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Sony A6000
11 FPS, 24MP APS-C, ISO 25,600

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

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Sony A6000

Sony A6000 (11.5 oz./327g, about $548) and PZ 16-50mm OSS. enlarge. I got mine at Adorama; I'd also get it at Amazon or at B&H.

This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you use those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. Sony's boxes are not sealed in any way, so never buy at retail or any source not on my personally approved list since you'll have no way of knowing if you're missing accessories, getting a defective, store demo, damaged, returned or used product. My approved sources ship from remote automated warehouses where no salespeople or lookie-loos can ever get their greasy fingers on your new camera before you do. Buy only from the approved sources I use myself for the best prices, service, return policies and selection. Thanks for helping me help you! Ken.

 

March 2016    Sony   Zeiss   Minolta   Nikon   Canon   Fuji   LEICA   All

NEW: Sony A6300 Review. The A6300 addresses most of the shortcomings of the A6000, in fact, the A6300 pretty much can replace a full-frame Sony! March 2106

Kipon Baveyes 0.7x Adapter Makes this into a full-frame camera! 26 September 2015

Sony A7R II vs A6000 vs Canon 5DS R Comparison 18 September 2015

 

Sony A6000

Sony A6000. enlarge.

 

Sony A6000

Sony A6000. enlarge.

 

Sample Images         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

Trees at West Steakhouse

Trees, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 20mm, f/5 at 1/80 at Auto ISO 100.) bigger.

 

Inside West Steakhouse

Inside, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 23mm, f/4 at 1/2 hand-held at ISO 800, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

 

inside the Carlsbad Dove Library

Inside the library, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 16mm, f/3.5 at 1/13 hand-held at ISO 200, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

 

Introduction         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

Adorama pays top dollar for your used gear.

B&H Photo - Video - Pro Audio

I buy only from these approved sources. I can't vouch for ads below.

The Sony A6000 is a very competent APS-C mirrorless camera with an excellent built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF).

It performs pretty much as well as Sony's $3,200 A7R II, for less than one-sixth the price.

The A6000 focuses super-fast and makes great-looking images in just about any light. The reasons to pay more for the A7R II are if you really need ISOs above 25,600 (you don't) or need more than 42 megapixels, which you don't either.

The real reason the A7R II is a better camera is because it has a few more software features and a few more buttons and dials that let the few of us who actually use all these adjustments to make them more quickly than we can in the menu system of the A6000.

If you're a normal person, the A6000 should be all you need.

If you're like me and actually use all the features and adjustments, I find the A7R II better only due to finer points. The A6000 has no memory recall modes on its mode dial, no exposure compensation dial (although you can program another dial to do this), no way to program the slowest shutter speeds in Auto ISO, no level in the viewfinder and no silent mode — all things the A7R II has or does.

The A6000 has a built-in flash, missing in the A7R II — ha!

The A6000 runs over twice as fast as the A7R II: 11 versus 5 FPS. Not bad for a $548 camera compared to a $3,200 camera!

 

Good

Superb electronic viewfinder.

Small.

Light.

Fast.

Tough.

Great-looking pictures.

 

Bad

The SD card inserts so the label is away from you (backwards), so it's nearly impossible remove it because the top of the card with the little raised lip is hidden against the open card door. You have to grope for it and try to grab the sides; card bottoms have no raised edges to grab.

 

Missing

No exposure compensation dial (have to twiddle in a menu instead).

No memory recall modes on mode dial.

Can't program minimum shutter speed in Auto ISO.

No level.

No silent mode.

No way to back up the complete camera state as Nikons can do.

No second card slot.

The LCD isn't bright enough to see in direct sunlight; it has no auto brightness control.

 

Specifications         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

 

Sensor

24 MP.

APS-C 16 x 24mm.

6,000 x 4,000 pixels native.

1.5:1 aspect ratio.

Short 18mm flange focal distance allows better lens designs than DSLRs do — the same advantage rangefinder cameras have.

 

Lens Compatibility

Sony A6000

Sony A6000. enlarge.

Sony E-Mount (NEX).

Use the LA-EA4 adapter to use Sony Alpha and Minolta MAXXUM lenses with perfect autofocus and complete compatibility.

While you can adapt any lens to the A6000, they won't work as well as native Sony or Zeiss FE lenses, or Alpha or MAXXUM lenses with the LA-EA4 adapter.

All full-frame FE and APS-C lenses work.

 

LCD

Sony A6000

Sony A6000. enlarge.

Short 16:9 "chopped" LCD.

 

Power & Battery

Charges via USB in-camera.

Sony NP-FW50 Battery

Sony NP-FW50 battery. enlarge.

 

Weight

11.530 oz. (326.9g) actual measured weight with battery and card.

 

Quality

Sony A6000

Sony A6000. enlarge.

Made in Thailand.

 

Introduced

2014.

 

Included

Camera, maybe a lens as a kit.

Strap.

Battery.

USB cord and universal wall USB power supply.

 

Price

$548, September 2015; $698 with 16-50mm lens.

Sony A6000

Sony A6000 box. enlarge.

 

Performance         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

 

Overall

The A6000 is a swell little camera.

I love its EVF, tiny size and how fast and responsive it is.

I prefer the A7R II because of a few little features that matter to me; however the pictures are just as good from the A6000 for a fraction of the price. Resolution and ISOs don't matter in the real world; getting the exposure and colors and focus do, which the A6000 does very well.

 

Autofocus

Autofocus is great: it's fast and accurate.

Face recognition really works to find and focus on faces with no need to select them manually.

It works swell in the dark outside at night and doesn't need its AF illuminator.

It only stumbles if its even darker, like inside a very dim restaurant, where it may take a few tries to try to get focus.

Read on under High ISOs where I'll show where it focuses well or not.

 

Finder

The EVF is excellent.

It's sharp, bright and colorful.

It stays in focus because the finder focus wheel is where it's not likely to get knocked.

 

Shutter

After shooting the A7R II in its silent mode as I sneak around public and private places, the shutter of the A6000 sounds much louder. It has no silent mode.

 

Ergonomics

Sony's menu system is the worst in the business. Items are thrown around at random, so expect to have to wade through the entire system every time you want to find something.

Once you get the camera set it works very fast, but getting it set can be maddening.

Once it's set, all the buttons are on the right, so it's easy to shoot and play back with one hand. Bravo!

All the buttons feel the same, so good luck finding them by feel.

You can't pull the SD card out because it's backwards. There's no grab lip on the bottom of the card, which is the only side you can touch because the top lies against the open card door!

For the seasoned shooter there aren't enough external controls and it too often asks you to have to do common things, like exposure compensation, by piddling with multifunction buttons.

Unlike a DSLR, it always takes a moment to wake up and be ready to shoot.

 

Auto ISO

Auto ISO is primitive, offering only the ability to set the minimum and maximum ISO.

There is no way to set the slowest speed, which makes this camera much less useful for me.

Good news is that it cheerfully runs up to whatever insane high ISO you've programmed it to go, so you really can use all of the great high ISO performance of this camera.

 

Auto White Balance

Auto White Balance is typically decent under most light, but poor under tungsten, halogen and warm-white fluorescent Under these conditions it is way too yellow:

Katie and her Unicorn Pajanimal

Katie and her Unicorn Pajanimal under warm-white fluorescent, September 2015. Sony A6000, Zeiss 24-70mm f/4 at 42mm, f/4 at 1/60 at Auto ISO 1,600, Perfectly Clear V2. bigger.

 

Sharpness

It's super sharp.

With 24 Megapixels, you have about 20 megapixels more than you really need for anything. If you cant' get a sharp photo its because you're doing something stupid, are shooting at f/32, aren't in focus, or something moved.

See how this 24MP camera and a cheap lens easily can keep up with Sony's best $3,200 42 MP camera.

 

High ISOs

High ISOs look great. They look as good as they can, and the Auto ISO system makes them easy to get automatically.

 

ISO 1,600

ISO 1,600 looks swell. See the image above under fluorescent light, and this one under mercury vapor:

Carlabad Dove library at night

Walkway at night, 22 September 2015. Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 20mm, f/3.5 at 1/13 hand-held at Auto ISO 1,600, Perfectly Clear V2. bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

 

ISO 3,200

ISO 3,200 also looks great, with just a hint of grain. Yes, it loses a lot of detail, but tough, the images still look great:

Ryan washes Dad's windows in Del Mar

Ryan squeegees Dad's windows, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 32mm, f/5 at 1/60 at Auto ISO 3,200, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

 

ISO 10,000

ISO 10,000 also looks great!

Outside West Steakhouse at night

Trees outside at night, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 16mm, f/4 at 1/60 at Auto ISO 10,000, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

 

ISO 20,000

By the time we get to crazytown, ISO 20,000 looks pretty bad, meaning that noise reduction is doing its best to pull an image out of nothing, but what's left is severely smudged over, looking like a wet sponge was taken to a chalk drawing:

Ryan at West Steakhouse

Ryan in a dark restaurant, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 27mm, -1 stop exposure compensation, f/4.5 at 1/60 at Auto ISO 20,000, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

It was so dark in here that the A6000 took a while to try to focus.

 

ISO 25,600

ISO 25,600 works when you need it. Everything becomes very cartoon-like from the strong noise reduction used to try to salvage a usable image from what would be nothing otherwise.

Seeing how insane is ISO 25,600 and how it lets me shoot even with slow lenses hand-held in the dark at night, I think ISO 25,600 looks spectacular:

outside Carlsbad Dove library showing wall sculpture at night

Outdoors at night, 22 September 2015. (Sony A6000, Sony PZ 16-50mm OSS at 16mm, f/4 at 1/60 at Auto ISO 25,600, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger or unprocessed camera-original © file.

It focuses easily in this light without its AF illuminator.

 

LCD & Playback

The LCD isn't bright enough to see in direct sunlight.

It's a squinty and inappropriate 16:9 "chopped" LCD which means that the image never fills the screen; it either has black on either side, or crops off part of the image if zoomed.

There's no way to read file number.

Use the top rear dial to swap images while zoomed.

 

Data

Cards are not properly formatted, they are left as NO NAME instead of SONY_A6K.

Sony litters our cards with too many folders and hides videos in a different folder than our pictures.

Auto ISO reads properly in Media Pro.

Fantastic is that we have the menu option for it to create a new folder each day. I wish my DSLRs did that!

 

Clock Accuracy

My A6000 gains one second per week, or it runs fast 4.3 seconds per month.

This is pretty good.

Every sample will be different.

 

Power

It has a battery percentage indicator, but no long-term battery health indication.

The A6000 charges via USB only.

It draws 470 mA while charging, and 40mA when done.

 

Compared         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

 

NEW: Sony A7R II vs A6000 vs Canon 5DS R Comparison 18 September 2015

See the rest of the review for comparisons to the A7R II. Also the A7R II includes a spare battery (total of two) and a separate plug-in-the-wall battery charger, so you can charge both at once. With this A6000, you get one battery and no external charger; the A6000 only charges in the camera via USB.

While the A6000's images are as good as from more expensive Sonys, it lacks quite a few convenience features which I use. Most people who buy one of these wouldn't miss anything.

 

Recommendations         top

Sample Images   Intro   Specs   Performance

Compared   Recommendations

The A6000 is a very competent little camera at a great price. If you think you want one, get one. Personally I prefer my Nikon and Canon DSLRs, but to each their own.

Be sure to use it only with Sony or Zeiss lenses made for E-Mount. Performance won't be as impressive with adapted lenses, and takes most of the speed out of it.

Do get it as a kit with the PZ 16-50mm OSS, a tiny, high-performance and inexpensive lens.

This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you get yours via these links to it at Adorama, at Amazon or at B&H. When you use those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live, it helps me keep adding to this free website — but I receive nothing for my efforts if you take the chance of buying elsewhere. Unlike a bottle of milk or a CD, Sony doesn't seal its boxes at all, so you have no idea if you're getting a used, returned, incomplete or damaged product if you risk buying at retail. Never buy at retail. I use the sources I do because they have the best prices, service, return policies and selection— and they ship from secure remote warehouses where no customers or salesmen can get their sticky hands on your new camera before you do.

Thanks for helping me help you!

Ken.

 

© Ken Rockwell. All rights reserved. Tous droits réservés. Alle Rechte vorbehalten.

 

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Mr. & Mrs. Ken Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.

 

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24 September 2015