Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r

Started 9 months ago | Discussions
Erik Magnuson
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to GaryW, 9 months ago

GaryW wrote:

Why would users who know these obvious things need to read a review?

Because they want affirmation that they made the right choice and everyone else agrees.

The raw compression issue doesn't affect everything, all of the time, so one could want 36mp and still deal with this occasional irritation.

Sometimes it becomes one of those things you can't unsee. Once you know it's there and what it looks like, those "occasions" become more frequent.

Everything is a compromise - Thom was addressing why he felt A7R was not ultimate in FF IQ. Just two minor tweaks (true 14-bit raw and a smoother shutter) and it would have equaled the D800E for a noticeably lower price.

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Erik Magnuson
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Jabez02, 9 months ago

Jabez02 wrote:

Erik, it depends upon the target audience.

Exactly - what's important enough to be mentioned and what's not depends on who the author thinks will read it.  It's another form of unavoidable bias.

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Thoughtful post.......
In reply to dbm305, 9 months ago

You are correct.  The D800E is a better camera than the A7R.  The question is - At what cost?

In many ways my 5D3 is a better camera than my RX1.

Guess which camera I shot most often with?

Cameras are used and owned in a very personal  context.....

No question that I would use an A7R more than a superior D800E and that makes it a much better value on top of being more usable.

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Erik Magnuson
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Tim Devine, 9 months ago

Tim Devine wrote:

DxO makes DxO Optics and DxO Optics Pro. They aren't theory, they are actual raw converters, not so unlike ACR/LR.

Does DxO guarantee that DxO Optics Pro can deliver the full DxOMark sensor DR to an image file?  Of course not: for one thing DxOMark DR is only based on grey, not colors.

DxO profiles the lenses with each camera and creates profiles for the lenses and the cameras. If anything, I think DxO was gathering all this data for use in their raw software and they decided to start the whole DxOMark thing to put that data to other uses.

Yes, but what can be measured with DxO Analyzer is not necessarily going to apply to what DxO raw conversions can do.  Just like what's measured by EPA for fuel economy (back calculated from emissions) does not mean you will get that mileage.

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Tim Devine
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Erik Magnuson, 9 months ago

So the net of this conversation is that DxO Analyzer is flawed in that it doesn't mimic what might be realistic if someone used an actual raw converter. To which you gave ACR/Lightroom as an example (since Thom appeared to be using it), even though it may or may not represent what might be possible if you look at the gamut of raw conversion software that is available.

I will go so far as to say that Thom believes that based on his experience with the carmeras and ACR, that ISO 200 is the optimal ISO.  I'm just not sure that's any more "real" than DxO's measured data.  ACR would be one datapoint, and it would be good to have someone corroborate Thom's findings even with ACR.  I don't use ACR or Lightroom, so it's something I can't personally do.

I find my a7R performance better at ISO 100, but who knows...

-Tim

Erik Magnuson wrote:

Tim Devine wrote:

DxO makes DxO Optics and DxO Optics Pro. They aren't theory, they are actual raw converters, not so unlike ACR/LR.

Does DxO guarantee that DxO Optics Pro can deliver the full DxOMark sensor DR to an image file? Of course not: for one thing DxOMark DR is only based on grey, not colors.

DxO profiles the lenses with each camera and creates profiles for the lenses and the cameras. If anything, I think DxO was gathering all this data for use in their raw software and they decided to start the whole DxOMark thing to put that data to other uses.

Yes, but what can be measured with DxO Analyzer is not necessarily going to apply to what DxO raw conversions can do. Just like what's measured by EPA for fuel economy (back calculated from emissions) does not mean you will get that mileage.

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Erik Magnuson
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Tim Devine, 9 months ago

Tim Devine wrote:

So the net of this conversation is that DxO Analyzer is flawed in that it doesn't mimic what might be realistic if someone used an actual raw converter.

Or that it's definition of DR is not precisely what a photographer would consider useful DR.   Or it's possible that Thom was using RawDigger's analysis of A7 raw files which may define DR using different quality thresholds than DxO.

I will go so far as to say that Thom believes that based on his experience with the carmeras and ACR, that ISO 200 is the optimal ISO.

Given so many potential variables (of which DR is only one), "optimal" is inherently subjective.  It would be useful if Thom elaborated why he thinks ISO 200 is optimal.

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Tim Devine
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Erik Magnuson, 9 months ago

Agreed.

Erik Magnuson wrote:

Tim Devine wrote:

So the net of this conversation is that DxO Analyzer is flawed in that it doesn't mimic what might be realistic if someone used an actual raw converter.

Or that it's definition of DR is not precisely what a photographer would consider useful DR. Or it's possible that Thom was using RawDigger's analysis of A7 raw files which may define DR using different quality thresholds than DxO.

I will go so far as to say that Thom believes that based on his experience with the carmeras and ACR, that ISO 200 is the optimal ISO.

Given so many potential variables (of which DR is only one), "optimal" is inherently subjective. It would be useful if Thom elaborated why he thinks ISO 200 is optimal.

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Re: I don't think he is wrong, exactly
In reply to tex, 9 months ago

tex wrote:

So it is here: comparisons against DSLR's are not entirely appropriate, any more than comparing them to m43 format. The difficulty is, there really isn't a populated object class for these cameras----there isn't anything to compare them to. Right now they are black swans.

It's not a comparison to the DSLR, it's a commentary about the comparison to the DSLR. When Gizmodo runs articles titles like "Why the DSLR is Dead" etc etc, then the current state of the discussion is fair game. An experienced shooter knows the difference, but you can't talk about "serious mirrorless" without running into "Is it as good as DSLR?"... even if that question has less meaning than it seems that it does.

Or to put it another way, if Canon/Nikon are 80% of the market (in NA at least) then why shouldn't the A7/A7r be compared to DSLR's. As a sales effort, if it doesn't have something more to give than what people already know, then why should it exist? E.G., how can one talk about the benefits of the A7r without spelling out exactly how it's better than a D800? Hence, the comparisons are unavoidable and valid, even if they can lead the conversation astray sometimes.

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tomtom50
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Horshack, 9 months ago

Terrific review.

The slowness relative to a DSLR is understandable - a trade-off one might accept for compactness.

Artifacts due to non-optional lossy RAW compression? Shutter blur? Inexcusable on a high-end camera like the a7r.

Not so troubling on the a7. No shutter bounce and since it is inexpensive for FF the RAW issue is overlookable although Sony should fix it ASAP nonetheless.

And Thom Hogan is not a Nikon fanboy. His carry everywhere camera is an R100 and his criticisms of Nikon are pretty harsh. He prefers m43 to Nex because it has a better lens line... And he is right.

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Jeff Kott
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Re: ISO 200?
In reply to Paul Richman, 9 months ago

Paul Richman wrote:

Interesting and well written article. Not as "flamey" as I had expected.

The one thing new and surprising to me was his statement that ISO 200 is the optimal ISO setting, except for long exposures. Is that documented elsewhere? Do you agree?

I sent Thom and email today asking him to explain. IF I hear from him I'll report back.

Jeff Kott

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captura
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to osv, 9 months ago

osv wrote:

captura wrote:

Horshack wrote:

http://www.sansmirror.com/cameras/a-note-about-camera-reviews/sony-nex-camera-reviews/sony-a7-and-a7r-review.html

Thom Hogan has been dumping on Sony for some time now. He has become very much of an M43 fanboy.

10 minutes of my life that i'll never get back, lol...

he very briefly attempts to compare the 6d/610 to the a7, but nowhere in the review does he mention evf focusing versus ovf focusing?? he ignores one of the biggest reasons for going with these sony cameras.

he claims to have used the a7 for months... how could he not know how to use the camera, after handling it for that long? maybe he just never uses manual focus? he doesn't understand basic camera operation; probably because he's a blogger, not a photographer.

the phrase "d800e" never gets mentioned in the review, but he uses a7r vs. d800 in the same sentence... does he not understand that the a7r sensor setup compares directly with the d800e, not the d800? does he even know that there is such a thing as a d800e?

unfortunately he's not alone in his incompetence...

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Yes, he seems a shadow of his former self; am a right about that? Strong anti-Sony bias.

BTW I recall reading that the Nikon D600 and D610 use the same Sony sensor as the A7.

(Not in here, but this is more Rockwell.)

‎‎http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:mDj_zAZ7HMUJ:kenrockwell.com/nikon/d610.htm+&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=ca&client=firefox-a

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captura
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to blue_skies, 9 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

LouMeluso wrote:

I'm not sure how one can construe Mr. Hogan's review as "dumping". He basically is repeating what has been discovered about the cameras by a number of testers and added his own user opinions and images. Seems like a fair way to approach it. I would consider his user opinions quite experienced and informed.

To begin replying to this thread with immediate name calling (fanboy-as despicable a word if there ever was one) is not only disrespectful of Mr. Hogan but not conducive to any useful discussion on this thread.

Did you perhaps mean this as a response to Captura's message?

You posted your response wrong then.

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Lou might not be familiar with the enthusiasm that was displayed by Mr. Hogan in a report a few months ago, belittling the Sony cameras in favor M43, in particular the E-M1. He was another one of those who had declared that the A7/r suffered from Shutter Shock, when not a single shred of evidence of that has ever been presented. It looked like a blatant attempt to cast serious aspersion upon the A7/r cameras. And the usual M43 fanboys jumped right into this forum and the battle raged for several days.

Things are much quieter now and I hope they stay that way.

Steve

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LouMeluso
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to captura, 9 months ago

Lou might not be familiar with the enthusiasm that was displayed by Mr. Hogan in a report a few months ago, belittling the Sony cameras in favor M43, in particular the E-M1. He was another one of those who had declared that the A7/r suffered from Shutter Shock, when not a single shred of evidence of that has ever been presented. It looked like a blatant attempt to cast serious aspersion upon the A7/r cameras. And the usual M43 fanboys jumped right into this forum and the battle raged for several days.

Things are much quieter now and I hope they stay that way.

Steve

Hi Steve:

You are right I did not read previous opinions from Mr. Hogan. Nor would it change my opinion if I had. I don't understand the defensive stance members have if they discover someone has an opinion that differs from their own. Mr. Hogan has an opinion expressed in this review. I happen to agree with his assessment but I didn't need his agreement to purchase the A7 camera which, BTW, he recommends. Don't we all have bias? Some things we like and some we don't. Mr. Hogan is not allowed to have personal likes and dislikes? He should be the target of name calling or worse because of it? I say no! In the remote chance he had some "secret, hidden agenda" to "cast dispersion" on Sony products....so what? In any case, I got no sense of any of that from this review.

I don't understand the lack of fraternity and comradeship, from some here, that would allow members to freely feel personally affronted and devolve to name calling of reviewer's or even forum members, such as the correspondent directly above, with impunity. I'm shocked and dismayed by the lack of decorum and collegiality in this forum.

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Waardij
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to LouMeluso, 9 months ago

I removed the text written here. to everyone its own.

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captura
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to LouMeluso, 9 months ago

LouMeluso wrote:

Lou might not be familiar with the enthusiasm that was displayed by Mr. Hogan in a report a few months ago, belittling the Sony cameras in favor M43, in particular the E-M1. He was another one of those who had declared that the A7/r suffered from Shutter Shock, when not a single shred of evidence of that has ever been presented. It looked like a blatant attempt to cast serious aspersion upon the A7/r cameras. And the usual M43 fanboys jumped right into this forum and the battle raged for several days.

Things are much quieter now and I hope they stay that way.

Steve

Hi Steve:

You are right I did not read previous opinions from Mr. Hogan. Nor would it change my opinion if I had. I don't understand the defensive stance members have if they discover someone has an opinion that differs from their own. Mr. Hogan has an opinion expressed in this review. I happen to agree with his assessment but I didn't need his agreement to purchase the A7 camera which, BTW, he recommends. Don't we all have bias? Some things we like and some we don't. Mr. Hogan is not allowed to have personal likes and dislikes? He should be the target of name calling or worse because of it? I say no! In the remote chance he had some "secret, hidden agenda" to "cast dispersion" on Sony products....so what? In any case, I got no sense of any of that from this review.

I don't understand the lack of fraternity and comradeship, from some here, that would allow members to freely feel personally affronted and devolve to name calling of reviewer's or even forum members, such as the correspondent directly above, with impunity. I'm shocked and dismayed by the lack of decorum and collegiality in this forum.

You have a point there, Lou. There seems to be a pre-existing consensus here amongst the regular members of this forum about Mr. Thom's apparent M43 boosterism and scorn of comparable Sony products.

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buellom
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Re: Thom Hogan's review - nothing really new, but:
In reply to Horshack, 9 months ago

It shows that Sony is not yet there where they want to be. As I stated before these cameras are not yet mature products and it seems not that easy to get there.

Sony has terrefic sensors but indeed what is the benefit of a 36MP sensor when the surroundings make it very hard to get these pixel to work.

But the most annoynig aspect is that Sony cooks the raws. True, in most cases this doesn't matter. But it's the approach: What if they starting cooking the raws even more in future cameras? It's not what I want and my guess is most people who are looking for a high resolution landscape camera aren't either.

The decision to cook raws is for me a sign that Sony isn't actually going in the right direction. A show stopper.

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GaryW
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to Erik Magnuson, 9 months ago

Erik Magnuson wrote:

GaryW wrote:

Why would users who know these obvious things need to read a review?

Because they want affirmation that they made the right choice and everyone else agrees.

Seems reasonable.  

The raw compression issue doesn't affect everything, all of the time, so one could want 36mp and still deal with this occasional irritation.

Sometimes it becomes one of those things you can't unsee. Once you know it's there and what it looks like, those "occasions" become more frequent.

What if Sony doesn't resolve this?  What are the options?  From earlier discussions, this feels like a RAW processing problem as much as a Sony one.  As in, where there's been a loss of information, the result should be dithered, not displayed as a checkerboard pattern.

Everything is a compromise - Thom was addressing why he felt A7R was not ultimate in FF IQ. Just two minor tweaks (true 14-bit raw and a smoother shutter) and it would have equaled the D800E for a noticeably lower price.

That sounds reasonable.

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GaryW
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Re: Thom Hogan's review - nothing really new, but:
In reply to buellom, 9 months ago

buellom wrote:

It shows that Sony is not yet there where they want to be. As I stated before these cameras are not yet mature products and it seems not that easy to get there.

Sony has terrefic sensors but indeed what is the benefit of a 36MP sensor when the surroundings make it very hard to get these pixel to work.

The worst problem, at least for me, would be simply having to be more careful hand-holding.  With more resolution it would be harder to not introduce motion blur.  If you mean the "shutter shock", this effect seems to exist in many cameras, particularly those with mirrors.

But the most annoynig aspect is that Sony cooks the raws. True, in most cases this doesn't matter. But it's the approach: What if they starting cooking the raws even more in future cameras? It's not what I want and my guess is most people who are looking for a high resolution landscape camera aren't either.

The decision to cook raws is for me a sign that Sony isn't actually going in the right direction. A show stopper.

In what way does it "cook" the raw file?  If you mean the lossy compression, I would not call that cooking; I would call it a potential loss of information.

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LTZ470
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to captura, 9 months ago

captura wrote:

LouMeluso wrote:

Lou might not be familiar with the enthusiasm that was displayed by Mr. Hogan in a report a few months ago, belittling the Sony cameras in favor M43, in particular the E-M1. He was another one of those who had declared that the A7/r suffered from Shutter Shock, when not a single shred of evidence of that has ever been presented. It looked like a blatant attempt to cast serious aspersion upon the A7/r cameras. And the usual M43 fanboys jumped right into this forum and the battle raged for several days.

Things are much quieter now and I hope they stay that way.

Steve

Hi Steve:

You are right I did not read previous opinions from Mr. Hogan. Nor would it change my opinion if I had. I don't understand the defensive stance members have if they discover someone has an opinion that differs from their own. Mr. Hogan has an opinion expressed in this review. I happen to agree with his assessment but I didn't need his agreement to purchase the A7 camera which, BTW, he recommends. Don't we all have bias? Some things we like and some we don't. Mr. Hogan is not allowed to have personal likes and dislikes? He should be the target of name calling or worse because of it? I say no! In the remote chance he had some "secret, hidden agenda" to "cast dispersion" on Sony products....so what? In any case, I got no sense of any of that from this review.

I don't understand the lack of fraternity and comradeship, from some here, that would allow members to freely feel personally affronted and devolve to name calling of reviewer's or even forum members, such as the correspondent directly above, with impunity. I'm shocked and dismayed by the lack of decorum and collegiality in this forum.

You have a point there, Lou. There seems to be a pre-existing consensus here amongst the regular members of this forum about Mr. Thom's apparent M43 boosterism and scorn of comparable Sony products.

Ole Thom's got ice packs on both eye's this morning after writing that review...lol...a black from the A7 and a black eye from the A7r...

They're great cameras folks, and we all know Sony has been hitting home runs with a lot of cameras...so I am sure these will mature nicely...and yes could you imagine if Sony actually put Oly's CDAF System in these cams? Oly made the BEST move using Focus Peaking in their cameras from Sony...believe me it really helped Oly to excel...now if Sony will take Oly's FAST CDAF System and implement it in their cameras they would sweep a large portion of the market...it would look like the outside of and Apple Store when they release a new product...

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Monty Parker
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Re: Thom Hogan's review of the A7/A7r
In reply to LouMeluso, 9 months ago

LouMeluso wrote:

Lou might not be familiar with the enthusiasm that was displayed by Mr. Hogan in a report a few months ago, belittling the Sony cameras in favor M43, in particular the E-M1. He was another one of those who had declared that the A7/r suffered from Shutter Shock, when not a single shred of evidence of that has ever been presented. It looked like a blatant attempt to cast serious aspersion upon the A7/r cameras. And the usual M43 fanboys jumped right into this forum and the battle raged for several days.

Things are much quieter now and I hope they stay that way.

Steve

Hi Steve:

You are right I did not read previous opinions from Mr. Hogan. Nor would it change my opinion if I had. I don't understand the defensive stance members have if they discover someone has an opinion that differs from their own. Mr. Hogan has an opinion expressed in this review. I happen to agree with his assessment but I didn't need his agreement to purchase the A7 camera which, BTW, he recommends. Don't we all have bias? Some things we like and some we don't. Mr. Hogan is not allowed to have personal likes and dislikes? He should be the target of name calling or worse because of it? I say no! In the remote chance he had some "secret, hidden agenda" to "cast dispersion" on Sony products....so what? In any case, I got no sense of any of that from this review.

I don't understand the lack of fraternity and comradeship, from some here, that would allow members to freely feel personally affronted and devolve to name calling of reviewer's or even forum members, such as the correspondent directly above, with impunity. I'm shocked and dismayed by the lack of decorum and collegiality in this forum.

My, you certainly shock easily. And dismayed, I hope you could sleep. Were you shcked and dismayed reading Thom's opener that prejudged those who might wish to disagree with him as "fanboys"?

One need not be a fanboy to realize his "review" is incomplete and with his interest in mind.

I have been a fan of Thoms for many years and have purchased several of his works. This review just doesn't measure up.

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