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Reid Reviews' normal business hours are 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM EST Monday through Friday
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and any problems with subscriptions, responses to e-mail, etc. are normally handled
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full name you provide exactly matches the name on your PayPal account.

On June 21 I published a review of the Sony FE 28/2.0 based on field and studio testing.

On June 8 I published a review of the Fuji X-H1.

On May 24 I published a review of the Cosina Voigtlander 12/5.6 Ultra Wide-Heliar ASPH III on the
Leica CL based upon field testing and studio tests of resolution, vignetting and color drift.

On May 15 I published a review of the Sony Distagon T FE 35/1.4 based on field and studio testing.

On May 2 I published an article about working with the Leica Monochrom (Typ 246) at Daytona Beach.

On April 17 I published a review of the Zeiss Loxia 25/2.4 Distagon based on field and studio testing.

On April 10 I published a review of the Sony A7R III.

On March 21 I published a review of the Cosina Voigtlander 15/4.5 Super Wide-Heliar ASPH III on the
Leica CL based upon extensive field testing and studio tests of resolution, vignetting and color drift.

On March 8 I published a review of the Cosina Voigtlander 10/5.6 Heliar-Hyper Wide on the Leica CL
based on field testing and studio tests of resolution, vignetting and color drift.

On February 21 I published a very extensive double lens review of the Leica 75/1.25 Noctilux ASPH
& Leica 75/2.0 APO Summicron ASPH based on field and full studio testing. This article includes
over 200 illustrations.

On February 15 I published a detailed double lens review of the Fuji XF 80/2.8 Macro and Fuji
XF 90/2.0 based on field and studio testing. This article includes over 140 illustrations and is
probably the most extensive Fuji lens review I have done to date.

On January 27 I published an article which looks at detailed studio tests (using three different compact
rangefinder lenses) that compare the corner-to-corner resolution, vignetting and color drift of the
Leica M10 and M (Typ 240). This is an article I've long wanted to do and it hopefully should prove
interesting to any photographers who work with the full frame Leica DRFs.

On January 20
I published an extensive review of the Cosina Voigtlander 10/5.6 Heliar-Hyper Wide
on the Leica M10.

On January 11 I published a studio comparison test that looks at the color rendering, resolution and ISO
noise performance of the Fuji X-Pro 2 and Leica CL.

On December 7 I revised and expanded my 2015 article on the, fairly important, topic of "Software
Distortion Correction
".  This subject is becoming increasingly relevant as forced SDC becomes more and
more common in opcodes and raw file processing. Like AA filtering, SDC comes with pros and cons.

On December 6 I published a full review of the Leica TL 35/1.4 Summilux ASPH tested (in the studio
and in the field) on the Leica CL.

On November 28 I published the results of my field and studio testing of the Leica 28/2.8 M Elmarit ASPH
on the Leica CL.

On November 21 I published a review of the new Leica CL.

On November 21 I published a full review of the new Leica TL 18/2.8 Elmarit ASPH.

On November 13 I published an extensive review of the Cosina Voigtlander 12/5.6 Ultra Wide-Heliar III
on the Leica M10 and Sony A9.

On November 6 I published a field and studio test of the Leitz Wetzlar 28/2.8 R Elmarit on the Sony A9.

On October 26 I published an article that looks at the comparative highlight headroom
(available for over-exposure) in DNGs made by the Leica SL, M10 and M (Typ 240).

On October 20 I published an extensive review of the Cosina Voigtlander 15/4.5 Super Wide Heliar III
on the Leica M10 and Sony A9.

On September 29 I published a review of the Sony A9. There are quite a few other articles in progress now
that will be coming out in October and November.

On August 24 I published an article that looks at the usable dynamic range (UDR) differences between two
cameras (tested at three different ISO levels). The cameras tested were the Leica M10 and Leica M (Typ 240)
but the general ideas explored in the article apply to almost all digital cameras.

On August 4 I published a full review of the Fujinon XF 16/1.4 R WR based on field and studio testing.

On July 22 I published an article that looks at the highlight headroom available, at different low ISO levels, from
three Leica cameras: the M10, SL and M (Typ 240). The larger subject this story looks at, naturally, is native ISO
and its relation to dynamic range. So the ideas explored in this article may also be of interest to photographers
who work with other brands of cameras.

On July 2 I published a test of four different programs for converting FujiFilm RAF files.

On June 12 I updated my review of the Sigma SD Quattro H based on field testing using an external Elvid

On June 6 I published an extensive review of the BenQ SW320 which is a 4K display that renders in nearly full
AdobeRGB. This article also looks in detail at calibration as well as options for using 4K displays with older
(silver box) Mac Pros.

On May 25 I published a full review of the Fujinon XF 50/2.0 WR based on field and studio testing.

On May 11 I published my review of the Sigma SD Quattro H. This camera is especially interesting not only
because it uses a larger sensor than past Sigma Foveon cameras but also because it can now output DNG files.

On May 11 I updated my article on waist level photography with some new comments about Diane

On April 26 I published my review of the Fuji X-T2.

On April 13 I published an article that began as a field report but -- organically I think -- grew into an essay,
an interview (with the photographer Larry Fink), a field report (on working at waist level with the Fuji X-T1)
and a proposal for a new digital camera.

"I wanted to send a groggy note of thanks for your incredible website—examining your reviews has become my late night guilty pleasure. I’d been researching new cameras (unsuccessfully) for months until I found you. Love at first site. Thanks, Sean."

Katy Grannan
Photographer & Filmmaker

"I have to say that I am in awe of your thoughtfulness and intelligence as they're reflected in what you've done. I'm sorry I hadn't come across your work before."

- Tod  Papageorge
Former Director Of Graduate Studies In Photography
Yale University School Of Art

"You are an exceptional writer and photographer but what is most important is that I have never found any bias in anything you have written about. That says a lot in this day and age."

- Elliot Stern
Founder and Director
Blue Ridge Workshops

"In the din of the Internet's noise, Sean Reid is one of a handful of voices worth listening to."

- Kent Phelan

"The best and most detailed account (of the Leica M8) I've yet read from a photographer's point of view is on the Reid Reviews site."

- Peter Marshall
Photography Guide,

"Reviewing photographic equipment isn't as easy as it looks. Not only does it take writing skill, and a critical sensibility, but for the review to carry weight and have value its author must have significant experience with similar and previous equipment.  Sean Reid has written equipment reviews for The Luminous Landscape for the past two years, and unfailingly they have been well-researched and comprehensive.  Sean writes with both style and insight, and bases his opinions on his years as a photographer, and not simply from the perspective of a technologist, as is too frequently found on the Net.  His site is free of advertising, and well worth your support. I was particularly taken by his article "On Small Sensor Cameras". It is a unique perspective on how different digital formats are redrawing the face of photography."

- Michael Reichmann, Publisher
The Luminous Landscape

Welcome to, an on-line magazine of reviews and essays by photographer and writer Sean Reid.  Each year, there will be at least twelve new articles about the tools and practice of photography added to this site. As of early 2016 there are over four hundred articles on this site - most of them very extensive. There are no press releases, news summaries or the like but only reviews, essays and other writing about photography.

Every writer naturally brings his or her own experience and perspective to the articles he or she writes.  My writing is heavily influenced by my experience working as a professional photographer for more than thirty years.  I'm primarily interested in cameras and lenses as tools for drawing, as I believe that photography really is a branch of drawing.  As the photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson once said in an interview, "My photography is just an instant drawing...I never quit drawing. The camera is a way of drawing."

I'm also guided by the photographer Andre Kertesz's observation, "I see the thing, I feel the thing, I make the thing".  So when I review a camera or a lens, I look primarily at how it presents the world to the photographer (via the finder), how it works as a tool in the hands, and how it draws the kind of picture we call a photograph.



There are at least two kinds of review content on this web site.  There are reviews of cameras and lenses that are receiving wide attention from many photographers (and reviewers) as well as reviews of equipment that is of great interest to more specialized groups of photographers.  I have written quite a bit about rangefinder cameras and lenses and that equipment will continue to be an important focus of this site.  I also give a lot of attention to compact cameras that are designed for serious photography. There are also essays and other types of articles to be found here that are not necessarily about equipment per se.

I did my first professional photography work in 1984. While I am primarily a "fine art photographer" (a strange and clumsy term that suggests one makes pictures of paintings, sculptures and the like) I also do professional architectural and documentary wedding photography.  So I sometimes look at the performance of cameras and lenses in those contexts.  I obviously can't write about every piece of photographic equipment and so my focus is really on tools that, I think, deserve some attention from serious photographers, professional or amateur.  Sometimes they are fairly new to the market, other times they might be quite old and found only as used equipment.  In either case, if I decide to write about a lens or camera, it's because I believe it's worth reading about. I was a film photographer for two decades (and a B&W exhibition printer for a few years) but I now work entirely with digital capture. As such, almost all of my camera reviews are of digital models. The individual reviews obviously discuss specific cameras and/or lenses but all of the reviews also look at more general aspects of photography that can be relevant no matter what camera and/or lens a photographer uses.

My own photography frequently illustrates the articles on Reid Reviews and  the site sometimes features articles about my own photographic projects. I am primarily a black and white photographer (except for a few projects and certain work that I do for clients) and so many of the general (as opposed to technical) illustrations on this site are in BW.

My bio:

Sean Reid has been a commercial and fine art photographer for more than thirty years. He studied photography at Bard College under Stephen Shore and Ben Lifson. In the late 1980s he worked as an exhibition printer for Wendy Ewald and other fine art photographers. In 1989, he was the first American photographer to receive an artist-in-residence grant from the Irish Arts Council in Dublin, Ireland and his work is held in their collection. That same year he gave a guest lecture at Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art in Dublin. In the early 1990s Sean met occasionally with Helen Levitt to discuss and edit pictures he was making in the subways of Budapest and New York City. These were exhibited in New York in conjunction with performances by Jens Nygaard's Jupiter Symphony.

Sean's work for clients is often of weddings and architecture. His editorial work has appeared in magazines such as Motorcyclist, Rider and The Robb Report. His personal work is primarily of people in public places -- especially in rural New England where he resides.

In 2004, Sean began reviewing cameras and lenses for Luminous Landscape. The following year he began Reid Reviews,  a site that accepts no advertising and is paid for entirely by subscribers. Sean also serves as an unpaid consultant, advisor and sometimes beta tester for several camera and lens manufacturers.


"Quite simply, I think your sections on 'drawing' and and on 'sunny day lenses' are the best writing about photographic lenses that I have read - whether in magazines, journals, books or the various sources online. Few professional writers about photography ever attempt such a full consideration of the range of lens performance characteristics and the different ways in which they are photographically significant. Some discussions in photographic communities online circle around the subject, but don't achieve the focus, rigour and articulacy that you have managed here. Your article is what all writing about photographic lenses ought to be like, yet it's astonishing that next to none of it is. Interesting though Irwin Puts Leica lens book is, it would have been so much more interesting, and so much more appropriate to its subject matter, if it had been written as you have written here...I found the article incredibly useful and interesting. A great help in clarifying and firming up what I have experienced and half-understood about how different lenses work."

- Simon Pulman-Jones, England

"We all owe you a vote of thanks for such a massive and thorough piece of work. What a concept-- a "lens test" that is really about the pictorial effect of how lenses draw their images. Lines per millimeter and MTF graphs have their place, but your article really gets to the heart of the matter in the way that photographers can relate to instantly."

- Peter Klein, USA

"This is a really excellent in depth review. I particularly like how you guide the reader not to look for winners, but to use it as a reference for their own needs. I think it may turn out to be a reference classic for working photographers seeking how to judge lenses in real world use.. I for one will be returning to it."

- Jim Watts, USA

"I read your substantial paper with great interest. I am an amateur enthusiast in photography and optics.
Your concept first surprised me, because I have had an impression that few photographers in North America and possibly in Europe like to discuss lens characters as expression tools. Among Japanese photographers, amateurs and professionals alike, there is a long tradition of interest or even addiction in appreciating various image characters of optics. For instance, Shoji Ohtake, one of the most influential photographers in Japan writes a regular column titled Lens Physiognomy for a major camera journal. He says that for each of his representation he selects the right lens from his huge collection.  I was impressed by your pragmatic and well-organised approach in reviewing the lenses. Your observation is keen and relevant to essential aspects of photographic imagery. Your rhetoric is straight, logical, and free from jargon. These are rarely met in review papers on similar tests, which tend to be too technical or too subjective. I should also tell you that I myself have evaluated lenses mostly in B&W for the same reason as in your reviews. Few people have understood me. All in all, it is a marvelous paper. My applause."

- Mikiro Mori, Japan

"...a very informative, even enlightening, work. It not only provides visual evidence of comparative lenses' performance, it also gets right to the most important factor of lens evaluation - how the image looks to the photographer. Long ago I stopped reading test charts of lenses since none of my clients ever published any. It is always the look of the finished image that counts."

- Richard Weisgrau, USA

"I hope your tests become a benchmark for other reviewers to pay more attention to the real needs of photographers..."

- Phil Fogle, USA

"I think that your approach is what photographers have been asking for. Your article was spectacularly successful. I didn't think a review could be any better than yours on wide angles for the R-D1, but you topped it with this one. Thank you for all the hard work that went into it!"

- Bill Marshall, USA



Example Articles accepts no advertising.  A subscription is currently $39.95 per year. To get a sense of my writing style and approach you may want to read any of the freely accessible articles linked in the Read Without A Subscription section of our article index.  And, of course, that index includes every article on RR so you'll be able to see just what content can be found here. As of late November, 2017 there were over 450 articles on the site, most of them quite extensive. All of them are reviews or essays.

Current Articles

A list of current articles on Reid Reviews can be found at the site's article index.


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As many readers know, RR has always been an independent site in many senses of that word. We hope that our readers can appreciate the value of this approach. As a society, we are barraged with advertising (on the web, on televison, on radio, on buses, streets, etc.). Reading Reid Reviews is, we hope, an oasis from that. We have never accepted advertising and we never will. We also have never taken sales commission from any business. The Reid Reviews system is simple: we create the content and our readers,  and only our readers, pay for it.

The purpose of advertising, ultimately, is to convince us that we need to buy whatever product a manufacturer or other business wants to sell us. Advertising in photography has long perpetuated the myth that owning certain brands and certain products will magically make one a better photographer. But we all know, of course, how false that myth is.

For a humorous, but also very perceptive, take on where the line between journalism and advertising seems to be heading, for some publications at least, see this John Oliver video. I highly recommend watching it.

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Useful tips on using the Reid Reviews site can be found here. That page is worth reading and will be updated from time to time.


The one-year subscription rate for the site is $39.95.  Once your username and password have been issued, the subscription amount is not refundable.  The best way to sample my work (to decide if you'd want to be a subscriber) is to read the freely accessible articles linked in the Read Without A Subscription section of our article index Pay Pal customers can pay for their subscriptions using their Pay Pal accounts and people who are not Pay Pal customers may make a one-time credit card payment to Reid Reviews via PayPal.  To make a payment by check please follow the instructions listed on the "subscribe" page which is linked below.

Reid Reviews' normal business hours are 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM EST Monday through Friday (excluding holidays) and any problems with subscriptions, responses to e-mail, etc. are normally handled during those business hours. I am, however, sometimes away for medical appointments during those hours and appreciate your patience if you need to wait for a response to your e-mail.  If subscribing, please be sure that the full name you provide exactly matches the name on your PayPal account. If they don't match there's a good chance the system will not be able to start your subscription automatically.

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