Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

Started Oct 26, 2010 | Discussions
Gary Dean Mercer Clark
Gary Dean Mercer Clark Veteran Member • Posts: 5,613
Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I'll spare you the technical review of this camera--that's for the camera geeks and technicians to do. I shoot professionally, so I'll just give my opinion using this camera shooting in VERY VERY low light at an evening outdoor party at sunset for fun.

The Sony SLT-A55V is absolute unadulterated fun to shoot with. The out of camera .jpegs are very good quality. Shooting an impromptu panorama is child's play with this camera. I shot .jpegs and raw side by side and yes, you can see an improvement in the raw over the .jpegs, but not enough for most amateur photographers to really care about. The out of camera .jpegs will be just fine for most photographers to shoot most of the time. This camera is sooooo easy to use.

The EVF is very easy on the eyes and not a problem whatsoever and very nice to use. The external LCD is very viewable in even the brightest lighting. The controls are easy to figure out and making impromptu quick changes in shoot settings is super easy with the Fn button.

The camera is so feathery light---I don't have the neck and shoulder strain of shooting with my heavy professional cameras I use in the studio either which is a huge relief.

When I'm not shooting professionally, I want to be able to relax and practice the " JOY OF PHOTOGRAPHY" and feed my creative artistic needs and to have some fun outside of work.

The image quality is tact sharp with the kit lens---that was a real surprise for me as I expected to find the kit lens lacking as I have experienced in the past with other consumer DSLRs I've purchased or borrowed. I even picked up a cheap 50mm f1.8 lens for $150.00---you can't beat that and it has a lovely buttery bokeh to it.

I really can't find anything to complain about with this new camera other than it has a cheap plastic body--but I paid a little bit extra for a you drop it we fix it or replace it warranty----so I'm not babying this camera whatsoever. Its a great take it with you everywhere camera and a solid performer, perfect for street photography, as it isn't so large and obnoxious that people start getting nervous when you pull it out and start shooting photographs and is surprisingly very quiet. I don't know how many shutter actuations this camera is rated to achieve---50,000? 100,000? or 150,000? but I'm sure I'll find out as I really enjoy this little treasure. I haven't seen any ghosting issues, or the other nit picky problems voiced in the forum, like claims of over exposure, over heating etc with this camera yet. Exposure seems pretty accurate to me. I shot low light images and the noise looks just like film grain--that was absolutely a shock. Unless you pixel peep at 100 % enlargement, you just don't realize the noise in the images and the prints don't shot high Iso noise. I've always read that smaller pixels were a bad thing and it created more noise etc, however these pixels are so small that the noise dissapears or is undetectible at normal printing sizes. Smaller pixels---you don't see the noise as easily. BRILLIANT!

You can shoot all automatic and get superb results or use highly customize your shooting experience, shoot on full manual etc. It truly is a camera with very few missing features. I didn't buy the camera to shoot video, so I haven't even tested that feature out and probably never will, but I know its there if I need it---so I'm very cool with that. Haven't tested the GPS yet but will do that as well soon.

It is clear that Sony has become" the premiere innovator" in camera design with this new camera! Congratulations.

Gary

http://www.garymercer.us

BoDrey Junior Member • Posts: 48
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

Thank you for this positive contribution!

And I agree with your last sentence - Sony is THE leading innovator at present and this should ensure them of sizeable photography market share in the future.

Perhaps they are doing the Walkman-thing for photography - take it anywhere, shoot anything in a highly poratble package.
--
Bo

aminucyrus Regular Member • Posts: 219
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

Very nice unbiased personal review and i totally agree with you. I am one very happy a55v owner. It does put Fun into Photography.

 aminucyrus's gear list:aminucyrus's gear list
Sony SLT-A77 Sony DT 16-80mm F3.5-4.5 ZA Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Sony 75-300mm F4.5-5.6 Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di Macro +1 more
Biu Veteran Member • Posts: 3,229
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I agree with you. The fun factor of the A55 is very high. It is like the ipod touch in the ipod line. It is one of those few things I bought the first time I saw it and not thinking much. As a Minolta owner, I resisted all previous Sony DSLR models until this one.

garykohs
garykohs Veteran Member • Posts: 4,726
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I think you hit the nail on the head. It's lot's of fun and the Fn menu makes most changes very simple and fast.
--
Gary

 garykohs's gear list:garykohs's gear list
Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D Canon EOS-1D X Sony a99 II Sony a9 Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM +14 more
fjbyrne
fjbyrne Veteran Member • Posts: 8,350
Nice perspective. Thanks for the post. nt
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Rick

 fjbyrne's gear list:fjbyrne's gear list
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busch
busch Forum Pro • Posts: 32,822
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

Thanks for an informative hands on report! I can't wait to see what the A77 is going to be.

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Busch

Take the scenic route! Life is too short to do otherwise.

http://www.pbase.com/busch

 busch's gear list:busch's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7 Sony RX10 III Sony Cyber-shot DSC-R1 Sony a77 II Sony 16-35mm F2.8 ZA SSM Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* +12 more
nbercasio Senior Member • Posts: 2,498
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I totally agree. By the way, viewed your homepage, great portfolio and sample A55 photos in your DP gallery! Love the sunset photos...

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Life is good!

Condor99 Senior Member • Posts: 1,938
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

Thank you for your wonderful review, Gary. I am sitting here waiting on the UPS man. My a55 went out for delivery this morning and he should be here in a few hours. I am as excited as can be.

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Tom Seiler
My portfolio:
http://picasaweb.google.com/SeilerBird/MyPortfolio
Sony a330 - copper > Sony 18-55
Sony a55 > Tamron 200-500
Sony 70-300

BroncoGuy Contributing Member • Posts: 513
Decided to get one - now waiting until stock filled...

I called the guy at the photo store yesterday about the expected arrival (he has no idea, but wasn't worried about it being soon. He was very happy with Sony.

More importantly, he bought the first A55 to enter his store and shared his thoughts with me and I have to say, if I didn't know any better, I would think you and him are the same guys.

He loves the camera. As the owner of the store, he can get/use most any camera on the market and chose the A55 due to its "fun". Needless to say, I hollered at him for making me more jealous since I can't find one right now.

thanks for the impressions, can't wait to form some of my own...

crippled schmippled

Gary Dean Mercer Clark
OP Gary Dean Mercer Clark Veteran Member • Posts: 5,613
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I forgot to add the gallery album of some of the images I shot with the A55 just for fun and had a great time doing it! Here is the gallery link.

55

gary mercer wrote:

I'll spare you the technical review of this camera--that's for the camera geeks and technicians to do. I shoot professionally, so I'll just give my opinion using this camera shooting in VERY VERY low light at an evening outdoor party at sunset for fun.

The Sony SLT-A55V is absolute unadulterated fun to shoot with. The out of camera .jpegs are very good quality. Shooting an impromptu panorama is child's play with this camera. I shot .jpegs and raw side by side and yes, you can see an improvement in the raw over the .jpegs, but not enough for most amateur photographers to really care about. The out of camera .jpegs will be just fine for most photographers to shoot most of the time. This camera is sooooo easy to use.

The EVF is very easy on the eyes and not a problem whatsoever and very nice to use. The external LCD is very viewable in even the brightest lighting. The controls are easy to figure out and making impromptu quick changes in shoot settings is super easy with the Fn button.

The camera is so feathery light---I don't have the neck and shoulder strain of shooting with my heavy professional cameras I use in the studio either which is a huge relief.

When I'm not shooting professionally, I want to be able to relax and practice the " JOY OF PHOTOGRAPHY" and feed my creative artistic needs and to have some fun outside of work.

The image quality is tact sharp with the kit lens---that was a real surprise for me as I expected to find the kit lens lacking as I have experienced in the past with other consumer DSLRs I've purchased or borrowed. I even picked up a cheap 50mm f1.8 lens for $150.00---you can't beat that and it has a lovely buttery bokeh to it.

I really can't find anything to complain about with this new camera other than it has a cheap plastic body--but I paid a little bit extra for a you drop it we fix it or replace it warranty----so I'm not babying this camera whatsoever. Its a great take it with you everywhere camera and a solid performer, perfect for street photography, as it isn't so large and obnoxious that people start getting nervous when you pull it out and start shooting photographs and is surprisingly very quiet. I don't know how many shutter actuations this camera is rated to achieve---50,000? 100,000? or 150,000? but I'm sure I'll find out as I really enjoy this little treasure. I haven't seen any ghosting issues, or the other nit picky problems voiced in the forum, like claims of over exposure, over heating etc with this camera yet. Exposure seems pretty accurate to me. I shot low light images and the noise looks just like film grain--that was absolutely a shock. Unless you pixel peep at 100 % enlargement, you just don't realize the noise in the images and the prints don't shot high Iso noise. I've always read that smaller pixels were a bad thing and it created more noise etc, however these pixels are so small that the noise dissapears or is undetectible at normal printing sizes. Smaller pixels---you don't see the noise as easily. BRILLIANT!

You can shoot all automatic and get superb results or use highly customize your shooting experience, shoot on full manual etc. It truly is a camera with very few missing features. I didn't buy the camera to shoot video, so I haven't even tested that feature out and probably never will, but I know its there if I need it---so I'm very cool with that. Haven't tested the GPS yet but will do that as well soon.

It is clear that Sony has become" the premiere innovator" in camera design with this new camera! Congratulations.

Gary

http://www.garymercer.us

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Plastek Contributing Member • Posts: 619
Wow.....

Wow... no whining, positive review on this forum?! I had to clean my eyes twice and I still couldn't believe till I checked that Gary isn't constant contributor to Sony DSLR Talk - this explains everything...

Thanks for post, very nice review!

Mike Boreham Senior Member • Posts: 1,447
Re: Wow.....

Let me chip in too...

I am another pro photographer who is really enjoying my Sony a55 with 18-250. Gary put it very well.

After carrying two D700s with f2.8 lenses and flashes for several hours, this camera is a joy.

Although I bought it for personal/fun use, I will use it occasionally on pro jobs when super quietness is important.

"The glass is half full not half empty"....actually I think in this case the glass is 90% full, not 10% empty.

 Mike Boreham's gear list:Mike Boreham's gear list
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Apple iPhone XS Max +7 more
poepog Regular Member • Posts: 320
Great!

Thanks for your great review: I got my A55VL since a week and I'm so happy with this little fantastic innovative camera.
Thanks again
--
http://www.pbase.com/enricopog
Equipment in profile

Civilization was not born from labour, but from freetime and game

Pinggy Forum Member • Posts: 61
How about the ghosting and overexposure?

How about the ghosting and overexposure reported in other threads?

Have you tried it with any of the Sony Carl Zeiss lenses?

Also, how does the image quality compare with the Sigmas that you have, e.g., SD15, SD14, and DP1?

chrishurley Contributing Member • Posts: 766
I feel the same way about the a33

I've got an a33 and I am having a similar experience.

I have my screen folded inside (closed) so that I can quickly flip it down for a lower level shot (folded out 90 degrees) or all the way down (180 degrees) for arms length touristy shooting.

The EVF works fine for me but I enjoy the option of shooting other angles without having to kneel or lay on the ground, in the water, or whatever.

I'm enjoying video snapshots as well- I do wish there was a focus hold option for one of the on-body buttons. Flipping the af/mf switch is hard to do smoothly, but pressing the DOF switch would be convenient perhaps.

Lots of enjoyment- I hope it will last a long time.

johnday1 Regular Member • Posts: 441
'Nice to see you pop up "over here" :-)

Thanks for relating your experiences.... I have been thinking about these new Sony cameras to use as a "fun" camera... You may just have convinced me, lol!

About the time you got the 5Dii, I caved in and bought the A900...., which I love

I still use the other brand, and am curious about their big announcement, of course...., whenever it materializes.

Cheers, as always.....

Ray Maines
Ray Maines Veteran Member • Posts: 4,137
Re: How about the ghosting and overexposure?

gary mercer wrote:

I haven't seen any ghosting issues, or the other nit picky problems voiced in the forum, like claims of over exposure, over heating etc with this camera yet. Exposure seems pretty accurate to me.

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Tacoma, Washington, USA

 Ray Maines's gear list:Ray Maines's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DC-G9 Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 OSS Rokinon 8mm F2.8 UMC Aspherical Fisheye +5 more
Mohd Shehri New Member • Posts: 9
I'm enjoying it too

I just got mine a few days ago. I didn't use my a850 since then.

it's really fun to use and I agree with you regarding the heating and ghosting issues, I didn't notice any. I don't shoot video a lot though.

Little Pooter Contributing Member • Posts: 644
Re: Sony SLT-A55V----A camera that puts the " Fun" Back into Photography!

I couldn't agree with the OP more... the A55 has re-ignited my passion for photography, in a fun way. Photography for me is a hobby and a way to relax and have fun outside of my commercial art business. The A55 allows me to explore any shooting situation with a high probability of pleasing results. I just love it.

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Sony A55
Sony A500
Sony DSC-F828
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Sony T1

Lenses: SAL18250, Maxxum 50mm 1.7, Tamron 70-300-mm, SAL70-300... Looking for used 70400G**

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