Where is the A7III?

Started Nov 6, 2017 | Discussions thread
SilvanBromide Senior Member • Posts: 3,939
Re: Where is the A7III?

FlyinDoc wrote:

SilvanBromide wrote:

FlyinDoc wrote:

Sony does not go backwards on tech. They just throw the latest sensor and or improvements into the next generation of cameras.

If you read their interviews, they make clear that they plan their cameras based on upcoming sensor tech. i.e. when stacked sensor tech was ready for FF, they launched A9 with 20fps, marketed it as a high end "sports camera" and charged $4500 for it. In reality, like the RX100 series that got the stacked sensor and 24fps in the 5th gen, the A9 really should have been the A7M3. But marketing got greedy, and pricing it as a D5, 1Dx competitor was too good to pass up.

Sure, it can match and beat the big flagships, but the sensor and upgrades to the body, ergonomics etc. surely does not cost them the huge premium they are charging for the A9. The addition of the stacked sensor in the RX100 resulted in a $100 increase in price.

With their Resolution sensor being only two years old, they did not have a big enough jump in sensor tech to change it. They added a Front LSI (first seen on A6500) and when the D850 forced their hand, and they released the A7RIII with all the ergonomic and other improvements developed for the A9.

My point is, whenever new developments in sensor come through, they throw it onto the next camera and charge whatever the market will accept. They do not think in terms of 2k price point, 3k price point and what do we remove or add in features at each segment. That is Canon.

The A6000 and A5100 are quite old now, but no replacement is coming at that price point. They will simply reduce A6300, A6500 price when they add a stacked sensor to next A6xxx series camera. Think A9 AF in crop sensor- tasty.

A7M2 will continue to drop in price. A7RM2 will settle around $2300.

A7SIII is coming soon with PDAF and 4K60p, 120fps in 1080p without crop, 240fps in 720p. Who knows, maybe even 960fps in low res. HLG and Slog3 are sure things; so is Touch AF. Same price as A7RIII.

To sum up, IMHO, Sony will not release A7III because they already did. They called it the A9.


The a9 is about no compromise tech and class leading raw speed over all else. It's for people who need that and priced accordingly (at least in part because few people need that and economies of scale are not going to help them on price for such a config).

The fact that Sony has gone out on a limb to do a low demand high tech FF offering doesn't translate into any kind of proof that they won't produce a more modest offering that brings the ergonomics and associated enhancements to a different market.

If anything, the a7R3 proves they are open to that concept, since the primary driver for it clearly wasn't an advance in sensor tech (same sensor as the R2). Instead, it's an exercise in bringing ergonomics and refinements that accompanied the a9 speed behemoth to a model/format elsewhere in the line. There's nothing to say that they won't follow through on that approach to other models, including the a7x, which targets a very different and much larger group of users than the a9 could ever hope to.

I sincerely hope you are right and I am wrong. I am just basing it on what Sony has done until now.

It would indeed be silly not to have an update for the A7M2, as the entry level FF camera would be quite long in the tooth. Maybe they really are waiting for maximum A7R III sales before introducing a new 24mp A7III with a BSI sensor and Front LSI, all the ergonomic, battery, AF and other improvements from the A7R III, keeping the stacked sensor and 93% coverage for A9.

That would kill A9 sales. We can only speculate at this point.

Like Trek of Joy, I don't see it impacting the a9 sales at all.

Few people would be paying the premium price of the a9 if they don't need the speed it offers. They're not who it was meant for. Without a doubt, the a9 is priced as it is in part because Sony knows it targets a narrow segment (and thus they can't depend on economies of scale to recoup R&D and overheads).

The same will apply to the 400mm f2.8 lens they've just announced - it will necessarily be priced assuming to low demand - but the demand for it (whatever it may be) would not be impacted at all by them also offering a slower 400mm lens (because the people who need a fast 400 prime aren't going to be interested in the slower one, just as the people who can get by with a slower 400mm won't be able to justify the ticket price - or added bulk/weight of a f2.8).

Conversely, those who actually *need* the speeds the a9 offers would be unlikely to consider buying a camera that doesn't provide it - even at less than half the price.

So, realistically, Sony could reasonably expect very little overlap between the target markets for two such offerings. At most, some professionals who need speed might consider an a7iii as their second camera when otherwise they'd require two a9 bodies. But even then, most will stump for two a9s for flexibility and interchangeability (and they will need speed on the second body just as much as on the first in most situations).

It's hard to see where you're envisaging overlap, TBH.

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