Which lens to purchase for Sony A65?

Started Mar 30, 2014 | Discussions thread
Calico Jack Senior Member • Posts: 2,306
Re: Which lens to purchase for Sony A65?

jaynbay112 wrote:

I'm snooping around for Cameras and the A65 seems like a strong candidate. I was wondering what lenses to purchase if I were to buy the A65. I would like any suggestions all focal lengths, whatever. (However I do like street photog). Am i better off with a minolta? All recommendations are welcome!

Unless the A65 or the SLT system does something unlike no other that you MUST have other than taking stills, you should also be aware that there are known incompatibility issues with certain 3rd party hardware such as flashguns and the like, so should you need one, you may be restricted to paying 4x as much as necessary for an F43 flash whereas much less for an F42, Sigma, Metz or Minolta flash (this could also include macro ring-flash such as the Delta DRF-14 S. Marumi or Minolta variants).

Have you realistically considered buying an A700 and maybe a vertical grip for portrait? I only ask as this model, like all 3 digit Alpha's have no such incompatibility issues with legacy Minolta, Tokina or current version lenses or 3rd party hardware and if I'm brutally honest, I think this may be the way to go. Used A700's are dirt cheap (as is the VG if you think one is required) and whilst it may be 5 or so years old, it's still a superb intermediate grade mag-alloy chassis body that delivers wonderful results. For reference, take a look at some images I have on Flickr (via Fluidr). Most were with the A700 and apart from some top-self primes, were with affordable lenses, some of which I've eluded to in previous posts on your thread.  I could easily sort you out with an A700, VG-C70AM grip, external flash, macro ring-flash, second battery for the grip, 2 memory cards and 4 lenses to cover 17mm - 300mm range for under US $1000.00 no problem.  I'm a Pirate and it's my job!  If you were to get just one lens, then based on what you've said, a Sigma 10-20mm DC would give you all the width you'll need for close-up urban work such as high buildings and ultra-wide angle (UWA) but at the same time, a Sigma 17-70mm DC or Tamron 17-50mm would be perfect for standard wide-angle zoom (WA) 'street' work.

Anyway you decide on the image quality, and most were taken with the A700 and Sigma 17-70mm DC Macro though there are other lenses used from the superb $50.00 Vivitar/Cosina AF 100mm F/3.5 MC Macro 'plastic fantastic' to the Minolta AF 300/2.8 APO HS G.  See here.  Camera and lens used is on the right side of the image (where I've remembered to input the data).  I currently use the full frame Sony A850 which like the A900 is around the same age as the A700.  I don't need GPS, video, tilting screen, coffee maker, Bluetooth, cell/mobile phone or other gizmo's or gadgets.  One word of advice is don't buy a camera based on useless extras which you won't use and end up paying a premium for.

For most that now use SLT, they would likely have migrated from DSLR and have many years of experience, so will be at least competent with usage and handling.  Unless I've got the wrong 'vibe', I'm guessing you're a novice or inexperienced shooter.  If I'm right, then I would strongly urge you to have a re-think and look at the A700 to cut your teeth on and then after a couple of years after you've moved up to the competent/experienced category, you'll be in a much better position to decide if you stay with the brand, move elsewhere or likely by then, newer models will have been released and you could then make an informed choice to stay with the tried and tested DSLR format or pay over the odds to replace everything you already have with like-for-like kit on a then current system.  Maybe you'll decide to go full frame, and then the doors really will open lens-wise.

Whatever you do, don't jump in with both feet.  Yes, SLT owners will tell you about the system, but if as I think you're making your first steps, then I think erring on the side of caution would be both sensible and more cost effective for you, but this isn't me saying SLT is wrong for you, but for example, have you looked down a digital viewfinder and an optical viewfinder?  It's one detail that can make a lot of difference and there are pro's and con's on both sides, but I'm not pitching DSLR against DSLT, but making sure you fully understand that their the same . . but different for a variety of reasons notwithstanding features, price and compatibility.

Let me know what you make of the sample images.  I have many more on aviation sites and on RedBubble.  The A700 with intermediate quality inexpensive optics really can perform superbly.

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Mark (aka Pirate!)

 Calico Jack's gear list:Calico Jack's gear list
Sony Alpha DSLR-A850 Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D Sony Alpha DSLR-A100 Sony DT 11-18mm F4.5-5.6 Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di Macro +26 more
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