Sony and Konica Minolta Cameras Forum

Sony Digital Cameras Forum This forum is for discussing Sony digital cameras and the Sony Alpha DSLR and Konica Minolta Maxxum / Dynax SLR systems.
Sony Digital SLR Reviews >>
Sony Above 10-Megapixel Digital Camera Reviews >>
Sony 8 to 10-Megapixel Digital Camera Reviews >>
Sony 6 to 7-Megapixel Digital Camera Reviews >>
All Sony Photography Product Reviews >>
Sony Digital Cameras & History Page >>
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    We had a big storm last night and woke up to 6 or 7 inches of wet snow in Salt Lake City. I resigned myself to working through another powder day. So far this year I've had too much work to sneak out for any of the other ones. However, at about 9:30 in the morning, the power went out. My first reaction was a lot of cursing. Then, when it didn't come back on, I went outside to look around, remembering some trees sagging dangerously under the weight of slushy wet snow, last night. I finally called the power company and was told that the power wouldn't be back on until 5:30 this evening. Since that meant the project I was working on was for all intents and purposes, down for the day, I grabbed the Sony Alpha A55 and headed up to the Alta testing facility. What else could I do? I figured that God didn't want me to miss another powder day

    The first photo here is looking south at Mt. Timpanogos. The second is my only action shot of the day, a ski instructor with a pupil in the background. The third is a heli-ski helicopter over Little Cottonwood Canyon.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2326.jpg   A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2302.jpg   A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2333.jpg  
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  2. #2
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    Sweep Panorama

    One cool feature Sony cameras have now is the Sweep Panorama Mode. I first encountered it with the Sony TX5 waterproof pocket camera I reviewed last year. Turns out they included it in the A55, too. Basically, when the camera is in Sweep Panorama Mode, you can make an in-camera panoramic photo by holding down the shutter release button and panning the camera. The camera's processing does the rest and you get a minimal effort JPEG panoramic image right out of the camera.



    This photo is taken from Catherine's Pass on the east boundary of Alta Ski Resort. I've actually skied Catherine's Bowl, in the foreground. But it's out of bounds and I'd need a partner to do it safely. It was also a very high avalanche danger day so I don't think I would have done it today, anyway.

    Click on the photo to see a 1500 pixel version in the gallery.
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    Mt. Superior

    Here are a couple of Mt. Superior, which dominates the north side of Little Cottonwood Canyon, across from Snowbird and Alta ski resorts. Superior isn't part of either resort but people hike it and ski it all the time. Not today, though. Avalanche danger was very high and there were slides all over it. The third photo is of the ridgeline just to the west of Superior. They're the same peaks that are in the helicopter photo. I'm not sure what their names are but I love the way they looked with those clouds.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2336.jpg   A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2329.jpg   A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55-_dsc2335.jpg  
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    S.F. Bay Area, CA - USA
    Posts
    344

    Re: A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    Nice scenic shots... The one action shot isn't bad either... The poor student is lagging pretty far behind the instructor though.. ;) I like the separation, the instructor is looking good and sharp, at least at that size...

    Using kit lens, or did you have another on there? How's the camera on exposure for snow? Are you dialing in a stop of compensation while shooting, or dealing with it in raw later? My a700 and a900 tend to prefer about + .7 dialed in, but do occasionally nail it on their own. When I actually remember, +.7 insures I have something usable, without blowing it out...

    - G

  5. #5
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    Re: A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    Quote Originally Posted by NoKnees
    Nice scenic shots... The one action shot isn't bad either... The poor student is lagging pretty far behind the instructor though.. ;) I like the separation, the instructor is looking good and sharp, at least at that size...

    Using kit lens, or did you have another on there? How's the camera on exposure for snow? Are you dialing in a stop of compensation while shooting, or dealing with it in raw later? My a700 and a900 tend to prefer about + .7 dialed in, but do occasionally nail it on their own. When I actually remember, +.7 insures I have something usable, without blowing it out...

    - G
    The ski instructor is super sharp. I was shooting with continuous auto focus and it was rock solid. I am very pleased with the A55's auto focus unless I'm trying to focus on plain snow. For that, I think Canon and Nikon would do better. However, I haven't actually tested back to back to make sure that assumption is correct.

    For exposure I always use the histogram to make sure I'm on target. One nice thing about the A55's EVF is you can see the histogram in the viewfinder while you're adjusting the exposure. So the exposure depends on the scene. It could be +.7 or it could be +1.3. For snow photos I just try to adjust so the histogram is pushing towards the right without clipping the highlights. Then I fine-tune in Lightroom and Photoshop. I am not at all a straight of the camera guy - too much darkroom experience

    I have two lenses - the 18-55 kit lens and the Sony 70-200 f/2.8. The ski instructor photo was taken with the 70-200. It's a sweet lens. It's even white - like a proper 70-200mm f/2.8 should be
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Portland Oregon USA
    Posts
    6

    Re: A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    unless I'm trying to focus on plain snow. For that, I think Canon and Nikon would do better.
    I don't think so. I have the Canon 7D which has one of the most advanced AF systems out there, but there are certain situations that defy AF, plain sky, reflective surfaces, shooting through glass windows, plain undefined surfaces (like snow,) among others. If you can find even one tree, or a shadow, anything that offers contrast and at the distance that you want to shoot, then you can do a pre-focus on that and then switch to manual to hold the focus is one way of holding a focus setting for another subject at the same distance. AF is pretty neat and very accurate in most situations. On the Canon, a half-press of the shutter button activates AF, but you can choose to change that to a separate back-button on the camera to activate AF, then you can preserve the focus when shooting without the AF being activated again.
    Last edited by Ken Nielsen; 04-02-2011 at 02:09 PM.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Idaho
    Posts
    7

    Re: A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    beautiful shots of superior!

  8. #8
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    Re: A Day At Alta With The Sony Alpha A55

    Quote Originally Posted by TripleT View Post
    beautiful shots of superior!
    Thanks! I sure hope we have a better winter coming up. Last season was very disappointing. I love the Alta camera testing facility (ACTF)
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Latest PhotographyREVIEW Articles



Latest Camera News