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Old Oct 3, 2007, 10:15 AM   #11
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To give you an idea how much I pushed it, here's a conversion from .dng using Picasa with no changes. I was shooting in Av mode with Matrix metering and it was trying to protect the highlights (they were mostly backlit), leaving my subjects too dark. I don't care about the highlights for this kind of shot, and it pushes from ISO 2000 to ISO 5000+ with acceptable noise levels shooting in raw at the print sizes I'd use from what I'm seeing.

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Old Oct 3, 2007, 11:49 AM   #12
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Jim,

These are looking good. This is turning out to be the year of noise reduction

I'm glad to see useful real-life shots in low light conditions. Too many people "test" in pretty good lighting and have an image with a lot of light tones and declare noise performance to be great.

Glad to see real life tests showing very usable results. I think 8x10 results at 3200 is a very good benchmark to achieve.

What about the rest of the camera's performance? Any thoughts/opinions on how the camera stacks up against it's competitors?
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Old Oct 3, 2007, 1:29 PM   #13
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Ask me in a couple of weeks. lol

Actually, this camera is growing on me every day. The default jpeg processing (unless you carefully tweak exposure) takes some getting used to.

The DRO (Dynamic Range Optimization) kicks in and that can skew the results. I suspect that most camera reviewers will get it wrong looking at the jpeg images (thinking that noise is higher than it is because it's pushing the mid tones, pulling the deeper shadows, and more using the camera's default settings),

What seems to be happening is that the Dynamic Range Optimization is kicking in with any underexposure using the defaults, and it's applying an odd curve to the images. Ditto for the contrast setttings when used in combination with DRO (making noise in shadows areas worse than it would be otherwise). But, once you figure out what it's doing and adjust (lower both), it works just fine.

For even better results, it looks like RAW will be the way to go. You can shoot JPEG at a rapid pace (5fps) until the card is full (or 13-16 images shooting jpeg extra fine, depending on card speed).

But, I'll probably just shoot raw. I'd bypass all of the in camera processing that way, and with a 13 frame raw buffer and super fast write speeds to media, I'll survive. lol That way, I can process the images in batch mode using any number of raw converters and get great results at very high iso speeds from what I'm seeing.
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Old Oct 9, 2007, 9:51 AM   #14
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Found these shots of A700 sports action shots at high iso

http://www.dyxum.com/dforum/forum_po...=213378#213378
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Old Oct 9, 2007, 10:05 AM   #15
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I wouldn't mind having that lens (70-200mm f/2.8G SSM). lol

I see he was using it wide open at f/2.8 for the first one, getting a shutter speed of 1/500 second at ISO 2500.

From what I hear, it's users are saying the Sony A700 works great with it (faster AF with less hunting compared to the KM 7D, even though it wasn't using the in body focus motor with the 7D).

So, the sensitivity of the AF sensors and speed of the algorithms improved with the A700, even with SSM lenses that don't take advantage of the beefed up focus motor in the A700.

But, at the current price of $1899 at B&H for the Sony 70-200mm f/2.8G SSM, I can't justify the expense, since I don't use a longer lens very much (my 135mm f/2.8 is the longest I'd usually need, and even 135mm is rarely needed for what I typically shoot).

At least this 70-200mm is dropping in price some now. If Sigma gets off of their rear and starts shipping their 70-200mm f/2.8 again in this mount, that would probably help attract more Sony sports shooters.

For a sports shooter, this combo (A700 + 70-200mm f/2.8G SSM) would be super.


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Old Oct 9, 2007, 10:13 AM   #16
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Jim

If I were a sports photography this lens and the A700 would have to be in my arsenal. I attend sporting events by watching them on TV.
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Old Oct 9, 2007, 7:40 PM   #17
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Here's one more at ISO 3200 using an even slower shutter speed. You've got to love the stabilization. :-)

Minolta 100mm f/2 at f/2.5, 1/20 second

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Old Oct 11, 2007, 7:25 AM   #18
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Jim, the IQ you get with that 100mm f/2 is just great. I don't think you mentioned whether you were using AF or MF for the low light shoots. There are numerous positive comments around on the A700's AF speed and accuracy but I was wondering how well it works in low light.
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Old Oct 11, 2007, 7:43 AM   #19
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All Autofocus. No problems at all in this lighting.

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Old Oct 16, 2007, 3:10 PM   #20
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Looks like you have been making fine use of this camera!
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