Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

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RH McCaslan Regular Member • Posts: 125
Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down.  This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem.  Anyway, what do professionals think?

Magnar W
Magnar W Veteran Member • Posts: 5,603
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down. This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

Probably made as a multi purpose camera with extreme specs, suitable for sports and other kinds of action shooting, like nature and wildlife. I see more and more wildlife photographers joining the E-mount. Also, a lot of amateur photographers will stretch their budgets for such a superb camera, some of them owners of 400 or 600 mm GM primes.

Also, as 5G is the new standard, file transfer is way faster than with 4G, up to 100 times faster according to 5G providers. There is even a light jpg format if file size for transfer is a concern.

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ZurichPhoto Contributing Member • Posts: 755
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
3

As you may see from my gear list, I'm a Nikon sport shooter who has been watching mirrorless developments in anticipation of making the "leap" from DSLRs and possibly changing systems. The Alpha 1 may speed up that process that I was hoping to avoid for a few more years.

There are 3 things that most sports photographers agree on.

* You can't have too much reach

* You can't have too many fps

* Low--light ISO performance is never good enough

I'm not too worried about the file size. My guess is most people buying a $6,500 camera and $10,000-plus superteles will feel the same. Cards and storage are cheap. And I'm not transmitting hundreds of files at a time. Transmission speeds will improve with 5G, This may be an issue for some but for me -- not so much.

More MPs also allow for more cropping, which is important to most sports shooters.

I'm going to generalize here -- so tech guys, hold your fire, please -- but in many cases more MPs have had an impact on low-light performance, Personally, I'd rather have better ISO performance.

We'll see how this camera performs. I hope it is spectacular.

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OP RH McCaslan Regular Member • Posts: 125
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

ZurichPhoto wrote:

As you may see from my gear list, I'm a Nikon sport shooter who has been watching mirrorless developments in anticipation of making the "leap" from DSLRs and possibly changing systems. The Alpha 1 may speed up that process that I was hoping to avoid for a few more years.

There are 3 things that most sports photographers agree on.

* You can't have too much reach

* You can't have too many fps

* Low--light ISO performance is never good enough

I'm not too worried about the file size. My guess is most people buying a $6,500 camera and $10,000-plus superteles will feel the same. Cards and storage are cheap. And I'm not transmitting hundreds of files at a time. Transmission speeds will improve with 5G, This may be an issue for some but for me -- not so much.

More MPs also allow for more cropping, which is important to most sports shooters.

I'm going to generalize here -- so tech guys, hold your fire, please -- but in many cases more MPs have had an impact on low-light performance, Personally, I'd rather have better ISO performance.

We'll see how this camera performs. I hope it is spectacular.

Thanks for the response.

As a nature/wildlife shooter, I love the added pixels.  I wasn't a fan of the a7IV because it didn't provide enough AF performance improvement, and I struggled to see much benefit over the 42MP sensor even in cropping.

Anyway, I had frequently heard that the reason the A9II did not increase resolution was because photojournalists cringed at sending large files--even with fast connections, it takes longer to send a 50MP file--especially when the images are printed or put on the web with a fairly low resolution.

Thus, I wonder if size-sensitive journalists will use the camera in crop-sensor mode and if so, will there be any problems doing so?

Magnar W
Magnar W Veteran Member • Posts: 5,603
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
4

ZurichPhoto wrote:

I'm going to generalize here -- so tech guys, hold your fire, please -- but in many cases more MPs have had an impact on low-light performance, Personally, I'd rather have better ISO performance.

This was correct some years ago, but after they got very efficient micro lenses on the sensors, the sensor area is what determines the noise level. So a 12 Mp, 24 Mp and 50 Mp camera will give the same noise with a given exposure, also at very high ISO values. There might be a small difference at extreme ISO, but nothing that matters for us as low light photographers. Even mr. Fossum, the inventor of the CMOS sensor, have stated this. Real world tests will tell the same.

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Paulowen929 New Member • Posts: 19
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

Whoever it is designed for, here in the UK it is going to cost £6500 GBP body only!! So you need deep pockets!

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SQLGuy
SQLGuy Forum Pro • Posts: 10,395
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
1

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down.

Not necessarily. The A1 supports 21MP JPGs from full frame or APS-C with a one step switch between crop and full. That's JPG only, but a lot of PJs are required to shoot JPG anyway.

This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

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PAntunes Contributing Member • Posts: 808
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

SQLGuy wrote:

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down.

Not necessarily. The A1 supports 21MP JPGs from full frame or APS-C with a one step switch between crop and full. That's JPG only, but a lot of PJs are required to shoot JPG anyway.

This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

Also, this Sony has a "light jpeg/HEIF" format that will make the files smaller and transfer faster. Sony has got photojournalists covered.

SQLGuy
SQLGuy Forum Pro • Posts: 10,395
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

PAntunes wrote:

SQLGuy wrote:

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down.

Not necessarily. The A1 supports 21MP JPGs from full frame or APS-C with a one step switch between crop and full. That's JPG only, but a lot of PJs are required to shoot JPG anyway.

This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

Also, this Sony has a "light jpeg/HEIF" format that will make the files smaller and transfer faster. Sony has got photojournalists covered.

Hmm... 21MP. Nikon D6: 20.8MP. Canon 1DXIII: 20.1MP.

More evidence, IMO, besides the price, of which cameras the A1 was designed to compete against.

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olstrup Veteran Member • Posts: 4,005
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
1

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Unless I'm missing something it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down.

Most photojournalist/sports photogs shoot JPEG and not RAW due to tight deadlines (often within minutes after the fact as pictures must be uploaded to web sites in almost real time). Also, the general tendency is to avoid RAW files in photojournalism in order to not invite heavy postprocessing and thereby altering the "reality". With JPEGs the photographer can just choose a smaller file size in the camera meny.  But yes, photojournalists/sports photogs doesn't need the huge files either, so it will likely not be the high MP count oft the A1 which is the strongest selling point for them. OTOH, the better options for cropping (which can be done in-camera) can come in handy when they are caught in an unexpected situation with too short lenses.

This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

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The Grumpy Snapper Regular Member • Posts: 489
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

National Geographic photographers. Some of them have been field testing it.

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JohnNEX Senior Member • Posts: 2,396
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

RH McCaslan wrote:

Anyway, what do professionals think?

Happy to be corrected, but I am not aware of any pro photojournalists (currently earning the majority of their income directly from their photographs being published) posting on these forums.

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Adam Palmer Contributing Member • Posts: 654
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
1

Magnar W wrote:

ZurichPhoto wrote:

I'm going to generalize here -- so tech guys, hold your fire, please -- but in many cases more MPs have had an impact on low-light performance, Personally, I'd rather have better ISO performance.

This was correct some years ago, but after they got very efficient micro lenses on the sensors, the sensor area is what determines the noise level. So a 12 Mp, 24 Mp and 50 Mp camera will give the same noise with a given exposure, also at very high ISO values. There might be a small difference at extreme ISO, but nothing that matters for us as low light photographers. Even mr. Fossum, the inventor of the CMOS sensor, have stated this. Real world tests will tell the same.

The old conventional wisdom of higher MPX equaling more noise just doesn't want to die without a fight.

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Geomaticsman Senior Member • Posts: 2,957
It's designed for birders ;-) (n/t)
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pollup Contributing Member • Posts: 852
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?

RH McCaslan wrote:

Assuming that the A1 is the replacement for the A9II and is designed with sports photographers in mind, does a 50MP camera make sense for this group who prefer 1/2 the MP or less?

Yes, it makes perfect sense, because of the speed (30 fps) and the much improved AF, and because of the much better silent shutter.

Unless I'm missing something

Yes you're missing something: those photographers often shoot JPEG, and those are much smaller in size and can be resized in camera to 21MP, and there's even a "low quality JPEG" option now.

it means that they will need to shoot in APS-C mode to keep file sizes down. This shouldn't be a problem for longer lenses--that 400mm 2.8 becomes a 600mm lens--, but what about at the wide end? The workhorse 24-70, not with the reach of a 36-105, is perhaps a touch long at the wide end. Maybe given the benefits of the new body, this is a minor problem. Anyway, what do professionals think?

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Bang Ding Ow New Member • Posts: 23
Re: Is the A1 Designed for Photojournalists/Sports Photographers?
1

The A1 is designed to be an apex action camera--whether for sports or wildlife.

Can it be used for landscapes? Certainly, given its relatively high resolution.

However, I expect Sony will eventually release an 80-100MP landscape-oriented body to compete with the GFX 100s.

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