Some thoughts on A99 - part 1

Started Sep 14, 2012 | Discussions thread
Grevture
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It is interesting ...
In reply to copejorg1, Oct 21, 2012

copejorg1 wrote:

Grevture wrote:

My apologies, I might very well have spread misinformation here

It appears that you did not spead misinformation.  I just had a look at the A99 manual (just became available today), and Sony has indeed added an "AF On" function that can be assigned to the AF/MF button (or to the AEL button, ISO button, etc).  This is in addition to the "AF Lock" function that was an available option on the A77 and all other Sony/Minolta SLRs having the AF/MF button.

The manual didn't go into any great detail on this; but since the AF Lock functionality that was available with earlier Sony/Minolta models already simulated "AF On" functionality as it would be with the AF set to single-shot mode, I can only surmise that this new AF On function in the A99 allows the AF/MF button (or certain others) to invoke Continuous AF, as well.

I had a quick second look at the A99 at Photokina, sadly there was a distinct lack of useful subjects (moving enough) to really try it, but yes, it seem you can really get continous AF with thumb focus. Which was (and still is) a puzzling omission on the A77.

Smart move by Sony, as this (as well as Auto ISO in "M" mode, tethering, Quick-Navi, NR "Off" setting and various other features incorporated into the A99 that previously were unavailable in the Sony SLT lineup) represents the removal of yet another impediment to switching to Sony for current users of Canon and Nikon DSLRs who've gotten used to the thumb-button AF shooting technique.  Good job, Sony!  And thanks for listening!

Some might argue that some of the functions available in Canon and Nikon cameras are not that important or well implemented, but that is not an argument for omitting them. If Sony want to get customers from Canon and Nikon, they probably need to be somewhat compatible in how the cameras are used - like providing fully working thumb focus. It might appeal only to a part of the photographers, but it happen to be a part of the photographers which could find many aspects of the SLT concept alluring.

Soon I will be able to get a loaner A99 to try out, its is going to be interesting

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