Is the Sony a7III the Best ILC Camera in 2019?

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Photography

The Sony a7III was announced in February 2018 and immediately sold like hotcakes. There were so many pre-orders placed that it was still sold out in many stores 6 months after it was released.

In 2018 Digital Photography Review (DPReview) not only awarded the Sony A7III their best mid-range ILC camera of the year award but also their most prestigious award for best product of the year. So will the Sony a7III be picking up any awards in 2019?

Here are 5 reasons why the Sony a7III is likely to remain the best mid-range ILC camera in 2019:

1. Real-Time Eye Autofocus

When the Sony a7III was released the Eye AF system that locks on and tracks human eyes to nail razor sharp images was better than ever, only the flagship Sony a9 offered a faster AF system. In April 2019 the a7III received a firmware update (v3.00) that improved this technology even further by automatically identifying eyes with a half-press of the shutter button and also providing the option of deciding which eye you would like to focus on, or letting the camera decide for itself.

2. Animal Eye AF

With the new firmware Sony did not only stop at improving Eye AF for humans, they also decided to implement this amazing technology for animals as well, something that so far no other camera manufacturer is offering. It works best with cats and dogs but occasionally it will also work with other animals like birds too. Animal Eye AF is certainly not as fast as Human Eye AF at this point, but hopefully this is only going to improve going forward as Sony invests more resources into Artificial Intelligence within their cameras. 

3. Large Choice of E-Mount Lenses

There are now over 50 full-frame lenses available for Sony E-mount and you can also use lens adapters like the Metabones and Sigma MC-11 to adapt lenses from Canon, Sigma, Tamron plus many more to the a7III. The number and quality of Sony a7III lenses (such as these) is increasing faster than ever, with third-parties like Sigma and Tamron now also producing native Sony E-mount lenses. Focal lengths vary from as wide as 10mm all the way up to 400mm. Sony’s most popular full frame lens in 2018 was the Sony FE 24mm F1.4 G Master. The fast aperture and incredible sharpness along with superb reviews has kept this lens sold out in many stores 7 months after it was released.

4. Interval Shooting

Along with Real-Time Eye AF and Animal Eye AF, Sony also added interval shooting with the Sony a7III firmware update in April. This means that you can now shoot time-lapses in-camera without the need for an external intervalometer. Although you can play back the time-lapses in-camera, if you want to create a movie for uploading to YouTube or viewing on your TV then you will need to use Sony’s free Imaging Edge and PlayMemories software.

5. 4k Video

The a7III supports 24p/25p 4K video recording with zero sensor crop, which it achieves by capturing 6K then down sampling to 4k. At 30p recording is captured at roughly 5k, so there is a very small crop of 1.2x. There is support for S-Log2 and S-Log3 gamma curves for shooting wide dynamic range scenes and also Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) for playing back directly on high dynamic range (HDR) displays without the need for post-processing.

Further information on the Sony a7III is available on Sony’s website.

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