B&H Photo News Roundup: Week of February 12, 2024

B&H Photo News Roundup: Week of February 12, 2024

It's been a solid week for news, with Hollyland’s LARK M2 announcement taking the top spot, followed by new earbuds from Bose®, a significant firmware update for the Nikon Z8 camera, and a range of new content for all tastes across the B&H content-verse.

Hollyland Introduces LARK M2 Wireless Mic System

LARK M2 Wireless Microphone System in Dedicated Charging Case
LARK M2 Wireless Microphone System in Dedicated Charging Case

The big announcement of the week goes to Hollyland and its introduction of the LARK M2 wireless microphone system. This is a content-creator-focused system built around a very portable, button-sized wireless transmitter mic. The mic can be worn on a simple necklace or connected using more conventional methods, like clips or magnets, depending on what’s best for your shoot.

On the receiving end, there is a variety of options to suit different recording needs: a USB-C plug version can be used with Android devices, iPhone 15s, action cameras, or other mobile devices; there’s a Lightning plug version, which is MFi-certified for legacy Apple devices; or a camera-mount receiver that uses a 3.5mm TRS to TRS cable to connect with cameras or field recorders. Also, there’s a wireless charging case for the system that protects the mics and receiver while providing up to 40 total hours of battery life per charge.

LARK M2 worn via the Magnet Necklace attachment
LARK M2 worn via the Magnet Necklace attachment

In terms of recording specs, the LARK M2 captures lossless audio at 24-bit / 48 kHz and built-in environmental noise cancellation technology keeps quality super clean with minimal noise across the entire frequency spectrum. The LARK M2 also supports a 1,000' stable transmission range and a high-gain LDS antenna helps avoid human body interference to further boost sound clarity for long-distance recording needs.

It'll be interesting to see more content creators and vloggers get their hands on this wireless system; its compact size and wide range of accessories makes it a really appealing system for shooters on the go and those working with more compact mirrorless camera rigs.

Bose® Debuts Ultra Open™ Earbuds

Bose Ultra Open Earbuds
Bose® Ultra Open™ Earbuds

Offering something new and unique in the world of earbuds, Bose® launched its Ultra Open™ Earbuds on Thursday, which use OpenAudio Technology to mix comfort and spatial awareness with rich, nuanced sound. As an alternative to bone-conduction, these earbuds use air conduction for more refined audio quality. And rather than jamming the earbuds directly into your ear, they wrap around the outside of your ears with a cuff fit (similar to jewelry) that maintains all-day comfort. The battery life is rated for 7.5 hours, or 4.5 hours with Immersive Audio, and the included charging case will get you an extra 19.5 hours of playback.

Firmware 2.0 Brings Bird Detection and Pixel Shift to the Nikon Z8

In photo news, Nikon announced a major firmware update for its popular mirrorless camera, the Z8. Firmware 2.0 is the first major update for the camera platform and brings the camera closer in line to the Z9. The update adds some new shooting modes, Picture Control settings, and video recording updates:

Firmware 2.0 adds a new [Bird] Mode for improved detection and AF tracking
Firmware 2.0 adds a new [Bird] Mode for improved detection and AF tracking
  • New [Bird] mode improves AF subject detection tracking when photographing birds of various sizes and species, from varying distances and under a variety of lighting conditions

  • Auto Capture mode automatically releases the shutter when a specified subject type is recognized

  • Pixel Shift mode creates 180MP composite images by automatically recording a series of up to 32 frames

  • New Lo 2.0 setting, equivalent to ISO 200, is available during N-Log recording for greater detail and dynamic range

  • Added Rich Tone Portrait, Flat Monochrome, and Deep Tone Monochrome Picture Control Modes

  • New custom shutter sounds and volume options

Eric Fossum, Inventor of the CMOS Sensor, on the B&H Photography Podcast

This week’s podcast is an extra special one: our guest is Eric Fossum, inventor of the CMOS image sensor. “[Fossum] led the invention of the CMOS active-pixel image sensor as part of his work for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). Then, as part of JPL’s mandate to seek commercial and consumer applications for emerging technologies, he was active in the transfer of the CMOS sensor’s ‘camera-on-a-chip’ technology to industry.”

Tune in to learn more about the science behind the invention and stay for some fun food references and analogies.

In other news…

The official mascot of CP+, Cameracco
The official mascot of CP+, Cameracco
  • The latest article from our Gaming Build series is live: a Guide to PC Cases

  • This week’s installment of Teton Perspectives has Nate Luebbe and Autumn Schrock sharing their post-production processes as they go through some of the images they’ve made in the Tetons. Also, if you missed an episode, check out the Teton Perspectives page to catch up on all eight episodes.

  • We’re starting to get excited for the next Great American Total Solar Eclipse, happening on Monday, April 8. Check out all things Solar Eclipse to make sure you have the gear and knowledge you need.

  • In case you thought the FUJIFILM GFX100 II was only suitable for photography, we released a video highlighting the mirrorless medium format camera’s capabilities when used for video applications.

  • CP+ 2024 is happening next week; this Japanese trade show has historically been one of the launching grounds for some of the biggest photography announcements of the year. We’re looking forward it!

We’ll get back to it next week, with more news and content to share.