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Friday, May 26, 2017

Canon Registers Three New Cameras - EOS-6D Mark II, Rebel SL2, New Mirrorless




Nokishita has discovered three new Canon cameras completing the registration process with the proper authorities. The EOS-6D Mark II is definitely on its way soon.

DS126631 (Canon EOS-6D Mark II?)

D S L R camera made in Japan
SKU: 1897C003AA, 1897C010AA, 1897C015AA, 1897C022AA
Wi-Fi · Bluetooth installed
Reverse back and open 180 degrees Back LCD
Size : W 144.0 mm x H 111.8 mm x D 75.5

DS126671 (Canon Rebel SL2?)

D S L R camera made in Taiwan
SKU: 2250C001AA, 2250C002AA, 2250C011AA, 2253C001AA, 2256C001AA
Wi-Fi · Bluetooth installed

PC2276 (Canon EOS-M10 replacement?)

Mirrorless camera made in Japan
SKU: 2209C002AA, 2209C012AA, 2209C022AA, 2209C032AA, 2210C002AA, 2210C012AA, 2210C022AA, 2210C032AA, 2211C002AA, 2211C012AA, 2211C022AA, 2211C032AA
Body color : 3 colors. One body and three lens kits
Wi-Fi · Bluetooth installed

Canon Autofocus Series : How Does Traditional SLR AF Work?


Today’s digital SLR cameras usually have two distinct Autofocus systems — what we now think of as traditional AF you get through the optical viewfinder; and (usually) a separate AF system for focus using the LCD monitor to view your scene, when shooting with Live View or recording video.  They’re very different :

Viewfinder AF : 

Usually relies on a totally separate AF sensor for focus detection, and always uses what’s called Phase Detection technology.

Live View and video AF :

Uses pixels on the actual camera imaging sensor to read focus information.  Early systems simply read blurriness or sharpness off the image sensor; this is called Contrast Detection AF.  (This is still used in some competitive brand interchangeable-lens cameras.)  More sophisticated systems utilize individual pixels, or groups of pixels, on the image sensor and make comparisons of data to detect when a subject is focused or not…this approach is also called Phase Detection.

We’ll discuss the many advantages that traditional through-the-viewfinder AF systems offer in this series of AF articles.  But before we dive in, it may be helpful to have a quick understanding of how AF has typically worked in our SLR cameras since these systems were introduced back in the mid-1980s.

The phase detection concept

With the vast majority of SLR cameras offering autofocus, whether film or digital, a separate and completely independent sensor is placed in the camera body — usually beneath the mirror box, in front of the film plane.  With the camera’s reflex mirror in its normal down position, some light goes through a semi-transparent area in the middle of this main mirror, and is reflected by a smaller, secondary mirror downward, toward a very sophisticated and precise set of optics which split the incoming light into two distinct and sharply focused rays.  These are then focused upon a sensor with rows of light-sensitive pixels.  (This definitely is not the imaging sensor; it’s the AF sensor).


The above image shows the basic layout used in today’s digital SLRs for autofocus. The green rays simulate light coming through the camera lens. The main mirror in a DSLR is semi-transparent, and some of this light passes through the mirror, and is reflected downward in the camera. It ultimately ends up as pairs of sharply-focused rays of light, hitting the extremely precisely-positioned AF sensor.

How can an AF sensor tell when an image is in-focus?  Every line of pixels is actually a pair of lines, arranged in the same direction.  We just mentioned that incoming light is split into two separate and sharply-focused beams, which shine upon these tiny rows of individual pixels.


The image above shows how Phase-detection for autofocus is able to work because it can compare two incoming beams of light. In digital SLRs, a separate AF sensor is used for this. Unlike an imaging sensor, which has light-sensitive pixels covering its entire area, the AF sensor uses lines or rows of pixels. For each “line” used for focus detection, there are actually two lines on the AF sensor. A single incoming beam of light is precisely split in two, and focused upon each row, illuminating either the pixel at the center of each row, or pixels further inward or away.

Engineers discovered early-on a very interesting natural phenomenon of these light beams: when the camera lens is focused sharply at a given AF point, these beams would split evenly, and strike the pixel(s) in the middle of both rows on the AF sensor.  By reading-out each light-gathering pixel independently, when those known to be in the exact center register brightness, the AF system knows that the lens is now in-focus.


The image above illustrates how incoming light from the camera lens passes into the very precise AF optical system. The secondary image forming lens splits this single “beam” of light into two separate and sharply-focused beams, which are aimed at the pair of rows of pixels on the imaging sensor. Which pixels they illuminate on the two rows immediately tells the AF system whether you’re sharply focused or not.

And, here’s the important thing about phase detect AF: when the camera’s lens is focused too close and AF is aimed at a subject, the beams of light move, in tandem, closer together.  The pixels on the pair of line sensors toward the inside register light hitting them, and the camera instantly knows two things: not only that the lens isn’t in focus, but that to achieve focus, the lens has to be driven further away, in the direction of “infinity.”

Likewise, if the two beams of light spread further apart, and strike a pixel on each row that’s away from center, the AF sensor knows instantly that the lens is focused too far, and that focus must be driven closer.  As the lens is being focused, the position of these two beams of incoming light hitting the AF sensor continue to be registered, and when they strike the dead-center of each row of pixels, AF stops.  The lens is focused on the subject it’s being aimed at.


In the diagram above, each pixel on the pair of light-sensitive lines on the AF sensor can individually detect when it’s being hit by incoming light. When the main camera lens is not properly focused, the two incoming beams of light either spread wider, or move closer together. Focused behind the subject? The two beams spread farther, each illuminating a pixel away from the center — and instantly telling the AF system that the lens needs to be driven to a closer focus distance. And, the system can calculate immediately how far to drive the lens, too, based on which pair of pixels (one per line sensor) is initially hit by light. When the center pixel on each row is struck by light, the AF system knows it’s seeing sharp focus at whatever that AF point is being aimed at.

What’s the benefit of this traditional, phase-detect AF?

Even with the advance of different AF systems that can read focus during Live View off the imaging sensor, traditional “through the viewfinder” phase-detect AF systems have some powerful advantages for today’s digital photographers working with SLR cameras.  While exact performance specs and features can and do vary from one camera model to the next, here are some important benefits that the modern DSLR often provides with its viewfinder AF :

  • Instant focus response, to drive the lens in the proper direction.
  • Very little tendency to “hunt” back and forth to find sharpest focus…unlike many contrast-detection focus systems (often used by competitive cameras for video and Live View focus), phase detect systems through the viewfinder know the instant sharp focus is achieved, and can be programmed to stop on a proverbial “dime” to that focus setting.
  • Ability to read and drive a lens toward proper focus, even when AF begins with lens very out-of-focus (example: if a macro lens has previously been left at its nearest focus distance, and subsequently is picked up and focused upon a distant subject).  Just as a point of reference, if a lens is in a totally out-of-focus state, this is often called “defocus” by camera experts.
  • Ability to continually update AF, on a shot-by-shot basis, to follow moving subjects.
  • For more than 20 years, “predictive” AF technology with moving subjects…not only does the AF system know the direction to focus the lens, and have ability to follow moving subjects, but it adds ability to predict the degree of subject movement in the instant that occurs before focus detection ends (as the main mirror rises) and the shutter fires a split-second later.  Modern AF systems continue to drive the lens until the last possible instant, to insure that athletes, birds in flight, or other moving subjects can be captured in sharp sequences.  (Canon calls this predictive focus element “AI Servo AF,” with AI meaning Artificial Intelligence.)


The image above shows how Phase-detection AF systems for digital SLRs have certainly evolved over the years. Compare the conceptual illustration of a single pair of rows of pixels (above), depicting an early AF sensor with one AF point, to this image of the AF sensor on today’s EOS-1D X Mark II camera, which has 61 AF points — most of which offer cross-type coverage.

And, ability for different AF points on the AF sensor to provide “cross-type” AF coverage, for even better recognition and focus on many hard-to-focus subjects.  This will be the subject of our next article.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Adobe Released New Lightroom CC Version 2015.10.1



I am back from my Galapagos and Ecuadorian Amazon Photo Tour. I did not encounter as many wildlife as I had hoped. Slowly getting back to my daily blog and photo processing. You can follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter. See my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com

Adobe release a new version  of Lightroom CC 2015.10.1 to provide additional camera raw support, lens profile support and address bugs that were present in previous releases.

New Camera Support in Lightroom CC 2015.10.1 / 6.10.1

  • Panasonic LUMIX DC-ZS70 (DC-TZ90,DC-TZ91, DC-TZ92, DC-T93)
  • Sony A9 (ILCE-9)

New Lens Profile Support in Lightroom CC 2015.10.1 / 6.10.1

  • Sony FE Zeiss Batis 2.8/135

Customer reported issues resolved

  • Edit in Photoshop Erroneous Message Fixed
  • Fixed issue causing color cast on images from some Fujifilm X series cameras shot in CH/CL modes.
  • Fixed issue where images taken on the Fujifilm GFX 50s with top 3 extended ISOs appear over exposed.
  • Fixed issue where some images converted to DNG from the Hasselblad H6 contained a color cast.
  • Fixed issue with Hasselblad X1D images losing highlight details at high ISOs.

Known Issues

We have an issue where customers are unable to use the Develop module with GPU enabled. This only occurs when using an AMD graphics card using driver Version 17.4.4 (released 4/23/2017) on Windows. Please see this note for more details and workarounds.
Installation Instructions

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

Give us feedback

Once you’ve updated to the latest version of Lightroom, don’t forget to leave us feedback about your experiences. Lightroom wouldn’t be what it is today without our passionate and loyal customers around the world. Giving us regular feedback helps us to find and fix issues that we may otherwise not know about. We are listening.

Here are a few ways that you can send us feedback :

  • Report bugs and suggest features
  • Discuss workflow and get help with how-to questions or basic troubleshooting 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Canon Rebel EOS SL2 Camera Coming In Q3 2017




I am back from my Galapagos and Ecuadorian Amazon Photo Tour. I did not encounter as many wildlife as I had hoped. Slowly getting back to my daily blog and photo processing. You can follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter. See my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com

In February, I reported Canon is expected to announce the EOS Rebel SL2 some time this year. Indications are the date will be early Q3 of 2017. The new, small DSLRs will be a bit smaller and lighter than the current EOS Rebel SL1 and will have specifications similar to the recently announced EOS-77D. Perhaps like a 'baby' EOS-77D.

However, the exciting news for many photographers is the expected announcement of the affordable full frame EOS 6D Mark II some time in early Q3 of 2017.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

When Is Canon's Full Frame Mirrorless Camera Coming?


Blue-footed Booby 

I am still on my Galapagos and Ecuadorian Amazon Photo Tour. Just a quick post to update my readers on the latest development in photography news. You can follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter. See my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com

The rumor mill is heating up again about Canon's full frame mirrorless camera. My readers know I have been reporting on this for the past couple of years and this is the best information I have right now.
  • New camera will be full frame and uses the EF mount
  • No new type of lens to accompany camera
  • Camera comes with a new type of sensor
  • Brand new technology to adapt EF lenses to the new sensor
  • Video quality slightly greater than 4K
  • Camera will be announced some time in 2018

Canon is already testing multiple versions of the camera, including hybrid models but I am quite certain only the full frame mirrorless model will be announced. Personally, I think it's about time Canon gives Sony a run for its mirrorless money. Keep checking back for the latest information. 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Wildlife Photography - Galapagos Islands and Ecuadorian Amazon Photo Tour



Quito, Ecuador. The city is 2 miles high and a launch pad for The Galapagos

Sunset in The Galapagos - Day is done

Footloose in The Galapagos 

Only the Lonely

Male Frigate Bird showing his ware

Tequila Sunset

I am embarking on a wildlife photography tour of the Galapagos Islands and the Ecuadorian Amazon. Last year I had a very good tour of the Peruvian Amazon and Highlands. It was a great testing ground for my Canon equipment due to its diverse climates of heavy humidity in the jungles and cold temperatures of over 2 miles elevation in the Peruvian Andes.

In keeping with my philosophy of traveling lighter, my main equipment are the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II, EOS-1D Mark IV, EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II and EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II.

There will be very limited access to the Internet and little time to look over and process my photos. I have a small laptop to process a few pics and will try and keep my readers up to date on any interesting Canon and other photography news. In the meantime, you can follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter. See my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Canon Movie Tutorial - Why and How To Shoot A Good Video


Canon Movie tutorial series on how to make a good video. the following topics are covered. 

  • LESSON 1 : Why should I make a video?
  • LESSON 2 : How to craft a good story
  • LESSON 3 : The importance of frame rate and resolution
  • LESSON 4 : How to expose for video
  • LESSON 5 : Controlling Camera Movement and Stabilization 
  • LESSON 6 : The use of Sound and Music
  • LESSON 7 : How to choose the right lenses
  • LESSON 8 : How to stay in focus
  • LESSON 9 : How to editing the video
  • LESSON 10 : Final Conclusion




Canon Cinema C200 Camcorder Coming Soon




As reported earlier, Canon is expected to announce the Cinema C200 camera soon, perhaps in June. This new camcorder is touted to be a 'baby' C300 Mark II and may come with 4K video. It is somewhere between a C100 Mark II and a C300 Mark II and will be quite a good value for the money. Keep checking back for the latest info and development.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Canon Released Firmware V 1.0.1 For EOS-M5 Camera


Canon EOS-M5 mirrorless camera

Canon has released firmware V 1.0.1 for the EOS M5 mirrorless camera.

The new Firmware Version 1.0.1 incorporates the following fixes :

  • Corrects a phenomenon in which, when the playback grid is set to “6×4”, and a vertical image is displayed, or a horizontal image is rotated to be displayed vertically, the grid does not display correctly.
  • In languages other than Japanese, the phrase “no. of shots” has been corrected to “value” in the “Time-lapse movie settings > Interval/Shots” setting screen.

Firmware Version 1.0.1 is for cameras with firmware up to Version 1.0.0. If the camera’s firmware is already Version 1.0.1, it is not necessary to update the firmware.

Download firmware V 1.0.1 for the Canon EOS M5 here

Canon EOS-6D Mark II Camera Coming Early Q3, 2017


Canon EOS-6D Mark II full frame DSLR camera

Your patience will be rewarded soon. The Canon's EOS-6D Mark II full frame camera is expected to be announced early Q3 2017, perhaps in July. There is no precise date but shipping should commence soon after announcement. Keep checking back for the latest news and specs as I receive them.

Possible specs for Canon EOS-6D Mark II camera
  • All new 28MP sensor
  • 45 AF points, all cross-type
  • Dual SD slots
  • Tilting and reversible LCD with touchscreen capabilities
  • Larger and more vivid viewfinder
  • Single DIGIC 7 processor
  • Burst rate, 6 fps
  • Some 4K video capability but not full 4K performance
  • WiFi, NFC & Bluetooth
  • Built-in GPS ? (Possible but not likely)
  • Body slightly taller and deeper than previous model
  • Suggested list price of $1,999 in the U.S.
  • Expected shipment date - August 2017

Friday, May 5, 2017

When Is The Canon Super Zoom Lens Coming?


Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4x lens


Back in 2015, I reported Egami discovered a new Canon patent for a 200-600mm f/4.5-5.6 Super Zoom lens. Unfortunately, Egami has since been off the Internet and no more new patents have been reported.

However, Canon is definitely work on this technology. As you know, they rarely try to be the first, just the best. Currently, the Super Zoom space is occupied by Sigma and Tamron. Both companies have the 150-600mm lens out for a few years now with mediocre to good results.

Canon has the EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II and EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4x lens out for some time but they are not readily affordable to all photographers. The new Super Zoom model Canon is perfecting now may not be an 'L' lens but it will be of high quality and more affordable, perhaps in the $1,000 to $1,500 list price category.

There is a chance Canon may decide to really wow photographers and turn this Super Zoom design into a SuperTelephoto zoom lens. If that is the case, I expect some industry breaking innovation. Perhaps a two stage built-in extender, like 1.4x and 1.7x. Stay tuned and keep checking back for the latest development.

I anticipate the new lens will be announced some time in the first half of 2018. The EF 600mm f/4 DO BR lens is also expected to arrive some time in 2018. These are the two lenses I am interested in buying. My readers know me as The Wildlife Ho-tographer and I have been testing Canon equipment on wildlife tours for years. You can follow my travels on Facebook and Twitter. See my equipment bag and works on MichaelDanielHo.com

Monday, May 1, 2017

When Is The Canon EOS-6D Mark II, Rebel SL2, Cinema C200 and EF 85mm f/1.4L IS Coming


Canon EOS-6D Mark II full frame DSLR camera

Be patient. The Canon's EOS-6D Mark II full frame camera, Rebel SL2, EF 85mm f/1.4L IS and Cinema C200 (C300 Mark II's little brother) will be announced around Q3 to Q4 of 2017. Keep checking back for the latest news as I receive them.


Possible specs for Canon EOS-6D Mark II camera
  • All new 28MP sensor
  • 45 AF points, all cross-type
  • Dual SD slots
  • Tilting LCD with touchscreen capabilities
  • Larger and more vivid viewfinder
  • Single DIGIC 7 processor
  • Burst rate, 6 fps
  • Some 4K video capability but not full 4K performance
  • WiFi, NFC & Bluetooth
  • Built-in GPS 
  • Suggested list price of $1,999 in the U.S.

Understanding The Basics Of Lighting and Aperture In Photography




It helps to refresh oneself with the basics of photography now and then. Light and aperture are two of the most important things to master in any type of photography.