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Thread: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

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    Subscriber Member mwalker's Avatar
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    Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Just curious if anyone shot the a900 with strobes yet? If so, do you have a favorite portrait lens? Please post some shots.
    Last edited by mwalker; 22nd April 2009 at 13:05.
    Mike

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  2. #2
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I too have wondered about this... I'm coming down to ground zero on a major camera purchase (medium format), but the a900 keeps nagging me. I'd love to see some professional studio and on-location fashion work to see how well it fairs.

    I LOVE what I see here... it's just not what I usually shoot.

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Sorry I can't help . . . .

    Maybe Albert can chip in, I'm not sure he's done fashion, but he certainly does to studio with it (have a look at his group shots in the pictures thread).

    All I can say is that after 6 months I like the camera better every day . . .and the files.

    Just this guy you know

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    Senior Member edwardkaraa's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I do studio shots occasionally but with no live models fortunately Usually it's products.
    M262 ZM 25/2.8 35/1.4 50/2 85/2

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by mwalker View Post
    Just curious if anyone shot the a900 with strobes yet? If so, do you have a favorite portrait lens? Please post some shots.
    Check out this old thread on dpr

    N

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    Senior Member Quentin_Bargate's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I've shot still-life for stock, but no portaits as yet with strobes. For example, the three wine shots in this thread

    I have shot available light portaits with the A900, and it does a fine job. I used the 85mm f/1.8 Zeiss for this shot and also for this test portrait shot

    Its a good studio camera.
    Quentin Bargate
    Director of Bargate Murray, Law Firm of the Year 2012 - 2017, ”leading individual”, Chambers HNW guide, 2017, Photographer

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I posted a couple of cz85 + A900 portraits on the "Fun pictures with Sonyb thread" using a strobe setup.

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    Subscriber Member mwalker's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I'm going to try some low key B&W 's this weekend..maybe.. if some equipment shows up... I'll post em if they're worth a sh*t.
    Mike

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  9. #9
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Hey guys... I just bought an a-900 today. Should be here saturday. My canon stuff is all but gone.

    I'm also lookin' at some MF stuff and just couldn't stomach the thought of shooting my 35mm stuff and having it look so inferior to the MF stuff. I see the a900 as kind of "MF Light". Love the image quality when you use it for what it was meant for.

    So... expect to see some studio, wedding, and commercial stuff from me very soon with the new digs.

    woohoo....

  10. #10
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Oh... and if you had a limited budget to start on... what would be the one lens you'd get?

    My feeling is the 24-70/2.8 (although not limited $$$)... but I'm mostly a prime shooter.

    Also... how is the lowly sony 50/1.4?

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Awesome man, hope you enjoy the camera. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions on the ins and outs of the system.

    I have the 24-70, and it is a great all purpose lens. For my stuff, that lens and the CZ85 are used for 90% of my shooting....although I've been getting the m42 bug lately, and that percentage may start to change. I've been using a CZ Jena 135, and I have bids on a Super Takumar 50 1.4 and a Schneider c-curtagon 35 2.8. Some of the m42 lenses are still unbeatable in IQ, and I think an addiction is forming!

    The Sony 50mm 1.4 is pretty good for the money, and is in the same ballpark as the equivalent Nikon and Canon. I use it as a walk around when going light. I really hope Sony brings an AF Zeiss 50mm someday, as I would buy that immediately. I'm considering the ZS 50mm......
    Last edited by douglasf13; 23rd April 2009 at 19:19.

  12. #12
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Awesome man, hope you enjoy the camera. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions on the ins and outs of the system.
    cool... much appreciated. I REALLY want to get some older mf lenses to try out. Which major systems can be adapted? M42, obviously...

    Is there a version of the classic 110/2 (hasselblad or contax) that can be adapted to the alpha?

    I see a similar lens addiction in my future

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    There are chipped m42 adapters available or Sony. I use one from James Lao, and it allows focus confirmation and SSS. There are unchipped adapters for Hassie Zeiss and Mamiya 645. For leica R, it takes a mount swap that is reversible. The options arent as good as Canon, but not too shabby.

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Douglas,

    How about a Minolta Rokkor 58 1.2 instead of the Tak?

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Id consider it, but the tak is cheaper and doesnt need a special conversion. Ill probably get the ZS 50 when im ready to spend more. The tak is just for fun

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shelby Lewis View Post
    Oh... and if you had a limited budget to start on... what would be the one lens you'd get?

    My feeling is the 24-70/2.8 (although not limited $$$)... but I'm mostly a prime shooter.

    Also... how is the lowly sony 50/1.4?
    Congratulations Shelby
    I hope you'll be very happy together!
    I think the 24-70 is pretty much unavoidable for general stuff, and it's a fine lens. I use that and the 135 f1.8 for most of my stuff these days,the 70-300 makes a good cheap(ish) option for when you need that bit of extra length (Edward thinks it's not up to the job, but I reckon it's the best of this particular breed I've used - reliably sharp at all focal lengths and apertures).

    The 50 f1.4 is a nice lens, I can't compare with the canon, but I think it has a better bokeh than the old Nikon version.

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Awesome man, hope you enjoy the camera. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions on the ins and outs of the system.

    I have the 24-70, and it is a great all purpose lens. For my stuff, that lens and the CZ85 are used for 90% of my shooting....although I've been getting the m42 bug lately, and that percentage may start to change. I've been using a CZ Jena 135, and I have bids on a Super Takumar 50 1.4 and a Schneider c-curtagon 35 2.8. Some of the m42 lenses are still unbeatable in IQ, and I think an addiction is forming!

    The Sony 50mm 1.4 is pretty good for the money, and is in the same ballpark as the equivalent Nikon and Canon. I use it as a walk around when going light. I really hope Sony brings an AF Zeiss 50mm someday, as I would buy that immediately. I'm considering the ZS 50mm......
    Have you ever used the Zeiss 50/1.4? The Contax version, the Contax N version, and the Zeiss ZF,ZS , etc., versions are all similar in character and have a commonality to them ... maybe the worst 50/1.4 I've ever used. Horrible wormy bokeh ... which is not a good characteristic for a f/1.4 lens.

    While it could be built more substantially, the Sony 50/1.4 is a WAY better lens for use at f/1.4 IMHO. BTW, the new AFS Nikon D is the best of the f/1.4 AF lot right now ... at least my version of it is.

    The newer Sigma 50/1.4 is also an interesting lens, and is getting rave reviews from users ... I had it for awhile in Nikon mount but sold it in favor of the new Nikon 50/1.4D. But I do have to admit that the Sigma was kind of unique in signature.

    If Zeiss produces a 50mm for the Alpha mount let's hope it is the 50/2 macro formula like the ZF I have (only in AF) ... in contrast to the Zeiss 50/1.4, it is perhaps the best 50mm I've used to date rivaling recent Leica 50s.

    Just because it has Zeiss stamped on it, doesn't always mean it's stellar. Be careful what you wish for ... you may get it

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shelby Lewis View Post
    cool... much appreciated. I REALLY want to get some older mf lenses to try out. Which major systems can be adapted? M42, obviously...

    Is there a version of the classic 110/2 (hasselblad or contax) that can be adapted to the alpha?

    I see a similar lens addiction in my future
    Yep, I'm currently using my vast collection of Hasselblad V lenses on the Alpha 900, and the in-camera IS makes a world of difference. A simple $79. Fodex adapter and off you go. The A900s big bright viewfinder does help in manually focusing, but there isn't any focus confirmation like with my Nikons. I wonder if there is a way to trick the camera and activate focus confirmation?

    Also, my hope is that Bright Screen will eventually make a diagonal split microprism manual focusing screen for the A900 ... I use one in my Nikon F6 and it is very easy to MF the ZF lenses with that camera ... just got one for the D700 which I have yet to install. The diagonal split is the best for use in both landscape and portrait modes IMO.

    I just posted a similar answer on a Hasselblad site and showed some quick shots done around the house using the Zeiss 110/2FE on the A900. Here they are for a quick reference. BTW, the close up of the Greek vase is @ ISO 1250 ... and there is very little noise For some reason, noise has become less of an issue at ISOs up to 1600 and I cannot figure out why
    The common element has been that all the clean shots were with the V lenses

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    Senior Member edwardkaraa's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Well, the Zeiss 50/1.4 are a controversial breed. Some love them, others really hate them. I happen to be in the first category. I have used the manual focus Contax for many years and it was my favourite lens. I agree that the bokeh is not always nice, but it also can be extremely nice, depending on the aperture used, the distance to subject, and subject distance to background. I personally prefer "harsh" bokeh for this kind of lens that I don't usually use for portraits. But I don't shoot weddings, so I understand your position.

    Btw, someone at FM forums did a (blind) comparison between several 50s including the Sigma, and many members picked the image with worst bokeh as being that from the Contax, while in fact it was the second best after Sigma if I remember well (some also didn't like the Sigma bokeh), so there are definitely preconceived ideas among users.

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Have you ever used the Zeiss 50/1.4? The Contax version, the Contax N version, and the Zeiss ZF,ZS , etc., versions are all similar in character and have a commonality to them ... maybe the worst 50/1.4 I've ever used. Horrible wormy bokeh ... which is not a good characteristic for a f/1.4 lens.

    While it could be built more substantially, the Sony 50/1.4 is a WAY better lens for use at f/1.4 IMHO. BTW, the new AFS Nikon D is the best of the f/1.4 AF lot right now ... at least my version of it is.

    The newer Sigma 50/1.4 is also an interesting lens, and is getting rave reviews from users ... I had it for awhile in Nikon mount but sold it in favor of the new Nikon 50/1.4D. But I do have to admit that the Sigma was kind of unique in signature.

    If Zeiss produces a 50mm for the Alpha mount let's hope it is the 50/2 macro formula like the ZF I have (only in AF) ... in contrast to the Zeiss 50/1.4, it is perhaps the best 50mm I've used to date rivaling recent Leica 50s.

    Just because it has Zeiss stamped on it, doesn't always mean it's stellar. Be careful what you wish for ... you may get it
    M262 ZM 25/2.8 35/1.4 50/2 85/2

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I hear you, fotografz. Ive seen and heard a lot of conflicting reports on the Zeiss 50. It seems its similar to the 24-70 in that sometimes bokeh is awful, sometimes it's fine. What Id really like is a Leica 50 f2. There is a guy selling a Leica 35 f2 on ebay right now that is fully converted to alpha with chip! If he brings a 50, I may have to bite. Id go for the 35, but ive been told the schneider c-curtagon is great on A900, so im looking for one of those. Ill hold off on the Zeiss for now

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Uh oh, I spoke too soon. There is a guy that is actually doing mount conversions for only 100 euro. I am now officially in trouble

    http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/forum_po...ersion-service

    I'm gonna go post this on the Leica forum...

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    I agree with Photografz, for portraiture I prefer smooth bokeh and the only Zeiss Z* lens which I find has smooth bokeh is the ZA Sonnar 135 1.8. I am not a Leica bokeh lover either even though I have the 100 Macro APO and 180 APO 2.8. The 80 Lux being the best of the Leica lenses for bokeh.

    The Minolta Rokkor 58 1.2 is a great combination of Leica like colors, and similar(not quite as sharp wide open) to Noct-Nikkor 58 1.2 combination of sharpness and smooth bokeh all for around ~$300's.
    I think it can be adapted to Sony alpha mount pretty easily right?
    The Siggy 50 looks to have nice creamy bokeh too and is cheaper than the Leica 50 Cron.
    Not sure though if Sigma fixed their AF focusing/focus shift problems with the lens at 10ft or less.
    As Edward mentioned, bokeh is a very personal preference.

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    Senior Member douglasf13's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by wayne_s View Post
    I agree with Photografz, for portraiture I prefer smooth bokeh and the only Zeiss Z* lens which I find has smooth bokeh is the ZA Sonnar 135 1.8. I am not a Leica bokeh lover either even though I have the 100 Macro APO and 180 APO 2.8. The 80 Lux being the best of the Leica lenses for bokeh.

    The Minolta Rokkor 58 1.2 is a great combination of Leica like colors, and similar(not quite as sharp wide open) to Noct-Nikkor 58 1.2 combination of sharpness and smooth bokeh all for around ~$300's.
    I think it can be adapted to Sony alpha mount pretty easily right?
    The Siggy 50 looks to have nice creamy bokeh too and is cheaper than the Leica 50 Cron.
    Not sure though if Sigma fixed their AF focusing/focus shift problems with the lens at 10ft or less.
    As Edward mentioned, bokeh is a very personal preference.
    I would argue that the ZA 85 actually has better bokeh than the ZA 135, it's just that the 135 is able to get a shallower depth of field, which can be misleading. When both of these lenses were released a few years ago, there were some comparison threads of the two floating around, and the ZA 135's bokeh was harsher in some instances. Regardless, bokeh is a matter of taste anyway. Some people hate the Sigma 50 because the bokeh is so smooth.

    The Rokkor 58 1.2 is sweet, but it takes some work and a remount to fit it. Also, prices have skyrocketed over the last year. I believe $500-$700 is what they're going for now.

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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Got the studio, got the strobes, can get the models so if you'd all like to chip in and send me a 900 and lenses I'll do the snaps
    david

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    Subscriber Member mwalker's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone use the A900 in the studio yet?

    Got the remaining studio equipment yesterday and a 135 1.8 on its way. I'll try some single light stuff this weekend. My models won't be as good as yours I'm sure...but I won't tell my wife that.
    Mike

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