Quite often, consumer electronics' manufacturers don't really reveal the full potential of their various devices right from the moment they're pushed on the market, preferring to enable them later on, via firmware updates, this also being the case with Sony's NEX-5/NEX-3 mirrorless, interchangeable-lens digital cameras, who've just received some interesting performance enhancements via the company's latest firmware update.
As you will certainly remember, we've had the chance to test Sony's NEX-3 ourselves, and we'll have to admit that the enhancements brought about will be quite welcome, albeit only a handful of photographers will take advantage of at least a couple of them.
Anyway, with the new update, Autofocus is now supported when using the NEX-5/NEX-3 with 14 lenses from the full range of A-mount optics by Sony and Carl Zeiss that includes telephotos, primes and zooms.
Moreover, the aperture settings can be maintained during HD movie recording, either in A (aperture priority) mode or in iAuto mode with background defocus activated.
System menu operation has been streamlined alongside other usability improvements, since, after applying the upgrade, you'll be able to customise functions of two of the three soft keys on the camera’s rear panel.
Functions that can be assigned include Shooting Mode, Shooting Tips, Precision Digital Zoom, ISO, White Balance, Metering Mode, Flash Compensation, DRO, Auto HDR, Creative Style, MF Assist and AF Area.
Also, when ‘Menu’ is selected, there’s now the option to display either the main menu screen or the last parameter set, a feature that will certainly simplify quick readjustment of recently-selected functions and settings.
An enlarged image portion can be displayed on screen with user-selectable duration while in MF (Manual Focus) Assist mode and MF Assist operation has also been improved, because the previously-chosen magnified image portion can now be maintained when MF Assist is re-selected, making repeated checks of fine focus quicker and more convenient.
Of course, in order to be able to apply this upgrade, you have to be a registered NEX-5/NEX-3 owner, and in that case, you will be advised of the free update via email.
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