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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Des Plaines, IL
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    Question Did anyone pop for the SONY A900, on the forum?

    I know we have discussed this, quite a bit, but has anyone, yet, bought this camera body?

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    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    2,204
    Don't have one (duh), but I noticed Jeff Keller (? reviewer I assume) of DCRP has kicked back the A900 final review to "December and beyond." It was next in line with the Nikon D700 (still in position, next) for this month.

    Apparently no one is interested in the A900? It made the front cover of Popular Photography! I really wanted to see the review. Until then, I guess we got:

    Imaging-Resource
    DPReview
    Camera Labs
    flickr

    Canon 7D - 5D | 550EX - 430EX II - (2) PW FlexTT5 | 24-105 f4L | 70-200 f2.8L IS | 100 f2.8L IS | 50 f1.8 II

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    670
    I did. Also got the A700 to test as an APS-C partner to the A900 so I could evaluate the option of moving to Sony as a system in favour of my Nikon gear.

    But after testing both the A900 and A700 with the Zeiss 24-70/2.8 and 135/1.8, I have concluded that it is just not in the cards. Why, you ask?

    1. Not a fan of the Sony AWB performance, NR, and JPEG quality (even with v4 f/w for the A700). Find I need to make WB adjustments in post-processing more often, and the NR even with v4 could still use improvement.

    As for the JPEG file quality, I could just shoot in RAW and actually do shoot in RAW + JPEG all the time, but I prefer to use the JPEG files OoC if I get the exposure and WB right because it saves time and effort in post-processing. I will definitely use the RAW files if the exposure or WB wasn't right when i took the shot, or if the DR is just too great, or for any critical shots.

    My Olympus E-520, E-3 and Nikon D300 produce good enough JPEGs that I can often use them OoC with little to no processing. Not so with the Sony files.

    2. Also wish Auto ISO would work in manual exposure mode, essentially invoking shutter + aperture priority mode as is available on Pentax as an actual exposure mode and on Olympus and Nikon by using Auto ISO with M mode. With this feature, you can set the aperture and shutter speed and let the camera take care of the rest by varying the ISO to attain proper exposure.

    I personally find it very useful, because as a photographer, you generally know what aperture / DoF and shutter speed you want to use, but you don't really care what ISO you're using other than not setting it too high to avoid noise.

    In other words, aperture and shutter speed are creative controls, and you need to be able to control both to get the shot you want. In changing light conditions or if light levels vary across the scene, you would have to adjust at least one of ISO, aperture, or shutter speed for every shot. I'd rather keep the aperture and SS to what I want to use and let the ISO float accordingly.

    --------------

    But since there is no other FF camera on the market with the combination of 24 MP, built-in IS, and top notch glass, I will keep the A900 and Zeiss glass for now, hoping Sony improves things via firmware updates.
    Last edited by e_dawg; 11-05-2008 at 06:30 PM.

    Nikon: D300, D700, Nikkor: 24-70, 70-200, 70-300/VR, 24/2.8, 35/2, 50/1.4G, 60/2.8G, 180/2.8,
    Sigma: 10-20, 50-150/2.8, 50/2.8, Tamron: 17-50/2.8, 28-75/2.8, Tokina: 12-24, Zeiss: 25/2.8
    Olympus: E-520, E-3, 7-14, 9-18, 11-22, 12-60, 14-35/2, 14-54, 35-100/2, 50-200, 25/2.8, 35/3.5, 50/2
    Panasonic: G1, Leica: 14-50, 14-150, 25/1.4
    Sony: A700, A900, 24-85, 35-70, 70-210/4, 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 50/2.8, T 90 macro, Zeiss: 24-70/2.8, 135/1.8
    P&S: Canon S90, Panasonic: LX3


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    2,204
    Quote Originally Posted by e_dawg View Post
    I did. Also got the A700 to test as an APS-C partner to the A900 so I could evaluate the option of moving to Sony as a system in favour of my Nikon gear.

    But after testing both the A900 and A700 with the Zeiss 24-70/2.8 and 135/1.8, I have concluded that it is just not in the cards. Why, you ask?

    1. Not a fan of the Sony AWB performance, NR, and JPEG quality (even with v4 f/w for the A700). Find I need to make WB adjustments in post-processing more often, and the NR even with v4 could still use improvement.

    As for the JPEG file quality, I could just shoot in RAW and actually do shoot in RAW + JPEG all the time, but I prefer to use the JPEG files OoC if I get the exposure and WB right because it saves time and effort in post-processing. I will definitely use the RAW files if the exposure or WB wasn't right when i took the shot, or if the DR is just too great, or for any critical shots.

    My Olympus E-520, E-3 and Nikon D300 produce good enough JPEGs that I can often use them OoC with little to no processing. Not so with the Sony files.

    2. Also wish Auto ISO would work in manual exposure mode, essentially invoking shutter + aperture priority mode as is available on Pentax as an actual exposure mode and on Olympus and Nikon by using Auto ISO with M mode. With this feature, you can set the aperture and shutter speed and let the camera take care of the rest by varying the ISO to attain proper exposure.

    I personally find it very useful, because as a photographer, you generally know what aperture / DoF and shutter speed you want to use, but you don't really care what ISO you're using other than not setting it too high to avoid noise.

    In other words, aperture and shutter speed are creative controls, and you need to be able to control both to get the shot you want. In changing light conditions or if light levels vary across the scene, you would have to adjust at least one of ISO, aperture, or shutter speed for every shot. I'd rather keep the aperture and SS to what I want to use and let the ISO float accordingly.

    --------------

    But since there is no other FF camera on the market with the combination of 24 MP, built-in IS, and top notch glass, I will keep the A900 and Zeiss glass for now, hoping Sony improves things via firmware updates.
    Glad to hear you are keeping it! That is some fine gear you've amassed!

    This does result in more time, but I know many like the new v4 because they can turn NR OFF in the camera and do it better themselves later in PP using noiseninja or something similar.

    That's an interesting take on Auto ISO, never thought of it. I can usually gauge what I want and just set it accordingly.

    I'd love to see some of your shots with the new camera!
    flickr

    Canon 7D - 5D | 550EX - 430EX II - (2) PW FlexTT5 | 24-105 f4L | 70-200 f2.8L IS | 100 f2.8L IS | 50 f1.8 II

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,545
    I have to say, that is a bold move with $6000, doing the lens and all. I would appreciate more insight on your A900 images versus the Nikons. I do not usually hear about that comparison, as I have had other photographers comment on the rather good image quality I have been acheiving with the A700 and non-SONY lenses versus Nikon D300s.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    670
    Yes, I agree... bold move. Basically, after I tried Olympus' pro lenses (14-35/2, 35-100/2), I realized the difference top glass makes. Come to think of it, I have always lusted after Zeiss lenses ever since I had a Kyocera P&S as my first camera. It had a 35 mm Carl Zeiss Tessar lens -- truly unique on a P&S camera, and noticeably better than the competition. I was blown away by the images, and I was hooked.

    There is no question that you can get good images from the A700, as it basically uses the same sensor as the D90 and D300 twins from Nikon. I've found the A700 JPEG files require more work in post-processing and are often not as good as the RAW files at high ISO. Bottom line, the JPEGs I get from the D300 are more consistently usable and don't require post-processing as often, which saves me time and effort, which I like.

    Nikon: D300, D700, Nikkor: 24-70, 70-200, 70-300/VR, 24/2.8, 35/2, 50/1.4G, 60/2.8G, 180/2.8,
    Sigma: 10-20, 50-150/2.8, 50/2.8, Tamron: 17-50/2.8, 28-75/2.8, Tokina: 12-24, Zeiss: 25/2.8
    Olympus: E-520, E-3, 7-14, 9-18, 11-22, 12-60, 14-35/2, 14-54, 35-100/2, 50-200, 25/2.8, 35/3.5, 50/2
    Panasonic: G1, Leica: 14-50, 14-150, 25/1.4
    Sony: A700, A900, 24-85, 35-70, 70-210/4, 20/2.8, 24/2.8, 50/2.8, T 90 macro, Zeiss: 24-70/2.8, 135/1.8
    P&S: Canon S90, Panasonic: LX3


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,545
    Personally, I believe that you tend to get better images, if you don't shoot in the dark.

    Just a casual observation. You can quote me on that, if you'd like.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,545
    Congrats to SONYNUT ... on your purchase!
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    1,756
    happy with my glass too

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    Posts
    788
    What glass are you using with the new A900 now?
    Jason Hamilton
    Selective Frame

    EOS 5D - Canon EF 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5 USM, EF 35 f/2, EF 50mm f/1.8 Mk II, EF 70-210 f/3.5-4.5 USM, EF 85mm f/1.8 USM, EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro, Helios 44-2 58mm f/2 (with EOS adapter), 430EX, Canon S90
    Nikon FE - Nikkor 35mm f/2 AI'd, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AI, Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 AI, F to EF adapter, 2xVivitar 285, other lighting stuff
    Mamiya C220 - 80mm f/2.8

    Gear List flickr

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