Sony A6000

Sometimes the weight of my Nikon D800 and lenses is just too much so I decided to buy the new Sony A6000 camera and the two kit lenses, the 16-50 and 55-210 lens, which gives me an equivalent full frame reach from 24 mm to 315 mm.

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I had a chance to use it recently while cycling up Mt Hamilton and then the next day down the California coast to watch the Tour of California Pro Cycling race.  Riding a bike with my D800 and lenses would be a big much but the Sony A6000 was quite ideal.  We stopped a few places along the way to take some photos, such as the one above.

To take pictures of the race, I switched to the 55-205 mm lens.  Maybe not the highest quality lens, but it is small and lightweight, exactly what I wanted.  It gave the the reach of a 315 mm, full frame equivalent, and yet in an easy to carry lens.  Considering that the Sony A6000 uses a APS-C sensor size, it is rather amazing.

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It has a very fast burst rate, around 10 fps.  However you will want to save only to JPEG or  you will fill up the buffer very quickly.   Here are two of the images of such a high frames per second.  You will see little difference between the two images even though I am shooting a fast moving bike race using a long reach telephoto.

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I noticed that when using the 16-50 mm lens at 16 mm, there is heavy distortion and vignetting at the corners.  You can see in the image below the bending of the horizon and the darkening in the corners.

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However this can be corrected by using the lens profile in Adobe Lightroom.

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The video is also excellent, with the only complaint the poor placement of the dedicated video button.  Sorry for the shaky video but it is a bit difficult to carry a tripod on a bicycle.

Overall I am very happy with the Sony A6000.  It has proven to be a great little camera that has abilities far beyond what you might expect from it’s small size and weight.  I recognize that using better lenses would give me much better images, but I already have a Nikon D800 and high end lenses for that and putting a heavy lens on the Sony A6000 would defeat the purpose for what I bought it for.

One thought on “Sony A6000”

  1. Very good report. Thanks for sharing your experience with the A6000. Currently, I am an owner of Sony’s full frame A7, but had previous ownership of Sony’s NEX-7 and NEX-6 cameras, the predecessor to the current Alpha A6000. I can attest to what you say with your experiences. Of all the cameras I ever owned the Sony NEX-6 was one of my favorites. It’s compact, lightweight, fast, and has a large APS-C sensor in the camera and also the same 16-50mm pancake lens similar to your A6000. The superiority edge of the A6000 is it very fast hybrid CDAF/PDAF auto focus system with 196 on sensor PDAF focus points covering 92% of the lenses surface. That is a first for Sony! As for photo quality is concerned, given the fact that Sony sensors are superior and a primary provider to even other camera makers, the final photo quality output will be as good as the lens you place on the camera. One can always buy the 24-70mm (?) Zeiss E-mount designed for Sony and pay the $1,000 bucks or so for the lens.

    I was surprised to see your experience with vignetting and the ocean curvature you experienced at the wide end of the pancake lens. I have the same exact lens and don’t ever recall those issues. Perhaps, I never took notice of them. Today is a Thai Festival in Tokyo and plan to do some shooting. I will pay attention to that having mentioned it here. Nonetheless, I like the 16-50mm pancake very much because of it’s compactness, convenience and auto zooming, definitely a benefit for video shooting. I like it enough that I even went out of my way to purchase it as a standalone lens to use in conjunction with my full frame Sony Alpha A7 camera, even though the lens is only got APS-C coverage.

    It’s good to hear your first impressions and experience with this camera is positive. I am also very tempted to buy one myself as a second body to accompany my A7. Then, I can avoid lens swapping, and/or just take one camera or the other when journeying. Considering the camera bodies are almost identical in size and design, it is quite easy to carry both bodies each with a mounted lens in a single compact camera bag. Then, I would just pull out the camera with the appropriate lens I want to use for the occasion.

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