Sony myth buster
There are a lot of opinions about Sony cameras floating on the net, some good, some bad and many wrong. Given that Sony is clueless as to how to address that, I might do it instead.
Myth I : Sony is overpriced
That is the most common myth and is generally followed by a lone example. The thing is, overall, Sony isn’t overpriced whatsoever. It is easy to make it look so, when you cherry-pick, though. Here are a few examples of gear that is pretty much in line with competing equivalents (of either Canon or Nikon) Zeiss 16-35, Zeiss 24-70, Zeiss 24mm f2, Zeiss 85mm f1.4, 50mm f1.4, 85mm f2.8, 100mm macro, 16-50 DT, 16-105 DT, 35mm DT, 50mm DT and I am getting bored already. Then, looking at the E-mount, except maybe the 24mm Zeiss, nothing is really overpriced when comparing to competing systems such as m43 and Fuji. And don’t get me started on the bodies.
An example of a typical discussion:
- – Sony is overpriced, just look at the 50mm f1.4 Zeiss.
- – Sony does have a 50 f1.4, which costs roughly the same as Canikon equivalents. TheZeiss is just a bonus.
- – The Sony 50 f1.4 is an old design from thousands of years ago.
- – It was updated and who cares how old the design is?
- – I care, because it’s crap.
As you can see, you can’t win here. It doesn’t matter that the 50 f1.4 performs perfectly well and that, on top of it, you have the Zeiss option.Another discussion:
– Sony is overpriced, the A99 should cost same like the D600.
– It has the same sensor!
– So, what about the 5D markIII then?
– The D800 is much better! The A99 must be cheaper!
– So, sensor is everything, features do not matter?
– Absolutely! It’s all about IQ!
– So why does the D7100 cost more than a D5200?
– Because it’s a better camera, duh!
Again, no way to win here. It doesn’t matter that the A99 has plenty of features over the D600 and even the D800. And if you manage to get to those, the SLT will be a horrible light sucker, but the fact that the D800 has a terrible live view and no swivel screen (quite useful for precise tripod work and precise manual focus) won’t matter. Gimmicks, you know.Conclusion: Every brand has overpriced products and, depending on how you decide to cherry-pick, you can make each of them look bad.
Advice: I strongly suggest that people interested in the Sony system make the price comparison by themselves, rather than listen to unsubstantiated claims. Depending on your specific needs one system might be more or less expensive than another, but most of the time there won’t be much of a difference in terms of price.
Myth II : Sony’s lens range is lacking
Not exactly a myth, but an over-exaggerated issue. Yes, Canon and Nikon have arguably wider selections. But, for most uses, Sony can cover your needs, not to mention that there are some unique lenses in the lineup. The thing is, the wider selection from other companies means absolutely nothing in itself. It all depends on your needs.
And don’t forget you can use Minolta lenses. Conclusion: Depends on your needs. Advice: Know your needs.
Myth III : Sony’s NEX lens range is lacking and the lenses are crap and expensive
Some of it myth, some not, a lot is exaggerated.
It is lacking, but let’s be clear – there are two real competitors here – m43 and Fuji. m43 is a system that had more time to develop and is supported by two companies and is pretty much the exclusive mount for said companies (not much development on the 43 front). It is easy to see how they might end up having a more complete offering. Fuji has been amazing, and while it does have excellent lenses, the lens range isn’t much wider than NEX’s one.
As to the lens performance, currently there are 4 lenses performing very very well (24mm Zeiss, 35mm f1.8, 50mm f1.8, 10-18mm). Of those, only the 24mm can be seen as being overpriced. Then, we have the usual suspects (16-50, 18-55, 18-200, 55-210). These lenses are perfectly good performers for what they are (helpful hint: they are kit zoom lenses and a travel zoom, all priced accordingly).
This leaves only 3 lenses to be crappy: 16mm (tried it, crappy it is), 20mm (no experience, but judging by samples, it is a perfectly capable lens, hardly crappy), 30mm macro (no experience here).
Conclusion: as I see it, there are at best 2 crappy lenses in the whole NEX lineup. I invite you to compare the prices to Fuji’s or to those of the m43 system and you’ll see that they are not that far off overall.
Advice: when someone tells you that NEX lenses are crappy and gives you as an example the weak optical performance (duh!) of the 16-50, stop listening.
Myth IV : most people prefer OVFs
This appears everywhere, but when you ask people where did they get the information, you generally receive one of two possible answers. Either “many of their friends” don’t like EVFs or this can be “logically concluded” by Canon and Nikon selling more.
Advice: take statistically irrelevant data and flawed logic with a grain of salt.
Myth V : OVFs are better
That’s a half-myth. And in a few years it will probably be an almost complete one. They are better for some things. But certainly not for chimping (sidenote: there is nothing wrong with chimping) or manual focus, or displaying plenty of useful information, or… you get the idea.
Conclusion: It is subjective. Advice: Try both and choose.
Sony is a great system. It does have its shortcomings, like all the others, but it also has some unique features.