I have been using a Sony NEX 5t lately but I kinda destroyed it (long story). I might have to get another one or should I use this as the opportunity to step up to the Sony A5100? Is the price difference really worth it?
According to Amazon, the Sony Nex 5T (Body only) is $199 and the Sony A5100 is $356 on the used market. I will probably get a used one as this would be for my Youtube channel and I seem to break cameras easily when I am out doing a vlog.
Is it worth the extra $150 to upgrade to the newest (not really new anymore) model? I do not know that to be honest.
The advantages of the Sony Nex 5t
The first real advantage is I own one and use one. I know exactly what they can do. The color rendering on it is quite good if the lighting is right. It also has a pretty good sensor.
The downside to the Sony Nex 5t is low light. The usable ISO on it is about 800. Anything pass that is no man’s land. It is basically not good for dark locations or at night. It is what it is.
It is quite a good camera and anyone needing a cheap option for doing photography or vlogging (as I use it for); this model is for sure a great bang for the buck!
The advantages of the Sony A5100
While, I have not had one in my hands but I assume that the usable ISO is much better. Probably around 3200 or so. That is a huge factor when vlogging. Something you need that extra light.
The other advantage is more a photography issue but the resolution is bigger. It is 24MP against the 16MP of the other model. This is not a huge deal for most but it is nice to be able to use the camera for professional photography too.
The downside to the Sony A5100 is the battery life. Neither are very good but this model has a very bad reputation for a crappy life of a charge. It is a huge issue unless you want to carry a dozen batteries with you when using the camera. I do not.
In every way (but the battery) this camera should be better for quality and handling of files. It is worth the extra $150 if you ask me.
Common issues between them
The harsh reality is the Sony Nex 5T and the Sony A5100 both have crappy battery life, no 3.5″ input for a microphone, and the sensor heat up quickly.
I really am amazed that Sony can not figure out how to make the battery charge last longer than they do. It really is something I would think they could fix in the research and development department. It is not fixed. The newest mirrorless cameras have the same problem.
One thing that annoys me personally is the lack of a microphone jack. I would really like to hook up a Rode VideoMic Pro to the camera to get better audio but I can’t. They seem to justify this by the stereo mic onboard. I do have to say it is quite good for an internal microphone.
Many people have pointed out that the sensor overheats quickly. I find the Sony Nex 5t starts to overheat at 12 minutes. The good news is most clips I do are around 3-4 minutes. However, this could become an issue.
Which one should I get?
If you have used either one of these cameras, let me what you think of them? I would love to hear your experience. As of this writing, I am still on the fence about what to do.