The most popular camera starts worldside shipment: The Fuji X100.

Almost every day you can find news about the Fuji X100. The camera worldwide shipment started yesterday in Japan (see Amazon Japan). It should be in Stock soon at Amazon (Click here), BHphoto (Click here) and Adorama (Click here) and in April in Europe (See Amazon UK). This is the latest news summary:

Leica M3 versus Finepix X100 (Source: Nokton on Flickr).
Download the Fuji X100 manual in english (.pdf): https://files.me.com/kylebarrow/dxsgl2
First image samples on Flickr.
First Impressions of the Finepix X100 from a rangefinder shooter by Pieter Franken (SteveHuffPhoto.com).
Those are the first unboxing pictures coming from Japan (More at dmaniax.com). Shots with the x100 from the same person: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fotois/sets/72157626059913905
The dpreview forum user “Ncruces” posted the patched source code to open the Quesabesdes RAW files with DCraw. Download from here: http://db.tt/jSGfK7R.
The dpreview forum user “ebrandon” posted two links to download the “before” (unprocessed TIFF) http://db.tt/uM3tnCm and the “after” (post-processed TIFF) http://db.tt/dvXlxHS.

P.S.: I am still hoping Fuji will join m43!!!

Surprise: Last minute design changes for the Samyang 35mm f/1.4 lens

Over a year passed without Olympus announcing any new Four Thirds lens. At least Samyang announced that nice 35mm f/1.4 manual focusing lens with 43-mount. There is a last minute surprise. Samyang added a red ring and an useful focusing scale to the lens. And they announced the final price which will be 389 Euro. All Samyang lenses for Olympus can be found on eBay only and under seven different brand names (Click on it to see all Four Thirds lenses from the specific brand!):
Samyang Walimex Rokinon Opteka Falcon Vivitar Bower

Unbelievable or not? :)

Click the link to read the press release:

Read More

a little bit of everything…(Fuji X100 in Europe in April only)


I was inspired when I saw the $195 Kipon EOS-m4/3 adapter so I decided to build my own. I salvage old parts from my father’s spoiled Hi8 video camera and fixed onto a standard EOS-m4/3 adapter.

The Fuji X100 will be in Stock at Amazon UK on April 11 (Click here). In US Adorama should start shipment in March (Click here).
A few X100 image samples can be found on Flick here. A few body pictures on Flickr.

HDMI Capture Problem SOLVED (DVXuser forum).
Panasonic GF2 ISO charts at tech.sina.
Olympus E-5 charts at tech.sina.
Dutch Panasonic GF2 hands-on at bright.nl.
M.Zuiko 40-150 Tested against the Panasonic 45-200 (Dpreview forum).
Day 3 of the Olympus EPL-2 Field Review (ThePhoBlographer).
AG-AF105 preview at pronews.jp (japanese!)
Using protective filters on lenses (m43blogspot).
Olympus SP-800UZ review at CNET.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 Review at Steve Digicams.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20 Review at Photographyblog.
Noctilux-M 50 mm f/0.95 ASPH Leica on a GH2 (Image samples at 3Dkraft).

Triple new Olympus firmware for the E-5, E-PL2 and XZ-1

Olympus just released the new firmware 1.1 for three cameras! Thise are the chnages for each camera:

E-5: Resolved issue of the LCD monitor color compensation being reset.
E-PL2: Changed default setting of Image Stabilizer (IS) to “On” when converter lens scene mode ([FISHEYE EFFECT], [ WIDE-ANGLE], and [ MACRO]) are selected.
XZ-1: Version 1.1 Resolved issue that occurred when the POWER button of the dedicated flash units was operated.

Click here to visit the Olympus firmware download page.

E-5 links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.
E-PL2 links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.
XZ-1 links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.

Take a look at the original Panasonic GF1 patent

Companies do not only patent specific technologies but also camera designs. Take a look at the following Panasonic patent that explains the Panasonic GF1 design (Source: freepatentsonline). That’s the description:

In one aspect, a mirrorless type imaging apparatus is provided. The imaging apparatus includes a mount to which a lens unit is mountable, an imager operable to produce an image signal from light incident through the lens unit, a light-emitter operable to emit light, and an electric storage device operable to supply electric power to the light-emitter, wherein the electric storage device is disposed behind the mount and below the imager.
According to, in the imaging apparatus of the aspect, the electric storage device is disposed below the imager, so that imaging apparatus can be miniaturized. Additionally, the electric storage device is disposed below the imager, so that an influence of heat generation of the imager on the electric storage device can be reduced.

You might want to read the rest of the patent to see what’s so special on the GF1 ;)

Reminder: The Panasonic GF2 is in Stock almost everywhere (as usual US is the latest country in the world to get stocks of Panasonic cameras!). Check out price and availability clicking on those direct GF2 links: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.

Why Panasonic forces me to shoot my next documentary with a Canon instead of using the GH2.

For a long time we had to struggle to find the GH2 in Stock in US and Europe. But in these days I am experiencing another frustrating story with Panasonic. I have to shoot a new short documentary between March 3th and March 5th. That’s why I ordered some new GH2 batteries at a well known German online shop on January 20th (yes January!). It wasn’t in Stock at that time but the cruel news is that they still don’t have it in Stock after 6 weeks of waiting! And you know what? Not a single german online store do have it in Stock right now (Source: idealo). I searched on eBay and found one eBay shop accepting preorders for five of them (Bayern Fotoversand). Sadly they said that they don’t have them in Stock right now  and they have no idea when they will be in Stock again!!!

What’s next?
As I am shooting on the border between Italy and Austria I contacted both Panasonic Italy and Panasonic Germany:
Panasonic Italy said that “we didn’t notice that there is a supply problem” and “our PC systems says that delivery time is unknown“.
Panasonic Germany gave us a phone number to an external distributor. We called the distributor that also wasn’t really sure about when it would be available (They said maybe 1-2 weeks).

What am I going to do?
Friends from the company helios.bz will give me the Canon 5DII with a huge pack of batteries.

Resume:
I don’t post this story to blame Panasonic, I posted it because I want them to acknowledge that they have some serious problems at the dsitribution level. The Panasonic GH2 has a much better video quality than the Canon 5DII but you really have to:
a) Increase the production of the GH2 cameras and related accessories.
b) If that is not possible at least inform us (and also inform Panasonic employers and online retailers) when those will be in Stock again. It’s pity I can’t use make a profesisonal use of the  Panasonic GH2 because of that.

P.S: GH2 battery links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay (in Stock only in some US stores and not in european stores).

Olympus announces three new compact cameras with FullHD, Multiframe movie, Dual Engine TruePic III+ and Backlight-CMOS-Sensor


Olympus announced three new compact cameras:
SZ-30 24x optical (25-600mm), 1080p movie, Can capture full res photos & video at the same time, Can shoot two videos at the same time
SZ-20 12.5x optical, 1080p Movie, 460k screen, 9FPS Continual shooting
TG-810 Crushproof, Waterproof, Shockproof, GPS & Electronic Compass, 920k dot screen

Although those are not m43 camera it’s always interesting to see what kind of new features Olympus did or didn’t implement. The most interesting feature is the “Multiframe movie” which simultaneous captures 1080p HD videos and full resolution stills. The necessary power for that is given by the new “Dual TruePic III+ Engine“. It’s also a surprise to see that Olympus is using a new 16 Megapixel “Backlight-CMOS-Sensor“. Is it from Panasonic or Sony?

UPDATE: If that 16Megapixel sensor is really from Sony than this could mean that Olympus is no more bound (by 2 or 4 years contracts) to Panasonic sensors. Could this have some influence on the next PEN cameras?

Press release

Megapixel
DPreview
Photographyblog
Photoscala