Where is the industry heading - some thoughts.

Started Mar 31, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Re: Where is the industry heading - some thoughts.
In reply to GeraldW, Mar 31, 2014

Note that the only place I used "Alpha" was in reverence to the lens mount and back flange distance.  The NEX and A series cameras use the E mount.  With the Sony mount adapters, you can use Alpha mount lenses on E mount cameras.

There has been very little activity in the Alpha mount lens line since the announcement.  Almost all the activity has been in the E mount or the FF version of E mount lenses for the A7 and A7R.

If the A77 replacement is an APS-C body with E mount, that will be very interesting.

Thanks for chiming in.

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Minolta brought the "Alpha" line with A-mount in 1985 but I believe "Maxxum" was the preferred choice in North America.

Sony took over the A-mouny in 2006 and has marketed it under Alpha brand. The E-mount was added to Sony Alpha in 2010 (however, that applied only to stills cameras, the E-mount video cameras were not marketed as Alpha).

Every E-mount stills camera has been a Sony Alpha division (Sony's ILC division as opposed to fixed lens Sony Cybershot division). Every NEX camera has the big alpha logo on the front for that reason.

The a6000, for example, is Alpha 6000. I have seen some reviewers mention: Sony Alpha a6000, but that is wrong.

Sony Alpha was previously DSLR- line (Sony Alpha DSLR-580, or shortened to a580), DSLT line (Sony Alpha SLT-55 or a55) and NEX line ( Sony Alpha NEX-5, people usually dropped Alpha).

Right now, it is Alpha 7 (or a7) with single digit implying E-mount FF body, Alpha 6000 (a6000) with four digits implying APSc E-mount) and Alpha 77 (a77) with two digits for A-mount. Whether Sony keeps the same standard for A-mount remains to be seen.

In other words, Sony appears to be in the process of dropping the extra acronyms (SLT and NEX and previously also DSLR). It is likely to market the entire ILC line under a unified brand "Alpha", also as mirrorless is destined to be the convergence approach.

The a77 replacement will be A-mount and may be called a77 II (rumors suggest that). I still expect it to have SLT, potentially one that allows a mirrorless approach as well.

As for lenses, Sony has mostly updated its A-mount lenses (although Sony Zeiss 50/1.4 Planar SSM was added a few months ago). I see the updates as potentially preparing to go mirrorless on A-mount, keeping the mirror only to support older lenses.

It is likely this transition that has Sony slow down A-mount launches. The E-mount has seen aggressive lens introductions because it is needed and the mount is already designed for mirrorless.

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