On Thursday, August 6th, Trey Ratcliff started his Photo Walk tour in New York City. It was a blast! We started in Brooklyn, walked over the Brooklyn Bridge, and ended up in the city. Listening to Trey speak about photography makes you understand the passion he has for what he does.
The Photo Walk, while great for listening to Trey speak, was also a perfect opportunity to break out my new Sony A7R II and give it a real world test. I knew we were going to be walking a lot, so I only brought one lens: The Sony 16-35mm f4. An incredibly sharp and wide angled lens.
One of the first things I noticed about the A7R II was the weight difference from the cameras I have used in the past. To put it simply, a Canon 5D Mark III (body only) weights 1.9 lbs while the Sony A7R II (body only) weights only 1.375 lbs. Thats over a half pound difference. Doesn't sound like a lot, but after walking for 3 hours with my camera in hand a half a pound is huge!
The screen works great out during the day and the electronic viewfinder (one of the reasons I chose this camera) is incredible. Seeing exactly what I'm taking before I take it is something every photographer should experience. I also realized why a tilting screen is a must have. No more lying on the ground or standing on a chair to look through the viewfinder.
Through out the shoot I shot in Aperture Priority mode and loved that I could move the flexible spot focus area to over 60% of the sensor. The A7R II focuses incredibly fast and accurately. I only switched to manual focus once when shooting through the wires on the Brooklyn Bridge.
The top feature that completely blew me away was Sony's 5-axis image stabilization system. The Brooklyn Bridge vibrates non stop due to cars, bikes, those police scooter cars, etc. and yet every shot was sharp and clear. Every time I took a long exposure shot, I felt the bridge vibrate and figured the shot was ruined. Apparently not! The image stabilization system counteracted the bridge's vibrations for 90% of my shots. The only time it didn't work was on a 20 second exposure which I am not surprised by, but even then it was only slightly out of focus.
Oh and one last note: The resolution is massive; 7952 x 5304 pixels at 42.4 MP. Let's just say I took a picture of a photographer on the walk from head to toe and at 100% all I saw was one of her eyes and nose. To have shots that high in resolution while staying incredible sharp made me rethink how I shoot. If I am only displaying my work at 1500px, like all shots on my site, I have more space to play with than ever before. If I'm printing my shots, I can use a 42.4 MP photo to print a massive image!
TL;DR: The Sony A7R II is incredible and worth every penny.
If you have any questions about the walk or the Sony A7R II, please ask below