Party on…High ISO Monster Sony A7s out in the wild

Today I want to share with you a couple of pictures I took at two parties I went to last weekend. Parties have never been my favorite subject to shoot, because the lighting often is really shitty and in my mind using a flash is not an option here. It’s just too disturbing and will bring all the attention to me and I love to capture unscripted, decisive moments. And here is where the Sony A7s comes into play with its amazing low light capabilities. I shot DSLRs like the Nikon D700/D800 and they were pretty good in low light, but the A7s is noticeably better, especially when you crank up the ISO beyond 10.000. But, there has to be at least some sort of light, otherwise the pictures will look grainy and won’t be useable at all.

So, when I bring the camera to a party I always look out for light sources brighten up a face or at least make a situation or a person look interesting in some way. Nowadays people get more and more addicted to their smartphones and that can come in handy while taking pictures at a party. The light emitting from their screens can add a lot to a scene and the people are totally focused and won’t notice you taking their picture.

The only lens I used was the Voigtlander 58/1.4 for F-Mount. Manual Focus was not an issue thanks to focus peaking and the very bright viewfinder. All shots were taken wide open at f/1.4 with a shutter speed of 1/50 with ISOs from 3200 to 104600. The pictures have been processed in Lightroom and some of them have been even pushed by half a stop or more. Some pictures show visible noise, but considering the near absence of any light and those crazy high ISO numbers, the results look great.

On Monday I received the Mitakon 50mm f/0.95, which will serve me pretty well in low light situations and so far the results look really promising. A Sony A7s review will be coming and I might do one for Mitakon as well.


If you have any questions, leave a comment below and I will try to answer them as soon as possible. And of course smack the like button and follow me on facebook!


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11 Kommentare

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  • Wolfgang LonienDecember 4, 2014 - 17:40

    Beautiful people, perfectly captured. Bravo Robin!


    • RobinDecember 4, 2014 - 18:30

      Thank you Wolfgang!


  • WillDecember 5, 2014 - 01:43

    Nice! I think I can tell which one was shot at 100,000 iso…but like you said, you’ve captured the moment and that’s the most important thing!


    • RobinDecember 5, 2014 - 09:10

      Thank you Will! There are more ISO 100.000 shots in this set.


  • AmroDecember 18, 2014 - 18:27

    Excellent images.

    Very well done.

    I don’t have Facebook, but I’ll keep an eye on you here. (Unless you’re on Flickr or something!).



    • RobinDecember 19, 2014 - 15:22

      Thank you Amro! I have a Flickr Account, but don’t use it anymore.


  • Sony Tidbits… | sonyalpharumorsDecember 20, 2014 - 04:45

    […] Robin: “I recently purchased a Sony A7s and took it out the first time for some serious high ISO shooting. I am really impressed by the results I got out of it and I wrote an article about my initial thoughts with tons of sample images.; […]


  • Ottawa Wedding PhotographerDecember 20, 2014 - 22:17

    beautiful shots!
    I especially like how you’ve used people’s smartphones as your main light!


    • RobinDecember 21, 2014 - 13:15

      Thank you! 🙂


  • ThomasOctober 29, 2015 - 01:42

    Very nice photos you have there!
    I’m looking for advice for the best setup to shoot low light photos, since I own a night club.
    I’m on the crossroad between Olympus or Sony A7s.
    Which one would you consider investing into for these extreme low light conditions?


    • RobinNovember 3, 2015 - 23:21

      For extreme low light shooting the Sony A7s is a no brainer, there is no other camera out there that is able to deliver better results!