Should I buy an A7S? Coming from 5DII and L lenses.

Started Aug 25, 2014 | Discussions thread
120 to 35 Senior Member • Posts: 1,268
Re: Should I buy an A7S? Coming from 5DII and L lenses.

wedouglas wrote:

So, I've been out of the photography loop a while, mainly because I got sick of traveling to 2nd/3rd world countries, and also because I never want to lug around my camera to casual places.

Currently I have a 5DII and probably about $5-10K worth of L lenses. I really like some of the lenses, but at the end of the day, it's too big/heavy that I never would want to take it anywhere other than really unique, once in a lifetime locales. For example, I'll take it to Nepal or Tibet, but I'll never walk around Rome or Paris with it, regardless if I would like some nice pictures with family and friends.

Another thing of note is that I have never and will never use a flash. If I can barely bring myself to carry a DSLR, there's no way I'll deal with carrying a flash. I have lots of fast glass for this reason, but sometimes you'd like more than just an eyeball in focus when light is very low and to shoot at a shutter speed quick enough to shoot handheld reliably. Yeah, I also never carry any type of tripod.

I never print anything, most viewing is on the web/digital, and I'd never do huge prints even if I did print stuff. One day I plan to start printing stuff, but it will be closer to the typical photo size that most people print. 4x6"? Something like that? I honestly don't even know because I don't print stuff.

I'd like to point out that when using my 5DII, I have found ISO 3200 to be acceptable in some cases with some PP work, though 1600 or 2500 is probably more on the safe side of what I consider acceptable in terms of noise in dark scenes. Though of course those are almost always wide open and at pretty low shutter speed and with IS lens.

I shoot anything interesting but rarely wildlife, astro, sports, or anything to requires a really powerful zoom. My lenses most used are 24-135L and 35L, though I have an 85 that I break out occasionally too.

A7S pros:

1. It's mirrorless and way smaller. I actually could see myself carrying this, or at least in my GF purse

2. It has seemingly amazing low-light capability with respect to noise. I never use a flash or tripod, so a combination of faster shutter and more DOF with acceptable noise is really the selling point here.

Amazing means something like 2EV extra. This allows you a two-stops-faster shutter speed than the A7.


1. Native lens selection suuuucks.

2. About 9mp less than the 5D2, so less cropping ability.

Now, I'll never be able to increase MP, so that is what it is, but lens selection should improve over time.


If I got a Sony A->E adapter, will the A lenses function exactly as they do on a DSLR? Will the focus performance suck? Will the IQ suck? Will I lose lens based IS for some reason? I'm pretty unfamiliar with Sony cameras and I've never used adapters before.

A-mount lenses focus very well with the Sony LA-EA4 adapter. If the lens has IS (some third party A-mount lenses do) the IS works. Event the IS in the Canon EF lenses works when the lens is attached to one of the third-party smart adapters. There is no loss of IQ with a non-E-mount lens attached.

Is the IQ of the A7S with a good lens at least comparable to a 5DII in normal lighting? I feel like I often use probably at least 200 or 320 ISO on the 5DII because I'm usually more concerned about shutter speed and DOF than I am about low-ISO DR. Needless to say, I've never been unhappy with 5DII IQ in bright enough lighting.

Comparable yes, but not equal. You will notice the resolution when there is a large difference between any two cameras with similar sensor sizes.

Think they have decent residual value short-term? It's kind of niche and it seems a bit pricey at $2500. Cost doesn't really matter and I can afford to just buy a bunch of lenses and stuff regardless, but would be slightly annoyed if I couldn't sell it right away for a reasonable price should I not like it.

In general, if you buy at the lowest current price, you should be able to sell at up to a 40% loss within a few months. But this depends on the camera and lens. Always easier to sell cheaper models as there is a larger market.

I have about $5K worth of Canon lenses I don't like/use, so that could easily just be swapped into some Sont stuff "free of charge," so to say. Definitely wouldn't sell all my Canon stuff right away just incase Canon shows up with a quality mirrorless camera.

So yeah, any input on these questions or just in general is much appreciated!

I would suggest also to try a camera with a small built-in flash for a while. Even a GN6 flash opens up a lot of hand-held shooting opportunities at night both indoors and in the street.

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