I never learn.
I'm like Charlie Brown kicking Lucy's football....
I was thinking that the A6000 replacement might have IBIS. The A7 cameras have IBIS; the Olympus cameras have IBIS. It was rumored that the A6000 replacement would have IBIS. It seemed like a reasonable assumption. IBIS is one thing I miss.
Instead, Sony improved the autofocus speed and the video performance.
The new Sony A6300
You should never wait for what's coming like you know what's coming. Never assume. Until something exists, it doesn't exist.
I know, I should know! I keep telling other people not to do this, and you would think I could take my own advice.
Anyway, I'm pretty disappointed about the A6300.
How about you? Were faster autofocus and better video the two things you thought the small APS-C Sony ILC needed?
I have a few additional questions as well.
- If you have an A6000, were you frequently annoyed with the AF speed?
- Is the A6xxx the first camera you think of when you think of a need for outstanding focus tracking?
- Do we really need stills cameras to double as video cameras?
- Finally, do you ever come running up to kick this particular football only to have Lucy yank it away?
[UPDATE: ...And we have a name for this! "I have noticed this phenomena more generally as 'pre-release syndrome.' To wit: 'any camera that hasn't been released yet contains all the features you were looking for in your next camera, until it is released.' Or more generally: no new camera can live up to the hype that we generate for ourselves regarding it." Thanks to MarkR for this. —MJ]
[UPDATE no. 2: I went to an opening this afternoon, and hauled the "old" (Sept. 2011, i.e. back when I was young) NEX-6, to refresh my memory and see if the focus speed really needed improving. I can't speak to the A6000, but the NEX-6 is pretty slow, as least with the Sigma 60mm DN I was using on it. The camera is surprisingly slow to come to life, slow to meter, slow to focus, and sometimes gets a bit flustered in low light if the AF can't find enough to grab on to. So I guess what I'm saying is, all right, the focusing did need speeding up. At least from the NEX-6. —MJ]
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(To see all the comments, click on the "Comments" link below.)
Featured Comments from:
Dori: "If it had been me there would be weathersealing...might have switched over then, but IBIS would be good too."
Pete Mc: "Personally? Yes, this is the perfect update. I use my A6000 as part of a pair with an A7R. The A7 looks after high quality, low speed work. The A6000 looks after action—no need for IBIS, just give me better and better AF and I'm happy. I freely admit my use may be unusual, but to me the development of the A6xxx and A7x series as a pair is almost perfect."
Romano Giannetti: "I feel the same. Was waiting for the A6000-with-IBIS unicorn, to buy it with the alpha adapter to substitute my A55. But no.... And the A7 is out of the roof for me. Bummer."
Markus Spring (partial comment): "Maybe it"s due to the geographical situation (I live in Germany, with really short days in winter a.k.a half of the year), IBIS is the feature I treasure most in my cameras, and I wouldn't buy one without it. Especially when creating/taking pictures on a daily basis, additionally to the bread job, times with dwindling light are more the rule than the exception, but thanks to IBIS I really can make best use of them."
[For the full text of partial comments, please see the full Comments Section by clicking on "Comments" below. —Ed.]
JBo: "Not sure why, but I don't like stabilization. Using Nikon talk, using it doesn't feel like 'pure photography.' Seriously though, I've also succumbed to the "waiting for a perfect camera" syndrome more than once...I was almost sure things I was waiting for would happen, because it was so logical and desirable for me, and everyone surely shares my logic and desires, don't they?
"And I was waiting for:
- Small, FM-style Nikon F mount mirrorless full frame with a viewfinder optimized for MF legacy lenses—got Dƒ instead.
- Small, rangefinder style autofocusing mirrorless full frame with compact Leica AF primes—got Leica SL instead with a huge zoom.
- Longer battery life in every new mirrorless camera—seems to gets shorter instead.
"In more than one way photo equipment reminds me of modern politics—I never seem to get what I vote for. Well, Fuji seems to be the one brand that actually delivers most of the things I wish for—hence I'm a little afraid they may lose the next elections. ;-) "
Huw Morgan (partial comment): "There was also a much-needed improvement to viewfinder resolution. I'm not sure the A6300 upgrade will propel a6000 users to part with cash, but there are many NEX-7 users (like me) who will probably upgrade to get the better focus performance. The sensor hasn't been rated by DxOMark yet, but if the high ISO noise performance is significantly better than the NEX-7, then an upgrade will be a no-brainer."
[We called the NEX-7 "the most desirable camera on the planet" in 2011. —Ed.]
tex andrews: "Well, I'm not in the market for the A6300 or any other apsc camera, but with Sony I don't think the company is thinking about photographers' needs, per se. I am not saying they are indifferent, at all. But I think their main targets are Nikon and Canon. Thus it seems to me, from their every move for the past six years or so back to the A900,that they are ticking off items from a list (or two lists): 'Why is mirrorless inferior?' and 'Why is Sony inferior?'
"So, Price: box ticked in Sony's favor with both the A900 and the A850 especially, the first FF camera to break the sub $2k mark. Sensor MP number: box ticked in Sony's favor with the above two cameras, then with the A7R, and now with the A7RII (and the 645Z before it...). ISO/DR range: box ticked in Sony's favor with the sensors generally, but especially with the A7S and 645Z. And when they jumped into the mirrorless pool, they did so in such a way that they reduced their mirrorless competitors to other, lesser players, and probably quashed any hope Nikon or Canon had in making inroads there.
"But there were still a bunch of criticisms and niggles: the EVF-OVF battle, AF performance, Canon's video performance, the menus and haptics, etc. But Sony is chipping away at all of these as well, improving EVF's to the point where OVF is really only a personal preference, not one merited by any technical issues, improving low-light AF radically, improving video performance a great deal, second now only to the brand new Canon 1DS-MK-7-WXYZ-44-Q (and I'll bet not for long...remember, Sony has a long video history, broadcast quality), and 'improving' (translated: fixing) the menus and haptics as they go along. And with the new lens line, plus what they have brought out in E mount over the last several years by themselves and with Zeiss—and radically with the legacy lens abilities—chipping away at that 'no lenses' problem (or canard, depending on POV). They have some more boxes to tick off, but....
"Yes, all this pertains to us as users, but I think secondarily. Sony has two bigger fish to fry, and that is beginning to look more and more possible, as opposed to something most would have considered a fantasy six years ago. Contrast with Pentax and Fuji and to some extent Oly, niche makers whose prime targets seem to be photographers themselves, based on the way the cameras are made and perform. By the way, I had a very interesting discussion with a Pentax manager in the fall at the PhotoExpo show that really underscored this for Pentax (and me), as he discussed what he could about that company's upcoming FF camera."
Eolake: "Oh I hear you. I love my Olympus system. So big now. But occasionally my gaze strays to 'other women' who are mighty fine. Such big and beautiful eyes. Sony...Fuji...Canikon...[Skkrrrrreeeaaachtc] Oops, forgot: no IBIS.
"It's like looking at beautiful cars until you remember that these models have no steering wheels."
Andy Kochanowski: "Never even gave it a thought. Here is the funny thing about the former NEX line: for what it does, it is almost absurdly perfect. It's a mirrorless replacement of a mid-line DSLR, the type of camera that you would take on vacation, to shoot street photography, or maybe for a quick documentary project. It works unobtrusively, it gets decent battery life, its extra batteries are cheap, and you can control the basic functions you need without ever going near a menu.
"You could buy the A6000 for something like $400, which is what I paid for mine, and for another $150 get a perfectly decent image-stabilized kit lens. Is the kit lens a Zeiss? No. Is it decently, nicely sharp? Yes. Does Sony's software correct distortion in camera? Yes. Do its JPEGs look perfectly good? Yes. Does it use the best APS-C sensor in the world? Yes. What else do you need?
"I'm not immune from liking and occasionally wanting a cool, retro buttons 'n' dials, milled, black rangefindery camera. The Pen-F looks great, and I can just imagine how nice it would feel in hand with one of those Oly/Panny lenses. All the Fujis look cool as heck. Like an M6 with a Summicron made relevant for the digi age. I get it.
"Here is the thing. The AF in the A6000 is darn near instant. Unlike every other mirrorless I've used, and it's been a few, in real life it's easily on par with what was state of the art DSLR autofocus of a couple years ago. My A6000 can track a moving, running dog. My various Leicas and Panasonics couldn't. When I go out to shoot street stuff for a few hours, I get instant focus where I want it without even thinking about it. Can I say it again? It cost $400. [They're for sale new right now for $498, and are apparently staying in the lineup. —Ed.]
"From what I can see, Sony tweaked the few things in the A6000 that would make a better experience for the shooter. The A6000 sort of clatters a bit. The shutter now has a quiet mode. The EVF on the A6000 is good enough, but apparently the new one is OLED and like the A7's. Those are great. The A6000 feels a little plasticky (unlike the original NEX-7 which felt like a tank). The new camera is supposedly all magnesium and better weather sealed. And it's all supposedly even faster and gets better battery life.
"And in about a year it will cost $600.
"So no, IBIS doesn't even cross my mind."
[Andy is a talented street shooter who has written about street photography here on TOP. —Ed.]
robert e (partial comment): "'Instead, Sony improved the autofocus speed and the video performance.' Shouldn't that sentence start with 'Kidding!'?"
Michael H: "I'm a NEX-7 owner who has been waiting for this one...I wanted improved focus (check), silent shutter (check), equivalent or better EVF (check), and IBIS (arrggh!). If the ISO performance is much improved then I won't worry about the absence of IBIS and I will buy it. If an ISO improvement doesn't allow for an extra stop or two advantage then...???"