Sony Alpha 7S – Pros

  • High ISO performance
  • 4K video capture

Sony Alpha 7S – Cons

  • 4K video recorded to external device
  • AF not the fastest

Sony Alpha 7S review – Introduction

When Sony launched the A7 and A7R towards the end of last year, it broke new ground with the combination of an impressive full frame sensor in a portable and compact CSC body, gaining many accolades in the process.

Although the pair are very similar on the outside, one glance at the specification shows they are actually very different propositions.

The A7R features a 36.3MP resolution and, thanks to the absence of an anti-aliasing filter, was best suited to studio and still-life photographers whom demand the highest detail.

The A7, meanwhile, features a 24MP resolution and adopts a much faster hybrid phase and contrast detection AF, and as such delivers a more complete ‘all-round’ level of performance.

So where does the Sonly Alpha 7S fit in? Well, with a much lower resolution of 12.2MP, paired with an ISO range of 50 to 409,600 it’s seen as a low-light specialist which, Sony claims, really does have the ability to see in the dark.

Let’s see if it completes the set of impressive full frame CSCs for Sony…

Sony Alpha 7S review – Features

A host of the features found on the Sony Alpha 7S will be familiar to those already acquainted with the A7 and A7R.

For example, the model features the same Wi-fi and NFC connectivity which so impressed on the other two models. This allows for the camera to be connected to a similarly-enabled NFC device by simply touching the two together, or alternatively through its Wi-fi functionality.

Once connected, it’s possible to control the camera wirelessly and review images on the fly thanks to Sony’s excellent ‘Play Memories’ app.

On the rear of the camera sits the same LCD screen as seen on the other models. The unit is of the tiltable variety, is 3in in size and features a resolution of 921k-dots, which is a little below the highest resolution on the market.

The good news is that this LCD screen is once again paired with an impressive EVF. The viewfinder itself measures in at 1/2in and sports an impressive 2.4m-dot resolution, covering a 100% field of view and delivering shooting info display and histogram referral should it be required, as well as manual brightness adjustment.

The real change with regards to features, however, concerns the A7S’s sensor. The model sports a newly-engineered 12.2MP chip featuring gapless technology, meaning there’s no space between the light-gathering photodiodes.

In real terms this means that the sensor will deliver less noise at higher ISO settings, as well as a better dynamic range, something highlighted by the 50-409,600 ISO range.

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