Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

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miltos
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Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby miltos » Tue Mar 13, 2012 2:22 pm

I am a relatively satisfied user of the SONY a100 since September 2006. I shoot only RAW. My themes are mostly landscapes (beach, sunsets) but also portraits and people. When I shoot indoors, I rarely use flash but rely on fast lemses of fixed focal length. I very rarely use ISO above 200.
In some situations like moving target (person) or indoor shooting, the autofocus fails.
I don't use high ISO because the noise is rising dramatically. ISO 1600 noise is visible even in small resampled pictures. On the other hand, ISO 100 with sunshine etc. is very good. I always have the camera on the beach with me.

So now I am wondering if the time has come to upgrade and the candidate would be the a77. I don't care that much about the extra pixels since I rarely print. I would benefit only in those occasions that I crop images to fix the composition.

What I am mostly interested to know in order to decide is:
1) Will outdoors picture quality at ISO 100, 200 be at least as good as a100 or maybe better due to higher dynamic range (sunsets, etc.)?
2) Will Autofocus be better at low light or moving person? Low light is more important.
3) Will ISO 400 - 1600 be significantly better than with the a100?

The other features are just a plus but they are not sufficient. The above three issues are the important ones.

Could somebody advise? In central Europe the thing is much more expensive than in the US. So if I buy it, I have to stick with it for at least 4-5 years.

For those curious about the photos I take: http://picasaweb.google.com/miltiadis.sarakinos

Miltos

Lonnie Utah
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Re: Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby Lonnie Utah » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:55 pm

1) Yes.
2) Yes.
3) Yes.

jcoffin
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Re: Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby jcoffin » Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:38 pm

1. Maybe. Some people prefer the results from cameras with CCD sensors. I'm not at all sure I (or they) could provide objective evidence to show the claimed superiority, but there are certainly people who claim it anyway. Whether you'd feel the same way, I can't even begin to guess.
2. The A77 does quite well in low light, and the larger number of cross-type sensors seems to help considerably with moving subjects.
3. For high ISO, the A77 is/will be dramatically superior.

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harveyzone
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Re: Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby harveyzone » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:41 pm

Having made the very same step (from A100 to A77) I can only say that there are massive improvements across the board.
As Lonnie says, the answer to your questions are quite simply yes, yes, and yes.
--
Tom

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Dr. Harout
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Re: Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby Dr. Harout » Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:52 pm

Walked through the same path, from A100 -> A700 -> A77
So my answers would be:
1- yes, and note that A77 has a wonderful ISO 50
2- definitely yes, not to say that it would be even a sin to make such a comparison,
3- that would be a sin too, of course yes.
And one more thing, apart all the positives of the a77, the EVF is way better than the OVF of A100 (something that even die-hard OVF-ers would agree)
A99 + a7rII + Sony, Zeiss, Minolta, Rokinon and M42 lenses

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miltos
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Re: Upgrade to a77 from a100? Please advise.

Unread postby miltos » Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:47 pm

Thank you for your help. Apparently there is little risk. I did some test shots with the a77 and some comparisons with the a100. For a portrait with the Minolta 85/1.4 at 1.4 the a77 is superior. I tested some higher ISO shots and same result. I am missing a nice landscape on the beach, a nice sunset etc. but I don't think I will get the chance to test that.

The only catch is that my Mac with its 4 Gb RAM is slow processing such big RAWs. So I may revert to half the resolution especially if it ends up reducing noise (assuming the camera is grouping pixels together).

CCD vs CMOS: reminds me a bit of Vinyl vs CD. I still like the sound of my LPs better. But I suppose there is no choice here.

I suppose the next Full Field camera (a99?) will be much more expensive and, instead of offering lower noise, it will offer more pixels.

So I will sleep over it and maybe go buy it soon.


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