Insane or clever upgrade

It is time to reflect on the experience moving from the Sony Alpha A99V to the Sony Alpha A99II, has it been Insane or clever move. Such a evaluation has to be very non-objective by nature. Based on what I find important and what in my views yield less value. I am not going to compare feature 2 feature, the list will be long, we all know that, but the differences will have different value to us as a photographer, depending on how we use the camera.

Getting the camera in hand was a thrill, this flag ship came on the paper with some of the features that I have looked after for a long time. Expectations and reality did meet and here is my views on this transmission.

My first impression was possibly the menu system and the joystick to maneuver through it. To be honest, I didn’t like neither. It is not like I loved the menu system from the A99V, but the A99II wasn’t any improvement. Slow, un-logical is some of the words I would attach to it. Now add that the Joystick is fiddly, inaccurate and hard to get use, and you got the base of a disappointment. To be honest, I have now learned the joystick, and maneuvering has become a lot easier, but I HATED it at first.

I am not using high speed shooting and focusing all that much, but when I did it became obvious that the backbone of the camera wasn’t up to 12fps continuous high+ burst mode shooting. The camera and its menus froze while the buffer was clearing, and auto focus falls short as well.

The Poor battery life of the camera is manageable, but the fact that they yanked the built in GPS, and replaced that with a bluetooth option to your phone is just an entirely horrible idea.

Let me start out with declaring my love, this camera is the dream of any landscape photographer. Performing far beoynd my expectations in low light, and with a 42.4-million-pixel full-frame sensor is it a dream when combined with a modern lens with high Modulation Transfer Function (MTF). And holy smokes it performs well on 8fps continuous high burst mode. 

I dont know what Sony did to reduce sensor dust, but something has changed, and changed alot.

Conclusion

Seen from the outside is the A99 II much the same as its predecessor, however it is a very different beast. The A99II is a significant upgrade comparing head to head on the spec sheet. With its strong ISO capabilities will it appeal to a wide range of photography. And with its fast burst rate combined with its advanced focusing system will it with out a doubt appeal to sports and action photographers. It is an expencive camera but also a blast of a camera,  replacing a really good camera. And it makes you wonder, is it really worth the price for the change. Honestly I am in doubt, I am fearful of that it will not be justifying the price changing from the A99V. I would possibly have been better off, spending the money on better glass. But undeniably is the A99 II is as significant an upgrade, as we’d expect from the four-year gap between the two.

 

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