Mark B UK wrote:
I have used the a99 for a shoot and have shot with the a77 for over a year. My other camera is the a900 so I know both systems.
I'm wondering whether to get an A99 and would appreciate answers to a few questions from Sony SLT experts:
1. Is the A99 likely to be more like a conventional DSLR or a m4/3 in terms of its susceptibility to dust etc on the sensor?
I don't think its better or worse. Some can say the non moving mirror helps to keep the dust away from the sensor and others will feel that the mirror being so close to the lens opening is going to collect more dust and since light has to go threw the translucent mirror their is even more sensitivity to dust. My own thought is the less moving parts the better your odds to keeping the dust down but you still need to be aware of your environment and what can you do to minimize dust in the camera.
I always clean my gear after a shoot I actually find it relaxing to go threw my gear and make sure its in working order. I had cameras that are 3 years old that may not look like new but work as well as the day I first shot with them.
Big item is if your at a dusty location try to keep your changing of lenses to a minimum and or try to shield the camera during a lens swap. I am good at holding the lens so the red dot for alinement is by my right thumb and I can change a lens without looking holding the camera pointed strait down so less chance of dust entering the camera. Another trick is most people don't check the rear of the lens for dust and just mount it to the camera on a normal SLR when the mirror swings up its like a little wind storm inside there and it can pull the dust into the camera and then to the back.
2. How good is the sensor-shift IS likely to be, compared with that of an Olympus OMD E-M5?
I have not tried the Olympus OMD but I hear good things about it. I think you first need to think about how you will use the camera. The m4/3 sensor is much smaller then the full frame a99 so inherently I don't think the a99 sensor can move as fast to correct for shake as the in lens IS for a much smaller sensor. But then again it does not need to expecially iff you shoot mostly wide to normal lenses. It longer lenses that need more IS control. I find the Sony system to be very good so how much additional vibration reduction to you need and will the lenses on the m4/3 have the IS control. If you want shallow depth of field then you will use a fast lens and most fast glass does not have IS then the Sony has the advantage since its built into the body any Sony lens can be stabilized
3. Am I might in thinking that only certain the lenses achieve all of the functions available on the camera? If so, which lenses are needed to preserve full functionality, and what is sacrificed by using other glass?
I think your referring to lens correction. All lenses have some issue with distortion, or ca for example and yes not all the lenses are supported yet with the a99. Having said that there is other software out there that would let you shoot in raw and apply lens corrections. One is LightRoom you can download correction tables from the Adobe user group for quite a few lenses or Adobe itself has some creates a few tables for Sony lenses.