Exeter with the Sony NEX-6

We had a day in Exeter today, with my parents. I took my new Sony NEX-6 along, and it seems people may be interested in seeing what it can do. I’ll add a few more notes after the gallery, but first, the photos:

The indoor shots were all taken in Chaucer’s, an underground pub. It’s dark in there. In our alcove, we used a torch to read the menus. The NEX-6 still got reasonably good shots of the food, using the handheld twilight mode.

General Use

In general, it handled really well again. It fits fairly neatly in my coat pocket, and it’s small enough that it doesn’t feel too conspicuous around my neck. I do sometimes feel a little noticeable using my Nikon D90 and 18-200 zoom in the street. I don’t know how different it really looks from outside, but it certainly feels more subtle from where I am.

Rich Monochrome

It’s hard to say just how much I love the Rich Monochrome mode. It fires three shots, then builds the final image from them. I think it’s doing an HDR effect, really, but in monochrome it looks good. Smooth, rich tones, without the strangely unreal look that colour HDR shots have.

Most of my favourite shots to come out of this camera so far have been with this mode. I’ve liked doing mono shots before, but it’s always felt like work to do it in Aperture, and like a compromise on quality to do it in-camera. With the NEX-6, I feel like I’m getting the best quality, with the least effort. It doesn’t work with things that are moving much, but seems to be fine with smaller movements, even coping ok with people walking while it’s getting its three shots.


The pub we went in for lunch, Chaucer’s, was dark. Even there, though, it seemed to be able to get reasonable shots. The white balance looks way out in those shots, but they’re quite usable for simple foodie pics. Not photos I’m proud of, but decent enough snaps for those who think people might be interested in what they ate.

Comparing the NEX-6 with the NEX-5R

I had trouble making up my mind between these two cameras. The 6 has some nice extra features, but the smaller size of the 5R was very tempting. I got chance to see the 5R in Jessops while we were out. The size difference is less than I expected, and I’m very glad I didn’t decide to miss out on the 6’s extra features. I use the mode dial a lot.

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