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Thanks so much for clearing that up, David. 

 

And now back to Geoff's favorite topic—the NEX camera system!

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Does anybody own one or two of the newer, slick-looking, mod Sigmas for the NEX system. I'm considering the 19mm f/2.8, which sell here in NYC at $199. 

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Does anybody own one or two of the newer, slick-looking, mod Sigmas for the NEX system. I'm considering the 19mm f/2.8, which sell here in NYC at $199. 

Not one of the newer ones but I do have the original one. From what I understand, the optical design remains unchanged but they have improved autofocus as well as the looks of the lens. Looks a bit more like a sony lens and less plastic looking. Optically, the original 19mm is great, nice and sharp.

 

The manual focus ring was a bit sticky so hopefully they have improved this when tweaking the case.

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You get several things with the bigger older lens - much better 200mm performance with less softness and vignetting, and much better OSS. This is what makes it better for video of course, but it also means the OSS is more effective for stills. The image is not deformed as much during OSS shifts. It's designed to keep everything looking perfect during videos. Lower distortion too. I could never afford the big one.

 

David

 

 

Received a 18-200mm Sony lens.... unfortunately it was the new version.

 

Sharpness wise, the 18-200 is very similar to the 50-210mm. I was about to take it back but thought I would give it a test today when heading over to the Lake District to see how it performed in the real world. This is what I found

 

1. The likeliehood of obtaining the best sharpness with the 18-200 seems significantly better. The autofocus is better, faster and more accurate than the 50-210.

2. With the manual focus ring being nearest the camera it meant using DMF was a lot easier. Cradle the lens with you left hand / fingers leaving your thumb to make minor adjustments. The manual focus ring for the 50-210 is on the outside and is awkward to adjust when half pressing the shutter button for DMF. I feel this is a big improvement / benefit, so easy now to make minor adjustments.

3. The optical steady stabiliser seems a hell of a lot better on this lens, so much so I'm wondering whether my 50-210 is a bit of a dud. The 18-200 really steadies the image a lot and makes it very easy to use DMF when it zooms in. Holds it very steady even at 200mm. The 50-210 bounces around still, all be it a lot less than without the stabilisation but no where near to the same extent as the 18-200.

4. Decent weight and size. When on a Nex 7 I can still fit the lens and camera into my map pocket of the jacket if it starts to rain. Normally it's attached to my backpack strap with the Capture Clip System by PeakDesign. This I also rate very highly, brilliant piece of kit.

 

Even with challenging light, low contrast early on, it came up with plenty of keepers and when the light improved it was a pleasure to use.... nice and sharp. Softens slightly on the extreme edges but not horrendously so, very acceptable. 

 

It looks like the 50-210 will be up for sale shortly!

 

David.....thanks again for your help earlier with this, much appreciated!

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Does anybody own one or two of the newer, slick-looking, mod Sigmas for the NEX system. I'm considering the 19mm f/2.8, which sell here in NYC at $199. 

Ed. I've got the old Sigma 19 and 30 and they are really good, I seriously doubt that the newer versions are going to be any better, optically anyway. And I doubt whether the focus is going to be any quicker.

 

I'm in the market for the new 60 when Sigma get their a*s in gear and release it. That said I'd like to have a play with the CZ 50.

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Yes, good to see the topic reinvigorated.

 

I believe that my copy of the 55-210 Sony zoom has a de-centred element, as I am finding it impossible to get uniform sharpness across the field of view at longer focal lengths. Currently using an old Pentax 75-150mm f4 manual focus zoom, which, in addition to providing better corner to corner sharpness, is producing higher pixel count JPGs than the Sony, Sending Sony zoom to have it looked at by official repairer - interested to know what they have to say. At the shorter focal lengths it is better than the kit zoom, maybe I expect too much of this relatively inexpensive lens!

 

The Sigma 19mm is the only auto focus lens in my possession that I can trust to produce really sharp and contrasty images,  old manual focus primes out perform the kit 16-50 with ease.

 

An additional drawback to using this non autofocus old glass is that they all suffer, to a greater or lesser extent, from CA with the digital sensor, but that's easily removed in LR.

 

I look forward to the day when Sigma or a.n.other bring out a pair of decent E fit auto focus zooms to match the quality and range of the 24-105 f4 and 70-200 f4 that I use with my Canon.

 

Despite these issues, I am still preferring the NEX 6 to 5DII for most of my photography, It's just so easy to carry around.

 

Just noticed, the images linked to my portfolio here are not mine! - Now fixed!

 

I've been processing pictures that I took recently with the Sony e-mount 55-210, and I'm noticing that, with my lens, the left side of images can be significantly softer -- when viewed at 100%, anyway -- than the right one. This is something I wasn't aware of before, probably because I haven't been looking for it. If you do take your lens in for repair, please let us know what you find out. However, I wonder if this isn't just a common characteristic of zooms of this type.

Edited by John Mitchell

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I've been processing pictures that I took recently with the Sony e-mount 55-210, and I'm noticing that, with my lens, the left side of images can be significantly softer -- when viewed at 100%, anyway -- than the right one. This is something I wasn't aware of before, probably because I haven't been looking for it. If you do take your lens in for repair, please let us know what you find out. However, I wonder if this isn't just a common characteristic of zooms of this type.

John

 

I sent my 55-210 off to an accredited Sony repairer last week, and received a call to say that they have received it. Will let you know how I get on.

 

I found, by messing around, that I could get sharpness anywhere across the field, but not uniform sharpness. Using the, non too convenient, flexible spot mode, you can move the point of focus to any point on the screen. Have you tried focusing on the left side of the image?

 

Edit - latest on lens repair. Company acknowledges that lens has a fault, spare parts ordered!

Edited by Bryan

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Also try, with the 55-210mm, turning off OSS and checking on a tripod (has to be disabled in-camera). With many of these lenses including the 50mm f/1.8, the OSS can make one side of the image or the other unsharp.

 

David

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Yes, it occurred to me that OSS might be the culprit. I'm not sure how it works exactly with Sony's IS lenses, but the lens elements must wiggle around when OSS is on. Shall try some tests with a tripod when I get a chance. Thanks for the suggestion. Have to say that I much prefer the sensor-shift type of image stabilization. It works very well with long lenses on my "old" Alpha 100.

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I'm starting to notice more noise in photos taken with my aging NEX-3 (all of three years old), specifically sky noise -- even at ISO 200 -- and increased shadow area noise at ISO 400 and above. Has anyone else experienced this with the earlier NEX's?

 

e.g. I have a current submission destined to be stuck in QC purgatory for the next month (won't get into that) by the looks of it. Before submitting, I went over each shot with the proverbial fine tooth comb. However, looking at them again, I see that I missed some sky noise (pink flecks nestled between fluffy white clouds) in one image, which might be the culprit. It was shot with the NEX-3 at ISO 200 in reasonably good light.

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I've been waiting, but I still don't see the Sony NEX-6 on Alamy's recommended camera list. Does anyone know if this is a decision they've made or has it just not happened yet?  

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I've been waiting, but I still don't see the Sony NEX-6 on Alamy's recommended camera list. Does anyone know if this is a decision they've made or has it just not happened yet?  

 

Odd that the NEX-6 isn't there. Perhaps Alamy just got sick of adding new NEX models. It's tough to keep up with camera manufacturers these days.

 

I still plan to buy the NEX-6. Can anyone think of a reason why Alamy might not like the results from this camera? All the reviews that I've read have given it high marks.

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I've been waiting, but I still don't see the Sony NEX-6 on Alamy's recommended camera list. Does anyone know if this is a decision they've made or has it just not happened yet?  

 

Odd that the NEX-6 isn't there. Perhaps Alamy just got sick of adding new NEX models. It's tough to keep up with camera manufacturers these days.

 

I still plan to buy the NEX-6. Can anyone think of a reason why Alamy might not like the results from this camera? All the reviews that I've read have given it high marks.

I've been submitting pictures from the NEX 6 for some time with no problem and before that the 5N, they both have the same sensor. I think it sometimes takes Alamy a while to update the listing.

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I've been waiting, but I still don't see the Sony NEX-6 on Alamy's recommended camera list. Does anyone know if this is a decision they've made or has it just not happened yet?  

 

Odd that the NEX-6 isn't there. Perhaps Alamy just got sick of adding new NEX models. It's tough to keep up with camera manufacturers these days.

 

I still plan to buy the NEX-6. Can anyone think of a reason why Alamy might not like the results from this camera? All the reviews that I've read have given it high marks.

I've been submitting pictures from the NEX 6 for some time with no problem and before that the 5N, they both have the same sensor. I think it sometimes takes Alamy a while to update the listing.

 

You're probably correct. I believe that the sensor used in the NEX-6 and 5-R is different than the one in the earlier 5N. The latest 16 MP sensor supposedly has pixels sensitive to both contrast and phase detect autofocus (rather than only contrast detect). The 5-R is not on the recommended list either, probably because, like the NEX-6, it is a new-ish model.

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Yes, you are right John, the NEX 6 has phase detect which seems to have made a bit of a difference to the focus speed on my CZ 24 (I think). The images from the 6 would appear indistinguishable from those from my 5N, in as much as I can tell anyway. I expect DK has made an in depth study of the two and would be able to describe any differences far better than I can. Alamy QC seem happy with both I'm pleased to say.

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Yes, you are right John, the NEX 6 has phase detect which seems to have made a bit of a difference to the focus speed on my CZ 24 (I think). The images from the 6 would appear indistinguishable from those from my 5N, in as much as I can tell anyway. I expect DK has made an in depth study of the two and would be able to describe any differences far better than I can. Alamy QC seem happy with both I'm pleased to say.

 

Good to hear. Now all I have to do is make about 60 more HuffPo sales so that I can afford to buy a NEX-6 body.

Edited by John Mitchell

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Yes, you are right John, the NEX 6 has phase detect which seems to have made a bit of a difference to the focus speed on my CZ 24 (I think). The images from the 6 would appear indistinguishable from those from my 5N, in as much as I can tell anyway. I expect DK has made an in depth study of the two and would be able to describe any differences far better than I can. Alamy QC seem happy with both I'm pleased to say.

 

Good to hear. Now all I have to do is make about 60 more HuffPo sales so that I can afford to buy a NEX-6 body.

 

I too have been successfully submitting images from my NEX-6 since I first got it at the beginning of the year. I tend to use it more than my NEX-7 because the noise control is better.

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Yes, you are right John, the NEX 6 has phase detect which seems to have made a bit of a difference to the focus speed on my CZ 24 (I think). The images from the 6 would appear indistinguishable from those from my 5N, in as much as I can tell anyway. I expect DK has made an in depth study of the two and would be able to describe any differences far better than I can. Alamy QC seem happy with both I'm pleased to say.

 

Good to hear. Now all I have to do is make about 60 more HuffPo sales so that I can afford to buy a NEX-6 body.

 

I too have been successfully submitting images from my NEX-6 since I first got it at the beginning of the year. I tend to use it more than my NEX-7 because the noise control is better.

Ed, I seem to remember that you also have the original NEX-3. Have you noticed any increase in the amount of noise at ISO 400 (and sometimes even sky noise  ISO 200) with this camera as it gets older? My NEX-3 seems to be either deteriorating or acting up in the noise department.

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Sorry, John, I lost this thread for a time. 

 

Yes, I still have an NEX-3. But to be truthful I have it sitting around unused now that I own both an NEX-6 and an NEX-7. I prefer to work with a viewfinder. Having said that, I got very used to my NEX-3 and working with the screen, and I produced some very useful images, particularly of food, with that early NEX. 

 

As far as the problems you sighted "with this camera as it gets older," goes, I just don't buy that. What is your NEX-3? Two years old? Come on! I think what you are experiencing is that screen viewing simply doesn't always work well 100% of the time in all lighting situation. Maybe David K can give us his take on this? (And didn't David or someone post about peeling the scratched screen off and replacing it? I need to do that with my NEX-3.) 

 

Oh, and you mentioned noise. Don't know your NEX workflow (I'm LR4 and then I spot and convert to jpeg in CS5), but there are lots of places to point for a noise problem other than at your camera. I had a lovely image taken with the NEX-3 of a carriage driver in Central Park cuddling his horse's head. Everything is in the sun except the horse's head. I tried to pull it out of the shadow, then using LR4 noise reduction. Round and round I went, but I could not make it work. It's an imperfect world. 

Edited by Ed Rooney

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I have/had a very popular post on our old forum for people who use or are interested in buying one of the smaller NEX system cameras. 

 

In recent months I've been using the NEX-6 more than my NEX-7, but I use both. I've skipped buying both questionable zooms that Sony offers and find myself using the Sony Zeiss 24mm f/1.8 75% or more of the time. I bought both the Sony 30mm f/3.5 macro and then the Sigma 30mm f/2.8, but  I've stopped using both of these 30's and plan to sell them; there's not enough difference in the X1.5 view between 36mm and 45mm to need both primes. And the 24 focuses to 6.5", which means it's a closeup lens if not a true macro.

 

The Sony 50mm f/1.8 is a very sharp and useful short tele. My Sony 16mm is not flexible, not great, so I'm in the market for a better wide angle. Oh, and I bought the NEX-6 because it has much better noise control at ISO 800 and ISO 1,600. 

 

Welcome to an old subject on the new forum.  :)

I too was disappointed with the performance of the 16mm Sony lens. Sony has a pretty bad reputation for NEX lens sharpness, despite their above average build quality. I can't complain too much since I bought the 5n with the 16mm and the OLED finder for $430 off CL.

 

On the plus side, adapting older MF lenses breaths new life into cheap but good glass from decades past. It's an awkward solution for a wide angle size wise, but image quality for the Samyang/Rokinon/Vivitar 14mm is very high and if you shoot full frame you can use on both systems. Also I adapted an old Zeiss Plannar I had gathering dust with a $20 adapter, bought a 200mm Mamiya screw mount lens for $25 at an antiques shop, and have had a lot of fun playing around with a CCTV lens for crazy Petvalesque effects. And I use my old Tamron adaptall 300mm f2.8 with the NEX and 5d MKII both with great results.

 

Don't know if B&H still is selling at this price but I got the two Sigma lens kit 19mm and 30mm for $200 for both including shipping!

Edited by Michael Halberstadt
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Michael, I'm waiting for the redesigned Sigma 19mm to get some positive notices and be readily available at B&H or Adorama. I have the original Sigma 30mm, but see no point in keeping it, because I will always choose the Sony Zeiss 24 over it. The view between the two, 36 or 45, is not that important when street shooting. 

Edited by Ed Rooney
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Michael, I'm waiting for the redesigned Sigma 19mm to get some positive notices and be readily available at B&H or Adorama. I have the original Sigma 30mm, but see no point in keeping it, because I will always chose the Sony Zeiss 24 over it. The view between the two, 36 or 45, is not that important when street shooting. 

Good points. Wish I had a fancy modern wide like the Zeiss 24mm for the Sony but out of my budget. For me the NEX kit is for 1) not looking like a professional yet still make professional quality photos and ii) something I can throw on my bike or take on a walk that wouldn't kill my business if it broke or got stolen. As for the new 19mm, I believe the changes are only cosmetic unless i misunderstood. Seem to recall there was going to be a new 60mm in the Sigma lineup too, but don't understand how it would compete with the faster Sony 50mm that has OSS and sells for just over $200 used however. 

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I have the Sony 50mm, and that is a very good lens . . . and it has VR. I'm totally happy with the 24 and the 50, but the Sony 16 and 30 macro are bad, and the Sigma 30 is not much better. Did you know that the 24 focus to 6.5" ?  I have to believe the newer Sigma NEX design is better. Why would they introduce a new line so soon just because it's shinier? But I'll tell you somebody should light a fire under the Sony lens department and their PR section. Don't make me come over there! Where are they, anyway? 

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Sorry, John, I lost this thread for a time. 

 

Yes, I still have an NEX-3. But to be truthful I have it sitting around unused now that I own both an NEX-6 and an NEX-7. I prefer to work with a viewfinder. Having said that, I got very used to my NEX-3 and working with the screen, and I produced some very useful images, particularly of food, with that early NEX. 

 

As far as the problems you sighted "with this camera as it gets older," goes, I just don't buy that. What is your NEX-3? Two years old? Come on! I think what you are experiencing is that screen viewing simply doesn't always work well 100% of the time in all lighting situation. Maybe David K can give us his take on this? (And didn't David or someone post about peeling the scratched screen off and replacing it? I need to do that with my NEX-3.) 

 

Oh, and you mentioned noise. Don't know your NEX workflow (I'm LR4 and then I spot and convert to jpeg in CS5), but there are lots of places to point for a noise problem other than at your camera. I had a lovely image taken with the NEX-3 of a carriage driver in Central Park cuddling his horse's head. Everything is in the sun except the horse's head. I tried to pull it out of the shadow, then using LR4 noise reduction. Round and round I went, but I could not make it work. It's an imperfect world. 

 

Thanks for the feedback. Yes, I imagine that your NEX-3 is gathering dust these days. You're right, of course, there are many possible causes of noise. I just seem to be seeing more noise at lower ISO's than I'm used to, especially in photos that I took on a recent trip to Mexico. I'm thinking /hoping that it had something to do with harsh tropical light and high air temps. I imagine that sensors, like everything else, do deteriorate over time, but the NEX is less than three years old. Currently, I'm using Sony's clunky RAW conversion software for noise reduction. It actually does an OK job most of the time. The plan is to eventually take the plunge into LR. But that will probably involve getting into more debt for a new computer and parting with my beloved Windows XP.

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"Currently, I'm using Sony's clunky RAW conversion software for noise reduction." -- John

 

It's a wonder that you get anything worthwhile with that PP system. I tried it when I first got the NEX-3 and found it just awful. David K slammed it too. Wait until you see the difference with LR4. The noise control in Lightroom is wonderful. I don't download beta programs, but maybe you should try the test period on Beta LR5? 

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