Leica has released a series of 100 limited edition Leica M bodies with red anodized top and base plates. The company says the red hue of the cameras makes a bold statement, though some might argue the nearly-$7,000 price tag is slightly more daring.
The cameras will be technically identical to the existing M (Typ 262) with the lightweight aluminum top plate and base, and no video or live view modes. The company says the red body will match the red 50mm F2 APO Summicron-M lens that it launched in equally limited numbers in November of 2015, though new owners of the red camera would be very lucky indeed to find one of those red lenses still on the shelves.
The red anodized M bodies will be sold through Leica’s own stores starting today. By comparison, a standard M (Typ 262) costs $5595/£4680.
For more information, visit the Leica website.
Leica Camera Unveils Special Edition M Camera with Striking Red Anodized Finish
The Leica M (Typ 262) ‘red anodized finish’ is limited to just 100 units worldwide
December 14, 2017 – Leica Camera presents a special new addition to the Leica rangefinder system – the Leica M (Typ 262) ‘red anodized finish’. The unique color scheme of this special edition camera takes the classic styling of the Leica M and couples it with the bold statement of a bright red hue. The top plate and baseplate of the Leica M (Typ 262) are machined from solid aluminum and anodized in red. This lends the camera a unique look that perfectly matches the color of the special edition Leica APO-Summicron-M 50 mm f/2 ASPH. lens released in 2016. The exclusiveness of this striking edition is further underlined by the strictly limited number being made available: As was the case with → continue…
2017 National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year Winners
National Geographic has revealed the winners of their annual Nature Photographer of the Year contest, and as usual, every photo from the Grand Prize winner all the way to the Honorable Mentions and People’s Choice awards are fantastic.
The Grand Prize this year—and title of Nature Photographer of the Year—went to Jayaprakash Joghee Bojan of Singapore, who captured an intense wildlife portrait of an orangutan crossing a river in Indonesia’s Tanjung Puting National Park. The photo, titled “Face to Face in a River in Borneo,” was selected from over 11,000 entries and earns Bojan $10,000 in prize money, in addition to his image showing up in an upcoming issue of National Geographic.
Speaking of the moment he captured the shot, Bojan told Nat Geo:
Honestly, sometimes you just go blind when things like this happen. You’re so caught up. You really don’t know what’s happening. You don’t feel the pain, you don’t feel the mosquito bites, you don’t feel the cold, because your mind is completely lost in what’s happening in front of you.
You can see Bojan’s grand prize winning image, as well as every 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and People’s Choice winner in the slideshow above, or by visiting the National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year website.
National Geographic Announces Winners of the 2017 National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year Contest
WASHINGTON (Dec. 12, 2017) – Selected from over 11,000 entries, a wildlife photo of an orangutan crossing a river in Indonesia’s Tanjung Puting National Park has been selected as the grand-prize winner of the 2017 National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year contest. The photo, titled “Face to face in a river in Borneo,” was captured by Jayaprakash Joghee Bojan of Singapore. He → continue…
After raising $585,085 through Kickstarter earlier this year, Lomography is finally ready to release its Neptune three-in-one lens system for sale to the general public. This odd system uses a single lens base that accepts three different front element groups to can create three individual focal lengths.
The Neptune system provides 35mm f/3.5, 50mm f/2.8 and 80mm f/4 optical configurations via the interchangeable front groups, and two switchable iris units. The kits are available in Nikon, Canon and Pentax mounts and cost £840/$990.
The kits come with all three front element groups—called Despina, Thalassa and Proteus—as well as a set of cut-out stops that influence the shape of out-of-focus highlights to create stars, discs and crosses, among others. A set of adapters is also available for MFT, Fujifilm X and Sony NX cameras that work with the Nikon F and Canon EF mount versions.
For more information, read the full release below or visit the Lomography website.
The Neptune Convertible Art Lens System
One Story, Unlimited Endings – Now Available in the Lomography Online Shop and Gallery Stores Worldwide
- One System, Three Prime Lenses, Two Aperture Mechanisms: The Neptune Convertible Art Lens System packs countless creative options into one compact package. Mix and match focal lengths, f/stops, and special aperture plates to adapt the Neptune Convertible Art Lens System to your style, mood or subject.
- Three Fixed Focal Lengths for Flawless Images in Every Situation: This handcrafted lens system delivers superb optical quality at a fixed focal length of 3.5/35mm, 2.8/50mm or 4/80mm. The Neptune Convertible Art Lens System offers clean and crisp shots, dense colors and unlimited freedom of choice.
- A Dual Aperture System for Extended Creative Options: Rely on the seamless iris diaphragm aperture mechanism for stunningly sharp photos and videos, or use the → continue…
19 of the best entries from the Sony World Photography Awards
The Sony World Photography Awards—one of the largest annual competitions in the world of photography—is just a month away from closing its entries. To remind photographers of this deadline (and just maybe brag a little bit about the quality of the entries they’ve received so far—World Press Photo has released a teaser of 19 stunning entries submitted to the competition so far.
From perfectly composed black-and-white street portraits, to spectacular wildlife images, to landscape photos that’ll rev up your wanderlust, there’s a little something for everyone in this Holiday teaser.
Scroll through the slideshow to see them all for yourself. And if you’re planning to submit your own entry, you can do so for free right here. Just remember: the submission deadline for the Open, Youth, and National Award competitions is January 4th, 2018, and the deadline for the Professional – Best Series of Works competition is January 11th, 2018.
New images released to mark one month until deadline of 2018 Sony World Photography Awards
December 5, 2017 – Photographers worldwide have just one month left to enter the 11th edition of the Sony World Photography Awards. To mark this deadline, the World Photography Organisation, the creators of the Awards, today releases a new selection of entries from the Open competition. Submitted by photographers from around the world, the images cover a wide variety of topics, from stunning aerial landscapes to intimate portraits and animals in the wild.
The internationally acclaimed Sony World Photography Awards are one of the most important fixtures on the worldwide photographic calendar, with many of its shortlisted and winning photographers gaining global exposure and recognition. Last year’s Photographer of the Year, Frederik Buyckx (Belgium) said, “Being named Photographer of the Year has → continue…
Toshiba has unveiled what it claims is the first ever Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR) Hard Drive (HDD) with a massive 14TB capacity. This drive, which is billed as a model for enterprise use, boasts nine disks and a helium-sealed design, 3.5in form factor, 7200rpm speed, and a 6Gbit/s SATA interface.
Toshiba announced the new drive, which is part of the new MG07ACA series, last week alongside a smaller 12TB 8-disk model. Both hard drives boast a lower operating power profile than the previously launched MG06ACA series, according to Toshiba, as well as better storage density.
The 14TB drive in particular offers a greater than 50% improvement in power efficiency versus the 10TB MG06ACA version. Conventional magnetic recording drives such as these are faster than similar models that use shingled magnetic recording tech.
Talking about the new MG07ACA series, IDC’s HDD Research VP John Rydning said:
Toshiba’s new helium-sealed enterprise HDD is the world’s first 14TB of storage capacity using conventional rather than shingled magnetic recording technology, giving enterprise customers the highest capacity HDD available in the market today for existing server and storage system architectures.
Consumers interested in this new enterprise series will need to contact Toshiba directly for purchase information, but as 4K and even 8K video becomes standard, ultra-high capacity enterprise drives like this might not be limited to traditional ‘enterprise’ users for long…
Toshiba Launches World’s First 14TB HDD with Conventional Magnetic Recording
The 14TB models use an innovative 9-disk, helium-sealed design to deliver massive capacity that fits into standard 3.5 inch SATA drive bays
Irvine, CA – December 7, 2017 – Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation today announced the launch of the MG07ACA Series, the world’s first enterprise 14TB Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR) HDD. Using a 9-disk, helium-sealed design, the → continue…
Kodak expanded its instant product lineup today with the launch of the new Kodak Mini Shot Instant 10MP camera: a point-and-shoot digital model that produces credit card-sized color prints on 4Pass Photo Paper. The Mini Shot Instant—which is offered in black, yellow and white colors—also features Bluetooth connectivity for transferring images to an iOS or Android device running the Kodak MINI Shot companion app.
With the Kodak MINI Shot App, users can make minor edits to their images before printing them, including applying filters and stickers, cropping, and using card templates. Image previews are possible in-camera, as well, via the Mini Shot Instant’s 1.7-inch LCD viewfinder. The camera offers gamma color control, auto focus, white balance, and exposure control.
Users have two photo paper sizes to choose from: rectangular 2.1 x 3.4-inch and square 2.1 x 2.1-inch with adhesive backing. The 4Pass Photo Paper is available in packs of up to 50 (for $35), and the camera is sold with an 8-pack all-in-one print cartridge. The Kodak Mini Shot Instant is available from Amazon now for $100 USD.
Kodak Expands Its Instant Print Camera Offerings with New KODAK Mini Shot Instant Camera
High-quality, instant print photo gratification meets Android and iOS compatibility plus Bluetooth connectivity.
SUWON, South Korea & EDISON, N.J. – Today, Prinics Co., Ltd announced the availability of the new KODAK Mini Shot Instant Print Camera through its North American distributor C+A Global. Expanding upon its instant print product line, the new KODAK Mini Shot point-and-shoot camera combines high-quality, instant-print color photos with digital conveniences such as color controls, filter effects and Bluetooth connectivity, making it the ideal all-in-one solution for picture taking and photo editing.
Furthermore, not only can these photographs be instantly shared with family and friends → continue…
Huge news is coming out of the camera gear rental space today. Lensrentals and LensProToGo have announced a ‘strategic partnership’, merging into one privately held company that the duo is calling “the strongest photo and video equipment rental company in the United States.”
This is a big deal, especially when you consider the dearth of real competition in the rental space—BorrowLenses was put up for sale by Shutterfly in January of this year, and Lumoid ‘paused operations‘ in September… just to name a few troubling bits of news.
The results of this important merger will not be a whole new company, though—you won’t be seeing a LensProToRentals or LensrentalsToGo brand spring up. Instead, both websites will continue to exist and both brands will continue to operate under their current names, only now they’ll do it with the substantially increased resources that the partnership provides. This paragraph from the press release sums up the benefits to current Lensrentals and LensProToGo customers well:
The strategic partnership effectively increases Lensrentals video equipment knowledge base, provides an East coast facility, and allows the company to further its leading position in the photo and video equipment rental market. Customers of both brands will be able to continue the long-term customer service relationships built over the years, in addition to having access to the largest inventory of equipment for rental in the photo and video industry, and an array of shipping, try-before-you-buy and insurance coverage programs.
This ‘strategic partnership agreement’ was closed and approved by both companies on December 1st, but since both are—or were—privately held, we won’t be getting any financial evaluations of the deal or companies (unless, of course, someone wants to leak it to us… hint hint).
In recent years, financial reports from major camera manufacturers haven’t typically made for overly positive news stories; however, Leica Camera AG is bucking this trend with the announcement of its results for the 2016/2017 financial year ending March 31st. Apparently, the German camera maker has been able to grow revenue by 6 percent, despite the global camera market declining by around 10 percent over the same period.
Leica cites systematic realignment of the company over recent years as the main driver of the positive development.
At the heart of this realignment lies the establishment of an in-house retail distribution division that now controls a network of 90 monobrand stores around the globe. The company says this move has been vital in promoting the brand, and the retail network is set to expand even further in the near future. China is currently Leica’s number one growth market, and 20 to 30 new stores are planned in the country alone.
Other important initiatives include the Leica Akademie brand—which aims to increase brand awareness among younger target groups—and the company’s collaboration with Chinese smartphone maker Huawei on the cameras in their latest high-end devices.
The upward trend has reportedly continued into the 2017/2018 financial year, leading CEO of Leica Camera AG, Matthias Harsch, to predict record-breaking growth for this coming year.
Its important to note, however, that at least part of Leica’s future growth will have nothing to do with photography. In 2017, the company entered into the eyewear segment under the Leica Eyecare brand, which Leica says will “systematically tap into this global market in conjunction with its technology partner Novacel.”
Hot on the heels of yesterday’s Noctilux-M 75mm F1.25 ASPH announcement, Leica has debuted yet another lens this week. This time, it’s a special edition: the Leica APO-Summicron-M 50mm F2 ASPH ‘LHSA’ released in honor of the 50th anniversary of The International Leica Society (LHSA).
What makes this lens special is, basically, that it meshes the styling of the original Summicon 50mm F2 from 1954 with the optics of the current APO-Summicron 50mm F2 ASPH released in May of 2012. Optically, it’s identical to the 2012 lens, but on the outside it features either a black paint or silver chrome finish, a 1950s style lens hood, and red engravings of the distance scale. Other special markings include:
The special serial number is engraved on the aperture ring and is picked out in black on the silver chrome version and is not coloured on the black paint lens. Further engravings are found on the bayonet ring: ‘MADE IN GERMANY’ and the LHSA Logo – both of which are not picked out in colour.
This special edition Leica APO-Summicron-M 50mm F2 ASPH ‘LHSA’ will be limited to just 500 copies—300 in the black finish and 200 in silver—and each of them will come in ‘high quality packaging’ with a certificate of authenticity.
Both colors will be available starting the 4th of December, and according to our contacts at Leica it will retail for $9,595. That’s $1,800 more than the non-special edition lens retails for.
To learn more about this lens, visit the Leica website.
Leica APO-Summicron-M 50mm f/2 ASPH. ‘LHSA’: Special Edition to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of ‘The International Leica Society’ (LHSA)
Wetzlar, 30 November 2017 – For the past 50 years, ‘The International Leica Society’ (LHSA) has dedicated itself to researching the history of Leica and the use of the → continue…
Iconic medium format manufacturer Hasselblad has opened its own online store, allowing users all over the world to skip the third-party vendors and local dealer and buy direct from the manufacturer itself. Following in the footsteps of Hasselblad’s first brick-andmortar stores in Sweden, China, and Japan, the online ‘Hasselblad Store’ will be open to resident of the USA, China, UK, Germany and France.
Currently, the Hasselblad Store is selling both X1D and H6D cameras, as well as a limited number of lenses. Opening offers include 5% off some X1D kits and the body-only price, while H6D buyers can get a free hard case with their purchase. These discounts will last until December 7th.
The company’s hope is that an official online store will broaden the availability of its products:
The launch of the ‘Hasselblad Store’ is one of our core initiatives derived from our strategy that focuses on not only making our products more accessible to photographers seeking hands on experience with the Hasselblad product line-up, but also to inspire fans with great images and stories.
For more information or if you want to purchase a brand new Hassy from the company itself, check out the Hasselblad Store for yourself.
Hasselblad Expands Into E-Commerce with Launch of ‘Hasselblad Store’
Hasselblad’s New Online Store is Now Open To The USA, China, UK, Germany and France
Hasselblad, the leading manufacturer of digital medium format cameras and lenses, is pleased to announce the launch of its new online ‘Hasselblad Store’. The online store will broaden availability of Hasselblad’s iconic high- performance cameras and lenses to photographers in the USA, China, UK, Germany and France.
“The launch of the ‘Hasselblad Store’ is one of our core initiatives derived from our strategy that focuses on not only making our products more accessible to → continue…
Nikon just released a new version of its camera connectivity app SnapBridge. The new SnapBridge Version 2.0—which is available for both iOS and Android devices starting today—has been redesigned with an easier-to-use interface and a bunch of new features like the ability to register up to five devices, and full-manual control of select cameras.
On the UI side, both the screen design and the menu structure have been updated to be ‘more intuitive’ and offer direct access to Help functions. The app has also now been equipped with a ‘power saving mode’ that keeps SnapBridge from draining your smartphone or tablet’s battery when you’re not connected to a camera (i.e. when it’s not in use).
On the feature side, the major addition is full manual control. If you have a compatible camera—according to Nikon, these include the Nikon D850, D500, D7500, and D5600—you’ll now be able to control exposure modes (P/S/A/M), shutter speed, aperture, exposure comp, ISO, and white balance.
Nikon Announces Updated Version of SnapBridge Camera Connectivity App for Seamless Image Transfer and Sharing
Easier to Use, More Intuitive and Simpler Connection with SnapBridge Version 2.0*
MELVILLE, NY (November 29, 2017 at 11:00 P.M. EST) – Today, Nikon is pleased to announce the release of version 2.0 of Nikon SnapBridge, which offers enhanced functionality, stability and ease of use. SnapBridge is the Nikon app that enables users to easily and seamlessly share images and control select Nikon digital camera via Bluetooth** and Wi-Fi® connection with a compatible smart device such as a phone or tablet.
Enhanced Interface and Connectivity
SnapBridge version 2.0 reflects feedback from → continue…
Originally announced back in January and slated for a mid-year release, the HDMI 2.1 specification is just now making its debut on the world stage. Announced by the HDMI forum yesterday, the new specification offers users the ability to deal with 10K video resolution, as well as other data-intensive formats such as Dynamic HDR, uncompressed 8K HDR video, and 4K at 120fps.
A new Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable standard has also been announced that carries up to 48Gbps, and which is said to have ‘exceptionally low electro-magnetic interference’ to avoid conflict with other devices in the vicinity.
HDMI 2.1 is backwards compatible with earlier versions of the standard, as is the new high speed cable. For more information, visit the HDMI forum website.
HDMI FORUM RELEASES VERSION 2.1 OF THE HDMI SPECIFICATION
A Huge Leap Forward Supports Resolutions Up to 10K and Dynamic HDR and Introduces New Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable
SAN JOSE, California – November 28, 2017 – HDMI Forum, Inc. today announced the release of Version 2.1 of the HDMI® Specification which is now available to all HDMI 2.0 adopters. This latest HDMI Specification supports a range of higher video resolutions and refresh rates including 8K60 and 4K120, and resolutions up to 10K. Dynamic HDR formats are also supported, and bandwidth capability is increased up to 48Gbps.
Supporting the 48Gbps bandwidth is the new Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable. The cable ensures high-bandwidth dependent features are delivered including uncompressed 8K video with HDR. It features exceptionally low EMI (electro-magnetic interference) which reduces interference with nearby wireless devices. The cable is backwards compatible and can be used with the existing installed base of HDMI devices.
Version 2.1 of the HDMI Specification is backward compatible with earlier versions of → continue…
Sony has announced that it will introduce the CFast memory card format to its professional range in the first quarter of next year, and odd and exciting move when you consider that CFast 2.0 competes directly with the XQD card format Sony helped pioneer.
The series will launch with three memory cards that boast maximum read and write speeds of 530MB/s and 510MB/s, respectively. These G-series cards will be aimed at cinematographers and those shooting high bit-rate video, as well as stills photographers working with high frame rate cameras like the Canon 1DX Mark II.
As mentioned above, the cards boast a maximum write speed of 510MB/s, but more importantly they also guarantee a minimum sustained write speed of 130MB/s under the Video Performance Guarantee. This helps to ensure cards do not force cameras to stop recording during lengthy sequences.
And since pros need their cards to be sturdy as well as fast, Sony says the new CFast cards have been carefully tested for drop, vibration, shock resistance and rigidity, and states that they work in a wide range of temperatures and are highly resistant to static.
The cards will be available in 32GB, 64GB and 128GB capacities for $120, $200, and $350, respectively. For more information, read the full release below or visit the Sony website.
Sony completes Pro memory card line-up with new CFast range
November 28, 2017 – Sony is launching a range of high performance CFast memory cards, which are designed to meet the needs of professional photographers and videographers. The G Series CFast 2.0 memory cards will be available in 32GB (CAT-G32), 64GB (CAT-G64) and 128GB (CAT-G128) capacities, responding to the ever increasing capabilities of high-end DSLR and 4K cinema-grade broadcast cameras. The cards offer lightning-fast write speeds of → continue…
Photo messaging has been around for a long time, but as smartphone cameras get better and better, this form of ‘visual communication’ is only becoming more common. That’s why, earlier today, Facebook announced a major update to Facebook Messenger that doubles the resolution of the photos you send from 2K to 4K—or, more specifically, to a max of 4096 x 4096 pixels.
“We heard that people want to send and receive high resolution photos in Messenger,” reads the release from Facebook, “and considering people send more than 17 billion photos through Messenger every month, we’re making your conversations richer, sharper, and better than ever.”
And just in case you’re wondering: this resolution bump should not affect speed. According to Facebook, “your photos will also be sent just as quickly before, even at this new, higher resolution.”
Here are a few before and after samples that show what doubling the resolution from the previous 2K looks like IRL.
*The images on the left were reproduced to reflect the previous default resolution at 2K. The images on the right reflect the new default resolution at 4K
To take advantage of the new feature yourself, update your FB Messenger app to the latest version and every photo you send should automatically send at up to 4096 x 4096 pixels.
For now, the feature is limited to iPhone and Android users in the US, Canada, France, Australia, the UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, and South Korea. Additional countries will be added in the ‘coming weeks.’
Making Visual Messaging Even Better – Introducing High Resolution Photos in Messenger
By Sean Kelly & Hagen Green, Product Managers, Messenger
The way people message today is no longer limited by just text; visual messaging as our new universal language is much more emotional and expressive. Whether you’re catching → continue…