I haven’t tried either camera so I can’t give you any personnel experience. Good thing is, that you can’t make wrong choice, both are top of the line in the DSLR APS-Cworld. 12 f/s with Sony is impressive, but at that speed, you don’t have control of the image between the captures and AF will be very unpredictable. Where you might need 12 f/s? Extreme sport, extreme wildlife etc. otherwise, I believe that 6 f/s is more than enough for most situations.
I didn’t understand your note about size of the sensor. AFAIK they are supposed to be same (23.5 x 15.6 mm) 24 mpx. While I think it’s same sensor (base) in both cameras, I can’t say for sure. Nikon is designing its own A/D converters and processing pipe and they are also supposed to design sensor topings including micro lenses. In a result, I believe that IQ will be very similar between the two, but because of the transluscent technology used in Sony, Nikon should have somewhat better low light performance.
Articulating screen feature is nice to have. I have been using it on my Sony E mount cameras mainly for landscape, because I am lazy to bend, but at the end I usually have to look in the viewfinder anyway, in order to prevent parasite light and reflections from the LCD screen. If you are planning to shot lot of video, articulating screen is certainly beneficial.
As I said, you can’t make wrong choice here. Moral lifetime of such a camera is probably only few years, and both cameras might be soon replaced with newer models. Real life time of those cameras is much longer and if you take good care of it, I am sure they will be able to make competitive IQ images another 5-7 years.
Photo industry is very turbulent recently. There are new breakthrough solutions in lens design, including Fresnel type of optics and other diffractive special glasses. In parallel, computational approaches in image quality improvement are very dynamic and we can already see gap between great and cheap optical correction being drastically reduced by different software solutions.
Light field technology is still waiting to show its full potential and younger generation is asking for more interactive idea presentation (360°video, Lythro etc.)
I am saying this in order to put in perspective your concerns about future of the Sony A mount. In fact, everything in traditional photography equipment is under big question mark recently. I wouldn’t be surprised if Nikon collapse (they are heavily over-invested according some economical sources), but they might also show unexpected growth if rumors about Samsung acquisition, shows to be truth.
Choose the camera that impress you more. Beside all those fancy functions, there is always little emotional relation to the gear, just like in marriage (first few months are great).
Regarding your lens question – you can use any third party lens made for Minolta/Sony A (there are also lot of older Minolta AF lenses that will work on Sony A77 MII), my point is that most of third party producers, and even Sony themselves didn’t release new A mount lens for a while now. And proper choice of the lens, will have greater influence on the final image, than camera body. From that perspective, Nikon is still alive, while Sony is living from the old glory. (There are some magnificent lenses in Sony A mount, such Minolta/Sony 135/2.8 STF is one of its kind portrait lens with incredibly smooth bokeh e.g.)
All the best mate,
- This reply was modified 2 years ago by viktor pavlovic.