Weekly Nikon related news/links #80

"Among the new features is the PhotoMovie function that allows my Picturetown members to create a dynamic slide show of photos that can be combined with text, music, and special effects. This service allows users to include their favorite memories in a PhotoMovie that can be easily shared with friends and family through email or popular social networks. The tool is a unique alternative to posting single pictures and adds the ability to tell a story and share memorable moments through multiple photos, captions, and royalty-free music available on the site.

Other improvements include a redesigned homepage, an enhanced “My Photos” page, and the option to add designs to shared albums. Once logged in, a member’s homepage can be decorated with a random assortment of previously uploaded photos for a personal touch that continues to entertain as more photos are uploaded. Members can also access and share their photos stress-free with the improved “My Photos” page, which now lets users view thousands of photos on one page, organize photos with a simple drag-and-drop operation, and share photos through a Facebook uploading function. Members can also personalize their online albums with 18 design options to share with family and friends."

Nikon podcasts can be download at iTunes.

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  • drumbo

    cool lense!

    • Segura

      Lense? Lens.

  • and where is tilt transformer for DSLR?

    • Paul

      Yeah, where the heck is it? You’d think if it was made to accept Nikon lenses that at least you could get one with a Nikon mount, right? C’mon already…

      • xunsinn

        I’d love to check out the Tilt Transformer but I’d hate to buy a Nex for that…

        • Imagine…

          a) Old Nikkor (FX) lens with image circle (coverage) of “X” size…
          b) Standard (FF) sensor or 35mm film with frame diagonal a tiny bit smaller than “X”…

          Everything looks fine, isn’t it… 🙂

          Now another scenario…

          a) Old Nikkor (FX) lens with image circle (coverage) of “X” size…
          b) A gap between lens and film/sensor plane (a.k.a. “Tilt Transformer”)
          c) Standard (FF) sensor or 35mm film with frame diagonal a tiny bit smaller than “X”…

          This time lens image circle coverage is not enough to cover whole film/sensor plane… Huston, we have a problem…

          In Sony Nex scenario sensor size is so small that even with a huge gap between lens and sensor good old Nikkor covers that tiny sensor and there is even left some space to tilt things a bit… 🙂

          (sorry for my poor english)

          • It’s not that coverage changes with flange distance, it’s that flange distance is dictated by optical design. There’s room for this adapter when you don’t have a mirror box in the way. There is no way to design these (as simply) for cameras with mirrors. This is an EVIL only trick. (and a quite brilliant one!) I only wish they’d added a shift option. That would be truly game changing!

  • IndyGeoff

    $37k for an old (nearly) piece of junk. I guess if you want a collectable and are wealthy, why not.

    • jdsl

      Even if I’m wealthy, I won’t buy this junk 🙂

  • Akira

    Mmm, Sigma 85 1.4, Do want.

  • chuck

    lol @ that d200/lensbaby photochop

  • Ken Elliott

    I found the D300s vs. 7D interesting. The Nikon has 1 stop lower ISO, and he used glass that was 1.5 stops faster on the Canon. Even at a 2.5 stop disadvantage, he picked the Nikon as a winner.

    Interesting because I have a D300 and 70-200 and they pretty much stay in the bag for concert shooting. The D700 and 85mm f/1.4 is my tool-of-choice. That combo is pure magic for shooting bands.

    • In addition, I think the guy behind the blog is a Canon shooter (from his older posts).

      • Also interesting, because as a concert photographer, I think he sucks, and I think he’s two years too late in making this observation.

        I also think that this was like comparing whether a Corvette for a Viper would make a better F1 car. Well, both will do well on track day, but in an F1 race, neither one is an F1 car.

        There are just other observations that would make more sense (and would be more timely).

    • His post as far as comparison purposes was worthless for me. He used two criteria: auto-focus and ISO. And out of the two he throws out ISO because he was shooting in JPEG mode. Just doesn’t seem like he used a lot of information to make his opinion. The article for me was a waste of time.

  • Mock Kenwell

    Okay, I’m just going to go on record stating that I hate lensbaby. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a shot I like from one. I know they’re a sponsor, I’m just saying.

    • Quoll K

      I desperately want to like the lensbaby. It’s always seemed like a good concept (to me at least) and they’re relatively cheap. So I’ve dug around and found a shot someone’s taken with one that I actually like:


      Don’t ask me to find another one though. Much too difficult.

      • That image is good. It’s helped by some careful post processing, too (not to mention excellent capture skills). But you can achieve this kind of look without lens baby using FocalPoint from onOne.

      • zoetmb

        I think there are people who have taken good LensBaby photos, but until they put a real aperture ring on their lenses or connect it electronically to the body, I’m not buying one. IMO, having to use those stupid rings to control aperture with a magnetic stick to get them in and out is absurd.

    • They have the tooling and expertise to make something useful…

      …like a tilt-shift adapter that I can use with my Nikon lenses on my Nikon body.

      • Nope. They can’t adapt F-mount lenses. There’s not room for the movements. They could possibly adapt older shift lenses to add tilt–which would awesome!

  • jk

    That camera is a piece of junk for the price collectable or not…. Funny how the shipping is only $40 economy. If I paid the asking price I would want something different…. hand delivered perhaps by a supermodel…. we should all make $1 offers lol

    You cannot mount the lens baby tilt tranformer on a DSLR due to the design etc… it is for micro 43 only. Alot of people will (and are) be confused (me included at first) because it says it accepts nikon lenses so you kinda go all stupid and assume it would fit a nikon body too… they need to make this a little clearer imo.

    The sigma seems a little steep in price considering I bought my nikon 85 1.4 brand new for $899 cdn one year ago… pays to shop around i guess….

    • Eric

      Thanks for your comment.

      I also totally assumed they would offer F-mount tilt transformer.
      Don’t know much about optics, but I supposed that a FX lens could be mounted on a DX body with enough coverage.

      No problem if you get a lot of vignette, you don’t expect perfect quality from Lensbaby anyway.
      I think you might lose focus to infinity with the additional distance between lens and sensor, but that wouldn’t be a deal-breaker either.

      • Drag

        You’re right on both counts, except the image circle is still quite small on most FX lenses and you would vignette quite severely (even on DX) with even modest tilts.

        • WoutK89

          What about distance from back of the lens to sensor is too big on DSLRs? And so a mirrorless camera + tilt adapter makes the same distance as using a lens on DSLR?

  • The D300s comparison was pretty interesting. I would have thought the 7D would have slightly better noise performance in low light for some reason. I don’t ever venture into the ISO 3200 realm with my D300s but I can get usable ISO 1600 shots. I think both are exceptional cameras.

    I also saw some incredible prints taken with a D3s today at a camera store in Vegas. It’s hard to believe that so many people feel they need more than 12MP. I think I would find a way to survive with a D3s. If I owned that Nikon SP, I could sell it at a fraction of that price and buy me one. BTW, I didn’t see a D7000 anywhere in the store. I did get a nice new Gitzo ballhead for my cheapo carbon fiber tripod. I’d be out using them if it weren’t raining out.

  • c.d.embrey

    What did the Jarvis video have to do with Nikon?

    • Chase had a D7000 on his neck

      • Ant

        I think Chase was carrying a D3s , whilst the video was being filmed on the D7000.

    • chuck

      I believe he’s holding a D7000 while he’s being smacked by those waves.

      • Chris P

        That was sea (salt) water that he was being hit by. No matter what make/model of camera he had, when he got back inside the only place the camera and lens is going is in the bin.

        • Mikils

          I was smacked by several sea wawes on a trip on a flimsy boat to reach Handa Island (bird sanctuary in Scotland) years ago. My F100 was soaked, as so was I. The camera worked smooth, much smoother than me, anyway, all the rest of the day, and the days later, and still works.

          • Chris P


            That has got to be the finest recommendation for Nikon I have ever seen. I spent nine years at sea in my youth and saw what sea water can do. Makes me very glad that I have the current F100 in the shape of a D700, but there is no way I am going to do with my camera what you and he have done with yours.

            • Mikils

              I wouldn’t have done it, if only the boat owner had warned me in term less general than ”it’s going to be a bit rough”; after all, it is just a short ride, and I hoped to make some shot in the process. then came the first wawe crashing in the bow and splashing me and my gear thoroughfully, then a second, and a third…. all I remember is crawling on the beach and start drying the camera, expecting something going wrong anytime… but it neved did.

          • Eric

            The FM2N is the ULTIMATE water camera, who cares if it gets a bit wet, its fully mechanical anyways. Only problem would be rust but dry it off at night , not like you live under water.

            • Jabs

              The Nikon FM2N is NOT 100% mechanical. It has an electronic light meter, if I remember well. The shutter would operate without batteries but you would loose match-diode or even metering, so back to your trusty Gossen Luna-Pro or Minolta meter – LOL!
              I think the original FM2 was all mechanical and I would NEVER use an FM2 (any version) in or near salty water, as it is not sealed or suitable for that in my opinion.
              Try a Nikon RS for that, as THAT is the ultimate Nikon water or splash-proof camera (if you can get one or even afford it – LOL).
              The F3 was better sealed than the FM2 or FM2N – facts.
              An F4 or F4S was also better sealed.
              I would trust an F3 or an F4 in or near water better than ANY FM2 as I used them all.
              Preferred the FA to the FM2 also, as batteries was always a non-issue for me plus the FA with an MD-15 was superior to an FM2 with an MD-12!

  • Amien

    I tested the SIGMA 85MM 1.4 HSM in Switzerland 2 days ago : it is a GEM !!! very accurate low light focus, extremely sharp at 1.4 & awesome bokeh : this is the Nikon 85mm 1.4G Killer lens I expected 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • st r

      Sigma suggested prices are usually overinflated w.r.t. actual street prices. At least regarding the lenses I have cared to check or buy in the past. So you may be right, if this means that it will be significantly cheaper than Nikkor.

      I added significantly, because Sigma also has to overcome a perceived(/real?) lesser quality reputation, so a small price advantage may not be enough.

      • Amien

        I had some issues with a consumer Sigma lens (AF stopped working) and they fixed it for free out of the warranty time. Same with a Nikon 18-70mm. So for me, this is not the biggest issue.
        IQ is the most important thing & the bokeh of the 85mm 1.4 Nikon G lens is quite unpleasing. To me, the Sigma will be the best investment in term of price & image quality, not speaking of the wonderful 10 year Canadian warranrty program !!!

        • Bad bokeh on the f/1.4G? That was SO two months ago before anyone got their hands on one, and all the pre-release photos were… subpar and questionable.

          You’re trying to justify a means to an end at this point. The Nikon 85mm f/1.4 AF-S produces world-class bokeh with unbeatable sharpness across the frame at f/1.4. It has superior contrast, sharpness, and autofocus accuracy compared to anything in its class. End Of Story.

          • Eh…no. The bokeh wide open is kinda mediocre at portrait distances. Kinda ringy on highlights behind and close to the plane of focus. It dissipates really quick, but it’s still noticeable.

            It’s better than the 1.4D and the Canon 1.2, but there’s still room for improvement. I’m not expecting much from Sigma after their 50/1.4 though.

            I will say the new 85 may be the sharpest of the lot though. Definitely higher res than the 1.4.

            “World class” is a rather nebulous claim, so is not easily refutable. Comparisons I’ve made above do stand, from my first hand observations.

            • Let me get this straight.

              It’s better than the f/1.4D and the Canon 1.2… i.e. better than lenses considered to have great bokeh… but still mediocre?

              I understand that the “pleasantness” of out-of-focus regions is quite subjective, and that I’m seriously impressed with it… but what more would you want from it that another similar lens does better?

            • Eric

              you realize the 85 1.4d is known for having some of the best bokeh from ANY lens, same goes for the canon 1.2. Ive used a lot of lenses, and seen a lot of imagesand my 85 has the smoothest bokeh, period and the AFS keeps that going nicely.

              name the list of lenses that have better bokeh then the 85 1.4, by all means, I love smooth bokeh and would buy.

            • I think that the G is just plain sharper than the D with similar bokeh. Not horrid. The Canon 85/1.2 would be a prime example of horrid.

              Here’s the old D for comparison. Look at the blur blob highlights. Kinda distracting: http://photozone.smugmug.com/photos/884003688_po7MG-O.jpg

              I’ll stick with my tiny 85/1.8 for now. It can get a bit ringy too, but at most reasonable distances, it’s just as good or better. Just 2/3rd of a stop slower and no ring motor. But it was only $230. And clients still look at it and say “wow, that’s big piece of glass!” as they look into it’s owl eye.

              I’ll definitely give the Sigma a go, but I’m wary the brand after my favorite Sigma’s iris imploded (after 4 years, but still…not fun)

            • #1 on the list in my opinion: the 200/2.


              That’s gotta be at least 200′ away. Closer portrait distances–even full body–give even smoother bokeh. Just look at how the twigs mush out close to the plane of focus. No outlining at all.

              Of course, it’s three times the price of the 85/1.4. However, the point is only that there is still something to aspire to in terms of bokeh quality.

            • And don’t get me wrong. The 200 f/2 is one of my dream lenses and is a legendary piece of consumer optical engineering in the same class as the 400mm f/2.8, but like you said, 3x the price and just absolutely not practical, and really an unfair comparison.

              And I used the 85mm f/1.8 as my go-to portrait lens until just recently, so I am intimately familiar with it, and while I tell everyone it’s an incredible value and highly recommend it to those on a budget, it’s just in a different class from the f/1.4 AF-S.

              I used the “just 2/3rds of a stop” argument for a long time. It doesn’t hold water. It’s a big difference.

    • JoshL

      I hope I agree with you once I get to play with it a bit – I’m assuming they’ll have some to play with at Photoplus at the end of the month. I actually chose the Sigma version of 50mm f/1.4 over the Nikon G version because of better Bokeh despite reviews saying that the Nikkor had better all around performance. I’ll mostly use 50mm and 85mm for portraits, so I’m more interested in Bokeh that is pleasing to me. The sigma version of the 50mm is actually ~70 bucks more expensive, so it was somewhat of a tough choice to make, but if the new sigma 85mm ends up having similar advantage over the Nikkor’s new 85, then I’m definitely in considering the huge price break.

      • Del-Uks

        Good choice JoshL!

        The Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM is SIMPLY THE BEST 50mm lens @ f/1.4 I’ve tested almost all of them : AI-S f/1.2, AF-S G, Zeiss, etc.
        The Sigma is the sharpest and has the most creamy bokeh @ f/1.4, it is just perfect for portrait.

        So… YES, I’m looking forward to try this new Sigma 85mm babe.

        • JoshL

          Thanks for agreeing!

          I was also enamored with the idea of Zeiss Planar T* ZF.2 version of the 50mm 1.4, but per reviews, agreed with the logic that the manual focus will inevitably give me less chance of getting the desired and correctly focused shots. Of course I’m sure with practice it could be an awesome lens to own….but +300 bucks price point is quite unattractive….

  • Steve

    on the D7000 shipping with v2.02:
    well yeah, as nikon hasn’t updated any of their software related to control or raw for it yet.
    on mr jarvis: he is slowly becoming a victim of himself. soon he will be a guest photographer on Bravo’s next big model show and then at the height of his career a guest cartoon character on cartoon networks scooby doo show. i just got done shooting around Maine in a Nor Easter ( you now total deluge with 50+ mph winds)all day over the weekand and then headed into the White Mountains of NH where it was raining and snowing too all weekend with my D3 and D700.

  • Ren Kockwell

    So would anyone buy the Sigma knowing the original Nikon 85mm f/1.4 can be easily had on eBay for the same price? That price has got to drop considerably.

    • Broxibear

      I only buy Nikon glass so the Sigma isn’t a consideration for me, others will feel different I’m sure.
      In the UK the Sigma 85mm f/1.4 is £700 and a new Nikon AF 85mm f1.4 D is £850…or get the brilliant 85mm f/1.8D instead and spend what you save on other equipment ?

      • amien

        UK Prices are simply non-sense.
        Prices are doubled vs europe or usa +_+

        • Eric

          a new AFD is 1200 canadian dollars, which would be about 700 pounds give or take a bit so no i would say thats average pricing. The states is a hundread or two below that but not even close to doubled.

  • Amien

    yes I will. 10 years of warranty for a brand new awesome sharp lens is a no brainer for the same price.

    • Ren Kockwell

      I’m not a Nikon purist, but I’ve yet to see the Sigma tgat bests a Nikkor on 1:1 terms. Sigma’s strength is in A) filling Nikon’s focal length gaps and B) offering similar lenses at less cost (albeit with some sacrifices). But if the sample variation don’t get ya, the AF hunting will.

  • The invisible man

    $37,750.00…………sure (+shipping !)
    I wonder if the batteries are included (if there is any !).
    Some people really don’t know what do do whith their money.

    • The invisible man

      Here is a brand new one for only $5000 !

      • zoetmb

        That’s not the original model. That’s one of a new run that Nikon produced in 2005. So it has a totally different collectable value.

    • The invisible man

      From the same guys…..$114,400.00


      Starting next week I’ll check all the trashes in the city !

      • Joe

        Well, the “famous photographer” Leif Engberg who’s property the camera was seems to be still alive.
        I think you can get a newer Leica “used by him” at a much lower price if you ask him politely to take some few shots on a Leica you bring to him. 😉

        • WoutK89

          haha, good idea, even the trip to him + camera will be cheaper, you could even get a full photocourse with him for that price I would assume 😉

  • That was an interesting test between the D300s and the 7D. Honestly, I’m having a hard time finding anything that can be called a real High-ISO performer from the Canon side of things. I was working on an article about picking a beginning set up for indoor sports and just drew a blank outside of Nikon. I wouldn’t call the 1DMKiv a beginner rig, and the 7D shows grain at base ISO. All I could come up with was the 5D MK II really, and I’d suspect that the 40D is actually next in the line when noise reduction software is turned off.

  • Anonymous

    So where is the big f***n’ surprise the Nikon president was talking about????

    No pro or FX products for 2010? I guess that is the surprise. Or perhaps FX stays another 5 yrs at 12MP.

    • Yes, because the several (4 or 5) lenses they released for FX in 2010, and the D3x @ 24MP don’t count in your observation.

      • zzddrr

        The D3x was released in 2008 and has a sony 24mp sensor in it. The components of the D3x do not justify the 4 times higher price compared to the sony or canon 20mp+ cameras.

        I am not sure what Anonymus is up to but Sean think logically, many of the current Nikon lenses work just fine with 12mp. So it makes no sense to invest into Nikon glass when we do not know whether Nikon actually can deliver or not. I am not investing in Nikon glass because I am disappointed that Nikon is unable to even match the competition for over 2 years. I am referring to a small body high res FX. Nikon just does not have anything because if 12MP is high res for you then….

        • Eric

          Grow up. Either you are using sloppy technique, or not long enough glass. Cropping in frame a lot is amateur, and if i can print good large prints from my d300s, the D3 and D3x are equally up there.

          thousands of high end photographers shoot nikon, if you dont like it stop giving them your money and buy something else.

          I swear your 12 years old.

          • “you’re” not “your”

            ; D

        • Yes, I was incorrect… but keep in mind it was not even available till mid 2009… and well, really still isn’t available. And just because it’s prohibitively expensive doesn’t mean it’s not justified. They ARE hand built and use precision made-to-order parts, after all.

          And are we ignoring the fact that the D3x has the best image quality of ANY 35mm camera in the world? It is only topped by a small number of medium format cameras that are 4x the D3x’s price.

          Nikon doesn’t have to prove shit. The bottom line is that they are consistently ahead of the competition in still photography (video can suck my phallus) across the entire product line. Head on over to the Canon boards, I guarantee they are bitching about more important things that Nikon has right that you’re taking for granted… like superior autofocus, unbelievable low-light performance, better build and weather-sealing, etc.

          And all the while I’m printing sharp, gallery quality images upwards of 30 inches from my “lowly” 12MP D700. I’ll just go back to my cave and search for small mammals to chew on.

  • Bootlogger

    Congratulations on the new sponsor! Goes well with the site and a respectable company to boot.

  • Nicola

    Canon’s 7(th)D(efeat)

  • zzddrr

    NR Admin, any new news about a possible FX announcement for 2010?

    The reason why I am asking is because the D3s is already a year old (it was announced Oct 14, 2009) and I find it extremely odd that not one Pro or FX is announced this year. Very sad year so far FX enthusiasts (except if you want to invest into nikon glass).

    • no, I have not received anything since photokina

  • Jabs
  • Sigma 85/1.4 may be a killer of Nikon 85/1.8D but not 85/1.4 … in quality, but in price sigma have a chance :).

    • I dunno. The f/1.8 is less than half the price new, and other than being 2/3rd stop slower than the f/1.4, it’s a VERY competent lens that’s quite sharp and has good bokeh.

      The Sigma is going to have to be as good in every way as the f/1.8 in addition to being faster for it to be a f/1.8 killer.

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