Sony Mirrorless Camera Spec Warfare: Sony a6100 vs a6400 vs a6600

Sony announces a6600 and a6100

Sony certainly came to play this morning announcing two APS-C mirrorless camera bodies alongside two brand new lenses. If you thought camera companies were letting the crop sensor market head niche, think again. Both the Sony a6100 and Sony a6600 join its slightly older sibling, the a6400 in filling out the company’s APS-C line. 

First, let’s get the important details out of the way — price and release date.

Sony a6100 Price. It will retail for $748 / €900 and preorders are up at Amazon / B&H / Adorama.

Release Date. The camera body and kit lens combo have an expected ship date in October.

Sony a6600 Price. The new flagship of the APS-C line will retail for $1400 / €1600 and like its cheaper variant have preorder pages up at Amazon / B&H / Adorama

Release Date. It’s the same as the a6100 with body and kit lens combo shipping in October. 

How does that compare to the slightly older a6400? Pricing on it is somewhat more than the a6100 at $898 and is available today at Amazon / B&H / Adorama. Let’s dive into the differences between Sony’s trio of 2019 APS-C cameras.

Comparing the Sony a6100 vs a6400 vs a6600

First, let’s get the similarities out of the way so you can make a judgment call on if the differences warrant the price difference. Jump down to the significant differences – and they are major – if you can’t wait any longer.

FeaturesSony a6100Sony a6400Sony a6600
24.2MP CMOS Sensor
BIONZ X
Video: 4K at 30fps
AF: 425-point Phase Detection
11fps with AF/AE Tracking
Real-time Eye: Stills/ Human / Animal
Real-time Tracking
180-Degree Tiltable Touch Screen

Now come the key differences between the three cameras. 

Battery. Only the Sony a6600 will feature the Z-battery giving it 2.2x the battery life over the a6100 and a6400. You knew Sony would hamper some features to get two sub-$1000 cameras out for the holidays. The rating for the Z-battery is around 720 shots.  

IBIS. It’s the same news for IBIS (in-body image stabilization). The Sony a6600 gets the nod for the five-axis optical stabilization technology leaving the other two needing either a steady head or a gimbal.  

Real-time Eye AF for Movies. Sony’s new a6600 gets this incredible feature which will bring Eye AF into video. That alone is enough to justify the price. 4K HDR movies join it with what Sony dubs as advanced AF speed and stability. 

OLED EVF. All three have them, but the a6100 loses out to the a6400 and a6600. The Sony a6100 has as SVGA 1.44m-Dot OLED EVF while the other two sport an XGA Tru-Finder 2.36m-Dot OLED EVF.

Let’s take a look at a few of the product videos showcasing the two new cameras. 

Sony New APS-C Lenses

Those of us who love having a dedicated APS-C camera, it’s been a solid week thanks to Canon and now Sony. Not only did Sony launch two new bodies, but also two new lenses. One is a wildlife-focused Sony E 70-350mm f/4.5-6.3 G OSS. 

If you do the quick APS-C 1.5x conversion, it works out to a 105-525mm (35mm equivalent). That’ll reach out and touch a subject. The pricing is reasonable at $998.00, and shipping is set for the first of November. Like the bodies, preorders are live at Amazon / B&H / Adorama.

The other big lens is the G-Master line making its way to APS-C. A new Sony E 16-55mm f/2.8 will ship in October for $1398 (Amazon / B&H / Adorama). That works out to 24-82.5mm (35mm equivalent). It’s a 24-70mm for APS-C fans. It’s about time we get a little love.

Which Sony APS-C Camera is for You?

Let’s focus on the latest models thanks to all three having the newest AF technology and sharing many of the same features. Personally, I was hoping for a bit more from the Sony a6600, but I understand cost constraints due to the value the a7 III represents. 

At $1400, it checks a lot of boxes people were clamoring for when the Sony a6400 launched (Amazon / B&H / Adorama). It has IBIS. The real-time Eye AF in movies is a fantastic feature. And the battery life. Finally. Sony listens and puts the Z-battery inside an APS-C frame. 

It comes down to your use case. Are you a hybrid shooter or a vlogger? The a6600 is the camera for you (Amazon / B&H / Adorama). Not into videos but still want the better EVF and a few other quality of life features? The Sony a6400. 

As for the a6100 (Amazon / B&H / Adorama), I see it quickly replacing the a6000 as the intro mirrorless bundle for the holidays. It has a compelling price and gets very close to the impulse buy for those people on your Christmas list looking to get into photography.

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