a700 user late to the a77 party - wow, what a camera !

Started Feb 18, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Marco Cinnirella
Marco Cinnirella Veteran Member • Posts: 6,363
a700 user late to the a77 party - wow, what a camera !

Well I held off and held off jumping on the a77 bandwagon, bought an a57, dabbled with micro four thirds (and still do), and now eventually very late, with the a78 on the doorstep, got myself an a77 (a good deal and I know it will be a lot cheaper than the price the a78 comes in at).

Two initial thoughts :-

1. Damn, this is good, really good. AF is great, EVF is wonderful (and it whips the ass of the EVF on my Panasonic GH3 even though the GH3 cost me a lot more money), handling is fantastic, excellent upgrade to the a77.

2. Why did I let all the high ISO noise scares put me off buying one earlier - darn it ! Yes it can be noisy at 800 in shadow areas or if there is underexposure, yes 3200+ can be damn noisy at times, but even if it is an ISO 50-1600 camera, so what, I shot for years using no higher ISO than 400 when I shot film ! And I coped OK then...  I decided to keep the a57 so I have a high ISO cam if I really need one, and even my GH3 is cleaner at ISO 1600+, but even saying that, I can live perfectly adequately with a77 high ISO images with a little PP noise reduction, especially now I have hit on what plugin(s) work best for me (see my other thread - I basically recommend Noiseware).

I also plumped for the 16-50. What a great combo! Is that lens perfect? No! Is there anything better for Sony a mount that covers 16-50? No ! I insitially panicked a bit when testing the lens as I found my copy very soft at f2.8 at 16mm but then I discovered it occasionally misses focus at infinity with landscapes so you need to watch for that. I also found it is quite sensitive to the direction of light on a very bright day and you can get a lot of veiling haze in 16mm f2.8 images at certain angles to the sun on very bright days - this nearly made me return the lens but then I took some images in the shade and with the sun behind me and they were pretty good at 2.8. I think a polariser might help?

Overall, I am real impressed with the a77 and 16-50 combo and buying now at the end of the product life cycle (in a marketing sense) has at least saved me a lot of money.

 Marco Cinnirella's gear list:Marco Cinnirella's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Sony Alpha a99 Fujifilm X-T1 Sony a99 II Fujifilm FinePix X100 +2 more
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Sony Alpha DSLR-A700 Sony SLT-A57 Sony SLT-A77
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