Friday, November 16, 2012

The little camera that could.

Firstly I apologize for going MIA for those who bother to read my ramblings. I've just been preoccupied and too busy to bother posting on my blog - my bad!

As some of you may know, i've had the Sony NEX 5n for a few months now and it's a little camera that i've slowly grown to love more and more every time I use it. Sure, there are times when the image quality isn't good enough, or the autofocusing isn't fast enough and sometimes, it just.. lacks that something to make it a truly amazing camera. Having said that, it is the size of an iPhone and a few hundred dollars as opposed to a few thousand!

So take this as a.. on going updated review of the NEX 5n, something that with all its flaws, limitations and quirks, I love to bits.

British India came to Gladstone last night and performed a one off performance in Central Queensland. I've never heard much of their music, so i wont turn this blog into a music review. I took the D4 (which i'll write about how that compares to the D3s soon) and took the 5n along just for laughs to see how it would perform in a live gig environment, and see how it compared to the beast that is the Nikon D4.

 The problem that I have with the NEX system - as a whole - is that it lacks any good fast lenses, the only fast lenses they have at the moment are the 50mm f1.8 and the Carl Zeiss 28mm f1.8 which costs an arm and a leg. The alternative? legacy lenses, using old school lenses that everyone forgets about, and chuck them onto the NEX. With its amazing peaking feature for manual focussing it's pretty easy to get used to shooting with full manual focus.

Maybe it's the hipster inside of me, but something about a manual focus lens makes me feel Henri-Cartier Bresson-esque, shooting and capturing images the old school way. (obviously it's not, but using a full manual lens just gives you that sense of pure photography that machine gunning with AF doesn't.)

The images turned out better than I thought and the noise performance is acceptable, clearly not Nikon D3s/4 quality but again, for its size and price it's nothing i'd complain about.

Having shot a few live gigs in the past year or so, there's one thing I hate and always will hate, the damn stage lighting. flickering reds, blues, oranges and clean whites, the lighting changes every few seconds and it's damn hard to try and catch a shot consistently with the same lighting. Makes people look like aliens if you get the wrong colour on their faces.

I stripped these images of all their colour partly for this reason but also because I feel that the really over saturated colours from the lights draw attention away from the main subject and by stripping the colours, there are less visual distractions for the viewers - my opinion of course.

Supporting act for British India were a Brisbane band named Young Griffo.

For those who are curious as to how the NEX looks like with legacy lenses, there you go. 55mm f1.4 which is effectively 80mm-ish at f1.4 with the smaller cropped sensor. As you can see by the photo, the lens is almost, if not, bigger than the whole camera, perfect for travelling and hiking - which is why I bought it in the first place. 

Can it/does it replace a DSLR? definitely not. It's a different style and type of shooting. The image quality is definitely better than a lot of DSLR's out there but to use it in a professional environment such as the news environment would be a bit touch and go for this little camera. Sure, there would be a way where you COULD use it for the work that I do, but it'd just be too much effort for little reward. 

Hopefully I can find more occasions to take this little camera out in the future and do a direct comparison to my workhorse, the D4.

Unti then,


p.s - a bit more colour to end this post.  (NEX 5n of course)