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Associated Press Sign Exclusive Product Deal With Sony


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1.) I’m a full-time photojournalist. I do have encounters with AP PJs out in the field. If they are churning and burning, they probably won’t shoot log as they upload and send their video to other press agencies. They in turn do not have the luxury of color correcting before air. 

If they are shooting an investigative piece or something long term where they have time and crew to put it together, yes they may shoot LOG. Business is deadline driven, "Make slot, not art".  SLOG introduces an unnecessary workflow when your slamming video together. Not enough time to render and transcode that.

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From the director of photography AP:

"We liked the idea of having the color quality and the image quality being close to the same between stills and video equipment. So if a stills photographer helped out a video colleague with a little filming, or B-roll, it would fit in the edit. And if we were to pull a frame grab from a 4K video camera it would have the same basic feel as a photograph from a stills camera."

So it doesn't sound like a good idea to use Sony defaults on A9 II and try to match it to FS line to me.

Surely better to shoot S-LOG on both and match in post with same LUT on each.

A LUT does not actually slow down your turn-around.

I assume professional news editors know how to use one.

10 seconds, click, done.

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This is a bit befuddling:

"The vast majority of the stills photographers will get a9 Mark IIs. We will get some a7R IVs for the videographers...But the standard kit will be an a9 Mark II."

A7R IV for the videographers?

The only advantage it has over the A9 II for the videographer is literally just SLOG.

So I assume they are going to use SLOG otherwise why get "A7R IVs for the videographers"

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The killer feature the A9 and A9ii have is 'silent shooting with a stacked sensor' - this means you get silent shooting with a very fast sensor read and no noticeable rolling shutter in the stills. Contrast that with say the silent shutter on the A7riv which is basically unusable (apart from still scenes) because of the rolling shutter. Canon and Nikon are yet to introduce mirrorless cameras with a stacked sensor.

As for the lack of SLOG and other picture profiles on the A9, I thought it was a tech limitation of the shutter on the A9 rather than a software/cripple hammer issue?

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As much as I like Sony, could it actually be because AP is in trouble and getting a bunch of free stuff (that to be fair is still good for their purposes) would be a major help?

The Australian Asscociated Press actually was slated to close recently but was saved at the last minute.

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I can't speak for journalists, but I would love for Sony to update the firmware on the A9 to include slog. The A9 is my go-to camera for photographing wildlife and I also occasionally use it for video. It would certainly be nice to have a bit more latitude on highlights.

 

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I'd guess the logistics available to a company like Sony may have something to do with it too? Sony is a vast corporation and I guess  AP want to be able to get stuff anywhere at any time, and may benefit from the distribution networks and so on?

Just a guess, but I'd think for such a large organisation as AP there's a lot to worry about in terms of spares, repairs, availability in far-flung parts of the world etc

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12 hours ago, TheRealOG said:

1.) I’m a full-time photojournalist. I do have encounters with AP PJs out in the field. If they are churning and burning, they probably won’t shoot log as they upload and send their video to other press agencies. They in turn do not have the luxury of color correcting before air. 

If they are shooting an investigative piece or something long term where they have time and crew to put it together, yes they may shoot LOG. Business is deadline driven, "Make slot, not art".  SLOG introduces an unnecessary workflow when your slamming video together. Not enough time to render and transcode that.

That's interesting to read. Having never done a job like that I never think in those terms. I'm guessing that also the small size and weight of Sony's offerings has something to do with it?

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4 minutes ago, jgharding said:

I'd guess the logistics available to a company like Sony may have something to do with it too? Sony is a vast corporation and I guess  AP want to be able to get stuff anywhere at any time, and may benefit from the distribution networks and so on?

Just a guess, but I'd think for such a large organisation as AP there's a lot to worry about in terms of spares, repairs, availability in far-flung parts of the world etc

Canon, Nikon, Panasonic, etc. could have got stuff anywhere at any time, I think the decision largely boils down to Sony winning the tender before the other manufacturers even got a look in because it was perhaps a done deal with Sony marketing material in the tender (like AP saying it needs "cut & paste from Sony"... eh, I mean "silent shutter")

That's what I hear on the grape vine anyway 🙂

Plus the financial terms probably quite favourable.

But also, Canon didn't have a pro mirrorless camera available at the time the decision was made, and neither did Nikon, both with limited mirrorless lens ranges too.

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12 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

"The vast majority of the stills photographers will get a9 Mark IIs. We will get some a7R IVs for the videographers...But the standard kit will be an a9 Mark II."

Perhaps a basic question, but how much of what AP does is video vs stills?

My impression of AP was for print media - do they have a big video arm too?  with journalists reporting from wherever?  

I only ever remember seeing the old "Credit: AP" "Source: AP" type captions on photographs.

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9 minutes ago, Andrew Reid said:

Canon, Nikon, Panasonic, etc. could have got stuff anywhere at any time, I think the decision largely boils down to Sony winning the tender before the other manufacturers even got a look in because it was perhaps a done deal with Sony marketing material in the tender (like AP saying it needs "cut & paste from Sony"... eh, I mean "silent shutter")

That's what I hear on the grape vine anyway 🙂

Plus the financial terms probably quite favourable.

But also, Canon didn't have a pro mirrorless camera available at the time the decision was made, and neither did Nikon, both with limited mirrorless lens ranges too.

Yeah the sleeping on pro mirrorless was pretty shocking. 

I always picture steering a company like Canon or Nikon as being like steering an oil tanker using a the committee in Chernobyl. They're all round this table in the bowels of the ship. Someone says "this is what we need to do" and he is hauled of to the gulag. 

A year later they carry the orders up to the guy at the wheel, and he fills in the requisite 200 forms he has to before he can steer the ship.

He then starts turning and they hit an iceberg.

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13 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

This is the key point.

EF and the range of DSLR lenses has been an advantage for so long and now it's practically in the bin

Thankfully, I'm no longer in the game of having to drop big money on 400mm f2.8 primes but if I was then £12K on a new Nikon that is on an ,if not exactly dead mount but one that is in its twilight hours, and that also would tie me into DSLRs for the duration if I wanted native performance would definitely give pause for thought.

Without having a pro body, Canon and Nikon currently offer no transition path to mirrorless and the longer that goes on, the more chance that transition path will lead users to Sony.

Particularly as, not withstanding whatever additional deal they gave to AP, the equivalent Sony system for a couple of bodies, 24-70 f2.8,70-200 f2.8 and 400 f2.8 is about 15-20% cheaper than the other two.

That 15-20% is a big chunk of cash when you are looking at just under £30K for a system, especially at a time when the arse had already fallen out of publication fees even before COVID-19.

Spread that saving across the many hundreds of systems AP were buying and it would have been a compelling deal for them even without any additional bung from Sony.

 

 

 

 

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Ahh, just looked up AP and it is a different company entirely to what I thought it was and since it is a non profit, of course they would take any deal that got them free gear in exchange for selling just a little bit of their soul.

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20 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

 

Surely better to shoot S-LOG on both and match in post with same LUT on each.

 

I disagree with your conclusion in your main post. That's not how rapid world journalist and photojournalism (or video journalism) works. You want to capture something and very quickly with little editing publish it around the world. This is not film making. 

These guys have to deliver a very specific images or types of images and then push it quickly to their editors who then decide which ones make the cut and gets pushed out.  No one is going to sit there color match for hours. By then the story is over. 

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2 hours ago, Heiko Herrmann said:

I am sorry, but slog can not be added via firmware to an α9. Gammut is done by the sensor in real time when in movie mode. The translation to 8bit is not done by the cpu here. 

Interesting if true, thank you.

If in some readout modes, the 14bit colour depth, wide gamut and translation to 8bit Rec.709 is done on-sensor that would perhaps explain why there are no SLOG or Picture Profiles in silent shutter mode on cameras like the A7R IV too.

If the sensor lacks the onboard brain to do LOG then it may explain why Sigma Fp doesn't have LOG either, similar Sony sensor.

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