How many stops can I expect from upgrading to A99?

Started Mar 9, 2013 | Discussions thread
seachicken2000
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Re: How many stops can I expect from upgrading to A99?
In reply to dpyy, Mar 12, 2013

dpyy wrote:

I don't really understand what seachicken2000 is saying, if given all those technical limitations the A99 performs worst than a NEX then why would anyone buy a FF camera to begin with? False advertising?

If you look at Clayton1985's point that you could use something like the 24mm f/2 on the A99, you'll see the advantage. Here, the equivalent lens in the E-mount line-up is the 16mm f/2.8.

Assuming the best case for the A99: you're shooting a landscape at infinity with no foreground elements, so you can shoot both lenses wide open, and that nothing is moving in the scene, so you can take advantage of stabilization.

The A99 lens is 1-stop faster, and in addition the A99 sensor is 2/3 stop less noisy at the same ISO, so that's 1 2/3 advantage to the A99. Furthermore, the A99 lens is being stabilized, so you can add another four and a half of stops (if you believe Sony). So now we're at 6+ stops better. Last but not least, the NEX lens is soft in the corners wide open. There's really no contest, even if you don't believe Sony on the stabilization thing.

One piece of advice I can offer is (assuming you are not already) to use RAW with Lightroom (or other software with equally capable noise reduction). It can make a big difference to the way things look at high ISO.

If size, weight and cost are not issues, then a solid choice for a low light camera has got to be the A99 (or other modern full frame DSLR) with fast primes, and a good sturdy tripod. The A99 loses out a little to some other full-frame cameras due to light loss from its pellicle mirror, but on the other hand it stabilizes everything.

If size, weight and cost are important factors, then there are compromises and trade-offs to be made, and there may be solutions involving smaller format sensors that can do well, depending on what you typically shoot.

For example if weight were a constraint, you could add a light tripod to the NEX kit and keep it about the same weight as the A99+Zeiss, and a tripod can be a game-changer in low light.

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