Would I really notice the difference in IQ between a NEX5/6 and a Canon 100/700D?

Started Jan 5, 2014 | Questions thread
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willym Regular Member • Posts: 117
Would I really notice the difference in IQ between a NEX5/6 and a Canon 100/700D?

Hi all,

I'd really appreciate some practical advice on a problem I've been having recently - I'll try and get to the point quickly and clearly:

The problem:

Bottom line is I love the photos my NEX-5N gives me - I'm really happy with the sharpness I get with my lenses and the dynamic range, quality, resolution and high-ISO performance of the sensor. The problem I'm having is that I don't really 'enjoy' using the camera, in that it's not a very satisfying experience for me.

I think the problem I'm having is the interface, the controls/buttons available, and the lack of viewfinder.

I recently went to the shops and played with both an NEX-6 and a Canon 100D/SL1.

  • To be honest, I wasn't really a fan of the EVF on the NEX-6 (I'm not 'trolling', I can see the clear benefits to people that shoot in creative styles and/or with MF lenses!) and I really didn't like the lack of a touch screen (I love touch focusing on the 5N, rather than focus and recompose).
  • For the life of me, I can't find an EV1S in-store to try out on my 5N. I know it's the same as the NEX-6 EVF, but wanted to see how it practically works when using the camera (it look quite obtrusive, and I'm a glasses wearer). I'd intend to leave the EVF on the 5N 90% of the time - although clearly this doesn't solve my dissatisfaction with the UI/lack of controls
  • really liked the handling, interface and OVF of the 100D. In my hands, it felt great, and I really enjoyed playing around with it. The touch screen/control wheel combo is lovely. I'd probably sell all of my NEX gear, buy the Sigma 18-35f1.8 and the canon 40 f2.8 pancake to cover pretty much 90% of my shooting and have a more portable option when required.

The extra size/weight doesn't bother me. I usually bring a tripod and multiple primes with me anyway, so moving to a 100D/18-35 combo would probably be similar. The better AF clearly isn't a requirement either. This is pretty much down to a case of handling and interface.

Which brings me back to my first statement - I'm really happy with the images I'm getting from the 5N. I've tried to compare the cameras online ad nauseum. From the stats, the 5N has a better sensor in terms of dynamic range (important to me), noise and image quality.

I do actually print my favourite photos - typically up to 24x16. I also like sharing photos online with friends, family and colleagues. My worry is that the 100D is just not going to provide the photos I'm getting from my 5N, and I'll be pining for my old camera within a month!

Are these differences in stats and figures between 5N and 100D sensors likely to translate into any real-world, noticeable differences in image quality?

I'm not looking to get an increase in image quality (although I certainly wouldn't turn it down!), but I just don't really want to pay to upgrade and go 'backwards'.

I'd appreciate any comments and advice people can give on this. I don't really have any rental services near me, and I don't like the idea of ordering from Amazon with the intention of returning it with in a week, so I'm hoping shared experience can fill this void

I'd also appreciate others experience using the 5N with the (crazy expensive in the UK) EV1S, and whether it's solved some of the hesitations of staying with a 5-series camera (wrt to interface and controls).

Thanks all


 willym's gear list:willym's gear list
Sony Alpha NEX-5N Sony Alpha NEX-6 Sony E 16mm F2.8 Pancake Sigma 30mm F2.8 EX DN Sigma 19mm F2.8 EX DN +4 more
This question has not been answered yet.
Canon EOS Rebel SL1 (EOS 100D) Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony Alpha NEX-5N Sony Alpha NEX-6
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