Wednesday 21 March 2018

Sony unveils 'ultimate' DSLR camera

Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

Sony is gunning to take over the enthusiast DSLR market with what may be the ultimate flagship camera, the a7R iii.

The device, a successor to Sony’s a7R ii model, packs in a raft of new features that customers in the shrinking camera market say they want.

The a7R iii includes an extra memory card slot, better battery life, a control joystick and upgraded autofocus.

It also now has a USB-C port for power, meaning you can charge it on the go with cables you may already have for either a new Android phone or a MacBook.

The 42-megapixel camera, which will cost €3,500 in Ireland, has also added a bit to its video prowess, with S-Log 3. It shoots either 4K or ‘full’ HD at 120 frames per second.

For still, it now shoots at up to 10 frames per second with full autofocus and exposure tracking throughout.

Its autofocus boost now sees 399 phase-detection autofocus points covering 68pc of the image area and 425 contrast autofocus points.

Sony claims that the a7R iii’s eye autofocus is around twice as effective.

The a7R iii is also designed to minimise shaky hands with a five-axis optical in-body image stabilisation system that Sony says delivers a 5.5 stop shutter speed advantage.

Sony is pitching this camera at photographers and videographers who are either hobbyists or use the camera at least partly for work.

To this end, the company has also improved its lens availability with two now bits of glass, a 24-105mm F4 zoom (€1,350) and a G Master 400mm F2.8 telephoto prime.

The latter 400mm lens is considered to be necessary to get wildlife or sports photographers to consider Sony camera systems over Canon or Nikon systems.

The launch of the a7R iii may make some think twice about Sony’s high end DSLR, the a9. While the a9 currently has a far higher frames-per-second shooting ability, it costs €1,500 more (€4,999).

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