The New Sigma 50mm F1.4 Art Magic

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The New Sigma 50mm F1.4 Art Magic
- Sigma’s new 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART lens is set to take on all its competitors.
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Picture: The Award-Winning Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

16th April 2014, Singapore – The much awaited 50mm of the year had arrived at Singapore after many weeks of anticipation by local Sigma fans. The 50mm F1.4 that once rule the 50mm region has gotten a tougher replacement -now as part of the Sigma Art series lenses. From the photo above you can see that the new 50mm ART has changed how a typical 50mm lens will look like. Breaking away from the squarish profile, the 50mm Art has grown taller (85.4 x 99.9 mm) and it really look closer to its 35mm F1.4 ART sibling.

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Picture: The Award-Winning Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

On closer look, the new Sigma 50mm ART is nothing close to its predecessor. The Art lens is redesigned from scratch and it is made for professional level DSLRs. The Art lens features the company’s proven Hypersonic Motor (HSM) but it has just got faster and much quieter. We attribute that to the better sealing and the overall build of the lens body so that operational noise is reduced to a minimum. We really love the creamy smooth focusing for that matter.

R0012007
Picture: The New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) retained the 77mm filter thread and the design looks very Zeiss-like.

As expected from Sigma looking at all the recent releases, Sigma included not 1 but 3 Special Low Dispersion (SLD) glass & 1 aspherical glass into its construction making sure that all images are razor-sharp and well-defined. We tested the lens (see photos below) and we certainly love the colors and the details captured even when we shot at wide open (aperture). The 50mm ART also features the company’s Super Multi-Layer coating reducing CA and making dusts harder to stay on the front element – this is what Sigma fans swear by. The package is further sweetened by the new lens barrel material TSC (thermally stable compound) which the world had seen and touched since the first Art lens came.

This 9-blader has 13 elements in 8 groups inside making the lens a little weighty (815gm), but very manageable. We didn’t broke our arms testing the lens for a full 2 days of continuous shooting. Focusing from a mere 40cm (min focusing distance), the 50mm F1.4 has the highest magnification at 1:5.6 when the aperture is set to F8. However for normal operations, the 50mm ART aperture range is from F1.4 to F16.

Before we get to the image quality, let’s take a look at some size comparisons of the new Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART with other popular 50mm in the market. (Please note the below is for size comparions only)

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Picture: Canon EF 50mm F1.2L USM(left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

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Picture: Canon EF 50mm F1.8 Mark 1(left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

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Picture: Sony SAL 50mm F1.4 SSM(left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

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Picture: Nikon AF-Nikkor 50mm F1.8D (left) & the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) (right)

From the above few comparisons, we can see that Sigma had changed how the “usual” 50mm’s shaping profile should look like.
Sigma had rewritten the rules and who say a 50mm must be “square & fat”. The new 50mm ART is now tall & slim. The new 50mm ART when handled, it feels very close to the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM (A) and needless to say, the feel is incredibly good. The 50mm F1.4 ART feels like “one of those $3000 lens” anytime.

Moving on from the cosmetics & build quality, let’s take a look at the lens performance department. We paired the 50mm ART to a Canon 5D MarkII & took a shot indoor without flash of a book that I was reading.

IMG_0032a
Picture: Shot at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

We opened the aperture to F1.4 and focused on the word “light” and took a shot. (above)
Then we did a 60% crop and check out the cropped image below.

IMG_0032
Picture: Shot at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART) after 60% crop.

From the cropped photo above, we were surprised at the sharpness rendered on the word that we focused on while the aperture is at its widest. This is impressive – many other wide aperture prime lenses cannot even hold their sharpness until the lens is stopped down. The new Sigma 50mm ART has defied that technicality and is still sharp at wide open, how awesome is that?

We took a few shots at varying apertures of some rice grains against a black table top and check out the incredible details that the new 50mm ART can produce.
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From the photos above, you can see that the lens kept the centre sharpness throughout the aperture range from F1.4 to F5.6
We did not stop down further as the sharpness is already impressive at F5.6 so we decided not to carry on stopping down to F16.
We are afraid that if we did, you may cut yourself while reading this review. (kidding)

Since the new Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART is also designed as a standard walkabout lens, we test it shooting both indoor and outdoor without a flash and check out the below photos.

IMG_0051
Picture: Shot indoor at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

IMG_0053
Picture: Shot indoor at F2.0 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

IMG_0057
Picture: Shot outdoor at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

IMG_0060
Picture: Shot outdoor at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

IMG_0061
Picture: Shot outdoor at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

IMG_0063
Picture: Shot outdoor at F1.4 with the New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM (ART)

So are you impressed? We certainly are. Sigma is reventing lenses that no one else thought was possible and since the Sigma announced the “Sigma Global Vision”, every new Art, Sports & Contemporary line lenses released was released as an award-winning lens. (Why I said that? Because every lens went on to bag awards).

From what we have seen throughout the review, the NEW Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART is worth every cent although the asking price is nowhere near cheap. Then again, we cannot place a price on image quality and build quality right?
Get your Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART soon before it runs out and face a worldwide shortage like the 35mm f1.4
Personally, this is one lens that I will buy (when I strike lottery) some day.

Find Out more about the new Sigma 50 F1.4 DG HSM ART here.
Read my other reviews of Sigma Lenses here.
Buy Your New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART here.

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IMPORTANT NOTE:
** Sigma had re-organized their whole lens line into 3 category.
They are “C” Lens, “A” Lens & “S” Lens.

C Lens = Contemporary Lens Line
c02_c_img
Featuring the very latest technology, and combining optical performance with compactness, Sigma’s high-performance Contemporary line covers a wide range of needs. Lenses in this category are Standard zoom lenses, telephoto zoom lenses, high-magnification zoom lenses.

A Lens = Art Lens Line
c02_a_img
Designed with a focus on sophisticated optical performance and abundant expressive power, Sigma’s Art line delivers high-level artistic expression. Lenses in this category are Large-aperture prime lenses, wide-angle lenses, ultra-wide-angle lenses, macro lenses, fisheye lenses.

S Lens – Sports Lens Line
c02_s_img
While offering sophisticated optical performance and expressiveness, Sigma Sports line lenses deliver high action-capture performance, enabling photographers to get exactly the shots they want. Lenses in this category are Telephoto lenses, telephoto zoom lenses, super telephoto lenses, super telephoto zoom lenses.

SIGMA-NEW-LOGO
Sigma Marketing Singapore Pte Ltd. is a subsidiary of Sigma Japan Corporation.

For more information, please visit http://www.sigma-global.com

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CapitaLand-National Geographic Channel “Building People” Photography Competition focuses on “Happiness”

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CapitaLand-National Geographic Channel “Building People” Photography Competition focuses on “Happiness”
- Grand prize of an exclusive overseas assignment under the mentorship of Pulitzer Center grant recipient and National Geographic Creative Photographer, Sean Gallagher

capitaland-horz

Singapore, 16 April 2014– CapitaLand Limited, in partnership with the National Geographic Channel (NGC), has launched the regional “Building People” Photography Competition (Competition), for a period of eight weeks starting 14 April 2014. In its fifth year, this year’s Competition calls for photographs that reflect “Happiness” against the backdrop of CapitaLand properties – homes, offices, shopping malls, serviced residences and mixed-use developments – in the Asia Pacific region.

Photographers are encouraged to challenge themselves and capture “Happiness” generated by the characteristics of CapitaLand buildings, including their ambience, shape, colour and texture.

Participation has grown considerably since the first Competition in 2010. Last year, there was a 38.5% increase in submissions over 2012, with about 3,000 entries from 10 countries in the Asia Pacific. To date, CapitaLand has a collection of more than
6,500 photographs from the Competition which feature its properties. These pictures allow CapitaLand to have a better understanding of its consumers, translating into a more conducive built environment that resonates with end-users. This aligns with CapitaLand’s philosophy of building people and building communities.

This year’s judging panel includes National Geographic Creative photographer, Mr Sean Gallagher (please refer to Annex A for biography), and executives from CapitaLand and National Geographic Channel. Photographic submissions will be judged according to creative interpretation of “Happiness” captured through the photographers’ lenses.

Mr Tan Seng Chai, Group Chief Corporate Officer, CapitaLand Limited, said: “Buildings are personified by the people who live, work and play in or around their vicinity, and how they are designed, built and operated contribute towards the well-being and happiness of its users. This year’s ‘Happiness’ theme taps both the happy moments experienced at our properties, as well as elements in these buildings that have brought joy to its users. This reinforces our commitment to provide a quality built environment to our residents, office and retail tenants, shoppers and serviced residence guests.”

He added: “As a real estate developer, CapitaLand goes beyond the business of building buildings, to building people and communities too. We will continue to rejuvenate our living environment, bring people together in social spaces at our properties, enhance quality of life through innovative designs and preserve the future of the next generation through sustainability.”

Mr Simeon Dawes, Executive Vice President of Advertising Sales & Partnerships at FOX One Stop Media, commented: “We are extremely encouraged by the tremendous number of photography talents we discover in Asia through this competition each year. The ‘Happiness’ theme provides yet another fantastic opportunity to encourage the continuous discovery of our living environment.”

As a six-time recipient of the Pulitzer Center Grant, Mr Gallagher’s involvement in the project offers a rare opportunity for participating photographers to learn from his vast experience and knowledge of not only the art, but also of the environment. Fluent in Chinese, Mr Gallagher has called Beijing ‘home’ for the past seven years. His work takes him all over the world, engaging and mentoring students and photography enthusiasts through various workshops and seminars. His work has been featured in various international media outlets, reaching a wide audience.

Mr Sean Gallagher said: “I am excited to be a part of this Competition, to have an opportunity to work with the National Geographic Channel, as well as to work with CapitaLand, one of Asia’s largest real estate developers. I am excited to see the participants’ creative interpretation of the theme ‘Happiness’ when they reveal the photographed architecture. Being an environmental photojournalist, it is a bonus to be associated with an organisation like CapitaLand with such a strong commitment to sustainability, with both the natural and built environment as priorities.”

The grand prize winner of the Competition will have the opportunity to embark on an exclusive overseas photography assignment in China under the mentorship of Mr Sean Gallagher. Other prizes include S$5,000 worth of CapitaVouchers and complimentary stay at Ascott serviced residences in Asia Pacific.

Winners will also get an opportunity to join Mr Sean Gallagher on a photography trail in Singapore. In addition, winning submissions will also be showcased at the CapitaLand-NGC “Building People” Photography Exhibition, scheduled for August this year.

A special award, The Voters’ Choice Award, will be given to the participant whose entry receives the highest number of votes from members of the public.

Another special award, Best CapitaMall Photo, will be given to the photographer who best captures shopper engagement within CapitaMalls.

The sponsors of the prizes are CapitaMalls Asia Limited and The Ascott Limited.

Participating photographers will be invited to attend an exclusive CapitaLand-NGC “Building People” Photography Seminar conducted by Mr Sean Gallagher that will be held in August this year.

The Competition is open to the public from 14 April to 8 June 2014 (please refer to Annex B for the Competition details). Participants are required to submit an original captioned photograph via the Competition website at www.capitaland.com/ngcphoto.

For more information, please visit www.capitaland.com/ngcphoto.

About CapitaLand Limited
CapitaLand is one of Asia’s largest real estate companies. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, the company’s businesses in real estate and real estate fund management are focused on its core markets of Singapore and China.

The company’s diversified real estate portfolio primarily includes homes, offices, shopping malls, serviced residences and mixed-use developments. The company also has one of the largest real estate fund management businesses with assets located in Asia. CapitaLand leverages its significant asset base, real estate domain knowledge, product design and development capabilities, active capital management strategies and extensive market network to develop real estate products and services in its markets.

The listed entities of the CapitaLand Group include CapitaMalls Asia, Ascott Residence Trust, CapitaCommercial Trust, CapitaMall Trust, CapitaMalls Malaysia Trust and CapitaRetail China Trust.

About National Geographic Channels International (NGCI)
National Geographic Channels International (NGCI) inspires viewers through its smart, innovative programming that questions what we know, how we view the world and what drives us forward. A business enterprise owned by National Geographic Ventures and FOX Entertainment Group, NGCI contributes to the National Geographic Society’s commitment to exploration, conservation and education through its six channels: National Geographic Channel, National Geographic Channel HD, Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo Wild HD, Nat Geo People and Nat Geo Mundo.

Globally, National Geographic Channel (including NGC U.S., which is a joint venture of NGV and Fox Cable Networks Group) is available in more than 440 million homes in
171 countries and 45 languages.

For more information, please visit www.natgeotv.com

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Unforgettable Yuan Yang – Featuring Susan Gwee

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Unforgettable Yuan Yang – Featuring Susan Gwee
Yuanyang  - 箐口_4

Photo by Susan Gwee.

 

12th April 2014, Singapore – I have been doing photography for a while in Singapore. I have always been fascinated by travel photography. But never will I imagine myself to make the effort and take on a photography-based trip to some other part of the world. But there is always a first time – I took on Yuan Yang, Yunnan in China and my very first photography trip in my life. And since this is my very photography trip, I decided to book my trip with Xing Asia, a licensed photography tour company that is managed by Master Photographer Michael Lee – a professional travel photographer who had left footsteps in many parts of the world.

白水镇
Photo by Susan Gwee.

 

The experience was fabulous and overwhelmingly awesome. Yuanyang is a beautiful & magical place. The colors, the culture are interesting and the place is full of contrasts. Importantly, it is the local people of Yuan Yang, they are very hospitable, I can feel the warmth of the people everywhere I went and they literally welcome us with wide open arms & hearts. How awesome is that?
To sweeten the trip, Michael Lee has intimate connections with the people there. We were given many opportunities to interact directly with the minority tribes. Through this, I gained a better understanding of their cultures and a deep insight to their lifestyles. The people are sincere and extremely friendly – the feeling of warmth touched me deeply.

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Photo by Susan Gwee.

 

During this trip, we were granted a rare chance to attend the Axi Fire Worship Festival of Yi ethnic group from Mile County. Although it was almost impossible to shoot due to the large turnout in a massive crowd, it has been an eye-opener to better understand their culture leaving me with an indescribable experience that I will remember for years to come.

In brief, I am incredibly impressed with the comprehensive & well-tailored itinerary by Xing Asia. This trip provided me with a wide variety of photography opportunities like the mystical Milky Way, the incredibly beautiful Sunrise & Sunset, the contrasting landscapes, portraitures of everyday life of the local people, the festival events and even wildlife photography – all accomplished within the 8 days trip.

Louping - 金鸡
Photo by Susan Gwee.

 

I would also like to take this chance to share that I am grateful to Ourshutterjourney.com (Previously Shutter Journey Singapore) for providing me a constant platform to practice & hone my photography skills through their many photography outings. I was able to apply the skills that I have learned on unforeseen circumstances like harsh sunlight, dim shooting environment, continuously moving objects, etc.

Our Tour Guide Michael has also been extremely helpful and very resourceful in planning of the entire itinerary. I enjoyed myself very much throughout the trip and made many new friends sharing the same passion as mine. They generously shared many useful photography tips along the way making the trip very special to me.

Luxi - 城子村
Photo by Susan Gwee.

 

If you are passionate about photography, curious about different cultures and hope to open up your social circle, I will strongly recommend Xing Asia’s travel photography trips – This is the good choice that I took, and I am sure it will be the same for anyone who is looking to start off a really personalized photography journey.

SG
Photo: Susan Gwee

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About http://www.xing-Asia.com.

xing-asia2

Xing Asia is a fully licensed travel agent by Singapore Tourism Board. We seek to provide exceptional value and authentic experience for like minded people to experience Asia and beyond through the eyes of our lenses. We differentiate ourselves by creating a platform for people to share and express their passion through immersing themselves in the local culture and lifestyles, befriending the locals and giving back to the community. Our mission is to ensure that your photographic travel experience expands your soul, refresh your perspectives and rejuvenate your spirit.

Join us for a journey of new beginnings, friendships and an enriching experience! For more trips & information, Please visit www.xing-Asia.com


Why http://www.xing-Asia.com ?
- We are a Licensed travel company by Singapore Tourism Board.
- We have been granted ISO 9001 : 2008 Certification on Quality Management System.
- We specializes off-the-beaten-track destinations and photography expedition trips.
- All trips are designed and owned by us making us a true travel company and not just a travel agent.
- All photography technical advices are guided by a Master Photographer (MPA).
- We welcome customized trips or planning for a private group.
- Our travel concept are based on our values of the 4 pillars (http://xing-asia.com)

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Supported by:

SJS Jpg
ourshutterjourney.com

Shutter journey member would get to enjoy FREE
Individual Basic single trip travel insurance for the trip.

http://www.xing-Asia.com  is an Accredited
Preferred Merchant of ourshutterjourney.com
Preferred Merchant

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The New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART – Open for Pre-Order

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The New Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM ART – Open for Pre-Order

50mm

11th April 2014, Singapore – The much-anticipated prime lens of the year, the NEW Art Series Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art will be reaching our shores in less than a month. Since Sigma took on the “Global Vision”, Sigma had been releasing Award-Winning Lenses after Lenses. The Art, Contemporary & Sport Series lenses are highly acclaimed for their built quality, image quality and the very affordable asking price. It is as if by setting the industry benchmark is not enough, Sigma goes all the way to built Lenses that Photographers really wants.

The new 50mm monster will be hitting our shores soon so if you have been waiting for this lens, you can try to pre-order from
our accredited merchants first. I was told that only a “small quantity” was allocated to Singapore due to the worldwide launch and demand. So hurry and contact our accedited merchants soon to reserve a unit.

Here are some of the specs taken from the Sigma site.
(More official specs here)

50mm F1.4 DG HSM | A | Redesigned, Reengineered, Revitalized

Categories : Standard
Class: Art

Typical Photography: Travel, Wedding & Events, Portrait

  • Completely redesigned and reengineered
  • Exceptional Image Quality
  • Incredible focal point sharpness when wide open
  • Pairs well with Pro-Level DSLR’s
  • MTF A1-tested
  • Front & rear lens caps and lens hood (LH830-02) is included=================================IMPORTANT NOTE:
    ** Sigma had re-organized their whole lens line into 3 category.
    They are “C” Lens, “A” Lens & “S” Lens.

    C Lens = Contemporary Lens Line
    c02_c_img
    Featuring the very latest technology, and combining optical performance with compactness, Sigma’s high-performance Contemporary line covers a wide range of needs. Lenses in this category are Standard zoom lenses, telephoto zoom lenses, high-magnification zoom lenses.

    A Lens = Art Lens Line
    c02_a_img
    Designed with a focus on sophisticated optical performance and abundant expressive power, Sigma’s Art line delivers high-level artistic expression. Lenses in this category are Large-aperture prime lenses, wide-angle lenses, ultra-wide-angle lenses, macro lenses, fisheye lenses.

    S Lens – Sports Lens Line
    c02_s_img
    While offering sophisticated optical performance and expressiveness, Sigma Sports line lenses deliver high action-capture performance, enabling photographers to get exactly the shots they want. Lenses in this category are Telephoto lenses, telephoto zoom lenses, super telephoto lenses, super telephoto zoom lenses.

    SIGMA-NEW-LOGO
    Sigma Marketing Singapore Pte Ltd. is a subsidiary of Sigma Japan Corporation.

    For more information, please visit http://www.sigma-global.com

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Take Your Best Shot – A Nature Photography Showcase

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Take Your Best Shot – A Nature Photography Showcase
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10th April 2014, Singapore – (NTUC) U Live Golden Eye Photography interest group is once again pleased to present you an interesting and exciting photography outing cum mini contest.

In line with the re-development projects of downtown east, we are looking for as many unique photographers as possible to capture images of Pasir Ris Park. These images, once selected, will be part of the new rooms in the resorts. This is a great chance for you as photographers to have your pictures displayed in the rooms for many years to come. This event is open to Everyone so do invite your friends and family to come along.

Special Guest:
Allan Lee, Founding Photographer of Ourshutterjourney LLP will be sharing and guiding the outing participants for this event.
Conferred as one of the “Photographers of the Year 2013″ by Canon EOS World, Allan is also a Certified PA Trainer for Photography and an Accredited Photography Instructor at the Photographic Society of Singapore.

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Please register if you are keen to attend.

Details:

Date: 19 April 2014 (Sat)

Time : 2pm- 6.00pm

Venue : Downtown East & Pasir Ris Park

Registration Fees:

U Live ( NTUC member above 55yrs) – Free

NTUC Members – Free

Public – Free

Participant Limit: 30- 35

Registration is on a first come first serve basis, due to the participant limit, first priority will be to U Live members & Ourshutterjourney.com members, SIREN Members & Danboarders SG members.
Hurry register Now!

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What You Need to know about InfraRed Photography

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What You Need to know about InfraRed Photography
- The technical aspects

DSC_0468

09th April 2014, Singapore – Many are fascinated by infra-red photography (IR), needless to say, one can easily jump into it by buying screw-on infrared filters like the Hoya R72 or Cokin P007 off the shelves (just like what I did many years ago) since these filter are easily available. However, many photographers ended up frustrated with the longer-than-usual exposure just to get a decent white balance before they can even start shooting their first frame. And no one told them that they also not able to get crispy sharp tree leaves due to the long exposure and they will have to lug a tripod & a remote switch wherever they go. In extreme cases, they are people who literally fried their sensors due to overheating.

Infrared Photo exhibition in Singapore by Allan Lee.

DSC_0506

So the trend of modifying older DSLRs & compact cameras into full-time Infrared cameras started. So how does it work? Basically the modification will start from dismantling the camera and getting to the sensor unit. Then there will be the slow & delicate job of slowing removing the low-pass (or hot) filter from the front of the sensor unit. A piece of infrared filter is then selected based on their Nm (IR Cut level meter), their thickness, material being plastic or glass, then the installer will cut the filter to size. Once the filter is ready for installation, the installer will carefully placed the pre-cut IR filter over the sensor and position sealed. (This is why IR-modification is an irreversible modification) Then the camera is being assembled back.

DSC_0527

Since there are many companies & individuals doing the modifications on their own, it is also good to know the difference between the type of modifications and other services involved. The price may vary too depending on the process of modification. (or required replacement parts).

For example; there is a basic modification which is pretty cheap.
Steps involved – (SGD $120-$180)
1) Dismantle the camera.
2) Remove Low Pass filter.
3) Paste on a Diamond Cut-&-Break-&-Filed IR Filter (Can be a plastic or glass filter)
4) Assemble the camera.
5) Ready for collection.

Then there is the mid-range modification which is more expensive.
Steps involved – (SGD $200-$380)
1) Dismantle the camera.
2) Remove Low Pass filter.
3) Paste on a Diamond Cut-&-Break-&-Filed IR Filter (Can be a plastic or glass filter).
4) Check for defective parts like the mirror box, shutter arms etc. (replacement will add costs)
5) Assemble the camera.
6) Test for focusing and calibrations.
7) Ready for collection.

Lastly, there is the ultimate modification which is getting popular.
Steps involved – (SGD $450-$600)
1) Test the camera for normal operations and check for faults.
2) Dismantle the camera.
3) Check for in-body fugue & mould & cleaning.
4) Remove Low Pass filter.
5) Check the thickness of the Low-pass filter
6) Water cut or laser cut a selected IR filter to size with the exact thickness.
7) Seal on the pre-cut IR filter using compound sealants.
8) Before assembling, the camera is further checked for defective parts like the mirror box, shutter arms etc. (replacement will add costs)
9) The camera at this stage will be cleaned from inside out.
10) Assemble the camera.
11) Cleaning of all external parts, polishing and restore cosmetic condition.
12) Test for focusing and calibrations.
13) Ready for collection.
14) A workshop on getting the right white balance and a quick introduction to shooting infrared lesson. Workshop includes post-processing methods and tips.

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So before you reach out to that dinosaur DSLR living somewhere in your dry cabinet, hold on. The reality is, NOT every camera is suitable to be converted. Some brand likes to have their cameras made with the hot mirror embedded or pre-sealed, some brand just made it impossible by adding on lots of mumbo jumbos to their circuitries & construction so that you get confused, unplugged or joined a wrong wire and you have a camera exploded in your face. Well, I was really just kidding on the second part – some cameras are just impossible to be modified if I have to put it in brief here.

After scouring through websites and forums, we managed to compile the below list of equipments that are suitable or unsuitable for infrared photography. Please note that the list will be updated constantly as more people will try to modify newer cameras. So if you have some information to contribute, please contact us at the links after the jump.

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DSLRs Suitable for IR Conversion:

Canon:
EOS 350D
EOS 450D
EOS 500D
EOS 550D
EOS 600D
EOS 10D
EOS 20D
EOS 30D
EOS 40D
EOS 50D
EOS 5D
EOS 5D2
EOS 7D
EOS 1Ds2
EOS 1Ds3

Nikon:
D40
D40x
D70
D70s
D80
D90
D7000
D200
D300
D1x
D2h
D3.

Sony:
A100
A200
A230
A290
A330
A380
A500
A550
A700
A850
A900
A37
A67
A77

Olympus:
E420
E500
E520
E610
E620

Pentax:
K10D
K20D
K-X
K-R
K-5

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Filters are equally important as that will determine the final colors you will be able to extract from your IR Photos. All IR filters whether it is screw-on, square or industrial uncut stripes, they are measured by NM. Do check out the guide below for the type of “colors” that you might like before you modify your DSLR.

Infrared Filter Colors:

500NM to 620NM -
Denser Yellow signature, More Colors can be extracted.

650NM-720NM -
Denser Blue signature, Very typical IR colors.

750NM-770NM -
Denser White signature, Less Colorful. Highly popular for the flexibility to extract colors or to render into monochrome.

800NM & Above -
Monochrome (Black & White), High Contrast. (Best used with a Red Filter)

Full Spectrum -
The Ultimate IR Filter, Gives all kinds of interesting colors & costs a bomb, a leg & an arm. But not exactly popular.

IMG_8424

Hotspots
A phenomenon that occurs when certain lenses are used. A bright and distinctive red circle appears in your IR photo right at the centre and no amount of processing can correct that out. (possible, but lots of work) Some lenses that produces hotspots on IR photos can be correct by selecting a wider aperture while there are some other lenses that gives you a red surprise throughout the aperture range. So you have to test around to get to the right lenses.

We have compiled a list of lenses from all over the internet (including our local Clubsnap IR forum http://www.clubsnap.com/forums/showthread.php?t=183234) that is suitable or not suitable for Infrared shooting.

Good IR Lenses-

Canon:
Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 L
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L
Canon EF-S 17-85 f4-5.6 IS USM (no hotspot’s)
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EF 28mm f/2.8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 MKI
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 MKII (no hotspot what so ever)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L
Canon EF 75-300mm f/4.0-5.6 IS
Canon EF 135mm f/2L
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.0-5.6 IS L
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 macro
Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 USM
Canon EF 135mm f/2.0 L

Nikon:

Nikon 12-24 mm f/4.0 G IF-ED AF-S DX
Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5 G ED AF-S DX
Nikon 20mm f/2.8 D
Nikon 24-70mm f/3.5-5.6 UC
Nikon AF 35-70mm f/2.8 D
Nikon AF 35-70mm f/3.3-4.5 (1986)
Nikon 70-210mm f/4.0-5.6 D

Other Brands:
Panasonic 20mm F1.7 no hot spots
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX
Sigma AF 15mm f/2.8 EX Fisheye
Lensbaby 50 mm f/2.8
Lumix 14-45 kit lens no hot spots
Peleng 8 mm fisheye
Phoenix 100 mm f/3.5 macro

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Bad IR Lenses -

Canon:
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Canon EF 16-35mm f2.8 L
Canon EF 20mm f/2.8
Canon EF 35mm f/2
Canon EF 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5
Canon EF 28-70mm f/2.8L
Canon EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5
Canon EF 35-80 f/4.0-5.6
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4
Canon EF 50mm f/2.5 Macro
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8
Canon EF 24mm f/2.8

Nikon:
Nikon 18-105mm f/3.5-4.5 G ED AF-S DX

Other Brands:
Olympus 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 with visible hot spot
Sigma 10-20mm f/4.0-5.6 EX
Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 EX
Sigma 30mm f/1.4
Sigma 20mm f/1.8
Sigma 50-500mm “Bigma”
Tamron 19-35mm
Tamron 70-300mm f3.x-xxx Macro
Tamron SP AF 24-135mm f/3.5-5.6 AD aspherical macro
Tamron AF 18-200 F/3.5-6.3 XR (IF) Di-II lens
Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 LD macro
Tokina 12-24mm f/4

IMG_8486

Other Tips/ Advices on IR Hotspots.

1. If hotspots appears, try using a larger aperture. Many times the hotspots disappears or greatly reduced.

2. Hotspots seems to be the most obvious at 50mm focal length. Many claimed that through the viewfinder, one can see a hexagonal shape distinctly. Therefore, try to avoid shooting at 50mm. Longer focal length lenses with smaller aperture will cause hotspots too.

3. Using Circular Polarizer (CPL), UV filters, ND filters will not reduce hotspot.

4. Lens hood will not reduce hotspot.

Thanks to All the contributors, the various websites and individuals for testing out and providing all the require information for this ultimate compilation.

If you have more information to share with us, please feel free to email us so that we may update the list and keep everyone informed.

If you are keen to modify your DSLR into a full time Infrared camera (so that you can forget about the insane long exposure and the added freedom to use any lenses you like), please email us to find out more.

If you would like to talk to us, please join us at SIREN (Singapore InfraRed Enthusiasts Network) https://www.facebook.com/groups/SgInfraRedEntNet/ which is proudly managed by Ourshutterjourney LLP.

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3 Comments

Schmidt Friends & Family Sale (5-7 April 2014)‏

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Schmidt Friends & Family Sale (5-7 April 2014)‏

3rd April 2014, Singapore – Schmidt Friends & Family Sales is happening from 5th April to 7th April 2014 at their Takashimaya
outlet prior to moving to a brand new location. All the details are on the poster below. Do take note of the opening hours and of course the DISCOUNT. :)

See you there!

Ed.

image001

 

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