It’s fall color season right now in Colorado! Just going outside is enough to make me feel refreshed and relaxed. It’s a slower time of year for photography news, but a few interesting things still happened this week. When I’ve had time away from the aspens, here’s what I’ve found for you.
- DxO PhotoLab 6: Better noise reduction, color processing algorithms, and a more complex cloning/healing tool, among other improvements. The “essential” edition of PhotoLab 6 is $139 (or $75 to upgrade for existing users), but doesn’t have the new noise reduction. The “Elite” edition does and costs $219 ($99 for the upgrade).
- 7Artisans 4mm f/2.8 circular fisheye lens for APS-C: A tiny, fully-manual, fisheye lens that produces circular images for APS-C cameras. It’s not compatible with Nikon Z or Canon RF, though; it’s compatible with Canon EOS-M, Fuji X, Micro Four Thirds, and Sony E only. But the $150 price could be attractive for photographers who want to try shooting fisheyes without a major commitment.
- Zenfolio Smart Pricing: I tend to think that photographers know their audience better than an algorithm, but if you have a hard time pricing your photos, this new tool (part of Zenfolio’s website builder) seems useful. The company says it uses data from hundreds of thousands of transactions to determine the optimal price for your prints.
- Cine versions of two popular Laowa macro lenses: Venus Optics debuted cinema versions of two of its macro lenses – specifically a 65mm T2.9 and 100mm T2.9 lens. Both of them are 2x macro lenses, making them the first such cine lenses ever made. (The 65mm is for APS-C, while the 100mm is for full-frame.) At $600 and $1000 respectively, these are also pretty inexpensive cine lenses.
The Rumor Mill
Nikon 35mm S lens will be f/1.2, and the next Z lens to be announced?
Nikon Rumors is reporting that the 35mm S lens (which has long been on Nikon’s roadmap) will be an f/1.2 lens, as many photographers suspected – and that it will be the next Z lens to ship.
Interestingly, Nikon also released a placeholder drawing for the 35mm f/1.2, which might represent the lens’s size and shape. Except, as I mentioned in our Nikon roadmap article, the identical placeholder drawing is also being used for the upcoming 135mm S and 70-180mm lenses. So, we’ll probably need to wait for the announcement before we know what the lens will look like.
Via Nikon Rumors
Canon patents stir rumors for long-awaited RF telephoto lenses
Canon has patented a 300mm f/2.8, 400mm f/2.8, and even a 600mm f/2.8 lens for their mirrorless RF mount. All three patents include information on a built-in 1.4x teleconverter for the lens. Normally, patents alone don’t garner our attention because they often don’t imply that a real product is coming. But Canon Rumors reports that the 300mm f/2.8 with a built-in 1.4x teleconverter matches what they’ve heard about an upcoming, redesigned 300mm f/2.8L for mirrorless.
Via Canon Rumors
Sony A7R V to be released later this month?
Sony Alpha Rumors has been reporting that the Sony A7R V is rumored for release on October 26. Details are still sparse, but the prevailing theory is that it will use a similar sensor and mainly improve upon its predecessor in terms of autofocus and processing speed. As October 26 gets closer, expect to see more details floating around (as well as more fake rumors, like the probably Photoshopped mockup of the A7R that Sony Alpha Rumors just posted).
Photo Contest Corner
- Topic: Five categories, open to photographers around the world (landscape, aerial, night photography, wildlife, and Canary Islands categories)
- Fees: €15-25 depending on category (but 10% discount if you enter before November 31)
- Prize: €4000 + 4-night hotel stay grand prize; €1000 + 3-night hotel stay runner-ups
- Deadline: December 31, 2022
- Topic: 15 categories, including mountain photography, adventure photography, and wildlife photography
- Fees: One free entry, €22 per additional entry (and free under 19 years old)
- Prize: €3000 grand prize, €300 each for 14 different category winners
- Deadline: December 1, 2022
- Topic: Landscape photography
- Fees: $25 per image (but every fifth image is free if entered before October 14)
- Prize: $5000 grand prize, $1000 second place, $500 third place for photographer of the year (plus gear prizes); $2000, $1000, and $500 for photo of the year; 101 best photos published in their book
- Deadline: October 21, 2022
Good Deals and New Sales
Memory card deals are pretty common, but this one still caught my eye for photographers who use CFExpress Type B cards (including many Nikon Z and Canon mirrorless users). The SanDisk Extreme Pro cards are fast enough for 8K video, although I’d hesitate to use them for 8K 60p RAW video on the Nikon Z9. But in any case, a 128 GB card that’s normally $250 is $140 today, and a 256 GB card that was $400 is on sale for $270.
One unusual deal this week comes from Smugmug, which is my personal favorite of the various Zenfolio/Wix/Squarespace tools for building photography websites. Smugmug’s highest-level “Pro” plan is normally $360/year, but if you buy the Pro plan during October and then make $500 in profit within the first 12 months, they’ll pay you back the $360! If you’re confident in your photo selling skills, it’s a really interesting deal (found here). Otherwise, maybe stick to one of their cheaper plans.
Finally, Canon is continuing to run their huge lens sale that I mentioned last week. If you missed my previous notice, there’s up to $400 off their lenses, mostly for EOS R mirrorless cameras. Some highlights include the RF 100mm f/2.8L Macro ($1000, was $1400); the RF 14-35mm f/4 ($1300, was $1700); and the 70-200mm f/4 ($1500, was $1800). You can see all the lens deals here.
Other Pages of Interest
CIPA’s August 2022 numbers have been released, and show an interesting reversal of recent trends: compared to July, DSLR sales are up, and mirrorless sales are down. It’s probably a brief fluke, however, as mirrorless sales are still up 31% compared to the same month last year. (DSLR sales are up 19% compared to August 2021 – so it’s hardly a dead format.) More analysis at Nikon Rumors.
The 2022 Ocean Photographer of the Year winners have been announced, and they’re as beautiful as you’d imagine. The winning image is a stunning example of surfing photography, and I’m also partial to the third place winner by Brook Peterson – showing a cormorant diving through a school of baitfish, but in a pattern that reminds me of a human face. See the winners here.
The world’s largest camera will be shipped to Chile soon to take astronomical observations of the Southern sky. With 189 separate CCDs of 16 megapixels apiece, the camera – part of the Legacy Survey of Space and Time – captures photos up to 3.2 gigapixels (3200 megapixels). This makes it the highest megapixel camera today, although at least astronomers seem to be chasing megapixels for good reasons. Read the full article on DPReview.