A1 or Z9

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Hut2

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Sony EVFs have always had this problem. I preferred the less spec'd EVF on the Z6/Z7 vs the Sony A9/A7R4 that I owned. There are several forum posts where people who use multiple systems seem to prefer the less spec'd EVFs from Nikon and Canon compared to Sony EVF.
That doesn’t seem to be what he is referring to. 🤷‍♂️
I only have an A1 and cant believe how great it is.
 

Venkatesh VT

Love nature & nature loves you back
Supporting Member
Seriously, is that the best you can come up with…. Software Bloating… wow, where Do you come up with this BS….please explain further.
Simple to understand if you care to understand.
In a high fps camera every unit of time counts how ever small it may be
I had already explained in this another thread which you seem to have missed it.
If there was only one subject identification compared to say five it would take 1/5 th time.While this may not be strictly linear it would certainly take more time & it would bloat the software or require more buffer & other implications..Even now slower cards are not able to support the higher FPS & every additional line of code is bloatware wrt speed of operation.
This would become even more acute if the camera has auto subject recognition (as reported to be existing in a new camera )
Ideally the solution would be to allow the user to load plugins as required for different subjects to keep optimum speeds though that would be another level of complexity
I certainly don't think it is bs to think of what is known as 'tight code'
 
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thelordofthelight

Well-known member
Do you have any quantitative evidence to prove what you are saying? Going by this logic, we should all go back to the DSLRs that have no tracking, no subject detection etc etc which means less no of codes and hence better performance.

With better AI and more codes you are totally forgetting the fact that such new cameras also come with more powerful processors and ancillary HW to support complex algorithms/ extra line of codes.
 

Venkatesh VT

Love nature & nature loves you back
Supporting Member
Do you have any quantitative evidence to prove what you are saying? Going by this logic, we should all go back to the DSLRs that have no tracking, no subject detection etc etc which means less no of codes and hence better performance.

With better AI and more codes you are totally forgetting the fact that such new cameras also come with more powerful processors and ancillary HW to support complex algorithms/ extra line of codes.
Effects of extra lines of code affect everything including camera size,write speeds & even AF itself ( as was evident in Zii cameras ).R5 does not have a black out free screen for fast action.Canon R3 & Sony 9 ii do not have high mp.
How ever for a still camera with high FPS requirements ( which ever brand it is) this would be very critical
Only the respective camera engineers can present quantitative data .But the logic is irrefutable
In the end it all boils down to a balacing act viz size,cost,mp ,fps,8 k ,time to develop, video etc etc.
Innovation would be the key as to how the balancing is done
 

thelordofthelight

Well-known member
Ok. You win 🤦

Effects of extra lines of code affect everything including camera size,write speeds & even AF itself ( as was evident in Zii cameras ).R5 does not have a black out free screen for fast action.Canon R3 & Sony 9 ii do not have high mp.
How ever for a still camera with high FPS requirements ( which ever brand it is) this would be very critical
Only the respective camera engineers can present quantitative data .But the logic is irrefutable
In the end it all boils down to a balacing act viz size,cost,mp ,fps,8 k ,time to develop, video etc etc.
Innovation would be the key as to how the balancing is done
 
I'm sure the decisions these news organizations made were based purely on financial reasons and not some secret sauce that Sony offers. They're upgrading and Sony probably cut them a deal. No more no less. It's pretty doubtful that bird eye af was high on their wish list.
When AP made the deal with Sony they didn’t have bird eye AF yet. Oops. Did Sony cut them a deal seemingly how Nikon is cutting a deal with the Z9 in an attempt to gain back market share??? Surely Nikon has some secret sauce to spread and it’s not just cheap bodies.
 

Ralph Bruno

Well-known member
Supporting Member
😂😂😂😂😂. Boy, this is entertaining stuff. I can’t wait each morning to read this thread as I’m drinking my coffee. It was running out off steam until Eric jumped in. Thanks Eric. Brings back memories of Windows vs Apple. All of you are doing a great job of keeping it civil but still very entertaining. I’m sure Steve is very proud of you.
 

FB101

Well-known member
Supporting Member
i want to play too - my take on this list of weaknesses :)

  • The A1 reduces EVF resolution and reduces EVF refresh with high speed photography in continuous mode.
correct, but there is no scenario where it drops below the z9 EVF speed or resolution… so not sure it’s a weakness
  • The EVF is not as bright as the Z9 - relevant for bright outdoor conditions
yes, I think that will have real life implications and have the z9 come closer the the canon R3 HDR view. The A1 is really good but I suspect the z9 and R3 will edge it in very bright environments or high DR scenes.

  • The buffer is large, but buffer clearing is slow; this has an especially large impact in backup mode writing to two cards.
I have not experienced that even at 30fps - it will be interesting to do some real life comparison at 20fps which is the max the z9 can do in raw. I am not certain it will come out as you think.

  • CFExpress Type A is a little slower and harder to find than Type B used by Canon and Nikon.
It’s partly true; there are fewer options but inventory is plentiful (because they are overpriced) and they are slower than the best cards you can put in the z9. On the other hand the A1 is backwards compatible to SD cards which means that in emergency you can find some replacement cards almost anywhere.

  • Limited RAW file options create a very large amount of data with high frame rates. Nikon's High Efficiency RAW is a viable option.
Sony has lossy and non lossy raw just like Nikon. nikon may have two levels of lossy raw but nobody has really assessed the impact on image quality. If it’s really a big deal, this is something Sony can choose to fix via software, but I am not sure it will be that big of a deal (time will tell).

  • Requires additional grip and battery for extended shooting.
yes but at least it’s optional. Nikon needs a second body when you want a light kit… oh wait, it really dosent exist, so not an option.

  • Potential for overheating / limited weather sealing with 8k for extended periods prevents 8k 60p (it does have 4k 60p).
True. The A1 can’t shoot 8k for as long or at the same frame rates. Trade off for being half the weight but indeed real. That said, I’ve read many threads that say if you pull the screen away from the body, overheating is not a practical issue (Time limits and fps limits set by Sony do remain though).
  • Limited output options for ProRes RAW video (requires Atmos while Z9 does not require an external recorder).
yes indeed. The salient point here is that adding the ninja negates the weight advantage of the A1, the positive counterpart is again flexibility and options. The A1 overall is more modular.
  • AF subject identification somewhat limited to eyes but not other subjects (aircraft and vehicles).
for now. I’ll be shocked if it doesn’t come very soon via firmware. It’s actually easier to do than the current level of accuracy with eyes.
  • AF struggles with Face/Eye AF for backlit subjects (a problem area for most cameras and an area that will improve).
Indeed but I don’t think it’s any different with z9 and R3. Time and direct comparisons will tell.
  • Lacks AF Eye Control found in Canon R3.
yes, so do every other camera on earth except the two EOS 3 slowly decaying in my camera collection :)
  • Lack of full size HDMI output found on Z9.
Indeed.
  • Fastest shutter speed slower than 1/32,000 sec of Z9.
not true. The A1 maxes out at 1/32000 like the z9. Only the R3 is faster.
  • Slowest shutter speed setting less than 900 seconds (15 minutes) for Z9.
Indeed. I sure hope Sony fixes that by firmware.
  • Shorter battery life / lower voltage to power lenses and accessories at highest speed
Yes on battery life. It’s all part if that weight trade off argument. But in that size and firm factor the Sony battery is actually much better than other brands (but it can’t match the new Nikon which is much bigger).
i don’t know that I agree on lacking voltage because it is relative only to the voltage needed to get to a specific speed and the new linear motors are delivering greater speed at lower voltage. So in practice the new Sonys are focusing lightning fast and don’t need higher voltage to do so.

  • Significantly higher cost (about $1700+) - especially when considering a grip and additional batteries.
Hard to argue with that one :) but there is a counter to that when you look at what it costs to pull a full native system together due to access to excellent 3rd party lenses. If you want the zoom holly trinity, going Sigma and Tamron will save you over $4K versus Nikon Z or Canon R and be true E mount lenses.



Actually most of the things listed but a few are trade offs not shortcomings, and I bet Sony will address a couple of the shortcomings in the next firmware, possibly even things not listed (120fps 11mp should be feasible on the A1 for example).
The list leaves out a couple of the real bummers of the A1, that back screen is actually not flagship worthy… and that won’t be fixed by firmware. It also doesn’t do focus stacking but hopefully this will come by firmware, on the other hand it does sensor pixel shift which the z9 doesn’t (for now). I’d rather have stacking myself…

So I really don’t think the z9 leapfrogged the A1, it edges it in a few areas and the A1 edges it in a few others but practically they will likely be functionally identical. The R1 coming out at least 12 months after the z9 and 2 years after the A1 could be a different ball game, we’ll see.
 

ChrisM

Active member
Interesting discussion. It appears the launch of the Z9 has divided flagship shooters into two camps, the pro-Sony and the pro-Nikon camp. Canon will enter the arena when the R1 is launched.

I get the division though, the Nikon and Sony approach are radically different. I guess that if you don't have a dslr history but started with mirrorless, then the Z9 is a bridge too far.
It is actually the dslr that brought the photography world the supersize and heavyweight class camera bodies.
In the old analogue days, it was a civilized Olympus OM1, Pentax K-1000 or Nikon F2.
Dslr brought D3/4/5/6 and Canon 1DX monsters. If you don't relate to this type of camera then thanks to Sony, you can get top performance in a manageable body, and small issues like the lack of infinite battery life etc. are easily overcome.

If you dó like a camera body to be built to last through raids, sandstorms, mountain climbs, rain showers, riotting crowds, bumpy car rides, being chased by bears, and all that you may encounter, than a Z9 type body will be your favorite no doubt.
If you dón't expect to use (abuse) your camera in these highly stressing cirumstances, then it may feel overdone to do your photography with a military grade tool, and a Sony A1 body may be all that you need.
I fit into the last category, and the Z9 was my sign to switch to Sony, coming from a D500.
 
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dtibbals

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Interesting discussion. It appears the launch of the Z9 has divided flagship shooters into two camps, the pro-Sony and the pro-Nikon camp. Canon will enter the arena when the R1 is launched.

I get the division though, the Nikon and Sony approach are radically different. I guess that if you don't have a dslr history but started with mirrorless, then the Z9 is a bridge too far.
It is actually the dslr that brought the photography world the supersize and heavyweight class camera bodies.
In the old analogue days, it was a civilized Olympus OM1, Pentax K-1000 or Nikon F2.
Dslr brought D3/4/5/6 and Canon 1DX monsters. If you don't relate to this type of camera then thanks to Sony, you can get top performance in a manageable body, and small issues like the lack of infinite battery life etc. are easily overcome.

If you dó like a camera body to be built to last through raids, sandstorms, mountain climbs, rain showers, riotting crowds, bumpy car rides, being chased by bears, and all that you may encounter, than a Z9 type body will be your favorite no doubt.
If you dón't expect to use (abuse) your camera in these highly stressing cirumstances, then it may feel overdone to do your photography with a military grade tool, and a Sony A1 body may be all that you need.
I fit into the last category, and the Z9 was my sign to switch to Sony, coming from a D500.
Reality is the a1 has proven to be just as good in poor weather and rough use environments as any of the competing flagship models. It’s like vehicles in accidents. Big doesn’t make you always safer. Modern cars are safer than the old 90’s tanks we drove.
 

FB101

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Interesting discussion. It appears the launch of the Z9 has divided flagship shooters into two camps, the pro-Sony and the pro-Nikon camp. Canon will enter the arena when the R1 is launched.

I get the division though, the Nikon and Sony approach are radically different. I guess that if you don't have a dslr history but started with mirrorless, then the Z9 is a bridge too far.
It is actually the dslr that brought the photography world the supersize and heavyweight class camera bodies.
In the old analogue days, it was a civilized Olympus OM1, Pentax K-1000 or Nikon F2.
Dslr brought D3/4/5/6 and Canon 1DX monsters. If you don't relate to this type of camera then thanks to Sony, you can get top performance in a manageable body, and small issues like the lack of infinite battery life etc. are easily overcome.

If you dó like a camera body to be built to last through raids, sandstorms, mountain climbs, rain showers, riotting crowds, bumpy car rides, being chased by bears, and all that you may encounter, than a Z9 type body will be your favorite no doubt.
If you dón't expect to use (abuse) your camera in these highly stressing cirumstances, then it may feel overdone to do your photography with a military grade tool, and a Sony A1 body may be all that you need.
I fit into the last category, and the Z9 was my sign to switch to Sony, coming from a D500.
I’ve shot flagship canons for wildlife for the better part of twenty years and the EOS 1n saved me when I had to whack an inquisitive black bear back on its ass (Both the bear and the camera were fine after impact). And I have shot Leica and Fuji X for street photography for 15 years. The A1 gives me street agility in a wildlife package, and I am not giving that up :) Hopefully I don’t need to tackle another bear as I am not sure the A1 would fare as well as the canon 1n.
 

Backdoor Arts

Active member
There's the rolling shutter thing to consider: virtually absent with a1 and Z9, significant with R5.
I shot hummingbirds with it to test that out. One in 8 showed signs of it. I've yet to see it once with 1st Curtain, which I shoot in 95% of the time. I came from a D500 so I'm happy in the 10-13fps range for most things. By all means if your photography relies on 20-30fps then pay for the upgrade. I fully expect Canon will have that AND the MP's next year (you can get it now - or likely before the Z9 - at 24MPs with the R3, which is an amazing camera - yes, I've used one).
 

thelordofthelight

Well-known member
I think after the release of canon R5,R6,R3 and Nikon Z9 the brands are all pretty even. It boils down to which system one prefers overall and picking the compromises that suits best for each individual. It's just pointless to argue and nitpick on A1 vs Z9 vs R3 etc. Best is to demo or rent all the 3 and buy the one that works best.

In my case, I prefer the raw files, colors, ergonomics and lens rendition of the Nikon system. All I wanted was a true Nikon D850 in mirrorless form and I got that and some more with the Z9 so I'm at peace now.

Had Nikon messed up with the Z9, my plan was to seriously consider the Canon R5 with one of their lovely RF mount tele lenses. Sony never worked for me. Was disappointed with the A7R4 and 200-600 fiasco and also didn't like the way their expensive lenses render the images. Colors were not to my liking, images shot even with exotic prime lenses look too flat TO ME ( lack of rendition/3d pop) compared to Nikon and Canon. Although I like their compact set up, top notch AF, customization etc, ultimately the image output is a big deal and that's where I was and still am not convinced with Sony.
 

Backdoor Arts

Active member
Yet another major news agency moving 100% to Sony. This has got to start hurting Canon as this has been their bread and butter for decades.
https://m.dpreview.com/news/9739857...Mfgm6UxtTEz82Awd3CCv-0kMlZ4-LnIJc-nipu8PWpbb0
This says it's going to be a multi-year rollout with the goal, "to get each photographer and videographer at Gannett ‘at minimum, two cameras and three zoom lenses as the company-supplied kit.’"

Right now I'm guessing some of those photographers are being handed an R3. I think it's going to be interesting to see how long that rollout takes and whether or not the folks shooting balk at the change. If nothing else this drives one more nail in Nikon's coffin as there seems to be no gap to breach in what their competitors are offering.
 

dtibbals

Well-known member
Supporting Member
This says it's going to be a multi-year rollout with the goal, "to get each photographer and videographer at Gannett ‘at minimum, two cameras and three zoom lenses as the company-supplied kit.’"

Right now I'm guessing some of those photographers are being handed an R3. I think it's going to be interesting to see how long that rollout takes and whether or not the folks shooting balk at the change. If nothing else this drives one more nail in Nikon's coffin as there seems to be no gap to breach in what their competitors are offering.
Highly doubt that. If you quote the article in accuracy they continue to discuss they have equipment that is still new enough and needs to be depreciated before replacing. People who think Sony gives away gear is nuts.
 

ChrisM

Active member
I think after the release of canon R5,R6,R3 and Nikon Z9 the brands are all pretty even. It boils down to which system one prefers overall and picking the compromises that suits best for each individual. It's just pointless to argue and nitpick on A1 vs Z9 vs R3 etc. Best is to demo or rent all the 3 and buy the one that works best.

In my case, I prefer the raw files, colors, ergonomics and lens rendition of the Nikon system. All I wanted was a true Nikon D850 in mirrorless form and I got that and some more with the Z9 so I'm at peace now.

Had Nikon messed up with the Z9, my plan was to seriously consider the Canon R5 with one of their lovely RF mount tele lenses. Sony never worked for me. Was disappointed with the A7R4 and 200-600 fiasco and also didn't like the way their expensive lenses render the images. Colors were not to my liking, images shot even with exotic prime lenses look too flat TO ME ( lack of rendition/3d pop) compared to Nikon and Canon. Although I like their compact set up, top notch AF, customization etc, ultimately the image output is a big deal and that's where I was and still am not convinced with Sony.
All very valid points, but some of them so very subjective.
I went from a Sony A7RII with the Loxia 25, 35 and 50mm lenses to a Nikon Z7 with the Z24 and Z50 lenses because I wanted one system, and could use my 500PF on the Z7. I sold the D500. One year later, I am back to the Sony A7RIV with the Loxia 25 and FE35mm f1.4GM and the D500, because I did not like the colors and overall rendering of the Z7 with the Z lenses. Neither did I like the 500PF on the Z7, so I am also back to the D500. To me, Nikon colors are too sterile, Sony colors are richer and warmer TO ME (shooting raw b.t.w.).

So thankfully we all have the free choice. I do hope for D500 shooters though, that Nikon won't lock action shooters in the Z9 system though, by keeping other lines like Z6 and Z7 specifically for general shooting. There is not a lot of room up there in the high price segment for multiple stacked sensor 45-50 mp bodies.
 

EricBowles

Well-known member
i want to play too - my take on this list of weaknesses :)

Actually most of the things listed but a few are trade offs not shortcomings, and I bet Sony will address a couple of the shortcomings in the next firmware, possibly even things not listed (120fps 11mp should be feasible on the A1 for example).
The list leaves out a couple of the real bummers of the A1, that back screen is actually not flagship worthy… and that won’t be fixed by firmware. It also doesn’t do focus stacking but hopefully this will come by firmware, on the other hand it does sensor pixel shift which the z9 doesn’t (for now). I’d rather have stacking myself…

So I really don’t think the z9 leapfrogged the A1, it edges it in a few areas and the A1 edges it in a few others but practically they will likely be functionally identical. The R1 coming out at least 12 months after the z9 and 2 years after the A1 could be a different ball game, we’ll see.
All of these items are relatively small in the scheme of things, but matter a lot to some people. The thing is, any new flagship camera is going to have differences and advantages over competitors. It's impossible for a new camera to have zero advantages. I was asked specifically about the shortcomings of the A1.

My point is simple - I would not change systems over a feature or two at a given point in time because the next iteration of any flagship camera will jump over the latest and greatest of the competition. In general, with all of these flagship cameras, if you can't get the shot, don't blame the gear. There are a lot more features in most current cameras than any photographer will use.

I was in the Okefenokee this week with my lowly Z7ii using the Z 70-200 f/2.8 and 200-500 with FTZ. My favorite shot of the trip was a flock of 45 little blue herons approaching low over the water in the pre-dawn mist - an environmental shot at ISO 5000 with the pink light of dawn and the orange foliage of pond cypress at peak color. The camera consistently focused accurately on every frame of the series so I'm happy.
 

thelordofthelight

Well-known member
Indeed all the points I made were subjective which is the whole point. We have reached a stage where discussing objective features like AF, FPS etc are almost irrelevant which leaves us with subjective things like rendition, colors etc.

All very valid points, but some of them so very subjective.
I went from a Sony A7RII with the Loxia 25, 35 and 50mm lenses to a Nikon Z7 with the Z24 and Z50 lenses because I wanted one system, and could use my 500PF on the Z7. I sold the D500. One year later, I am back to the Sony A7RIV with the Loxia 25 and FE35mm f1.4GM and the D500, because I did not like the colors and overall rendering of the Z7 with the Z lenses. Neither did I like the 500PF on the Z7, so I am also back to the D500. To me, Nikon colors are too sterile, Sony colors are richer and warmer TO ME (shooting raw b.t.w.).

So thankfully we all have the free choice. I do hope for D500 shooters though, that Nikon won't lock action shooters in the Z9 system though, by keeping other lines like Z6 and Z7 specifically for general shooting. There is not a lot of room up there in the high price segment for multiple stacked sensor 45-50 mp bodies.
 

Hut2

Well-known member
Supporting Member
All of these items are relatively small in the scheme of things, but matter a lot to some people. The thing is, any new flagship camera is going to have differences and advantages over competitors. It's impossible for a new camera to have zero advantages. I was asked specifically about the shortcomings of the A1.

My point is simple - I would not change systems over a feature or two at a given point in time because the next iteration of any flagship camera will jump over the latest and greatest of the competition. In general, with all of these flagship cameras, if you can't get the shot, don't blame the gear. There are a lot more features in most current cameras than any photographer will use.

I was in the Okefenokee this week with my lowly Z7ii using the Z 70-200 f/2.8 and 200-500 with FTZ. My favorite shot of the trip was a flock of 45 little blue herons approaching low over the water in the pre-dawn mist - an environmental shot at ISO 5000 with the pink light of dawn and the orange foliage of pond cypress at peak color. The camera consistently focused accurately on every frame of the series so I'm happy.
It’s nice that your gear is working for you but that list of “weaknesses” are actually leading edge technology.
When Z9 hits the market I’m sure Nikon will have a winner.
 

Hut2

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I think after the release of canon R5,R6,R3 and Nikon Z9 the brands are all pretty even. It boils down to which system one prefers overall and picking the compromises that suits best for each individual. It's just pointless to argue and nitpick on A1 vs Z9 vs R3 etc. Best is to demo or rent all the 3 and buy the one that works best.

In my case, I prefer the raw files, colors, ergonomics and lens rendition of the Nikon system. All I wanted was a true Nikon D850 in mirrorless form and I got that and some more with the Z9 so I'm at peace now.

Had Nikon messed up with the Z9, my plan was to seriously consider the Canon R5 with one of their lovely RF mount tele lenses. Sony never worked for me. Was disappointed with the A7R4 and 200-600 fiasco and also didn't like the way their expensive lenses render the images. Colors were not to my liking, images shot even with exotic prime lenses look too flat TO ME ( lack of rendition/3d pop) compared to Nikon and Canon. Although I like their compact set up, top notch AF, customization etc, ultimately the image output is a big deal and that's where I was and still am not convinced with Sony.
I’m not a pro but,
I’m happy with the files on A1 and color is awesome.
Just curious if you have borrowed or rented an A1? I’d be interested to see some of your results. As said before your IG is great! If not I think you might be pleasantly surprised if you enter with an open mind. I had to change some things in my workflow but it’s all coming around.
 

FB101

Well-known member
Supporting Member
This says it's going to be a multi-year rollout with the goal, "to get each photographer and videographer at Gannett ‘at minimum, two cameras and three zoom lenses as the company-supplied kit.’"

Right now I'm guessing some of those photographers are being handed an R3. I think it's going to be interesting to see how long that rollout takes and whether or not the folks shooting balk at the change. If nothing else this drives one more nail in Nikon's coffin as there seems to be no gap to breach in what their competitors are offering.
There is a “law” of marketing called the broken stick rule. With just a handful of parameters one can predict easily with decent accuracy how shares will shake up in a market that is stable. For the longest time camera makers shares have followed that model very closely but nit lately as the market is being transformed.
What it also says is that technology disruption creates opportunities for rank changes and when that happens, the company jumping up in rank gains far more than people expect and the one going down one rank also loses a lot more.

Sony created a rank change opportunity with mirrorless, for themselves (done) and for Fuji (Being currently fought) What this technically means, is that if Nikon can’t get back ahead of Fuji really quick, they are pretty much guaranteed to slide to #4 with mid single digit share. I had been wondering why Nikon launched the Z fc, it made no sense in the context of their stated strategy but it makes every sense in light of weakening Fuji’s hold on rank #3 and it’s 10-ish percent share potential.

There is a lot of research and data behind the model - a lot has to do with resource effectiveness and share of mind. In absence of disruptive technology, that inertia is practically unbeatable. It’s even hard to beat it with disruptive pricing (it’s feasible but slower). I built some of the most complex broken stick models twenty years ago and they are still scarily accurate predicting shares in markets where the products and companies are completely different from 20 years ago which point to the fact that the principles are deeply rooted in economics.
 
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