Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...

Started Feb 4, 2013 | Discussions
blue_skies
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Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
Feb 4, 2013

From SAR (no rush, it is an old post):

  • "All I can say for now is that every aspect from EVF, sensor up to the AF will be changed (ok that was to be expected). I haven’t heard of any revolutionary new feature yet (like foveon sensor or whatever you imagine). While final prototypes are already out for testing you may share your wish list for the new NEX-7 successor while I am working on the real specs info."

Disclaimer - below was purely based on a quick discussion (speculation) we had here about what would make a Nex-7 replacement more interesting. THERE IS NO SUPPORT FOR SUCH THOUGHTS!!!!

OTH - you could vote for which topics are of most interest to you...

  • Image resolution: reduced from 24Mp to 20Mp, to enable larger pixels.
  • AA filter removed: to match Fuji sharpness (and have moire filter in PP). 
  • Magenta cast problem reduced, or eliminated, similar to 16Mp sensors.
  • PDAF alike the Nex-5R/6.
  • Same for Wifi - meaning plastic parts on body (for signal to get out)
  • Same for Live View - corrections being applied live. 
  • Other Nex-6' features: CIZ, iAuto+, QuickNavi control button.
  • Custom recall modes (3 or 5?)
  • NEW PROCESS NODE: it has been two years since Nex-5N and related sensors. Asic fabs have finally moved on, and a newly developed sensor for the Nex-7 may very well include the next process node. 
  • More buttons than current Nex-7 (e.g. zoom assist, C1, C2 modes).
  • New High IQ zoom lens, specifically engineered for new Nex-7. (Also, cooperation with Zeiss upcoming APS-C lenses for max performance on this sensor).
  • Default ISO up to ISO 3200, possibly even 6400.
  • Override controls to specify bounds for min-shutter, max-ISO, min-aperture, while still using iAuto/A/S/P modes (used in the custom modes).
  • Mild in-camera NR applied to RAW, (and overstating ISO).
  • Larger grip, allowing for a larger, or dual, battery, but compatible to current battery.
  • Pop-up flash rating to increase to 10 (from current 6). 
  • Dual SD card slots, allowing parallel writes, or switch A/B writes.
  • Smart hot-shoe terminal.
  • And, least likely of all, but for the holy grail: IBIS - paving the way for a FF Nex.
Also, we expect the price to increase by at least 25%, but that includes a much larger buffer size for images, larger flash size for installing apps (100Mb on Nex-6), stronger built-in flash and a larger grip. 
The body for the new Nex-7 will be physically larger than that of the current Nex-7, as it likely will be shared with the upcoming FF Nex - hence some of the features listed above (they are typically PRO/FF features). 
One suggestion made was for the E mount itself to become recessed, rather than sticking out, as is currently the case. The mount cannot be flush with the body, due the the LA-EA2 adapter, but the body can come forward by 3/4 of the metal mount itself, allowing for interior space. (And the grip will move outwards this way, giving it the larger grip). This also allows for the 'new' EVF to be deeper, and easier to view with the eye, possible displaying a larger image (and hopefully with more pixels and wider DR). 
This new body will also have reinforced support for the tripod mount (and sensor heat sink), causing large lenses to put less stress on the body. The new camera will therefore be heavier, and may use Nex-6' like plastics to offset this somewhat.
And, missing features:
  • No Video enhancements. (meaning interfaces, buttons, 4k, etc. - keep mic input, but not easy to rig with a video-rig).
  • No GPS.
  • No split-screen image that the X100S shows (using PDAF cells).
  • No weather sealing.
  • No 180 degree swivel screen.
  • No Touch Screen.

In terms of reviews, this new Nex-7 will increase low-light ISO scores (DxO mark), sharpness scores, noise levels, DR ranges, in short - it will move up on the curve against all current APS-C cameras.

  • Assuming ALL of the features listed are present, would you dump your current Nex-7 and purchase it's replacement?
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Cheers,
Henry

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couchpotato
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

Bigger, heavier and 25% more expensive!!! No, thanks. For this amount of money, I will add a bit more to get a FF NEX 9.

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blue_skies
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to couchpotato, Feb 4, 2013

couchpotato wrote:

Bigger, heavier and 25% more expensive!!! No, thanks. For this amount of money, I will add a bit more to get a FF NEX 9.

It would still share the width and height with the current model. The depth of the body increases, but the camera size with a lens mounted would not. Just imagine the body to come forward, including the grip.

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jpr2
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re: a sure deal breaker for me = decreasing res from 24Mpx to 20Mpx :(
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

OTOH an increase from 24Mpx to something like 30-36Mpx would be highly welcome

and what the heck is iAuto - a silly question maybe, as I never went out of the comfort of PASM and RAW (actually ASM, as P-mode on NEX'es seems rather cumbersome without sufficiently many external controls and UI overburdened with endless menus clicking)??

EDIT:

  • and it seems that an AUTO ISO equipped with user-settable low and high boundaries, coupled with user-settable minimal shutter speed is ​long, long overdue on N7 !!!
  • likewise with an increase of flash sync from its currently meager 1/160 sec.  ​(speaking of which - where is HSS shutter mode on NEX'es?)

jpr2

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blue_skies
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Re: re: a sure deal breaker for me = decreasing res from 24Mpx to 20Mpx :(
In reply to jpr2, Feb 4, 2013

jpr2 wrote:

OTOH an increase from 24Mpx to something like 30-36Mpx would be highly welcome

and what the heck is iAuto - a silly question maybe, as I never went out of the comfort of PASM and RAW (actually ASM, as P-mode on NEX'es seems rather cumbersome without sufficiently many external controls and UI overburdened with endless menus clicking)??

iAuto+ and Superior Auto are advancing quite fast in the Cybershot products.

The Nex-6 has iAuto+, which mainly increases the shutter speed (1/160) versus iAuto (1/60) under low-light, at least, as far as I have noticed.

Superior Auto goes quite a bit further. Check these two demo pages:

On the Nex-6, the Fn button basically does nothing in iAuto/iAuto+ mode (only AF/DMF/MF can be chosen).

EDIT:

  • and it seems that an AUTO ISO equipped with user-settable low and high boundaries, coupled with user-settable minimal shutter speed is ​long, long overdue on N7 !!!
  • likewise with an increase of flash sync from its currently meager 1/160 sec. ​(speaking of which - where is HSS shutter mode on NEX'es?)

jpr2

Yes to both.

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jpr2
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re: in other words - iAuto = JPG only :) n/t
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

jpr2

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clail
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How about Flash?
In reply to jpr2, Feb 4, 2013

We need the Wireless Flash function!!!!!!!!!!

built-in flash to trigger the off camera flash please! What's wrong with Sony? Currently 6,7, A99 and maybe RX1 needs another flash to trigger an external flash! We need a real wireless solution with ratio control built in. Period.

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DtEW
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

I was just thinking similar thoughts today.

I think it can be assumed that the next process node will be utilized.  The 16mpx Exmor is optimized and not much more can be squeezed out of it, as observed through the 5N -> 5R/6 evolution.  Sony needs a new sensor not just for the NEX/Alpha lines, but to entice Nikon/Fuji/Pentax to buy.

(But wow has Nikon gotten confusing.  D3200 uses a Nikon's own 24mpx sensor much like Sony's Exmor, and the new D5200 uses Toshiba's 24mpx chip, which is apparently better than the Sony version.  The D7200 is rumored to be getting a 24mps sensor, which one would have to presume to be the Toshiba... but rumors are just that.)

20mpx was actually the number I had in mind as well.  I think Sony has now temporally offset the 7 from the lower line NEXs to where the entire NEX line will be standarized to one sensor design, with the 7-successor getting it first for a year, and trickling-down to the others in subsequent year(s).  OCPDAF is a given.

To separate the 7-successor from the successful 6, I think it will retain the magnesium body, but also add weather sealing.*  I also suspect it will get the 6's mode knob in the same stacked configuration, but will retain Tri-Navi.  The overall design will remain the same, as the design has been well-received to the point of spawning an internal imitator (the 6).  I think it's safe to say that it will remain black.

* - Sony may also choose to introduce a weather-sealed G-zoom to be paired with the 7-successor, which will raise the kit price substantially.  But the 7 and its successor is one of those cameras that are expected to sell as many as kits and as body-only; people aren't casually buying them at a local Best Buy.  This is an enthusiast-to-prosumer targeted product.

The existence of the 6 allows Sony to push the 7-successor further toward the prosumer grade/price level.

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nzmacro
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

Guess I'm the odd one out Henry, as long as it has a decent sensor, has focus peaking and goes click !!, I'm happy mate. Take a fair bit to make me want to change to be honest, but you never know.

I would love to see a lot of the rest for other uses though. Especially faster AF, use of wide angles better, etc, etc. Oh and lenses of course.

All the best Henry and it will be interesting to see for sure.

Danny.

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seachicken2000
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

blue_skies wrote:

  • And, least likely of all, but for the holy grail: IBIS - paving the way for a FF Nex

How about this idea: the replacement for the NEX-7 is a FF NEX?

It would have a 36M pixel or higher sensor, so that an APS-C crop will have enough pixels to give a decent resolution image with current E-mount lenses.

It would also have pixel shift IBIS on crops of the sensor, or some hybrid technique that can use both the lens and sensor stabilization together.

If the FF sensor is still a little too expensive to manufacture for this model, perhaps they could introduce the technology anyway by including a larger than APS-C sensor.

I guess Sony could try to address areas where it is perceived to be lagging behind. Misrepresenting the camera's ISO would be a shame, but its competitors are doing this and gaining advantage, so perhaps they will. ISO3200 could become the new ISO6400 across the board.

IBIS is another area, but their answer could be to simply put stabilization into most E-mount lenses. I was surprised to see it in the 10-18mm, and even the 35mm. This would mean legacy lens users don't get the benefit, but from Sony's point of view this will encourage the sales of their own lenses.

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spacemn
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to seachicken2000, Feb 4, 2013

seachicken2000 wrote:

blue_skies wrote:

  • And, least likely of all, but for the holy grail: IBIS - paving the way for a FF Nex

How about this idea: the replacement for the NEX-7 is a FF NEX?

It would have a 36M pixel or higher sensor, so that an APS-C crop will have enough pixels to give a decent resolution image with current E-mount lenses.

It would also have pixel shift IBIS on crops of the sensor, or some hybrid technique that can use both the lens and sensor stabilization together.

If the FF sensor is still a little too expensive to manufacture for this model, perhaps they could introduce the technology anyway by including a larger than APS-C sensor.

I guess Sony could try to address areas where it is perceived to be lagging behind. Misrepresenting the camera's ISO would be a shame, but its competitors are doing this and gaining advantage, so perhaps they will. ISO3200 could become the new ISO6400 across the board.

IBIS is another area, but their answer could be to simply put stabilization into most E-mount lenses. I was surprised to see it in the 10-18mm, and even the 35mm. This would mean legacy lens users don't get the benefit, but from Sony's point of view this will encourage the sales of their own lenses.

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"The only thing that gets in the way of a really good photograph, is the camera"
Norman Parkinson

The FF NEX will be larger, which is okay. What is not okay is to make the NEX-7 significantly larger.

This is why it is a deal breaker for me if the next NEX-7 gets significantly bigger:

- The current form factor kick DSLR bum. The NEX cameras are one of few cameras where you can use all important controls with a single hand...impressive!

- A new generation processing etc, will get rid of any cooling problems. NEX-6 has got same processing power with no heat problems what so ever, I hope NEX-7 will get next gen processing and SW features.

- IBIS is great, but will be very expensive, instead, give the 24Mpix (yes no less) sensor a serious upgrade (make the camera world pop up their eyes again). If Sony can do some magic and increase the low light performance with one stop or more, then we will be close to FF land, and almost 2 stops better than the best m43's, while price is kept down and is slightly cheaper than the OMD. (I know maybe wishful thinking)

Other things that would make me buy the next NEX-7 in a heart beat:

- Add touchscreen

- Give the NEX-7 the Alfa and top-cybershot menu structure optimized for touch

- Make a kick ass hybrid AF system (perhaps same as the FF NEX)

Oh, and then together with the NEX-7, Sony can launch the markets most compact G-lens 24-70/2.8 and 70-200/2.8 (drawing FF image circles ofcourse) *big wink*

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GodSpeaks
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Sony needs to get off the pot
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

Sony needs to get off the pot and redesign the menus and add NEEDED features to the firmware.

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Keit ll
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to seachicken2000, Feb 4, 2013

Any successor to the 7 would have to be significantly better to interest me. If it was only allowed one extra feature it would have to be IBIS which would boost the performance of all legacy & non stabilised new lenses. A high quality NWEX ith this capability would be a total winner. It cannot have escaped Sonys attention that recently many Canikon users , looking for a versatile lightweight option , have migrated to NEX ownership & with IBIS this steady trickle would become a flood.

My one fear is that Sony will be tempted to over-price the new NEX as they have done with the RX1 & the A99 & this would halt the steady increase in NEX sales.

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sean lancaster
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to Keit ll, Feb 4, 2013

Keit ll wrote:

My one fear is that Sony will be tempted to over-price the new NEX as they have done with the RX1 & the A99 & this would halt the steady increase in NEX sales.

Heh, I actually thought the RX1 was priced correctly. I tried to get another full frame camera with a Zeiss 35/2 lens and it came out more expensive than the RX1 and it wasn't going to be as good of quality (never mind that it was going to be huge). But yeah, the A99 should have been about $2500 at release and slowly dropped from there. Sigh.

I don't mind the NEX 7 replacement getting a little larger if it means 2 batteries or 2 SDHC slots. My alternative it to go SLR/SLT and that's still going to make a larger NEX 7 replacement seem small. I really want a touch screen, but every camera maker seems to think that touching is something for amateurs. I've used a Sony NEX 5N and an RX1 and when you're shooting at f/2, you often don't want to focus and recompose because it moves the plane of focus. On the 5N, I touch where I want the focus and fire. It's blazingly fast. On the RX1, I hit a button to move the focus point and use a little button to shift it to where I want it . . . it's slow. It's so slow that you almost need to know where you going to place the kid (for example) in the photo before you approach the scene. But if Sony figures out wide angle lenses better and improves AF speed then I'll probably get the 7 replacement. And, if they overstate the ISO then more power to them. Heh.

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spacemn
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to sean lancaster, Feb 4, 2013

What is meant by "overstating ISO", is this what Olympus and Fuji are doing, ISO6400 having the same sensitivity as ISO3200 on the NEX?

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jack scholl
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

My 2 cents . . .

1.  Custom modes

2.  Improved AF/tracking, and a LOT BETTER than the 6

3.  WA sensor fix

4.  Clean up the menu system

5.  24Mp minimum sensor . . . better if possible.

6.  Body size about the same, a little bigger OK

Jack

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sean lancaster
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to spacemn, Feb 4, 2013

spacemn wrote:

What is meant by "overstating ISO", is this what Olympus and Fuji are doing, ISO6400 having the same sensitivity as ISO3200 on the NEX?

Exactly.

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jpr2
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Jack: very strong thumbs up on 1, 2 & 5
In reply to jack scholl, Feb 4, 2013

jack scholl wrote:

My 2 cents . . .

1. Custom modes

2. Improved AF/tracking, and a LOT BETTER than the 6

3. WA sensor fix

4. Clean up the menu system

5. 24Mp minimum sensor . . . better if possible.

6. Body size about the same, a little bigger OK

Jack

  • a ​complete redesign for "4"​- ​including user-selectable re-programmig of functions of all three wheels and all buttons: I'd esp. like to have a choice as to what is being activated and what cancelled/stopped when I do a 1/2-press,
  • don't care about "6" !!

jpr2

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jack scholl
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Re: Jack: very strong thumbs up on 1, 2 & 5
In reply to jpr2, Feb 4, 2013

jpr2 wrote:

jack scholl wrote:

My 2 cents . . .

1. Custom modes

2. Improved AF/tracking, and a LOT BETTER than the 6

3. WA sensor fix

4. Clean up the menu system

5. 24Mp minimum sensor . . . better if possible.

6. Body size about the same, a little bigger OK

Jack

  • a ​complete redesign for "4"​- ​including user-selectable re-programmig of functions of all three wheels and all buttons: I'd esp. like to have a choice as to what is being activated and what cancelled/stopped when I do a 1/2-press,
  • don't care about "6" !!

jpr2

Regarding #4, I never have understood why we have a dedicated Exposure Compensation button AND a dedicated (except in M) Exposure Compensation wheel (right).  Seems like a programmer fell asleep and no one checked it.  We have adjusted to it, but it sure would be nice to be able to customize these controls.

Jack

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Brian Caslis
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Re: Speculation on Nex-7 replacement...
In reply to blue_skies, Feb 4, 2013

To be honest the only things you described that are of interest to me are custom recall modes, a better lens, and improved EVF. Most of the other things you described would be negatives to me, and many don't make much sense. Why reduce pixels to 20M when you could improve the process and keep the same number but get better quality?

So, since you asked, I probably would not replace the NEX-7 with what has speculated in your post.

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