*ZY Optics, Zhong Yi Mitakon Speedmaster 25mm f/0.95 lens for Micro 4/3 user review

ZY Speedmaster 25mm f/0.95

Small, sharp, fast, relatively light and comparably inexpensive.  All things I love in a lens.  ZY Optics has produced yet another ultra fast option for micro 4/3 shooters, but a first option available in a dedicated mount, faster than f/1.4, new for under $400. 

The question now stands, how does this fit in with all the other standard/normal lens offerings within the micro 4/3 landscape?  Well, more easily than you might think.  While not perfect, it definitely has enough going for it to justify a look.  C’mon in for my thoughts and some tests against the Pana-Leica 25mm f/1.4 Summilux…

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*Sigma 20mm f/1.4 Art Lens on the Sony a7II and Canon 5DII, a user review w/ @adorama

 

Sigma Art EF 20mm f/1.4 Lens review

Happy new year! I’ve been having a wonderful holiday season, largely thanks to Adorama for lending me this beaut of a lens.  The Sigma Art 20mm f/1.4 is the widest, f/1.4 full frame lens, and is the newest addition to the much vaunted line of f/1.4 Sigma Art Primes available in Canon EF, Nikon F, and Sigma mounts.  In this article, we’ll explore a bit of the more measurable aspects as well as the more touchy, feely parts of interacting with this lens.  I shot this lens on both the Canon EOS 5D mkII and the Sony a7II via the EF>FE Metabones MkIV smart adapter, and it performed equally as solid on both cameras.  Is this a viable option for full frame system shooters for fast, ultra wide applications?  Well, seeing as there has never been a full frame compatible lens this wide, this fast, it’s forging new ground for many shooters, and that is pretty rare in this day and age.  C’mon in to see some example images and read my rambling thoughts…

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*TRP Vector Straps, now available through Mettle Cycling!

Mettle Cycling

I’m teaming up with my good friend, and fellow photographer, Randall (owner of Mettle Cycling) to offer the TRP Vector camera wrist straps.  We chose the Vector in particular, as a great option for those who like to tote their cameras along for the ride because they’re light, easy to get on and off one handed, and while on, they’re comfortable and secure.  I’ve been using the Vector straps, almost exclusively on my various cameras lately because they are comfy, and very low profile.

Vector Straps

Available now in all 4 colors, go and visit Mettle Cycling HERE to see the camera straps (available with free shipping for the straps by using FREESHIPPING at checkout), along with tons of beautifully handmade, cycling goods.  If you’re into journeying on two wheels, or just like to see great velo-photography, have a look at the Mettle Blog HERE.  Great insight into various goings on here in the Pacific Northwest, along with different projects like Leave It On The Road, where a great group of folks raise money to fight cancer doing what they love, to help support those they love.

Happy Holidays to all, and I hope this entry finds you and all of yours, well.  Keep on keeping on, and for the other TRP straps, you can always find them HERE.

Stay tuned, and up to speed with stuff here by adding your email to the top right of the page, or find me on the socials;  Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Instagram.

Thanks for the read, and happy shooting,

Tyson

*The Panasonic Lumix GX8 vs GX7 showdown. How much of an upgrade is it, really? Well… w/ @LumixUSA

gx7 vs gx8

Well, my friends, I have been enjoying the comparison between these two great cameras, and in this article I would like to present my opinions and findings regarding how they directly compare to each other in regards to performance and file output, once and for all (for my purposes, anyway).  Here’s my disclaimer… I don’t work for Panasonic.  I’ve always researched and purchased my own gear, and do these tests in an attempt to help others like myself see what I wish that I could have seen in cases before buying stuff.  Enjoy and I hope this shows you something you’ve not yet seen.

I’ve been looking at the comparison from the angle of one who is curious about replacing my historically favorite micro 4/3 camera in the GX7, with it’s intended upgrade in the GX8.  I’ve now had the GX8 for a couple months and have shot a few thousand images with it, so I have been able to get a good feel for how it handles, performs and how the files look when digging into them.  With the GX8, Panasonic has given us an increase in size, resolution and features, which have all looked good on paper, and I’m now wanting to really see that come through in practice, which in most cases, it has.

Here is what I’ve seen, and what I’ve found…

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*Goal Zero, clean, portable, endless power for a digital world.

PanhandleGap

Does that sound like a commercial pitch?  I’m sorry, I’m just trying to be creative with these articles and the idea of writing about batteries, or rechargeable, storable and portable power might not tick too many boxes for those of us looking for a humorous review on the latest, greatest camera gear.

With that said, I can’t even begin to count the times over the past few years that I’ve been frustrated by low shot volume lithium ion, camera batteries.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s amazing technology, and the lifespan on many of these batteries is so far beyond what older batteries were, but with all the power hungry features in todays cameras, combined with the ever growing desire to see these machines not only become more powerful, but smaller and lighter, power is going to be compromised.  Anyone shooting an Olympus EM5/10 or Sony alpha camera can relate, I’m sure.

Enter Goal Zero, a solution for those of us who travel, shoot in the field or enjoy having some of the creature comforts while out in the wild, wild world.  A very cool company producing some very cool products.  C’mon in to read and see more…

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*Holy S#!† The new FW updates for the @Sony a7II and #Metabones EF smart adapter have created a monster.

P1050568

Sorry for my dirty, foul mouth. I’m just blown away by how much better my a7II and Canon EF lens setup has become overnight.  Long overdue, the Sony a7II got the much ballyhooed Uncompressed 14 bit RAW update (as opposed to that weird 11/7 compressed stuff, which is still nicely, an option) along with the return of the on sensor Phase Detection AF to the a7, pro-sumer camera with third party lenses.  Why they kept this out to begin with is beyond me, and really one of my gripes with the Sony approach as a whole, but now that it’s here, it is friggin’ amazing.  It is like I have an entirely new camera.  C’mon in for firmware update links, and a video comparison between the auto focus speed and performance from the original firmware on the a7II and Metabones mark IV adapter, and now that they’ve both very recently been updated…

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*Quick look! Check out the dynamic range recovery on the GX8, which also happens to be on sale!

GX8dynamicrange

I am mere hours of work away from posting my GX7 vs GX8 final comparison, but going through images from my work trip last week, I came across a snapshot I took while rushing to catch the tram.  The sun rise was begging to be recorded, and I quickly pulled my GX8 (on sale for $200 off right now DOH! see it at B&H HERE and Adorama HERE) with the PL15mm out of the bag and literally stopped walking for a second to take this shot.  The sky dominated the exposure, as it should have in this case, and just now I tried bringing up the shadows to see what I could get as I’d not really pushed any of the GX8 frames quite this far, in this way.  Well, color me frigging impressed… have a look:

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