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A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors

  
 
Isaacheus
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


Have a slight possibility of picking up a new camera in a month or so; currently have an a7iii and a7riii and planning to just add another camera rather than swap one of these out (one will go to my fiancee)

Was considering the A7rv due to the screen, focus stacking, medium compressed mode and new bulb mode, even though it has no improvement in read out speed vs my current cameras, however a second hand A1 has come up nearby at about the same price as the rV new.

Looking for better af for wildlife essentially, but typical main subjects are landscape and astro (both landscape astro and deeper tracked). Shooting stills and time-lapse, with occasional video only

How good is the af in the rV for birds in flight vs the a7iii/riii, or is the stacked a1 sensor needed here, and anyone have first hand experience with how the 61mp sensor is vs the 50 for low light? (seems to be a bit mixed online comparisons)




Jan 22, 2023 at 04:17 AM
nobody23
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


BIF with an A7rV results very likely in bended wings due to read out speed...


Jan 22, 2023 at 05:41 AM
InFocus2014
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


I shot the A1 alongside the A7RIV for awhile and finally sold my R4 for a second A1. The no-blackout shooting and total silent shooting of the A1 just made the R4 feel like old technology. The R4 was simply not enjoyable to shoot for action and BIF. Also, shooting total electronic shutter when out in public has allowed me to take shots I could never get with a noisy mechanical shutter. As an example, I can now take silent shots at my grand-daughter's dance recital and not have folks turning around to give me dirty looks.

I have read/viewed just about every R5 review (and comparison to A1) out there and do not feel compelled to switch one of my A1ís to an R5. Once you shoot a stacked sensor camera, it is tough to go back.

For all practical purposes, noise characteristics are seemingly similar, and focus stacking electronic accessories are cheap and easy to use. While the new R5 focusing technology would be nice to have, I rarely ever experience out of focus shots with the A1; although, if I was a wedding photographer, I would likely appreciate the R5 with its expanded subject recognition. The seven stops of IBIS and improved, flexible LCD would also be nice to have.

At the end of the day it is all about personal proclivities, priorities and choices. Biased, anecdotal drivel from folks like me may not be of much help to you.

Edited on Jan 26, 2023 at 12:45 PM · View previous versions



Jan 22, 2023 at 05:53 AM
kimknapp
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


nobody23 wrote:
BIF with an A7rV results very likely in bended wings due to read out speed...


This is only true when using the electronic shutter.

If you are only rarely shooting BIF I would recommend the 7RV. It is much better then the 7RIII.
If you will often be photographing BIF, the A1 will give you better results and you will be able to use the electronic shutter for everything.



Jan 22, 2023 at 08:30 AM
AGeoJO
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


nobody23 wrote:
BIF with an A7rV results very likely in bended wings due to read out speed...


If the default electronic first curtain shutter (combination of electronic and mechanical shutter) is used instead of the (solely) electronic shutter, the wings will be rendered normally. Even the ďoldĒ A7r IV can pull that task offÖ



© AGeoJO 2022

  ILCE-7RM4    FE 600mm F4 GM OSS + 2X Teleconverter lens    1200mm    f/8.0    1/2000s    640 ISO    0.0 EV  





© AGeoJO 2022

  ILCE-7RM4    FE 600mm F4 GM OSS lens    600mm    f/4.0    1/2500s    160 ISO    0.0 EV  




Jan 22, 2023 at 09:20 AM
1bwana1
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors




nobody23 wrote:
BIF with an A7rV results very likely in bended wings due to read out speed...


Not with mechanical shutter which is how you will shoot BIF.



Jan 22, 2023 at 10:24 AM
tschopp
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


For BIF or other fast action, I would expect the A1 focus to be better due to the speed of the sensor. The A1 does 120 focus calculations and lens updates / second (4 / shot @ 30 FPS). The a9's do 60 focus / second or (3/shot @ 20 FPS). I haven't been able to find focus speed info for the r4 or r5, but I would guess it's in the 20-30 focus / sec (2-3 / shot @ 10 FPS). So the A1 is doing 4-6x more focus measurements, I don't see how the fancy AI chip can compensate for that.

As AGeoJo has shown you certainly can get good BIF with either. You will need to use mechanical shutter on the r5.

As far as astro noise I would think they are pretty similar. If your astro involves stacking lots of quick files to avoid motion blur then the a7iii will outperform. This is due to the way the noise statistics work for low light and changes in pixel size. For most noise discussion it is assumed the noise can be treated as Gaussian and this governs the math of total noise in the frame. The noise is actually Poisson, but if you have enough photons the Gaussian approximation is good. As you get fewer and fewer photons per pixel, like in stacked astro frames, then the Gaussian approximation falls apart and larger pixels will perform better.



Jan 22, 2023 at 10:26 AM
1bwana1
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


I have a friend here who shoots primarily BIF. For years he chose to use the A7RIV. He mostly shoots with mechanical shutter, in APSC mode, with the Sony 200-600. He got excellent results preferring the higher resolution in crop mode to the faster sensor of the A1. He has switched now to the A7RV and considers it a significant and valuable upgrade. The focus processor produces excellent results with birds including BIF He says. He estimates a 90% plus hit rate for BIF, and says for birds in bushes or static it is better than his A1 ever was.

I still happily shoot my A1. But I have seen his images and they are excellent.

Of course the A7RV is the best of the Sony cameras now for events (except when silence is required), studio, landscape, portraits, and macro. It is also a very good wildlife camera.

As an A1 shooter there are times I envy that new rear screen.

I hope this information is helpful.




Jan 22, 2023 at 10:39 AM
1bwana1
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


tschopp wrote:
For BIF or other fast action, I would expect the A1 focus to be better due to the speed of the sensor. The A1 does 120 focus calculations and lens updates / second (4 / shot @ 30 FPS). The a9's do 60 focus / second or (3/shot @ 20 FPS). I haven't been able to find focus speed info for the r4 or r5, but I would guess it's in the 20-30 focus / sec (2-3 / shot @ 10 FPS). So the A1 is doing 4-6x more focus measurements, I don't see how the fancy AI chip can
...Show more


I have never believed that the metric of how many focus measurements per frame is particularly relevant. We can make the A7RV ratio beat the A1 on that metric just by choosing a slower frame rate. Do the math.

The benefits of the faster focus rate is relevant to the speed of the subject, not the frame rate ratio. In that sense faster is better.

The new AI focusing processor can compensate for slower focus calculation speeds by being more accurate due to the predictive nature of the AI. You can see this happening in the viewfinder.

To me the big difference in the two approaches is the real time tracking and refresh rate of the EVF. It makes it much easier and a better experience with the A1.

Edited on Jan 22, 2023 at 01:44 PM · View previous versions



Jan 22, 2023 at 10:53 AM
osv2
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


1bwana1 wrote:
I have never believed that the metric of how many focus measurements per frame is particularly relevant.


well, fwiw the official sony a1 metric doesn't quantify it by measurements per frame, only by seconds:

"120 AF/AE tracking calculations per second
Fast sensor readout enables 120 AF/AE calculations per second(2), even during 30 fps bursts, for pinpoint AF tracking precision with fast and erratic subjects. AE latency is less than 0.033sec.

(2) At shutter speeds of 1/125 sec. or higher. The number of AF calculations will depend on the lens used." https://www.sony.com/lr/electronics/interchangeable-lens-cameras/ilce-1

1bwana1 wrote:
The new AI focusing processor can compensate for slower focus calculation speeds by being more accurate due to the predictive nature of the AI.


prediction can never be as accurate as actual af measurements, that's why the a1 is better for tracking.

there are no af/ae measurements being taken when the a7r5 mechanical shutter is flapping around, which when combined with the dog-slow sensor readout, is not a formula for af success with fast-moving objects.

even a stopped watch is right twice a day; i shot this with a clunky old a7r and a $25 manual focus 60-300 tamron adaptall-2 zoom, but there is no way i'll use that gear over the a1




Jan 22, 2023 at 12:38 PM
 


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wordfool
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


Isaacheus wrote:
Have a slight possibility of picking up a new camera in a month or so; currently have an a7iii and a7riii and planning to just add another camera rather than swap one of these out (one will go to my fiancee)

Was considering the A7rv due to the screen, focus stacking, medium compressed mode and new bulb mode, even though it has no improvement in read out speed vs my current cameras, however a second hand A1 has come up nearby at about the same price as the rV new.

Looking for better af for wildlife essentially, but typical main subjects are
...Show more

I wouldn't have thought a stacked sensor is necessary for BiF, unless those birds are very sensitive to noise (like hummingbirds at fairly close range perhaps). After all, people have been taking BiF photos for decades with mechanical shutters. What the A1 does offer that's potentially useful over the A7R5 is the blackout-free EVF, which makes visually tracking fast-moving subjects easier. But again, not essential for BiF (IMO).

By all accounts the A7R5's autofocus is on par or slightly better than the A1's, but both are no doubt equally capable when it comes to BiF. If I were buying a new body today and didn't need silent shooting capability then I'd probably get an A7R5. But because I have an A1 I'm weirdly addicted to silent shooting!

Edited on Jan 22, 2023 at 01:51 PM · View previous versions



Jan 22, 2023 at 01:51 PM
1bwana1
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


osv2 wrote:
prediction can never be as accurate as actual af measurements, that's why the a1 is better for tracking.

there are no af/ae measurements being taken when the a7r5 mechanical shutter is flapping around, which when combined with the dog-slow sensor readout, is not a formula for af success with fast-moving objects.

even a stopped watch is right twice a day; i shot this with a clunky old a7r and a $25 manual focus 60-300 tamron adaptall-2 zoom, but there is no way i'll use that gear over the a1



I think you and me (and Sony) are in full agreement that for a dedicated fast action camera our choice remains the A1.

The OP has primary uses for his camera that favor the A7RV strongly. He asked if he will be able to successfully shoot wildlife and BIF with the A7RV, or will it not be suitable for such use. My examples were meant to show that it is very possible to shoot action with the A7RV and get great results. In fact, I know some that prefer it for wildlife including BIF.




Jan 22, 2023 at 01:51 PM
GMPhotography
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


My biggest issue I had with the A1 was actually seeing I was shooting in e shutter. When Iím shooting a ton of shots for awhile on end then it gets hard to see it. I like the silence but not always needed. Iím really enjoying the A7RV but Iím also beating it to death on shutter activations on mechanical. But these shutters are rated warped better than the old days so I honestly donít care Iíll move it to secondary when something better may come along. Plus I donít need the high FPS but I also know there is nothing I canít shoot with it. I just might not be silent doing it


Jan 22, 2023 at 02:43 PM
tschopp
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


1bwana1 wrote:
I have never believed that the metric of how many focus measurements per frame is particularly relevant. We can make the A7RV ratio beat the A1 on that metric just by choosing a slower frame rate. Do the math.

The benefits of the faster focus rate is relevant to the speed of the subject, not the frame rate ratio. In that sense faster is better.

The new AI focusing processor can compensate for slower focus calculation speeds by being more accurate due to the predictive nature of the AI. You can see this happening in the viewfinder.

To me the big difference in
...Show more

Yep, agree with everything you are saying. The focus / sec number is more important for fast moving targets. The focus / shot was more about making a guess as to how fast the focus in the R5 might be since they don't list it. I have written some motor control firmware in the past that I would think would be similar to focus control. I used a Newton's method iteration to choose the next location and after 2-3 steps it is pretty accurate. So I would think 2 steps / shot is about the minimum, 3 is better, and 4 to me says there is maybe surplus speed or it will just be a touch more accurate during the shot.

I could see the AI being able to make a better next iteration, so this would help to compensate for a slower focus system, but I wouldn't expect it to beat the A1 for fast unpredictable objects.

For a bird in the bushes I would expect the R5 to do better, the A1 is plenty fast, but in this case it is not sure where to focus.



Jan 22, 2023 at 03:08 PM
Isaacheus
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


For the astro side, I'm usually using a small tracker, so 30 second exposures are the typical. Haven't set up dithering (as not guided yet, just polar aligned) but will look at a larger mount and probably a dedicated astro cam if I was going that route anyway. It's not high on the list currently at least

I'll hang onto the mk3's in a fashion, but would ideally like to have a similar iso capability if I can only take one camera on a trip, even if only when sampled down



Jan 22, 2023 at 03:43 PM
Isaacheus
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


1bwana1 wrote:
I have a friend here who shoots primarily BIF. For years he chose to use the A7RIV. He mostly shoots with mechanical shutter, in APSC mode, with the Sony 200-600. He got excellent results preferring the higher resolution in crop mode to the faster sensor of the A1. He has switched now to the A7RV and considers it a significant and valuable upgrade. The focus processor produces excellent results with birds including BIF He says. He estimates a 90% plus hit rate for BIF, and says for birds in bushes or static it is better than his A1 ever was.

I
...Show more

The rear screen is one of the main drawcards - if the A1 had that, then it would be an easy winner.
The static bird part is interesting - I had assumed the eye af for birds in the A1 would have made that a non-issue



Jan 22, 2023 at 03:48 PM
liggy
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


Totally unscientific data point. Was out shooting with a buddy with a new A7R5. I was shooting an A1. Both of us had the 200-600.

Seemed like the A1 acquired/ locked on faster - bald eagle flyby. The R5 was better at grabbing the eye of a heron while wading looking for fish.

I wonít go back to a non-stacked sensor for the fast eshutter alone on an action camera.



Jan 22, 2023 at 04:01 PM
1bwana1
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


Isaacheus wrote:
The rear screen is one of the main drawcards - if the A1 had that, then it would be an easy winner.
The static bird part is interesting - I had assumed the eye af for birds in the A1 would have made that a non-issue


The A1 has no idea about where the eye of a bird is when its head is turned or partially obscured by the bushes. On the R5 it pretty much knows how to predict that so it acquires the eye faster and more accurately on slow moving things.

I am guessing that the A1-II will have both an even better Focus AI processing engine, and the new rear screen. If so, I will be happily upgrading once again.



Jan 22, 2023 at 04:10 PM
wordfool
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


The last firmware update seemed to make both animal and bird eye AF worse on my A1, not better as advertised. Not sure why I'm experiencing that, but it sounds like the R5's eye AF is potentially a lot better.


Jan 22, 2023 at 04:29 PM
TGPhotography
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · A7rV for BIF? More recent af vs stacked sensors


I mentioned it in another thread, I'll repeat it here.

Both cameras try to focus at their respective rates. This is 20 calcs/s for the rV, 120 calc/s for the A1. Both cameras will default to whatever focus mode if the subject ID doesn't work for whatever reason.

For anything moving truly erratically in regards to the focus plane, I would much rather have it try and focus on something at the higher rate rather than better subject recognition at a much lower frequency. For truly erratic movement in relation to the focus plane, AI just helps recognize the subject. No AI can guess what's in a birds brain today about which direction it will move.

You can get good shots with either camera.

Just my opinion.




Jan 22, 2023 at 05:18 PM
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