Previous page Next page

Sony Alpha 7 Review

January 2014 | By Jeff Keller, Richard Butler
Buy on GearShopFrom $1,698.00


Review based on a production Sony a7 running firmware v1.0

If there's one thing that you can say about Sony's digital camera business, it's that they've experimented with many different concepts. From SLRs with dual autofocus systems and Translucent Mirror Technology to its NEX mirrorless line-up, Sony has gone down virtually every avenue in digital imaging. Its latest products - the Alpha 7 and Alpha 7R - may be the most exciting products to come out of the Sony labs in some time. The company has managed to create full-frame cameras which are about the same size as the Olympus OM-D E-M1. In other words, the Alpha 7s are much smaller than their full-frame interchangeable lens peers (such as Nikon's D610 and the Canon EOS 6D), an achievement made possible primarily because they're not SLRs.

In addition, Sony is also unifying the Alpha and NEX brands, so all future interchangeable lens cameras will now fall under the Alpha umbrella. Being mirrorless, the a7 would have otherwise likely been prefixed with the letters NEX.

The a7 and a7R are identical in terms of physical design, with the main differences being the sensor and autofocus system. The a7 features a full-frame 24 megapixel CMOS, while the a7R has a 36 megapixel CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter. The a7 uses a Hybrid AF system (with on-chip phase detection) similar to the one found on the NEX-6, while the a7R has traditional contrast detection. The a7 is also capable of electronic first curtain mode, which allows for a quieter shutter, and reduces the potential for 'shutter shock' vibration; this is absent from the A7R. Both cameras use Sony's latest Bionz X processor and also have XGA electronic viewfinders, tilting LCDs, Wi-Fi, and weatherproof bodies that resemble that of the Olympus E-M1.

As you'd expect, Sony had to come up with new lenses to take advantage of the full-frame sensors, and they'll be known as 'FE-series'. Five lenses were announced to start with (listed below), with ten more promised by 2015. Existing E-mount lenses will work, though the image will (necessarily) be cropped. If you have A-mount lenses laying around, those too will work, as long as you pick up either of Sony's full-frame-ready adapters (the LA-EA3 or LA-EA4).

Sony a7 key features

  • 24.3 megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor with OLPF
  • E-mount with support for FE, E, and A-mount lenses (with adapter)
  • Bionz X image processor
  • Hybrid AF system with 25 contrast-detect and 117 phase-detect points
  • Sealed alloy and composite body
  • Multi-Interface Shoe
  • 3-inch tilting LCD with 1.23 million dots (640x480, RGBW)
  • XGA (1024x768) electronic viewfinder
  • Diffraction correction technology
  • Full HD video recording at 1080/60p and 24p; uncompressed HDMI output
  • Wi-Fi with NFC capability and downloadable apps

The a7 uses a 24.3 megapixel CMOS sensor with a low-pass filter and on-chip phase detection. This 'Hybrid AF' is supposed to result in speedier AF, supporting the camera's ability to shoot at 5 fps with continuous autofocus. The more expensive a7R, on the other hand, has a 36 megapixel sensor with no optical low-pass filter and a more conventional contrast-detect AF system.

Both the a7 and a7R can record video at 1080/60p and 24p, with manual exposure control, headphone and mic ports, an audio meter, zebra pattern, XLR support (via adapter), and live, uncompressed HDMI output.

Bionz X Processor

The company's latest processor, dubbed Bionz X for reasons that presumably made sense to someone, is considerably more powerful than the previous generation, allowing what the company says is more sophisticated processing.

Sony is being a little vague on specifics but is touting the new processor as offering 'Detail Reproduction Technology' which appears to be a more subtle and sophisticated sharpening system. The company promises less apparent emphasis on edges, giving a more convincing representation of fine detail'.

Another function promised by the Bionz X processor is 'Diffraction Reduction', in which the camera's processing attempts to correct for the softness caused by diffraction as you stop a lens' aperture down. This processing is presumably aperture-dependent and sounds similar to an element of Fujifilm's Lens Modulation Optimization system (introduced on the X100S), suggesting it's something we should expect to see become more common across brands in the coming months.

Finally, Sony says the Bionz X chip offers a more advanced version of its context-sensitive, 'area-specific noise reduction', which attempts to identify whether each area of an image represents smooth tone, textured detail or subject edges and apply different amounts of noise reduction accordingly. Later in the review, we'll show you just how well this system works, and also the problems it can create.

Lenses

While the a7 has an E-mount, you'll need to use Sony's new FE-series lenses to take advantage of its full-frame sensor. Existing E-mount lenses will still physically fit, but as they're only designed for use with APS-C sensors, their image circles won't cover the entire frame properly (just like using Sony's DT lenses on full-frame Alpha mount cameras). While five FE lenses were announced at launch, they were not all available at 'press time', and the 28-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS will only be sold as a kit lens for the a7. All of the lenses are weather-sealed, but while the zooms include optical stabilization, the primes do not.

Here are the five FE lenses that have been officially announced:

Model MSRP Availability
24-70mm F4 Carl Zeiss OSS $1199/£1049 February 2014
28-70mm F3.5-5.6 Sony OSS Kit only Now
70-200mm F4 Sony G OSS TBD TBD
35mm F2.8 Carl Zeiss $799/£699 Now
55mm F1.8 Carl Zeiss $999/£849 Now

Sony plans to have a total of fifteen FE lenses by 2015, including macro and ultra-wide models.

The first five Sony FE lenses include two standard zooms, two primes, and a tele zoom

We're slightly surprised by Sony's strategy here: it seems a bit odd to be making two different standard zooms to start with, rather than adding a wide-angle zoom. And while it's great to see a couple of primes, both look somewhat slow given their prices. The 55mm F1.8 is a bit long for a 'normal' lens too. We'd have loved to see a fast 'portrait' lens in the 85-135mm range early on, but hopefully Sony will offer one soon.

The two cameras are perfectly capable of using existing E-mount and A-mount lenses, and you have the choice as to whether the image is cropped. If you choose to crop, the resolution will drop to 10 megapixels on the a7, and the equivalent focal length will increase by 1.5X. Sony also gives you the option to not crop and use the entire sensor, though this is likely to lead to strong vignetting.

Image 1
24mm full-frame lens - APS-C Crop Off
Image 2
24mm APS-C lens - APS-C Crop Off
Image 3
24mm APS-C lens - APS-C Crop On

The camera offers three options for its APS-C crop mode - Off, Auto and On. With it switched Off, you'll see Image 1 with a full-frame lens and Image 2 if you're using an APS-C lens. With it switched to Auto mode, you'll get Image 1 or Image 3, depending on whether you're using a full-frame or an APS-C lens. And finally, with it On, you'll see Image 3, regardless of which lens type you put on the camera.

The a7R with LA-E4 A-mount adapter and 50mm F1.4 Zeiss lens

Sony's A-Mount lenses will require the use of an A- to E-mount adapter. Somewhat confusingly Sony now offers no fewer than four such adapters, which differ in their autofocus capabilities and format coverage. The LA-E1 and LA-EA3 offer contrast detect autofocus for lenses that have built-in focus motors (i.e. SAM and SSM), but only manual focus with other lenses, while the LA-EA2 and the new LA-EA4 use Sony's Translucent Mirror Technology to offer autofocus with all lenses. The LA-EA1 and LA-EA2, however, were designed for APS-C NEX cameras and will vignette strongly when used on the a7(R); the LA-EA3 and LA-EA4 are needed to give complete sensor coverage with full-frame lenses.

Adapter Full autofocus? Full-frame ready?
LA-EA1
No
No
LA-EA2
Yes
No
LA-EA3
No
Yes
LA-EA4
Yes
Yes

It's well worth noting that the a7 and a7R are able to accept a huge range of other lenses via readily-available third-party adapters, including old manual focus lenses from long-dead systems such as Minolta MD, Olympus OM, and Canon FD, as well as those from current systems such as Nikon F, Pentax K and Leica M. What's more, in principle these lenses should offer the angle of view they were originally designed to give - so a 24mm will be a true wide-angle again, for example. So if you have a cherished collection of old manual focus primes sitting a closet, the a7 may be just the camera to bring them back to life. More on that later in the review.

Kit options and pricing

The 24 megapixel Alpha 7 sells for $1699/£1299 body only and $1999/£1549 with the 28-70 F3.5-5.6 OSS lens. For those who are curious, the 36 megapixel a7R is priced at $2299/£1699 body only.

The most notable accessory for both cameras is an optional battery grip (VG-C1EM) - a first for an E-mount camera. This grip adds controls for vertical shooting and holds an additional battery, and will set you back around $300/£259.

The a7 does NOT come with an external battery charger, instead relying on internal charging over USB. USB charging is quite slow (and it makes having a spare battery on hand more difficult), so picking up the BC-VW1 or BC-TRW external chargers is probably a smart move.

Other accessories include camera cases, an off-shoe flash adapter, wired and wireless remotes, and screen protectors.



If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2014 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

Previous page Next page
485
I own it
409
I want it
94
I had it
Discuss in the forums

Comments

Total comments: 1606
23456
Rawmeister
By Rawmeister (8 months ago)

Sony - as long as it's something Sony thinks can give an advantage over the competition, its a good to go product. There is no single employee responsible for the overall integrity or completeness of any system. Some minolta lenses left over from film days they still try to peddle to the unsuspecting. And way overpriced, and nothing special stuff from Zeiss . Tamron CA city products from 15 years ago etc. They need a leader who's been steeped in the industry to save thier disorganized bacon. Look at the specs for their 70-200mm f2.8G. Look at the performance and the price. What a joke. It's not just Sony.
Huge corps trying to empty our wallets. Price fixing at the distributor and retail levels that go unchallenged. Lenses that are non- retrofocus designs, yet still have same price as retrofocus models yet no better quality. All benefit of less complexity goes into profits and nothing comes our way in lower prices or better performance. They can all bite me, I'm not buying a thing.

0 upvotes
PWRUSS
By PWRUSS (8 months ago)

Having got the A7r and used it for a month I won't be going back to my 5D MkII for landscapes or cityscapes, day or night shooting. I shoot raw and process in Lightroom which is very easy. I get the best results I have ever got, and by a good margin. I don't like the slightly artificial look of the JPEGS but, since I prefer raw for its flexibility when processing, its not an issue for me.
I also highly rate my RX100 and D7100 and enjoy being able to pick from a range of gear for the job or trip. The limitations of the A7/r have been highlighted in this article and if you could only buy one camera to cover a broad range of subjects, perhaps not an A7/r but a get a small SLR. Otherwise, buy it for its pros, I did. Also be prepared to buy some very good lenses unless you already have them, a couple of batteries and a charger.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
18 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

These are incredible images using A7/r http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1255248/108

7 upvotes
Kiril Karaatanasov
By Kiril Karaatanasov (8 months ago)

DPR could have checked this page...I thought they are friends...

http://2.static.img-dpreview.com/files/g/TS560x560~2816986.jpg

but really does IQ matter for a camera? iPhone 4s is ok for most cases....now reviews are made in the states iPhone is popular there so....

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 53 seconds after posting
5 upvotes
DPReview Staff
By DPReview Staff (8 months ago)

Image quality wasn't strictly the issue we referred to. It was poor handling of JPEGs, with an emphasis on posterization due to Sony's uniquely aggressive anti-noise processing.

5 upvotes
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

Shawn, is the A7 like most Sony cameras where you can't turn off noise reduction? It7T seems they usually only have 2 options for jpegs, a lot of NR, and a lot MORE NR. I have no idea why you can't turn it off on so many cameras.

0 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

It has 3 settings: Default, Low, Off. NEX-5N had Default and Low, and low wasn't low enough, I agree. A7 low is in the Goldilocks zone for me.

1 upvote
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

I have it all switch off on A7 and posterisation is gone llike what Dpreview reviewed it. It is clear that Sony had made a mistake in algorithm in the noise reduction. But it long been affecting other camera like back to Nex 7 or so in few years apart. It is a serious flaw for JPEG shooting.

0 upvotes
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

I thought the sensor is supposed to be most sensitivity at blue and green only more than red itself which is common nowaday. Sony does not render as red as Canon does. It renders orange in Sony for example instead of true reddish.

0 upvotes
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (8 months ago)

DPR, feel the wrath of Sony fans...

6 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

Not just Sony owners but there are many Lieca, Canon and Nikon shooters who owns A7 and completely disagree with DP's cons about JPG of the camera.

12 upvotes
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (8 months ago)

If you own *and* like the camera... I'm not sure why would you be bothered by reviewers' opinion. I personally am not.

You take the DPR reviews too seriously. They are not objective. I'm happily shooting away with the GX7 and it got worse score than the A7. But DPR staff doesn't like it.

They like camera - it gets better scores. They do not like the camera - it gets worse scores. And that's pretty much all what there is to it.

9 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

We have all the tendence to compare apple and oranges. Comparing this camera with a DSLR is only possible on one level, and that is that it is a camera and it's IQ. All the rest is completely different stuff. Weight, size, handling, all that can never be compared, possibly facilities to personalize, but that's it. Now, concerning jpeg quality, I wrote this alredy and repeat it, a spanish magazine has tested IQ of A7, Leica M140, Nikon D800 for the out of camera IQ in jpeg and raw, and in both fields, Sony won that match. So, I do not know why DPR is always among those who get bad pictures out of most cameras. When I compare the sample on this site and those from Fred Miranda forums, or Steve Huff, there are worlds of difference. Maybe a guy who knows about what a camera is and how to handle it, like Steve Huff, should work for DPR to make cameras somewhat better. One can not judge a camera on what disadvantages it has, anyone has here other ideas and needs anyway.

3 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (8 months ago)

@The Philips - the scores are as objective as possible and based on around 50 specific data points, benchmarked against the camera's peers.

The awards are based on whether the reviewer liked it or not, after extensive use, trying to put themselves in the position of a would-be buyer. All reviews, by their nature, include opinions.

3 upvotes
RichRMA
By RichRMA (8 months ago)

Ah Sony users. Running frantically around the net, looking for good reviews to affirm that their choice of purchase was the right one. No faith in their own ability to judge?

2 upvotes
jonny1976
By jonny1976 (8 months ago)

there are at least 20 review out there all underlining poor af and handling and still a bunch of sony fanboys ant convince us that this camera is as responsive as em1 and the shutter is not bad, even if it produce a sound not even a mamiya rb67 does....then you see a small camera with the same biug lenses as any other ff...a 70-200 2,8 will be the same as big as any ff 70-200 2,8..so you end up with a smaller body and biug lenses, same as nex, same uncomfortable handling.

0 upvotes
jonny1976
By jonny1976 (8 months ago)

http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5495/12038171185_247b6a4f5e_o.jpg

portability i imagine

1 upvote
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (8 months ago)

@R Butler, you do not have to justify it somehow. The GX7 review came at the time as I have finished reading the Canon D70 review. Contrast between the two was just too great to miss. GX7 review was like "oh that and this works but we don't like it". While D70 review was "omg, there are problems and compromise, but those are OK for the Canon because all Canons have them and anyway it spells omg the great future!!!1!!". It is bias in its purest form. It is also humane to be biased so I'm not really protesting much. I'm just stating the obvious.

1 upvote
pcblade
By pcblade (8 months ago)

@Shamael Spanish vs British review... Do you think that the different outcome results from the dispute on Gibraltar ?

1 upvote
thomas2279f
By thomas2279f (8 months ago)

I like it - why no gold award ?

1 upvote
brycesteiner
By brycesteiner (8 months ago)

Because you didn't write the review.

9 upvotes
J Parker
By J Parker (8 months ago)

Wow. Just how revolutionary does a camera have to be to get a gold award?
If Sony made a camera that walked on water, some of us would complain that the water wasn't wet enough. I respect DPReview's conclusions (let's be honest -- DPReview's reviews are consistently outstanding and worth the wait). But as with any review, actually put the camera through its paces for yourself and decide if its for you or not. The fact is, whether its Fuji, Canon, Nikon, or Sony, etc., cameras of this caliber perform at a level of excellence unheard of even five years ago. The fact that we can with a straight face nitpick about image quality at ISO 12, 800 only shows that we as photographers have it made.

15 upvotes
DPReview Staff
By DPReview Staff (8 months ago)

We have to really enjoy using it. Read this: http://www.dpreview.com/articles/4416254604/camera-scores-ratings-explained

2 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

Shawn, when I use the A7 and the NEX-7 side by side, and see the handling and knowledge it needs to shoot with any of that 2 cameras, the NEX-7 requires much more feeling and knowledge than A7. The NEX is limited to 400 iso, beyond that you have dusty shots. For all the rest, both cameras have the same advantages, skills, and disadvantages, not to forget the crappy Fuji S5 style menues you find on Nex-7. The NEX-7 ended with gold and one of the best notes Sony ever got from DPR. There is something fishy here, and it smells ..... If I had to evaluate advantages against disadvantages, I would end with a 97% advantages. The sole disadvantage I find is that it is too light and too small for certain types of photography, and here it is Makro that suffers form that. With a tripod, the problem is resolved, but a tripod can be a problem in some situations, insects generally do not wait till you finish setting up your gear. Well let's than wait Canikon to do the same to get gold. (yawn)

4 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

the best and more simple way to go is to give the camera to a few people, leve them give their opinion, then write a report, say what it has and has not, what to your opinion could have been made better, and then publish that. Forget that notation system, you end by endless discussions with all people to see this different, and there are 7 billions on this planet having all their own opinion, and for each of them, there own is the only good one that counts.
Camera brands, like so many things, have become for many a religion, a dogma no one wants to break, so why blow air in the coal to keep the fire burning. That is all nonsense. I use 4 systems, and soon a fifth, but not all people do, some keep one brand only and use it as their religion, and many comments confirm this without any doubt.

1 upvote
J Parker
By J Parker (8 months ago)

Shawn, thanks for your response. You hit it right on the head -- I find that a camera's ability to inspire me to shoot with it is just as important as its spec sheet. I respect that the reviews have a certain level of subjectivity to them because behind every camera is a real person with his or own expectations about what a camera should accomplish for them. Thanks for the excellent review of a great (but certainly not perfect) camera.

3 upvotes
Jay A
By Jay A (8 months ago)

Tried this in a store with a metabones lens adapter to try out some Canon AF lenses on it. Not sure if there was something wrong with the camera or adapter, but it took about 6 seconds for the combo to achieve auto focus.

1 upvote
Bamboojled
By Bamboojled (8 months ago)

No, that is called "within specs" for this camera

1 upvote
new boyz
By new boyz (8 months ago)

Within specs... sure. CDAF with SLR lens will take way longer time to focus. So nothing wrong with that,it works just as what it's suppose to.

2 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

the goal of using hybrid lenses is to make yourself the job and focus manually, and not let the camera do the job. Canon uses another algorythm for the AF system, and translating that in an adapter ends by some issues in focusing speed. That is normal, and PDAF is different, if you use any dslr lens with adapter, you get that issues. That is why Sony uses an adapter with the contrast detect AF system from A77/99 with translucent mirror to run A lenses on the E system. The LA-EA1 and EA3 have no AF system and work in MF only, EA2 and EA4 have it and are thus bulkier. The issue to get this resolved is that all manufactureres step to a common mount in DSLR and in Mirorless, and a common AF algorythm and detection system. That would really give a kick to the market all over. Imagine one lens park, different brands, one mount, up to 5 bodies for just any need and style and there we go. But, keep dreaming, it was just a nightmare like any other.

0 upvotes
Bamboojled
By Bamboojled (8 months ago)

@Shamael
I am sure Sony users would love a one lens fits all solution as at least then they would have some depth in native lens selection.

0 upvotes
juvx
By juvx (8 months ago)

Sure it has its drawbacks, nothing is perfect but I don't think its advantages have been weighed nearly enough. It is compared to a D600 right? Well try walking around with a D600 with a zoom lens on all day. ITS gets REALLY heavy. Not to mention its size. A7 with lens is about HALF its weight.
They say the best camera is the one you have with you and its simply way easier to carry the A7 around. Image quality is just as good if not better sometimes (I only shoot RAW). Sure JPEG quality doesn't look that great ill admit BUT unless you plan on using the pic right out the camera with NO post processing at ALL then why wouldn't you shoot RAW? Or better yet shoot RAW + JPEG ... for quick sharing AND post processing.. its really not as big of a deal as you make it out to be. Start up time isnt great but its never made me miss a photo...2.5 sec max. I personally would rate the A7 a 90 and yes iv owned the D600 as well.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
16 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

Sorry DPR doesn't have a measure for "portability" in its FF segment that would be so unfair

3 upvotes
RichRMA
By RichRMA (8 months ago)

Depends on the zoom lens, doesn't it? You can cut the body weight of the camera down to nothing, but physics being what they are, if you want a lens that's 200mm f/2.8, you need a front lens at least 72mm across. That's with any camera and any sensor size.

0 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (8 months ago)

People really need start going to a gym.

I don't know - for years weight wasn't such an issue, and heck: even some of the heavier cameras were sought for (eg. Dynax 9 Ti - still one of most desired film cameras of it's age). But suddenly in last 2-3 years everyone lost muscles and now every gram counts.
WTF?!

1 upvote
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

Interesting point someone made. If you take the A7 with any of its native lenses, you can find the EM1 and a similar native lens that makes a smaller package and gives you close to a stop or more light. Oh, and the EM1 combos cost less too.
Why does this matter? If you check DxO the difference in DR is usually around only 1/2 a stop (at most ISOs) and for noise very close to that 1 stop difference (for most ISOs).
So when you do a comparison with native lenses, the EM1 is smaller, costs less, gives the same or better IQ according to DxO, gives you IS with each lens, focuses faster, and focuses more reliably in low light. The only win for the A7 is slightly less DoF, which often is not a good thing.
FE 35 F/2.8 vs. 20mm F/1.7 (more than 1 stop and no A7 IS)
FE 24-70 F/4 vs. 12-35 F/2.8
FE 55 F/1.8 vs. 25mm F/1.4 (less than 1 stop but no A7 IS)
FE 70-200 F/4 vs. 35-100 F/2.8

8 upvotes
Kiril Karaatanasov
By Kiril Karaatanasov (8 months ago)

This is delusional. M1 is ok up to iso 1600 A7 is ok at 6400 and not bad at 12800.....shallow DoF allows for something called creativity, of course phone cameras lack any shallow DoF and thus perform best but some rare people love to have control....

Should we speak about diffraction or you did not bother reading the M1 review?

5 upvotes
Kiril Karaatanasov
By Kiril Karaatanasov (8 months ago)

ohhh did we mention dynamic range? or that doe snot matter either?..it is about image quality so who cares really - people shoot JPEG with maximum compression and high noise suppression all the time....

4 upvotes
Rawmeister
By Rawmeister (8 months ago)

So you say a 4/3 sensor gives the same or better IQ as a Sony 24MP full frame sensor? Or at least DXO says so? Maybe you want to check your facts and or give your head a shake. lol. Question is, how do you get better photographs (better, meaning having compositional value to shock, please, inspire or communicate a message - and the answer has nothing to do with how you interpret DXo technical info. I'm not saying anything, I'm just saying.

4 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

EM1 has noise starting from base ISO which isn't even 100. But thanks for the laugh!

5 upvotes
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

So some people here can't read. I listed the M43 lenses that give a 1 stop advantage over the native Sony FE lenses (EM1 has IS too). With the extra stop the E-M1 surpasses the A7 in DR for most ISOs! Noise also almost is even too (with IS will be less on the EM1 in many cases).
So you end up with one camera/lens combo that is cheaper, smaller, has more DR, focuses faster, operates faster, can use MORE lenses (All use IS), and even has a nicer/larger grip! The other camera has tiny bit less DoF.

2 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

Uhm, if you're maximizing dynamic range, you shoot at base ISO. Remind me what base ISO is on EM1 again?

3 upvotes
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

With the EM1 the ISO range is ISO100 and up.
When you compare the actual measured ISOs (not what the camera says) from about ISO150 up to over ISO9000, the difference between the A7 and EM1 is around 1/3rd or 1/2 stop. My bet is most picture you take fall in that range. For me it is well over 90%. The 1 stop better lenses mean the EM1 will give you more DR. Then there is the fact that the EM1 does almost every thing else either better or faster or more reliably.

0 upvotes
new boyz
By new boyz (8 months ago)

NEX-6 costs even less. What's the point of comparing cameras from different sensor size? True, for native lens, m43 format offers more selections. However, Sony FF mirrorless is ALSO useful for those who already own legacy lenses(or no so legacy Canikon lenses). Of course you can use those legacy lenses on m43 cameras, but the field of view is changed. If you are building a system from zero and you prefer smaller size, m43 is probably a better choice. But if you want to use your Canon lenses on a 36mp camera, Sony FE system is the answer.

3 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

This is uselss talk. You do not need FF to get a good shot. At 100 iso, a NEX-7 makes a better picture if you look at full size than A7. This is normal, since pixel pitch is twice as fine on NEX-7 than on A7. A 7 pitch matches 12 mpix APS-C, A7R matches 18 mpix APS-C, 16 mpix 4/3 is same as 24 mpix APS-C. Now, all is in what you want to do. DOF and high ISO noise is the issue, and not all of us do night shots, or want pictures where only a spot in the center is sharp and all around is out of focus, what is an issue you can not solve with larger sensors, except if you make the distance to the sensor and the lens larger, like on medium format, where distance and lens size is given by the mirror that is in between it. DOF can be obtained by hyper fast lenses on any system, a 0.95 Nokton or any 1.4 lens gives you DOF on just any system, without, for sure, being able to reach the one of a FF sensor. 1", 4/3, APS-C and FF, sized to 9x13 prints do all the same good picture.

1 upvote
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

While the noise in APS-C is awful compare to FF.

0 upvotes
Camley
By Camley (8 months ago)

Yes DT200 but the a7/r has better image quality and for me that is what matters. Perhaps it is a lower priority for you and perhaps you don't do much post processing.
The a7/r has started a new class of ILC. Why get so upset about a competing ILC. It's just another option for us all.
Reasonably priced ILC users now have a choice of 4/3, APSC or Full Frame. What is wrong with that? These various ILC formats have various strengths and weaknesses and our choice has now been expanded.
Stay with 4/3 if that is what you want but please don't try to convince me to follow you preference.
The a7/r will cause other manufacturers to make reasonably priced full frame ILCs (possibly Olympus) and choice is good for all of us.
By the way, DXO gives the a7/r much higher scores than the EM-1.

2 upvotes
Max Savin
By Max Savin (8 months ago)

I have had mine for a month now. Of the 15 "CONS" listed in the review, only the slow start up has any meaning for me. All of my systems lenses can be used on this body. My large dslrs and M8 have been unused since it's arrival and I am considering an A7r for back up or primary body.

6 upvotes
DPReview Staff
By DPReview Staff (8 months ago)

Exactly. "Cons" isn't short for "condemnations," it's a list of possible disadvantages we thought people should know about so they can make their own decision. When we don't mention certain items, people jump on us, so we list the ones with think might matter. If a con won't matter to you, ignore it.

5 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

But that's no help to someone who doesn't own the camera and has no realistic way to assess whether the con matters or not... If he thinks your review has merit, he must assume that it matters. Otherwise your review serves no purpose. But if it shouldn't actually matter for most people, then you're prejudicing the reader.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
9 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (8 months ago)

for 15 years we have been listing the good points and the bad points in as much detail as possible in order for readers to make an informed decision. The cons listed do not, of course, have equal weight. Does 'fiddly battery cover' carry as much weight as 'worst in class image quality'? Of course not. We list everything we find and it's up to you to decide if it matters. If you only shoot raw you can ignore all comments on JPEGs, for example. If you only shoot manual exposure you don't need to worry about comments about auto modes. We have a large, broad audience, and we try to offer as much information for everyone as we can. We also offer a lot of context to our criticisms, including here, where we are at pains to point out that these are not big issues, can in part be mitigated by changing default settings, and will not be relevant to most users.

5 upvotes
Martkub70
By Martkub70 (8 months ago)

I reckon this review to be quite critical and camera as underrated. As a very frequent user of A7 - one of first on a local market, when put into sale in Oct 2013, with more than 10T pictures already taken - I can just confirm, that it is far, far better in terms of IQ than any of its SONY predecessors which I have used equally frequently (using digital camers since 1997 - mainly SONY's F828, A100, A700, A77). I am always thrilled by MAJOR improvements in IQ and camera's abilites generation-by-generation (A100 to F828, A700 to A100, A77 to A700 and now A7 to all others. At a same moment, I am still keeping former SONY machines as I still love their capabilites.
What can be confirmed as a setback is battery life and start-up times - u can get used to that, also lack of legacy lenses - but with Minolta and other alternatives, who cares. Not much from highlighted cons shall matter to any user. Photographic results are just excellent.

10 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (8 months ago)

image quality is obviously better than A99 (SLT to be blamed) but not as good as RX1 according to DxOMark (maybe within error).

2 upvotes
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

SLT is a problem, losing 1/3 of light lose 1/3 of IQ compare to mirrorless/and full time mirror DSLR. The noise crawl in 1/3 earlier in SLT than other camera unfortunately. Thats a consequence.

0 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (8 months ago)

On the other hand you get much better AF, stunningly innovative AF-D mode, and a body that you can actually use with lenses longer than 50mm.

1 upvote
cxsparc
By cxsparc (8 months ago)

So now that we all know what utter rubbish these cameras are, please also ignore this thread:
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1255248/108
They can't be serious, shooting those pictures with one of those :-)

13 upvotes
luis caramujo
By luis caramujo (8 months ago)

i have a 7r with Fe35 2.8, and that´s what matters to me also.

5 upvotes
Jonath
By Jonath (8 months ago)

Wow, some beautiful shots on that thread.

I guess thats the point though isn't it? When the camera first came out I was critical of those already criticizing it based on a spec sheet. Ironically when the initial reviews came back all positive, the response was that a FF camera wouldn't make you take better pictures.

Now the reviews are in, its the opposite, the FF camera irrespective of your skill as a photographer will make you take worse pictures, or atleast that seems to be the implication.

I'm the first to criticise some of the A7(r)'s shortcomings as you'll see from my other posts on this thread, and agree with the silver award, but would I sell it and get a D610 or 6D? No way. It's a different beast altogether, and inspite of the shutter lag, pays the photographer back in buckets for a little time and effort learning to use it. I will no doubt have it for years, along with my Vivitar 90mm f/2.5 'Bokina', Super Takumar 50mm F/1.4, Konica Hexanon 50mm, Ensinor 24mm....

1 upvote
luis caramujo
By luis caramujo (8 months ago)

7R, FE 35, 2.8, Jpeg.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=701078569916694&l=dd96ca75b9

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=701061113251773&l=bf44a5c679

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

the miranda forum shows us what this cameras are able to do. Now, if we see some Oly OMD forums, we look NEX-7 forums and so on, we see that all those cameras are able to as good and even in some situations much better. But all that proves nothing, if you know how to use a camera, you make good shots, and today, thare is among the top line of cameras no bad one anymore. I am not jealous on any of that forum shots if I compare them to my NEX-7 shots or the A7 and A7R shots I did. The only issue that will make me buy an A7 is better high ISO performance. If I see the results on 100 ISO, I see no reason to change, one can hardly beat NEX-7 IQ anyway. At this moment I wait what the NEX-7 successor will be, I prefer APSC for the wider DOF, FF is too shallow in most situation in which I shoot.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
jonny1976
By jonny1976 (8 months ago)

goo duck that now we have a sony a7 so we can shoot marvelous photos....those thread show pretty normal photography as you can see in every thread in miranda related to other camera.
go to get dpi and watch sigma dp3 or medium format camera sample, your jaw will drop compared to the images in that thread

0 upvotes
white shadow
By white shadow (8 months ago)

Good try Sony but the list of "cons" is the deal breaker. It may have the smallest full frame body with interchangeable lens capabilty but it is still far away from being a camera capable to satisfy professional needs.

Back to the drawing board. Surprise it can still get an 80% score and silver award. I would take the Oly EM-1 anytime eventhough I would prefer a Canon 5D Mk3 or 1DX for performance and getting the job done.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 11 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
juvx
By juvx (8 months ago)

LOL iv owned the Oly EM-1 and the A7r. fact is the EM-1 looks like a smartphone quality vs the A7r. Is it faster with better auto focus? sure but the end result is 10000x better from the A7r and thats all that really matters in the same form factor... As for the 5D Mk3... its 1k$ more...and frankly image quality is NOT better (only the autofocus and FPS). D800E is however slightly better esp in JPEG.

4 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

Have fun with your EM-1 - No contest at all! http://2.static.img-dpreview.com/files/g/TS560x560~2816986.jpg

2 upvotes
brycesteiner
By brycesteiner (8 months ago)

I would take the E-M1 because of the speed it has. I think this would be a good complimentary alternative system to have for weddings and slow moving action.
I really like that DPReview did point out flaws and not just how wonderful it is. They produce good reviews even if I don't always agree.

0 upvotes
jonny1976
By jonny1976 (8 months ago)

no contest if you want live in a manual world, u want be hear 20 meters u are taking a photo and our af struggle after 5 o'clock. good luck.. but if you shoot still stative is good...in miranda thread is not a case there no photo with subject moving.

0 upvotes
Peter DD
By Peter DD (8 months ago)

I has appreciated the reviews on DPreview since many years,
but this story was a great disapointment.
The overemphasis of minor flaws shows before the conclusion,
something is wrong here.
In the valuation the A7 has lower Image quality than the older and slt-handicaped A99.
Is this a joke?
Now the A99 is hidden, great solution.
And the sony-haters are stoked.

9 upvotes
DPReview Staff
By DPReview Staff (8 months ago)

The A99 is hidden? http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sony-alpha-slt-a99/

1 upvote
Peter DD
By Peter DD (8 months ago)

Short after the Publishing the Review of the A7 it was possible to add the a99 for direct compare. Now their are only the Canon and Nikon modells left. Is that an easy solution for the illogical claim, that the A7 get lower judgemnet in IQ (also in RAW) than the A99.

2 upvotes
nathantw
By nathantw (8 months ago)

I might be the minority, but I went into a Sony store, stuck my SD card into the A7R, shot some frames with the attached 50mm f/1.8 lens, went home, stuck it into my computer to look at the quality and was utterly not impressed.

Also the camera was unnecessarily loud when clicking the shutter. I was able to hear it on the other side of the store going off when someone clicked the shutter. What the heck? It's mirrorless for goodness sakes.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
8 upvotes
Max Savin
By Max Savin (8 months ago)

I have "stuck" a multitude of different lenses (leica, canon, nikon) on my A7 and am totally impressed. Maybe it is just you.

11 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

You are right, you are in the minority. Just look at these samples http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1255248/108

2 upvotes
nathantw
By nathantw (8 months ago)

You're right that those are some really nice photos shot with the camera on teh fredmiranda site. However, they aren't showing me anything that couldn't be done on any other digital camera. The problem with digital cameras is that the sensor is the determining factor and so many cameras have the same or similar sensors in some cameras that everything looks the same. That can be a good thing and that can be a bad thing. In this case it's a nice sensor, but nothing we haven't seen before (Nikon D800).

I understand my experience with the camera in the Sony Store isn't indicative of what the camera is capable of since all the settings could have been skewed towards "pleasing everyone" look, but it just didn't impress me, which is why I said it could be just me and I'm sure it was, save for a few people.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

"In this case it's a nice sensor, but nothing we haven't seen before (Nikon D800)"

It is the same sensor as D800. I have made tests with both, and 3 people in our photoclub, hard Nikon herdliners, have sold there D800 after that to get the A7R. It makes definitly a little better picture, as well in jpeg as in RAW. The difference, when downsizing, is not visible, what matters is the same good, even a bit better IQ in a smallee package. Our club is made of old hares in the photo business, and when you get older than 60, weight matters. I have DSLRs, medium format, and since I have the NEX, the big things take dust. And, I shoot sine 52 years now, so one can not say I not know what I am talking about. My preferred DSLR remains my Fuji S5 anyway.

3 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (8 months ago)

The overly detailed investigation into jpeg posteration may be fitting to the OCD nature of many gearheads out there, and I do not think Sony jpeg is that great (compared to the likes of Canon/Oly/Fuji) and agree it has a negative impact especially in face of its wi-fi capability, but I find the level of investigation over something arguably minor could similarly justify in-depth investigation of shutter-shock in many MFT cameras that do not have EFC, or in-depth investigation of PDAF errors of bright primes in *many* entry level DSLRs without MFA, or investigation into PDAF competency among different DSLRs, etc for that matter. We get the point, Sony doesn't make for the best jpegs...I agree with that point to a good extent. However so much investigation when IMO there are plenty of similar flaws deserving of research as well. In fact I would wager PDAF inaccuracy of bright primes on non-MFA cameras to be far more detrimental with no good work around.

10 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (8 months ago)

@Timbukto - it's a difficult balance to strike. We came pretty close to moving the posterization section into a sepatate article, or maybe presenting less about our findings. In the end we elected to put a note stressing that we didn't think it was a big issue and that the reason we'd shown so much detail was to explain the subtleties of what we'd found.

The problem is, once you've started to notice something that affects your conclusion (to any degree), how much depth should you go into? We had to check whether all cameras exhibit the problem and whether it was just a JPEG issue. Did we present too much information? Possibly. But we wanted to be clear the extent (large or small) of the issue, so that people could make up their own minds.

Since we don't have the time to investigate every issue on every camera, we have two choices: to not investigate anything, in the name of 'fairness' or try to pin-down those issues we encounter and think we can explain.

3 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (8 months ago)

With regards primes on non-fine-adjusted bodies, there are many, many factors involved: which lens, sample variation between bodies, compatibility, given the additional sample variation between lenses. Then you have to create a test that is reasonably representative of real-world conditions for a reasonable number of hypothetical users.

Then you test. With multiple lenses and multiple brands.

Before finally being told 'you must have got a bad copy,' 'everyone knows that lens is no good,' 'you're being biased because you didn't show it also occurs in this brand' and 'if fine adjust exists, why didn't you use it - dpr doesn't know what it's doing.'

I agree there's plenty of things worth looking into, but it's not always possible.

2 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (8 months ago)

Yes PDAF testing and sample variation in gear, etc is a burden to test. One for which Roger Cicala of LensRental has more leverage than most review sites (which if review samples were requested could easily be cherry-picked by each brand anyways). But just as this posterization rears its head only sometimes, IMO PDAF errors rears its head perhaps more than just sometimes, to the extent that personally I view a MFA-enabled DSLR as a must (you guys briefly touch upon this point recently in the 70D review which is a MFA-capable DSLR). Obviously to have an empirical study would be out of scope and reason...but at the same time PDAF accuracy/speed/competency is quite often what tacks on an extra digit in pricing with DSLRs, obviously it is something that heavily delineates purchasing decisions.

I would like more investigation into PDAF beyond this DSLR has so and so # of cross points. The issue of complaints and bias is moot as people are complaining about your posterization results.

0 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

If DPR have actually "discovered" a real issue, it should be all over the place. The most common instance of gradated uniform background is sky+vignette. And we know for a fact thousands of wide angle RF lenses (which we know vignette heavily) were among the first to be tested on the A7(R)s, well before RAW profiles were available for them. Yet everyone missed the posterization but it was the brilliant sleuthing of DPR that uncovered it. ... Either that or posterization is actually bloody rare even in the situations that are supposed to display it!

Comment edited 38 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (8 months ago)

Also if DPReview is looking to save up some substantial 'test' time, IMO you guys should *not* run every single Canon 18MP APS-C sensor or Sony 16MP Exmor through the studio comparison ropes. That would save a ton of time right there. Create one 'reference' for those sensors and once you determine another sensor to be 99% the same, just refer to the reference. Testing every iteration of some 18MP or 24MP APS-C sensor again and again does nothing but waste time in letting people view nothing but minor focus error differences. All that time being spent carefully shooting that static scene at different ISOs should be devoted towards creating a moving AF scene which would be revolutionary...perhaps flawed but I'd love to see an honest attempt of one.

1 upvote
joao 43
By joao 43 (8 months ago)

R Butler you don't agree with Barney Britton on this article then....

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/6018399843/using-third-party-lenses-on-the-sony-a7-a7r

...because I don't see him using legacy lenses of notable brands like nikon, canon, olympus, leica or zeiss with adapters from Fotodiox, voigtlander, etc.. and trying different combinations os customization for the problems he says exist in the A7. I guess for Barney Britton this wasn't a test but only his personal opinion. If not, how can a professional miss the Af/MF button when using MF lenses, before stating " When it comes to activating magnified focus mode, the buttons that it makes most sense to assign are C1 or C2. Personally, I find that C2 is a bit awkward, due to its position on the 'shelf' that runs along the upper rear of the cameras, and so close to the EVF." We must have missed that there is in fact a more convenient and practical way to change to magnify while using the EVF. Wouldn't you agree? Regards.

1 upvote
Petroglyph
By Petroglyph (8 months ago)

Thank you for the A7 review DPR. I read through as much as possible given time constraints. I always try to pick up a few ideas (whether I own the camera or not) in a detailed review such as this. Looks like lossy RAW compression could be offset with a firmware option for lossless compression (If the mfr. would do it). Set NR to off - no problem I've done that with nearly every camera I've used. DRO auto? I might try it to see what effect. 1/60 min shutter in auto ISO. True I'm used to more control over that but just shoot manual and use auto ISO while setting aperture and shutter speed. Looks like a good camera which essentially you've said.

1 upvote
jkokich
By jkokich (8 months ago)

I just think that in this day and age, there is no excuse for substandard JPEGs. Yes, I know shooting RAW is great, but there's no reason, with today's tech, to have anything less than great JPEGs, especially at this price, and I'm a Sony fan!

4 upvotes
bluevellet
By bluevellet (8 months ago)

More like plenty of people reposting the same blog link to prove plenty of people are with them.

1 upvote
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

More like no one can actually post sample everyday shots of JPEGs showing these alleged problems except in carefully set up conditions.

1 upvote
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

For example, from DPR's review: "Our test scene suggests the problem becomes visible around ISO 12,800." lol what kind of hunting for artifacts nonsense is this? Even auto modes cap at 6400 but most people should never need to go above 3200.

8 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (8 months ago)

@querza - as with the posterization, it's something we saw in our real-world images first, that we then tested so that we understood and could explain when it would and wouldn't have an impact.

Once we'd seen it, very obviously in a couple of images, would you prefer us to just not say anything? Or say 'it happens sometimes, we don't really know when'? Or should we say 'this occasionally happens, it seems to only be an issue in these circumstances'?

1 upvote
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

Let's take it through backwards shall we? You wrote in the conclusion: "JPEG quality disappointing compared to peers – crude sharpening, over-aggressive processing and occasional posterization" - the 1st con on the list which appears to make it sound very important

Now in your review, on sharpening you actually state the JPEG did better than your RAW attempt but in your effort to prove your point, you continue: "This, combined with the camera's tendency to sharpen edges, can leave a rather unpleasant result if you zoom in. Our test scene suggests the problem becomes visible around ISO 12,800." Uh hello... ISO 12,800 before sharpening becomes apparent is a negative? Maybe in 2016 when ISO 25,600 is standard but in today's world seriously?

Then "heavy handed noise suppression" is uh... heavy handed at the strongest setting? So if you don't like it, you can turn it to low or off...?

At least you're honest enough to say posterization is occasional, but the other two are non-issues.

5 upvotes
quezra
By quezra (8 months ago)

The sum of it is that there's a reason there's options in the camera. Some people want the camera to do all the PP work for them. Others abhor it. On the one hand you treat the JPEG user as discerning enough to be able to spot rare bands of posterization and a regular pixelpeeping user of ISO12800, on the other hand you treat the JPEG user as not smart enough to figure out there are image quality settings to toggle in camera. It's really quite shoddy reporting.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (8 months ago)

I disagree that it is shoddy reporting, just somewhat unbalanced relative to other problems in other gear. The posterization information was detailed and informative, just not very 'balanced' in the face of other problems out there with cameras.

1 upvote
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (8 months ago)

The authors described themselves as ambivalent about the Sony A7.

I am not sure how this ambivalence equals a silver award.

Sony appears to engineered a camera where the whole does not equal the sum of the pieces.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
wherearemyshorts
By wherearemyshorts (8 months ago)

i could have had the sony or a hasselblad. i got the hasselblad instead. cost a lot less than the sony. the hasselblad has a larger image size.

3 upvotes
new boyz
By new boyz (8 months ago)

Which Hasselblad, Lunar or Stellar?

0 upvotes
justmeMN
By justmeMN (8 months ago)

"The alpha phase of the release life cycle is the first phase to begin software testing..." -Wiki. Yup, this Sony camera is an Alpha. :-) Perhaps next year Sony will release a Beta version.

0 upvotes
KL Matt
By KL Matt (8 months ago)

"If you need more of a contrast boost, the HDR feature works very well."
The problem is too much scene contrast, not too little. Boosting contrast would be the opposite of what you want, and also the opposite of what the extended dynamic range modes do.

2 upvotes
dougster1979
By dougster1979 (8 months ago)

I will be impressed when they make a 24-70mm f2.8 that fits in your pocket!!

0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (8 months ago)

you can buy a pocket like CL-M3 or LP1219, and
sew up to your overcoat.

0 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

Please post the A7r review now!

4 upvotes
obayedh
By obayedh (8 months ago)

Ha! Ha!! Amused at Dpreview a7/r review! I thought a7/r has the best JPEG image so far by Sony and close to Nikon D800.

The review seems biased and from a fanboy perspective rather a neutral camera reviewer?

11 upvotes
juvx
By juvx (8 months ago)

Feels like that to me too in a way.

1 upvote
new boyz
By new boyz (8 months ago)

Agree. It's the best Sony JPEG engine ever. But the posterization problem seems legit. I hope Sony can address that. Makes me remember the infamous Fuji white orb problem.

0 upvotes
MikeF4Black
By MikeF4Black (8 months ago)

So, nice try, but terminally flawed. I always thought Sony was best at making transistor radios.

1 upvote
mick232
By mick232 (8 months ago)

The review may be flawed, but at least dpreview knows the difference between a transistor radio and a camera.

10 upvotes
MikeF4Black
By MikeF4Black (8 months ago)

They've both got knobs on, don't they? It's a "camera", made by a very clever company with little experience or idea of what a real (still) camera is. So good try, no cigar.

Btw, did you ever handle one?

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (8 months ago)

They bought a company that made excellent cameras for many years. Not much rubbed off unfortunately. But they did make better and more expensive transistor radios than Panasonic so I wouldn't write Sony off.

0 upvotes
MikeF4Black
By MikeF4Black (8 months ago)

@AbrasiveReducer: yes they bought that company, and have so little left to show for it.

Comment edited 50 seconds after posting
1 upvote
dynaxx
By dynaxx (8 months ago)

Balderdash and poppycock Mike - the reason Sony can make top-drawer cameras and lenses is the technology and expertise acquired from Minolta ( who, in turn stole the same skills from Leica during their collaboration ) and Konica. The pioneering spirit of these 2 companies ( introducing things we take for granted today like having a processing chip in a camera, auto-focus and in-body stabilisation etc. etc. ) has been carried forward very effectively by Sony

3 upvotes
MikeF4Black
By MikeF4Black (8 months ago)

"B&P Mike"? Never heard such nonsense. Get a gripppp on yourself man!

0 upvotes
mcshan
By mcshan (8 months ago)

This appears to be a thorough and fair review. I am probably not in the market for a new camera but was very curious about the A7. As the RX100 produces really good jpegs and the RX1R outstanding jpegs the results here are a bit of a surprise.

Thanks DPR, I enjoyed the review.

5 upvotes
jhinkey
By jhinkey (8 months ago)

Looking forward to the Nikon equivalent to the A7 - hopefully it won't have the A7's flaws.
For whatever manufacturer that puts out a compact FX mirrorless body I think one of the missing links are compact primes.
I'm not talking about a compact 50/1.8, but rather a set of compact primes something like 85/2.8, 50/2.8, 20/4, etc. that are very very good wide open. Though there are many times f/1.8 comes in handy, most of the time f/2.8 or f/4 works just fine, especially with the high ISO performance of today's FX sensors.
I realize that you can't have a compact tele because of the physics or compact f/2.8 ultra-wide angle primes due to telecentricity issues, but a set of compact wide angle to short tele primes would really make FX mirrorless much more portable.

Comment edited 58 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

Get ready for a looooong wait. Nikon don't even have a mirorrless APSC system, only a partially successfull 1" system.

5 upvotes
jhinkey
By jhinkey (8 months ago)

Yep, you are unfortunately probably right that I'll have to wait for a long time. Hopefully Sony introduction of the A7(r) will force the issue with Nikon (and likely Canon as well).

In the mean time I'm enjoying my D800 + FX glass (both modern AF and legacy MF glass) and my m43 system (GX7+ some great glass + adapted glass).

I'd love to just have a compact mirroless FX body with some compact f/2.8-ish primes able to use all my F-mount glass . . . .

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Stu 5
By Stu 5 (8 months ago)

Not unless the A7 starts selling in greater numbers and there is no sign of that happening due to the fact they rushed the camera to market and messed up the launch.

0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (8 months ago)

"Not unless the A7 starts selling in greater numbers "

Where are you getting your "numbers"?

2 upvotes
juvx
By juvx (8 months ago)

LOL Canon and nikon are SO far behind in Mirrorless. I would expect Fuji, Panasonic and Olympus to all be WAY AHEAD of them for a long long time. Sony being the leader. I would suspect that the numbers are actually pretty good for the A7(r) price range. Similar if not greater than the D600/D800...

0 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (8 months ago)

TrojMacReady - just look up at the sales rankings. Eg. Amazon got one, and A7 is far behind the bestsellers.
Besides - CIPA also is releasing global sales numbers, and mirrorless are steadily going down.

0 upvotes
dynaxx
By dynaxx (8 months ago)

You are missing the point Jhinkey - Nikon do not have the wherewithal to make a camera like this. Nikon became successful in the 1950/60's making copies of Leica/Zeiss cameras and have very little originality nor innovation in their DNA. They don't make sensors because they do not have the technological skills.

Sony acquired Konica/Minolta who have always pushed the photo' industry forward. Their innovations include PASM mode selection / TTL metering / in-camera auto-focus / in-body stabilisation / having a computer chip in a camera and many others. Sony are continuing this pioneering spirit. Minolta went bust because their motivation was to make better cameras/lenses while Nikon put profits first.

0 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (8 months ago)

"just look up at the sales rankings. Eg. Amazon got one, and A7 is far behind the bestsellers.
Besides - CIPA also is releasing global sales numbers, and mirrorless are steadily going down."

First, the A7/A7R have been listed 3 to 4 times in the top 20 of compact system camera sales the last week. And again, those are not sales numbers, local, single retailer and most importantly, too short term, non verifiable... non usable statistics to begin with.

CIPA sales statistics to date:
A) do not diferentiate per model
B) hardly/do not yet include real A7/A7R sales to begin with (november is the last available)
C) show both DSLR and mirrorless sales declined by a similar percentage over last year (roughly 18%) and a stronger surge of mirroless in the last month made available.

Let's stick to the facts, rather than making up silly and unsubstantiated claims.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
REDred Photo
By REDred Photo (8 months ago)

It seems to me the problem here is in mismanaged expectations and perspective. Consumers seem to expect every new product should improve on every possible specification from megapixels and ISO to battery life. The reality is there are always trade offs. Sony has built the highest resolution 35mm sensor currently available into the smallest possible interchangeable lens form factor.

Many people are comparing the a7/a7r to the em1, which has a sensor 1/4 the size and half the resolution in a body roughly the same size. But this camera isn't meant to be an em1. If you want those capabilities, buy the em1. This a7r provides the highest resolution sensor ever available in a body that allows me to adapt virtually any manual focus lens ever made in the history of photography. It's insane to expect auto focus lenses from other systems to adapt without trade offs in performance. It's silly to expect a 36 megapixel camera with 2 electronic screens and who knows how much internal processing to get the same battery life as other cameras with dramatically smaller sensors and larger bodies.

A Sony rep recently loaned the a7r to me for testing. The first thing I did was remove the zoom lens he included and attached my Contax Zeiss manual focus lenses. It's a marvel to have what is effectively a digital contax S2. For most of my work, I shoot hasselblad with an older Phase One tethered back. It's a slow combination... Difficult to focus... Large and heavy... Not portable in the least... I can't shoot slower than 1/125 without camera shake unless I'm using a 30lb tripod or studio flashes... My usable ISO is 50 or 100... And there are literally zero image options besides white balance. And yet the results are stunning... But I never use it for weddings or theater photography. For that I use an em1.

To me, the a7r is a baby hasselblad with more resolution than my current digital back, battery power, infinite lens adaptability with potential for Zeiss tilt/shift adapters, incredible ISO range, live view focus peaking, some choices for auto focus, weather sealing, Wi-Fi, intervalometer, AND video that is as good or better than anything out there in this price range... And it costs less than $3000!??!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! Shut up and take my money!

39 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

I believe Sony are expecting this initial "hit" due to excessive expectations and this will be compensated later when major players start migrating to their new FF mirorrless systems which is inevitable and at that point Sony will be far ahead.

5 upvotes
Max Savin
By Max Savin (8 months ago)

You nailed it. This camera isn't perfect, but very close for many photographers. I bought one and am having the time of my photographic life using my leica, canon and nikon lenses. My M8, D800,D600 and 1DS-MK3 remain in the drawer.

7 upvotes
Rawmeister
By Rawmeister (8 months ago)

You don't mean you shoot weddings professionally with an EM1 - do you? You must mean just for personal purposes. Right? Because at weddings you need "the conch shell" or you get no cred. Surely you know that. yes?

0 upvotes
Camley
By Camley (8 months ago)

Popular Photography tests (CIPA) rate the Olympus EM-1 as 350 shots and the Sony a7r as 340 shots. Pretty much the same.

2 upvotes
Reilly Diefenbach
By Reilly Diefenbach (8 months ago)

Maybe not a perfect camera, but the sample pics show the full frame story very well indeed. Eat your hearts out, users of smaller formats!

9 upvotes
Jogger
By Jogger (8 months ago)

This is actually quite problematic for smaller sensor ILCs. Sony has essentially set an price ceiling for APSc and smaller ILCs. With each generation this price ceiling will decrease.

What this means is that Oly or Pana will not be able to price their cameras above the A7 (and subsequent successors).. since people will simply buy the FF camera at the same or lower price.

This is what happened when the Canon Rebel released (it destroyed the prosumer compact market), and it is gradually happening with APSc and smaller. If Sony releases a lower spec A5 with FF... it would expedite things even more.

3 upvotes
VisualFX
By VisualFX (8 months ago)

Of course Oly/Pana/Fuji can all go above this price, because they still have better quality images coming out of their camera, then this Sony FF.

0 upvotes
JEROME NOLAS
By JEROME NOLAS (8 months ago)

I don't want FF any more. It's ridiculous what camera makers are putting on the table. This is a quick bang ($) from Sony. If you use Zeiss lenses you'll be fine. But hey you have four!!! lens adapters...and faint double images in A7R. Oh Lord, just scrap it and start with a clean sheet!

3 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

Did you expect them to start the FE system with 8-10 new lenses or what? If it takes 2-4 years for a engineering team to develop a new lens design this would be a stupid investment. I think they did the reasonable thing, and the system is not perfect but good enough for a lot of people. If it is not suitable for your needs - its just not for you - thats it! Stop bitching.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
9 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Oh, no, don't!!! Not another half-baked product from Sony!

3 upvotes
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

Even worse look at the lenses. Compare the size to:
Sony 35mm F/2.8 vs. Canon 40mm F/2.8
Sony 55mm F/1.8 vs. Canon 50mm F/1.8
Sony 70-200mm F/4 vs. Canon 70-20mm F/4

Mount these all on an A7 and Canon 6D and the size ends up almost the same and the Canon costs hundreds less. So much for small size!

5 upvotes
Bamboojled
By Bamboojled (8 months ago)

@Everlast66
I agree with you that it is not feasible to come out with 10 or so lenses at launch...

I think the biggest issue is that Sony now has 4 systems out that have not been completed (Alpha FF, Alpha APS-c, Nex, and now A7/r).

If Sony at least had matured one system before going on to their next project, folks could point to that as proof positive to their commitment in that particular segment.

Unfortunately, as it stands now, Sony users continue to wait for updates to the lens line up (not just rehashed old Minolta designs that underperform against the competition and are priced at a premium over the competing brands) and new lenses to fill the gaping holes in the system; and Nex Users are still waiting on native lenses that will take advantage of the compactness of the cameras without having to attach adaptors that negate size of the camera.

And now we have yet another incomplete system offered up to the masses.

5 upvotes
JEROME NOLAS
By JEROME NOLAS (8 months ago)

@Bamboojled-I couldn't say this better! That's what I exactly meant....

1 upvote
Dimit
By Dimit (8 months ago)

To DT200 :
Are you comparing Zeiss glass to Canon glass?? You must be living in a remote island together with Robinson Crusoe!!!!...and I shoot Canon for maaany years...
To Black box:
Better half baked than others' stuff burned!!

1 upvote
Stu 5
By Stu 5 (8 months ago)

Just because is says Zeiss does not guarantee the quality is good anymore. Those days have long gone. Each lens needs to be looked at individually.

2 upvotes
The Lotus Eater
By The Lotus Eater (8 months ago)

Stu 5, yes that's true, but DT200 compared the Sony Zeiss 55mm f/1.8 to the Canon 50mm f/1.8. There IS no comparison. There's barely any comparison to be made with the 50mm f/1.2 L!

0 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (8 months ago)

Dimit - FE lenses are just Sony branded with Zeiss. These are not Zeiss lenses like ZE series.
The Lotus Eater - 50 f/1.2 is one of the worst 50s on a market if not the worst one when it comes to the image quality. This lens was made for portraits and shallow depth of field, not the best sharpness.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
The Lotus Eater
By The Lotus Eater (8 months ago)

A standard 50mm is not made primarily for portraits.

0 upvotes
Vlad S
By Vlad S (8 months ago)

Those who wanted a square sensor so much can buy A7 now and shoot with APS-C lenses uncropped. Done!

1 upvote
Rawmeister
By Rawmeister (8 months ago)

best laugh I had all day - thanks. hehehe

0 upvotes
UnitedNations
By UnitedNations (8 months ago)

Basically this is a mess up by Sony just like Nikon messed up with the faulty DF.
I never felt this happy in my whole life for not buying a product. I am glad I waited for this review.

A7 is a camera with some very disappointing weaknesses.
Hope the A7r is better!

0 upvotes
jkoch2
By jkoch2 (8 months ago)

"Mess up" perhaps a tad cruel. The modest DPR score of 80 may owe to the need to distinguish it a wee bit from the 83 to be assigned to the A7R. However, perhaps it has wobbly AF in low light or video too. I would rush to buy either, if the primary appeal is compatibility with old lenses I don't have. There are good cameras that are more compact, cost less, or both. Sony itself will announce alternatives too.

People ought to be happier in general about toys they don't buy: waste not, want not. Pain, more than happiness, compells a forced "love" of non-essentials we buy but shouldn't. The pain is obvious by the touchiness towards any reservations (blasphemy) about the product. Price may have something to do with it: the higher the price, the more consuming the buyer's need for affirmation.

A good thing professional reviewers get merchandise on loan, or they too would be consumed by buyer self-affirmation.

0 upvotes
new boyz
By new boyz (8 months ago)

Errr no, I don't think they messed up similarly. Nikon claimed the Df will be a pure photography camera, but it turned out to be just another DSLR optimized for AF. A7(r) on the other hand, just a mirrorless with some flaws. Sony failed to make a perfect mirrorless, but the Df has failed at its fundamental purpose of becoming a retro camera(functionality,the look is okay).

0 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

To sum up 19 pages of the review, Sony Alpha a7 is ambitious but rubbish. It should now be Sony's slogan.

6 upvotes
Thoughts
By Thoughts (8 months ago)

You are quite entertaining... :P

1 upvote
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (8 months ago)

Really. So 'rubbish' products get a silver award ? You should complain to DPR. :P

4 upvotes
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (8 months ago)

No, rubbish can get a gold award too.

5 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (8 months ago)

it's not anyone else's fault a reviewer awards rubbish.

0 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

brendon1000, it wasn't a complaint. It was a statement. Need a dictionary?

1 upvote
Cedrus
By Cedrus (8 months ago)

A silver award seems unfair to me. Mirrorless and dslr APS-C cameras fall in différent categories. It should be the same With FF.

2 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

Regarding the "limited" FE mount lens line-up, it should be taken in account that Sony are building a NEW system here and this is the ONLY mirorrless FF system right now!
In a generation or two Sony's mirorrless AF technology will catch up with traditional SLR/PDAF speeds and Sony will be far ahead in lens line-up.
Nikon and Canon are only maintaining their existing systems and sooner or later will have to abandon the flappy mirros and bulky prisms and come up with new systems themselves. The 50 year-old lens systems will not be cutting it anymore if they will want to take advantage of the dropped mirror box.
We should SUPPORT AND ENCOURAGE INOVATION if we don't want to keep getting minor updates in hugley advertised marketting gimmicks as we do from Canikon.

15 upvotes
DT200
By DT200 (8 months ago)

"Sony's mirorrless AF technology will catch up with traditional SLR/PDAF speeds and Sony will be far ahead in lens line-up."

Sony said that for their NEX line up 2 years ago but their AF tech is still far behind. They also still have gaping holes in their lens line up.

Never buy a camera for what "might" happen in a couple years.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
7 upvotes
Jogger
By Jogger (8 months ago)

"Never buy a camera for what "might" happen in a couple years." ..

hahaa.. thats really rich.. i suppose you are still shooting Canon FD or Oly OM cameras, since you never bought any new system due to lack of lenses.. or do you expect companies to come out with 20+ lenses all at once. Did Oly, Pana, or Fuji do that?

4 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Everlast66, "in a generation or two" (for which the actual buyers will have to pay) this camera will be ancient history. Sony promised the same with a lot of things - NEX lenses, apps. Also, there's absolutely no guarantee that in a generation or two they won't abandon this idea (as they did everything else in the past 10 years) and start something "new and promising that will catch up in a generation or two".

I don't know about you, but I'm quite tired of waiting for Sony to finally CATCH UP on anything in at least ONE solid product that doesn't have design flaws of Titanic magnitude.

6 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

@Black Box

Sony have enough solid "pro" level products in their A mount line-up. Their mirorless lines, both the NEX and RX are leading the industry! Certain features of those new lines have to catch up with features of traditional systems but then they will totally take over!

1 upvote
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (8 months ago)

@DT200

Ok then continue investing in Nikon F glass for years to come.
Nokia and Blackberry/RIM once seemed like they are going to dominate the mobile market forever and see where they are now!

2 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (8 months ago)

Minolta was not very good at lenses and Sony is worse.
the most expected from a mirrorless system is better lenses.
nobody has so far showed us real advantage.

Canon's limited EF-M lenses are quite impressive in image quality but immediately we see an EF-S 18-55 STM that performs as well.

0 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Everlast66, in what nightmare are they industry leading with their NEX! NEX-7 was a brilliant camera with no lenses. They waited two years before they released E-mount specs for third parties.

And in the pro section could you name a few products they're good at? I just can't remember any, sorry.

1 upvote
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (8 months ago)

They are currently #2 in the mirrorless market in Japan ahead of Panasonic which is quite a feat if you consider the limited lens line up.

There are no reliable figures for sales for the rest of the globe unfortunately but in Japan at least they are #2.

2 upvotes
REDred Photo
By REDred Photo (8 months ago)

How many lenses do you think you need? In my entire career I've never used more than 4 or 5 prime lenses a nd maybe one zoom for any system I've ever owned. If I'm being honest I probably never needed all those lenses either. If push came to shove I could produce 99% of all my work with a 35mm and a 100mm macro.

0 upvotes
ConradWinchester
By ConradWinchester (8 months ago)

JPEG Problems? I think you reviewed a faulty camera1

7 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (8 months ago)

That's exactly why we asked Sony to send us a second A7, to check against. We saw the same (fairly minor) flaws in that one.

9 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

You could've just as well asked them to send another product - simply to confirm it's a "mind gap" in their engineers, not a glitch in a particular example.

1 upvote
Beat Traveller
By Beat Traveller (8 months ago)

Camera only gets a silver award instead of a gold one? First world problems...

6 upvotes
RichRMA
By RichRMA (8 months ago)

The cold reality about all these small cameras whether Sony, Olympus, etc., is that they will never be as comfortable to use or as easy to use as a full-sized (D300 or better) DSLR with a real grip, especially with larger lenses. Having owned more than a few, I an attest to that. They exist solely to be light and small, so carrying them around is easier, but not actually using them.

7 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Yes! Not everyone is ready to sacrifice their clothes to lug around 20 pounds of photo equipment.

2 upvotes
Vlad S
By Vlad S (8 months ago)

Comfort and ease of use are to a point is a matter of habit. For example, I find handholding my E-M5 with 100-300 zoom much easier than I did 5DMkII with a 150mm lens, because it does not feel like a seesaw in my hands. Setting a custom white balance is a lot easier on my µ4/3 cameras than on the 5D. Selecting a focus point with a touch screen is a lot easier, than by rolling a dial or pressing buttons. My friend with a nerve damage can't even lift a full sized DSLR, let alone hold it stably, especially with larger lenses. So the comfort of use is different for everyone, and even for the same user it changes with practice.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (8 months ago)

I just checked standard combat load of Japanese Army in the WW2 (average soldiers were much smaller than Japanese are now). it's 28 kg/62 lbs for a 7-day session (including 7 kg/15 lbs rifle & cartridges), and up to over 50 kg/110 lbs for expeditionary troops.

soldiers usually carry 4.6 kg/10 lbs of water which is not needed by a photographer. 60 lbs with 20 lbs camera gear is quite safe a figure for planning of a two- or three-day hiking in good weather.

Comment edited 8 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
uniball
By uniball (8 months ago)

Sounds like my initial experience with an NEX-7 I returned after 3 weeks. Poor implementation of the evf switching and raw only. I admire the size but the camera has to be fun to use as well.

The lens line does absolutely nothing for me. For Alpha lenses, a big turnoff.

Good, no interest here.

1 upvote
Master Yoda
By Master Yoda (8 months ago)

Ouch . . . well that review has to sting for Sony. While it's not a complete slam they are pulling no punches in revealing a number of key negatives. Yes, there are some solid positives. However, I think on balance a lot of people are going to "pass" on this camera. Sony should not be too discouraged. They merely need to course correct some things for the next ideation of this camera. It will get better. I do appreciate DPReivew for their candor in what they found.

5 upvotes
K E Hoffman
By K E Hoffman (8 months ago)

I think it looks worse than it it.. DPR had a problem what do you compare it to? So there are lots of DSLR comparisons.. it is not one of those. I think it will be a great options for people looking for smaller FF needs that are not shooting action.. that's a lot of people. For them its a Gold camera.. but reviews are still about a camera being a Jack of All Trades.. it isn't heck for a long-time Sony had a hard time getting a "recommended from this site" Silver for a new camera they compared to FF.. DSLR not bad. Still not interested..for what I want.

2 upvotes
makistza
By makistza (8 months ago)

6D - mark III...again are the kings , imagine what comes to mark IV... panic!!!! :)

0 upvotes
Max Savin
By Max Savin (8 months ago)

I have an A7, a full set of Leica, Nikon, and Canon lenses and adapters. My NX7 uses a common battery and an external charger so no problem there. I like it so much that i'll probably pick up an A7r while my 1DSMK3, D800, D600 and M8 sit unused in a drawer. In spite of what the article says auto ISO does work when using shutter priority and if you know anything about photography you can make this camera work with manual focus, auto focus (canon), or anything you can attach to it. It is wonderfully small and light with Leica lenses up to 50mm and is still comfortable with a Canon 70-200 f4 L IS attached via a Metabones type 3 adapter. I'm amused by the many comments by writers who have only 2nd hand evaluations and have never held this camera in their hands.

16 upvotes
kimchiflower
By kimchiflower (8 months ago)

This is like a FF version of the Panasonic G6. That sensor still commands quite a premium

0 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

This must be an error:
First page: Built-in flash
Conclusion: Lacks a built-in flash

2 upvotes
Jeff Keller
By Jeff Keller (8 months ago)

whoops- thanks

0 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

If they can commit this kind of error then we can assume part of the review in general is an error! JPEG output of this camera is sharp, battery will last long up to 1000 shots by turning on "Airplane Mode", there is a wired remote control, USB charging is a PRO not a CON and many more...

4 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Hmmm... on that basis, if you overpay for your car, can we assume you married the wrong woman? :-))

0 upvotes
Marvol
By Marvol (8 months ago)

I think people who get wound up about "terrible" battery life (this includes DPR staff apparently) need to get some perspective.

You are merely spoilt by *some* cameras that, by certain design choices, or perhaps even by *sheer accident*, have a battery life upwards of 500, maybe even close to 1,000 shots. This, however, does not mean that this is *normal*.
It's like taking a 1.8 litre turbo diesel direct injection saloon car and demanding that "every other car" matches it, somehow, for fuel economy, and if it doesn't, this is then *bad*. It won't, and it isn't.
Similarly no single modern smartphone even remotely matches the battery life of a dumbphone. There, nobody cares, people have accepted it and moved on. Why is photography somehow different?

And do remember that *not that long ago* you could only get *36 photos* out of most cameras before you had to 'reload' ... ;)

15 upvotes
forpetessake
By forpetessake (8 months ago)

They could have easily accommodated a bigger battery, but likely because of extra weight and backward compatibility they decided against it.

Comment edited 15 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
PaulDavis
By PaulDavis (8 months ago)

Yeah the battery is choice in this camera is questionable. I came up from a nex6 so I had extra batteries and charger but if I hadn't had those then I would have wanted a larger battery to begin with. I purchased an extra battery and charger ebay for $20 total a while back and both are now being used in a7. I haven't ran I to a shortage of battery power yet with the two. I could understand The desire for a little bigger grip and battery though.

0 upvotes
Black Box
By Black Box (8 months ago)

Marvol, most cars of similar displacement engines have similar output. So if Camera A can take 1000 shots and Camera B can't, the engineers of Camera B should get the well deserved stick for it.

Furthering your analogy, why don't you live in a clay hut like so many people in Zimbabwe?

0 upvotes
brycesteiner
By brycesteiner (8 months ago)

Only getting a little over 300 shots on average is terrible for mirrorless, let alone SLR, which this is not. Sony should have made a new battery.
Not including a charger and over 5 hours to charge with USB is almost criminal. This alone should give it a silver.
The E-M5/E-M1 I can get over 500 shots per charge, and sometimes alot more depending on the action of the sport.
The camera itself looks pretty good. I would love to have one.
The jpg shading is a real problem and so is the compression in RAW. That is the point of RAW, to have a completely unprocessed image to work with.

0 upvotes
SonyA7r
By SonyA7r (8 months ago)

Set it to "Airplane Mode" and you can get up to 1000 shots!

9 upvotes
brycesteiner
By brycesteiner (8 months ago)

That is good then. I don't think most people are going around leaving the wifi on. It still should have a charger included. That's as bad, maybe worse, than Olympus not including lens hoods with their expensive lenses.

0 upvotes
Camley
By Camley (8 months ago)

To repeat an earlier reply, Popular Photography rates the number of shots for the EM-1 as 350 versus 340 for the a7r.

2 upvotes
kadardr
By kadardr (8 months ago)

http://diglloyd.com/blog/2014/20140123_2-SonyA7R-shutterVibration-CallForAction.html
serious stuff

Comment edited 51 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
Docmartin
By Docmartin (8 months ago)

Wow, this kill´s the A7R. Hopefully the A7 (with electronic first curtain enabled) is not concerned ...

0 upvotes
dead eyes open
By dead eyes open (8 months ago)

codswallop.

4 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (8 months ago)

I love this guy. He probably, seriously, expects Sony to make a public declaration and beg forgiveness. If Lloyd is very lucky, he'll get a letter saying if you don't like it, don't buy it. But I doubt it.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

codswallop is correct! I haven't had issue with A7 with e shutter at all. And I am glad I don't choose A7R over A7 cos of too many missing feature and no OPL is not my type no thanks.

Comment edited 46 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Just a Photographer
By Just a Photographer (8 months ago)

There are some serious names in that petition.

Seems like Sony f*cked up pretty much.
Reducing shuttervibration via a firmware update? - Highly unlikely!

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 60 seconds after posting
1 upvote
naththo
By naththo (8 months ago)

Also I noticed if you press shutter, your hands move and shake a little as you force to push fully to take picture.

0 upvotes
Stu 5
By Stu 5 (8 months ago)

naphtha you have not had an issue with the A7 because the problem is only with the A7r.

2 upvotes
MotoJB
By MotoJB (8 months ago)

OUCH...I won't be buying either the A7 or A7R at this point.

0 upvotes
jonny1976
By jonny1976 (8 months ago)

It was clear something was wrong...too lord shutter for such a small camera...sa always Sony good idea ad implementation.

1 upvote
Grammaloreto
By Grammaloreto (8 months ago)

Misleading Review: Please Be Objective..continued

- usability with non-Sony branded legacy glass doesn't always lead to great results because Sony did not make this camera to be used with non-Sony glass. That would be too much to control for. I mean how can a manufacture tailor a camera to work with lenses from every other manufacturer on the planet? Although many have seen the flexibility of being able to do so with the Sony E-mount cameras, that cannot be a factor to base your rating for this camera. Especially when the camera does work like a charm with Sony A-mount glass and the provided LA-EA4 adapter.

The Sony A7 does an excellent job in the IQ department, has a great build quality and user interface/controls and deserves more than this pathetic rating.
The only downside to the Sony A7 is the lack of Sony FE lens system. Given the fact that the currently available Zeiss: 35mm 2.8 and 55mm 1.8 already have received rave reviews, future releases may also be pretty darn good.

7 upvotes
DPReview Staff
By DPReview Staff (8 months ago)

Silver is not pathetic. 80% is also quite good. We did not judge it based on its performance with third party lenses; indeed, we praised its adaptability.

9 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (8 months ago)

This is the pot calling the kettle black. Normally, one might say "If you use a non-Sony lens we can't guarantee the results" but Sony isn't offering many lenses. So it's not an incredible stretch to bet somebody will buy the camera with the intention of using non-Sony lenses.

2 upvotes
Grammaloreto
By Grammaloreto (8 months ago)

The Sony A7 works great with Sony A-mount lenses, and I believe that Sony does have a decent existing A-mount lens system. So you cannot say that Sony is not offering many lenses.
However, using A-mount glass on the A7 is still a temporary solution. Sony needs to release more FE lenses, but this not going to happen overnight.

2 upvotes
Grammaloreto
By Grammaloreto (8 months ago)

Also Shawn I think the rating was heavily based on "jpeg performance", which I think is not right for this category of camera.
I would be very critical about jpeg performance if it were a $500 camera, something like the NEX-3N.
For a full frame camera people usually look at raw IQ and lowlight ISO performance. The A7 excels in both of those areas.

4 upvotes
Total comments: 1606
23456