First Look: Sony A7: A welcome step-up from smaller sensors
About Video Comments (0 ) Transcript

First Look: Sony A7: A welcome step-up from smaller sensors

2:10 /

It's a great alternative to similarly priced entry-level full-frame dSLRs, as long as you don't need speedy continuous shooting.

Hi. I'm Lori Grunin and this is the Sony Alpha ILCE-7, otherwise known as the A7. There's a lot to like about this camera. It's got a 24-megapixel full frame sensor which delivers reasonably sharp images that have a nicely broad dynamic range. JPEGs are pretty clean through ISO 800, and if you shoot raw, you can push that higher, though depending upon the scene, the JPEGs might be okay as high as ISO 12800. The video looks good without any unexpected artifacts and its got nice tonality even in low light. The camera's also quite well-designed. It's got a sturdy magnesium alloy body, a relatively large bright contrasty electronic viewfinder, and a bright tilting LCD. The controls are pretty customizable with all the frequently needed settings at or near the surface. I do wish some of the buttons were more pronounced and dislike the feel and location of the movie record button. But these are more than made up for by controls like the auto manual focus override toggle, placement of the SD card slot on the side rather than in the battery compartment, the support for USB charging, an exposure compensation dial, a grip sufficiently large for shooting with heavy A-mount lenses, and other amenities. I don't really have any complains about the feature set. Well, I wish it had a built-in flash that's frequently excluded from full frame models. In addition to the EVF and the tilting LCD, the A7 supports Wi-Fi with NFC along with apps from Sony's proprietary PlayMemories app store. Well, it offers better performance than its more expensive sibling, the a7R and it's also competitively fast as similar DSLRs, it does have a really slow startup which may frustrate some folks and the burst shooting performance doesn't match competitors. The battery life is also kind of poor for a camera in this price class. If you want full frame photo quality and a great shooting experience in a compact model, it's a good choice. Just carry a spare battery and don't get frustrated by the occasional sluggishness. I'm Lori Grunin from CNET and this is the Sony Alpha ILCE-7.

New releases

The Netgear R8000 Nighthawk X6...
4:47 July 23, 2014
CNET editor Dong Ngo finds the Netgear R8000 Nighthawk X6 Wi-Fi router a hefty investment that doesn't return...
Play video
Can Android do for wearables what...
14:49 July 23, 2014
Google makes a play to be the center of the wearable universe, cars that communicate to each other, and what...
Play video
How accurately do fitness trackers...
2:13 July 23, 2014
As the "quantified self" craze continues, fitness trackers have us obsessing over not only how active we are...
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 023: Amazon Fire...
24:16 July 23, 2014
Today, Amazon Fire phone reviews started dropping (and they're not very good), Samsung puts a price tag on...
Play video
Philips' speaker base not for bass...
1:39 July 23, 2014
The Philips Blu-ray Surround Base HTB3525B offers a compelling combination of useful features and appropriate...
Play video
The 404 1,530: Where we're richer...
41:25 July 23, 2014
Convincing Google that you accidentally clicked on a racist search result, Comic-con 2014 events for TMNT...
Play video
Unlock your phone with Motorola's...
2:54 July 23, 2014
Motorola unveils a near-field communication security sticker for your wrist, Sony's high-priced Walkman gets...
Play video
Manything makes home security free...
2:12 July 23, 2014
This free iOS app gives pricy security cameras a run for their money.
Play video
 

Video discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre