Thursday, 4 February 2016

News and Rumour Thursday - Canon, Sony, Phottix and Sekonic/Elinchrom

In this weeks summary:
  • Canon: 1DX Mk II is here to compete against the Nikon D5.
  • Sony: As well as the long awaited A6300, three new FE lenses have been announced.
  • Phottix: Over a year late, but finally the Odin IIs are here (but no Sony version yet).
  • Sekonic: New versions of the popular LiteMaster Pro L-478DR have been announced with Phottix/Elinchrom compatibility


As expected, Canon's answer to the Nikon D5 has been announced. Fanboys everywhere can argue about the merits of each, even though the people arguing are probably least likely to buy a camera in this range.

DPReview: Canon announces flagship EOS-1D X Mark II full-frame digital SLR


Sony has released the A6000 successor, the A6300 which was initially rumoured to come out last year. There seems to much excitement about the auto-focus capabilities of the new A6300 (as well as 4k slog video), but coming at a higher initial price than it's baby brother.

DPReview: Sony announces 24MP a6300 with incredible AF and 8 fps live view bursts

In other Sony news, they've announced 3 new premium lenses with the FE mount. A much longed for 85mm f/1.4, as well as two classics 24-70 and 70-200mm f/2.8 zooms. It is interesting they are now designating their premium lenses as 'G Master' instead of 'Sony Zeiss'.

Two teleconverters for the 70-200mm f/2.8 have been announced as well, but unfortunately it appears they will not work with any other lenses, including the existing 70-200 f/4.

The 85mm f/1.4 is a beast, weighing close to 40% more than the highly acclaimed Nikon 85mm f/1.4G lens (820g vs 595g). This puts its weight almost halfway between the Nikon 85mm and the Zeiss Otus. If the image quality of the lens is also halfway between these two lenses, it could be a real winner.

DPReview: Sony releases three premium 'G Master' lenses for FE-mount


In September 2014, Phottix announced the Odin II would be available in Q1, 2015. In August 2015, Phottix said they would announce more news about the Odin II within the next month. No news came, and sites like LightingRumours didn't discuss it or have any information.

Finally, 6 months after saying more info would come soon, and a full year since it was originally supposed to be available, the Odin II has been released for Canon and Nikon. The Sony version still isn't available, and is expected in April this year. However, Phottix clearly have a bad track record with their announcement reliability.

Phottix Journal: Phottix Odin II Now Available

In bad news for Canon users, it seems the Odin II for Canon cannot handle rear curtain sync, but Nikon and Sony versions can. This is particularly peculiar because the original Canon Odins do support rear curtain sync.


Sekonic is releasing two new versions of its popular LiteMaster Pro L-478DR, one with an Elinchrom Skyport transmitter, and one with a Phottix Strato II. As these are both on the 2.4GHz frequency, it seems a pity they couldn't combine this into one unit.

The Elinchrom version allows for 'complete control of the flash's power in 0.1-step increments'. However, it is reported that as the Phottix version is only based on the Strato II trigger it will only be able to trigger flashes, not set their power levels. If true, it seems a strange choice rather than building around the Odin system.

These new light meters are already available in US online stores.

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