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June 30, 2016
Posted in news

Metabones releases new firmware update to address customers critic

metabones

Metabones did listen to the customer feedback after the latest firmware release form June 23. And they just released a new firmware for the Canon EF to E-mount Smart adapters and Speed Boosters: Benefits and improvements: (more detail may refer to press release below)

  • You have spoken and we have listened. “Green” is the default mode again.
  • “Advanced” mode AF-C improvements.
  • Fixed manual focus distance display with focus-by-wire lenses (e.g. 85/1.2L, STM lenses).

Vancouver, Canada, June 30, 2016: Metabones® thrives on constructive criticism by the community and the press, and customer feedback was the driving force behind the fastest phase-detect autofocus (PDAF) across the widest selection of EF-Mount lenses on the Sony phase-detect trio (A7 Mark II, A7R Mark II and A6300) through a series of incremental firmware improvements last year, a feat that still held just as true with the release of “native” AF firmware last week. This accomplishment was the cornerstone of Metabones’ “Ubiquitously Fast Autofocus” vision, providing the broadest range of mirrorless cameras with fast still-photo single-AF when using adapted EF-mount digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) lenses. It began with fast AF on Panasonic launched in tandem with the 0.71x EF-MFT Speed Booster ULTRA last July, followed by fast AF on the Sony phase-detect trio and Olympus cameras last year. An EF lens on A7 Mark II, A7R Mark II or A6300 focused so quickly that it was virtually indistinguishable from a genuine Canon DSLR under some use-case scenarios. Nevertheless, Sony’s contrast-detect AF cameras such as A7S Mark II and early phase-detect cameras such as A6000 still took seconds to lock using an EF lens, and that remained the final frontier to conquer before we could lay claim to be ubiquitously fast. With Metabones “native” AF firmware, these other cameras got an order-of-magnitude boost in AF performance. “Native” AF was also an order-of-magnitude faster than Sony A-mount lenses on Sony LA-EA3 adapter on these non-phase-detect and early phase-detect Sony cameras. With the “native” AF firmware release, “Ubiquitously Fast Autofocus” was fait accompli and our vision had become reality.

“Native” was an informal term referring to a different version of the lens communication protocol which unlocked extra features such as direct manual focus (DMF), Eye-AF (A7 series), fast contrast-detect AF (faster for all Sony cameras except the phase-detect trio), continuous video AF, zoom position and focus distance display. Metabones did not make any representation of further performance improvement for the Sony phase-detect trio of cameras from “native” AF. Quite on the contrary, our previous announcement stated that “native” AF might have lower performance than the original “Green” mode phase-detect AF, which had been the fastest since last year. There was no performance regression in the sense that the user could configure the adapter to have the old behaviour (“Green” mode) back with a simple procedure. Hindsight being 20/20, switching the default mode from “Green” to “Advanced” was a mistake, and we apologize to affected A7 Mark II, A7R Mark II and A6300 owners who were inconvenienced by this change. Based on your input, we are releasing a new Metabones App 2.4 (E-mount v52) with the default mode reverted to “Green” again. V52 cannot be safer to install because no new features are activated and there are no changes in operation without you first opting in. Users of Sony’s contrast-detect AF and early phase-detect AF cameras are advised to configure your adapter to “Advanced” mode using the procedure in the User Manual section of our web site (http://metabones.com/article/of/green-power-save-mode) to get a significant AF performance improvement. In addition, we have made “native” AF-C slightly better and added C-AF support for Olympus OM-D E-M1, although an AF-C performance bottleneck remains in the lens’ inability to execute a series of fine maneuvers with minimal latency as commanded by the camera body. Metabones App 2.4 is available immediately for download from Metabones’ web site. We will continue to listen to your feedback as we have always been, because your input sets the direction of our future development efforts on “native” AF technology using adapted DSLR lenses.

Downloads links:
Firmware update for EF-E Smart Adapter MARK IV and EF-E Speed Booster ULTRA (Windows)
Firmware update for EF-E Smart Adapter MARK IV and EF-E Speed Booster ULTRA (Mac)
Firmware update for EF-M43 (Windows)
Firmware update for EF-M43 (Mac)

 

June 30, 2016
Posted in news

Sony camera business report: It’s number one in mirrorless. Future focus on resolution, sensivity and speed increase.

Sonycamerareport

Sony released the full financial report for the Imaging Product Segment (PDF file here). For the first time they give us a clue about the negative impact of the Kumamoto earthquake. So let’s get to the most important points:

  1. The main goal in the consumer market is to “Strengthen “camera brand” and maintain a high level of profitability centered on Interchangeable Lens Camera (ILC)“. As you can see from the slide above the focus is on higher resolution, sensivity and speed cameras. And of course expanding the “a-mount system”. But be aware that for Sony “a-mount” means Alpha-mount which is both A and E-mount (weird marketing!)
  2. The full 2016 year forecast for the whole Imaging Segment has been revised down. Sales are down from to 530 bln YEN (previous estimation was 630 bln YEN). While operating income is down to  16bln yen (previous estimation was 61 bln YEN).  To put in into numbers. The earthquake did cost 100bln YEN (16% off the overall sales).
  3. Sony predicts that during fiscal year 2017 sales will be 630-680 bln YEN and operating income around 8-10% of the sales.
  4. Sony predicts camera sales in 2016 to be comparable to the 2015 sales
  5. Sony predicts lens sales to grewth this year compared to 2015.
  6. Sony owns 14% of the camera market and is currently number one in the mirrorless and premium fixed lens market

Sonyc2

Sonyc3

Overall it looks like that due the Kumamoto earthquake damage 2016 will be a “Transition year”. Which means no growth is expected and probably no many new camera models will be on sale this year (some may be announced in late 2016 but shipment will start in 2017).

The full company reports can be found at http://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/IR/calendar/presen/irday/irday_160629.html

June 29, 2016
Posted in news

Trimagon 95mm f/2.6 E-mount lens from Meyer Optik Görlitz is shipping soon for €1,699

Trimagon_95mm

Meyer Optik (Click here) released the new Trimagon 95mm f/2.6 E-mount lens. It’s going to ship the coming weeks for €1,699 ($1,699). Image smaples can be downloaded on that Dropbox link. And this is the full press text:

Meyer-Optik Releases New Professional Portrait Lens Trimagon f2.6/95

Unique Coating and Design of Glass Lenses Provide Professional Photographers Sharp Artistic Portraits
Atlanta, GA – June 30, 2016 — Meyer-Optik Goerlitz announced today the availability of its new portrait lens, the Trimagon f2.6/95, in the United States and worldwide.Aimed at professional photographers, the Trimagon 95 uses a unique coating and design that delivers sharp images with minimal reflections to preserve skin tone. The triplet architecture 15-blade design adds Meyer Optik’s trademark artistic bokeh to Trimagon 95 images.

“While the Trioplan 100 restored Meyer-Optik’s long lens to the artistic photography market, the Trimagon 95 provides professionals a dynamic modern lens that delivers extraordinary portraits and natural-looking photographs,” said Dr. Stefan Immes, CEO, Meyer-Optik Goerlitz.  “The remarkable nature of the lens is its rendering of secondary light, specifically providing realistic reflections of the finest structures.”

A unique coating on the Trimagon f2.6/95 reduces unnecessary light flares and overexposed reflections. The Trimagon f2.6/95 features high-index glass from Schott or O’Hara, providing excellent sharpness. The new portrait lens is suitable for resolutions from 60 million pixels and even more.

As with all Meyer-Optik lenses, the Trimagon f2.6/95 is 100% handmade in Germany. All Trimagon f2.6/95 lenses feature the best components and manufacturing processes, and undergo a rigorous inspection process with strict tolerance limits.  The end result is a superior high-end lens for discerning photographers.

“The bokeh is exquisite and gives images a distinctive look,” said professional photographer and author Alexander Henry. “The sharpness is impressive and the lens significantly reduces the amount of post-production required.”

The technical specifications of the Meyer-Optik Trioplan f2.6/95 include:

Technical information:
Light intensity and focal length: f2.6-22; 95mm
Optical design: 3 elements in 3 assembly units
Angle of view: 25°
Filter diameter: 52mm

Specifications:
Optical assembly as a classic triplet | 3 lenses/3 units
Iris diaphragm with 15 uniquely calculated steel aperture blades with special anti-reflection coating
Compatible with:
Canon
Nikon
Fuji X
Sony-E
MFT
Leica M*

The Trimagon f2.6/95 is available for purchase at USD$1,699. Orders are currently being taken on the Meyer-Optik website.  The lens was initially released only in Germany.

* Rangefinder not supported.

About Meyer-Optik-Görlitz  
A brand with a proud tradition and reputation for exceptional products, Meyer-Optik-Görlitz started manufacturing innovative, high-quality lenses in Germany in 1896.  In 2014, net SE revived the traditional spirit of the lenses once known throughout the world and started developing new lenses under the Meyer-Optik-Görlitz brand in Germany. Manufacturing handmade lenses started in 2015 with first generation prototypes.  Serial production began in early 2016.
In May 2015, net SE (http://www.netag.de) created a new subsidiary, Meyer-Optik USA Inc. headquartered in Atlanta, GA. Meyer-Optik USA is online at http://www.meyer-optik-goerlitz.com.

June 29, 2016
Posted in news

Next bad news: Kumamoto sensor factory will be fully operational in August only!

Kumamoto

For the third time this week we got a bad news from Sony (Links to bad news one and bad news two):

Today Sony CEO Hirai said that the Sony Kumamoto sensor factory will gain the 100% full production capability in August only (via DC.watch). This means the factory had a stop (or partial stop) of over 4 months. This surely will affect the original camera release roadmap. Sony A5300, new RX cameras, new A7 cameras and the A9 may be released much later than planed by Sony.

Sony also released the full Corporate Strategy Meeting FY2016 press text. There is no detailed info about the digital camera business. The only info is the changed forecast. Sony expects less sales in the imaging products segment but at the same time the operating income margin will increase. Here are the full data:

Sony-forecast

While I expect Sony to still announce some exciting products at Photokina it may will take til early 2017 before the new cameras will ship…

June 29, 2016
Posted in news

Capture One 9.2 released. Many new features and new FE lens support

Capture One Pro 9.2 got released. All info and download here: phaseone.com/en/Download.aspx

ONE

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