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A7s Officially Announced, Sony’s Answer to the GH4

By Anthony Thurston on April 6th 2014

A lot of fuss was made over the recent announcement of the Panasonic GH4 and its 4K recording capabilities. Well, not one to be outdone, Sony has put their hat into the ring with their own 4K camera, the Sony A7s.

The A7s was announced today at NAB, and details are still coming in, but we wanted to share with you what we know so far.

Sony A7s Specs


  • Wide ISO sensitivity setting from 50 to 409600 and unprecedented dynamic range
  • World’s first full-frame sensor capable of full pixel read-out without pixel binning process for movie and 4K (QFHD: 3840 x 2160) HDMI video output
  • Professional video functions including XAVC S Full HD recording at 50Mbps, time code and optional XLR audio inputs
  • High ISO sensitivity range allows faster shutter speeds during low light shooting
  • α Mount System compatible with a wide range of high quality lenses, including power zoom lens ideal for movie shooting
  • Improved Fast Intelligent AF performance in light as low as EV-4
  • Ultra compact, light-weight body for comfortable pro-style operation

According to Sony, the key to the extraordinary sensitivity of the A7S is “a specially developed new full-frame 35mm Exmor CMOS image sensor.” That full frame sensor gives the A7s a HUGE advantage over the GH4, plus the added sensitivity means this could be a very capable video camera.

Stay tune for more information, we will share it as it becomes available.

*Here is a replay of the official announcement if you are interested in watching it.

What are your thoughts on the Sony A7s? Do you think that it is a better option than the GH4? Leave a comment below to join the discussion.

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Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Austin Swenson

    sweetness, although I wish it could have more megapixels

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  2. Matthew Saville

    Honestly I couldn’t care less about 4K video, at least not yet in my career, but I’m still very, very excited to create 4K timelapse footage with this bad boy. The ISO performance alone will make this camera the street & wedding etc. photographer’s dream, not to mention the astro-landscape photographer’s dream.

    Coming at the same time as Rokinon announcing compatibility with their 24mm f/1.4, I’m excited to see what the next year or so holds!


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  3. Rick

    IMO, 4K is just hype for the consumer space. And, you’re not going to find a cheap broadcast quality solution any time soon.

    If you’re serious about 4K (or beyond), you really need better equipment. Consumer equipment employ tradeoffs in order to work with inexpensive parts. Put simply, it’s about bandwidth. Consumer equipment will use lower bit depths, inferior chroma subsampling, etc.

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  4. tytyty

    Sadly, the A7s is a big fail.
    It +can’t+ shoot 4K internally. It can record 4K only when you have an external recorder plugged in via HDMI.

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    • Anthony Thurston

      That may be a disadvantage. But I know a lot of people who prefer to shoot into HDMI recorders, so for those people no internal 4K recording doesn’t really matter does it?

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  5. fotosiamo

    I love this! The one advantage that the GH4 does have is the ability to record 4K to an SD card internally. The a7s has clean HDMI 4K 4:2:2 ouput, but no ability to record 4K internally.

    Still though. 12mp full-frame sensor, full-pixel video readout, and a 24-105mm zoom lens in the works. Sony’s not slowing down. Go Sony!

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  6. David Liang

    This camera is very tempting. I would expect incredible resolution and sharpness from a native 4k sensor, no binning should have a huge impact on the footage.

    My only concern is battery life and if sony or a 3rd party will launch a power pack accessory. The lens they announced for video looks interesting too. If it’s price near the other a7 cameras in the 1700-2000 range the GH4 just got a serious contender to deal with.

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