Sony A7 III Review (Is It Still a Good Choice in 2023? ). Sony a73 camera

Sony A7 III Review (Is It Still a Good Choice in 2023?)

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I’ve been using the Sony A7 III since it was released. I have taken thousands of photos and shot countless videos with it. So this review is based on years of hard use and intimate knowledge of its strengths and weaknesses.

With a newer model available, perhaps the question is whether this full frame mirrorless camera is still a good choice. I hope my experience will help you decide whether the Sony A7 III is a good fit for your needs and your Read on to find out more!

If you’re looking for a full frame mirrorless camera with impressive autofocus, image quality, and low-light performance, the Sony A7 III is a great choice.

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  • Advanced 24.2MP BSI sensor with 1.8X readout speed
  • Impressive 15-stop dynamic range and ISO 50 to 204,800
  • 693 phase detection and 425 contrast AF points

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Sony A7 III Overview and Specifications

Sony A7 III

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Sony’s digital cameras are getting more and more popular, and the brand innovates continuously. Sony releases new versions of their camera bodies every two to three years. Nikon and Canon only do that every four to five years. They clearly have the desire to continually innovate as a brand. And that shows by how frequently they release revolutionary cameras.

The Sony A7 III has a full frame 24 MP CMOS image sensor and shoots 10 frames per second. It also captures 4K video at up to 30 fps and has handy dual memory card slots. It’s a full frame camera that is positioned as an all-rounder within the Sony camera lineup.

I consider it a great fit, especially for portrait and event photographers. In comparison, the A9 lineup is mostly for sports and wildlife photographers. And the A7R cameras are aimed at professional studio and landscape photographers who appreciate extra detail in their images.

One of the key features of the A7 III is its fast and accurate autofocus. Its eye autofocus system finds the eye almost instantly. It’s a great addition for photographers and videographers alike.

Despite the competition, this camera still holds its position amongst the best full frame mirrorless cameras. And there are quite a few reasons for that.

Who Is The Sony A7 III For?

The Sony A7 III is a Smart choice for many photographers. It’s a great all-rounder that comes at a reasonable price.

The high-resolution sensor, fast and reliable autofocus, and good dynamic range made it wildly popular among portrait and landscape photographers. And due to the outstanding autofocus and 10 fps burst, I even recommend it to photographers who are shooting action on a budget.

The camera’s smaller size makes it a good option for street and travel photography. This is particularly true when paired with a smaller lens.

Quite frankly, it does a marvelous job in all niches of photography.

Key Features

So let’s see how the A7 III lives up to its expectations in a real-life test.

Mount and Compatibility

The Sony A7 III uses the E-mount lens system that’s been on the market for many years. Now a wide range of E-mount lenses is available, both by Sony and by other third-party manufacturers. The E-mount has a typically short flange distance that results in great compatibility and easy adaptability.

As an ex-Canon user, I use lens mount adapters. These allow me to apply Canon EF lenses on an E-mount camera (like the A7 III). It gives aperture control and full autofocus. But the AF will be a bit slower than with native E-mount lenses.

One of the reasons people switch from DSLRs to mirrorless cameras is the smaller size and reduced weight. If you’re looking to make this choice, the A7 III is a good starting point.

It is worth mentioning that most of the native Sony E-mount lenses are quite heavy pieces. Not to mention the high-end alternatives like the Distagon T FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA, which is comparable to the size of DSLR lenses. This is a bit contradictory to the general idea behind lightweight mirrorless cameras.

The greatest thing about the E-mount is the range of Sony cameras that use it. E-mount lenses work on the three main camera models and all their different iterations in the Sony full frame lineup. These are the A9, A7, A7R, A7S and A7C series. It’s worth noting that the full frame compatible lenses can also be used on Sony’s APS-C models.

Sensor and Image Quality

The A7 III has a 24 MP full frame BSI CMOS sensor. This results in 6000 x 4000-pixel images and great low-light performance.

The dynamic range of the sensor is 13.8 EV. And having worked with this camera a great deal, I can confirm it’s excellent. This dynamic range allows amazing recovery of details, especially in shady parts.

I have to warn you that the dynamic range is compromised when shooting compressed RAW files. But uncompressed RAW files are larger and take longer to write to memory cards. I only advise using compressed RAW when shooting fast-paced action or events. In other cases, go for the larger files with a better dynamic range.

Another great asset is the in-body image stabilization (IBIS) with 5 stops of stabilization. This is extremely helpful in low-light situations. And you can use it for handheld shots with a slower shutter speed.

sony, review, good, choice

Another favorite feature of mine is the high ISO performance. I can shoot at up to ISO 12,800 in low-light events where using a flash isn’t permitted. There is obviously some noise at that level, but not a lot. See for yourself in the image above!

A minor drawback is that when taking the lens off the camera, the sensor isn’t covered—unlike the Canon EOS R models. This means the sensor is exposed to dust if the camera is left while changing lenses.

To avoid dust damage and ensure a longer lifespan, turn the camera off and wait a few seconds before removing a lens. This gives the sensor time to switch off. A handy feature is the built-in sensor cleaning function. This shakes the sensor to remove any dust, but it doesn’t always do a perfect job.

Focusing and Burst

The Sony A7 III‘s autofocus is so outstanding that it has turned many DSLR users into Sony fans.

There are 693 phase-detection points that give a 93% coverage of the frame. And the continuous focusing mode makes a calculation 30 times per second. This results in a highly responsive and accurate autofocus system.

One drawback should be mentioned here, though. When shooting in continuous FOCUS mode with a high f-stop, the camera doesn’t open the aperture to allow more light in. But if you shoot with a wide aperture, it’s not an issue.

Eye Autofocus is an awesome feature that makes a photographer’s life easier. The camera detects human eyes (or animal eyes!) in the scene. Then, using continuous autofocus, it locks on the eye and tracks it.

It’s a killer feature for portrait and event photographers. For example, at a wedding, it can track the bride’s eye as she walks down the aisle.

There are several different FOCUS modes available. It’s got wide, flexible spot FOCUS of different sizes, zone, center, expandable flexible spot, and lock-on versions of all these modes. Eye Autofocus can be allocated to a custom button on the camera. This can be a handy customization as Eye AF overrides almost all the other AF modes.

The A7 III can shoot 10 frames per second both with a mechanical or a silent electronic shutter. The silent shutter mode is great for static subjects. But if the camera or subject is moving, the images will suffer from a major rolling shutter effect.

There are four different burst speeds—Low, Medium, High, and High. The High mode shoots at 10 frames per second. It’s worth noting that this burst speed fills up the camera’s memory buffer quickly, even with fast SD cards. It can be frustrating, especially if you’re shooting fast. Sometimes this prevents you from tweaking your camera settings.

Video Features

The A7 III shoots 4K video up to 30 frames per second and 1080p up to 60 frames per second. These assets make the A7 III a capable camera for videography. But due to its 8-bit mode, the color depth is not as good as in professional videography cameras. But if you look at the Sony family, the A7 III’s video feature set is better than the more expensive A9‘s.

Sony A7III Still Worth It??

You can record videos in different picture profiles and logs. This makes color grading the footage in post-production easier and better. Sound recording is easy thanks to the external microphone and headphone ports.

Unfortunately, the autofocus in video mode doesn’t compare to stills. It performs well with slow-moving and predictable subjects. But the fantastic continuous FOCUS tracking doesn’t work as well for videos as it does for photos. But wide open, you’ll be pretty satisfied using the autofocus in scenes that are not too busy. The A7 III will automatically prioritize and lock on to faces.

In manual FOCUS, the A7 III offers FOCUS peaking with adjustable intensity. It’s especially helpful when shooting with a shallow depth of field. It also offers exposure warning zebras to ensure that no important parts of the frame are overexposed.

The A7 III doesn’t offer all the bells and whistles of more specialized video bodies like the Panasonic GH5 or the Sony A7S III. But the A7 III certainly offers great video features, making it a popular choice for many videographers on a budget. And it’s great for taking B-roll footage.

Body and Handling

One of the biggest benefits of mirrorless cameras is their smaller size. And true to form, the Sony A7 III weighs only 650 g (1.43 lbs) including a battery. In comparison, my previous camera was the Canon 5D Mark IV which weighs 890 g (1.96 lb). And it’s not just lighter. The A7 III is also smaller, measuring 127 x 96 x 74 mm (5 x 3.78 x 2.91 in).

The smaller size is great in theory, but how does it handle?

The grip is smaller than on a DSLR. This makes many people—especially those with larger hands—purchase a battery grip or a grip extension that screws into the bottom of the camera. This will improve usability and comfort.

The A7 III is an extremely customizable camera. There are four official custom buttons. But you can actually customize 13 buttons. You can program these buttons so they suit your needs and preferences. Another great feature is that you can recall a group of settings with the touch of a button.

The magnesium-alloy camera body has decent weather sealing. But it’s not as advanced as high-end DSLRs. The bottom of the camera is the weakest area. So make sure you don’t put the camera down on a wet surface.

The flip-out screen is definitely something to love. It’s great when shooting from above or below your eye level. But I have to mention that it’s not a fully articulating screen.

The LCD is a touchscreen that you can even use for selecting a FOCUS point. It can also serve as an alternative to the joystick for moving the FOCUS point when shooting with the camera up to your eye.

The viewfinder is bright and responsive. But there are many competitors that have more advanced ones. And the little rubber eye cup that attaches to the EVF has a habit of falling off. I’ve lost a few.

The body also has two SD card slots. One supports the faster UHS-II and the other is UHS-I. This means if you’re shooting to both cards, the transfer speed is limited to the slower slot.

Sony A7R III Long Term Review | Still good in 2023?

The battery life on the A7 III with the Sony NP-FZ100 battery is excellent. Sony says the A7 III will take 710 shots from a fully charged battery.

Alternatives

The A7 III was released in April 2018, so there are some more up-to-date alternatives. I’ll mention a few of the most relevant ones.

The EOS R6 is one of Canon’s newer full frame mirrorless cameras. It can shoot 20 MP images, which might seem a bit low. But it has caught up with the A7 III when it comes to features. It uses the RF-mount, so lenses are big, heavy, and expensive.

Nikon’s Z6 is another worthy competitor to the A7 III. It uses the Z-mount. This Nikon model has a slightly upgraded list of features. If you’re a Nikon shooter, it’s worth checking out.

The Panasonic Lumix DC-S1 and the S5 are also worth mentioning. If your primary aim is to shoot videos, the S5 has a strong set of features. It can record 10-bit video footage. And the S1 offers a good balance of features that make it ideal for both photos and video.

Our Verdict—Sony A7 III

The Sony A7 III, although released in 2018, is still a brilliant full frame mirrorless camera. Almost any photographer will find it to be a great all-rounder. The diverse set of features and the reasonable price make it a great buy.

The attributes I found the most impressive throughout my years of use are the autofocus, image quality, and low-light performance.

But if you’re considering this model, you should keep in mind that the Sony A7 IV is the newest version. It’s got a higher resolution and a better dynamic range than the A7 III. And the Eye Autofocus works in video mode, which is a shortcoming of the A7 III.

However, I don’t think I’d rush to get the A7 IV. The A7 III will stay an extremely capable camera for years to come.

The Sony A7 III is an impressive entry-level full-frame camera that offers photographers and videographers amazingly high performance for the price point

Space Verdict

While the Sony A7 III gives advanced enthusiasts and even professionals a lot of camera for their money, it does have a few annoying handling niggles.

Pros

  • 10fps burst shooting
  • Brilliant autofocus performance
  • Weather-sealing for tough conditions

Cons

  • – Missing dials for drive and FOCUS modes
  • – Unbalanced with heavier lenses
  • – Unfriendly menu system

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The Sony A7 III was introduced into the company’s mirrorless range in 2018 as a successor to the A7 II. Although pegged on paper as an entry-level full-frame when compared to the rest of the alpha line-up, none of its features could be considered basic.

Although the A7 III is a generalist camera, being such a versatile jack of all trades is part of its popularity and appeal. With 5-axis image stabilization, blistering 10fps maximum shooting, and 4K video, its specs make it a terrific all-rounder whether you’re shooting stills or video footage.

Type: Mirrorless Sensor: 24.2MP full-frame Lens mount: E-mount ISO range: 50 to 204800 (extended) Viewfinder: 2.36m dots Video capability: 4K UHD at 30/24fps, Full HD at up to 120fps Weight: 1.43 lbs Size: 5 x 3.8 x 2.9 in Memory card type: 2x MS/SD (1x UHS-II compliant)

No camera is perfect though, and the Sony A7 III isn’t without its foibles. Some users have been critical of the button and dial layout – or lack of dials in some cases. Sony has cleared up the menu system on its latest cameras, but the A7 III still feels harder to navigate than it needs to in some areas.

Negatives aside, the A7 III is a remarkable camera that also manages to feel remarkably small. During our testing, we used it on a week-long landscape photo tour, around the streets of London, and on a commercial portrait gig, to put it through its paces in a range of scenarios. The A7 III continues to win users over because of its versatility, providing a quality result for an affordable price point.

The handling and control layout aren’t ideal, and other cameras might grab the headlines in specific areas, but few full-frame models are so consistently capable of capturing such a wide range of subjects. So versatile is the Sony A7 II, we included it in our guide to the best cameras for astrophotography.

If this product isn’t for you, and you want to explore other options, we’ve reviewed plenty of other cameras in our best cameras guide.

Sony A7 III review: Design

  • Comfortable grip
  • Touchscreen FOCUS
  • Tilting rather than vari-angle screen

One of the first things you notice about the Sony A7 III (especially if you’re coming from a full-frame DSLR) is its small size. This is good news for those who like to travel light, and fine when it’s paired with the 28-70mm kit lens or a basic prime such as the FE 50mm F1.8. Unfortunately, it results in a more front-heavy setup when adding premium Sony lenses such as the FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS. Sports and wildlife shooters working with longer lenses will either need to support the lens with their hand or invest in the optional VG-C3EM battery grip to balance things out. Otherwise, the Sony A7 III is generally comfortable to handhold, and the camera’s rubber grip makes for a good purchase around the camera body itself.

In terms of button layout, things are fairly straightforward. On the top plate, the exposure mode dial and exposure compensation dials are easy to access, and two custom buttons can be programmed with your most-used settings. It’s a shame that there’s not a dedicated drive mode dial, especially as the burst rate is one of the camera’s talked-about features, but it’s easy enough to set this from the shooting menu.

There’s not much else to criticize in terms of handling. A movie button sits just to the right of the viewfinder, which gives a quicker switch to video recording than the main mode dial. The 0.78x electronic viewfinder is more than adequate, although there’s an occasional lag when starting up the camera.

When you use the LCD, fine-tuning the FOCUS is easily done via a light touch gesture on the screen. However, one annoyance for composition is that while the screen tilts, it’s not fully articulating, which makes it a bit awkward to reach interesting angles or shoot low to the ground in portrait orientation. By default, the screen can also be a bit dim, but if you set the Sunny Weather mode, it becomes much more usable in bright daylight.

In inclement weather, the Sony A7 III holds up surprisingly well. Its magnesium alloy outer shell is designed to withstand the elements, and during a particularly harsh landscape shoot in Scotland, we felt confident to keep going despite exposing the camera to strong rainfall and winds.

Sony A7 III review: Functionality

  • 4K video recording
  • 4D Focus for wider frame coverage
  • AF/AE capabilities

The Sony A7 III has been designed to serve all genres and subjects, and it suits this function well in terms of both its design and image output. Landscape photographers will make up a large proportion of users, and while the RAW files show great dynamic range for high-contrast scenes, the 24MP sensor might not be enough for those who want to make very big prints. In the field, we found that operating the camera can be difficult while wearing gloves, and to our disappointment discovered that there isn’t an intervalometer built-in. You’ll need to download the PlayMemories apps for this function.

Kit lens: Sony FE 28-70mm f3.5-5.6 OSS

Best wide lens: Sony FE 12-24mm f4 G

Best zoom lens: Sony 24-105mm F4 FE G OSS

Spare battery type: NP-FZ100

Memory card: SanDisk Extreme PRO 128GB SDXC

For portrait shooters, the A7 III’s Eye autofocus is impeccable, and the camera locks on accurately even at wider apertures with a prime portrait lens. If anything, when we took headshots with the Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lens, the results were so sharp they were almost unflattering.

Although the A7 III probably isn’t the top choice for wildlife and sports shooters, the incredible autofocus coverage (93% of the frame), effective subject tracking and 10fps burst shooting mode through the viewfinder is enough to satisfy fans of action.

On some cameras of this price, video recording capabilities are very much second fiddle to the stills specs. Not so on the Sony A7 III, which offers 4K video footage at 24 frames per second (the Sony A7 III could only record Full HD) plus tools to aid exposure and FOCUS. The video features nicely are rounded off with headphone and microphone jacks, giving options to create pro video straight from the camera.

In 4K/24p mode, the Sony A7 III actually captures 6K footage using every pixel on the sensor and then condenses it by approx. 2.4 times for a 4K movie. What this means is you get incredibly detailed footage, which you could zoom into or take decent screenshots from. When recording at 30fps there is a 1.2x crop from full-frame, but the quality is still impressive and more than usable for most enthusiast outputs.

While not a particularly sexy selling point, the A7 III’s battery life is also brilliant. It has 2.2 times the capacity of the A7 II’s, and this amounts to up to around 600 shots when using the electronic viewfinder – or in our experience, a full day of on-off travel photography.

Sony A7III review: Performance

On paper, the Sony A7 III offers much greater performance than it should for the price. Sony has borrowed some tech from the flagship A9 sports camera, providing the A7 III with 693 phase-detection AF points covering 93% of the image area – many more than competitors such as the Nikon Z6. But specs are one thing, and real-life results are another.

Fortunately, we found few issues with the A7 III tracking, except that it doesn’t always keep up with erratic subjects (it was fooled by a fast puppy). Elsewhere, for portraits relying on the Eye AF mode (which can be used in continuous or single-shot AF modes) and landscape shots requiring a more selective use of foreground interest, it delivers the goods.

RAW Image quality from the 24MP sensor is generally excellent, with a few exceptions. Significant banding appears when you’re shooting under artificial lighting such as fluorescents or LEDs, and subtle moiré patterns occur in scenes when the subject being photographed is wearing clothing with repetitive details.

Although not marketed as Sony’s top-tier model for astrophotography, the A 7 III’s low-light performance is one of the best on the market right now. RAW files retain good detail and contrast up to ISO 12,800, although sharpness and texture start to disappear after 25,600. What is perhaps most impressive is the camera’s high dynamic range, which allows you to recover amazing detail out from the shadows with no discoloration to the tones. In situations where you can’t lower the shutter speed and don’t want to boost the ISO, knowing that you can recover underexposed tones is a great solution.

Should you buy the Sony A7 III?

Sony’s A7 line of mirrorless cameras is perfect for the generalist photographer, and the A7 III is no different. Equally adept at stills and video, it will suit you if you’re someone who might go from photographing a family event one day, to shooting landscapes and travel for fun, with the odd bit of commercial work as a side hustle. Although the A7 III is no beginner camera, it’s generally easy to pick up and use, even if you’ve come from other brands previously.

If you want a camera that’s fairly compact, fairly affordable and very versatile, it’s the right choice to make. Plus, with the latest Sony A7 IV release, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the A7 III price drop soon, making it an even more sensibly priced option than it is currently.

If this product isn’t for you

If only the latest model will do, look to the Sony A7 IV. It supersedes the A7 III in every way – including price.

The Sony A7R IV is a better choice if you’re looking to make big prints from your files, as the 61-megapixel sensor offers much greater resolution.

If you’re on the lookout for a mirrorless option by Nikon, you could try the Nikon Z6: easy to handle with a superb ISO range, it’s a great camera for astrophotography.

The Fuji X-T4 is a great lightweight option both for landscape and astrophotography.

Sony A7 III vs A7 IV – The 10 Main Differences and Full Comparison

The A7 mark III has become the most popular full frame camera since its release in 2018. Blending excellent quality and performance at a competitive price, it made an important contribution to the rise in popularity of Sony mirrorless cameras.

Three years later, the A7 IV arrives with some very big shoes to fill. Is it the successor we’ve all been waiting for? Let’s find out!

Editor’s note: this article has been upgraded to a full comparison and includes our first-hand tests and experience with the two cameras.

Ethics statement: the following is based on our personal experience with the A7 III and A7 IV, that we purchased for personal and review purpose. We were not asked to write anything about these products, nor were we provided with any sort of compensation. Within the article, there are affiliate links. If you buy something after clicking the link, we will receive a small commission. To know more about our ethics, you can visit our full disclosure page. Thank you!

TABLE OF CONTENTS

The 10 Main Differences in a Nutshell

  • Autofocus: the addition of real-time tracking and Eye AF for Birds is the major improvement. Eye AF also works in video mode, unlike the A7 III.
  • Continuous shooting: the two cameras have the same 10fps burst speed, but that decreases to 6fps with uncompressed or lossless compressed RAW on the A7 IV. The latter has a better buffer when using the expensive CFexpress Type A card.
  • Video: there are a lot of improvements on the new model including 10-bit 4:2:2, no recording limit, 4K 60p (crop mode), a bit more dynamic range and better skin tones. The A7 III has less noise at high ISOs.
  • Image stabilisation: there is a minor improvement for still photos, and the Active mode for video on the A7 IV is useful when walking with the camera.
  • Design: subtle changes make the new camera more comfortable to hold, while also giving it more customisation and a better menu system
  • Viewfinder / Monitor: more resolution and frame rates in the viewfinder, multi-angle LCD screen and more touch capabilities for the new model
  • Memory cards: dual SD card slots on both cameras. The A7 IV can also use one CFexpress card (type A), but it is only worth it for specific needs.
  • Extra features: the mark IV has extra settings and options, like using it as a webcam with a simple USB connection (no plugin required).
  • Price: the A7 III is less expensive.

Sensor and Image Quality

The A7 III features a 24.2MP sensor. Despite sharing the same resolution as the previous models (mark I and mark II), the sensor was new and conceived specifically for the mark III model with a faster readout and a back-illuminated structure (BSI).

The A7 IV comes with a brand new chip that increases the resolution to 33MP (27% increase) and uses a BSI design as well.

Resolution

The extra megapixels on the A7 IV are far from game changing, but they remain a welcome addition nonetheless. As you can see below, when both images are enlarged at 100%, details appear a bit larger and crisper on the A7 IV.

A similar conclusion can be drawn after looking at the same shot but with the Straight-Out-Of-Camera JPG.

Note that sharpness of the JPG files, as well as other parameters such as saturation and contrast, can be edited in camera. ( on this further down.)

megapixels can also give you a bit of extra room for cropping your photos when required. For example, the APS-C mode on the A7 IV outputs a 14MP file versus 10MP on the A7 III.

The mark III model has a low-pass filter, but this has not yet been confirmed for the new camera. Websites like Imaging Resource say there isn’t one, whereas DPreview concluded there is a weak AA filter after doing their studio test. I also found a comment on the DPreview forum where a user received an answer from Sony Support saying there is no Anti-Aliasing filter.

I added an additional test in my to-do list and took a picture of a dark striped jacket that caused moiré to appear on previous cameras I tested. I added a generous amount of saturation to the RAW files to make the difference more visible, for the sake of the test. I also included the A7R III, which doesn’t have an AA filter. As you can see, there are more traces of moiré on the A7 IV than the A7 III, although it is not as bad as the A7R III. If there is a low-pass filter on the new camera, it is a very weak one.

ISO Sensitivity

Despite the higher pixel count, the A7 IV retains the same ISO range as the A7 III: 100 to 51,200 ISO (normal range), or 50 to 204,800 ISO with the extended values.

The new camera features a faster image processor, the BionZ XR (8x time faster than the BionZ X on the A7 III, according to Sony) and it should, among other things, keep noise at high ISOs more contained.

When the two cameras are put side by side, the quality is very similar overall. If you look carefully, you can see a bit more noise on the A7 IV images but the difference is hardly relevant until ISO 51,200. The highest value of 204,800 shows a visible colour cast on the mark IV model (although it is unlikely you’ll ever need to take pictures with such a high sensitivity).

If you’re working with JPGs, each camera has a Noise Reduction setting with three levels. The results are similar when it is turned off, otherwise I find it to be slightly more aggressive on the A7 IV files.

The mark IV model has a new ISO Range Limit option to reduce the minimum and maximum values of the sensitivity range when working in manual ISO mode (if you know you won’t use all of it for example).

Dynamic Range

The A7 IV has an advantage when it comes to shadow recovery. As you can see below, it displays less noise and fewer colour artefacts after a heavy exposure adjustment in Lightroom.

With a 3 stop recovery, the A7 IV remains superior.

Concerning the highlights, you can recover the same amount of details in over-exposed areas with both cameras.

A welcome addition on the A7 IV is the possibility to choose a third compression option for the RAW files: Lossless Compressed. On the A7 III, it’s either Compressed or Uncompressed.

In terms of file size, the scene above captured with the three compression settings gave me the following:

RAW QualityA7 IIIA7 IV
Uncompressed 49MB 68MB
Lossless Compressed 38MB
Compressed 25MB 35MB

The Lossless version is close to the Compressed version in terms of file size. As for the quality, a strong 4Ev exposure recovery didn’t highlight a relevant difference between the three options.

Colours and Parameters

The A7 IV inherits Sony’s latest colour palette and image processing tweaks that the company introduced with the A7S III (although a few changes, such as improved skin tone rendition, already appeared on the A7R IV).

What I noticed from the start when comparing the two cameras is that the A7 IV leans towards a more greenish look. Also, the sky has more cyan compared to that captured by the A7 III. This is visible with the RAW files (if all the basic settings are equalised) as well as the Creative profiles on the JPG.

With the enlargement below you can see that the hill in the background has more patches of vibrant green when using the A7 IV, especially when the Vivid profile is selected.

As always, it’s important to interpret the results above in the correct way. With RAW files, the difference is less important because this format is designed to be post processed and each photographer has their own method, presets, taste and favourite software that will influence the final result. Also, the two RAW images can be easily matched with a few adjustments in the same editing program.

The JPGs give us a better insight into the updates brought by Sony. This is also a good time to talk about the picture profiles.

The A7 IV has a brand new set called Creative Look. There are 10 of them, including one for Black White and one for Sepia. Each profile can be customised with 8 different parameters: contrast, highlights, shadows, fade, saturation, sharpness, sharpness range and clarity. (Note that ‘sharpness range’ is not available for video.)

The A7 III features the old Creative Style that has been around since Nex APS-C cameras. There are 13 of them, with only three parameters to edit for each (contrast, saturation, sharpness). Furthermore, these parameters can be controlled in fewer steps than the A7 IV. For example, sharpness works in 6 steps as opposed to 9 steps on the successor model.

The differences can be subtle. If you look at the second scene below, the A7 IV captured a slightly pinker Apple and the blue stone is a bit more vibrant, but it’s not something you notice at first glance.

Now let’s have a look at portraits and skin tones.

With the RAW files, the A7 III has stronger reds and a hint of magenta which makes the photo appear cooler, whereas the A7 IV has a warmer look (with the exact same settings in Lightroom, using the Adobe Color profile).

With JPG and the Standard Style / Look, it is the A7 IV that displays more reds on the face.

Switch to the Portrait profile, and the look is more subtle. The mark IV model maintains more red, but also shows smoother transitions between the various shades of colours. Also, I don’t like the colour of my lips with the A7 III portrait style – it looks like I’m wearing lipstick and is unrealistic compared to the rest of my face.

The Neutral profile decreases the saturation but here too I find the A7 IV has a more consistent rendering of the skin, and in this case, the mark III model once again has a magenta tone.

New to the A7 IV is the Soft Skin Effect setting that, as the name suggests, gives skin tones a smoother look. There are three levels to choose from and you can see the results below. The Low level is very subtle, and it’s difficult to discern a difference at first, although the most prominent wrinkles are reduced (look under the eyes for example).

With Medium, the effect starts to be apparent, whereas the Hi level is invasive and unrealistic.

Concerning the Auto White Balance, both cameras behave in the same way with a tendency towards cool colours. With artificial light, you can prioritise the whites or the colour tone of the light source.

The A7 IV has a new setting called Shutter AWB Lock, which allows you to lock the white balance when the shutter button is half-pressed, or at the first shot of a burst sequence.

HDR images

The A7 IV has the option to record 10-bit HEIF images in addition to JPG and RAW, with a choice of 4:2:0 or 4:2:2, as well as the possibility to activate the HLG mode which records the photos with the BT.2100 colour space rather than the classic sRGB.

The main advantage of the HEIF format is much smaller files: around 8-9MB instead of 20MB when using JPG X-Fine. It also provides better colour depth, but keep in mind that it is not a popular format yet, so you can encounter incompatibility with post production softwares, including popular ones such as Photoshop and Lightroom.

Below you can see a quick comparison between two JPG files and the HEIF version. These examples include a version with the DR Optimiser setting set to Level 5 on the JPGs, which brightens the shadows. The HLG version retains more details in the highlights but has darker shadows due to the DRO setting being disabled automatically. Also, when the HLG mode is enabled, the minimum ISO available is 125.

For now, the HDR format mainly aims at devices that are HDR compatible such as a modern TV for example. I can’t see it replacing the JPG workflow yet.

Autofocus

The A7 III features 693 phase and 425 contrast detection points. The phase area covers approximately 93% of the sensor surface.

sony, review, good, choice

The A7 IV increases the AF coverage slightly (94%) with a total of 759 phase detection points. This is the same amount used by the A7S III and the flagship A1. The contrast detection points remain the same (425).

Single AF

Sony says that autofocus has been improved not only in continuous mode, but also in S-AF mode, in which the phase detection points have been optimised to make FOCUS acquisition quicker and more responsive.

Using various lenses I have at home (FE 35mm F1.8, FE 55mm F1.8 ZA, FE 85mm F1.8, FE 200-600mm G), I tried to see if the A7 IV would indeed FOCUS faster and my feeling is that it is a bit more responsive and quicker at changing the FOCUS point, but it’s not a big difference.

Low Light

Another improvement concerns low light sensitivity, which is.4Ev on the A7 IV vs.3Ev on the older model (measured with an F2 aperture). Furthermore, phase detection autofocus works down to f/22 on the A7 IV (versus f/11 for the A7 III) when using high continuous shooting speeds.

In situations that we can label low light but where there is enough brightness and contrast to distinguish the subject, both cameras do equally well.

I tried to find a difference by testing the two cameras in a very dark environment (the kind where you need to raise the ISO near the maximum available, like in the image below), but both cameras continued to behave in a similar way. At the beginning, it looked like the A7 IV was being more successful with C-AF, but further testing showed that it often struggled as much as its predecessor.

Concerning the improvement with small apertures and phase detection, I can use the FE 200-600mm with the 2.0x teleconverter (largest aperture is f/13 at 600mm) attached to my A7 IV and maintain full AF performance in the fastest burst mode. With the same set-up on the A7 III, contrast detection is used instead, and FOCUS is locked on the first frame when using the Mid, High and High burst modes.

AF Tracking

The mark IV model sees a significant boost when it comes to the autofocus software and machine learning. It has real-time tracking and real-time Eye AF that works for humans and animals, including birds. Eye AF works for video as well (including for animals and birds). Overall, Sony says that the accuracy of Eye AF has been improved by 30% in comparison to the A7 III.

sony, review, good, choice

The mark III model received Eye AF for animals via firmware (version 3.0) but it is an older version and doesn’t work with birds. Plus, Eye AF (humans/animals) is not available during movie recording.

Eye AF for Human

In my first test with a human subject, the A7 IV gave me a keeper rate of 80% while the person moved back and forth, whereas the A7 III couldn’t do better than 60%. The predecessor struggles to keep FOCUS at all times, and especially when the person walked away from the camera. The number of out of FOCUS shots on the mark IV model were much lower overall.

One key thing that sets the two cameras apart is the different tracking methods they use. On the A7 III, you have the old Lock-On AF mode but it struggles more to keep FOCUS on the subject when it turns around and the face becomes covered momentarily. Also, the camera is less prone to use Eye AF when Lock-On is active.

For the A7 IV, the tracking mode can analyse the scene at different levels (brightness, depth, colour, FOCUS, face and eyes) and is much more precise. Furthermore, face and eyes are always prioritised when detected.

I’ve used the tracking mode on the A7 IV a lot to take pictures of my toddler, and once it starts tracking him, it rarely lets it go despite him moving around a lot. It’s reliable and makes the whole AF experience much easier.

The A7 IV offers additional settings to control Eye AF, like for example the possibility of prioritising the left or right eye (doesn’t work with birds), a very useful setting to have assigned to a custom button when taking portraits, and a feature I often miss on my A7 III.

Eye AF for Birds

Eye AF works reliably with a vast range of animals and, on the A7 IV, Sony has added the possibility of doing the same with birds.

I took the A7 IV with the 200-600mm G and the teleconverters to various nature reserves, and Eye AF didn’t disappoint, providing accurate and precise results.

Where it surprised me the most was with small birds perched on a tree, and thin branches covering part of the body or even part of the head. The camera managed to keep FOCUS on the eye and avoided mis-focusing on the nearby branches in the foreground. It wasn’t perfect every single time but, with any other setting, the bird would have been out of FOCUS.

Eye AF also helps to ensure that the head of the bird is in FOCUS, rather than the body. With the A7 III, I use a small AF point like Flexible Spot, but it’s not always easy to keep that area on the small bird’s head because it moves all the time. So instead, I FOCUS on the body which it is larger, but depending on the distance, focal length and aperture, that can result in the bird’s eye being soft. With the eye being tracked automatically on the A7 IV, this is less likely to happen.

Despite the caveats, it is possible to capture fine photos of small birds with the A7 III (as long as the body is clearly visible) and I’ve managed to take some nice shots over the years. But there is no doubt that Eye AF makes FOCUS accuracy and composition in general easier to manage.

So overall Eye AF works a treat for birds, but it’s not perfect and there are a few things you need to be aware of.

First, Animals and Birds are two separate settings in the menu. The camera won’t automatically switch from one to the other. You need to choose manually which type of subject you want to track.

Second, it is important to combine it with the Tracking mode and start focusing on the bird’s body initially, if possible with a clear view of said body (no elements in front of it that can confuse the AF). The camera will then automatically go for the eye if detected, or stay on the body if no eyes are visible (like when the bird turns its head backwards).

Third, eyes are not always detected depending on the species of bird, or their distance from the camera. For example, with ducks the AF area often stayed on the body, especially when the face was in the shade. The camera also occasionally confused the eye with another part of the body. If the bird is too far away (that is, it doesn’t fill a good portion of the frame), the eye might not be detected at all.

I mentioned birds and branches, and here are a few examples where it didn’t work properly. With the heron photograph, the subject was too distant for the eye to be recognised, and the camera always chose the thin branches in front of it.

With the robin, it was initially covered by a few branches and the camera mis-focused. This is why it is important to start the tracking with as clear a view as possible of the subject. I moved a bit closer, tried again and the camera had no problem. From there, it kept tracking the eye even when the bird moved a bit and went behind a branch.

Birds in Flight

The old tracking mode on the A7 III (Lock-On AF) is not reliable for fast subjects like birds in flight. The FOCUS area often jumps away from the bird to track the background or, occasionally, even the blue sky. So, my favourite setting is Zone Area, combined with level 5 for the AF Tracking Sensitivity and Focus Priority in C-AF.

With the A7 IV on the other hand, real time tracking is good enough that I can use it for these challenging subjects, and in fact it proved to be the best setting to use for my red kite test.

One advantage of using Real-Time Tracking over Zone is that with the latter, the camera occasionally focuses on the background, especially if the background has similar colours to the bird’s feather. With tracking, this behaviour doesn’t happen. You just have to make sure you’re positioning the bird right under the tracking area at the centre of the frame at the beginning of the sequence.

Note: I use Tracking with Expand Flexible Spot on the A7 IV, but you can combine it with any other AF area. However, with a larger area, the camera might decide to track something nearby rather than your subject. That’s why I prefer Expand Flexible Spot, a small point that I keep at the centre of the frame so that the camera understands better what I want. Once it starts tracking, it will follow the subject across the entire frame, no matter how small the AF area you selected is.

I tested the A7 IV on multiple occasions, and the best score I got was really close to that of the A9 / A9 II result. The A7 III is not far but I never managed to push it to the same level.

A7 III: Best Score 86% 99%
A7 III: Average Score 80% 95%
A7 IV: Best Score 94% 99%
A7 IV: Average Score 89% 97%

The first number (green) is for sharp images only, the second includes slightly soft results. The average score includes different days I went to the red kite feeding station, and various setting combinations I may have tried. You can find out more about my birds in flight test in the dedicated article.

Although the performance of the A7 IV is really good, I noticed a lack of consistency. Sometimes it would nail a sequence perfectly, other times there would be 5 or 6 shots out of FOCUS or slightly soft.

Granted, the light conditions change from one location to another, and from one day to the next. In one location, the sun sets to the right and most of the trees the kites fly against are in the shade. This makes it a difficult scene to meter and the AF can be confused too. When I went back to the same location with more clouds and a softer light, the camera struggled less.

Other AF Settings For Photography

The two cameras have many settings in common including five Focus Modes, six Focus Areas, the Priority Settings (AF, Release or Balanced Emphasis) and the Tracking Sensitivity (5 steps).

The A7 IV offers additional adjustments such as:

  • Focus Area Limit: limits the number of Focus Area settings displayed in the menu, so that you don’t have to scroll through all of them every time (if you know you’ll only use 2 out of 6 for example)
  • Focus Area Color: allows you to change the colour of the FOCUS area displayed on the live view, with a choice of white or red
  • Circulation of Focus Point: allows you to move the FOCUS point from one edge to the screen to the opposite side without going all the way back
  • AF Frame Movement Amount: choose whether to move the FOCUS point in smaller or larger steps (when using Spot or Expand Spot areas)

AF Performance and Settings For Video

As stated earlier, the A7 III doesn’t have Eye AF for video, only face detection.

With a person walking towards the camera, it often loses FOCUS for a few seconds, and when he or she walks backwards. The mark IV model is more accurate and consistent.

Another limitation is when a person wears a hat: the A7 III will easily FOCUS on the brim of the hat and leave the face out of FOCUS. You need to disable face detection and use a small AF point instead. With the A7 IV, this problem doesn’t exist.

Another improvement on the new camera is additional controls for autofocus during video recording.

There is the AF Transition Speed that works in 7 steps to make FOCUS changes fast or slow, whereas AF Subject Shift Sensitivity determines how quick FOCUS should move from one subject to another. It works on 5 levels.

They replace the AF Drive Speed and AF Track Sensitivity settings you find on the A7 III which have fewer steps to control the performance (3 levels and 2 levels respectively).

These settings can be useful for various applications, one of which is to make nice and smooth FOCUS transitions between two points in your composition. The A7 IV gives you a higher degree of customisation to find the speed that you want, and the beginning and end are smoother. With the A7 III for example, the Slow setting is too slow, especially near the end of the transition.

Another thing I noticed is that at close FOCUS distances, when not touching anything on the camera, nor having anything moving in the scene, the A7 III tends to move the lens elements back and forth rather than leaving FOCUS fixed in one position. This doesn’t happen with the A7 IV. You can watch some examples of this in our video review in chapter 4.

Then we have Focus Map, which gives you a graphic visualisation of the depth of field, highlighting in cool colours what’s behind the DoF and in warm colours what’s in front of it. The areas where colours remain normal are within the depth of field.

It’s an interesting solution for manual FOCUS. It can be a bit confusing at first, especially if you use a fast aperture, but once you get used to it, it becomes a good alternative to Peaking, and I actually find it more reliable. It’s not as precise as Focus Magnification, but not far off either, even when using a fast aperture and shallow depth of field.

Last but not least, the A7 IV has a new option called AF assist, which allows you to use the FOCUS ring to make manual changes while working in continuous autofocus mode. This can be useful when using large FOCUS areas such as Wide or Zone, where the camera might pick the wrong area to FOCUS on. If that is the case, you can correct FOCUS manually, and once you’ve finished, the camera will keep FOCUS on the area you corrected manually.

Shutter, Drive Speed and Buffer

The two products feature a mechanical, an electronic first curtain and a fully electronic shutter mode. They can take pictures up to 1/8000s. Activating the electronic shutter doesn’t raise the speed further as it happens on other models.

The shutter sound is quieter on the mark IV model which makes the camera a bit more discreet when using the mechanical mode.

Another problem of using the electronic shutter can be banding, which occurs under certain types of artificial light sources (fluorescent, LED) and can result in darker horizontal stripes in your image.

To tackle this, Sony has included on the A7 IV a function called Variable Shutter. It allows you to adjust the shutter speed to a higher degree of precision than the default 1/3 step, and see in real time the impact it has regarding flickering on the monitor. It works for stills and video.

You can see an example below with the following two images. There is an inexpensive LED strip behind the shelf, and when I lower its brightness, flickering appears on the screen. The first shot is taken without the variable shutter and has visible banding. I tried different shutter speeds (normal 1/3 steps) and couldn’t get rid of the problem. The second image has no banding after adjusting the shutter speed precisely to 1/64.2s with the function enabled.

I didn’t find the chance to test this in a variety of situations, so I can’t confirm if it works every time. There might be moments where it is difficult to find the correct frequency of the light source and set the appropriate shutter speed. Sometimes, banding can be very thin and you’ll only see it if you zoom 100% on the image. My advice is always to take a few test shots when using the electronic shutter, if possible. If you find banding, the Variable Shutter function will increase your chance of getting rid of it.

Note that the Variable Shutter is different from the Anti-Flicker mode that you also find on the A7 III. Anti-Flicker only works for still photos (no video), and the mechanical shutter (no electronic mode). It is designed to adjust the continuous shooting speed to match the 100Hz or 120Hz frequencies. With the variable shutter, you can detect frequencies in between those values or even higher.

A final note about the electronic shutter on the the A7 IV is the extra setting to control silent shooting (such as the possibility of leaving it on or disabling additional functions of the camera that emit sound).

Buffer

Sony states that the A7 IV has a large buffer that allows you to save more than 1,000 JPG, lossless compressed or compressed RAW, or more than 800 uncompressed RAW files. Small catch: this is valid when using a CFexpress card.

By comparison, the A7 III can do 182 JPGs, 89 compressed RAW or 40 uncompressed RAW images, using a UHS-II SD card.

I tested an uninterrupted burst of 30s to see if and when the frame rate will slow down, and by how much. With the CFexpress card, the A7 IV maintained full speed for the whole time. Given Sony’s official figure, I guess I could have continued for another minute. With the SD card however, the mark IV model slowed down with all except the JPG file.

The A7 III struggles to go past 10s at full speed with RAW, and even with JPG the speed slows down after about 17 seconds. This results are close enough to the official figures.

Video Quality and Settings

There are a lot of interesting improvements on the new camera when it comes to video.

Part 2 of of our video review (which is all about the movie capabilities of these two cameras) is available to watch below. Keep reading for a written version of our feedback.

Sony α7 III Camera Review

The Sony α7 III is a full-frame mirrorless camera first released in 2018. It’s the third iteration of the “base” full-frame model in Sony’s popular Alpha 7 lineup, alongside the compact Sony α7C, the high-resolution Sony α7R, and the low-light-sensitive Sony α7S, offering a well-balanced feature set for a range of different kinds of photography. Though it’s no longer top of its class, its excellent sensor, highly effective autofocus, shooting speed, and in-body image stabilization make it a great choice for those looking to get into full-frame photography.

Our Verdict

The Sony Alpha 7 III is good for travel photography. While it isn’t the most compact option, it’s still relatively portable for a full-frame camera. Images look sharp and detailed, and it performs well even in low-light conditions. It’s also fitted with a fairly quick and accurate autofocus system that’s great for busier scenes or faster subjects. Plus, it has excellent battery life for a mirrorless model. That said, it isn’t weather-sealed, and its menu system can be a pain to navigate.

The Sony α7 III is excellent for landscape photography. Images are detailed, color-accurate, and low in noise when shooting in low light. It also has fantastic dynamic range, so it preserves a wide range of shadow and highlight detail in high-contrast scenes. The camera itself feels quite sturdy, too, though it isn’t weather-sealed. It isn’t the most portable to take to remote shooting locations or on long hikes.

The Sony a7III is great for sports and wildlife photography. Image quality is fantastic, and it has a great autofocus system with a decent AF tracking feature to continuously keep moving subjects in FOCUS. Its max continuous shooting speed is fairly quick, too, allowing you to capture quick bursts of moving subjects. That said, its photo buffer isn’t the deepest, and it takes a little while to clear when you fill it up, which can interrupt your shooting.

The Sony a7 III is okay for vlogging, though it isn’t meant for it. On the upside, video quality is excellent, and it has an amazing face-tracking feature to ensure you or your subject stays in FOCUS. That said, its screen only tilts and doesn’t fully articulate, so you can’t see yourself when the camera is pointed at you. Its image stabilization performance is also somewhat lacking.

The Sony a7III is an excellent option for studio video. It has a wide array of inputs and outputs for videography accessories, records very high-quality footage in both 4k and FHD, and delivers excellent autofocus performance. Battery life is also fantastic, with no overheating issues and USB charging while in use. You also get Log profiles to capture a wider range of detail. That said, it’s limited to 8-bit 4:2:0 internal recording, meaning you can’t take full advantage of Log recording. Its menu system is also poorly organized and hard to navigate.

The Sony Alpha 7 III isn’t designed for action video. It’s too big to mount onto a helmet rig, and it isn’t water-resistant. 4k frame rate options are also limited, though it does support 1080p recording at 120 fps, allowing you to create slow-motion videos.

  • 7.8 Travel Photography
  • 8.4 Landscape Photography
  • 8.0 Sport Wildlife Photography
  • 6.7 Vlogging
  • 8.6 Studio Video
  • 4.4 Action Video
  • Updated Feb 22, 2023: Fleshed out text in the ‘4k Video Frame Rate’ Box and added a link to the Canon EOS R6 Mark II.
  • Updated Dec 15, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.12.
  • Updated Nov 30, 2022: Added full text to review and rewrote existing text for clarity.
  • Updated Nov 21, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.11.
  • Updated Sep 16, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.10.
  • Updated Aug 16, 2022: After running into issues with RawTherapee during retesting for Test Bench 0.9, we decided to process the ‘Photo RAW Dynamic Range’ test scene in Lightroom instead. The test scene photo has been reuploaded.
  • Updated Jul 29, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.9.
  • Updated Apr 26, 2022: Having tested a wider array of cameras, we have reevaluated and adjusted this camera’s ‘Build Quality’ score to more accurately reflect its build quality.
  • Updated Apr 22, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.8.
  • Updated Jul 16, 2021: Corrected camera and screen size measurements, number of command dials, and ‘In The Box’ contents.
  • Updated Feb 08, 2021: Review published.
  • Updated Feb 08, 2021: Early access published.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Sony Alpha 7 III only has one color variant: ‘Black’. You can see our unit’s label here.

You can buy the Sony a7III with the Sony FE 28-70mm F/3.5-5.6 OSS kits lens, but depending on the retailer, you can also buy it in a bundle with other E-mount lenses, like the Sony FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS lens, or without a lens at all.

If you come across a different variant, let us know in the discussions, and we’ll update our review.

Compared To Other Cameras

The Sony a7III is an excellent full-frame camera that offers a ton of value for its price now that it’s been superseded by the Sony α7 IV. With plenty of native and third-party lens options, an amazing-for-its-time autofocus system, and a sensor that still holds up remarkably well when it comes to image quality, the a7III has a lot to offer for those looking for a full-frame mirrorless camera. Just don’t expect the latest and greatest video features or quality-of-life features like a more intuitive menu system and more robust weather-sealing.

The Sony α7C is essentially a more compact version of the Sony α7 III. Being newer, it offers a few improvements, including an upgraded autofocus system with a better AF tracking algorithm, plus a longer battery life and unlimited video recording time. That said, the α7 III has better ergonomics, with more custom buttons and dials, along with a significantly larger viewfinder and dual SD card slots. The α7 III also has a tilting screen, while the α7C has a fully articulated screen, one of which may suit you better than the other depending on your needs and personal preference.

The Sony α7 IV replaces the Sony α7 III. It has a new, higher-resolution 33-megapixel sensor and improved autofocus system. Physically, the α7 IV is a little bigger and includes two UHS-II SD card slots, one of which has an integrated CFexpress Type A slot and has a fully articulated touchscreen and improved menu system. The α7 III, on the other hand, has two SD card slots, but only one of them is rated for UHS-II cards and has a tilting screen and more confusing menu. While both are fantastic cameras for photography, the α7 IV supports 10-bit 4:2:2 video recording internally and can capture video at exceptionally high bit rates, making it the better option for videographers. If you’re mainly interested in photography, the α7 III still offers a lot of value.

The Sony α7 III is a bit better overall than the Sony α6600, mostly because it uses a full-frame sensor while the α6600 has an APS-C sensor. As a result, the α7 III delivers better image quality and performs better at higher ISO levels in low light. Both are mirrorless cameras with highly effective autofocus systems, but the α7 III has a slightly larger EVF. It also has two SD card slots, but unlike the α6600, it isn’t weather-sealed. The α6600 is also a bit lighter and more portable.

The Panasonic LUMIX GH5s and the Sony α7 III have different strengths and weaknesses. The Panasonic is a better option for videography and filmmaking since it can record 10-bit video internally, offers more 4k frame rate options, and higher bit rates. While the Sony is no slouch in the video department, it’s aimed more at photographers. Its full-frame sensor gives you a wider dynamic range and better low-light performance. It also has a much more reliable autofocus system.

The Sony α7 III and the Nikon D780 are both enthusiast-oriented full-frame cameras, but they’re different camera types. The Sony is a mirrorless camera with an electronic viewfinder that lets you see changes to exposure directly through the finder, while the Nikon is a DSLR with an optical viewfinder that gives you a lag-free, unfiltered view through the lens. The Sony is lighter and more portable and has a more reliable overall autofocus system. However, the Nikon has a longer battery life and more intuitive menu system and controls.