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Canon Announces 35mm F/1.4L II & Brings EOS M3 Stateside, Pentax Full Frame Coming in October? | Daily Roundup

By Anthony Thurston on August 27th 2015

Welcome to our roundup series where we will hit on several gear news and rumor topics each day. This gives you a chance to get caught up on all of the day’s news and rumors in one place. Make sure to check back daily for the latest gear news, rumors and announcements.

Canon Officially Announces 35mm F/1.4L II


Well, that was fast but the rumors were right. Today, Canon officially announced the new Canon 35mm F/1.4L II. Canon has finally answered the Sigma 35mm Art lens, and I personally can not wait to see the showdown between these two lenses. But I am getting a little ahead of myself; here are the official 35mm F/1.4L II specs:

  • Aperture Range: f/1.4-22
  • Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics
  • Two Aspherical Elements, One UD Element
  • Subwavelength and Fluorine Coatings
  • Ultrasonic Autofocus Motor
  • Full-Time Manual Focus Override
  • Weather-Sealed Design
  • Rounded 9-Blade Diaphragm

One of the big points that Canon is driving home about this new lens, is the inclusion of their new (and proprietary) ‘Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics’ which they claim will reduce CA. Other notable points are that this lens is weather sealed and features a USM motor rather than an STM motor like what has been featured in Canon’s newer lower-priced primes.

Pricewise, the rumors appeared to be off by about $200, in the wrong direction, with this lens retailing for $1799 in the US. The interesting note about that is that this price essentially makes this lens twice the price of the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art. The performance will have to back up that price, or I see people sticking with the Sigma as the go to 35mm prime.

If you are interested in being one of the first to get this new 35mm F/1.4L II, you can pre-order now over on B&H for $1799, here.

Canon Bringing EOS M3 To the USA


It seems that mirrorless fans finally stomped their feet enough to get Canon’s attention. Today, it was announced that Canon will finally be bringing their EOS M3 to the USA, marking Canon’s first mirrorless camera in this market since the EOS M bombed back in 2012.

The fun part about the Canon announcement is they are acting like this is something new, like the rest of the world has not had the M3 for the better part of a year already, ha! Regardless, for those who need a refresher, here are the EOS M3 specs:

  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor
  • DIGIC 6 Image Processor
  • 3.0″ 1,040k-Dot Touchscreen Tilting LCD
  • Full HD 1080p Video at 24/25/30 fps
  • Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC
  • Hybrid CMOS AF System with 49 AF Points
  • ISO 100-12800, Expandable to 25600
  • Hot Shoe and Built-In Flash
  • 3.5mm Stereo Mic Input
  • Full Manual Control

I am excited to get my hands on one of these and finally put it to the test against other mirrorless offerings in that price range. Speaking of price, Canon is not making the same mistake they did with the original M, and have priced this model rather appropriately in my estimation, with a retail price of $679 for the body or more if you want to grab one in a kit.

If you want to get your hands on one, you can pre-order them now over on B&H for $679, here.

Pentax to Announce Their Full Frame DSLR In October?


An interesting (though a little light on facts) rumor has surfaced regarding the official announcement of the upcoming Pentax full frame DSLR. According to the rumor mill, Pentax will officially announce the camera on October 6th.

The camera concept and idea were teased last year, and updates have been few and far between; so if an announcement is coming in a little over a month from now, Pentax has been doing a stellar job of keeping it all under wraps.

This rumor does come from a forum user who has shared correct information about Pentax in the past, so at this point, I will be looking for the Pentax announcement on October 6th. That said, don’t go selling all your gear in anticipation; plans could change, or this guy could just be trolling us.

Next Sony APS-C E-Mount Camera to Feature New Sensor Tech?


According to the latest rumor buzz out of Sony land, the next A6xxx series camera will feature some new sensor tech that sounds really amazing. According to the rumor report, the new sensor will be backlit and feature a world first RGBW pixel layout design rather than the standard RGB layout on most other camera sensors (Foveon excluded).

This explanation was provided as to why it could be beneficial to add the white pixels:

The built-in “RGBW Coding” function which adds W (White) pixels to the conventional range of RGB (Red-Green-Blue) pixels has realized higher sensitivity, enabling high-quality shooting with low noise even in dark indoor or night settings. While the addition of W (White) pixels improves sensitivity, it has the problem of degrading image quality. However, Sony’s own device technology and signal processing realizes superior sensitivity without hurting image quality.

No word yet on when this new camera will be announced, but it is expected to be in the somewhat near future, but we will see. It sounds like this could be yet another super hyped jaw-dropping Sony announcement once it does finally happen.

What are your thoughts on today’s roundup? What news/rumors did we miss? What would you like to see covered in future roundups? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!

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Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Fisnik Islami

    nice one 35mm

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  2. Jeffrey Kenerly

    I am excited about new A6100/7100, because I am hoping A6000 goes lower than $450 for the body

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  3. Kevin Cucci

    Well geez Adam. Now I’m going to have to get it. Why do you have to make so much sense!

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    • adam sanford

      Nonsense — get what you *need*. Don’t take tips from me — I just enjoy riffing on why things are priced the way they are.

      If you need it, buy it. But if you only *want* it, just wait. The price has to come down slightly, but keep in mind the original 35L settled in at $1,479 despite a better lens (the Art) sitting far cheaper below it. Canon will only let it drop so far.

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  4. J. Cassario

    That $1800 price tag is a joke, even if it is close to Otus performance wise. The Sigma Art is already sharp enough for most people, so even if the new Canon is sharper, it will need to be better in every other category as well, and not just by a little bit. It will take a lot to make anyone dish out an extra $1k for this lens. But, it will be interesting to see just how good they made this lens and how it compares to the Sigma.

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    • Matthew Saville

      Jay, I’m actually pretty surprised to see such a comment from you considering your interest in specialty lenses with “character” such as Leica, etc. What I mean is, while the Sigma lenses are indeed quite flawless, many folks argue that they do indeed lack character. I haven’t done too much testing to see how the flare performs on the Sigma Arts, or compared the bokeh of the 35 Art specifically against the other 35 1.4’s out there, however I do remember using the old Canon 35 L with much fondness, its bokeh and flare was just mouth-watering.

      If Canon can deliver eye-popping sharpness AND the “character” that Canon L primes are so famous for, I think it’d be worth $1400-$1500 at least, which will probably be the case after a rebate shows up from time to time and drives the used price down after a year or two.

      Indeed, $1800 is too steep for ANYBODY on a <$1K budget. And the Sigma is so incredibly sharp and well-built, that if that's your main concern, you're better off buying the Art. But for certain folks, maybe the price will be more justifiable?

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    • adam sanford

      Compared to the Sigma 35 Art, consider:

      1) It will be sharper — potentially considerably so if the MTF is matched in real life.

      2) It will have reliable/consistent AF at f/1.4, something the Sigma 35 Art has rather famously struggled with

      1 + 2 = $1,500 to me, and easily so. The wide open AF performance alone is worth $500 over the Sigma.

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    • J. Cassario

      We’ll see how it does in real life, I don’t pay too much attention to charts. Matt, the Sigma 35 has plenty of character, sharper, and without the annoying CA that the Canon 35L had. I owned both for a while and rarely ever pulled out the Canon. For me to spend $1800, or $1500 on a 35mm lens, it has to do more than just show me pretty MTF charts. So, while yes, character of a lens is the biggest deciding factor, the Sigma 35 is one of my favorites, along with my Leica glass.
      Adam, my Sigma nails the focus wide open, I rarely shoot it any other way. As far as sharpness goes, its gonna have to be a lot more than just sharper for me to dump my Sigma. There is simply a lot of like about the Sigma 35, and its plenty sharp, one of the sharpest lenses I own. I will no doubt be curious to see how it performs with a price tag like that, so im looking forward to getting it in my hands to test soon.

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  5. Tom Blair

    I like the 35mm lens

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  6. Ben Perrin

    Yeah the MTF for the new 35L looks amazing. Canon continues to do well on the lens front, all they need to do is progress in sensor development.

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  7. adam sanford

    The 35L II announcement was not a surprise. The *MTF chart that came with it*, however, absolutely was. If the theoretical MTF is borne out in real use, this will be one whopper of a lens — almost a Zeiss Otus with autofocus!

    In addition, folks have been waiting for Canon to put out a new prime in a Sigma Art focal length, and here’s the first of hopefully many. Not too shabby, Canon. (Even if you want my liver for it. :-P)

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    • Kevin Cucci

      couldn’t agree more…. but $1800.00… come on now. I am not one to complain about prices and usually suck it up and buy the L lens, but with the Sigma 35 ART now sitting pretty at $750.00, you would have to think long and hard about dropping that kind of money for this lens over the Sigma…

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    • adam sanford

      Normally, Kevin, I’d agree, but that MTF chart was beyond even the Sigma. It’s nearly in Otus territory (compared against the 55mm).

      So something non-trivially sharper than the Sigma with rock-solid first-party autofocus (and don’t forget about weather sealing) should sell. That price puts it out of range of a lot of people, but the pricier MF Zeiss users might just snatch this up.

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    • Alexander Europa

      I currently have the 35mm Art and love it. However, it’s lack of weather sealing is a problem for me an street/outdoors/event photographer. I’ll definitely be renting one of these to test out and see if it’s really worth the extra coin. I’m hoping it is!

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    • Alexander Europa

      I really hope that Canon expands its mirrorless line of lenses now that the M3 is coming to the States…they have an uphill battle to contend with the glass that the other mirrorless manufacturers are currently offering.

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  8. Matthew Saville

    As an aside, the rumor about a full-frame Pentax camera was “leaked” exactly 42 days befor October 6th, IIRC. A few Pentaxians caught this, and the debate currently rages as to whether or not Pentax will be getting Sony’s 42 MP sensor before Nikon does. If so, this could be a rather ground-breaking camera for Pentax, provided they “do it right” and offer the amazing features the K-3 II has offered. (in-board GPS and astro-tracing, IBIS, and general rock-solid quality) Plus it wouldn’t hurt if Pentax was the first photo-oriented DSLR to also offer 4K video, but as Anthony said, there’s almost zero other details about this camera.

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