I don't even think the A100 is a 5D upgrade. With the exception of the memory and the lens system, I think the A100 is a new camera.
I'm beginning to suspect that it was Sony that pushed Minolta out of the business because they were going to offer a camera at a lower price level with the same feature set including the camera body image stabilization feature and Minolta knew that would kill them. They sold out when they could. Yes, it's just speculation.
Anyway, I'm going to take a wait and see approach to this situation. My next priority is a long telephoto zoom anyway. Then I'll be interested in what Sony does with a camera body. I'll definitely want one with the vertical grip. It's very nice to have.
I handled the new Sony Alpha today for the first time and I have to say that I was somewhat disappointed. I found it bulky and plasticky. It also has a very small view finder. The camera did not seem at all well made. I think that Sony will have to do better than this if it wishes to take the market by storm as it is suggesting. This is despite the favourable reviews that I have read. I know that nearly all DSLR's suffer from small view finders but I had hoped for an improvement in this brand new new model.
I was interested in the camera because there are to be Carl Zeiss lenses for it and I am a user of the now defunct Contax brand looking for somewhere to migrate in this digital era.
Just handled the A100 yesterday and although it does feel cheap compared to a 7D, I have say I was quite impressed.
The handling is good, the AF is very quick and the controls are well placed.
I have to agree if does feel cheap and the viewfinder is smaller than a 7D (exactly like the 5D), especially if your coming from a quality 35mm such as Contax. (but most cameras below £1200 will feel cheap in that case anyway)
You have to keep in mind this is an entry level DSLR, you are not going to get a Nikon D200 feel for this price.
However, you will get the guts of the D200 performance, which is pretty remarkable
Before anyone adds small points, I mean you get D200 resolution, not a weather sealed body, 5 fps and all the other goodies on the big Nikon.
I am very happy Sony continued (and improved) the KM Anti Shake feature, this is IMHO one of the most useful features ever introduced to the DSLR market.
No one seems to count how much it's worth, in terms of the overall cost of the camera.
For me it's worth maybe 15 to 20% of the overall price which I will gladly pay.
For all of us using AS (or SSS) I think it's safe to say, that once you'd had it and used it you don't want to be without it again.
Nice one Mr Sony, can we have a 7D replacement now please? lol
Thanks for your very interesting comments. I suppose I have to accept that £600 only buys an entry level DSLR. I hadn't apreciated the point about KM 5D versus 7D but in the end it is always the results that count and the Alpha does seem to give very good results.
Anti shake does appeal to me as does (very much) the anti dust feature.
I think I shall wait until the system has matured a little. I think they will bring out a 7D equivalent and maybe cameras still better than that as they are apparantly launching a full scale attack on the DSLR market.
> i think a replacement for the 9 is on the way... i reckon they'll keep beefing up the 5, delete the 7 and produce a redhot pro model... the old KM 5d and 7d were starting to merge anyway. Sony have a fair hold on the pro audio and video markets, i just don't believe they haven't got an eye on the top end of the dslr market... anyone wanna bet?
Yes, unfortunately DSLRs are expensive beasts relative to 35mm, I paid £939 for my 7D and at the time that was a killer price. (I know because my wife almost killed me! lol)
I see Jessops have knocked £100 off the A100 list already and are offering it with the 17-80mm kit lens at the body only RRP of £599
When you say the Alpha doesn't give very could results, are you referring to noise at higher iso?
This seem to be the only weakness, but unless you shoot beyond 400 regularly it shouldn't be too much of a problem.
I agree with you about maturity, I will also be waiting for a 7D replacement.
There are some rumours from fairly knowledgable pros, that a full frame sensor is on the cards from Sony.
What camera that will be planned for is impossible to know (9D type?) it is based on the fact that 2 of 'brand new' Sony CZ lens (not the rebranded Minolta lens) are full frame (35mm image size) capable designs.
The reasoning is, that it is much less expensive to make a brand new lens for the APSc sized image circle, so producing a full frame capable lens, without never making a full frame DSLR is not logical.
I have to say though, if I were starting out again I'd have an A100 in heart beat
I think it will do really well for Sony, which will be good for all of us.
The DP review of the A100 was very indepth, have you read it?
If not check it out here:
Competition can only be good for everyone, no matter the brand.
Prices will fall and I can have my 7D replacement, without a divorce! lol
I reckon a 9D level camera will come, but not this year. It would be out of my price range I'm sure, but nice to dream about.
I am a confirmed Minolta user (nut!) of 30 years, but I have to say I very nearly bought a Nikon D200, while the Sony takeover was in the early stages.
I'm glad I didn't now, it looks like Sony are not going to drop the ball.
Wayne, I agree with your top end assessment, but I don't think the 7D type mid range will be dropped.
KM were already working on the 7D replacement, it's unlikely Sony will drop it, rather release their updated version of the camera that KM would have launched.
For many photographers a vertical grip, superior build quality, better viewfinder and other mid range features the A100 lacks are reason enough for a A200, even it the sensor turns out to be similar.
I would buy such a camera over the A100, in the same way I would buy a 7D over a 5D.
That is not to say the 5D or A100 or not good cameras, they are excellent photographic tools!
It's simply that they are missing features, that some, including myself would prefer 'if the choice were there'.
The same could be said for the Canon 350D and the 30D.
I don't think Sony can seriously challenge (in the mid term 3-5 years) Canon for No 1, maybe they will get their planned No 3 spot, but Canon (and Nikon) will not sit on their laurels any longer.
It's good to see Canon get a kick up the rear end, as I said before competition will give us even better cameras and reduce prices.
No matter what brand you worship (lol), it's all good
>What scared me was losing a platform for my Minolta glass. i bought my first digital anything (a 7D) about a month before Sony took over... and i sweated badly for those months until Sony announced that they were going with a Minolta mount now i'm happy... as much as i love my srt's....
Yes, I had heard the suggestion that Sony might make a full frame sensor camera. That would appeal to me as I could use my Carl Zeiss lenses on it (painfully acquired second hand over the years) with no crop factor. An adapter would be needed and automatic features would be lost but the lenses would be useable - assuming someone made such an adapter! Then when the Zeiss lenses came along, it would be great and no doubt greatly expensive too.
I was considering the Canon 5D, which is full frame, for this purpose but it is expensive and I don't suppose that Zeiss will produce lenses for it - although they have for Nikon. But anyway I am unlikely to be able to afford them as they will all be new with no second hand ones for ages.
Probably I wouldn't be able to afford CZ lenses for a full frame Sony either initially but it would be a new system with possibilities for continuing to stay with CZ. Second hand prices don't encourage selling film gear now.
But a very strong point in favour of the Sony to me is the anti dust system and that could tip the balance in favour of it over the Canon irrespective of the other points.
I think I will just hang on. I like film and am delighted with my scanner. It is just that it takes to so long to scan everything.
Sorry Dennis, I meant to say that I had read that the Sony does give good results.
The 80-200 F2.8 G, is a bit like getting a new improved sensor or a new pair of glasses.
You thought everything was alright before, but then you get a shock
My G is the white Hi Speed version or Mk11. (I think)
It's very sharp, but moreover there is a smooth presence to the images that's hard to describe.
The contrast is great, colour fabulous, bokeh to die for and af speed is excellent.
I guess you can conclude I'm a fan! lol
I'd love to try the SSM lens though.
No worries mate, I have no axe to grind on the A100's behalf, I just hadn't heard any complaints about poor quality, didn't realise it was a mistake
Yes, no CZ lenses for Canon I'm afraid.
The 5D is a great camera though.
There were quite a few adapters made over the years, to convert various lens to fit Minolta A mount, I'm not sure if CZ was one of them.
You could try SRB, years ago they used to make custom adapters to order, perhaps they still do?
Thanks, SRB is a good idea. I have had a look but couldn't find it so I have emailed them.
It's not long until Photokina now and I think I am going to hang on to see what comes up. A new Sigma model is rumoured too and that intrigues me with the possibility of a Foveon sensor which I always thought was a good concept. I think the SD10 has a dust filter too.