Sony A77 vs A99 for Concert Photography

Started Mar 3, 2014 | Discussions thread
OP c0nstrictor Forum Member • Posts: 81
Re: Sony A77 vs A99 for Concert Photography

c0nstrictor wrote:

Hey guys! I'm new to this forum, but I am not a new forumer, nor am I a "new" (new) photographer I started just around a year ago, but quickly moved up from an A57 to an A77, and my skills have been rapidly improving ever since. I have now gotten into concert photography, and after shooting a couple concerts with my A77, I have started to see some problems with it. It's a great camera, but the high ISO noise is pretty high, even with some post production (of course I shoot in RAW! ). I have been thinking about getting an A99 even before I got the A77, but didn't have the money at the time. I am now working harder and am seriously thinking about getting the A99 and selling the A77 to get that rich, low high ISO noise.

So I have come to question you about this endeavor. Should I get the A99 and sell the A77? Is it really that worth it? I can get one used for around $1200, which would mean I would have to sell the A77 and some other stuff (I'm guessing all the gear I am selling should cost around $1000-$1200), and take out a "loan" from my parents (by the way, I'm 16). I have done a ton of research, but what do you guys think about having an A99 over an A77? Thanks!

And here's a shot of a concert I was at (Dystopia @Toad's Place, CT) at ISO 2500, 70mm, f/2.8, 1/200th shutter speed to show how much the noise is visible, even with post noise reduction. (Any tips on noise reduction would be great too!)

EDIT: By the way, the image looks a little better on my computer in Lightroom, so try clicking on the image to get better quality)

The image above is away underexposed, which can introduce challenges with handling noise. Or you could try and gain up this picture in Lightroom more until exposure is correct. You have not mentioned what lenses you are using. If doing concert photography, a good investment might be to consider fast glass. Go for a 50, 85 1.4 lens or both. This can be done quite low cost too, i.e. Minolta / Sony 50 1.4 and Rokinon 85 1.4 (manual focusing). These lenses will increase light to your sensor and you can then reduce your noise settings accordingly on the a77. In addition these lenses will work on your FF when you update later, as they are FF lenses. Also a 35 1.8 DT Sony lens would be the best lower cost option. It is around 200 - 250 USD and this might be all you will need to get more usability out of your A77. Good luck.

I am currently using a Minolta 50 1.7, and a 28 2.8. For this concert I rented a Tokina 11-16 and a Tamron 70-200. I will be buying a Tamron or Sigma 70-200, and perhaps a Sony 50 1.4.

Trust me, I know I need good glass, but even with 2.8's and a 1.7, they were stretching the ISO boundaries. Which is what I wouldn't be worried about on the A99 (or at least what I think).

And I did expose it a little bit, but not too much because I didn't want to introduce too much more noise.

 c0nstrictor's gear list:c0nstrictor's gear list
Canon EOS 6D Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM Rokinon 14mm F2.8 IF ED MC Adobe Photoshop CS6 extended Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 +4 more
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