Interesting read by Thom Hogan

Started 10 months ago | Discussions thread
GaryW
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Re: Interesting read by Thom Hogan
In reply to Habs Fan27, 10 months ago

Habs Fan27 wrote:

nemist wrote:

It's very funny to read people spread these misconceptopons.

1) a-mount in not complete.

Many old Minolta lenses are not being serviced any longer. They have film coatings. The AF is often slow and loud. There are no warranty options. And they must be purchased on the used market. So the idea that the beer can is a viable option is not good for someone who wants a modern competitive system that can be serviced.

For an enthusiast, a lot of these old lenses still work pretty well, and make for a fun, if not top-end, setup.  Being able to get these lenses used means you can build up a nice setup pretty inexpensively.

Just because a-mount has some lenses does not make it a complete lens line up, i.e. where are these lenses:

...any tilt shift options (17mm, 24mm, 90mm)

big exotics

These are the lenses that are just flat out missing. There are also plenty on Minolta rebadges that need to be up updated and are no longer competitive.

The list above is just for FF lenses, and only a-mount.

I don't think Sony has the sales/money/infrastructure to make every combination.  Something exotic or T/S is just not going to happen.  Maybe it's a chicken-or-the-egg problem, but I just don't think they have a critical-mass of sales to support something too obscure.

A 50/1.8 seems like a no-brainer, although personally, I'd rather have a 35....  At any rate, the Minolta 50/1.4 or 50/1.7 probably work well enough, even if they are not ideal with newer coatings.

2) Sony has done terribly on FF bodies. They have really released two a-mount bodies (a900/a99) since 2008. The a850 is really a extremely slight rehash of the a900. And I do looooove that camera.

The higher-end cameras always have a lower refresh rate, although it does seem a bit slow for the FF A-mount cameras.

3) Using non-native lenses on a camera does not complete a system, although it can work.

It's not ideal but it does work.  Sometimes it simply has to work well enough.

Having ILC cameras like the Fuji series or NEX is great. I have used both. And I have a set of legacy lenses. I have also used LAEA adapter with NEX. It's a nice option, it's not a substitute. Aside from loss of stabilization and extra bulk, there is another couple hundred you spend on the LAEA adapter. By the way, there are four of them now…nice money scam Sony.

Did they even expect to release FF cameras back when they first released the original two adapters?  The only scam part might be that they released the EA1 first and the EA2 later -- was that planned, to get people to buy the first adapter then later get the more capable one?  Personally, I think this is a huge plus for the Sony mounts.  What would you rather people do, just do without these lenses on the Nex at all?  That wouldn't be better.  Wait until Sony reproduces the entire A-mount range in the E-mount?  Seems like that would be a crazy, huge undertaking.  The adapter is the sensible solution, to give options until more native lenses arrive.

If you're going to shoot NEX, the major selling point in big IQ in a small package. If you are using large lenses, you're negative a major strength of the system.

I don't know what your point is here.  Do you not want tele lenses for the Nex system or just not A-mount lenses to be available?  In my mind, for many lenses above 50mm or so, they aren't going to be made substantially smaller for E-mount.  For tele lenses, I think the main drawback is lack of stabilization, although this isn't necessarily a deal-breaker -- it is, however, a compromise.  Yes, you compromise a few things going with the smaller E-mount systems.  I think it's a fair tradeoff for the benefits.  A Pro might look at it as, why should I compromise?  That's fine too, that the Nex isn't intended for the pro market.

4) I primarily shot a mount for several years, and I love that system. The AF zeiss and Sony bodies are lovely. But aside from very high end options, and used lenses, you start to run out of options quick--especially if you need anything more than very standard glass.

Do you feel disappointed that Sony has put so much energy in Nex and that perhaps they have reduced work on the A-mount?  I know for years, some A-mount fans have been disappointed in the direction Sony has gone.

Here's my thought, though -- while everyone blames the lawsuit, I think Minolta was already struggling to have that "complete" system, much less maintain it.  I'm not sure that I like everything that Sony did with the A-mount, but at least they've kept it alive and given people interesting options.

5) Sony has 5 large sensor camera lines right now--aps-c a/e mount, ff a/e mount, and RX100/10/1. All interchangeable lens mounts are vastly incomplete. Sony keep building a very basic system, makes some promise, then moves on.

What do you mean?  Sony had a "lens roadmap" through most of the Nex development, and kept their promise... after modifying it slightly after their whole Thai factory was flooded.  Or is there some other promise?

While some people complained about Sony's choices of focal lengths or apertures, for the most part, it seemed to make sense to me to cover what should be the most-used focal lengths.  It makes sense to come out with a 55-210 -- this combined with the kit lens will make a "complete" system for most people.  Add in the UWA adapter for the 16mm lens, and suddenly you can cover 12mm to 210mm in a modest, not-too-expensive setup, but not pro-level.

E-mount ape-c and a-mount ape-c and FF have been shown so little attention lately.

I am sure some will attack this post and call me a hater and wish me off to other systems.

If you want a "complete system", you will be forced to go off to other brands.  I'm sure you want to stick with Sony, I just don't think Sony can become the market leader necessary to do what you want.

But I have shot Sony extensively. Both FF and crop. When Sony fits the bill, it's fabulous. The Zeiss 85 and 135 are spectacular lenses that give superb results on the a900/a99. The FE 55 1.8 is superb. The 24 1.8 is a wonderful lens. I hear very good things about the 16-50 2.8 a-mount.

So, what's the problem?  That you are forced to use the kit lens when not using these lenses?  There are a couple of "holes" in e-mount, particularly, but do you have a specific hole that isn't filled?

It's really a bummer Sony can't dedicate itself to a single target/mount. Had they consolidated all their resources to one mount, the market share would have been much better.

So, by making other cameras, you figure Sony is stretched thin?  People who buy an RX100 aren't in the market for an A-mount camera.  To focus just an A-mount might help push A-mount a bit, but they'd lose far more sales that they currently have with other cameras.

Sony never tried to truly challenge Nikon and Canon in earnest. They never stuck around, built a system, catered to different demographics, worked with many smaller camera shops,

Even before they took over A-mount, I recall a small camera shop that was really angry with Sony.  Their beef were the restrictions required for display in cases, etc., however, while I was listening, it seemed like they had similar restrictions from Canikon, but that was OK -- it was only Sony's restrictions that ticked them off.  Perhaps they felt that as a "lesser" company, Sony should be more accommodating, while Sony thinks of themselves as a premium brand, I don't know.  It seems like a lot of people have had an anti-Sony attitude for a very long time.  But back at the time of that conversation, I looked at the available "pro-sumer" or "bridge" type advanced cameras, and Sony seemed to be the most advanced, or at least had the features I appreciated the most.  I went into the camera search wanting Nikon or maybe Canon but ended up with Sony (in large part because of the responsiveness).

capitalized on Zeiss AF glass, release firmware updates, refresh lenses, etc.

Shooters can shout and make excuses, but it's extremely hard to argue with results.

It's the photograph that is the end results for me.  When I get good results, then that seems to be enough "excuse" for me.  No shouting necessary.

People will go to the best option. Photographers are no "prejudice" they want the best option for the least money.

Sure, but what system is that?  When I bought my A100, I tried again to look at Nikon, but here again, Sony seemed like the better option for less money.  Nikon had just changed their low-end camera(s?) to not have a screw mount, so few lenses were available, and the huge legacy catalog didn't apply.  That didn't seem so appealing to me as a consumer.  Maybe it's flipped in recent years and Sony is the worst deal in DSLRs, I don't know, but I think it's not correct that Sony hasn't tried to be competitive with Canikon.

I did preface by saying it was A-mount was reasonably complete. Sony will never compete with Canon or Nikon on lens system completeness. If you need tilt shift or can not make do with the Sony 70-300 G becuase it is not an F4 or the 70-200 2.8 is to big/expensive then I guess you are SOL. Sony has had to try to compete on other fronts (providing usable live view, decent video AF, Mirrorless, etc.) which may or may not be important to everyone but they seem to have their place.

Even Minolta was having a bit of trouble making a "complete" line.  Sony has had to focus on the basics.

If you are one of the very very small minority that needs that absolute highest quality lenses in ever focal length, then Sony will not work for you. I'd say most ILC cameras Sony sells are to people that don't own a single lens of very few.

I have wondered about this myself, through the  years of, "Where are the Nex lenses?" complaints.  There are a lot of calls for this lens or that lens, but if you looked at one individual, even an enthusiast, there probably are not a lot of lenses owned.  Does everyone just want every possible lens to be available just-in-case?  I suppose that would be nice to have the secure feeling that you'll never be stuck, but as a practical matter, I think few people would actually buy some of the lenses that they call for or point out as "missing".

I'm not sure how interested Sony is in the Pro market as they can probably make more money at the consumer/hobbyist level.

To compete in the Pro market requires more than the obscure lenses and accessories, but also a support network.

How many of Nikon's lenses are actually good enough to use on a D800? As sensor quality improves, Nikon and Canon are going to have issues as well as many of their lenses are not going to cut it if you want to get the most out of the sensors.

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Gary W.

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