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iPhone 6s vs Sony A7RII: Battle of the 4K Video

By Hanssie on September 26th 2015

The iPhone 6s came out yesterday with some of the usual Apple fanfare – lines of people at the stores, posts of new phones on social media. Though not quite the frenzy of years past, Apple still has the hearts of many photographers, if my Facebook feed is of any indication.


With the 6s comes the inclusion of 4k video capabilities! Say what? I still remember being awed when our flip phones could text (and pagers for that matter). Anyhow, we’ve come a long way in our phone technology and to see what this newest Apple offering is made of, Lee Morris from Fstoppers decided to pit the 4K video capabilities of the new iPhone 6s against the camera everyone is talking about right now, the Sony a7RII. Of course, when you compare a $3200 camera (body only) with a phone camera, it’s not a fair nor scientific fight, but it makes for a very interesting comparison.

To get a similar depth of field, the Sony was set to ISO 100 at f/8 with the shutter speed as close to the iPhone as possible. Watch the video below to see how the iPhone performs (spoiler – as expected the Sony is sharper, but duh, it better be).

Lee mentions in the Fstoppers post that he doesnt “care to export videos in 4k,” he “just wants higher quality 1080p footage,” and it looks like the iPhone delivers.

If you haven’t done so already, be sure to enter the FALL CAMERA GIVEAWAY | WIN A CANON 5DS R, NIKON D810 OR SONY A7R II. You can win that Sony A7II and do your own 4k comparison!

Did you get the new iPhone 6s? If so, brag about it in the comments below.

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Paul Blacklock

    bottle caps in the water, shame on those polluters!

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  2. Brian Stricker

    I am curios why this is something that need a comparison when 4K in a phone has been out for a while. Apple once again has not done anything new so why the big deal?

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    • Hagos Rush

      To answer your question Brian,

      Apple NEVER does anything new they just do a better job than most others.

      This video answers the question that individuals always ask when considering a camera/phone. Does it have 4K? My answer has always been, do you have something that can play back 4K? Then stop wasting your time. Most people don’t even understand that they get a better video when compressed from 4K to 1080 but your video was clear and concise enough.

      Great video showing an honestly useless comparison. It was cool but no real guesses on the winner in this bout.

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    • robert garfinkle

      McDonald’s, sells more beef than anyone else I bet, per year, but cannot be used as a basis in determining whether McDonald’s beef is better than anyone else’s, right?

      So, what does that have to do with 4k. Well, nothing I suppose – had to drop in a stream of consciousness moment on y’all and that’s where my head went relating to phone cameras / video – McDonald’s…

      There is no doubt that phones / devices have superior photographic equipment compared to even 3 years ago, and I suppose in the spirit of, if you don’t have a “camera camera” (real camera) on your person, a phone will do, sure.

      I will drop in some “attitude” here – I don’t like apple, never have. Not because their products just suck or anything like that, but their business model consists of “Now that you are hooked, all we have to do is drop little tiny eensy weensy stale incremental product updates in front of you; bread crumbs dressed up as loaves of bread, and you’ll buy it…” – I hate that… I almost threw up when I saw “retina” used way back…

      And, don’t get me started on Sony… :)

      Enough of the drama – back to 4k…

      4k, right now it’s front and center, next stop, 8k* – and to @HAGOS, you are correct, filming it, ok, cool, but what can you play it back on, that’s the whole point, right? good call…

      *8k – Sony, at the same time that 4k hit the streets, dropped for a short while 8k, too, but I don’t see it any more, not sure why… but it is out there…


      but, let’s discuss 4k / 8k with respect to photography, it’s a different apple, I know, but I wish to talk about it for a moment.

      when 4 k hit the streets, I said, ok, it’s HD x 2, right? and 8k is HD x 4, yes? But I was not impressed really, as my camera, a D810 (D800 before that) was producing close to (just short of) 8k in width images, big as raw files… and the A7Rii, is most likely surpassing 8k in width images… I really could care less about the video…

      Why do I reel in “images” to a video conversation – well, frankly, for me, what can I display my images on without having to crop all to heck… of course I probably won’t ever see a 3:2 television ever again, just a 16×9 ratio, but it’d be really cool if all I had to do is crop a bottom (or top) of an image and not have to reduce the actual size, and display that puppy on a big screen…

      ok, enough, I have probably confused even myself, but ok…

      have a nice day y’all

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