Sony Alpha 100 Launch - Impressions, Opinions AND SPECULATION !

Discussion in 'Sony/Minolta' started by bill_thorlin, Aug 2, 2006.

  1. I recently attended a product launch for the Alpha 100. It took place in the
    old town part of a smallish town in the Home Counties/Middle England (
    Stevenage for you Brits ). I will not make any comment on the technical
    specifications and will leave that to those who know about these things ( given
    my limited knowledge I was, however, impressed ).

    PLASTICKY - this has been a complaint seen on other forums. All I can say is
    compared with what ? Possibly if comparison is made with cameras costing 4 to 5
    times as much.

    HERITAGE/LEGACY/PEDIGREE - it was immediately evident as to how much had come
    from Minolta especially as regards the Dynax 7 - at a quick glance it would be
    easy to mistake one for another. The Sony input was there but was more internal
    than external.

    SIZE - for me it was on the small size but then I think the Dynax 7 is on the
    small size if compared with say the 800si.

    MARKET - it occurred to me that it was not only aimed at the Minolta faithful
    but at newcomers to the DSLR market and of course existing Sony users wishing
    to upgrade and I think we need to bear this in mind - it is not just for us and
    this was confirmed in discussions with the Sony people present.

    I have tried to discount "sales-speak" in the following.

    TARGET - it seemed apparent that the first objective was to make inroads into
    the Nikon position ( note recent price cuts ) and then onto Canon and there was
    a degree of confidence shown in this. It seemed that Pentax and Olympus were to
    be "taken in our stride" - we will see.

    Now comes the SPECULATION.

    I angled a number of my questions towards the Full Frame aspect of the future.
    I made it clear that that would be the thing most likely to make me change. I
    also said that I felt that if they were going to match Canon they would need
    full frame - this was greeted with mock surprise. Then I mentioned the fact
    that out of some 20 lenses announced only about 4 were not 35mm ( i.e. of the
    DT variety ) and only 1 out of 3 of the Zeiss lenses. The response this time
    was "Umm yes" with raised eyebrows. Having used up a fair bit of their time I
    thanked them for their attention and as I left I received a sort of parting
    shot of "See you at the product launch in about a year or so then !?" Was it a
    sales promotion effort or was there more to it than that - I cannot of course
    say for sure but I would not now be surprised.

    Oh, how did the launch go. Well it started at 9 a.m. and when I arrived at a
    little after 12.15 a.m. I asked just that question and was told that they had
    arrived with 30 kits and had sold 24 of them already - not bad I guess.

    SUMMATION - I am allowing myself a degree of optimism :) Time will tell.
  2. For 12.15 a.m. read p.m. - spotted it :)
  3. If they did come up with a full frame model, how would that work with existing lenses and AS? Wouldn't the movement of the sensor cause the corners to move out of the image circle on occasion?
  4. Bill, hopefully your experience will make you believe that Sony Will come out with a full frame DSLR. I don't know how they will do it, but it has been speculated that it can be done. Afterall, you don't need much movement to correct for shake. I would think that even if you had an image circle that is only a couple of millimeters larger than the area of the sensor, you can effect at least some anti-shake, or as it is known now, Super Steady Shot.

    Perhaps some people that you have mocked in the past will get the last laugh.
  5. James - as I said I leave the technical aspects to others, it not being my forte. However I will say that my experience has been that when "experts" have stated categorically that it cannot be done, lo and behold, within an increasingly short space of time it is done. I have also found the reverse is very often the case as well - perhaps I am just an old cynic ! ( Definition of a cynic - "a blackguard that sees the world as it really is and not as others would have him believe it to be" - cannot remember who said that unfortunately. )

    Robert - I do know that it is your habit to attempt to personalise everything and I would ask you to provide substantiation for your final comment i.e. please cite one instance where I have mocked anybody on the subject of a full-frame Sony DSLR appearing at any time in the future.

    Just to add a few points missed above - they made much of the Zeiss lenses and rather discounted the Minolta legacy, the camera was available only in kit form and "body only" was for some time in the future as "the lenses are where the money is made", they had a special display to show the effect of SSS ( sprung mounted camera linked to a small screen ) and the product literature was of a pretty high standard.
  6. Bill, I'm talking about how you treated Eugene Cunningham when he posted about some future DSLRs that K/M was planning to come out with. This was prior to the announcement that they were leaving the photo business. The time line has changed somewhat from what he said would happen, but so did the fortune of K/M and Sony.

    Other than that, I do not wish to engage in an arguement with you. I would rather hope that your SPECULATION becomes fact.
  7. I will say that my experience has been that when "experts" have stated categorically that it cannot be done, lo and behold, within an increasingly short space of time it is done.​

    Yes, like time travel and alchemy!
  8. .

    The Minolta DiMage 5/7/A-series went from no-anti shake to including anti shake without changing the size of the sensor and without changing lens designs. Either they made the circle of coverage from the first lens w-a-y too large to begin with -- why would they have done that? -- or full frame sensor anti shake, that is, sensor based anti shake where the circle of coverage of the system lenses is NOT enhanced -- is entirely possible.

    The hold out is PRICE of a full frame sensor and a marketplace willing to pay for it, or a manufacturer willing to release it anyway. Minolta was averse to releasing anything BUT the 9ti as a vanity/glory piece. I wish they'd released "the best" they could think of all the time anyway and NOT tried to make the "next big thing". They were depressed when the 7 won awards and didn't sell. Heck, it was more expensive than Canon and Nikon at the time, and Minolta refused to give it away once they'd invested in and built a few million of 'em. Marketing rant over ... no, wait a minute, there's ALWAYS more to bitch about regarding Minolta's LACK of marketing ...

    There's no technical reason to NOT release a full frame sensor, but marketing positioning and afordability will be the reason, not pleasing the few customers like you and I who want it now. If Nikon, Pentax/Samsung, Sigma (are they still in the running?), Olympus/Panasonic/Leica and Canon middle- and entry-level can survive with less than a full frame sensor, then what's Sony's incentive to spend the money to go against Canon's full frame canon all by their lonesome right now? I predict Sony will address the full frame competition after addressing the smaller sensor competition, putting Nikon and Pentax/Samsung in their place BEHIND Sony, and it will take a full range of competitive models and a few years to get there.

    Waiting ...


    Love and hugs,

    Peter Blaise Minolta Rokkor Alpha DiMage Photographer

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