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04-27-2015, 09:20 AM   #1
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Sony a7 vs current Pentax APS-C cameras

I use a K30, and often like to underexpose to preserve highlights and then bring up the shadows later when post processing. I find that I can bring the exposure up by about 1.5 stops in adobe camera raw and still get great results with my K30. I am thinking of getting a Sony a7 for the meantime (until I eventually get a full frame Pentax), but I have heard that the Sony a7 RAW files are not easily pushed without showing artifacts. Is there anyone that can compare their a7 with their Pentax APS-C in regards to this? (preferrably a K30 or newer model Pentax DSLR)

04-27-2015, 10:28 AM - 1 Like   #2
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I use Sony A7R and Pentax K-5 IIs and K-3. Shoot exclusively RAW. Both brands produce wonderful images. Full frame A7R definitely has its advantage in resolution and other FF related pro's. OTOH Pentax produces wonderful colors and low noise images that shine on their own. Just my personal impression...
04-27-2015, 05:24 PM   #3
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I find that I can push more that with the K-3. Files are really nice. I'm using the A7II and it has basically the same IQ. I was concerned about the compressed RAW, but so far it has been a non-issue. Love the colors and IQ.
04-28-2015, 04:29 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
but so far it has been a non-issue.
That's good to hear. By the way people complain on sonyalpharumors you would think the a7 was useless! Do you manually focus any Pentax lenses on your a7, and if so, how well does it work for you?

04-28-2015, 07:17 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillshot2 Quote
That's good to hear. By the way people complain on sonyalpharumors you would think the a7 was useless! Do you manually focus any Pentax lenses on your a7, and if so, how well does it work for you?
The 31mm is the only Pentax lens I currently use on it. I have used my Sigma 85mm, but I don't like not having an aperture ring. Manual focus has been very easy. I got a change to use the Loxia 50mm and it automatically goes to focus zoom when you turn the focus ring, so manual focus with it is very quick. I can manual focus about as fast as the K-7 could AF. On the 31mm I'm a little slower because I have to hold down my magnification button while I focus.


I love the 55mm F/1.8. AF is not as snappy as the K-3, but on par with the K-7. Accuracy though is much better. There is not front or back focus. I have been very happy with the tack sharp focus even at F/1.8. Using the face and eye AF really work pretty well if you photograph people.


If Sony releases the A9 with professional specifications I could see myself switching for professional work. The new 35mm F/1.4 and 85mm F/1.8 would round out my kit and cover 90% of what I do.
04-28-2015, 11:47 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillshot2 Quote
That's good to hear. By the way people complain on sonyalpharumors you would think the a7 was useless! Do you manually focus any Pentax lenses on your a7, and if so, how well does it work for you?
I do manually focus my Pentax lenses on the A7, Stillshot, including the Sigma 35mm Art f1.4, 50mm DA f1.8 and FA f2.8 macro and FA77.

I find you can't trust focus peaking with fast lenses, but in a static situation, you've got time to use the focus magnifier and control the aperture from the adapter instead of from the body.

Where you've got changing circumstances - I'm off to a dog show on Saturday - those same lenses will be mounted on my K-30, along with flash.
04-29-2015, 06:35 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
use the focus magnifier and control the aperture from the adapter instead of from the body.
Can you adjust aperture from a lens that has an aperture ring, or do you have to buy an adapter that controls aperture?

I would probably use the focus magnifier function as I once did with a Sony a55 I used to own, and it proved to work well as long as the environment didn't get too dark (because the image started getting noisy in live view and it got harder to tell if it was in focus). I can only imagine the a7 will give a better live view in low light due to improvements in technology.

04-29-2015, 11:57 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillshot2 Quote
Can you adjust aperture from a lens that has an aperture ring, or do you have to buy an adapter that controls aperture?

I would probably use the focus magnifier function as I once did with a Sony a55 I used to own, and it proved to work well as long as the environment didn't get too dark (because the image started getting noisy in live view and it got harder to tell if it was in focus). I can only imagine the a7 will give a better live view in low light due to improvements in technology.


I have 2 different adapters. One has not aperture adjustment ring and I use that on my 31mm. I use the ring on my 31mm to control aperture. My second adapter had a clickless aperture adjustment and I use it on my 85mm, but it has no scale so you don't know aperture. The aperture ring on the adapter is very sensitive. A small movement seem to make a big change and its difficult to work with in my opinion. That is why I don't use my 85mm much and I'm going to buy the new Zeiss 85mm F/1.8. I will keep my Sigma 85mm until the new FF Pentax comes out and test it on that to see if I will keep the Sigma.
04-29-2015, 12:07 PM   #9
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Ok. Thanks for the help everyone!
04-29-2015, 08:54 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillshot2 Quote
Can you adjust aperture from a lens that has an aperture ring, or do you have to buy an adapter that controls aperture?

I would probably use the focus magnifier function as I once did with a Sony a55 I used to own, and it proved to work well as long as the environment didn't get too dark (because the image started getting noisy in live view and it got harder to tell if it was in focus). I can only imagine the a7 will give a better live view in low light due to improvements in technology.
Like Winder, I have two adapters, Stillshot, a simple Fotodiox and a pricey Novoflex (that has an aperture ring so the Sigma and DA lenses work). Other than wide open and closed right down, it's a bit of guesswork to know exactly where you are.
05-20-2015, 09:07 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
Like Winder, I have two adapters, Stillshot, a simple Fotodiox and a pricey Novoflex (that has an aperture ring so the Sigma and DA lenses work). Other than wide open and closed right down, it's a bit of guesswork to know exactly where you are.
So let me get this straight...

These adapters (non aperture on adapter) can use MF A lenses, using the Aperture control on the lens itself.

These adapters (aperture control) can use a lens like the 35mm 2.4 (no aperture control), with the adapter manually changing the aperture.
-if yes: How do you know what Aperture you are at?

Ideally I'd love to use my 55 1.4 DA* on the A7. So assuming that I use a Novoflex, with aperture ring control, I'd be able to use this lens on the A7, in full manual mode on the cam...

sorry bit confused. I love the A7 and played with it a ton. Would love to pick up the body and adapter a lens or two until I can get a sony lens.

thanks
05-20-2015, 01:19 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by rzarector Quote

Ideally I'd love to use my 55 1.4 DA* on the A7. So assuming that I use a Novoflex, with aperture ring control, I'd be able to use this lens on the A7, in full manual mode on the cam...
You can, Rzarector.

But you won't know the aperture value.

For a single lens you might bother trying to calibrate the ring with a fine marker pen.

However, the throw distance is very small and there's a smooth rotation, not a series of clicks. Good luck with it, I'm not even going to try!

The best mount for these DA and Sigma K lenses is - surprise, surprise - a Pentax body.

Last edited by clackers; 05-20-2015 at 01:26 PM.
05-20-2015, 10:49 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillshot2 Quote
I use a K30, and often like to underexpose to preserve highlights and then bring up the shadows later when post processing. I find that I can bring the exposure up by about 1.5 stops in adobe camera raw and still get great results with my K30. I am thinking of getting a Sony a7 for the meantime (until I eventually get a full frame Pentax), but I have heard that the Sony a7 RAW files are not easily pushed without showing artifacts. Is there anyone that can compare their a7 with their Pentax APS-C in regards to this? (preferrably a K30 or newer model Pentax DSLR)

I have exactly both cameras.
I've never bothered to compare between them, but what I will comment is based on my working on lots of files in LR for both cameras.

The A7 sensor, is somehow a bit different than the Exmor 16mp aps-c sensor based sensor (which by extension the A7r 36mp sensor is).
Noise seems to be more apparent from ISO200. (I've never noticed the same from K5 onwards)
Its nothing to tear out the hair over though, just that I notice this characteristic more when processing my files than with the K5 or K30 files.
Overall, still a wonderful sensor with no apparent color noise (as with all the new Sony sensors)
If you want the K30 like performance on FF, the 36mp sensor on the A7r is the one. (but that camera got its own set of issues)


ISO50 is a very nice option.
Gives an extra stop for controlling the shutter speed.

24mp is plenty, yet forgiving on most old lenses (and any lack in technique)


MF with the camera is the best of the cameras I have used (5D w/ EES screen; G3; Pentax since K100; film cameras,etc)
Its EVF based though, so not for everyone. (Luckily, I can switch between OVF/EVF w/o any adaptation issues)


With the Pentax FF coming soon, if you have more AF lenses (or ones worth going for), then just wait for the Pentax.
If you like MF lenses, then I think the A7 is the best one yet.
05-21-2015, 08:00 AM   #14
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I have 3 MF lenses and 5 AF lenses, but I would probably never use the 18-55 on FF. I have tried the viewfinder of the A7 at a local store and it's miles ahead of the old Sony a55 I used to own. The only real issue is that by the time the Pentax FF gets here, I could probably get a used a7 for a lot less money, which is a factor for me. But, if the Pentax FF is what I hope it will be, it may be worth waiting for, because in the meantime my K30 still continues to impress me.
05-21-2015, 08:51 AM   #15
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The A7 is selling for under $1,000. For a FF that can be used with almost any lens made that is a pretty good deal. I really expect the Ricoh FF to be $2300 or more unless they launch 2 bodies.
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