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Andrew Reid

Sony A9 and electronic shutter picture profile limitations

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Since we first had S-LOG and advanced Cine picture profiles from Sony there has been a restriction that they can't be enabled in Silent Mode, which uses an electronic shutter.

This got me thinking - the A9 makes a big deal about it's electronic shutter - and low and behold has no picture profiles.

Do you think Sony left them out as they conflict with the electronic shutter somehow - maybe they were afraid sports photographers would be confused about why their max FPS just dropped from 20fps to 5fps, because they had PP1 selected.

I think that's it.

Of course, this is a stupid decision by Sony.

First basic solution I just plucked out of my ass...make the damn profiles work with an electronic shutter! How hard can it be!

Second basic answer... make the picture profiles work only when video mode is selected on the mode dial. Avoids confusion.

Third point is this - how can Sony have the BEST full frame 4K picture, even more detailed than the A6500 on their FLAGSHIP and MOST EXPENSIVE camera and NOT put S-LOG or Hybrid LOG Gamma on it?!

The A7R III and D850 full frame 4K both fall short of the resolution and almost zero-moire achieved by the A9. So they have the most capable full frame mirrorless camera on the market for shooting 4K... with the least number of picture profile options. Well done Sony!

Thing is getting down to £3k used now, so actually cheaper than the A7R III with all the same nice things, but better 4K, bigger buffer, extra dial, faster continuous shooting, better electronic shutter and yet... no S-LOG!

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

I really, really like the a9 - the zero blackout EVF and AF are truly what every mirrorless camera should strive to achieve, its so far ahead of everything else out there - most DSLR's too. The oversampled 4k is absolutely beautiful as well, RS is good and its just so fast at ... well everything. I've been seriously tempted to get one and dumping my a7r2/s2 despite the lack of PP's, just using the standard profiles instead. 

I still think the PP's get added at some point when a7r3 mania slows a bit. But Sony being Sony, you can see why they exclude them. With the sensor readout speed being so fast, I'm willing to bet they could unlock 4k60p and much higher bitrates too if they wanted to.

Chris

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It’s a good question. I have a slightly different theory. The A9 was sold on the basis of the almost zero rolling shutter in ‘stills’ due to the 1/160th sensor readout. I think Sony didn’t want people buying the camera for video essentially expecting zero rolling shutter as sensor readout for video is 1/30 (1/50 apsc). So they deliberately crippled the video capabilities.

I also think we might get a better understanding of Sony’,s thinking when they release the A7siii.

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Hmm rolling shutter is pretty good in video mode on the A9 though, isn't it? Not zero, but still very good.

And I can't understand why they'd want us to buy an A7S III or A7R III instead for video, when these have more rolling shutter, and most importantly for Sony - when these are cheaper and actually the A9 has a bigger profit margin for Sony. There are people who actually want to buy one for video right now and who find lack of S-LOG a major roadblock to Sony earning a tasty $4.5k sale.

Daft!

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1 hour ago, Andrew Reid said:

Hmm rolling shutter is pretty good in video mode on the A9 though, isn't it? Not zero, but still very good.

And I can't understand why they'd want us to buy an A7S III or A7R III instead for video, when these have more rolling shutter, and most importantly for Sony - when these are cheaper and actually the A9 has a bigger profit margin for Sony. There are people who actually want to buy one for video right now and who find lack of S-LOG a major roadblock to Sony earning a tasty $4.5k sale.

Daft!

Well I tend to agree.

Here is an A9 v A7riii video...

I think that rolling shutter is the same but 4k is noticeably sharper on the A9 and the focusing slightly better. Definitely nothing in the A7riii that would suggest you shouldnt put PP in the A9.

And not having PP in the A9 is like putting a large sticker on the camera saying 'dont buy for video'.

And yes please get rid of PP in still shooting - it is incredibly annoying!

Maybe the A7siii will tell us. I think that the A7siii may not have 4k 60p dues to 'overheating' so I sort of wonder whether 'zero rolling shutter' (possibly based off the A9 sensor) will be its 'key selling point'. 

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6 hours ago, Robert Collins said:

Well I tend to agree.

Here is an A9 v A7riii video...

I think that rolling shutter is the same but 4k is noticeably sharper on the A9 and the focusing slightly better. Definitely nothing in the A7riii that would suggest you shouldnt put PP in the A9.

And not having PP in the A9 is like putting a large sticker on the camera saying 'dont buy for video'.

And yes please get rid of PP in still shooting - it is incredibly annoying!

Maybe the A7siii will tell us. I think that the A7siii may not have 4k 60p dues to 'overheating' so I sort of wonder whether 'zero rolling shutter' (possibly based off the A9 sensor) will be its 'key selling point'. 

Yeah it's annoying if you have S-LOG selected in video mode and you turn the dial back to stills mode and your JPEGs are now in S-LOG. Not sure users want to do that. Sony however, seem to think otherwise. Maybe their engineer is a big fan of shooting S-LOG stills?!

That video reveals some interesting things -

The colour is slightly better on the A9, with slightly higher luminance at same exposure.

The rolling shutter for me is impressive, as the A9 is doing a 6K full pixel readout yet with less rolling shutter than the A7R III which is pixel binning. (Skipping rows or pixels = less data to readout from the sensor). Compare that performance to the other 6K readout cameras (A6500, NX1) and it's roughly twice as good.

Finally the noise performance is outstanding on both, considering the megapixel count... way higher than 12MP on the A7S II... But it is particularly incredible on the A9, with clean 12,800 and hardly any noise even at 25,600 whereas that is really the limit for the A7R III - although no shame in that - that camera is a miracle in low light considering 42MP.

So yeah, the A9 is superior for video and unnecessarily crippled by lacking PPs. Maybe they want us to spend $1000 less on an A7S III instead?!

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i have been holding back buying the riii. (Still own rii). A9 would be great for me (With PP) as it would be very capable stills and video. Kind of 2 bodies in one. A7siii will need to have 4k60 and great slow mo for me. Hopefully a bump in slow mo frame rate.

sony don’t have a great track record of adding features in firmware updates on the consumer side. But the a9 is supposed to be a “pro” camera.

Think we will know more once A7sIII is released. It’s killing me though, I have had the money to put down on a new camera for 6 months. 

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Interesting theory about picture profiles conflicting with electronic shutter. On the A7R ii, I noticed that the in camera HDR mode doesn't work with a picture profile enabled or with electronic shutter enabled. Then, on the A9, in camera HDR does work with electronic shutter enabled but obviously there's no potential conflict with picture profiles since they are non-existent.

I wish Sony would just default to a different setting when there's a conflict, or allow you to select a fallback setting in the event of a conflict. It's a real pain having to switch 3 menu settings on a regular basis.

To me, A9 video seems positioned as high quality video for photographers only.

There's no full frame 4K PDAF photo/video combo option in the Sony lineup right now. Do full frame 4K videographers want combo bodies with more MP and PDAF, like an A9S (with fps crippled on the photography side), or another refinement of low MP CDAF S bodies great for low light? Do videographers buy the S bodies for low light or for full sensor full frame 4K? A lot of videographers also seemed to be happy buying an R PDAF combo body over an S body.

 

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Just picked one up for a great price. Wanted it for sports photography mainly. But happy to use it for video and see how it holds up. Should be fine for the crappie YouTube stuff I do. 

Still desperately waiting for th a7siii though. 

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