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I forgot to say when I posted about the Sigma 60 the other day. I emailed Sigma to ask whether they had any plans to make the new lenses compatible with the NEX PDAF system through firmware updates. Apparently they do not!

 

That's what I've heard too. Only the Sony lenses are compatible with the new hybrid autofocus system on the NEX-5Rand 6. Also, it doesn't appear that Sigma will be making image-stabilized NEX lenses. Too bad on both counts.

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Yes John, I agree, it is a shame. Sigma undoubtedly have the technology to produce such lenses. But I guess they are probably feeling their way into the mirrorless market rather than commit to big R and D budgets this early in the game. They seem to be more concerned with doing what they do best, and that is to produce good value, sharp, basic lenses.

 

It would be nice to have PDAF and IS, but I can manage without them. What I couldn't manage without is a corner to corner sharp lens though!

 

So, hey ho, maybe later versions will have those luxuries. I'm sure when the likes of Fuji and Sony get the mirrorless technology nailed, Sigma will follow and come up with higher spec lenses, which will cost considerably more money than their present offerings, no doubt.

 

Rich.

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Not sure if this is the place to post but....was in town today with a friend who bought a NEX 7 with kit zoom....who couldn't wait to take it out of the box ! Soon prised it out of his hands and took a couple of shots,as set from factory,straight j.pegs and loaded them onto pc an hour later.....am pretty impressed with the results,makes my GF1 a likely ebay candidate ! Was seriously looking at getting a Fuji x-pro 1 but now not so sure....without opening a can of worms....any opinions on which is the better as a general carry around/back up camera?

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Definitely "a can of worms" Martyn!

 

At the time of writing, I would have to say NEX6 with Sigma and or Zeiss lenses.

 

I have the X Pro 1, 35 and 60 lenses. There are a large number of people who are very happy with the Fuji X Trans sensor, I however, am not one of them.

 

Rich.

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Thank you Richard ! I have been looking at the Fuji+35 lens,looks pretty good and I like the reviews on its high iso/low light capabilities....something I have come to rely on with my Nikon D700....but was impressed with the Nex results and do like the tilt screen for candids.I just can't get on without a viewfinder which is why I struggle with the GF1.The only thing I was not impressed with on first handling with the NEX was the incredibly flimsy looking pop up flash !! Guess I will need to try out the Fuji as well and try to keep the worm can lid securely fastened !!! Just out of interest,what have you found with the Fuji that is a cause of concern?

Edited by Martyn

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I have a question.

 

I just ordered a Vello glass LCD screen protector for my NEX-6 from B&H Photo. I already have one on my NEX-7, and it's very good. I have a plastic Sony screen protector on my NEX-6 at the moment. It's junk and it's coming off. 

 

The question is, when I peel off the plastic Sony cover what should I use to clean the camera's basic LCD before attaching the Vello screen?

 

Thanks

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Ed, use a brillo pad :-) The glass screen protectors all seem to come with a cleaning cloth. That plus moisture (breathe on the screen) should be enough.

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Breathe on the screen, eh? Should that be Glenmorangie or will ordinary Kentucky Bourbon do? Actually that's the way I clean my lenses. 

 

Thanks, David.

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Martyn. The biggest problem(s) with the XP1, as far as I am concerned, is the poor RAW conversion support and the very slow and, more importantly, inconsistent focus. The NEX has very slow focus, but it is at least consistent in its results.

 

I do actually use the XP1 quite a lot, but I have to pick and choose my subjects. I suggest you Google "X Pro 1 watercolour effect" to see what I am talking about on the RAW issue. There are a number of (extreme) examples of this particular anomaly. An anomaly that is bloody annoying to say the least!

 

It is slightly better since adobe improved(?) the X Trans process, but not significantly.

 

It is a damn good camera but............ you wouldn't want to rely on it for everything. Depends what you specialise in possibly. I am particularly annoyed with Fuji because I have spent some 2,000 quid on body and lenses for a camera which does not deliver, and further have had to spend out on another system, i.e.. NEX in order to cover Fuji's failings.

 

The NEX system is very, very good. I have the Zeiss 24 which is  excellent and the Sigma 19, 30 and 60. But, the NEX can't match the XP1 when it comes to high ISO, in my opinion anyway.

 

Its another case of horses for courses.

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Ed, do you have Birra Morretti over there. Swig a bottle of that, breathe on the screen or lens and Bobs your Uncle, works every time. Swear by it!

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Morretti? Si, certo. Heineken owns them now. I've taken to drinking the new Heineken Light, the only light beer that has a positive beer taste.  Want proof?

 

CNEKT1

Edited by Ed Rooney

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Martyn. The biggest problem(s) with the XP1, as far as I am concerned, is the poor RAW conversion support and the very slow and, more importantly, inconsistent focus. The NEX has very slow focus, but it is at least consistent in its results.

 

I do actually use the XP1 quite a lot, but I have to pick and choose my subjects. I suggest you Google "X Pro 1 watercolour effect" to see what I am talking about on the RAW issue. There are a number of (extreme) examples of this particular anomaly. An anomaly that is bloody annoying to say the least!

 

It is slightly better since adobe improved(?) the X Trans process, but not significantly.

 

It is a damn good camera but............ you wouldn't want to rely on it for everything. Depends what you specialise in possibly. I am particularly annoyed with Fuji because I have spent some 2,000 quid on body and lenses for a camera which does not deliver, and further have had to spend out on another system, i.e.. NEX in order to cover Fuji's failings.

 

The NEX system is very, very good. I have the Zeiss 24 which is  excellent and the Sigma 19, 30 and 60. But, the NEX can't match the XP1 when it comes to high ISO, in my opinion anyway.

 

Its another case of horses for courses.

 

Funny, this is the exact opposite to what I have found ( apart from the high ISO bit ;-). I guess it depends on what you shoot. I'm a landscape, outdoor climbing as well as general stock and studio stuff type of guy and I have found it works very nicely for that.

 

The X Pro 1 has slightly slower autofocus but unlike the Nex 7, it nails it every time. the number of OOF shots I was getting with the Nex7 was becoming irritating  The shear quality of Fuji's lenses amazed me and after 2 weeks use, I sold the Nex 7, Sigma 19mm, Zeiss 24, Sony 35mm 55-210 and 18-200. The bad purple fringing on the 24mm annoyed me a little given the £850 price tag. 

 

I have the 14mm, 35mm, 60mm, 18-55 & recently the 55-200. All are very sharp and more than fast enough for me. That said, if you are a sports shooter, forget it but that applied to almost all mirrorless systems to be honest.

 

Using LR 4.4 and Beta 5 and the raws are good no major concerns. I turned the incamera noise reduction off as it tended to create a painted/watercolour effect. Yes they could still improve but more than acceptable. I found I was always reducing the resolution of Nex7 images to tighten them up. I haven't had to do that with Xpro1.

 

Like you said, excellent high ISO performance. Outperforms the 5Dmkii I have by possibly 1 stop. The quality of the 55-200 was enough for me to finally sell the Canon 100-400L. A lens I loved. The 60mm is near on perfect lens in terms of detail and bokeh. The 14mm and 35mm are both amazing as well. The 18-55mm is extremely good and provides images close to the quality of the Ziess 24mm, with no fringing.

 

Don't get me wrong, it ain't perfect. Annoying things like hunting in very low light but change it to manual and use the AE-L to focus and it hits it straight away! It sort of suggests they can make the Autofocus work. A big firmware release is due in July... maybe they will improve it further, even though it is more than manageable now. The eye sensor is overridden when the sun is shinning low behind you, makes the camera go to screen even when you eye is up against the OVF. You can set the display to view finder only to get round this. And, Batteries could last longer as well... 300 shots per battery.

 

I think what really sold it for me is their approach to lenses. They have gone all out to produce beautiful glass and this makes a big difference. The Fuji 55-200 is on a different planet compared to the Sony 55-210 or 18-200.

 

I loved the Nex 7 Tri Navi system, flip screen and size but I couldn't live with the inconsistent quality after being used to the 5dmkii. For me, the fuji has matched and in a lot of ways, beaten the 5dmkii.

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Thank you Richard ! I have been looking at the Fuji+35 lens,looks pretty good and I like the reviews on its high iso/low light capabilities....something I have come to rely on with my Nikon D700....but was impressed with the Nex results and do like the tilt screen for candids.I just can't get on without a viewfinder which is why I struggle with the GF1.The only thing I was not impressed with on first handling with the NEX was the incredibly flimsy looking pop up flash !! Guess I will need to try out the Fuji as well and try to keep the worm can lid securely fastened !!! Just out of interest,what have you found with the Fuji that is a cause of concern?

 

I wasn't intending to buy the Fuji system, the guy in Jessops convinced me to try it on the basis that if I didn't like it I would be able to return it to them within 30 days. If you are near a Jessops (not many of them now) give it a try and if you don't like it, take it back. That way you will be able to find out first hand as to whether it is something you will like!

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Many thanks Duncan and Richard,useful info...I was aware of the watercolour effect but hopefully,that will be overcome with time....but I don't want to be waiting to long for the "cure" and have a huge backlog of raw Fuji files to process ! Interesting also to learn of the Nex problems from first hand users...having had a brief play with the Nex 7,think I need to have a try with the X pro as well and take it from there. In the meantime,will continue using the GF1 as a carry around....

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No problem Martyn. Neither system is perfect (but what is :-). Here are a couple of observations from both sides.

Nex7.

1. Autofocus can be inaccurate at times, front or back focusing leaving the image soft. Sometimes you can reduce the image size to rescue sometimes not.
2. If you like UWA lenses, the Nex 7 will leave a colour cast in the corners that needs to be taken out with Cornerfix. Easy enough but it is an extra step in the processing. This adds time if you have 100's of shots which I sometimes did. If you use UWA lenses and want the Nex, look at the Nex 6. It handles them a lot better.
3. Poor noise handling over 800 ISO. I rarely shot over 800 with the Nex7 as the amount of noise mixed in with the detail seemed messy (Raw Images). The 5dmkii had very clean files and the detail didn't look grainy when you did go to 1600 ISO.
4. There are a lot more lenses available for the Nex but I found the 24mm to be the only one that was at a near professional level quality like Canon's L series. Even then, purple and green fringing was evident between f/1.8 and f/4 and was tricky to shift at times. The sony 35mm had similar issue with fringing.
5. Rubber grip falls off the Nex 7 after a while. I had mine about 8 months before it had to be repaired.
6. Loved the way you could see the effects of the settings in the view finder or on the screen in manual mode, very useful.
7. Great flip screen and good controls felt very natural to use.
8. Better EVF. Very nice but no optical option.

X Pro1

1. Autofocusing speed has been vastly improved in firmware 2 but still needs a little work.
2. Raw files have improved a lot since LR 4.3 but again, need improving to meet bayer sensor standards. You have to be careful with Clarity, Sharpening, Details and contrast controls. If you switch noise reduction off in camera and take it easy with these sliders the watercolour effect is greatly reduced and in 99% of shots, none existant.
3. Better eyecup with detection sensors inside the eyecup needed, there is no dioptric adjustment.
4. Doesn't have a flip screen, would be nice but that would takeaway from the rangefinder feel it has.
5. Focus selection buttons poorly positioned. They may be able to change this in firmware by adding custom settings, not sure. Makes it a little tricky to change focus spot while looking through the viewfinder.
6. Tripod thread off centre. Doesn't effect me greatly as I use the grip that puts it back in the centre. The grip is very nice.
7. Goes through batteries a little quicker than the Nex. I have 5 just in case when I am out on 1-2 day camping treks. They are about a £10 a peace so no hardship but it would be nice to have stronger batteries.
8. Fuji colours. The jpgs and the raw files have lovely colours and take less to process than the Nex7. Remember, go easy with the sharpening as the files are very sharp to start with. The 60mm especially. I often reduce the sharpening from 25 in LR to 10-15 with that lens.
9. Lenses are beautiful. The 18mm is good but the 18-55 is just as good at 18 so didn't bother with it but the rest are amazing lenses. I don't feel the need to change these or look for anything better. They feel like pro DSLR standard in IQ and build.
10. The camera is fun to use. By that I mean the controls are near perfect (excluding the autofocus point select). Aperture on the lens, speed on the dial, iso on the fn button and the ability to flip between OVF and EVF very easily.
11. Nearly forgot about the OVF. Very clever, use the parallax correction option and it's brilliant. Makes a big difference with some styles of shooting. See people about to walk into shot so you can capture them or miss them. The optical has two zoom strengths as well so you can see even more of what's going on around you.
12. Last but not least. Auto ISO. I often set this to auto 3200 and know that even shots at 3200 will be useable. I have uploaded some here and no issues or any rejections from this camera. My last 600 uploads are from this camera and I have processed another 500 to be uploaded soon. Brilliant low light capabilities.... silly... shouldn't be possible good :-) and better than the 5dmkii.

There we have it. Now I have wrote this down I can see why I preferred the fuji over the Nex. BUT, I did enjoy using the Nex7 and it is a very capable camera. In the end though the Fuji won out for me and I have grown to really like the retro style look which I wasn't fond of to begin with.

Edited by Duncan_Andison

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Hi Duncan,many thanks for taking the time and trouble to write all of this down,very helpful,better than many "reviews" I have read and much appreciated !

It was the Fuji that I had set my sights on in the beginning as it would suit a lot of the subjects that I shoot and would be a lot easier to travel lightly with.I do not intend it to replace the D700 but to compliment it...but the thought of taking my D700 to Indonesia again in the near future makes me want to buy a carry around sooner rather than later! As I said,having used my friends Nex 7 for a few hours,was very impressed with the handling and the results and the flip out screen is useful....but....I just have that feeling that it is still the Fuji I would be more comfortable with....and your excellent information/experience with both seems to confirm that to myself ! Hopefully the raw files will not be too much of a problem and the watercolour effect minimal...although all of my raw files are converted using Adobe dng converter and then processed in cs2. I have installed Lightroom 3 but have never really had need to use it.As to whether I would go for the zoom or the primes,not sure....am used to using just primes on the Nikon but think for the Fuji,as a carry around,the zoom would be more beneficial.

Will let you know when I make the purchase.....and apologies to all if the Nex thread has gone slightly off track !!

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I've decided to take the plunge and have upgraded to a NEX 7 and 24mm Zeiss, both bought second hand through KEH.  (Paid about $750/$850 respectively and will sell my NEX 5 eventually.)  Apologies if this has been discussed, but has anyone tried the Sony 10-18 zoom?  Luminous Landscape gave it a good review.  Thanks

Edited by Rosemary Hawkins

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I've decided to take the plunge and have upgraded to a NEX 7 and 24mm Zeiss, both bought second hand through KEH.  (Paid about $750/$850 respectively and will sell my NEX 5 eventually.)  Apologies if this has been discussed, but has anyone tried the Sony 10-18 zoom?  Luminous Landscape gave it a good review.  Thanks

 

Hi There, from what I have seen, the zoom is quite good but if you use it with a Nex 7, there will be a colour shift in the corners but not as much as a Voigtlander lens. I think it may correct this in Jpgs but not raws. There was a discussion about this on DPReview. This isn't a problem with the lens but the way the Nex7 reacts to any UWA lens. Hopefully this will help.

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Hi There, from what I have seen, the zoom is quite good but if you use it with a Nex 7, there will be a colour shift in the corners but not as much as a Voigtlander lens. I think it may correct this in Jpgs but not raws. There was a discussion about this on DPReview. This isn't a problem with the lens but the way the Nex7 reacts to any UWA lens. Hopefully this will help.

 

Thanks very much Duncan, guess I may wait on wider angle for now.

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I'm still suffering from wind-angle quality problems with what's available for the NEX system.

 

Sunday I went up to the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue. I need to get something for a writer friend's Website. I shot with the Sony Zeiss 24 (36 view) and the Sony 16 (24 view). Nothing I shot with the 16 made the cut—very disappointing. Don't bother suggesting the Sigma 19. I own the Sigma 30 and I'm underwhelmed with it. The Sony 10-18? I don't need a wide zoom and I'm not going to drop that kind of money. Thank god I still have the D700 with the 20 and the 14-24. (I plan to sell the 14-24.) 

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On a recent trip to Mexico, I experimented with Sony's UWA conversion lens (VCL-ECU1) that attaches to the 16mm pancake lens. I got some nice outdoor shots with it (see example below). However, I discovered that this attachment is not much use in low-light situations. Still, it's a good deal ($100 at B&H) for occasional wide-angle shots, and the results are adequate for Alamy if you step down to f/5.6+ and shoot in bright light. I was using it on the 14MP NEX-3. I imagine that the results wouldn't have been as good with the more demanding 24MP NEX-7.

 

 

D8GNTM.jpg

 

Pyramid of the Magician, Uxmal, Yucatan

Edited by John Mitchell

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Hi There, from what I have seen, the zoom is quite good but if you use it with a Nex 7, there will be a colour shift in the corners but not as much as a Voigtlander lens. I think it may correct this in Jpgs but not raws. There was a discussion about this on DPReview. This isn't a problem with the lens but the way the Nex7 reacts to any UWA lens. Hopefully this will help.

 

Thanks very much Duncan, guess I may wait on wider angle for now.

 

No problem, there is a programme called cornerfix that will correct it. It adds to the processing a little but not massively.... it's an option if you like using UWA. 

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I'm still suffering from wind-angle quality problems with what's available for the NEX system.

 

Sunday I went up to the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue. I need to get something for a writer friend's Website. I shot with the Sony Zeiss 24 (36 view) and the Sony 16 (24 view). Nothing I shot with the 16 made the cut—very disappointing. Don't bother suggesting the Sigma 19. I own the Sigma 30 and I'm underwhelmed with it. The Sony 10-18? I don't need a wide zoom and I'm not going to drop that kind of money. Thank god I still have the D700 with the 20 and the 14-24. (I plan to sell the 14-24.) 

 

For UWA there is always the 12mm Voigtlander.

 

I'm sure it doesn't leave a colour cast on the Nex 6 and on the 7, it can be removed with Cornerfix. Focusing is a dream for a manual lens. You set it to focus from half metre out at f/5.6 - f/8 and everything is in focus! I used it on the Nex 7 a lot and still do with the X Pro 1. It's very handy to take photos while out rock scrambling / climbing and not having to to worry about focusing... Just point and shoot! Not as expensive as the 10-18, but still not cheap at about £500 (instead f £670 for the 10-18). Adapters are about £20.

Edited by Duncan_Andison

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Ed. I'd be interested to know why you have a problem with the Sigma 19 and 30. I've been using them for some time, and they seem pretty good to me, particularly the 30.

 

Hey, I've decided I'm coming over to New York for a short stay to shoot some pictures, something I've wanted to do for a long time. I'll bring my lenses with me and you can try them.

 

Oh, and clear down that corner in your apartment for me!  :)

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I've decided to take the plunge and have upgraded to a NEX 7 and 24mm Zeiss, both bought second hand through KEH.  (Paid about $750/$850 respectively and will sell my NEX 5 eventually.)  Apologies if this has been discussed, but has anyone tried the Sony 10-18 zoom?  Luminous Landscape gave it a good review.  Thanks

 

Rosemary, just wondering why you chose the NEX-7 over the NEX-6. I've yet to use either camera, but judging from comments here and elsewhere, the NEX-6's 16 MP sensor sounds less troublesome than the NEX-7's. Also, the NEX-6 reportedly has better noise control and is not so demanding on lenses. I guess the NEX-7 probably will give you 48 MB files, which could be a plus. Still, I'm not sure what other benefits there might be in choosing the 7 over the 6. If my plans to win the lottery come through, I'll be looking to "upgrade" too at some point, most likely to the 6.

Edited by John Mitchell

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