Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sony R1 HDR yesterday's RX1

Yesterday's RX1

Clearing out some excess inventory (cameras). Listing on ebay and Amazon. Some of these cameras I've bought and sold multiple times. The Sony R1 is one of those. Had a couple, sold them, then bought another one. Not a very modern design, or too modern (looks like a Klingon space ship), depending on your point of view.

Sony can design cameras to suit their engineering and marketing weltanschauung rather than me too other camera makers. Sony is after all an electronics giant, not a camera company. Of course the past few years Sony's offerings did turn more "me too" starting when they obtained Minolta and copied their DSLRs. [5D -> A100, 7D -> A700] I have an A850 and it is a very good camera with exceptional output. Recently Sony introduced a full frame compact camera (the first of it's kind), the RX1 and it's sorta a Leica killer at about 3K. You get the fast Zeiss lens married to a magnesium body (or some such metal) holding a full frame (35mm) sensor. The output is frightening good (assume you like that sort of thing, which, unfortunately, I do). Not going to drop the 2.7K on it, no. One day the price drops (say 3 years) and it's a real possibility (then). There are some positives to digital cameras losing their value over time. If you're a pro and sell your work, you can depreciate the equipment. Hobbyists who aren't following the quick release of newer and better cameras and the quick depreciation of same, could stick with what they have and get excellent output anyway and avoid the monetary loss. What you should do, eh?

But I digress. The R1 was Sony's no compromise camera of a few years ago. It's available now for around 300 beans, give or take. It started out at $999 list.  I had mine listed for 350 on Amazon and nobody bought it and I was about to lower the price and took it out and reviewed it a bit for value (to me). What I like:

Shoot from the hip with 2nd monitor on top. A great way to street shoot.
Shoot a Carl Zeiss designed lens. Sharp, controlled flare, etc. An expensive piece of kit were it one and not built-in.
Range: 24mm (you don't go that wide on many DSLRs on the cheap, that's for sure)
to 120mm. That's a wide range for one lens and it's a very, very good lens.
Speed: At wide, f2.8. A great place to start and the sign of an normally expensive lens.
Sensor: APC sized Sony 10mp - Good looking output here. Large enough for a really detailed and film like output, which is hard to get in a small sensor.
Shoots HDR easy as pie.
Grip: Almost perfect. Falls into hand well and easy to steady and hold,
Built like a tank. - Outstanding. - A pro build.
Never an dust spec. on the sensor. Don't need multiple lenses to carry around. Professional quality output.
By now: cheap when you compare what you get to what it costs.

Most of the negatives will center around high ISO noise, weird interface, small monitor (either of two), unusual design, no sd card (2 cards on board though) and so on.

So I commit camercide to check it's output to see if I want to continue to list the thing. I did a quick 3 shot HDR and then combined. Here they are:

and now the combo:
The camera has built in capability of producing outstanding images. It is relatively compact, has a great sensor, has great build quality, you can shoot from many advantageous angles, it is easy to hold and shoot, it's lens is very, very good quality and great range and good speed. It starts and shoots quickly enough. The battery lasts a very long time and is of a good quality and you don't need to take much along because of it's versatility and it goes wide at 24mm, which is relatively unusual and something I really like.

So I guess by now you realize I took it off Amazon. At least until the next great thing comes along that I can afford (be a while on the RX1) and I'll need to sacrifice something else to do it. For now the R1 stays with me.

1 comment:

  1. Love it to bits and was for years hoping for a follow up in an R2, but that never came.