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While the lack of AA filter causes some artifacts and false detail, inserting an AA filter 'kills' the finest detail and, even if you can recover part of it on post process, something is lost forever. Sharpening a filtered picture introduces also halos and artifacts to some extent.
In the end, apart from personal preferences, all depends on the strength of the AA filter and the pixel density. As things are right now -mainly 12 to 16 Mp APS-C or 24Mp FF sensors- my choice is without filter.
I'm a bit surprised Douglas that you 'support' the AA filter being...Show more →
Removing the AA filter is a necessary evil for my M9, because the filter stack becomes a source of more astigmatism. If using a well designed AA filter was possible for the M9 and didn't become an issue at the edges, yes, I would prefer one. I know that new users to AA-less cameras are always wowed when viewing their files with all of this amazing "detail," and, in the case of Leica, many think that it is some kind of magic clarity, but it's really born out of Leica saving money and needing to sacrifice for good edge performance.
We must remember that there's a reason that the majority of aps-c and 35mm sensor cameras have AA filters. They aren't cheap, and the camera companies would love save money by not including them, but well designed AA filters provide the best balance of image quality in most cases, and I don't see a lot more real detail in a AA-less file over a properly sharpened file that had an AA.
I've owned more than one camera without an AA filter, and, even with today's tools, getting rid of moire can be a bear. I don't think the extra false detail is worth it, but I guess many are interested in the look of more detail, even if it isn't real detail. Of course, more megapixels will solve this, and then AA filters won't be needed, but we're not there yet.
My MFDB had larger pixels than my M9, and, man, that thing was moire city. Granted, for product photography, many pros use diffraction to their advantage by stopping down quite a bit, in order to eliminate the moire, so it often isn't as much of an issue.
Anyways, sorry to get off topic. It seems the RX-1 has good edge performance, so I think Sony's AA filter choice looks to be ok.