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Showing posts with the label Manual Focus

No water droplets.

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I was trying to get some nice spherical water droplets but to no avail.

Focus Stack Test with the Leica 60mm Elmarit-R

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8 Images Blended Together.
Here is the Lysudamuloa Red Jewel in full bloom. We wanted to try out focus stacking with the Leica 60mm Macro Elmarit-R. The aperture was set at f/5.6 which we assumed was optimal. The image above at 45˚ was a stack of 8 shots aligned and blended together with Photoshop.

The Anther Cap of the Lysudamuloa Red Jewel 
The image above is a crop of the 90˚ stack which was a 5 shot stack.



Lysudamuloa Red Jewel 
Lysudamuloa Red Jewel 
Lysudamuloa Red Jewel 



Olympus Infinity Point and Shoot vs Sony A7

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Windham Graves shows us how to create a new lens for your Sony E-mount camera from a film point and shoot. He harvests the lens from an Olympus Infinity camera which has a relatively fast 35mm f/2.8 lens. A Russian m39
lens tube with a helicoid is used to Frankenstein the final lens for the e-mount.






Olympus Infinity 35mm f2.8 Adapted to Sony E-mount




Getting the Shot Sony A7r II vs 5d Mark III

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Bokeh Battle 85mm Zeiss Otus vs Sony G Master
The video above from DigitalRev TV shows the advantage of electronic viewfinders found on Sony cameras. The evf betters optical viewfinders by providing a more accurate way to manual focus lenses. The Sony A7r II provides a magnified view for focusing. It also has focus peaking which highlights portions of the image that are in the focus zone. So getting the shot with the Otus is a much easier task with an EVF.

Another advantage shown is that Zeiss only provides autofocus lenses for Sony - the Batis line. The A7r II had no problems locking focus with the 85mm G Master. Canon and Nikon shooters can only use the Otus and Milvus line, which Sony shooters have access to as well.

Which do you prefer?


Louis Vuitton America’s Cup New York

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One World Trade Center with America's Cup AC45 Catamarans.

America's Cup racing returned to New York City after a 96 year absence. The Cup is currently in the hands of the USA, Team Oracle. There are six teams in the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series which include Artemis Racing, Emirates Team New Zealand, Groupama Team France, Land Rover BAR, ORACLE TEAM USA, and SoftBank Team Japan.


Emirates Team New Zealand with the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings.
America's Cup AC45 Catamarans Anchored in Jersey City.
Lower Manhattan behind the America's Cup Catamarans.
Brooklyn behind Land Rover BAR Team Great Britain and Artemis Racing Team Sweden Catamarans.
Land Rover BAR Great Britain, Groupama Team France, and Emirates Team New Zealand.
Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.
Team Emirates Flying Hull.
Team Groupama Flying Hull.
Oracla Team USA Double Flying Hull.
Manhattan and America's Cup.
The photos show here were taken with the NEX-7 with the Minolta 24mm f/2.8 MD…

Red Hook Crit Brooklyn No. 9 with the NEX-7.

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We took the subway down to Red Hook - Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, which is definitely a place for bikes since the nearest station is a mile a way. We had a nice compact setup with the Sony NEX-7 and the Contax 50mm Planar via the Metabones Speed Booster. The Speed Booster effectively gave us an f/1.0 lens with a 55mm focal length.



We have some static shots but it takes away from the sensation of speed that the women were achieving on the track. Above is the lead pack during the race. We only had 2 minutes between each lap until we saw them again.









It's always fun to watch the Red Hook Crit even though it was cooler than usual. We did pretty well with a manual focus lens during a sporting event. I wonder what the Sony A6300 with its advanced autofocus tracking can manage.

Sony a7 Clear Image Zoom Test

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Sony a7r Clear Image Zoom Candidate #1
Here are four images from the Sony a7r and the Contaz Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 Planar. The four shots are full frame, 1.5x clear image zoom to match APS-C, a7r in APS-C mode, and 2X clear image zoom in APS-C mode. The images were then cropped to match a 2X clear image zoom in APS-C mode. The 50mm lens now provides a field of view of 150mm with 2X clear image zoom APS-C mode on the a7r.  See the images below and determine if CIZ is something you should try.  Please rank the images from best to worst.

What is Clear Image Zoom?

from Sony:
Clear Image Zoom is a function that uses the Sony® exclusive By Pixel Super Resolution Technology. It allows you to enlarge the image with close to the original image quality when shooting still images. The camera first zooms optically to the maximum optical magnification, then uses Clear Image Zoom technology to enlarge the image an additional 2x, producing sharp, clear images despite the increased zoom ratio.

NOTES: Th…

Hands On with Zeiss 35mm Distagon on Sony a7r at Photo Plus

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Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 Distagon on the a7r
Here is the newest Zeiss lens for the Leica M system. It is a Distagon 1.4/35mm ZM lens - Carl Zeiss' fastest lens for rangefinder cameras. We stopped by the Zeiss booth at Photo Plus and tried it out on the Sony a7r with a close-focus adapter. Voigtlander makes a better version of the adapter but this one works for us.

The 35mm Distagon ZM feels like a fine piece of machinery. The aperture from f/1.4 to f/18 have soft click stops. The focus ring is smooth, well damped, and pleasing to use - we prefer it to the Otus' ring. The lens is dense and heavy for such a small size thanks to the all metal construction. The 35mm Distagon ZM is deceptively heavy as the 85mm Otus ZE is deceptively light.

Jeff Koons at the Whitney Museum with the A7r

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Jeff Koons: A Retrospective Whitney Museum
We discovered that the Jeff Koons exhibit was on its final days at the Whitney Museum. We also learned that the Whitney was closing the doors at the Breuer Building location and was moving downtown towards the Highline. We took the Sony A7r and a Contax 28mm Distagon and tested out GeoTagging - posted earlier. Here are some images from the excursion.


Bear and Policeman by Jeff Koons

Sony A7s Video: Aurora Borealis in Tromsø

Aurora Borealis in Tromsø by Anders Mildestveit
Real time video of northern lights on oct. 18th in Tromsø, Norway.
Shot with a Sony A7S and Rokinon 24mm T1.5 at 25600 iso with no noise reduction applied.

The video of the of the Aurora Borealis demonstrates the low light prowess of the Sony A7s.

Zeiss 35mm Distagon ZM Announced

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Mockup of Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 ZM on Sony A7r
Carl Zeiss announced their fastest ZM, Leica M mount, lens at Photokina 2014. The new Distagon T* 1,4/35mm ZM is designed for the Leica M digital sensor but we are hopeful that it will work well on the Sony A7 cameras with the appropriate lens adapter. Above is a mockup of what the Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 lens would look on a Sony A7. The Zeiss 35 f/1.4 will provide subject isolation through shallow depth of field.

Zeiss 35mm f/1.4 Distagon ZM in Black
Below are the lens specs and intro video from Carl Zeiss.

Two New APS-C E-mount Lenses from Zhongyi Optics

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Zhongyi Optics Mitakon 42mm and 24mm for APS-C E-mount Cameras
Zhongyi Optics introduced two new lenses designed for the E-mount APS-C sensor (a6000, a5100, a5000, and NEX cameras) at Photokina 2014. The first is the Mitakon 24mm f/1.7 which translates to an EFOV of a 36mm lens on the APS-C. The Mitakon 24mm is attractively priced at $289. The second lens is a Mitakon 42.5mm f/1.2 lens which converts to 63mm on the APS-C sensor. The Mitakon 42mm is priced at $359. Both lenses are manual focus and provide a relatively large aperture for excellent low light shots. Both are very light and compact, perfect travel lenses.

Below are specs and sample images from the new Zhongyi Mitakon lenses.

Sony a6000 Digiscoping Samples by 5Bellies Digiscoping

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Marsh Harrier 14 by 5bellies Digiscoping
Here are some great digiscoping shots by 5bellies Digiscoping. He uses a Sony a6000 with a Swarovski scope which consists the STX-85 modular objective lens, the STX Eyepiece Module with a 25-60x magnification, and the TLS APO adapter.

There are a few samples below and a quick tutorial by Swarovski.

The Rig, Sony a6000 with a Swarovski STX-85 Digiscope

Zeiss Loxia 50mm on A7r Samples and Review by Berlin Backstage

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Zeiss Loxia 50mm Planar on Sony A7r
Berlin Backstage was lucky enough to test out the new Carl Zeiss Loxia 50mm f/2 Planar lens before the Photokina 2014 official release. Here are a points we extracted from their review titled "Blau trifft Orange," translated blue meets orange.
180° of focus ring movement for gentle, precise focus.Aperture ring can be de-clicked for videographers with a supplied de-click tool.Feels similar to the Zeiss 50mm ZM Planar lens.  The Loxia 2/50 is a massaged ZM Planar design for the Sony A7 series. The f/2.0 maximum aperture keeps the lens small which is a good compromise. The Loxia is a manual aperture lens, not electronic controlled.It provides Exif data to the camera. The lens hood can be mounted in reverse without blocking the focusing ring. Ten aperture blades for buttery soft bokeh.Important points for the reviewer: feel, color, contrast.See the sample images from the Loxia 50mm on the A7r from Berlin Backstage below.


Film To Digital Konica S3 Rangefinder with Sony NEX-5 Sensor

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Frankencamera by Oliver Baker
Give Oliver Baker an NEX-5, a Konica S3 fixed lens rangefinder, and a 3D Printer and what do you get? The Frankencamera.

Oliver combined the mechanical features of the Konica S3 RF and the digital components of the NEX-5 to create a new camera. The back of the S3 was replaced with a 3D printed replica, via selective laser sintering. The new back holds the NEX-5 sensor and related electronics.

Zeiss Loxia 35mm and 50mm Lens Specs for Sony A7 Cameras

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Here are the specs for the upcoming Loxia lenses by Carl Zeiss designed for the Sony A7 family and other E-mount cameras. The first two announced are the Loxia 35mm f/2 Biogon and the 50mm f/2 Planar.  Both lenses share the same physical dimensions and filter ring thread.  They are manual focus lenses with electronic coupling to Sony E-mount cameras.

Loxia 2/35 Biogon

NY Botanical Garden with the A7r and Minolta 35-70mm MD

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We took the Sony A7r with the Minolta 35-70mm MD Macro lens to the New York Botanical Garden's The Orchid Show. The 35-70mm MD Macro makes for a nice walkabout zoom lens for the full frame A7r. It can cover wide angle to medium telephoto shots. The majority of pictures poster here were taken using macro mode, providing 1:4 magnification. The aperture was set at f/5.6 - f/8. The Sony A7r was set to shutter priority mode at 1/200 and auto ISO. This was in order to minimize camera shake indoors, since this was all hand held.

We were pleased with the results and drawing style provided by the a7r and the Minolta 35-70mm. This would be a nice inexpensive travel lens.