Sony a6000 plus 10-18mm and 85mm lenses.

Thursday I went out with what could almost be described as a 'conventional' Sony outfit. An e-mount camera, one e-mount lens, the 10-18mm zoom and a LA-EA4 adapted Sony a-mount 85mm f/2.8 prime. The prime motivation was to try out my re-gripped a6000.

The grip worked well as I expected. Much nicer handling with only a marginal increase in weight. Lenses worked well too. 

The more I use the a6000, the more I'm convinced that this is the best APS-C sensor I've ever used and also the best mirrorless camera I've ever used as well. My Sony A7r is better image quality wise (And I'm currently editing Friday's image taken with that camera which are simply mind-blowing in terms of sharpness, resolution and visual impact) my Panasonic m4/3's cameras are slicker and easier to use and my Fuji X's are 'sexier' and classier. But all-round the a6000 is hard to beat. Better image quality than either my m4/3 or Fuji sensors can produce, with blindingly fast AF and a feature set that wouldn't be out of place on a top of the range pro DSLR only a short time ago. Add in the fact that it's small, light and relatively inexpensive and you have the camera that has taken over from the GM1 as the frontrunner for my incredibly prestigious (Not!) Soundimageplus camera of the year award.

It is indeed a 'pocket rocket' a 'wolf in sheeps clothing' 'micro monster' or whatever cliche you want to apply to it. I still don't love it (or any Sony camera for that matter) but I do admire and respect it. And I certainly love the image files it produces which are great straight out the camera and easy, quick and simple to process from raw to squeeze out all the quality they are capable of. 

It is a great camera and one that seems to be somewhat undervalued. It certainly seems to attract less column inches on the photographic internet than other far less worthy cameras. The 'reviews' usually are positive but not much more enthusiastic than that. However prolonged use with it in a variety of situations and with a variety of lenses, has proved to me that Sony have got a lot of things right with the a6000 and it deserves to be much more highly rated. Ultimately cameras have to be judged because of what they produce and the a6000 is pretty much the best out there in terms of APS-C sensor captured images. And to be honest it does look and feel a lot better with it's leather case and wooden base plate attached. 

And if they could get their 'new best friends' Olympus to re-style it then it could be the workhorse camera of my dreams. The Fuji X100s is to me the ultimate 'style statement' (If you're a retro head chrome, metal and lookaleicaness fan that is!) but the a6000 puts that camera in the shade in terms of the pixels it produces. Plastic and mass-produced machine made it may be, but there's nothing run of the mill about the images it produces. Sony may be the lens maker from hell but they've got camera / sensor engineering down to a fine art and I can't think of another manufacturer that comes near them in those terms.

My relationship with Sony is a bit like one of those arranged marriages that the English aristocracy used to indulge in to protect their finances, power and prestige. Not a lot of passion there, but in time a mutual respect and genuine friendship. And like those marriages, I may go off and have the odd romantic fling somewhere else, but I do keep keep coming back. 

Finally just on a non-photographic note, my congratulations to the Dutch for showing that commitment, speed and adventure beats 'pitter-patter' football any day. The Spanish method of boring their opponents into giving up by loosing the will to live (or play football at least) seems to thankfully have come to an end. And if there's going to be a better goal in this world cup than Robin Van Persie's header, I look forward to seeing it. Great stuff. Now if only England can manage to avoid loosing to Italy, it could be a very watchable world cup (unlike the last one). It's certainly a good start and with lots of goals so far actually quite an exciting one. 

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