Sony's A7 range just became more of a proper system

by Mike Evans
The 90mm Macro, one of the three new primes added to the Sony FE-mount range

The 90mm Macro, one of the three new primes added to the Sony FE-mount range

Good as the quartet of Sony A7 cameras is, the A7, A7r, A7s and A7II have always lacked a bit of tender loving care in the lens department. I've said many times that the Fuji X System offers a better range of optics than the hitherto meagre fare from Sony.

That is now about to change as Sony introduces three new fast primes and a wide-to-long zoom. The new models are relatively large, as inevitable with modern full-frame auto-focus designs, and serve to emphasise the relative compactness of the APS-C system as espoused by Fuji. But full-frame addicts will love the added capabilities the new optics bring to the A7 range.

The three FE primes consist of a very fast f/1.4 35mm Zeiss Distagon, a 28mm f/2 and a stabilised 90mm f/2,8 macro. Providing more zoom muscle is a 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 beast featuring stabilisation.  In addition, Sony has added two fisheye converters for the new 28mm f/2.

You can find the full details here on Sony Alpha Rumors

Fuji gets the wooden spoon in Steve's battle of the mirrorless cameras

by Mike Evans

There are three major players in mirrorless systems in the minds of enthusiasts. They are Fuji, Olympus and Sony (in alphabetical order, I should point out). I don't include Leica because, strictly speaking, the M is not a mirrorless camera in the new meaning. As a rangefinder it is unique. But the three Japanese manufacturers are ploughing their furrows with three different sensor sizes, Four Thirds, APS-C and full frame.

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Oliver Kaltner replaces Alfred Schopf as Leica CEO

by Mike Evans

Big news from Leica this afternoon. As reported in Leica Rumors, Dr. Alfred Schopf is leaving Wetzlar on March 31 and will be replaced as chairman of the executive board by 46-year-old Oliver Kaltner.

Kaltner, previously with Microsoft Germany, has been a member of the Leica board since last September.  Alfred Schopf will continue to act as an advisor until the end of this year. 

 

iPhone 6 Plus: The two things Apple got wrong with the big phone

by Mike Evans

The iPhone 6 Plus has been a revelation and I am a huge fan. For me, it has become the only device I carry around every day. No longer do I feel the need for an iPad mini to supplement the phone. It is truly a one-stop shop. There is just one major aspect of the design that niggles—the placing of the lock (or on/off) button on the right of the handset, directly opposite the volume controls. Many times I have inadvertently locked the phone just by picking it up or when attempting to alter the volume. The top-placed button on the iPhone 5 was much more sensible in my view. 

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Sony A7 with manual lenses: Learn to focus reliably in five minutes

by Mike Evans

Whenever I write about using manual lenses, usually Leica lenses, on a non-Leica camera the article goes to the top of the charts. There is tremendous interest out there, particularly among users of mirrorless cameras such as the Fuji X and Sony A7 ranges. I am currently reviewing one lens, the fabulous and expensive 50mm Leica Apo-Summicron-M ASPH on three vastly different cameras, the Sony A7II, the Fuji X-T1 and, of course, the Leica M. The lens is the constant, but the method and ease of achieving perfect focus differs on these three cameras. Some are easier and more rewarding than others.

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Britain puts a stamp on eight world-class inventions

by Mike Evans

An impressive set of eight postage stamps to commemorate British inventions has just gone on sale. It's a rather eclectic bunch which covers a number of innovations, such as the computer and the World Wide Web, but ignores older triumphs such as televisionpenicillin, the steam enginerailways and spotted dick. But it makes a pretty set, nonetheless.

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