Upgrade from F3 to NEX 6 ... already?

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Cameras' started by Jazzer, Nov 25, 2012.

  1. Jazzer

    Jazzer TalkEmount Veteran

    344
    Nov 6, 2012
    New York
    Larry
    I have a NEX F3 that I purchased with the EVF and 18-55 kit lens and have only had for a few weeks -- not enough time to even get to know the camera -- but still I am considering selling it and buying a NEX 6. The primary reasons are the built in EVF, smaller kit lens and better controls (dials, etc.) on the 6. Although I have some basic technical knowledge of photography I don't have much practical experience applying that knowledge (although like many I have taken photos without any knowledge for years ;)), so I consider myself very much a beginner. In other words, I have a ton to learn. Money is not the deciding factor here, but I purchased the F3 and EVF at a good price so to buy a 6 would represent a substantial increase over what I paid (I mention this only because if I had purchased the F3 and EVF at regular retail prices, the cost would have been almost as much as the 6).

    Any thoughts from those of you who have some experience as to whether it makes any sense to upgrade or if I might be better off saving the money for now, working with the F3 and kit lens for a while and upgrading down the road? Or perhaps there is something else that would be better to use while learning? I know the gear is much less important than the photographer and the F3 is a good camera, so I don't have any delusions that my photos will be miraculously better with another camera. I'm just trying to figure out what makes most sense for me.
     
  2. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    I had a 5N before, and have had my 6 for 4 weeks now.
    One main difference between the two is size. The N was a really tiny body, and I believe the F3 is close to that ?
    The 6 is definitely chunkier, it hits the perfect size/weight ratio IMHO.
    Let's get the AF question out of the way right now. I didn't see any majo improvement with the new "hybrid" AF, as far as I'm concerned it still slow and lousy, to the point I don't even bother with it (I had never used MF prior to picking up my 5N, but went 100% ever since, part because AF is so bad, part because MF with Peaking is so awesome). So if an AF "upgrade" is a main motive for you, I don't think it's really worth it.
    OTOH, if you would like more external controls, allowing improved UI, along with faster operation, yes, the 6 is worth it. The standard hotshoe is very useful to me, but the built-in flash is also great in bounce mode. Built-in EVF is useful at times, and the auto switch between LCD and EVF is instant (nice).
    Play is faster, deletion is faster, menu navigation is faster.
    Haven't play with the WIFI or apps, I guess I'm not a very gimmick oriented photographer, lol.
    To me the 6 with the secondary dial on top is golden, I can shoot in S mode, select aperture directly on my vintage lenses, and get direct exposure control by altering shutter speed with the (very well dampened) secondary dial, right under my thumb, and get instant preview without having to deal with the annoying exposure compensation scheme (button press + thumb wheel fidgeting).
    The 6 item menu accessible via the Fn button lets me switch from color to monochrome fast and easy, and change a couple of other important settings as well.
    I ditched the new 16-50, it was lovely for size, but IQ was meh and I selling it brought the price of my 6 body very nicely.
    4 weeks later I love the camera and wouldn't change it for anything else. I understand the story might be a bit different for someone wanting more automation from his cam, but as manual everything it is seamless, fits well in the hand, and produces gorgeous pictures now that I have set it the way I want.
    I do believe it's a camera that is very capable as long as one does the homework a bit, for more casual shooters wanting good results without too much thought involved, a GX-1 might be a better option.
     
  3. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    How much work do you do off a tripod? I find the articulating EVF a great boon to tripod work as I can get very low to the ground when needed and not need to lay on the ground to see through it. Yes, the LCD swivels. Yes, the LCD is nearly unusable in certain light making the EVF essential.

    If you shoot eye level or waist level most of the time an articulating EVF is less important to you. Dials/buttons/etc. are a very individual thing, what works for me might be nearly useless for you. Claire is well known (and very vocal ;) ) in her dislike for NEX AF, but it works fine for me. Then again I don't spend much time shooting active 4-year-old girls either.

    My point is this- we can't tell you what will work best for you. You have to decide 1) what you want to shoot most often, 2) how you want to shoot it, 3) and what controls are needed for #1&2.

    Once you can answer those questions then we, as a community of NEX users, can better help you via our experience.

    How's that for a non-answer? :)
     
  4. SRHEdD

    SRHEdD TalkEmount Veteran

    396
    Nov 25, 2012
    Viera, Florida, USA
    Steve
    Just jumped over from the m4/3 group.

    I went from a D7000 to OM-D to the NEX-6. After discovering that the NEX-6 needs +2/3 to look like the OM-D, I have started to warm up to it. I miss the grip from the OM-D, but I got a smaller camera to BE a smaller camera. To think that I can take this NEX-6 with me and reasonably expect the same results I got from my D7000 is wonderful. I may need to make some adjustments in my work flow, but the NEX-6 is giving my jpegs that rival the Oly pop with the D7000 detail. That's a pretty good scenario in my book. Lenses are scarce, but with the 16-50 and 55-210, I have most everything I need while I wait for the NEX system to develop more fully. More of a concern is a lack of a good flash. For now, my Metz is on manual, but I'd like a fully communicating Sony/Metz flash at some point. The 16-50 not taking a reasonable lens hood is a weird quirk as well. I'll probably grab a 18-55 to use as a traveling lens with its hood and manual zoom, keeping the power zoom 16-50 in the bag. Hate to give up that 24mm wide equivalent though. Focus isn't as blindingly fast as the OM-D, but is fine for my sons's football games. So far, the NEX-6 is a great little camera. I think a slim UV (Heliopan) on the 16-50 and a leather half-case to add some bulk to the grip will make it better though.
     
  5. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    LOL. I know many fine folks are at peace with NEX's af, so take my contempt for it with a grain of salt. But I'd rather have users be warned rather than disappointed and feeling robbed.. That's kind of how I felt when I first tried my N in AF mode. I went like "Huh ? Seriously ?" I'm sure Sony WILL come up with good, fast AF, it's just not really there yet...
     
  6. Bimjo

    Bimjo Super Moderator

    Oct 28, 2011
    Washington State
    Jim
    Well, I don't know if I'm at peace with it, but I can live with. ;) I agree, forewarned is forearmed re: NEX platform AF abilities. Sad, but true. :)
     
  7. Jazzer

    Jazzer TalkEmount Veteran

    344
    Nov 6, 2012
    New York
    Larry
    Thank you. Claire, Re: size of the F3, it is actually similar to the NEX 6. Because it has a built in flash, they made it a little larger. I like the size of it, but actually prefer the 5N grip slightly. Because the body of the 5N is thinner, the grip is slightly deeper, but the F3 grip is close and works well for me. I like the articulating EVF and I understand it is essentially the same as that on the 6 and 7, except that adds a little more to the size, making the F3 with the EVF probably a little larger than the NEX 6.

    I guess because I'm not really used to the AF on other cameras and don't shoot a lot of fast moving objects/people frequently, that's not really an issue for me. I guess you don't miss what you don't have. I do, however, probably fall more into the casual shooter category at this point. I suppose I could try a Panasonic m4/3, but I was lured by the better high ISO of the Sony sensor as I tend to shoot night shots and indoors without flash reasonably frequently. The Panasonic G3, which has a built in EVF is at a great price at the moment (although a year old at this point) and something I have given a lot of thought to. As a relative beginner, I have been hesitant to jump in and spend a lot of money on a top of the line camera and a bunch of lenses as I don't want to find myself having to sell everything and start again in a few months when I figure out all of the mistakes I made :).

    Jim, you actually did sort of give me an answer. Since I am still deciding about what I want to shoot most often and what controls I need, perhaps it makes sense to just stick with what I have until I know a little more about my habits and needs.
     
  8. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    France
    That's probably very wise. And by keeping a NEX you're also getting to stay with the most gracious folks on any photo forum anywhere. That's a pretty big bonus in my book ;)
     
  9. Jazzer

    Jazzer TalkEmount Veteran

    344
    Nov 6, 2012
    New York
    Larry
    So true ;)
     
  10. Dioptrick

    Dioptrick TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 4, 2012
    New Zealand
    Give "Freddytto" a PM... he has first hand experience on both bodies and has made the upgrade...
     
  11. freddytto

    freddytto TalkEmount All-Pro

    Dec 2, 2011
    Puebla, Mexico
    I'm here friend.
     
  12. teefin1

    teefin1 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    618
    Sep 7, 2012
    That's such a nice thing to say.
     
  13. freddytto

    freddytto TalkEmount All-Pro

    Dec 2, 2011
    Puebla, Mexico


    Well I was and I am personally disappointed nexF3 it, (had the nex5n) for many obvious reasons, I will mention here.

    1.-ISO 200 minimum.
    2.-Can 't use Remote Control / wireless flash mode (long exposures: ()
    3. - Lacks the charm retro, compact (little big than nex5n), on front is ugly
    4. - 5.5fps burst shooting (It's more fast the nex5n/nex 6/nex 7)
    5. - No in-body Image Stabilisation via lens so this is only If the lens have .
    6. - Take About 1-2 seconds before an image materializes on the LCD slightly slower.
    7. - No touch screen.

    But not everything is bad in nexF3, provides nearly the same quality of image and video, the AF is a little better, so I'm not crazy, I like morethe versatile screen in 180 ° of tilt, fully integrated pop-up flash. (great ans easy for bounce flash).
    The multitude of creative effects on offer, apart from other such as HDR, dynamic range optimization, creative styles, innovative Sweep Panorama mode and range of image effects in the camera help you to makes good photos if you dont have the experience, and even the Superior Auto creates beautiful photographs reducing blur and noise.


    I test the nex6 and is really great, like my nex7, so are minimun details between the two cameras, had an uncertainty if necessary spend over 450 bucks to get the nex6, because in my case is different so I decided to grab the nex5R and save the 450 for more manual lenses, or if I find some good deal of the viewfinder.

    The nex5R and Nex-6, have Wi-Fi support, and you can choose for the 16-50mm pancake or the 18-55mm (only in the nex5R, the nex6 it's with 16-50), they have the same partial flip screen as higher-end models, the diference is the VF en la nex6. The tri-nav in the nex6 is very good, in the nex5R you have the control dial, for set the aperture and shutter speed like the nex6, it's almost the same in the nex7.

    well nex5R/ Nex6, better focusing, better low-light (better than the nex7), flash and hotshoe, like I said before, the only thing is the VF beetwen both.

    You have the NexF3 and electronic viewfinder, you could sell it and grab the nex5R, is really great, and use the viewfinder, but it´s up to you friend so, the decision is in your hands, to me choose for the nex5R and keep VF, considering they have the same image quality 16MP and viewfinder.
     
  14. Jazzer

    Jazzer TalkEmount Veteran

    344
    Nov 6, 2012
    New York
    Larry
    Freddytto, thank you very much for your time and this summary. While you obviously prefer the 5r, it sounds as though you also think the F3 is a good camera and has some benefits. While I imagine the 5r is probably a step up, I will probably hold on to the F3 for now. I think a 5r would probably cost about $300 or so more than I could get for the F3 on a resale and perhaps that money is better spent on lenses. After a while when I have gained more experience and no more about what I want and need for the way I am shooting I can upgrade and no doubt prices will have come down a little and/or there will be some new "must have" camera.

    I, of course, retain the right to change my mind at any moment. :D