As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Started 5 months ago | Discussions
Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
Nikon D5 Nikon D500 Nikon D850 Sony a7 Sony a7R
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Tom - 2015 Regular Member • Posts: 289
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
2

Focus Lock wrote:

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

Get rid of the Nikon 16-35mm and 50mm as there are much better options than these lenses available now (like the Sony 55 f/1.8, which you already have).

Keep the A7III and buy the Zeiss or Sony 16-35mm.

Keep the D500 and 200-500.

Which Nikon 70-200 do you have? If it's the latest FL f/2.8 then that might change things.

 Tom - 2015's gear list:Tom - 2015's gear list
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 58mm f/1.4G Nikon 24-70mm F2.8E ED VR Fujifilm X100F Sony a9 Nikon D850 +7 more
DenImage Senior Member • Posts: 2,834
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
4

IMO the d850 is the best DSLR ever made, and I suspect it won't be superseded by another DSLR. I'd get one whilst they're still available.

Keep the Sony and 24-105mm for wide to mild tele.

Den

 DenImage's gear list:DenImage's gear list
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OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Hi, thanks for your advice. I have the latest 70-200 as far as I know. It’s a few years old but somehow not used as much as I would have thought in street photography. A bit big really to walk with. Too small for birds and sports. The 200-500 has been great really on the d500.

my other thought is to get rid of the d500 and replace with the d850 but then I’m still on two systems?!

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
SilvanBromide Senior Member • Posts: 3,939
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
1

Focus Lock wrote:

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

A lot depends on what attracted you to the Sony a7iii and mirrorless in general.

One option might be to consider the Nikon Z6 or Z7, which would allow you to adapt your F glass with good results - and that might be a good middle ground between staying with the a7iii or going for something like a D850.

On the other hand, migrating across to FE-only could also make some sense, particularly if you are enjoying the a7iii. When I first moved to Sony I had a lot of dSLR lenses and gear - some of which I used with adapters - but over time I've sold most of it and replaced with native FE alternatives. I now have a FF and crop body (both Sony) and for me that made sense.

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 SilvanBromide's gear list:SilvanBromide's gear list
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XeroJay
XeroJay Senior Member • Posts: 2,200
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
3

DenImage wrote:

IMO the d850 is the best DSLR ever made, and I suspect it won't be superseded by another DSLR. I'd get one whilst they're still available.

Keep the Sony and 24-105mm for wide to mild tele.

Den

Imho, DSLR - even the mighty D850 cannot keep up with mirrorless when it comes to using fast primes wide open. The AF just isn't as consistent or accurate until about f2.8, at which point you're into zoom territory anyway. The Samyang lenses have been discussed as problematic AF many times before though, so I would consider offloading it.

If you're going to be stopping down though, past f4 ish, then DSLR is generally going to perform better than most mirrorless. The A7III is not great with small aperture shooting.

 XeroJay's gear list:XeroJay's gear list
Canon EOS M6 Sony a9 Sony a7 III Canon EF 100mm F2.8L Macro IS USM Canon EF-M 22mm f/2 STM +7 more
OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

SilvanBromide wrote:

Focus Lock wrote:

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

A lot depends on what attracted you to the Sony a7iii and mirrorless in general.

One option might be to consider the Nikon Z6 or Z7, which would allow you to adapt your F glass with good results - and that might be a good middle ground between staying with the a7iii or going for something like a D850.

On the other hand, migrating across to FE-only could also make some sense, particularly if you are enjoying the a7iii. When I first moved to Sony I had a lot of dSLR lenses and gear - some of which I used with adapters - but over time I've sold most of it and replaced with native FE alternatives. I now have a FF and crop body (both Sony) and for me that made sense.

Yes I didn’t say why I bought the Sony... I bought it having looked a lot online into size v performance for an all rounder camera . The FF sensor, low noise and dynamic range really did attract me. I was using the Fuji XT2 for this but the Sony FF is definitely better. And I have to say that I bought the A7iii instead of the R version because I felt it had a great balance of these features. I didn’t expect to need the extra pixels but I now think extra pixels would be great for landscape and perhaps even wildlife if cropping. Maybe I’m chasing more pixels and don’t need to?! I still feel having two systems is a bit confusing for someone who wants to streamline and really use my gear rather than have it sat on a shelf.

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
fjbyrne
fjbyrne Veteran Member • Posts: 8,353
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Focus Lock wrote:

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

Can't speak about the Samyang 85 but I have the Batis 85 and the AF is great including eye-AF

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

For sports/wildlife I would suggest getting the D850 as I think you'd need an A9 to really rival that camera.  If you want to go all in with Sony check out the A9 and the new 200-600 G that was just released.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

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Rick

 fjbyrne's gear list:fjbyrne's gear list
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Philnw2 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,427
Less is More
4

I haven't had Nikon, but i had Pentax previously, and got tired of their stubborn ways with regards to camera design.  Never understood why i couldn't get a foldout LCD live viewer without going to Med Format.

So when i went to Sony a7rII, i still felt compelled to keep a Pentax APS K4 and K5 DSLRs along with the best wide zoom and long zoom i had.  That was a mistake, i should have just sold the whole bit when i moved over.

You got to go with where your heart is now, with regard to systems and specific lenses.  I don't have any connection with KEH.com, but i sure appreciate their willingness to buy and sell lenses - and they give top dollar (and give 5% more if you exchange your trade in for other lenses they have).  When i compared their prices to other outlets, they paid out slightly more.  And they have a formal system of checking out used lenses - also they are now an official outlet for new Sony equipment and can do repairs on most makes as far as i know.  So if you decide to move to Sony, then send them lenses you no longer have your heart into, and see what kind of trade they will make if you need specific Sony lenses.  If you want to stay with Nikon, same thing, get rid of Sony.

Case in point, i used my Sony 70-200 f4 for indoor shooting in a playhouse and also on a fashion runway for "Wearable Art" shows.  no longer do that, so sold it, but kept my Sony a-mount 70-400 g2.  Also recently sold my FE 28.

Whether its Sony or Nikon, get rid of stuff you are no longer using or have your heart into.  It all takes up space.  I'm sorry i kept as much Pentax stuff as i did.  And trying to switch back and forth between 2 different camera mfr seemed too complex to me.

Good luck!

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Phil B

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OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Yes I have definitely been considering the new 200-600 as a means of moving over but the a9 whilst fast, still leaves me with a lower resolution for landscapes etc. Then I’d be wondering about the R again as a third camera. The a7iii is apparently a ‘best of’ balance between the other two Sonys; correct me if I’m wrong.

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: Less is More

Thanks Phil. I guess I’ll have to take a financial hit one way or another when I sell my unused gear but you’re right; it’ll be better not to have it sat there anyway.

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
Jeff2013
Jeff2013 Senior Member • Posts: 2,797
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
3

Imho, DSLR - even the mighty D850 cannot keep up with mirrorless when it comes to using fast primes wide open. The AF just isn't as consistent or accurate until about f2.8, at which point you're into zoom territory anyway. The Samyang lenses have been discussed as problematic AF many times before though, so I would consider offloading it.

If you're going to be stopping down though, past f4 ish, then DSLR is generally going to perform better than most mirrorless. The A7III is not great with small aperture shooting.

I completely agree with this analysis.

I was first in line when D800E's were introduced and shot these and D810's for about six years. I mostly shoot fast primes, so I think I spent a short lifetime constantly calibrating these lenses to the several bodies that I would shoot. Worse, focus varied between shots at f1.4 (camera on a tripod shooting a LensCal target). I invited other photographers from my camera clubs with D810's to test with this setup and they all had the same problem, to varying degrees. I sent my D810's in to Nikon for repair and they were returned with the comment that they were within factory spec.

To make matters worse, I would need to estimate the distance to subject that I would be shooting at any engagement and calibrate for that distance.... which could change.

Shooting A7RIII's and an A9 completely solved the focus accuracy problem. I think the D850 is an incredible beast of a camera, and I salivate over the specifications, but for the way I shoot, it would likely be far too frustrating and I simply do not want to waste another minute of my life calibrating lenses to camera bodies.

As a note, I realize that the D850 has an internal calibration facility, but I understand that, in practice, it is not as useful as it sounds and it still does not compensate for the shot-to-shot variation, likely caused by the variation in mirror return position.

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XeroJay
XeroJay Senior Member • Posts: 2,200
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Focus Lock wrote:

Yes I have definitely been considering the new 200-600 as a means of moving over but the a9 whilst fast, still leaves me with a lower resolution for landscapes etc. Then I’d be wondering about the R again as a third camera. The a7iii is apparently a ‘best of’ balance between the other two Sonys; correct me if I’m wrong.

It's actually kind of the "worst of" except for price, which is so much lower that it makes the "rest of" seem like much "less of" a value proposition...

If any of that makes sense

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OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Hi,

and thanks to both of you for this aspect I hadn’t even considered?! People speak so highly of the d850 that I’ve never heard of focus issues. Maybe I haven’t looked enough! I am curious why the a7iii might have issues at smaller apertures? I’ve only taken f11s on landscapes so I can’t be sure I’ve noticed an issue as yet.

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Sony a7R II
SilvanBromide Senior Member • Posts: 3,939
Re: Less is More
6

Focus Lock wrote:

Thanks Phil. I guess I’ll have to take a financial hit one way or another when I sell my unused gear but you’re right; it’ll be better not to have it sat there anyway.

Not as big a hit as you take if you keep it and don't use it.  ; )

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 SilvanBromide's gear list:SilvanBromide's gear list
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OP Focus Lock Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

Lol. I’m trying to make sense of it but I think I get your thoughts. You’re saying it’s neither as fast as the a9, nor as resolving as the R? I watched quite a few YouTube videos and I guess one can argue about reviewers etc. but the a7iii seems to do what it says on the tin for me at present. I would like more pixels I think... not really expecting to print large but might help in cropping.

 Focus Lock's gear list:Focus Lock's gear list
Sony a7R II
SilvanBromide Senior Member • Posts: 3,939
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
1

Focus Lock wrote:

SilvanBromide wrote:

Focus Lock wrote:

hi guys,

this question could also be posed on the Nikon forum but I’m hoping to get your help as ex Nikon users here.

my issue is that I have bought the Sony a7iii and 24-105, as well as the 55 1.8 and now the Samyang 85mm. These primes have had very little use and the 85 wide open i found problems with eye AF. I do love the Sony though and have enjoyed using it with the 24-105. It’s a keeper.

i am now faced with having my Nikon d500 and 200-500 lens which is great for sports and wildlife. Very fast and accurate. I also have the 16-35 lens; 50 mm1.8; 70-200.

Now all these are FF lenses and I am now stuck as to wanting a FF body like the d850 to use these lenses or should I sell up these lenses and move to the A7riii and it’s prime equivalents? On one hand I am trying to put my eggs into one system and on the the other I feel I could lose less money by keeping the Nikon gear but then I’d be running a FF Nikon, a CROP sensor Nikon and the FF Sony.

Sorry for the long question but how can I best sort this out?

A lot depends on what attracted you to the Sony a7iii and mirrorless in general.

One option might be to consider the Nikon Z6 or Z7, which would allow you to adapt your F glass with good results - and that might be a good middle ground between staying with the a7iii or going for something like a D850.

On the other hand, migrating across to FE-only could also make some sense, particularly if you are enjoying the a7iii. When I first moved to Sony I had a lot of dSLR lenses and gear - some of which I used with adapters - but over time I've sold most of it and replaced with native FE alternatives. I now have a FF and crop body (both Sony) and for me that made sense.

Yes I didn’t say why I bought the Sony... I bought it having looked a lot online into size v performance for an all rounder camera . The FF sensor, low noise and dynamic range really did attract me. I was using the Fuji XT2 for this but the Sony FF is definitely better. And I have to say that I bought the A7iii instead of the R version because I felt it had a great balance of these features. I didn’t expect to need the extra pixels but I now think extra pixels would be great for landscape and perhaps even wildlife if cropping. Maybe I’m chasing more pixels and don’t need to?! I still feel having two systems is a bit confusing for someone who wants to streamline and really use my gear rather than have it sat on a shelf.

The extra pixels of the a7Riii are mainly useful if you want to be able to crop heavily, or if you may have call (now or in the future) to make large format prints.

But, cost aside, it's a bit of a trade-off because the file sizes are larger (which means slower writes and transfers, and more disk space required). It works for me, in what I do (i.e. for me, the benefits outweigh any disadvantages), but it's not for everyone...

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 SilvanBromide's gear list:SilvanBromide's gear list
Sony a7R III Sony FE 35mm F1.4 Sony FE 85mm F1.4 GM Sony a6500 Sony FE 35mm F2.8 +25 more
XeroJay
XeroJay Senior Member • Posts: 2,200
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
1

Jeff2013 wrote:

Imho, DSLR - even the mighty D850 cannot keep up with mirrorless when it comes to using fast primes wide open. The AF just isn't as consistent or accurate until about f2.8, at which point you're into zoom territory anyway. The Samyang lenses have been discussed as problematic AF many times before though, so I would consider offloading it.

If you're going to be stopping down though, past f4 ish, then DSLR is generally going to perform better than most mirrorless. The A7III is not great with small aperture shooting.

I completely agree with this analysis.

I was first in line when D800E's were introduced and shot these and D810's for about six years. I mostly shoot fast primes, so I think I spent a short lifetime constantly calibrating these lenses to the several bodies that I would shoot. Worse, focus varied between shots at f1.4 (camera on a tripod shooting a LensCal target). I invited other photographers from my camera clubs with D810's to test with this setup and they all had the same problem, to varying degrees. I sent my D810's in to Nikon for repair and they were returned with the comment that they were within factory spec.

To make matters worse, I would need to estimate the distance to subject that I would be shooting at any engagement and calibrate for that distance.... which could change.

Shooting A7RIII's and an A9 completely solved the focus accuracy problem. I think the D850 is an incredible beast of a camera, and I salivate over the specifications, but for the way I shoot, it would likely be far too frustrating and I simply do not want to waste another minute of my life calibrating lenses to camera bodies.

As a note, I realize that the D850 has an internal calibration facility, but I understand that, in practice, it is not as useful as it sounds and it still does not compensate for the shot-to-shot variation, likely caused by the variation in mirror return position.

I think the main problem with DSLRs and fast primes stems from the simple fact that the AF system is actually limited to f2.8 on even the best DSLRs. It's a little known fact, but that AF optical path is simply not taking any phase detect sensitivity beyond 2.8, no matter what lens you have on. It only makes sense that things get further-off the more you open up past 2.8. you can be shooting at f1.4, but your AF system is only at 2.8.

It's one of those things that seems so simple and straightforward that it should be common knowledge in the technical photographic community, but it seems like such an obscured technical tidbit that I don't think most folks are even aware of it.

Mirrorless, on the other hand, is able to use the maximum aperture for AF. This is bound to work better with primes, and it also equals the playing field with low light AF between DSLR and mirrorless. I had heard so many folks claim that the A7III low light AF is poor, only to learn that they're using f4 lenses. I use only fast primes, so I've found the A7III low light AF to be even better than my DSLRs.

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XeroJay
XeroJay Senior Member • Posts: 2,200
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.
2

Focus Lock wrote:

Lol. I’m trying to make sense of it but I think I get your thoughts. You’re saying it’s neither as fast as the a9, nor as resolving as the R? I watched quite a few YouTube videos and I guess one can argue about reviewers etc. but the a7iii seems to do what it says on the tin for me at present. I would like more pixels I think... not really expecting to print large but might help in cropping.

Haha yeah, basically! With the A7III you're getting basically the entire αlpha experience, without paying the extra $$$ premium for either resolution or speed. You are still getting an extremely well rounded camera though, and though it may not be the resolution King or speed demon, it is still more than capable for most non-specialist resolution or speed needs.

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PrebenR Veteran Member • Posts: 4,146
Re: As unbiased as can be please? Help needed.

If you have the a7iii why do you want to get a7riii. Won't help with AF.

I use two systems because they offer different strengths and I can choose which I want to use depending on situation. But no need to have full lens lineup in both systems.

What do you need and why are good questions to ask oneself.

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Don't blame the camera
Still trying to upgrade photographer body

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