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Andrew Reid

Sony A7S Mark 3 - What to expect

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4 hours ago, Trek of Joy said:

The first one was announced just before NAB a few years back along with the cine lens, it was one of the stars of that years' show. 

Yeah, but that's not generally the focus of NAB. It's more for broadcasters and their partners.

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

If I was working for Sony on the A7S range my thinking is what are the essential attributes of the A7s series that could be improved upon to have a successful m3 version? First of all, low light. When the A7s was launched it was quality of the video in low light that blew everyone away and was a prime reason for people wanting to buy one, and that’s been retained in the A7SII.  Whether Sony continue with a 12mp sensor or replace with a larger one, they won’t be able to go backwards and make it less capable in low light, as arguably it would no longer be an a7S series camera.

IBIS introduced into the A7SII was a step forward, and if it’s of at least satisfactory quality  then I don’t believe they will spend a lot of capital making it significantly better.

As has already been mentioned by several people here, a key new attraction that Sony could offer in a new version is PDAF. This would appeal to both professional filmmakers and mainstream serious consumers wanting to shoot well-focused images in a wide range of situations without having to mess about with manual focusing. It would make the camera usable for anyone, hence likely to appeal to a wider market. If the PDAF works really well, they might not bother with a touchscreen and so keep the price down. If they don’t provide PDAF in an A7SIII  then you begin to wonder how many people would want to upgrade expensively from either of the earlier versions.

Bigger, or at least higher capacity batteries would address one of the long-standing complaints about the series. I would find it surprising if Sony did not extend shooting times, and again if they didn’t it’s going to offer another good reason not to upgrade.

Rolling shutter simply has to be dealt with. If you shoot any sort of run & gun video it restricts you. Solve that, or at least reduce the occurrence of rolling shutter so it’s definitely not such an issue, then it’s going to be a big plus.

I’m assuming the same frame-rates and bit-rates would have to offered as in the A7SII but also internal 4K at 50/60p would be a major boost to capabilities to attract buyers if it can be done without overheating.

If all the above can be achieved, they still have to keep the camera compact as otherwise it defeats the purpose of being able to offer a small full-frame camera which is one of the main selling points of the range. Even if you are happy with a bigger body, there will be lots of potential customers put off by a bulky pumped up camera that no longer can be carried around so easily. I’m assuming similar or improved weather resistance is a given. Just some thoughts.

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15 hours ago, mrjim said:

As has already been mentioned by several people here, a key new attraction that Sony could offer in a new version is PDAF. This would appeal to both professional filmmakers and mainstream serious consumers wanting to shoot well-focused images in a wide range of situations without having to mess about with manual focusing. It would make the camera usable for anyone, hence likely to appeal to a wider market. If the PDAF works really well, they might not bother with a touchscreen and so keep the price down. If they don’t provide PDAF in an A7SIII  then you begin to wonder how many people would want to upgrade expensively from either of the earlier versions.

Bigger, or at least higher capacity batteries would address one of the long-standing complaints about the series. I would find it surprising if Sony did not extend shooting times, and again if they didn’t it’s going to offer another good reason not to upgrade.

Rolling shutter simply has to be dealt with. If you shoot any sort of run & gun video it restricts you. Solve that, or at least reduce the occurrence of rolling shutter so it’s definitely not such an issue, then it’s going to be a big plus.

I’m assuming the same frame-rates and bit-rates would have to offered as in the A7SII but also internal 4K at 50/60p would be a major boost to capabilities to attract buyers if it can be done without overheating.

+1

This is pretty much what I expect to see - PADF, 4k60p, stacked sensor for faster readout/less rolling shutter, a bump to 20mp so FF is oversampled and crop mode is full readout and slight IBIS improvements. It would be nice to get 4:2:2 internal - even if its only 8-bit - it wouldn't cannibalize any FS5/7 sales, but it would make the A7s a better addition to a FS kit. I'd be really surprised if any future A7 didn't have the new battery - but this is Sony and their pro A9 is the first to have a UHS-II card slot despite the competition using them for years, and there's only one - the $1600 XT2 has two UHS-II slots, SMH.

OT thought - I do hope the A9 is a huge success, if Sony is really serious about chasing action shooters there needs to be a APS-c version to compete with the d500/7d2 in the bird/wildlife/safari realm. Make it a 4k60p camera and you have a GH5 killer as well.

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The only rational for leaving picture profiles off the A9 is that they are going to bring out a video-centric camera with much of the same technology. Maybe an A7 style body, and a single card slot, but having invested so much in a new sensor design, they are going to want to roll it out in several cameras. If they can get low light performance similar to the A7S, then wave the 12 MP sensor goodbye.

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4 hours ago, BasiliskFilm said:

The only rational for leaving picture profiles off the A9 is that they are going to bring out a video-centric camera with much of the same technology. Maybe an A7 style body, and a single card slot, but having invested so much in a new sensor design, they are going to want to roll it out in several cameras. If they can get low light performance similar to the A7S, then wave the 12 MP sensor goodbye.

I bet PP's get added in a FW update if there are enough complaints. But I don't think the intended users will be complaining. I wouldn't write off the 12mp sensor just yet, add the same sensor improvements to it - RS all but disappears and crazy ISO's like 104,000+ may get cleaner. With Sony you just never know.

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17 hours ago, Trek of Joy said:

I bet PP's get added in a FW update if there are enough complaints. But I don't think the intended users will be complaining. I wouldn't write off the 12mp sensor just yet, add the same sensor improvements to it - RS all but disappears and crazy ISO's like 104,000+ may get cleaner. With Sony you just never know.

I think another model with a 12MP sensor only makes sense if they upgrade the autofocus to match the A9 etc, otherwise what would be the justification for an (inevitably) more expensive model. There is no one snapping at their heels to keep prices down.
If they can read 20MP @ 25fps (as in the A9) then I guess maybe they could read 8MP @ 60 fps, and maybe (lineskipped) 2MP/HD @ 240 fps. The challenge though is writing this much data to the card.

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Does anyone have any idea when the a7siii may be released, or at the very least announced? I've been holding off from getting a GH5 due to the hope that the a7siii may offer better auto focus, better low light, equal or better iq, stabilization, etc. My budget only allows me to get a camera every 4 years or so, which is why I haven't just bought the GH5 per the adage "there will always be something better around the corner". At the same time, though, I can only wait so long to see if it's even worth continuing to wait for. Thanks!

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1 hour ago, Rank Amateur said:

Does anyone have any idea when the a7siii may be released, or at the very least announced? I've been holding off from getting a GH5 due to the hope that the a7siii may offer better auto focus, better low light, equal or better iq, stabilization, etc. My budget only allows me to get a camera every 4 years or so, which is why I haven't just bought the GH5 per the adage "there will always be something better around the corner". At the same time, though, I can only wait so long to see if it's even worth continuing to wait for. Thanks!

Could be next year as there is rumor about A7III coming in nov

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On 4/24/2017 at 5:17 AM, BTM_Pix said:

They all need to just stop fucking about to be honest.

Just sell us the sensor and processor in a housing and let us buy two different body shells to slot it into. An SLR type and a film camera type. Have an esata interface so we can choose to attach a memory card interface or SSDs so we don't get ripped off by external recorder manufacturers for wanting to record RAW or ProRes. Put every single capability they've got in it and let us wake the features up as and when through paid add ons from the controlling smartphone app. Let us do it monthly, annually, permanently or even daily if we want to.

It's 2017, people are used to these type of subscription and add on purchase models.

And if this all sounds a bit like what RED were trying to do well it is but they never really followed it through properly.

If they want to make more money from us, fine, sell us some accessories. Starting with a field monitor again stops us having to line someone else's pocket. And the big one is a gimbal. Who wants to have the hassle of importing some unknown device with no support when you could buy one from the manufacturer that would DEFINITELY work with your camera and provably more effectively because it would be fed data from the cameras own IBIS system.

A manufacturer that does this will clean up. 

Blackmagic could do it (and the micro looked like it could be a shot at it) but the path they seem to be on is the same as everyone else and just making different versions of the wheel.

So it'll have to be a startup or maybe an offshoot of RED that remains truer to what most of us believed they were going to do.

I hope someone does it as I'm sure we're all fed up having to buy a bunch of surrounding electronics over and over again just to change the functionality. It's like having to buy a different smartphone to use as a calculator and another one to do a spreadsheet on when we all know the underlying structure is the same it's just the interface that changes. 

Did not DJI already do this? Along with a few others. Honestly, a gimbal camera single unit combination would be great. These traditional form factors (DSLR, ENG style) are less useful for modern video styles.

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1 hour ago, cojocaru27 said:

there is any update regarding the possible launch of a7s mark3?

have my eyes on gh5 and this is the only camera holding me back from taking the panasonic way. thx

From what I've read on SonyAlphaRumours, A7III to launch in Autumn this year, possible A7RIII next with 64MP sensor in early 2018, no rumours on a A7SIII - so probably spring 2018.

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1 hour ago, cojocaru27 said:

there is any update regarding the possible launch of a7s mark3?

have my eyes on gh5 and this is the only camera holding me back from taking the panasonic way. thx

They have reduced the price of the A7S II (and A7R II) by £500 on WEX in the UK.

Is this a new thing or on-going reduction?

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12 minutes ago, Andrew Reid said:

They have reduced the price of the A7S II (and A7R II) by £500 on WEX in the UK.

Is this a new thing or on-going reduction?

Sony have got loads of cashback offers on.

I'm literally stood in a camera shop in London trying to exercise one of them right now!

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If anyone is looking to get one then Jessops include a voucher for 500 free 7x5 prints and a 20x16 canvas if you buy an A7Sii from them.

That's the sort of deal that you'd never get if you bought an Alexa.

Possibly the most Alan Partridge special offer since he was pushing Rawlinson's doing slightly damaged chocolate oranges.

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Latest rumor (SR2):

"The interesting thing will be that is will house the worlds first full frame RGBW backlit stacked sensor. Giving us around 68% better low light performance over the original a7s sensors. It will also be capable of 4K 4:2:2 10bit color and 4K 60p but only at 8bit 4:2:0 full sensor readout. These are the things I am mostly sure of." 

http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/sr2-some-early-unconfirmed-a7siii-rumors/#disqus_thread

Might even see it today.. Nah just a $40K CineAlta

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