Photographer Ken Lee enjoys the mystery and excitement of nighttime photography as he explores abandoned sites when most are asleep. His latest series features an abandoned water park that had plenty of photographic opportunities.
Nighttime photography can unleash creative opportunities that daytime shoots don’t always deliver. Lee, an experienced nighttime photographer and explorer of “secret places” across the country, finds this type of photography particularly appealing.
“If I do a long exposure of several minutes, I am able to walk around the scene and light it with a handheld light, much like a producer might light a movie, choosing what to illuminate and what to keep in shadow,” he says.
He also finds that having creative control over lighting, texture, and color can be “totally addicting” and unique because no two photos ever come out exactly the same. Not just that, the calm of the night makes the process a therapeutic and calming one, giving him time to slow down, take in the surroundings, and appreciate the stars drifting across the sky.
One of Lee’s latest shoots at an abandoned and post-apocalyptic-looking water park fit the bill — it had plenty of unique features to explore, splashes of color from graffiti sprayed on the buildings, and exuded just enough of darkness and mystery for Lee to really enjoy shooting the area.
The night he chose to photograph featured a full moon and as a result, provided Lee with plenty of light and allowed him to have a longer exposure of several minutes for his shots. He also was able to stop down to f/8 and use a lower ISO to have a broader depth of field, reduce the noise, and provide enough time to light paint exactly how he intended.
Lee points out that photographers often think they need special equipment to do shots like these.
“On the contrary, although a nice camera is of course always helpful, you may use any sort of camera that allows manual control, which is just about any DSLR or mirrorless camera, new or old,” he tells PetaPixel.
“You can create photos like this with modest equipment, especially since you don’t need a lens with wide apertures, which are typically more expensive.”
All of the cameras were mounted on Feisol tripods, while he used a handheld ProtoMachines LED2 light painting device, which produces all colors in the RGB spectrum, allows brightness and saturation control, among other features.
Although photographing in late hours can be a peaceful process, Lee felt a little apprehensive and unsure whether he’d come across any strangers hanging out at the park. That’s why Lee suggests photographers obtain permission whenever possible or go visit sites that require special permission prior to entry and can therefore be considered safer.
Another option is to organize a shoot with other people, which can give a sense of safety due to the number of people around. Similarly, night photography workshops can give a good shot at night photography, although those tend to focus more on astrophotography, Lee says.
When it comes to the finished images, Lee doesn’t let him sit idle on his computer. He already has two books featuring night photography of abandoned sites, which give personal stories alongside the history of the sites where possible. Images from this nighttime visit at the abandoned park are likely to make an appearance in his upcoming book, but there is yet plenty of work to do from writing to assembling the book.
He plans on visiting other abandoned sites for more images because part of the excitement is visiting, exploring, and learning about the history of these sites, as well as photographing them at night.
“Between creating night photos, the rich history, the mystery, and the vivid experience while exploring, there can be quite a lot to share in these books!”
The monotonous propeller noise of Air Greenland’s Dash-8-200 had been roaring in my ears for more than an hour as we began our approach to Ilulissat.
The First Day in Greenland, July 2003
The 40km-long Ilulissat Icefjord spread out below us. We glided over countless icebergs that had run aground at the end of the ice fjord, wedged into each other. A white mush of ice floes, broken ice and icebergs marked the way to the 7 km-wide break-off edge of the huge glacier. Every day, huge thundering masses of ice break into the sea, causing the sea level to rise slowly but incessantly.
Shortly thereafter, colourful wooden houses, parked containers, and sled dogs on chains appeared in between. Large oil tanks marked the entrance to the harbour of Ilulissat, where hundreds of small boats are tied up, some in several rows against the jetties. Shortly after, we landed abruptly, braking and engine roaring, on Ilulissat’s short landing strip.
A veil of clouds bathed the airport in diffused light. As I stepped off the plane, my lungs filled for the first time with air cooled by glaciers and icebergs. I breathed in deeply.
A little later I was sitting with my luggage in a cab on the way to the harbour, where my boat and equipment were waiting for me in a warehouse. I have the two large wooden boxes with my equipment brought near a jetty.
A red cargo ship of the Royal Arctic Line was being unloaded next to me. This ship supplies the town of just under 5000 inhabitants with everything that is needed here except fish and meat.
Fishermen were preparing their boats for departure. Hunters dragged a hunted seal across swaying jetties. Boats are repaired, cleaned, refuelled. Everywhere, luggage was waiting to be shipped. The harbour is the heart of Ilulissat.
Amid this colourful hustle and bustle, I started building my 5.3-yard-long Zodiac. I was lucky that several young Inuit helped me with the set-up. We carried my boat over a swaying wooden dock and pushed some boats aside to put it in the water. My outboard motor was quickly hooked up. Nuka started the motor with two pulls on the cable and wanted to try out the boat. We drove slowly out of the harbour. Fog obscured the view, and we carefully pushed our way through a dense carpet of drift ice.
On all sides of the boat, sharp ice floes scraped against the thin skin of my inflatable boat. Nuka showed me how to navigate safely through the dangerous ice mush. Now I understood why you can’t rent a boat in Greenland. It takes a lot of experience to drive a boat safely through the Arctic Ocean and I learned that every year numerous fishermen lose their lives. I suddenly realized that a trip in such a small boat is a life-threatening risk.
We returned to the harbour. I stowed the rest of my gear, said goodbye to Nuka and the others, and set off alone for the first time through fog and ice towards Rodebay, where I had rented a wooden cabin. Ice floes scraped ceaselessly along the thin outer skin of my boat. I imagined travelling alone in this boat along the coast, and I felt very uneasy.
For the first time I doubted my project. Travelling alone in a dinghy, thousands of kilometres along an almost uninhabited coast to take pictures? What a crazy idea.
After a long tour in fog and drizzle I reached the sheltered bay of Rodebay. At the jetty, I found Inigo was expecting me. I had survived the first tour between numerous icebergs and drift ice. I was already sure that it was unlikely I would carry out my planned tour to the very north of West Greenland.
My cabin was only a few steps away from the jetty, so the boat was quickly unloaded, and Ingo showed me how the kerosene stove worked. I had to fetch water with canisters from the well house 200 meters away. There was a grocery store, a school, a church, and the small restaurant of Ingo and Uta in the village of thirty inhabitants. In front of almost every hut there were sled dogs chained and waiting for the winter, when they could let off steam again. Only the young sled dogs were allowed to run around freely. They dragged away everything that lay around to somewhere they could play with it like a toy.
After the unsettling tour with the boat through the fog, I now felt safe again and finally crawled into my sleeping bag at 2 a.m., while outside the midnight sun still lit up the landscape. Sled dogs barked and howled me to sleep.
The First Month: Greenland
Under the new suspicion that I would not finish my Greenland project, suddenly all the pressure was gone. I started to make daily trips with my boat. People were a bit surprised, and a bit worried, about the German and his boat. But I got valuable tips from many people on how best to avoid the many dangers of the Arctic Ocean. Soon I found out that the light is most beautiful from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m., and from then on I looked for my pictures at this time.
Light and landscape inspired me. Slowly I became more confident in handling my boat and the conditions in the Arctic Ocean. My tours became more courageous from day to day. I began to expand the radius of my exploration and now spent sometimes 16 to 18 hours on the water. The fog had something magical about it and soon I was going out when it was densest.
The floating icebergs far out at sea impressed me so much that I took my first pictures, with the 8 x 10-inch camera, from the boat (Ilulissat Icefjord 05. to 08.).
I was trapped by the ice several times and pushed dangerously close to calving icebergs by the ice mush. I photographed glaciers calving directly into the sea. I took incredible pictures during my first month in Greenland.
On the flight back to Germany I was already thinking whether I should dare to travel even further north. I was already “Arctic bitten” which is what they say when you are drawn there again and again after your first visit to the Arctic. Fourteen journeys to Greenland would follow in the coming years.
The Second Journey: From Ilulissat to Uummannaq
It was to be two years before I was determined and prepared to continue the tour north. My boat and equipment were safely stowed in a container at the port of Ilulissat. At the beginning of July 2005, I set off well-prepared and equipped in good weather towards Uummannaq; 360 km of almost uninhabited coast lay ahead of me. Since there was no safe bay for my boat anywhere along the route, I decided to do the whole tour in one piece. During the 36 hours at the motor tiller, humpback whales accompanied me, and I observed seals hunting together. The coast became increasingly mountainous. Steep cliffs rose to 1900 meters directly out of the sea. Even huge icebergs were lost like small white spots against the dark rocky background.
In Uummannaq Fjord I lived in various Inuit settlements and from there, explored the area in countless nocturnal trips. Here there were almost daily violent storms. Taking pictures from the boat with the large format camera turned out to be difficult. Due to the steep rock walls of the fjord, there was also the danger of 10- to 30-metre-high tidal waves in narrow places when glaciers calved. But glaciers were not the only threat. In 2017, 50 million cubic metres of debris broke into the fjord from an altitude of 1200 metres in one of the bays near Uummannaq, causing a 95-metre-high tidal wave.
Numerous houses in the village of Nuugaatsiaq were washed out to sea. Scientists found the debris avalanche was triggered by the growing warming of the rocks. The brittle rock is no longer held together by the permafrost, so the danger of rock falls has been increasing for years. Scientists have calculated that, in addition, the coasts of Greenland and the island itself will rise significantly because of the melting of the tons of ice, while the rising sea level will literally drown some coasts. Everything will change. On the advice of experienced hunters and fishermen I decided not to go by boat the last 150 km to Upernavik – my boat might break up in the frequent high waves on the rocky coast. So I drove back to Uummannaq and prepared my boat for shipping to Upernavik.
The Third Journey: From Upernavik to Melvillebay
In early July 2006, I was on my way to the Innuit settlement of Tassiussaq. The midnight sun was just above the horizon in the north, so I could only avoid its blinding rays to some extent by permanently changing course. Some icebergs were reflected in the smooth sea, and I could travel at high speed. I was just checking my course on the GPS, when everything suddenly became dark and silent. I felt something ice cold on my chin and at the same time something warm ran down my forehead. I opened my eyes and saw ice. I closed my eyes again when I felt pain in my chest and head.
Blood ran down my cheeks. Everything was spinning. I realized that I must have hit an iceberg at full speed and been thrown out of the boat. Everything must have happened in a split second. I had sustained a laceration with concussion and broken my left rib. My boat had drifted away in the meantime. Some of my equipment was floating in the sea. The small iceberg I was on was drifting out to sea. I had not seen another boat for more than 20 hours. I was alone, far away from the nearest settlement. No one would help me here. I decided to leave the iceberg as quickly as possible to swim to my boat.
For my own safety, I always wore a dry suit and a life jacket when on the boat. On my wrist I had a safety line so that the engine would stop immediately if I fell out of the boat. Knowing that there was no turning back, I let myself slide off the iceberg into the water, which was about 2º Celsius, and started swimming after my boat.
A light breeze drove the boat away from me and it took me at least 15 minutes to reach it. As I tried to climb into the boat, I realized that my muscles were too cold to work by now. I had almost no strength left and at first, I was hanging, perplexed, onto the boat with my painful broken rib. Finally, I swam to the back and was able to push myself up into the boat with one foot on the propeller. Fortunately, the boat had not been damaged in the accident and the engine started immediately. I was saved.
As I continued my journey north, my broken rib plagued me with every movement of the waves. But giving up was not an option. Despite everything, I managed to take many wonderful pictures with my large format camera.
I continued north until dense ice and bad weather in Melville Bay forced me to turn back. For more than 30 hours I fought my way back through snowstorms and meter-high waves to Upernavik. This was probably the worst tour of the entire trip, and I swore to myself that if I survived this, I would never do such a tour again. While packing my equipment in Upernavik I decided to ship my boat back to Ilulissat instead of Germany. The very next year I set off on a new expedition to Greenland’s Icecap.
The article is courtesy of ELEMENTS Magazine. ELEMENTS is a monthly magazine dedicated to elegant landscape photography, insightful editorials and fluid, clean design. Inside you will find an exclusive and in-depth articles and imagery by the best landscape photographers in the world such as Bruce Barnbaum, Christopher Burkett, Chuck Kimmerle, Christian Fletcher, Charlie Waite, Rachael Talibart, Erin Babnik and Freeman Patterson, to name a few. Use the PETAPIXEL10 code for a 10% discount off the annual subscription.
About the author:Olaf Otto Becker was born in Lübeck-Travemünde, Germany in 1959. Becker is a regular contributor to the New York Times Magazine. His first publication Under the Nordic Light (2005) was nominated for the Rencontres D’Arles Book award. He has been nominated twice for the Prix Pictet award in both 2008 and 2012. His work has been exhibited internationally in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Google hasn’t had the best time thus far keeping the Pixel 6 under wraps since it was leaked with dead-on accuracy in May and more last month, but it isn’t getting any better: a product listing has fully revealed the smartphone a week before its official launch.
As screen-captured and shared by Evan Blass (known as evleaks on Twitter), CarPhoneWarehouse — a London-based phone retailer — appears to have accidentally published the entire Google Pixel 6 landing page that reveals all the details of the phone that has not officially been announced by Google and isn’t scheduled to be for another week.
The product pages for both the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro were shared by Blass in two screenshots on Twitter, but the image compression makes the details difficult to read:
The two pages have since been taken down, but the Internet Archive remembers all, and both the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro product pages are still available to view through it.
The two pages advertise the new Google Tensor chip that was revealed to be coming to the two devices in a webpage set up by Google earlier this year, so its inclusion here isn’t particularly noteworthy. That said, Google is promising that it will allow the phones to provide up to 80% better performance compared to the Pixel 5’s Snapdragon 765G chip.
The listing also shows that the Pixel 6 will be getting a 6.4-inch display with a nondescript variable refresh rate while the Pixel 6 Pro will get a slightly larger 6.7-inch screen with a 120Hz variable refresh rate that Gizmodo notes is similar to the one found on the Galaxy S21 Ultra.
Both the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro sport IP68 water and dust resistance.
Camera features have always been part of Google’s selling point for its Pixel devices, and the listing confirms a lot of what was speculated in previous rumors. The Pixel 6 will pack a 50-megapixel main camera with a backup ultra-wide that doesn’t show a specific resolution. The listing does show that Google is touting this new main camera to let in 150% more light than the one on the Pixel 5.
The listing for the Pixel 6 Pro is a lot more descriptive, however. It shows that in addition to a main 50-megapixel main wide camera and 12-megapixel ultra-wide, it will also add a 48-megapixel telephoto camera that features 4x optical zoom and up to 20x hybrid zoom thanks to Google’s Super Res Zoom feature. The front-facing camera promises a 94-degree field of view, but specific resolution was not noted.
The Pixel 6 Pro page also shows a graphic that superimposes the Pixel 5 sensor on top of the much larger Pixel 6 sensor, which explains the previous note about 150% more light-gathering capability. While not confirmed, it is likely that the sensor on the 6 and 6 Pro is the same.
While this looks like a set of legitimate product pages, it’s all still technically speculative until Google officially announces the phones, an event which is scheduled for next week. But if what is seen here comes to pass, both Apple and Samsung may have a real competitor on their hands.
Roland Miller is a photographer who has focused his lens on U.S. space exploration programs over the course of the last 30 years. His latest series and book, Orbital Planes, is a visual presentation of the entire decades-long journey.
Miller’s full series of photos will be encompassed in a 200-page photo book called Orbital Planes: A Personal Vision of the Space Shuttle and will be released in the fall of 2022. It is being published by Damiani Editore in Bologna, Italy.
He says that the book is a visual presentation of his journey documenting and interpreting the Space Shuttle, including the orbiters, rockets, and manufacturing, testing, and launch facilities located around the United States. Along with the photos are his accounts of interactions with the Space Shuttle program and its personnel.
“I approached this subject in a hybrid style of documentary and abstract imagery to tell a more complete story,” he says. “My hope is that Orbital Planes will give the reader their own personal view of the Space Shuttle and the technology and facilities that helped it fly.”
Miller started documenting the Space Shuttle program when he was teaching photography at a college near Kennedy Space Center, and in 2008 put in significant and concentrated effort into documenting the final years of the program. He says that Orbital Planes is the result of that work and contains images from that 30 year period, with an emphasis on the final years of the program before it was decommissioned.
In order to offset costs related to producing the book and to offer prints of selected images from the project, Miller has launched a Kickstarter for the project. As part of the crowdfunding campaign, backing options include signed copies of the Orbital Planes book, images from the book in a variety of sizes, and copies of Miller’s other two space photography books: Abandoned in Place: Preserving America’s Space History and Interior Space: A Visual Exploration of the International Space Station, the latter which was co-authored with Italian astronaut, Paolo Nespoli.
Interior Space was successfully funded on Kickstarter in 2020.
The finished book will be printed on what Miller describes as high-quality paper and will be 11.7 x 9.8 inches in size, hardbound with 200 pages and 150 color photos. All books sold through the Kickstarter will be signed copies. Any prints offered as rewards will be printed on high-quality archival paper with pigment inks and will also be signed.
Mulitple reward tiers are available for the book which starts at $55 and range as high as $1,500, all of which can be perused on the Orbital Planes Kickstarter.
Disclaimer: Make sure you do your own research into any crowdfunding project you’re considering backing. While we aim to only share legitimate and trustworthy campaigns, there’s always a real chance that you can lose your money when backing any crowdfunded project.
Image credits: All photos by Roland Miller and used with permission.
Today, Fstoppers has teamed up with NiSi filters to launch a brand new, free tutorial series with landscape photographer Elia Locardi. Not only are we releasing new video lessons every week, but we are also giving away over $600 worth of free gear with every video. Welcome to our long exposure adventure in Puerto Rico!
A few weeks ago, NiSi was kind enough to send us a huge box of all their newest gear, including a collection of their best neutral density filters and the freshly redesigned V7 Filter Holder Kit that was just officially released today. They were like: “Hey! Can you guys teach everyone how to use this gear, like Photographing The World style?” Patrick and I said: “Hell yeah! We can do it right here in Puerto Rico.” As usual, Lee was skeptical: “I don’t know, guys. I mean, it’s so hard to wake up before sunrise, and there are mosquitoes, and I’ll miss my bath time, and good grief, what if I don’t have time for breakfast?” Thankfully, it was two against one, and here we are.
Long exposure photography is an amazing art form by itself, but it can also be intimidating when you’re first starting. There are many different types of filters to use. While it can be a bit overwhelming at first, NiSi sponsored this video series so we could show how it’s actually quite simple to get amazing results, even with just a few select filters. This first video introduces what will be covered in the field as we release each episode of this series and all of the gear we’ll use to get there.
We’ll be covering a lot of ground in this series, along with highlighting some high-quality gear to enhance long exposure photography. Head over to the Nisi Optics website if you’re interested in any of the gear we feature. Also, make sure you subscribe to the Fstoppers Youtube Channel or at least follow the Elia Locardi / NiSi Long Exposure Playlist to follow along as each episode is released. Good luck to everyone who enters the contest, and I hope I’m able to give you some insight on how I like to use filters out on location in my own work!
The “purple mountain majesties” which Katharine Lee Bates reflected on when writing the words of America the Beautiful, would likely be unrecognizable to her today. Humankind appears intent on consuming all of what was a seemingly endless landscape in Bates’ day. However, we may at least credit ourselves with recognizing some value in wild places. We guard their remains behind the high fences of pay-as-you-go national parks.
Humanity’s relationship with the natural world is problematic. Although humankind is broadly seen as part of nature, human activity is often thought of as a separate category from other natural phenomena. Human activities are now largely destabilizing the fundamental balance of the global climate system.
The pictures from the work “Vestiges” are not about deformations of the picturesque. Rather, they are examples of human activity that are more interesting, less-than-monotonous and sometimes quizzical efforts, aspirations, and constructions in the places we live. Realizing their impermanence, we might then view these anonymous abandoned structures and traces of our presence in a more informed and compelling framework.
Walker Evans once commented, “A garbage can, occasionally, to me at least, be beautiful. That’s because you’re seeing. Some people are able to see that – see it and feel it. I lean towards the enchantment, the visual power, of the aesthetically rejected subject.”
Ambiguity and visual contradictions offer a broad palette of possible narratives. The architectural variety and spatial organization, the opportunity to consider the phenomenon of change and loss, and the meditative and utter stillness of these places become valuable resources when considering the clutter and rubble of today’s “purple mountain majesties.”
The article is courtesy of ELEMENTS Magazine. ELEMENTS is the new monthly magazine dedicated to the finest landscape photography, insightful editorials, and fluid, clean design. Inside you will find exclusive and in-depth articles and imagery by the best landscape photographers in the world such as Freeman Patterson, Bruce Barnbaum, Rachael Talibart, Charles Cramer, Hans Strand, Erin Babnik, and Tony Hewitt, to name a few. Use the PETAPIXEL10 code for a 10% discount off the annual subscription.
About the author: David Zimmerman is an American photographer who works on long-term projects of landscape, portrait, and social documentary photography. He is best known for his landscape photographs in the desert regions of the southwestern US, his work in homeless and marginalized American communities, and for his large-scale portraits of Tibetan refugees in India. David’s work is exhibited internationally.
Zimmerman is co-founder of the Himalayan Art Centre, a free-school open to all. The Art Centre is dedicated to teaching visual storytelling through photography and filmmaking in under-served regions of the Indian Himalayas. Zimmerman is a member of the World Photographic Academy.
Award-winning aerial photographer Brad Walls has released a new photo series that showcases his unique take on conceptual aerial photography, drawing inspiration from 1940s fashion.
Drones as a photographic tool are rarely associated with conceptual photography and tend to be preferred for landscape, architecture, and other types of commercial photographic projects. However, Walls proves that aerial photography can give another dimension to fine artwork, too.
“Conceptual photography is mostly shot on handheld cameras, but I wanted to showcase the value of an alternate viewpoint to convey a meaningful story,” he explains.
His signature style utilizes negative space, symmetry and leading lines shot top-down, such as in his earlier project this year — “Water Geomaids.” Walls collaborated with a local, Sydney-based team of synchronized swimmers and choreographer Katrin Ann, who is a former competitor herself.
His latest work — “Detached, in Harmony” — also carries his unique style, one that is executed with great precision. Walls tells PetaPixel that with this photographic series he wanted “to harness nuance and meticulous attention to detail to mirror the state of the world during the pandemic.”
Like many other creatives, Walls experienced how distant and repetitive life had become and wanted to use this as an inspiration and as a focal point in his work. To express these emotions visually, Walls used repetition in his compositions, combined with his signature symmetry of figures and minimalism. Walls also wanted to showcase the possibilities of drones to create conceptual photography, one that takes the viewer on a visual journey to experience the pandemic in a creative way.
Each frame was carefully arranged with models placed at even lengths, while the shadows they cast highlighted the element of solitude. “The figures are purposefully static, to symbolize how we have been frozen in time over the past 18 months,” says Walls.
Prior to the shoot, Walls sketched out his ideas on his iPad but had to be ready to improvise whilst faced with the harsh sand dunes environment. In order to achieve his desired result, Walls tells PetaPixel that the biggest challenge was timing.
“I had a certain look I was trying to achieve, and I knew that I needed rainfall the night prior to shooting to achieve that flat sand look,” he explains. “Patience is a virtue! Also, it can be terribly gusty on sand dunes, so handling the drone at a higher altitude shown in ‘sentinel’ created some challenges. It must be said that the majority of my work is at low altitudes, so as a drone user I never have too many technical issues on the shoot.”
He drew inspiration from 1940s fashion photographer Clifford Coffin’s “Models Sitting on Sand Dunes” image, which was shot for Vogue in 1949. In a similar vein to Coffin’s boundary-breaking photography, Walls is also drawn to similar elements, such as a melancholic sense of loneliness, balanced by warmer hues.
“We all belong to something that separates us. It’s a sort of melancholic irony,” says Walls about his latest work, which placed second in the 2021 Fine Art Photography Awards “Conceptual” category. It was also awarded Silver in both the prestigious PX2 and Moscow Fine Art Awards of 2021. In the near future, Walls plans to exhibit this body of work in a solo exhibition in 2022.
The Xiaomi T Series has finally made its debut with the introduction of the Xiaomi 11T Pro and Xiaomi 11T mid-range smartphones.
On the Xiaomi 11T Pro is a triple-camera set-up with a pro-grade 108MP wide-angle lens leading the way with a 2x telemacro lens and a 120-degree ultra-wide-angle lens supporting. AI Cinema modes, 8K recording and HDR10+ are just a few of the modes built-in alongside Xiaomi HyperCharge technology which means users can charge the Xiaomi 11T Pro to 100% in 17 minutes.
Pricing: The Xiaomi 11T Pro will be available from £599 while the Xiaomi 11T prices start at £499.
Xiaomi 11T Pro Key Features:
120W HyperCharge fast charging: charges device to 100% in 17 minutes
108MP wide-angle f/1.75 camera, OIS, Dual Native ISO
8MP ultra-wide-angle camera 120° FOV, f/2.2
5MP telemacro camera f/2.4, AF 3-7cm
8K video recording
16MP in-display front camera f/2
120Hz 6.67” AMOLED flat DotDisplay
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888
SOUND by Harman Kardon and Dolby Atmos
120 Hz AMOLED display
Dimensions: 164.1mm x 76.9mm x 8.8mm
Colours: Meteorite Gray, Moonlight White, Celestial Blue
Xiaomi 11T Key Features:
67W charging: charges device to 100% in 36 minutes
108MP wide-angle f/1.75 camera, OIS, Dual Native ISO
8MP ultra-wide-angle camera 120° FOV, f/2.2
5MP telemacro camera f/2.4, AF 3-7cm
16MP in-display front camera f/2
120Hz 6.67” AMOLED flat DotDisplay
MediaTek Dimensity 1200-Ultra
120 Hz AMOLED display
Dimensions: 164.1mm x 76.9mm x 8.8mm
Colours: Meteorite Gray, Moonlight White, Celestial Blue
New Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE
As well as the T Series, Xiaomi has introduced a follow-up to the Xiaomi 11 Series – the Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE. Alongside a 64MP main camera, you find an 8MP ultra-wide-angle camera and a 5MP telemacro camera. The Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE also offers a Qualcomm Snapdragon 778 5G Mobile Platform chipset providing ultra-fast 5G connectivity.
Other features include a 6.55″ AMOLED DotDisplay and a 4,250mAh battery with 33w fast charging.
Colour-wise, Truffle Black, Bubblegum Blue, and Peach Pink are making a return alongside a brand-new colour – Snowflake White that’s matte and frosted.
In the UK, the Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE will go on sale in October, full pricing and availability will be provided closer to launch.
Global technology leader, Xiaomi, today announced the introduction of three new smartphones to the Xiaomi 11 family of devices – Xiaomi 11T, Xiaomi 11T Pro – all designed to inspire creativity among smartphone users – as well as the refreshed and stylish Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE.
Xiaomi continues to revolutionise smartphone photography and videography by offering a slew of innovative “Cinemagic” filmmaking features in Xiaomi 11T and Xiaomi 11T Pro. Gone are the days of heavy and expensive movie-making equipment, with Xiaomi 11T Series, industry-leading filmmaking technology is now available in the palms of aspiring creators’ hands.
At the same time, the ultra-slim, featherweight Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE, is the perfect offering for users seeking a high-end stylish smartphone that includes innovative features to enable creativity.
Xiaomi 11T Pro: The Ultimate Flagship for Cinemagic Filmmaking and Phenomenal Performance
Xiaomi has achieved another milestone with the launch of the cinematic powerhouse Xiaomi 11T Pro – Xiaomi’s first smartphone to launch globally with the company’s proprietary 120W Xiaomi HyperCharge technology. The industry-leading technology will enable a 100% charge in just 17 minutes, giving creators more time to keep up with their creativity and minimise downtime by ensuring a full day use. This is achieved through innovative technologies such as dual charge pumps, dual-cell battery structure, MTW, Graphene application on Li-ion battery and Mi-FC technology. The safety of the battery is guaranteed by a TÜV Rheinland Safe Fast-Charge System Certification, 34 charging and battery safety features, real-time temperature monitoring and other measures. All that while the flagship Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 888 mobile platform delivers the power needed to propel a plethora of AI features.
Not only does Xiaomi 11T Pro pack a lot of performance punch, but it also features a powerful triple camera set up with a pro-grade 108MP wide-angle, 2x telemacro, and a 120° ultra-wide angle lens. On top of that, the smartphone boasts impressive computational filmography capabilities with one-click AI Cinema modes, 8K recording and HDR10+, allowing users to capture footage with the same smart ISO technology found in digital cameras.
A real Cinemagic powerhouse wouldn’t be complete without a stunning, durable and responsive display. The DisplayMate A+ rated 6.67’’ FHD+ 120Hz AMOLED flat display is equipped with TrueColor, Dolby Vision® and HDR10+. It showcases over 1 billion colours, boasts 1000 nits of peak brightness, offers up to 480Hz touch sampling rate and is shielded by the strongest Corning® Gorilla® glass to date – Corning Gorilla Glass Victus. The display also features a number of eye care functions to protect users from eye strain, such as True Display which automatically adjusts the colour temperature according to the surrounding conditions as well as Reading Mode 3.0. Xiaomi 11T Pro further tops that up with Dolby Vision® as well as dedicated dual speakers with SOUND BY Harman Kardon.
Xiaomi 11T: The Cinemagic Powerhouse for Content Creation
Xiaomi 11T continues the mission to make Cinemagic available to everyone by offering features such as a high-resolution triple camera, along with a suite of AI-powered tools to boost your creativity and productivity.
Enjoy breathtaking shots with Xiaomi 11T triple camera featuring a 108MP high-resolution wide-angle, 120° ultra-wide angle, and 2x telemacro camera. The smartphone combines this with its one-click AI cinema modes to distil the tricks of professional cinematographers such as Time Freeze, Magic Zoom and other types of complicated shots into just a single click while the faintest of sounds is brought to life in cinematic fashion with Audio Zoom.
Xiaomi 11T 6.67’’ 120Hz flat AMOLED display equally delivers HDR10+ with stunning sharpness and crystal clarity, over 1 billion colours, a smorgasbord of eye care features and up to 480Hz touch sampling rate, ensuring that the slightest tap on the screen will allow users to capture the perfect shot even in a fleeting moment.
Whether you’re shooting or editing your very own cinematic footage, Xiaomi 11T keeps up with you throughout your day thanks to a power-efficient MediaTek Dimensity 1200-Ultra chipset, a massive 5000mAh battery and 67W wired turbocharging that gets to 100% in only 36 minutes.
Vivo has announced that it will launch three new smartphones under its X70 series in the X70, X70 Pro, and X70 Pro+ as it tries to position itself among the best mobile photography options available.
The company is also sticking to its collaboration with Zeiss in a “joint pursuit of creating the ultimate mobile photography experience.” Vivo is looking to follow up on the solid performance of its X60 series phones, particularly with the image quality it proved capable of producing. The Zeiss effect was most prevalent in the X60 Pro+, though the German optics brand’s logo is present on all three X70 models coming from its Chinese partner.
Pushing Mobile Photography Forward
Vivo outfitted all three phones with 32-megapixel front-facing cameras, whereas their respective rear arrays will differ, especially when it comes to the primary image sensor. The X70 Pro+ will feature Samsung’s 50-megapixel Ultra-Sensing GN1 primary sensor, which may be the very same one the X60 Pro+ was equipped with: a 23mm equivalent lens with an f/1.57 aperture. Vivo has yet to confirm whether there are any unique differences in that regard.
What may be different this time around is how that sensor works with the 48-megapixel ultra-wide Gimbal Camera with what Vivo calls 360-degree Horizon Leveling Stabilization technology. Vivo claims this will result in “unshakable stability even during extreme action-packed shooting sequences.” Having not seen any sort of demo on how that works, it’s not clear exactly how or when such a feature kicks in.
Vivo had also put its Gimbal Camera in the 48-megapixel ultra-wide sensor on the X60 Pro+, and it is indeed the same Sony IMX598 sensor found in that device. It does look like the telephoto lens may also stick to the same 8-megapixel sensor from before, whereas the fourth lens at 12-megapixel wasn’t specifically identified. Vivo had a 32-megapixel sensor for its Portrait mode in the X60 Pro+, and PetaPixel is waiting to hear if the 12-megapixel sensor is for that same purpose,
The X70 Pro sports a similar lineup in the rear, save for the ultra-wide sensor, which is a 12-megapixel one instead. The X70 uses a different 40-megapixel sensor as its primary shooter, and ditches the telephoto lens to go with a triple array.
To try and offer a similar experience, the primary lens works with Gimbal Stabilization 3.0 technology to better capture action shots. VIS 5-Axis Ultra Stable Video technology also applies for the X70 Pro and X70 “integrating enhanced OIS with EIS to transition the X/Y-axis with Z-axis rotation for well-rounded stability.”
New Software and Imaging Settings
There is some new hardware under the hood to note as the X70 Pro+ does have the new Imaging Chip V1. This is proprietary silicon that Vivo says uses artificial intelligence (AI) to reduce noise in a photo, while also applying MEMC (motion estimation, motion compensation) effects. It’s not yet clear how effective or efficient these features are, or in what conditions in which they work best.
High-Transmittance Glass Lens — which has Zeiss all over it — is upgraded glass designed to lower dispersion for improved image quality. Neither Vivo nor Zeiss provided additional context in the announcement as to how that works.
Vivo also hasn’t confirmed if all the software features and modes from the X60 Pro+ made the cut over to the X70 Pro+, but did mention multi-modal photo and video features, like Real-Time Extreme Night Vision, Super Night Video, Pure Night View, and Pro Cinematic Mode, among others.
Zeiss’s imprint on the software side looks like it will come through with bokeh effects. The Biotar Portrait Style will give all three X70 models three lenses to shoot with: Distagon, Planar, and Sonnar. Distagon is more anamorphic with a dynamic perspective, while Planar is more classic in how it applies bokeh to an image. Sonnar is more creamy, where it works best when capturing people in a frame, whether posed or candid.
Design and Components
The X70 Pro+ has a 6.783-inch WQHD display with up to 2K resolution and a pixel density of 517ppi. Vivo mentions a 120Hz refresh rate for the X70 Pro and X70, but not its flagship among the three, and PetaPixel will confirm what the deal is with that.
Under the hood, the X70 Pro+ runs on a Snapdragon 888 chipset with a 5G modem. Details like internal storage and RAM weren’t specified, but they will likely mirror those of the X60 series. The X70 Pro+ will also be the first Vivo phone to offer water and dust resistance, courtesy of an IP68 rating. It also supports wireless charging — another first.
In contrast, the X70 Pro and X70 won’t have that kind of protection, nor support wireless charging. They each sport 6.56-inch displays — though Vivo didn’t note the top resolution — and they also run on the same MediaTek Dimensity 1200-Vivo processor.
All three phones in the X70 lineup have ZEISS T* Coating, much like their successor X60 phones did, to reduce reflections, ghosting, stray light, and other image artifacts.
Vivo is also making the X70 Pro+ available only in enigma black, whereas the X70 Pro and X70 will come in cosmic black and aurora dawn colors. It appears the back plate will retain the textured faux leather from the previous generation as well.
Vivo will launch all three phones in the X70 series on September 30. Pricing was not provided at the time of publication.
Sigma launch two brand new lenses for Mirrorless users; the 24mm F2 DG DN Contemporary and the 90mm F2.8mm DG DN Contemporary, available from 24 September 2021 at the SRP £549.99
The two new lenses are the 24mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary and the 90mm F2.8 DG DN | Contemporary, sitting in the l series line-up and are designed from the ground up for L-Mount and Sony E-mount systems. This brings the total number of l series lenses to six, presenting mirrorless users with plenty of choice.
The all-new 24mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary delivers exceptional edge-to-edge rendering power in an ultra-compact, all-metal body. This impressive, wide-angle, I series prime is now available for L-Mount and Sony E-mount systems. The 24mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary premium compact prime is the latest lens to be added to SIGMA’s growing I series range. It joins four existing I series lenses as well as the new 90mm F2.8, offering superb optical performance, a bright F2 aperture, an all-metal build and a manual aperture ring. Designed from the ground up for mirrorless systems it feels perfectly-balanced on modern full-frame bodies, and boasts exceptional resolving power that can keep up with the latest ultra-high-resolution cameras. The lens’s advanced optical design produces sharp, high-contrast results from the center of the frame to the far corners, and together with its F2 aperture and wide angle-of-view it’s an excellent choice for night sky photography, events and interiors. Owing to its compact size the lens can be carried around effortlessly, which makes it perfect for day-to-day use. The high quality, all-metal construction, which is found on all of SIGMA’s I series models, makes the experience of owning and operating this lens extremely satisfying. This new full-frame 24mm F2 prime is designed for photographers who need a sharp, fast, robust, wide-angle optic that will not weigh them down. It is available for L-Mount and Sony E-mount systems.
Key features 1. I series – Premium Compact Primes for mirrorless users The SIGMA I series features full-frame-compatible lenses that offer mirrorless users a new and better alternative, both in the experience of shooting with the lens and in the impressive results it is able to achieve. One of the key advantages of mirrorless cameras is their smaller form-factor, and this new 24mm optic is designed to be perfectly matched to these more compact systems without sacrificing performance. This combination of superb optical quality with exceptional portability, not previously possible with DSLR systems, will bring new opportunities to this and future generations of photographers. Simultaneously, SIGMA is aware that, in this day and age when we have such huge diversity when it comes to what we use to photograph, as represented by smartphones, people look for something more than a mere act of ‘taking pictures’ when they choose to own a camera and lenses. SIGMA’s excellence in development and processing technologies has been built up since it was founded in 1961 – actually, this lens is being announced 60 years to the day since SIGMA’s story began – and has become further sophisticated with the introduction of the SIGMA Global Vision in 2012. With this as a base SIGMA has given careful thought to how photographers use and enjoy their lenses, including optical design, advanced functionality, build quality and the experience of picking up and using the lens, and with all of this carefully considered the I series was born.
2. New standards of optical performance for the Contemporary line The SIGMA 24mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary, like the SIGMA 35mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary and the SIGMA 65mm F2 DG DN | Contemporary, combines the highest level of optical performance even at its maximum aperture of F2 and a well-balanced body. The lens uses two SLD glass elements and one FLD glass element to correct axial chromatic aberration, which is a particular concern with bright lenses. It also incorporates two high-precision glass-molded aspherical elements, made possible by the processing technology of SIGMA’s sole production facility in Aizu. This has enabled the total number of lens elements to be kept down and the size and weight of the lens to be reduced, while providing excellent correction of various aberrations. In anticipation of wide-angle lens applications, SIGMA’s optical designers have ensured the lens resolution is extremely high, and is uniform from the center to the periphery of the image. Sagittal coma flare is also well suppressed, giving the lens a high degree of rendering power that makes it ideal for night sky photography. The AF drive system incorporates a quiet, high-speed stepping motor. This allows photographers to capture every detail of the spacious 24mm scene with light AF.
3. Exceptional I series build quality with a compact form-factor All I series lenses have an all-metal construction. The precision-cut aluminum parts not only give the barrel a sleek, stylish finish, but provide superb durability that improves the quality of the entire product. Metal materials are also used in internal structures that slide with the operation ring for added robustness. These high-precision components crafted with SIGMA’s cutting-edge metalworking technology are also used in SIGMA’s cine lens line-up for professional cinematographers and provide a tactile, ergonomic feel that make the lens a pleasure to use. The cover ring between the focus ring and the aperture ring has hairline processing that is also used for the rear cylinder of the Art line. This covering functions as a finger hold when attaching or detaching the lens.
Additional features • Lens construction: 13 elements in 11 groups, with 1 FLD, 2 SLD and 2 aspherical lens elements • Inner focus system • Compatible with high-speed autofocus • Stepping motor • Compatible with lens aberration correction * Function available on supported cameras only. Available corrections may vary depending on the camera model. • Support DMF and AF+MF • Super Multi-Layer Coating • Aperture ring • Focus Mode switch • Petal-type lens hood (LH656-02) • Magnetic metal lens cap (LCF62-01M) • Mount with dust and splash resistant structure • Compatible with SIGMA USB DOCK UD-11 (sold separately / for L-Mount only) • Designed to minimize flare and ghosting • Every single lens undergoes SIGMA’s proprietary MTF measuring system • 9-blade rounded diaphragm • High-precision, durable brass bayonet mount • “Made in Japan” craftsmanship Key specifications (The figures below are for L-Mount) Lens construction: 11 groups, 13 elements (1 FLD, 2 SLD and 2 aspherical) Angle-of-view: 84.1° Number of diaphragm blades: 9 (rounded diaphragm) Minimum aperture: F22 Minimum focusing distance: 24.5cm Maximum magnification ratio: 1:6.7 Filter size: φ62mm Dimensions (Maximum Diameter x Length): φ70mm×72mm Weight: 365g
SIGMA’s brand new, mid-telephoto I series prime for mirrorless systems, the compact 90mm F2.8 DG DN | Contemporary premium compact prime, has also been added to SIGMA’s growing I series range. It joins four existing I series primes as well as the all-new 24mm F2, offering superb optical performance, a bright F2.8 aperture, an all-metal build and a manual aperture ring. Designed especially for mirrorless systems it feels well-balanced on modern full-frame bodies, and boasts exceptional resolving power that can keep up with the latest ultra-high-resolution cameras.
With its versatile mid-telephoto focal length, the lens is the longest I series lens yet, but still remains remarkably compact and light so is ideal for day-to-day use. It is fully-optimized for mirrorless systems with ultra-fast and accurate AF performance, and it boasts outstanding optical capabilities. The rich, smooth bokeh makes for attractive backgrounds, which is perfect for portraits, and the minimum focusing distance of 50cm allows photographers to get closer to their subject. This high-quality, everyday lens is able to bring scenes to life with its beautiful rendering and ultra-sharp optics, all in a portable, robust and tactile lens body.
Key features 1. I series – Premium Compact Primes for mirrorless users The SIGMA I series features full-frame-compatible lenses that offer mirrorless users a new and better alternative, both in the experience of shooting with the lens and in the impressive results it is able to achieve. One of the key advantages of mirrorless cameras is their smaller form-factor, and this new 90mm optic is designed to be perfectly matched to these more compact systems without sacrificing performance. This combination of superb optical quality with exceptional portability, not previously possible with DSLR systems, will bring new opportunities to this and future generations of photographers. Simultaneously, SIGMA is aware that, in this day and age when we have such huge diversity when it comes to what we use to photograph, as represented by smartphones, people look for something more than a mere act of “taking pictures” when they choose to own a camera and lenses. SIGMA’s excellence in development and processing technologies has been built up since it was founded in 1961 – actually, this lens is being announced 60 years to the day since SIGMA’s story began – and has become further sophisticated with the introduction of the SIGMA Global Vision in 2012. With this as a base SIGMA has given careful thought to how photographers use and enjoy their lenses, including optical design, advanced functionality, build quality and the experience of picking up and using the lens, and with all of this carefully considered the I series was born.
2. New standards of optical performance for the Contemporary line The SIGMA 90mm F2.8 DG DN | Contemporary boasts exceptional optical performance with a ultra-high resolving power to match the latest high-resolution mirrorless cameras. The lens is built using the very latest optical technology, and includes five SLD glass elements. This helps to reduce axial chromatic aberration that cannot be corrected in-camera, allowing the lens to achieve high resolution and clear image quality with no color bleeding. A high-precision glass molded aspherical lens provides both high resolution and beautiful bokeh. Photographers can enjoy shooting with soft, large bokeh without coloration and this is something that only a full-frame lens is able to deliver. The lens also utilizes the camera’s optical correction functionality, which is an advantage of mirrorless systems, SIGMA’s optical designers were therefore able to concentrate on correcting aberrations that can only be corrected by the optical design, thereby improving rendering performance and reducing the size and weight of the lens. With a minimum focusing distance of 50cm and a maximum magnification ratio of 1:5, close-up macro-style photography is possible. The lens highlights the subject, allowing photographers to focus in on fine details or create more abstract compositions. The AF drive system incorporates a quiet, high-speed stepping motor, making it suitable for still images as well as video recording.
3. Exceptional I series build quality with a compact form-factor All I series lenses have an all-metal construction. The precision-cut aluminum parts not only give the barrel a sleek, stylish finish, but provide superb durability that improves the quality of the entire product. Metal materials are also used in internal structures that slide with the operation ring for added robustness. These high-precision components crafted with SIGMA’s cutting-edge metalworking technology are also used in SIGMA’s cine lens line-up for professional cinematographers and provide a tactile, ergonomic feel that make the lens a pleasure to use.
The 90mm F2.8 DG DN | Contemporary shares the same φ64mm maximum diameter and 55mm filter size as the 24mm F3.5 DG DN | Contemporary and the 45mm F2.8 DG DN | Contemporary, making them a natural trio, especially for filmmakers who use filters more regularly. With a combined weight of only 735grams / 25.9oz.*, these three lenses (wide-angle, standard, mid-telephoto) can be used in tandem as part of a high-spec and compact camera system that covers a wide range of shooting situations. *The figures are for L-Mount.
Additional features • Lens construction: 11 elements in 10 groups, with 5 SLD and 1 aspherical lens element • Inner focus system • Compatible with high-speed autofocus • Stepping motor • Compatible with lens aberration correction * Function available on supported cameras only. Available corrections may vary depending on the camera model. • Support DMF and AF+MF • Super Multi-Layer Coating • Aperture ring • Focus Mode switch • Lens hood (LH576-02) • Magnetic metal lens cap (LCF55-01M) • Mount with dust and splash resistant structure • Compatible with SIGMA USB DOCK UD-11 (sold separately / for L-Mount only) • Designed to minimize flare and ghosting • Every single lens undergoes SIGMA’s proprietary MTF measuring system • 9-blade rounded diaphragm • High-precision, durable brass bayonet mount • “Made in Japan” craftsmanship Key specifications (The figures below are for L-Mount) Lens construction: 10 groups, 11 elements (5 SLD and 1 aspherical) Angle-of-view: 27° Number of diaphragm blades: 9 (rounded diaphragm) Minimum aperture: F22 Minimum focusing distance: 50cm Maximum magnification ratio: 1:5 Filter size: φ55mm Dimensions (Maximum Diameter x Length): φ64mm×59.7mm. Weight: 295g
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