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Just posted: Our Sony NEX-7 in-depth review

By dpreview staff on Dec 14, 2011 at 00:50 GMT

Just posted: Our in-depth review of the Sony Alpha NEX-7. With its 24MP APS-C sensor and high-resolution EVF encased in a compact body with lots of external controls, the NEX-7 is one of the most desirable cameras of the year for the enthusiast photographer - on paper at least. But at a body-only price around $1000, it's far from cheap. So does it live up to the expectations and hype? Read our 28-page in-depth review to find out.

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Comments

Total comments: 339
12
industwetrust
By industwetrust (Dec 19, 2011)

this could have been my new camera. On first sight it looks pretty good. but why does this camera causing so much trouble with m-mount lenses wider than 35mm? i can´t understand sony why they give away one of their biggest advantages so easily. why can´t sony handle it, while ricoh can? in the end this camera is simply a disappointment.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 19, 2011)

industwetrust:

Where can I read about these difficulties with M mount lenses less than 35mm?

M mount lenses are one of the few things that make the Nex system interesting to me.

0 upvotes
industwetrust
By industwetrust (Dec 19, 2011)

HowaboutRAW:
i did some goolge search last week and find a couple of reviews. the nex7 show some extremely weird magenta color shifts with nearly all leica lenses wider than 35, the same with cosina/vl and zeiss. i´m using leica and voigtländer lenses. the crazy thing is that the nex5 do it so much better than the 7, which i cannot understand. at the steve huff page you can see by scrolling a little down, that the ricoh gxr managing the whole thing much better.

http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2011/10/28/sony-nex-7-with-wide-angle-leica-lenses-a-quick-test-and-gxr-comparison/

another:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 19, 2011)

ndustwetrust:

Thank you for the specifics. Tends to confirm my reasons for avoiding the Nex 7.

There are generally so many problems with shutter noise and the Sony G lenses that I'll stick with my Samsung NX100 for now, and avoid the whole Nex series, no matter how attractive the Nex 5 is.

(I think, without hard evidence, that Sony makes sure that the Luminous Landscape guy gets to test Sony G lenses which have been thoroughly tested by Sony.)

I was impressed by the Ricoh GXR with the Leica M mount insert when I tried it briefly at a trade show with a Voigtlander lens. So I'm thinking about that, but then would have to reinvest in Leica M lenses.

0 upvotes
industwetrust
By industwetrust (Dec 20, 2011)

yes. i have an eye on the ricoh now, but i never had one in my hand. till now i only took analog pics with my M-mount lenses and i want to use them digital. the leica M9 is out of reach. so it seems the ricoh is still without alternative. i don´t want to continue with my digital canon dslr stuff...

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 20, 2011)

industwetrust:

Don't own the M9 and sold my Leica M lenses. When I've tested the M9 at trade shows, despite Leica's claims, ISO 2500 pictures have too much shadow noise, and the shutter is much too audible.

Really like the rangefinder part though, but that's not new to me. (Had a film Konica Hexar RF with Leica Ms, and that sure was a quiet shutter and film advance.)

I took some test shots with the Ricoh GXR M mount insert at ISO 3200 and 1600; it didn't seem like the greatest sensor in the world, maybe the in camera processor is the problem. And it only had a Voightlander lens on it. (Used Adobe Camera RAW to process the DNG files.)

So I want to test it further, when it starts to ship, before I'd consider buying it.

0 upvotes
attomole
By attomole (Dec 18, 2011)

This is the fist of this style of cameras which attracts me, it always seemed to me that manufacturing economy was driving the design, not ergonomics, now with two thumb wheels and viewfinder, functionally it makes sense, not sure on 24MP just sucking up computer bandwidth as far as i am concerned, but I suppose the advantages for cropping an print size would compensate.

I think some are going off the top on the noise performance, Reviewers here and at the respected LL website are saying its good for 3200 iso and per pixel comparisons fall away when printed size for size.

For me the problem is that this is not a second camera, you are really into SLR territory here, and the only real advantage is the size of the body, the rest of the outfit (if and when it comes) and i am really thinking lenses, will be governed by physics that won't shrink any, also you are restricted to using a clumsy adapter to access SLR system lenses,
It comes down to an SLR still being a better choice.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 18, 2011)

Did LL post an Nex 7 3200 ISO shot anywhere with a great deal of shadow? Shadow noise is the real test, not well illuminated color patterns.

Also there still aren't many dedicated lenses for the Nex system and the shutters on all Nex cameras remain way too audible--worse than many slrs.

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
ProfHankD
By ProfHankD (Dec 18, 2011)

An interesting detail: I was wondering what lens was used for the resolution test shots -- it could have been nearly anything using an adapter. Well, the EXIF data says "Sony DT 50mm F1.8 SAM (SAL50F18)" -- which sounds like the currently $125 A-mount lens. Is that right?

Two comments: (1) darn good lens optically (at least at f/8) and (2) does this mean resolution was tested using the LA-EA1 or LA-EA2? I'd assume an LA-EA1; if it was an LA-EA2, the comparison with the A77 wouldn't make sense because both would have a mirror in the path....

0 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (Dec 20, 2011)

The adapter used was the LA-EA1, and yes the EXIF data is correct on the lens.

0 upvotes
Kenneth Margulies
By Kenneth Margulies (Dec 17, 2011)

NEX 7 sets the standard, at least until another great camera comes out.
I know some folks wedded to Nikon and Canon cannot accept that Sony is setting the pace for mirrorless cameras, but I say this new competition will spur further advancements in image quality and small size.
I also enjoy that many great pictures are being taken with the iPhone 4S and the number one "camera" on Flickr is now the iPhone 4.
This is a revolutionary time in photography. Enjoy!

0 upvotes
mediman30
By mediman30 (Dec 17, 2011)

I am the NEXt generation of cameras, I AM NEX 7.

I AM SONY.

1 upvote
Rsuomi
By Rsuomi (Dec 16, 2011)

Having read at least ten top-mark reviews there is no doubt in my mind that the NEX 7 will be a massive sucess for Sony. Ironically the supply problems have probably helped their marketing. The lure of the unobtainable.. I see eBay bids for the first body only shipments have passed $2500 - ridiculous!

1 upvote
powerbook duo
By powerbook duo (Dec 16, 2011)

Anyone else wishing for this body with 5n's sensor with the price somewhere inbetween?

2 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 16, 2011)

the price increase does not come from the sensor so this will not happen.

0 upvotes
tomboyter
By tomboyter (Dec 17, 2011)

Yes, the first thing that I thought of...and some really good, reasonably priced, compact lenses.

Comment edited 31 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Magnus W
By Magnus W (Dec 17, 2011)

The quality at the same printing size is exactly the same.

0 upvotes
J Parker
By J Parker (Dec 16, 2011)

I find it amazing (and amusing) to see how so many of us will argue over which camera can pee the farthest. Lighten up. From the Nikon D700, to the Fujifilm x100 -- and yes, the Nex 7 (and many more I could name from Canon, Olympus, etc.), there are more great cameras available today than ever before. I personally don't know which camera is the best -- I do know that it's a great time to be a photographer.

2 upvotes
unknown member
By (unknown member) (Dec 16, 2011)

There you go introducing sanity. What were you thinking?

3 upvotes
xlynx9
By xlynx9 (Dec 15, 2011)

This camera is like a dream.

I take away from this review a top 3 easily fixed firmware limitations for Sony:

1) increase auto iso max (because iso 3200 looks great)
2) make "down" on 4-way controller programmable (because top dial already does exposure compensation).
3) don't auto skip to next movie in playback (because we don't want to accidentally delete the wrong movie).

0 upvotes
damienlee
By damienlee (Dec 16, 2011)

This all pales in comparison to a proper autoexposure bracket.

3 upvotes
bajanexile
By bajanexile (Dec 15, 2011)

"OneGuy has not uploaded any photos to their gallery yet.". So many opinions from so many people, yet not a single image posted and this seems to be true for most of the people contributing to these posts. It would be interesting to see some images from you all. We might take your comments a bit more seriously. I value opinions from people who can actually take a half-decent picture. As it stands, this is open to debate. The way to overcome doubt is to supply proof. Any salesman will confirm this. Let's see some of your pictures on line.

0 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (Dec 15, 2011)

Sorry baja. When I challenged hiplnsdriftr to look at pictures, I meant the DPR Studio pictures in the NEX-7 review (page 26). DPR uses a non-native lens to make the -7 look its best, performance wise, but one look at the hair next to a blue clock (which I assume would be of interest to the so-called pros taking pictures of women) tells me to look elsewhere for a camera. Personally, the NEX-7 makes a sick puppy out of the blue VW on top of the Studio scene. All this also at mere ISO 800.
Oh, I read a review on Amazon of a guy who was glad to sell his Fuji X100 while the hype was still high.

0 upvotes
RedValley
By RedValley (Dec 15, 2011)

I just checked the blonde hair you're mentioning in the ISO 100 RAW and it's softer than the neighboring feathers, therefore I'm assuming it may be OOF.
I'm not sure what's wrong with the blue VW print.
And I hope no one is forcing you to buy the NEX against your will...

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Dec 15, 2011)

OneGuy, get a life. The lens is softer in that area. That's all. In other parts Nex-7 has much more detail than other APSC cameras, as it should with the 24 MP sensor. It's funny how these online clowns pick whatever part of shot that supports their inane position.

2 upvotes
hiplnsdrftr
By hiplnsdrftr (Dec 15, 2011)

Maybe the amazing review on this site threw me off?

I'm pretty sure the performance and results will be just fine.

0 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (Dec 16, 2011)

Yo, red, if you claim 'out of focus' then it tells me you are scraping the bottom of a barrel. This is the best possible pic with the best possible lens with the best possible people doing the shooting (oh, isn't Sony making a claim of lens correction?). To see the sick white dots on the VW with poor contrast and square artifacts, just go to JPEG at ISO 800. The Volkswagen pic is not only sick by itself but compared to the other three choices it could make you sick as well.
Well, my f(r)iend ET, I am gettin' a life. I want a camera I can take to the street and make the best picks without worrying about AF or the subject being in the soft spot of a lens. The last thing I need is enough light for ISO 100. Because I want to have life, I don't do raw. There is a camera for me out there and now, and it is not -7, which was a candidate. You're on a smart planet, ET, and your misconceptions will serve you to your detriment.

1 upvote
John 3
By John 3 (Dec 16, 2011)

I'm afraid I have to agree with One Guy. If that's the best the Nex-7 can do with it's best lens, it's disappointing. Sometimes it's hard to believe your eyes when faced with all the glowing WRITTEN reviews.

0 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 16, 2011)

@OneGuy, your decision on buying a camera is based on (and I quote) "one look at the hair next to a blue clock "? Dpreview spent time writing a very thorough review and your opinion is based on a very specific part of the comparison tool at a certain ISO?

I would agree the clock (and the hair next to it) looks bad at all ISOs in JPEG and RAW, so I'm not sure what's wrong here, but in many other places (and most, in my eyes) the Nex 7 is very good (comparing to the d7000 which everyone seems to be doing). But I'm not going to buy the camera because of this, and I'm not going to not buy it because the hair next to the blue clock looks bad. (damn typos)

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
CAT Productions
By CAT Productions (Dec 15, 2011)

Curious about what this sensor would do in a hypothetical Nikon D400. Especially considering Nikon frequently squeezes better IQ from Sony sensors + the better selection of high-quality Nikkor glass...

1 upvote
hiplnsdrftr
By hiplnsdrftr (Dec 15, 2011)

As a working professional fashion/documentary photographer I am really excited about the NEX-7.

The combination of it's size, sensor size and features is perfect for what I have been looking for. The only feature I could do with out is the flip screen.

Looking forward to using it in situations where the 1Ds3 is not really practical (too big or too conspicuous).

The NEX-7 along with some lens adapters should allow me to use some of my existing lens as well!

Only thing frustrating about it will be the long wait to get one...

This will be my first digital camera that will not be a Canon... they have blown it.

Comment edited 35 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (Dec 15, 2011)

You mentioned a lot of things except performance, for if you have had checked the pictures and particularly those of hair, you wouldn't be all that hoo haa about the -7. Being a Canon user my guess is that you take performance for granted.

2 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Dec 15, 2011)

OneGuy you are a clown. If the hair in that section are soft, that is lens/focus issue .. It has nothing to do with the camera with 24 MP sensor that should (and does) capture more detail. Check other part of the image. Check IR studio images and hair on the manikin.

3 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

Seems like this camera has a lot of people arguing. They either think it's too expensive. Or they complain about the lack of lens lineup at launch. Or they think that the noise performance is poor. Or they think the lenses are too big.

But there are a crap load of people out there buying up Nex cameras because they offer awesome image quality at an incomparable price. They are the best solution out for somebody to mount various classic manual lenses due to the short flange distance and the big sensor. The noise performance is very very close to even full-frame cameras causing lots of full-frame shooters to think the Nex-7 is a complete bargain. And there are people itching to put M mount lenses on this system for an extremely compact, travel friendly camera.

Sony's making good money on the Nex cameras already out and once they solve their supply issues for the Nex-7 they're going to make a killing filling this market that lots of people don't seem to think exists.

4 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 15, 2011)

I don't know anything about the Sony NEX line-up, so I cannot comment on those. However, Sony has a pair of new 24.3MP APS-C sensor cameras out -- called "SLT Alpha 65" and "SLT Alpha 77." Those two cannot perform worth squat in low lite, record digital noise Godzilla style, and capture pretty darn awful colors, to boot.

So, I am rather glad to see that with the NEX bodies, particularly the top-end NEX-7, Sony had finally created a winner.

0 upvotes
carino
By carino (Dec 17, 2011)

"very very close to even full-frame cameras" ?
Go to the Compare with Raw page at DPR and compare the Nex 7 at 3200 ISO in a dark area with the Fujifilm X100. The X100 is much better.
The X100 is the only one which can be compared with a full frame at high ISO.
I'l wait unitll february for the next Fujifilm X.. with exchangeable lenses that they've anounced.

0 upvotes
miketala
By miketala (Dec 15, 2011)

It's odd to compare this with cameras that cost--at most--1/2 the price. I get that it's mirrorless, but with lenses it's simply not as compact as m43, and at least one of the adapters appears to be as large as the camera itself.

A comparison with a similarly priced camera using a similar sized sensor, e.g. the D7000, is highly warranted and it's simply silly and unprofessional that DPR failed to do this.

Comment edited 52 seconds after posting
3 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

Comparing it with the best pana/oylmpus have to offer, they cost about £850 w/14-42 and the nex7 is £1130 (in the UK at least). I think it's more sensible to compare it to them than to the d7000. How many people are going to choose between a nex7 and a d7000?

Comment edited 14 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Rmano
By Rmano (Dec 15, 2011)

...or a Pentax K-5, which at GBP 800 now seems probably the best camera in that price range.

0 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

Because Sony's creating a new class of camera. It's not a DSLR like the D7000 and it's supposed to outperform the m43 cameras.

Sony believes there are people who feel that m43 doesn't provide the picture quality they need and a DSLR is bursting with features they won't use. I believe Sony's right to think there's a market of people out there for the Nex-7.

0 upvotes
hiplnsdrftr
By hiplnsdrftr (Dec 15, 2011)

The Nex-7 with pancake is roughly the same size as a Canon G12, so would be fair to compare them if size was your main concern.

If price is your main concern then yeah, compare it to other $1200 cameras.

If your main concern is sensor size then yes, compare it to 7D and the likes.

The great thing about the Nex-7 for me is the successful combination of factors that are important to me.

1 upvote
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Dec 15, 2011)

Looks like a rich man's alternative to the a65, but with a perplexing menu structure and tinier ergonomics. True or false?

Are there any NEX7 owners fond of its menu system? Perhaps they learn to live with it, like certain intestinal or skin disorders, but is there any sane reason why Sony did not revamp the whole scheme? It's not as though the company's cameras always had convoluted menus.

0 upvotes
whtchocla7e
By whtchocla7e (Dec 15, 2011)

Once set up to my liking, the menu sytem is the last thing I pay attention to since I have access to whatever I need via buttons/switches.........

4 upvotes
hiplnsdrftr
By hiplnsdrftr (Dec 15, 2011)

I think the price is fair for what you supposedly get... so nothing "rich man's" about it.

Leica X1 at $2,000 might be more of a "rich man's" compact APS camera?

0 upvotes
KonstantinosK
By KonstantinosK (Dec 15, 2011)

260 comments and counting... Wow. If anything else, this is one VERY discussed camera...

2 upvotes
tarkovsky
By tarkovsky (Dec 15, 2011)

On the DxO website, the NEX-7 scores better than Fuji X100 in low light performance, but if you compare the two in the dpreview, the Fuji looks way better in ISO 400 and above. Is there something I'm missing?

t

0 upvotes
jaja_m
By jaja_m (Dec 15, 2011)

at DXO 1) probably you see "Print" tab, where both cameras downscaled to 8MP. Switch to "Screen" tab, you can see Fuji's SNR is higher for any given ISO which agrees with DPR RAW comparison. 2) I dont see where DxO says that Nex7 is better than X100. Both of them have virtually same High ISO scores (which are taken from "Print" result)

Comment edited 38 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (Dec 15, 2011)

DPreview (and most other review sites) compare the output of different cameras, i.e. actual images, while the DxO scores result from measurements of sensor performance prior to image delivery. A quote from their site:
"All sensor scores reflect only the RAW sensor performance of a camera body. All measurements are performed on the RAW image file BEFORE demosaicing or other processing prior to final image delivery. DxOMark does not address such other important criteria as image signal processing, mechanical robustness, ease of use, flexibility, optics quality, value for money, etc."

1 upvote
tarkovsky
By tarkovsky (Dec 15, 2011)

Ah. Didn't notice the screen/print feature. So yes there certainly is a difference, while not at all as significant as the dpreview, but maybe that because of the setup...(?)

It seems to be a very capable camera, but I'm just too curious about those Fuji rumours...

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Rmano
By Rmano (Dec 15, 2011)

What I really find incredible (in that sense that is difficult to believe) is the poor bracketing options and the failure to save RAW along special functions (hdr, etc) which is a mere software matter. I would have expected an advanced bracketing options (EV, iso, mixed shutter time/aperture)... Sony, if you're listening, ask me.

That is a real pity. I was almost decided to go for it but powerful machines with crippled (and unmodifiable) software drive me crazy. Why not having an API and "Apps" for that cameras? They deserve it...

3 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

I'm hoping these issues will be fixed in the next FW update. Sony are very aware of them, but they are still Sony, so I doubt anything will change :)

2 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

You can't really expect lightroom, ACR, aperture, et. al. to have to not only support RAW files but every permutation of every special shooting feature from every manufacturer. That's just silly.

1 upvote
Rmano
By Rmano (Dec 15, 2011)

@sesopenko: sorry, I do not understand your comment. I was simply stating that if you shot "in camera" HDR, the camera could well store the three RAW (plain) images along with the JPEG result. That's perfectly transparent for lightroom, ACR, etc.

What I mean for "Apps" is having the possibility to personalize the software. Example: CHDK has an application that shot a burst of photos when the camera detect movement into the frame, and is used for (semi-)unattended birds shot. Applications IN the camera, not on your PC.

Or for example having iso-bracketing, or aperture bracketing, or a combination of them. The computers inside the camera are well capable of this, and the final result are simple RAW or JPEG file, no external support needed.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
jameshamm
By jameshamm (Dec 15, 2011)

A Crowdsource camera? Sounds good,

1 upvote
Petrus Magnus
By Petrus Magnus (Dec 15, 2011)

Very, very interesting camera! What a pity, though, that Sony dispensed with its in-camera image stabilization, especially since many NEX-users will be using various adapted lenses that do not feature (functional) optical image stabilization.

1 upvote
Magnus W
By Magnus W (Dec 15, 2011)

I agree. This is the number one irritation with the NEX system. I guess it must be to get the thinnest possible camera.

1 upvote
CFynn
By CFynn (Dec 15, 2011)

Well the camera would have had to be thicker - but they could have kept the flange distance the same.

When they designed the NEX system I don't think they imagined they would become such a hit with people wanting to use old manual focus lenses.

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Dec 15, 2011)

Does in-lens stabilization entail less sensor heat generation than in-body stabilization? Perhaps the in-lens approach allows for longer video shots before smoke and flames appear, or before the shut-down claxon blows.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (Dec 15, 2011)

I think the e-mount is very much a video cam specification. and there the in-lens is better.

0 upvotes
Magnus W
By Magnus W (Dec 15, 2011)

@Cy Cheze: Yes, you can use the camera body body as a heat sink if the sensor is fixed, but in the SLRs/SLTs, you can get still video with in-body stabilization.

0 upvotes
abi170845
By abi170845 (Dec 15, 2011)

Don't be a tease, SONY, WHERE ARE THOSE LENSES THAT YOU PROMISED? I won't buy this camera unless the Zeiss and the 50mm OSS are readily available. And probably future firmware updates from Sony.

1 upvote
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

Honestly I'm not a fan of the 24mm Sonnar. It should have been a Distagon but a Sonnar means higher profit margins due to a more relaxed engineering design.

You do know you can put old Contax Zeiss C/Y lenses on this system and they're very well priced?

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 15, 2011)

E-mount lens line-up is even poorer than MFT lens line-up.

0 upvotes
samdman
By samdman (Dec 15, 2011)

In my opinion, this review really reflects DxO findings.
http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/(appareil1)/736%7C0/(brand)/Sony/(appareil2)/640%7C0/(brand2)/Leica
Does this mean that NEX-7 is 'scientifically' better than 6 times higher priced camera?

Food for thought.

2 upvotes
Pankrac
By Pankrac (Dec 15, 2011)

Not only that, but this using this comparison NEX5N is better than a 10 times higher priced camera. Is it?

http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/(appareil1)/736%7C0/(brand)/Sony/(appareil2)/737%7C0/(brand2)/Sony/(appareil3)/640%7C0/(brand3)/Leica

0 upvotes
micahmedia
By micahmedia (Dec 16, 2011)

DX0 Mark is barely relevant hype, created to sell their image processing/correction software. They repurpose the data they collect about lenses and sensors marketing noise. They're basically screaming "ME ME, HERE, LOOK AT ME!" If they present their data in a way that's stirs controversy, so be it. There's no such thing as bad press. But it is in no way scientific. All they're doing it looking at raw files, which anyone can do. They're really measuring what their software can do with raw files, which is unimportant, unless you buy their software.

Tomorrow Adobe or some open-source outfit could do what they do, only better. In fact, I think they already do. Which is why you don't see DX0 as a plugin for gimp or Adobe software.

1 upvote
rocklobster
By rocklobster (Dec 15, 2011)

Canon and Nikon caught napping. The Nikon 1 shows some promise of things to come but is there really anything on the horizon?

0 upvotes
micahmedia
By micahmedia (Dec 16, 2011)

Hopefully better video! I tried out mirrorless cams for video this week and the V1 had the worst quality video out of the lot. I think I even preferred the Pentax Q's video quality. I'm not sure what was up, but it had some odd interlacing artifacts while panning.

Looks like it's a Nex and some F mount adapters for me!

0 upvotes
tlinn
By tlinn (Dec 15, 2011)

I can totally see myself moving away from my lifelong affiliation with Canon gear after a few more E-mount lenses and another generation or two of this body. I'll have to give up my tilt-shifts but my aching back is telling me it is worth it.

7 upvotes
Sosua
By Sosua (Dec 15, 2011)

You can use TSE lenses on the NEX as well - practically any lens you want :)

1 upvote
CFynn
By CFynn (Dec 15, 2011)

Actually with the short flange distance - it might be possible to make TS adapters for full frame wide angle DSLR lenses if the image circle is big enough.

1 upvote
didida do da do da do da
By didida do da do da do da (Dec 15, 2011)

awesome idea, CFynn!

0 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

I've already sold my 5D classic and I'm clearing out my EOS mount glass for M mount glass. You can put Olympus shift lenses on the Sony nex cameras. They even have one as wide as a 24mm and the 35mm can be had for an awesome price.

0 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (Dec 15, 2011)

It's been done.... You can already buy on eBay NEX tilt adapters for many manual focus lens mounts, and shift adapters for Nikon F at least.

0 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

Reading the comments was an enjoyable experience. It's a war between sony haters with noise hallucinations and people with more money than sense. I think we will eventually agree that it's an awesome camera (with a FW update or 2, and more lenses it could become king of APS-C), but I'm going to wait until it comes down in price :)

9 upvotes
nathanleebush
By nathanleebush (Dec 15, 2011)

Comes down in price? Get real! It's spec'd like a D7000, which is the same price. This thing is going to be impossible to find for the next few months because of the Thai flooding. When would these theoretical discounts set it?

1 upvote
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

I don't see much point comparing it to a d7000 (at least in my case, I'm staying mirrorless). But the first nex's dropped in price quite a bit about 4~6 months after release (they dropped in price, and then sony gave the VAT back). The 5ns have already dropped in price, so I'll wait for the 7 to do the same.

1 upvote
unknown member
By (unknown member) (Dec 15, 2011)

However, like other cameras that rely on contrast-detection autofocus, it doesn't have continuous AF performance to match.

How does this very short comment with huge ramifications get buried so deeply? Why wasn't it mentioned on the first page? How did it not make it to the CONS list? How is it not the first item in the list? Is it primarily a manual focus camera? I have no stake in the camera, but when a camera costing this much money has a suspect AF system it calls into question exactly what the agenda is with your ratings. Just saying....

2 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

as I see it, you can only compare it with camera in the same class. quote page 13 "This is impressive performance by any standards - it surpasses almost any other mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera by quite some margin. The only exceptions are the Nikon 1 twins, the J1 and V1, which due to some clever sensor technology can shoot at 10fps with continuous autofocus."

1 upvote
unknown member
By (unknown member) (Dec 15, 2011)

Certainly Price is a component of classification. This thing costs as much as many enthusiasts DSLRs, more if one adds the adapter and lens that will actually provide phase detect AF. But then after the addition it is as large as enthusiast DSLRs. So it appears that this camera's rating is based 100% on the ability to shoot still life for a mere $2000. Astonishing.

0 upvotes
darkref
By darkref (Dec 15, 2011)

I don't really agree, some macbooks cost the same price, but you can't compare, they are different products. If I wanted a camera with a mirror, I would probably get a d7000. But I don't. Of course, this camera is not brilliant for shooting fast action, but neither are the other mirrorless cameras (with the exception of the nikon, but as dpreview said, that camera has a completely different audience).

The adapter does seem big. But it's not meant to be attatched to the camera all the time, it's just for people who want to use their existing lenses.

Everyone keeps saying how big the nex camera are when they have their lenses attatched. Once you have used one though, especially in travel, it's hard to go back.

But I am confused to why Sony can't make an autofocus system similar to the nikons. It doesn't hold the camera back though, at least until canon/pana/olympus/fuji come up with something similar to the nex with fast autofocus.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
unknown member
By (unknown member) (Dec 15, 2011)

In regard to the cameras with kit lenses I didn't find the NEX 5N to be any more cumbersome than the E-P3, or even the Nikon V1. All are more than a pocket full. And I assume the NEX 7 kit lens will be the same as the 5N, so that is a non-issue to me. Really just nitpicking. My gripe is the AF system, and that is the reason I sold the 5N (for a good price perhaps thanks to the Gold award). But I think the NEX 7, and the 5N, are not kit lens type cameras because they really are useless for action photography or even street shooting. They are more suited to landscape and architecture photography, IMO. The big issue I have with DPR is that they do not point that out clearly, and not everyone who reads these review conclusions understands the differences. Think soccer moms. For a person who wants to photograph school sports these cameras don't even deserve a silver award, but as you say the same is true for other cameras in this class. So perhaps I'm wrong.

1 upvote
J Parker
By J Parker (Dec 15, 2011)

Thanks for the excellent review and calling it the way you saw it. Although many of us disagree, I was pleasantly surprised that the image quality does seem to be very respectable, especially considering the number of megapixels.

I'm pretty confident that Sony, only one of world's largest companies, can produce a few good lenses in the coming months. The Nex E-Mount system is fairly new. How long has Canon and Nikon been making lenses, anyway? They've had decades to produce dozens of lenses within their systems.

Do cameras have to be either large or tiny, with no in between? No, the NEX won't fit in your shirt pocket. But Sony didn't claim it would -- just that it is smaller and lighter than a DSLR. I personally don't mind carrying my DSLR (as strange as it may sound, I knew it wasn't small when I bought it -- really) but the idea of shooting a wedding for eight hours with a NEX hanging around my neck doesn't sound half bad.

6 upvotes
R Valentino
By R Valentino (Dec 15, 2011)

Nice camera, pretty decent IQ for an APS, but I still don't get the point of these types of cameras.

Teeny, tiny camera, GREAT big lens means it's still going to be hanging from your neck. Once you mount a decent lens on the Nex7 for all practical purposes it's the same size as the A900.

Seriously does half a pound really make that much difference? Sony's own A77 is still a much better all around camera and not much bigger.

If it can't fit in a jacket or cargo pants/shorts pockets you might as well use a real camera :-)

4 upvotes
goshigoo
By goshigoo (Dec 15, 2011)

Totally agree; I'd rather pay the same price to get a proper DSLR
instead of paying 2000 USD on NEX7 + 24 f/1.8

1 upvote
T3
By T3 (Dec 15, 2011)

Clearly, you have no idea what you're talking about. Go to a camera store and put the NEX-7 next to an A900, both with lenses mounted. There's a significant size difference. And plenty of people appreciate a smaller camera that takes up a lot less room in a satchel or shoulder bag. A more compact camera is also less intimidating and less obvious when you're street shooting. Plus, even when going to a party, you look like less of a dork when using something like an NEX, rather than a big ol' DSLR. It's always good to have different options when it comes to camera form factors. Many of us already have DSLRs (some of us have several DSLRs), but still like the option of something like an NEX.

5 upvotes
nathanleebush
By nathanleebush (Dec 15, 2011)

The ultimate combo, if you're looking for a small package for unobtrusive street shooting, is an M mount adapter with some Leica glass.

3 upvotes
Parsek
By Parsek (Dec 15, 2011)

Exactly. Thanks for underscoring this.

0 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

My 5D classic weighs more than my Mamiya 7II rangefinder WITH the 65mm lens attached. When I wear a Nex-5N around my neck I don't even remember it's there.

Also consider the size for people who travel a lot. They no longer have to worry about the body because the body is so small. They can pack lenses, attach the body to one and it's not really going to take more space in the bag. It makes a difference.

And finally: mount a Leica/Zeiss/Voigtlander lens on one of these mirrorless cameras and you'll end up with a camera that's super light weight with good image quality.

0 upvotes
Fujifilm Finepix F30
By Fujifilm Finepix F30 (Dec 15, 2011)

Try this. Upscale the ISO 800, 1600, 3200, 6400 and 12,800 test shots of the 18 megapixel Canon 550d to 24 megapixels. Compare the upscaled version of that dSLR to that of the Sony Nex 7's native 24 megapixel output. View 'equalized' (same megapixel) comparisons at 100%. You'll be surprised that the dSLR outperforms the Sony Nex 7. I really can't understand why dpreview makes such sweeping statements claiming 'Nex 7 has the best IQ among APS-C cameras bar none' when a lower megapixel (18 megapixel) dSLR clearly produces better output and retains better detail upscaled to 24 megapixels from ISO 800 and up than the Nex7 has in its native 24megapixels to start with.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 13 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Dec 15, 2011)

It's not just DPR. Dxomark also rates Nex-7 much higher than Canon's 18 MP cameras. So it's most likely that you are the one who is wrong and doing something wrong, not the rest of the world.

8 upvotes
BBViet
By BBViet (Dec 15, 2011)

Nobody scales up an image. Try the same test but scale the 24MP down to 18MP. If the NEX-7 still looks worse then you might have a case.

Edit: post side-by-side comparison too, or it's just your word against DPR's and everyone knows whose has more weight.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 15, 2011)

And here the results at ISO 6400 with LR 3.6. 550D top, NEX 7 bottom and keep in mind that the 550D received a third of a stop more light (larger aperture, same shutterspeed):
http://i43.tinypic.com/eheqyq.jpg
Again pretty similar.

Comment edited 53 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Fujifilm Finepix F30
By Fujifilm Finepix F30 (Dec 15, 2011)

"It's not just DPR. Dxomark also rates Nex-7 much higher than Canon's 18 MP cameras. So it's most likely that you are the one who is wrong and doing something wrong, not the rest of the world."

It doesn't take a genius to figure out that the statement is a fallacy. The 24MP Nex7 should kick the 18mp Canon in the butt given its 6megapixel advantage, but the detail isn't simply there. Just for once, try downloading the dpreview standard test shots. Download and compare Canon 550d's upscaled ISO 3200 to the Nex 7's native 24 mp ISO 3200. Look at the clock face. Look at the globe. I'd call it even from ISO 800-1600 with a practically negligible detail advantage to the Nex7. At ISO 3200, 6400 and 12,800, the NEX-7's 24MP worth of fake detail simply wipes the floor with that captured by the 550d at the same very high ISO settings. And mind you, it doesn't matter if you upscale the 550d output or downscale the Nex7 output.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Dustinash
By Dustinash (Dec 15, 2011)

Upscaling 18mpix to 24 would just cause blur. I am highly skeptical of this.
*DISCLAIMER* I own a a77, not nex-7 but same sensor

I do find the 24mp sensor really dodgy in the higher isos from chroma noise. I wont shoot with it above 800 and rarely above 400. Sometimes it produces solid results in those isos but somtimes it polutes the image with massive chroma noise in the shadows that is hard to remove without crushing your blacks to oblivion. But it is still a fantastic camera and if your not producing posters in those isos then its fine for typical photography, brilliant actually.

And if you do want to produce a poster this camera can do it BETTER then that canon. Throw a key, fill, and hair light in, move into the iso 100-200 range and this thing is a slayer. Its ability to render fine detail WHEN you have good light and a good lens is fantastic.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 14, 2011)

Sony's E-mount lenses are even more of a 'pariah category' of lenses than Micro Four-Thirds lenses are. Getting a Sony SLT Alpha 65 for $900 is markedly better option that this NEX-7, I should think. At least you can mount all sorts of 3rd-party Alpha-mount lenses on that one (a65/a77) natively.

0 upvotes
Menneisyys
By Menneisyys (Dec 14, 2011)

"Sony's E-mount lenses are even more of a 'pariah category' of lenses than Micro Four-Thirds lenses are."

Are you serious? The m43 lens lineup (and particularly future lenses - see the two zooms Pana will announce next month and Oly's new, light UWA zoom) is just great. Unlike, unfortunately, that of the E mount. Actually, in addition to the excellent video quality (and hackability) of the GH2, the lens lineup probably the only real strength of the entire system as opposed to, say, the NEX flagships (which REALLY lack any decent generic - read: anything under 40 mm equiv - and affordable lens), the N1, the X100 or the new Samsung NX-200 (albeit the latter also has decent lens lineup).

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
nathanleebush
By nathanleebush (Dec 15, 2011)

I wrote about this in my review a couple months back. The achilles heel of the NEX line is the woeful lack of lenses. But, you can put pretty much any glass out there on one with an adapter, albeit, without AF. Peaking is a HUGE plus though. And I shoot a lot of video, so I could see myself using this mainly as a video camera with cheap manual lenses. Its' the only stills camera, besides the other Sonys, that do 60fps at 1080p. I've been using the novoflex adaptor with a bunch of old Nikon lenses I have and it's worked great, though the adaptor does add an inch-plus of length.

http://arcrental.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/hands-on-report-nex-7/

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
hippo84
By hippo84 (Dec 15, 2011)

Don't forget about EL-2 adaptor, which gives You not only possibility to use all A-mount glasses, but also PDAF with 15 points(3 of them are cross-type)

0 upvotes
Dustinash
By Dustinash (Dec 15, 2011)

The GH2 is a killer camera and I think panasonics next incarnation will crush this generation of sonys. The video and ergonomics on the gh2 are amazing. It fails in flash, photo IQ and I hate its small form factor for pro photography.

0 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 15, 2011)

Or get the Nex with the shorter flange distance, the LA-EA2 and you've opened yourself up to even more lenses. The A mount isn't that great for mounting other lenses onto the DSLR so shooting with a Nex is a very appealing choice for people who want to do stuff like mount Contax Zeiss C/Y, Leica/Ziess/Voigtlander M mounts, etc, etc etc.

0 upvotes
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Dec 14, 2011)

"Knob and Dial" concept:
This reminds me of the concept Olympus implemented with their C-5050. I used it all the time for quick access to settings like ISO, exposure or flash.
Surprisingly, DPR was at that time not very pleased with it, if I recall correctly.
Sony seems to have copied and optimized it. Now they like it. :-)

1 upvote
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Dec 14, 2011)

I suspect you recall incorrectly. I see nothing in the 9 year old C-5050 review to suggest what you say is true...

8 upvotes
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Dec 18, 2011)

@ Simon: Yes you are right, I checked again - great that this review is still online.
I must have confused it with another review, sorry for this!

0 upvotes
Sosua
By Sosua (Dec 14, 2011)

So many noob comments here. Hilarious reading.

7 upvotes
glanglois
By glanglois (Dec 14, 2011)

Some are easily amused, it seems.

5 upvotes
ProfHankD
By ProfHankD (Dec 14, 2011)

Good review; and I'm glad you mentioned the use of manual lenses that don't fit DSLRs, because that is where NEX is truly outstanding.

The IQ for the 24MP sensor looks really excellent at low ISO and reasonable higher, but try comparing with the old 24MP full-frame A900. It looks like there's still room for a full-frame E-mount at the top of the NEX line.... ;)

1 upvote
Pik2004
By Pik2004 (Dec 14, 2011)

Where's NX-200 review?

1 upvote
aliminator
By aliminator (Dec 14, 2011)

There is one reviewer who says that Samsung's NX200 sensor is one of the best among APS-C sensors and he prefers it to Sony's.

1 upvote
Jonathan F/2
By Jonathan F/2 (Dec 14, 2011)

Yawn. For the price and lack of lenses, I'd rather pick up a Nikon D700.

2 upvotes
whtchocla7e
By whtchocla7e (Dec 14, 2011)

Where can I find a Nikon D700 for $1200?

8 upvotes
Gabor Szantai
By Gabor Szantai (Dec 14, 2011)

Who the hell would buy D700 when its successor has just swum out from the Taiwanese Nikon factory?

1 upvote
Revenant
By Revenant (Dec 14, 2011)

The release of a new model doesn't suddenly make the older one into a bad camera. The D700 is still just as good as it ever was, and probably a whole lot cheaper. Why this rush to always get the latest models?

1 upvote
Mssimo
By Mssimo (Dec 14, 2011)

Yawn. For the price and lack of lenses, I'd rather pick up a nasa satellite camera ccd array with the extra solar panels on the side and maybe 6 month extended warranty. Ohhh yeah..forgot the dummies manual.

4 upvotes
Gabor Szantai
By Gabor Szantai (Dec 14, 2011)

Revenant: The D700's biggest problem: it's overpriced. I would agree with you if it was about £1000-1200 but it's slightly more expensive than a 5D mark II.
Why does it cost £1700?
I really don\t care about brands, I use everything what I can but this nonsense pricing policy drives me crazy...

4 upvotes
Ilkka Nissilä
By Ilkka Nissilä (Dec 15, 2011)

The D700 has Nikon's top autofocus module; that is one reason it is so valued. Currently it may be that the demand exceeds supply because of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in the spring.

0 upvotes
offertonhatter
By offertonhatter (Dec 14, 2011)

I don't often post, but with this camera I thought I might.
The whole concept of the CSC camera has come of age with this beauty.
Small size, DSLR sized sensor (albeit APS-C and not FF - but the latter would make the body too big) full control, built-in viewfinder, flip out screen etc etc.
Now I know that the Samsung NX10 had APS-C/viewfinder, but there was something about it I did'nt like the look of. This however ticks all the boxes.
Along with the Fuji X100, at harks back to those top quality 35mm compacts.

However, as the reviewsays, there is a downside and that is the availability of good quality lenses for the system. E-system lenses are known to lack edge to edge sharpness in comparison to the competition, especially the Panasonic ones, so I would like to see Sony now concentrate on a great lens range, including some excellent good priced primes (35mm F1.8 anyone).
As it is, oh so close, but with more lenses, then it will be the optimum complement to a DSLR. Kudos to Sony.

2 upvotes
Magnus W
By Magnus W (Dec 14, 2011)

Well, with inexpensive and purely mechanical adapters, you can mount pretty much any lens ever made. It's now possible to build a system out of the absolute best lenses, from any manufacturer.

How's that for "more lenses"? ;-)

1 upvote
tkbslc
By tkbslc (Dec 14, 2011)

Magnus, that's true, but the downside is that it is also a requirement. There are many alternative lens options for other systems, too (like 4/3, Canon) but they also offer plenty of native mount, AF options.

0 upvotes
Bob Meyer
By Bob Meyer (Dec 14, 2011)

Magnus, that true only if you don't care about AF. I think the number of potential buyers that are willing to do without AF is relatively small.

0 upvotes
Magnus W
By Magnus W (Dec 15, 2011)

@tkbslc: Samsung and Sony are the only ones with a thin body allowing glassless adapters and a 1.5x sensor. The 2x crop (and for me, the less attractive proportions of 4/3 -- yes I have a 4/3 camera) means that old lenses are just too long, or too bad.

@Bob: that depends on the market. I don't see classic Leica aficionados complain over lack of AF. So far, the market seems to have responded enthusiastically to adapted lenses, but of course the point-and-shoot crowd won't use such lenses. OTOH, those shooters will only have the need for the kit zoom and the tele zoom, both of which exist.

0 upvotes
BMWX5
By BMWX5 (Dec 14, 2011)

Great review, great camera, this review should solidify the reasons why it won the PopPhoto "Camera of the Year" award. But I am disappointed that DP did not mention the awesomeness of the box with velvety material inside and the inclusion of cleaning cloth. ;-)

6 upvotes
Dustinash
By Dustinash (Dec 15, 2011)

and popphoto sounds like a real professional photography magazine. Sounds like valley girls poppin hubba bubba to me

0 upvotes
BMWX5
By BMWX5 (Dec 15, 2011)

NEX-7: “the new benchmark to beat” and “best mirrorless camera today” according to a number of reviews so PP's award is on the money...

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
JWest
By JWest (Dec 14, 2011)

The NEX-7 body sure looks like a beautiful bit of kit, but it's a shame about the lens line-up. For those of us who want a truly compact solution, it seems we're out of luck.

I'll be watching with interest for a review of the new Samsung NX200. It's sadly lacking the NEX-7's integrated viewfinder, but other than that it seems likely to give it a run for its money in most respects. Most importantly, it has a decent range of compact lenses to back it up.

1 upvote
T3
By T3 (Dec 15, 2011)

Yeah, the lens line-up is the biggest factor in keeping me from getting one. They need a bigger selection of compact primes, a few pancake lenses.

0 upvotes
Dustinash
By Dustinash (Dec 15, 2011)

the nex body looks useful for when you need a compact camera. Should be weather sealed. In any serious professional photographic situation a standard dslr body anhillates this camera in every thing from easy stabalization to fast access to functions with one eye to the viewfinder. I view this camera like a funny car. Its all engine and horsepower and can demolish the speed in a straight line but I think it would have issues as a daily driver.

0 upvotes
Photomonkey
By Photomonkey (Dec 14, 2011)

The revolution that Sony has in the Nex-7 is the EVF. A pure and simple leap in usability for enthusiasts that somehow escaped the marketers at Olympus, Panasonic and Samsung.

Holding cameras at arm's length is not a serious option for serious photographers.

9 upvotes
HIScamera
By HIScamera (Dec 14, 2011)

So, if a serious photographer takes a photo by holding his camera at arm's length, he at once will cease to be serious and become....whimsical?
Method by which a person takes his photo does NOT dictate the person's intent. There are notable war journalists who are taking serious photos with their iPhones. And they are doing it at arm's length.

7 upvotes
powerbook duo
By powerbook duo (Dec 14, 2011)

most hassleblad are held at arm's length, and if such 'serious' photographers require a viewfinder, what's wrong with an SLR? the point of these cameras are that they are not constrained by the tradition, so what if the viewfinder is optional?

3 upvotes
HBowman
By HBowman (Dec 14, 2011)

Im surely not a serious photographer because I shoot all my stage and models with a dp2s in hackward situations :D

I love such "serious" comments :)

On the topic, the nex7 seems to be a useless piece of hardware, a money hole for "not so awesome" results and (big and) HUGE files lol.

Looking forward on the fuji x-thing in spring.

2 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (Dec 14, 2011)

Somehow the marketers at those other brands still managed to figure out that compact system needs compact lens options.... :)

1 upvote
Tee1up
By Tee1up (Dec 14, 2011)

Powerbook duo >> Most Hassleblad users are shooting studio portraits and could easily make use of a monitor on the wall for framing. For street, action and bright light photography a viewfinder is essential for most of us.

0 upvotes
Bob Meyer
By Bob Meyer (Dec 14, 2011)

Monkey, you demonstrate your ignorance with this comment. Panasonic has made 6 m43 cameras with an EVF: G1, G10, G2, G3, GH1 and GH2.

0 upvotes
Photomonkey
By Photomonkey (Dec 15, 2011)

Bob you are right and I remembered that after posting. They chose to emulate the slr look rather than the RF look. Not necessarily bad but Oly in particular was referencing the Pen series of SLRs and completely missed the opportunity.

As for the others replying... you know exactly what I mean when I say that serious photographers do not hold cameras at arm's length. I am referring to the P&S POS waved around in front of the photographer as they squint in vain at the image on the back. As for Rollei and Hasselblad and other waist level cameras you may notice that the eye level finders were very popular with those actually trying to use them quickly. The vast majority of serious pros desire an eye level solution. Yes we do take photos without using the VF on occasion but that doesn't mean we want to do that all day long.

0 upvotes
T3
By T3 (Dec 15, 2011)

Uh...you don't need to hold a camera at arms length to compose with a rear LCD. A few inches from your face is more accurate. And there's really no reason why you can't still get great shots this way. After all, plenty of videographers using DSLRs these days are shooting great video by framing and shooting with the rear LCD as their viewfinder.

0 upvotes
HIScamera
By HIScamera (Dec 15, 2011)

"Yes we do take photos without using the VF on occasion but that doesn't mean we want to do that all day long."

You want to tell that to Damon Winter? He was out there, taking those shots with his iPhone, all day, every day. Sure, he did his prize winning shots with Canon, but for everyday candid shots of the troops, it was his iPhone that did it for him. ALL DAY LONG.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Dustinash
By Dustinash (Dec 15, 2011)

have you looked through a gh2 evf? Its a wicked camera but the sony evf comes fart closer to being a better alternative to ovf. Better then Brilliant in good light, terrible in bad light. Misleading with flash. Sony cameras like light. They are like Jedi, I am ok with that. If i need a fix of darkness ill pick up a nex-5n. Which is a far more practical piece of secondary body for me. God if they would just standardize the lens mount? How nifty would that be?

0 upvotes
Photo-Wiz
By Photo-Wiz (Dec 14, 2011)

I think I'll wait until NEX 5n has built in viewfinder and built in flash. Picture quality is what it is all about.

0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 14, 2011)

Read page 22.

6 upvotes
cboulakia
By cboulakia (Dec 14, 2011)

Seems bizarre that no one is talking about image stabilization. One of the main benefits of this camera is that I can use it with my old lenses (Contax, OM, NAI). Seems to me, I'll take lower IQ with in - body IS for real-world shooting. I was really looking forward to this camera, because of the control layout, but I think I'll get a Pen.

Oh - I also find it bizarre there's so much emphasis on the price - total cost of this camera is equivalent to purchasing and developing about 100 rolls of film. All digital cameras (with the exception of the professional ones) are dirt cheap.

6 upvotes
duartix
By duartix (Dec 14, 2011)

No one is talking about it because you are the only person that knows about it. ;)

3 upvotes
ryansholl
By ryansholl (Dec 14, 2011)

What is this "film" you speak of? Didn't Sony include the cleaning cloth to wipe the camera free of it? ;)

3 upvotes
Anadrol
By Anadrol (Dec 15, 2011)

It has Hand Held Twilight, which is better than IBIS in my opinion.

0 upvotes
Hannu108
By Hannu108 (Dec 15, 2011)

I got an E-PL2 and very satisfied with it. I have some great old glass of OM Zuiko and Yashica—all optically stabilized!

0 upvotes
SDF
By SDF (Dec 14, 2011)

Great review and Thank you Andy and the DPR team. In my opinion, the first thing Sony should address on the next firmware should be the jpeg engine. Not everyone wants to shoot 24mp raw casually. Overall good job Sony.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 14, 2011)

Yeah, the sensor here is too small and jam-pack crammed with way too many photosites (pixels). Bring out a 12MP version of this thing, Sony.

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Dec 14, 2011)

What lens was used for the NEX-7 studio comparison shots? Maybe it was discussed in a previous NEX review I did not read, or maybe I missed it. Thanks.

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Dec 14, 2011)

If you click on the little 'settings' cog under the crop, it should always tell you.

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Dec 14, 2011)

Thanks! Sony DT 50/1.8 presumably with adapter.

0 upvotes
Mssimo
By Mssimo (Dec 14, 2011)

How good is the 50mm f1.8?

0 upvotes
CAcreeks
By CAcreeks (Dec 15, 2011)

Pretty good from f/2.8 to f/11 according to the slrgear.com graph.

0 upvotes
dariusk
By dariusk (Dec 14, 2011)

Megapixelwar is like other wars not the right way. @higher iso iq of the nex7 is worse than nex5. So what is ist for? For all the newbies that buy their first cam and think higher megapix= bette iq??? Eeryone who needs 24 or more pixels will choose mediumformat and not apc. Good idea with the evf but missed the chance to be a real goal. Defenatly a step back in terms of iq. Only for newbies and dummies.

0 upvotes
HIScamera
By HIScamera (Dec 14, 2011)

I guess spell-check and Caps Lock are also for "newbies and dummies", huh?

7 upvotes
RedValley
By RedValley (Dec 14, 2011)

Defenatly!!

1 upvote
choochoo22
By choochoo22 (Dec 15, 2011)

I thought they addressed this pretty well in the review. As someone else said, read page 22. At high ISO the noise is about the same as a 5n, otherwise the 7 has higher IQ due to the resolution. I don't understand why people think this is a step backwards just because it only improves IQ under some circumstances, not all. I would think this is a step forward.

2 upvotes
dariusk
By dariusk (Dec 15, 2011)

yes!!! We want 100 Megapix+ on APS-C!!! Than we have 100Mb per pic but we can print our pix in 500" and 100%-iq (detail+noise) equal to the cams in mobile phones. Absolutly stupid but seem there is an market for :-)

0 upvotes
slagan
By slagan (Dec 14, 2011)

Yes, I have seen test and what I see. Modern product, high price, and much visible noise even in low ISO. I was waiting for nex-7 and wanted to buy , but waiting for Nikon D800 will be the best choice. When someone wants to compare new camera with nikon D 7000 more than one year old, and trying to prove that I must pay for newest product in less quality bigger price, than I can't understand. Maybe it's new , maybe is smaller, maybe many others , but noise and high price disqualify it in my eyes.To much noise about this camera...

2 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 14, 2011)

Less quality? Below ISO 3200 for a given display size you get more resolution with similar noise levels. Above that noise and detail are both similar.
ISO 6400 converted with LR 3.6m NEX 7 top, D7000 bottom:
http://i39.tinypic.com/15pk21u.jpg

2 upvotes
Menneisyys
By Menneisyys (Dec 14, 2011)

"ISO 6400 converted with LR 3.6m NEX 7 top, D7000 bottom:
http://i39.tinypic.com/15pk21u.jpg"

The D7000 seems to be totally defocused - or, it's just the difference between the resolving power of 24 vs. 16.2 Mpixels? It shouldn't be THAT bad...

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 15, 2011)

Not sure we're looking at the same pictures as there's only a slight focus difference. But that wasn't the point to begin with. The point is that the noise is similar for a given display size.

0 upvotes
Hannu108
By Hannu108 (Dec 15, 2011)

Yes, there is too much noise for a camera in this price range. Even my little E-PL2 does better at ISO1600

See the RAW results here:

http://s1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/?action=view&current=SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO1600.jpg

http://s1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/?action=view&current=SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO3200.jpg

http://s1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/?action=view&current=SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO6400.jpg

0 upvotes
Azfar
By Azfar (Dec 14, 2011)

Why are they comparing Nex-7 with 4/3rd sensors in the review ??

0 upvotes
JWest
By JWest (Dec 14, 2011)

Because it's a compact mirrorless camera, so its main competition is Samsung NX range and the m4/3 cameras.

1 upvote
bajanexile
By bajanexile (Dec 14, 2011)

You might like to check this comparison out on the DxO Mark website:
http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/(appareil1)/736%7C0/(brand)/Sony/(appareil2)/676%7C0/(brand2)/Pentax/(appareil3)/680%7C0/(brand3)/Nikon

1 upvote
bajanexile
By bajanexile (Dec 14, 2011)

It seems to me that some are missing the whole attraction Photographers have for the Sony NEX-7. It may be an ideal second body for owners of Leica, Zeiss or Contax Glass. I will be renting a body to evaluate the camera my self and would suggest that if you are really serious, that you do the same. There is so much more to Sensors than just high ISO performance. How many of you shoot images at ISO settings > ISO 1600? I doubt that many do and if that is all that you are interested in, then this may not be the camera for you. In case you have forgotten, check the current price of the Nikon D3S or even the D7000. This camera body may be an absolute bargin, but like everything in life, it may well be a case of "Horses for Courses".

6 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

Yes, good point about Leica M lenses, however wouldn't the Nex 5n be an even better choice?

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Dec 14, 2011)

Why? Nex-7 has EVF and more dials, and higher resolution sensor.

1 upvote
burnymeister
By burnymeister (Dec 14, 2011)

5N doesn't color cast as much as the NEX7 with some wide angle lenses.

0 upvotes
poorfatjames
By poorfatjames (Dec 14, 2011)

Why jump to lenses that cost hundreds of dollars? I'm using my $40 Hexanon 50mm 1.4 now on my GF2, but looking closely at the 5n.

PS I now know what 'horses for courses' means.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

ET2:

Yawn, unless you were being ironic.

1 upvote
poorfatjames
By poorfatjames (Jan 9, 2012)

dials! got dials! come get your dials! round dials flat dial clicky dials ISO dials soft dials multi dials! I got dials on dials!

1 upvote
Michael49
By Michael49 (Dec 14, 2011)

I think many people miss one of the main advantages of theses mirrorless bodies - the MF lens options are nearly endless. On my NEX 5N I use almost all MF glass, such as some of the old Canon FD glass and the results are stellar. Manual focusing with the NEX via focus peaking makes MF a breeze and I actually prefer it to AF, except for quickly moving subjects.

The IQ of my 5d is still better, but the entire shooting experience of the NEX with legacy glass is truly revolutionary.

15 upvotes
Bob Meyer
By Bob Meyer (Dec 14, 2011)

And you miss the fact that the number of people who want MF lenses these days is a tiny fraction of the total market. I cut my teeth on MF and film. but really don't want to go back.

1 upvote
Jens_G
By Jens_G (Dec 15, 2011)

@Bob Meyer, two words: FOCUS PEAKING.
Especially in-EVF focus peaking.

2 upvotes
poorfatjames
By poorfatjames (Jan 9, 2012)

+1, Mike. I am enjoying my ILC+MF like no camera I've ever had, from SLRs to digi compact. I'm in control, I feel connected, and I'm learning more than ever did with the others. It's cheap, it's totally uncompromising in IQ. Amazing. This is what all photo schools should be using. And EVFs are already getting very favorable reviews- just need to come down in price. It's electronics, so you know it's just a matter of time.

1 upvote
Fujifilm Finepix F30
By Fujifilm Finepix F30 (Dec 14, 2011)

"It's no stretch to say that, at its best, the NEX-7 offers the finest still image quality of any APS-C camera, bar none."

I don't quite agree with this statement. It's pretty obvious from the test shots that from ISO 3200, 6400 and 12800, the 24MP NEX-7 is remarkably mushy and inferior in terms of detail retention compared to either the 18MP Canon 550d or the Nikon D5100. The high ISO image quality of the Nex-7 is actually inferior even when compared to that of the Nex-5N. I suspect even use of RAW will not dramatically improve things.

Don

3 upvotes
slncezgsi
By slncezgsi (Dec 14, 2011)

I suppose that "at it's best" does not mean ISO 6400 ...

8 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Dec 14, 2011)

Read the review. DPR did a whole page on high ISO comparison with 5N

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sonynex7/page22.asp

5N is not better

3 upvotes
sensibill
By sensibill (Dec 14, 2011)

5N is better before correcting for resolution - there's no doubt about it. Whether correcting for the MP discrepancy gives the 7 the edge remains to be conclusively (ie. NOT done by a Sony Fan) established.

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

ET2:

What world are you living in?

2 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 15, 2011)

Yes yes, because the Dpreview staff did exactly that but since they are Sony fans, the results cannot be called conclusive. Uhuh.
The ironic part is that I have yet to see anyone who claims the 5N is (much) better, come up with a fully normalized (visual and physical exposures, resolution) comparison. And no, a screenshot from the non normalized tool in the review does not qualify.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Hannu108
By Hannu108 (Dec 15, 2011)

Raw of NEX-7 looks quite bad. See these screen shots :

http://i1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO1600.jpg

http://i1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO3200.jpg

http://i1141.photobucket.com/albums/n600/EPL108/SonyNEX-7vsothers_ISO6400.jpg

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

Why on earth is DPReview asserting that the Nex 7 produces usable images at ISO 6400? Has DPReview simply decided to quote Sony marketing as verified fact.

In the RAW comparison tool:

Pick the Nikon D3s (because it is nearly noise free at ISO 6400)

Then for actual Nex 7 competitors select: The Samsung NX200, and the Sony Nex 5n.

The Samsung and the less expensive Sony destroy the Nex 7 at ISO 6400. RAWs (okay Tiffs) at that ISO from the Nex 7 will print like garbage; I can be sure because I know what it is to print from ISO 6400 shots taken with a D3s.
(I don't want to read the "noise improves with downsizing" noise.)

Look: The Nex 7 is a really interesting camera, and will be better when Sony releases a greater number of decent lenses. But telling tall tails about it doesn’t do DPReview any good and doesn’t help those who’d be interested in buying this camera or something like it.

PS:

I wish the shutter were less audible on all Nex cameras.

3 upvotes
sesopenko
By sesopenko (Dec 14, 2011)

Yeah my 5N has a sort of kachunk-chunk sound. It's not as loud as an RB67 but it definitely reminds me of one.

Also... Expecting a 24mp APS-C sensor to perform as well as a 12MP full-frame sensor in the noise department is kind of ridiculous.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 14, 2011)

You apparently missed page 22 of the review.
The tool you're referring to often uses different physical and visual exposures, compares different resolutions etc.
Here are both compared at ISO 6400, converted with LR 3.6. The 7 on the left, 5N on the right (and received 1/3 of a stop more light...):
http://i40.tinypic.com/23r50k1.jpg
Doesn't seem like "destroy" is the right choice of words when they are virtually the same.

1 upvote
sensibill
By sensibill (Dec 14, 2011)

There's not much difference, but the 5N in your (exported/adjusted/who knows) pic is a bit sharper and color is better.

1 upvote
JKP
By JKP (Dec 14, 2011)

I was wondering the same. Took old Canon 5DII as a reference for raw/ISO6400 and pointed to the coins or the bobbin with gray yarn. Sony is no match for the canon.

I know we are comparing APS-C to FF, but Canon is already 3 years old.

1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

sesopenko:

I picked the D3s as what is possible and actually near noise free at ISO 6400; I never said the Sony Nex should come close to that.

However the Sony Nex 7 should about match the high ISO performance of the Samsung NX200, and the Nex 7 does not.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

TrojMacReady:

Yes "destroy" is the right word, and I skipped page 22 and looked at a RAW file.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 14, 2011)

sensibill:

Are you looking at RAW files when saying there's not much difference between the 5n and the 7?

0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (Dec 15, 2011)

I posted direct RAW conversions....
Here's a set from the Dpreview studio, ISO 6400 converted with LR 3.6, 5N top (received 1/3 of a stop more light...), bottom the 7.
http://i43.tinypic.com/294mddf.jpg
In other words, the only thing that just got destroyed is your theory. If you compare, you'll have to normalize exposures and output size (resolution) first.

0 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (Dec 15, 2011)

I don't do raw for the same reason I don't swim across the Channel. Yet I agree with your comments. There is not much you can do with noise except to say it's just there. (Its random and other artifacts get created when trying to get rid of it .)
When I compared the pics of Oly's latest triple charge (pm1, pl3, p3) to Sony's -5N I was quite confident that -7 was not going to be much better, reviewed or not.
Sony would rather have a "great speed and great looks" rather than high IQ because taking on the top two dogs is a tight squeeze and technologically expensive at that.
Personally, being fairly new to this with but two P&S camera experience, I really must have fast AF, IS and low noise -- all equally important for a self-declared street shooter. Sounds ridiculous but -7 is oh for 3 for me.
While I pass on the -7 without remorse, I handled the camera in a store and found out I can use the viewfinder with my glasses on -- a nice term of endearment.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Dec 15, 2011)

TrojMacReady:

It's a little hard to take claims about noise in jpgs seriously. Please do tiffs.

I think it best to include the box with the colorful thread in it--lower mid picture.

0 upvotes
_Federico_
By _Federico_ (Dec 21, 2011)

This is the quality from an APS-C cameras?
Noisy even at 100 ISO ?
ahahahahhaah!

Sorry , Dpreview team , but do you know what you're talking about?
Are you sure?
This is ridiculous....

0 upvotes
Total comments: 339
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