Sony has just announced the entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera A7 IV which replaces the hugely popular A7 III of 2018. Unlike the A7S III which targets videographers and the A7 III which focuses on photography, the A7 IV is a mirrorless camera that does a great job in both stills and video.
If you’re in the market for a mirrorless camera, your timing couldn’t be more perfect as you now have new options from Sony, Canon, and Nikon. Here we’ll cover the price, release date, and our first impressions of the Sony A7 IV mirrorless camera.
Sony finally launches the A7 IV full frame mirrorless camera
People have been waiting for the launch of the A7 IV for years since its predecessor, the A7 III, released in 2018. Hardware upgrades after a three-year hiatus put this line of cameras on par with the competition, like the Canon. EOS R6 and Nikon Z6 II.
For starters, the Sony A7 IV sports an all-new 33-megapixel full-frame back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor for high-resolution photos. It uses the same Bionz XR processor as the more expensive Sony A1 for high-speed autofocus performance. Sony claims a 30% improvement in face and eye detection AF over its predecessor.
In terms of video, you now get 4K / 60FPS video recording, but there is a catch. You can only record at 60 frames per second in cropped Super 35mm mode, where the image is downsampled from 4.6K. To use the full width of the sensor, you’ll need to go down to 4K / 30FPS, which downsamples video from 7K playback for improved quality.
The A7 IV can also record with 10-bit color depth and 4: 2: 2 color sampling, unlike its predecessor. And if you’re a vlogger, you’ll be happy to hear that Sony has finally added a flip-up screen.
In addition to these hardware changes, the A7 IV also includes new features that work with compatible Sony E-mount lenses. One of them is AF assist, a feature that supports focus transitions when autofocus is on.
Sony has also added a brand new Breath Compensation feature to combat focus breathing issues and ensure the camera maintains a constant field of view even as you keep adjusting focus.
Our first impressions of the Sony A7 IV
Now that we know all of the changes you can expect with this new model, we’re going to compare the A7 IV with the older A7 III and the competition to see if it’s worth buying.
Sony has upgraded the sensor’s resolution from 24.2 MP to 33 MP, which in our opinion is perfect for a mirrorless camera that customers buy for both stills and video. If you look at the competition, the Canon EOS R6 has a sensor resolution of 20.1 megapixels, which is not ideal for today’s standards.
The addition of 4K / 60FPS video recording capabilities at 10-bit color depth along with a long-awaited flip-up screen make it much more desirable for videographers and bloggers. While this is up to the competition, we would have liked Sony to include a 4K / 120FPS mode for people who want to shoot in slow motion.
Plus, while we like the new flip-up screen, it comes at the expense of resolution. You get a 1.03 million dot touchscreen, which is significantly lower than the 1.6 million dot LCD screen on the EOS R6.
Overall, we think Sony has managed to focus on key areas with the A7 IV, making it the entry-level mirrorless camera to beat for the foreseeable future. However, your buying decision may ultimately come down to its price, which we’ll take a look at below.
Sony A7 IV price and availability
The Sony A7 IV is not yet available, but it will go on sale in the US from December 2021. If you live in Australia, you can get your hands on the camera sooner, as it will be available. at the end of November.
Sony has set a price of $ 2,499 for the body-only version of the A7 IV. The company will also sell a kit version for $ 2,699, which includes the FE 28-70mm lens.
While this price matches that of the Canon EOS R6 perfectly, you have to remember that Sony launched the A7 III for $ 1,999. You pay an additional $ 500 for some incremental upgrades.
It comes down to whether or not you will benefit from these hardware upgrades. And if you’re really strapped for cash, you might even consider the Nikon Z6 II for $ 1999.
The Sony A7 IV is the new mirrorless camera to beat
The very popular A7 III started to lose its luster due to aging hardware and competition from other manufacturers. So we’re happy that Sony managed to tick the right boxes to ensure the A7 IV borders the Canon EOS R6 in critical areas.
While it has its fair share of negatives, it looks like the Sony A7 IV will be hard to beat over the next couple of years.
If you’re planning on switching from a DSLR, make sure you understand the differences and know what features you might be missing out on before spending all of your hard-earned money on your first mirrorless camera.
Are you wondering whether you should buy a mirrorless or DSLR camera? Here’s what you need to know about the differences.
About the Author