Sony α7s Full-Frame Camera Features High ISO Sensitivity and 4K Video
Joining the acclaimed α7 and α7R family of the world’s smallest full-frame interchangeable lens cameras, Sony’s new α7S model puts extraordinary sensitivity, low noise and spectacular 4K video quality into the hands of professional photographers and videographers.
The innovative α7S camera features a newly developed, 12.2 effective megapixel 35mm Exmor CMOS sensor paired with a powerful BIONZ X image processor, allowing it to shoot at a sensitivity range of ISO 50 – 409600 with unprecedented dynamic range and low noise.
The new model is also the world’s first camera to utilize the entire width of a full-frame image sensor in 4K video acquisition, and does this without cropping or line skipping as it can read and process data from every one of the sensor’s pixels. This allows 4K video shooters to utilize all of the artistic and creative benefits provided by the unique sensor.
“The α7S gives Sony the most complete, versatile lineup of full-frame cameras in market today,” said Neal Manowitz, director of the interchangeable lens camera business at Sony Electronics. “Between the α99, VG900, RX1, α7, α7R and now α7S models, we have completely revolutionized what it means to be a ‘full-frame’ camera, bringing a new level of quality and portability to enthusiast photographers and videographers.”
Wide ISO Sensitivity and Impressive Dynamic Range
Sony, the world’s largest manufacturer of image sensors, has developed a unique 12.2 MP sensor with extraordinary sensitivity that allows the α7S camera to collect dramatically more light than traditional cameras and to produce beautifully detailed, low-noise images in even the darkest environments.
The camera also features a newly developed on-sensor technology that allows it to optimize the dynamic range throughout the entirety of the ISO 50 – 409,600 sensitivity range. This on-sensor technology also broadens the range of tonal gradation in bright environments and minimizes noise in dark scenes, allowing the camera to deliver impressive results in these extreme conditions where other cameras (and image sensors) typically struggle.
World’s First Full-Frame Camera with Full Pixel Read-out (without pixel binning) during Movie Shooting
With the new α7S camera, the high-speed read out of the 35mm full-frame image sensor combined with the high-speed processing of the BIONZ X processor enables significant improvements in video quality.
The high ISO sensitivity range of the α7S camera is extremely effective for still image shooting, especially in low-light conditions, where the camera can shoot at high shutter speeds while keeping noise as low as possible.
These powerful components allow the camera to process data from all of the sensor’s pixels and output stunning HD and 4K (QFHD 3840 x 2160 pixels) video while utilizing the full-width of the sensor. In addition to the benefits for low-light shooting, the read out of all pixels frees the video from aliasing, moiré and false color artifacts (as opposed to pixel binning) to achieve the highest quality video.
Additional Pro-Quality Video Functions
In video mode, the α7S can output 4K video at QFHD (3840×2160) to an optional external 3rd party 4K recorder, and can record full HD (1920×1080) at frame rates of 60p, 60i, 30p and 24p directly to a compatible memory card. Video modes can be changed from full-frame to APS-C (super 35mm equivalent) if desired, and in this crop mode, the camera can support high frame rate 120fps shooting at standard HD resolution (1280 x 720p), creating a 5x slow-motion effect.
The α7S camera is also equipped with S-Log2 gamma. Common to Sony’s range of professional video cameras, S-Log2 expands the dynamic range by up to 1300% to minimize clipped highlights and loss of detail in shadows. Additionally, for the first time ever in a Sony α camera, the α7S adopts the workflow-friendly XAVC S recording format in addition to AVCHD and MP4 codecs. XAVC S format allows for full HD recording at a data rate of 50 mbps with lower compression for improved video quality.
Other specialist video functions on the new camera include a picture profile that can adjust settings like gamma, black, level and color adjustment, and can be saved for use in a multi-camera shoot. It also has Full HD and 4K base band HDMI output, time code/user bit for easier editing, synchronous recording feature with compatible devices, various marker and zebra displays on both the LCD screen and viewfinder and can dual record XAVC S as well as MP4 (1280×720 @30p).
The camera also has a Multi-terminal interface shoe that is compatible with Sony’s XLR Adaptor Microphone Kits (XLR-K1M plus a new model under development), allowing the use of professional microphone systems.
Low-Light Shooting Advantages
The high ISO sensitivity range of the α7S camera is extremely effective for still image shooting, especially in low-light conditions, where the camera can shoot at high shutter speeds while keeping noise as low as possible. This is particularly useful for shooting indoor, dimly lit sporting events or other situations where most cameras typically struggle.
The camera is also equipped with the same high-precision Fast Intelligent AF system as the α7R camera, with drastically improved low-light AF sensitivity that can go as low as -4EV.
Expanding α Mount System And New Power Zoom Lens For Movie Shooting
Directly compatible with the growing family of E-mount lenses, the α7S camera can also be used with A-mount and others lens systems with optional adapters. Sony’s complete α lens system now includes 54 total lenses for both A and E mounts, including several premium offerings from Carl Zeiss and G Series Lenses.
As a whole, Sony’s E-mount lens system is particularly well-suited for video shooting, with a variety of models containing “movie-friendly” features like smooth focusing, powered zoom control, and silent iris/aperture control. Building on this, Sony has announced development of a brand new, full-frame power zoom 28-135mm F4 lens E-mount lens that is an ideal match for the powerful movie capabilities of the α7S model.
Sony α7s Key Specs
|Lens mount||α E-mount|
|Type||35mm full frame (35.6 x 23.8mm), Exmor CMOS sensor|
|Number of pixels (effective)||Approx. 12.2 megapixels|
|Recording system (still images)|
|Recording format||JPEG (DCF Ver. 2.0, Exif Ver. 2.3, MPF baseline compliant)
RAW (Sony ARW 2.3 format)
|RAW output 14 bit|
|Recording system (movies)|
|Recording format||XAVC S / AVCHD format Ver. 2.0 compliant /MP4|
|Video compression||XAVC S: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
AVCHD: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
MP4: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
|Audio recording format||XAVC S: LPCM, 2ch
AVCHD: Dolby Digital (AC-3), 2ch, Dolby Digital Stereo Creator
MP4: MPEG-4 AAC-LC, 2ch
|Image size (pixels)||XAVC S: 1920 x 1080 (60p/50Mbps, 30p/50Mbps, 24p/50Mbps), 1280 x 720 (120p/50Mbps)
AVCHD: 1920 x 1080 (60p/28Mbps/PS, 60i/24Mbps/FX, 60i/17Mbps/FH, 24p/24Mbps/FX, 24p/17Mbps/FH)
MP4: 1440 x 1080 (30fps/12Mbps), 640 x 480 (30fps/3Mbps)
|Movie functions||Audio Level Display, Audio Rec Level, Auto Slow Shutter, HDMI info. Display (On/Off selectable), Time Code/User Bit, Picture Profile, Creative Style, Picture Effect, Rec Control, Dual Video Rec, Marker Setting|
|Picture Profile||Yes (Off / PP1-PP7) Parameters: Black level, Gamma (Movie, Still, Cine1-4, ITU709, ITU709 [800%], S-Log2), Black Gamma, Knee, Colour Mode, Colour Level, Colour Phase, Colour Depth, Detail, Copy, Reset|
|Clean HDMI output|
|Output signal||3840 × 2160(30p/24p) / 1920 × 1080(60p/60i/24p)YCbCr 4:2:2 8bit/ RGB 8bit|
|Media||Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick XC-HG Duo, SD memory card, SDHC memory card (UHS-I compliant), SDXC memory card (UHS-I compliant)|
|Focus point||25 points|
|Sensitivity range||EV -4 to EV 20 (at ISO 100 equivalent with F2.0 lens attached)|
|Metering type||1200-zone evaluative metering|
|ISO sensitivity||Still images: ISO 100-102400, Movies: ISO 200-102400 equivalent (both expandable to 409600, for still: expandable down to 50)|
|Type||XGA OLED, 1.3cm (0.5 type) electronic viewfinder (colour)|
|Total no. of dots||2,359,296 dots|
|Magnification||Approx. 0.71x (with 50mm lens at infinity, -1m-1)|
|Type||7.5cm (3.0 type) TFT drive|
|Total number of dots||921,600 dots|
|Adjustable angle||Up approx. 90 degrees, down approx. 45 degrees|
|PlayMemories Camera Apps||Yes|
|Wireless LAN (built-in)||Wi-Fi Compatible, IEEE802.11b/g/n (2.4GHz band)
Playback of still images and movies on smartphones, PCs and TVs
|NFC||Yes (NFC Forum Type 3 Tag compatible, One-touch remote, One-touch sharing)|
|Multi Interface Shoe||Yes|
|HD output||HDMI micro connector (Type-D), BRAVIA Sync (link menu), PhotoTV HD, 4K still image playback|
|Type||Electronically controlled, vertical-traverse, focal-plane type|
|Shutter speed||Still images: 1/8000 to 30 sec., Bulb
Movies: 1/8000 to 1/4 (1/3 step), Up to 1/60 in AUTO mode (up to 1/30 in Auto Slow Shutter mode)
|Electronic front curtain shutter||Yes, On/Off|
|Drive modes||Single shooting, Continuous shooing, Speed Priority Continuous shooting, Self-timer (10/2 sec. delay selectable), Self-timer (Cont.) (10 sec. delay, 3/5 exposures selectable), Bracketing (Cont., Single, White Balance, DRO)|
|Speed (approx., max)||Continuous shooting: Max. 2.5fps, Speed Priority Continuous Shooting: Max. 5.0fps|
|Battery||Rechargeable battery pack NP-FW50|
|Still images||Approx. 320 shots (viewfinder) / approx. 380 shots (LCD screen) (CIPA standard)|
|Movies||Actual: Approx. 55 min with viewfinder, approx. 60 min with LCD screen (CIPA standard)
Continuous: Approx. 90 min with viewfinder, approx. 90 min with LCD screen (CIPA standard)
|External power||AC Adaptor AC-PW20 (optional)|
|With battery and Memory Stick PRO Duo||Approx. 489g (approx. 1 lb 1.2 oz)|
|Body only||Approx. 446g (approx. 15.7 oz)|
|W x H x D (excluding protrusions)||Approx. 126.9 x 94.4 x 48.2mm (approx. 5 x 3 3/4 x 1 15/16 in.)|
|Range||32°-104°F / 0-40°C|
Pricing And Availability
Pricing and availability of the α7S full-frame interchangeable lens camera will be announced at a future date.
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