Sony A3000 or DSLR ? Looking for used market no more than $250

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by shaolin95, Jan 5, 2016.

  1. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    So my bro cannot deal with the smaller sizes of Mirrorless but wants to upgrade from his bridge Canon SX50 HS so I was hoping to get some ideas on options at less than $250 in DSLR body.

  2. Nexnut

    Nexnut TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Anything special he wants to do with that camera?
  3. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    The idea of getting an e-mount sounds great, more so since you have lenses to share with him as he starts with Sony ;)
  4. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    He is Puerto Rico and I am in Utah so not much sharing possible sadly :D
    Basically he wants more BOKEH and better ISO two things he is not getting with the tiny sensor on his Canon lol But he is planning to keep his SX50 for long range so my idea was getting him a Nex-6 used and something like a canon 50mm 1.4 to start but since the size is going to be an issue maybe I thought about the A3000. Of course I want to push for mirrorless personally if possible.
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  5. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    The A3000 is an interesting product. It has a respectable sensor, cased in a lackluster feature poor DSLR sized body that can be had for under $250.00.

    For some who want a bare bones body, this can be a great option. However, if this is going to be your primary camera, the lackluster feature list can be disappointing.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Well he is coming from an SX50 as his only camera so not sure how much he will miss any options but what are you referring to precisely? I really wanted him to get the NEX-6 but oh well.
  7. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    As I myself "upgraded" from a mega-zoom like the SX50 - in my case the Sony HX100V - to an A3000 back in 2013, perhaps I can offer some thoughts. I did a quick check of SX50 specs in order to compare it to the experience I had with the HX100V and then A3000.

    The SX50, like the HX100V, being a lower-cost mega-zoom bridge camera, is equipped with a 200K dot viewfinder, about the same as that on the A3000, so your brother is not likely to feel let down by the viewfinder. Many here, used to the higher density EVFs of the NEX-7, -6, and A6000, not to mention the A7-series, rightly view such a viewfinder as inferior. But if you've never used better, you may not miss the better resolution.

    The SX50 apparently has a 460K dot LCD monitor that tilts (Canon's "vari-angle"). My Sony HX100V also had a tilting higher-resolution (920K dot) LCD panel, which was noticeably better than the fixed 230K dot one on the back of the A3000. Indeed, this was perhaps the greatest weakness of the A3000. Your brother may find the LCD to be a step backward. However, I'm not sure the difference b/w 460K and 230K will be as noticeable as that b/w 230K and 920K. The lack of tilt may be limiting in strong daylight outdoors though. That was about the only time I would revert to using the low-res EVF on the A3000 rather than the LCD. If bright light shooting with a tilting LCD is critical, that would be one notable consideration.

    In terms of just about everything else, except for autofocus speed and continuous shooting frame-rate, the A3000 was a major improvement on the megazoom HX100V in my experience. And the larger body and grip (versus the other NEX and Axxxx models) made it easy to switch from the similar-sized and shaped HX100V. The image quality from the A3000's APS-C 20.1MP sensor was a huge improvement on that from the HX100V's (and presumably also the SX50's) 1/2.3" 16MP sensor. In fact, I still don't see much improvement IQ wise from my newer A6000 over the A3000. In terms of functionality, the A6000 surely beats the A3000, but for a "starter" large-sensor interchangeable lens camera, the A3000 is, in my humble opinion, a great bargain. Especially since A3000 bodies can now be easily had for under US$200....
    See SONY A3000 DIGITAL CAMERA BODY {20.1 M/P} - KEH Camera

    That's my two-cents worth. I hope it helps.
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  8. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Thanks for sharing that. It makes sense indeed. I will still ask him to try locating an A6000 or similar to play with it at the store and see if handling is not bad for him before moving forward.
  9. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    I would advise him to go DSLR since he doesn't care about size. Unless he wants to get into manual legacy lenses, the a3000 body may be cheap, but e-mount lenses are not. Especially those that will give the bokeh he is looking for.
    • Agree Agree x 4
  10. WoodWorks

    WoodWorks Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 12, 2012
    Ashland, OR, USA
    I agree with Gary. Some recent vintage Rebel would be the best bang for the buck, IMO.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. SpaceManSpiff

    SpaceManSpiff TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Dec 13, 2013
    Tucson, AZ
    About a year ago, my mom upgraded from a Canon SX40 to an a3000.

    The image quality is nice and pretty darn impressive considering the price of the camera (big improvement from the SX40), AF is pretty quick, the camera is light and comfortable to hold. But sony took a lot of shortcuts when they made their mirror less camera look like a DSLR.
    Despite being happy with the IQ, she just bought an a6000 and is a happier snapper.
    Both the EVF and LCD are relatively low-res --she had a difficult time seeing if a captured image was in focus.

    The camera's design limits direct adjustments, IMHO.
    She tended to leave the a3000 in P and not make many adjustments.
    There is no front control dial, only the spinny dial in the back.
    It doesn't have a Fn button --making changes to WB, metering, AF, etc. required menu diving until I realized I could give her access to 6 functions by assigning it to the ISO button...better than menu diving yes, but then she had to remember to press the ISO button to gain access to the WB....
    (the flash doesn't bounce, you have to push a button to switch between LCD and EVF, no tilt screen, the frame around the EVF is hard plastic).

    the image quality is there, but accessing it is not easy in the a3000.

    I agree with Gary's post above.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. WNG

    WNG TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2014
    Arrid Zone-A, USA
    I also agree with Gary, hard to beat the bang for the buck in the used market for a Canon APS-C DSLR. And their super cheap but remarkably good 50mm f/1.8 will give him the speed and bokeh he's after.
    Especially if he doesn't care about manual-focus legacy lenses and not looking to get into it seriously.
    Otherwise, I'd recommend searching aggressively for a used a6000 as you concluded. As long he's willing to pay for AF native lenses.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    Any specific Canon models you think are good? I will have to check if he is ok with OVF as we were talking about how much he likes the EVF and seeing the changes there.
  14. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    In that case, and for what everbody else said, I'd also recommend go with a DSLR :)
  15. HabsFan

    HabsFan TalkEmount Veteran

    Apr 10, 2013
    Ontario, CAN
    If he likes EVF, you could try a used Sony A33/A35/A55/A57/A58. Those are all pretty solid cameras. I had an A35 and I only got rid of it because I wanted something a big smaller. I'd probably go for the A57 as seems to have the best combination of build/image quality/features. I had the A35 which had a fixed screen which was a bit of an issue for low angle shots. Here is an old posting for an a57 with 3 Sony lenses for 325. FS: Sony A57 with 3 lenses $325 only. Cheap Cheap

    That's dirt cheap! 50mm lens is pretty decent and the kit lens is OK too. A mount gear is much cheaper these days with little interest in it
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  16. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    I second the a57. Great AF. Nice body. Lightweight.
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  17. GabrielPhoto

    GabrielPhoto TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Jul 3, 2013
    That combo seems like a good deal since you get 3 lenses PLUS it has EVF and I just saw some reviews which makes it look like a real nice camera for sure. :)
  18. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Well, if he wants larger form factor, EVF and is on a certain budget, that's going to narrow the choices considerably.
    I'll chime in with others for some form of Canon "Rebel" because they're so inexpensive and plentiful. IQ with the 18MP models is honestly as much as most folks will ever need (even enthusiasts like me...) And lenses are pretty cheap if he wants to expand. I'd look for a T#i (the highest # that still fits the budget).
  19. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    One thing to watch for if going the Canikon DSLR route is that the LCD screen on the lower end Canon Rebels (T3, T5), and even the Nikon D3000 series, are fixed like that on the A3000 and are not much higher resolution than that of the A3000 in most cases. Of course, as DSLRs will have optical viewfinders, resolution of the viewfinder (as opposed to the screen) will be a non-issue.

    If your brother doesn't go the A3000/NEX-6/A6000 route, I think the idea mentioned above re: a used Sony A57 or even an A58, is not a bad one. Any A-mount lenses he would get and use would be easily adapted to E-mount (like an A7-series upgrade unit) in the future. Of course, with the rate of progress in adapters, I suppose the same can be said for Canon and even Nikon lenses now.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2016
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