a99: The All Souls Procession

Started Nov 5, 2012 | Discussions thread
OP Steve West Veteran Member • Posts: 5,968

Hi Rob,

Thanks.  Here's my take on the A77 compared to the A99.  It is based on experiments I did last weekend.  Nord and Allan O helped out with suggestions.


If you set up both cameras with the same lens and the same distance, if you crop the A99 to the APS size so both see the same image.  I'm giving the A99 a 1 stop advantage in noise. This is mainly just due to my view of straight pixel noise between the images.  So for wildlife telephoto with heavy crops, you only get about a 1-stop advantage.

If however, you use the same lens, but adjust the distance so that the same scene fills up each detector, then the A99 gets about a 2.5 stop advantage!  So long as you fill that FF detector with the scene, the amount of light the pixels gathers is phenomenal.  For a given lens, that means you have to get closer to your object with FF.

As far as the flash--I'm pretty Tee'd at Sony.  The very least they could have done is put a small pop-up flash that could act as the wireless commander.  I have 3 Minolta flashes and I use all 3 for portraits, but now I have to mount one of my 43FAMs to the top of this camera and then buy another flash.  This is ridiculous.  Or I have to spend more money and go to radio, but I want radio to work with HSS.  I hate Sony for leaving their loyal customers out of the A99 hotshoe.  Because of this stupid move to get new customers at my expense, I will not say anything nice about whomever made this idiotic decision, and my thoughts about Sony in general have degraded.  This falls into the category of screw your friends first.

The nice thing about the A99 is that for low light non-studio work, you don't need no stinking flash!

So is the A99 worth extra money?  I always wanted a FF detector, and now I have one. I already went out to this event and got pictures that were impossible with my APS camera. I saw peoples flash pics, and the subject is illuminated (usually over illuminated) and the background is completely black, so they don't get the wonderful ambient backgrounds the non-flash photography brings to the table.

Robsphoto wrote:

Hi Steve, I am very impressed with these images. I see that you also own a Sony A77 and I am interested to know whether you think the quality of the A99 high ISO images is a great deal better than the comparable A77 images would be?

In New Zealand, the A99 costs a hefty $4,000 in comparison with about $2,000 for the A77, but if the image quality is a great deal better (particularly for high ISO situations), it could be well worthwhile purchasing the A99 (I currently own the A900 and A55).

However, the A99 doesn't have built-in flash, so do you think it's worthwhile purchasing an external flash unit, considering that the high ISO images of the A99 look so good?

Thanks for your help.



-- hide signature --
 Steve West's gear list:Steve West's gear list
Sony Alpha a99 Sony a6000 Sony a99 II Sony 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Sony 70-400mm F4-5.6 G SSM +7 more
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow