B&H Gear News Roundup: April 17th, 2015


This week in the news: The Gear Roundup is back from another vacation and spring has arrived in New York City! For those of you keeping score at home, this week was the NAB Show in Las Vegas; the annual National Association of Broadcasters gathering that brought more than 100,000 attendees to the desert to see the latest in broadcasting gear and tech.

B&H Photo was there, on the ground, and if you want to jump right to what we saw and liked, go to this NAB link right now.

Lots of stuff to talk about from NAB and other points around the globe, so let’s get to it.

Canon 4K EOS C300 Mark II and Compact XC10 Camcorders

Not wanting to wait until NAB, Canon announced a pair of 4K video cameras just before the show to get the masses excited about visiting the Canon booth.

The EOS C300 Mark II is available in Canon EF or PL mount versions and features internal 4K recording at either true DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) or Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) resolution for the broadcast and cinema customers. The EF version lets you utilize Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology and has a boosted ISO range up to ISO 25600.

The XC10 features a fixed 10x zoom lens and is a unique machine that looks like its DNA is pulled from both Canon camcorders and DSLRs. It features a 1" CMOS sensor, optimized for 4K production.

For more information on the pair of movie-making machines, click on this link.

Blackmagic Design Cinema Cameras

Blackmagic made some big splashes at NAB this week with a bevy of new products, including the URSA, a user-upgradable digital cinema camera, and URSA sensor-upgrade module. The upgrade module will be available with an EF or PL lens mount. It features a Super-35mm-sized image sensor that boasts 4.6K resolution, 15 stops of dynamic range, and frame rates up to 120 fps. A smaller URSA Mini features the same 4.6K sensor and core processing as the full-sized URSA, but comes in a significantly smaller and lighter magnesium-alloy body. A second version of the URSA Mini shoots 4K and does not feature the global shutter or gyroscope sensor.

Be sure to check out the Micro Cinema Camera and Micro Studio Camera that pack pro features and a big sensor into a body about the size of an action camera and feature a Micro Four Thirds lens mount and HD (Micro Cinema) and 4K (Micro Studio) recording.

For more info on the Blackmagic releases, click here and here.

Drones Drones Drones

If the airspace was not crowded enough, it is more crowded now with new drone releases from DJI and 3D Robotics at NAB.

The 3D Robotics Solo carries your GoPro camera to new heights and can follow you and your compatible smart device, giving a whole new dimension to selfie possibilities. It even has a Selfie Mode. The Gear Review cannot wait to finally see what the top of its head looks like from an aerial perspective!

The DJI Phantom 3 has landed. Both the Advanced Edition, identified by silver stripes on the prop arms, and the Professional Edition, with gold stripes, will feature a three-axis, gimbal-stabilized camera system similar to the one currently found on the Phantom 2 Vision+. The camera on the Advanced produces 1080p, while the Professional may be shooting up to 4K-UHD (3840 x 2160) but B&H has not yet confirmed this. For stills, both cameras will take 12MP shots in either JPG or DNG RAW format.

Not a flying drone, but also from DJI is the new Ronin-M 3-axis camera stabilizer.

For more information go to this 3D Robotics announcement, see a video of the Solo, and check out the DJI video and announcement as well.

Fujifilm XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR Lens

If you have memorized the Fujifilm X mount Lens Roadmap, you will see that the new Fujifilm XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR Lens is right on schedule. The lens features a 35mm equivalent of 24mm and a large f/1.4 maximum aperture. The WR designation means that this lens is built to be dust and weather-resistant and can operate down to temperatures as low as 14°F. Fujifilm says that it can focus in as little as 0.11 seconds.

The lens also sports and old-school look with useful depth-of-field and focus distance markings.

For more information on the new Fujifilm 16mm, click here.

Sony’s New Long-Range Point-and-Shoots

Sleek and small, but with large 30x optical zooms, the new Cyber-shot cameras from Sony are the Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V and the Cyber-shot DSC-WX500. The DSC-HX90V has a pop-up OLED Tru-Finder for eye-level viewing along with a tilting LCD monitor, improved video recording, and a new Zeiss-designed lens. The DSC-WX500 features the same improved design elements, including XAVC S video recording, but without the viewfinder.

Both Cyber-shots feature a new 18.2MP 1/2.3" Exmor R BSI CMOS sensor paired with the latest Sony BIONZ X image processor bringing an expandable sensitivity range to ISO 12800 and continuous shooting up to 10 fps. Full HD 1920 x 1080 video recording is supported in 60p, 60i, as well as 24p frame rates, and the high-quality 50Mb/s XAVC S format can be used in addition to the standard AVCHD format.

Want to know more about this pair of Sony’s? Click here.

Manfrotto’s Digital Director

The new Digital Director from Manfrotto might be just what you need to take your movie-making DSLR to the next level. It combines an iPad mount, an internal high-powered microprocessor, and a camera control interface into a seamless unit that plugs into your Canon or Nikon DSLR to give you monitoring, control, and recording capabilities while shooting video or still images.

For more information, click here.

Olympus TOUGH TG-4 and 1s Cameras

Olympus has rolled out two new point-and-shoot cameras for customers. The new TOUGH TG-4 comes in black or red and allows you to shoot 16MP stills or full HD 1080p video up to 50' below the surface of the water, in temperatures as low as 14°F, while being dropped onto a hard surface from 7', or while being stepped on by a person with a 220 lbf footprint. Dust and sand cannot get into the TG-4 either, so bring it to the beach!

Looking like its interchangeable-lens stable mates in the OM-D line, the Stylus 1s appears to be the fixed-lens version of the retro-design Olympus line. The 10x zoom lens has a 35mm equivalent range of 28-300mm at a maximum aperture of f/2.8 and shoots full HD 1080p/30 video and 12MP stills with a back side illuminated (BSI) CMOS sensor.

For more info about these two new additions from Olympus, click here.

Nikon 1 J5 Mirrorless Camera

Nikon has added to its popular Nikon 1 interchangeable-lens mirrorless line with the new J5. The J5 features an elegant design encapsulating a 20.8MP BSI CX-format CMOS sensor coupled to a new EXPEED 5A image-processing engine that gives the camera shooting capability up to ISO 12800. The overall body has been changed from the J4 to include an ergonomic grip, raised controls, and a textured exterior. Selfie lovers rejoice: the J5’s 1,037k-dot LCD touchscreen features 180° of tilt.

The camera features UHD 2160p/15 video recording or 20.4MP stills.

Get the J5 with a 10-100mm VR Lens in silver or white; with the 10-30mm PD-ZOOM lens in blacksilver, or white; and with the 10-30mm PD-ZOOM and 30-110mm VR lenses in silver or white. Three accessories are also available with the cameras: an EN-EL 24 rechargeable battery, an MH-31 battery charger, a dedicated Body Case, and an EP-5F Power Connector for connecting to the EH-5b AC Adapter.

For more information on the Nikon 1 J5, click here.

Other news you might have missed...

... and that's your news for the week of April 13, 2015.

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