Best camera for live music?

Started Jan 16, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Best camera for live music?
Jan 16, 2013

I am keen to find a quiet camera suited to taking stills of live music in low light without heaps of visual noise. The task is made difficult because I would like to use legacy lenses (manual focus), but with multi-focal spectacles I can't easily focus on the screen of a DSLR.

What I'd like to find is a combination of:

Low visual noise at high ISO settings

Silent or nearly silent shutter

A high quality electronic viewfinder with diopter and focus peaking

A flip-out screen that allows for shooting at waist height or lower

Large sensor, but not necessarily packed with megapixels

The options I have considered so far that are within my price range are the Sony NEX-6 and the Sony SLT-A65. The former has more legacy lens options and better performance at high ISO, while the latter feels much better in the hand, but has fewer lens options (Minolta, Sony, Takumar) and pretty terrible visual noise at high ISO settings due to the number of megapixels.

Both these have excellent EVFs which would allow me to use focus peaking and not have to annoy patrons who are behind me at a gig (which happens when I use the LCD screen to focus).

The NEX-6 seems to make a sharper click that I think would stand out if I used it during quiet periods of music, whereas the A65 seems to muffle the shutter noise.

A Sony SLT-A99 would be nice, but it is too expensive.

Does anyone have suggestions of other makes/models?

For years I have used my ageing Sony F717 for totally silent shooting (see pics at, but the sensor is so small I get way too much visual noise at 400 and 800.


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Roger Mitchell Australia Canon A80 & Sony F717

Sony Alpha NEX-6 Sony SLT-A65
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