Tag Archives: technology

Halide app developer says iPhone portrait smoothing is due to low contrast, noise reduction

4 Oct

The developer of the app, which is billed as RAW Manual Camera and has in one review been described as a “pro camera app”, suggests in this blog post that the smoothing observed (and previously described here) may be a consequence of smart HDR in that HDR always reduces contrast (hence high dynamic range) and therefore apparent sharpness, which may subjectively appear as smoothing. Read more here.


Comparing the Fujifilm X-H1 and X-T3

4 Oct

Releasing two flagship cameras in short succession, Fujifilm has left some prospective customers confused, never mind the fact that the X-Pro2 is also still hovering about somewhere in the line-up. So here I’ll look at the X-H1 and X-T3 and who they might be suited for.


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Olympus planning flagship E-M camera for 2019

2 Oct

Several sources, including some from Photokina, are reporting that Olympus is planning to release a flagship camera possibly in early 2019. They will also be celebrating their 100th anniversary later in the year with something special.

A different rumour suggests that Olympus were invited to join the L mount alliance, but declined. Figures quoted in this context point out that Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh and Fujifilm summed together have about 15% market share, which could lead one to wonder whether Ricoh or Fujifilm might have been approached.

Videographer evaluates the Canon EOS R

1 Oct

Hugh Brownstone of Three Blind Men and An Elephant Productions has given a fairly comprehensive 30 minute appraisal of the EOS R, linked below. For those who can read faster than they can watch a YouTube video, I’ve also provided a summary/write-up after the break hopefully catching all the main points made.

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Meike announces 6-11mm fisheye for APS-C

1 Oct

The f/3.5 lens is reported to give a 180 degree maximum field of view. However, it is not stated whether this is true for Nikon or Canon – since they use different crop factors, they can’t have the same field of view with the same lens without further modification.

Screen Shot 2018-10-01 at 21.10.30

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iPhone XS portrait mode smoothes skin #nooffswitch

1 Oct

Apparently, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max have skin smoothing built in when using the portrait mode – in addition to the fake background blur. For the way it looks, I’d say it’s probably done by means of frequency separation as used by many professional retouchers. Customers are now complaining since there’s no know off switch for this – if you want the fake bokeh, you get fake skin thrown into the deal, so the only choice is to not use portrait mode and forego both.

Pentax licenses lens to Tokina, then lets them undercut the original price

30 Sep

I’ve referred to the HD Pentax D FA* 50mm f/1.4 SDM AW in stories several times. This lens is important because of the popularity of the 50mm focal length and hence the importance of such lenses to the industry. Optics companies measured their strength against another by the quality of their 50mm lenses in the 1950s, and they still do so today. Right now, there is a new iteration of this contest, in which lenses such as Sony’s Gold Master, Sigma’s Art, Zeiss’ Otus and Milvus, various Canon and Nikon versions, and of course, Pentax D FA* are tested against one another on various merits.


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