Gear of the Month | May 2024

TOP.jpg

Welcome to our guide to the best new photo gear released in May 2024. We’ve got lots to get through. Much like last year, May has been an exciting month for the photography and video industry. We’ve seen big things from Fujifilm, Nikon and Panasonic; and an even bigger announcement from Canon

The new cameras are all very different, with everything from high-end luxury compacts and professional full-frame mirrorless cameras to medium format bodies to versatile lenses. So without further ado, let’s get into it with the very special announcement from Canon.

 

Canon EOS R1 Digital Camera Body

£0.00 View

 

There’s no doubt that you’ll have heard the news. Very early in the morning on May 15th, Canon announced the development of the much anticipated Canon EOS R1 Mirrorless Digital Camera Body.

Now, we don’t know much but what we do know is a few key specs that can get us thinking about what this camera will offer and who it will be designed for. So, the headline specs are: 

  • Newly developed DIGIC Accelerator and processor DIGIC X
  • A new CMOS sensor
  • Advanced Auto Focus (AF) with deep learning subject recognition technology
  • New Action Priority function
  • New in-body image noise reduction

Based on the look of the camera, the headline specs and the trend of Canon’s flagship mirrorless cameras, it’s safe to say that this camera will be designed for sports, photojournalism and video production. Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the camera is the new AF system with AI subject recognition. This system supposedly will be able to track subjects even if they go out of the frame and have the ability to figure out who the main subject of the scene is. This will clearly be a game-changer for sports photographers.

While we don’t know when it will be released exactly, we do know that it will be this year. Be sure to head on over and register your interest here for all the news we'll email you as soon as we start accepting orders.

 

Fujifilm GFX 100S II Medium Format Camera Body

£4,999.00 View

Fujifilm’s big release this month was the Fujifilm GFX 100S II Medium Format Camera Body. The previous generation, the GFX 100S, made waves in the industry for its incredible medium format image quality in a comparatively compact and lightweight form.

The mighty Fujifilm GFX 100S II features a range of upgrades including an updated 102 MP BSI CMOS II sensor and Fujifilm’s X-Processor 5 which together offer an even more impressive image resolution. This model is equipped with 8.0 stops In-body image stabilisation — two more than the previous model — which will make this camera better suited to faster-paced environments and will further increase image quality and sharpness. 

This model also sees some bumps in video capability. The GFX 100S II can record 4K/30P and 1080/60P in 4:2:2 10-bit​. You’ll be able to make use of F-Log, F-Log2 and Built-in Frame.IO connectivity​, as well as being able to shoot in ProRes/BlackMagic Raw via HDMI. 

There’s also the new Fujifilm MHG-GFX S Hand Grip to go with it to make your shoot experience even more enjoyable!

Fujifilm GF 500mm f5.6 R LM OIS WR Lens

£3,499.00 View

The Fujifilm GF 500mm f5.6 R LM OIS WR Lens arrives as the farthest-reaching of all the GF-mount lenses to date. And to think, if you use this lens on the GFX 100S II, you’ll have 102MP of quality at a 500mm focal length. That’s an incredible prospect and sure to be a godsend to wildlife and sports photographers. This lens is made up of 21 elements in 14 groups and provides a minimum focusing distance of 2.75 metres. It’s also compatible with Fujifilm’s 1.4x teleconverter which will give you a reach of 700mm! What’s even more impressive about this lens is how lightweight and compact it is, not to mention its weather-resistant construction. Other lenses in this category are giant compared to this, so there’s no compromise in portable when using this lens on your GFX camera body

Fujifilm X-T50 Digital Camera Body - Black

£1,299.00 View

Fujifilm X-T50 Digital Camera Body - Silver

£1,299.00 View

Next up for Fujifilm is the long-awaited X-T50. Don’t you mean X-T40? Nope, they skipped that and went straight to the X-T50. Why they did this isn’t entirely clear but based on the other recent launches e.g. X100VI, and the glowing list specs of this new camera, it would seem that they wanted to show how far they’ve progressed. 

So, the most exciting part of this camera is that it is equipped with the very same 40.2MP X-Trans CMOS 5 HR Sensor and X-Processor 5​ found in the X-T5 but in an even more compact body. The amazing thing about this is that it allows you to take flagship-level tech on your travels — it really is a travel photographer’s dream (one who likes to use interchangeable lenses rather than fixed, that is). 

But it doesn’t stop there. There is a whole list of upgrades and additions to this camera including a 3.0-inch 1.62M-dot 2-Way Touch LCD​, it can shoot up to 8fps MS / 20 fps ES / 1/180,000s ES​, and it features up to 7.0 stops of IBIS with Face/Eye AF and subject detection​. Finally, one feature of Fujifilm that is loved by many is its film simulations. The X-T50 not only has 20 film simulation modes including Reala Ace. / 10-bit HEIF, but it also features a physical film sim. dial for quick and convenient access. 

This camera is available as just the camera alone or it can be purchased as a kit with the XC 15-45mm f3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens in black or silver. Or, it can purchased as a kit with Fujifilm's brand new XF 16-50mm f2.8-4.8 R LM Lens (in either black or silver) — more on that new lens next.

Fujifilm XF 16-50mm f2.8-4.8 R LM WR Lens

£699.00 View

A new lens for a new camera. The Fujifilm XF 16-50mm f2.8-4.8 R LM WR Lens replaces the beloved 18-55mm “kit lens” as the go-to for new Fujifilm camera bodies. This lens offers a 24-76mm (35mm Equiv.) focal range and is specifically designed to compliment the high-resolution performance of Fujifilm’s 40.2 million pixels X-Trans CMOS 5 HR sensors throughout its entire zoom range. This lens features an internal zoom and a fast and silent linear AF motor, both of which reflect advances Fujifilm is making to bring pro-level kit to all its users.


Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG DN II Art Lens for Sony E

£1,179.00 View

Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG DN II Art Lens for L-Mount

£1,179.00 View

The new Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG DN II Art Lens, available in Sony E and L-Mount, builds on the success of its predecessor. This iteration incorporates Sigma’s most advanced technologies and features upgrades including improved resolving power and a redesigned HLA autofocus system. The lens is also smaller and lighter than the previous model, adding to its versatility for photographers and filmmakers. Naturally, as a Sigma lens, it has a premium feel and offers edge-to-edge sharpness. And thanks to its lens structure and coatings, there is significantly minimised flare and ghosting.


Panasonic Lumix S9 Digital Camera Body - Black

£1,499.00 View

Panasonic released the LUMIX  S9 in May and this is somewhat of a surprise. We took to London's Royal Parks to field test the S9, which is Panasonic’s smallest and lightest model of the Lumix S series. But despite its compact form, it packs a 24.2MP full-frame sensor, real-time recognition AF with PDAF and industry-leading 6.5-stop 5-axis dual image stabilisation. 

The S9 also features a 6K Open Gate 3:2 recording option for flexible framing and a dedicated real-time LUT button for content creation. The new MP4(lite) file type is engineered for fast transfer to mobile letting you move from shoot to post in 30 seconds.

This all signals a camera designed for content creation. The camera body is available in black (seen above), green, blue and red. They also released this camera as a kit with the Panasonic LUMIX S 20-60mm f3.5-5.6 Lens. You can get that kit in black, blue and green.

You can watch our review here: 

 

Panasonic Lumix S 18-40mm f4.5-6.3 Lens

£0.00 View

Along with the S9 and 26mm launches mentioned previously, Panasonic had one more thing. A development announcement for the Panasonic Lumix S 18-40mm f4.5-6.3 Lens. Like the 26mm, the 18-40mm is a compact everyday lens. This lens will have a versatile focal length and its compact, easy-to-carry design is suitable for both videography and photography.

Leica D-LUX 8 Digital Camera

£1,450.00 View

The Leica D-Lux 8 was a late addition to what is a rather exciting, albeit chaotic, month of product launches. This new iteration of the D-Lux line improves on its predecessor with a range of upgrades including a design overhaul that sees a new button layout, it’s had the top, front and back changed up; and it features an upgraded  3” back display. Unfortunately, that back display is still fixed and for a camera that is aimed at travel photographers, and therefore ideally has some versatility, this is a shame.

In addition, the D-Lux 8 features a fairly significant update to its OLED EVF that offers improved high-res real-time viewing. The optical performance of the lens has been improved which is nice to see especially as this version sports a new 22MP 4/3” MOS sensor; so we want to get the most out of that!

About the Author

Leo White has been a member of the Wex Photo Video team since 2018, working in a variety of roles ranging from the contact centre to the product setup team. With both a photography BA and MA, Leo has a wealth of knowledge he's ready to share.