sony-a7c-evaluation:-smart,-small-and-clumsy

At $1,800, the A7C is $200 cheaper than the A7 III was at launch. Today, nonetheless, the A7 III has dropped in value so each price the identical. So the query is, do you have to get the smaller A7C with improved autofocus, the bigger A7 III with extra bodily dials or one other digital camera altogether? To determine that out, I took it taking pictures round Paris.

Gallery: Sony A7C mirrorless digital camera pattern photos | 31 Photos

Body and dealing with

Many people wished Sony to alter the design of their APS-C digital camera to appear like the extra traditional A7 design, however what we bought was the alternative — an A7 digital camera that appears just like the A6600. In reality, the A7C is simply barely bigger than the crop-sensor A6600 and is way smaller than every other A7-series digital camera. It’s the world’s lightest full-frame digital camera at simply 509 grams, in comparison with 650 grams for the A7 III.

With that tiny physique, it was simpler to hold round than the A7 III and extra discreet for vacationer and road images. Keep in thoughts that a lot of Sony’s finest full-frame FE lenses are heavy, bar a number of just like the 30mm f/2.0 mannequin and the brand new 28-60mm f/3.5-5.6 package lens. Also, to maintain that physique so small and light-weight, the A7C lacks a entrance dial, joystick and different guide controls.

Because of that, I discovered I needed to function the three predominant dials with my thumb, which undoubtedly slowed down my taking pictures. Meanwhile, the dearth of a joystick meant I had to make use of the D-pad to alter focus when trying via the viewfinder, an inelegant resolution. Some of the opposite autofocus options assist make up for that, although, as I’ll element shortly.

You can set the main focus level with the touchscreen, but it surely’s not very responsive. And in contrast to the A7S III, it doesn’t assist contact for menus or every other capabilities. However, it does flip round and totally rotate, which makes the A7C a superb vlogging digital camera. 

Sony A7C mirrorless camera sample images

Steve Dent/Engadget

It didn’t acquire the much-improved menu system from the A7S III, both. Instead, Sony retained the complicated menus that I hated a lot on the A7 III. With all the additional scrolling and fumbling required to seek out settings, you’ll need to arrange the customized menus and buttons earlier than utilizing this digital camera.

Another situation that may annoy hybrid shooters is the dearth of separation between picture and video modes. On different new cameras just like the Panasonic S5, the Canon R6 and Sony’s A7C III, switching will change all the suitable settings. The A7C retains every part the identical, so that you’ll want to make use of a customized mode to maintain the nonetheless and film modes firewalled from one another.

The digital viewfinder isn’t a robust level, both. Without a middle hump like different A7 cameras, the EVF is pushed to the left nook. As a consequence, it’s small and lacks a decent-sized eyecup. The decision can also be not nice at 2.36 million dots, in comparison with the three.69 million dot EVF on Fujifilm’s cheaper X-T4, for instance. It does enhance on the A7 III’s EVF by doubling the refresh fee to 120 Hz, however due to the small dimension and broad magnification, it’s not as nice to make use of.

Sony little question made these tradeoffs to maintain the value and dimension of the A7C down, which is honest sufficient. Luckily, there aren’t any compromises on the battery, which is the bigger NP-FZ1000 discovered on the A7S III and A7R IV. It can go a formidable 680 pictures on a cost, pushing DSLR territory, in comparison with 610 for the A7 III. I additionally bought a good hour and 55 minutes of 4K video taking pictures on a cost.

Lastly, it has only a single card slot, which isn’t superb for professional photographers who want a backup. However, it’s situated on the facet and never within the battery compartment like on the A6600, thank God, and helps quick UHS II card speeds.

Performance

Sony A7C mirrorless camera sample images

Steve Dent/Engadget

Since they share the identical sensor, Bionz X picture processor and 693-point phase-detect AF system, it is no shock that the A7C performs very like the A7 III. To wit, it has comparable 10 fps burst speeds, picture high quality and low-light sensitivity. However, the A7C has a number of tweaks associated to the buffer, autofocus efficiency and picture stabilization.

To begin with, the A7C can maintain longer bursts than the A7 III, because it has a bigger buffer that may maintain as much as 115 RAW photos, in comparison with 89 for the A7 III — permitting for over 11 seconds of steady burst taking pictures. It clears a bit faster so that you’re able to shoot once more sooner, too. You additionally get Sony’s newest AF algorithms, together with the uncanny subject-tracking system discovered on the A7S III and different current fashions.

Whether you’re monitoring race automobiles, birds or individuals, when you contact to pick out your focus level, it stays tenaciously connected to the topic. It additionally works rapidly and easily, so this digital camera is superior for sports activities, wildlife or different motion genres.

Sony A7C mirrorless camera sample images

Steve Dent/Engadget

As with all of Sony’s different current cameras, it additionally has face and eye monitoring that’s smoother and extra correct than its rivals — each with animals and other people. While Canon drastically improved its autofocus with the R6 and R5 fashions, Sony’s continues to be a bit sooner, smoother and extra dependable.

The A7C has an all new five-axis picture stabilization system designed to suit the A7C’s smaller physique. It provides 5.5 stops of shake discount for images, good for taking pictures all the way down to 1/fifteenth of a second or a bit beneath. It doesn’t deal with video as properly, however extra on that later.

One different small distinction between the A7C and A7 III is the dearth of a mechanical shutter. The A7C as an alternative has a hybrid digital shutter, which may generally trigger minor artifacts with out-of-focus backgrounds at excessive shutter speeds. Personally, I didn’t discover any points and I doubt the common person will, both, however purists would possibly hate it.

So far, the A7C’s efficiency is on par or higher than the A7 III, whereas the dealing with and controls are worse. What counts for most folk, although, is how the images look.

Image high quality

Gallery: Sony A7C full-frame mirrorless digital camera pattern photos | 47 Photos