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New Sony Flagship A1 Announced

Thad E Ginathom

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Something else, I've noted: Purchasing an A1 may mean one has to upgrade lenses. Apparently, some older Sony lenses and most third-party lenses cannot make full use of the camera's 30 fps burst ability.
fps burst ability is about as irrelevant to me as the ultimate "burst ability:" it does video. Outside of sports/action photographers, maybe some wildlife stuff, how important is it as a buying factor? Or have I just named the entire market, apart from enthusiasts with some wealth, for this camera?

I also wonder if the third-party lens restriction is a matter of ability or of imposition.
 

bdbits

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Wildlife photographers also, especially birders. And some people like it for their kids. I know, right?

I've seen the lens thing discussed elsewhere. It seems no vendor has ever said, perhaps due to non-disclosure purposes. Emount is 'open' but you have to sign an agreement with Sony to get the specs, from what I understand, so there could be some restrictions.
 
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fps burst ability is about as irrelevant to me as the ultimate "burst ability:" it does video. Outside of sports/action photographers, maybe some wildlife stuff, how important is it as a buying factor? Or have I just named the entire market, apart from enthusiasts with some wealth, for this camera?

I also wonder if the third-party lens restriction is a matter of ability or of imposition.
I'm interested in the A1 and I don't do sports/action/wildlife. But I like to do street photography (not now, but when people will come back to the streets) and I know that I get a lot more keepers with an A9 (borrowed) in that scenario: the AF acquisition was so fast that you can literally point the camera at something/someone and shoot immediately. The A7R4 still shows a noticeable and sometimes annoying lag before focus is acquired, the A9's AF felt instantaneous. I guess the A1 is even better than the A9 in this respect.
 

somnambulist_squirrel

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I shoot alpine skiing, and my kids’ soccer and basketball games regularly. While 30fps could potentially be useful, I found the 11fps a6xxx series to be fast enough to capture World Cup skiers at GS speeds (though the AF on the a6000 and 6300 didn’t quite keep up for every shot, I expect the 6600 or A9 certainly would). Maybe if I was shooting downhill and SG events I’d feel differently, but I think that speed has to really matter only to professional sports and wildlife shooters, and birders of significant means. I can’t imagine sifting through the volume of shots I’d get with that frame rate. I expect I’d use it at the slower, uncompressed frame rates anyway. That said, I’d love to have this body, but even if I were in some alternate universe where I could afford it, I’d have a hard time deciding whether to go with the A1 or the new Fuji medium format. Given my bias toward landscapes, that’d probably serve me better. But golly, the A1 is drool-worthy.

Next fall if FIS racing returns to Killington, maybe I’ll rent one!
 
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I can’t imagine sifting through the volume of shots I’d get with that frame rate.
You have a point there. I borrowed an A9 once on a photo fair and I came home with exactly 2000 shots from 1.5 hours of shooting. Admittedly, I basically shot everything that was moving, but still. And it was indeed quite the job to cull the images, only to end up with a few that didn't end up in the trash right away.
 

Richard Crowe

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I'm interested in the A1 and I don't do sports/action/wildlife. But I like to do street photography (not now, but when people will come back to the streets) and I know that I get a lot more keepers with an A9 (borrowed) in that scenario: the AF acquisition was so fast that you can literally point the camera at something/someone and shoot immediately. The A7R4 still shows a noticeable and sometimes annoying lag before focus is acquired, the A9's AF felt instantaneous. I guess the A1 is even better than the A9 in this respect.
I am wondering if this is a factor of the camera or a factor of the focus speed of the lens. Additionally, I understand that some Sony cameras need to use a relatively large aperture to get the fastest focus speed and will slow down at smaller apertures like f/11...

I have not used any variation of the A9 camera but, from what I have read the focus speeds of the A9 is only "slightly" faster than the A7iii... However the writers never quantify what they mean by "slightly" and how it would impact shooting of fast moving subjects.

The A6600 is sometimes described as a "Mini A9" but, I have not found any info on comparative AF speeds - JUST burst speeds....
 
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I am wondering if this is a factor of the camera or a factor of the focus speed of the lens. Additionally, I understand that some Sony cameras need to use a relatively large aperture to get the fastest focus speed and will slow down at smaller apertures like f/11...

I have not used any variation of the A9 camera but, from what I have read the focus speeds of the A9 is only "slightly" faster than the A7iii... However the writers never quantify what they mean by "slightly" and how it would impact shooting of fast moving subjects.

The A6600 is sometimes described as a "Mini A9" but, I have not found any info on comparative AF speeds - JUST burst speeds....
My biggest problem with autofocus has always been initial acquisition time to lock focus for the first shot, not the ability to keep up while shooting bursts. The A7Rm2 was way too slow in that respect to do run-and-gun shooting on the streets; the A7m3 was better but still too slow, the A7Rm4 is again better and I've got a number of keepers but also lost out because of missed focus. However, the A9 acquires focus almost instantaneously and I expect the A1 to be at the same level at least.
 

fractal

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Watched a few videos on this - One comparing ISO with the A7R4. A1 exhibited amazing high ISO performance for a high res sensor.
These were JPEG files so will be interesting when the RAW files are allowed to be shown.

Still out of my league but the nerd in me appreciates it - plus, I'm sure we'll see this new stacked sensor tech make it's way down the line.
 

davect01

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My biggest problem with autofocus has always been initial acquisition time to lock focus for the first shot, not the ability to keep up while shooting bursts. The A7Rm2 was way too slow in that respect to do run-and-gun shooting on the streets; the A7m3 was better but still too slow, the A7Rm4 is again better and I've got a number of keepers but also lost out because of missed focus. However, the A9 acquires focus almost instantaneously and I expect the A1 to be at the same level at least.
Keeping Auto Focus was the biggest issue with my previous A6000. High burst speeds don't matter much if your pictures are out of focus.

My current camera, the A6400 has yet to let me down when burst shooting.

The biggest part that moves this forward in the A1 is the sensor and card that keeps you from hitting the buffer.
 

sven karma

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fps burst ability is about as irrelevant to me as the ultimate "burst ability:" it does video. Outside of sports/action photographers, maybe some wildlife stuff, how important is it as a buying factor? Or have I just named the entire market, apart from enthusiasts with some wealth, for this camera?

I also wonder if the third-party lens restriction is a matter of ability or of imposition.
I can imagine that high burst fps and super-zippy AF would be catnip to a wedding photographer and they must be quite a chunk of the 'cost no object' market.
 

Ziggy99

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I studied 7 vids covering the Bird Eye AF performance of the A1 and found two cases where it may do better than an A9 set to CAF Zone or Small Spot:

1. Static bird shot from a 3/4 rear point (an over the shoulder shot where the eye is visible).
2. Small static bird that stays put. (The A9, A7R III & A7R IV are all unreliable here, sometimes flatly failing to lock).

1 is of no significant value to me as it rarely makes for an engaging image.
2 is of interest but I'd prefer Sony fixed their AF algorithms.

There's more testing to be done and studied so these are preliminary conclusions.

The use case where it would be valuable is in panning shots of fairly close BIF where you want focus on the eye and not the wing tip.

I deal with that by setting the aperture to f8 or smaller so that there's acceptable sharpness in the eye.

I've seen lots of posts trumpeting the BIF eye AF performance in images that are easily obtained without it.
 
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Intriguing announcement introducing among others a 2.36 Mdot LCD screen on the A7R3 and A7R4. Sony must have heard the critique about the pedestrian LCD screen on their cameras. The A1 still has a 1.44 Mdot LCD; if I'm going for the A1, I'll certainly wait for the upgrade with the 2.36 Mdots LCD. This looks like a weird upgrade path, almost seems a panic attack.
 

unlo

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Intriguing announcement introducing among others a 2.36 Mdot LCD screen on the A7R3 and A7R4. Sony must have heard the critique about the pedestrian LCD screen on their cameras. The A1 still has a 1.44 Mdot LCD; if I'm going for the A1, I'll certainly wait for the upgrade with the 2.36 Mdots LCD. This looks like a weird upgrade path, almost seems a panic attack.
Beat me to it.. I watched the video twice trying to determine if sony released a week late April Fools
 

Biro

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Oct 21, 2012
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I wonder if the recent $2,999 sale on the A7rIV was a move to blow out the stock of cameras with the old LCD. If the next sale - even with the lower-res panel - comes down to $2,500, Sony will have my money.
 

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