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Sony's new HVL-F28RM flash uses camera face detection for better portraits

Sony's new HVL-F28RM flash uses camera face detection for better portraits


Sony's new HVL-F28RM flash uses camera face detection for better portraits 1

Sony has just announced the HVL-F28RM flash. It’s designed to be compact and easy to use, but also comes with features that more advanced photographers will appreciate.

When combined with Sony’s a7C, a7S III, a7R IV and a9 II, the F28RM will use face detection information from the camera to better balance its output with the ambient lighting of the scene, as well as adjust white balance for a more natural look.

The flash angle can be adjusted up to 120 degrees and it’s powered by two AA-sized alkaline or NiMH batteries. Other features include radio wireless communication, a stronger metal hot shoe and dust and moisture resistance.

The HVL-F28RM will be available this winter and will retail for $249 USD ($329 CAD).

Press release:

Sony Electronics Introduces Alpha 7C Camera and Zoom Lens, the World’s Smallest and Lightest[i] Full-frame Camera System

New HVL-F28RM Compact Flash is also Announced

SAN DIEGO, CA – September 14, 2020 – Today, Sony Electronics Inc. announced several additions to an already impressive imaging lineup — the Alpha 7C full-frame camera (model ILCE-7C), the FE 28-60mm F4-5.6 (model SEL2860) zoom lens and HVL-F28RM flash.

The Alpha 7C is the world’s smallest and lightest[ii] full-frame body with uncompromising performance, featuring advanced AF (autofocus), high-resolution 4K video[iii] capabilities and more. When paired with the world’s smallest and lightest[iv] FE 28-60mm F4-5.6 standard zoom lens, this versatile combination delivers an experience unlike any other, maximizing portability and versatility without sacrificing any of the power of full-frame imaging. The HVL-F28RM flash allows users to broaden their photo expressions with outstanding compactness, and an intelligent light intensity control linked to camera face detection[v].

“We are committed to creating the best tools possible, based on the needs of our customers,” said Neal Manowitz, deputy president of Imaging Products and Solutions Americas, Sony Electronics. “The new Alpha 7C camera and FE 28-60mm F4-5.6 zoom lens pack many of our most advanced imaging technologies in a brand new design that is the smallest and lightest full-frame camera and lens system in the world. This opens up a new world of possibilities for creators, giving them the uncompromised power of a full-frame system in the palm of their hand.”

New HVL-F28RM: Compact Flash with Light Intensity Control Linked to Camera Face Detection[v]

The HVL-F28RM is a compact flash designed to match Sony’s mirrorless cameras for a compact, manageable system, and offers the type of reliable, stable performance that only a genuine Sony product can provide. When compared to the HVL-F32M, the HVL-F28RM features a 12 percent reduction in volume and 7 percent reduction in weight. This compact, easy-to-use flash unit delivers the capabilities and dependability to meet the needs of both professional and advanced amateur content creators.

The HVL-F28RM offers consistent GN28[xxv] light output, optimized light distribution and continuous flash performance that won’t interrupt the user’s workflow, as well as stable radio wireless communication and multi flash radio control. The new flash also features Sony’s newly introduced flash control linked to camera face detection[v] advanced technology. When used with a compatible camera, the balance between the light falling on the subject’s face and ambient light is evaluated to automatically adjust accurate white balance so that the subject’s face is rendered with natural, lifelike color. In addition, flash compensation, light ratio, and other detailed flash parameters can be controlled directly from a compatible camera[xxvi]. A camera custom key can be assigned to call up the flash parameter display so that adjustments can be made while looking through the viewfinder and gripping the camera. Flash parameters are shown in the selected camera display language.

A newly developed “Metal Shoe Foot with Rugged Side Frame”[xxvii] that also houses the unit’s electrical contacts offers improved resistance to physical shock and impact from all directions. The Multi Interface foot is fabricated from metal for higher strength. The HVL-F28RM also features a dust and moisture resistant[xxii] design. When the HVL-F28RM is mounted and locked onto the Alpha 7C, Alpha 7S III, Alpha 7R IV and Alpha 9 II, durability to dust and moisture is improved, even when used in challenging outdoor environments.

The HVL-F28RM also features simple, intuitive operation with minimal controls including +/- light level buttons, pairing button, test button and lock lever. Plenty of light is available for bounce applications. The flash angle can also be set as required via 0, 20, 40, 60, 80, and 120 degree click stops for easy positioning. The new flash also features a built-in wireless radio trigger for reliable flash triggering when mounted on a compatible camera[xxvi] and paired with an off-camera unit. When used as a transmitter, the HVL-F28RM can control up to 15 flash and/or receiver units in 5 groups[xxviii] at distances of up to 114 feet (35 meters)[xxix] for extraordinary lighting control and versatility. The HVL-F28RM is powered by two AA (LR6) alkaline or NiMH batteries. A fresh pair of alkaline batteries can provide power for up to 110 continuous flashes (1/1 manual flash with alkaline batteries)[xxix].

Pricing and Availability

The HVL-F28RM flash will be available this winter and will be sold for approximately $249.99 USD and $329.99 CAD. It will be sold at a variety of Sony’s authorized dealers throughout North America.

Exclusive stories and exciting new content shot with the new camera, lens and Sony’s other imaging products can be found at www.alphauniverse.com, a site created to educate and inspire all fans and customers of Sony α – Alpha.

[i] An Alpha 7C with an FE 28-60mm F4-5.6 lens mounted. Among full-frame interchangeable-lens digital cameras, in combination with an interchangeable zoom lens. As of Sept. 2020. Sony survey.

[ii] Among full-frame interchangeable-lens digital cameras with optical in-body image stabilization mechanism, as of Sept. 2020. Sony survey.

[iii] A Class 10 or higher SDHC/SDXC card is required for XAVC S format movie recording. UHS speed class 3 or higher is required for 100 Mbps recording.

[iv] Among interchangeable zoom lenses for 35mm full-frame format digital camera bodies, as of Sept. 2020. Sony survey.

[v] This function is only compatible with Alpha 7C as of Sept. 2020

[xxii] Not guaranteed to be 100% dust and water resistant.

[xxv] 50 mm, at ISO 100 in meters

[xxvi] Visit Sony support webpage for functional compatibility information.

[xxvii] Design registration application pending.

[xxviii] In group flash mode. 3 groups (A-C) in TTL or manual flash mode.

[xxix] Sony internal test conditions.



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