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Andrew Reid

Sony A7S Review Part 2 and Conclusion

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Try sliding on a  long lens (above 100 in FF) with architectural  elements in the foreground. Even in APSC mode it's pretty bad.

 

How fast are you going? I mean APSC mode on the a7s is pretty much on par (or even faster) than other CMOS cameras anyway. So comparing it to one of the few global shutter cameras (F55) is quite wrong.

 

If A7s is unusable to you in APSC mode then so is every CMOS camera except ones with global shutter (F55).

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How fast are you going? I mean APSC mode on the a7s is pretty much on par (or even faster) than other CMOS cameras anyway. So comparing it to one of the few global shutter cameras (F55) is quite wrong.

 

If A7s is unusable to you in APSC mode then so is every CMOS camera except ones with global shutter (F55).

These were pretty slow slides. Wish I could post them but dailies are with client. Overall, the APS-C rolling shutter isn't much of an issue except when I'm longer then 100mm, tracking sideways or panning with strong architectural elements (Buildings, fences, products, etc). Trees aren't an issue because who knows how straight they really are. Medium to wide lens, not a problem. But I often shoot product shots 150mm and above. Recently, we had several bottles, beakers, etc for a product shot at 200mm and after several attempts at very slow slide, the skew was still noticeable so we swapped with an F55. The A7s, starts with perhaps the worst skew in the business, so even at APS - C it still has worst skew than most other CMOS cameras. 

 

For personal and indie products, much if not all this is easily fixed in post. But on jobs where the footage is out of my hands and the director's too with a client that wants to turn it around yesterday, that level of skew will lose you work. It's the kind of thing that if they love the idea of full frame, APS-C and low light performance of the A7s, I have to read them the riot act on its rolling shutter issues and work arounds. If you're in the market, I'd say rent it, see what you love and hate, then balance it with your needs. Overall, the camera's still a winner, with drawbacks.

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 The A7s, starts with perhaps the worst skew in the business, so even at APS - C it still has worst skew than most other CMOS cameras. 

 

But no. A7s has been measured to be about 15-20ms (depending on measurer) in aps-c mode, that's pretty much the standard on any CMOS camera that is s35.

 

http://www.cinema5d.com/rolling-shutter-sony-a7s-vs-arri-amira-canon-c300-5d-mark-iii-1dc-panasonic-gh4/

 

Samuel H's measurements:

http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?303559-Measuring-rolling-shutter-put-a-number-on-this-issue!

 

I've used a bunch of CMOS cameras and none of them really have that much faster than 15ms rolling shutter. I also wouldn't call 100mm a normal slide look, usually slides are done wide angle instead of semi-telephoto. Actually, I don't even remember a slide that needs global shutter that much, usually it's handheld that gets most damaged by rolling shutter, not slides.

 

I'm trying to figure out your shot, apparently your slide was very fast and it had buildings that were slanted. That's just an odd slide if you ask me.

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One major flaw: The A7s (and most likely also other A7 and possibly even FS700) suffer from horrible clipping treatment in the blue/purple areas.

 

Sample Video:

(password: blue)

Thread: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?328486-A7S-Serious-quot-Colour-Burn-quot-Problem

 

@Andrew: As we all know you have a much closer relationship to the big camera companies than most of us. Whenever you can, pls bring this to someones attention, since all my efforts only end up in Template-eMail-answers asking me to send my camera to a service partner, not acknowledging that this is in ALL cameras.

 

This needs to be adressed with people who can do smth about this.

 

Thank you.

That's crazy!  It's the same issue I found in the Sony Nex5n.  When that camera came out I shot a short film that had a police car scene in it.  In the edit I noticed the clipping with the blue flashes.  Granted, those lights were quite bright, but after seeing your video, it's the same look totally.  I had to bring down the blue levels to compensate on those shots.  I wonder what this similarities are between how the A7s and the Nex lineup in video capture.  We know it's not the codec... Makes me wonder if other cameras (like the fs7) will have the same issue.  Anyone know if this is present in the f5 or, god forbid... the f55?  

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Heres another short I shot today using the A7s. Opening shot is using the time-lapse app, which is pretty convenient! 

 

This was a difficult assignment. Had to arrive at the stadium at 7am and have the thing shot and edited by the afternoon before the finals show started. The a7s didn't get in the way, and the lightweight was a huge plus since I was used to lugging the C100 around. 

 

Overall Im incredibly happy with the camera

 

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But no. A7s has been measured to be about 15-20ms (depending on measurer) in aps-c mode, that's pretty much the standard on any CMOS camera that is s35.

 

I also wouldn't call 100mm a normal slide look, usually slides are done wide angle instead of semi-telephoto. Actually, I don't even remember a slide that needs global shutter that much, usually it's handheld that gets most damaged by rolling shutter, not slides.

 

I'm trying to figure out your shot, apparently your slide was very fast and it had buildings that were slanted. That's just an odd slide if you ask me.

200mm, sliding across product. Think commercial where you shoot rather small products. We're shooting 30 to100 ML bottles of NJOY product. It'd be similar to shooting Manhattan skyline from Brooklyn where you want to feature individual buildings (in case you've no small bottles lying around). Slow slide and we still had leaning tower of Piza effect. Swear to God, not making this up. For work, I've usually use the usual suspects (Alexa, Red, C300, F5/55) and of course their skew is considerably less. All that said, the director still preferred the A7s over our F55 for the low light, mobility, and full frame. He creamed his jeans when we threw on Pretzvel. 

 

Starting a feature next month, I'm going to try and convince our director to go A7s. It's noir. 

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For what it's worth, except for a few misgivings, the A7s, has reinvigorated me about what a camera can get away with. It's become my home movie, personal and some pro project go to. Anyone thinking of getting it, I strongly recommend budget in the Movcam A7s cage. Barely bigger than the camera it solves a lot of issues. If has a bracket lock for Metabones style adaptors. I have a EF MB mount constantly on my A7s. The Movcam mount bracket takes care of the freeplay between Metabones and camera. It also adds a second mounting point further securing the camera and taking stress off the E mount. It also has a proper hdmi lock. The first job I did with the A7s, I went through three micro hdmi cables in two weeks. Since getting the Movcam cage, haven't busted one. I can actually swing the camera by the cable (not recommended). Last it has two levels of quick release: 15mm rod mount to tripod and camera cage to 15mm rod mount. So you can go real small and pop the camera off in seconds with nothing but cage and top handle. Got mine off Ebay for 340.00 with rods / rod mount and hdmi lock. I don't work for them, just jazzed about a product that'd even make German engineers green with envy.

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Heres another short I shot today using the A7s. Opening shot is using the time-lapse app, which is pretty convenient! 

 

This was a difficult assignment. Had to arrive at the stadium at 7am and have the thing shot and edited by the afternoon before the finals show started. The a7s didn't get in the way, and the lightweight was a huge plus since I was used to lugging the C100 around. 

 

Overall Im incredibly happy with the camera

 

 

Nice job, Zach!  What did you edit in? And which PP did you shoot with?

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Nice job, Zach!  What did you edit in? And which PP did you shoot with?

Thank you! I shot this entirely in PP6. I edited in FCPX using film convert along with the Cine 4 gamma preset in film convert. I'm not sure if this is the correct preset for PP6, but I loved the look I ended up with. 

 

I'm finding that the footage is just so easy and fun to play with. So many different looks achievable due to the great dynamic range and flexible codec. Its just fun to shoot with from start to finish

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If the A7s is used in APSC mode, does the dynamic range get affected? Is there any negative impact to the image other than the crop?

 

I noticed a slight variation in brightness of the same shots in Philip Bloom's test between full frame and Apsc modes.

 

thanks.

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Unrelated to the A7S camera discussion - but great video Andrew!

 

It's just interesting to keep watching the video for the effects. I find that it fits well together with the type of music. The editing and mixing in different speeds of the footage (the low shutter speed effect vs normal speed vs slowmotion) works great.

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For the person that asked if the A7S overheats: I've shot a lot of video with the A7S, even in 100-degree weather with 100% humidity and I haven't had any issues with it. I'm confident saying it does not overheat. 

 

As for not being able to film action with the A7S? I disagree:

http://www.drivingsports.com/2014-red-bull-grc-seattle-highlights/

 

Video was shot with manual focus using the Tamron SP 24-70 f/2.8 and 70-200 A-Mount lenses in 1080/30p FF mode. Also, a couple GoPro clips, but those are obvious.

 

In related news, I just put my FS100 up on eBay.

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For what it's worth, except for a few misgivings, the A7s, has reinvigorated me about what a camera can get away with. It's become my home movie, personal and some pro project go to. Anyone thinking of getting it, I strongly recommend budget in the Movcam A7s cage. Barely bigger than the camera it solves a lot of issues. If has a bracket lock for Metabones style adaptors. I have a EF MB mount constantly on my A7s. The Movcam mount bracket takes care of the freeplay between Metabones and camera. It also adds a second mounting point further securing the camera and taking stress off the E mount. It also has a proper hdmi lock. The first job I did with the A7s, I went through three micro hdmi cables in two weeks. Since getting the Movcam cage, haven't busted one. I can actually swing the camera by the cable (not recommended). Last it has two levels of quick release: 15mm rod mount to tripod and camera cage to 15mm rod mount. So you can go real small and pop the camera off in seconds with nothing but cage and top handle. Got mine off Ebay for 340.00 with rods / rod mount and hdmi lock. I don't work for them, just jazzed about a product that'd even make German engineers green with envy.

Out of interest what type of micro hdmi cable do you use ? I need to buy a cable to use with my A7s Movcam cage but it is difficult to judge what type of cable will work effectively with that type of clamp.

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I own a GH4 and I like the camera.  It is not so good in low light as you all mentioned - even with the Voitlander 17.5 attached.  I struggle with the 24p stuff in a PAL region as it seems if the PAL system regularly tries to "catch" up to correct the output to 25p and then the output image has that %$%$ little "jump" I see in the video - which I hate with a passion!.

 

I'm now VERY tempted to buy a A7s body as well....   I seem to have your blessing??  :-)  (I only have a 10 - 18 & 50mm 1.8 Canon full frame lens and will buy a "cheap" lens adapter for now - no money for Sony lenses left!!)

 

In a very, very general way - if I rate the GH4 a 90% camera, what would the A7s be compared to it?

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I own a GH4 and I like the camera.  It is not so good in low light as you all mentioned - even with the Voitlander 17.5 attached.  I struggle with the 24p stuff in a PAL region as it seems if the PAL system regularly tries to "catch" up to correct the output to 25p and then the output image has that %$%$ little "jump" I see in the video - which I hate with a passion!.

 

That little jump -which you understandably hate- can easily be avoided. If delivering for web, you can edit and encode the finished piece in 24p. If you are editing for broadcast or some medium that requires 25p, just conform the footage first -it's done in different ways in different NLEs, but it is always easy-.

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Help me out...  I shoot in 24p 4K.  I then tried: 1. Importing to Premiere CS6 as 24p and then export to 25p (PAL).  It does its "jumps".  2. I import the 24p in a 25p profile.  Premiere warns that the sequence differ from the source.  I keep the sequence and export to 25p.  I get the $$%% "jumps".  3. Same as above but I now change at the warning to "change" to match source - I get the "jumps".

 

What do I do wrong here?

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