Editorial

Peter Flower

The summer months have witnessed a great number of events in what is traditionally our 'closed' season. These have all been well-attended. In addition to a number of outings organised by individual members we had the Chatham Challenge 2017. Organised by Mick Higgs, this attracted a good entry. Saturday Natters at Denbies Vineyard were extremely popular and are undoubtedly responsible for the increased sociable atmosphere in the society. (The conventional evening talk events and competition evenings provide only a brief time for social chat during the tea break) The Summer Sessions, organised by Stephen Hewes, provided not only a series of interesting photographic evenings, wandering in and around Reigate, but also attracted attendance by a number of potential new members. We have yet to see the outcome of this, but the indications are that these events might well prove to have been our most successful in attracting new recruits.

Grahame Singleton's Exhibition – Saturday 26 August 2017

Peter Flower

In Newsletter 96 I reported on the preview for this exhibition. I have now received confirmation that the full exhibition of Grahame's prints will start on this date, with viewing between 11.00am and 2.00pm. (Exhibitions run for the week, Saturday to Saturday, subject to weather conditions) There will be 16 images entitled Reigate + Monochromes. The venue is the Yard @ Reigate Station in Holmesdale Road, Reigate. This is just around the corner from London Road and, as the name implies, backs onto the railway line of the station.

As reported previously, a number of us attended the preview and saw just a small selection of Grahame's excellent prints. Although car parking in the immediate vicinity is difficult there is availability in local roads, and the venue is within easy walking distance from the town centre. The added advantage of this venue is that Beryl & Pegs cafe which provides excellent food and drinks is nearby on the opposite side of the road.

New Season Events

Peter Flower

Members, and prospective new members, are reminded about opening events in the new season from early September -

Saturday Natter – Saturday 2 September 2017

This is an extra event, immediately prior to that of the formal programme. As usual, members will be meeting in the restaurant of Denbies Vineyard, Dorking, at about 10:30am.

Passion Projects – 4 September 2017 – Robert Canis

Full details of this are on the Home Page.

Round Table Evening – 11 September 2017 - Organised by John Fisher

Experienced members will be manning a number of tables at which you can get advice on a range of photographic topics. This will also be an ideal event for prospective new members to meet and get to know the existing ones.

Scavenge event – 18 September 2017 – Organised by Paul Renaut

Paul explains - The idea of the evening is that, new and established members will mix and join together in teams of 3(max). I will produce a sheet containing ~ 20 images. The images will mostly be quite easy to identify, but ~5 will perhaps take a bit more thought to identify. The teams will then need to take a picture of the object, building etc. There is the possibility that the teams may have to split in order to reach all of the images, but they will need to be together for the last image. The teams will submit their entries through the PDI system. Louise and I will then judge the images and award marks from 1 - 10 and the team with the highest marks wins. A tripod will be needed as it will be dark past 9:00pm and there will be some images that need to be taken in the dark.

European Imaging and Sound Association’s (EISA) Awards – 15 August 2017

Techman

Slightly confusingly these awards are declared as 2017-2018. It should be stressed that the awards do not apply to products that are necessarily regarded as the best at the current time, but to those that have been newly introduced and tested by association members in the run-up to a 31 March 2017 deadline. In the case of the awards for 'Photography' 15 magazines are involved in the nomination process. This includes Amateur Photographer on behalf of the UK.

Full details of the camera models gaining awards are listed below, but the following summary gives a flavour of the trends affecting individual manufacturers. From this it is obvious that the traditional market leaders, such as Nikon and Canon, are under increasing threat from other companies.

Canon’s EOS 5D Mk IV won the EISA Professional DSLR of the Year award, making this the third year in a row that the brand beat Nikon to the top spot in the professional camera category. In comparison, neither company managed to come out as well as Sony, which won a total of six titles for its compact system range. Most significantly, the flagship a9 model was named European Camera of the Year, a prize that the company has not won in nine years.

The differentiation between prosumer and consumer may be confusing. A dictionary definition reads as follows - The term “prosumer” has transformed from meaning “professional consumer” to meaning “product and brand advocate.” Rather than simply “consuming” products, people are becoming the voices of those products and significantly impacting the success or failure of companies, products, and brands, particularly through their involvement on the social web.

The camera descriptions come directly from the EISA comments.

Consumer DSLR camera 2017-2018 - Canon EOS 77D

The Canon EOS 77D adopts many key features from the semi-professional EOS 80D. The 24.2 million pixel CMOS-sensor achieves a better dynamic range than its predecessor. A big advantage is the Dual Pixel CMOS AF that enables a very fast and smooth autofocus during live view and video. Combined with STM or Nano USM lenses the focus is very quiet. The viewfinder autofocus is also greatly improved, with 45 cross-type points. The new DIGIC 7 processor delivers enough power for fast continuous shooting (6 frames per second) and Full HD-video with high frame rates (1080/60p). The top plate LCD and the quick control dial allow fast operation. Other modern features are the articulated touch-screen and Wi-Fi, which is accompanied by Bluetooth for easy access.

Prosumer DSLR camera 2017-2018 - Nikon D7500

The D7500 is an advanced DSLR camera that packs much of the innovation of the acclaimed D500 into a lightweight, robust and more affordable body. Using the same 20.9 million pixel image sensor, processor and wide ISO range as the D500, the D7500 is a capable and versatile tool in the hands of a passionate photographer. With a burst speed of 8 frames per second and Nikon’s proven 51-point AF system it is well suited to capturing fast action. Thanks to Nikon’s SnapBridge technology, transferring images to a smart device is fast and seamless.

Professional DSLR camera 2017-2018 - Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is the tool of many professional photographers all over the world. Compared to its predecessor Canon has increased the still image quality significantly with higher resolution and wider dynamic range, while the autofocus has become more sensitive. The video function is also much more advanced with high quality 4K recording and fast autofocus in live view mode. The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV also features the innovative new Dual Pixel Raw feature, which allows sharpness and background blur to be fine-tuned later. All in all, the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV will remain a class-leading camera for several years to come.

Consumer Compact System camera 2017-2018 - Fujifilm X-T20

The Fujifilm X-T20 is a compact, mirrorless consumer camera that produces sharp, clean images and 4K video quality at a competitive price. At the heart of the camera is its 24.3 million pixel X-Trans CMOS III sensor and X-Processor Pro, which are jointly responsible for the extraordinary image quality. Despite its comparatively affordable cost the X-T20 uses the same high quality sensor and processor as the highly regarded X-T2 and X-Pro2. The touch-screen operation and custom AF-C setting are also big pluses. Finally the X-T20’s sharp and highly detailed 4K video recording makes this camera a great all-rounder.

Prosumer Compact System camera 2017-2018 - Sony a6500

The α6500 is a very small compact system camera offering professional performance. Whether you are a 4K video or stills photographer, the α6500 offers excellent image quality with its 24.2 million pixel Exmor CMOS APS-C sized sensor, high speed and great choice of lenses. The 5-axis image stabilisation works with Sony E-mount lenses as well as A-mount lenses with adapters. The 425 phase detection AF points cover almost the whole picture frame, while the 3in tiltable touch screen lets you choose focus points with your finger. The camera supports up to 11 frames per second shooting with continuous AF and metering with a buffer that supports up to 269 pictures in one sequence.

Best Product 2017-2018 - Sony a9

The Sony α9 is a ground-breaking mirrorless camera that in many ways surpasses traditional DSLR rivals. Thanks to an innovative design, the 24.2 million pixel full-frame image sensor captures up to 20 frames per second in full resolution with no EVF blackout and offers completely silent, vibration-free shooting at up to 1/32,000th second. The new super-fast autofocus system, with 693 phase detection AF points covering 93% of the image area, ensures that even fast-moving subjects are in focus. The 5-axis image stabilisation allows a 5-step slower shutter speed. The oversampling process and full-frame pixel read-out result in excellent 4K movie quality.

Compact Camera 2017-2018 - Sony RX100 V

The Sony RX100 V is a high-tech masterpiece in a very compact body. Like its predecessor, it offers a 1.0-type sensor and an excellent retractable OLED electronic viewfinder. The new 20.1 million pixel Exmor RS CMOS image sensor, in conjunction with the fast BIONZ X image processor and a new front-end LSI, made it possible for Sony to shorten autofocus response time to 0.05sec and speed-up continuous shooting to 24 frames per second – with AF/AE tracking so that in a series of a moving subject, every picture stays in focus with the correct exposure. Besides the ability to shoot 4K videos, the RX100 V offers super slow motion up to 1000 frames per second, silent shooting and a multi-function control ring for personalised use.

Superzoom Camera 2017-2018 - Sony RX10 III

At just 1095g, the Sony RX10 III is the perfect camera for sports, nature and wildlife photographers looking for an easy to carry all-in-one solution. The stunning ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-600mm lens provides a 25x zoom range with a fast f/2.4-4 maximum aperture, while the Exmor RS 1.0-type sensor, super-fast autofocus and Optical SteadyShot ensure sharp images free from camera shake. In addition to its incredible focal range, the RX10 III can shoot macro from as close as 3cm from the lens, while the silent shutter means you won’t disturb sensitive nature subjects. The RX10 III isn’t just great for stills – it also shoots 4K video and there is also the option to shoot at 1000 frames per second for a dramatic 40x slow motion effect.

Photo & Video Camera 2017-2018 - Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5

The Panasonic DC-GH5 focuses all the brand’s know-how in both photo and video. The body is well balanced, weather resistant and has an excellent electronic viewfinder. With a 20.3 million pixel Four Thirds sensor it delivers good picture quality up to ISO 3200, with excellent autofocus and internal stabilisation. In video it provides an excellent compromise between image quality, features and price and allows recording up to 4K/60p 4:2:2 10-bit onto the memory card without recording time limitation. With high-end features such as a high-speed 6K Photo mode, slow motion, automatic focus transition, Vlog and an XLR module for sound recording, the GH5 offers endless possibilities for creative video production.

Instant Camera 2017-2018 - Fujifilm Instax SQUARE SQ10

The Instax SQUARE SQ10 is the first hybrid instant camera that lets you take and print square photos (62x62mm). You can brighten, darken or add vignettes to your images or choose from 10 creative filters to apply, before you decide to print them. The bright LCD viewfinder makes it easy to create and edit your pictures, which are recorded in the internal memory or on a micro SD card, so you can share them with your friends and family.

Full details of awards in the Photography category, including lenses, can be seen at this web address -

https://www.eisa.eu/awards/photography/

And finally . . . . . . . .

Dangerous waters !

Acknowledgement to iStock – image from the web