Memory Upgrades for 2019 Mac Pro - Save Up to 65% vs Factory Costs
877-865-7002
Today’s Deal Zone Items... Handpicked deals...
$1399 $949
SAVE $450

$3508 $2998
SAVE $510

$2799 $2499
SAVE $300

$2799 $2499
SAVE $300

$1499 $1349
SAVE $150

$400 $300
SAVE $100

$150 $100
SAVE $50

$998 $798
SAVE $200

$3247 $3097
SAVE $150

$1598 $1298
SAVE $300

$2042 $1597
SAVE $445

$1699 $999
SAVE $700

$1998 $1998
SAVE $click

$2299 $1799
SAVE $500

$2799 $2299
SAVE $500

$2299 $1799
SAVE $500

$180 $100
SAVE $80

$699 $479
SAVE $220

$2299 $1799
SAVE $500

$1798 $1598
SAVE $200

$3508 $2998
SAVE $510

$1099 $999
SAVE $100

$1099 $999
SAVE $100

$2797 $2497
SAVE $300

$1499 $1349
SAVE $150

$1499 $1299
SAVE $200

$2598 $2598
SAVE $click

$3998 $2998
SAVE $1000

$3498 $2998
SAVE $500

$1199 $1099
SAVE $100

$240 $175
SAVE $65

$1499 $1349
SAVE $150

$2799 $2499
SAVE $300

$7999 $6999
SAVE $1000

$250 $210
SAVE $40

$1199 $1099
SAVE $100

$799 $599
SAVE $200

$999 $949
SAVE $50

$1999 $1449
SAVE $550

$2799 $2499
SAVE $300

$449 $389
SAVE $60

$400 $300
SAVE $100

$1699 $999
SAVE $700

Fast and Reliable SDXC Camera Card Storage for Fujfilm GFX100S, Batteries/Charger, Tripod Mounting

re: The Camera Market is Down to Two 35mm Format Contestants: Sony A1 and Canon TBD
re: Sony A7R IV: Which High-Speed and High-Capacity SDXC Cards Are Best?

The Fujifilm GFX100S has dual SDXC card slots, regrettably not CFExpress, rather strange for a new high-end camera here in 2021.

My recommendation is for the Sony TOUGH SDXC cards. They are better built than any of my cards (Lexar, SanDisk, etc), and have been totally reliable. I won’t buy any other brand at this point.

I also recommend:

  • At least one spare battery, but three total batteries if you shoot long days.
  • An extra charger if you want those batteries charged up by morning.
  • The metal base plate for tripod use (“Arca-Type Compatible Dovetail Protrusion”).

Starting out with the Fujifilm GFX100S, Fujifilm medium format?

In this order, what I would get: for landscape use 50/3.5, 30/3.5, 23/4, 80/1.7, 250/4.

They’re all terrific, change-up that order if your shooting style demands it. But you cannot go wrong starting with the Fujifilm GF 50mm f/3.5 as an all-arounder for everything.

OWC Accelsior 4M2 PCIe SSD
6000 MB/sec!
Mac or PC.


Ideal for Lightroom, Photoshop, video.
Capacity up to 16TB!
OWC Envoy Pro Elektron

Ultra-high performance across entire capacity, outperforms the competition.

Tiny, bus-powered, rugged, compact!


√ No more slow and noisy hard drives!
OWC Envoy Pro EX SSD
Blazingly fast Thunderbolt 3 SSD!

Up to 4TB capacity, USB-C compatible.

USB-C model also available


Great for travel or for desktop!
OWC Thunderblade Thunderbolt 3 SSD

Blazing fast, up to 16TB.

YEE HAH!



√ No more slow and noisy hard drives!

Fast Camera Card Storage for Sony A1: CFExpress

re: The Camera Market is Down to Two 35mm Format Contestants: Sony A1 and Canon TBD
re: Sony A7R IV: Which High-Speed and High-Capacity SDXC Cards Are Best?

The Sony A1 has dual card slots, one hyper-fast CFExpress slot and one SDXC slot. Apparently it’s either/or.

The CFExpress slot trounces the SDXC slot for bandwidth, so if you’re going to be banging out 30 fps raw files and/or you want hyper-fast downloads of 8K video, CFExpress is the only rational choice. Recording 8K video can be done to a fast enough SD card, but that seems a dubious choice at best. And if you’re spending $6500 for a camera, skimping on storage makes no sense unless you’re just shooting stills at low capture rates.

I just bought a blazingly fast Sony 512GB CFExpress card and the Sony MRW-G1 CFexpress Type B/XQD Memory Card Reader. Ouch on the cost, but the CFExpress card should be good in an increasing number of cameras and I expect it to become the standard for all new high-end cameras within a year.

Lame that the new Fujifilm GFX100S still uses SDXC (two slots), but Nikon Z7/Z6 series and Canon EOS R5 and Nikon D850 all support CFExpress.

View all handpicked deals...

Sony Alpha a7R IV Mirrorless Digital Camera Body with Accessories Kit
$3508 $2998
SAVE $510

Thunderbolt and Random Disconnects SOLVED with OWC Thunderbolt Hub

Thunderbolt is supposed to allow 6 devices per port/bus daisy-chained, but users with more than two devices daisy-chained have almost certainly run into the dirty little secret of Thunderbolt that neither Apple nor Intel will discuss: sporadic random disconnects.

Ever have macOS tell you that a device has disconnected unexpectedly (that you should eject it first?). If it’s on Thunderbolt and you didn’t physically do something, that’s a disconnect bug.

Thunderbolt 4 indirectly addresses this nasty reliabilty problem with support for Thunderbolt hubs, also a boon for Macs with only two Thunderbolt ports.

HOT! the OWC Thunderbolt Hub Delivers Unprecedented Rock-Solid Thunderbolt, a mini review

CLICK TO VIEW: OWC Thunderbolt Hub, Dock, cables

OWC Thunderbolt Hub
Protect Your Phone
NuGard KX Case for iPhones and iPads.
Outstanding protection against drops and impact!
Plus, excellent grip for wet hands, cycling, etc.

Longer “reach”: Micro Four Thirds vs Cropping Full-Frame or APS-C

re: The Most Useful and Practical Telephoto for Wildlife Might Be the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm f/4.5 TC1.25X IS PRO

Sensor sizes

See Roy P’s latest comment on thinking through whether to go with Micro Four Thirds or instead crop 35mm full-frame (towards bottom of post).

Funny how the format-size issue just never goes away—real reasons remain to embrace or reject Micro Four Thirds.

More depth of field with smaller format? No... and yes.

Depth of field for a particular focal length and shooting distance and aperture is always the same; the lens projects an image whose properties are invariant to capture area.

Nor does cropping an image change its depth of field, whether the crop is the sensor, or Photoshop. For example, capturing an image at 300mm @ f/4 is identical in the APS-C portion whether the camera records a full-frame capture or an APS-C crop-capture.

But the foregoing is techno-babble that drops real-world context.

Practically speaking compared to Micro Four Thirds, one shoots at (about) half the focal length or twice the distance for the same field of view as 35mm full-frame*. That doubles the depth of field vs 35mm full frame.

* Using the long edge of the frame, the factor is 17.3/35.9 = 0.482 for full frame (2.075 multiplier), and 17.3/23.6 = .733 for APS-C (1.364 multiplier).

Filling the frame on both formats vs cropping

Suppose you are 50 yards/meters distant from a bighorn sheep. You want to fill the frame. Or you might instead crop.

Rounding slightly and ignoring aspect ratio:

Fill the full frame width, equivalent DoF:
Micro Four Thirds: 300mm @ f/4.5 @ 20 megapixels
            APS-C: 408mm @ f/6.3 @ 24 megapixels (typical)
  35mm Full Frame: 622mm @ f/9.0 @ 60 megapixels (Sony A7R IV)
     Fujifilmm MF: 760mm @ f/11.4 @ 100 megapixels (Fujifilm GFX100S) 

Stopping-down for equivalent depth of field can be problematic: slower shutter speed.

Crop to Micro Four Thirds:
Micro Four Thirds: 300mm @ f/4.5 @ 20 megapixels
            APS-C: 300mm @ f/4.5 @ 14.7 megapixels*
  35mm Full Frame: 300mm @ f/4.5 @ 15.7/13.1 megapixels**
     Fujifilmm MF: 300mm @ f/4.5 @ 15.6 megapixels***

* Factor of 0.613 multiplier 1.36X assuming 23.5 X 15.6mm 24-megapixel sensor
** Factor of 0.261 multiplier 2.08X assuming 35.9 X 24.0 60/50-megapixel sensor
*** Factor of 0.395 multiplier 2.53X, assuming 43.8 X 32.8 100-megapixel sensor

Cropping delivers about 1/4 fewer megapixels versus a Micro Four Thirds sensor. But what if the lens has enough reach so that cropping all the way down to Micro Four Thirds size is not needed? Or we see an 80-megapixel 35mm camera? Then the megapixel counts rise rapidly in favor of the larger sensors. So unless shooting is always about maximum “reach” and not getting you out there, the equation quickly moves to favor of the larger sensor. Assuming the lenses are palatable in cost and size/weight. Which might be a big “if”—I’ve never seen any telephoto lens as enjoyable to shoot as the Panasonic 200mm f/2.8 (415mm equiv) for Micro Four Thirds.

But wait—practically speaking, stopping down for equivalent depth of field means shutter speeds 1/4 as fast as on the 35mm full-frame format. That’s a big problem in some scenarios.

My conclusion therefore is that this whole discussion comes down to “it all depends on actual usage”. It does not depend on logic-by-numbers; it depends on what you actually shoot and how and what you are willing to carry and your budget.

Cropping in camera

Some cameras offer a built-in crop-sensor mode for aspect ratios (5:4, 4:3, etc), APS-H crop (1.2X), DX crop (1.57X) and maybe others. Some might record the full frame, others might record only the cropped portion with EXIF denoting the crop.

Sometimes the cameras black-off the cropped area in the Live View image and some show it faded and some might draw lines.

Crop modes are useful for cutting file sizes down if the camera records only the crop portion, but unless the subject matter is highly cooperative, I deem it better to record the entire sensor. An ideal crop might well differ from an in-camera crop for compositional reasons—the desired crop could be translated/offset slightly, cropped a bit less, or work better with another aspect ratio cropped on one side vs the other. Shooting a bit wide and capturing the entire frame gives a lot more options for the final image.

Sensor sizes

Deals Updated Daily at B&H Photo

Great Blue Herons Require a Very Long Lens, at least in my backyard

re: The Most Useful and Practical Telephoto for Wildlife Might Be the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm f/4.5 TC1.25X IS PRO
re: Cropping a Full-Frame 35mm-Format Camera for Longer Reach, vs APS-C and Micro Four Thirds

Below, my shot today of a Great Blue Heron, with a very inadequate 100mm focal length om the Olympus ZUIKO SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED (100mm is equivalent to 208mm in 35mm format).

That’s why the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm f/4.5 would be so darn handy... that heron would fill the frame at the long end of the 150-400mm at its 400mm setting and with the built-in TC 1.25X, it offers 5X the magnification (25X smaller area) than the 100mm of the 35-100mm zoom.

Please use these links to buy, thank you.

CLICK TO VIEW: Olympus Micro Four Thirds and fantastic lenses for it

Great Blue Heron
f4 @ 1/1000 sec, ISO 200; 2021-03-06 14:20:42
Olympus E-M1 Mark II + Olympus Zuiko SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED @ 207.6mm equiv (100mm)

[low-res image for bot]

Of course, context matters: sometimes you can get really close.

White Egret
f4 @ 1/1500 sec, ISO 200; 2005-08-14 13:46:56
NIKON D2X + Nikon AF-S VR 70-200mm f/2.8 IF ED @ 300mm equiv (200mm)

[low-res image for bot]


Canon EOS R5

IN STOCK!

45 megapixels, 8K30 and 4K120 10-bit video, IBIS, 5.7 megadot EVF, 20 fps.

Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH: My Initial 'Take'

re:Voigtlander M 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar Aspherical
re: World’s Best 35mm Lens? Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar for Sony Mirrorless and Leica M Coming in April

Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH

In diglloyd Leica, I offer some insights into the new Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH, including:

Overview of Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH

Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH: MTF

Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH: Distortion

Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH: Vignetting

At a wallet-busting price of nearly 7X the Voigtlande 35/2 APO, the new Leica 35/2 APO doesn’t look any better based on MTF charts. So it will come down to actual field performance.

For landscape, I’ll go out on a limb just a little and suggest that the Voigtlander looks like a more consistent performer across the frame, even if the Leica has a tad more micro contrast in a very small central area at f/2.

But the main thing (if you can afford it), is that the two lenses likely will 'draw' differently. The smart move if you can afford the Leica 35/2 APO: get it, but also get the Voigtlander 35/2 APO, and shoot them side-by-side to see which is most pleasing to your own type of photography*.

Or course I want to review both lenses (and the Zeiss ZM 35/1.4 Distagon) on the Leica M10-R and Leica M10-M, but the sky-high prices exceed my equipment loaner budget, so I don’t know to make it happen just yet. Maybe some reader will loan me an M10-R or M10-M and the lens for a few weeks.

* You might need to 6-bit code the Voigtlander 35/2 APO if it has color shading issues. At least one of the 35mm Leica M lens codes should work well for the Voigtlander.

MTF for Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH
Distortion for Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH
Vignetting for Leica 35mm f/2 APO-Summicron-M ASPH


OWC Envoy Pro FX SSD: Fantastically Fast Option for Photographers/Videographers

Bus-powered, Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C compatibility, totally silent, awesomely fast.

REVIEWED: OWC Mercury Envoy Pro FX Thunderbolt 3 SSD: Awesomely Fast!

OWC Envoy Pro FX Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C SSD

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

The Most Useful and Practical Telephoto for Wildlife Might Be the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm f/4.5 TC1.25X IS PRO

re: Inexpensive Camera for Wildlife: Olympus E-M1 Mark II + Reader Comments, including the reader comments.
re: Cropping a Full-Frame 35mm-Format Camera for Longer Reach, vs APS-C and Micro Four Thirds

Olympus M.Zuiko 150-400mm f/4.5

UPDATE March 7: more reader comments added, scroll down.

Each spring and fall in particular, I feel a little frustrated with lacking the reach to get some good images. For example, here in spring a Great Blue Heron regularly lands about 80 feet out my office window (looking for gophers). I’d love to get some images but this bird is extremely skittish; just exiting the house and off s/he goes. All these years, and not one acceptable image. Yet I could shoot right out my office window (swing-open windows).

Great Blue Heron diet — Highly variable and adaptable. Eats mostly fish, but also frogs, salamanders, turtles, snakes, insects, rodents, birds. Has been seen stalking voles and gophers in fields, capturing rails at edge of marsh, eating many species of small waterbirds. 


But the longest lens I have for the Olympus E-M1 Mark II is the Olympus ZUIKO SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED. A world class lens, but it only gets out to 200mm equivalent, and I need more like 800mm for such birds or other wildlife that size and smaller.

That’s why I’d love to own the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm f/4.5 TC1.25X IS PRO. Not just for home, but it would be great for all sorts of grab-n-click shots in the outdoors, with plenty of opportunities right out the van window.

Even without its built-in 1.25X teleconverter, the 150-400mm is the equivalent of about a 312-832mm. With the teleconverter, about a 400-1000mm and it’s still at f/5.6, which is slow but acceptable. On the E-M1 Mark II, handholding with quality is feasible too, what with the optical image stabilization and the IBIS.

James M, a wildlife photographer since 1949, writes:

I have used the Olympus M.ZUIKO 300mm f/4 IS PRO for several years and it has never let me down. The upcoming Olympus 150-400mm f/4.5 IS lens may be an additional reason, but I have yet to see a critical review. For less than 300mm there are many good lens options. I often use the Panasonic Lumix 42.5mm f1.2 ASPH.

DIGLLOYD: yep the 150-400mm is the ticket, and those other lenses are great too.

Is a 20-megapixel sensor enough for wildlife? I think so, but take a look at the image below and see what you think. Thing is, depth of field is a major consideration (double on Micro Four Thirds at the same aperture), and if you have twice the reach and/or can handhold shots, you get a lot more winning shots much more easily. Try shooting one of the full-frame super-telephotos—major PITA in practical terms.

Please use these links to buy, thank you.

Roy P writes:

As the adage (created by me, but I’m probably the millionth co-author) goes, it’s the lens that matters, and the camera is just an accessory to the lens.

I just couldn’t pass up this Oly lens. For hand-held shooting of wildlife, BIF, planes, etc., the sheer reach and portability of this lens is unmatched, and I’ve got to believe the optics will be very good for the stated used case. I don’t think I will be doing pano stitching at the max focal length with the 1.25x switched on. My only concern is the viability of Olympus as a company, but the fact they came out with this camera is a sign they are not dead. This lens should be a pretty big success.

Also, a little worried about the camera. A 33% price drop is not normal – that happens when a product is being end of lifed. So I don’t know if there’s a new camera coming as well, that would obsolete this camera.

I don’t think I’m buying any other lens for this. I don’t want to own yet another system!

DIGLLOYD: yes, the camera is an accessory for some lenses, [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], etc)! The price drop on the Olympus E-M1X is probably just demand-based—it’s a niche camera. And perhaps it’s too big for most shooters (those with any lens but the 150-400mm!) and just not worth the weight and bulk over the Olympus E-M1 Mark III—and thus has sold poorly (I’m not clear on what exactly the E-M1X does better). The Panasonic Leica 8mm f/3.5 fisheye might be a suitable complement to the 150-400mm.

Eeraj Q writes:

Glad to see Tigger survive the coyote encounter. Handsome cat. I like the B&W version [diglloyd: see below] - another great illustration of using B&W when the light generally sucks, but monochrome can still make for a compelling image. Agree with your assessment on MFT for wildlife. Not a wildlife person here, but I always wondered about the need to carry boat-anchor full-frame long lenses for that rare trip where I might see a whale or something far away. Olympus is surely a strong contender here for people like me, who don't make a living shooting bears or eagles, but still want a decent wildlife shot if the opportunity arises. Might rent one for a trip to Alaska whenever that happens.

DIGLOYD: most pros might do well to have the Micro Four Thirds solution at hand. I’m not sold on struggling with a lens like the Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS or Canon 200-400mm f/4L IS.

Since his encounter with coytotes a few weeks ago, Tigger has really ramped up his tree-climbing—he’ll rocket up a tree lightning fast, or run up a limb 30 feet up and out, pause and survey the scene, etc. He loves olive branches as a “kitty tease”, and has shredded several dozen now. I’ve never seen a cat so at home in trees.

Tigger the Tree Climber
f2.8 @ 1/200 sec handheld, ISO 1250; 2021-03-02 17:40:03
Olympus E-M1 Mark II + Olympus Zuiko SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED @ 207.6mm equiv (100mm) RAW: USM {8,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]

Below, tough lighting. I prefer Tigger’s gorgeous patterned colors, but when the light is tough like this, monochrome works well—toggle to compare.

Tigger the Tree Climber
f4 @ 1/100 sec, ISO 800; 2021-03-02 17:41:30
Olympus E-M1 Mark II + Olympus Zuiko SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED @ 108mm equiv (52mm)
RAW: LACA corrected, push 0.5 stops, +13 Shadows, -100 Highlights, +20 Whites, +5 Dehaze, +37 Clarity, Chroma NR {10}, USM {6,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]

Roy P writes:

The Olympus 150-400 lens should indeed be excellent for wildlife.  This lens + the Olympus 40-150 f/2.8 + two bodies should be everything you need for all wildlife / safari photography.

The big question mark has been the viability of Olympus as a company.  Frankly, I’m quite surprised they came out with a new lens, and a very high end one at that.  That could be a sign that the company has now moved past its nightmare years and found some new financing and support to continue its operations.

The other big question is the viability of the MFT format.  There is strong competition at the APS-C level from both Fuji and Sony, and there is also strong competition at the 1” sensor segment from the Sony RX100 and RX10 cameras.  Between these two, the MFT faces enormous pressure.  With the only other MFT camera maker (Panasonic) being very video-centric, Olympus is fighting a lonely battle, and you have to wonder if one day they will just fold.

If the risk of folding goes away, this does provide an attractive option for wildlife photographers.  The Sony and Canon 600mm f/4 lenses and cameras like the R5 and A1 will be the best for wildlife, but they are big, and as you pointed out, you get a lot more DOF from the MFT.

BTW, what is the top of the line Olympus camera?  I’m not familiar with the models.  The most expensive camera seems to be the OM-D E-M1X, with its built-in vertical grip.  This camera is on sale, with a $1000 price drop, from $3K to $2K.  I don’t know if that’s good news or bad news.  Any chance they could be coming out with a new body?

One wildcard is the Sony RX10, which has not seen an upgrade in some 3-4 years.  This is a grossly underappreciated camera, IMO.  I took mine to Kenya in 2018 and I came back with a lot of very good photos with it.  The only problem is, it’s built like a toy.  IMO, if Sony created a rugged version of this camera with a more pro-like implementation of the lens with fast zoom and fast AF / tracking, in a rugged body with weather sealing, etc., even if they tripled the price from $1700 to $5000, it would be a formidable lens.  I have a lurking suspicion that the RX10 might see an upgrade this year.

But the Olympus 150-400 lens with its built-in zoom and focusing, as well as the 1.25x integrated extender, should be really nice.  The big question is whether Olympus is going to be around!

DIGLLOYD: top of the line is Olympus E-M1X, but the Olympus E-M1 III looks awfully appealing as an all-around that is great for telephoto wildlife work too. I got the E-M1 II for only $899 so I’m sticking with that for now.

If it really is about maximum performance for high-speed wildlife capture (the “Pro capture” feature), stick with Olympus lenses. According to James M:

For wildlife, the Pro Capture mode is very valuable. For example if you want to capture a lion pouncing on its prey. Oly is the only camera that has this mode. But it will not work if a Pany lens is attached. The manual does not point that out clearly. You only learn it the hard way.

The most pressing problem I’m seeing is a total failure to focus on the eyes. Maybe I’m doing it wrong somehow? Maybe the E-M1 Mark III or the E-M1X actually work for Eye AF?

Tigger Closeup
f2.8 @ 1/160 sec, ISO 1000; 2021-03-02 17:40:35
Olympus E-M1 Mark II + Olympus Zuiko SHG 35-100mm f/2 ED @ 207.6mm equiv (100mm)
RAW: push 0.35 stops, +40 Whites, +5 Dehaze, +15 Clarity

[low-res image for bot]

Roy P writes:

If you can catch these white egrets in flight, they are really spectacular.  You can frequently get close enough to shoot them with a 70-200 + 1.4x or a 70-300mm like lens.  You can see them at Shoreline early in the AM when they come down for food and are flying around.  Also pelicans, especially some days when they show up in droves.

For BIF, the Sony or Canon 100-400 are very handy – they are light and hand-holdable.  Heavier lenses of course, need a tripod.  This is a great thing to use with a tripod, it lets you shoot almost hand-held with a heavy lens. And for only $100:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/197099-REG/Novoflex_GAKO_Forked_Joint.html

I swap this out for my FlexShooter head in a few seconds, and now I’m almost hand-held.  I only need to remember when I’m using this that the camera and lens are not held by anything other than my hands, so I can’t let go of the camera!  So I always wear the camera strap, just in case!

BTW, I’m having second thoughts about Olympus.  The company that bought them is the same one that bought the Sony VAIO computer line.  All they did was to milk it as a cash cow, and eventually let it fade.  I think Olympus is a different business – unlike computers, lenses are less vulnerable to digital decay, although cameras are.  Still, the Oly cameras are pretty stable and can be sold for many more years – I don’t think any Olympus users are clamoring for 40 or 60 MP sensors or 8K video for their MFT cameras.

So I don’t expect the Olympus business to fade and die as the Sony VAIO line did, and who knows, if they can find a niche in wildlife photography, that is large enough to keep them alive for quite some time.  There is a lot of excellent Oly glass that has already been designed, and won’t have to be upgraded for another 10 years, maybe even longer.

The 150-400 is a bit pricey, for sure.  Maybe $5K would have been a more fair price.  But it is also much cheaper than a Canon 200-400 with the 1.25x (which seems to have been their inspiration).  There are people like Tony Northrup screaming Olympus is gouging their captive customers, and how this will be their last lens, and how their business is going to evaporate, leaving their customers holding the bag.  See, for example:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsJI35bxif4&t=328s

Unlike Steve Huff, Ken Rockwell, et al, who are strictly coin-operated (they will pitch whatever you pay them to pitch), Tony is more independent and insightful, although I don’t agree with a lot of things he says.  In this case, his concerns about the long-term future of Olympus are legit, although I don’t think it is a “run it into the ground” scenario as Tony thinks. 

I think if Oly can find some niches they can defend and stabilize the operation financially, they can survive and even thrive.  Leica has found its niche, and while they aren’t going to grow much past a 1% market share, they can stay at that level and be prosperous, like Lichtenstein or Monaco do as countries.

I also don’t buy that Olympus is gouging its customers. They are pricing to what their market will bear, and I do think this will be a superb lens, and it should be compared to the Canon 200-400 or Nikon 180-400, which are like $11-12.5K.  So I am not sweating the $7.5K price, although I’d be a lot more excited if it were only $4-5K.

In my case, it’s more a decision based on what I already have, and that is a lot of Sony glass.  I already own the Sony 70-200, 100-400, 200-600, 400 f/2.8, 600 f/4 and 1.4x and 2.0x.

If I compare the Oly 150-400 with the Sony 200-600, which I can use with a Sony A6500 with a 1.5x crop factor and 1.5x DOF, or even an A1 in APS-C mode (presumably that buys additional 1.5x DOF also) or just crop a full-frame image to APS-C size (with no DOF gain), this is how they shake out:

  Micro Four Thirds vs APS-C lens choices
Micro Four Thirds vs APS-C lens choices

The thing is, while the Oly lens + camera is eminently more hand-holdable than the Sony lens + A1, it’s still too heavy for extended hand-held-only shooting.  I’d still end up using a tripod + Novoflex GAKO forked joint, anyway.

I also have to consider that sooner or later, maybe even this year, we will see a 180-400 or perhaps even 150-400 from Sony with a 1.25x or 1.4x built-in extender.  I can’t imagine Sony not addressing this obvious hole in its portfolio.  And when that comes, it’s a no brainer, I’m getting one.

So with that backdrop, I think an Olympus 75-150 + camera becomes just too much gear for me, and I’m thinking of pulling the plug on it.

For the same money, I could buy a second Sony A1 body + another Fujifilm GFX lens, like either the 110 f/2 or maybe even the 250 f/4, which would be like a 200 mm prime, and with the 1.4x, it would give me a 280 mm f/5.6.

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1402064-REG/fujifilm_600020030_gf_250mm_f_4_r.html

I’m thinking which would I rather have, the Oly 150-400 or the Fuji 250 f/4 + 1.4x, given that for the use cases for the Oly 150-400, I already have competent solutions.  Increasingly, the Fuji 250 f/4 is looking very appealing!

DIGLLOYD: what a great essay about selecting to find the best solution for long-lens photography.The right solution for one’s own work can surely only be known only with the practicalities of experience: lugging the gear around, the shooting envelope and responsiveness of the camera, the sharpness and final image quality.

On the business viability front, the concern that I'd have is what happens if the lens malfunctions. Easy enough to get another body.

Pricing: to take several $K off the Olympus 150-400mm f/4.5 lens price, you'd likely get an inferior product (optics quality, build, quality control). It's just what this stuff costs, and that doesn't change a lot by format—it seems to be invariant for the high-end stuff. Of course I can't rule out some a foolish decision to sell an inferior product with a big markup, but it's halo product and that would be reputational suicide.

75mm range to complement 150-400mm: the 75/1.8 is very compact and is an alternative to another zoom. You can fit it into a jacket pocket.

What I know for sure is when I shot the Panasonic 200/2.8 on the Olympus E-M1 II, it was the most enjoyable long lens work I had ever done. Ditto for the Olympus 300/4. Can that 'feel' be replicated on a Sony full-frame camera + lens? Perhaps.

Perhaps cropping is the solution, as you suggest. If so, I see no point to APS-C; same arguments for and against it as Micro Four Thirds. And using APS-C presums that an equivalent quality lens of reduced size and weight are available.

If the lens size/weight reductions are not there, then you might as well crop an A1 or A7R IV. I’m a bit skeptical that the Sony 200-600mm can deliver the same sharpness as the Olympus 150-400mm because no Sony tele-zoom I've used has ever even been symmetric across the frame and the quality just hasn’t there even at the top end—maybe I just got a bad sample? And all the Olympus SHG lenses I have are perfect (but I don’t know if that translates to the 150-400mm).



Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

FOR SALE: Leica M Gear, Canon EF 200/2.8L IS, View Camera Gear, Zeiss Batis/Loxia

Most items with original box, lenses with lens caps, etc, except as noted. Clear and clean glass, known-good lens samples owned by Lloyd.

Local sale (San Francisco Bay Area) preferred so buyer can inspect lens, but can ship FedEx insured. Contact Lloyd.

Zeiss Batis and Zeiss Loxia

Leica M

View camera gear

All items with original box, lenses with lens caps, etc. Clear and clean glass, known-good lens samples owned by Lloyd

  • Rodenstock 135mm f/5.6 APO-Sironar-S Copal shutter + Linhof Technikardan lens board $1250 PRISTINE
  • Schneider 400mm f/5.6 APO-TELE-XENAR Copal shutter+ Linhof Technikardan lens board $1750 PRISTINE
  • Schneider 150mm f/4 Tele-Xenar medium format lens (Pentacon)
  • Carl Zeiss Jena 180mm f/2.8 MC Sonnar medium format lens (Pentacon?)

Canon

$950 Canon MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1-5x Macro Photo Lens

Canon EF 200mm f/1.8L USM — see this page.

Canon EF 200mm f/1.8L and stuff
f1.8 @ 1/100 sec, ISO 20; 2019-09-15 09:22:47
iPhone 7 Plus + iPhone 7 Plus 4.0 mm f/1.8 ENV: altitude 473 ft / 144 m

[low-res image for bot]

 

OWC ROVER PRO wheels for Mac Pro

No tools or hassle… just place your Mac Pro’s factory feet into the Rover Pro’s polished stainless-steel housings and secure with a few hand twists.

When you’re done moving your Mac Pro around, the Rover Pro makes it just as quick and easy to convert back to the factory feet for stationary use.

Reader Comment: “applaud your new monochrome site... D850M a joy to work with”

re: Reader Comment: Black and White Photography “samples you have are some of the best I have seen”

See my developing Monochrome workflow pages, part way done with lots more planned.

The monochrome workflow pages currently resides in Making Sharp Images, but they will become their own Monochrome section in the future, incorporating the diglloyd Infrared publication. I need to sort out some kind of video support for screencasts and such, ideally on a platform that can’t throw away my entire subscriber list as YouTube did a few years ago, or otherwise stomp on me or arbitrarily demonetize my videos (as YouTube also did).

Gary VZ writes:

I applaud your new monochrome site.

On your recommendation, I bought a Nikon D850M from MaxMax.com a year ago and what a joy it is to work with. The tonal gradations, absence of noise, and high resolution are all strong selling features. The Zeiss Otii and Milvii lenses are superb in this application (as they are in color). Of special note for me are the Zeiss Milvus 18mm f/2.8, the Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 and Zeiss Otus 100mm f/1.4 and the Nikon AF-S 200mm f2 VRII

I am a regular reader of your blog and I appreciate your objective equipment reviews.

DIGLLOYD: the D850 Monochrome image quality is indeed superb. I found no image quality problems with it as I did with the Leica M10 Monochrom. Indeed, the D850M the noise is far superior (spectacularly low), plus the D850 + Milvus/Otus sharpness leaves Leica M10M and the compromised M lenses in the dust.

You can get a Nikon D850M converted to monochrome at maxmax.com—please let them know I referred you.

Eeraj Q writes:

Excellent walkthroughs in your "MONOCHROME IMAGERY" section. Never thought of using the Dehaze filter for B&W until I browsed through "Using the Dehaze filter for Monochrome Images". The example shown in that section and being able to quickly see the effect from 0 to 100 Dehaze is very useful. Practical techniques that can be learnt quickly for very effective results - highly recommended reading for anyone who is on the fence.

On a separate note, glad to see Tigger survive the coyote encounter. Handsome cat. I like the B&W version - another great illustration of using B&W when the light generally sucks, but monochrome can still make for a compelling image. Agree with your assessment on MFT for wildlife. Not a wildlife person here, but I always wondered about the need to carry boat-anchor full-frame long lenses for that rare trip where I might see a whale or something far away. Olympus is surely a strong contender here for people like me, who don't make a living shooting bears or eagles, but still want a decent wildlife shot if the opportunity arises. Might rent one for a trip to Alaska whenever that happens.

DIGLOYD: I’ll keep filling out the monochrome section over the coming months. As for wildlife, I think even most pros might do well to have the Micro Four Thirds solution at hand.

Please buy using these links. My top recommendation as a first lens for D850M is the Zeiss Milvus 35mm f/1.4—spectacularly good.

Pine Creek Peaks at Dusk, Crescent Moon
f4.5 @ 6.0 sec electronic shutter stitched from 10 frames (5 X 2), ISO 31; 2019-10-03 18:36:21
NIKON D850 + Zeiss Milvus 85mm f/1.4 + filter B+W Dark Red 091
ENV: Pine Creek Tungsten Mine, altitude 9000 ft / 2743 m, 50°F / 10°C
RAW: vignetting corrected, pull 1.3 stops, USM {8,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]
Eureka Dunes set against Superstition Mountains range
f8 @ 1/15 sec electronic shutter, ISO 31; 2019-10-07 10:20:33
NIKON D850 monochrome + Zeiss Milvus 135mm f/2 + filter B+W Dark Red 091
ENV: Talc mine to the west, altitude 6200 ft / 1890 m, 70°F / 21°C
RAW: pull 1.75 stops, +100 Shadows, +100 Highlights, +72 Dehaze, USM {20,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]

Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

Every Photographer Should Have a Color Checker Card to Establish Neutral White Balance and Tint for Each Camera and Lens Brand Combo

re: white balance and tint

Datacolor SpyderCHECKR

One of the very first things I do with a new lens or camera is to establish what is a neutral white balance and tint settings for a specific camera+lens combination. See white balance and tint.

I like to at least get a baseline on mid-day sun and late-day sun and blue shade, because tint required for neutrality changes as the color temperature changes. But it’s more challenging than that:

  • Sometimes Adobe ships defective camera or lens profiles for Adobe Camera Raw. Later, an update fixes the problem; I’ve seen 10 to 20 point swings in magenta, for example.
  • Each lens line (eg Sony vs Sigma vs Zeiss) tends to have differing color temperature (yellow/blue) and tint (magenta/green characteristics. Usually a lens line is self-consistent, but rarely matches another brand.
  • Tint in particular can change with aperture. See for example White Balance and Tint — Huge Difference Wide Open vs Stopped Down.
  • Tint changes with color temperature. Just about every camera I used has a green shift as the light becomes more blue. Under the right conditions, I can show this phenomenon in a single capture (meaning there is no “correct” tint, only a magenta or green bias in some areas).
  • Polarizers and filters can affect tint slightly (usually only a little). Usually only a few points, but if you’re picky it’s worth knowing.

So... get the Datacolor SpyderCHECKR ASAP as it is 36% off today only. The clamshell design (BH SKU DASC) is best to start with, though some other ones are useful too, like the pocket-size ones. Also be aware that some displays are not color accurate (like my LG 5K) and that you should have a color managed display from NEC or Eizo.

OWC Envoy Express

World’s first Thunderbolt 3 M.2 NVME SSD enclosure.

Super fast, bus-powered, 3.3 oz, DIY easy, rugged and compact!


See also OWC Express 4M2
√ No more slow and noisy hard drives!

Fujifilm GFX100/Fujifilm GFX100S: 16-shot high-res mode looks like crap

re: Fujifilm GFX100S Pixel Shift Mode: How Good is it, and is it Viable for Non-Studio Photography?
re: pixel shift and multi-shot high-res mode

Definitions as used here:
pixel shift= 4-shot capture acquiring an RGGB sample at each photosite using full-pixel sensor shift
multi-shot high-res mode= shift using fractional pixel shifts, typically 8 or 16 exposures

Fujifilm GFX100S

See previous discussion of Fujififilm GFX100 16-shot mode.

I’ve had a chance to look at some multi-shot high-res mode raw images from the Fujifilm GFX100 sent by reader Alfred C, including a still life studio image.

The results are singularly disappointing in (a) not having any more real detail than a single capture, and (b) showing digital artifacts.

And that’s a still life with fixed lighting. Outdoor images are hideous, with massive out-of-register color pixels.

Sad to say, Fujifilm has screwed the pooch with its 16-shot multi-shot high-res mode science fair project. What was wrong with giving us a usable (for static subjects) 4-shot pixel shift like Sony and Pentax? How can a company as talented as Fujifilm ship a feature that is total crap? For that matter, why isn’t PDAF banding their top priority, since it’s the #1 image quality flaw in the GFX100/GFX100S.

Compared to the intelligent Panasonic S1R multi-shot high-res mode it’s a complete joke, and it makes the Sony A7R IV pixel shift mode (4-shot) look great by comparison, because at least the Sony algorithm works beautifully for static subjects.

Even the low end cameras can do far better: the Olympus multi-shot high-res mode of the Olympus E-M1 Mark II and Olympus E-M5 Mark II are excellent in still life capture.

CLICK TO VIEW: Fujifilm GFX100 and Top Lenses

Fujifilm GFX100S pixel shift algorithm

Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

3rd-Party Lenses for Nikon Z, Canon RF, Sony E, Fujifilm GF Mirrorless Cameras

re: The Camera Market is Down to Two 35mm Format Contestants: Sony A1 and Canon TBD

A system that locks you into their brand lenses is a poor value proposition. The hassle of lens adapters and all their problems is not a reasonable solution—I’m talking native-mount lenses.

At the outset, the strength of the Sony mirrorless ecosystem was and is its wide range of lens choices, starting with its partnership with Zeiss. Sony’s brilliant strategic move at the outset was to allow/encourage the development of lenses from other vendors. So we now have Sony/Zeiss, Zeiss Loxia, Zeiss Batis, Voigtlander FE, Sigma FE and half a dozen other brand lenses for Sony.

Similarly, Fujifilm medium format allows other brand lenses in native mount, and Fujifilm itself even offers a lens adapter for H-mount lenses and an adapter for its cameras to view camera lenses.

The good news is that 3rd-party options have emerged for all the mirrorless brands now. Is this not the golden age of photography?

Still, top-grade lens companies like Zeiss and Sigma have yet to support Nikon Z and Canon RF platforms, and it’s unclear if that will change—probably not unles Canon and Sony increase market share, which seems unlikely.

Please use these links to buy, thank you.

Non-Nikon native-mount lenses for Nikon Z

A good start, but only 2nd-tier vendors Sigma, Zeiss.

Non-Canon native-mount lenses for Canon RF

A good start, but only 2nd-tier vendors Sigma, Zeiss.

Non-Fujifilm native-mount lenses for Fujifilm medium format

Not bad, given the relatively small market. But only 2nd-tier vendors Sigma, Zeiss. I’d sure like to see what Zeiss and Sigma could do on a 44 X 33mm sensor.

Non-Sony lenses for Sony mirrorless

A huge cornucopia of lenses for Sony including Sigma and Zeiss.

Please use these links to buy, thank you.

Sampling of native-mount lenses for Sony mirrorless
$199 SAVE $50 = 20.0% $7 FREE ITEMS Tamron 35mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M 1:2 in All Other Categories

 


Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

Mid range zooms: the new Sigma FE 28-70mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary

re: The Camera Market is Down to Two 35mm Format Contestants: Sony A1 and Canon TBD

The strength of the Sony mirrorless ecosystem is its wide range of lens choices. A system that locks you into their brand lenses is a poor value proposition.

Mid range zooms for Sony

If you’re in the market for a mid-range zoom, the new entrant is the Sigma FE 28-70mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary, claimed to perform as well as its sibling, the Sigma FE 24-70mm f/2.8 DG DN Art.

At 470g, the Sigma 28-70/2.8 is considerably lighter than its 835g 24-70/2.8 sibling, and significantly smaller too. It might make a good choice for an all-arounder, and a 28-70mm still matches up great to a 12/14-24mm zoom and 70-200mm zoom, for those looking to do it all with just 3 lenses.

Please use these links to buy, thank you. See also Voigtlander for Leica M.


Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

Recommended Lenses for the Leica M Shooter: Voigtlander M Nokton 75mm f/1.5, Voigtlander M 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar, Voigtlander M 50mm f/2 APO-Lanthar

re: World’s Best 35mm Lens? Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar for Sony Mirrorless and Leica M Coming in April

Leica M shooters might want to take note of some extremely low-cost* but very high quality lenses for the Leica M platform.

In particular, the Voigtlander M 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar and Voigtlander M 50mm f/2 APO-Lanthar are spectacular performers as in best on any platform.

Although I have not tested it, the Voigtlander M Nokton 50mm f/1.2 Aspherical might give the Leica 50mm f/1.2 Noctilux-M ASPH a run for its money, at 1/7 the price.

And the Voigtlander M Nokton 75mm f/1.5 Aspherical reportedly has very pleasing bokeh, at 1/5 the cost of Leica’s 75/2 APO offering.

* Relative to Leica offerings.

Please use these links to buy, thank you. See also Voigtlander for Leica M.


Upgrade the memory of your 2020 iMac up to 128GB

Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar vs Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM

Subscribe to diglloyd Mirrorless.

re: World’s Best 35mm Lens? Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar for Sony Mirrorless and Leica M Coming in April

   
Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM
   
Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2
APO-Lanthar

Really cool to see two new top-flight 35mm focal length prime lenses showing up for Sony mirrorless. Maybe the world’s best 35mm lens vs Sony’s f/1.4 offering should make for a really interesting comparison.

Accordingly, I am deferring review of the Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM until the Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lanthar becomes available in April. The choice of manual focus or autofocus will surely decide the matter for some (in favor of AF), but size/weight and performance for others.

For landscape and those who wish to travel compactly/lightly, the Voigtlander offering is unbeatable at 352 grams vs 524 grams for the Sony, and much more compact dimensions.

The Sigma FE 35mm f/1.2 DG DN Art is superb, but it is huge and heavy (1090 grams). Still, I should probably try to get all three together because the Sigma 35/1.2 was really impressive when I reviewed it.

My expectation of a “good sample” is highest for the Voigtlander FE 35mm f/2 APO-Lantharbecause of excellent quality control at Cosina Voigtlander, and the simplest lens design of the three. It can be tough getting a top-performing sample of exotic lens designs of f/1.4 and f/1.2 speed—the Sigma 35/1.2 had some sample variation issues.

It also makes me wonder: for those who need a compact/lightweight top performer for some uses (the Voigtlander), but also want a fast high performer autofocus lens, maybe the Voigtlander and Sigma could turn out to be fine choices as a combo? Also, for some uses, the best overall illumination at f/1.4 or f/2 might be a serious factor for consideration, like astrophotography, or 'street' shooting.

Finally, characteristics like distortion and field of view might be considerations (the Sigma 35/1.2 has substantial barrel distortion). I’d expect the Voigtlander to have the least distortion (TBD), and it does have the widest field of view. When used, distortion correction has a real impact on actual micro contrast, so a low-distortion lens like the Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2 is a big plus.

Please use these links to buy, thank you. See also Voigtlander for Sony.

Eric B writes:

I am very much looking forward to your reviews of the new 35mm E mount lenses. I have the Voigtlander 50mm f/2 APO-Lanthar and it is truly spectacular.

I wonder if you might include the interesting Sigma FE 35mm f/2 DG DN in that group. It appears to be light, relatively inexpensive, and desirable as part of a small prime set for Sony E.

I do not question the excellence of the Sigma f/1.2 but at 1 kg, (compared to the f/2 DG DN at 325 grams, the CV f/2 at 352 grams and the even the Sony GM at 524 grams) it will likely never see the inside of my camera bag whereas the Sony GM and/or the CV 35 APO are decent candidates. It’s great to have so many excellent choices. Thanks for all you do.

DIGLLOYD: Yes, I should probably add the Sigma FE 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary to the grouping. Though I have yet to be satisfied with any of the Contemporary lenses performance, with 3 aspherical elements, the Sigma 35/2 might turn out to be a fine performer if it can control field curvature and be free of focus shift issues. Its sibling the Sigma FE 45mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary makes visually appealing images, but disappointed me in field use and could not perform satisfactorily on the mosaic test. And when I look at some sample images with the Sigma 35/2, they looks pretty poor in the outer zones on distance scenes.

Top-class 35mm lenses for Sony mirrorless
  Voigtlander FE50mm f/2 APO-Lanthar Sigma FE 35mm f/2 DG DN Art Sony FE 35mm f/1.4 GM Sigma FE 35mm f/1.2 DG DN Art
Aperture range: f/2 - f/16
1/3 stop clicks or stepless aperture
f/2 - f/22 f/1.4 - 16 f/1.2 - f/16
Iris blades: 12 blades
circular aperture through f/16
9, rounded 11, rounded 11 blades, rounded
Focusing range: 13.8 in = 35 cm - INF 10.6 in = 27 cm - INF 9.8 in = 25 cm - INF 11.81 in / 30 cm - INF
Reproduction ratio: 1:6.46 0.18X = 1:5.5 0.26X = 1:3.84 0.19X = 1:5.26
Angle of view: 62.2° 63.4° 63° 63.4°
Number of elements/groups: 11 elements in 9 groups
5 special dispersion glass
2 double-sided aspherical
10 elements in 9 groups 14 elements in 10 groups 17 elements in 12 groups
Filter thread: 49mm 58mm 67mm 82mm
Weight (nominal): 352g 11.5 oz = 325g 524g 38.45 oz = 1090g
Dimensions: 62.6 x 67.3 mm 2.8 x 2.7 in = 70 X 67.4mm 76 X 96 mm 3.46 x 5.36 in = 87.8 x 136.2 mm
Includes: Front and Rear Lens Caps
Lens Hood
Limited 1-Year Warranty
LH577-01 Lens Hood
Sigma LCF-55 III 55mm Lens Cap
Sigma Rear Cap LCR II for Sony E Mount Lenses
Limited 1-Year Warranty + Limited 3-Year U.S.A. Warranty Extension
ALC-F67S 67mm Front Lens Cap
ALC-R1EM Rear Lens Cap
ALC-SH164 Lens Hood
Lens Case
Limited 1-Year Warranty
Lens Case LH878-02 Lens Hood
Sigma LCF-82 III 82mm Lens Cap
Sigma Rear Cap LCR II
Limited 1-Year Warranty + Limited 3-Year U.S.A. Warranty Extension

Image below from Patriarch Grove from Above At Dusk, View Southwest.

Sunset at Patriarch Grove
f1.2 @ 0.4 sec electronic shutter, ISO 100; 2019-10-24 18:24:21
Sony A7R IV + Sigma FE 35mm f/1.2 DG DN Art + polarizer Breakthrough Photography X4
ENV: Patriarch Grove, altitude 11500 ft / 3505 m, 45°F / 7°C
RAW: Enhance Details, LACA corrected, +40 Shadows, -80 Highlights, +40 Whites, +10 Contrast, USM {8,50,0}

[low-res image for bot]

 

OWC Area 51


Accessories • batteries • cables, docks • hard drives and SSDs • Mac hardware • new and pre-owned Macs • Thunderbolt
... and more!
Mac or PC, iPhone/iPad accessories, more!

Reader Comment: “had I read your article before, I surely could have spared money and disappointment before buying”

re: Fujifilm medium format

Subscribe to diglloyd Medium Format.

Alberto D writes:

Fujifilm GFX-50S

Dear Mr. Chambers,

I’m reading your site with great interest and your articles are more than helpful—thumbs up for your great work.

I have recently  switched from Canon EOS 5Ds R to the Fujifilm GFX-50S system. I’m happy but I wasn’t aware of the weakness of the Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8 lens and bought it. I have the Fujifilm GF 23mm f/4 and the Fujifilm GF 110mm f/2, which are good—maybe I was lucky no focus issues at the moment.

I have kept three Leica R lenses that I’ve used with Canon. The Leica 280/2.8 APO-Telyt-R with the 50 GFX-50R was terrible but It has a lens separation problem discovered by a Technician—very disappointing considering the original cost of the lens.

The 100/2,8 APO-Macro-Elmarit-R is ok but not so good as I expected, and the 50 Summicron shows vignetting from 5,6.

Having read your articles before I surely could have spared money and disappoint...

Many thanks have a nice day— Alberto D

DIGLLOYD: the Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8 is a very good lens (I’d have no objection to having a good sample), but it does have some mild field curvature and focus shift issues—perfectly reasonable in context, but I prefer the flatter field and freedom from focus shift of the Fujifilm GF 50mm f/3.5. Plus the 50/3.5 is a much better pairing with the Fujifilm GF 80mm f/1.7. Because anything but negligible focus shift or field curvature a Big Deal on a 100-megapixel sensor with 3.76 micron pixels—a big PITA. Even the 50/3.5 has a little field curvature towards the corners.

Adapting 35mm-format lenses

I do not recommend any 35mm-format lenses on the Fujifilm medium format system. Yes, a rare few do reasonably well stopped down to f/8 or f/11 (ugh), but most are a waste of time—inadequate coverage and/or massive field curvature outside the 35mm frame and so on. As well as awkwared to use.

Introduction to Adapting Lenses to Fujifilm GFX: Overview and Experience with Zeiss DSLR Lenses

Evaluating 9 Top-End 35mm DSLR Lenses on the Fujifilm GFX

Adapting Lenses to the Fujifilm GFX

Even a good sample of the Leica 280mm f/ 4 APO-Telyt-R cannot take a sharp image if there is shutter vibration—for example on Leica M240 it as a disaster at any speed under 1/500. Be sure to use the electronic shutter.

f6.4 @ 1/50 sec, ISO 100; 2017-04-05 08:00:24
GFX 50S + Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8 R WR @ 51.6mm equiv (63mm)

[low-res image for bot]
f2 @ 7.5 sec, ISO 100; 2017-07-28 04:51:53
GFX 50S + Fujifilm GF 110mm f/2 R LM WR @ 90mm equiv (110mm)

[low-res image for bot]

Best Deals, Updated Weekly

Monochrome: Making of “Mining Cabin Interior” (Fujifilm GFX100)

re: Reader Comment: Black and White Photography “samples you have are some of the best I have seen”

Added to my Monochrome workflow pages:

Making of “Mining Cabin Interior” (Fujifilm GFX100)

Includes images up to full camera resolution in five variants, and discussion of settings used and two alternative conversion approaches.

Gary VZ writes:

I applaud your new monochrome site.

On your recommendation, I bought a Nikon D850M from MaxMax.com a year ago and what a joy it is to work with. The tonal gradations, absence of noise, and high resolution are all strong selling features. The Zeiss Otii and Milvii lenses are superb in this application (as they are in color). Of special note for me are the Zeiss Milvus 18mm f/2.8, the Zeiss Otus 55mm f/1.4 and 100mm Otii and the Nikon AF-S 200mm f2 VRII

I am a regular reader of your blog and I appreciate your objective equipment reviews.

DIGLLOYD: I’ll keep working on the monochrome stuff.

f13 @ 2.5 sec electronic shutter, ISO 100; 2020-04-22 17:34:47
Fujifilm GFX100 + Fujifilm GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR @ 41mm equiv (50mm)
ENV: old mining cabin NE of Eureka Dunes, altitude 6500 ft / 1981 m, 65°F / 18°C
RAW: LACA corrected, distortion corrected, vignetting corrected, pull 0.1 stops, +25 Shadows, +40 Whites, +20 Clarity, +20 Texture, diffraction mitigating sharpening

[low-res image for bot]

Upgrade the memory of your 2018 Mac mini up to 64GB

Save the tax, we pay you back, instantly!

diglloyd Inc. | FTC Disclosure | PRIVACY POLICY | Trademarks | Terms of Use
Contact | About Lloyd Chambers | Consulting | Photo Tours
RSS Feeds | Twitter
Copyright © 2020 diglloyd Inc, all rights reserved.