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on April 19, 2013
I'm writing this review because if you are anything like me, you're wondering if this book is worth buying. Well, I can say absolutely YES. I know something about writing because it's my trade, so I can say that I like this author's style very much and the design of the book is very attractive and easy to follow. I considered buying the Kindle/Nook version but I'm very glad I did not. The book is too big for that format (so it was downsized to fit) and it is so nicely illustrated that it would be a shame, I think, not to get the printed book.

So is this worth the $14 or so versus just using the small printed manual or even the very long user guide that is available as a PDF file? My answer is YES! Neither of those resources is as easy to follow and understand as this book is. You might also wonder if this book is useful for NEX-6 owners in particular or whether it is just a rehash of a generic photography guide that could apply to any photography guide book. My answer to that question is two-fold: yes, it is directly squarely at the NEX-6 owner (so that all the features described are exactly those on this model camera) and yet it also has tons of general photography tips and explanations of terminology and technique. Also, it is illustrated with many great shhots taken by the author of his childhood home in Texas (and others from his travels). Each of these photos shows the lens, ISO, shutter, and f-stop settings used. I found this one feature to be very educational and helpful. This one little book has helped me to appreciate--and use--the NEX-6's many capabilities because each chapter in the book ends with a list of "assignments" (i.e., practice) suggestions for using/mastering the features and techniques discussed in each chapter.

In summary, I think this book is the perfect blend of general information and very specific details about the Sony NEX-6. I have owned my NEX-6 for about 6 months now and I've read both the small paper manual and the PDF guide. Both were useful in their own way as references to buttons, icons, and settings. But, both are also very poorly written, designed and illustrated. All in all, this "From Snapshots to Great Shots" book is an example of very solid instructional design combined with a smooth and accessible writing style and lots of very useful and specific content about this particular camera model. I'm very happy with my purchase. I recommend that any new NEX-6 owner buy one, but do get it in print! As I said, the e-book version is a downsized version with far less visual appeal. A book about photography should have visual appeal....don't you think? <grin>
11 comment37 of 37 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 1, 2013
As people have moved away from compact point and shoot cameras to using their smart phone camera for convenience, they have found that the image quality is still a long way from being satisfying. At the other end of the scale, the enthusiast and professional photographer have found that there are many occasions when they do not wish to carry the huge weight of a DSLR, several heavy lens combinations and seek a camera which is small compact and which produces high quality publishable images. We are all fortunate, because within the last eighteen months the compact mirrorless camera has been developed. Having tested several of these cameras my choice is the Sony Nex- 6, which I guess is also your choice, as you are reading this review. The Nex-6 is a truly remarkable and complex camera packed into a compact size.
The menu of the Nex-6 can be intimidating, many of the dials and buttons have dual purpose. The camera menu is attempting to cover the needs of the inexperienced photographer as well as the demands of the professional. The addition of all these customizing options make it a complex camera to use. Without the benefit of Jerod Fosters excellent guide book, digging through the menu could be confusing and time consuming. Jerods book is not a manual, it is a clearly thought out guide on how to use the functions quickly and easily to take great photographs. By using this book you will quickly learn how to know what to use and how to use it. Using the camera and its functions will become second nature, allowing you to obtain constantly high quality still photographs and movies.
For me, one of the best things I obtained from this book is how to make short cuts, such as auto HDR, DRO, hand held twilight, creative style and picture effect , as well as how to customise regularly used functions to avoid constantly digging into the menu.
You will find that as a result of studying this guide alongside your camera that you will be thrilled with its capabilities and ease of operation to transform your photographic practices and the high quality results.
Enjoy using your Sony Nex/6
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on April 13, 2013
Ok, I'm not "OLD" yet, but I can sure see where I'm headed. My first SLR camera from the 70's was a manual focus match needle metered camera and I learned three or four tricks that let me take some great pictures. My second SLR camera was a manual focus aperature /shutter preferred with a program mode camera that I loved. My third camera was a digital auto focus hybred with too many gizmos that I left it in "auto" nearly all the time with dissapointing results. That brings me to the NEX-6, great camera with SLR features in a compact east to carry style - I DON"T understand the manual or the menus. This book is pretty straight forward in explaining the things I desire to do. It boils it down to a few basic steps that you can build off from and get the results you are looking for. The author also takes some time to explain some basic photograpy techniques that we all know, but forget to use.

If you understand how to use this camera right out of the box you don't need this book. But then you wouldn't be reading these reviews, would you? This book will put you on the path to quick success and you will be able to build from the basics set forth here. This book is not for professionals, it's for you and me. I highly recomend this book to anyone who wants to understand and take better pictures with the exceptional Sony NEX-6.
11 comment24 of 27 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 9, 2013
I have used other books from this series, and was impressed. I bought this when I ordered the NEX-6 to show me the way to get the most from the camera. As expected, the first three chapters were great, and on point. Beginning with Chapter 4, the book became very much a digital photography how-to book, and barely mentioned this camera. I am disappointed in the demise of this fine series.
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on April 1, 2013
While it is a good book on photography, it has little to say specifically about the NEX-6 beyond showing what the buttons do. I get the feeling that for the next book on this series, they will substitute the new model number whatever it is for NEX-6 in this addition and go to print.
11 comment8 of 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 11, 2013
Many books dedicated to a device are rehashes of the manual. This book, however, is written by both a real photographer and a NEX-6 user. With camera in one hand and book in other, I have learned much. Rare for a reference book.
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on August 29, 2013
This is a good book if you bought a NEX-6 because the camera's manual is unreadably brief. But for me, there's so much general photographic information, that it was real work to read through it. I didn't want to read about composition, lines, etc etc. I just wanted a readable explanation of the camera's features.
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on May 28, 2013
The book is pretty good, but it is a disappointing that the example pictures in the book does not seem to be snapped with the NEX-6. There is one image that is taken with a shutter speed of more than 6000, the max shutter speed of the NEX-6 is 4000...
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on April 4, 2013
This book obviously was written by a very knowledgeable photographer who must have worked many hours with the Nex 6 to become so familiar with using it and--just as important--does an excellent job of conveying that knowledge and experience to the reader. This book goes far beyond the scope of the camera owner's manual to clearly explain how, when, where and why to use each of the camera's many features and discusses many valuable methods of taking excellent pictures in general. I am very glad that I purchased a copy and I would recommend it to anyone with a Sony Nex camera who strives to get the best pictures and videos possible, regardless of their level of experience with other cameras.
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on December 18, 2013
Foster's book presents an outstanding set of beginning photography lessons, as well as some guidance on the operation of the NEX-6. However, I was disappointed that it didn't provide enough in-depth information on the NEX-6's complex set of controls and features (thus my one-star subtraction). Despite this shortcoming, it was a helpful read --worth its cost.

Some impressions:

PROS:
*Useful guidance re configuring a new NEX-6.
*Good directions for updating NEX-6's firmware (not provided by other books.)
*Well-illustrated with large, lovely photos.
*Useful tips (e.g. improvised "bouncing" of NEX6's built-in flash.)

CONS:
*Too much general material re how to take good pictures (i.e. but not about the NEX-6 per se.)
*Skimpy coverage of NEX-6's built-in HDR and panorama features.
*States that NEX-6's wireless features (e.g. smart remote) "not in the scope of this book".
*Too often refers "out" to Sony's manual for important info (e.g. see pages 32, 64, 72, 244.)

Concurrent with purchasing a NEX-6, I obtained three "how-to" references: Matsumoto and Roullard's "The Sony Alpha NEX-6"; Foster's "The Sony NEX-6 From Snapshots To Great Shots"; and Sony's "Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera Instruction Manual/Handbook". Matsumoto and Roullard's book is the most useful of the three, and will serve as my primary NEX-6 reference manual. While Foster's visually stunning book provided me with a productive photo-workout, along with some useful tips, it didn't cover enough ground to function as a reliable NEX-6 reference. Sony's sometimes-helpful Manual/Handbook often lacked needed details.
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