DPP Home Gear Cameras Can A Pro Go Mirrorless?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Can A Pro Go Mirrorless?

Like the transition from Speed Graphics to 35mm film and SLRs, today’s pros might consider making a full switch to a mirrorless system. Before you scoff at the notion, take a rational look at the advantages and disadvantages.


This Article Features Photo Zoom

Sony NEX-7
Sony NEX-7. It's two years old now, but Sony's NEX-7 is still the top model in the NEX mirrorless lineup. Its 24.3-megapixel Sony Exmor APS HD CMOS sensor offers the most megapixels (and highest DxOMark.com sensor rating) of any mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera. ISOs run from 100-16,000. The built-in, eye-level, 2,359,000-dot XGA OLED Tru-Finder is the best EVF we've seen (it's also used in Sony's A99, A77 and A65 translucent-mirror DSLRs and the NEX-6 mirrorless model); it's complemented by a 3.0-inch, 921,000-dot tilting LCD.

The NEX-7 can shoot 24.3-megapixel images at 10 fps (with focus and exposure locked at the first exposure), or 2.5 fps with continuous AF and exposure adjustments. Shutter release lag is a class best 0.02 seconds. AVCHD Progressive v2.0 format video can be shot in 1920x1080 full HD at 60p, as well as the usual 60i, and 1080/24p for a more "cinematic" look. There's also 1440x1080 and 640x480 MP4 video at 30p when smaller files are desired. A built-in stereo microphone provides Dolby Digital stereo sound.

AF is contrast-based (the newer NEX-6 offers quicker hybrid phase-detection/contrast AF). The LA-EA2 adapter lets you use Sony A-mount (and legacy Konica Minolta Maxxum) lenses on the NEX-7 and provides a fixed translucent-mirror and phase-detection AF similar to that in the SLT-A65. The NEX-7 also provides manual focus peaking, which outlines in-focus edges in your choice of white, red or yellow, making it easy to see just where focus is in the image.

The first NEX to feature a built-in flash unit, the NEX-7 also has a hot-shoe for an external accessory flash and an adapter that provides a PC terminal for studio flash systems. Estimated Street Price: $1,099 (body only); $1,249 (with 18-55mm zoom).

Accessories

A big part of a DSLR system is a wide range of accessories. Mirrorless cameras offer fewer accessories, but there are some good ones.

For its X-series cameras, Fujifilm offers three flash units, handgrips, a remote release and an adapter for Leica M-mount lenses, plus filters, a leather case and the XF lenses.

Olympus offers electronic viewfinders for the current models that don't come with one (including a new tilting VF-4 with 2.36 million dots and 1.48X magnification), three flash units and a macro arm light (plus flash brackets and a hot-shoe flash cable), a remote cable release, Four Thirds and OM lens adapters, and fisheye, wide and macro converters.

Panasonic offers a battery grip for the GH3, and for all models, three flash units, a stereo shotgun microphone, adapters to use Four Thirds, Leica M and Leica R lenses, a remote shutter release, fisheye/wide/tele/macro adapters, and a zoom lever to help smooth zooming during video shooting.

Samsung mirrorless accessories include four flash units, an NX external microphone and a remote shutter release.

Accessories for Sony NEX mirrorless cameras include flash units, lens adapters (including one that adds phase-detection AF with Sony A-mount DSLR lenses), fisheye and ultrawide converters, a stereo microphone, a wireless remote commander unit, a five-inch external HDMI monitor (with headphone jack and LCD hood), and for the NEX-5T, a tilting, 2359K-dot OLED eye-level Tru-Finder.


 

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