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Author Topic: Need advice on switching to A7R ii  (Read 1244 times)

rvamos

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Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« on: March 09, 2017, 06:24:14 PM »

I am currently a long-time Nikon user - have been using the D800e for the past few years, after a succession of film and digital models.  But I have never been satisfied with the color from the Nikon digital bodies, nor fully satisfied with their lenses either.  In parallel I have been using a Leica M240 and the difference in image quality and color is staggering - t least for me.  The nikon just doesn't get much use these days.  So I'm selling all my Nikon equipment and have been thinking of either the Fuji GFX 50S, which to my mind is a little risky as it is a new system and so not well tried out yet (and possibly full of bugs) or the Sony A7Rii, about which a lot of good stuff has been said.  Why not just stick with the Leica?  I would if it had more megapixels and, especially, better low-light performance (I like to do a lot of night shots).  I am mainly a landscape photographer but need an all-around travel camera.  So my question is, how comfortable are Sony users in recommending the a7rii?  Are there any major red flags with this camera?  I heard that the lack of uncompressed RAW might be one.  I also read that the problem with the camera overheating has been solved by a firmware upgrade - is this true?  Any other image quality or usability issues I should know about?  Thanks in advance for the advice.
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Wolfman

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2017, 07:13:35 PM »

I use the a7r2 for landscape frequently and I like it a lot.....specifically for the image quality, resolution and compact body.

I think the overheating was more of a concern for video shooters and that has been improved as you said.

The negatives that most people mention is the poor battery usage ( I just carry extras ) and the huge menu. The menu can be tamed by setting up
custom buttons that puts your most used items at your fingertips.

I don't know what your color issues were with the Nikon but I like Sony's colors and they are easily tweaked if you shoot raw.

Lens choices are growing for the Sony ......especially on the wide end ( landscape ).

Best be is to rent first and then make an educated choice.
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scooby70

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2017, 07:41:59 PM »

I heard that the lack of uncompressed RAW might be one. 

I thought these cameras got uncompressed raw some time ago?
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Paul Roark

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2017, 11:39:40 PM »

I switched from M9 to Sony a7r 1 then 2.  I think the Sony is an excellent platform.  Shooting with the M9 now feels like shooting blind, and the higher pixel count of the Sony is evident.

I was a little disappointed that the Sony cover glass is too thick to allow good image quality at the edges with Leica M wides.  However the wide angles made for the Sony, in particular the 35mm f/2.8 and the Loxia 21mm are outstanding.  The Tri-Elmar works very well on it. The A7R ii is without doubt the best camera I've ever used.  With the Voigtlander VM-E adapter, the longer Leica M glass works perfectly.  My M optics I use with it are the 75mm and 135 apo.  The VM-E adapter allows me to set the infinity stop accurately.

I tried the uncompressed and went back to their compressed version.  The buffer filled too fast, and I could not see a significant difference in image quality.

Have fun.

Paul
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Jim Kasson

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2017, 11:59:16 PM »

I am currently a long-time Nikon user - have been using the D800e for the past few years, after a succession of film and digital models.  But I have never been satisfied with the color from the Nikon digital bodies, nor fully satisfied with their lenses either.  In parallel I have been using a Leica M240 and the difference in image quality and color is staggering - t least for me.  The nikon just doesn't get much use these days.  So I'm selling all my Nikon equipment and have been thinking of either the Fuji GFX 50S, which to my mind is a little risky as it is a new system and so not well tried out yet (and possibly full of bugs) or the Sony A7Rii, about which a lot of good stuff has been said.  Why not just stick with the Leica?  I would if it had more megapixels and, especially, better low-light performance (I like to do a lot of night shots).  I am mainly a landscape photographer but need an all-around travel camera.  So my question is, how comfortable are Sony users in recommending the a7rii?  Are there any major red flags with this camera?  I heard that the lack of uncompressed RAW might be one.  I also read that the problem with the camera overheating has been solved by a firmware upgrade - is this true?  Any other image quality or usability issues I should know about?  Thanks in advance for the advice.

This might help you:

http://blog.kasson.com/the-last-word/sony-a7rii-or-nikon-d810/

I am a former M240 user, though I still own the camera. I'd be happy to talk about the a7RII in that context if it interests you. I can tell you that the a7RII does not have the M240 green shadows problem:

http://blog.kasson.com/?s=m240+green+shadows

WRT overheating, the issue is way overblown for stills:

http://blog.kasson.com/?s=a7RII+self+heating

Uncompressed raw is available as an option with current a7RII FW.

Jim

mshea

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2017, 12:42:29 AM »

I have the M240 as well though, like you, I find its low-light high ISO performance to be pretty poor. I've been eyeing the A7RII for quite some time, but I'll wait until its replacement comes along. Seems to me that shouldn't be too far in the future.

Merrill
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davidgp

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2017, 02:22:14 AM »

I have the M240 as well though, like you, I find its low-light high ISO performance to be pretty poor. I've been eyeing the A7RII for quite some time, but I'll wait until its replacement comes along. Seems to me that shouldn't be too far in the future.

Last rumors say next month... But they are rumors... And Sony has a good track of keeping everything close doors (rumors sites usually publish right information... But just around a few days of the actual announcement...)

Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2017, 04:24:17 AM »

Certainly the Alpha 7 system is a very good one, if it has the lenses you need. Of course Nikon has more lenses, and I am curious why you would not be happy with Nikon lenses?

The Sony has seen a growing number of lenses lately, in native mount, from Sony, Zeiss, Voigtlander, and Tokina. Plenty to choose from.

kers

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2017, 05:28:28 AM »

... But I have never been satisfied with the color from the Nikon digital bodies, nor fully satisfied with their lenses either.  In parallel I have been using a Leica M240 and the difference in image quality and color is staggering - t least for me.....
I use a d810 body and like the color a bit better over the d800e
Always difficult to compare /talk about something hard to grasp / subjective as colour;
But would like to know:  better colour; is it the lenses, the camera/sensor or the raw developer, or a combination?

In the case of the d810 the colour of ACR gives more artefacts and stronger colours than Nikon NDX
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rvamos

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2017, 07:14:15 AM »

Thank you all for your replies.  Seems to me there is a consensus that the a7rii is a winner. My color issues with the Nikon are skin tones - way too red and very hard to correct.  Both the D2x and the D800e suffer from this.  It's probably how the processor is programmed (but I'm no expert!). Nikon glass is just not as sharp as Leica glass, especially at the edges - seems like I'm just spoiled... 

If the a7r2 replacement is close, then I think I'll wait - will probably make the price of remaining units go down and also eBay will see an influx of used ones.  Always good to spend less.  Unfortunately where I am (Brazil) renting is not an option, so I will not be able to try one out beforehand, as suggested.  Which is why I very much appreciate all the input from y'all.

Jim Kasson - when I click on the links you posted, my browser goes to the Google homepage - I would suggest you check into this as I would very much like to read your articles! ;-)
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Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2017, 09:35:30 AM »

Jim Kasson - when I click on the links you posted, my browser goes to the Google homepage - I would suggest you check into this as I would very much like to read your articles! ;-)

Works fine for me, so I think the links are not the problem?

kers

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2017, 10:18:27 AM »

....My color issues with the Nikon are skin tones - way too red and very hard to correct.  Both the D2x and the D800e suffer from this.  It's probably how the processor is programmed (but I'm no expert!). Nikon glass is just not as sharp as Leica glass, especially at the edges - seems like I'm just spoiled... 

I use Sigma Art lenses and Nikon lenses - no problems with sharpness... But i agree that some Nikon lenses have to catch up (the important but neglected 50mm standard lens for one)
about skin tones- i would choose NXD + neutral camera profile  to get relaxt skintones and also be careful not to overexpose the red channel.
But my work is mainly architecture...
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Hywel

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2017, 03:17:30 AM »

I find the A7RII to be a solid workhorse camera for landscape and people photography (which is what I do).

It has a much wider "shooting envelope" than my Hasselblad... it is capable of delivering excellent results in a very wide range of lighting and conditions.

It has flaws- the menu system is ghastly, after a year I still end up scrolling through pages and pages to find the thing I want. Eye focus only works some of the time and has to be assigned to a button rather than being always on, or on shutter half depress. Battery life isn't the greatest (conversely I only have three batteries and that does me fine for a day and a night and the next day in the mountains). And I REALLY want a fully-articulated touch screen with touch-to-PDAF focus.

What it does have is the killer combination of 42 megapixels, decent colour via my preferred workflows, in-body stablisation, acceptable viewfinder, excellent noise performance from the back illuminated sensor design. The Sony FE lenses are expensive, but in my experience range from surprisingly good (28 f/2, 24-240 zoom) through really good (35mm f/1.4, 70-200 f/2) to outstanding (55mm f/1.8, 85mm f/1.4 GM).

And when fast autofocus isn't the highest priority (eg Landscape) I find adapted lenses work just fine; I use Samyangs for astrophotography and it was nice not to have to replace my Canon mount ones.

All in all I find myself using the Sony every time in the mountains, and increasingly often in the studio. Recommended.

Cheers, Hywel
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rvamos

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2017, 05:44:37 PM »

How about experience in using Sigma Art lenses and Leica R and M lenses on the a7rii - any issues?  Any loss of sharpness/contrast due to the adapters?
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Eric Brody

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2017, 05:57:33 PM »

I suspect I may just be a bit dim, but I just do not understand the issue of "color" with different high end camera brands. I certainly understand they may be a bit different but with a Color Checker Passport or something similar, one can generate a dng profile and then with the incredible flexibility of Lightroom, Photoshop, Capture 1, one can manipulate the color of a digital file to one's heart's content.

I have a Nikon D800E, with a dng profile, and now use mostly a Fuji X T-2, also with a dng profile, made with the Color Checker. I certainly have my problems with my photography, but color difference between cameras is not one of them.
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hogloff

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2017, 07:28:44 PM »

I suspect I may just be a bit dim, but I just do not understand the issue of "color" with different high end camera brands. I certainly understand they may be a bit different but with a Color Checker Passport or something similar, one can generate a dng profile and then with the incredible flexibility of Lightroom, Photoshop, Capture 1, one can manipulate the color of a digital file to one's heart's content.

I have a Nikon D800E, with a dng profile, and now use mostly a Fuji X T-2, also with a dng profile, made with the Color Checker. I certainly have my problems with my photography, but color difference between cameras is not one of them.

Yep...getting the right profiles goes a long way.
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Msstudio

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Re: Need advice on switching to A7R ii
« Reply #16 on: March 20, 2017, 12:53:32 PM »

Coming from DSLR the Sony A7xx will feel very different. Generally I'm not a big fan of EVF but as I'm now shooting with this series cameras since they're out, the A7R II since August 2015, I have to admit they have a lot going for them. It's a very flexible system, articulating LCD is just one point here, files are great (uncompressed RAW is an option). Reliability has been great, very rarely do I have to reboot, and I've been in all kinds of weather, Ocean, Iceland, Death Valley, per cars, trains and automobiles and it all just works. My reservations are mainly: lack of dual cards for backup and dedicated focal point selector, small camera interface and general menu layout along with no custom page of frequently used adjustments and general "sensor" cleaning. Sometimes the built quality of the moving parts give me pause, but I have them now for 19month and it's a Sony not a Pro grade DSLR.
In other notes, I love the new G Master zooms and Loxias and I rarely have battery issues, shooting electronic shutter nearly exclusively I get 1200-1400 frames out of a day before I need to switch. And I love the packability along with the option of crop frame shooting and 4K video.
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