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January 3, 2016
Posted in reviews

Phase One XF 100MP uses similar A7rII sensor tech. First short image test impressions.

Today Phase One has announced the XF 101 megapixel back. The CMOS sensor was developed by Sony and uses a similar Sony A7RII sensor design. Phase One says this is a “Full Frame” sensor. What they mean is that it has the real field-of view size of 53.7 x 40.4mm. It means unlike previous Phase One backs there is no crop.

Original Phase One 101 MP file (left) and 4.5 stop overexposure (right). Image courtesy by Ori Cohen

Our reader Ori Cohen made a short test with the files available for download at Phase One’s website:

“The XF 100MP boasts at being the “ultimate camera system”, powered by the world’s first 100MP sony sensor. Phase One generously gave us a few TIF sample files to inspect, and they are simply stunning. This much detail is every photographer’s dream, but it comes at a high cost of not just money, but also processing power. My system can handle huge files, but editing a 500MB TIF demands more than an I7 and 32GB of memory. I was excited to see that one of the files was under-exposed. The image in question is the dramatic mountain that was shot at ISO100, and its histogram is leaning to the left, with the help of LR I recovered the shadows and blacks in order to see if there was any noise in the shadows. In fact, the majority of the image’s pixels are dark blue\gray. Recovery of the shadows and blacks to 100% did not show any noisy pixels. In a second attempt to force the noise to appear, I pushed the “exposure” slider by +4.5 stops, and there was still no noise! obviously the highlights and whites were blown, but with a small amount of highlights and whites recovery they stayed within the histogram. The only reason I did not add +5 FULL stops of exposure was because the highlights and whites recovery sliders’ range is too narrow for this 16 bit file and can’t push the over exposed pixels to the left of the histogram. Although this observation was done at the optimal ISO, as a comparison I could not recover a similarly under-exposed A99 RAW file without seeing noise at ISO 100. I believe that this camera can recover shadows by more than 4.5 stops without showing noise artifacts, but in order to do that Adobe needs to give us the ability to dial in more than 5 stops in each direction, and extend the shadow/darks/highlights/whites recovery range.”

January 3, 2016
Posted in reviews

Tamron SP 15-30mm gets DxOmarked: Is the best bang for the buck!


DxOmark (Click here) tested the Tamron 15-30mm SP lens. They used the F-mount version on the D810 which uses the same A7r sensor. The A-mount lens can be ordered at BHphoto (Click here) and at Adorama (Click here). So how good is the lens? DxO writes:

All lenses are a compromise, but the Tamron has a good balance, with high central sharpness wide-open and sharpness improving across the frame on stopping down, and with generally good control of chromatic aberration. On the downside, it has some slight field curvature at 30mm and it has quite high levels of both barrel and pincushion distortion that are more noticeable than the Nikkor equivalents.
However, at least the Tamron doesn’t exhibit complex distortion, so it should be relatively easy to correct with software. In physical terms, the lens is large and heavy and doesn’t cover the popular 35mm focal length, but as a 24-47mm equivalent on an APS-C-format DSLR, it remains a versatile offering. Combined with its good performance and the lure of built-in stabilization, at around $1,200 it looks very tempting.

DxOmark (Click here) also tested the Sony DT 16-50mm F2.8 SSM lens:

Although the Sony has good center sharpness throughout much of the range, the exception is at 50mm, where field curvature can be problematic and stopping down doesn’t help. It also has quite noticeable chromatic aberration at the edges of the frame at 16mm and when stopped-down mid-range (24-35mm), making it look like a somewhat problematic lens. On balance, however, after taking the high speed aperture, stabilization, sonic type motor and price into account, it remains an attractive option for Sony users. But if brand loyalty isn’t a concern, potential buyers could look at the offerings from Sigma or Tamron.

January 1, 2016
Posted in reviews

Sony A7sII versus ….Human Eye!

SonyAlphaForum member Boji skipped the usual camera comparison. He did that Sony A7s II vs Human Eye low light test!

A7sII store links: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, eBay


December 28, 2015
Posted in reviews

First SLR Magic 50mm f/1.1 review (new version) on Cinema5D

Image courtesy: Cinema5d

The new SLR Magic 50mm f/1.1 is now shipping at Adorama, BHphoto and on eBay. And as you know SLR Magic improved the performance of the lens right before the first shipment. Cinema5D published the only review of the new lens and tells us what has been improved:

One of the problems were the very soft left side corners of the lens when the aperture was wide open. (The right side looked sharper). As you can judge from the above photo (crops from the upper left hand corner of the image produced by the lenses), this is no longer the case. The optical performance of the SLR Magic Cine 50mm f/1.1 was significantly improved and now is matching the right hand side of the lens.

Well done SLR Magic!

UPDATE: Judd Weiss early thoughts on the new SLR Magic 50mm f1.1 E-mount can be read on his Facebook page!

December 27, 2015
Posted in reviews

New video demo of the brand new Nikon F to Sony E-mount autofocus adapter (by Steel Chen)

Steel Chen is working hard to further improve the new Nikon F to Sony E-mount autofocus adapter. As a reminder: This is not the Commlite adapter! It’s a new project which seems to work much better than the Commlite version.

Steel just sent me the link to his latest video shot on the A7rII with the Nikkor 70-200 G I lens. It really looks very promising. As usual feel free to add questions on the comment section. Steel will answer all your questions!

Something else for EU readers:
A77II Gold Box at
A51000 Gold Box at

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