Trying out new cameras and lenses

I have GAS, I’ll admit, even though I know it doesn’t bring me eternal happiness and I can’t afford it. But I can’t help constantly looking at other systems and wanting to try them out. After all, photography is my hobby, and buying gear is part of that hobby. It’s fun!

I’m currently wondering about trying full frame for a while and seeing how I like the Sony A7Cii, because I like compact cameras. The problem is that I’d really like to try it before buying full into the ecosystem. But I don’t think anywhere near me does rentals and I don’t know anyone who owns one. Anyone have any tips for trying before buying? Or do you all just buy new and then return if you don’t like it?


Go to the store and bring your own memory card?

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Yeah, I guess that’s probably the best I could hope for, although I was thinking more of testing out in the field over several days. But I guess that’s only possible with rental companies.

Are you in an area where there’s a camera club or a decent used equipment shop? You could mount up a lens at a meeting or test a piece of kit in the shop and see for yourself if something floats your boat.

I had some interest in this camera when it came out and I can’t really attest to how accurate the statements are but there were a lot of comments like this one…

How can a $3000 camera have a worse EVF than Sony’s entry level APSC camera - that crazy!

If I spend that much on a camera a decent evf would be important…maybe there are many more other things about the camera to out weigh that…

Points for sure to being able to try it out to see if it matches your expectation…

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Yes, I saw lots of comments about that too, but I think that was for the A7C rather than its successor, wasn’t it? The first version had a famously bad EVF, but I think the mk ii model improves on it quite a bit. Still, I don’t think it’s great, and the price of the camera would suggest that it should have a premium build all around. Perhaps it’s a sacrifice they had to make to offer a full-frame camera in such a compact body… or perhaps they needed to make it worse than one of their competing Alpha products to avoid cannibalizing sales…

But it’s for sure a strong argument for trying it. It’s more expensive than my X-T5 but is inferior in many areas. Still, it looks like a very nice camera and I’m interested in trying out the Sony FF ecosystem with its huge lens offering. That said, I’m also interested in trying out Canon, Nikon, OM-1, Panasonic… Leica (I wish)…


You need to win the lottery :grin:

Well, that would be nice, but I’ve never played the lottery and probably never will. I don’t like those odds…

Yeah, I go through these phases of getting a bit obsessed with gear. Then I purchase something and I realize that gear is just gear, and then I get obsessed with going out and actually photographing. And then I go through a phase of being obsessed with developing RAWs… And then the cycle repeats.

I’m using “obsessed” very loosely here because I actually do have impulse control. I don’t want to diminish the experience of those with actual OCD.


Can I make some comments about the full frame verses crop sensor discussion. Full frame can bring the most out of wide angle lenses such as 14mm because there is no crop factor. That is great for those people such as real estate photographers and others who need more wide angle capability. Another advantage of full frame is the ‘potential’ for larger photosites that capture more light giving them advantages in dim lighting with reduced noise and higher dynamic range. Important word here is ‘potentially’. This is great for astro photography and even twilight landscape photographers.

On the other hand crop sensors bring out the best of your telephoto lenses because of the crop sensor. A 1.5 crop factor turns a 400mm lenses into a 600mm equivalent. This is great for wildlife and bird photographers. Extra bonus if the camera has high pixel density to further allow post shooting cropping.

Maybe for the average person the extra cost of body, lenses and weight is not justifiable for a full frame camera to take some holiday snaps or pictures that never get printed. Crop sensor cameras are more affordable and the quality of the images exceeds the average person’s needs.

Just some personal reflections so don’t be too hard on me.


Good points. I would add that the potentially lower noise levels are of greater advantage to action photographers too…

And also, full frame gives a shallower depth of field for a given field of view and aperture value - not sure how relevant this is for most, can even be a disadvantage, but worth mentioning IMO.

I wouldn’t be hard on you at all. I really hate the sensor wars, and I get irritated by anyone championing one as much better than the other. As you said, they both have their strengths and weaker aspects. What matters is how much you enjoy using the camera and whether the relative strengths are important for your genre of photography.

Personally, I love my APS-C camera and will continue to use it as long as it brings me joy. I want to try a FF camera (or should I say 35mm equivalent because “full frame” is a misnomer and just marketing fluff) simply to see if I prefer it for my style of shooting, and also just to try out something else other than the Fuji ecosystem. I certainly wouldn’t consider it any kind of “upgrade” other than in the areas where physics says it will be better.

I think the vastly higher price of most FF cameras is not always justified to be honest, but I’m sure I’ll have a more informed opinion of the various manufacturers and sensor sizes once I’ve tried them all!

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That can be an advantage for portrait work and a big disadvantage for holiday snapshots.

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I recently was in the market for a new camera and deliberately went for the Canon R7 with the crop sensor and high pixel density. Full frame did not suit my needs and would have meant investing in a whole new set of lenses which would have cost me thousands of dollars. But if I ever went back to being a pro photographer I would have both full frame and crop sensor cameras. I also love my Canon G16 quality compact camera. It has a 6mm f1.8 wide angle lens that allows me to capture candid night street scenes with good depth of field.

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I’ve heard good things about that camera (R7). Before I went Fuji, I was always a Canon photographer and my last one was a Canon T3i/D550. Before that it was a Rebel G / EOS 550N. Some of my favourite shots were with those cameras.
I may one day go back to Canon, but for now I’m enjoying trying out new systems.

I really don’t have the money to buy lots of gear, although I talk like I do. I save for something in particular and then I look for deals and second-hand bargains. The hunt is part of the fun!


You could get an early A7… they’re relatively cheap now, although they do have their own quirks too. But work well with adapted lenses.

Yes, I thought of going that route, and I may well do. I’ll keep looking for deals and see what comes up, although I really am a fan of the more compact cameras these days, so not sure I want to go back to anything bulky like my old DSLR.


I love the fuji cameras despite not owning one myself. I like the iso invariance of the fuji sensor, but I had a collection of Canon lenses so I went that route. I also own Nikon and Pentax cameras, but the R7 is the new kid on the block. The new challenge I started as of today is learning to edit the 4K videos that it shoots. They are really very high quality.

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And here I am living in the distant past… I’m currently churning the idea of grabbing a used Lumix GH1 around in my head :smiley:

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Goferit! (as long it’s not too expensive). :wink:

They’ve been sitting on it a while now, and I’ve been trying to check comparable prices…but I think I’ll just throw them an offer when I’ve gotten back on the disposable income train.
Currently happy with my bridge camera, but I really want to get something a bit better.