The new Sony A7s brings AMAZING high ISO & 4K video!

SONY

The new Sony A7s brings amazing high ISO, 4K video and crazy creative possibilities!

The all new Sony A7s is now up for pre-order at B&H Photo HERE or Amazon HERE at $2,498.00. 

So I have been busy all weekend with some travel (so am a couple of hours late with this) but MAN OH MAN did Sony just KILL it with the latest announcement. The new SONY A7s which will be a full frame A7 but with a 12.2 MP BRAND NEW sensor with insane crazy high ISO capabilities up to over 400,000 ISO. Imagine the possibilities…you have a nice fast lens attached, a nice small file size, no noise. Astrophotography anyone? INSANE! Low light interior? INSANE!

This new sensor will, according to Sony, offer the best dynamic range and noise performance of ANY full frame camera. Period. I love the fact that this has a 12.2 MP sensor! SMALL file sizes with RICH gorgeous tonality. I have said for years that 10MP is enough for any use, and 16 is maximum that is needed. 12.2 is sweet and should bring up the performance of this sensor. Wow. Sony did it again. I had no clue about this one, they did not even tell the press about it.

Sony is one of the most forward thinking companies out there and they have just proved it again with the new Sony A7s. Pricing and Availability is yet to be determined. I guess $1800 for the body, but it is just a guess. The A7s seems like it will be the perfect body for those who want HQ video AND images in one. Of course we will have to wait and see but I will keep you all informed as it progresses. I already told Sony I MUST have one for review when they are ready!

B&H Photo already has it listed HERE!

sony2

ISO 50-409600

Amazingly high dynamic range

4K recording 

The “S” means “sensivity

Take a look at the official Sony video showing an example often ISO possibilities.

And the video possibilities:

and the official press release:

Sony’s α7S Full-Frame Camera Realizes a New World of Imaging Expression

Features newly developed, wide dynamic range sensor with awe-inspiring sensitivity

SAN DIEGO, April 6, 2014 – Joining the acclaimed α7 and α7R family of the world’s smallest full-frame interchangeable lens cameras1, Sony’s new α7S model puts extraordinary sensitivity, low noise and spectacular 4K video quality into the hands of professional photographers and videographers.

The innovative α7S camera features a newly developed, 12.2 effective megapixel 35mm Exmor® CMOS sensor paired with a powerful BIONZ X image processor, allowing it to shoot at a sensitivity range of ISO 50 – 4096002 with unprecedented dynamic range and low noise.

The new model is also the world’s first camera to utilize the entire width of a full-frame image sensor in 4K video acquisition, and does this without cropping or line skipping as it can read and process data from every one of the sensor’s pixels. This allows 4K video shooters to utilize all of the artistic and creative benefits provided by the unique sensor.

“The α7S gives Sony the most complete, versatile lineup of full-frame cameras in market today,” said Neal Manowitz, director of the interchangeable lens camera business at Sony Electronics. “Between the α99, VG900, RX1, α7, α7R and now α7S models, we have completely revolutionized what it means to be a ‘full-frame’ camera, bringing a new level of quality and portability to enthusiast photographers and videographers.”

Wide ISO Sensitivity (ISO 50 – 409,6002) and Impressive Dynamic Range

Sony, the world’s largest manufacturer of image sensors, has developed a unique 12.2 MP sensor with extraordinary sensitivity that allows the α7S camera to collect dramatically more light than traditional cameras and to produce beautifully detailed, low-noise images in even the darkest environments.

The camera also features a newly developed on-sensor technology that allows it to optimize the dynamic range throughout the entirety of the ISO50 – 409,600 sensitivity range. This on-sensor technology also broadens the range of tonal gradation in bright environments and minimizes noise in dark scenes, allowing the camera to deliver impressive results in these extreme conditions where other cameras (and image sensors) typically struggle.

World’s First Full-Frame Camera with Full Pixel Read-out3 (without pixel binning) during Movie Shooting

With the new α7S camera, the high-speed read out of the 35mm full-frame image sensor combined with the high-speed processing of the BIONZ X processor enables significant improvements in video quality.

These powerful components allow the camera to process data from all of the sensor’s pixels and output stunning HD and 4K (QFHD 3840 x 2160 pixels) video3 while utilizing the full-width of the sensor. In addition to the benefits for low-light shooting, the read out of all pixels frees the video from aliasing, moiré and false color artifacts (as opposed to pixel binning) to achieve the highest quality video.

Additional Pro-Quality Video Functions

In video mode, the α7S can output 4K video4 at QFHD (3840×2160) to an optional external 3rd party 4K recorder, and can record full HD (1920×1080) at frame rates of 60p, 60i, 30p and 24p directly to a compatible memory card. Video modes can be changed from full-frame to APS-C (super 35mm equivalent) if desired, and in this crop mode, the camera can support high frame rate 120fps shooting at standard HD resolution (1280 x 720p), creating a 5x slow-motion effect.

The α7S camera is also equipped with S-Log2 gamma. Common to Sony’s range of professional video cameras, S-Log2 expands the dynamic range by up to 1300% to minimize clipped highlights and loss of detail in shadows. Additionally, for the first time ever in a Sony α camera, the α7S adopts the workflow-friendly XAVC S recording format in addition to AVCHD and MP4 codecs. XAVC S format allows for full HD recording at a data rate of 50 mbps with lower compression for improved video quality.

Other specialist video functions on the new camera include a picture profile that can adjust settings like gamma, black, level and color adjustment, and can be saved for use in a multi-camera shoot. It also has Full HD and 4K base band HDMI® output, time code/user bit for easier editing, synchronous recording feature with compatible devices, various marker and zebra displays on both the LCD screen and viewfinder and can dual record XAVC S as well as MP4 (1280×720 @30p).

The camera also has a Multi-terminal interface shoe that is compatible with Sony’s XLR Adaptor Microphone Kits (XLR-K1M plus a new model under development), allowing the use of professional microphone systems.

Low-light Shooting Advantages

The high ISO sensitivity range of the α7S camera is extremely effective for still image shooting, especially in low-light conditions, where the camera can shoot at high shutter speeds while keeping noise as low as possible. This is particularly useful for shooting indoor, dimly lit sporting events or other situations where most cameras typically struggle.

The camera is also equipped with the same high-precision Fast Intelligent AF system as the α7R camera, with drastically improved low-light AF sensitivity that can go as low as -4EV.

Expanding α Mount System and New Power Zoom Lens for Movie Shooting

Directly compatible with the growing family of E-mount lenses, the α7S camera can also be used with A-mount and others lens systems with optional adapters. Sony’s complete α lens system now includes 54 total lenses for both A and E mounts, including several premium offerings from Carl Zeiss® and G Series Lenses.

As a whole, Sony’s E-mount lens system is particularly well-suited for video shooting, with a variety of models containing “movie-friendly” features like smooth focusing, powered zoom control, and silent iris/aperture control. Building on this, Sony has announced development of a brand new, full-frame power zoom 28-135mm F4 lens E-mount lens that is an ideal match for the powerful movie capabilities of the α7S model.

Pricing and availability of the α7S full-frame interchangeable lens camera will be announced at a future date. To learn more about the product in the meantime, please visit www.store.sony.com, and follow #SonyAlpha on twitter for the latest α camera news.

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169 Comments

  1. I find it funny reading through the comments that there are so many people hating on an obviously great camera. I too never before gave Sony much of a second look because as a pro they didn’t have what I needed for the work I was doing. I think most true professionals, while they have their favorite personal camera lens combo realize that camera equipment is just that equipment. As professionals we use the best tools for the job or sometimes the tools given to you by your employer or client.
    When I first started shooting professionally I shot with Nikon. When I started shooting more sports I switched to Canon. When I started shooting more photo essays and wanted to work more discreetly I bought a Contax G1. When I started shooting more fashion and portrait work I bought a Hasselbald 503 CW and later a Mamiya RB, RZ and 7. In the digital age I have gone back and worth between Canon and Nikon until recently when I switched to Micro Four Thirds cameras, Panasonic GH series cameras for video and an Olympus OMD-EM5 for stills. Lets be clear though most people today including me have cameras that perform way beyond what we will ever actually need to get our jobs done well. I rarely print anything anymore as I suspect is true for most of us. Most of us deliver digitally and that’s the way the images stay. So a 12mp sensor in the Sony a7s is more than enough to print large and in exchange gives us better low light performance. As far as the autofocus performance of all cameras today if you can’t capture the action then instead of blaming the camera you need to practice your craft because all of these systems have amazing autofocus performance. Add onto that the flexibility of being able use just about any lens with mirrorless cameras like the Sony A7s and also have a full-frame sensor in a small mirrorless chassis. Furthermore, any professional who has been shooting for years will tell you they are wiling to switch if it means they can stop carrying 35-40lbs of gear on their shoulders or back.
    I would suggest instead of people hating on Sony cameras embrace them for what they are and what they can do, and that goes for every camera system.

  2. People are comparing the A7s with the Nikon D4s. You’ll never get agreement – built for two entirely different markets – D4s is probably the ideal camera for sports and well any type of stills photography (although canon shooters might argue). The A7s is a hybrid specifically aimed to attract semi-pro videographers (hey it’s cheap for a videocam with SLog2) who have an occasional need for 4K video and maybe already own the NEX FS700 and a Convergent Design Odyssey 7Q (4K capable outboard recorder/monitor). Hey and lots of stills photographers will like it as well. But remember – primarily it is an HD camera.

    It also completely ignores the price differential. Thats because professionals buy the right tool for the job regardless of price. If you really want a 4K videocam from Sony that’s purpose built you can spring for an F5 or F55. Doesn’t mean there isn’t a great market for a camera like this – don’t forget Sony is an expert at finding a market and hitting it early.

    So does this camera make sense to me? Absolutely – perhaps I’d compare it to D700 with a super video capability and even better low light performance. Does it make sense to a professional stills photog? Nope – the Nikons and Canons have that pretty much covered.

    Be good if this cam could output raw.. would make keying a dream:)

  3. From all the negativity on this thread I’d swear Sony has never made a good camera!? However, I just spent a month touring New Mexico, Arizona, California and Oregon with two Canon 60D’s and a Sony A7R. After using the A7R a couple of times the Canons never came out of their storage container. I shot astrophotography, wildlife, landscapes, people, etc. for the full month with the A7R, a Sony 28-70 zoom, adapters and several Canon lens, telescopes AND can honestly say I have never used a better camera!

    I see the A7s as being the current ultimate for astrophotography probably using both video and stills, AND can hardly wait to get my hands on one!

    • @Brian:

      +1: The A7s shall be a great sensor platform.

      And it will certainly play a role in remote sensing and astrophotography…

      Should allow for some interesting new possibilities.

    • I’m with Brian on this one. I never bought a Sony before the A7, but it fitted my needs. Every camera is a case of ‘horses for courses’, and it’s wonderful that we have so many and such diverse choices to suit every one of us.

      I happened to have a bunch of Leica, Voigtlander and Zeiss glass from my M6, IIIf and Contax days, but couldn’t justify spending £6000 plus on a Leica full frame digital, especially as I don’t feel they meet my needs in the way that the M6 did in its day. I was *praying* for one company or other to bring out a full frame digital with modern functionality that I could fit those lenses to for my work.

      When I saw the focus peaking on the A7 it was a no-brainer. That it even auto focusses my old Canon L zooms too is just sensational. All this for £1250? Come on, this is brilliant. No more lugging my Canon rucksack around. My system fits in a messenger bag now.

      So now to bring out a low light beauty with increased dynamic range – sign me up for the second body for my new system.

      I’m a pro photographer using the A7 with Leica manual glass for all my assignments. To suggest these aren’t really pro cameras is a nonsense. They’re pro if you’re pro and you use them.

      Of course they won’t do *everything*. No camera will. So why all the negativity? You’d think Sony had taken something away, not provided something new…

      • Remeber, most of the people that hates this or that camera for being “not pro” usually are just forum squatters that spend all day posting on forums and AT MOST shoot test charts in their basement 🙂

      • @Phoenix:

        Your line of argument could be mine. As already written elsewhere, I made my business case for the A7 and against the M240 along the same lines.

        And I am very happy with the results, so happy that my sellable DSLR bodies are gone by now…

        Cheers,

        Michael
        =->

  4. 1st time post Steve. Love your site and your fun, positive energetic attitude!

    Does this make you want to (almost) sit down and cry:

    Sony RX1s. Body: Carbon Fibre Weight: 287g inc battery. Sensor: 12MP Full frame. Sensitivity: Native 102K ISO. Lens: *New* Zeiss 35mm f1.4 lens. RRP: USD $2995.00

    Can it be done?

    Greg

  5. ISO 400k? Haha, that’s not enough. It should have been at least 800k to 1.6M, or even better 3.2M. And the fastest shutter speed should have been 1/512000 s…

    I love my Leica M-E. It’s so normal.

    • … and you are missing a lot…

      High ISO sensors open many new possibilities.

      I find it rather exciting that they seem to be coming off age, at last.

  6. At last a 12mp smaller sized FF camera. Lets hope the micro-lenses are reasonable enough to allow M lenses without too much in the way of bad effects, as this is a much better “if my M9 breaks” cost area for me.

    However.. Sony … seriously … spend some money on lens production and design before anything else. As now we have 3 FF small format bodies with 3 lenses, 2 of which are ok and 1 really mediocre zoom. No, slamming an A mount adapter on is a fallacy. If we want A mount we’d buy the A mount cameras!!!

    Anyway.. let’s see how long it lasts before it comes out and every swap a body a day forum creepers slate it for all the wrong reasons.

  7. My prophecy upon the announcement of the A7/A7r almost became true. Sony rolls out another FE body long before they announce additional FE lenses. Almost, because Sony announced the 28-135/4.0. But it is power zoom for video rather than for stills. And the A7s makes even sense rather than releasing another “me too” product.

  8. This is THE camera I have been waiting for. I took me almost a year of reading and learning to get over my irrational desire for ever more pixels. I crave low light sensitivity but I DO NOT want an antique gigantor sized DSLR. I was starting to despair that the camera I want would never exist.

    It’s like some kind of miracle that the need for a compact 4k video camera FORCED a return to lower pixel density resulting in my DREAM sensor.

    I can’t believe how many naysayers are lined up to crucify this camera. For some of us, this has NOTHING to do with G.A.S.. This is simply the tool I’ve always wanted, finally materialized.

    • True. As a sensor platform this is really appealing. As is the high ISO. Good enough to replace some conventional night vision gear, and delivering results in proper color…

      I am looking forward to the tryout.

  9. A new model and no new lenses apart from the announcement of a slow and undoubtedly huge (given that range) zoom? I am so glad I switched and bought an X-E2.

    My Nex-6 was stolen. I had the 35mm, 50mm, 20mm and powered kit zoom. The 50mm wouldn’t focus (at all 4 times out of 5) in ‘pub’ lighting, the 20mm was soft until f5.6 (and a stupid focal length – that’s debatable though), the kit lens was horrible (but I didn’t know that at the time). The 35mm was a good lens… however I bought the fuji with the 56mm and it focuses faster at 1.2 than the sony 35mm 1.8 did wide open. The other lens I got was the 27mm 2.8 and it’s sharp wide open and I think a better generalist focal length than the 20mm (which is what a pancake should be).

    Also, the high ISO noise on the Nex 6 and 5R (looks absolutely disgusting) compared to the Fuji even if the Fuji is a stop higher. There’s still noise. It just looks better and I don’t feel like I have to crank up NR, get rid of it and lose all detail.

    Sony need to stop bringing out bodies and deal with their lens deficit. Just my opinion.

    The only thing I preferred about the Sony was they included OSS in their primes.

    Am I Fuji fan boy? Maybe. And I’ve only had the X-e2 for 2 months.

    • I think Sony’s strategy is to “throw sh*t at the wall until something sticks”.

      I honestly, truly believe that’s their strategy. They found an angle to exploit: big sensor in small body … and lots of folks will gobble that up, at least initially. But there are just SO many problems with the A7 series, I’m not even sure where to begin…

      What Fuji and Olympus are doing with mirrorless is MUCH better, IMO.

      • @Robert Falconer

        “…What Fuji and Olympus are doing with mirrorless is MUCH better, IMO….”

        And yet, Sony will survive, the others will not.

        For good or for bad, they are now number 3 in the market, real market share growing.

        Olympus and Fuji are sitting in a niche, one that is getting smaller and smaller, however sexy some of their products may be (and yes, I think the OM-Ds are quite appealing… just not my thing, I prefer big sensors and short register to sensibly reuse my old glass.

        Enough said, putting up polemics does not redirect the market (;->).

  10. Agreed Kayar, every 6 mths a new camera and no lenses, look how cheap the Nex 6 & 7 cameras are going now, they don’t hold value long making it hard to sell if your trying to upgrade. Soon the A7’s will be in the same boat. People getting irritated waiting for lenses then losing money trying to switch to a new system as a result. I switched back to Nikon and got a DF, and very happy I did, maybe in a few more years when sony finally gets their shit together with a steady line, then maybe I’ll take another chance.

    • Hello Sergio,

      you are missing the boat.

      Both NEX and ILCE offer very capable sensor platforms in a small package, unencumbered by mirrors, optical finders and other outdated details.

      They allow proper reuse of most old glass which now actually increases in value because of the existence of these cameras.

      If I want to go retro, I take my analogue cameras (Leica M/R/C, Plaubel, Mamiya (MF), Canon, Rollei, Nikon F2 …), or I take a proper ‘fusion’ device (M240 comes to mind, albeit the price-to-performance rating is questionable).

      The Dd somehow does not do it for me – the feeling is not right, Neither do the Fujis appeal to me.

      The Foveon sensor could be interesting as well – if only Sigma had managed to pack the stuff in a decent working package with a decent usability… pity, the IQ at low ISO is very good.

      Regard,

      Michael
      =->
      PS: With the short-livedness of electronics and the component obsolescence in less than a decade, one should drop the illusion that digital camera bodies hold any value… no matter which brand, the relative value drops quicker than the value of fancy cars. Any digital body should be considered to be written off in 3..5 years. Even my beloved Sony RX1…

  11. With the amount of money you will spend on lenses your better off with a Nikon DF. loads of used nikon lenses out there, you’ll end up spending less and have a better built camera that will also hold a better resale value. Its hard to get decent money for used sony’s when you want to upgrade, but at least sony is trying new stuff.

  12. I sure hope Nikon rolls out a “son of Df” that is smaller and more compact. One good place to start would be in developing a smaller logic board, so that it doesn’t need to sandwich all the way across the back of the camera between the sensor and the LCD but can live on one side or the other (or one half on each side, connected by a ribbon cable). That would be good for shaving four or five millimeters off the depth of the body right there. Putting some thought into shrinking the lenses would be good too; the AF-D products from the 1990s were very compact, but the AF-S gear has become quite bloated. Lastly, I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again; Nikon needs to consider losing the aperture pin and going all-electronic on the lens mount. The capability is already there but only the big 800 tele and the PC-E tilt-and-shift lenses actually use it.

    • …or better yet, get finally rid of the mirror assembly. I fell in love with the images of the Df, then I had it in the hands and was let down by the size…

  13. It would be nice to see Sony invest further in their FE lens roadmap a bit more aggressively. Their current lens lineup is just not cutting it (though I do love the Zeiss 50mm F1.8). Faster primes along with a 24-70mm F2.8 are going to be must-haves given that Sony is obviously investing in this Alpha 7 lineup of bodies. Can’t wait to see the low-light images this bad boy produces.

  14. Why is there any excitement for this camera? If this is sensor is better than the one in the A7 and A7r then they have just screwed everyone who bot one of those cameras…. 4k video…. ? But you need an external recorder that hasn’t even been made yet?…. That will cost over $2k?…. Sony made a great camera with their rx1…. And instead of building off that platform they have been in a race with themselves to release cameras before they are fully developed. no wonder they are losing tons of money on cameras (only the sensor business selling to other companies is profitable).

  15. Personally, this sound like exciting news.

    I guess more info needs to be released on the A7s, but I’m not certain what type of AF it has?… kind of mentioned it’s the same (slow) AF as the A7/A7R, but the A7 & A7R do not have the exact same AF.. though, both aren’t particularly fast when you compare to the competition, the A7 should be faster since it has PD in addition to CD. The A7R does not have PD and supposedly AF is a bit slower.

    Anyways, it has yet to be seen, but I’m not expecting the A7s to be particularly fast in the AF department either. Let’s wait and see more on this one.

    I hope the price is reasonable.. about the same as the A7 so in the mid $1k.. at least a comfortable price under $2k?… It sounds like it would make a great alternative to the much more expensive Nikon Df.. and it would probably work better having all the tech and advantages the A7 line includes in general. Also, I had a chance to get a closer look and feel for the Nikon Df recently.. I was intrigued by the performance and retro design (it’s obviously a big part of the Df’s appeal, if that appeals to you), but I am still not sold on it. For $3k, you can a very comparable A7s with more lenses and options and seemingly even better low light performance. Also, the Df is surprisingly lightweight for it’s smaller but also bulkier retro form factor… i think a little too light.. it did feel very plasticy, especially with the kit special edition 50mm f1.8 G lens. Sorry, but I didn’t like the feel, personally. It just felt so much less substantial than my E-M1 and it’s smaller, but a lot more metal in the build and feels very solid with a good confident weight to it. Also, the Df’s mode selection and many other features seem more confusing, redundant and generally less streamlined and less well thought out than a lot of other cameras. For that type of design and feature, I’d opt to go the Sony A7s or Fuji X-T1 route. But, i digress….

    If I wanted another (secondary) camera that was more suited for higher resolution (over my MFT camera) and better ISO performance, this sounds like it would be a great candidate for such a role.

    The one little problem I have with the A7’s is in the physical design.. I had a try at a local camera store to see how it feels like… it’s important how it feels in the hands as well as how it performs, for me. This has been an issue for some, and I can see why now, and it’s the shutter button. It does feel a bit too far back.. or rather not forward enough so you have to put just that extra bit of effort to bend and extend your finger to reach the shutter button.. it feels awkward and unnatural. You can probably use the camera enough and get use to it, but my first reaction and thought is that it wasn’t well designed. I think they tried to keep it within the body’s hard lines which visually looks cleaner, but ergonomically not as pleasant in actual use. As opposed to the Fuji X-T1, which I also had a chance to hold and try this past weekend.. it’s shape and design isn’t that far off from the Sony A7’s, but the shutter button is just not set back as much and is forward just enough to more comfortably place your finger on and press. Lastly, I’ve never been a fan of the Sony NEX’s grip on the front right.. and the A7 is basically the same. it’s a bit too blocky and the space between the grip and where the lens attaches is pretty narrow and tight, imho.. i found the knuckles on my fingers touching whatever lens attached. It just feels tighter in that area than I like. The grip on the X-T1 is pleasantly surprisingly comfortable and reassuring… more so than I originally imagined based on all the images and videos I’ve seen about it. However, the E-M1’s grip is still better.

    Do these ergonomic design issues I have make the camera unusable? No, of course not, this is really about the 12mp FF sensor that should give you outstanding top notch low light performance and DR. But, it may be just enough to make me not want to choose it because it’s just not comfortable to hold and use.. and if you’re not comfortable holding and using the camera, would you want to continue using it more? Maybe not.. have to see the price for the A7s and if the IQ and overall package is well worth these little niggles I have with it on the outside. I am still impressed by the potential of the A7s.

  16. Go ahead and spend your money for the next best and greatest thing. I would rather concentrate on the images themselves and not all these “selfies” that millenials seem to be hung up on. I am still considering dumping all my digital stuff in favor of returning to film just to have something tangible in my hands. Fortunately, I no longer need or require 8 frames per second and have returned to shooting mostly manual focus. So why not return to film and enjoy that rush when I open the stainless steel developing can (I still have the first ones I bought back in 1978) and pull the film off the spool and see I actually did something right.

    • Rich,

      I’ll trade you. Nikon FA + 50mm f1.8 for all your digital stuff. Get in touch and we will work out the details.

  17. Again a bold move from Sony! They really go for it, time after time. I love them for that.
    This is a very tempting body to own next to my A7r. And honestly, I’d doubt which one I’d use the most… Shooting the Otus most of the time npw, I really suspect this sensor to also perform exceptionally well with this lens. If you have ideas what about how this combination would perform, I’d like to hear it…

    • why would you slap lens capable of resolving so much on a 12mp camera? otus is better served on your a7r

      • i agree. i’m sure the outs will do great on a 12mp FF camera, but it was really designed for FF cameras which have the highest resolving power and give the best IQ for such cameras. You could use on a 12mp A7s, but would be a slight waste of a very nice and expensive lens… you just wouldn’t get the full imaging potential of the Otus and what’s the point if you want the Otus without getting the ultimate best high res IQ out of it?

      • Absolutely. But there’s more to this lens than just resolution resolving power. I’m just curious. The A7s’ sensor must offer incredible dynamic too and be able to show the most and the finest contrast. It could be wurthwhile to put Otus on it. I’d just like to see what it does…

  18. Sony good idea for movies, not for stills. I would be one the first to say keep your 24MP, 12MP, that is a little on the low side. For APS-C, Fuji does fine with 16MP, I would think maybe 18MP at most. But this camera is for 4k movies, sure it will do great low light, but now at the cost of resolution. If these camera were 16-20MP, then it would have great balance, but if all you do is extreme low and 4k movies this your camera. Sony make some lens. The last person asked if it has an AA filter, my answer is you bet ch’a. Because all good movie cameras have them. Great still camera for taking pictures of black cats in coal mines at midnight.Like all Sony cameras, almost.

  19. Well. The Sensor sound nice.

    But Sony glass isn’t that good at all – see latest Photozone Review: http://www.photozone.de/sonyalphaff/867-zeiss2470f4oss

    As for 4K. Sounds Good, but but specwise not close at all compared to the mighty GH4 (i.e. direct 8Bit 4K Recording, or 4K 10Bit 422 via HDMI or other Video Featues)

    So yes, Sony did it again: Nice Headline, but lacking details

    B

  20. Do we really need a new Sony camera???? Again?? Who cares? Sony should make more lenses instead of bringing out new cameras very 6 months. What is wrong with Sony?

    • yes, new camera needed, as the A7 has an AA filter, while the A7r has too many mega pixels. A refined A7 without an AA filter but with lower mega pixels is needed. Maybe that’s the A7s

      • No chance…the a7S will have an OLPF…count on it. This cam is aimed at videographers so Sony wouldn’t risk moiré issues. It’s still going to be an outstanding picture taker though…think RX1 on steroids.

  21. Again???

    By now, people don’t even expect Sony to bring out lenses. They don’t do lenses, it seems, only camera bodies.

    Steve: for all your talk about the wonderful M43 lenses (rightfully so) you are awfully quiet about Sonys lack of glass. Even with E-mount (does anybody still remember E-mount?) you STILL have to go with either Zeiss or Sigma to get a halfway decent set of glass. Could certainly warrant at least a mention.

    • When the NEX-7 was introduced, we had to wait 6 months for the Zeiss 24 1,8 to have at least a one decent lens. There will be 8 FE lenses available by years end (5-right now and the 55 1,8 is outstanding). 2 more Zeiss and a G macro to come…that’s progress my friend.

      • So, there will be 8 lenses…. and three bodies (or possibly more)?

        But, you know, you are right. Compared to the nex line of cameras, it IS progress. That is the sad part.

        • Agreed…I do want more lenses and I want them to be faster but I love the images my a7R/55 1,8 produces…so I’ll be patient and hopeful 😉

      • Sorry, meant +1 for Jan. I just hope Sony will learn. It has the potential and the will to be a big player in the Photo Market. And it has the ideas. So now it just needs a plan. Look at Fuji how well they introduce a new system to the Market.

        • Ingo: maybe you haven’t been keeping with current events; Sony has over 50% of the digital camera sensor market…that makes them a “Big Player” 🙂 Be Moved…

          • Yes Scott, you´re right of course. My Nikon has a Sony Sensor, but made with Nikon Specs. I just forgot because i was writing about Sony Cameras. And i think the earn some Money with their Camera Division, much more than with their TVs.

  22. Amazing – now we can take pictures in total darkness Thank you Sony !!

    Seriously – do you know what Photography really means ?
    Painting with Light not with shadows so who needs this stupid ISO ?
    Who cares it when Sony brings out a new Camera every 3 month ?

    30 minutes ago I shot some portraits with a 40 year old Nikkormat EL
    and a Kodak Tri-X with nothing else as the sun shine trough a window.

    You need time and light – not more……….

    • Some may say “who cares if you shot some Tri-X 30 minutes ago” – seriously. Read my “shaking the disease” post. Some have a hobby and that hobby is enjoying NEW gear..THAt is the hobby in itself. No need to trash it, it is what it is 🙂 The Sony can also do light through a window but it also can do what the old Nikkormat can not do. Technology evolves and while film, much like vinyl records, have a charm and certain feel to them that we enjoy, digital is every bit as good and technically much better. Digital can do things today that film could never even start to attempt which means it is versatile..it pushes boundaries in creativity..which is always a GOOD thing. Vintage and retro is cool, but there is more that can be done.

      • Hi Steve, you´re right, of course. But this is not about old against new, it´s more like truth against marketing. You like your Olympus, for example. I like my Fuji and my new (old) M8. Those Brands all have an idea and a plan you can trust in. Sony is more like try and error. They have great specs like 4k. But why need an external 4k-Recorder. Sony knows that not too many photographers who buy an A7s will also buy a Recorder and a faster PC and a specialized lens for video.
        So to me it looks more like a marketing-gag. Even those (and sometimes me included) who love new gear might be disappointed by the new A7s.
        So in my humble opinion taking good photos just needs a Nikkormat EL. Taking good videos needs much more than that, and sorry, even a little more than Sony offers.
        And i´m just speaking of the A7s, the A7r may be a totally different beast.

      • Steve I dont write to blame somebody but its just my opinion that these marketing guys
        are the evil itself. Do you know the movie “Fight Club” ? There is some quote I really like:

        We buy things we dont need
        with money we dont have
        to impress people we dont like

        Most of these new features in these new amazing things are useless.
        No one ever missed them before and a lot of guys never use them after
        the bought the new click-clack-computer.

        It´s ok for fanboys who collect things – but other ones take photography serious.

        I see a lot of your pictures and I like them.
        You can take impressing pictures with a shoebox and a piece of broken glass
        so no need to get exited about every new falderal.

        *Peace*

        • But 90% of those who read this page ENJOY new tech as a hobby just as some enjoy the actual act of photography as a hobby. You are looking at it in the wrong way. Also, tech moves on, moves forward. You can do things today with digital that you can NOT do with film..just as in 10 years we will be able to do things we cannot do today. This is a great release for Astro guys, for low light guys, and some video guys. I see it as the perfect A7 – low MP, high ISO, etc. Small file sizes, rich color, high DR and amazing ISO capability.

    • Yup. “Batteries not included” sort of situation. You want the advertised 4K video? Add another $1000-$2000 for the adapter. The base camera will NOT record 4K video to its internal memory card. I don’t understand the excitement over this camera.

    • And don´t forget the stabilizer. The announced new lens for video will not be cheap, for sure. Just google for “Video Rig”. The videographers don´t use those ugly buildings just to impress anybody. They need it because handy-cam-style videos can be fun sometimes but you´ll get most of 4k if you use semi-pro or pro tripods. So add a few hundred bucks. And add a good Monitor if you want to see what you get.

    • When you get wider exposure range (lets please stop using “Dynamic Range” and use the real term “Exposure Range”) you of course lose in contrast a lot. So you need to do more post processing to bring back the contrast to get colors correctly. Soon we are in situation where shots are all just grey and you need to be developing every shot at computer same time as it toke to develop a single B/W photo.

  23. I love that Sony is doing whatever it wants. It gave up mostly, on competing, and just started making cool sh*t. Nex was strange but different and cool, I still love my Nex7.

  24. Were the demo videos in S-Log? If so this is a neutral option designed to preserve highlight and shadow detail. It makes a good base for grading in post.

    • Yes, most difficult example is the Leica Monochrom. The gradient ist very hard to master. But that is a natural gradient from the sensor, nor like Sony with software-tricks. It´s not the same. You can see this in the strange colors of the faces in the video.

  25. Fingers crossed the larger pixel size will mean it works better with wide RF lenses. I guess it will have an AA filter but the rest of my fingers crossed that it doesn’t.

  26. Is ist only me, or is anybody else less than impressed by the colors and contrast of the demo-videos? May be there is just some post-processing needed, but i´ve see much more cine-like looking videos out of cams like the D800, 5D and even the D3s. They all have a less sterile, plastic look.
    It´s 4k, the price and the size, that makes the sony interesting. There are only a few TVs out there having that 4k resolution. And those of them with a good picture are expensive. So the cheap price is an illusion by now. About size: You can only record 4k in combination with an expensive 4k-Recorder. And you will need more to steady hold the cam for good video. So cheap price and small size are gone. And you need a powerful system for post-processing and you all know the price of a mac pro. And the 4k-monitors……
    So what is left? A small cam with low picture-resolution (think of large prints or cropping with your high-quality glass), mediocre color and contrast video without 60p made by a company known for changing their system whenever they like (Nex/alpha/full frame/crop). By the way, has anybody heard the noise of the A7´s shutter click?

    • I think the demo-videos were intentionally like that in order to show off the dynamic range.

      I’m not interested in the 4K myself (I think that’s more for the growing niche semi-pro video market) but the d/r, low light capability, and small size make this credit-card bait for me! 🙂

          • Yes, the leaf shutter and the 2,0/35 (24 on crop) where fun on my Fuji X100. Overpowering the sun? Sometimes it worked with a speedlight.
            @Mars Observer Yes, you are right, i think. Problem is, if the sensor is not capable of high dynamic range, and few are, the electronic tricks can destroy you picture. Just look at the skin of the faces in the video. It´s colors are off. Just too reddish and with a strange glow. Compare this to the Sigma DP3 for example an you see immediately the difference in skin tonality. May be it works in BW?

      • Sorry, that was not my intension. I just think by next year a lot of choices will be on the market with 4k. It will be a standard so the prices will come back to earth, especially in the consumer Market (TVs). Than we don´t need external 4k-Recorders and more powerful PCs can handle those heavy data-streams easily. And many new surprising gadgets, maybe from Sony?

  27. I can feel GAS acting up… How to convince the wife I need this?!
    If the lens line-up improves a bit and it has no AA filter, it would be a serious temptation to switch from my Fuji X to Sony

  28. Cameras evolve, but I wish they’d bring out an A850/900 version of this, then I wouldn’t also have to use those dratted A-mount adaptors.

    • I’m with you Sam. I’d like a proper low-light A-mount for higher speed low light concert photography. Then I might, maybe, possibly, give up my A900, but probably not.

  29. Can’t wait for Steve to get a review A7s!…If this had been announced on April 1st, we would have all had a good laugh!! And said ..Yeah Right Sony!…Nice one ..you had us there for a moment!!

    • Yes, they will start babbling. Of course. But if you talk about pros, they´ll have another point. You always buy into a system. It´s all about lenses, flash-systems, macro, durability, speed and not to forget service and support. That´s part of the high price you pay for a real pro system. But yes, the sony will be a nice gadget for sure.
      And don´t be surprised, lenses always have been more expensive than their counterparts in other systems.

        • Sorry, didn´t mean to be too harsh. I´m German and my schools english ist a little rusty. All i wanted to say is that Sony often starts a great system but then looses interest. Like the A900. Having a nice body, few excellent lenses and …. then? Nothing for years. Same with the (abandoned?) NEX-System. Yet, they have the A99 and the A7. Why? So being impressed by a new Camera does´t tell the whole story.

          • I fully agree with you, I’m glad that somebody actually commented on the fact what pro really means.

          • I’m with you, it is a shame that Sony pushes innovation with cameras, but doesn’t follow with lenses! Btw, I was joking about the SO-CALLED “pros” that judge everithing in terms of megapixels and adhering to “old school” concepts like pro=full frame=mirrors=OVFs. The same “pros” that are eager to discuss on forums but never shows nay of their work… 😉

          • I use a 12.8Mp 5D MK1 for real estate photography and for landscapes. It has plenty enough resolution for both. The small RAW file sizes are a plus. The only reason to have more MP is if I needed to heavily crop or needed very large high res prints.
            I also have an 18Mp 7D but the 5D images are cleaner. See my work here http://www.essential-images-nelson.co.nz/
            and my Flickr site here with recent 5D and X100 images (also 12 Mp). https://www.flickr.com/photos/dougbm/

  30. I’m wondering if the A7s works much better with Leica glass than the other A7 cameras, just from a reduced mp perspective. After all, the 24mp A7 works better than the 36mp A7r. So maybe the 12mp A7s will be better still.

    But, sure 12mp is enough for most, as long as you don’t make large prints. Which is what I do.
    I guess a rental will be in order when it comes out to see how it really performs.

    • I really want to know that also. I got the A7r when it came out and returned within days. My M glass just did not perform shooting wide open, my 35mm summilux was just awful up to f 5.6. But I understand it is not made specifically for M glass but if it did…
      .

    • Don’t make large prints?

      You can print huge prints from 10-11Mpix like 80x80cm size. The problem with that 12Mpix is that Mpix fanboys have hard time to accept that they can’t anymore just crop but they need to learn zoom with feets if not investing to tele lenses.

      • Sorry, I was comparing to GH4, not GH3. Being a A7r owner not wanting to invest into m43 gear, but may be needing to for video work, my severe disappointment in this Sony release is these issues. The codec comments were from judging that same codec on the FDR-AX100, trying to read out the 1″ sensor, which it clearly struggled with. And Sony wasn’t able to read out the 1″ sensor without the most horrid skew and rolling shutter ever seen, so I am wondering how they will read out the FF sensor and get reasonable rate.

        I could use the GH4 without any external recorder and still get 4K, I can’t do that with the Sony. On the GH4, I can take that 8bit 4:2:0 stream, down-sample and get 1080P at 10bit 4:4:4. I can’t do that with the Sony. If I am going to do pro work, I can use an external recorder, but I can use the recorder with the GH4, straight out of the HDMI port and get 10bit 4:2:2, and again the Sony will only give 8bit over HDMI. 8bit 4K will make nice looking 1080P and look better on the web, but 8bit 4K doesn’t cut it on a 4K display at all.

        Then of course the GH4 can AF like crazy, and so can the A6000, but again, not this Sony.

        But I am looking forward to getting the A7s for low light stills work, I think its going to be incredible for that.

        • The lack on internal 4K recording kinda takes some of the fun out of this cam for me. The low light capability though. WOW!

        • Another thing is they added the additional video capability but kept the camera form factor the same. If you look at the 5DIII and the Gh4, they have a nicely placed dedicated video record button that easy to press but not easy to press accidentally. On the a7s it’s still awkwardly placed off to the side which if you ask anyone it seems it’s too easy to press accidentally or too awkwardly placed to press when you want to (seems it’s either one or the other).

  31. Dang you, Sony. Just bought a used, bulky D800. Would love to have this smaller, lighter weight Sony instead.

    • I don’t get it Geoff. You bought a used, bulky (were you surprised when you received it?) 36 Mp full frame camera which Sony already has in a smaller form factor (same sensor), then complain when they come out with a 12 Mp version? You should have bought a used D700, and then started complaining. But you wouldn’t have as it is such a fantastic camera. The D800 is crap, of course, you should have known that.

    • With its focus on video, an AA filter will almost be required unless they have another way to correct the moire.

      • Not necessarily! Since they don’t mention it, they probably didn’t remove it, but one of the reasons video was more prone to moire in the past we because of the compression. Now with 4k with a better way of rendering than before, they potentially diminish the risk of moire, at least for 4k. But the rest of the formats may not be handled as well…

  32. I’m very impressed. Leica needs to use Sony sensors in future products… Leica needs to share the micro lens corrections though so we can get the best out our M lenses…

  33. Like to know the ISO comparison between the A7s and the Nikon D4s. They all have the same 409,000 ISO. Which one is the best. They did not mention the shutter speed, how slow is the Sony ?

    • I too would like to know the shutter frames per second – I don’t think the D4 will have anything to worry about.

    • “Like to know the ISO comparison between the A7s and the Nikon D4s. They all have the same 409,000 ISO. Which one is the best….”

      Best in what way? Best resolution? Lowest noise at high ISO?

      My money’s on the D4s sensor as the best “overall” IQ performer between these two, since it has the same high ISO capacity but with higher resolution.

  34. I would have preferred Sony to announce some more native glass for the A7 line. That’s where they will truly start to poach Canon and Nikon users. I’d take a Noctilux (or future Sony equivalent) Hint, Hint at 1600 ISO over an insane ISO rating like that.

  35. Finally after years of complaining, and skipping cameras like Sony’s A77, 99 etc, watching Canon and Nikon go down the same megapixel hole, Sony delivers what I have been wanting for years. To get this kind of performance we as photographers were forced to older cameras like the D700, or to cough up huge bucks for the D3s, D4, D4s.

    No longer. OK so it won’t do 10 or 12bit video, but they have high end video cameras to protect. forget the crazy high ISO, getting clean shots at base ISO to 6400 is all I care about. Finally a camera that will cause me to put down my used (650 bucks a year ago) Fuji X100. Keep your A7R and your D800! Bravo Sony! and boo! for waiting too many years to deliver this camera. Will there be a dSLR version for the sports shooters?

    • Hmmm, not just clean shots at ISO 6400 but maybe, just maybe totally clean shots at ISO 12,800. Unheard of, for sure, but this is 2014 and cars are supposed to fly.

  36. Just a little excited about this latest offering eh lol ? D4s might already be knocked off the top of the hill as far as owning the night goes

  37. Just like my 12.8Mp 5D but way better low light ability and much smaller and with 4K video. Quite agree with Steve. Don’t need so many Mp. This could be an amazing little gadget.

  38. Insane! I have waited with anticipation for cameras that we have all been expecting but this one comes from left field. This is shocking really. Is it enough to sell my Fuji X100S? The Sony NEX-7S is the first camera that is very, very tempting. I do love manual controls and I will see what Steve has to say about the ease of using this camera. On paper the NEX-7S sounds like the perfect full-frame camera but the devil is in the details. The NEX-7S has to be perfect ergonomically too.

    • I just want to add: Does the curtain shutter still make tons of noise? Did Sony update the electronics on the NEX-7S to shoot silently? Yes, this camera will probably be the low light champion but what about a leaf shutter so we can overpower the sun with speedlights? Lots of questions. Can’t wait for the answers…

    • Hello everyone.

      The recording on the internal card of the sony allows only 2K.
      It will be necessary to proceed to a work of post production to restore 4K. There is never anything perfect in the world of the consumption.

  39. Snap. D4s looks so old fashioned now haha
    Now if Sony could just call up Fuji and ask how to make solid lenses we’d be set.

    • The D4s has the same high ISO range (409600) but also offers 16 megapixels.

      4K adopters aside, frankly this new Sony suffers from all the same maladies as the other A7 series cameras.

        • Small size > Sure, small size … but big lenses if you want to use a very fast autofocus prime or an autofocus zoom that isn’t f/4 or smaller, or an autofocus telephoto – then you end up with an unbalanced package.

          reasonable pricing > Yep, I’ll give ’em that, for sure.

          focus peaking > Lots of cameras have that now.

          the ability to use MF lenses? 😉 > Well, there’s the rub. First, they’re manual focus (so you lose one aspect of automation right there). Second, adaptors can and frequently do cause issues of their own; imperfections in surface planarity reduce sharpness … and wider Leica M lenses typically do not perform well on these Sony cameras.

          • @Robert:

            Who seriously shoots 4K video (or any other serious video/film footage) with autofocus? New gathering people, maybe. Serious movie/video production, rather not.

            MF rules that field, and will for a long time. Primes or zoom lenses, manually focussed, are most used here.

            The sensors in the A7-series are good enough to be paired with top notch Thales-Angenieux, Zeiss, Schneider or Leica Cine primes.

            As for adapter issues: Even most cheap Chinese adapters do not cause serious de-centering or planeness issues – Novoflex-, Fotodiox- or Leitax-adapters certainly do not.

            Leica M wide angle and other non-retrofocus non-telecentric lenses do have an issue with most digital sensors – even Leica (M240) do heavy corrections in body for such lenses, before a RAW image is saved. On the other hand, there are M wide-angle lenses which work perfectly with the Sony sensors – f. i. the WATE, which is anyway one of the best FF Wide angle lenses…

      • Robert, you are correct (as you usually are). And of course, the D4s has other advantages over the A7s: blazingly fast AF, pro build quality, etc…it’s a workhorse camera, and really one cannot compare the two. I guarantee a D4s will last far longer than an A7s, and hold resale value better.

        Like you, I think the A7 series suffers the same problems that Sony is famous for: ergonomic difficulties, confusing menus, mediocre AF, lack of good lens ecosystem, etc.

        Sony is basically an electronics company, and in imaging, their expertise is in the sensors. But they are not an optics company and it shows. And they have a lot to learn about what photographers need and want.

        I hope that in the next generation Sony adds AF comparable to their A6000 release, and continues to improve ergonomics. Also as others always note, they need lenses to their system.

        • Yeah, I’m pretty much running in the opposite direction as everyone else when it comes to these Sony cameras. When you really break down what they offer; their lens support; their system support; ergonomics; autofocus; and Sony’s track record supporting new cameras … I’m left utterly cold.

          The only advantage one’s left with is: “big sensor in small camera”.

          Trouble with that idea is this >>

          http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GkNnQOvOPno/U0Hx_B14kyI/AAAAAAAAFYg/kFRmYUsjtg0/s1600/sony-a7s-4k-video-iso-409600-2.jpg

          Whoops, not so tiny anymore.

          • Agreed.
            It seems like bean counters & electronics guys are calling the shots over at Sony. Every new Sony cam since the A850/900 just seems like a electronics gadget aimed at… Well, gadget types.

            They need to bring in some field pros with clout to advise(like what Fuji is doing), and actually listen to what they say.
            Because there’s no way in hell professional photographers told them to abandon OVF’s, abandon the A-mount, and start using a new ff lens mount that restricts lenses to f1.8 or slower, etc.

            When Sony announced the Zeiss 135mm f1.8 I thought to myself “wow-these guys mean business”. Unfortunately…that was the last time I said that about Sony.

          • Sony just doesn’t understand still cameras, pure and simple. They’re an electronic appliance manufacturer … and their cameras reflect that; they have no soul. Sony have no heritage or understanding of the subtleties that serious shooters and pros look for (frankly, even Minolta had lost its way before Sony acquired the division).

            Oh sure, they’ll get a few adopters here and there, but IMO they will never be taken seriously as an advanced or professional still camera manufacturer.

            Moreover, like every other mirrorless camera manufacturer right now, Sony is also losing money on this whole experiment.

            It’ll be interesting to see where we’re at in 5 or 6 years.

          • By “soul,” do you mean character, quality, and appeal? If so, I will say that my RX1 most definitely has soul, a sentiment I suspect I share with other RX1 owners, many of whom (including me) consider it their favorite camera ever. (My former favorite was a Contax 139 that I purchased in 1981.) So, if the RX1 is any guide, Sony is certainly capable of making cameras with soul, although perhaps the RX1 is the only time they have accomplished this.

          • And if I could rant a bit:
            Sony has the means to dominate the camera industry. Total domination. It’s really a bummer to see them so focused on making gadget cams. I’m not against them pushing to innovate. (Focus peaking is a prime example of their innovation in photography. Their sensors are another example worthy of applause).

            It’s just…. They acquired Minolta! THE Minolta.
            The same Minolta who made one of the best film slr’s ever- the maxxum/dynax 7(& 9).
            The same Minolta who built a Leica better than Leica (the CLE).
            Unbelievably good lenses.

            On paper- the formula of combing Minolta’s camera & lens know-how, mixed with Sony electronics & innovation, with a dash of zeiss optics… It should’ve been a recipe for something incredible!
            But all I see is gadgets- electronics made with cheap parts that won’t last. Made to be replaced every 2-3 years.
            It’s almost as if they pulled some of their DVD & tv guys out of their dept and said “hey guys- your doing cameras now”.

            Sorry to rant- I just hate seeing such a giant of a company not living up to it’s full potential. I have my brand preferences, but I want all companies to succeed and bring out the BEST product possible. Quality > quantity. Shooters want more than just great resolution.
            I hate gimmicky gadgets made to be replaced every few years. These aren’t $59 Bestbuy DVD players. But looking at them, and the way Sony keeps pumping them out and changing things up, you’d be hard pressed to tell the difference.

            I’ll say this- Once Fuji brings out the FF x-pro2… Sony(and Leica, canon & Nikon for that matter) better have something that can compete. And I hope they do, because Fuji means business.
            An A7 might be appealing now, but when it’s sitting next to a built-like-a-brick Fuji FF that has hybrid ovf/evf and a 50/1.2 fujinon lens strapped on it…

            Exciting times for us shooters. c’Mon Sony, time to go ‘all in’!

          • Robert,
            1) The only thing what the picture in this blogspot tells me is that it is POSSIBLE to use the A7 in a setup with really big equipment. But I really don’t understand why you think that this wipes away the advantage of its small body. If you choose to go big, you can, but if you wanna go compact, you can as well. It’s the latter that isn’t possible with a big body.
            2) I own an A7r and use lenses up to f/1.2. So I simply don’t understand what you’re saying.
            3) Concerning me being a gadget type: I can choose from 27 different lenses, most of them being classic MF primes, all with their own character. But no fringes, just manual shooting. There are two main reasons why I bought this Sony: it’s compact size and the possibility of using a vaste amount of (classic) lenses. So again, I don’t understand what you guys are talking about. BTW, I don’t always want to go compact (I use the Zeiss Otus a lot lately), but whenever I want or need it to be compact, I put something really small on it, like the Voigtländer Nokton Classic 1.4 or the Zeiss Planar ZM.

          • Using it with a kit of small, manual focus primes lenses is probably the ideal application; no argument there.

            The issue is finding such primes that will match well with it. The wide Leica glass is problematic, for example.

            The image I linked to was to make the point that you can have the smallest full frame body in the world, but the moment you want to use it as the center of a comprehensive system, its size and weight advantages immediately disappear … while the imbalance of having it serve as the core of larger apparatus quickly becomes a detriment.

          • I’m glad that you at least respond calmy, Robert! In this way we can really exchange thoughts. 🙂 And I agree with most of what you say. Still, I’d love guys like you to mainly see the possibilities.
            1) When you want/need to use larger apparatus, I’m not really convinced that there IS any unbalance with the Sony. In the setup, pictured in the blogspot, everything is steadily fixed, with a lot of front weight but a pro tripod to still make it work comfortably. IMO, a heavier body will not improve balance here. Right? But imagine a somewhat more common combination: a 1kg lens on tripod. When I shoot with Otus, I put the extra grip on the body, and mount it on the tripod via collar. Result: perfect balance. See https://www.flickr.com/photos/keepnitgood/12661533353/ In this picture the clamping knobs are completely loosened, still the camera stays in balance. Also OOH, I think, with grip, the balance is remarkable – I shot a selfie at one tenth of a second to prove it (next picture on Flickr). Of course, this is NOT a compact combination, but again with the same body, when I want, I CAN go very compact and stil enjoy the full frame sensor.
            2) Indeed, not all Leica glass works. The wide angles with sticking out backlens are a no-go. I sold the 35mm Summicron, because my Nokton Classic performed much better on my A7r. But you know, there still are so many lens opportunities, much more than with any other FF body. So let’s not blame this camera that some lenses don’t perform well on it, because it still works well with so much more glass than any other FF body. Finding lenses that will work is really pretty simple: check if the back lens doesn’t stick out and you’ll be good.

          • If the Sony works for you, then neither my opinion nor the opinion of anyone else matters a hill of beans. Certainly the Otus with that Sony sensor will produce outstanding IQ.

            But remember that an ultra high quality image of a boring subject won’t be nearly as valuable as a good quality image of a captivating or hypnotic subject.

            For me personally, I don’t like the ergonomics or feel of the Sony cameras. As someone else mentioned, it’s like they brought over the Playstation design team and told them that they would now be designing cameras. The A7’s ergonomics and build feel very “beta” to me.

            The Olympus OM-D E-M1 mind you — while lacking the ultimate IQ of the A7 series — has some of the best design and ergonomics of any camera I have ever used. And IQ from the latest m4/3 sensors is now sufficient for most applications, whether amateur or professional … and well beyond what we got from 35mm film 20 years ago.

            Sony has a 10% stake in Olympus. They might be wise to leverage some of Olympus’ camera design know-how and use that in their own cameras going forward.

            Meanwhile, I continue to hold on to my Fuji X-Pro 1. Despite it’s deficiencies there is something magical about that camera. RAW processing aside, when it nails an image it produces some of the best IQ I have ever seen (couldn’t disagree with Steve more vehemently that the images are “flat”). I’ve produced files from that camera — along with the stellar Fujinon XF35mm f/1.4 R — that just left me speechless. Quirks aside, I think some of the DNA that Fuji used in the cameras and lenses they built for Hasselblad ended up in the X-System.

            We’re all different, with varying tastes and needs. Shoot what feels right and what works well for you, and you will produce the best images you can. All of today’s higher-end gear can produce better IQ than most photographers are capable of squeezing out of it.

          • I read your latest reply only now, Robert. And I totally agree with everything you say. Otus indeed brings up the problem that it’s hard to free yourself from trying to make it technically perfect, which indeed often stands in the way of creating good pictures. But I use this for my pleasure, so there’s no pressure. I guess it’ll eventually teach me a lot, as long as I criticise my own pictures…

    • Same focusing system as the A7r, which means contrast only and no phase detection. Maybe the -4 EV sensitivity will help mitigate the low light slow focus. But my 6D can do -3 EV with phase detection and an OVF that doesn’t slow down in low light (Digitalrev demonstrated how slow the EVF of the A7 becomes in low light). Seems Sony is going for more of the video crowd and adding features rather than improve on the shortcomings of the camera.

      • Don’t forget though:
        a) CDAF is more accurate and precise than PDAF
        b) you can get PDAF on the A7’s simply by throwing the LA-EA4 adapter on it
        c) in low, low light an EVF is better than on OVF because it amps up

          • Is that the one with the silly race between Kai and the camera guy? 🙂 I remember that one. Fun video! But the light in the parking garage is just moderately low. In really low light (like when I do night photography) the EVF wins (it’s almost like having ‘night vision’)

          • I would agree. The EVF is WONDERFUL for astrophotography! Really nice to see something in the viewfinder…

        • CDAF is more accurate that PDAF? That has not been my experience. A couple of years ago, I took my Fuji X100 to a wedding and in low, ambient light it could not ever focus on the subject. It would hunt for focus and settle on the rim of a window 20 feet away.

          • You used a camera that has one of its very few weak points in the AF department – try an “old” E-M5, your jaw will drop… everybody knows that on high-end FF the PDAF is, at best, ON PAR with CDAF in regards of accuracy. Now, speed is another thing entirely…

        • I wasn’t talking about accuracy, I was talking about speed. Both CDAF and PDAF are plenty accurate, but in a low light wedding reception, I would trust PDAF to lock on much quicker than CDAF. But not everyone needs that capability, if CDAF meets all your needs, than more power to you.

          As for the EVF amping up, you still have the dekay from the refresh rate of the video feee. Whereas the OVF has no delay at all. I’m sure EVF’s will improve and get faster refresh rates in the future.

          • Agreed. PDAF is generally faster, CDAF is generally more accurate, and hybrid PDAF/CDAF is the ideal!

            But for those who require PDAF, the A7 has very capable PDAF with the LA-EA4 adapter.

            For those who don’t require PFAF, CDAF and MF with focus peaking also works well.

            I like the idea that you get to choose with the A7

          • The PDAF will lock faster, but as always the accuracy would be questionable, and with an OVF you’ll find it too late, when chimping. Fast shooting rates on FF are prized just for that (“spray and pray” anyone?). About EVF improvements, Fuji and Olympus are already here, so I trust Sony will follow VERY soon.

      • Haha, digitalrev is fun but don’t take their review to seriously dude, the EVF doesn’t look bad as they shown just make sure the shutter speed is set higher than 1/30s or turn off the live view setting for viewfinder. Furthermore, the readout time from 12MP sensor probably will be much faster.

        • kuroo, I have no doubts Sony and other manufacturers will improve the EVF. But as Kai said, full frame DSLR’s are already pretty good and Sony is still catching up at this point. I just find it funny each new release is hyped up so much when there’s still some refining to be done on the previous modele.

          • True true! But there is not one camera on the market today that does not need some refining in an area or two. There is never a perfect digital camera release. Never! Wish there was. Closest I have seen in mirror less is the E-M1, but it is not perfect either. Neither is the Fuji X-T1. Neither is the Sony A7 or RX1. It’s like a game but this new A7s is something different which offers this kind of DR and ISO performance in a small FF body. Sony has many lenses planned through 2015 so I am sure they will get there. By 2015 maybe the A9 series will be out and will be more refined. IN fact, that is my prediction! 🙂

          • It is certainly not: too big, no EVF, too difficult to use with manual lenses, needlessly convoluted wheels operations… No way I’ll ever buy a camera built like that. NOW, the Fuji X-T1 could be all another story…

          • The Nikon Df is perfect.

            Repeating misunderstandings about locks and focus screen is from the same people over and over who have never really used the camera. The Df focus screen destroys that of my FM2. Used with manual Nikkors in manual mode with the unique, among full frame dslr’s, shutter dial it is the best camera in the world with the possible exception of the Leica Monochrom.

            XT1? Sure for those who are suckers for gadgets and trends and like composing through looking on a mini TV. Love Fuji but would take the X100S over the XT1 any day.

          • “XT1? Sure for those who are suckers for gadgets and trends and like composing through looking on a mini TV.”

            Repeating misunderstandings about EVF is from the same people over and over who have never really used the latest tech iteration, and like to fancy themselves like “real old style photographers”.
            Perfect niche for the Df.

          • “who have never really used the latest tech iteration”

            That’s right. I have not tried the latest iterations. Interesting how the people interested in the latest technology (rather than the making of photographs) are the same ones who seem to be fans of Sonys products and EVF. You’re not interested in cameras but technology iteration and consumption. Nothing wrong with that, but be clear about your interest. Many commenters who voiced discontent over the DF didn’t like that it didn’t push the envelope in regards to trendy tech. Instead the DF is a mature, perfect platform. How many times have I heard tech consumers mention “almost there” in regards to Sony and Fuji systems? I wonder how many A7e consumers are thinking about selling their camera – the same people who last year was obsessed by megapixels are now sweating about this new thing.

          • Sorry, I’m not a Sony fan, just pointing out some facts 🙂
            I’m more interested in photography, NOT gadgets – I’ve done a year-long b/w fine arts projects using just an old manual lens from the Eighties: you can read my posts and see my photos on the E-P1.net forum and on my Zenfolio galleries, where you can find many shots both with contemporary prime lens, and old lenses and film cameras. But I welcome innovations when they can help me – TRUE innovations, and is for this reason I conratulate Sony even if I do not find the least appeal in their products.

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