And my winner is…

Nex7Fev14-01The mighty NEX 7

My previous post today was titled “either, or”. Well, you guessed it. Don’t get me wrong, the A6000 is a gearhead’s wet dream. I’m compact, solid, smart, and means business like no other. The AF performance is nothing short of system leading, it’s just fantastic. But then… I like the NEX7 even better.

MarlaMar14-23I’m not even sure I can explain why. I guess it has something to do with the elegant simplicity of the TriNavi system, the unmatched metal body and it’s unique feel in hand, and the optimum balance between detail and noise in its output.




Long story short, I like to make my mind quickly when I assess a camera. It needs to grab me by the gut and *make* me want to keep it. Do I want to keep the A6000 ? Sure ! Do I want to have to chose which one, either it, or the N7, I’m gonna pick up, going out the door ? Nope. Every time I owned both a N7 and N6 (and I’m embarrassed to admit that it happened more than once… or twice) the N6 got zero use at all, because despite liking its output better, I still intuitively reached for the N7.
I’ve shot too many bottles and cans, and coffee cups for the past two days. The one clear advantage I’m giving to the A6K, is a huge AF gain, and even a better use of the LA-EA2 adapter (and more external controls, better menus, more customization options…). For IQ, I’m far, far from convinced that the new body is better than the older one, if at all.

However, my recommendation for the A6000 still holds true, it’s an amazing camera, and unless you have, like me, as sort emotional attchment to the NEX7, that almost defies any logic, you’ll be absolutely thrilled with it.



About marla2008

Shutterbug. Shallow DOF nut. Mother of Child. Student of the Horse.
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20 Responses to And my winner is…

  1. Yes, it was the outdoor shots of the horses with fast movement which I liked better with the A6K. But I really do understand not wanting to switch from one type of control system and build to another when you really want to just get the the shots, so that keeping both won’t work. Thanks for your review.

  2. marla2008 says:

    The deeper truth is in my previous post, explaining in detail why shooting them together would be very confusing and hard mental work to readapt on the fly to their differences. I’m still thinking Sony needs a true flagship between the 650€ A6000, and 1300€ A7…

  3. James (Australia.) says:

    I’m thinking your N-7 shots are slightly better, too, Marla’s mum.

    That metal body; several months ago while in Scotland I dropped my N-7 from waist height onto the hard bitumen of a car park. I picked it up in horror expecting to throw it in the nearest bin but everything still worked, a slight bend of the hood screw on the Voigtlander Ultron 28/1.9 was the only visible damage.
    Since then it has continued to work perfectly. I now have even greater respect for its build quality.

    • marla2008 says:

      Yes James, you got that right, too. Frankly, there’s nothing wrong with the A6000’s build, it feels pretty solid in the hand. Until you pick up the N7 side by side with it. And want to put the A6K back down on the spot…

  4. Dave Uhlig says:

    I tried the A7, (even after your review), which I should have paid more attention to! Returned it and now have an A6000 on pre-order. Sony has been incredibly confusing lately. I have used the Nex 6 and 7 for the past year and a half. Always wishing for a combination of those two cameras. Give me a standard hot shoe, wi-fi and tri-nav with metal construction, and we have a winner. I am hoping the A6000 comes close, and I can pick up a couple of them. I have been frustrated with jumping between the 6 and 7 and would like to be quick with just one camera. I am almost leaning towards running with two Nex 6. I need the standard hot shoe for portrait work. Anyway, thank you again for your insight. Keep up the good work!

    • marla2008 says:

      Dave, I think you’ll love the A6000. To me it’s a baby A7, but without the worst of the A7’s glitches. The AF is spectacular, the extra controls very much welcome. Just don’t shoot it along with a N7 and you’ll be a happy camper

  5. Martin says:

    Interesting, but I would have put money on this outcome 🙂

    Would you care for a back-up NEX-7? If not, eBay it is. My affair with the A7R has moved to marriage…

    • marla2008 says:

      Oh Martin, that’s great news ! I wish I had the opportunity to try the A7R rather than A7, several trusty sources of mine are telling me they’re different beasts. I do love two bodies, but I want a purse sized one, so I have my eyes on a super cheap 3N to shoot along with my N7 🙂

      • Martin says:

        No problemo 🙂
        I thought I’d offer it up, as you’re still gushing (rightly so) over the NEX-7. I’ll review the A7R in due course (I have some other reviews planned first), but it’s gelling with me quite nicely thus far.
        I think I have come at your problem from another angle, and am now looking for another purse! 😀

  6. I think the strong point is that despite the N7 being an ‘old’ model, the IQ isn’t surpassed by newer models. Sure, certain features of functionality are improved, but the N7 is still the camera to beat (except in shitty menus, which is only bested by Oly) . Great images, I would struggle to tell at web viewing size which came from which unit.

    As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke…….


    • marla2008 says:

      That’s the idea. The N7 ain’t broke, not in the least. And hand holding both cameras together, it’s still the best feeling one. Since IQ is on par, why bother ? Superfast AF ? Well, looks like I don’t truly need it

      • Wait until Marla starts to compete in cross-country events, though!

        That’s the problem with modern digital camera’s. They have really reached a plateau (at least in term of IQ), and many people are very content to stick with a 2-3 years old camera (in my case 5, but I am really not a picky shooter, as you already know!).

        (just picked a “new” camera, by the way. Canon Ftb. will see if I can get anything good at all from it)


  7. Paul says:

    Great review – very comprehensive! Despite the marketing claims IQ is not radically different from earlier NEX series cameras. So it comes down to ease of use or special requirements like needing the fast AF.

    After using the NEX 5N for a while I switched to the Sony RX100 as it really is pocketable and IQ is close enough to the NEX 5N to be good enough. But its AF has meant I’ve missed a few shots of my dog who moves too quick for the AF! Plus on a sunny day the LCD is virtually impossible to see – I’ve often had to point in the direction of the thing I wanted to photo and just hope for the best!

    So the viewfinder and fast AF of the A6000 will be useful ( hopefully! ). It won’t replace my RX100 but a useful addition.

    My best camera ever was the Nikon D700 – great low light camera. But with a quality lens it was just soooo heavy! I’m too lazy for such heavy things these days.

    Still getting used to the A6000 and its quirks! But its much easier to use than trying navigate the dreadful menus of the NEX 5N.

    • marla2008 says:

      Paul, you are going to *love* how the A6000 captures you dog, for sure ! It’s a great, great camera. For anyone not in a long time love affair with a NEX7, frankly, it’s a no brainer. Best E mount camera so far (N7 aside, as it’s a bit of a special case).

  8. danilkazzz says:


    I’ve read your three posts about the a6000, thank you for sharing your thoughts and experience 🙂

    I have a NEX 5 and besides photos I am shooting a lot of video. The a6000 is actually perfect but it has no mic input. The N7 does. So I’m thinking, why not take the N7 which does have a mic input.

    The only issue I have, AF took aside, is it’s age. The NEX 7 is over 2 years (?) old and I don’t know if it is such a good idea to get a camera that is actually pretty old :/

    • marla2008 says:

      It’s old ok, but the truth is it’s actually still pretty much sitting on top of all APS-C mirrorless offerings for IQ. The User Interface is absolutely top of the world as well with the TriNavi. Prices have gone down so much that you’d take little risk trying one. I had both the A7 and A6000, and kept the NEX7 over both, that should tell you something…

    • I”m of the same mind. The NEX 7 is a body that wouldn’t fail to serve. I recently had the N7, A7r and A99 together and sure, there were certain small differences, when the images were blown up or seriously cropped, but overall the N7 performed admirably in the face of FF competition. It also offers serious bang for buck right now.

      • marla2008 says:

        I’m starting to see N7 bodies boxed with accessories around 450€ and even below, so the value has never been as amazing as right now. If I didn’t already have two E mount bodies, I’d be prone to picking another one up…

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