July/August 2015

Pentax K-3 II

Ricoh Imaging has introduced the Pentax K-3 II camera. The K-3 II shares the K-3’s dustproof and weather-resistant magnesium-alloy casing and metal chassis, as well as the 24.35-effective-megapixel resolution, 27-point AF system and 8.3 fps shooting speed. The K-3 II incorporates new GPS technology with a GPS receiver and electric compass logging image location, camera orientation, altitude, time and date. Images then can be transferred to a map like Google Earth. The K-3 II also incorporates Pixel Shift Resolution, utilizing the improved 4.5 EV-stop Shake Reduction system to move the CMOS sensor in single-pixel increments over four frames, then combines the frames into a single high-definition image. Adding the in-body Shake Reduction system to the GPS technology, and magnetic and acceleration sensors, the Astrotracer feature calculates the motion of stars and planets, allowing you to capture the stars as points of light instead of light trails during long exposures. The K-3 II also includes a new high-speed AF algorithm, gyro-sensor panning detection and automatic horizon correction. List Price: $1,099. Contact: Ricoh Imaging, www.us.ricoh-imaging.com.

Nikon D7200

With a 24.2-megapixel CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter combined with a new EXPEED 4 Processing Engine, the Nikon D7200 is ready to capture quick action. The 51-point AF system utilizes 15 cross-type sensors. The large buffer capacity allows for 100 shots of continuous shooting in JPEG/fine/large file settings, 27 shots in the 12-bit lossless compressed RAW setting and 18 shots in the 14-bit lossless compressed RAW setting. The D7200 is ready to handle low-light conditions, with a 100-25,600 ISO range and additional BW1 ISO of 51,200 and BW2 ISO of 102,400 for additional ISO range with monochromatic images. The camera includes auto-bracketing of up to 9 frames and built-in HDR, and it’s the first Nikon DSLR to include built-in WiFi and NFC connection for sharing and remote camera control. List Price: $1,199. Contact: Nikon, www.nikonusa.com.

Video Rod Adapter

The Really Right Stuff VRA-15 Video Rod Adapter allows you to add 15mm rod accessories to your video rig while using Arca-style plates. The VRA-15 includes a quick-release-lever-style clamp with laser engraving every 1mm that accepts RRS plates and rails, as well as Arca-style plates from other manufacturers. Folding wing screws make adjustments easy without the need for additional tools. The adapter has two 3⁄8"-16 threaded mounting sockets and five 1⁄4"-20 threaded mounting sockets. Kits include one VRA-15 adapter, one VRA-15 rail, rods and spacers. List Price: $355 (VRA-15 adapter); $490-$560 (VRA-15 kits). Contact: Really Right Stuff, www.reallyrightstuff.com.

dp0 Quattro

The dp0 Quattro by Sigma is the fourth compact camera in the Quattro series. Combined with the TRUE III Image Processor, the Quattro sensor uses green-, red- and blue-sensitive layers, resulting in the quick processing of highly detailed true color images. The fixed 14mm ƒ/4 lens is equivalent to 21mm on a 35mm DSLR. With a 91° angle of view, the lens reduces the aberration and distortion found with superwide-angle lenses using four "F" low-dispersion glass elements, two special low-dispersion glass elements and two aspherical lenses, one of which is a wide double-sided aspherical lens. The dp0 Quattro also has increased ISO performance and improved Auto Color Mode, Auto Focus and Auto White Balance compared to its predecessors. List Price: TBA. Contact: Sigma, www.sigmaphoto.com.

Photo/Video Tripod

Argraph has developed the SIRUI R-X Series Photo/Video tripod for multimedia shooters looking to reduce their gear load. Each of the four tripods in the series comes with a 75mm bowl to replace the flat platform for desired video use and is compatible with the SIRUI VH-10 and VH-15 video heads, as well as the SIRUI K-40x Professional ballhead and PH-20 gimbal head. The tripod itself has a re-engineered spider using anodized, forged aircraft-grade components, increasing stability and load capacity, and includes a bubble level for horizontal alignment. Ten layers of carbon fiber have been used on the legs, increasing strength and vibration reduction while maintaining a lightweight, 6.2-pound total weight. The Pull-Out Leg Angle Locking System allows for positioning at three different angles. The rubber feet can be replaced by stainless-steel spikes. List Price: $870-$1,171. Contact: Argraph, www.argraph.com.

Military-Grade Equipment Case

The SKB 3i-13096SA7 Sony A-7 case keeps your Sony a7 and essentials safe through inclement conditions. The iSeries injection-moulded waterproof case is constructed from polypropylene copolymer resin, creating a gasketed, waterproof and fully submersible design. The interior utilizes high-quality PE foam with space for a Sony a7, a7R or a7S body with a lens attached, two lens slots (with three 1⁄2-inch removable rings to fit a variety of lens sizes), a lens hood slot and an accessory pocket. For additional equipment safety, the case also includes an auto-ambient pressure-equalization valve and ensures secure case stacking. Estimated Street Price: $119. Contact: SKB, www.skbcases.com.

Weather-Resistant Superzoom

With 21 seals, the HD Pentax D FA 150-450mm ƒ/4.5-5.6ED DC AW lens is designed to be weatherproof. Complementary to the Pentax K-mount and future Pentax sensor technology, the lens offers a 35mm system equivalent of 225-675mm. Three Extra-low dispersion and one super-low dispersion glass elements compensate for chromatic aberration, and the high-grade HD coating provides sharp, high-contrast images while reducing flare and ghosting. The Quick-Shift Focus System allows you to instantly switch to manual focus after the subject is captured in focus by the AF system. Three positions (QFS/A, QFS/M and MF) let you set a user priority. The lens also includes a zoom lock lever and a detachable tripod mount with a newly designed anti-falling mechanism. List Price: $2,499. Contact: Ricoh Imaging, www.us.ricoh-imaging.com.

An Urban Approach

Taking notes from the Urban Disguise Classic series, the Urban Approach 10 Mirrorless Camera Shoulder Bag by Think Tank Photo provides a low-profile look for toting high-qua
lity gear. The bag holds one medium to large mirrorless camera body or compact DSLR with lens attached and two to four additional lenses. A dedicated interior pocket stores a 10-inch tablet. A front organizer and rear pocket provide storage for accessories and notebooks, and stretchable side pockets can house a water bottle or flash. Sound Silencers can be used to silence the Velcro® closures. A padded nonslip shoulder strap, removable top grab handle and seam-sealed rain cover are included. List Price: $134. Contact: Think Tank Photo, www.thinktankphoto.com.

Sony Alpha A-Mount Lenses

Sony has developed new high-performance standard zoom and wide-angle zoom lenses. The Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm ƒ/2.8 ZA SSM II and Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm ƒ/2.8 ZA SSM II are now available for use with A-mount cameras or, using an adapter, with E-mount cameras. Both lenses utilize a Zeiss T* coating on optical surfaces to minimize ghosting and flare. Aspherical and extra-low dispersion glass elements are used to minimize distortion and aberration. Both lenses have enhanced AF capabilities compared to their predecessors with four times the subject tracking speed due to a Super Sonic wave Motor. List Price: $2,100 (Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm ƒ/2.8 ZA SSM II); $2,250 (Vario-Sonnar T* 16-35mm ƒ/2.8 ZA SSM II). Contact: Sony, store.sony.com.

Digital Director

Digital Director by Manfrotto is an Apple-Certified interface for managing photo and video workflow by turning the iPad Air’s high-definition Retina display into an external monitor and controller. This allows exposure, ISO, shutter speed, aperture, focus, white balance and image quality to be viewed and controlled via the app’s Live View Mode. Digital Director shows a Dynamic Live Histogram and utilizes an interactive focus point, as well as displays Audio Levels for video use. It also provides the ability to download images directly to the iPad for quality check and instant photo editing. Downloaded images then can be shared via FTP, email or social-media networks. List Price: $500. Contact: Manfrotto, www.manfrotto.us.

Practilite 602

The Practilite 602 by Kinotehnik is a versatile light that fits into any kit. Within the aircraft-grade, full-aluminum, CNC-machined body, the LED Fresnel fixture utilizes a 3.2-inch 80mm lens for precise light shaping. The beam angle can be controlled from 15º to 80°. The flicker-free light is also color-variable from 3200K to 5600K to adjust to any lighting situation. All settings on the Practilite 602 can be controlled by a smartphone app, reducing the need for gaffers or lowering light stands for small adjustments. The 4x7x6-inch light uses universal AC/DC power and can be powered by V-mount and Anton/Bauer batteries. A universal umbrella mount is built in and barndoors are included. The light is also compatible with third-party light modifiers such as Profoto and Broncolor Picolite. Estimated Street Price: TBA. Contact: Kinotehnik, www.kinotehnik.com.

Photo Moments App

Photo host and e-commerce platform Zenfolio has launched the Photo Moments App, giving clients a way to view and download digital images from their smartphones. With the app, photographers can enable and disable downloads for password-protected galleries. Once a client signs in, they can download photos and videos to their smartphone and share images through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and personal email. Photographers can create gallery expiration dates and set watermark usage. Zenfolio is continuing to improve the app and is currently working on a client Favorites feature. The app is available on iTunes, and it’s free for Zenfolio clients. Contact: Zenfolio, www.zenfolio.com.


Lowepro has created the "grab-and-go"-style DroneGuard Kit that can be used alone or inside Lowepro bags such as the Pro Roller 200 and Hardside 400 case. The lightweight kit has been specifically designed to complement the drone "X" shape. A rigid base with a honeycomb interior creates a solid foundation and workspace, and retention straps keep the drone securely in place. Pockets and dividers offer storage for accessories. A modular battery box with dividers and a remote/transmitter section keep all components safe. The elastic loop system secures cords and tools. List Price: $99 (DroneGuard Kit); $319 (DroneGuard Kit with Hardside 400 case). Contact: Lowepro, www.lowepro.com.

Epson SureColor P800

Epson has delivered a 17-inch borderless professional printer with a compact design for desktop use. The SureColor P800 uses Epson MicroPiezo AMC printhead technology and UltraChrome HD eight-color pigment ink for improved black density and print preservation for both color and black-and-white images. The SureColor P800 has a sheet feeder for photo and matte papers, as well as a front-in and front-out paper path for fine-art papers and posterboards. An optional 17-inch-wide Roll Paper Adapter is available for canvas or panorama prints. The printer supports connections for USB 2.0, Ethernet, wireless, WiFi Direct, Apple Air Print and Google Cloud Print. List Price: $1,295 (SureColor P800); $199 (optional Roll Paper Adapter); $59 (UltraChrome HD 80 ml ink cartridge). Contact: Epson, www.epson.com.

Zeiss Batis Lenses

Finding the wide-angle- and tele-portrait-length lenses to be the most popular focal lengths thus far for the Sony a7 camera family, Zeiss has now developed two full-frame autofocus lenses for the E-mount. Both the Batis 2/25 and Batis 1.8/85 support manual focus with a rubberized focus ring while also offering fast, reliable and quiet autofocus, utilizing an AF drive with linear motors. Zeiss has emphasized a modern lens body design with smooth surfaces and has now included an OLED display, showing the focal plane distance and depth of field. The Batis 2/25 has 10 lens elements in 8 groups, similar to the Zeiss Distagon optical design. Aspherical elements ensure sharpness to the frame edges. The Batis 1.8/85 has 11 lens elements in 8 groups, similar to the Zeiss Sonnar optical design, and includes optical image stabilization for a sharp image in difficult light situations. List Price: $1,299 (Batis 2/25); $1,199 (Batis 1.8/85). Contact: Zeiss, ww

Rapid Box Duo

Easy to set up, quick to tear down and with highly controllable light, the new 32-inch Rapid Box Octa Duo is perfect for location photographers. The Duo features the same reflective silver interior, durable umbrella frame and lightweight construction of the original Rapid Box series, but the Duo offers the option to mount up to two speedlights. The built-in, solid-metal mounting tilt bracket is fully adjustable for speedlights of all sizes. The adjustable back collar prevents light leaks while still allowing access to speedlight controls. An optional deflector plate and grid offer additional light control. Estimated Street Price: $269. Contact: Westcott, www.fjwestcott.com.

CoolVee 7

The CoolVee 7 by Flashpoint provides continuous fluorescent lighting for both still and video shooting. The seven cool-running daylight fluorescent spiral lamps offer a total output of 760 watts of tungsten light. Four switches control the configuration of lamps used, as well as their output power. The CoolVee 7 comes with two light modifiers. A detachable pebble-finished reflector creates bright direct light, while the octagonal softbox with removable scrim creates a softer glow. The CoolVee 7 comes with a one-year warranty. List Price: $199. Contact: Flashpoint (Adorama), www.adorama.com.

Phantom 3

DJI has announced the addition of the Phantom 3 to their drone line. The Phantom 3 Advanced utilizes a built-in camera with a Sony EXMOR 1/2.3-inch sensor that shoots 1080p up to 60 fps. The Phantom 3 Professional has the same built-in camera and sensor, but has the ability to shoot 4K footage at 24 or 30 fps. A Main Controller collects motor speed, GPS location, automatic sensor data and user inputs to control flight behavior. This includes using an Inertial Measurement Unit with a 6-axis gyroscope and an accelerometer to detect and compensate for unwanted tilt movement. Visual Positioning Technology uses visual and ultrasonic sensors to allow the Phantom 3 to find position without a GPS. The Intelligent Flight Battery uses built-in sensors to read real-time battery status. Connect a phone/tablet to the Phantom 3 using Lightbridge to have a 720p HD live view of camera footage. Use the DJI Pilot app Auto Pilot for auto-takeoff, auto-return home and a fail-safe mode that will return the Phantom 3 to the takeoff point and land safely if it loses connection with the remote control. DJI also offers the Software Development Kit as an open resource for app development, ranging from recording live streams, gathering flight data or setting a single point of interest for the Phantom 3 to face. List Price: $999 (Phantom 3 Advanced); $1,259 (Phantom 3 Professional). Contact: DJI, store.dji.com.

Screen Calibration

To ensure the colors in your print are the same as what you viewed on your monitor while processing your digital image, it’s important to calibrate your monitor. Datacolor has released the redesigned portable Spyder5 calibration system with a 7-detector optical engine for increased tonal response, accurate shadow detail and smooth gradients. The Spyder5 is available in three options, depending on your level of need. The Spyder5EXPRESS uses an interactive 4-step guide to walk you through calibration, with a before-and-after feature. The Spyder5PRO includes an advanced ambient light sensor to compensate for room light, additional calibration settings and display analysis. The Spyder5ELITE includes a tripod mount for projector display calibration, unlimited calibration settings, monitor matching and optimized gray-balance routines. List Price: $129 (Spyder5EXPRESS); $189 (Spyder5PRO); $279 (Spyder5ELITE). Contact: Datacolor, spyder.datacolor.com.

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