Jump to content
bullets

New to Sony/mirrorless not getting great results with A6000

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

 

I normally shoot with a Nikon D5200 but I recently purchased a Sony A6000  for some street photography as it was lovely size.With all the hype about the new A7's coming out  I was full sure I was going to change from Nikon to Sony if I ever manage to save up enough money to purchase a Full frame camera.   After purchasing the A6000 I'm not so sure if I'll stick to Nikon or goto Sony whenever that time comes.  So far after a week or two of messing about with the A6000 I'm so far not getting any decent shots from it. 

 

The capture one software is kinda sluggish but OK,  the A6000 takes a very very long time to format the memory card which I found odd, buttons and settings are a little fiddly and will need a lot of getting used to.  I'm finding the Kit lens that came with it absoultly horrid.  I got the 16-50 3.5-5.6 Kit lens  Even stopped down to F8 and F10 I'm finding it hard to get anything sharp.  A lot of the shots look lifeless, lacking in colour/contrast the outside edges are blurry the centre could be a lot better. Another thing I found is flare or light from the side causing blown highlights that would not normally be blown if I was taking the same shot with my Nikon Camera using the same focal length without a lens hood.

 

I purchased a fotodiox pro lens adapter so I could use my Nikon Glass on the A6000 its a great little bit of kit,

as I like macro I was hoping I could use focus peaking with my macro lens but it does not really work too great when your

at 1:1 distance from your subject.   I also found mounting my Nikon glass onto the A6000 was still not getting me

great results.  My 85mm 1.8g which is amazing on the D5200 was giving crappy results on the A6000 which was disapointing and I've been messing about with my 50mm and 30mm primes and things are hit and miss and the colour and contrast does not seem to be getting reproduced as good on the Sony compared to the Nikon  when shooting in Raw and just converting to jpg (without any development/tweaking)

 

I also purchased the Sony 55-210 4/5-6.3 and thankfully thats getting a lot better result but they

are still not as good as I would be used to when shooting with my Trusty DSLR using the selectable focus points.

 

I'm not a stranger to Manual focus as I shot with the Cannon A1 for years and had my own dark room back in the film days

With all the Postive stories I keep hearing with the Sony Mirrorless cameras my only conclusion is I'm doing something wrong!    

 

Has anyone suggestions/Advice ? 

 

Are Sony RAW files really lacking   in contrast and colour out of camera compared to Nikon RAW straight from Camera

I'm finding I need to really treak the hell out of the Sony RAW files a heck of a lot more than the Nikon Raw files to get the same results.

 

Should I stick to the adustable single focus point for better results? Any of the more automatic focus areas are very

hit and miss.

 

I binned most of the failed shots I was not happy with, I uploaded a few examples of what I'm seeing here:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1486867664939165.1073741836.1454138394878759&type=3

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1479305159028749.1073741834.1454138394878759&type=3

 

~B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you tried using something else instead of Capture One? I have a double set-up Nikon - Sony and I've seen the difference in contrast / color punch you are talking about. But in my opinion mostly this boils out to the kind of profile you (or the software you use) will apply to your files.

 

To give you an example, shooting the same scene with both the Nikon and one of the Sony and using Lightroom I've found that:

 

  • if I let Lightroom decide for me than it will apply the "Adobe standard" profile to both Nikon and Sony, and the images will often need quite a big contrast enhancement
  • if I apply the "Camera standard" to both, the Nikon files will be punchier and generally nicer
  • if I apply the "Camera standard" profile to the Nikon files, and the "Vivid" to the Sony ones the results will be indistinguishable from one another

 

So it looks like Nikon just defaults to a more punchier rendering, while Sony tends to give you a flatter file to preserve the maximum amount of dynamic range.

 

The fact that Nikon lenses are not looking good once adapted to Sony it might have to do with some kind of correction that Nikon applies in-camera (just guessing). This because I've noticed that the Nikon kit lens, that behaves pretty well on the Nikon, it is unwatchable on the A7r and even the 35/1.8 is not better (actually worse) than my ancient Minolta 35/1.8 MC (again, this may have more to do with the amount of pixels).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest all8

Try using the Sony with Vivid JPG setting (a Creative Style IIRC), if it helps even bit then you can tune it further to get what you want.

 

Focus peaking works on contrast, which makes it difficult to use for some subject matter. You can get used to it, but usually better results come from using the focus magnifier. Are you using that?

 

And for Auto focus, try using Face Detect or Eye AF (if the a6000 has that). Also, Continuous AF is better for moving subjects (kids and animals) and Lock-On helps there too. Single Focus Point is not so good for moving subjects IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been using viewnx2 + gimp when processing my Nikon Raw files. (And loaded a few Sony jpgs onto it also to see differences)

So far I've been using only Capture one to process the Sony RAW's.

I still have to get myself a Lightroom licence sooner or later and learn how to use it correctly, I had a trial version that I tried before.

Every time I goto buy a perpetual licence I keep thinking its money towards a Lens or filter or bit of kit so keep using freeware.

After reading addicted2light's reply I'm guessing its how the software is reading and processing the colour profiles of the files

as I know lightroom did show my raw nikon files different to how nikons own software showed them.

 

For the Sony I've been shooting in Raw+jpg have not had any issues with the buffer with a UHS3 class10 95MB/s card which is fantastic

(The DSLR is terrible when I'm trying to shoot stacks for Macro as the buffer fills up too fast) So far I've only tried using the Capture one.

When using the Lens adapter I had not been using the magnifier (only figured out how to get it to stay on! with a 3rd party lens a few mins ago)

When using the Kit lens I had the Face Detect set to registered only so maybe thats why it was not locking on. I dont see an option for Eye AF but it would be nice!        

The 16-50 Kit lens I reckon if going to drive me Nuts But its so Tiny and the camera fits in the coat pocket so easily.  If I can scrounge enough cash

over the next few paychecks I think I will try the 30mm 2.8 Prime from Sigma's art range.

 

After purchasing the A6000 + adapter it opens up some doors for me when it comes to my favourite type of Photorgaphy which is Macro!

If I ever won some money! I could purchase the Cannon MPE65 Lens which offers 5:1 magnifiaction ratio which no other Macro Lens has!

Its all money money money though which I am lacking after my recent splurge! :)

 

~B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been using viewnx2 + gimp when processing my Nikon Raw files. (And loaded a few Sony jpgs onto it also to see differences)

So far I've been using only Capture one to process the Sony RAW's.

I still have to get myself a Lightroom licence sooner or later and learn how to use it correctly, I had a trial version that I tried before.

Every time I goto buy a perpetual licence I keep thinking its money towards a Lens or filter or bit of kit so keep using freeware.

After reading addicted2light's reply I'm guessing its how the software is reading and processing the colour profiles of the files

as I know lightroom did show my raw nikon files different to how nikons own software showed them.

 

For the Sony I've been shooting in Raw+jpg have not had any issues with the buffer with a UHS3 class10 95MB/s card which is fantastic

(The DSLR is terrible when I'm trying to shoot stacks for Macro as the buffer fills up too fast) So far I've only tried using the Capture one.

When using the Lens adapter I had not been using the magnifier (only figured out how to get it to stay on! with a 3rd party lens a few mins ago)

When using the Kit lens I had the Face Detect set to registered only so maybe thats why it was not locking on. I dont see an option for Eye AF but it would be nice!        

The 16-50 Kit lens I reckon if going to drive me Nuts But its so Tiny and the camera fits in the coat pocket so easily.  If I can scrounge enough cash

over the next few paychecks I think I will try the 30mm 2.8 Prime from Sigma's art range.

 

After purchasing the A6000 + adapter it opens up some doors for me when it comes to my favourite type of Photorgaphy which is Macro!

If I ever won some money! I could purchase the Cannon MPE65 Lens which offers 5:1 magnifiaction ratio which no other Macro Lens has!

Its all money money money though which I am lacking after my recent splurge! :)

 

~B

 

ViewNX is the software equivalent of an acid trip :)  I still have some of the file I processed when I used to shoot only Nikon with the previous version, and they look like something Ken Rockwell might have been shooting ;)

 

For Lightroom you could always try the CC version first at, if I'm not mistaken, 10$ per month, canceling the subscription if you later should decide you don't like the software or if you'll end up buying the "stand-alone" version.

 

As for the Sigma 30mm, I own the first version (the not-metal one) and besides the fact that I hate focus-by-wire it is indeed an excellent (relatively) little lens. I use it on my Nex 7, and the rendering is quite beautiful: pretty sharp from the get go, and a lovely color rendering. The AF is reasonably fast as well, or at least it never left me wanting (on the A6000 it should be much faster, though). And in low light it nails focus in levels at which my Nikon simply refuses to work.

 

Lastly, while you put aside the money needed for the Canon you could try the old trick of using an enlarger lens (they sell literally for peanuts these days), maybe an Apo one (think: SCARY sharp), on a bellows. This will probably set you back less than 50$, adapter rings included. This way you will be able to even go over 5:1, and enlarger lenses are optimized for this kind of reproduction ratio.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lastly, while you put aside the money needed for the Canon you could try the old trick of using an enlarger lens (they sell literally for peanuts these days), maybe an Apo one (think: SCARY sharp), on a bellows. This will probably set you back less than 50$, adapter rings included. This way you will be able to even go over 5:1, and enlarger lenses are optimized for this kind of reproduction ratio.

Using a Sigma 105mm 2.8 with a set of extension tubes at the moment.  I was going to buy the Venus Macro lens but used my savings to purchase the A6000 along with the 55-210 + adaptor.   I only recently was clearing out my Attic at home and gave away all my Darkroom Equipment as had not used it since I was a teenager   a few days later I found out I could have used the enlarger lens as a poormans macro lens so I had a Homer Doh! moment.   Looking forward to seeing if I can get any decent shots with the Sigma lens with the Sony its nice to see the exposer on screen before hitting the button.

 

~B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hi.. i have a6000 as my fist serious camera, somehow i feel that kit lens (16-50) indeed is not sharp enough (below my expectation). even though i've never used a dslr before  :P to compare with another brand kit lens..

 

i've found this link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FVuO8FezjA maybe you can find the answer there

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If someone mentioned this already forgive me.

Couple things to remember.

    When you mount a Nikon auto focus lens on the a6000 you will loose all lens correction that you had with it mounted on the Nikon.

Along with pincushion correction the Nikon d5200 was also doing color correction for that Nikon lens.

    Also there have been intermittent reports of some Fotodiox adapters letting light in causing a "Washed" effect.

    Finally, it's best to use a picture hosting service that allows for viewing the image at full size as you uploaded it. Facebook has horrendous compression loss.

Though not the best, Flickr at least allows us to view the full image for examination. ;)

 

Also make sure your RAW editor has the latest profiles for your camera.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re the 16-50, Sony does a lot of in-camera correction on that lens, worth checking to see if you've got the latest and greatest firmware revision.

 

FWIW, I get 16x20 prints using that lens on a Nex5n. You've got half again as many pixels, so I'd expect you to get more resolution. In my copies, the 55-210 is a little sharper, but the difference is not dramatic. Both are better than I expected them to be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies folks I will try out a few things at the weekend if if ever stops raining here in Ireland,   I turned off the long exposure noise reduction but I would not have thought this would have any effect for nornal shooting during day time. I also figured out how to assign the eye auto focus to a button! but it wont keep up with the speed of my child running around the place! and wont work with continues focus switched on,  When I bought the camera it updated the 16-50 lens to the latest firmware, the Lens behaves a little better when stopped down to F9/F10.   (Its pretty cool to be able to update a lens firmware just by connecting the camera via the usb!!)

 

The washed out and soft edges I was seeing in pictures was when using the 16-50 Kit lens but when using the Fotodiox adapter with the manual focus with my Nikon gear was OK. (some of the focus issues I think are me getting used to the new setup)

I've the Sigma 30mm 2.8 EX DN ordered so look forward to seeing if its better than the kit.

 

The A6000 is pretty nice even at ISO3200 which was a pleasent surprise! I was able to take some shots in Pitch Dark of some hedgehogs

in my backgarden the other night with just a small torch shining on them and the camera still auto focused which I thought was neat!

 

The macro stuff, I mainly use the Sigma 105 lens, love it! but only doing 1:1 up to about 1.7ish:1.

I've tried reversal rings using my old cannon 50m 1.4 the only SLR lens I've left from my Teenage years that has no lens rot.

Hoping to use the Sigma lens with the A6000 but will need to get some lens support sorted as I will be putting it on a focus rail.

 

I'm on flicker but dont have not anything much up using the Sony yet.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/116522624@N04/

 

~B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't stop the kit lens down past F8, after that the centres start getting less sharp.

http://kurtmunger.com/sony_nex_pz_16_50mmid344.html

 

Apparently this lens is best at F5.6 (I don't own the lens)

 

I do however, own the Sigma 30mm 2.8 and a Nex7. Great combination, small and light.  The results I've got nothing to complain about.

 

Capture One software is free for Sony cameras, which is a pretty good deal.  Make sure you turn on the use GPU for stuff function, it makes everything loads faster.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies folks I will try out a few things at the weekend if if ever stops raining here in Ireland,   I turned off the long exposure noise reduction but I would not have thought this would have any effect for nornal shooting during day time. I also figured out how to assign the eye auto focus to a button! but it wont keep up with the speed of my child running around the place! and wont work with continues focus switched on,  When I bought the camera it updated the 16-50 lens to the latest firmware, the Lens behaves a little better when stopped down to F9/F10.   (Its pretty cool to be able to update a lens firmware just by connecting the camera via the usb!!)

 

The washed out and soft edges I was seeing in pictures was when using the 16-50 Kit lens but when using the Fotodiox adapter with the manual focus with my Nikon gear was OK. (some of the focus issues I think are me getting used to the new setup)

I've the Sigma 30mm 2.8 EX DN ordered so look forward to seeing if its better than the kit.

 

The A6000 is pretty nice even at ISO3200 which was a pleasent surprise! I was able to take some shots in Pitch Dark of some hedgehogs

in my backgarden the other night with just a small torch shining on them and the camera still auto focused which I thought was neat!

 

The macro stuff, I mainly use the Sigma 105 lens, love it! but only doing 1:1 up to about 1.7ish:1.

I've tried reversal rings using my old cannon 50m 1.4 the only SLR lens I've left from my Teenage years that has no lens rot.

Hoping to use the Sigma lens with the A6000 but will need to get some lens support sorted as I will be putting it on a focus rail.

 

I'm on flicker but dont have not anything much up using the Sony yet.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/116522624@N04/

 

~B

Hello there,

 

I just visited your Flickr, and saw some of your images using the a6000 and the 55-210.

When I first read your post I initially thought of ISO, metering and focal points. I have myself had a bit of a struggle to "de-automate" the a6000 after deciding it did a poor job whenever let to decide settings for me (or using default factory settings).

 

From your EXIF i guess you have allready figured out more about how to use the a6000. Personally I ditched the kit 15-50pz (both halfed battery life and was only half sharp at about 20-30mm). Then I got a sel5018. Then I understood that using any iso over 200 would ruin details no matter what I did (Im picky, I know). After that I stopped using "the worlds fastest AF" and stick to flexible spot (M-S) / AF-S, and then again I set metering mode to center, programmed C1-button to open custom White Balance menu, and finally C2-button to lock metering (to meter one spot and using that exposure on another focal point).

 

The 55-210 is good. But it is not that great on its shorter focal range. I would definately rather use any Nikon or manual wide / normal lens or buy the 50f1.8 or the new 28f2.0 (or ofcourse the 55f1.8 zeiss If I could afford) for street-shooting. Have read great things about the 60mm sigma (and the 19mm) Art lenses, but they have no OSS.

 

I use my a6000 in "manual" mode 99% of the time. Sometimes I set auto-ISO 100 - 400 and use "Aperture priority". I have gradually (actually spent almost a year now) learned that the a6000 is great if you disable its brain. Mainly because its brain chooses to up ISO and merge pixels deemed as "noise" rather than asking you to hold still. The tendency of my a6000 to force ISO up rather than trusting OSS is the dumbest thing I have ever encountered in a camera. When using OSS-lenses, there is no need to up ISO unless outside at night.

 

I have disabled High ISO Noise Reduction and Slow shutter Noise reduction. I use electronic curtain first. My a6000 is a killer, and its only limitation is that max iso 200 (I am sure 400 would be fine for most people, and when shooting Birds in Flight I use completely different settings (AF-C, Wide, Iso max 6400, 1000-4000/th sec shutter)).

 

The a6000 is a great little camera. Its just not (IMHO) suitable for stills using "action AF tracking stuff". And that is kinda weird since thats its main marketing point/gimmick... The "words faster Hybrid AF" cant hardly track anything moving towards of away from me, and when trying the 11fps bursts "to atleast get some keepers" that just clogs up memort-writes. My assesment is it cant really take decent pictures in any auto-modes without getting a serious lobotomy first.

 

My favorite lenses are a minolta MC Rokkor pf 58/1.4 and Sigma 85/1.2 (Canon). To get more keepers and not plan shots that much I use the sel50f18 and "vivid" (in camera colour rendering) and shoot jpeg. They are remarkably good most of the time (IQ-wise that is). I am considering getting a new 16-50 to try it out now that my use / settings has changed so much. Maybe we will find a way :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

.... .. .... .... ... ... .... .. .. 

 

So it looks like Nikon just defaults to a more

punchier rendering, while Sony tends to give

you a flatter file to preserve the maximum

amountof dynamic range.

 

..... ... ...... ... ... .... ......

Makes sense. Nikon has uncompressed raw.

Sony raw is effectively 11 or maybe 12 bit due

to compression. Nikon is full 14 bit. So if Sony

shoots flatter by default, it could prevent from

running out of tonal "headroom" when making

extreme corrections in post.

 

`

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

................

 

After purchasing the A6000 + adapter it opens up some

doors for me when it comes to my favourite type of

Photorgaphy which is Macro!

If I ever won some money! I could purchase the Cannon

MPE65 Lens which offers 5:1 magnifiaction ratio which

no other Macro Lens has!

Its all money money money though which I am lacking

after my recent splurge! :)

" ..... 5:1 magnifiaction ratio which no other Macro

Lens has! ..... "

 

I find the whole idea of that lens borders on the

ridiculous. There is no Quik-n-EZ approach to high

magnification. Lighting, camera support, chasing

dust specks off the subjects, focus stacking, etc

all make quite the project, regardless of choice of

optics, regardless of conveniences [auto-iris, etc]

built into the gear.

 

But all that is not bad news. The good news is that

a fairly convenient, verrrry versatile rig, instead of

that magical EF lens, is simply dirt cheap. A bellows

rig with two lenses costs almost nothing these days.

Possibly exactly nothing. Does better focus stacking

than any helical focus lens could, and focuses from

[typically] infinity to 5X or 10X, with excellent

clearance for subject illumination.

 

For "lesser" macro work, a macro lens is a definite

convenience, but as numbers rise its convenience

pales, and then the bellows rig prevails.

 

`

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...