Sony A7R II Extensive Real World Review

My Gear

This is everything I currently use to create, make , take and process pictures. It’s a very basic setup with almost everything one could possibly need to take pictures¬†inside and outside. Have fun reading and clicking through it ūüôā

If you got any questions, as always, ask away!


MY GEAR

CAMERAS
Sony A7R IIMy main all-round camera.
Check out how much I like this camera right here.

Sony A7 – My second body.
The Sony A7 is a relatively small camera with a high quality full frame sensor inside.  It has everything, except an uberfast AF (it is decently fast though and tracks moving subjects very well) and a high burst rate.

Sony A7R II Extensive Real World Review

My main camera РSony A7R II  РExtensive Real World Review

LENSES

Sony Zeiss 16-35mm f4 Vario-Tessar¬†– ¬†It’s finally out, yay.
A well-built, well-performing and rather expensive wide angle lens.

Sony Zeiss 55mm 1.8¬†–¬†The best¬†auto focus¬†lens in the world.
To date, this is the best performing auto focus lens in every regard on DXOmark.com.

Sony Zeiss 35mm 2.8 РAwesome performance, small and light.
This is one of my favorite lenses. Even though it’s small, it’s very sharp and overall performs very well.

HARDWARE
Macbook Pro Retina 15″¬†(Mid 2014)¬†– My main computer.
I use this laptop as my main machine.

Asus PB278Q РMy main monitor.
This is a pretty nice WQHD monitor that I have the chance to use at work. It has a 1440p resolution and has a matte coating with minimal reflection. Yay! Matte is the way to go and has always been for me.

Samsung Syncmaster P2770 HD – My secondary monitor.
This is actually my main monitor at home. It has a matte finish and is pretty decent, especially taking its price into account. I think I bought it for about 250 EUR back then. The newer model costs 199 USD now.

Samsung 840 Pro Series SSD РMy external drive.
I use this 512 GB SSD drive in combination with this¬†to make it an external drive. A friend of mine stated that it is a little exaggerated to host your Dropbox folder on such an expensive drive, but I don’t regret my 250 GB Dropbox to be blazing fast AND portable at all times.

Logitech marathon mouse with 3 years of battery life¬†– I couldn’t live without its hyper-fast scrolling!

Transcend Multi Card Reader USB 3.0 – A great card reader.
This card reader also reads bigger and faster SD cards like this one, so all’s good.

Razer Goliathus Alpha Mousepad – A very large mousepad to not fall off the edges.

Very Large Razer Mouse Pad

Very Large Razer Mouse Pad


SMARTPHONE AND TABLET
Sony Xperia Z1 Compact – A photographers smartphone.
To me, this is the best Android phone out there with the slickest UI and the best buttery performance, while having an awesome 20MP camera that, in good light,¬†can take¬†shots like this one. I often share pictures from¬†my A7 to the phone directly via NFC…I just LOVE that feature :>

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 – The old model, because the new one was sadly not as good.
This suffices to show off photos efficiently and has a pen. The price went down quite a bit, even for the 32GB model.


SOFTWARE
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom РMy main photo editing software.
I use mainly Adobe Photoshop Lightroom in combination with Photoshop CC. I use them both from Adobe Creative Cloud and pay about 12/13 EUR per month for both. Check out the Adobe website to find that offer in your country.

Adobe Photoshop CC – I just can’t live without it.
I have tried many different alternatives and have always come back to the real thing. Photoshop, for me, is a must.

HDRsoft Photomatix Pro Р My main and only HDR software tool.
This is the easiest and (to me) best HDR/tonemapping software out there and it is relatively cheap. Many of my pictures are processed with it.

The three main operating systems that I use are Windows 8.1, Windows 7 and Mac OSX Mavericks.

APPS
Sony Album – To me, the best gallery app for Android.
DOF Calculator – A free depth of field calculator for Android.
TPE – The photographers ephemeris, to see when the sun and moon goes down/up, and where exactly.

BAGS
Sony LCSBP3 DSLR System Backpack – I’d say it’s the perfect backpack.
My all time favorite bag along with this one.

Peak Design Everyday MessengerMy favorite messenger bag.
Ultra high quality and very well-thought messenger by Peak Design and Trey Ratcliff.

Think Tank Retrospective 7 – A very nice messenger bag of high quality.
Not too big, not too small. I got mine in Pinestone color.

Amazonbasics DSLR Backpack – Awesome bag for that price range.
I use this one for my A77 II, its lenses and accessories and it is just perfect. All that for less than 30 bucks…whaaaat?

Amazonbasics Holster Camera Case РSimple camera case.
This is a nice case to put in a single DSLR with a lens or a mirrorless cam with one or two lenses.

Retrospective 7 - Pinestone

Retrospective 7 – Pinestone

ACCOUNTS
Dropbox – What I use to backup my pics.
The question is not whether if your hard drive will fail one day, but whether when it will go down and leave you crying. That’s why I backup to Dropbox AND occasionally copy that whole folder to an external drive.

Adobe CC – To use Lightroom and Photoshop. Paid on a monthly basis.

TRIPODS
Manfrotto 055XPROB – My main tripod.
This is a very sturdy and heavy tripod of high quality. This one even withstands decently heavy winds.

Manfrotto 498RC4 Ball Head High quality ball head.
This is the head that I’m using. It can tilt and do panoramas. It has a quick release system and supports up to 8kg (17 pounds).

Togopod Explorer – My travel¬†tripod, which doesn’t seem to exist in the US.

STUDIO EQUIPEMENT
60″ convertible umbrella A nice umbrella that can be used reflected or as a shoot through.
Light stands
Collapsible background (black and white)
Umbrella adapter
Reflectors

FLASH
Yongnuo 560 Mark III
Flash diffuser bounce cap
Wireless Flash Triggers Receiver Transmitter Transceiver

BATTERIES
Eneloop batteries – Really good batteries!
Battery charger

Eneloop Batteries

Eneloop Batteries

 

SD CARDS
SanDisk 32GB 95MB/s – The one I use on my A77 MK2.
SanDisk 64 GB 45MB/s – The one I use on my Alpha 7.

AUDIO EQUIPMENT
Rode Smartlav
Takstar directional mic

ACESSORIES
Cable release

CLEANING SETS
Lenspen – To clean cameras and lenses.
Giottos Rocket Air Blaster – To clean sensor dust.


STUFF I HAVE SOLD

Sony A77 II – Was my main wildlife and sports camera and i was very good.
This camera has everything the A7 lacks. It has a very fast, accurate and high performing AF, and a high burst rate (12 fps, while still tracking subjects) with a big buffer. It has an APS-C sized sensor for the extra reach in wildlife photography.
My review of the A77 II.

Why did I sell it?
I will stick to the FE mount as I can see the future of Sony’s cameras in it. If I would have had the money to spend on the 70-400 G II then I would have kept it for wildlife alone. Now I’ll be waiting for Sony to release a 400mm on FE mount.

 

ZY Optics Mitakon 50mm 0.95 manual focus lens – A lens with a lot of character.

A heavy and well-built lens that has a lot of character. It is the “cheap Noctilux” for us normal people. It does what it has been built for: keeping¬†warm and lovely moments and memories in its own special way.

My review of the Mitakon 50mm 0.95.

Why did I sell it?
After getting the 55 1.8 Sony Zeiss I have found myself not using the Mitakon anymore, so I was better off having a few bucks in my pocket again.

Sony SAL70300G – A compact super telephoto zoom lens.
This is my current wildlife and sports lens. As the 300mm range is not sufficient I’ll “have to” invest in a bigger lens on day.
I even tested it on the A6000.

Why did I sell it?
After selling the A77 II I couldn’t use this one natively anymore.

Sony 28-70 FE 3.5-5.6 Kit lens РThe lens that came with the A7.
This is the lens that came with the Sony A7. It is a decently good lens with a quite handy zoom range. You can do landscapes, portraits and more with it, and the pictures turn out ok.

Why did I sell it?
I have covered that focal length range with these 3 lenses: 1, 2, 3.

 

Sony LE-EA4 E-mount to A-mount adapter – To mount Sony DSLR lenses to the mirrorless E-mount.
I use this adapter to mount the big A-mount lenses to the E/FE mount. There are not many full frame E-mount (FE) lenses available, so this adapter can help out being the bridge to some really good lenses. I personally use it to mount the SAL70300G to my A7.
You can see the adapter in action here.

Why did I sell it?
For my needs, the internal AF of the adapter, does not suffice.

 

An older Macbook Pro (550 USD used) РPerfect as a sharing server!
I use this laptop as an always on device (with the screen off) to share audio, video and photos using iTunes and Serviio.

Why did I sell it?
Someone from the family needed a cheap computer.

STUFF I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE!
Sony RX100 M4
Sony FE Macro 90mm 2.8
Sony FE 70-200 F4

If a link is not functioning or linking to the wrong product then please feel free to comment below. Also if you have some other question or suggestion, then please ask away.

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