The rumors were essentially spot on. Sony’s schedule? Not so much. The company unveiled its latest alpha-series full-frame mirrorless camera, the Sony a7III, in Vegas. Let’s dive into the specs, price and release date.
First, the specs. Say what you will about Sony, but the company listens to its customers. Want 4K? Done. Joystick? Done. Dual SD slots? Of course. While dubbed the ‘basic model,’ the a7III punches above its class. One of the glaring specs is it is grabbing the autofocus system from the a9. That’s a 693-point phase detection covering 92% of the frame. On paper, it will focus faster than the a7rIII.
Internals sport an all-new 24.2 MP sensor backed by the BIONZ-X processor. For a comparison, it’s nearly twice as fast as the a7II. ISO hits 204800, and the camera promises 15 stops of dynamic range (stills). Ports on the camera are actually more than I expected. Dual SD card slots, HDMI, USB-C, and micro-USB. Wireless connectivity includes the usual suspects – WiFi, Bluetooth, and NFC.
Burst shooting tops out at 10fps in both mechanical and silent shooting. Thanks to the new BIONZ-X, the buffer tops out around 177 shots (you’ll need the fastest SD card you can find).
Video features offer up 4K with 6K oversampling. Here’s where things get interesting. With the a9 autofocus system, there’s less ‘wobble,’ and the camera does a full sensor readout for 4K video. Contrast that with the a7rIII which does this type of readout over an APS-C portion of the full-frame sensor. You can achieve full-frame 4K, but the result has pixel-binning, and it’s softer.
It does make you wonder what the hell Sony is plotting for the a7sIII.