark III will feature Canon’s acclaimed Dual Pixel CMOS AF system. This feature, popular amongst enthusiast and professional users, provides extremely fast and smooth autofocus capabilities across nearly the entire focal plane, allowing for more creative compositions when framing a subject away from the center of a shot.

Versatile and Intuitive Operation

Dust and water resistant, the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III is a compact and powerful imaging companion ready for a variety of challenging shooting scenarios. Designed for enthusiast and professional users, it offers a host of useful features to help inspire creativity and improve operability. These include:

• 2.36 million dot Organic LED Electronic Viewfinder provides customization options to match nearly any shooting style or scene
• Touch & Drag AF allows for intuitive operation linking the Electronic Viewfinder and touch panel monitor to quickly adjust focus targeting without looking away from the viewfinder, or using Smooth Zone AF to effortlessly track subjects with the touch of a finger.
• 3.0 inch Vari-angle Touch LCD Monitor helps capture the perfect shot from a variety of challenging angles, including overhead or low-angle shooting.
• The G1 X Mark III is capable of fast continuous shooting up to approximately 7 frames per second (fps), or up to 9fps with AF fixed – working easily with Dual Pixel CMOS AF to track even the most fleeting of subjects with ease.
• A New Shutter Release function offers a sophisticated sense of operation, similar to high-end EOS models, providing a comfortable hold during continuous shooting

Canon Technologies Worthy of a Flagship

With technology ranging from HD video capabilities to the latest in connectivity features, the G1 X Mark III is versatile enough to achieve high-level performance on the go. Additional features include:
• Instantly connect to a smart device* via built-in Wi-Fi***, NFC^ or Bluetooth^^ to facilitate easy sharing with friends and family or utilize the Camera Connect app to shoot remotely.
• Panoramic Shot Mode functionality allows users to easily capture panoramic photos, simply be swinging the camera while shooting either vertically or horizontally.
• Capture Full HD 1080/60p Video with high ISO speed shooting and smooth accurate focus when used alongside Canon’s Dual Pixel AF technology, while 5-axis movie IS helps reduce the effect of camera shake when shooting handheld
• Easily capture picturesque Time-Lapse Movies with intuitive settings that help determine intervals and exposure

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III is scheduled to be available in November 2017 for an estimated retail price of $1299.00¹. In addition the Canon Lens Hood LH-DC110, Waterproof Case WP-DC56 and Deluxe Leather Case PSC-6300 for the PowerShot G1 X Mark III will be available for an estimated retail price of $59.99, $499.99 and $99.99 respectively ¹. For more information please visit usa.canon.com.

*Image processing may cause a decrease in the number of pixels.

** 35mm film equivalent.

***Compatible with iOS® versions 9.3/10.3, Android™ smartphone and tablet versions 4.4/5.0/5.1/6.0/7.0/7.1. Data charges may apply with the download of the free Canon Camera Connect app. This app helps enable you to upload images to social media services. Please note that image files may contain personally identifiable information that may implicate privacy laws. Canon disclaims and has no responsibility for your use of such images. Canon does not obtain, collect or use such images or any information included in such images through this app.

^ Compatible with Android™ smartphone and tablet versions 4.4/5.0/5.1/6.0/7.0/7.1.

^^ Compatible with select smartphone and tablet devices (Android™ version 5.0 or later and the following iOS® devices: iPhone 4s or later, iPad 3rd gen. or later, iPod Touch 5th gen. or later) equipped with Bluetooth® version 4.0 or later and the Camera Connect.

¹Availability, prices and specifications subject to change without notice. Actual prices are set be individual dealers and may vary.

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III specifications

Price
MSRP$1299
Body type
Body typeLarge sensor compact
Body materialMagnesium alloy
Sensor
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Image ratio w:h3:2
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors26 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (22.3 x 14.9 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorDIGIC 7
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary Color Filter
Image
ISOAuto, 100-25600
White balance presets7
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationOptical
CIPA image stabilization rating4 stop(s)
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, normal
File format
  • JPEG (Exif v2.3)
  • Raw (Canon 14-bit CR2)
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.)24–72 mm
Optical zoom3×
Maximum apertureF2.8–5.6
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Digital zoomYes (4x)
Manual focusYes
Normal focus range10 cm (3.94)
Macro focus range10 cm (3.94)
Number of focus points49
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3
Screen dots1,040,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeElectronic
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder resolution2,360,000
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/2000 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program
  • Shutter priority
  • Aperture priority
  • Manual
Scene modes
  • Panoramic Shot
  • Panning
  • Star
  • Handheld Night
  • Grainy B&W
  • Soft Focus
  • Fish Eye
  • Art Bold
  • Watercolor Painting
  • Toy Camera
  • Miniature Effect
  • HDR
  • Underwater
  • Fireworks
Built-in flashYes
Flash range9.00 m (at Auto ISO)
External flashYes (via hot shoe)
Flash modesAuto, on, sl0w synchro, off
Flash X sync speed1/2000 sec
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Self-timer
  • Remote
Continuous drive9.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 secs, custom)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation±3
AE Bracketing±3 (3 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV, 2 EV steps)
Videography features
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
Modes
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 35 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
  • 1280 x 720 @ 30p / 8 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
MicrophoneStereo
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC card (UHS-I supported)
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
USB chargingYes
HDMIYes (micro HDMI)
Microphone portNo
Headphone portNo
WirelessBuilt-In
Wireless notes802.11b/g/n + NFC + Bluetooth
Remote controlYes (wired or smartphone)
Physical
Environmentally sealedYes
BatteryBuilt-in
Battery descriptionNB-13L lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)200
Weight (inc. batteries)399 g (0.88 lb / 14.07 oz)
Dimensions115 x 78 x 51 mm (4.53 x 3.07 x 2.01)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes
GPSNone

About the Author

- "The Back Page" was developed by Kristakov & Co. as an aggregation resource tool for sharing tips, techniques, inspiration and news with the larger photographic community. The site is threaded with information that is produced for or can be found around the web in disparate sources. The Back Page serves as a means of bringing those disparate sources together for discussion, comment and insights.

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