Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD Lens Review

July 8th, 2014 No Comments   Posted in Digital SLR Cameras, SLR Lenses
Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD Lens Profile

The Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD Lens cuts an impressive profile

Tamron’s SP150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD is amongst the longest zoom lenses available for ‘full-frame’ and APS-C format DIGITAL SLR cameras. As a Di zoom lens, it can be utilized on both of the ‘full frame’ and cropped sensor systems. Its focal length range is equivalent to 225 to 900mm with DX sensor DSLR’s from Nikon and Sony and 240 to 960mm on Canon EOS DSLR’s.

The optical design of this zoom lens is necessarily complicated, using twenty elements in thirteen groups. The leading group contains 3 LD (Low Dispersion) glass elements (2 within the 1st group, 1 within the 3rd) for enhanced optical correction effectiveness, making it possible for the zoom lens to compensate for on-axis aberrations at the telephoto end.

Tamron’s eBAND (Extended Bandwidth & Angular-Dependency) coating and conventional BBAR (Broad-Band Anti-Reflection) have been used to suppress internal reflections as well as minimise flare and ghosting. The nine-bladed iris diaphragm closes to a rounded aperture for appealing bokeh.

Tamron’s VC (Vibration Compensation) system uses 3 voice coils for lenses with Canon and Nikon mounts. The driving coils trigger the shake-compensating VC zoom lens group electromagnetically through 3 ceramic ball bearings, which in turn support these with very little friction.

Stabilisation is not incorporated into Sony mount models because it is included in their DIGITAL SLR bodies.

The USD (Ultrasonic Silent Drive) AF drive within the zoom lens promises to deliver high torque, extremely fast reaction times, and extremely low noise. Full-time manual over-ride is possible in AF mode.

Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD focus motor

Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD focus motor

The most obvious targets for this zoom lens are sporting and wildlife photographers, especially birders, that are hunting for a long telephoto zoom lens at a reasonable cost. There are not many 600mm lenses for DIGITAL SLR cameras which belong to this category – or close to it.

Build and Ergonomics

Being a comparatively large and hefty zoom lens, the SP150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD is much better suitable for pro as well as pro-sumer digital camera bodies compared to entry level DSLRs. It felt nicely balanced on an EOS 5D camera, owing to its strategically-positioned tripod mount. Although not quite as comfortable or simple to manage on an EOS 70D.

You can easily sit the bigger digital camera with the zoom lens attached on a steady support and be certain it’s going to stay in place and secure enough to capture with, which is convenient when you need to take a quick photo and do not have a tripod close at hand. However, the dimensions and weight of the zoom lens make it most suitable for tripod mounting – and you will need a durable and stable tripod with a quality head.

There is absolutely nothing to make a complaint in regards to the build quality of the zoom lens. As stated by Tamron, it’s moisture-resistant and you will easily feel the rubber sealing gasket should you run a fingertip across the zoom lens mount.

Even though the barrel is manufactured primarily from polycarbonate plastic material, it is actually high-quality and there aren’t any gaps to be noticed wherever components join. The overall finish is actually first-rate and all of the necessary components are of a suitable quality and properly designed to augment the lens.

Without the hood affixed, the barrel measures just under 260 millimeters long. Installing the hood contributes an additional 102 millimeters. The overall weight with the hood and tripod collar installed is just below 2 kgs.

The inner barrel at the front end of the lens is threaded for 95 millimeter filters, whilst the outer barrel features a bayonet mounting for the lens hood.  The barrel flares gently outward starting about twenty five millimeters back from the hood mount.


Lateral chromatic aberration was very well managed for this kind of high-magnification zoom lens and we uncovered no noticeable coloured fringing within test shots.

We detected a small drop in image sharpness towards the 600mm focal length setting in photos taken with both cameras. Nevertheless, focal lengths up to around 300mm supplied impressive sharpness and an abundance of contrast.

Autofocusing was actually rapidly as well as precise with the evaluation zoom lens, provided light levels were sufficient and there was adequate contrast in the subject matter for the lens to lock on to. In inadequate illumination as well as with low contrast subjects, hunting was common and it may take a second or so for the zoom lens to lock on – and even then you’ll probably need to make use of AF area selection and choose the area carefully when the primary subject is off-centre.

Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD Lens Sample Bokeh

Depth of field is actually exceptionally shallow with longer focal lengths and, should you shoot with the zoom lens wide open, the plane of sharpness is extremely narrow. This brings about smooth bokeh this is certainly extremely attractive and offers exceptional separation of the subject from the background.

Tracking motion was not quite as simple as we expected and we found it challenging to maintain the subject within the frame – and sharp – whenever recording bursts of images following moving birds.

The photographing technique to accomplish a high percentage of razor-sharp images calls for plenty of practice. Unfortunately we haven’t had enough practice for this type of shooting.

Setting the focus limiter enhances your chances whenever photographing in indifferent lighting circumstances along with when subject contrast is low, especially using longer focal length settings. However even when there seemed to be an abundance of light, we discovered minor hesitation when the zoom lens was required to change focus rapidly between close and distant subjects.

With smaller – and more normal – adjustments to focusing distance, the zoom lens reacted rapidly enough to satisfy the majority of prospective buyers, though minor hesitation often happened with the longer focal lengths. With stationary subjects, the zoom lens can capture an abundance of detail.

Stabilisation was extremely effective, permitting the lens to be handheld at shutter speeds as slow as 1/160 second and obtain over fifty percent of the photographs crisp. The stabilisation of the viewfinder image makes it much simpler to compose shots, especially when the subject is not moving.

Tamron SP 150-600mm F5-6.3 DI VC USD Lens Flare

Backlit subjects were managed exceptionally well, with thanks to the generous lens hood. We were not able to force the zoom lens to flare, even if a bright source of light was on the edge of the frame.

Depth of field is actually exceptionally shallow with longer focal lengths and, should you shoot with the zoom lens wide open, the plane of sharpness is extremely narrow. This brings about smooth bokeh this is certainly extremely attractive and offers exceptional separation of the subject from the background.

Both the rectilinear distortion and vignetting were relatively low – but clearly apparent. Distortion was within the shape of pincushion distortion. It was present through the entire focal length range, although you most likely would not notice it inside photos unless they included straight line running parallel to the image frame.

Vignetting was most obvious at the extremes of the zoom range, with edges as well as corners being a little bit over a stop darker as compared to middle. The darkening disappear around a stop down from maximum aperture. Both problems are very easily remedied, either with in-camera processing or during post-capture editing.

Backlit subjects were managed exceptionally well, with thanks to the generous lens hood. We were not able to force the zoom lens to flare, even if a bright source of light was on the edge of the frame. A smallish region around the bright spot displayed minimal loss of contrast; the remainder of the frame maintained the entire dynamic range anticipated from the subject.


The Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD would definitely rate a recommendation based on its price alone, all the other factors being equal. Its nearest rival is Sigma’s 150-500mm f/5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM, that features a comparable AF drive mechanism and optical stabilisation. Nevertheless it covers a reduced range and its coatings are not up to the specifications of Tamron’s eBAND coatings.

Sigma additionally makes a considerably much longer zoom lens, their 300-800mm f /5.6 EX zoom, that is in excess of 1 / 2 a metre long – without lens hood – and weighs in at 5.88 kgs. Its price places it beyond the reach of all but the most committed (as well as cashed-up) specialists.

Canon as well as Nikon each make telephoto zoom lenses however both have maximum focal lengths of 400mm, though with maximum apertures which ranges from f/4-5.6. Both Canon’s EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM and Nikon’s AF-S 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR Nikkor lens sells significantly more than the Tamron.

Tamron additionally makes a 200-500mm f/5-6.3 Di LD (IF) zoom lens, that is an older design which is lacking Vibration Compensation, USD silent focusing as well as eBAND anti-reflective coating.

This makes the Tamron zoom lens something of a bargain.

This new zoom lens is approximately thirty millimeters longer and 715 grms weightier versus the earlier model as well as its close focusing distance is actually twenty cm longer. Given the longer range and less expensive price tag, that is quite a remarkable accomplishment.

Nikon D3300 Review

March 22nd, 2014 No Comments   Posted in Digital SLR Cameras
Nikon D3200 digital SLR

The Nikon D3300 is an entry level digital SLR camera boasting enthusiast level features.

The Nikon D3300 is an entry level digital SLR camera boasting enthusiast level features. Despite having an identical resolution to the Nikon D3200 that it is replacing, the Nikon D3300 is an entirely new camera with a number of features that distinguish it from the previous model.

Anti-Aliasing Filter

Nikon has removed the optical anti-aliasing filter from the Nikon D3300. An optical anti-aliasing filter is used to reduce occurences of optical aberrations, such as moiré patterning. The trade off is that an optical anti-aliasing filter reduces the sharpness in an image. The Nikon D800E was the first camera introduced in to the Nikon digital SLR lineup without an optical anti-aliasing filter, and Nikon has been progressively adding more digital SLR’s to their lineup with the same feature.

The effect of removing the optical anti-aliasing filter is that the high-resolution sensor can capture every possible detail, which puts the Nikon D3300 alongside more advanced (and more expensive) digital SLR cameras.

Expeed 4

The Nikon D3300 now has the updated Expeed 4 image processing engine, which is Nikon’s fastest processor yet. The Nikon D3300 feels snappier than its predecessor, and takes less time processing an image. The Expeed 4 image processing engine also increases ISO to an impressive maximum of 25600. Sports and action photographers will also appreciate the increased shooting rate to 5fps.


The Nikon D3300 is smaller than the Nikon D3200 but doesn’t feel cramped, thanks to a re-designed larger grip. The new 18-55mm VR II lens that ships with the Nikon D3300 is also much more compact than its predecessor, featuring a retractable design making the lens more portable when it’s not in use. This combination makes the Nikon D3300 a much more attractive travel friendly option for the space concious photographer.

Ease Of Use

Nikon D3300 Back Rubber Thumb Rest

The high-end rubber coating on the grip and thumbrest improve the feel of the Nikon D3300 and improve the ergonomics

The Nikon D3300 has a suprising high quality feel to the body at this price point, thanks in no small part to the rubber coating on the grip. This also appears on the rear thumb rest at the back of the camera.  This improvement advances the ergonomics, and gives you a more secure feel when holding the camera.

The on-screen user interface has been re-designed for the Nikon D3300 to give it a cleaner look. Advanced photographers will also appreciate the new “i” button on the back of the camera, allowing you to bypass the main menu and directly change key settings.

Nikon D3300 Mode Dial

The Nikon D3300 Mode Dial allows for quick and convenient mode selection

The mode dial of the Nikon D3300 allows you to select between various scene modes or advanced modes, such as shutter and aperture priority or manual exposure.

The Guide mode, first seen in the Nikon D3000, is also present. The Guide mode uses sample images and simple terminology to teach beginners which settings to use in a number of shooting situations.

The Nikon D3300 has 13 different filters that can be applied in the Effects shooting mode. This mode can be used in both still & video recording. A number of these effects can be applied to both still & video after you’ve taken them.

The Nikon D3300 can shoot video in 1080p Full HD, and can record movies at 60p/50p/30p/25p/24p. Full-time autofocus is available in movie mode. The aperture and shutter speed can be pre-set prior to starting recording, and can be adjusted whilst recording.


Image Quality

Nikon D3300 Image Quality

The Nikon D3300 produces rich images in a number of lighting conditions

The Nikon D3300 produces excelent quality images at a number of ISO settings. There is virtually no noise up to ISO 800 in JPEG images. At up to ISO 3200, JPEG images are still highly usable, even for large prints. High quality images at higher ISO settings are easily obtainable in RAW. Shooting in RAW also showcases how much detail you can capture with this sensor.

The Nikon D3300 features Active D-Lighting, which increases the detail in the shadow and highlight areas of high-contrast images.

The Nikon D3300 also features Nikon’s Picture Controls, which are preset combinations of sharpening, contrast, brightness, saturation and hue. The available choices are Standard, Neutral, Vivid, Monochrome, Portrait and Landscape. Additionally there are 13 different creative filters that can be applied to both still images and movies in the Effects shooting mode. These filters include Night Vision, Super Vivid, Pop, Photo Illustration, Colour Sketch, Toy Camera, Minature Effect, Selective Colour, Silhouette, High Key, Low Key & HDR Painting.

The Nikon D3300 has an Easy Panorama mode, which allows you to create a 180 degree panorama photo by simply sweeping the camera around.


At first glance the Nikon D3300 does not seem to offer much in the way of a significant improvement over the Nikon D3200, but the removal of the Optical Low Pass Filter, the speedier EXPEED 4 processor, increased ISO range 20 256,000, quicker 5fps burst shooting, 50/60p movie mode, improved battery life, and a new range of special effects do add up to make the Nikon D3300 a better camera than the D3200. The new compact kit lens is also an extremely important improvement, instantly making the Nikon D3300 a much more compact camera when not in use, a feature that the target audience will certainly appreciate.

The huge 24 megapixel sensor still offers more resolution than any competing manufacturer, and is one of the highest resolution sensors in the DX APS-C format. Improved fine detail rendition and extended ISO range have been also achieved by the removal of the optical anti-aliasing filter.

The Nikon D3300 is highly reccomended as a great camera for beginners who want more performance form an entry level SLR and are prepared to spend a little extra to get it.

Nikon D3300 Sample Photo

Nikon D3300 Sample Photo

Nikon D3300 Sample Photo

Nikon D3300 Sample Photo

Nikon D5300 Review

February 18th, 2014 No Comments   Posted in Digital SLR Cameras

In the heart of all of the photography associated innovations, DIGITAL SLR cameras continue steadily to posses their particular allure. Yes, Nokia Lumia 1020 will snap really good pictures. And so can iPhone 5S as well as Galaxy S4. A number of compact digital cameras including the Sony RX 100 II are also thoroughly astonishing!

However there are certain things which DIGITAL SLR cameras fare much better. DIGITAL SLR cameras deliver the most effective way to compose a photo, and that is by way of a nice and bright viewfinder. They provide the flexibility of changing lenses and configurations to produce a individualized picture taking experience that’s well suited for the requirements of an individual photographer. And in the majority of situations, they provide awesome picture quality, even during low-light circumstances with little effort.

DIGITAL SLR cameras service the requirements of professionals and prosumers – the individuals who actually demand digital slr cameras which are not just simple-to-use for novice photographers but additionally have sophisticated controls and image quality options.

Nikon D5300 is a middle range DIGITAL SLR camera whose purpose is to satisfy the prosumers. Will it be successful? Why don’t we discover.

Nikon D5300

The Nikon D5300 has an articulated LCD screen

Compared with Nikon D5200

The Nikon D5300 is an progressive update. Among the list of big-ticket changes, two stand out above the crowd — Wi-Fi and GPS. As opposed to the D5200, this new Nikon DIGITAL SLR can connect with smartphones utilizing a Wi-Fi network, enabling owners to share photos on social networking sites right after they’ve been taken. The D5300 additionally features a built in GPS module, that can record the position information when you’re snapping photographs.

Whilst those two latest features are really easy to identify, the D5300 additionally has several other advancements over the D5200. The 24MP image sensor is similar to the one used in the D5200 however in the D5300 it doesn’t have a optical low-pass filter. In theory, this ought to permit it to shoot better resolution photographs. It additionally has an enhanced movie function, enhanced ISO sensitivity, upgraded battery pack efficiency, boasts a lighter weight as well as (marginally) smaller body, plus incorporates a screen that’s larger by 0.2 inches and also has greater resolution as compared to the one in the D5200.

However in the grand scheme of things, the alterations inside the D5300 are modest.

The design and style as well as components improvements in DIGITAL SLR cameras tend not to materialize frequently. The D5300 is not an exception. It features the typical design that Nikon has utilized with its entry level DIGITAL SLR cameras for the past few years. This particular design works well and Nikon’s all D3X00 and D5X00 series digital slr cameras are extremely easy to handle.

As opposed to higher end DIGITAL SLR cameras, the D5300 utilizes a synthetic body nevertheless, the build quality is great. It certainly feels more robust compared to similarly-priced Canon DSLRs. The camera grip boasts a layer of soft rubber with leather-like finish. This will assist a user to grasp the camera more securely while taking photographs.

NNikon D5300 18-140 VR Kit

The Nikon D5300 is available with an 18-140mm VR lens, which we used in this test

The D5300 employs an identical button layout to the D5200. This is certainly fairly disappointing as there is a deficiency of dedicated buttons for advanced image capture options. Even though principal settings such as aperture or shutter speed is able to be operated by using hardware buttons without taking the eye away from the viewfinder, for more advanced options, owners will need to go in to the menu. This is certainly akin to just how Nikon’s entry level digital slr cameras function. However considering the price of D5300, we’d have actually appreciated seeing it employing a button layout akin to D7X00 digital slr cameras.

By default the D5300 is combined with an 18-55mm Nikkor VR lens. It’s additionally readily available as a body only, if you already have a collection of lenses, and is also available with an 18-140mm VR lens. We evaluated the D5300 with 18-140mm lens.

Similar to other D5X00 series digital slr cameras, the display screen on the D5300 is able to be rotated and swiveled. This will assist while you’re endeavoring to compose a picture in circumstances in which it is not necessarily feasible to make use of the viewfinder. For instance, in instances where you’re going to be holding the camera over your head, this display screen is extremely versatile.

More resolution than you need

It really is nearly impossible to select a Nikon or Canon DIGITAL SLR camera which doesn’t provide fantastic image quality. However even based on the high standards established by pre-existing middle range DIGITAL SLR cameras, D5300 records photographs which are exceptional in the majority of circumstances. This is because the lack of a low-pass filter creates photographs with a pop and cleanliness. Indeed, D5200 also records photographs at 24MP nevertheless, the photographs recorded using the D5300 appear a little crisper and cleaner. The absence of a low-pass filter does indeed offer slightly superior resolution to photographs recorded using the D5300.

Capturing photographs at 24MP with a DIGITAL SLR is a wonderful experience. The degree of detail that’s recorded is simply astonishing. This’ll help when you’re endeavoring to photograph wildlife. Even though you are unable to zoom very close to a bird, you are able to crop and obtain a superbly crisp photograph. The drawback is that often shots tend to be large in regards to size so if you’re working with a two gigabyte or perhaps 4 gigabyte memory card, it’s going to be filled very quickly.

The caliber of colours that the D5300 captures is extremely good. We discovered that the photographs recorded using the D5300 have punchy vibrant colours.

For the previous few years, Nikon’s midrange digital slr cameras have excelled at low-light photography due to the method that they manage dynamic range and ISO. On both matters, the D5300 is an excellent performer. Photographs using ISO as high as 3200 reveal hardly any noise. The camera furthermore captures the contrast between darker areas and well-lit areas inside a scene very well.

Nikon D5300 Sample Image

Nikon D5300 sample image – low light performance

Our only issue with the D5300 with regards to image quality is the fact that it has a tendency to underexpose photographs. This certainly could be addressed using a photo editing applications, particularly if you are photographing in RAW. However mainstream photographers infrequently shoot photographs in RAW.

As for performance, the D5300 stands up very well. It focuses rapidly and also precisely. The D5300, much like the D5200, incorporates a 39-point focus system. Of those nine at the center are cross-type, meaning that they’re more sensitive which will let you focus quickly in lower light. Even though it is always preferable to have more cross-type focus points and broader coverage with focus-points, the 39-point setup within the D5300 is sufficient, rapid and also is very effective.

The dslr camera can capture movies in Full High Definition. The caliber of video clips is dependent a great deal on the lens that you have coupled to the dslr camera however in our tests using the 18-140mm lens we discovered that D5300 records video clips that’s a step upward for a DIGITAL SLR within its class. Essentially, it takes high quality movies with virtually no focus issues and if you utilize it to record a brief video clip of a birthday celebration, you’re not going to be disappointed.

As opposed to the typical 18-55mm lens that are typically shipped with these dslr cameras, we evaluated the D5300 using the Nikkor 18-140mm, that provides a broader reach to a user. Due to the fact that the D5300 is a DX format dslr camera, the effective range is 27-210mm. Consequently the majority of your daily photographing requirements are usually covered with this specific lens. The overall performance of the lens is extremely good however the D5300 is capable of more and once we matched the dslr camera with significantly better lenses, such as one of the 50mm prime lenses, we obtained much better results.

In the event that you currently have a Nikon DIGITAL SLR such as the D3000/D3100 or D40/D60/D90 and would like to update, the D7100 may be a better option for you. In reality, the D7100 is not much more than the D5300 despite being a more versatile camera with better build quality and better controls.

The D7100 also offers a focus motor – there’s not one in the D5300 – and therefore can function with all the old Nikon lenses that are lacking a focus motor.

If you’re looking to get involved with the digital photography scene, a dslr camera such as the D3200 along with a couple of additional lenses will cost not as much as the D5300 and provide you with a more flexible photography package.

As we stated previously, the D5300 is a superb dslr camera and if you purchase it, you simply won’t be disappointed. In addition it offers additional features such as built-in GPS and Wi-Fi, in the event that they’re essential for you. However it is not really value for money such as an entry level DIGITAL SLR such as the D3200. And is not really within the league of the D7100, which is actually a much better dslr camera for the advanced shooters.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW Review

February 11th, 2014 No Comments   Posted in Bags and Straps
Lowepro Versapack 200 AW

The Lowepro Versapack 200 AW is a lightweight modern daypack with dual side entry compartments and a hideaway tripod mount plus an all weather AW cover

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW Bag review – a flexible bag with a padded area for your photographic camera equipment with an unpadded area for snacks, or anything else you might carry along with you.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW top compartment holds a variety of personal items.

Typically the challenge with keeping your dslr camera equipment at hand all of the time is how you would carry all of those other bits and bobs necessary during the daily routine, such as for example audio players, snacks, writing instruments, notepads, etc. Most photographic camera bags are specialized for carrying your equipment about and conduct a fantastic job of that, however may not be so great at accommodating other things.

The half and half layout of the Lowepro Versapack 200 AW is not a totally new concept. Anyone who recalls the Lowepro Orion Trekker bags should be able to observe how the concept has continued to develop. Those bags too possessed a respectable sized padded section for dslr camera equipment in the base along with an unpadded ‘daytime pack’ area in the top for other items, and were tremendously popular.

The dslr camera inner compartment is able to hold a compact pro including the Nikon D300 or Canon EOS 7D without having a battery grip installed but which includes a conventional zoom lens attached, although without having a lens hood. The other storage compartments are great for as many as five small lenses such as for instance a 50mm, or even a telephoto such as a 70-300mm f/4-5.6. A flashgun may be replaced for one of the lenses as well. This is definitely abundant room for the casual snappers with light-weight equipment venturing out for a days photographing.

A tripod mounting setup enables a tripod to be secured vertically to the exterior of the backpack and is very effective with compact, portable tripods. With a bigger tripod, such as the Manfrotto 190XPROB, the bag may become awkward. It is a little more tricky to secure the tripod. The strap on the top is a touch loose for supporting that sort of load and the pocket at the base is just too small to perfectly fit the legs in. Cinch straps on the bottom of the bag allow for the horizontal attachment of a second tripod, or a rolled up jacket or towel.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW padded camera compartment holds a DSLR with up to 6 lenses

The cushioned shoulder straps are comfortable, regardless of whether the backpack is completely packed and is going to be easy enough to carry around over a long day’s photographing. Accessibility of the camera inner compartment is furnished by a heavy duty zipper, that opens out so wide that the backpack divides in two. There are also 2 side access panels, allowing you to re-configure the inner camera compartment for instant access to your DSLR by swinging the bag around to the front. This particular layout doesn’t lend itself to instant access to bigger dslr cameras for example a Nikon D700, as the openings are a little too small ,however it is excellent for smaller enthusiast and beginner DSLRs. The sides can even be opened to swiftly grab a lens or flashgun from both sides if carrying your camera around your neck.

The  Lowepro Versapack 200 AW has four Universal SlipLock™ attachments, 2 located on either side of the bag and 1 on each of the carrying straps. The Universal SlipLock™ attachments allow you to attach a number of additional Lowepro pouches and bags, such as the Lowepro S&F Bottle Pouch, Lowepro S&F Phone Case 20 or Lowepro Lens Case, allowing you to easily expand the carrying capacity of the backpack.

An AWC All Weather Cover is supplied which covers the outside of the rucksack. This particular cover is a breeze to fit and performs an excellent job of safeguarding the backpack in severe weather conditions, as well as dusty conditions.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW: Verdict

This backpack is perfect for those looking to purchase a backpack which includes a excellent volume of space for a moderate collection of dslr camera equipment as well as camera lenses for day trips out, as well as other situations which you might require room for other non-photographic equipment, including snacks.

The tripod mounting system is really a awesome concept, yet it’s primarily actually appropriate for compact, portable tripods and also the weatherproof protection is a superb inclusion, particularly if you get trapped in a downpour.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW includes an AWC All Weather Cover

Being very affordable, this backpack is extremely great value if this meets your requirements. The caliber of materials utilized is truly great and the padded straps ensure the backpack a delight to carry, even for very long periods.

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW: Pros

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW Half and half layout is wonderful for instances when non photographic equipment need to be transported

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW Comfy straps

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW weatherproof cover

Easy accessibility to compact items such as lenses from the sides

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW: Cons

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW fast side access restricted to smaller DSLR cameras

Lowepro Versapack 200 AW Tripod mounting method is a bit insecure for more substantial tripods

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Review

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Compact Digital Camera

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Compact Digital Camera 20.2 Mega Pixel RX Series 8.3x Optical Zoom Cyber-shot

To numerous photographers — novices and experts alike — digital SLRs signify quality. The fact that you can detach the lens and exchange it for an alternative is irrelevant to those who will never purchase a second optic, and it’s that particular section of the marketplace that Sony’s concentrating on with its Cyber-shot RX10. Everything about the Cyber-shot RX10 is DSLR-like — its form factor, integrated EVF, focusing performance and picture quality are all on par with numerous higher end SLRs — but its awesome 24-200mm lens is permanently affixed. By opting with this relatively rigid design, Sony’s able to produce a constant f/2.8 aperture and extremely high-quality optics in a comfortable package, at a price tag considerably under what a comparable detachable lens would command, were it to really exist to start with. The end result, quite simply, is incredible, however as the price is at the upper end of even deep-pocketed consumers’ budgets, you will want to catch our complete review prior to making any purchase.

Visually, the Cyber-shot RX10 is much like a digital SLR in virtually every way. You will find a noticable grip, a top-mounted monochrome LCD, a pop-up flash, a hot shoe (in this instance, Sony’s Multi Interface Shoe), dedicated mode and exposure-compensation dials, an XGA OLED viewfinder, a 3-inch 1.23M-dot Liquid Crystal Display that tilts upwards 84 degrees and downward 43 degrees and a reasonably large SLR-like lens up front. From the inside, however, the Cyber-shot RX10 is very similar to its compact counterparts, the RX1 and RX100 Mark II. As a matter of fact, the 10 features exactly the same 20.2-megapixel 1-inch BSI CMOS sensor as that latter model, which, although nonetheless quite large, is smaller than the APS-C and 35mm sensors in traditional DSLRs. What’s more, it contains Sony’s potent new BIONZ X processor, which is also located in the Alpha 7 and 7R, along side Sony’s freshly launched A5000.

But back again to that lens. The 24-200mm Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* optic is unquestionably the celebrity of the show, thanks in no small part to its constant f/2.8 aperture. What makes that significant, you may well ask? The majority of zoom lenses, particularly those permanently connected to a camera, incorporate variable aperture lenses. Although some may perhaps allow you to capture at f/2.8 from the widest focal length (24mm in this instance), you simply will not discover many point-and-shoots boasting of that equivalent aperture at the tele end at the same time. Commonly, a lower-end lens allows apertures no greater than f/5.6 or even f/6.3 at 200mm, and having f/2.8 available instead, you can actually take significantly crisper photos in lower light, or images with velvety bokeh (shallow depth of field) during the daytime. You have still got f/5.6 (right up to f/16) for your use, needless to say, immediately available utilizing the dedicated ring dial round the base of the lens, in case you are after different imaging effects, alternatively.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Top View

You can still find a great deal more hardware components to discover, too. Sony’s placed loads of emphasis on connectivity with the Cyber-shot RX10. On the sound front, you can find headphone and microphone jacks, stereo microphones up top as well as being compatible with Sony’s advanced audio accessories utilizing the accessory port which is also a hot shoe — for mounting wireless receivers as well as shotgun mics. You will find an HDMI interface with clean, uncompressed output, a micro-USB interface for data transfers and charging the camera’s 1,080mAh battery (exactly the same unit included in NEX cameras as well as select current Alphas), a dual Memory Stick/SDXC flash card slot and a tripod socket at the base. The camera is rather comfortable to hold on to, and even though it is weightier than you would anticipate, it will not weigh you down whilst it dangles from the neck strap.

Sony hasn’t modified its UI a great deal since the NEX series’ creation in 2010, but just like the other RX products as well as current Alphas, the Cyber-shot RX10 incorporates a tab-based user interface that many of us significantly prefer. Settings are really simple to find along with every thing displayed in a linear format, it’s simple to hop from category to category to generate each of the modifications you require without first going back to your home screen. Capturing choices like file size, ISO and SteadyShot are displayed in the first tab; customizable key modifications and display alternatives are within the next tab, accompanied by wireless-connectivity features, then playback; and then finally general settings like sound levels and display monitor brightness can be found in the 5th tab.

Additionally, there are a great deal of dedicated controls around the camera, and so you will not absolutely need to spend much time in the main menu whatsoever. A function button off to the right of the LCD launches a quick-adjust setting, with direct access to drive mode, flash options, ISO, white balance, metering, et cetera. A display button cycles through a variety of display modes, such as a full-screen real time feed, an advanced settings panel with histogram and physical alignment indicators and an image preview screen with a thorough settings readout placed at the border. Also there is a specific video capture button, an alternative settings dial and a control ring on the back. Up top, you will find there’s backlight switch for lighting the grayscale LCD, a flash release button, a user-configurable button, an exposure-compensation dial and a zoom toggle switch around the shutter release. Additionally there is a focus-mode selector switch along the front side of the camera, right below the lens.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Back

Incorporating WiFi, it’s also possible to control the camera utilizing a smartphone or even tablet running Sony’s PlayMemories Mobile app. After establishing a connection to the camera’s wi-fi hotspot, you’re able to only shoot in auto mode with the app — as soon as you connect, auto will override all of the existing camera settings. Photos are sent to the connected device right after capture. Although this is an excellent solution for group self-portraits as well as other tripod photos, as a result of the diminished control options, we would advocate capturing directly on the camera and then transferring pictures to the app from either the camera’s playback mode or perhaps the live gallery viewer within the application. Wi-fi connectivity helps make sharing pictures on the internet a piece of cake, nevertheless — your Instagram account will certainly benefit enormously from the Cyber-shot RX10‘s huge sensor and mighty lens.

At release, Sony’s RX100 arrived with an ambitious price tag, which was a significant sum for a point-&-shoot, especially one which did not appear a great deal different from a model one half its price to the inexperienced eye. Then again extraordinary performance — for any digital camera, actually; not only a pocket-size compact — established this the essential everyday camera of 2012. You can actually make the identical argument here. The Cyber-shot RX10 delivers that level of performance to a considerably larger, although a lot more versatile form factor. Shutter lag is just about nonexistent and also camera’s speed overall is practically flawless. Even wi-fi transfers are far more seamless than we have experienced with a lot of other digital cameras, including previous models from Sony.

The camera can power on and capture its first shot in just over 1.5 seconds. When shifting the frame between a subject 2 meters in the distance and another centimeters from the lens, the Cyber-shot RX10 managed to expose and refocus in approximately 0.25 second. Meanwhile, in the speed-priority continuous setting, we managed to capture 20 successive JPEGs at 9 fps, as opposed to the “approximately ten frames per second” which Sony estimates within the standards. When it comes to transporting pictures wirelessly, it took us 17 seconds from choosing a picture on the camera to receiving a 2-megapixel image on this smart phone, which includes the amount of time needed for this smart phone to connect with the Cyber-shot RX10‘s Wi-fi. Transfers ended up being a great deal faster when choosing pictures on this smart phone instead, because the couple were already paired. A 2-megapixel picture took roughly one second to transfer, whilst a full-resolution photo took only five seconds.

Battery life, as you would probably expect from a camera this large, is superb. The Cyber-shot RX10 utilizes the identical battery as each and every previous NEX digital camera along with the latest Alpha mirrorless cams, and that means you may perhaps already have spare NP-FW50 1,080mAh packs laying about. If you are planning to be away from an electric socket for several days, it would not hurt to take a spare. Nonetheless, we succeeded in making it through every complete day’s shooting with a great deal of juice to spare. We devoted 2 days photographing without recharging the battery pack. The capacity meter reflected a 31 % charge remaining following taking over 700 pictures as well as 5 mins of 720p video, together with a number of Wi-fi transfers as well as some on-camera picture reviews.

As if you didn’t already have enough to anticipate having with the Cyber-shot RX10… Picture quality, no real shock, is incredible. Truly, with this selling price, we would not put up with anything less. No matter whether you want to shoot in bright sunlight or a evening street scene illuminated by a solitary dim light, photos are crisp and free from noise, even at ISO 6400. Video looks phenomenal likewise, even if caught at night.

The Cyber-shot RX10‘s quick power-on and focus times make it quite easy to acquire the photo. In an exposure which includes a fast paced subject, and following a rapid adjustment on the setting dial, pictures can be clicked straight away. The exposure and color balance are precise, plus details are really sharp, regardless of whether the subject is going along very fast.

The tilt-up screen and 24-200mm lens present you with a massive amount of versatility. For street photographers, this really is a necessity.

The Cyber-shot RX10‘s aperture ring, mounted around the lens, allows you to access specific f-stops directly.

The Cyber-shot RX10 is a master of focus and exposure when you take close-up photos. Elements across the foreground are exceedingly razor-sharp, even with comparatively high ISO, while the background is properly blurred, as you would anticipate by having an f/2.8 aperture.

Video quality is every bit as remarkable. The Cyber-shot RX10 has the ability to record at resolutions as high as 1080/60p with AVCHD encoding. Exposures were spot-on universally, and also videos recorded at high sensitivities (ISO 12,800) appeared much better than predicted.

As it is with Sony’s QX10 and QX100 lens cameras, the full-frame Alpha 7 and 7R and even the RX100 Mark II and RX1, the Cyber-shot RX10 lacks competition from other brands, especially if you are looking for virtually identical specifications and performance. Which is not to state you do not possess other choices, nevertheless, if an integrated, fixed-aperture, telephoto zoom lens combined with a 1-inch sensor are the thing that you’re after, there exists ultimately not anywhere else to look. You’re able to, obviously, go for a conventional digital SLR, and of course, if you already possess an assortment of lenses (or you are intending to develop one), an interchangeable-lens camera is definitely your best option.

Canon’s 70D along with the D5300 from Nikon each offer serious still picture and video chops, and they also incorporate built in Wi-fi, as well. You will need to bring your own lens into the mix, including the body-only for the Canon along with the Nikon, in addition to the price of lenses, you are going to considerably surpass the Cyber-shot RX10‘s selling price once you have included the required optics. When it comes to superzooms, Panasonic’s Lumix FZ200 also contains a lens with a constant f/2.8 aperture, which includes a massive 25-600mm focal length, even so the 1/2.3-inch 12.1-megapixel sensor is considerably less proficient compared to what you will get using the Sony. The FZ200 is equipped with affordability on its side, though.

Ultimately, we really love the Sony Cyber-shot RX10. In reality, we battled to fill the negatives segment with anything apart from a high price tag. However your money goes an incredibly long way here, and if you need to record razor-sharp pictures and full-HD movies in just about any lighting condition, with a substantial focal range, you will be challenged to identify a more suitable shooter. This is actually the very best fixed-lens digital camera we have ever used, and we would not be astounded if the RX10 Mark II, when ever it shows up, would be the sole equivalent model worthwhile considering.


Wonderful Constant f/2.8-aperture 24-200mm lens

Phenomenal image and video quality in all lighting conditions

Excellent performance and battery life

Dedicated exposure-compensation dial

WiFi with NFC




Sony’s Cyber-shot RX10 may perhaps be expensive, but this camera’s a must-buy if you’ve got the money to invest.