Which A7 MkII body and lenses to purchase for concert/theatre photography

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Cameras' started by PRMDigitalProductions, Aug 10, 2016.

  1. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    I mainly shoot live entertainment such as theatre, concerts, and dance. I have been a Canon DSLR shooter for 5 years but I'm transitioning to Sony Mirrorless. I recently bought the a6300 and Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 which I have used for headshots so far. I also bought the 24-70mm f/2.8 GM lens but I might be returning it (still in my 30 day window) because depending on my second body I might not be able to afford it. I am looking at the a7 II, a7S II, and a7R II. What body and lens combo would be recommended to compliment the a6300 and 85 Batis? When I shoot theatre I can usually move freely in the theatre because I'm shooting during dress rehearsals. Concert wise it's either pit or soundboard with the typical 3 songs. If I were to get the 7S II or 7R II I probably wouldn't be able to afford the 24-70mm GM or any other expensive lens to go with the 85 f/1.8 which I have already. Any info would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Veteran

    257
    Aug 16, 2014
    Do you still have your Canon lenses? I'd get the Sigma MC-11 EF adapter and use your Canon glass. I just shot a stage play last week using my A7 II + Commlite Nikon/Sony AF adapter and pictures turned out great. You could probably get an A7S II and utilize your Canon glass until you could afford to upgrade to native Sony lenses. As for me, I find my Nikon glass good enough that I have no urge to get native glass!
     
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  3. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    Yeah I still have my Canon glass for the moment. I was planning on selling it to help pay for the new Sony gear lol. I might have to look into that though, thanks! How does the A7 II perform for theatre? Do you think the A7S II is better suited due to its low light capability?
     
  4. JonathanF2

    JonathanF2 TalkEmount Veteran

    257
    Aug 16, 2014
    I was shooting mostly composed stage shots so focus tracking wasn't a big issue. I think for most mild to brisk action, the A7 II works fine. For really fast movement like dance and other critical shot type moments, it might not be the best option if you need to shoot fast continuous burst. I still have a DSLR for that.

    It's your call regarding which body to choose. The A7 II is cheaper and offers a bit more megapixels. If you're using fast glass in combination with IBIS, you should be able to shoot most things. If you're shooting in extreme low light plus action and need the silent shutter as well, the A7S II might be the better option.
     
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  5. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    Luckily for me any concert or theatre I shoot the lighting is at the worst decent so I might not need the A7S II. Is the A7 II good at auto focusing in lower light? I read the original A7 was pretty bad so I didn't know if it got better with the MK II? The a6300 is good at continuous burst so I really don't need two bodies that are good with that.
     
  6. metalmania

    metalmania TalkEmount Regular

    123
    Dec 3, 2014
    USA
    A7Rii has better low light focusing than A7ii. However using PDAF mode with adapted EF lens will be much faster at focusing than native CDAF mode. So if you get MC-11, pair it with Canon lens; if you get Metabones IV, pair it with Sigma lens or Canon lens. Do not pair the MC-11 with Sigma ART lenses.
     
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  7. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    I only have one Canon lens. The other two are Sigma and Tamron for Canon mounts. So obviously I would get the Metabones IV to cover both my Canon and Sigma glass. What about Tamron lenses? Say I decide not to use my Canon mount lenses and go with something to compliment my Zeiss 85 f/1.8 Batis. Would you recommend the A7Rii still over the A7Sii and A7ii? What about lenses?
     
  8. metalmania

    metalmania TalkEmount Regular

    123
    Dec 3, 2014
    USA
    Yes, if you have the budget. For the lens I usually buy refurbished Canon lens directly from Canon online store, some really good prices! You have the Batis 85, so you might want to consider a Sigma 35 Art or Sigma 50 Art, and a Canon 135L if you don't have it yet. My expenses on these lenses are: Sigma 35 Art refurbished $679 from Sigma outlet, Sigma 50 Art $675 like new from ebay, Canon 135L like new $720 from a friend.
     
  9. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    Thanks! The Sigma lenses you mentioned aren't e mount lenses, right? I would need to get the Metabones IV? What about the A7ii with native lenses? Would it be better than the A7rii with adapted lenses?
     
  10. metalmania

    metalmania TalkEmount Regular

    123
    Dec 3, 2014
    USA
    No, they are Canon EF mount lenses. MC-11 is good for Canon 135L. Metabones IV is good for all. I don't like native E mount lenses, as I said before the PDAF focusing is faster than the native CDAF focusing. But people who like native lenses have their reasons, such as eye AF, center button focus lock for tracking, etc.
     
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  11. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    Thanks for the info! I think I'd rather shoot with native lenses because I like the eye AF etc.
     
  12. metalmania

    metalmania TalkEmount Regular

    123
    Dec 3, 2014
    USA
    Metabones IV with 0.52 or 0.53 version firmware has the native mode with eye AF.
     
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  13. PRMDigitalProductions

    PRMDigitalProductions New to TalkEmount

    7
    Aug 10, 2016
    That's good to know, thanks!