bunn (bunn) wrote,
bunn
bunn

New camera test shots and wittering

I have been experimenting with my new Sony A5000.  At the moment I'm sticking to using the lens that came with it, a 16-50mm pancake lens.  It is absurdly small and light wearing that lens - very pocketable, at least into a coat pocket.

One downside to that lens is that it has a special small lens cap - much smaller than would fit any of my other lenses - which inevitably I am going to lose because it has no way to attach it to the camera.   The other downside is that it's a smaller lens with a minimum 3.5 aperture, so it doesn't get quite so much light to the sensor as I am used to with my legacy lenses.   I'm also having to get used to the screen: since for the last 4 years I've been using a camera with a screen that makes everything look a bit too dark, I keep thinking that this new one is overexposing things that are actually OK.

I was pleased to catch this shot, but sort of disappointed too, because it would definitely have been crisper if I'd caught it with a manual focus lens focussed precisely over the logs.  This lens is struggling a bit, I think because it's trying to use software to identify what to focus on rather than me telling it. This is exactly what I find a bit frustrating about autofocus.  Autofocus doesn't know that I'm about to call a 30mph dog into the middle of the shot.   To be fair, it was a bit dark that morning which doesn't help.

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Whereas I'm not honestly sure HOW to get a shot like this one more right.   The previous photo was a setup: I stood behind the log ready to take the shot, and then called Rosie over, knowing that probably she would choose to jump.  (well, eventually.  She kept me waiting a while, then shot off like a rocket...)   Whereas this next one, I was focussing on Brythen posing heroically among the heather in his red jumper with Rosie in the background, when suddenly a rabbit shot right past my foot and Brythen went after it.  So I didn't know he was suddenly going to be moving fast towards me and therefore it's not all that surprising that the camera very slightly missed its focus on his face.

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This one isn't bad, although I cropped it, it had more foreground.  I don't think I'd have caught this with the legacy lenses as again, I didn't know they were going to do it (although if I had had an old lens on that had happened to be focussed right and got lucky, it would be crisper on the foreground)

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The lens  seems more comfortable focussing in better light with dogs going sideways rather than straight at the camera but somehow I feel this shot would have been better with my ancient 50mm lens although I really can't put my finger on why.

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It may be about depth of field.  My default way of taking photos tends to be to whack the lens as wide open as it will go, and use the fastest shutter speed available.  I take a lot of photos at F2.8 or even less.    This gives me a nice crisp foreground and a blurred background, and lots of light.

Whereas, auto settings always seem to end up taking photos using much higher f numbers and lower shutter speed for some reason: even if you use a sports mode, they will try to use a shutter speed that seems insanely slow sometimes, and I'm not sure why.

I'm not really sure what to do with Fnumbers above about 5ish.  I should really try to work out what those are useful for: they must have a purpose, or surely they would not put them on the lenses :-D.

Also I need to read the manual and find out what all the HDR functions actually do.  This is my first camera that can do HDR!  Expect some terrible HDR photos until I get bored with that...

I do really like the 16mm wide angle though, you can get so much into the picture!

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It seems to do a not entirely terrible job as a macro lens too.  I think that the water inside the rotten twig has frozen and expanded, and as the water has expanded through tiny holes in the twig it's created a tiny tracery of ice?  Or is it something else?  It was definitely frozen.

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Tags: camera, photos
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