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Forums Sony Cameras Just returned NX70 #2; now looking at NX5 but I have a BUNCH of questions!

  • Just returned NX70 #2; now looking at NX5 but I have a BUNCH of questions!

     Stephen Crye updated 9 years, 1 month ago 8 Members · 26 Posts
  • Stephen Crye

    December 8, 2011 at 12:00 am


    I’m hoping John Lenihan and others can help.

    Still in mourning over the problems with the NX70s. Design flaws, too many to mention – but the killer was horrible chromatic aberration and poor focus quality across the entire image. WAAAAY worse than my little HDR-CX550V!

    Some example of the problems here – frame grabs. Look at them in full-screen full res. In particular, the one titled NX70city1.jpg shows the problem that drove me crazy. Notice how the center is perfectly sharp, various areas of the frame are also sharp, but the right left, even near the center, is terribly blurred. And not just that shot, all the footage I shot had the problem. On NX70#1, the problem was on the right side, near the corner! There are some major QC problems at the NX70 factory ….

    So, now that everyone can understand how picky I am about focus from edge to edge, just imagine how even the slightest problem with back-focus would drive me out of my mind.

    I’ve been reading conflicting reports about the back-focus thing. Some say it was a problem with early NX5s, others say “live with it”

    back-focus can be adjusted at the factory, and I would expect PERFECT focus throughout the zoom range – my CX550V has zero problems with back-focus.

    Can anyone help? $4K for an NX70 will seem insane to my wife …


    Win7 Pro X64 on Dell T3400, MultiTB SATA, 8GB RAM Vegas 10e x64 DVDA 5.2(build 133) Sony HDR-CX550V

  • Stephen Crye

    December 8, 2011 at 4:25 am

    Here’s the reply from John in the other thread I rudely hijacked to get his attention (sorry people):


    I just looked at your samples and it is a very nice documation of the product.

    Why is the consumer camera look better? I remember from high school photography class that a very good lens is a pin hole in aluminum foil. No aberration, everything is in focus. But, it takes a lot of light. Consumer cameras are basically pin hole lenses. Making a real lens that works well over a zoom range, an aperture range, and across the xy grid on the screen is extremely tough. And it takes compromises to make them inexpensively and small, lightweight, watertight etc. It looks like they picked some trade offs aimed more at blow and go journalists who are covering breaking stories like huricanes or roaming on a football field while it snows.

    The 70 appears not to be targeting the crowd who actually care about what the picture looks like, just get something and get out.

    I have not done that thorough of a characterization of the nx5 under those various lighting conditions. So I cannot give you an apples to apples comparison.

    Probably we should get some charts for comparing cameras and fully document each of these nx cameras.

    I can say that I have only rarely noticed any chromatic aberation on the nx5s. The big big concern is it has an “antiface” detector in the autofocus. In other words, it focuses on sharp objects like trees and buildings, even if the a face is taking up 3/4 of the screen sometimes.

    I can only add that I bought an nx 100 and returned it and bought a fourth nx5 because:
    The nx100 price was more, the form factor is poor, the picture quality no better than the nx5u etc.


    John Lenihan

    LeniCam Video Productions

    Win7 Pro X64 on Dell T3400, MultiTB SATA, 8GB RAM Vegas 10e x64 DVDA 5.2(build 133) Sony HDR-CX550V

  • Stephen Crye

    December 8, 2011 at 4:29 am


    “antiface detection” – LOL.

    John, let’s tackle one potential problem at a time. Have you done any back-focus tests with your units (four NX5’s! Awesome)?

    The test would be easy – just point it at some kind of a still-life about 30 feet distant, zoom all the way, manual focus sharp, and zoom out.

    Here’s an example that shows the problem:



    Win7 Pro X64 on Dell T3400, MultiTB SATA, 8GB RAM Vegas 10e x64 DVDA 5.2(build 133) Sony HDR-CX550V

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  • Michael Johnston

    December 11, 2011 at 5:41 am

    I can only speak for my NX5U. I got it in April of 2011 and the backfocus is slightly off. Basically, I zoom in, critical focus, zoom out and turn the focus ring ever so slightly clockwise and it’s perfect focus. I’ve dealt with it for a couple of reasons. One, I’ve heard horror stories about how long it takes to get the camera back from Sony and, two, some have gotten their NX5’s back with the backfocus worse than when they originally sent it in.

    I have never noticed a focus issue with my NX5 that you documented with your NX70’s.

  • Jeff Pulera

    December 13, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    Post deleted by user

  • Ian Liuzzi-Fedun

    December 17, 2011 at 6:30 am

    So what’s the deal? Is it a sound camera to go with or not?

  • john lenihan

    December 17, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    People often ask me what camera they should buy. In fact, my daughter asked for one for Christmas and said I should pick it out.

    I tell each of them the same thing. Buying a camera is like buying a pair of shoes, it is a personal choice based on your need, your size, and your price range. Do you want to run in the shoes, do you want to ride a horse, do you want to go to a prom? All shoes have strengths for some things, and weaknesses for others.

    Íf you tell us your purpose, and what your budget is, and what features you have liked or question on paper, then we can give you some further experience.

    I have a small, growing videography business. In 2010 I bought two NX5u to do weddings. I found the autofocus to sometimes become confused. I work around it.

    This summer I bought two more NX5us because the business grew on referrals and I was getting two weddings at a time. I teach my team how to use the cameras to shoot weddings. There is not a better camera on the market for this purpose in my opinion.

    John Lenihan

    John Lenihan

    LeniCam Video Productions


  • Ian Liuzzi-Fedun

    December 17, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    I’m not talking about the autofocus – that back focus thing (a completely different issue) is my primary concern

  • Michael Johnston

    December 18, 2011 at 8:14 am

    The backfocus is going to be off. All that means is if you zoom in to critical, it won’t hold a focus when you pull out. However, there is an expanded focus button beside the zoom rocker and it works great. Push it, focus, push again. Very accurate and quicker than the traditional critical focus method.

    All in all, the NX5 is a spectacular camera. I have no regrets buying it and, with my picture profile settings, the image is every bit as good as an EX1 or EX3.

  • Ian Liuzzi-Fedun

    December 18, 2011 at 8:18 am

    I am simultaneously astounded and impressed. I don’t know how I could get used to that whole focus thing. I do multicamera shoots and holding focus while the shot is moving is beyond critical.

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