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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:08 am 
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So unless there's an 11th hour announcement, it looks like we now know about all the new products for the first half of this year - although beware, sometimes there's a few spring announcements too!

So were you impressed or disappointed?

Was the camera or lens you were waiting for launched?

Who was the manufacturer or product of the show for you?

Me? In terms of DSLRs, I reckon Sony came out of this quite strongly, and the A350 looks very promising... Canon did as expected. And Nikon was disappointing...

In terms of compacts, I'm looking forward most to testing the Panasonic TZ5 and the Samsung NV24HD... and the Sigma DP1 if it ever arrives!

Lenses? The Sigma 200-500mm f2.8 of course! The kit lens for 2008!

Gordon


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:37 am 
I thought Nikon's releases were pretty underwhelming. The D60 is nothing to shout about, and there was no D80 replacement although I can't say I was disappointed about the D80 going without an update or replacement. This will probably sound stupid and selfish, but I've been dreading the day my D80 becomes obsolete. I do like the sound of another AF-S macro lens, I'm quite interested to see how the 60mm turns out.

I think Sony was the most impressive. The way they have every budget offering from competing manufacturers covered will appeal greatly to consumers.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:42 pm 
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Graham, the day Nikon launches the D80s successor is not the day your D80 becomes obselete! It'll still be a great camera you'll be able to use for years to come. Same with all the new announcements. There'll always be a new model coming, but it doesn't stop an existing one form working just fine!

But back to PMA - I agree with your comments...


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 9:16 pm 
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Gordon,

As always, with so many announcements and new products :shock: , it is nearly impossible to have all of them on mind.

As always again, I noted the densification of the ranges of products in order to offer a solution for every single customer and every possible customer, at the expenses of making the choice difficult :? and the purchase uneasy :( . This is particularly true for compact cameras (as at previous years) but has been extended to dSLRs, with for example the multiple alpha cameras by Sony.

I've seen no real breakthrough idea or killing innovation, but rather nice evolutions. As technology evolves, high-end features are now made accessible, like live view. But the mega pixels race is still on :!:

However, I’m delighted with the announcements of new lenses for dSLR. A dSLR body is only one piece of the puzzle: lenses are the other pieces.

As a Pentax user :wink: (I noted Gordon didn't mention Pentax in his post... :) ), I think the K20D pushes the limit set by the K10D even higher, but I consider the K200D as even more interesting, with its dramatic value. Five announced new lenses and 3 showcased lenses (for summer 2008) are good news for Pentax dSLR owners, and bad news for their credit cards :) . So for me, the expected expense of this year will be a lens, the DA* 60-250mm, should it be available this year :!:

I’m sure Canon, Nikon and Sony owners are happy too :)

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Last edited by rei_vilo on Fri Feb 01, 2008 11:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:07 pm 
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So what have we had so far this year? New DSLRs are the Pentax K20D, Pentax K200D, Samsung GX20, Canon 450D/XSi, Nikon D60, Sony A200, Sony A300 and the Sony A350. There are several dozen point and shoots (compacts and superzooms) and a very interesting selection of new lenses. A pretty good haul and Gordon's heart must be sinking at the thought of how many reviews he may have to do in the coming months. :?

Probably the most notable omission was the expected Nikon D90 so attention for that update will move to Photokina in the fall. Similar disappointment for those lucky enough to be contemplating the successor to Canon's "budget" full-framer, the EOS 5D.

The stand out for me is the aggressive push into the DSLR market by Sony. While Canon and Nikon will no doubt remain at the top of the tree for the foreseeable future I imagine that Pentax, Olympus and even Panasonic will be very concerned to see a company with the muscle and brand awareness of Sony entering their markets.

And for the not too distant future we have the promise of a 24 MP Sony full-framer which will certainly compete strongly with the EOS 5D line and any other budget full-frame offerings. As Gordon has pointed out elsewhere, the Canon and Nikon "pro" grade full-frame cameras are probably safe with their great build quality and extensive lens and accessory systems.

So later in the year we will have the new Sony full-framer, we should have the Nikon D90 and we may have the Canon 5D MkII. Even adding some refreshes of the various point and shoot models it doesn't look as though Photokina is going to be hugely exciting compared to PMA/CES. Unless there are some surprises planned... :wink:

Bob.

UPDATE: PopPhoto has a nice summary of the new cameras for 2008 here.

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Last edited by Bob Andersson on Sat Feb 02, 2008 12:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:37 pm 
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I was only focussing on Nikon and that was a full disappointment!
From what I hoped for camera-wise nothing showed up and lens-wise only one of the expected/rumoured lenses (16-85) but otherwise nada!
So it's back into waiting-mode without sore feelings, because the D80 is stille very good camera, quality-wise. And everybody here in the forum knows that I'm not after features...
But still with my focus on Nikon announcements and news I felt that Sony certainly made an impact. They're swamping the marked with all grades of bodies plus the assertion of a FF-body built around their latest sensor. With CZ lenses to boot that is a force to reckon.
I predict that Sony will trample over Nikons low-end pretty fast and out-innovate them. Only Canon will stand up going head to head. Whether this means that Canon will leave some of their unique selling propositions behind will have to be seen...

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Last edited by Thomas on Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Chuck Westfall interview
PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 4:38 pm 
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Hi folks,

If you click on this link there is a video which, after the first 50 seconds or so switches to an English language interview with Chuck Westfall where he talks about the new EOS 450D/XSi and is asked about the "5D MkII", the EOS 1D MkIII and the lack of any wide-angle prime announcements. While you are waiting for the interview to start there are also some nice shots of the new telephoto primes. So now we know: no "5D MkII" yet because there is no competing model elsewhere! Maybe the 24 MP full-framer pre-announced by Sony is the best news yet for those awaiting a 5D update.

After you have finished digesting Chuck's comments there are some other video's to watch, the more recent of which cover new offerings from Pentax, Nikon and Sony with variable amounts of English language interviews.

Courtesy of Kamera & Bild.

Bob.

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Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 5:43 pm 
As it often happens in any market, the dominant manufacturers have settled into a certain routine in terms of new product launches - one that almost inevitably is slower than the up-and-comers in the same market space.

I think that the big battle is and will be in the "everyman camera" space. Compact, portable, feature-laden pocket shooters with very large LCDs.

Going out in Vancouver yesterday - the first bright sunlit day in months - I noticed that cameras were everywhere. I saw perhaps 3 other DSLRs wielded by mature folk and a gazillion various small compact digitals.

As I struggle with this month's assignment (kudos to Drazen again for making it a challenging topic) I was in the vicinity of many obvious and eminently shoot-able "landmarks" and cultural "features". It was virtually overrun with groups of young people, each wielding some compact digital.

The DSLR market may well - if it haven't already - fill the same role as race cars do for car manufacturers. This is not where the money is made, but where the tech for tomorrow's "every man camera" is being field tested.

The only real innovation in my sphere of interest is how the Nikon D3 is able to handle noise at very high ISO (6400). Other than that I don't see much true innovation.

- Articulated LCDs have been around for a while - but now they are being put onto cameras as well. OK..I'm happy for those who needs it, but I seriously wonder how durable they are.
- Live View - the DSLRs are just trying to catch up with a feature that has been on the compacts for years. I personally have no need or desire for that feature as it cannot reveal the subtleties that my eyes can see through the viewfinder.
- Going from 10 to 12 MP doesn't count as innovation in my opinion.
- "Automated" dust removal. Hmm..I have yet to be convinced that this is a key feature for any camera and it might encourage people to think they can swap lenses in all sorts of environments - because they have the dut removal. If I can't remove it with a blower, I'm taking mine down for cleaning by professionals.

When Pentax, Samsung or Sony have a large selection of high-quality lenses that are as good or better than Canon's & Nikon's, I might take more of an interest - but right now I don't consider them full-fledged alternatives to the Canon or Nikon systems as a whole.

As a Nikon user, the new 16-85mm VR is an interesting addition in and of itself - could be a perfect urban walk around lens for me - but it's priced almost similarly to the 18-200 VR. Less distortion and apparently no lens creep - but really, nothing to select one over the other for, given the 18-200mm VR's excellent performance. I could see if the 16-85mm becomes a kit-lens in the near-future and in a bundled form at a competitive price-point.

I think this PMA is revealing of both clear and unclear strategies. The newcomers clearly wanting to push more out there to grab some attention - loaded with fancy features, perhaps too fancy.
On the other hand we have Canon and Nikon who may not have a full-fledged strategy in place to answer this push - or they have one, but choose to see how the market reacts to all the new stuff, before launching it.

..I see this as the silence before the storm :-)


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:49 am 
Well I have only really been looking into cameras in the last 6 months or so but rome wasn't built in a day. They are making cameras step by step better. It is good in a way because if you buy a camera now in another 6 months or a year you won't feel as your camera is really out of date like it is with computers. But then again if your camera is taking good pictures now why is that going to change in lets say 10 years, yes other cameras going have more features and so on.

and the 5D now gees that camera is getting old but people are stilling buying it, it's a great camera but it makes me wonder if canon are going to try and make a the mark II just as good as the 5D was in when it was new. Thats why they didn't show it at the PMA I dunno.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:56 pm 
A few things that caught my attention:

Nikon:
- the sensor cleaning / airflow system in the new D60
- the electronic rangefinder that displays focus info in the viewfinder of the new D60... could really help with manual focusing
- the new 60mm AF-S Micro-Nikkor... hey - it's a prime :wink: I hope to see some more when the D90 is announced...

Panasonic:
- if I understood correctly, the new DMC-TZ4 and TZ5 have per-pixel ISO control??? - that sure beats Active D-Lighting... at least on paper

Kodak:
- they showed the first camera phone sensor with the new RGB / clear pixel pattern

Fuji:
- that 6x7 medium format film camera 8)

Darrin


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:07 pm 
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Darrin wrote:
...if I understood correctly, the new DMC-TZ4 and TZ5 have per-pixel ISO control???...

Sounds a bit odd. :?

Do you have a link to the article describing this feature? Thanks.

Bob.

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Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 8:23 pm 
Bob Andersson wrote:
Sounds a bit odd. :?
Do you have a link to the article describing this feature? Thanks.

Bob.

Take a look here (is linking to letsgodigital.org discouraged? :oops:):
Quote:
Panasonic TZ5 - Intelligent Exposure & Digital Red-eye correction
[...]The newly added Intelligent Exposure function automatically controls the ISO sensitivity partially to increase the exposure of only the darkened area due to backlighting or insufficient flash lighting to capture the scene as you see it by suppressing the extreme brightness and darkness in the picture.


Could be a mistake though, because in the Panasonic press material the "Intelligent Exposure" section does not mention ISO and sounds more like Active D-Lighting....

Darrin


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 9:27 pm 
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Hmmm, that sounds curious... I hadn't heard that myself, but will of course investigate for our review of the TZ5 when it arrives...


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 9:42 pm 
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Thanks for the link and the quote. Whatever it is they are doing might be a help to the casual user, I suppose.

The idea of "per pixel" ISO variation really appealed to my warped sense of humour. I could imagine the ISO being varied so that each pixel from the camera was a perfectly matched shade of grey, with just some chroma noise introduced during Bayer de-mosaicking. :shock: :lol: :lol:

Bob.

_________________
Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject: Chuck Westfall interview
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 12:10 am 
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Hi folks,

In addition to the video interview with Chuck Westfall (technical adviser for Canon USA's professional products marketing division) I mentioned in an earlier post there is also an interview with him by the guys over at CNet. Here's the link.

Bob.

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Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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