Photo FOMO: Nikon’s 3D printer, Canon’s mirrorless push, Pixel 2’s secrets

Canon EOS M6
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Afraid of missing out on the latest photo industry news while you’re out, well, actually taking pictures? Photo FOMO is all the news you might have missed this week, published on the weekends. Alongside the biggest stories of the week, like a lensless camera that can shoot any wavelength and a $2.96 million Leica, find briefs on the latest in accessories and photo industry news from this week with Photo FOMO.

Canon wants to sell more mirrorless

While Canon’s mirrorless cameras are improving with every launch, the company is still largely known for their DSLRs. The company, however, wants to build a 50 percent market share out of all the interchangeable lens cameras and they plan to do that through expanding sales in mirrorless. During a presentation, Canon CEO Fujio Mitarai said that the company “will go on the offensive and work to expand our sales in the mirrorless camera market, which is exhibiting remarkable growth.”

Exactly how the company plans to expand mirrorless sales isn’t detailed, but don’t be surprised if Canon launches some new mirrorless cameras in the future.

Nikon patents a 3D printer that corrects its own flaws

A patent published March 15 suggests Nikon is looking into expanding into additional markets with “an apparatus for manufacturing a three dimensional [sic] shaped object.” The patent describes a process that, unlike current 3D printers, would integrate an “inspecting unit.” The inspecting portion of the printer would be able to examine each layer, looking for holes or a rough surface. Using that information, the printer could then be adjusted to fill in any holes or to adhere to the rough surface for the subsequent layer.

Patents don’t always become physical objects, but the paperwork suggests Nikon is putting some research effort into 3D-printing possibilities. While the patent was just published publicly this week, Nikon first filed the paperwork in 2015.

Sharing is caring — Google makes some of the tech behind Pixel 2 Portrait Mode open source

Identifying an object in an image is simple for a human but requires complex algorithms before a computer can understand not only what is in the image, but where the edges of that object is. The task is called semantic image segmentation and it helps a computer understand what the object is and what is just background. Google is sharing its algorithms, called DeepLap V3+, as open source in TensorFlow.

The algorithm is part — but not all — of the programming behind the Pixel 2’s portrait mode, because the computer can’t blur the background if it can’t recognize where the background is. With the tech being open source, more platforms will be able to integrate the ability to separate the background into their apps.

Have 143 pounds of gear? This tripod can handle it

Add too much weight to a tripod, and you risk a topple and some serious gear damage. Novoflex wants to make sure photographers have a tripod that can handle even the heaviest gear with the TrioPod Pro75. The modular tripod system can handle up to 143 pounds, beefing up the capacity through eight layers of carbon fiber making up the legs along with adding two optional “mini-legs” for more versatile setups. That heavy capacity comes at a price though — just the base will cost around $1,500.

The Syrp Magic Carpet Pro offers long sliders for big gear

Speaking of heavy-hitting accessories, Syrp’s latest video slider is rated to hold up to 70 pounds of gear. The Syrp Magic Carpet Pro can be expanded using track extensions, allowing for slides as long as, well, as long as the budget allows. The expansion options are made possible by a design change that moves the flywheel and eliminates pulleys. The expandable capabilities will cost you, however, with prices beginning at $989 for a summer launch.

Leica D-Lux camera gets paired with new accessories

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Leica
Leica

The Leica D-Lux has a new accessory bundle. The Lecia D-Lux Explorer Kit is a new set that pairs the camera with a red rope strap and an automatic lens cap. The automatic lens cap moves when the lens extends, providing convenient protection to the front of the lens in a design attached to the camera to prevent losing the cap. (Because, be honest, who hasn’t lost a lens cap?) The new kit will launch on Thursday, March 22.

The Fujifilm GFX 50S gains focus bracketing

Fujfilm’s medium-format mirrorless received new capabilities for capturing sharper shots. With firmware update version 3.0, the GFX 50S gains a focus bracketing mode. The mode allows the photographer to more easily shoot a series of images, each with a different focal length. The update allows for up to 999 images to be shot inside the bracketing mode, with focus shift steps from one to 10. The images can then be stacked together in post-processing for a sharper image.

The update also adds a 35mm format cropped mode for using with 35mm lenses and expanded compatibility for the H Mount Adapter G.

The LyfieEye200 is a tiny 360 camera

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Team Lyfie
Team Lyfie

The need for multiple lenses and stitching software mean a bit larger bodies for 360 cameras than the smallest single-lens camera, but one startup is claiming the smallest yet. The LyfieEye200, designed by the California-based Team Lyfie, is an Android add-on camera that shoots 2880 x 1440 videos at up to 30 fps but only weighs about half an ounce. The accompanying app allows for features like live previews and live-streaming. A LyfieStroll app plans to mix the videos with augmented reality graphics. The camera is only in the prototype stage, however, and is aiming to launch with an Indiegogo campaign, now about 35 percent funded.

Shutterstock signs a new deal for soccer photos

On March 15, the Football Association of the United Kingdom announced that SilverHub Media and Shutterstock now have an agreement for photos, distribution, and syndication. The exclusive agreement gives the companies access to the FA and Wembley Stadiums for both men and women’s soccer leagues. SilverHub images of the games, including behind-the-scenes shots, will be licensed through Shutterstock. Shutterstock says the agreement continues to expand the platform’s editorial images.