Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Alpha and OMG eh?

So I've received more than a few comments and emails asking about my new camera. Being that some of you are nosy camera types (don't worry, as I am one too and would love to know what you are shooting with) here goes my new toy. Say hello to the Sony Alpha. I won't bore you with the technical reviews that have been so thoroughly reviewed by Phil Askey at the spectacular dpreview.com (For anyone researching a camera purchase I highly recommend you make this one of your first stops).

I had been doing what I usually do when it is time for me to make a large purchase and researched the living hell out of it. I'm so bad for digging for information before making a purchase that certain cameras ended up being discontinued and others, like this Sony, appeared after I had narrowed down the field to a two camera race. After digging through the features and the specs I decided that this was likely the camera for me but there was one complication........it was as yet unreleased when I decided on it. The up shot is that I had plenty of time to second guess myself. It was finally released into the stores on Friday, when I was helping my brother move of course, in extremely short supply. I rushed over to the fine folks at Henry's on Saturday afternoon and had a hands on look at it. After juggling it and the Nikon D200 back and forth I finally decided that I'd give the cheaper camera a shot. The only problem is that I'd wanted the two lens kit and they only had the single 18-70mm unit in stock. After waiting as long as I had, I didn't want to wait any longer I settled on the short lens and took it home. I have since spent the weekend and following days like paparazzi, stalking my family and anything else relentlessly with the new camera.

I am hooked on the image stabilizer which moves the sensor around to steady the shot, which reduces the need for a tripod. I am hooked on some of the intuitive things they've done and I have uncovered a great deal of function already. Now I have to learn the rest. This could take a while. Sony hadn't developed their own technology and instead purchased the camera business of Konica Minolta. While some may grumble about the lack of innovation I couldn't be happier. One of the cameras that initially got my attention was the Minolta DSLR. Sony took the old 5D and improved upon it greatly. This paved the way for more dividends than having to suffer through all new technology. I was really grateful for the heritage of the camera when I discovered that Sony had retained the original Konica lens mount. Thanks to the glorious interweb I managed to discover that the Sony lenses that are first being released on the market are simply old Konica-Minolta Maxxum/Dynax lenses that have been rebadged. This has opened up a world of savings to me. The photographer types among you both young and old will know what I mean when I grumble about the cost of lenses. The camera came with a fantastic lens for all round photography in the 18-70mm 4.5-5.6 Sony kit lens. The quality on it seems pretty damn good and it was used for all the pictures in Monday's post. Yesterday, thanks to the searing heat, we were booted out of work early and I went to see the guys at the camera store I really wanted to buy from, but didn't carry the Sony. Bell Arte camera is one of the best in town and beats Henry's in service and knowledge, but only by a bit. The personal service is top notch and their used selection, while minimal, proved to have a lens I was looking at. The Sony 50mm F1.7 lens, again being a rebadged Minolta, would have cost me almost $400.00 and I managed to score it used for the princely sum of $80.00. Add eBay to the pile and I managed to get the $350.00 75-300mm lens for around $100.00. Not too shabby! So I will await the arrival of my telephoto lens and pass the time mucking about with my 50mm. I only hope it gets here before I go camping as the zoom might allow me pictures of critters that won't allow me the luxury of proximity.

I am hooked on SLR and it has only been a couple of days. How bad is it going to get? Pretty soon I'll have to figure out how to use my skills to make some money or I'll have to go whoring myself out on weekends to support my habit!! And to think, I was attracted to digital because of the savings! How bad would it be if I went old school and was shooting film? The siren song of my Father's old Canon A1 is strong.....

For such a happy dog, she always looks so worried.
Armco's big closeup
Just where do these go? I;d love to tell you , but it was too damn hot to follow them.
This littel guy seems like he could gaze clean through your soul!!
For those that worry about these sort of things, I shot all this with the 50mm fixed focus that I got.

10 Comments:

Blogger Cuppojoe said...

I, too, have recently joined the DSLR ranks... And I'm hooked!

10:48:00 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

I just got the dpreview newsletter today and briefly looked at the review. It seems like a fine camera. Enjoy the 10mp and I'll see you on Flickr -- when I manage it anyway.

2:15:00 PM  
Blogger Martini said...

Pete, you should be extremely happy with your new "Sony". Although I wish I had a more professional DSLR (like maybe the H2), I've been extremely happy with my Sony H1, and have not yet had a reason to purchase additional lenses.

I know your feelings about Sony, but....Sony rules! You'll see how great they are! Unless you perish in some freak photoshoot incident. :(

3:37:00 PM  
Blogger ramblin' girl said...

I love my Minolta 5D... I needed (ok, wanted) a DSLR and it fit with all my film lenses so it was a no-brainer when I got a deal on it... but now you're telling me there's a 10MP out there that would fit with them as well... that's more improved...

thanks, thanks alot, now I have camera envy all over again! need to start a new camera savings plan...

5:44:00 PM  
Blogger Magpie said...

SLR's are so expensive, you are right to shop about...i love my little digital but i think that needs upgrading soon, but nothing as fancy as yours...

wow thats one huuuuuugge baby...lol

and i rifle thru pockets for change when he's not looking...

:0)

3:36:00 AM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

those are some great shots Pete! I know who to call if I ever need a photographer!!!

11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Violet said...

great photos. I'm too lazy to work an SLR.

5:40:00 PM  
Blogger mrhaney said...

i am not in to cameras much but i like a person that does his research. i am in to carpentry and when i tackle a job i like to research it to no end before i start. very nice photos. keep them comming.

10:31:00 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I especially love the train tracks picture. Where was that taken? We were in Hamilton last week. My Mom was born there. We went to Gage Park cause she had heard something about it on the radio (CBC).

7:42:00 PM  
Blogger Rurality said...

Ooh nice! I'm jealous.

10:22:00 PM  

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