Sony Alpha NEX-7 (Part 2)

6/14/2012 11:33:03 AM

‘The NEX-7 is a great camera but will probably only appeal to small niche of photographers with very specific needs.’

Without an optical viewfinder, manual focusing isn’t easy so you need to be able to rely on the autofocus system. Thankfully, it’s a great system which works really well in most lightning conditions. If you are shooting portraits it’s even worth activating the Face Detection system as moving the autofocus points isn’t as quick as you may expect. There are a few little ‘fun’ features such as Smile Detection which will automatically focus on faces in the frame and will immediately take a picture when one of the faces smiles. It’s a great way to take a self-portrait (assuming you want to smile in it) or for taking those classic ‘MySpace’ type photos at arm’s reach.

Description: Description: Sony Alpha NEX-7

If you are used to shooting with a DSLR, you may find that it takes some time to get used to using an EVF, which interrupts your view of the subject every time you take a picture and doesn’t return until after you have viewed the shots and keep your eye on what’s going on for the second shot. The playback mode has a rather odd feature when it comes to watching videos. They are stored in a different playback mode than your still images so if you shoot a few images and then film a video clip, once you hit playback you’ll enter the playback mode of whichever you shot last – stills or video. This means you won’t see the other media in that playback mode. To make matters worse, MP4 files are stored in yet another separate folder from AVCHD videos.

So what about the beast that lies at the heart of the camera – the 24.3 megapixel CMOS sensor? You certainly won’t be disappointed, however we can’t promise that the NEX-7 will blow you away. This isn’t to say that it’s not a great camera but it’s not noticeably better than any of its stablemates in the Sony range and that’s no bad thing. Thanks to the larger APS-S sensor, you will however notice slightly less noise than you would when using a micro-sensor camera. But we’ll talk more about image quality and noise in the box.

Description: Description:  The NEX-7 with the 50 1.8

The NEX-7 with the 50 1.8

So the big question is whether or not you should invest in the Sony Alpha NEX-7. It is armed to the teeth with a whole host of features and packs a mean punch with that APS-C 24.3MP sensor, but is that enough? This camera lacks the aesthetic charm of the retro-inspired competition or the handling simplicity and professional feel of a DSLR. The NEX-7 is a great camera but will probably only appeal to small niche of photographers with very specific needs. Those who want the highest resolution possible at a fraction of the cost of a 24MP DSLR will no doubt be drawn to this model.

Description: Description: Colours are vibrant and the detail captures precisely with this CSC camera.

Colours are vibrant and the detail captures precisely with this CSC camera.

Technical data

Model: Sony Alpha NEX-7

Price: $1,695 (with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 lens)


Megapixels (effective): 24.3MP

Max resolution: 6000x4000

Sensor information: 23.5 x 15.6mm CMOS (APS-C)

Lens data: Sony E-mount

Zoom: 18-55mm (3x) 27-82.5mm (equiv)

Focus/macro: 0.25mm-infinity

Shutter speed: 30-1/4000sec

ISO sensitivity: A, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 16000

Exposure modes: iAuto, Auto+, P, A, S, M

Metering options: CW, S, MS

Flash modes: Foff, A, FF, SS, RS, Wireless

Connectivity: HSMI, USB 2.0, Microphone in

Weight: 291g

Dimensions: 119.9 x 66.9 x 42.6mm

Batteries: NP-FW50 Li-ion

Storage: MS PRO Duo/PRO-HG Duo, SD, SDHC, SDXC

LCD: 3 inch 921,600 pixels tilting

Viewfinder: Electronic 2.4 OLED

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