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Thursday, September 29, 2016

Canon EOS-5D Mark IV Firmware 1.0.2 Available


Canon EOS-5D Mark IV full frame 4K video camera

Canon has released a new firmware, Version 1.0.2 to its recently announced camera. The new software improves the reliability when using EOS Utility to register and update new Digital Lens Optimizer. You can download from Canon by clicking here

Canon EOS-6D Mark II Camera Coming In 2017


Canon EOS-6D Mark II full frame camera

As reported earlier in the year, Canon is expected to announce the EOS-6D Mark II camera some time in 2017, perhaps around the CP+ Show in February next year. The new camera may come with a mid 20 MP sensor, an articulating screen, dual memory card slots and higher quality video capability.

Possible specs for EOS-6D Mark II camera 

  • New mid 20 MP sensor
  • Dual Pixel AF and dual SD card slots
  • High quality than HD video but not quite 4K
  • Touch and tilting LCD screen
  • Improved 19 point AF system, all cross-type
  • NFC, WiFi and GPS
  • Improved ergonomics. Mark II version smaller and lighter
  • Announcement date -  Q1 to Q2, 2017

There are cameras out in the wild for testing already. New material and ergonomics will make the Mark II body handle better and lighter. Expect the price to be slightly higher than the Mark I model.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Frequently Used Photoshop Techniques You Want To Know


Take a look at the video below on how to 'master' a few frequently used Photoshop techniques. The photo processing tips are aimed primarily for people who do a lot of wedding, portrait or people photography. If you want to skip ahead in the video, look for the approximate time stamp for the following topics :

  • Stacking Face Aware Liquefy Filters - 0:53
  • Color Lookup Tables - 4:30
  • Move a Selection / Transform a Selection - 8:07
  • Frequency Separation - 9:03
  • Calculations for Selecting Hair - 15:06
  • Selective Sharpening w/ High Pass - 20:46
  • Color Range on Live Mask - 24:12
  • Curves - 27:21
  • Combine Adjustment Layers with Blend Modes - 29:50
  • Camera RAW filter (Dehaze for interesting contrast) - 32:28


Canon Debuts 8K Prototype Camera at Photokina 2016


At the Photokina 2016, Canon displayed a modified Cinema C300 Mark II camcorder prototype with a 8K Super 35mm sensor. It shoots 8K RAW files at 60 fps. One hour of footage will generate over 10 TB of data. Read my earlier post on Canon's 8K camera projects.


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Wildlife Photography - World Rhino Day 2016


video


Today is World Rhino Day. I have recently returned from my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. Came across Black and White Rhinos and their calves. The poaching epidemic is getting worse in many parts of the world but anti-poaching and conservation efforts are making a heroic stand between the Rhinos and extinction.


Anti poaching aerial patrol over Kruger National Park, South Africa

Rhino horns are essentially made from the same material as our nails, namely keratin. There is no scientific proof it has any medicinal value. What kind of government condones such a barbaric practice and individual buys such a blood tainted product, thereby condemning a species to possible extinction and depriving future generations of another animal to admire and wonder? Do they have no decency left in their hearts? You can follow my travels on Twitter , Facebook and see my works on MichaelDanielHo.com

The Indian Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) is the largest of the three Asian Rhino species. It has a single horn which can grow to almost 2 feet in length. The horn is not boney but composed of keratin, a protein also found in human hair and nails. The hairless skin of the Indian Rhino is grayish-brown and has many loose folds as well as lumps, known as tubercles, giving them an armor-plated appearance. The male Indian Rhino is bigger and heavier than the female. It can weigh up to almost 3 tons and has large, sharp incisors that may be used in fights over females during the breeding season.


Indian Rhino and calf, Kaziranga National Park, India

At the turn of the 20th century, the population of Indian Rhinos plummeted to about 20 individuals. Through strict protection in India and Nepal, this species has been brought back from the brink of extinction, with about 2000+ animals existing today. The Indian Rhino is listed under Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), meaning that trade in this species is only permitted under exceptional circumstances.

An Asian Rhino Action Plan has been established to maintain a wild population of at least 3,000 animals by the year 2020. Habitat improvement and extension, public education and an increase in anti-poaching measures are in place to try and achieve this goal. Although hunting was an important factor in the Indian Rhino's decline, poaching is now the greatest threat to this species' survival. With no scientific proof of its medicinal value, the Rhino horn is used in traditional Asian medicines, primarily for the 'treatment' of a variety of ailments ranging from epilepsy, fevers, and strokes. Asian Rhino horn is believed to be more 'effective' than African horn.

The Black Rhino (Diceros bicornis) is the poster child of the international effort to Save The Rhinos. There are five different species of Rhinos in the world - Black, White, Indian, Javan and Sumatran. Black rhinoceros are in fact grey in color and are distinguished from the other African species, the White Rhino by its pointed, prehensile upper lip. White rhinoceros have square lips. Both African species have two horns, made from clumped fibers rather than bone, similar to the material that make up our nails.


Black Rhino making a last stand in South Africa

Black Rhinos are critically endangered. Their numbers dropped to about 2,500 individuals a decade or so ago. A robust, worldwide conservation effort have stabilized the loss and a partial recovery of the population in a number of countries. The most successful effort have involved the rigorous protection of rhinoceros in fenced sanctuaries, often in partnerships between the State and private sectors, or in intensely protected unfenced zones within larger areas. Dehorning has also been used in some countries to reduce the incentive for poachers. By the turn of the 21st century, Black rhinoceros population had increased to over 3,000.

The White Rhino (Ceratotherium simum) is the largest of the five Rhino species and one of the world’s biggest land animals, second only to the African and Asian elephant in size. It can grow to about 12 feet long, 6 feet at the shoulder and weigh up to 6,000 pounds. This gentle and enormous animal is in fact, slate-grey to yellowish-brown in color. The ‘white’ likely comes from a mistranslation of the Afrikaner word for ‘wide’, referring to the animal’s wide mouth. Indeed, this species is often called the ‘square-lipped rhinoceros’ because of its broad, square, rather than pointed, flexible upper lip, differentiating it from the Black Rhino. The smallest Rhino is the Sumatran. They can grow to about 9 feet in length, stand up to 4 feet and weigh around 1,800 pounds.


Born To Run - White Rhino calf with mom

White Rhinoceros can also be distinguished from its African cousin by its longer skull, less sharply defined forehead and more pronounced shoulder hump. Like the Black rhinoceros and Sumatran rhinoceros, this species has two horns, the front being longer and can reach over 4 feet in length. Two geographically separated subspecies of white rhinoceros are recognized, the northern and the southern. The northern subspecies is now among the rarest of all rhinos, occurring only in the Garamba National Park, Democratic Republic of Congo. Meanwhile, the southern subspecies is the most numerous of all the world’s rhinos, with its stronghold in South Africa. Much smaller populations exist in Botswana, Namibia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe, Zambia, Uganda and Kenya.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Apple iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus Hands On Videos


Apple iPhone 7 with wireless Bluetooth earbuds


Apple announced the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in San Francisco recently. The new Apple iPhone 7 features a 12 megapixel camera with optical image stabilization and a f/1/8 aperture, six-element lens, new high-speed sensor, plus a redesigned quad-LED True Tone flash. The iPhone 7 Plus model offers high-res optical zoom at 2x using built-in dual-cameras.

The new operating system, iOS10, with the enhanced camera app, includes features to maximize the enhanced zoom features of the dual camera system on iPhone 7 Plus. Brand new to the iPhone 7 is the removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack. Instead, Apple is including a pair of Lightning-connected (wired) EarPods in the box and a Lightning-converter for your 3.5mm headphone plug. Alternatively, a Bluetooth earbuds can be used. Both models will come with new stereo speakers.

The new A10 Fusion four-core CPU will power both phones. Apple said it’s 40% faster than the A9 in previous generation iPhones and includes a 6-core graphics chip that’s 50% faster than A9. Both models are water and dust resistant. Battery life is claimed to extend by up to one to two hours over the iPhone 6 models.

Features of the new iPhone 7 :

  • Redesigned Home button with Taptic engine
  • A10 Fusion four-core CPU
  • Water and dust resistant enclosure
  • 12 Megapixel cameras with new quad-led True Tone flash
  • Dual-camera system for enhanced zoom on Plus models
  • Optical image stabilization in all iPhone 7 and 7 Plus models
  • Lightning Earpods + Lightning to 3.5mm adapter in box
  • New glossy “Jet black”, second “black” finish with black logo, silver, gold, rose gold




Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Adobe Lightroom CC, 6.7 and DNG Converter 9.7 Support Canon EOS-5D Mark IV


Canon EOS-5D Mark IV with EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II USM lens


Lightroom CC (2015.7) and Lightroom 6.7 are now available.  The goal of this release is to provide additional camera raw support and lens profile support, and to address bugs that were introduced in previous releases of Lightroom.

Please note that this version of Lightroom contains compatibility fixes for macOS 10.12 (Sierra) and also requires macOS 10.10 and greater. We recommend you update to Lightroom CC (2015.7) and Lightroom 6.7 prior to updating to macOS 10.12 (Sierra).

Publish to Adobe Stock Contributor Site

You can now submit images directly from Lightroom CC to the brand new Adobe Stock Contributor Site using the included Adobe Stock Publish Service.  By contributing to Adobe Stock, you have the opportunity to showcase your work to millions of customers directly inside Creative Cloud applications.

Updates to “All Synced Photos”

We’ve made it easier to access your Lightroom CC images on the go with Lightroom for mobile and Lightroom for web.

You can now drag images directly to the “All Synced Photographs” collection in the Catalog panel.  By doing so, the image syncs with the Creative Cloud, and ensures that you’ll be able to edit, organize, or share the photo on the go with Lightroom across your devices.

Smart Previews for Faster Performance

You’ve always been able to use Smart Previews in the Develop Module as a way to edit photos without having access to the original images on disk.  Astute customers reported faster performance in the Develop Module when using Smart Previews and keeping their original images disconnected from their computer.  Now, you can set a Preference in the Performance tab so that Lightroom will always use Smart Previews in the Develop Module, if they are available, even when the original files are also available.

To do so,
  • Choose Edit > Preferences.
  • In the Preferences dialog, select the Performance tab.
  • In the Develop section, select Use Smart Previews Instead Of Originals For Image Editing.
  • Click OK and then restart Lightroom.

New Camera Support in Lightroom CC (2015.7) / 6.7

  • Apple iPad Pro 9.7″ (wifi and cellular)
  • Apple iPhone 6s Plus
  • Apple iPhone 6s
  • Apple iPhone 7
  • Apple iPhone 7 Plus
  • Apple iPhone SE
  • Canon EOS 5D Mark IV*
  • Casio EX-ZR4000 (EX-ZR5000)
  • GoPro HERO5 Black
  • Hasselblad H6D-100c
  • Nikon D3400
  • Panasonic DMC-G8 (DMC-G80, DMC-G81, DMC-G85)
  • Panasonic DMC-LX9 (DMC-LX10, DMC-LX15)

Installation Instructions

Please select Help > Updates to use the update mechanism in the Creative Cloud app.

This update contains the Adobe DNG Converter 9.7.

The Adobe DNG Converter is a free utility that enables you to easily convert camera-specific raw files from more than 600 cameras to the more universal DNG raw format.

Digital Negative was developed to address the lack of an open standard for the proprietary and unique raw files created by each digital camera. DNG allows photographers to archive their raw camera files in a single format for easy cataloging and access in the future. With the format specification freely available, any developer can build software that supports and takes advantage of DNG. For more information, visit the Digital Negative page.

Support for many new cameras has been added. Visit the Camera Raw page for a complete list of supported cameras, including the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II and EOS-5D Mark IV cameras.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Sigma Announces 12-14mm f/4, 85mm f/1.4 Art and 500mm f/4 OS Sport Lens



Sigma 500mm f/4 DG OS Sport, 85mm f/1.4 DG HSM, 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art lenses


Cologne, Germany – September 19, 2016 – Sigma Corporation of America, a leading camera, DSLR lens, flash and accessories manufacturer, unveiled its new 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art and 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport Global Vision lenses at the Photokina 2016 event (hall 4.2, stands B020, B028 and C029).

“We are thrilled to announce three state-of-the-art additions to the Global Vision line. The Sigma 85mm 1.4 Art has been a highly requested lens and we are very confident those customers who have been waiting for us to deliver this lens will be more than pleased with the superior optical performance and zero compromise,” states Mark Amir-Hamzeh, president of Sigma Corporation of America. “In addition, the re-engineered 12-24mm F4 and highly competitive 500mm F4 Sport lens both embody the world-class performance our Global Vision lenses are known for. We look forward to seeing the incredible images our customers will create using these new Sigma lenses.”

Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art – The Ultimate Portrait Lens

Delivering the ultimate in creative expression, the new Sigma 85mm F1.4 Art lens is engineered to support the highest resolution sensors on the market with an exceptional degree of sharpness. The high-performance optical system is purpose-built by Sigma R&D to produce the attractive bokeh effect sought after by discerning photographers. The lens’ advanced architecture features two SLD (special low dispersion) glass elements and one glass element with a high rate of anomalous partial dispersion and refraction. A re-engineered AF system brings 1.3X the torque of its predecessor, while other features such as a full-time manual focus override have been added, which can be controlled when the focus ring is rotated, even during continuous AF.

The Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature a brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 85mm F1.4 Art lens will be available in late October and retails for a recommended street price of $1199.00 USD.

Sigma 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art Ultra-Wide Angle Zoom

Boasting the renowned Global Vision image quality from center to edge, the new Sigma 12-24mm F4 features the largest aspherical glass mold in the industry, offering photographers an ultra-wide angle zoom with virtually no distortion, flare or ghosting. Encompassing the long history of Sigma wide angle lens development expertise, the new 12-24mm F4 performance highlights include constant F4 brightness and the brand new Sigma AF system with 1.3X torque boost. The 12-24mm F4 features lens elements made with FLD (“F” Low Dispersion) glass, which is equivalent to calcium fluorite in performance. Combined with an optimized power distribution, the result is outstanding image quality from center to edges. With a minimum focus distance of 9.4 inches at 24mm, photographers can compose incredible close-up shots with expansive backgrounds.

The all new Sigma 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art lens supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature the brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 12-24mm F4 Art lens will be available in late October and retails for a recommended street price of $1599.00 USD.

Sigma 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport Lens – Pro Fast-Aperture Prime Super Telephoto

The flagship Sigma super telephoto 500mm F4 Sport lens incorporates the very latest in Sigma optical technology and innovation. Designed for the professional sports and wildlife shooter, the ultra-durable lens features magnesium alloy components, a carbon fiber hood, a water and oil resistant front element, and is dust and splash proof. The 500mm F4 features a drop-in rear filter slot for polarizers, UV and other critical filters. To help prevent damage during shooting and maintenance, the lens is also compatible with the exclusive SIGMA Protector LPT-11 (sold separately).

The lens incorporates two FLD and one SLD glass elements, while the optimized power distribution helps minimize spherical aberration and axial chromatic aberration. The optical system also effectively minimizes transverse chromatic aberration, which can affect the edges of the shots taken in the telephoto range. In addition, image quality remains exceptional when the lens is used with a Sigma Telephoto Converter (sold separately).

Other key performance features include Sigma’s two-mode Optical Stabilizer for enhanced performance when shooting handheld for still subjects or panning and tracking for moving subjects. There is also a customizable AF “return” function for setting the focus position of one’s choice and returning to that preset distance.

The all new Sigma 500mm F4 supports Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts. The Nikon mounts feature the brand new electromagnetic diaphragm.

The Sigma 500mm F4 Sport lens, in Canon and Sigma mounts, will be available in late October. The Nikon mount will be available in late November. The 500mm F4 will retail for a recommended street price of $5999.00 USD.

All Sigma Global Vision lenses, including the new 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, 12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art, and 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Global Vision lenses, can be updated with the latest lens firmware from a workstation or laptop using the Sigma Optimization Pro software and Sigma USB Dock (sold separately).

Tested for Optimum Performance

Sigma lenses are born of well thought-out design concepts, exceptional Japanese craftsmanship and manufacturing, and advanced lens performance testing and evaluation. To this end, Sigma has developed its own A1 proprietary MTF (modulation transfer function) measuring system using 46-megapixel Foveon direct image sensors. Even the most elusive high-frequency details are within the scope of Sigma’s quality control inspections. Every Global Vision lens is A1 tested, analyzed and approved before leaving the factory, ensuring maximum performance out of the box.

For more information on Sigma’s industry leading testing, please visit http://blog.sigmaphoto.com/2012/a1-mtf-testing-for-new-sigma-lenses/

About Sigma Corporation

Craftsmanship. Precision. Dedication. Since 1961, Sigma has been devoted the pursuit of advancing photographic technology. Unique to the industry, the family-owned business produces its high-quality, award-winning camera lenses, DSLR cameras, flashes, filters and accessories from its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility located in Aizu, Japan.

In 2012, the company introduced the Sigma Global Vision with three distinct lens lines: Art, Contemporary and Sport. Designed for industry camera mount systems including Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, Sony and Sigma, each lens is handcrafted and tested in Japan to ensure a high-performance, premium product that is purpose-built to last.

Sigma continues its tradition of imaging excellence with the mirrorless sd Quattro, sd Quattro H and the compact dp Quattro camera line. Leveraging the ultra-high resolution Foveon sensor, the Sigma Quattro cameras are designed to produce the highest quality image with every shot.

For information about Sigma, please visit www.sigmaphoto.com or follow the company on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Sigma To Announce Three New Lenses Today






Sigma is expected to announce three new lenses today in Cologne, Germany. They are :

  • Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art


  • Sigma 85mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art


  • Sigma 500mm f/4 DG OS HSM Sport 


Saturday, September 17, 2016

Canon Explains the Science of Optics and EF Lenses


Canon has recently surpassed the 120 million copy of EF lens production in its milestone. Their family of lenses range from 8mm to 1200mm. However, the science behind each piece of glass is essentially the same.

The video below shows the basics of understanding optics. Take a look at how the EF 500mm f/4L IS lens is made, from scratch to final assembly. This is one of my favorite Super Telephoto lens in Canon's lineup. You can see my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com


Canon EOS-7D Mark II vs EOS-80D Comparison


Canon EOS-7D Mark II vs. EOS-80D camera comparison


I have just returned from my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook. Beginning to get back to my daily routine, processing the photos and keeping my readers up to date on the latest photography news.

Many of you know I have picked the Canon EOS-7D as the best value APS-C camera for sports and wildlife photography, four years in a row after its announcement in 2009. The EOS-7D Mark II was announced in September 2014 and the EOS-80D in February 2016. I have taken both EOS-7Ds on many wildlife photo shoots around the globe. You can read my review on the EOS-7D Mark II, see my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com.

Essentially, for me the EOS-7D Mark II is the clear choice for those who is willing to pay a bit more and use the camera primarily for action photography, like sports and wildlife. The EOS-80D is a very good, all round camera for everyday use and occasional action photography. Below is a video from DigitalRev comparing the EOS-7D Mark II and EOS-80D cameras, with its usual bit of levity thrown in. 

The big differences between the EOS-7D Mark II and EOS-80D are the following :

  • Dual vs. Single DIGIC 6 processor
  • 65 vs. 45 cross-type AF points
  • None vs. Touchscreen AF in Live View
  • 10 vs. 7 fps burst rate
  • 1090 JPEG, 31 RAW vs. 110 JPEG, 25 RAW  
  • 200,000 vs. 100,000 cycle shutter rating
  • 960 vs. 670 shots rated on LP-E6N battery
  • Dual (CF + SD) vs. Single (SD) card slot
  • USB 3.0 vs. USB 2.0
  • Built-in GPS + Compass vs. None


Friday, September 16, 2016

Adobe Announced Lightroom Mobile 2.5 for Apple iOS10





SAN JOSE, California – Adobe today announced an update to Lightroom for mobile, making it one of the first apps for capturing Adobe DNG photos on Apple iOS 10 devices. Adobe DNG is the only raw file format directly integrated into iOS and delivers the highest possible image quality and the greatest amount of editing flexibility and control for capturing and editing photos.

With the release of iOS 10, DNG – a raw photography format created by Adobe – is now the go-to, high-quality capture format for mobile photography across both iOS and Android, a strong validation of the decades of leadership and innovation that Adobe has in digital photography. Lightroom for mobile 2.5 delivers an end-to-end Adobe DNG raw mobile photography workflow while also adding support for the new wide gamut P3 color space found in the iPad Pro 9.7 and the soon-to-be-released iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.

Download : Adobe Lightroom Mobile (iPhone | iPad)

DxOMark Rates Canon EOS-5D Mark IV Camera Sensor


Canon EOS-5D Mark IV full frame DSLR camera

I have just returned from my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook. Beginning to get back to my daily routine, processing the photos and keeping my readers up to date on the latest photography news.

The recently announced EOS-5D Mark IV was tested by DxOMark and they gave it a very high mark. For those who are into engineering and lab specs, below is the comparison with other Canon models. I am more interested in real world performance and will not be buying this camera since it is essentially a little brother to the EOS-1D X Mark II plus I already own the EOS-5Ds. Below is an excerpt from the DxOMark review.




Canon’s iconic EOS 5D series of full-frame DSLRs have had wide appeal with both pro and enthusiast photographers, blending great image quality and good features in a more affordable mid-range body design. Boasting a significant number of upgrades over its predecessor, including increased resolution, an updated autofocus system, Dual Pixel RAW capture, improved metering and 4K-video capture, the latest Mark IV looks like a mouth-watering prospect for the still photographer.

Full Frame Dual Sensor, great features

Built around a new 30.4Mp full-frame CMOS sensor, capturing 6720 x 4480 pixel stills in 3:2 aspect ratio, the 5D Mark IV offers a notable increase in resolution over the 22.3Mp 5D Mark III. For many Canon enthusiasts frustrated with the more modest resolution increase between the 5D Mark II and III versions, this will be a very welcome bump in resolution that brings the 5D Mark IV more in line with some of the recent high-resolution Sony and Nikon competition.  

The autofocus system from Canon’s flagship EOS 1D X Mark II has filtered down to the 5D Mark IV, which now offers greater focus coverage, with more of its 61 targets located at the top and bottom of the frame. Forty-one of these targets are the more accurate cross-type variety, including 5 dual cross-type targets at f/2.8 and 21 cross-type targets at f/8. This promises snappy AF with all Canon EF lenses and teleconverters, although the number of cross-type and dual cross-type targets will vary depending on the lens used. That’s not the only focusing trick Canon has pulled out with the 5D Mark IV either, which also features a Dual Pixel RAW mode that allows photographers to fine-tune the focus in post-production. By recording two 30.4Mp RAW files, photographers can apply fine focusing tweaks including “image micro adjustment,” “bokeh shift,” and “ghosting reduction” using Canon’s own Digital Photo Professional software, which is supplied with the camera.

The 252-zone / 150,000-pixel RGB+IR metering system is also from the EOS 1D X Mark II and is another notable upgrade compared to the 63-zone system in the 5D Mark III. The frame rate has increased, too, now up to 7fps with AE and AF tracking, and the 5D Mark IV will record JPEGs until the storage is full, or 21 RAW files in a continuous burst. In Live View mode, the frame rate is a little slower at 4.3fps, but the 5D Mark IV now offers full continuous autofocus tracking during burst shooting in Live View. The 3.2-inch LCD screen has been upgraded to a higher-resolution 1.6m-dot version with convenient touchscreen control. The LCD screen remains a fixed unit, however, and so doesn’t offer the pop-out or articulating controls often sought after for shooting video and for composing stills at awkward angles, or in bright light.

For video, the 5D Mark IV records 4K at 24/30fps, Full HD up to 60fps or standard HD at 100/120fps, which will allow quarter-speed slow-motion movies. While higher-resolution video capture is certainly a welcome addition, the 5D Mark IV records 4K in a 1.64x “crop mode,” which means it uses only part of the sensor and affects the focal length of the lens – something photographers looking to switch quickly between film and stills capture may find frustrating.
With feedback from Canon photographers requesting improved dynamic range, as well as some encouraging DxOMark scores from the recent EOS 80D and 1D X Mark II sensors, we were excited to see how the new Canon EOS 5D Mark IV would fare in the lab. Read on as we round up the analyzed and verified scores in our full review.

Key features & specifications

  • 30.4Mp CMOS sensor
  • Digic 6+ processor
  • ISO 100 – 32,000 (expandable to 102,400)
  • 7fps burst shooting
  • 3.2-inch 1.6m-dot touchscreen LCD
  • 61point AF system (41 cross-type sensors)
  • Dual Pixel RAW mode
  • WiFi / NFC / GPS connectivity
  • 4K video @ 24/30fps (Motion JPEG)
  • $3500 (body only)

Canon Announces EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM Lens



Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM lens






MELVILLE, N.Y., September 15, 2016 – Having the right tool for the job has long been the mantra for professional photographers and hobbyists alike. Canon’s wide array of lenses provide users with a variety of creative options to help capture dynamic photos and videos with their DSLR cameras. Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, announced today the new Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 IS II USM lens featuring NANO USM technology for high-speed and near-silent focusing in both still and video modes. The lens also features a new LCD information display and four-stop* image stabilization.

“To help photographers that are striving to create the most amazing pictures and videos possible, Canon is dedicated to developing the best tools to help them with their goal,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Having this new EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 IS II USM  lens in a photographer’s camera bag will surely help them achieve their creative vision.”

Designed with the user in mind, this affordable new lens includes technology to spark creativity and deliver excellent image and video quality from afar. This is the second Canon lens equipped with NANO USM technology, a focusing motor that combines the benefits of a ring USM (ultrasonic motor) for high-speed AF during still photo shooting and lead-screw type STM (stepping motor) for smooth and quiet video autofocusing (AF)

Features for the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 IS II USM lens include :

  • High-speed autofocus for shooting stills and smooth, near-silent autofocus when shooting video is achieved by incorporating NANO USM technology.
  • New Lens Information Display shows focusing distance, focal length and shake amount.
  • One UD Lens helps reduce chromatic aberration and delivers outstanding high resolution and high-contrast results.
  • Image Stabilizer effect at up-to-4* stops of shake correction helps capture sharp images.
  • Circular aperture (9 blades) helps deliver beautiful, soft backgrounds.
  • Full-time manual focus allows manual focus adjustment while in AF Mode.

The Canon EF 70-300mm F/4.5-5.6 IS II USM lens is scheduled to be available in November 2016, for an estimated retail price of $549.99

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Canon Announces EOS-M5 Mirrorless Camera

I am finishing my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook. Heading home.

As reported earlier, Canon has officially announced the EOS-M5 mirrorless camera. See all the following videos on the new camera.





MELVILLE, N.Y., September 15, 2016 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced the latest additions to its EOS M series system – the new Canon EOS M5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera and compact EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens. The EOS M5 camera features a 24.2 Megapixel APS-C sized CMOS sensor, DIGIC 7 Image Processor and the fastest AF speed in the EOS M-seriesi, enabling photographers to capture clear, sharp, high-resolution images and Full HD videos. It is also the first in the EOS camera line to include the low energy Bluetooth® Smartii feature that can maintain a constant connectioniii with your compatible smartphone or tablet when you use the Canon camera connect application and both applications are active. The versatile EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens is compatible with all Canon EOS M series digital cameras, and is a great option for photographers looking to capture scenic landscapes while traveling to close-up shots from afar.

“The new capabilities found in the Canon EOS M5 Camera and EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens set a new standard for our EOS M series of cameras and lenses, showing that Canon is constantly incorporating performance enhancements desired by our customers,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “When paired together, the new EOS M5 camera and EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens provide image-makers of all levels with powerful tools that enable them to capture a variety of remarkable images and videos.”




In addition, advanced photographers will appreciate the improved operability of the EOS M5 camera. It has a built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) and Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF for capturing stills and shooting video with smooth and precise autofocus. This allows for Touch and Drag AF so users can easily switch the subject of their focus by dragging the AF frame directly on the LCD panel, even while looking through the camera’s EVF. Focus peaking allows users to highlight the area of the image that is in focus from within the EVF or LCD monitor. In addition to its touchscreen operability, the EOS M5 camera also has easily accessible dials that allow you to quickly adjust your settings on-the-go.





Key Features of the Canon EOS M5 Camera Include :

  • 24.2 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor, ISO 100–25600.
  • Fast and smooth Dual Pixel CMOS AF helps you capture stills and shoot video with quick and precise autofocus.
  • High-speed continuous shooting at up to 7.0 fps (up to 9.0 fps with AF Lock) and new DIGIC 7 Image Processor with improved AF tracking performance.
  • Full HD 60p helps capture fast-moving subjects and brilliant results in MP4 format.
  • Digital IS with 5-axis image stabilizationivwhen shooting movies plus increased image stabilization with both lens optical IS and in-camera digital IS when shooting with an IS lens.
  • Built-in high-resolution EVF (approx. 2,360,000 dots) with new Touch and Drag AF lets you manually move the AF frame displayed for more precise focusing in different shooting situations.
  • Intuitive touch screen 3.2 tilt-type (85° up/180° down) LCD monitor (approx. 1,620,000 dots) enables flexible positioning and clear viewing.
  • Easily customize functions while shooting using the Main Dial, Quick Control Dial, Dial Function Button and Exposure Compensation Dial.
  • Built-in Wi-Fi®v and NFCvi allows for easy sharing and transferring of images and videos.
  • Equipped with Bluetooth®iii Smart for smooth pairing with a compatible smartphone by powering on both devices for easy photo sharing and remote control possibilities.
  • Shorter camera startup timevii and interval time between each image capture for a more efficient shooting experience.
  • Compatible with EF-M lenses as well as the full line of EFviii and EF-Sviii lenses and Speedlites for expanded creativity.

The Canon EOS M5 also features Combination IS with in-camera 5-axis image stabilization, while capturing video, a first in the Canon EOS series. With a compatible lens attachediv, Combination IS leverages optical IS and in-camera digital IS to help create tremendously smooth videos. The DIGIC 7 Image Processor makes the 5-axis IS possible even with lenses that do not contain IS, because the in-camera image stabilization functions independently to help reduce camera shake when shooting videos.

Additionally, the EOS M5 camera shoots impressive time-lapse videos. The EOS M5 camera also allows for easy panning by setting the optimal shutter speed after analyzing the camera’s panning speed and how fast the subject is moving.

The new Canon EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens offers a high-zoom ratio, expanding the range of photographic possibilities for EOS M digital cameras. Its image stabilizer helps with reducing image blur and making image and video shooting easier at longer focal lengths. Along with the enhanced performance, the EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens is compact and lightweight, making it a versatile and convenient lens to carry.





Key Features of the Canon EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM Lens Include :

  • Canon’s first EF-M high-zoom power lens covering a broad range of shooting scenes with a high-zoom ratio of up to 8.3x (29–240mm equivalent).
  • Compact and lightweight design allows for easy portability.
  • Optical design helps provide excellent image quality across a broad zoom range comparable to the EF-S 18–135mm f/3.5–5.6 IS USM lens.
  • Maximum magnification of 0.31x at focal length 150mm.
  • Image Stabilizer effect at up to 4 stops of shake correction helps capture sharp images.

Pricing and Availability

The new Canon EOS M5 camera is scheduled to be available through authorized Canon dealers or through the Canon Online store at http://shop.usa.canon.com/ in November 2016, for an estimated retail price of $979.99 for the body only. It will also be sold as part of body-and-lens kits with EF-M 15-45mm/F3.5-6.3 IS STM zoom kit lens (estimated retail price of $1,099.00, scheduled to be available early November 2016x), and with the new EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens for an (estimated retail price of $1,479.00x, scheduled to be available early December 2016x)

In addition, the new Canon EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens, available in graphite and silver colors, is scheduled to be available in December 2016 for an estimated retail price of $499.99x.

Additional optional EOS accessories include a Body Jacket (EM-E2) and Neck Strap (EH29-CJ) that come in black or brown.

For more information please visit : http://mseriescameras.usa.canon.com


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II Lens Photo & Specs Leaked


Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM lens


I am still on my Southern Africa on a wildlife photo tour. So far it has been a rather good trip. Put the EOS-1D X Mark II camera through a series of real world tests and it passed with flying colors. Just a quick note to let my readers know Canon will be announcing a replacement to its non 'L' EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS lens with the Series II some time this or next week. This is after the announcement of the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II and EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III a few weeks ago.

Major specs of EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II lens :

  • Lens construction : 12 group 17 sheets (one UD lens)
  • Number of blades : 9 sheets (circular aperture)
  • Minimum focusing distance : 1.2m
  • Maximum magnification : 0.25X (300mm), 0.07X (70mm)
  • 4 stops Image Stabilization
  • Filter diameter : 67mm
  • The maximum diameter × length: 80mm × 145.5mm
  • Weight : 710 g
  • Lens hood : ET-74B
  • Nano USM
  • Full-time manual focus

I expect the price of the lens to be slightly higher than the current model but comes with much better technology and optics, including a small LCD display window. The EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS and EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II are two of my favorite 'L' lens. I am waiting delivery of the new 24-105mm lens. You can see my equipment bag, works on MichaelDanielHo.com and follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Canon EOS-1D X Mark II Camera Firmware V 1.1.2 Available


Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera

I am still on my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook.

As reported earlier, Canon has released a new firmware, Version 1.1.2 You can download it here on Canon's website.

Firmware Version 1.1.2 incorporates the following improvements :

  • The addition of a selectable color-tone option for the LCD monitor.
  • The addition of a function to append IPTC data.
  • The addition of a function to transfer only protected images.
  • The addition of a function to set the GPS positional data retention period.
  • An increase in the number of network connection settings that can be saved to a memory card from 20 to 40.
  • When retrying FTP transfer, extension of the minimum auto power off time to 10 minutes.
  • Improvement of wireless transmission when using Wireless File Transmitter WFT-E6.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Canon Celebrates Production of 120 Million EF Lenses




TOKYO, September 8, 2016 - Canon Inc. today announced the achievement of a new lens-manufacturing milestone with the production on August 26, 2016, of the Company’s 120-millionth EF-series interchangeable lens for EOS cameras—an EF100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM telephoto zoom lens.

Production of interchangeable EF lenses for Canon EOS-series AF (Autofocus) single-lens reflex film cameras began in 1987 at the Company’s Utsunomiya Plant. Over the years, EF lenses have gained support from a wide range of users and production has since expanded to a total of four manufacturing bases, including Canon Inc., Taiwan; Canon Opto (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd.; and Oita Canon Inc. in southern Japan.

EF lens production passed the 10-million-unit mark in 1995 and crossed the 50-million-unit threshold in 2009. In April 2014, the Company celebrated its first-in-the-world achievement of having manufactured 100 million EF lenses, and now, setting a new world record for the most interchangeable lenses produced, Canon manufactured its 120-millionth EF lens in August 2016.

What’s more, Canon’s interchangeable-lens digital cameras (digital SLR and compact-system cameras), which utilize EF lenses, have maintained the No. 1 share of the global market for 13 consecutive years since 2003.1

Canon’s proprietary EF lenses, launched in March 1987 along with the EOS SLR camera system, have continued to evolve since their introduction, leading the industry through the incorporation of a wide range of innovative technologies, including such world’s firsts as the Ultrasonic Motor (USM), Image Stabilizer (IS) technology, a multilayered diffractive optical (DO) element, and Subwavelength Structure Coating (SWC) anti-reflection technology. The Company’s extensive EF lens-series lineup currently comprises a total of 97 models,2 including EF Cinema Lenses for digital cinematography.3

Canon will continue refining its imaging technologies centered on its EF lens lineup, striving to cater to the varying needs of photographers—from first-time users to advanced amateurs and professionals—while contributing to expanding the photographic and video imaging culture.

  1. As of March 29, 2016, based on a Canon survey.
  2. Including two EF lens extenders and 3 models available outside of Japan. As of 9/7/2016.
  3. For more information visit “The Eyes of EOS” Canon EF lens portal site at www.canon.com/the-eyes-of-eos/

Canon EOS-M5 Mirrorless Camera Photos and Specs Leaked


Canon EOS-M5 APS-C mirrorless camera


I am still on my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook.

As reported earlier, Canon will be announcing the new EOS-M5 mirrorless camera with the APS-C sensor next week.

Expected specs of EOS-M5 mirrorless camera :

  • 24 MP APS-C sensor (similar to EOS-80D camera)
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF
  • DIGIC 7 processor
  • 7 fps continuous shooting 
  • 9 fps in Live View
  • ISO 100 - 25600
  • Full HD video @ 60 fps 
  • 5 axis electronic Image Stabilizer system
  • Dynamic NFC and built-in BlueTooth capability
  • Built-in, flip up electronic viewfinder
  • New and improved AF system (Touchscreen focusing)
  • Better ergonomics and improved feel and handling
  • Media : SD / SDHC / SDXC cards
  • Size : 115.6 x 89.2 x 60.6 mm
  • Weight : 427 g
  • Camera sold with EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens kit
  • List price - $899 in the U.S. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Wildlife Photography - Photo Safari Tour in Southern Africa, Day 9


I am still on my Southern Africa Photo Safari Tour. Left Botswana after a very nice tour and now I am in South Africa. So far the wildlife sightings are very good and the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera is performing like a charm.

A couple of things I like to share with my readers. Looks like Canon has finally decided to sell its CMOS camera sensors to other camera manufacturers. Sony has been doing that for years and provide sensors to Nikon for all their DSLR cameras. Also, the Canon EOS-M5 mirrorless camera with the APS-C sensor will be announced next week. This will be Canon's most advanced mirrorless camera and the features and ergonomics will be far superior to the current models. Is this what the camera looks like? Check out the link above.

A few quick photos of my tour so far. Very little time and energy to do any proper viewing and processing. I only brought along a small netbook computer. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook and see more of my works on MichaelDanielHo.com.


Sunrise on the Chobe River 

Two month old Giraffe calf

Elephant crossing the Chobe River at sunset 

Two young Cheetahs descending from a termite mound

Critically endangered Black Rhino mom and adult male offspring

Young Bull Elephant trumpeting an aggressive behavior 

Plains Zebra getting a drink from a waterhole

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Canon EOS-M5 Mirrorless Camera Coming Before Photokina 2016


Canon EOS-M5 APS-C mirrorless camera?

I am still on my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook.

As reported earlier, Canon will be announcing the new EOS-M5 mirrorless camera with the APS-C sensor soon, perhaps as early as mid month, before the big Photokina show in Cologne, Germany, instead of later in Q4.

Expected specs of EOS-M5 mirrorless camera :

  • 24MP APS-C sensor (similar to EOS-80D camera)
  • Built-in, flip up electronic viewfinder
  • New and improved AF system (The EOS-M line sorely needs one)
  • Better egornomics and improved feel and handling
  • Camera sold with EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens kit
  • Price will just a bit higher than the EOS-M3, with much better performance 

Canon Announces XC-15 4K UHD Camcorder


Canon XC-15 4K UHD Camcorder


I am still on my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook.


MELVILLE, N.Y., September 1, 2016 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, announced today the XC15 4K Video Camcorder, a 4K UHD digital video camcorder for professional use that achieves high-image quality with a lightweight, compact body.

The new Canon XC15, which builds on the XC10 4K UHD digital video camcorder announced in April 2015, enables shooting with an external microphone through an XLR input and features the selection of visual-expression “Look” modes, including modes that allow it to match the look of other Canon professional cameras, making it ideal for use as a “B”-camera as well as for media and video-content productions.

The Canon XC15 ships with the MA-400 microphone adapter that, when attached, enables shooting with XLR-input microphones used in a wide range of media and content-creation applications. As a result, the camcorder supports the production of content that combines both high-image quality and high-sound quality with reduced noise. The MA-400 is also compatible with the EOS C300 Mark II camera.

Thanks to its high-sensitivity one-inch CMOS sensor and DIGIC DV 5 image processing platform with high calculation-processing power, the new XC15 is capable of capturing high-image quality and low-noise 4K UHD video. Additionally, the camcorder features a compact, lightweight body design, measuring approximately 5.0 x 4.1 x 4.8 inches (WxHxD) and weighs approximately 2.1 pounds while also sporting a 10x optical zoom lens1, which facilitates shooting in confined spaces and environments that demand mobility.

The Canon XC15 4K UHD professional video camcorder is scheduled to be available in September 2016 for a list price of $3,000.00.* For more information, please visit usa.canon.com

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Canon Develops Global Shutter Equipped CMOS Sensor




I am still on my Southern Africa wildlife photo shoot testing the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II camera. You can follow my travels on Twitter and Facebook.

TOKYO, August 31, 2016 - Canon Inc. today announced that it has developed a new CMOS sensor equipped with a global shutter function that, because it exposes all of the sensor’s pixels at the same time, enables the capture of distortion-free images even when shooting fast-moving objects. Employing a new signal-readout drive system and new pixel structure that significantly expands the full well capacity and reduces noise, the sensor contributes to high-image-quality video capture by making possible the realization of a wide dynamic range.

Distortion-free image capture when shooting fast-moving objects

Standard CMOS sensors make use of the rolling shutter method, which sequentially exposes the pixels one row at a time. Because rolling shutters can create slight discrepancies in signal-readout timing depending on the location of the pixel, images of fast-moving objects may appear distorted and flash photography may result in the occurrence of the flash band phenomenon, in which the upper and lower portions of images display different levels of brightness. Because Canon’s newly developed CMOS sensor employs a global shutter; when shooting such fast-moving objects as a rotating propeller or a speeding train, subjects are able to retain their proper form to create distortion-free images. Enabling the confirmation of object shapes with a high degree of accuracy, the sensor offers potential benefits in industrial applications, including as a sensor for use in inspection cameras.

Wide dynamic range realized through new proprietary drive method and pixel structure

When the newly developed CMOS sensor converts light into electrical signals and stores the signal charge in memory, the new drive system achieves a significant expansion in full well capacity. Also, because it employs a structure that efficiently captures light and each pixel incorporates an optimized internal configuration, the sensor makes possible increased sensitivity with reduced noise. The expanded full well capacity, realized through the sensor’s new drive system, and substantial reduction in noise, enabled by the new pixel structure, combine to deliver a wide dynamic range, facilitating the capture of high-image-quality, high-definition footage even when shooting scenes containing large variances in brightness.

Canon will explore various industrial and measurement applications for the newly developed CMOS sensor and consider deploying it in the field of video production for cinema production applications, TV dramas, commercials and more.