PFRE reader Jukka Töyli of Tampere, Finland sent me some images from a pre-production Sony Alpha A55 that he is testing for Sony of Finland. This Sony model was announced in late August. The feature that Jukka's images demonstrates is a new implementation of in camera "HDR". The press release describes this feature as follows:
"Auto HDR shoots and combines three frames into a single high dynamic range (HDR) photo with rich shadow and highlight detail. Multi frame NR shoots and combines six frames into a single photo, enabling smooth low-light imaging at half the noise level. Hand-held Twilight shoots and combines six frames into a single photo, suppressing blur to enable clear night-scene imaging without a tripod or flash."
It's probably a stretch to call this HDR processing because apparently it's bracketing uses only 3 steps of 1/3 to 2/3 stops and the only control over this feature is three modes. What, no sliders! Although, the images do have a distinct HDR look to them. Even to the point of having slight halos around some lights.
The main point that Jukka wanted to show us about these photos that the A55 shoots is that he believes the A55 gives acceptable results for his real estate and hotel shooting yet greatly speeds up workflow because of the in-camera processing. The images in the tour above are a mix of work done in Tampere, Finland and a shoot that he is currently doing in Puerto Banus and Benalmadena Harbour, Spain. Jukka says the results he's getting with the A55 are similar to the Exposure Fusion he normally does rather than HDR. Jukka describes his post processing on these images as minimal post processing in Lightroom: " more contrast, recovery and some of them fill light. I use also little noise reduction and sharpening but not so much. Really fast, just used 3-5 mins per photo." Jukka says what he really wants is a "Scott Hargis" mode for this camera but he's not going to hold his breath.
Thanks Jukka for the examples!