Top positive review
50 people found this helpful
Infinitely usable compact with DSLR rivalling image quality
on 29 November 2012
I got one of these for use at work (I'm responsible for the school magazine, website and prospectus photography) so that I wouldn't need to keep dragging my own DSLR gear into school. I have my own Canon G12 (which in itself is a great little camera but with limited scope) along with Canon 5D mkii and 50D bodies and the usual array of L series zooms to go with them. My credentials include an ARPS and a list of international exhibition acceptances that spans four continents, so I am what could be described as a reasonably experienced photographer.
My first impressions of the NEX 6 are as follows: reasonably small (though not so much so that it's in any way difficult to handle), good control layout (very similar to DSLR - i.e. index finger wheel and rear thumb dial), nicely responsive controls and very easy to live with autofocus speed, stunning little EVF (OK not an optical TTL but really the next best thing, with a whole array of information to be displayed through here if desired), nice enough rear screen, a kit lens that is superior to any kit zoom that I've ever tried on entry level/enthusiast DSLRs (though admittedly also more expensive than the latter), great dynamic range and high ISO capabilities (better than my 50D), all coupled with excellent RAW file output (at least comparable to my 50D, which has a similar pixel count APS-C sensor - 15MP as opposed to 16MP if I remember correctly) - sorry I don't do jpegs.
While my Canon G12 has served me well as a pocketable compact for the last couple of years, I've never really considered it as a serious proposition for my 'proper' photography, either in terms of quality of output, flexibility or ease of use. In fact it has always been a 'snapping my son in the park' kind of camera and never really lived up to my hopes of a viable walk-around for street photography etc. The NEX 6 is however a very different proposition.
I'm aware that there are a number of other well spec'd compact system cameras on the market at the moment, each with their own idiosyncrasies and bet tricks, some of which have feature sets and output quality close to and even better than that of the NEX 6, however at this price point I think you would struggle to find a better all rounder.
To round up this camera has completely changed my perception of what a compact is capable of. So much so that I'm considering getting one for my own use, but don't tell the wife!
Added 29th December:
Had my first chance to do some serious printing from a few NEX 6 RAW files this evening. I can report that with only default sharpening and slight contrast/colour pop courtesy of Adobe Light Room, prints right up to A2 look excellent. One of the images I printed up to A2 was shot at 3200 ISO and at sniffing proximity, without NR applied, it has noticeable grain, but no worse than similarly produced prints from my 5D mkii. I'm now in little or no doubt that, provided I'm not expecting stupid levels of performance from what is after all a sub £900 rig, I'll be able to exhibit the images captured with the NEX 6. I'm also confident that this style of camera setup is pretty much poised to be a 'game changer' over the next couple of years, for those of us who are seeking quality and versatility without the ensuing back ache that dragging a couple of DSLR bodies and an array of compatible glass around has meant until now. Nuf said....I'm having one in the New Year.