Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)

Started 7 months ago | Discussions
Lordsegan
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Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
7 months ago

So..

I have owned several Nikon DSLRs, and built up a good lens selection: 50mm, 85 1.8, 24-105 VR G, 24-70, 14-24, 70-300 Tamron, 100 Macro.

My friend has something like $20,000 of Canon lenses and convinced me to buy a Canon 5DMIII on the theory that I could borrow a lens anytime. I ended up buying a 35mm and 24-105 IS lens. NB: He has never actually let me borrow a lens. They are always "in use."

I currently own the D800, 5DMIII, and as of today, a Df.

Then I started reading more about the Sony A7r, and I panicked. This is in many ways arguably better than the Df, maybe in some ways even equal to the Df and the D800 in a single package.

Then I read This review of the Sony A7r and the panic subsided a bit. With a zoom lens, the package is really NOT MUCH smaller than the Df. Also, the contrast detect focus system sounds like it leaves a lot to be desired, especially for street photography.

So..... I am prepared to sell any of the above Cameras. I am considering selling the D800 for a D800E. Returning the Df. Selling the 5DMIII for a 6D. Buying the Sony A7r. Killing m... er... right.

My goals:

1) A good landscape camera... preferably something fairly light? I have dreams of hiking with the 14-24 and the D800, but to be honest I have never done it. I currently work 10+ hours a day in an office job and am not really in shape to hike seriously.

2) A street/social photography camera. Bonus if it has a wide enough lens to take social groups. Bonus if it has WiFi. Bonus if it is at least as small as the Df. Smaller is better.

3) A general purpose serious DSLR. With good autofocus and all the other things we buy DSLRs for.

NB: I don't shoot sports. Well, I do, but only about twice a year and not seriously.

NB2: I am a well-to-do amateur. Dual CF slots are not live or die for me.

Canon EOS 5D Canon EOS 6D Nikon D800 Nikon D800E Nikon Df Sony Alpha 7R
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chooflaki
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

If you want a good landscape camera for hiking thats light maybe a Sigma DP1m or DP2m will give you similar to D800 resolution and you can fit it in a jacket pocket.  As for the Sony A7r. I have no doubt it is a good camera but what can it do better than a FF DSLR other than save a little weight at this stage of it's development? Not much I think. I have no doubt it will be much better once their system matures in a couple of years but there may be better offerings from Nikon then.

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CFynn
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Lordsegan wrote:

So..

I have owned several Nikon DSLRs, and built up a good lens selection: 50mm, 85 1.8, 24-105 VR G, 24-70, 14-24, 70-300 Tamron, 100 Macro.

My friend has something like $20,000 of Canon lenses and convinced me to buy a Canon 5DMIII on the theory that I could borrow a lens anytime. I ended up buying a 35mm and 24-105 IS lens. NB: He has never actually let me borrow a lens. They are always "in use."

I currently own the D800, 5DMIII, and as of today, a Df.

Then I started reading more about the Sony A7r, and I panicked. This is in many ways arguably better than the Df, maybe in some ways even equal to the Df and the D800 in a single package.

Then I read This review of the Sony A7r and the panic subsided a bit. With a zoom lens, the package is really NOT MUCH smaller than the Df. Also, the contrast detect focus system sounds like it leaves a lot to be desired, especially for street photography.

So..... I am prepared to sell any of the above Cameras. I am considering selling the D800 for a D800E. Returning the Df. Selling the 5DMIII for a 6D. Buying the Sony A7r. Killing m... er... right.

My goals:

1) A good landscape camera... preferably something fairly light? I have dreams of hiking with the 14-24 and the D800, but to be honest I have never done it. I currently work 10+ hours a day in an office job and am not really in shape to hike seriously.

2) A street/social photography camera. Bonus if it has a wide enough lens to take social groups. Bonus if it has WiFi. Bonus if it is at least as small as the Df. Smaller is better.

3) A general purpose serious DSLR. With good autofocus and all the other things we buy DSLRs for.

NB: I don't shoot sports. Well, I do, but only about twice a year and not seriously.

NB2: I am a well-to-do amateur. Dual CF slots are not live or die for me.

The 5DMkIII sounds completely redundant. Running two incompatible systems gets expensive - you need two sets of lenses and means you have a lot of extra stuff to carry or deal with.

Your not going to see that much benefit switching your D800 for a D800E - so why bother?

The A7 / A7r looks like it could be a nice camera to use with short prime lenses for certain types of photography - but right now there are only a couple of native lenses available and the Nikon autofocus prime lenses that you have are not going to work very well as manual lenses on that body. I'd pass on that for now. (If you had a few good manual focus prime lenses it might be different - one those cameras with a couple of wide angle primes could make a fairly lightweight landscape system )

That leaves you with the D800 and Df which to me looks like a great combination.Df can be your general / street DSLR and the D800 for when you want more resolution for landscapes etc

If you are concerned about weight, do you really need heavy f2.8 zooms? How about lighter f/4 zooms complemented by prime lenses? Get a 28mm lens for your social groups - works well for street photography too

Last get a good pocketable compact camera with a decent size sensor for when you don't want to carry a DSLR.

Just my take on this

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Lordsegan
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to CFynn, 7 months ago

Currently thinking the following:

Sell the D800 for a D800E. -$500

Buy Nikkor 28mm G -$700

Sell 5DMIII for 6D +$1000

Keep Df. Buy Wifi dongle for Df. -$50

Use primes on the Df as my social camera. D800E for landscape stuff.

I ultimately was very impressed by the Fujifilm and Sony image quality. VERY impressed. But the idea of buying a third lens system didn't make sense to me. I also felt that the drawbacks of mirrorless are still somewhat real, although focus peaking and other little items are nice pros. I will probably someday get a mirrorless, but maybe the NEXT generation.

One reason I decided against the Fuji and Sony is that once you make them a full system and add a zoom lens, they are not any smaller in a meaningful way to me than the Df. Yes they are smaller with a 35mm, but even then not by THAT much.

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MisterHairy
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Flog the 5D and lenses and buy an a7r and an adaptor for your Nikon lenses.

You will need to be VERY picky with your selection of an adaptor, but a good one will give you image quality that surpasses even the D800E (and allow the use of really wide angle lenses with  impunity) in a small body which will not conflict with your existing kit.

Your nikon bodies will handle all of the faster paced stuff and the sony can handle the more sedate, careful work or work where precise manual focus is important (the evf plus magnification is much much better than a modern slr viewfinder).

the a7r seems to apply a high contrast tone curve to its raw data somehow (I think sony pre-cook their raw files) but beyond that, the a7r gives exceptional images and with a small lens, it does so at a very low weight.

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CFynn
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Lordsegan wrote:

Currently thinking the following:

Sell the D800 for a D800E. -$500

Add a little sharpening to D800 files and for practical purposes there really isn't that much difference from the E unless you are making huge prints that will be viewed close up. Still it's your $500.

Buy Nikkor 28mm G -$700

Nice light lens

Sell 5DMIII for 6D +$1000

Why buy a 6D? I'd Keep the D800 and Df (or the 5DMIII and get a 6D) - having both Canon and Nikon systems in the dame format rarely makes much sense.

Keep Df. Buy Wifi dongle for Df. -$50

Use primes on the Df as my social camera. D800E for landscape stuff.

Makes sense

I ultimately was very impressed by the Fujifilm and Sony image quality. VERY impressed. But the idea of buying a third lens system didn't make sense to me. I also felt that the drawbacks of mirrorless are still somewhat real, although focus peaking and other little items are nice pros. I will probably someday get a mirrorless, but maybe the NEXT generation.

One reason I decided against the Fuji and Sony is that once you make them a full system and add a zoom lens, they are not any smaller in a meaningful way to me than the Df. Yes they are smaller with a 35mm, but even then not by THAT much.

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brightcolours
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So....
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Lordsegan wrote:

So..

I have owned several Nikon DSLRs, and built up a good lens selection: 50mm, 85 1.8, 24-105 VR G, 24-70, 14-24, 70-300 Tamron, 100 Macro.

My friend has something like $20,000 of Canon lenses and convinced me to buy a Canon 5DMIII on the theory that I could borrow a lens anytime. I ended up buying a 35mm and 24-105 IS lens. NB: He has never actually let me borrow a lens. They are always "in use."

I currently own the D800, 5DMIII, and as of today, a Df.

So why did you buy that Df?

Then I started reading more about the Sony A7r, and I panicked. This is in many ways arguably better than the Df, maybe in some ways even equal to the Df and the D800 in a single package.

So for whatever reason (bad ergonomics, EVF.... soso AF) you find the A7r to be better than that Df.

Then I read This review of the Sony A7r and the panic subsided a bit. With a zoom lens, the package is really NOT MUCH smaller than the Df. Also, the contrast detect focus system sounds like it leaves a lot to be desired, especially for street photography.

So now you don't think it is better?

So..... I am prepared to sell any of the above Cameras. I am considering selling the D800 for a D800E. Returning the Df. Selling the 5DMIII for a 6D. Buying the Sony A7r. Killing m... er... right.

So now you are prepared to sell the awesome 5D mk III, D800, Df, for a camera of which you listed only serious downsides?

My goals:

1) A good landscape camera... preferably something fairly light? I have dreams of hiking with the 14-24 and the D800, but to be honest I have never done it. I currently work 10+ hours a day in an office job and am not really in shape to hike seriously.

So you want a camera for hiking and you never (find time to) hike? And you think the A7r will have a light and compact 14-24mm competitor?

2) A street/social photography camera. Bonus if it has a wide enough lens to take social groups. Bonus if it has WiFi. Bonus if it is at least as small as the Df. Smaller is better.

So... at least the A7r has an (expensive) 35mm Zeiss. Good for street photography. But then again, so does the 5D mk III. So... you find WiFi a bonus. I do too, for using my EOS 6D with the EOS Remote app for that camera for iOS and Android. Remote live view for the 6D, nice! So... why do YOU find WiFi a bonus?

3) A general purpose serious DSLR. With good autofocus and all the other things we buy DSLRs for.

So.... the A7r is not a DSLR. Not a serious DSLR. With not the greatest of AF systems. And no OVF, which we buy DSLRs for.

NB: I don't shoot sports. Well, I do, but only about twice a year and not seriously.

NB2: I am a well-to-do amateur. Dual CF slots are not live or die for me.

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brightcolours
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to MisterHairy, 7 months ago

MisterHairy wrote:

Flog the 5D and lenses and buy an a7r and an adaptor for your Nikon lenses.

You will need to be VERY picky with your selection of an adaptor, but a good one will give you image quality that surpasses even the D800E (and allow the use of really wide angle lenses with impunity) in a small body which will not conflict with your existing kit.

Your nikon bodies will handle all of the faster paced stuff and the sony can handle the more sedate, careful work or work where precise manual focus is important (the evf plus magnification is much much better than a modern slr viewfinder).

the a7r seems to apply a high contrast tone curve to its raw data somehow (I think sony pre-cook their raw files) but beyond that, the a7r gives exceptional images and with a small lens, it does so at a very low weight.

If they would apply a high contrast tonal curve to the RAW data, that would mean that the A7r will have unusually low dynamic range in its RAW data.

More likely is that it is a RAW conversion thing you have seen.

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wisep01
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

You read a review of the A7r on Gizmodo, a site that recently published a widely lampooned piece on the death of the DSLR and panic? Ubiquitous on the site are pieces by mentally pre-pubescent authors looking to snag cheap clicks. It is one step removed from a sensationalistic yellow-journalistic piece of tabloid drivel, and its content is as appealing to the intellect as a comb is to someone with alopecia universalis.

There is absolutely no merit to procuring a d800e over a d800 if you already own the latter, and from what I've read, the 6D is a shell of the camera it should have been. A rat on a wheel of conspicuous consumption never moves forward no matter how earnestly it runs.

If you've compulsively bought cameras to chase some impossible dream, and the pursuit has left you somehow empty, disillusioned, and bereft of meaning, you likely need help of a kind this forum cannot provide.

You need to ask the right questions before you can find the right answers. Those are my impressions.

Good luck with your quest. You may need it in spades.

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MisterHairy
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to brightcolours, 7 months ago

brightcolours wrote:

MisterHairy wrote:

Flog the 5D and lenses and buy an a7r and an adaptor for your Nikon lenses.

You will need to be VERY picky with your selection of an adaptor, but a good one will give you image quality that surpasses even the D800E (and allow the use of really wide angle lenses with impunity) in a small body which will not conflict with your existing kit.

Your nikon bodies will handle all of the faster paced stuff and the sony can handle the more sedate, careful work or work where precise manual focus is important (the evf plus magnification is much much better than a modern slr viewfinder).

the a7r seems to apply a high contrast tone curve to its raw data somehow (I think sony pre-cook their raw files) but beyond that, the a7r gives exceptional images and with a small lens, it does so at a very low weight.

If they would apply a high contrast tonal curve to the RAW data, that would mean that the A7r will have unusually low dynamic range in its RAW data.

More likely is that it is a RAW conversion thing you have seen.

I would tend to agree but both Lightroom and Sony's own (crap) software give the same result and so do the out of camera jpegs with the flattest curve possible. After 18 months or so of looking at D800E files, this is the only real disappointment with the a7r. "Fixing" the unnecessarily deep shadows does indeed bring out the noise. 2/3 stop EC helps, at the risk of some blown highlights. It's like going back to bloody jpeg shooting.

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arab_ninja
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Looks like we're in the same boat! Except I have the 800e.

Im a nikon shooter to begin with, but needed the 17mm tse. Then i found myself liking the new 5d3 autofocus system, plus i would admit the 5d3 is a better general purpose camera (than the 800e).

Now i bought myself a df and im in your dilemma.

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InTheMist
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

First, try to control yourself! 

Secondly, I'm similar to you in that I shoot shorts a few times a year, intensively. In that case, i put the D800 (unfortunately, I don't have an E) in DX mode with a grip populated with AA batteries for that nearly 6FPS. Otherwise, I shoot a LOT of landscape and some people photography.  I own just about all the Nikkors that I need, only hoping to add a macro soon.

My controversial opinion is that the perfect storm of full-frame nikons that focus fast, start immediately and use your Nikkors is a Dƒ and D800E for people like us.

You obviously have very high standards in cameras. I own, and have shot extensively with mirrorless and I'm always disappointed by the speed of starting and the focusing ability.  To put it bluntly, I miss shots with mirrorless that I know I would have gotten with a proper mirror.  When they hit, usually they look awesome.  (I'm a fan of the Fuji rendering)

So in summary, dump the Canons while you can still get a good price, and forget the mirrorless.  If you want small(ish) and light, take the Dƒ and shoot primes (I recommend the Sigma 35/1.4) or use the cheap kit 24-85 f3.5-4.5G, which I prefer over the 24-120 F4.  I've used this stuff and I've reported on them extensively  on my blog.

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cosmonaut
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

The a7R isn't good enough for a do everything camera. Mirrorless technology just hasn't progressed enough to really to compete with action shots and moving targets. IMO you would be better off with the D800 and maybe the a7 as a casual easy carry.

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user_name
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In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

I think there are issues with the Sony that need time to be ironed out (probably with firmware) and new issues not yet undiscovered.

Sony is new to the FX world with the A7 and I would wait a little to see where they really stand before committing to a product that has not yet had a chance to mature a little more.

However, that is me.  If you have money to burn and don't mind the smell of burning flesh from being an early adopter - go for it!  They need volunteers.

The thing is, the Sony A7 and A7r will not go up in price over time, so unless there is some significant need to fill right now - wait or rent a Leica or something.

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reginalddwight
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You need GAS-X (Serious response)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

You suffer from extreme G.A.S. and need GAS-X....STAT!

Reading the OP, I am at a loss for words.

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MisterHairy
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to cosmonaut, 7 months ago

cosmonaut wrote:

The a7R isn't good enough for a do everything camera. Mirrorless technology just hasn't progressed enough to really to compete with action shots and moving targets. IMO you would be better off with the D800 and maybe the a7 as a casual easy carry.

Fully agree, but if you enjoy using old manual focus lenses, it is an absolute boon. Probably the best option currently available.

As much as I hate the a7r's (lack of) weight and leisurely operation, when paired with an AI-s or ZF.2 lens, there is currently nothing to touch it in terms of IQ or ease of precise focusing. It is a bit of a stopgap camera, but in the absence of a Nikon mirrorless F mount full 35mm camera, Sony got my money this time.

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Simon Garrett
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A serious question to your serious thread
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Lordsegan wrote:

I currently own the D800, 5DMIII, and as of today, a Df.

Then I started reading more about the Sony A7r, and I panicked. This is in many ways arguably better than the Df, maybe in some ways even equal to the Df and the D800 in a single package.

Is the important issue for you merely to own a camera with the cachet of being "best" by some measure or other?

All the cameras you own are very high quality (with largely overlapping capabilities - one might question why you need all three), and now you're panicking because there might be another camera of high quality that you don't own?

If owning cameras is the imporant thing for you, then yes - go ahead and get the Sony and a load of lenses.  Buy everything that comes out, and then you can be sure of owning the best!

If the issue is to have at least one capable, high-quality, leading-edge camera - then put that credit card down and walk away.

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Alpha Tech
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Re: Help me! I have 3 FF cameras, Nikon and Canon, and then comes Sony...?? (Serious thread)
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

I understand your fascination with camera technology. There are so many good cameras right now that owning just a couple models still does not provide every desirable feature.

For hiking I suggest buying the A7R, especially considering your comment about not being in shape. I have carried heavy equipment, such as a D3 and 14-24, up mountains and on long hikes. I would never do that now. The extra weight from heavy DSLR equipment results in additional fatigue and water consumption.

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Grig
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Re: You need GAS-X (Serious response)
In reply to reginalddwight, 7 months ago

reginalddwight wrote:

You suffer from extreme G.A.S. and need GAS-X....STAT!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:GreyCat/Gear_Acquisition_Syndrome

At least half of DPR readers suffer this... Including myself in the near past... LOL...

For OP - leave D800 and Df, sell the rest and go to Hawaii!!!

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GearGuru
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Sounds like a serious case of G.A.S
In reply to Lordsegan, 7 months ago

Sounds like a serious case of G.A.S (Gear Aquisition Syndrome)

I think you are too focused on gear and not enough on photography.

I would recommend pairing your equipment down. You already have a D800 and nice glass for it. I would ditch the Canon gear and either keep your DF or sell it too and pick up a Fuji X-E2 with just a couple lenses. The Fuji is great and small and really fun to use. It's a nice compliment to the larger DSLR.

Then, with all the money left over after that, I'd recommend signing up for a photography workshop through Santa Fe Workshops and find an instructor that will both teach you something new and inspire creativity.

Then you can put all that sweet gear to use.

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