I’ve enjoyed my Sony A7 very much with all my Minolta lenses. I’ve concluded that, for me, it lacks nothing really important, and it performs admirably shooting the things I do. Last night, however, I finally yielded to the temptation to buy a new camera. Nearly identical in appearance to the A7, the A7R hides within it’s bowels one of the finest and largest resolution sensors in production: a 36 Megapixel full-frame beast of glory! It uses the same sensor found in the Nikon D800E. The best thing about having this sensor in the Sony though is I can still use all the old Minolta lenses I’ve been buying over the past few months. Side note: In the camera shop, I tested one of my 30+ year old Minolta lenses on the A7R against the Nikon D800E with one of Nikon’s best (read $$$$) equivalents. Guess which lens won? The cheap, old Minolta won by a mile. Even the guys running the camera shop were shocked by this. I’m not talking counting pixels won, it spanked it! Sharper, clearer, better contrast, better color. A sound beating. That’s not even mentioning the size and weight difference. The little Minolta weighed half what the Nikon did. I don’t know much about optical designs but I’m not so sure the massiveness of modern lenses is warranted. At least not in this case. By the time I left the camera shop it was already dark out and I didn’t have a tripod with me. No chance to shoot. I settled instead for a tour of Peter Lik’s gallery at the Houston Galleria Mall. That’s the first time I’ve seen this photographer’s work in person. Let me tell you how humbling that was. The prints I viewed left me speechless. If you’re unfamiliar with Mr. Lik and his work, do yourself the pleasure of googling him and check out his stuff. Then, don’t come back here for a month or so to let your memory of it fade a little. He is in a whole different league.
Getting back now to the part where I post some new photos… This morning I left Houston and made my way to Galveston Island. I’m here only for the day and will be flying out to go offshore in the morning. Given this opportunity to walk the beach with my new camera, I wasn’t about to waste it sitting in a hotel room. Being that it’s after midnight and I have to get up early I’m gonna cut to the chase and just post the photos without any details. I’d rather get these posted sans wordiness than wait a month when I’m back on shore and have internet again. The following photos are all from Galveston Island, TX, right across the street from the Hilton. I spent about 2 hours walking a stretch of about an 1/8th of a mile of shoreline All shots were made using the Minolta 28mm f/2.8 lens on the A7R. RAW files were converted to 16-bit TIFFs using Sony’s proprietary Image Converter software. TIFFs were then spiffed up in Photoshop.
I can’t wait to get back home and reshoot some of my favorite locations with this new setup. The level of detail you can get from this camera is insane. I plan on doing some big prints for the house once I get a few decent images captured. Hope you enjoyed the photos. I’ll be back online in about a month.