L-rumors.com: (L5) Major Panasonic S1-S1R announcement will happen around January 30

https://www.l-rumors.com/l5-major-panasonic-s1-s1r-announcement-will-happen-around-january-30/

We are now 99% certain that Panasonic will have a major S1-S1R related announcement on the days around January 30. This means we will likely get the full specs information and preorder pricing.

Stay tuned for more info to come!…

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Panasonic Lumix S1R 35mm mirrorless digital camera.

Panasonic S1 and S1R

Scenes from photokina 2018 and CES 2019, photographs courtesy of Panasonic.

Commentary

I bought into Panasonic’s excellent DSLR-style and rangefinder-style Micro Four Thirds sensor camera and lens system for documentary stills photography and video when Fujifilm dropped the ball with its first try at an interchangeable lens APS-C mirrorless rangefinder-style camera, the X-Pro1.

The problems making that camera sadly unusable for me were remedied with the later X-Pro2 and also the DSLR-style X-T1 and X-T2, with the recently-released X-T3 delivering almost everything one might desire in a DSLR-style stills/video hybrid camera with the exception of raw video recording via external monitors/recorders such as the Atomos Ninja V, in-body image stabilization, and a fully-articulated LCD monitor for maximum viewing usability whether shooting movies or photographs.

I was so impressed  by my experience of a loaner Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 that I ordered one immediately for documentary work and added a Lumix DMC-GX8 as a second video camera that almost immediately became my number one photography camera.

Both cameras constituted my documentary stills kit with the addition of the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro standard zoom lens with manual clutch focus, the lens that changed my mind about zoom lenses.

I soon added a second Olympus zoom, then a Panasonic prime followed by a Panasonic zoom lens.

I am holding off on more Micro Four Thirds lenses while waiting to see how developments with Olympus’ coming E-M1X pro-quality photography and video camera, Olympus M.Zuiko Pro prime and zoom lenses, Panasonic’s Lumix S Series and the amazing Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Summilux 10-25mm f/1.7 wide-to-normal zoom lens work out this year.

Rumors have it that Olympus’ M.Zuiko Pro lenses are designed in collaboration with Sigma, and whether true or not, Sigma’s membership of the L-Mount group alongside old allies Leica and Panasonic is exciting.

As a longtime though sadly no longer Leica camera and lens user, I would love to be able to afford their current cameras and lenses but Sigma’s Art line prime and zoom lenses’ specifications, image quality results, prices and most of all range of focal lengths impresses as does the company’s cine lens collection.

As I discovered with Fujifilm’s XF APS-C lenses and Panasonic’s M43 Lumix G and Leica DG lens lines, the seldom-spoken downside to new sensor and camera ranges is that it takes years and buckets of manufacturer cash for them to eventually acquire full collections of lenses to suit all their users’ needs.

It is estimated that Canon, for example, took 40 years to achieve that goal with lenses for its 35mm sensor DSLR camera line.

Will Sigma’s presence in the L-Mount consortium and its promised large L-Mount lens collection be persuasive enough to turn 35mm sensor camera users’ heads away from their Canons and Nikons?

The recently announced High Resolution stills and HLG video modes of the Lumix S-Series cameras are impressive but there is more to know about its other features and those of Panasonic’s other cameras in the series.

As a documentary and portrait photographer, I tend to prefer the more portrait and magazine-friendly 4:3 or 3:4 aspect ratios of Micro Four Thirds cameras over the often too-narrow 3:2 or 3:2 of 35mm sensors, and find that fully-articulated LCD monitors are far more useful than any fixed, two-way or three-way tilt screen solutions.

On the other hand, sensor megapixel counts of around 50 or more help produce portraits that possess an uncanny sense of being there especially when printed beautifully and large.

I am looking forward to Panasonic’s January 30 announcements and product shots.

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Is Samsung still the one to emulate in mirrorless hybrid camera hardware/software design and engineering?

Photokina 2018 is approaching and with it come announcements and rumours of marvellous new mirrorless hybrid cameras and lenses in sensor sizes including 35mm, APS-C, Medium Format and Micro Four Thirds. 

Yet I cannot help but think back to the once great white hope of mirrorless for stills and video, the Samsung NX1 and its close companions numbering amongst them the Samsung NX30, the Samsung Galaxy NX and the Samsung NX500, and wonder if any other camera maker has yet learned the lessons that these amazing cameras have to teach them. 

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Samsung NX1 APS-C/Super 35 digital hybrid mirrorless camera with Samsung Premium S 50-150mm f/2.8 ED OIS zoom lens.

I have never had the pleasure of using any Samsung camera due to their poor to nonexistent distribution here before Samsung’s camera and lens division was tragically axed , but I had an all-too-brief play with a colleague’s Samsung NX1 some time ago and that was enough to be amazed.

More recently mention of the Samsung NX30 appeared on a mirrorless rumours website, I googled to and was stunned and amazed to see the camera had a tilting electronic viewfinder and fully articulated monitor, two of the most essential , in my option, features for any serious stills and video hybrid camera.

My beloved Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 has both and its is a potent combination for stealthy and efficiently shooting stills or video, caged or uncaged, heavily rigged or camera-and-lens only.

The Samsung NX1 had superb ergonomics and a still unsurpassed menu design, and I suspect it worked even better in the hand when rigged with its vertical battery grip and Premium S lenses.

Imagine if Samsung had stayed in the camera and lens business, constantly innovating and showing the more established players in the market how it should be done.

Imagine what contemporary Samsung rangefinder-style and DSLR-style hybrid mirrorless APS-C and larger sensor equipped cameras might be like, with tilting EVFs, fully articulated AMOLED monitors on the mid-to upper level cameras or tilting AMOLED monitors on the lower-end models, excellent hardware ergonomics and software user interface design, 6K read-out, 1080p at 120 frames per second, HEVC H.265 codecs for 4K and 8K video, and more.

Imagine if Blackmagic Design, Canon, Fujifilm, Leica, Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh/Pentax and Sony learned even a fraction of the lessons Samsung’s genius designers and engineers had to teach them.

Samsung NX1

The Samsung NX1 was so far ahead of its time that many potential users complained bitterly about its then poorly supported HEVC video codec and H.265 video file type, but not long after its release computer makers began adding support and now it is standard on contemporary computers and 4K television sets.

Many professional moviemakers continue to rely on their Samsung NX1 cameras and native and adapted lenses, and anticipate the day when they start breaking down with dread.

Samsung NX30

The Samsung NX30 was aimed more at stills photographers than moviemakers, with its 1080p video and 20MP sensor, but it has two features I consider essential to hybrid mirrorless photography and cinematography, a tilting electronic viewfinder aka EVF and a fully articulated monitor.

Samsung Galaxy NX

The Samsung Galaxy NX was a bold experiment in pushing camera menu systems way beyond still common lists of text links into an Android-based fully graphic icon-based system.

Samsung NX500

The Samsung NX500 was minus an EVF but partially made top for that absence with a tilting monitor.

Apparently many photographers and cinematographers adopted the NX500 as a smaller companion camera to their Samsung NX1s.

Samsung lenses

It was often said of Samsung’s cameras that there were not enough lenses, though the company’s camera division had begun working on its professional-quality Premium S lens range before its was suddenly shut down.

It managed to issue two Premium S lenses, the Samsung Premium S 16-50mm f/2.8 ED OIS and Samsung Premium S 50-150mm f/2.8 ED OIS zoom lens, with other lens designs rumoured to be in the works or about to be released.

Any new mid-level to professional mirrorless camera system should be released alongside at least five top-quality lenses – a wide, medium and telephoto zoom lens trio, and two or three fast, wide aperture prime lenses.

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SmallRig Cage for Panasonic Lumix LX100 Premium Compact 4K Hybrid Camera Now in Pre-Order at 50% Off

Camera accessory maker SmallRig recently placed a camera cage for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 M43 4K hybrid digital camera  on pre-order status at a 50% discount for the first 100 orders, and it reminded me of what a remarkable little camera the LX100 appears to be even though it was released back in 2014 alongside the then ground-breaking Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4

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SmallRig Cage for Panasonic Lumix LX100 2198 enhances this capable little premium compact Micro Four Thirds camera for discrete run-and-gun video.

The professional camera stores I was frequenting at the time did not stock the LX100 otherwise I may well have bought one had I the chance to see and try one out.

The LX100’s specifications are impressive for a 2014 release camera with some of the few disappointments being its lack of microphone and headphone ports for good quality audio recording, but that lack can be remedied by attaching a small audio recorder to the camera for double system sound that can easily be synched to video in Final Cut Pro X or Red Giant’s Shooter PluralEyes.

A successor to the LX100, presumably to be named the Panasonic Lumix LX200, with more contemporary specifications such as in-body image stabilization aka IBIS or at least improved optical image stabilization, ND filters and a 16 to 20 megapixel sensor, has long been rumored and I hope that the latest rumour, that it will be announced before the photokina trade show in September this year, is true as I have been in the market for a top-specced compact hybrid camera for quite some time.

The one obvious downside to compact cameras that fit into the palm of one’s hand as the LX100 seems to is their minimal gripability and lack of attachment points for accessories necessary for producing great video such as audio recorders, microphones, hand grips, handles and small monitors or monitor/recorders, but SmallRig’s custom cage provides enough of those in the form of 1/4-20 threaded holes and a NATO accessory rail on one side.

The SmallRig Cage for Panasonic Lumix LX100 2198 is the company’s first such cage to adopt a more protective form factor than SmallRig’s other camera cages to date and I hope augurs well for more protective camera cage designs in future.

I became aware of the usefulness of protective as well as connective camera cage designs when shooting on location in a challenging situation with a Lumix GH4 inside a GH4 Cube Cage made by Motion9, now rebranded as Seercam.

SmallRig’s design style has been evolving lately with the appearance of custom L-brackets which add videocentric features to a camera accessory formerly aimed solely at stills photography.

Hybrid cameras, equally adept at stills photography as high-quality video, have demanded a rethink on the question of camera and accessories support and I look forward to SmallRig’s designs becoming more hybrid-savvy.

The Panasonic Lumix LX100, and hopefully soon the Panasonic Lumix LX200, are a case in point.

I look to a camera like this being as good for handheld documentary photography or tripod-mounted portrait photography in vertical and horizontal orientation via built-in Arca-Swiss plate as it is for video whether accessorized minimally or with audio recorder, left side handle, top handle, microphone and even a monitor.

I would like to see SmallRig’s cage for the LX200 be even more hybrid-influenced than its LX100 cage, a fusion of Arca-Swiss tripod plate with NATO, Arri and 1/4-20 mounting points such that one never needs to remove it, so versatile and comfortable would it be whether held in the hand or mounted on tripod, monopod or gimbal.

SmallRig Cage for Panasonic Lumix LX100 2198

Some accessories for SmallRig Cage for Panasonic Lumix LX100 2198

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 Micro Four Thirds 4K hybrid digital camera and accessories

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Leica D-Lux (Typ 109), Leica Camera’s version of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100, with premium materials, finishes and hardware user interface.

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43 Rumors: Panasonic going to launch new f/1.2 prime lenses? Here are the patents…

https://www.43rumors.com/panasonic-going-launch-new-f-1-2-prime-lens-series-patents/

“Sigma just patented two new Micro Four Thirds lenses: 14mm f/1.2 and 35mm f/1.2. Now you will wonder…what has this to do with Panasonic? Because Sigma is known to sell those lens designs to Panasonic. The Leica 12mm f/1.4 for example is designed by Sigma…

That’s why there is a high chance the 14mm and 35mm f/1.2 prime lenses will be released by Panasonic (maybe using Leica brand)….”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 Pro, Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm f/1.2 Pro and Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 45mm f/1.2 Pro. Might Sigma be planning on selling its newly patented  14mm f/1.2 and 35mm f/1.2 lens designs to Olympus instead of Panasonic?

Commentary

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43 Rumors reports the possibility that Panasonic may buy Sigma recently patented 14mm f/1.2 and 35mm f/1.2 M43 prime lens designs. If so, Panasonic likely will brand them as Panasonic Leica lenses to go into its premium-quality prime and zoom lens collection. Panasonic’s Leica and Lumix lenses, however, only offer autofocus or focus-by-wire and not manual clutch focus as Olympus does with its M.Zuiko Pro lens collection.

Or maybe there is an even higher chance that Sigma is planning on selling these two new f/1.2 prime lens designs to Olympus for its top-tier M.Zuiko Pro lens collection to go with its current 17mm, 25mm and 45mm f/1.2 primes?

Sigma Corporation, like Cosina and several other mostly Japanese companies, is an OEM manufacturer of lenses for other brands and apparently has already sold lens designs to Olympus, such as the 150mm-equivalent M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm f/1.8, considered to be one of the optically finest Micro Four Thirds lenses available.

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Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art zoom lens for APS-C sensors and for adapting to M43 with Metabones SpeedBoosters, lens available in Canon EF or Nikon mounts.

Sigma apparently was known for some years as a budget lens maker but its Art range of premium lenses proved that it belongs in the ranks of professional-quality lens makers now.

Sigma’s recently released Ciné prime and zoom lens collection cements the company’s reputation firmly in place as does, on the adapted lens front, the company’s much-lauded Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art, often first choice in combo with Metabones Speed Boosters for M43 video camera users working in available darkness.

Two documentary movie and photography favourites, 28mm and 75mm

My two preferred documentary prime lens focal lengths are 28mm and 75mm in 35mm sensor equivalence and they are my first choice when buying into a new camera system.

That choice is often thwarted, though, by their equivalents’ unavailability as native lenses in some mirrorless camera systems or, in the case of Fujifilm’s Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 R, an ageing lens’ quirky mechanical qualities making it next to useless for a high speed approach necessitated by the nature of my subjects and their circumstances.

28mm equivalent prime lenses by Fujifilm, Leica and Panasonic

Panasonic’s pancake prime, the Lumix G 14mm f/2.5 II, had vanished from most retailers after I tried a review loaner out and although I made some great photographs with it, its performance was suboptimal for everything I wanted to do with it, not least due to its lack of a focussing ring.

I and many other Fujifilm camera users are still waiting for the company to issue its long-rumoured 18mm update perhaps in the form of a Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 R WR “Fujicron”, especially suitable for documentary photography with the X-Pro2 rangefinder camera, the X-E3 rangefinder-style camera and Fujifilm’s smaller DSLR-style cameras.

For video, though, a faster 18mm lens in the style of Fujifilm’s Fujinon XF 14mm f/2.8 R, Fujinon XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR and Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R would be the preferred option.

75mm equivalent prime lenses by Fujifilm, Leica and Veydra

Prime lenses in the 35mm sensor equivalent 75mm focal length are as hard to find in the Micro Four Thirds world as their 28mm equivalent siblings, and that relative rarity is not assisted by Sigma’s patent for a 35mm and not 37.5mm focal length lens.

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Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom lens, one of the most versatile top-quality professional zoom lenses made, especially invaluable for its manual clutch focus and fast autofocus. I use mine resting on the 14mm or 37.5mm spot on the zoom ring depending on my project and subject.

I have used Panasonic’s Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 II Aspheric Power OIS zoom lens in its previous version I form but found its 35mm long end limited for documentary work and portraiture so opted for Olympus’ stellar M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro instead.

Even so there are times I miss the 90mm focal length equivalent so have Olympus’ M.Zuiko Digital ED 45mm f/1.2 Pro high on my M43 lens wishlist, also due to the manual clutch focus featured in all M.Zuiko Pro prime and zoom lenses making them invaluable for professional moviemaking and photography work.

Given a choice between a manual focus or manual clutch focus lens and a fly-by-wire autofocus or autofocus/manual lens, I will choose the manual or manual clutch focus lens same as I will choose a pair of fast primes over a zoom lens that includes both focal lengths.

There is no denying, though, that some projects demanding stealth, speed and small camera bag transportation can benefit from carrying just one top-quality zoom lens like the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro or the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS Pro.

Designed by Sigma for Olympus or Panasonic?

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Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm f/1.2 Aspheric Power OIS lens, apparently designed by Sigma. It has focus-by-wire manual focus or autofocus and can often miss the mark despite Panasonic’s DFD focussing system.

It is too early to tell whether the 43 Rumors folks are correct about Sigma’s 14mm and 35mm f/1.2 lens design patents being intended for Panasonic.

I am hoping upon hope that the eventual destination will be Olympus and its M.Zuiko Pro lens collection.

Panasonic seems disinclined to replace its lenses’ linear and non-linear fly-by-wire mechanisms with the far more capable manual clutch focus mechanism used in Olympus’ M.Zuiko primes and zooms, and Fujifilm’s 14mm, 16mm and 23mm wider aperture trio for that matter.

Panasonic insiders have told me they constantly receive requests from professional users for manual clutch focus lenses but the company seems set on its current path if its apparently Sigma-designed 12mm, 15mm, 25mm and 42.5mm wide aperture Leica-branded lenses are any indication.

I wish to see Olympus adding to its M.Zuiko Pro collection with 14mm and 37.5mm focal length lenses as well as 10.5mm and 12mm focal length prime lenses.

Sigma’s 70mm-equivalent 35mm f/1.2 lens is not quite my preferred focal length but at least it fills the gap between the current 25mm and 45mm M.Zuiko Pro lenses.

Now let’s see Olympus fill the other gaps in its M.Zuiko Pro collection.

Links

Image Credits

Header image concept and quick hack by Carmel D. Morris.

Image inspired by The Expanse TV show currently on SyFy channel soon moving to Amazon, and Cooke Optics’ famous matched sets of evenly-spaced top-quality cinema prime lenses.

I wish to see all lens makers emulate Cooke’s example with sets of manual or manual clutch focussing prime lenses in evenly spaced focal lengths.

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Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4.0 IS Pro, an excellent choice for travel and daily walkabout requiring a longer focal length range than kit and other zoom lenses.

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Imaging Resource: Olympus 17mm f/1.2 Pro Lens Review: The best wide-angle prime for Micro Four Thirds

https://www.imaging-resource.com/news/2018/05/11/olympus-17mm-f-1.2-pro-lens-review-best-wide-angle-for-micro-four-thirds

“Having earned the top spot as our Best Wide Angle Prime of 2017 in our annual Lens of the Year awards, we’ve now finalized our lab testing of the Olympus 17mm f/1.2 Pro lens. This 35mm-eq. wide-angle prime lens is undoubtedly a professional-level optic that offers excellent performance. Image quality is spectacular, even at f/1.2, with very low distortion and low chromatic aberration….”

https://creativityinnovationsuccess.files.wordpress.com/2017/10/olympus_m-zuiko_digital_ed_17mm_f1-2_front_upright_clutch_1024px_60.jpg
Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 Pro professional-quality Micro Four Thirds prime lens with manual clutch focus rings drawn back for accurate, repeatable manual focussing at a quarter turn to go from infinity to closest focusing distance, excellent for stills photography and video production on hybrid cameras and cinema cameras.
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The Olympus M.Zuiko Pro lens line-up as of late October 2017.

Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 Pro

Commentary

With the coming release of Blackmagic Design’s Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K aka BMPCC 4K aka P4K later this year, along with the already-released Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 IBIS hybrid 4K stills/video camera and the Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S high-end compact 4K video camera, attention is on affordable yet high-end professional-quality lenses capable of delivering excellent results whether manually-focussed or used with those cameras’ autofocus functionality if they have it.

After trying out prime and zoom optics from several ranges of Micro Four Thirds lenses, I have chosen to invest in Olympus’ M.Zuiko Pro range and will be adding more as availability and finances permit.

My documentary photography and moviemaking work demands gear that can withstand years of use and potentially challenging environments without succumbing, and the weather resistance, durability, quality and relative low weight and size put the M.Zuiko Pro lens range in the frame.

leica_cwsonderoptic_m0.8_set_5_01_1024px_60pc
The first five lenses from the Leica M 0.8 cinema lens set by Leica Camera sister company CW Sonderoptic, in the 21mm, 24mm, 28mm, 35mm and 50mm focal lengths, all with 77mm filter diameters, a perfect set for cinematographers or stills photographers. I am hoping that Olympus will expand its M.Zuiko Pro prime lens offerings to add a wider range of focal lengths like these in their M43 equivalents.So far Olympus has issued 35mm and 50mm equivalent focal lengths.

It is hardly surprising that the folks at Imaging Resource awarded their Best Wide Angle Prime of 2017 plaudit to the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 Pro lens.

I have yet to have the pleasure of trying one out due to apparent local supply problems, but the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 Pro is at the top of my M43 lens wish list along with its 45mm and 25mm stablemates as well as the 5-stop image-stablized Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS Pro zoom lens followed by the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro wideangle zoom.

I will be adding Xume fast-on, fast-off filter holders, Breakthrough Photography brass knurled step-up rings and UV protection filters, and a full set of top-quality variable and fixed ND filters to my kit in the 82mm and 105mm sizes soon.

I hope that Olympus will continue to expand its M.Zuiko Pro offerings into the 10.5mm and 14mm prime lens sizes as part of the company’s stated commitment to its professional lens range.

Both focal lengths, in 35mm sensor terms equivalent to 21mm and 28mm, are crucial to my work in documentary photography and video, and are essential to any well-rounded collection of professional-quality prime lenses.

I would also like to see a 75mm equivalent lens added to the Olympus M.Zuiko Pro lens collection – 21mm, 28mm and 75mm is one of my favourite 35mm sensor focal length triplet for documentary stills and video, or in M43 sensor terms 10.5mm, 14mm and 37.5mm.

That aside, I am very pleased that Olympus has released the 17mm f/1.2 in its second tranche of M.Zuiko Pro primes as I have been badly missing this focal length in my M43 sensor format cameras.

I had considered Olympus’ other 17mm lens, the M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8, as well as Panasonic’s near-17mm, the Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 Aspheric, but my head was decisively turned towards the M.Zuiko Pro series by my very first M43 lens purchase, the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro, one of my favourite zoom lenses to this very day.

My head was further turned towards the M.Zuiko Pro lens collection by Cosyspeed’s Thomas Ludwig’s review of the M.Zuiko Pro 25mm f/1.2 and its beautiful skin-tone rendering.

“What makes a good lens? This is in many ways a question that can only be answered individually. To me it is not important that it is super sharp wide open or does not vignette etc. – to me the most important point is the esthetics, the look and feel it delivers. When I look at the images of a certain lens and it “feels” good, well, than it is a good lens. And you know what? The OLY 25/1.2 is a lens of this category. I’m simply amazed especially when looking at the portraits I made in Hamburg. Amazed not by my images but by the clean, natural and three dimensional look.

The OLY 25/1.2 has a certain magic and I would describe it’s special character in the way it closes the gap between a pronounced three dimensional look and a portrait friendly (lower) level of micro contrast. A high level of micro contrast gives 3D pop for example to LEICA and ZEISS lenses, but it can be a bit harsh when shooting portraits. I don’t know how the OLYMPUS engineers made it, but they found a way to give it a lot of 3D pop while micro contrast is on a natural level.”

I have tried out the Panasonic Leica Summilux 15mm f/1.7, equivalent in 35mm sensor terms to 30mm, but I found the focal length an uneasy in-between, too wide for the subjects I prefer photographing with a 35mm equivalent lens and too long for those much better suited to a 28mm focal length equivalent.

When I began researching the Micro Four Thirds format for moviemaking and photography several years ago, its detractors harped on about how few M43 lenses existed back then.

The critics were factually wrong then and the number of M43 prime and zoom lenses has grown considerably since, but gaps still remain in the major lens makers’ offerings, especially at M43 system co-founders Olympus and Panasonic.

Olympus has hit the right notes with its M.Zuiko Pro collection but it needs to keep growing its prime lenses and long focal-length subsets, in the former case taking a leaf out of the book Leica Camera wrote some years ago with its Leica M-System lenses for stills photography and its recent cinema lens spin-off, Leica sister company CW Sonderoptic’s five-strong Leica M 0.8 series.

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Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K (BMPCC 4K) with Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom lens with manual clutch focus, great for manual focussing. I like the longer image-stabilized Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4.0 IS Pro zoom for available light daily walkabout needs for video and stills.

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  • Breakthrough Photography X4 UV and ND filtersB&H
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  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 8mm f/1.8 Fisheye PRO LensB&H
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  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f/4 IS PRO LensB&H
  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 PRO LensB&H
  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 25mm f/1.2 PRO LensB&H
  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO LensB&H
  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 45mm f/1.2 PRO LensB&H
  • Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 300mm f/4 IS PRO LensB&H
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Lensrentals: Veydra Cine Mini Prime MTF Optical Bench Tests

https://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2018/03/veydra-cine-mini-prime-mtf-optical-bench-tests/

“I have my preconceived notions, just like anyone else. A long while back the video techs told me we were stocking Veydra Primes in multiple focal lengths for m4/3 mounts. I just rolled my eyes and passed on by. Another boutique lens that would have poor resolution, ridiculous copy-to-copy variation, and a shelf-life-until-broken measured in weeks. Not interested.

But I noticed we were stocking more and more of them because they rented well; and added them in E-mount, too. I also saw they rarely came to repair. Then I did a little checking and found that our techs, who can check out any gear they want for their weekend shoots (it is an excellent perk, isn’t it?) were taking Veydras home pretty often. So I figured it was time to test them….”

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Veydra Mini Prime colour-matched, geared manual-focus cinema prime lenses, from left, 12mm T2.2, 16mm T2.2, 19mm T2.2, 25mm T2.2, 35mm T2.2, 50mm T2.2 and 85mm T2.2 for Micro Four Thirds and APS-C sensor cameras. Just one thing prevents me from investing in a kit of these, the lack of anything wider than 12mm which is a focal length I rarely use instead preferring 10.5mm aka 21mm in 35mm sensor equivalent or wider.

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Sony: IMX294CJK Diagonal 21.63 mm (Type 4/3) Approx. 10.71M-Effective Pixel Color CMOS Image Sensor

https://www.sony-semicon.co.jp/products_en/new_pro/may_2017/imx294cjk_e.html

“Sony Semiconductor Solutions Corporation has commercialized the “IMX294CJK” Type 4/3 back-illuminated CMOS image sensor with approximately 10.71M-effective pixels for the expanding security camera market.

The “IMX294CJK” is the first in-house image sensor for security cameras to adopt the Type 4/3 format, and realizes output of the number of pixels needed for 4K at 120 frame/s (in ADC 10-bit output mode). In addition, use of a large-size pixel achieves SNR1s of 0.14 lx*1, and use of a Quad Bayer pixel structure (see Figure 1) realizes an HDR (High Dynamic Range) function with no time difference, enabling video imaging with a wide dynamic range….”

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Is Sony’s IMX294CJK “Diagonal 21.63 mm (Type 4/3) Approx. 10.71M-Effective Pixel Color CMOS Image Sensor” the sensor used in the Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S and Blackmagic Design Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K? Image from Panasonic UK and Ireland product page for Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S.

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Frank Glencairn: Why the new Pocket Cinema Camera 2.0 isn’t actually a successor of the original Pocket, and why it doesn’t mat[t]er.

https://frankglencairn.wordpress.com/2018/04/19/why-the-new-pocket-cinema-camera-2-0-isnt-actually-a-successor-of-the-original-pocket-and-why-it-doesnt-mater/

“… So it’s that time of the year, when the whole industry looks at Vegas, eagerly awaiting the new game-changer collection. And this time, Blackmagic pretty much mopped the floor, with all the other new cameras that came out this year, by taking the GH5s (IMX294 or variant) sensor, building a better camera with it, and selling it for have [sic] of the price, while throwing in a full blown, Hollywood grade postproduction package on top of it….

… It’s not as small and stealthy as the original Pocket, but it’s a pretty amazing camera, that still lets you steal shots, while looking like a tourist with a DSLR, if you have to (come on – we all did that at least a few times).

It’s a good size and weight to put it on a one hand gimbal and run all day with it. And if you don’t have the budget for an Ursa, it’s a great camera that you can rig up cine style with all the bells and whistles, and shoot commercials or even narrative….”

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Blackmagic Design’s Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K aka BMPCC 4K with Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom lens, able to be easily handheld in ways that its Blackmagic cinema and production camera ancestors never could.

Blackmagic Production Camera 4K aka BMPC 4K in EF and PL mounts

Now that Blackmagic Design has removed the pages for its Blackmagic Cinema and Production cameras with Canon EF, Micro Four Thirds and PL lens mounts from its website, good quality product shots are harder to find and so worth preserving here for future reference and comparison with new products like the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K.

The images in this gallery are of the last models in Blackmagic Design’s now-defunct camera series, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K with EF or PL lens mounts, and apparently were intended for use in the production of serial television series rather than cinema productions.

I have not had the pleasure of using any of Blackmagic Design’s cinema or production cameras, but the proprietor of a production equipment rental service once told me that local well-funded documentary producers were particularly fond of using his Blackmagic rental cameras with Canon EF L-series lenses and adapted Nikon stills photography lenses.

Australian-based Director of Photography John Brawley has often had early access to Blackmagic Design cameras and has shared early footage from them, so it is worth checking his blog every so often.

Mr Brawley is an enthusiast for Micro Four Thirds system lens and Olympus M43 cameras, and it will be interesting to see what he makes of the BMPCC 4K in conjunction with his ever-growing collection of Olympus and SLR Magic lenses, illustrated above.

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Photogearnews: Daniel Berehulak on the Panasonic Lumix G9 and advice to young photo journalists

“Based out of Mexico City, but working wherever there is a story to be told, Daniel Berehulak (www.Danielberehulak.com) is an award winning photo journalist. His images have covered the Trial of Saddam Hussein, The Iraq War, the aftermath of the Tsunami in Japan and more recently the drug wars in The Philippines. He very kindly stopped by the Photo Gear News stand to talk to us about shooting with Panasonic Lumix cameras, notably the recent G9. Daniel also offered some words of advice to those wanting to get started in photo journalism.”

Commentary

Australian photojournalist Daniel Berehulak, like so many of my former colleagues with whom I worked for newspaper and magazine publishers here, finally upped and left for foreign clients and countries where photojournalists are still able to eke out a living covering events and people crucial to understanding and sometimes even influencing how the world is developing.

It was terrific to come across this video of Mr Berehulak stopping in for a quick chat with the Photo Gear News team at last month’s The Photography Show 2018 in Birmingham, one of the many photography trade shows that occur in the northern hemisphere.

I hope that some day soon, despite there no longer being any photography trade shows back here in Australia, Mr Berehulak will make some presentations on his work and career while on one of his not infrequent trips home to see family and friends.

Although Mr Berehulak has also been known to use Nikon DSLRs, this Panasonic Lumix Luminary brand ambassador has apparently long relied on Panasonic Lumix cameras and lenses and especially on Panasonic’s Leica prime and zoom lenses.

This may be a controversial view in some quarters but in my humble opinion digital gives us more than analog ever did with greater image quality in smaller, more affordable cameras and lenses to the point where Micro Four Thirds Bayer sensors outdo 35mm film, Fujifilm’s X-Trans APS-C sensors outdo 120 roll film and Fujifilm’s medium format Bayer sensors outdo 4″x5″ sheet film.

If I were fortunate enough to still be shooting for analog magazines and newspapers including those published by Fairfax as Daniel Berehulak did, I would mostly be relying on Lumix cameras due to their size, weight and silent mode, though I remain partial to Olympus’ M.Zuiko Pro prime and zoom lenses for their manual clutch focus and other professional-quality traits.

The small Micro Four Thirds sensor format and its little, quiet, discrete cameras are modern-day answers to the original aims of the inventor of the Leica analog camera, Oskar Barnack, to produce an easily portable camera for landscape photography but that was first put to serious documentary use reporting on the floods that swept through Leica’s home base of Wetzlar, Germany, in 1920.

Little wonder that Panasonic has collaborated with Leica Camera AG on producing Leica and Panasonic Leica-branded lenses for its stills and hybrid cameras and camcorders since 1995, lenses favoured by Daniel Berehulak for his documentary photography and photojournalism work.

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Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200mm f/2.8-4.0 Aspheric Power OIS telephoto zoom lens.

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  • Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 12mm f/1.4 ASPH. LensB&H
  • Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. POWER O.I.S. LensB&H
  • Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH. LensB&H
  • Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25mm f/1.4 ASPH. LensB&H
  • Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm f/1.2 ASPH. POWER O.I.S. LensB&H
  • Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm f/2.8 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S. LensB&H
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