Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

Started Dec 3, 2016 | Discussions
SigZero
SigZero Contributing Member • Posts: 675
Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews
15

After 3 days of getting familiar with my A6500, I've notices some (important for me) features that were not mentioned (or maybe missed) by most reviewers:

1. Touchpad focus. As a matter of fact is has two modes. When AF point selection is ON (you can move focus point by control wheel) sweeping screen moves the selected focus area or point according to move. But when focus selection is not ON touching and dragging on screen switches focus mode to point focus and moves point focus area. This is really great for me - when Wide area is selected, and I've notice something that drags my attention and I need focus there - simply swipe the screen and immediately I'm in point AF mode with pointer following my finger.

2. You can link AE point to active AF point when AE is in point (small or wide) measurement mode. Great thing available mostly on top level DSLR's (in Canon only 1D series support this)

3. There is new AE measurement mode - "highlight". It tries to correctly expose highlights on the scene.

4. Yes, you can enable touch-to-follow. I works simply by enabling focus tracking mode from menu. After touching object on touch-screen camera tries to follow selected object.

I'm really curious why nobody noticed those things during pre-release testing. I'm starting to think that collecting known photo-bloggers and simply giving them new cameras to play with without any functionality introduction might not be a quite good idea, at last from marketing point of view.

I'm still waiting for LR to natively support RAWs from A6500. I'm getting impression that highlight recovery in 6300 crafted RAWs from A6500 is easier and less noisy, but I do not want to give final verdict (I'm not familiar with C1, so I don't want to make any assumptions on basis of this software).

Br, Pawel.

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Sony a6500
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havanna60 Senior Member • Posts: 1,640
Some A6500: No other small 4K camera comes close for natural looking AF at the moment
2

Hi Pawel,

Thank you for your posts. It was simply hilariously incompetent from the DPR previewers complaining about the touch screen.

Here is a quote from Sony a6500 touch autofocus reviewed – It does a better job of focusing than I can (but thankfully it isn’t infallible)

Dan Chung:

The a6500’s touch autofocus system is a killer feature. No other small 4K camera comes close for natural looking AF at the moment. Having used it I see no going back, so I bought one.

It's especially important comment, since Dan Chung is a respected professional videographer reviewing and working a number of cameras. It rare when he is so enthusiastic about a camera.

I am fully convinced that the touch screen is what made the A6500. I picked the A5100 vs the A6000, because to my workflows touchscreen was more important than EVF. Despite I was so eager to get a 4K camera, I skipped A6300, A7Rii, A7Sii just because they had no touch screen. The A6500 is the first 4K camera I am seriously considering buying.

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SwissSwiss Contributing Member • Posts: 600
Re: Some A6500: No other small 4K camera comes close for natural looking AF at the moment

SigZero thanks for the useful information.

Btw nice photos on your website. Was looking at your gear list and was wondering which are your go to lenses for those beautiful photos?

SigZero
OP SigZero Contributing Member • Posts: 675
Re: Some A6500: No other small 4K camera comes close for natural looking AF at the moment
1

SwissSwiss wrote:

Btw nice photos on your website. Was looking at your gear list and was wondering which are your go to lenses for those beautiful photos?

Thanks

Generally I have two sets. Primary one consists of 10-18, 35, 16-70 and 55-210. All that with A6500 fits into my Lowepro Slingshoot Edge 150. This is my basic traveling kit. My second set is simply A6500 with 18-105PZ and 70-300G - I use those mostly for train- and plane-spotting.

Br, Pawel.

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 SigZero's gear list:SigZero's gear list
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dquangt Senior Member • Posts: 2,504
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

SigZero wrote:

After 3 days of getting familiar with my A6500, I've notices some (important for me) features that were not mentioned (or maybe missed) by most reviewers:

1. Touchpad focus. As a matter of fact is has two modes. When AF point selection is ON (you can move focus point by control wheel) sweeping screen moves the selected focus area or point according to move. But when focus selection is not ON touching and dragging on screen switches focus mode to point focus and moves point focus area. This is really great for me - when Wide area is selected, and I've notice something that drags my attention and I need focus there - simply swipe the screen and immediately I'm in point AF mode with pointer following my finger.

4. Yes, you can enable touch-to-follow. I works simply by enabling focus tracking mode from menu. After touching object on touch-screen camera tries to follow selected object.

I'm really curious why nobody noticed those things during pre-release testing. I'm starting to think that collecting known photo-bloggers and simply giving them new cameras to play with without any functionality introduction might not be a quite good idea, at last from marketing point of view.

Yeah, it's one reason I dislike these reviews in which the users don't actually have time to use the products. It's not just cameras either. Specifically to the a6500, I actually messaged a couple of the bigger reviewers, like thecamerastore, to update their reviews since they made such a point about the touchscreen focus.

BlueBomberTurbo Senior Member • Posts: 1,492
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

SigZero wrote:

I'm really curious why nobody noticed those things during pre-release testing. I'm starting to think that collecting known photo-bloggers and simply giving them new cameras to play with without any functionality introduction might not be a quite good idea, at last from marketing point of view.

Same thing happened with the A6300. In the end, everyone got the idea that the only improvement was in video, and that it wasn't worth upgrading.  But it had so many changes across the board vs the A6000, improving nearly everything. This is the only site that seems to have caught onto almost all of the differences:

http://www.mirrorlessons.com/2016/05/06/sony-a6300-vs-a6000/

 BlueBomberTurbo's gear list:BlueBomberTurbo's gear list
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val1 Senior Member • Posts: 2,351
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

one of the large stealth upgrades in the focus point metering mode.....although every camera should have this... duh

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uphillslide Regular Member • Posts: 362
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

I just got my a6500 and it seems like when I switch to video mode I'm seeing a cropping effect... Is this just an illusion given the 16:9 format or is there a crop setting that can be adjusted?

Thanks!

 uphillslide's gear list:uphillslide's gear list
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val1 Senior Member • Posts: 2,351
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

No it crops. This is because the sensor is doing a full frame readout but it is not fast enough. So Sony has it autocrop.

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Brownie1010 Regular Member • Posts: 172
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews
1

BlueBomberTurbo wrote:

SigZero wrote:

I'm really curious why nobody noticed those things during pre-release testing. I'm starting to think that collecting known photo-bloggers and simply giving them new cameras to play with without any functionality introduction might not be a quite good idea, at last from marketing point of view.

Same thing happened with the A6300. In the end, everyone got the idea that the only improvement was in video, and that it wasn't worth upgrading. But it had so many changes across the board vs the A6000, improving nearly everything. This is the only site that seems to have caught onto almost all of the differences:

http://www.mirrorlessons.com/2016/05/06/sony-a6300-vs-a6000/

BBT, thank you for the link to this very professional site. Didn't know it existed. Bookmarked now, cheers Brownie.

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BlueBomberTurbo Senior Member • Posts: 1,492
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

val1 wrote:

No it crops. This is because the sensor is doing a full frame readout but it is not fast enough. So Sony has it autocrop.

Untrue (mostly). The sensor crops in 2 ways.

1. Super 35 mode - 4K24, 1080p24/30/60
The camera will capture the full width of the sensor, cropping only the top and bottom to create the 16:9 aspect ratio (sensor is 3:2).  It captures the entire frame, then downscales to the final resolution, increasing quality.

2. Crop mode - 4K30, 1080p120
The camera will additionally crop a slight amount from all sides, resulting in about a 1.1x crop over the sensor's native 1.5x crop (1.6x total, like Canon).  The camera will only capture from that cropped area, and only at the final resolution (direct pixel binning instead of post-capture downscaling).  This will result in slightly less detailed/noisier footage, but will also reduce rolling shutter.

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Jerry R
Jerry R Forum Pro • Posts: 11,842
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

Thanks, the features you mention, for me, are more important than the ones mentioned in reviews.

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uphillslide Regular Member • Posts: 362
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

val1 wrote:

No it crops. This is because the sensor is doing a full frame readout but it is not fast enough. So Sony has it autocrop.

Bummer. Wonder what the crop effect is. Looks like 25% or so. It's fairly significant to my eye.  Thanks for the info.

 uphillslide's gear list:uphillslide's gear list
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uphillslide Regular Member • Posts: 362
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

BlueBomberTurbo wrote:

val1 wrote:

No it crops. This is because the sensor is doing a full frame readout but it is not fast enough. So Sony has it autocrop.

Untrue (mostly). The sensor crops in 2 ways.

1. Super 35 mode - 4K24, 1080p24/30/60
The camera will capture the full width of the sensor, cropping only the top and bottom to create the 16:9 aspect ratio (sensor is 3:2). It captures the entire frame, then downscales to the final resolution, increasing quality.

2. Crop mode - 4K30, 1080p120
The camera will additionally crop a slight amount from all sides, resulting in about a 1.1x crop over the sensor's native 1.5x crop (1.6x total, like Canon). The camera will only capture from that cropped area, and only at the final resolution (direct pixel binning instead of post-capture downscaling). This will result in slightly less detailed/noisier footage, but will also reduce rolling shutter.

Thanks. Very helpful info. I tried playing around with super 35. I thin I prefer it.

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Richard Butler
Richard Butler dpreview Admin • Posts: 2,898
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews
1

uphillslide wrote:

val1 wrote:

No it crops. This is because the sensor is doing a full frame readout but it is not fast enough. So Sony has it autocrop.

Bummer. Wonder what the crop effect is. Looks like 25% or so. It's fairly significant to my eye. Thanks for the info.

You shouldn't need to wonder: it's illustrated in our review.

Richard - dpreview.com

teddoman
teddoman Senior Member • Posts: 2,834
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews
1

uphillslide wrote:

I just got my a6500 and it seems like when I switch to video mode I'm seeing a cropping effect... Is this just an illusion given the 16:9 format or is there a crop setting that can be adjusted?

Thanks!

You're probably looking at the crop on the LCD screen that comes from using the 3:2 ratio for photos. There is blank space on both sides of the screen. If you switch your aspect ratio to 16:9, the blank space goes away.

When you're taking photos and then record a video, it automatically switches from 3:2 to 16:9. That's what you're perceiving as a "crop" but if you put something at the edge of the screen like a cup and watch what happens to it, nothing is getting cropped out.

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Ted
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C&C is encouraged, I'm always learning

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Castlenock New Member • Posts: 16
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

The viewfinder eyepiece is a great deal better than the 6300: a rubbery deal with a wee bit of flex on the a6500 as opposed to the hard plastic literal eye-sore of the a6300.  I think it locks in better as well, doesn't seem to get lost as easy.

Did a few tests in some light rain - would not have attempted that with the a6300, regardless if there is a measurable weather proofing benefit or not, the buttons feel so more solid and integrated into the frame that I'm less prone to freak out over it.

Was surprised these little details ended up being so big in practice, but happy to have them!

SwissSwiss Contributing Member • Posts: 600
Re: Some A6500 features not mentioned in reviews

Castlenock wrote:

The viewfinder eyepiece is a great deal better than the 6300: a rubbery deal with a wee bit of flex on the a6500 as opposed to the hard plastic literal eye-sore of the a6300. I think it locks in better as well, doesn't seem to get lost as easy.

Did a few tests in some light rain - would not have attempted that with the a6300, regardless if there is a measurable weather proofing benefit or not, the buttons feel so more solid and integrated into the frame that I'm less prone to freak out over it.

Was surprised these little details ended up being so big in practice, but happy to have them!

Yes I agree.

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