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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

In Focus: August 2013

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Handholding a big lens is tiring and not very stable, but conventional tripod heads don't let you move the camera to track moving subjects. Serious bird photographers love gimbal heads, as they provide the big lens with steady support while letting you photograph flighty subjects easily. You also can quickly lock down the lens at any angle for shots of nonmoving subjects. The Gepe Pro SK-GH01 Gimbal Head features an Arca-compatible mount that's adjustable for height and a 150ml-long scale to assure repeatable positioning. One large knob quickly locks the camera-mounting arm, while another locks panning. Estimated Street Price: $255. Contact: HP Marketing Corp., www.hpmarketingcorp.com.

Sony has released a new and improved 70-400mm ƒ/4-5.6G SSM II supertelephoto zoom lens. The optics have been enhanced from the previous model and the lens features an LSI drive circuit. The improved autofocus responsiveness will appeal to both photographers looking for crisp images and filmmakers wanting to capture sharp HD video of quick-moving wildlife. A Nano AR Coating covers the optical surface, five times as efficient as the conventional anti-reflection coating at reducing flare and ghosting. Estimated Street Price: $2,200. Contact: Sony, www.sony.com.

Think Tank Photo has created the Mirrorless Mover camera bag collection specifically for your lighter mirrorless system. The four bags—Mirrorless Mover 5, Mirrorless Mover 10, Mirrorless Mover 20 and Mirrorless Mover 30i—vary in size to match your particular system needs. Each bag has a DWR coated fabric exterior for weather resistance, as well as antique nickel-plated metal hardware, 3-ply bonded nylon thread and YKK RC zippers for durability, with a seam-sealed rain cover in the front pocket. The interior features removable foam dividers, a smartphone slot, two SD card slots and a mesh pocket on the lid for batteries and accessories. The Mirrorless Mover 30i also has a dedicated iPad pocket. Estimated Street Price: $34-$69. Contact: Think Tank Photo, www.thinktankphoto.com.

Capturing sharp detail of individual insect hairs in macro work or the smooth dramatic blur of separation in larger landscapes, the 1 Nikkor 32mm ƒ/1.2 lens is the newest addition to the 1 Nikkor lens system. The fixed 32mm lens is the first in the 1 Nikkor series to integrate core Nikkor technology into the incredibly light lens such as the Silent Wave Motor (SWM), manual focus ring and Nano Crystal Coat that reduces ghosting and flare. The M/A autofocus mode with manual override allows you to fine-tune using manual focus while still primarily utilizing autofocus. The Close-Range Correction System ensures high resolution, realistic textures and minimal aberration while shooting close to your subject. Estimated Street Price: $899. Contact: Nikon, www.nikonusa.com.
For wildlife and sports photographers looking for a unique alternative to getting even closer to the action, Canon designed the EF 200-400mm ƒ/4L USM extender 1.4x supertelephoto zoom. When you're in the field and can't change lenses because of timing or harsh weather, or you want to save space due to travel constraints, the built-in 1.4x extender increases the maximum focal length of the 200-400mm lens to 560mm with a simple switch. The lens includes high-performance Image Stabilizer technology with standard and panning modes, and a mode that applies stabilization only at the instant of exposure. The high-speed CPU and optimized AF algorithms ensure fast and accurate autofocusing throughout the focal-length range. Featuring fluorite crystal and UD glass, the lens has a high level of resolution, aberration correction and color fidelity while the housing itself is constructed for dust and water resistance. Estimated Street Price: $11,799. Contact: Canon, www.usa.canon.com.

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