April 23, 2015
Posted in news

Sony announces two new “updated” A-mount lenses!

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Bildschirmfoto 2015-04-23 um 16.34.41
Images via ePhotozine!

Surprise! Today Sony announced the release of the two new “updated” A-mount lenses! They now have 4x faster Tracking AF, improved image quality and ghost reduction. Below you can read the press text (via ePhotozine). Preorder links:
Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 ZA SSM II at BHphoto (Click here) and at Adorama (Click here).
Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA SSM II at BHphoto (Click here) and at Adorama (Click here).

Sony has enhanced its line-up of α A-mount interchangeable lenses with two enhanced versions of its full-frame ZEISS Vario-Sonnar large-aperture standard zoom and wide-angle zoom lenses.

Photo professionals and discerning enthusiasts will welcome the addition of the Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM II (SAL2470Z2) standard zoom and Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM II (SAL1635Z2) wide angle zoom, both delivering significant improvements in image quality, ghost reduction and AF performance, together with a new dust and moisture- resistant design.

The SAL2470Z2 and SAL1635Z2 are ideal partners for Sony’s A-mount family of interchangeable lens cameras, including the highly acclaimed α99 and α77 II. With the addition of an optional mount adaptor they’re also compatible with E-mount cameras such as the α7 series.

Uncompromising image quality is a hallmark of every ZEISS Vario-Sonnar lens. It’s taken to new levels with the SAL2470Z2 and SAL1635Z2 that feature a ZEISS T* coating on optical surfaces that achieves even greater reduction in ghosting, especially with tricky against-the-light shots.

Autofocus performance of the SSM (Super Sonic wave Motor) system in both lenses has also been uprated significantly. Faster, more powerful processing in the lens LSI increases AF accuracy, delivering approximately 4x the subject tracking speed of each lens’s predecessor – a perfect partner to the 4D Focus system in the α77 II – making it ideal for shots of fast-moving action subjects like wildlife, sports and active children.

Both models also feature a new dust and moisture-resistant design that makes the SAL2470Z2 and SAL1635Z2 even more appealing options for challenging outdoor assignments.

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Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM II

Covering a popular 24-70mm range of focal lengths, this high-performance full-frame zoom delivers imaging quality you’d expect from a prime lens.

From everyday snapshots to handheld portraits, landscapes and wildlife, you’ll enjoy legendary ZEISS® sharpness and contrast at all focal lengths. With a bright constant F2.8 maximum aperture right across the zoom range, the SAL2470Z2 is a dependable partner for low-light portraits, dim interiors and night-time scenes.

Aspherical and ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements are combined in a precision optical design that’s highly effective at suppressing aberration. You’ll appreciate the difference with high contrast and faithful reproduction of delicate gradations.

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Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM II

This large aperture, wide angle zoom is equally capable of capturing spectacular scenery or bustling street scenes. With a bright F2.8 maximum aperture at all zoom settings, it’s also ideal for handheld shooting at twilight or in dimly-lit interiors.

The precision optical design features aspherical lens elements that minimise distortion. In addition, ED (Extra-low Dispersion) and Super ED glass elements provide superior contrast, resolution, and colour fidelity.

The new SAL2470Z2 and SAL1635Z2 α A-mount ZEISS lenses from Sony are available to pre-order now.

Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 ZA SSM II at BHphoto (Click here) and at Adorama (Click here).
Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 ZA SSM II at BHphoto (Click here) and at Adorama (Click here).

April 23, 2015
Posted in news

Sony London press event: Sony “introduces” the 30x compact cameras to the European press and two A-mount lenses.

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Todays Sony press event in London only showed the two new 30x zoom cameras (X90V and the WX500) to European Journalists. So these were the two “new” cameras Sony “introduced” today. I am surprised they gathered all those journalists for such a small (non-)announcement. UPDATE: Sony just announced two new A-mount lenses. Hurray! :)

And as rumored previously the new E-mount cameras will be announced around mid-May. And we can expect the new RX cameras to come along that announcement too. I am 99% sure that announcement is not a “Bogus” like we had today.

What to expect to be announced by Sony in 2-3 weeks:
A7rII, A6100 and Rx100m4. Yet unconfirmed is the release of a RX1X (don’t know what exactly that is yet).

Personal note: I know some readers are upset with me. But Sony did indeed invite plenty of journalist to have a touch and try session with two “new” cameras. It was legit to hope to see some really new camera announced today just like it was last year. So please don’t blame me if Sony invited all those people for nothing :(
And please keep in mind that the new A7, A6xxx and RX cameras will be announced soon anyway!!! Today mis-announcement doesn’t invalidate them :)

April 23, 2015
Posted in news

New Pentax K-3 II has Sony 24MP sensor and Pixel Shift Resolution mode

PentaxkIII

Pentax announced a new K-3II camera featuring the Sony 24MP sensor inside. And they also add one feature I hope Sony will add on the current A7II and all future on sensor stabilized Sony cameras: Pixel Shift Resolution mode. Pentax writes:

The K-3 II is the first camera in the PENTAX line to incorporate Pixel Shift Resolution® for capturing still life subjects with ultra-high resolving power. Pixel shift technology uses the camera’s in-body Shake Reduction mechanism to move the image sensor at single pixel increments, capture 4 separate images, which are subsequently combined into a single high definition image. Benefits include higher resolving power, reduced false color and improved overall image quality of non-moving subjects. 

Please Sony…copy such good features! :)

April 23, 2015
Posted in reviews

Sony A77II gets tested at Dpreview.

Dpreview (Click here) posted the full Sony A77II review. The camera earned the Silver Award for the following reason:

The Sony a77 II is the perfect choice for those seeking pro-grade shooting and AF speeds for well-under pro-grade prices. No moving mirror means the a77 II can successfully use continuous AF during both 12fps bursts and video capture, a major advantage over many of its DSLR competitors. And in-body image stabilization helps to keep both stills and video a bit more stable than the competition. Subject tracking, one of the a77 II’s most anticipated features, is unfortunately, not very reliable. And high ISO images have a tendency to be fairly noisy. Build quality and ergonomics, however, are very good. Overall, the a77 II offers a lot of camera, for a very reasonable price.

The A77II got announced exactly one year ago at the Sony World Photography Award. And today Sony will indeed announce new cameras again…but no A-mount today?

April 23, 2015
Posted in rumors

Sony press event at around 14.00 London time. Next press event in May.

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Sony is set to announce new RX, A7 and A6000 cameras series between now and June.

Just to keep you up to date: Today Sony has a press event and so far the only certain news is that they will show two cameras and that there will be no A-mount cameras. And another press event for E-mount is scheduled for May. So what we can expect today at around 14:00 London time is:

1) Sony just introduces the two 30x compact cameras in Europe (X90V and the WX500).
2) Sony announces new RX cameras.
3) Sony announces some other surprise too.

So far I am almost certain the new A7rII and A6100 cameras will be announced in 2-3 weeks around mid May. I guess either option 1 or 2 will happen today. Option 1 would be really a joke but hey…it’s Sony :)

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