Sony halted and evacuated six factories in northeastern Japan

I am really shocked by what is happening in Japan. I wish things are less worse than the images on TV are showing us. All Japanese readers do have my solidarity.

A Sony related news (via Bloomberg):
Sony halted and evacuated six factories in northeastern Japan, said Yasuhiro Okada, a spokesman at the Tokyo-based company. He said the company was assessing the impact of power outages and damage to its facilities in the region, which make Blu-ray discs, magnetic heads and batteries.

Sony Translucent books roundup

A SonyAlphaRumors reader sent me a link to the latest book announcement of Gary Friedman: “The Complete Guide to Sony’s Alpha 33 and 55 SLT Cameras“. I checked all Amazon stores to see if there are other interesting books about the translucent cameras:

Amazon US:
Sony Alpha 55 by Lambert M. Tennoe, Mariam T. Henssonow, Susan F. Surhone (Click here)
David Busch’s Sony Alpha SLT-A55/A33 Guide to Digital Photography (Click here).

Amazon Canada:
Sony Alpha 55 by Lambert M. Tennoe, Mariam T. Henssonow, Susan F. Surhone (Click here)
David Busch’s Sony Alpha SLT-A55/A33 Guide to Digital Photography (Click here).

Amazon UK:
Sony Alpha 55 by Lambert M. Tennoe, Mariam T. Henssonow, Susan F. Surhone (Click here)
David Busch’s Sony Alpha SLT-A55/A33 Guide to Digital Photography (Click here).

Amazon Germany:
Sony Alpha 55 by Lambert M. Tennoe, Mariam T. Henssonow, Susan F. Surhone (Click here)
Digital ProLine: Praxisbuch Sony Alpha DSLRs (Click here)

Amazon Italy:
Sony Alpha 55 by Lambert M. Tennoe, Mariam T. Henssonow, Susan F. Surhone (Click here)

Poll: Should Sony use the DNG raw format?

A SonyAlphaRumors reader sent me an interesting question:

With all these different RAW formats. Would it not be nice to have a standard. I was wondering if Alpha Rumors could put a vote or start a campaign to get Sony to switch to Adobe’s DNG format. It would be nice to see what others think about making a standard RAW format.“. Hmmm, let us know what you think and if you really care about DNG. Before you vote you should read the following info (Source: Wikipedia):

1) Objectives of the DNG format
* Digital image preservation (sometimes known as “archiving”): to be suitable for the purpose of preserving digital images as an authentic resource for future generations.
* Easy and/or comprehensive exploitation by software developers: to enable software to be developed without the need for reverse engineering; and to avoid the need for frequent software upgrades and re-releases to cater for new cameras.
* In-camera use by camera manufacturers: to be suitable for many camera manufacturers to use as a native or optional raw image format in many cameras.
* Multi-vendor interoperability: to be suitable for workflows where different hardware and software components share raw image files and/or transmit and receive them.

2) Characteristics
* Freely-available specification
* Format based on open specifications and/or standards: DNG is compatible with TIFF/EP, and various open formats and/or standards are used, including Exif metadata, XMP metadata, IPTC metadata, CIE XYZ coordinates, ICC profiles, and JPEG.
* Self-contained file format: a DNG file contains the data (raw image data and metadata) needed to render an image without needing additional knowledge of the characteristics of the camera.
* It has a version scheme built into it that allows the DNG specification, DNG writers, and DNG readers, to evolve at their own paces.
* Freely-available source-code-based software development kit (SDK).
* Documented to have no known intellectual property encumbrances or license requirements: there is both a “Digital Negative (DNG) Specification Patent License” which says that anyone can exploit DNG, and a statement that there are no known intellectual property encumbrances or license requirements for DNG.

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New Samyang 35mm f/1.4 for Sony!

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Samyang announced a new 35mm f/1.4 manual lens that will also be available for Alpha-mount. The lens should be available this month for 389 Euro. The lens is very interesting because 1) it is a full frame lens 2) because Samyang is known for his high quality lenses!

You don’t believe the Samyang is a good lens? Photozone tested two lenses on a Canon full frame camera. The Samyang 14mm f/2.8 IF ED (Click here to read the review) and the Samyang 85mm f/1.4 Aspherical (Click here to read the review). The only thing you miss on those lenses is autofocus. If you don’t want to spend $1,369.00 for the Sony 35mm f/1.4 (Click here to see that lens on Amazon) the Samyang could be an interesting alternative.

All Samyang lenses can be found on eBay  under seven different brand names (Click on it to see all lenses from the specific brand):

[shoplink 5759]Samyang[/shoplink] [shoplink 5755]Walimex[/shoplink] [shoplink 5756]Rokinon[/shoplink]  (Also availbale on
[shoplink 5757]Opteka[/shoplink] [shoplink 5758]Falcon[/shoplink] [shoplink 5760]Vivitar[/shoplink] [shoplink 5761]Bower[/shoplink]

A must read for every SonyAlphaRumors reader: “Everything you need to know about our rumors!”

I saw that quite a few readers didn’t understand how rumors do work on SAR. A few also started to discredit us. That’s why I wanted to explain once again how this websites works and how YOU SHOULD READ rumors. Please read it very carefully ok?

1) Rumor classification! Rumors rated with SR1 are almost certainly fake. SR2=from new sources (very low chance this could be true). SR3=rumors from new sources or external websites that do have a 50% chance to be true. The difference between SR2 and SR3 is that in SR3 case I did receive the same rumor from a higher number of new or external sources. SR4= rumor from a trusted source. SR5=rumor confirmed by many trusted sources.

2) One of SAR goals is to collect rumors from external websites too! In that case we don’t have a chance to verify their sources. But by keeping track of the rumors from those websites we can learn if they are reliable or not. Example: A month ago a well known forum administrator said that the A77 would be announced in April. We re-posted the rumor reminding all of you that we can’t confirm that rumor and that you should take it with a grain of salt. The day after trusted sources contacted us to say that the rumor was untrue and we posted the new message on SAR. Two days ago I reminded you that there will  be no A77 and some commented that I was WRONG again because I said that it would come in April. As you see quite a few people didn’t understand what are the rumors from our sources and what are the rumors from external sources. So please. Don’t make SAR accountable for wrong rumors from external websites or low rated rumors from new sources!

3) SR1-SR2-SR3 rumors are form external or new sources!
I often do receive rumors from new sources. I usually do post that rumors only if a) other new sources told me similar things b) if I need to verify it with trusted sources.
The only way for me to verify if rumors from new sources are correct is to post them on SAR (with low value only!). That’s the only way our anonymous trusted sources can read it and confirm or deny the rumor. I do not have the mail adress from trusted sources and they usually contact me using the contact form on the right sidebar. So the only way for me to check if rumors are true or untrue is to post them! Example: I received two messages from two new sources that do say they are testing the A77. I did post that rumor two days ago on SAR with low SR2 value. Some commenter said that this was certainly fake, that I am cheating them and so on. Good for you that trusted sources did contact me to confirm that YES there are people testing those cameras. And I also did receive some more info about the A77 I will post soon on SAR. So SR2-SR3 rumors can be useful for me and you to get more news and to get closer to the real specs of a camera or lens!

The message should be clear now. SR4 and SR5 rumors are the ones you have to take into account to see if SonyAlphaRumors is a reliable rumor website or not. Of course also SR4 and SR5 rumors could be wrong, because also trusted sources can receive partial incorrect info and also because Sony itself often changes roadmap and specs. Please remind people that low rated rumors are here to help me to understand what new/external sources is reliable or not. Help me to remind them that they should look at SR4 and SR5 rumors only if they want to get a more realistic view about Sony strategy.

5) Future rumors regarding the A77. We were the first to tell you with SR5 value that the camera would be announced in mid 2011, and that it will have a 24 Megapixel sensor. Keep that in mind when the A77 will be finally here. We were also the first to tell you that the new NEX camera will be announced next month (in April). Those are the REAL good rumors!
6) The reason why you are here on SonyAlphaRumors is that we did post incredible good rumors in the past when no one else ever suspected that Sony would make Translucent cameras or that the new mirrorless cameras would be named “NEX”. Here is a list to some of our biggest rumors (very small selection):
On December 2009 almost a year before the A33/A55 camera release we were the first to publish the”translucent” rumor! (Click here to read that article)
On february 10 2010 we were the first to unveil the NEX specs and name! (Click here to read that article).
We were the first to post pictures of the NEX cameras two weeks before their announcement (Click here ot read that article).
We were the first to tell you that the A55 and A33 would be announced before Photokina (Click here to read that)

At the end: I am not a professional blogger, I even don’t speak English (My native languages are german and italian) and I work on SAR early int he morning before I go to work and late at night when I am back at home. I do this because I enjoy it and because I met a lot of interesting people through this website. I don’t get paid by big companies, I cover all costs with your help (when you buy stuff through the shop links). This is not a professional website and never will become it. But this will allow me to remain a “free writer” that writes on a bit chaotic platform meant for all real Sony fans ;)

If there is anything else you need to know from me feel free to comment this post. I will answer you. Thanks!


Sony doing very well in Japan! (+Sony HX100v, HX9v, WX10 Hands-On)

MirrorlessRumors posted a summary of the worldwide digital market trends and shares. The most interesting data are the market shares in Japan (sales shares for the first 9 months 2010):

Compact camera is lead by Canon 19.0%, followed by Casio 15.2% and Panasonic 13.9%
DSLR cameras is lead by Canon 32.0% followed by Nikon 29.4% and on third place we have Sony 13.1%.
Mirrorless is lead by Panasonic 38.7% followed by Sony 32.2% and Olympus 29.1%

Sony is Number three in the DSLR market and Number two in the new Mirrorlessmarket. That’s a huge success if you consider that in Japane 40% of all sold system cameras are Mirrorless!

P.S: Photographyblog posted a Sony HX100v, HX9v, WX10 Hands-On.