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Future Sony FE Bodies

iiiNelson

Active member
I’m curious if I’m alone in thinking there’s room for or a desire for Sony to make a body that’s larger than the current A7/A9 specifically for those that use the larger GM, G, Sony Zeiss, or Batis lenses. I’m not saying it needs to be or should be the size of the A99 but something the size of the Fuji XH1 (maybe 10-20% larger) I think would be ideal. I don’t even think it has to affect the A7... it could be strictly for the next generation A9 (or variants) especially with the 400/2.8 coming soon and the 500/4 and 600/4 being rumored.

Thoughts on this or does everyone only want the smaller bodies?
 

Bugleone

Active member
Personally, I have found the 'full-frame' sony designs to be unattractive and have held off from them. for the last couple of years I have used a a6000 which is a APS-C design that has some charm and grace, in my opinion. Were sony to make a FF version of the a6xxx range, which is not physically impossible according to my ruler anyway, then I would stat to scrape pennies together with some keeness!

It seems to be an unwritten rule that; as cameras get more 'serious' they need to become more imposing and the best way of doing that is to add pointless complexity and physical bulk. If one is going to use large, ie long focus, lenses then perhaps a DSLR is a better solution anyway. What is missing (for me anyway) is a range of small quality lenses capable of FF coverage and suitable for mirrorless FF....and as we know from the film era, these need NOT be as large as modern makers would like us to believe. With the great increase of iso available many users are NOT chasing huge max apertures and fractional Dof, contrary to what many would have us believe. Relatively few photographers are covering sports/birds/low flying aircraft etc....whereas large numbers of serious users in many genres need a low weight, high resolution mirrorless kit, which still fails to make an appearance.

With the imminent launch of Nikon mirrorless models we see one of the great camera makers now in the field. This is going to change the activities of the big electrical conglomerates such as Sony that have so far dominated mirrorless cameras apart, obviously,from fuji. So, perhaps the camera that I have waited 10 years for is just around the corner!
 

iiiNelson

Active member
Personally, I have found the 'full-frame' sony designs to be unattractive and have held off from them. for the last couple of years I have used a a6000 which is a APS-C design that has some charm and grace, in my opinion. Were sony to make a FF version of the a6xxx range, which is not physically impossible according to my ruler anyway, then I would stat to scrape pennies together with some keeness!

It seems to be an unwritten rule that; as cameras get more 'serious' they need to become more imposing and the best way of doing that is to add pointless complexity and physical bulk. If one is going to use large, ie long focus, lenses then perhaps a DSLR is a better solution anyway. What is missing (for me anyway) is a range of small quality lenses capable of FF coverage and suitable for mirrorless FF....and as we know from the film era, these need NOT be as large as modern makers would like us to believe. With the great increase of iso available many users are NOT chasing huge max apertures and fractional Dof, contrary to what many would have us believe. Relatively few photographers are covering sports/birds/low flying aircraft etc....whereas large numbers of serious users in many genres need a low weight, high resolution mirrorless kit, which still fails to make an appearance.

With the imminent launch of Nikon mirrorless models we see one of the great camera makers now in the field. This is going to change the activities of the big electrical conglomerates such as Sony that have so far dominated mirrorless cameras apart, obviously,from fuji. So, perhaps the camera that I have waited 10 years for is just around the corner!
i can understand and respect that viewpoint. For me large fast lenses are more about shooting in lower light conditions where flash isn’t always allowed. So the options for me would be to buy large aperture lenses or getting a A7S type body. Yes some of the other cameras have useable high ISO I still prefer to shoot at the lowest possible ISO. Shallow DOF is a matter of aperture AND distance so often times I think that part is lost on people (not necessarily you) that say people don’t need large aperture lenses.

Now ive heard there is a demand for small light primes (and I get that) but I do believe there are some out there with the 28, 35, 50, 55, and 85. Clearly there are still gaps but o also think in the film days (and I still shoot my Minolta from time to time) most of those small lenses didn’t have AF. Those that did usually had slow AF but that’s another point. If you don’t mind manual focus there’s the Voigtlander, Chinese, and Loxia lenses out there.

I still standby Fuji has the best compromise in a crop body system though I can easily make a case for Micro 4/3 as well.
 
V

Vivek

Guest
For me the size is secondary to the specs. Of course, a compact mirrorless set up is always preferred.

I hope Nikon, etc will give Sony a run for their money, make them come up with better quality cameras.
 

Knorp

Well-known member
I’m curious if I’m alone in thinking there’s room for or a desire for Sony to make a body that’s larger than the current A7/A9 specifically for those that use the larger GM, G, Sony Zeiss, or Batis lenses. I’m not saying it needs to be or should be the size of the A99 but something the size of the Fuji XH1 (maybe 10-20% larger) I think would be ideal. I don’t even think it has to affect the A7... it could be strictly for the next generation A9 (or variants) especially with the 400/2.8 coming soon and the 500/4 and 600/4 being rumored.

Thoughts on this or does everyone only want the smaller bodies?
I think the A7/A9 bodies on itself are too small to hold comfortably.
Even with the smallest and lightest of lenses it's only so-so.
Of course there is the battery-grip, but then it becomes rather bulky and therefore I hardly use mine.
I'm still pretty happy with the grip-extension.
So getting back to your question: I'd say a slightly higher body could be just perfect (for me).
 

ggibson

Well-known member
+1 on the smaller A6xxx rangefinder style of body. I also find the mk II and III versions of the Sony FE bodies to be quite heavy, and would prefer a lighter camera. I mostly stick with small primes on the system.
 

Pradeep

Member
Having moved completely from the big Canon DSLR/lenses to Sony, I am firmly in the 'small camera system' camp. Given that I am also a small person with small hands, it helps to have a smaller unit.

I know many people have difficulty with the form factor of the Sony esp if they have big hands, but hey, the world is moving on, more and more Asians are buying these cameras and it is the time of the small folk now ;)

Seriously though, I agree completely, technology should allow the manufacture of smaller, lighter long lenses (yeah, an oxymoron, that) - the Canon 400 DO MkII was pretty good, but did not win the popularity stakes. I am hearing good things about the Nikon PF lenses and I am sure Sony can come up with something similar. A zoom lens in the 200-600 range would be fantastic, does not have to be f4 either. I know Tamron makes one in a similar config, but my own experience with it was less than satisfactory. You want to use it maximum at the longest end and that's where it fell short.

I also agree that sometimes you want that separation from the subject and the background and nothing beats a wider aperture for that, especially if the animal is at a certain distance. Just cannot do it with an f5.6. So the need for a heavy long lens continues. I have come to the realization in life that good things cost money and all other things being equal, good images require good equipment.

I too would love to see the FF Sony bodies become even smaller and personally I don't have issues with big lenses on small bodies, as long as it balances well.

I love my Rx1r2 but of course it has a fixed prime lens.

I suspect the future A7x and A9x bodies will not be any bigger, rather the same size but may have more features built in, whether we want them or not.
 
V

Vivek

Guest
It is good to keep in mind that smaller bodies can be bulked up with add ons while larger bodies are CaNikon territory. Besides, those who tarvel know the importance of smaller, lighter systems vs the bulky, heavy ones.

I also doubt that the Zony 50/1.4 is flying off the shelf compared to the Zony 55/1.8.
 

pegelli

Well-known member
For me the A7 and A7ii are fine. Even with my big hands I can hold them comfortably (and steady).

But as others here I like holding my A6000 even better, so a FF camera within such a smaller shell would for me even be preferred.
 

k-hawinkler

Well-known member
A7r, A7r.2, and A9 with battery grip size- and weight-wise are a good fit for me.
I would prefer though if the battery grip were part of the camera body, as in Nikon’s D3.
I am shooting with my left eye, so I like the EVF in the middle of the camera body.
Third party rubber eye cups eliminate interfering light from the side.
I wish such eye cups were available for Olympus’ E-M1.2.

judt for fun: A9R - Rendering from SAR - FM Forums

Pue fantasie - all made up. :LOL:
 
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iiiNelson

Active member
A7r, A7r.2, and A9 with battery grip size- and weight-wise are a good fit for me.
I would prefer though if the battery grip were part of the camera body, as in Nikon’s D3.
I am shooting with my left eye, so I like the EVF in the middle of the camera body.
Third party rubber eye cups eliminate interfering light from the side.
I wish such eye cups were available for Olympus’ E-M1.2.

judt for fun: A9R - Rendering from SAR - FM Forums

Pue fantasie - all made up. :LOL:
I find that I generally shoot with the grip attached almost all the time which is what originally got me thinking about if there is a market or room for a larger or more “pro” style body for those of us that use the larger lenses. Again it doesn’t have to be as large as a pro body DSLR but I feel the slightly larger body of the Fuji XH1 is about the perfect compromise of not too big but not too small ergonomically.
 
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Knorp

Well-known member
I find that I generally shoot with the grip attached almost all the time which is what originally got me thinking aboutbif there is a market or room for a larger or more “pro” style body for those of us that use the larger lenses. Again it doesn’t have to be as large as a pro body DSLR but I feel the slightly larger body of the Fuji XH1 is about the perfect compromise of not too big but not too small ergonomically.
The XH1 body is perhaps better, but the G9 is IMV the best compromise.
Well, let's say it's almost perfect ... :grin:
 

Attachments

pegelli

Well-known member
I find that I generally shoot with the grip attached almost all the time which is what originally got me thinking aboutbif there is a market or room for a larger or more “pro” style body for those of us that use the larger lenses. Again it doesn’t have to be as large as a pro body DSLR but I feel the slightly larger body of the Fuji XH1 is about the perfect compromise of not too big but not too small ergonomically.
It's amazing how personal this all is. I bought my A7 2nd hand together with a grip. After some initial experimenting the grip came off and has never been back on. So for me the base body is fine and I'm glad grips can be added by people who like it.

What would be the advantages of a larger fixed grip body vs. one with a detachable grip, since I don't use one I'm probably overlooking something?
 

seb

Member
I'm in the smaller body camp.

The smaller body is less offensive. At least it's my experience with an a7RII + Voigtländer 40/1.2. Especially in low light situations, you can walk through the people and document easily a scenery. The camera looks more like a nice hipster gadget and surprisingly they accept pictures from it more than from professional equipment or a cell phone.
If a bigger grip is needed I'll attach the grip extension Knorp referred to. It has no weight and adds the necessary centimetres of grip to make it comfortable enough to carry heavy lenses through a day.
It's not as enjoyable as holding a café latte in a glass but I prefer the less offensive look over some more comfort. Just to clarify I have glove size 11 sometimes 12 (12 is the biggest size you can get).

On the other hand, why not produce cameras in two parts. One is the heart (sensor, electronics, battery) and the other is the body (EVF, knob positions, LCD, body size). The heart will be attached like a computer to a docking station.
 

Bugleone

Active member
Seb's post touches on several important matters to this;

The first Sony mirrorless was the NEX 3 (&5)...When I first used that camera as a walkaround and holiday camera I was greatly surprised that nobody even noticed me using it and that the images were every bit as good as from my Pentax DSLR's. perhaps it helped that it happened to be in a grey colour, I don't know, but the tilting screen was a bonus too. it seems that DSLR makers have dragged their feet in providing tilting or articulated screens even tho' it would add to facility greatly in many situations...

Seb's last point about a more modular approach seems to me to make great sense, and highlights that the makers have rather turned their faces to the wall on design....They understand 'the black plastic DSLR' and that's what they would like us to like as well!

Back in the 35mm film era there was a very clever SLR camera 'system' called Exacta. Every part of the camera set up could be modified according to the photographic task required with detachable viewfinders and screens and a large catalogue of accessories to enable all types of 'difficult' picture making..... This system was used world-wide by forensic, military, scientific and research groups, not to mention a great army of amateurs. One wonders what they use now....and why there is no digital equivalent, or even a modern evolvement into something really clever and useful. I can't help thinking that the black DSLR is really only intended by canikon for use at sports and pop events....
 

Bugleone

Active member
Knorp,...are those camera pics to a common scale?....the M/43 sensor looks rather large by comparison...according to my 'rithmatik' M43 sensor is a quarter of the size of FF sensor almost exactly but the G9 image looks much larger than perhaps it should.....I might be wrong 'tho!
 
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Vivek

Guest
The question about the body size is almost like the US politics nowadays. Changing the topic every hour to take the focus away from the key issues.

What happened to lossless RAW and lossless compressed RAW?

What happened to removing the star eater protocol?

Here is where Nikon will dent Sony’s sales and I will applaud them for it!

It is the image quality and not the ergos!
 

Knorp

Well-known member
The question about the body size is almost like the US politics nowadays. Changing the topic every hour to take the focus away from the key issues.

What happened to lossless RAW and lossless compressed RAW?

What happened to removing the star eater protocol?

Here is where Nikon will dent Sony’s sales and I will applaud them for it!

It is the image quality and not the ergos!
Vivek, what do you mean "changing the topic" ... :grin:
 

Knorp

Well-known member
Knorp,...are those camera pics to a common scale?....the M/43 sensor looks rather large by comparison...according to my 'rithmatik' M43 sensor is a quarter of the size of FF sensor almost exactly but the G9 image looks much larger than perhaps it should.....I might be wrong 'tho!
Oh BugleOne, you've got to blame "camerasize.com" for any scale mismatches !
Now, I think it's all down to perception, but to my eye (and to my measurements ...:p), the µ43 sensor shown is exactly half the size of the shown 'FF' sensor.
 

Pradeep

Member
Does everyone mean the 'battery grip' (where the grip houses an extra battery) when they mean a 'body grip'? I have never used that with any of my cameras. Bought one for my Canon 7D2 and took it off after one attempt. It made the camera unwieldy and with a big lens it did not sit well on the tripod - there was some play even if the grip was screwed on tight.

For me, the current form of the a7x/a9 works very well, as I can actually carry and hold it with my fingers hooked on the side of the battery section. Granted this is never a good way to carry a camera with a heavy lens like the 100-400 since the weight of the lens puts a lot of strain on the mount, but for very short periods it is doable. If it is a smaller zoom/prime, it is better than my DSLR used to be since the overall weight on my fingers is much less. With the bigger lenses I always use the lens foot to hold it or to attach the BR strap.

Vivek, I see your point but I feel Sony has been holding itself since there was no real competition, now the gloves will be off and I expect them to be even more aggressive in coming up with new tech.

FWIW, the 'star-eater' problem, though real for many people did not bother me. On my trip to Namibia last year I did some astrophotography for the first time in my life, with the A7r2. The images were very satisfying - for me. There is no discernible loss of stars in the sky in my Milky Way shots - at least it doesn't look that way. I agree they could address this issue in future FW upgrades or future sensor designs. I am sure somebody at Sony is looking into it.

All said and done, competition is always healthy and for us end users it means better products - at hopefully a better price.
 
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