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Sony a6000 Review

May 2014 | By Richard Butler, Jeff Keller
Buy on GearShopFrom $648.00


Review based on production Sony a6000

Sony's NEX-6 was a departure from the company's usual lineup of mirrorless cameras when it was introduced in the Fall of 2012. It slotted in between the various NEX-5 models and the NEX-7, and staked out a middle ground between the two, aiming to offer an accessible camera that offered a strong feature set for photographers. So you got a small camera with an electronic viewfinder and a degree of direct control. To this the NEX-6 offered two things that were yet to appear on any Sony mirrorless camera: an exposure mode dial and an ISO-standard hot shoe.

The new a6000 sits in the same place in Sony's mirrorless lineup and offers a broadly similar feature set, but adds a number of significant new features (while also losing the NEX moniker of its predecessor). The resolution and processor have been bumped up, the most notable feature on the a6000 is its updated Hybrid AF system.

Where the NEX-6 had 99 phase-detect points covering approximately 50% of the sensor, the a6000 has 179, with 92% coverage - by far the most comprehensive of any contemporary camera. This, combined with the new Bionz X processor, allows the camera to shoot continuously at 11 fps with subject tracking, according to Sony. The company also claims that the a6000 has the fastest AF performance on the market, though those statements should always be taken with a grain of salt.

The only major losses are that the a6000 utilizes Sony's lower resolution, SVGA viewfinder, rather than its top-end XGA panel. It also loses the NEX-6's level gauge - which seems like an odd thing to remove, just to help it hit a lower price point. However, those cost-cutting measures seem to have worked: the a6000's list price is $100 lower, at $649, than the NEX-6's was at launch.

Sony a6000 key features

  • 24.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Bionz X image processor
  • Hybrid AF system with 25 contrast-detect and 179 phase-detect points
  • Built-in flash + Multi-Interface Shoe
  • 11 fps continuous shooting with subject-tracking
  • 3-inch tilting LCD with 921,600 dots
  • OLED electronic viewfinder with 1.44M dots
  • Diffraction correction, area-specific noise reduction, and detail reproduction technology
  • Full HD video recording at 1080/60p and 24p; clean HDMI output
  • Wi-Fi with NFC capability and downloadable apps

The major changes here are related to the sensor. The new 24 megapixel 'Exmor APS HD' CMOS sensor has on-chip phase detection like its predecessor, but it covers a much larger area of the frame. Sony promises better AF tracking, especially when shooting continuously. The a6000 uses Sony's latest image processor - Bionz X - which touts improved detail and smarter noise reduction as improvements.

While the specs of the a6000's movie mode aren't a whole lot different from the NEX-6, users now have access to a zebra pattern (a live exposure warning that can be set to indicate a chosen brightness level), and can output 'clean' video over HDMI. The menus have switched to the new 'Alpha' style found on the a7 and a7R (for better or for worse), and the camera can now be controlled via a Mac or PC over a USB connection. The Wi-Fi feature is about the same as on the NEX-6, offering remote control from a smart device, the ability to transfer images from the camera and options for uploading to the cloud, across Wi-Fi networks. The camera can also download and run Sony's feature-enhancing 'Playmemories Apps' of which there are an increasing number.

Hybrid AF System

If there's one area that makes the a6000 stand out from the crowd, it's the camera's improved AF system. While the 25-point contrast detect part of the system remains the same, the number of phase-detect points has increased from 99 to 179 since the NEX-6. All of those extra phase detect points give you a much wider coverage area: roughly 92% of the frame, compared to around 50%. The benefit? A wider area that lets phase detection autofocus do what it does best: track moving subjects.

Bionz X Processor

The company's latest 'Bionz X' processor is considerably more powerful than the previous generation, allowing what the company says will be more sophisticated processing.

Sony is being a little vague on specifics, but is touting the new processor as offering 'Detail Reproduction Technology' which appears to be a more subtle and sophisticated sharpening system. The company promises less apparent emphasis on edges, giving a more convincing representation of fine detail.

Another function promised by the Bionz X processor is 'Diffraction Reduction', in which the camera's processing attempts to correct for the softness caused by diffraction as you stop a lens' aperture down. This processing is presumably aperture-dependent and sounds similar to an element of Fujifilm's Lens Modulation Optimization system (introduced on the X100S), and, as we predicted when we first saw it here, it's subsequently appeared across several brands, including Olympus.

Finally, Sony says the Bionz X chip offers a more advanced version of its context-sensitive, 'area-specific noise reduction', which attempts to identify whether each area of an image represents smooth tone, textured detail or subject edges, and then apply different amounts of noise reduction accordingly.

Compared to a5000 and NEX-6

While most of the changes on the a6000 are for the better, there are a few things that have gone the other way compared to the NEX-6. For the sake of comparison we've also thrown in the a6000's step-down model, the a5000.

 
a5000
NEX-6
a6000
Resolution
20.1MP
16.1MP
24.3MP
Processor
Bionz X
Bionz
Bionz X
AF system (contrast/phase)
25 / 0 point
25 / 99 point
25 / 179 point
ISO range
100-16000
100-25600
100-25600
LCD design (tilt up/down)
Tilting (180° up)
Tilting (90°/45°)
Tilting (90°/45°)
EVF type / resolution
None
OLED / 2.36M dot
OLED / 1.44M dot
EVF magnification (equiv.)
N/A
0.73x
0.70x
On-screen level gauge
No
Yes
No
Max burst rate
4 fps
10 fps
11 fps
Video resolution
1080/60i/24p
1080/60p/24p
1080/60p/24p
Zebra pattern
Yes
No
Yes
Clean HDMI output
No
No
Yes
PC remote
No
No
Yes
Battery life (CIPA)
420 shots
360 shots
360 shots

In most respects, the Alpha 6000 is a big step up from the NEX-6 - the slightly smaller, lower resolution viewfinder is the only major step down in the specification.

As you'd expect, the a6000 is considerably more capable than the lower-cost a5000, unless you want a 180 degree flip-up screen. The trade-off for that feature is the lack of an EVF.

Kit options and pricing

The a6000 is available in silver or black, at a price of $649/£589/€649 for the body and $799/£719/€799 for a kit including the 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 power zoom lens.

The a6000 is available in silver or black

Accessories of note include an 'active sling bag', screen protector, and body case. Some users may also be interested in the BC-VW1 external charger, as Sony only includes a USB charger in the box.


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2014 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 743
1234
msolea

For me, the major con is that it does not have a microphone jack for higher end microphones. I actually like the fact that it does not have a touch screen. I have used touch screens before and I always found them irritating. While, I have only handled this camera briefly, it seems to be a solid camera. If Sony were to offer an A7000, I would like to see a MIC jack added and possibly internal 4HD. But, I am not that big into making videos, so the latter point is that that crucial to me. Perhaps, they can take out the AA filter too.

That said, there are a couple of lenses I would like to see for the E-system or FE system, like a 70-300mm G or Zeiss OSS variable aperture lens as well as a wider angle lens that would at least incorporate 12mm or 18mm equivalent in the DX format that is also of high quality ~ G or Zeiss quality.... But, with the 55mm filter size. After all, 24-70mm f/4 FE lens is a bit too wide for this body, but manageable. Hence, my dilemma based on initial impressions.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Summi Luchs

A 70-300mm lens for APS-C sized sensors will inevitably become big. Even more an FE version. The size advantage of the shorter flange distance doesn't play a significant role at 300mm. So I doubt that it is meaningful to put such big lenses on such small camera bodies.

0 upvotes
Stan

Without control over audio codecs and levels (hate AGC) how much good would a mic input do? Sony sells a hot shoe mic and even a hotshoe bluetooth mic you can separate. But is the AGC dealt with - no. So dual record and the easily autosync in your NLE or via something like Pluraleyes.

0 upvotes
Crixus

Nice read, thank you for the review. Great little camera, I can't wait to have one in my hands.

2 upvotes
tecnoworld

This camera has just two negatives for being the perfect body for my tastes:

1) lack of touch screen to set af point quickly (some others are better here)
2) small and not top res evf (fuji is much better here)

For the rest, I consider it the best aps-c body available now on the market.

Sony is very clever in its rangefinder alike design.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
8 upvotes
Crixus

I totally agree about the touchscreen. It beats me why a giant like Sony with so much touchscreen know how doesn't see fit to equip their cameras with good quality ones (unlike 5R's awful implementation). For me and some others would be very useful, while the ones who don't like the option could always turn it off.

Would this be such an expensive feature to add?

5 upvotes
tecnoworld

I don't think it has to do with costs, but rather with the fact that somehow touch is seen as not a 'high end' feature by some.

Since when I'm used to change focus point with one click, I would not want to come back to the several clicks routine.

In general I much prefer physical controls, but NOT for af point.

2 upvotes
Old Baldy

They could just have used the lovely 5N touchscreen (much nicer than the later 5 versions) on this camera for presumably very little cost increase. Pity.

2 upvotes
bluevellet

It's mostly a cost-saving issue, since Sony has no problem including it in any camera without a viewfinder (but not both at the same time).

But whenever the issue of touchscreens comes up, the mental gymnastics exhibited in Sony forums is quite a sight to see.

0 upvotes
Stan

Um focus and recompose? With the buttons set right you can keep the composition, AE, and Focus all separate and under your control.

1 upvote
tecnoworld

Yup, try this technique with a 2 years old toddler :)

Touch af helped me keeping focus on eyes even with a jumping kid.

1 upvote
Bhima78

Focus recompose is a slower, less streamlined way to shoot than compose, touch once to focus and it takes a shot automatically. I still use focus recompose when I'm looking through the EVF, but when I can use the touchscreen, it is noticeably faster to get the shot.

1 upvote
rodderslw

What a bargin! Just image quality alone those studio shots look great compared to their direct competition and beyond. Do they use the kit lens for the studio comparison? I have had this camera for about 6 weeks now and am very happy with it. Great to hold and shoot with and with the SEL35f18 prime it shines. Also great to use with my old Minolta 50mm f1.4 and other legacy lenses.

10 upvotes
Juhaz

The studio comparison shows the lens used if you hover the cursor over the "i" in bottom right corner.

They shot those with the FE 55mm Zeiss which is absurdly good, so that's no doubt part of why they look fantastic. But of course a fantastic lens doesn't matter if the camera can't take advantage of the resolution it offers, and this one clearly can.

3 upvotes
rodderslw

Awesome, thanks for the info.

0 upvotes
FiveForm

As it pertains to the "downgrading" of the EVF, I owned the NEX-7 and It would be difficult to tell the view quality apart in the a6000 from that camera. I tend to believe Sony when they have said that the lower resolution of the EVF tends to let it perform better in low light (I haven't seen that mentioned in any reviews, but is in one of Sony's official videos of the product). This performance mainly shows up in less blocking up of shadow detail that was encountered in the NEX-7 viewfinder.
As for the absence of the touchscreen, I had a NEX-5N and was constantly unintentionally resetting focus by touching the screen when I didn't want this. What is our fascination with touchscreens, anyway? Must be coming in from smartphones. Well it's best to decide on any given piece of technology if you will be managing it via hard controls or touchscreen, but when it's both then I feel that there will be issues. The a6000 is simply so good grabbing the focus I want, that it is fine, as is.

6 upvotes
audiobomber

> "I had a NEX-5N and was constantly unintentionally resetting focus by touching the screen when I didn't want this."

That is my main beef. A smaller beef is that touch screens get all smudgy and fingerprinted. No touchscreen is a Pro, not a Con.

1 upvote
Old Baldy

Weird. I've owned two NEX-5Ns and have yet to inadvertently move the focus point because of the touchscreen. No way on Earth would I consider the LACK of a touchscreen to be any sort of advantage, other than to save a few pennies. I tend to shoot more with my 5N than with my 7 because of it.

Comment edited 42 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Eleson

@ "Image quality compared" , that cut-out @ 800 ISO with all its vertical lines did not look good on the D800E, I guess AA filter have a value after all !

Actually it doesn't look good even with the D800, someone care to explain?

0 upvotes
midimid

Wait - 'there's no real portrait prime' on E-mount? Isn't there a 50mm 1.8 from the original lineup? And a 55mm 1.8 on FE?

1 upvote
Carnex

Many consider portrait lenses to begin at 85 for APS-C and 135 for full frame sensors. And I kind of agree. But then again, i did use friends Jupiter 9 and Tair 11 with adapter and it works wonders. It's just that manual focus can be pain in the back with razor thin focus field.

Comment edited 59 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
abortabort

Oh I see, Fuji are more 'serious' because their 'portrait' lens is a whole 1mm longer than Sony's... Ok got it!

8 upvotes
Carnex

Where did Fuji come from? Who mentioned it? Oh, it was you actually...

1 upvote
Miwok

You can also find the Rokinon 85mm f1.4 on E-mount.
Big and MF only lens, but really good and insanely cheap.

0 upvotes
Gregm61

Sony is just short on NEX system lenses, period. At this point, they've probably created more NEX/A6000 body models than dedicated lenses to fit them. In that respect, even Samsung has done a better job.

3 upvotes
abortabort

@ Carnex - Actually the reviewer did thanks.

0 upvotes
Carnex

@abortabort
My apologies then

0 upvotes
abortabort

@ Gregm61 - At last count Sony had more lenses than Fuji, than Olympus and also Panasonic (though not Olympus and Panasonic combined).

Sony also are the only of the 'big 3' mirrorless systems that also support a DSLR system still (Oly, Panasonic and Fuji all abandoned theirs, though Fuji didn't really have one to begin with). As such Sony are the only company of those that offer proper compatibility with their existing system.

None of the other mirrorless systems offer popular focal length ranges with constant aperture like 24-105mm equiv and 28-158mm equiv.

None of the other systems have as many third party lenses for it, Fuji lack Tamron and Sigma support, M43's lacks Zeiss and Tamron support.

So.... there that is....

4 upvotes
kadardr

As long as the missing portrait lens concerns there is the Sony 135mm F1.8 ZA Carl Zeiss Sonnar. It is the best 135mm available, and there is also the LA-EA4 adapter (FF). Then this camera will not miss anything for great portraits.As a cheaper option there is the Minolta MAXXUM AF 85mm f/1.4 used (wonderful).

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
123Mike

Believe it or not, but portraits using the 18-105 f/4 G lens come out pretty good!

1 upvote
audiobomber

55mm is the ideal portrait length on APS-C and is available in E-mount. 50mm is an acceptable substitute. The review needs to be corrected.

It is clear though that E-mount is lacking in telephoto choices.

Comment edited 59 seconds after posting
1 upvote
joelR42

@Carnex, actuality the reviewer listed the lack of a "portrait prime" compared to the competition as a fault. So, no the reviewer did not mention Fuji by name but the competition would be Fuji, Oly, and Panasonic—none of which have 85/90mm lenses. They have "equivalent" focal lengths BUT Sony does too. Of course a 85/90mm fast prime would be great but it was a silly false statement.

2 upvotes
BigJ2013

Who wants or needs a touch screen! Dumb thought to think that one is actually required. Even Audi & Lexus has done away with that annoyance and use other means of navigating the menus.

5 upvotes
Andy Crowe

I take it you've never actually used a touch screen camera? A touch screen is no replacement for good physical controls, but if you have good physical controls a touch screen makes things even better; You can have a quick setting panel with all sorts of obscure settings that on a non-touch screen camera would require menu diving, and being able to instantly set a focus point anywhere on screen is a big plus.

9 upvotes
viking79

All mirrorless cameras need touchscreens. You can instantly change focus point to any point on the screen. Note their con about changing focus points. Also, touch to shoot is nice when you want near zero lag from focus finish to exposure. It is also nice for using smart features and changing settings. For example, long passwords are terrible unless you have a touch screen.

5 upvotes
T3

Yeah, and I can't wait until smartphones and tablets get rid of touch, too! LOL.

Touch is definitely *not* dumb. Your thumb is already right there next to the screen. It's totally logical that you should simply be able to touch graphical buttons on the screen...just like you do on a smartphone. What's "dumb" is that you have to use secondary controls (like buttons or dials) to interact with the primary information on the screen, when it would be easier just to interact with the screen directly.

1 upvote
ProfHankD

I can't believe that this is rated 3% lower than a Canon 70D, etc., but you'll notice the only non-subjective con is about flash exposure. "Lens range not as developed as rival systems" -- you mean like the EOS-M system? I suppose only about 25 of my 130+ lenses would quickly autofocus on an A6000.... ;-)

This is a disturbingly good camera at a very good price. Take a look at the IQ side-by-side against the full-frame A7. I'd buy one immediately except I have a NEX-7, an A7, and a wife who'd be unhappy if I bought another camera right now.

23 upvotes
iudex

And among all your lenses do you find an E-mount zoom with f2,8? Either standard, with most usual focal length (say 17-50), or telephoto? ;-)
So apart from EOS-M (which is a joke) all of the relevant competition (Fuji, Olympus, Panasonic) has better lens range. So it is a con.

6 upvotes
Greynerd

@iudex
I am not sure if EOS-M is a joke any more. It has become so very sad that it would be in extremely bad taste to laugh at it.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
19 upvotes
Carnex

Sony obviously doesn't want to make their MILC cameras competition for their STL line. But what I don't understand is why Sigma and Tamron don't adapt their lenses for E-Mount and FE mount? Is there some problem with Sony and/or their autofocus/optical stabilization. It's not like it would be hard to modify lenses, just extend them in the back for right optical position.

2 upvotes
ProfHankD

I don't have or want any f/2.8 or faster zoom I've seen. If I did, the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Lens for Sony Alpha will AF nicely using my LA-EA2/4. BHPhoto lists 40 lens choices in Fuji X mount, but 57 in E and another 7 in FE... and then there's the hundreds in Sony A mount that fast autofocus with any E/FE body using the Sony adapter... including a bunch of f/2.8 zooms. Although I PREFER manual, fixed-focal-length, lenses for everything but ultrawide....

Basically, E/FE can fast AF more lenses than any other mount and takes as many manual lenses as any other mount. Really hard to complain about that. Do you own 130 lenses that you can use with your camera? Did you pay a total of less than $3000 for those 130+ lenses? I do and did. :-)

2 upvotes
Carnex

No, actually I'm quite poor for a photo enthusiast so I still use Nex-5 (original one) and Canon FD/m39/m42 lenses. Problem is, focusing can be pain in the ass and autofocus would be nice. I would get one autofocus portrait lens in range of Canon EF 85 1.8 but there is none available. Well there is adapter with autofocus but it's as slow as la-ea1 if not slower and less reliable.

0 upvotes
HFLM

When looking into the NEX system I didn't find the lenses I want, especially if I don't want an adapter. Focusing alpha lenses uses the adapter and not the autofocus system of the A6000, which is way better than the adapter. I want lenses like a 56/1.2, 23/1.4, 35/1.4 or upcoming 16/1.4 or 90/2.0 and I want 2.8 zooms, designed for APSC and not for FF, fitting the size of the small body and not overwhelming it.

3 upvotes
FiveForm

I don't feel that the DPR rating scale accounts for making all camera types equal. It certainly shouldn't imply that an SLR is "better" than a ILC, or that a particular high rated P&S is better than a Nikon D4s, for instance, if the total score is higher. So, I don't believe that this is a competition amongst camera categories...

0 upvotes
abortabort

@ iudex - Really? I don't see any of the other systems having constant aperture f4 zooms like the 24-105mm equiv and 28-158mm equiv do you? These are also popular FL lenses... Guess EVERYONE is behind Sony then?

0 upvotes
iudex

ProfHankD: argument that you can use many lenses via adapter is ridiculous. Why buying extra small and lightweight NEX body (sorry, alpha now), when you add an adapter and a heavy A-mount lens? And as was already mentioned, the highlight of this a6000 is ultra fast AF: with non-native lenses via adapter it looses this advantage.
So once again: how many native E-mount lenses are there? Are there fast portrait lenses? Fast standard zooms? Fast telezooms? Nope. ;.)

4 upvotes
iudex

abortabort: maybe you didn´t notice I was talking about f2,8 zooms. That´s 1 EV faster than f4, you know? ;-) Something like 12-40/2,8 Pro from Oly or 12-35/2,8 from Pana or 16-55/2,8 from Fuji or 16-50/2-2,8 from Samsung... Got it?
P.S. The 16-40/4 is pretty mediocre according to reviews, definitely not worth the money.

0 upvotes
Dr_Jon

iudex - if you mean the 16-70 E-mount it looks to be a key lens for the system to me:
http://www.ephotozine.com/article/carl-zeiss-vario-tessar-e-16-70mm-f-4-za-oss-t--review-24059
Seems to be busting through Excellent all over the place.

Oh, and I have m43 not E-mount kit, so no fandom going on. Their f2.8 lenses (of which I have a couple) capture broadly similar amounts of light (the sensor being 0.6x the size of the Sony) as E-mount f4 lenses, so similar-ish noise levels result.

Math: (17.3*13)/(23.4*15.6) = 0.61

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 5 minutes after posting
1 upvote
123Mike

I think that's just sucking up to the hand that feeds it...
DPR is not really a Canikon shop though. Fro that turns out doesn't really know photo that much, for instance, now THERE is the ultimate Canikon. He won't acknowledge Sony even exists. There are others like that. Those Hong Kong boys, the one with the British accent that one, doesn't fully appreciate Sony for obvious reasons also.

0 upvotes
abortabort

@ iudex - You mean the Fuji f2.8 zoom that doesn't exist yet or some other one I don't know about? Your argument about f2.8 zooms was that Sony dont have lenses, my retort was Sony have lenses, popular lenses, that no other mirrorless systems has, but you are still hung up on f2.8 zooms like that is the only lens anyone would ever use / need. On the other hand m43's DOES have f2.8 zooms, which when tied to their smaller sensors are pretty close to f4 equiv, yet cover a smaller range.... So what's the big advantage there? That they can claim to have an f2.8 zoom? Well I have a Sony with a bigger f2.8 zoom than any of them, cost less than any of them (on their own) and clearly f2.8 is the only factor so it is instantly 'the best' right?

If so, then Sony produces the best lenses in the world bar none because they have a 24-200mm equiv f2.8, who would need anything else ever?

0 upvotes
W5JCK

@iudex, I hope you realize that the laws of optical physics says that an f/2.8 M43 lens is the equivalent speed on APS-C of f/3.6 and the equivalent speed on FF of f/5.6. So those M43 f/2.8 or just pure marketing crap. They are no faster, nor provide any more light, than a f/3.6 lens does on an a6000. Talk about a con, M43 BS marketing is a huge con!

0 upvotes
Dr_Jon

W5JCK - actually no as they are really f2.8 lenses, which is the focal length divided by the entrance pupil. Hence the light per unit area is the same and the exposure the same as any other f2.8 lens. The difference is for a smaller sensor less total light is captured. However they're still f2.8 as that's how f-ratios are defined.

There is an implied DoF gain as you'd use a shorter focal length to capture the same view on a scene compared to a larger sensor, but that's just down to focal lengths used.

Also while it's scientifically correct to just multiply the f-ratio by the crop factor to correct for a smaller sensor's effects (ignoring aspect ratio and sensor technology differences) you can also say that if the sensor noise at the ISO's you shoot at doesn't worry you for the use you will make of the pics (which can vary pic-pic, maybe Facebook: ISO 1600 is fine, Wall Poster: ISO 200) and the lens can give you the DoF you want then it's all good, as you'll get f2.8 exposure maths.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Carnex

We have all this again... with different sizes of snesor size of glass to achieve certain light conducting efficiency varies. f2.8 on m4/3 requires smaller frontal lens than f2.8 on APS-C and does have same light efficiency. Size affects depth of field only. Ans for amount of light gathered, that should never be metered by sensor size but rather per pixel. On smaller sensor with roughly the same resolution each pixel gets far smaller. For example if you take 5D M3 as standards 1.5 APS-C sensor would have to have resolution 9.7mpix and m4/3 sensor would have to have resolution 5.7mpix to maintain roughly the same pixel size/density. So yea, ISO is kind of a bs in digital photography but aperture stays true even when you recalculate lens to match 35mm equivalent since light gathering capability is much more important than depth of field to most customers.
@123mike
Jared said that he doesn't test SONY equipment because SONY doesn't send him any. He won't buy something we wont use.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
iudex

abortabort: look, I do not mean to bash Sony and I actually like their cameras, but I simply cannot really imagine buying one because I have no standard lens to add. Kit 16-50mm zoom is smal and lightweightl, but that´s pretty much everything it offers. It is slow and optically weak and I would like something better. But what can I have instead? Only primes, but absolutely no zoom. I dont say it must be constant f2,8 zoom, I would be happy also with something like Fuji 18-55/2,8-4. But there´s nothing like this for E-mount.

0 upvotes
Hakan zsara

Please don't upload photos when you drinking beer or wine!

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
electrophoto

Why on earth not?
Do we need more cat pictures then?

But wait, lets forbid all display of people drinking perfectly tasty beer and wine.
And whilst we are at it, no more adverts for cars that go faster than 40mph, no more extreme sports, no more sports in general, certainly no more parties...

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
9 upvotes
Hakan zsara

You forgot something important!..
Alcohol is harmful to human body.
There are getting more and more people die because of alcohol.
Do we need to advertise alcohol ?..

0 upvotes
electrophoto

Hakan,
Alcohol is about as harmful to the body as say junk food, over-the-counter medication... IF ABUSED.
If consumed with measure and occassionally it does not do any harm.
By your logic there should be no depiction of anyone taking paracetamol (acetaminophen) (and over the counter pain killer...)... actually there are a lot of people getting seriously poisoned and some even die from taking it... well from taking too much of it.
Also we should never see a photo / advert for a car, a motorcycle or public transportation again. people commit suicide by jumping in front of trains... car accidents kill a lot people.

Forbid all junk food adverts (and close down the fast food sellers) too... it harms your body if you live of it...

And seeing someone sip a beer hardly counts as advertisement for becoming a chronic drinker.

Get a look at the bigger picture... and ask yourself would you really want to live in a place that forbids ALL those things?
Me? NO THANKS, I value my freedom.

0 upvotes
Mike Yorkshire

Being somewhat "old school" I must say that the lack of a touchscreen is a PLUS for me.
Not many of the "Cons" would actually affect me either although YMMMV

Level gauge? - isn't that what the viewfinder is for?
In-camera RAW conversion? If you shoot in RAW surely this is better done in software?
Autofocus points - I rarely if ever use this feature on any camera except maybe on some tripod shots. Move centre to point you want to focus on - hold focus, re-frame. Much faster than fiddling with adjustment of focus point.
Movies? Get a movie camera if you must. I am a stills man.
External charger - a pain to have to buy one, but solvable.

So that leaves me with poor flash exposures - not an issue for landscapes and street shots.... heavy noise reduction - not good (but I have used Lumix's where some of the shots end up like paintings) ... poor battery life - see notes on charger ...lens range meh - enough for me!
Oh NO! I may have to buy one of these!

3 upvotes
Andy Crowe

> Being somewhat "old school" I must say that the lack of a touchscreen is a PLUS for me.

How can not having a feature be a plus? Imagine if the body was unchanged other than including a touchscreen, you could fit extra quick links to settings that you now have to menu dive for, and you can place the focus point anywhere instantly. There are absolutely no downsides to having a touchscreen.

1 upvote
tecnoworld

If touchscreen is present, you can turn it off via menu. If it's not present, you can't turn it on.

I remember when ppl went on saying that they considered it a plus not having asr on cars.

4 upvotes
khorton

Every extra feature adds a bit of cost to Sony, both for the engineering and testing time to develop the feature, and for the production cost of the hardware to support the feature. This drives up the retail price. This is OK if you value the extra feature, but those of us who don't care about touch screens or level gauges would rather not pay for these features. If touch screens and level gauges are important to you, there are other cameras on the market with these features.

1 upvote
Mike Yorkshire

Thank you KHorton - you seem to understand.

Andy Crowe is clearly not a likely customer for a Leica M series film camera, whereas I am. I prefer to have my eye to the camera instead of poking a screen to determine focus points etc. For my type of photography a touch screen is totally unnecessary and something I would rather not pay for - it is superfluous and I don't like them............for ME, not necessarily for anyone else.
I DID say YMMV Mr Crowe and it clearly does. Doesn't make you wrong, or me wrong - we have different needs - and I am still pleased that the A6000 doesn't have a touchscreen.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe

@Mike but then every other feature you don't use would be a con too. If you like taking photographs completely manually then all those PDAF points on the sensor add cost and are superfluous, the electronic contacts and focus motor on the lens add cost and are superfluous etc. If you enjoy film workflow then even a rear screen could be superfluous.

Removing any of the above would make a much bigger difference to the price than adding a touchscreen would, and even if you don't use autofocus any time you have to change one of the slightly less commonly used settings a touchscreen can make that a much quicker process.

1 upvote
Jorginho

Excellent well deserved result. 80 points seems a bit low to my mind.I hope some other brands take notice of this feature set and how well it performs per feature! Nothing below 1100 odllar can compete when we look at the body only. Lenses remain the only downside to the system but it is not as bad as it used to be. it is the first mirrorless cam with such a sensor that is recommendedfro amateurs sportshooters!

Minor point of critique here (I did not read the whole review, so sorry if I missed somehting) is that their focustracking test with the biker does not prove a whole lot.... And the buffersize of 21 shots or so seems rather limiting. ut at that price, what can you expect?

Congrats to Sony!!

10 upvotes
Andy Crowe

> I hope some other brands take notice of this feature set and how well it performs per feature! Nothing below 1100 odllar can compete when we look at the body only.

I wouldn't say there was no competition, for example the GX7 is close in terms of IQ, has a similar feature set and includes some nice to haves above the a6000 such as touchscreen, IBIS, tilting EVF and unlimited length video recording.

2 upvotes
Jorginho

@ Andy: because of the superb focustracking the A6000 I think distances itself in a very important way. GX7 indeed has very good IQ, mainly because of the better lenses in general. Teh sensor is good for mFTs, but a little below par when compared to average APS-c. Sony's is one of the best out there.

Panasonic better come up with a competitor that allows for much improved AF-c. I have the Gh4 and that is the way to go for lower end models to from this perspective. Sony is astep ahead I think...

2 upvotes
tecnoworld

If this camera had the samsung or fuji lenses, it would be the #1 in the world.

0 upvotes
Boky

not bad at all....
Nick

0 upvotes
Menneisyys

Too bad its video IQ doesn't even approach that of the RX100 MkIII, let alone the even better RX10... It's on exactly the Nikon D3300 / D5300 level, resolution-wise. Otherwise, it'd be a tempting camera, apart from the lens problem, obviously.

BTW, two mistakes / overlooks in the article:

- "advantegs" on the Conclusions page

- "While some people will never step away from a DSLR, the a6000 makes a very strong case for being able to do everything a Nikon D5300 or EOS 700D/Rebel T5i can do, even in terms of autofocus." - the D5300 also has GPS (smething immensely useful if you don't want to keep a separate tracker and/or maintain a constant Wi-Fi connection to an Android / iPhone)

Comment edited 31 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
123Mike

In the video still demonstration, the A6000 shows it was focused on nearer objects, like the bottle or that flock of hair. The D3300's version looks less sharp on those details. But the flat parts like the charts that are behind it, the D3300's look sharper. Also, it look like a sub-par lens was used for the A6000, which was probably the 16-50 lens (I haven't actually checked), which isn't very good at all.
But scrutinizing and finding those focusing differences, I think that the A6000 is probably better for video than the D3300 is.
Also question comparisons with other cameras as well. The focus is often what screws up these tests. This goes for their still tests as well !

0 upvotes
Stan

Good luck videoing something needing a wider angle or more telephoto focal length than what the R100M3 allows. Same with DOF control or mere access to the funtionality which is hindered by the size goal.

0 upvotes
Hubertus Bigend

I wonder how a smallish EVF with 462 x 346 effective RGB pixels can be "respectable" for a camera that offers 24 MP, let alone so many years after the first mirrorless camera has appeared on the market. Even the best EVF available today still lacks the clear image of a good optical SLR finder that allows precise manual focus without the nuisance of having to switch into a zoom-in mode. But an EVF like the current Olympus finder and probably the Fuji X-T1 finder, too, is at least a step in the right direction. New electronic finders should improve on that, not deteriorate.

4 upvotes
quezra

I guess that's the difference between people who've actually used the EVF and people who are experts at reading spec sheets

24 upvotes
Zeisschen

Manual Focus on a DSLR body that size? Oh wait... there is no DSLR that small...
99% will use AF anyways on A6000

2 upvotes
Scott Nicol

I was initially worried about the step down in EVF res but in practical use the new EVF is fine - the improved optics help a bit I think in terms of clarity and brightness, refresh rate feels much better in low light plus manual focusing with the auto zoom / peaking and in viewfinder distance scale (all when using a native lens) really help.

5 upvotes
Scott Nicol

I'm basing the above assessment on my previous experience with the a77 / NEX 6 and old a55 EVFs by the way

0 upvotes
Hubertus Bigend

@quezra: I've actually used the NEX-7 and NEX-6 EVFs and found them too low-res for my demand. I'm quite sure I don't need to actually use an A6000 to find out that less pixels lead to even lower resolution.

@Zeisschen: Using old manual focus lenses of all kinds is one of the most important application for mirrorless cameras. The worse an EVF is, the less a camera is fun for that purpose, because the more often you need zoom-in to get the focus right. With a good finder, you shouldn't need zoom-in.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Hubertus Bigend

@Scott: I see the point, and the A6000 probably is a capable camera if you don't mind using zoom-in with manual focus. The problem, though, is, that having to zoom in makes it near-impossible to use legacy lenses for snaphots.

1 upvote
photofan1986

Ever heard of focus peaking? I find it much easier to focus in a good EVF than on a normal sized OVF. Maybe on a full frame, it might be ok, but even so, you don't have to be in a hurry. But on a budget priced SLR, with the tiny tunnel pentamirror viewfinder, you'd be hard pressed if you manage to achieve manual focus!

3 upvotes
Andy Crowe

1.44MP is 800x600 RGB pixels you nitwit!

7 upvotes
abortabort

Yes, pity that there are no good optical viewfinders at a $650 price point, so your points are hardly valid. Sure a 1DX OVF is leagues ahead (well at least in terms of clarity, shooting information is a different story) but you won't see an OVF like that on a $650 camera... well ever.

Also as has been noted your math is wrong, it is an 800x600 panel.

2 upvotes
Scott Nicol

@Hubertus Yes I can see from a legacy lens point of view the lower res might be more of an issue if you want to focus whilst still seeing the whole scene unzoomed. My experience of focus peaking is that it helps immensely in good light but can struggle in low light / low contrast scenes. I guess my comments more address this idea that the A6000 is vastly inferior to the a77 / 6 EVF due to the drop in resolution - its actually more complex than that due to the refresh / improved optics and diopter adjustments. I personally would still give the a77 / 6 the edge but its much closer than resolution specs alone would suggest and so far I found it an easy adjustment to make when I swithc between the 2 (I still use the 6 as a backup body).

0 upvotes
Zeisschen

@Hubertus

The use of old lenses is just a side product of mirrorless cameras, not one of the main features. And Sony has the A7/r/s for use with those legacy (FF) lenses now, no need to put an expensive high res EVF in a small camera that's made for fast action

0 upvotes
Olymore

I think he may have been referring to the fact that three RGB points are required to make one pixel. I still think he got the calculation wrong though.

0 upvotes
Scott Nicol

@Hubertus have you had a chance to try the EVF on a Fuji X-T1? I tried a friends and found it impressive with its dual full screen / zoomed detail view (although I disliked the low refresh rate that appears to be a power saving feature until you half press the shutter - I tried it under fluorescent lighting and it was distracting). Of course, its worth noting that the X-T1 is in a different price bracket to the 6000.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe

@Olymore He may have divided by 3 twice or something, because 800*600*3 definitely equals 1.44 million :)

2 upvotes
quezra

I retract the stuff about him being an expert at reading spec sheets what was I thinking?

1 upvote
Robert Schroeder

@photofan1986: In every mirrorless camera I've used so far, I found that focus peaking tended to be more distracting then helpful, and except maybe for the Olympus E-M1 (which will probably become my next camera, by the way) it wasn't good enough on its own, I needed to zoom-in, too, to get the focus really right.

@Andy Crowe, @abortabort, @Olymore: My bad.

@Zeisschen: I don't see the A6000 being positioned as a camera specially focused on high-speed action. Like all the NEX predecessors have been, the A6000 is an all-purpose mirrorless camera, and surely a good one to boot. And with both the NEX-6 and the NEX-7 being discontinued, it is the only somewhat ambitious APS-C mirrorless camera available from Sony today. If they think they can force legacy lens users to buy the expensive A7/A7R – I won't.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Robert Schroeder

@Scott: Haven't yet had the chance to test the X-T1, but it sure looks like an interesting camera. I do find Fuji's lens line up quite attractive, too. As I still have some Four Thirds gear, it'll probably be the OM-D E-M1 in the end, though. My Sony investments so far only amount to a NEX-C3 to have some fun with my Minolta SR lenses (as much as that can be without any viewfinder whatsoever).

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
spidermoon

Maybe because less and less people use EVF to compose ?
Recently, i go to the Eiffel Tower, young use phone, their parent use compact camera, grand pa use dslr and use a view finder, japanese use either phone or mirroless. And many photographer using camera with viewfinder compose with the big lcd screen. It's always strange to see people shooting with dslr at arms length :)
Me ? I use a GM1, nice IQ, not so great ergonomics and LCD hard to see in sunny day.

0 upvotes
Langusta

Great sensor in so-so body... i.e. same old story.

2 upvotes
Zeisschen

Great camera! For that price it's hard to find anything better.
Sony, please bring the autofocus system to the A7II

8 upvotes
davids8560

I think I may buy this camera and use it alongside my NEX-7 for awhile, and then decide. I do some railroad and aviation photography. The NEX-7 gets left behind when I'm going after those subjects, pretty much because of unreliable AF. But I really like everything else about the NEX-7. So I dunno. I wonder if the a7000 (?) murmurings have any truth to them? Maybe I should wait and see! But why would Sony refresh the NEX-7? Don't they want everyone to migrate to the A7 FF series?

0 upvotes
Jerry Fusselman

"While still respectable, the EVF on the a6000 is a step down from the one on the NEX-6. It's both smaller and lower resolution."

I have both of these cameras, and no one would prefer the NEX-6's EVF. Especially in low light, the a6000's EVF is far better to look at and far more useful. That, not just resolution, is the bottom line. Thus, the review's statement that the a6000's EVF is a step down is false. It is actually a big step up, when all aspects of using the EVF are considered.

22 upvotes
DtEW

That is absolutely correct. You can actually use the A6000's EVF to resolve what is past the point of naked-eye visibility in darkness with as pedestrian as a f/1.8 aperture. The prior 2.4 million dot EVF that was in the NEX-6/7/FDA-EV1S would crush it all down to absolute black.

The old EVF is nicer to look at (high res!) on cursory examination under ideal conditions, but any deeper usage under a variety of conditions would reveal that the new, lower-res version is simply more functional, bar none.

I'm afraid you guys rushed this one out, DPR.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
6 upvotes
Vsbastosx

Hi jerry
I have just bought the NEX 6 and I would like to your opinion if it is worthy to upgrade to the a6000. Is the image quality in low light any better? Thanks!

0 upvotes
Greynerd

It seems a bit of an assumption by apologists for the downgraded EVF that improvement in the EVF usability in liveview is entirely due to the drop in resolution. It could be just that the new cheaper EVF has been set up better with its firmware drivers.

2 upvotes
AFishEye

@Vsbastosx
Don’t overthink it. I have both cameras and they are both fantastic!
In my opinion, in low light the NEX 6 still has a slight edge.
I bought the a6000 for the new AF system that I can use with the new 70-200 f4 and for the slightly better cropping ability when shooting wildlife with the 70-400 (or the 70-200).
For all other purposes, you will not see a huge difference in real life use.
It comes down to your shooting style and price point.
If you have the extra money, you’d be better off spending it on better lens (16-70 f4 or the 10-18 f4)

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Vsbastosx

Thanks AFishEye. I bought the NEX-6 2 weeks ago for USD 524, which I think is a bargain. You are correct....I better spend in better lenses. Cheers.

0 upvotes
DtEW

@Greynerd: It's far from an assumption when 1) an authority makes that claim, and 2) observations confirm the authority's claim. Sony has stated explicitly as to what the lower resolution EVF will do.

It is only you who is making a relatively unfounded leap to the theory that 1) this brand-new EVF couldn't possibly have any hardware advantages, and 2) the improvements we see must all be firmware, therefore implying 3) soon everyone with the 2-year old EVF will enjoy the same performance through a firmware upgrade.

Yeah, good luck on that.

0 upvotes
Greynerd

@DtEW
How does my 'it could just be' turn in to 'could not possibly'. I just made a suggestion. I appreciate your point of view but please reply to what is actually said. I doubt that there will be a firmware upgrade and never implied that there will be.

0 upvotes
Fogsprig

Everybody should wait for a7000. According to some rumors, Sony will release it in two weeks.

1 upvote
DtEW

And according to some rumors, your beloved micro-four-thirds is going to fold tomorrow. ;)

Please lay off the obvious FUD. Leave it to the pros, lest you only further the reputation of m43-forums as being chock-full of politicking fanboys/trolls.

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
13 upvotes
Fogsprig

Are you serious?
Oh yeah, I forgot that everything will end (except Sony).

2 upvotes
shadowhumper

So you saying Sony releases many cameras? Here is Olympus: E-M10, E-M1, E-M5, E-P5, E-PL5. Add to that the other creatures that I forgot to name then your argument falls flat.

But good thing, with m43, is that you don't need to overspend on an E-M1 since you are buying the same super tiny sensor with the same paltry 16 mpx :)

5 upvotes
SETI

I like m43 lens choice

Comment edited 17 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Fogsprig

@shadowhumper
1) Two lines (PEN, OM-D) and two years (2012 when NEX was supacool - 2014 when NEX is "I consider a6000").
2) Right, APS-C sensor size is a truly beast comparing to m43. A pro's workhorse and m43 isn't, yeah.
3) Megapickles? A7S
BTW, I think A7S is brilliant.

0 upvotes
ekaton

Put a decent lens on the a6000 and it leaves mft and Fuji in the dust, at least for stills and irrespective of price.

Comment edited 18 seconds after posting
13 upvotes
Langusta

Now find this decent lens...

20 upvotes
quezra

Zeiss 55/1.8 or 16-70/4

12 upvotes
Rob Sims

Zeiss 24/1.8 or 32/1.8.
...or Sony 10-18/4, 35/1.8 or 50/1.8.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
15 upvotes
HFLM

At ISO 100 it will be good. At ISO 3200 much of the advantage is gone. Performance seems similar to NEX7 according to DXO (and don't say DXO is crap, because it's always cited when raving the A7r). For the usual print sizes the difference is negligible, imo. I like the Fuji lenses better, but I like the prize of the A6000. After all the recent rebates from Sony I hope they are making profit.

3 upvotes
TrojMacReady

DXO does not look at resolution differences and the individual measured results (graphs) show that the new 24 MP sensor is a bit of a step up from the old one. In practise even more because DXO does not account for the visual impact of different noise patterns, where the old sensor lost points at higher ISO's (more blotchy, harder to clean up).

3 upvotes
123Mike

18-105 f/4 G
Problem solved !

1 upvote
ekaton

decent lenses: 10-18mm, 16-70mm, Touit 18mm & 32mm, Zeiss Sonnar 55 f1.8 (yes, the FF one). The latter is a superb portrait lens on the a6000. Zoom reach and weight are much preferable over what Fuji offers imho. The primes are excellent. AF on the zooms and the 55mm is fast, I mean really fast and not "Fuji fast".

0 upvotes
gloombug

To be honest, I had plenty of cases where I grabbed my NEX-C3 camera but forgot to put the battery in. I'd rather have a hotshoe protector. Besides, if you spring for a Sony battery they could add a free battery cradle for the charger to hook up to. They are expensive enough ;-)

0 upvotes
gloombug

There is a quick way to set the AF-point when in focus point mode. Configure the center button of the rear wheel for configuring the 'Focus Area'. If you are in focus point mode you can now quickly double tap (with mouse double click speed) and set the AF-point. Less practical is the way to enable eye-af. There is no easy mode swap.

3 upvotes
ryan92084

Once in flexible spot you can already move the focus point with a single press of the center by default.

1 upvote
h2k

A camera without touchscreen? That feels almost un-Sony.

3 upvotes
DtEW

Neither of the A6000's closest predecessors, the NEX-6 and NEX-7, have touchscreens. None of its higher-end, FF siblings (A7/A7R/A7S) have touchscreens. None of its current-generation APS-C siblings (A5000/A3500) have touchscreens. None of the entry-level predecessors (NEX-3/C3/F3/3N/A3000) had touchscreens.

In fact, the only Sony CSC to ever have had touchscreens were the NEX-5/5N/5R/5T series.

So what you must necessarily mean is that it feels unlike the NEX-5-series... by which necessarily deserves a "no duh, Sherlock!"

7 upvotes
Scott Nicol

I'm pretty sure the Nex 5 didn't have one either - I think it was introduced with the 5n

0 upvotes
Greynerd

@DtEW
I think he was just pointing out how primitive these CSC's are given that Sony are so leading edge in other areas. In fact in dropping the level gauge they seem to be going backwards.

Comment edited 10 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Scott Nicol

Dropping the level gauge to shave a small bit off manufacturing costs (we presume) to help hit the price point was a curious move - by no means a deal breaker for me but It is vaguely annoying and I do miss it. Even more penny pinching though is the omission of the hotshoe cover that came with the NEX 6 - its a bit of black plastic that would have cost a few pennies / cents at most.

1 upvote
h2k

Greynerd, thanks, you explain correctly the background of my comment (OP).

0 upvotes
Total comments: 743
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