Some unfortunately are not that great and have some user errors in them (camera shake) but its possible to see just what this sensor is capable of.
As you can see from the 100% blow up below, detail, resolution and sharpness is very impressive.
In fact the files have more of a non-AA filtered look than the Nikon D800E.
There are lots of negative comments on the SonyAlphaRumors post of course, the shills are out in force, but you can make your own assessment.
It strikes me that that this camera (plus the A7 to a certain extent) is competing in three different marketplaces. With 35mm pro spec. DSLR's from Canon, Nikon and Sony itself, with other mirrorless systems and with Leica and its rangefinders. There is obviously a problem in the limited lens selection available but with the Sony A adapter and the ability to use M-Mount, Nikon and Canon lenses via adapters for manual focus, this problem has a partial solution. The zoom lenses released are certainly pretty large, but some users won't see that as a disadvantage. The camera equipped with one of these will still have the DSLR bulk and size that some photographers like and some clients think indicates photographic professionalism. Use one of the primes and / or some Leica, Zeiss and Voigtlander lenses however and you have a different camera. Light, small and portable. I hesitate to call any camera a ***** killer, but it may make people think about their options. If you are sitting on the waiting list for a Leica M for example, with the prospect of up to a year to get your camera, the Sony A7r which has a built in EVF, focus peaking, more pixels and lots of other goodies could seem a very attractive proposition, since via a simple and cheap adapter it will take your m-mount lenses. You COULD use that difference to buy lenses, as well as having a high MP count camera a lot earlier. Or is the Leica really worth the extra £3500 to you?
These days, mirrorless cameras have many operating advantages over DSLR's and while the new Sonys are unknown quantities when it comes to heavy duty uses, there are lots of mirrorless cameras that have been around for a while to base a judgement on. Certainly, I've never had a mirrorless camera break on me, whereas I had to return One Nikon DSLR, One Canon DSLR and One Leica lens as they all stopped working in one way or another and had to be replaced under guarantee.
The A7r is however not the answer to life the universe and everything, as just like the Nikon D800E its not that great at high ISO's. Not bad, not D4 standard, but certainly better than anything that m4/3 can come up with for example, simply because you can either add noise reduction and / or downsize the file, both of which will enable pretty clean results up to ISO 3200.
There is the usual blend of hyper enthusiasm and heavy criticism that occurs when anybody releases a new camera and like everything else its not perfect. (Unfortunately!) However, from these raw files I can see that it is a very good camera indeed, capable of incredible results at low ISO's. Literally a D800E in a small, light package. I'm looking forward to using one.
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