Tag Archives: dpreview

Photographing the 2015 Boston Blizzard: Part 2 The Artistic/Macro approach

I know spring is coming but let’s rewind a little bit to this blizzard we underwent during this winter because it offered very interesting things. So how do you photograph extreme conditions in a way nobody does? It depends on the way you look at it.

Part 1 of this series had a common approach winter photography, mostly from a landscape photography point of view. Here, I wanted to explore the situation with a different eye. I wanted to look at perspectives that people wouldn’t see by themselves. I wanted to look at those tiny things that we would forget, but that the camera lens can make us see differently, thanks to the depth of field and bokeh that our eye cannot reproduce naturally.

 Pure Macro Close-ups

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1 to 1.5 inch for this icicle. The sun gave me this refraction bokeh.

By the way, just imagine one second if we could control our depth of field just with our iris? Wouldn’t that be incredible? Swiss researchers have created the first eye contact lens able to zoom x2.8 just with a blink! Amazing! Anyway, that was the revolutionary high-tech parenthesis. Continue reading Photographing the 2015 Boston Blizzard: Part 2 The Artistic/Macro approach

4 New Sony Full Frame Mirrorless Lenses!

Sony just release FOUR new lenses for the Sony full frame system this week. They are available for preorder right now and will be available to ship as early as this month. We take a brief look at each one and see which is for who.

1) The Everyday Prime: Sony FE 28mm f/2 – $448 at Amazon

Sony SEL28F20 FE 28mm f:2-22
Click on the image for the preorder page at Amazon.

The least expensive lens released is the large f/2 aperture 28mm wide normal prime should really be in every Sony photographer’s camera bag. It is more versatile and less expensive than the already stellar Zeiss Sonnar 35mm f/2.8. And it is compatible with ultra-wide and fisheye converter add-on lenses. While I was still shooting with a Canon 5D Mark II, my favorite prime lens was the EF 28mm f/1.8. It was such a sleeper lens. So small, light, and inexpensive, yet with such a fast aperture. This one is Sony’s equivalent.

Sony-28mm-f2-optical-design-diagram

It also features a dust and moisture resistant design, 9-blade circular aperture, and ED glass elements with multicoating which reduces flare and ghosting. The linear actuator focusing mechanism ensures smooth and quiet AF for photography and videography.

Continue reading 4 New Sony Full Frame Mirrorless Lenses!

The Street Shooters – Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2.0 vs. Zeiss Sonnar 35mm f/2.8

We don’t always do gear tests at iLHP but when we do, we go all out. This lens shootout will feature a Blackbird spy plane, two beautiful models on Melrose Ave., and the Space Shuttle Endeavour.

Space Shuttle Endeavor
Come on. Who else gives you a space shuttle in a lens review??

The 35mm is an ideal focal length for street photographers. Wide enough to capture subject within close proximity, not so wide that distortion becomes an issue or too many distractions are in the frame. Leica has long had their famous range of 35mm Summiluxes and Summicrons for street photogs. However, the 35mm is also a secret weapon for fashion/portrait photographers like Terry Richardson or Annie Leibovitz.

This comparo will be broken into 5 rounds:

  1. Build quality
  2. Sharpness
  3. Vignetting and Flare
  4. Bokeh and 3D Pop
  5. Real World Handling

The Contenders & Their Specs

Zeiss Sonnar 35mm Loxia 35mm Sonnar 55mm
All of these lenses are made from metal. Though similar in size, the Loxia feels much heavier than the Sonnar 35mm. Zeiss Sonnar 35mm f/2.8 (left); Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2 Biogon (center); Zeiss Sonnar 55mm f/1.8 (right).

On the left, weighing in at a featherweight 120g with a $798 price tag, is the Zeiss Sonnar T* 35mm f/2.8. In the middle, weighing in at a hefty 340g with a $1,299 price tag, is the brand new Zeiss Loxia T* 35mm f/2 Biogon. And for reference, we have the spectacular Zeiss Sonnar T* 55mm f/1.8 on the right.

Continue reading The Street Shooters – Zeiss Loxia 35mm f/2.0 vs. Zeiss Sonnar 35mm f/2.8

Photographing the 2015 Boston Blizzard – (Part 1: The Ghost City)

A record breaking winter. Yes, this is what this winter is in Boston. With 104 inches (2m64) of snow so far (March 1st) since the beginning of this incredible winter, it’s the second snowiest winter ever in Boston with a record at 107 inches (2m71). February already hit the 1st place as the snowiest month in the history of Boston.

IMG_1029
Almost 72 inches here (2m) and the wind blowing.

In terms of temperature, it is also one of the coldest winter ever. With some temperatures at -13F (-25C) and reaching -24F (-31C) with wind chill. This is also one of the reasons why the bay of Boston froze.

IMG_1072
Boston’s bay all frozen like a floe from Quincy. You can see Boston’s skyline in the horizon.

Of course, the Charles River is all frozen, but it’s more unusual concerning the ocean! Unless you live in the north pole or…in Canada eh? 😉 You probably saw the frozen wave photographed in the south of Boston, in a tiny island called Nantucket (watch here)? Boston is currently more or less in the same situation as Fairbanks, Alaska. You read it correctly, “Alaska”. Continue reading Photographing the 2015 Boston Blizzard – (Part 1: The Ghost City)

3 Detailed Reasons Why it is Still Too Early to Switch to a Full Frame Mirrorless System

It’s  been more than a year since the debut of the world’s first full frame mirrorless system and just this past month we’ve already seen the second generation Sony A7 Mark II hit the shelves (and our first impressions are here).  We are pretty much past the honeymoon phase along Roger’s Law of New Product Introductions (new products being mirrorless full frame systems). Early adopters have adopted. Initial nonbelievers are recanting. Now comes the point where the mainstream consumers are thinking whether or not they should ditch the DSLR and switch over to the mirrorless.

It isn’t an easy decision. Investing in a system is expensive and learning to use it takes time. My colleague Christian gave us 10 Reasons to Switch from a DSLR to a Mirrorless System. I present you with 3 key counterpoints as to why the mainstream should wait. This article will focus on full frame systems rather than APS-C. It is geared towards prosumers seriously invested in their gear and professionals who make their living with their cameras.

Continue reading 3 Detailed Reasons Why it is Still Too Early to Switch to a Full Frame Mirrorless System