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Nex-6 af

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Cameras' started by Merlin_AZ, Mar 23, 2013.

  1. Merlin_AZ

    Merlin_AZ New to TalkEmount

    9
    Oct 14, 2012
    I'm considering an NEX-6 for travel shots because of its small size and versatility.
    The kit lens looks fine for "walkaround" shots from what I've read.

    I'm also looking for a lens for lower light indoor shots that I can also use for rare concert shots.
    Will the pending 20/2.8 work well? The reason I ask is that my daughter will be in the 3rd row for a once-in-a-lifetime concert she has tix for.
    I've read that the live-view AF is too slow.
    Is the AF using the EVF fast enough for indoor/lower light shots with a 2.8 lens?

    Thanks for any recommendations.
     
  2. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave
    That should work fine. The weakest link in the NEX is the lowlight AF. Switching into manual focus for an event like that might result in better shots.

    I personally have the Sony 16mm 2.8 and just ordered the Sigma 19mm 2.8. My biggest concern is the range, but being on the 3rd row you should be close enough.

    Also, security at concerts can be a bit touchy as far as bringing in cameras. Might want to check into this ahead of time.
     
  3. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Low-light AF performance is the biggest weakness of the NEX-6 as far as I'm concerned. It switches from the AF spot to a large area so that you don't know what it's actually focussing on. In those cases I revert to manual focussing or to my Panasonic GH2 which doesn't have these kind of problems.
     
  4. Merlin_AZ

    Merlin_AZ New to TalkEmount

    9
    Oct 14, 2012
    Thanks for the replies.
    Now I'm even more concerned.
    So you guys are saying that low light shots, even using the EVF without live view, are an issue?
    I could always consider the Canon SL1, but I didn't want to go that route--NEX is still my only mirrorless consideration at this point.
    I guess I could see how the 7N performs, but it will probably be out of my price range. :(
     
  5. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Switching to MF is always an option, and in low light situations, where the background usually doesn't have extremely high contrast (which ruined some shots for me recently as the peaking simply highlighted everything ...) it should work light a charm.
     
  6. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Yes. It's the main reason why I haven't given up my µ4/3 set yet.
     
  7. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    Bit of a misconception here- the EVF is live view just like the LCD, it's just higher resolution. So EVF or LCD the focus issues are the same.

    You need Deadbear to chime in here as he shoots a lot of low light concert shots. He could give you a good idea of how to proceed. :)
     
  8. Merlin_AZ

    Merlin_AZ New to TalkEmount

    9
    Oct 14, 2012
    /me smacks side of head.
    Thanks guys for explaining.
     
  9. I think that there is a lot off unnecessary negativeness about the Nex AF. I know that there are dslr's and m43 which have better af but those system have their own limitations. I rarely use the full automatic af. My advice is is not to leave your nex in full automatic mode and start complaining, compare it with anotherbrand or system or call it a problem. In this case the photographer and his skills are the limitating factor, not the nex camera.

    Try out the different focus methods on your nex and get familiar with this so you can switch to the suitability method for the situation your in.

    I think a nex 6 (or other nex) is perfectly capable for focussing in low light if you take the effort getting familiar with it. In the described situation i would probably switch to single point af. Focus on a smaller object, face or whatever. If that doesn't work I'd swith to manual focus. One relief extra is that the manual focus of the NEX is to one of the best (maybe the best) on mirror less cameras.
     
  10. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Getting familiar with it, as I have done, is no solution for an AF system that doesn't work in a moderately lit room when you're trying to take family snapshots with a flash, a situation not too uncommon for many camera owners.

    The single point AF is the first thing to give up when the light gets dimmer, the NEX-6 starts to show a large green area instead, indicating it focussed on whatever within that green box. The red AF "assist" light doesn't do enough to prevent this and reverting to MF is necessary in those cases. And I'll grant you that, manual focussing on a NEX-6 is a breeze.

    As you may have noticed, I strongly resent the notion that the NEX has sufficient AF performance and that we NEX users shouldn't moan about it. I will keep stating that the NEX AF is inferior to the AF systems of the µ4/3 cameras. In the same circumstances I described my Panasonic GH2 autofocusses happily with its smallest AF spot (much smaller than the NEX's) and that's the main reason I'm not going all-out for the NEX system, despite my appreciation for the results I get from it.

    In my opinion Sony just needs to implement state-of-the-art AF performance in their NEX line-up, period.
     
  11. I still think that a lot more can be gained from the nex system if you take the time getting familiar with it. I come from Nikon Fx and thought initially the same way. After some time i found out that with a little tweaking and getting to know the different focussing methods that it is capable of a lot more. Not up to the level i was used to but not so negative as described in this topic. If you want it straight out of the box to choose for you the right method and make no errors this is saying in my opinion more about photography skills than about the nex system. That is not period...
     
  12. That is what i mean. This is full automatic af... Another focussing method which yor nex is capable of could do the trick here.


    The AF of your nex can do the same as your Panasonic if adjusted the settings correctly. I'm not saying that the Sony will do better but with the correct settings it wil not have the problem (at least a lot less) that you have described.

    My method:

    Method: (with my Nex7, i assume this is similar in the Nex 6)

    1 Menu
    2 AF Area
    3 Flexible spot (not the menu option Centre)
    4 put the flexible spot in the centre or wherever you like

    (By choosing “flexible spot” the af focus area is at it’s smallest)

    4 Focus on subject (area with high contrast)
    5 keep focus button half-way to keep this focus and do the make the picture (by pushing it further down) when you like it. It will use the focus that you had memorized by keeping the button halfway down.
     
  13. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    I'm using flexible spot, not multi. I wasn't aware that you have to stay in the AF point moving mode to force the camera to use spot focussing when using the AF assist light. Thanks for the hint, helps a lot. I just re-read the manual to see if I missed something, but nothing there, only stating that using the assist light forces the camera to show the total focussing area with a promise that the camera will emphasize the centre on determining optimum focus.

    Still I think that Sony needs to improve their AF performance, I can't see a principal reason why it should be worse than that of µ4/3 cameras.
     
  14. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    Austria
    Bigger sensor = smaller depth of field. And in most cases less glass to shift. Most (all?) mirrorless cameras are worse in AF speed because of these reasons than m4/3 cameras.
     
  15. JohnS

    JohnS New to TalkEmount

    2
    Mar 24, 2013
    Hi - my first post on tallknex.com.
    Re focussing - I have noticed that with my NEX 6 (and also with my RX100) AF is very considerably quicker if you turn OFF the AF assist light.
    With the light on I was initially disappointed with the hybrid focusing on the NEX 6, but find it quite adequate (if not as quick as my DSLR) with the light turned off.
    I have posed the question on why this might be on the popular www.dpreview NEX forum and another Sony forum, but no one has been able to come up with an answer yet.
    It is an important issue however as I am considering replacing my A77 kit with the new NEX 7 when it comes out - plus high performance standard zoom - but I use this for some professional work and cannot be let down by slow AF.
    Any ideas?
    Thanks
    John S
     
  16. Frank Teurlings

    Frank Teurlings TalkEmount Regular

    182
    Dec 10, 2012
    Netherlands
  17. Deadbear77

    Deadbear77 TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Sep 14, 2012
    Northeast Ohio
    Kevin
    I do shoot a lot of low light, I also shoot manual focus. The best way to tackle this is practice. I try to use the same lens every time for low light shots when possible. I've taken thousands of shots with the Rokkor 1.4 and I must say, shutter speed is your friend. Shoot RAW in black and white... its a little better contrast witch makes peaking work well. It's better to under expose and get a clear shot then have your shutter speed set to low and get blur. It's very easy to adjust exposure in LR4. Another plus of shooting raw is that you will still have the color image even if you shoot black and white.


    Sent from my iPad using My fingers
     
  18. Hello John,

    Welcome on this friendly forum! I absolutely agree with this. It also saves a lot of energy and makes you less visible taking photos in the dark.

    I agree with you and Addieleman that Sony could do better although it's workable with the right settings and practice (like what deadbear said) . Especially because the sony sensors are used in some models by other brands like Nikon. Their Af performance is much better with the same Sony sensors.

    That is new to me and sounds like a very good tip. I never knew that shooting in b&w would give you a coloured raw file.
     
  19. Deadbear77

    Deadbear77 TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Sep 14, 2012
    Northeast Ohio
    Kevin
    Yes if you use the jpg plus raw option you can shoot black and white and also save the color.
     
  20. JohnS

    JohnS New to TalkEmount

    2
    Mar 24, 2013
    Focusing is quicker with assist light turned off

    I have noticed with my NEX 6 that the focusing is far quicker when the assist light is turned off. In theory this should help for some reason it does the reverse resulting in lots of 'big green boxes'. Turn the light off and focus snaps in very much quicker. This also works with the RX100.