Photographic & Tech Musings by Jon Adams

Sony Nex-6 vs. Sony Nex-7

I received a question through my website from someone wondering about whether they should pick up a Nex-7 for a good price or get the newer Nex-6. Here’s the question

I've been on the fence whether to purchase the Nex-7 or Nex-6. Just seeing what you have been able to do with the 7 makes it that much more appealing. Would you say there is any benefit for me to pick up the 6 instead? I'm hoping to do action/sports and travel photography as well as using the video record features. 

I’ve since had several email conversations with this person. I’m excited to hear what they will do. For this post, I thought we might want to break down the two cameras.

Main Differences
24MP Sensor
Non-Standard Hotshoe
Slower Contrast Style Focusing
Tri-Navi Interface
External Mic plug

16MP Sensor
New ISO Standard Hotshoe
Faster Hybrid Focusing
No Mic Plug
Less External Control Buttons
Higher Maximum ISO
Apps available to extend functionality
Built in WIFI

EVF Viewfinder
Nearly the same size
Currently about the same money (Lots of deals on the Nex-7 right now)
Same Lens Mount
Great AF during video recording.

•So they are pretty similar size and shape. The Nex-7 is just more of a pro style body the way the controls are laid out, having buttons all over you can program to do what you want with.

•Focusing Speed with native e-mount lenses is one area the Nex-6 wins hands down. It’s grabs onto focus much faster than the 7. Although for me the focusing of the 7 is fast enough in most situations. Also if you plan to do much sports shooting, You’ll have to go with bigger A mount lenses anyway and the adapter has a phase detect AF system on board making the focus of both cameras equal. So this wasn’t an issue for my friend. But it might be for you. Shooting playing children with the hex-6 is much easier due to the focus speed of the camera. ‘

•No external mic port can also be a big deal if you plan to do much video. There is no gain control or monitoring, but you can at leas plug in a mic to the 7. Nothing on the 6.

•24 vs 16 Megapixel. I find the Nex-7 holds it’s own in the noise arena due to the higher res. If I scale them down to 16MP from the 24MP a lot of the noise disappears and seems about the same as the 16MP sensor does natively. The Nex-7 sensor really needs great glass to really shine. The best glass you can use helps both cameras. The 24 Megapixel file size is overkill for many many people out there. It does have an advantage in cropping and making large prints. I make a lot of very large prints and that was one of the main reasons I shoot with the Nex-7 today. But for most folks who only occasionally print large either sensor will be just fine.

Apps I am a huge fan of the apps. Finally a way to extend the built in features of a camera without having to buy a new camera. Sony can make money, and we can get new features! Current apps are Time Lapse, Bracket Pro, Cinematic Photo, Multi Frame NR, Photo Retouch, Direct Upload, Smart Remote Control, and Picture Effect. I’m sure more are on the way too. These can be very useful and cool. Nex-6 or Nex-5r are the only Nex cameras currently to support this feature. I’m sure all new ones will have them too.

Wifi is also a very handy feature. It’s more for the traveling photographer with an inkling to share their images via iPhone or Android right now. It’s very enjoyable to get to pull images into your iPad or iPhone and tweak them with something like Nik Software’s SnapSeed. Plus you can instantly share them with your favorite social media. There are wifi SD cards that can give you similar functionality with the Nex-7, but you’re limited to using that card to shoot to if you want to share images. If you were to only buy cards with wifi you’d spend a lot of money.

•Standard hotshoe is nice, but you can get an $8 adapter and your there with the Nex-7. I welcome the change looking forward.

I think my friend is going to go with the Nex-7. Wanting the extra controls, and Higher resolution. Planning to shoot sports with the phase detect A mount adapter anyway. I don’t think you can go wrong with either choice. They are both superb cameras. I’m also holding my breath to see what the next iteration of the Nex-7 will have. As it stands now, by adding WIFI, Hybrid Focusing and a standard hotshoe to the Nex-7 would be a fantastic upgrade. I don’t think they’ll stop there. I think they’re planning some wonderful things for the next Pro version of Nex. Hopefully I’ll be able to snag one of those when they come out.

If you decide to purchase one or both of these cameras. Fell free to use the links below. Amazon kicks back a little to this site to help pay for it.
Check out my Nex Shopping Site Click Here