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5 Reasons I liked the A7sii


Mattias Burling
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So I returned the A7sii yesterday.
Like with all Sonys, it first feels perfect. There is so much to like with them.
Everything from the handling, features, build, specs etc.


The A7sii is a joy to shoot, much improved DR, mind blowing lowlight and great IS for old glass.
But.... still... when grading and viewing the finished image... its just not there yet.
I hate being able to get the Slog-3 where I want it just to see it band.
Or to be satisfied with the Slog-2 in general and then see what it does to skin.

In short, its a super awesome and great camera, but its not for me.

With that said I did a top 5 review.

 

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EOSHD Pro Color 5 for Sony cameras EOSHD Z LOG for Nikon CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs
49 minutes ago, Mattias Burling said:

So I returned the A7sii yesterday.
Like with all Sonys, it first feels perfect. There is so much to like with them.
Everything from the handling, features, build, specs etc.


The A7sii is a joy to shoot, much improved DR, mind blowing lowlight and great IS for old glass.
But.... still... when grading and viewing the finished image... its just not there yet.
I hate being able to get the Slog-3 where I want it just to see it band.
Or to be satisfied with the Slog-2 in general and then see what it does to skin.

In short, its a super awesome and great camera, but its not for me.

With that said I did a top 5 review.

 

Mattias, nice video. I was waiting for your punch line "But I sold it anyway fuckers"!!  Lol

Nice shots of city. Is this Germany?

Have you tried color correcting on Davinci?

At least a dozen people I've spoken with about the Sony A series hated the colors, but suddenly fell in love with the camera again, after using Davinci a few hours to work the magic.

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39 minutes ago, lafilm said:

Mattias, nice video. I was waiting for your punch line "But I sold it anyway fuckers"!!  Lol

Nice shots of city. Is this Germany?

Have you tried color correcting on Davinci?

At least a dozen people I've spoken with about the Sony A series hated the colors, but suddenly fell in love with the camera again, after using Davinci a few hours to work the magic.

Its Sweden :)
Yeah I use Davinci, don't see how it would matter though, pretty much the same tools in there as other NLEs.

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Do you still need to grade S-Log2 with S-Gamut3.Cine configured? 

Mattias, nice review.  

I'm new to Sony's colors and profiles, and don't have a lot of time for grading as this is a hobby, more of a learn-as-you-go hobby.  What do you use for the most DR and best skin SOOC, assuming you're not going to grade it?

Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 8.30.12 PM.png

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi
41 minutes ago, Arizona Sunset said:

 

I'm new to Sony's colors and profiles, and don't have a lot of time for grading as this is a hobby, more of a learn-as-you-go hobby.  What do you use for the most DR and best skin SOOC, assuming you're not going to grade it?

 

Picture Profile OFF is the nicest natural direct viewing mode. Second is Automn leaves. 

These thing are highly subjective but this is the widest adopted opinion. For shooting with ZERO grading You should hook your camera to an HDTV/Monitor and tweak the in-camera settings until you hit the sweet spot. 

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16 minutes ago, Ebrahim Saadawi said:

Picture Profile OFF is the nicest natural direct viewing mode. Second is Automn leaves. 

These thing are highly subjective but this is the widest adopted opinion. For shooting with ZERO grading You should hook your camera to an HDTV/Monitor and tweak the in-camera settings until you hit the sweet spot. 

Good idea - thanks - do you recommend a 4k consumer monitor, or a color-tuned monitor?  I'm guess since this for family and friend consumption (in my case), it would be the former. 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Yes depends on what your viewer will use. When I do an in-camera PP grade for straight viewership, I would never use my calibrated EIZO monitor, it's just not what my audience will see, instead I hook it up to an HDTV (no need for a 4K one if you don't own one btw) and grade in-camera off that. 

Just remember to get into the TV settings and remove any ridiculous features under names like ''Magic XXX'' ''Smart ZZZ'' ''Noise Reduction'' ''Sports Mode'' ''Motion Smooth'', you know, ''calibrate'' it to a the most normal state with middle saturation & sharpening and no shifts in RGB white balance numbers from 0/0. 

This is how I make in-camera profile and view my final products, not a hideously default Samsung TV or an Eizo monitor, something in-between to give a close representation for both viewers. 

Just saying: If I am producing for a client who will only watch the project on one cheap LG/Sam TV with all the crap features turned on, I will grade using an exactly as hideous of a display. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

beautiful images there.  Love that little puppydog

I can't help but wonder whether it might have been the variable ND throttle device that might have been causing some of the colour problems.  I highly doubt fotodiox are using top quality glass  - I've yet to find a flawless product of theirs where there hasn't been at least one major pitfall to the design - usually due to keeping costs down. 

did you do any tests with the nd throttle not in the signal chain?  

 

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46 minutes ago, richg101 said:

beautiful images there.  Love that little puppydog

I can't help but wonder whether it might have been the variable ND throttle device that might have been causing some of the colour problems.  I highly doubt fotodiox are using top quality glass  - I've yet to find a flawless product of theirs where there hasn't been at least one major pitfall to the design - usually due to keeping costs down. 

did you do any tests with the nd throttle not in the signal chain?  

 

Checkout my review of it. The ND is actually sharper and better than my top notch Genus Eclipse. Its an insanely good deal.

 

41 minutes ago, araucaria said:

Filters behind lenses aren't really a good idea http://www.pierretoscani.com/echo_divers2.html#presentation203

I say its the best idea ever. And thats why the C100, C300 and all the ENG cameras I ever used are such great tools :)
Also Fotodiox said this,

"That problem comes up when you mount a variable ND on a wide lens. Let's say 24mm (sometimes even just 35mm!). The optics just don't work, and you get that cross-shaped defect. With the ND Throttle, you put the variable ND behind the lens, and so the effect works every time. You can now shoot variable ND with pretty much any lens in your collection."

And I agree, no X and there are hard stops for the safe zones. 

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On 3/3/2016 at 6:20 AM, Ebrahim Saadawi said:

Picture Profile OFF is the nicest natural direct viewing mode. Second is Automn leaves. 

Picture Profile OFF is not a mode. This a setting that turns off picture profiles and uses whatever creative style is active at the moment.

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1 hour ago, Mattias Burling said:

Checkout my review of it. The ND is actually sharper and better than my top notch Genus Eclipse. Its an insanely good deal.

 

I say its the best idea ever. And thats why the C100, C300 and all the ENG cameras I ever used are such great tools :)
Also Fotodiox said this,

"That problem comes up when you mount a variable ND on a wide lens. Let's say 24mm (sometimes even just 35mm!). The optics just don't work, and you get that cross-shaped defect. With the ND Throttle, you put the variable ND behind the lens, and so the effect works every time. You can now shoot variable ND with pretty much any lens in your collection."

And I agree, no X and there are hard stops for the safe zones. 

When this adapter is on the lowest setting does it still apply some level of ND? Or is it completely clear?

You're videos are a huge help dude!

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5 minutes ago, August McCue said:

When this adapter is on the lowest setting does it still apply some level of ND? Or is it completely clear?

You're videos are a huge help dude!

There is still some ND. Dont remember how many stops. On the Sony its a no issue imo due to the very high base iso.

But I would have an extra regular adapter with me just in case.

Im glad you find them helpful.

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8 hours ago, Mattias Burling said:

There is still some ND. Dont remember how many stops. On the Sony its a no issue imo due to the very high base iso.

But I would have an extra regular adapter with me just in case.

Im glad you find them helpful.

You may, however, get colour shift given that there's a piece of glass there. I've used Tiffen NDs that are more expensive per stop than the entirety of that adapter on Alexas and REDs and still had colour shifts. You can't trust the optical quality of a $200 adapter. Even a $400 single stop ND can cause a shift towards the green channel. It's not an issue exclusive to Tiffen either.

Personally, I've found no particular issues with Slog on any Sony cameras (A7s, F3, F5, FS5). Sure, it's no Log-C, but it's perfectly fine. I tend to shoot 4:2:2 to my Atomos from the A7s for anything critical, and to my eye that does help a bit with the colours.

I'll also add that I watched some ISO5000 Varicam LT footage projected on a 4k screen the other night. The night shots were impressive, noise-wise, but overall the image wasn't totally dissimilar to what you can get out of an A7s. There was lots of talk on the night about how the skin tones aren't particularly rich, or overly orange. But they're easy to get there if you want it. The skin tones are much more 'true to life'.

I caught myself thinking 'the skin tones are not dissimilar to what I see from my Sony cameras'

I wonder if maybe those on here are so used to shooting Canon, and their over-saturated, pushed to the red channel skin tones that anything that's more true to life is seen as 'not good enough'.

I also wonder how much of it is due to other reasons. I've set up LED lights, or put in filters and wondered for a minute at why my skin tones are looking a bit green.

Slide the ND up, or put some minus green gel on the light, and you'll see exactly why.

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40 minutes ago, jax_rox said:

You may, however, get colour shift given that there's a piece of glass there. I've used Tiffen NDs that are more expensive per stop than the entirety of that adapter on Alexas and REDs and still had colour shifts. You can't trust the optical quality of a $200 adapter. Even a $400 single stop ND can cause a shift towards the green channel. It's not an issue exclusive to Tiffen either.

Well, there you go, buy cheap then

Since NDs is a must you just have to grade it out. As you could see on the color charts the cheap ND had a very slight color shift. Almost not visable. But it was much charper than the expensive filter, which of course also has one.

Its important to remember that all filters does something to the image. My sugggestion is to just accept that all NDs has a color shift.

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