Sony has launched a new APS-C flagship camera, the Sony Alpha A6700. It boasts an array of new features, including a 26MP sensor, advanced subject-detection autofocus, and 4K 120p video recording.
Sony A6700 at a glance:
- £1450 body-only, £1550 with 16-50mm lens, £1800 with 18-135mm lens
- 26MP BSI-CMOS sensor
- ISO 100-32,000 standard, 50-102,400 (extended)
- Up to 11 frames per second shooting
- 2.36m-dot, 0.7x OLED EVF
- 3in, 1.04m-dot fully articulated touchscreen
- 4K video recording at 120fps
The Sony A6700 comes with a whole array of extremely welcome updates and improvements over the older A6600, including:
- Subject detection autofocus
- New front command dial
- 3:2 aspect ratio rear screen
- Dedicated AF-ON button
- Video button on top plate
- Stills/movie/S+Q selector switch
- Card slot accessible from the side of the camera
We have a detailed review, and you can read it here.
New Sony ECM-M1 multi-pattern microphone
The firm has also announced a new Sony ECM-M1 shotgun microphone, which uses four capsules arranged in a diamond pattern to deliver a range of pickup patterns, selected by a dial on its back. This fits onto the multi-interface (MI) shoe of compatible Sony cameras to give a convenient wireless connection. However, this means it can’t be used on other camera brands. It also requires too much power to work on Sony’s ZV-1 series vlogging compact cameras.
The Sony ECM-M1 microphone is due from the end of July for £349.
Sony Launches Its Most Advanced APS-C Camera Ever “α6700” and Versatile Compact Shotgun Microphone ECM-M1
High-precision subject recognition by AI and the latest still image and video performance are condensed into a compact APS-C body for the first time
12 July, 2023 Sony announces the release of its newest APS-C mirrorless camera, the “α6700”. This new offering combines the cutting-edge still image and video capabilities from the latest full-frame Alpha™ and Cinema Line cameras with the compact and lightweight design of the α6000 series, resulting in Sony’s most advanced APS-C mirrorless camera to date.
Combining an APS-C back-illuminated Exmor R® CMOS image sensor boasting 26.0 effective megapixels with the speed and power of Sony’s advanced BIONZ XR® processing engine, the “α6700” achieves exceptional imaging performance while maintaining a compact and lightweight design.
The camera supports high-resolution 4K video recording at up to 120fps, a wide latitude of 14+ stops for capturing details in harsh or under-lit conditions and features the S-Cinetone™ picture profile found in Sony’s professional Cinema Line models for refined movie imagery that doesn’t require colour grading, and it delivers stunning representation of human skin tones.
For videographers and vloggers, Sony has also announced “ECM-M1 “shotgun microphone, capable of high-quality sound capture with eight sound pickup modes including stereo.
“With the release of the α6700, Sony continues its commitment to elevate the abilities of creators everywhere and at every level by empowering them with state-of-the-art tools that enable their creativity to relentlessly move forward. Our vision is not static; Sony will continue to expand its APS-C line-up to cater to and support image production activities of a diverse array of creators,” says Yann Salmon Legagneur, Director Product Marketing, Imaging Solutions, Sony Europe.
Highly accurate subject recognition with AI
The latest APS-C sized, back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS image sensor boasts approximately 26.0 effective megapixels, paired with the advanced BIONZ XR engine for exceptional imaging performance. Standard ISO sensitivity spans 100 to 32000 for both stills and movies, allowing high-sensitivity, low-noise shooting. Enhanced colour reproduction ensures subjects like people and plants are captured with natural hues, while Creative Look features allow unique visual expressions.
The AI processing unit is inherited from the α7R V, enabling high accuracy Real-Time Recognition AF (autofocus). Beyond the α6000series’ human and animal recognition, it now accurately identifies multiple subjects such as humans, animals, birds, insects, cars/trains, and airplanes, catering to diverse creative expressions. When paired with today’s newly launched FE 70-200mm F4 G OSS II, it offers 105 mm to 300 mm focal lengths in 35mm full-frame equivalent, leveraging the power of telephoto zoom for high-quality shooting. Additionally, it’s compatible with the broad array of E-mount lenses.
Excellent video performance compatible with 4K120p
Harnessing data equivalent to 6K, the α6700 outputs superior 4K video, including support for high-frame-rate recording at 4K 120fps. It features S-Log3, offering 14+ stopsii, for stellar gradation. Also equipped with S-Cinetone, the α6700 delivers impressive skin tone depiction and subject highlighting, technologies honed through the Cinema Line development, while its AI-driven Auto-Framingiv smoothly tracks subjects, eliminating the need for manual camera movement. The body houses a Multi-Interface (MI) Shoe compatible with digital audio interfaces. Used in conjunction with the new ECM-M1 shotgun microphone, it allows for direct digital audio transmission, capturing high-quality, undegraded sound.
Mobility, operability, and connectivity unique to a compact and lightweight device
With a compact design (approx. 12cm × 7cm× 8cm. and weighing about 493g.), the α6700 is highly portable. It claims a user-friendly, touch-operable vari-angle LCD monitor, coupled with a modern touch menu for effortless operation. A customisable front dial and a switching dial for still images, movies, and S&Q modes are also included. It is equipped with an optical 5-axis in-body image stabilisation system with 5.0 stops of shutter speed advantage for stills and Active Mode ensures stable footage.
In terms of connectivity, the camera now supports the Creators’ App for seamless uploads of videos and still images to cloud services. Sony also plans to roll out a new version of the “Camera Remote SDK” in July 2023, allowing remote operation and setting adjustments.
Environmental conscious and accessibility
Over the past 10 years, Sony has replaced approximately 379 tonnesix of virgin plastic with recycled plastic in digital cameras and digital video cameras. Recycled materials, including SORPLASTMx, are actively used for the camera body, reducing environmental impact without sacrificing functionality. In addition, it is equipped with a Screen Reader functionxithat reads menus and video playback screens aloud to assist operations, supporting the creative activities of a wide variety of creators.
Shotgun microphone “ECM-M1”
The ECM-M1 is the world’s first shotgun microphone with eight dial-selectable audio recording modes. With 4 microphone capsules and unique beamforming and advanced digital processing technology, it offers varied modes including stereo. Its ultra-directional mode captures targeted sound from the front (within a 30-degree width) and at the same time it effectively suppresses other sounds, dynamically adapting to ambient sound in the surroundings. This mode is ideal for interviews and selfie shooting where the subject is always in front of the microphone.
A newly added mode dial with a locking mechanism ensures easy, secure switching of sound pickup modes. The ECM-M1 features noise reduction utilities like a noise cut filter for reducing background noise and a low-cut filter for minimising vibration and low frequency noise. These filters are implemented through digital signal processing, maximising audio quality at the recording stage and thereby reducing the need for complex post processing. It also supports 4-channel recording (compatible cameras only), allowing safety recording in omnidirectional mode on channels 3 and 4, while channels 1 and 2 focus on selected directivity. Compact and lightweight, the ECM-M1 enhances mobility, empowering creators to capture high-quality audio in diverse situations. Simply clip the microphone into the Multi Interface Shoe on a compatible camera for direct power and audio connections without the need for extra cables or batteries. When connected via the Multi Interface Shoe of a compatible camera that features a built-in digital audio interface, the audio signal is directly transferred to the camera in digital form so that no degradation can occur. A simple switch also provides compatibility with a wide range of cameras using an analogue interface.
Pricing and Availability
The new α6700 will be available at the end of July for approximately £1450 (Body only). It will be sold at a variety of Sony’s authorised dealers throughout Europe.
The new ECM-M1 will be available at the end of July for approximately £349. It will be sold at a variety of Sony’s authorised dealers throughout Europe.