The Sony A7r is no Leica M...

Started Dec 30, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Carbon111
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The Sony A7r is no Leica M...
Dec 30, 2013

I guess my title would be obvious to most people, but the promise of a relatively low-cost, compact, low-light-able, hi-rez wonder that would accept my M-mount glass was too much to resist and I picked up a Sony A7r (and its native 35mm prime) to try out. I was hoping to avoid the "upgrade cost" from my Leica M9 to the new M 240.

Don't misunderstand me, the A7r is an absolutely fantastic camera - with it's native glass. But I'm finding with adapted lenses its far too fiddly, and I'm not even talking about the problems with wide-angle lenses.
Part of the issue is that focus peaking is not very accurate on the A7r - it will get you in the ballpark but then you have to click a button for a magnified view to finish tweaking focus. Conversely, focus peaking has been spot-on on my Sony NEX 6 and Ricoh GXR.

There are other problems as well: Edges and corners, even with "normal" FOV glass can be unacceptably soft and is occasionally smeared. Weird reflective artifacts, even on a vanilla lens like the 50mm Cron has ruined a few shots as well. On some shots I'm seeing unusual rainbow refraction around bright specular highlights. The lens compensation app is too limited and has proved mostly a time waster. The battery life is a joke, even with wifi and image review turned off.

If the A7r had been anything like a full-frame version of the Ricoh GXR (with A12 mount) it would have been perfect. That oddball machine is such a sorely-underrated little camera!

As it stands, I'm selling my A7r and getting back on a waiting list for the M 240, but I thought I'd post this as a bit of a cautionary tale for any other Leicaphiles thinking the A7r attractive as a "second body" for their Leica glass. It *can* work with a lot of fiddling around, as I did get a lot of wonderful shots, but in the end I found the camera itself kept getting in the way of the picture-taking process.

Not trying to start a flame war or anything, just sharing my personal experience.

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Leica M Typ 240 Sony Alpha 7 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5 Leica Summicron-M 28mm f/2 ASPH Leica Summarit-M 35mm f/2.5 +13 more
Leica M Typ 240 Sony Alpha 7R
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