Not only has the a6000 received a substantial bump in resolution, it also has more phase-detect points, allowing for 92% coverage across the frame.
Sony's dust removal system includes a combination of ultrasonic vibrations as well as a 'charge protection coating'.
While still respectable, the EVF on the a6000 is a step down from the one on the NEX-6. It's both smaller and lower resolution.
The resolution of the EVF is 1.44 million dot, while the magnification is 0.70x (equivalent).
An infrared sensor activates the EVF when your eye approaches it.
The directional controller is just like it is on the NEX cameras. It has a wheel for adjusting settings, and can also set the drive mode, ISO, display mode, and exposure compensation (among other things).
The Fn button opens the shortcut menu shown below, and sends images to a smartphone in playback mode.
On the top right of the a6000 is the mode dial and the main control dial, which can adjust aperture, shutter speed or, if you wish, exposure compensation.
Above that is the power switch / shutter release combo and the Custom 1 button.
The a6000 has a pop-up flash, which is released manually. This flash has a guide number of 6m at ISO 100, which is typical for a midrange mirrorless.
The built-in flash can be used to control compatible external speedlights wirelessly.
Here you can see the movie recording button, which Sony keeps moving further away from the back panel, in order to prevent users from accidentally pressing it. The downside: now it's too hard to press.
The 'NFC' symbol is the spot where you'll tap your compatible smartphone for remote control and photo transfer.
There are two ports under a plastic door on the camera's left-hand side. On the top is the multi-interface port, which is for USB, charging, and attaching a wired remote.
Below that is a micro-HDMI port for connecting to a TV or video recorder. The a6000 can output uncompressed video over HDMI, a big improvement over its predecessor.
The Alpha 6000 uses the familiar NP-FW50 InfoLithium battery, which contains 7.7Wh of energy. This translates into 360 shots per charge, according to Sony.
As mentioned in the introduction, the default charging method is over USB, with an AC-to-USB adapter included in the box. If you want faster charging, or just want a spare on-hand, you'll want to pick up the external charger.
At first glance, the a6000 looks like an NEX-6 with a new name. While the two cameras have much in common, Sony has improved several things under the hood, most noticeably the autofocus system. With 179 phase detection points covering 92% of the frame, one would expect the a6000 to track subjects very well. While we haven't tried that on our pre-production camera, the examples shown to us by Sony were most impressive. Overall autofocus speeds were excellent in good light, and fairly good in low light. The a6000 also has 'Eye AF', which we're eager to try when a full production camera arrives.
Another notable change compared to the NEX-6 is a lower resolution electronic viewfinder. The XGA OLED viewfinder on the NEX-6 (and several other Sony cameras) is truly spectacular, but the one on the a6000 is no slouch, either. The resolution is fine for nearly all purposes, and there's very little lag.
The menu system has been given the same makeover as the Alpha 7 twins, which is mostly a good thing. The a6000 shares the same customizable Function menu as those cameras, as well. While there are two labeled custom buttons, the AEL button as well as all four directions on the 4-way controller can be set to your liking, as well. As mentioned at the start of the review, the a6000 can now display a zebra pattern which, along with focus peaking, works as advertised. Something that caught our eye in the menu are new options for AF drive speed and track duration, neither of which were on the NEX-6.
While some of the features of earlier NEX models (such as the cramped controls and rear dial) haven't changed, our initial impressions of the a6000 are certainly positive. One of the toughest things for a mirrorless camera to do is track a moving subject, and we can't wait to find out if Sony's latest mirrorless camera is up to the task.