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Wednesday, 16 October 2013


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i will be procuring which ever one turns out to play best with rangefinder wides. my current lens lineup for the camera will be the contax g 28/2.8 biogon, leica m 40/2 summicron, contax g 45/2 planar, jupiter-3 50/1.5 sonnar, and rokkor 58/1.2. will probably get a 50 lux asph, 75 summarit, nikkor s 85/2 sonnar, and either the newish cv 21/1.8 or the old contax g 21/2.8 for it as well. feels like christmas.

Judging from the photo, they should have used a larger mount (after all they are bringing out a new line of lenses anyway). Be interesting to see if there are any vignetting issues.

I suspect there are some very unhappy RX-1 and may be even M-E owners right now... Canikon probably aren't very happy either...

This camera might make a an interesting collectors item (first ff mirrorless interchangeable lens camera). From a practical point of view: the camera is rather small, but the lenses are certainly not Leica m-small. Seems like a quite front-heavy combination. The last sentence I read at dpreview before closing the browser tab (having lost all interest):

...though they certainly aren't made for stealth, as both have a rather noisy shutter.

Reducing the physical size of a camera while increasing (compared to a Sony RX1r) the audible noise level doesn't really help with letting the camera "disappear".

Generally, a very exciting product. With Zeiss in the boat, the lens front should prove increasingly adequate, too, and of course those cameras will see massive use of third party lenses with adapters. Will probably prove unbeatable for highest quality, contemplative work.

It's a pity, though, that they didn't include in-body stabilization (and probably never will, due to the extremely cramped E-mount). For shooting in low light/at lower shutter speeds, cameras like the Olympus E-M1 or Pentax K-3 are actually superior if you don't need the megapixels — they lose a stop or two in ISO capability, but gain three or four by means of the stabilizer. And those cameras are comparable in size and significantly cheaper.

(So there you go, Pentax, image-stabilized, full-frame mirrorless. You said you wanted to do something unique with full-frame — here's your chance!)

Just a little addition to my comment above: the IBIS argument is of course not at all directed against the A7 in particular. I'd much rather buy an A7r than a D800E, let alone any other full frame model. It's just another way of acknowledging that smaller-sensor offerings have in the recent years become serious competitors to the supposed top-of-the-line or "professional" models, and in some respects, even leapt ahead of them.

A soberly written excellent preview assessment at

You know, I think anyone would jump at a full-frame, light and portable camera, but the cost of these seems prohibitive when you think that the only lenses that will fill the frame are so expensive - over 3000 dollars for the camera and a lens(or 3000 pounds sterling for us traditionalists, dollars and pounds seem to be the pretty much the same things when it comes to photography, regardless of the actual exchange rate) or, if you dont want to pay the extra for the lenses you can use your existing e-mount lenses on the new bodies at 10 or so megapixels...erm...what's the point in that?

And why is it that I have a 35mm film camera with perfectly reasonably sized lenses but modern 'digital full-frame' offerings are normally the size and weight of a medium-sized badger?

I must admit, I laughed when a guy pre-ordered this camera two days ago at my work...

Seems wonderful but a tad pricey (the camera not the glass) but this is admittedly not my "segment". I probably suffer from big camera bias. That said I wouldn't kick it out of my bag if it turned up there. :/

Ah the chance of using a Leica lens on a 35mm-format camera at an human price... O_o

A very impressive effort from Sony to differentiate itself from the big two, and at the same time trump their mirrorless competitors.

If they can crank a new lens range at a decent rate, it will do very well indeed.

Caveat for those thinking about replacing their Leica bodies at a third of the cost - it's highly unlikely that you'll get your Leica glass to perform as well as you expect*;

(*Not that this will stop the rush for second hand glass.)

I haven't been following the FF Sony stuff - will these lenses be usable on the APS sensored NEX stuff? That 55 is tempting on my NEX7, I'm used to a 35/75 on my RF and wouldn't mind doing the same with NEX.

Watcha doin' in Oz Mike?

[I wasn't in Australia. The announcement broadcast originated there. --Mike]

That large-diameter mount opening was way bigger than needed for the APS-C sensor, so in hindsight, we should have seen this coming.

A nice blast of competition for everyone, from high-end micro-fourthirds, to full frame dslr's. Perhaps this is why my EM1 order shipping day was changed last night from November 7th to October 17th.

Both my venerable old NEX-3 and newer NEX-6 have little silver α logos on them, so the "alpha" designation is not new. The bigger cams use the orange α. So, single digit and four digit "alphas" are E-mount, two digit "alphas" are A-mount? Just guessing ... it's all good for me. I love seeing the evolution of digital photography.

When I saw the first images of these cameras I hoped they were mere renderings, but they actually were the real thing. Oh well...

The A7R is ugly but very tempting. I have 5 Leica M lenses (21 Asph, 35 sum., 50 Sum., 90 Elm. and 135 Apo), but the Leica M is to expensive for me. As Andrea say, a chance to use Leica Lenses at FF and at a human price, great.

Bravo Sony for having the guts to bring out products like these.

Shame on Leica, Canon and Nikon.

To Mark Roberts: The NEX cameras were launched in 2010 under the Alpha brand, just look at the front of the original NEX-5 and you'll see the Alpha symbol on the top corner. I understand that the cameras divisions at Sony were merged and the new naming system reflects this. The NEX sub-brand is just being phased out. On the official Sony website, they refer to the Minolta AF mount as A-mount rather than Alpha mount. I'm not sure it was ever officially alpha-mount, rather Alpha cameras, Alpha lenses, Alpha system, but still A-mount. Even pre-NEX, it used to be called Minolta A-type mount.

Steve Jacob: The corner shading "problem", the NEX-VG900 showed that the size of the mount was not a problem. The throat of the E mount is 46.1 mm in diameter, compare this with Leica Thread Mount which has a throat diameter of 39 mm, or M mount with 44 mm. If it's not inappropriate, I'll link to a blog post I made about this "issue" a few months ago, http://www.dkloi.co.uk/?p=1086

Sebastian: Difficulty of IBIS due to "extremely cramped E-mount", sensor shift image stabilisation could easily work with the E mount since all the extra machinery goes on the back of the sensor, not in front of it. The 18mm flange-sensor distance is immaterial in this regard. I think there are other reasons why there aren't E-mount bodies with IBIS yet.

Ken Ford: FE mount lenses will work on APS-C E-mount cameras. APS-C E-mount lenses will mount on the A7(r) cameras and you have the choice of a cropped or full frame capture (with possible vignetting). The NEX 50mm/1.8 OSS is a nice lens. Why not that instead of the FE 55mm/1.8?

Not much here to look at, IMHO -- if I were to choose between these cameras and the competing Nikons, I'd go with the Nikons based on the availability of accessories and the optical viewfinders. The D800 is sharply more expensive than the Sony r model, but when you put the glass on the cameras -- the Zeiss glass on the Sonys -- I suspect the costs will be much closer, without much quality difference in the lenses.

Probably the biggest difference between the Nikon and Sonys is weight (once you get a lens on them, the difference in frontal area will not be particularly noticeable.) And the weight can be argued either way...you want a lighter system, or a well-balanced one? I prefer balance, when you're talking about a D800e-sized camera; if the choice were between a Sony and a humongous D4, I might be more inclined to go with the Sony...

Which sort of brings up the question...whatever happened to Canon?

I'd be more interested in this new system if Sony had announced a full set of non-zoom lenses for it. Not to be available at some future date but *at launch.* Given Sony's "throw a bunch of stuff at the wall and see what sticks" approach, who knows if that full set of lenses will ever materialize? What if sales don't meet expectations? In that case they'll likely just move on to yet something else. As for "full frame"...couldn't care less one way or the other.

I think Sony really, really needs to make the jump to producing glass. They've cranked out considerably more NEX bodies than lenses since the system launched, and that's a damnable imbalance. 10 more lenses by the end of 2014 would be a nice promise, but by the end of 2015? I really wish that camera manufacturers would stop putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. If they want to win over new customers, they need to give them reasons (glass) to want these cameras. This camera could be a game-changer, and if launched 4 or 6 months from now with 3 more lenses would have a better shot of being so. Instead, this system seems too consumer-minded, when this kind of product really needs to build professional support first and let the benefits float downstream.

It really makes me happy with my investment in Fuji, who in a shorter amount of time have made considerably more lenses than cameras, have filled out most of the essentials already, and who have yet to iterate on any of their camera hardware (soon to change, with the much-rumored XE-2), and instead have supported customers with new glass and by making their existing cameras better with firmware. Glass makes a system, and camera hardware is too poorly-utilized out of the box. Fuji, by making great lenses like crazy and improving the effectiveness of their cameras long after they hit market, are building a system right. I only hope Sony can take some lessons from their customer-first approaches. Because these new cameras *could* be the basis of a great system.

I have a drawer full of Contax glass that I have been holding on to for just such a camera, including the 35/2.8 and the very sweet 45/2.8 Tessar pancake. I know I am unlikely to get full res out of the 7R with some of these lenses but it will be a great starting point.

By the way Mike, the 35/2 ZF and ZE retain the contrast of the 35/2.8 CY but improve sharpness and color rendering. The richness of contrast and color rendering in this lens is breathtaking.

Bad looking camera with exciting specs. Would be a really nice smaller camera for high image quality applications that don't require the fastest AF (or Nikon or Canon native mount for that matter).

But a bit worrying that the Zeiss primes are pretty expensive -- I'd like to see a bit more explanation from Sony or Zeiss on what the advantages are compared to other lenses.

John Camp: "Which sort of brings up the question...whatever happened to Canon?"

EOS-M anyone?

In a sense I see Canon, and even Nikon, swaddled the same type of self-comforting bed of formerly successful ideas that Leica had snuggled into (and in which it's still pounding the snooze button). They seem to deny the self-evidence that the shutterbug world is (a) diminishing, and (b) largely clamoring for smaller, high-performance devices. The dslr has been refined to perfection. But it's rapidly becoming an artifact of an earlier generation.

Sony and, yes, Fujifilm are in the vanguard of photo tech pioneers today, each from different angles. Sony is delivering high-perf in form-follows-function dress while Fuji is delivering high-quality new products dressed like grandpa's shorts.

Meanwhile...we benefit!

As one of the "Australian Kids" Mike referred to (I'm the one on the right), I've been watching our video spread with a mix of delight and horror. We really just wanted to give the locals an idea of what to expect, but we seem to have inadvertently conducted a global launch event in our downstairs studio.

Almost makes me wish I had waited a year to get my D800E . . . except for the part about not having the D800E for the past year. Seriously, I love the D800E and the 24-70 f2.8 except for the size and horrendous weight, and this looks like the perfect substitute (I never shoot below f5.6). Plus, being able to dial in exposure compensation on the fly with an EVF is a treat, as I learned with the E-M5. If only I were made of money....

I have just sold my D800E and Zeiss ZF2s and ordered the A7r with a couple of lenses. Unlike John Camp the size and weight of the Nikon kit was simply too great to use it anything like as much as it deserved and so I just used my Fuji Xs. Even much of my Fuji X kit is looking at risk now. Shame the Sony is no looker though.

Daniel Oi: To be honest, I've not been hugely impressed with what I've seen out of the Sony SEL 50. It just seems rather... bland. I should pick one up and find out for myself before passing judgment, though.

The reason the new Sony/Zeiss 55 appeals more than the Sony 50 is that it might have more character and that it would be usable on a future FF body if I ever go that route. I'm concerned that SELs are an evolutionary dead end at this point, the same thing that holds me back from buying the Sony/Zeiss 24.

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