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02-22-2014, 05:06 PM   #1
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Today I handled a Sony A7

I can consider myself long time Pentax user, I guess. Only use Pentax cameras and lenses.
Currently using a K5 and K5IIs.

I love the ergonomics or Pentax, and the solid feel when you holding on. When Canon and Nikon have the 6D and D600, I think I can finally afford a FF!
tried them, not impressed.... plastic feel, bad placement of buttons, and just not feeling it like Pentax. I hesitated.

Then came the A7, A7R. I would love to have the A7R. but at the same time I am worry about the ergonomic, the EVF lag, the focus speed, etc.
Today I went to a camera store to try it out, they only have A7, and they only have APSC lens to try on...

But! the hands on remove my doubt about EVF! it is much much faster than I imagine it would be. Very very usable I would say. Focus is fast, at least for a person who used to Pentax focus system.... the camera feels very solid, and ergonomic is much better than I think! after a while it feels good in your hand. The placement of the wheels are definitely odd, and I think the menu button could be placed better. They only have the 10-18 apsc lens for me to try. The menu system, is also pretty close to how Pentax implement the menu system. I can easily find where things are. I end up thinking, the EVF is really impressive, and this is definitely a camera that can 'replace' my Pentax. OK, the shutter is a bit loud, but when I first got my K200, I think the loud shutter is actually pretty cool. Also, that damn menu color on A7 make it look like it is a touch screen and I keep wanting to touch the screen to make changes. lol.

Now, before I left, I am excited to hear the manager telling his employee features about K-3, so I ask them if I they have K-3, they did!
As soon as I grab the K-3, it felt so heavy compare to the A7! and the handle is definitely bigger than K5 (too big for my hand), but some will like it I am sure. Then I play around with it..... man! I can't change setting efficiently on the K-3, they have changed so much (or is it because I have spend close to an hour on the A7?) from K-5!! This is so strange.. I felt embarrass to not able to change the setting quickly as a long time Pentax user!

I will go back to the store to try A7R to get a feel of shutter, fps, and AF on that one, when they have one in stock. I left the store feeling the A7 completely change my view towards mirrorless camera and EVF. They are, in fact, very usable.

If you haven't try a mirrorless before, the A7 will change your view. Give it a try.

I am afraid, the EVF is probably where we will be heading in the future... just sharing my experience.

02-22-2014, 05:57 PM   #2
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What kind of light did you try that camera in? I wonder if the EVF works as well indoors as it does outdoors.
That Sony is a pretty tempting camera for some Pentaxians, luckily its price tag is a good repellant

And Im surprised you mentioned loud shutter. A camera with EVF shouldn't be that loud
02-22-2014, 06:08 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
What kind of light did you try that camera in? I wonder if the EVF works as well indoors as it does outdoors.
That Sony is a pretty tempting camera for some Pentaxians, luckily its price tag is a good repellant

And Im surprised you mentioned loud shutter. A camera with EVF shouldn't be that loud
good idea, I should try it in outdoor next time! But it is big, and informative! the focus peaking, can also quickly 'zoom in' to the focus point and fill out the whole EVF, no way you would miss focus (of course unless your subject keep moving...)

Many reviews have said A7/A7R shutter is loud, I think it is, compare to K5, and K3.
02-22-2014, 09:30 PM   #4
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Today I handled a Sony A7

I think the Sony A7 series is a remarkable landmark in camera design. We may be seeings the return of "small" SLR style cameras like we had before. I would absolutely love to have a compact SLR camera like my Dad's ME Super. Perfect size! I'll even take something bigger like a Spotmatic or even a Yashica Electro TL X. It's only a matter of time now.


Last edited by 6BQ5; 02-22-2014 at 11:52 PM.
02-22-2014, 11:44 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I think the Sony A7 series is a remarkable landmark in camera design. We may be seeings the return of "small" SLR style cameras like we had before. I would absolutely love to have a company SLR camera like my Dad's ME Super. Perfect size! I'll even take something bigger like a Spotmatic or even a Yashica Electro TL X. It's only a matter of time now.
I am really surprise I will end up liking the A7 after I handle the camera.
Tried D600 and 6D, both felt cheap compare to Pentax K5, and also A7.

after today I realize mirrorless is here and they will stay, for sure.
02-23-2014, 08:59 AM   #6
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If the EVF impressed you, wait until you try the EVF on the Fuji X-T1. Faster, bigger, and with focus peaking and split screen focusing. Reports coming in say it is "simply amazing". I hope to be trying one soon.......FF is not on my list of needs, so the X-T1 is where I will venture.
Camera technology is moving fast, I agree that mirrorless is the new wave of the future. No telling what new and exciting features await us in the coming years...exciting, isn't it!

Regards!
02-23-2014, 09:21 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rupert Quote
If the EVF impressed you, wait until you try the EVF on the Fuji X-T1. Faster, bigger, and with focus peaking and split screen focusing. Reports coming in say it is "simply amazing". I hope to be trying one soon.......FF is not on my list of needs, so the X-T1 is where I will venture.
Camera technology is moving fast, I agree that mirrorless is the new wave of the future. No telling what new and exciting features await us in the coming years...exciting, isn't it!

Regards!
Yes... even the normally picky guy Kai praise the X-Ti evf...he said the EVF is even larger and better than Canon 5D series...

Fujifilm X series is really beating hard on Pentax, with their relatively affordable and fast prime lenses in APSC (but I still think the Pentax limited is nicer in design), and they are going WR as well. If I am not heavily invested in Pentax, I would go the Fuji route. I especially like the fact that Fuji took care of their customer by adding new features via firmware, like adding FP in their X100, after X100s is available. Pentax firmware update only fixes problems...
02-23-2014, 10:46 AM   #8
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Thanks for this post and Pentax oriented take on the a7r and Fuji X-T1. I don't need another camera, but both of these are calling to me. I'm leaning toward the a7r, but I do wish it had more of the external ergonomic control of the Fuji. It helps that the NEX - 6 that I already have will share batteries and adapters that I also already have. I'm considering selling both my K30 and NEX-6 for an a7r. I wish Pentax would make a camera that allowed such easy us of M and K lenses like the mirrorless cameras provide, but I suspect waiting on the next Pentax will only disappoint with another crippled mount. Cheers!

02-23-2014, 11:21 AM   #9
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The problem with Fuji is that they really don't get video. Otherwise I love their cameras. They are just such a joy to use.

As for the A7... I've tried that one too, and I hated it. I didn't understand it at all (but I only had a minute or two... but that's usually enough to at least get the basics with even something as bad as a Canon, but that Sony... (And I usually don't have problems with Sony's, they are generally well thought out)). The noise certainly doesn't help, it is WAY too loud.

I'm still happy with my K-5, no need to change to anything else. But hopefully Pentax will actually improve video after the let down that was the K-3. But if I were to pick a camera now, I'd probably get one of the OM-D's. Good video, good stills, small body.
02-23-2014, 11:51 AM   #10
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Thread moved. General Talk is for Non Photographic related topics only.
02-23-2014, 06:46 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by LFLee Quote
I can't change setting efficiently on the K-3, they have changed so much (or is it because I have spend close to an hour on the A7?) from K-5!!
Others have mentioned the same but love it after they get used to it. It's probably because you're used to the K-5. People who switched from the K20D to K7 (the new body design) had the same issues about button placement and the focus point joystick...

I'd look at the Fuji XT1 as well...the EVF looks really intriguing and they've always had good ergonomics so it'll be a lot more natural than Sony's...
02-23-2014, 07:39 PM - 1 Like   #12
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Yes, the EVF is the best one yet, or at least crosses that threshold as to be good enough in resolution and response to give a rather seamless experience.

The A7/r is the best camera yet for MF lenses.
High res EVF that can do MF by itself, add to that focus peaking and magnification, and it beats the best OVF with precision focusing screen (I had the 5D with EES screen)

Some caution over the euphoria though.

1. Menu and options are there, but when you start to use it, you (rather I) noticed that it does not 'flow' as well for photo taking as does a Pentax (or many of the cameras I've had in fact).
Silly things like double press for magnification; Limited EV+bracketing options; menu diving just to turn on remote control; button placements, etc
Nothing that deals a 'killing blow' but minor irritations that makes me think how a camera maker in the business for a good 10yrs (excluding Minolta years) can still not have a check list for these.

Now, here's a great one.
You can assign a button to 'Turn off LCD"
What it does, it turns it 'black' but its still 'ON'


2. Really poor JPGS (RAW is fine/great)

3. In very bright conditions, the LCD/EVF will still be a bit dim (but still ok imo)

4. In dark conditions like just before or at blue hour, if your lens is not a fast one (eg. f4; f5.6) it can be too dark to see/compose properly with it.

5. Sensor reflection issue - the main PITA as fas as I'm concerned.

6. Lenses are not worth it - Perhaps other than the FE55 (which to me is still overly big and expensive for a 55mm f1.8) ; the other 3 lenses rely on varying degrees of in-camera corrections. Not acceptable to me for the type of money they are sold for.
I can accept that a lens is cheaper and does this, or that its expensive and has most optical corrections in place relying on software to make it even better, but the FE35 and FE24-70 fall into the 'poorly corrected , relying on firmware correction and costly" category.

I am not trying to pull you away from the decision.
Rather, I'd hope you can be aware of the problems and make an informed decision.

To me, using a lens as small/good as a Voigtlander 12/5.6, coupled with wonderful Pentax lenses have been worth it, even though its far from perfect.


Some other info, lenses :
http://phillipreeve.net/blog/rolling-review-carl-zeiss-vario-tessar-t-fe-424-70-za/
Corner softness and lots of distortion (corrected in-camera) for the money

http://www.photozone.de/sonyalphaff/865-zeiss35f28ff
Vignetting of 2.6ev wide open; 0.96ev at f8 (for a rather expensive lens)

Last edited by pinholecam; 02-23-2014 at 08:22 PM.
02-23-2014, 08:22 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by pinholecam Quote
4. In dark conditions like just before or at blue hour, if your lens is not a fast one (eg. f4; f5.6) it can be too dark to see/compose properly with it.
mirrorless cameras have EVF brightness boost for such situations
02-24-2014, 07:54 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
mirrorless cameras have EVF brightness boost for such situations

The condition is at the limit of the camera+sensor.
The sensor+EVF gains up, but even that is not enough.

Do note, this is on f4, f5.6 lenses in dark conditions (eg. f8; 150s ISO100 ).
A f2.8 lens helps in these cases, but not all UWA are f2.8
02-25-2014, 02:26 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tom S. Quote
Thread moved. General Talk is for Non Photographic related topics only.
apology... always confuse with non-Pentax and general talk. I thought we can discuss anything in General talk.

Last edited by LFLee; 02-25-2014 at 03:06 PM.
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