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FORUMS Community Talk, Chatter & Stuff General Photography Talk 
Thread started 10 Nov 2011 (Thursday) 07:49
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Opinions on swapping out DSLR kit for mirrorless...

2,227 posts
Joined Dec 2005
Location: UK, Portsmouth Uni / HW Bucks
Nov 10, 2011 07:49 |  #1

Hi all,

Just wondering what the opinion was of the new crop of mirrorless cameras?
I currently have a canon 350D with a 24-105 f/4, 70-200 f/4 and 300 f/4. Whilst these are smaller lenses compared to their f/2.8 versions, they're still pretty heavy, and I'm finding I rarely use my camera as I don't want to lug it around.

For a while I've been thinking a need a new body to rekindle my love of photography, but on second thoughts I think I need a new system.

I really like the look of the NEX series (probably the NEX 5N with 16+18-55 kit), mainly due to the aps-c format. I have a nikon FE2 slr so the ability to use F mount lenses (and many others) on a NEX without having unusable focal lengths is appealing (Nikon 1 series is pretty useless in this department).

The main thing I am worried about is the usability, I haven't been able to get my hands on a NEX yet. How are the functions laid out? If It had a shooting mode dial I'd get one on a flash but I'm worried I'll have to dig around a load of touch screen menus to change from Av to Tv for example.

Anyone have any real world experience with this? What else should I be looking at? The Fuji X10 looks appealing but I feel its more of a retro toy than a serious tool.


Canon EOS 350D, Sigma 10-20 f4-5.6, 24-105 f4L IS, 70-200 f4L, 300 f4L IS, Kenko 1.4x pro300, 430EX, Apple Powerbook G4
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digital ­ paradise
Awaiting the title ferry...
19,795 posts
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Joined Oct 2009
Location: Canada
Nov 10, 2011 08:44 |  #2

I know very little about this. The only things I have read about is the EV sucks and they have not really solved shutter lag yet. I would not go with what I just said as I am not putting in any effort into researching this tech yet. I just get bits and pieces of info. Maybe someone else can add to this. I will wait until the tech matures before I look into it.

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1,303 posts
Likes: 1
Joined Oct 2008
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Nov 10, 2011 08:56 |  #3

Actually the EVF is excellent in the NEX-5N - it is probably the best one in the market place right now. Using manual focus lenses with the NEX system is a breeze due to the focus peeking feature. The Image Quality of the 5N is very good and comparable to the Canon 7D. Actually high ISO shots are even better with the Sony.

I could never live with only the Sony system though. I love it for my legacy lenses. The lenses will still be huge for that system (unless you stick with the slow Sony E-lenses).

Cream of the Crop
6,568 posts
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Joined Oct 2005
Location: Ohio
Nov 10, 2011 08:57 |  #4

If you're not using your current camera because of size/inconvenience, I would say to go for it. I've heard a lot of good stuff about the NEX cameras (although I do not own one). You're far better off having a camera that you'll actually use rather than one that sits around collecting dust.

167 posts
Joined Sep 2009
Nov 10, 2011 09:05 |  #5

These threads always make me feel buff :)

2,862 posts
Likes: 19
Joined May 2010
Location: Ventura, California
Nov 17, 2011 21:32 |  #6

stupot wrote in post #13380292 (external link)
...The Fuji X10 looks appealing but I feel its more of a retro toy than a serious tool.

I'm enjoying using my X10 as my ultra-portable 7D alternative. Here's a pretty good review at Luminous Landscape (external link).

There are times when the best "snapshot" camera is more useful than the best "planned session" camera.


Edit: Luminous Landscape's review has a pretty good synopsis: "The X10 fits beautifully in ones hand, in large measure because it isn't too small. I started this report with a discussion of how all camera designs are based on a series of trade-offs by their maker; sensor size vs image quality being paramount. Fujifilm has taken a path with the X-10 that calls for the largest possible sensor in a sort-of-pocketable camera, along with a fast lens of moderate range and a usable optical finder.

The quality of fit, finish and materials is first rate, and belies the camera's price point. For anyone over the age of forty or so, who remembers when cameras didn't feel like they were made from molded lumps of polycarbonate, the Fujifilm X-10 will bring a smile to your lips when you handle one, even if you don't decide to buy it.

Add smooth handling, along with image quality that really does challenge any of its competitors, and you have a compelling camera. It looks like the X-100 wasn't a one-off wonder, and that Fujifilm really does have its mojo back. With the next shoe (camera) rumoured to drop early in the new year, I can hardly wait.

But there is a spanner in the works. Sony's NEX, and Panasonic and Olympus' Micro Four Thirds cameras challenge the X-10 in terms of body size, and have much larger sensors, along with available high resolution electronic viewfinders, touch screens and articulated LCDs. Add a kit lens to one of these and the bulk isn't even that much more. The price is higher, of course, but not that much higher. And the lure of single focal length pancake lenses for compactness, as well as higher image quality for a not too significant increase in bulk and cost, leaves one to ponder the challenges of camera marketing in today's rapidly evolving marketplace."

Replacing my Canon 7D, Tokina 12-24mm, Canon 17-55mm, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 85mm f/1.4, and 150-500mm with a Panasonic Lumix FZ1000. I still have the 17-55 and the 30 available for sale.

216 posts
Joined Jun 2007
Location: Norway
Nov 23, 2011 11:20 as a reply to  @ cacawcacaw's post |  #7

I would also second the opinion on the X10. Having just bought one, i was blown away by the quality of pictures it produced, the build quality of the camera and overall ease of use. It will not replace my 5D2, but has certainly made it a little redundant. My 5D is seeing far less use at the moment, and for 95% of situations the X10 does the job. Of course the limitations on the sensor and lens will be there, and this will be vey obvious when doing anything more specialist, such as wildlife, sport, fashion etc. For taking great pictures on the go, or as a good travel companion, with the ability to get great lanscape and capture any scenario with such ease, this is hard to beat and will match many DSLRs. What you might lose in a smaller sensor, you gain in the fact that you actually had a camera with you, and this is a camera you can easily take with you anywhere.

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Fujifilm X-Pro1

Senior Member
853 posts
Joined Jan 2010
Nov 23, 2011 11:30 |  #8

I would do it primarily for the portability, EV or no EV. Personally I don't like using EV; I'm OK composing with the LCD. I also dig how tiny some of the bodies are. Thus, the Olympus E-PM1 is probably the one I'd go with.

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Opinions on swapping out DSLR kit for mirrorless...
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