Am I the only one baffled by NEX AF ??

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Cameras' started by nianys, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    Don't get me wrong I love my 5N's IQ and I haven't had so much fun with a camera in ages thanks to focus peaking.
    However, for those times when AF is needed (vacation snaps, for instance), I'm taken aback by how slow, bad and inaccurate it is, using the 18-55. Face recognition is a joke, the camera won't lock on any face that is 100% facing straight, and even so it won't detect my 4 yr old's face at all...
    The GX-1 's AF was super snappy, face detection well.. detected ! And pretty darn well.
    As my personal camera the NEX is made to pay with manual lenses, but I'd hate to need yet another body for those times when I want to hand the camera to someone else and let the AF do its magic..
    What do you guys think ??
     
  2. applemint

    applemint TalkEmount Veteran

    245
    Sep 20, 2012
    For me the slow AF (compared to m43) is the biggest flaw of the Nex cameras (hopefully improved in the 5R and 6?). People say lack of native lenses and bigger lens size (compared to m43) are the big negatives of the Nex but these are being addressed and for me were never a major issue as I use lots of legacy glass and am happy enough with the 16mm (which is not big obviously) and the 55-210 (which is big but much less so than a dslr lens of equivalent focal length and smaller/lighter than the m43 45-200 lens). Must admit I hardly ever use the 18-55 - never really got on with it.

    For my use (I don't have children or pets) the slow AF is not a major issue most of the time - only when I take photographs of people has it been a major issue. (Or flying aircraft - but all mirrorless cameras would probably have struggled with that!)

    I have never used face detect on my Nex though - did use it on my GF3 a few times but preferred it off (just personal chocie, it worked fine).

    Did you sell your GX 1? I enjoy having both options - a m43 camera for certain times and Nex for others, but it's not the most logical set-up financially. :) Will eventually probably keep one m43 camera + 1 lens (20mm) as my spare/ backup and Nex as my main camera. Or I might even ditch m43 all together at some stage if Nex AF improves and they come out with a fast 30mm (ish) pancake (Sigma is nice but not quite there - slightly too big, slightly too slow and not great for video).
     
  3. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    Well, the 35/1.8 OSS is expected in December and I will be getting it, no question.
    I did sell all my m4/3 stuff, including my beloved GX-1. I loved that cam, but as a portraitist the deeper inherent DOF was an issue from Day 1. NEX works much, much better for me. I'm getting the 6 when it comes out. However, if Fuji puts peaking in its future firmwares, I'm gonna have a very hard time not going X !
     
  4. dixeyk

    dixeyk TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 18, 2012
    Bellingham . WA
    Kevin
    That's why I kept my GX1. I found AF on the NEX to be "interesting" at best. It reminds me quite a lot of the AF on the E-P1 in fact. I see the NEX as a terrific MF machine like say an M8. I choose to believe my NEX does not actually AF at all, it makes for less frustration.
     
  5. WT21

    WT21 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    611
    Aug 7, 2011
    NEX has AF?

    I'm with Kevin. This is my third trip with a NEX and the ONLY reason is to try my two new-to-me CVs on it (that, and the cheap prices of 5ns).

    I'm asking on DPR why there are no native 1.4 NEX lenses, and all the NEX folks there are explaining (apologizing for Sony) that they aren't needed. Well, what's the difference between a 35/1.8 on NEX and a 25/1.4 on m43? The answer: 1/3 stop shallower DOF on the NEX, but workable controls and actual AF on the m43!

    Sony needs to do 1.4 lenses and they need to get their AF house in order!
     
  6. krugorg

    krugorg TalkEmount Regular

    34
    Aug 17, 2012
    I bought the NEX-7 and Sigma 19 for landscapes and had fairly low expectations on AF. It is working just fine for me, but obviously my subjects are not moving and I have my m4/3 kit for family shots.

    I also have the 35/1.8 OSS on order and, if it is good, I would start using it more for kid/family shots. Maybe I will experience frustration at that point.
     
  7. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    If butter were a mere number... But it's not. Beyond the strict mathematical equivalence the LOOK and quality of the OOF areas is much smoother on an APS-C sensor (NEX or any other old DSLR, not being pro Sony here). It all depends on what matters to one the most. For me actual usable MF (magnification is unusable by me for moving human beings) coupled with creamy backgrounds make me be with NEX for now. As I wrote before, if Fuji gets peaking, I'm going with the X mount. M4/3 is just too DOF limited for my use, which doesn't mean it's not perfectly suited for many others.
     
  8. WT21

    WT21 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    611
    Aug 7, 2011
    OOF butter is even creamier!!!

    Have you tried the AF on an X series? You might want to compare before moving, if you are struggling with NEX AF. The updated FW is supposed to help, though, so we'll have to see new comparisons.

    For me, I just re-bought a FF cam. I usually have one around the holidays anyway.
     
  9. krugorg

    krugorg TalkEmount Regular

    34
    Aug 17, 2012
    :eek: Did you grab a D600?
     
  10. WT21

    WT21 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    611
    Aug 7, 2011
    I wish! No, I got a used Canon 5D classic for $550! I'm going to keep it through Christmas, and take a look at the Canon vs. Nikon offering afterward. I am going to get at least 1 L lens, though, with the money I saved from NOT getting the D600! I'm thinking the 35L (35/1.4) or possibly the 135L. (135/2). If you're going to go big, why skimp! lol.

    edit: I did try one out in a local camera store, and it's a gorgeous machine. I just wasn't in the mood to relearn lenses and camera OS at this point in time.
     
  11. dixeyk

    dixeyk TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 18, 2012
    Bellingham . WA
    Kevin
    Nice grab.
     
  12. teefin1

    teefin1 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    618
    Sep 7, 2012
    So is the general consensus that the 5n is best only for those who use MF/ legacy glass exclusively? I'm still struggling between the 5n and A57 for the AF and price of native lenses (sigh)
     
  13. WT21

    WT21 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    611
    Aug 7, 2011
    If you dont mind the size, why not go with the a57? What are the reasons you are reluctant?
     
  14. Dioptrick

    Dioptrick TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 4, 2012
    New Zealand
    You can't have it all. If you need a DSLR get a DSLR. If you need a NEX, get a NEX, both will have good (and not so good) points. They are what they are...
     
  15. teefin1

    teefin1 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    618
    Sep 7, 2012
    I think only the size at this point. I was very eager to get the 5n and at such a good price but add in flunky AF, lens size and price the A57 is swaying me more and more. But.... the promise of the 6 with extra functionality and possibly better AF and EVF are holding me back. I can only afford one system really, not sure the NEX is better value.
     
  16. Dioptrick

    Dioptrick TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 4, 2012
    New Zealand
    Wait a few more months until user reviews of the NEX6 starts coming in. The decision might be easier and clearer for you then... :)
     
  17. teefin1

    teefin1 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    618
    Sep 7, 2012
    I think that is an option, keep it for a few months without investing too much in native lenses, if it doesn't suit I can buy an a57 and keep the 5n as a compact (with smaller lens obviously!) :confused:
     
  18. WT21

    WT21 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    611
    Aug 7, 2011
    Do you own either yet?

    If not, maybe Kevin still has his c3 he can sell you to test it out :)
     
  19. dixeyk

    dixeyk TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 18, 2012
    Bellingham . WA
    Kevin
    Just sold it last Friday. If AF is a big factor for you the 5n (and C3 for that matter) aren't your best bet. Don't get we wrong, I loved my C3 (and the 5n is even better for me) but I use the NEX exclusively for shooting with MF lenses. If AF were a priority I would either wait and see what the reviews say about AF speed on the new models or look elsewhere.
     
  20. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    I just read a blog stating the NEX is probably the best camera for learning photography. I totally agree, which is probably not how Sony intially intended it ! I wouldn't say it's not usable with AF, it would just be pretty frustrating in that regard. For really snappy AF the best cameras seem to be the Panny m4/3 models, or Oly E-M5.
    If the NEX is so good at learning the very foundations of the craft, it's because of its limited controls and quirky user interface. So the simpler, the better. It has no intermediate ISO to chose from and Auto ISO with legacy lenses will put exposure all over the place, so you're better of just selecting an ISO value and shooting all Manual. It works, it's great, it makes us all better photographers.
    For moving subjects, m4/3 is a way more reliable proposition.