Previews

July 20, 2012

I’m Back!! Sony Nex-F3 – First Impressions and High Res Sample Photos!!

nex-f3-front

I’m back after a brutal week of On-Call for my real job!! I got hammered and unfortunately had no time to write any articles for the past 5 days or so. Sorry about that ;)

I have been using the Sony Nex-F3 extensively and I must say, Sony made some drastic improvements on the overall Nex Design! I took many sample photos using Aperture Priority mode and Superior Intelligent Auto Mode.  I shot only in JPEG mode as the raw files are not supported by Lightroom 4 yet. I also took several video clips using the various quality and frame rate settings. The results are very good and I will put them up My Youtube Channel for you to check out asap!!

 

First Impressions – Sony Nex-F3

Sony took a different approach this time with the Nex series and created a “F” category. Standing for flip screen model with 3 series features and build quality.
The Nex-F3 has a few new bells and whistles  justify the new category letter if you ask me!  First off, the chassis has been completely re-designed to accommodate for the linkage needed that flips the screen up. The two main mount points are retractable style hinged arms, sort of like claws, and they move in and out of the camera. This creates the need for an overall taller design, which also allowed for a Nex-7 style pop up flash!!

The Flip Screen is particularly useful for doing reviews and stuff like I do, as it caters to self portraits or self recordings. Using this camera for reviewing equipment would be great, as I could actually see what I’m doing and to make sure the Autofocus is on what I want etc.. The screen does still aim down a little bit which does allow for overhead shooting. It’s not as easy as the full 90 degree downward tilt, but still usable in my opinion, and worth the sacrifice for the advantage. The very bottom of the screen clicks into the chassis near the tri-pod mount point when in the fully closed position. See below for a closer look!!

The battery is now facing perpendicular to the camera body which allows for a much better and deeper grip than the Nex-C3 for example.

 

Nex-F3 Vs Nex-C3 – Bottom of the Camera

Nex-F3 - Bottom in Black

Nex-F3 – Bottom in Black

Nex-C3 - Bottom

Nex-C3 – Bottom

 

The Nex-F3 has much more surface area on the bottom of the camera so Sony took advantage of this and beefed up the tri-pod mount area significantly. This extra space in the middle was created by making the camera thicker for better sensor cooling and overall strength I believe. Nice job Sony!!  You will need to remove your tri-pod quick re-lease plate in order to change the memory card most likely, unless it is extremely small. The battery should be no problem though.

Nex-F3 Shutter Button

Nex-F3 Shutter Button

The newly designed shutter button area was a bit weird at first, but I’ve grown to like it better as the pointer finger has more camera grip.

The Nex-F3 auxiliary port, is now able to take advantage of the OLED Viewfinder and other high power draw accessories, unlike the previous 3 series model.

The AF is significantly faster!! Not sure if Sony modified the way the AF works, or updated the hardware itself, but it’s definitely faster than the Nex-5n I just sent back to bhphoto. Granted, I was using the Sigma 19 and 30mm f.2.8 EX DN Lenses and not the Sony Kit lens!!

 

Sample Photos – Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens

Click the Photos for the full size 1200px version!!

Normal Exposure vs AutoHDR 6EV

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine - AutoHDR

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine – AutoHDR

 

A Street Scene with some depth and color shot at f/8.

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine – AutoHDR

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine – AutoHDR

 

I used the BW High Contrast and Sharp Lightroom Preset that I made the other day when creating a video tutorial on creating BW presets. Download the Free Lightroom Preset Here>>

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens - Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine - BW High Contrast and Sharp Lightroom 4 Preset

Sony Nex-F3 w/ 18-55mm kit lens – Sample Photos, Jpeg Fine – BW High Contrast and Sharp Lightroom 4 Preset

 

Click the thumbnails for the full size version in a gallery style format!!

 

Closing Remarks

The Sony Nex-F3 has a significantly re-designed camera body. I personally like the changes as it suites my needs quite well. The image quality is very good in my opinion as expected. Noting that I only shot in JPEG fine mode so far. The chassis changes including the flip screen, built in flash, and beefed up tri-pod mount area, are really the highlights for the Sony Nex-C3 in my opinion so far. The rest of the features like Superior Intelligent Auto, and Smart Zoom, are not new to Sony, but are new to the 3-series model for sure!! I will play with these features soon enough ;)

Stay tuned for more detailed 100% crop sample photos, HD video samples, and the Yasurhara Nanoha 5:1 Macro Lens sample photos!! The Sony RX100 and New 18-200mm E-Mount lens is also on it’s way!!

I’ll also get to all the un answered comments/ questions ASAP!!

Jay


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Thanks,
Jay

 

 

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About the Author

Jay
Hello, I'm the owner and operator of SonyAlphaLab.com. Please check out the About page for a full background on myself and the Lab ;) Google+ | Twitter | RSS-feed | Email Updates!!




5 Comments


  1. Hi Jay;

    Something i like to know about this NEX if is overheat on video mode, i have hopes this be addressed on the new NEX generation.

    Keep the good work, thanks


  2. Jay

    Hi Douglas,

    I’m curious about that myself. I have not had any issues at all yet, but I’ll run out the memory card later and see what happens. In 60i mode it will get the hottest the fastest, so I’ll use that.

    Jay



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