Investing into Sony a5000

Hi, fellas!

Wanna your critique of this camera, because I’m about to buy it :slight_smile:

p.s. AFAIK it’s kit lens is utterly terrible so lets avoid talking about it



The “Zeiss” 16-70 is rubbish too, at least if you factor in the prize. In retrospect I’d have rather gone with the kit lens and saved the money on that one.

Another thing that I still can’t reliably get right with my a6000 is the colors.
With the D810, things just work, with the A6000 I’m always fiddling. I did a quick profile using a colorchecker but that didn’t help much either.

Apart from that I’m fairy happy with the A6000, and I’d expect it to generalize to the a5000 too. If you can somehow get an a6000 that’s going to be nicer, it comes with a view finder and hot shoe among other things.

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Thanks, man. You’ve just saved a lot of my time and money, because I was aiming at buying Zeiss 16-70 some day. Will have to figure a different and good replacement for the kit lens.

Also, special thanks for mentioning the profile. Could you please tell what exactly is going wrong with this camera? I own colorchecker and have profiled my cameras to their best color renderring, so that I’m not noticing wrong colors anymore. Tthis really makes me question the purchase if I would not be able to fix the colors.

@Jonas_Wagner Have you tried using Rec2020 as the input profile? IMO it looks much better than the standard color matrix which has crazy saturated yellow/green colors. RawTherapee recently gained an auto matched color profile as well and its colors are also very close to Rec2020 (which probably explains why I always felt that Rec2020 looks better to my eyes).

I agree that the A6000 will be a much better choice if your budget allows. It has a better sensor, PDAF, 11 fps burst, a hotshoe and an EVF as well. Sony is really lacking a decent zoom that is good quality and not too expensive like Sigma/Tamron’s 17-50/2.8. It does shine well with prime lenses and you can easily end up with a really portable package with excellent image quality. There are also tons of inexpensive legacy lenses to choose from if you are into that.

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[quote=“PkmX, post:4, topic:2850”]
@Jonas_Wagner Have you tried using Rec2020 as the input profile? IMO it looks much better than the standard color matrix which has crazy saturated yellow/green colors. RawTherapee recently gained an auto matched color profile as well and its colors are also very close to Rec2020 (which probably explains why I always felt that Rec2020 looks better to my eyes).
[/quote]I haven’t tried that in the past but gave it a quick shot now. Definitely looks better than the stock color matrix. I’ll investigate this again when I take some more pictures with the a6000. :slight_smile:

I recently looked at the 5000/6000, and while the body is aggressively priced, it seems the lenses are not. Sony havingn its own mount type really turned me off; if they were an MFT mount I’d have purchased one of the two instead of the Yi M1.

That and I’ve felt with other Sony technologies that required them to provide software, and it has always been horrible. Remember mini disc? Memory stick? That and the compressed “raw” files from their camera made it a pass for me.

Well, almost all manufactures have their own mounts for their cameras (and different ones between SLR and mirrorless), with the exception of MFT. I doubt we will be seeing an universal APS-C or FF mount any time soon. Sony is probably better in this regard since the short flange distance allows it to adapt virtually any SLR lenses, and there are commercial adapters for EF lenses that enables IS and AF. There is even an autofocusing M-mount adapter and you can use it to AF (!) any old manual lenses.

If I were to make the choice again I would probably go with Fuji, since they provide much better updates for their hardware and their APS-C lens line is superb, plus their JPEG engine is so much better than Sony’s. But currently it is too much hassle for me to sell all my Sony lenses and switch system.

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If anyone reading this has a Sony α6000 (model ILCE-6000) and a ColorChecker, you will find instructions on how to take a good photo of the target here: How to create DCP color profiles - RawPedia
If you upload a daylight+tungsten shot of the target, I’ll create a DCP. @ping me.


here’s a simple video tutorial how to create camera profile for Darktable
I don’t know how it goes with X-Rite Colorchecker, as I used Russian version of the chart, though it had certain advantage - it came equipped with the chart color metering data that contained individual data of the print on my copy of the chart.

I would have gone for a6300, but I’ve found a5000 with a kit lens and valid warranty for just $300.
As I never seriously used Sony cameras before and am planning to purchase to A7II some day, I decided to familiarize myself firstly.Also, as I plan doing mostly, landscape photography, hotshoe and viewfinder are of no importance to me at all.

I would not agree with @paperdigits. Let’s compare apples and apples. MFT provides for crop factor about 2 and sony for about 1.5. So, even if Sony would start producing cameras with MFT mounts, they would have to sacrifice a bigger sensor i.e. image quality. Let alone they would let MFT majors like Panasonic and Olymbus bang an extra buck with their lenses on Sony’s customers before the latter would have developed its own MFT lenses range. We can state the same in respect of MFT manufactureres - why won’t they accomodate to a bigger sensors that allow using more lenses? So, with that, Sony and MFT league are equal and either of them is good in its own way. the real drawback of Sony lenses is the entirely opposite - their lenses are overpriced. Go check how much they charge for 70-200 G - its about $2000. The issue is their cheaper average lenses are really average in optical quality. As far as it feels like those were intentionally under-designed. I believe this is the way Sony induces its customers buy those overpriced ones. at the same time there are very few lenses from cheaper brands, like Sigma and Tamron. This is the first issue one, switching to Sony camera, is about to face.

This is like a story from my teenage years . Back in the day, I used conventional Panasonic MP3 CD payer which was large, consumed a lot of battery power and supported max 128 kbps, while there were Sony minidisc walkmans that required software for writing those minidiscs and the minidiscs themselves, while they provided excellent lossless sound and played music at least twice longer :slight_smile:

What is Sony RAW compression different from the others? Aren’t most popular full-frame cameras, save for Nikon 210a compress their RAWs nowadays? What makes Sony compression worse? I’d appreciate clearing that to me, please, cause don’t know that much about Sony…

The Sony compression was lossy in their raw files. Supposedly they released a firmware update to alliow lossless compression, but I never followed up on it, as I had purchased my Nikon.

If you primary shoot landscape be sure to get the Samyang 12/2 which is a fantastic wide-angle: f/2, very sharp, well-controlled coma, very light and cheap. I believe it is also on sale for $279 right now. It doesn’t have AF but you likely don’t need it with a 12mm wide-angle, though it also doesn’t transmit EXIF so you have to apply distortion and vignetting profiles manually.

Yes, Sony E-mount lenses are fairly expensive compared to other mounts. It also has some holes for its APS-C line:

  • A 17-50mm f/2.8 zoom like the one from Sigma or Tamron. Sony only has the 16-70/4 ZA which is quite mediocre (QC issues) and expensive, but well it is really light to carry around.
  • A 60mm f/1.4 for portrait or something similar, like Fuji’s 58/1.2. The only option here is the 50/1.8, which is excellent, but I’d like something that is a bit longer and faster. There is also the Sigma 60/2.8 but it is slow.
  • A 20~28mm f/2 or f/2.8 pancake that is not crap in IQ, like Canon’s EF-M 22mm f/2. The closest competitor is Sigma’s 19/2.8, but it is not exactly a pancake and the AF options are limited to center.
  • A cheaper 70-200/4 of course. Canon’s 70-200/4 can be had for like $450~$700 used depending on IS.

Uncompressed RAW is available on newer Sony cameras. The issue with compressed RAW is really only visible at sharp transitions from highlights to shadow when you pixel peep, so I wouldn’t worry too much about that.

Never knew about it until now and have just looked at the test images - wooow, such a low distortion! I’m speechless. As of the moment it’s like a unicorn on the market - no offers except for one shop asking for $400 for it. Will have to order it from abroad. Will check the rest of the lens later. Thank you, @PkmX

A bit off-topic, I’m wondering why have they put translucent mirror into Sony/Minolta - Sony E converter?

Yeah, it is one of those little gems that is somehow just better than its competitions, and it came from a relatively unknown Korean company. Samyang’s mirrorless lenses have very good performance/price ratio if you are willing to sacrifice AF, also check out their 21mm f/1.4 ($399 APS-C) and 85mm f/1.4 ($299 FF).

By the way, Samyang lenses are also sold under the “Rokinon”, “Bower” or “Walimex” brand name in some regions. They are the exact same lens just with different brandings, so make sure you also search these. Both B&H and Adorama are selling the 12/2 at $279 right now.

Here are two shots I took with the Samyang 12/2 with A6000:

The second one is shot wide-open at f/2, so you can see how insanely sharp this lens is.

There are 4 LA-EA adapters from 1 to 4. 1 and 2 are for APS-C only while 3 and 4 are for full frame sensors. 1 and 3 do not have a translucent mirror and rely on the camera to focus the lens. This was an issue with older NEX cameras as they only have CDAF which resulted in super poor AF performance, so they ripped the AF unit of a mid-range A-mount camera and put that in the adapter to drive the lens directly. On newer cameras (a6300, a7II, etc), the OSPDAF is fast enough to focus the lens with LA-EA1/3, so you should get that to avoid the light loss with the translucent mirror.

The LA-EA2/4 also includes an AF motor for older Minolta lenses that use screw-driven AF, so those 2 are your only option if you want to adapt such lenses.

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@PkmX So, following your advice I have purchased Samyang(Rokinon) 12 f/2.0 and am very happy with it. The only exception is my copy does not control coma as good as other copies, but, still it is quite good. Being one of the latest copies out there, the focusing ring is adjusted perfectly and hits infinity right at the infinity mark.

For midrange zoom I have purchased FF Sony 27-70 OSS hoping that the smaller sensor of my camera will cut off bad edges. It did, but I would not recommend this lens as the sharpness and contrast is still very low. Maybe I have not tested it well yet, but I’m not quite happy with the first results.

Mu third lens has become Sony SEL 55-210 and, surprisingly, it turned out to be sharp and contrasty lens, unlike bad reviews at it was given. Nothing of that applies to my lens it is sharp at long end and has very few vignetting. In my opinion, this confirms the fact that quality within the same model of lens may be extremely different. Pr Probably I’m lucky to own a good copy. Would definitely recommend it to everyone.

Now thinking about midrange zoom replacement.

Thank you for your recommendations, they saved me a lot of money and time!

@mosaster Glad to hear that it worked out in the end. :slight_smile:

Sony 18-105/4 G is a great alternative if you can bear with the size/weight. It’s very versatile and is very sharp in the center. Other than that you have the much more expensive 16-70/4 Zeiss, but it is infamous for QC issues in early copies.

If you don’t mind primes, the Sigma 30/1.4 DC DN is one of the best prime you can buy for E-mount. It’s fast, extremely sharp, has smooth bokeh, well-controlled flares and cheap ($339 new) as well.

Definitely d-on’t want that Zeiss as, comparing it to others of the same focal range, it seriously lags behind in quality.
That Sony 18-105 with a zoom engine is just too much for my needs :slight_smile:
Anything else you’d suggest for a mid-range zoom?

I suppose you already have the 16-50 “kit” zoom, right? If not, you might consider that. Probably my standards are lower than those of most folks here, but I think the lens is pretty ok (especially stopped down), considering the other features it has (it’s cheap, light, very compact, and fast-focusing). It is obviously not the best lens out there, but I found it much better than what I expected after reading some reviews.

Since your primary interest is landscape photography, I assume that fast focus speed is not your primary concern. Then, you can also try Canon lenses with an adapter. Here is one link with info on various options:

Old Minolta lenses are also excellent. See for example: