Sony A6300:Nikon D500:Sigma Art 50-100mm:Impressions

Sony A6300:Nikon D500:Sigma Art 50-100mm:Impressions

shot with the Nikon D500 and the Sigma ART 50-100mm at 100mm, 1.8
ISO 280, pushed by two stops in post

Took a few minutes to get used shooting with a DSLR and optical viewfinder again :)

by now I am so used to looking at my Sony’s rear screen, shooting overhead, from the hip or from very low angles, live view isn’t the D500 strength but if you are used to ovfs you will be blown away by the D500.
Plenty of praise can be found about everything that sets this camera apart from its predecessors and competitors, as for my shooting style and subjects,
due to size and weight, I can say with certainty that I won’t switch back to DSLR’s, despite a few obvious advantages in terms of usability and ergonomics for certain types of shoots.

To sum it up, I had no problems switching between the two cameras, the A6300 is speedy enough and focuses almost as fast! as the D500 in the real world, shooting in short bursts isn’t a problem either. Obviously the A6300 is better suited for candid street shooting, attracts fewer looks, due to size and the option for a completely silent shutter. The d500 in silent mode is – not silent at all, just slower with a pitch shift.

No doubt, the D500 feels and acts like a pro DSLR, the A6300 does not.
OVF is large and bright, turn it on and it is ready, instantly. Every button is in the right place and it feels natural to shoot looking through the EVF.


AF/Live view/OVF stills:
This is of course the main difference and the A6300 can hang with much bigger cameras in terms of high speed continuous shooting and provide live view in between, being able to pan along with  a moving subject using the LCD is fantastic.

The Nikon in live view mode is not a speed daemon. The touch screen is  practical, esp for image reviews and focus check, with focus/shutter enabled, you can touch your subject and the camera will do the rest, focus and take the shot ….-s-l-o-w-l-y. Best suited for static objects.
Using the OVF on the other hand, focus navigation with the joy stick is
totally intuitive and very fast, right from the start, you’ll get it in 30sec or less, the first time you handle the camera (even if you never handled a DSLR before in your life),  followed by almost instant focus acquisition. This sets it clearly apart from the A6300, and most other cameras currently available, regardless of price.
By now I can operate my Sony cams  intuitively and I am able to switch focus modes and points quickly, just can’t hang with the speed and simplicity of a joy stick.

Buffer: D500 clear winner

Continuous shooting: D500 for long bursts, only slight advantage over A6300 for short bursts

Silent shooting: A6300

Video capabilities: Too bad Nikon isn’t able to get the video mode right in their latest flaghships, AF  isn’t smooth and there is no focus peaking option. The A6300 on the other hand is  years ahead, relatively smooth af, focus peaking. No headphone jack, whereas the D500 does have one.

Battery life: we all know it by now

Who will  benefit from the D500? Sport shooters, birders and event photographers.

Who will mostly benefit from the A6300? Travel photographers and videographers.

Sensor performance: very impressed with the sensor in the D500, slight advantage of the Sony sensor in terms of resolution, other then that, I would consider them pretty much equal based on real world shooting.

Connectivity: I was very curious to test the new blue tooth option on the D500, as with everything software related,  not Nikon’s strong point, I managed to connect to my Nexus 6 running Android 6.0.1. A very slow process, once connected, I realized it will only recognize jpegs, if you are a raw shooter, you will need to enable one of the raw+jpeg options to transfer images to your phone. Very limited options and a primitive UI. I am not a fan of Sony’s Play Memories app either, I would rate them equally behind our times. Panasonic’s remote/image transfer software is light years ahead of anything else I have tried. Lots of camera control options, including full manual and speedy image transfers.

Sigma ART 50-100: After performing af fine tune using Nikon’s new auto fine tune option, the lens appears to focus accurately during my limited time shooting with it, focuses very fast and APSC shooters finally get a lens with bokehlicious qualities rivaling full frame sensors.


Good news for Sony A7rII shooters, I hope to test the Canon mount version with the Sigma TC 11 soon, the lens will cover approx a 1.15-1.2 crop , the dark edges less pronounced at the long end. Great news, keep in mind the lens is a monster in terms of size and weight, other then that, if you are after great bokeh in a versatile zoom at a reasonable price, this might be the one. Will post samples soon.

As always, keep in mind my preferences and dislikes are subjective and based on how and what I shoot:

If you are interested in handling the D500 and/or Sigma ART 50-100mm and happen to be in the City, swing by Adorama, ask for Efraim Nussbaum and he will gladly help you!
If you find this article helpful, please consider helping me maintaining this blog by purchasing your gear through my product links to Adorama and B&H and Ebay. It will cost you nothing and allows me to keep adding! Or consider making a direct donation using PayPal, thank you!

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