October 2016

October 31

Nikon 105mm f/1.4E Lens Review. The 105mm f/1.4E is something entirely new, which we don’t see much any more with lenses. It’s the fastest 105mm lens available (previously Nikon had a 105mm f/2D, which was as fast as you’d find in this focal length). Getting an extra stop with a new lens is always intriguing. The question everyone had was whether this also meant giving up sharpness (foreshadowing: no).  Article on dslrbodies.comOctober 27

Olympus Goes Pro. Olympus has announced a new service for professional photographers that will cost US$99 a year, Olympus Pro Advantage. The service includes expedited repairs with free overnight shipping both ways, two free clean and check services, a six month warranty extension on camera bodies, a 15% discount on out-of-warranty repairs, and loaner equipment if repairs will take more than three days. Article on sansmirror.com

October 26

Making Sense of the Interviews. Photokina tends to generate a lot of interview pieces, as it’s one of the few times where the mainstream photographic media gets access to Japanese camera company executives (short of traveling to Tokyo, of course). We’ve had a long string of such interview articles and videos appearing in the last month (see bottom). Article on dslrbodies.com

Nikon Instant Rebates. With instant rebates here are the new prices at Nikon currently in effect in the US. Article on dslrbodies.com

October 25

Thom’s Writes More Six Word Reviews. A few of you tell me I write too much or are too long-winded in my descriptions of products. So every now and then I take a stab at writing concise, pointed, six-word reviews. And yes, a bit snarky. Here’s the latest edition. Article on dslrbodies.com

October 19

Nikon Introduces Two Pro Lenses. Nikon today introduced the long-expected 19mm f/4E ED PC and 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR lenses. Both have been eagerly anticipated by FX shooters, a bit less so by DX owners. Article on dslrbodies.com70-200mm f/2.8E data page19mm f/4E data page.

October 17

Nikon’s Outstanding D500 Fix List. Here we are about six months after the D500’s first shipments, and we’ve had two very small firmware updates. Personally, I don’t think those firmware updates address the things I originally saw or still currently see as issues with the D500 firmware. Article on dslrbodies.com

Summer is Coming. The 2020 Summer Olympics are in Tokyo. Both Canon and Nikon would be expected to bring out completely new generation pro bodies just prior to that, probably in early 2020 so that there’s time to get used to them before the games begin. What the heck are those cameras going to be? Article on dslrbodies.com

More Buzzing About Missing Lenses. I’ve commented before about how I believe that Canon and Nikon are missing key components in their lens sets, particularly for the DX/APS models (buzz, buzz). Technically, they’re not the only ones making that mistake; Sony currently does the same thing with the E-mount (as opposed to the FE-mount). Article on dslrbodies.com

Nikon D3400 Camera Review. When the D3400 was announced in August 2016 a big swell of Nikon faithful complaints immediately welled: most were calling it a de-contented D3300. Why? Because of the perception—wrong or right—that the D3400 was taking features away from the previous model. Review on dslrbodies.com

Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G DX VR AF-P Lens Review The new AF-P lenses at the low end of the consumer DX lineup use a very different approach to focus motors. The AF-P lenses have stepper motors in them that are unlike the previous AF-S lens motors, which use a piezoelectric or ultrasonic wave motor. The good news is that these new stepper motors are fast and quiet. The bad news is that only a few cameras are compatible with them. Review on dslrbodies.com

Zeiss Batis 18mm f/2.8 Lens Review The Zeiss Batis 18mm is an autofocus focus wide angle lens that can be used with any of the Sony mirrorless cameras (E or FE). As such you get 18mm on the A7 models, and a near 28mm (equivalent) on the A6xxx models. Review on sansmirror.com

Zeiss Batis 25mm f/2 Lens Review The Zeiss Batis 25mm is an autofocus focus wide angle lens that can be used with any of the Sony mirrorless cameras (E or FE). As such you get a near 24mm on the A7 models, and a near 35mm (equivalent) on the A6xxx models. Review on sansmirror.com

The full 2016 Botswana Photo Workshop blog can be accessed here

October 11

The 7Kg Wildlife Safari Bag. The wildlife/safari photographer these days is encountering more and more airlines with strict 7Kg carry-on bag limits. (American readers please pardon me for using the metric system in this article, but that’s what will generally be applied at check-in or the gate.) This article is an attempt to describe several approaches that get you within that limit but still have an acceptable kit for a serious safari. Article on dslrbodies.com

What’s the Highest ISO I Should Set? Lately I’ve gotten quite a few “what’s the maximum ISO value I should use on camera X” type questions. I’m not quite sure what’s causing this, but I think it’s the wrong way to think about ISO. Article on dslrbodies.com

Wrap-up of the 2016 Botswana Photo Workshop blog. A short followup on lists.

October 10

Top Dogs. Let’s assume for a moment that you’re interested in “best in class” in terms of a camera. What exactly would that be? Article on dslrbodies.com

Canon and Nikon Interim 2016 Report Card. From time to time I grade the camera companies on how they’re doing. Today I’m going to do a late mid-term 2016 report on cameras from Canon and Nikon. While I’ll concentrate on DSLRs, we DSLR-users also shoot with other types of cameras at times, so I’ll address those, too. Article on dslrbodies.com

Day 21 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop blog

October 7

What? He’s still going? Day 20 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop Blog

Also: I’ve added some details to yesterday’s post on the Sony A6500 and corrected a few things in the database entry.

October 6

Day 19 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop BlogD500 users, you’ll want to read today’s blog entry.

Sony Adds Two Fast Cameras. Sony today surprised many by producing an A6500 mirrorless camera, which features several key performance attributes above the current (and remaining in the line up) A6300. This new body will retail for US$1400 and be available in December in the US. Article on sansmirror.comA6500 data page.

October 5

Day 18 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop Blog

October 4

Photoshop Elements 15 was introduced.

Day 17 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop Blog

October 3

How Cutting Costs Kills You. For quite some time I’ve received emails and queries that all fall into the “why doesn’t Nikon put Wi-Fi or GPS in every model?” Article on dslrbodies.com

Canon Pushes Firmware Updates. Canon released new firmware for five cameras to correct an issue with the 18-135mm and 70-300mm lenses: 6D version 1.1.7, 70D version 1.1.2, SL1 version 1.0.1, T5i versions 1.1.5, and T6 version 1.0.2.In addition, the 5D Mark II got a firmware update to version 1.0.2 to improve communications reliability with the EOS Utility. Article on dslrbodies.com

Nikon’s 2016 Annual Report. As always, there are gems galore in Nikon’s Annual Report. Nikon, while opaque on many levels, is actually relatively transparent when it comes to public information. As usual, I’m a little late to getting around to noting those gems. Article on dslrbodies.com

Day 16 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop blogSeptember 29

What I’d Be Doing If I were Nikon. As previous articles have mentioned, this is a critical time for Nikon, as they’re now losing market share in interchangeable lens cameras. Worse, they’re losing mind share among their most faithful and loyal customers, and Photokina did nothing to help that. So here’s my 10-point program of what I’d do. Article on dslrbodies.com

Day 15 of the 2016 byThom Botswana Photo Workshop blog

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