December 5, 2010 at 5:56 am #2161
So, I got an unexpected bonus at work, and I’ve converted it into a Sony NEX 3, the cheaper of their Non-SLR interchangeable lens compacts. I’ve had it for a couple weeks now, and I figured some of you might be interested.
It’s pretty small (the NEX 5 is even smaller!) – I can put it in a big pocket with the 16mm pancake on, but the 18-55 zoom is almost as big as an SLR lens (not really surprising given the size of the sensor) so you have to put that in another pocket if you’re going without a case.
The interface is definitely more compact than SLR, but with the latest firmware (which was not installed by default) it’s fairly functional for my needs, I can get to most of the settings I would want without too much menu navigation (pre-upgrade it was not very friendly for a bunch of important setting changes like ISO).
I didn’t want a micro 4/3 camera because I was interested in using it as a platform for some of my vintage lenses and the 2x crop of the M4/3 means almost everything becomes a telephoto. At least with an APS-C sensor I can use a 28-35mm as a normal lens and a 24mm as a mild wide angle.
So far I have Leica and Minolta MD adapters for it. Both are cheap ones off eBay and the tolerances aren’t quite perfect; both are a hair too short and allow focus slightly beyond infinity which puts the distance scale on the lenses off slightly as well. It works really well for macro on a tripod, you can magnify the view up to 14x for very accurate focusing, but the unmagnified LCD doesn’t quite give you enough focusing accuracy unless you’re stopped down a bit, I found using an 58mm F1.4 wide open was pretty hit or miss without magnification, and the 135mm F2.0 (which has basically no DOF wide open) was basically impossible handheld (it’s really to big for the camera, luckily the MD adapter has a tripod socket):
Image quality is definitely decent, much better than any compact I’ve seen. It’s pretty comparable to a D90, I think, but definitely not up to a D700 even at base ISO. Metering seems generally good, AF speed is pretty fast by compact standards, but it’s not going to win any races with an SLR in that department.
A bunch of images here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/awrose/tags/nex3/December 5, 2010 at 1:55 pm #36514CuriousParticipant
interesting camera. and the adapters seem to be a big plus given all the glass you have. speaking of that did you have a radio flyer wagon with you to tote all the cameras/glass on your trip to the botanical gardens or was that several trips?
and i downloaded for wallpaper the wachusett reservoir shot.December 5, 2010 at 5:21 pm #36515ElsinoreKeymaster
Wow, sweet!!December 5, 2010 at 7:48 pm #36516CauseISaidSoParticipant
That is an interesting setup. Congrats on your bonus and new toy. I’m sure you’re loving being able to use all of your vintage glass with it.
I’d kinda like to see a shot of it beside something for size comparison. The lens really dwarfs the camera in that last pic.December 6, 2010 at 4:56 am #36517December 6, 2010 at 5:03 am #36518CauseISaidSoParticipant
Thanks, it’s easier to visualize actual size now. So the camera is more or less standard P&S size, but it looks like any kind of decent zoom still puts it out of “covert” territory?December 6, 2010 at 5:14 am #36519
Yeah, but there are some fairly tiny leica mount lenses that will give it a bit more reach than the 16mm. I could get it in my jacket pocket with a 35mm summicron on it (including the hood). I wonder if a collapsible elmar would work….December 6, 2010 at 2:42 pm #36520orionidParticipant
Yeah, but there are some fairly tiny leica mount lenses that will give it a bit more reach than the 16mm. I could get it in my jacket pocket with a 35mm summicron on it (including the hood). I wonder if a collapsible elmar would work….
Or any one of several brands pancake 50’s.December 6, 2010 at 4:32 pm #36521
The trouble with the SLR mount pancakes is the mount adapters are quite big (to accommodate the lack of a reflex mirror). If you look at the photo with the 135/2 above, the minolta lens mount is the silver ring to the left of the tripod foot, so the adapter is more than an inch long. The leica adapter is much thinner – 3 or 4 mm and the F3.5 collapsible elmar (or. more likely a Russian knock-off to try it out) collapses to be very tiny:December 6, 2010 at 6:31 pm #36522orionidParticipant
Ah, gotcha.December 6, 2010 at 9:24 pm #36523CuriousParticipant
“This photo was taken 16 hours ago using a Nikon D700. ” that’s next to your size comparison shot and for some reason tickles me.
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