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Sony Alpha A7 review

An affordable full-frame CSC

Our Verdict

For the price and size, you can't really beat the A7. This is a camera for early adopters, but it's a fantastic step forward and we're already looking forward to the next generation.

For

  • Full frame sensor
  • Light body
  • Small body
  • Tilting screen

Against

  • Limited lens collection
  • No touchscreen
  • Limited raw functionality

We shoot a specially designed chart in carefully controlled conditions and the resulting images are analysed using DXO Analyzer software to generate the data to produce the graphs below.

A high signal to noise ratio (SNR) indicates a cleaner and better quality image.

For more more details on how to interpret our test data, check out our full explanation of our noise and dynamic range tests.

JPEG signal to noise ratio

JPEG signal to noise ratio

In terms of JPEG signal to noise ratio, the A7 puts in a consistently good performance. It is very close to the Nikon D600 at the expanded ISO 50 setting, while at the standard ISO 100, it's very close to both the D600 and the Canon EOS 6D. At the mid-range (ISO 200-1600) it is beaten by the Canon, but performs better than the Nikon. Once we get into the higher ranges (ISO 3200 and above), the A7 steals the lead comfortably.

Raw signal to noise ratio

Raw signal to noise ratio

When shooting in raw format, the A7 doesn't fare quite so well. It is below both the Nikon D610 and the Canon EOS 6D throughout the sensitivity range, being more closely matched to the NEX-7 which features an APS-C sensor. This may be indicative of the camera allowing you to fine tune noise control in raw format files though.

JPEG dynamic range

JPEG dynamic range

Throughout its native ISO range (ISO 100 -25600), the A7 performs with consistency. Although it doesn't quite match the Nikon D600 at the lower end of the scale, it does beat the Canon EOS 6D. At the higher end of the scale (ISO 1600 and above), the A7 outperforms the other cameras on test.

Raw dynamic range

Raw dynamic range

When shooting in raw format, again the A7 is less consistent, which could also be an indication of the control you have over raw files yourself. At the lower end of the scale it is fairly closely matched with both the Nikon D600 and Canon EOS 6D, but it loses out quite significantly to the Canon in the upper reaches of the sensitivity scale.

Tech Specs

Product TypeMirrorless Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
TouchscreenNo
Effective Camera Resolution24.3 Megapixel
GPSNo
USBYes
PictBridgeNo
Product Familyalpha
Image StabilizationNo
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameSony
DurabilityDust Resistant, Moisture Resistant
FeaturesContinuous Shooting Mode, Live View, Face Detection, Orientation Sensor, External Flash Shoe, Near Field Communication (NFC), Noise Reduction
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsAVCHD, MPEG-4 AVC, H.264, MP4
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)416 g
Maximum Image Resolution6000 x 4000
Maximum Frame Rate60 fps
Number of Batteries Supported1
Battery Built-inNo
Battery RechargeableYes
Battery IncludedYes
Display Screen TypeLCD
Image Sensor TypeExmor APS HD CMOS sensor
Total Camera Resolution24.7 Megapixel
HDMIYes
Camera AssemblyBody Only
HD Movie ModeYes
Battery Model SupportedNP-FW50
Memory Card SupportedMemory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick XC-HG Duo, Memory Stick Duo, Secure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card
Height94.4 mm
Width126.9 mm
Depth48.2 mm
Autofocus Points117
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW
Audio FormatsAC3, AAC-LC
Flash ModesAuto Flash, Flash OFF, Flash ON, Slow Sync, Rear Flash Sync, Pre-flash, Wireless Flash, Red-eye Reduction, Flash Exposure Compensation
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product Model7
Product Nameα7 Full-Frame ILC Body Only (No Lens Included)
Product Linealpha
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberILCE7B.CE
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing InformationStep up to full-frame power

Switch lenses. Shoot almighty professional quality with 24.3MP. React with speed and accuracy thanks to Fast Hybrid Autofocus and a high resolution OLED viewfinder. Realise your creative vision anywhere with the world's smallest 35mm full-frame interchangeable-lens camera.

Battery Life270 Shot
Package Contents
  • α7 Full-Frame ILC Body Only (No Lens Included)
  • Battery
Display Resolution921600 Pixel
Limited Warranty1 Year
Built-in DevicesSpeaker, Microphone