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Sony introduces the α7 camera: Full-frame photography in a truly compact body

Press Release   •   Oct 16, 2013 07:00 BST

The new α7 from Sony combines a 35mm full-frame image sensor and lens interchangeability in a truly compact body. Without compromising on image quality, shooting comfort, functionality or AF performance, the α7 delivers stunning photographs that were previously only possible on large, high-end cameras.

Alongside the new α7R, the α7 liberates photographers and cinematographers by combining amazing portability with all the advantages of full-frame photography and moviemaking. It offers higher sensitivity shooting with lower noise, a wider dynamic range, a shallower depth of field which enables dramatic defocusing effects like bokeh and compatibility with a newly extended range of full-frame lenses.

Beautifully styled and crafted from a robust magnesium alloy body, the α7 is designed to sit comfortably in the photographer’s hand. Front and back dials plus a control wheel and exposure compensation dial allow intuitive adjustments while framing shots through the high-contrast, high resolution XGA OLED Tru-Finder or on the tiltable 3.0-type LCD screen.

Together with the powerful new BIONZ X processor, the full-frame sensor also allows the α7 to shoot pro-quality Full HD video[i]. You’ll enjoy rich, beautifully rendered movie footage with sumptuous colours and ultra-low noise, even in low light. Clear Image Zoom has been enhanced for video recording, delivering powerful close-ups without sacrificing pixel count. Pro-style movie features include an audio recording level control and display, plus a ‘clean’ HDMI output that allows video to be viewed on an external monitor or recorded on another device.

An enhanced Fast Hybrid autofocus combines speedy phase detection AF with highly accurate contrast detection AF, which has been accelerated through a new Spatial Object Detection algorithm, to achieve among the fastest autofocusing performance of any full-frame camera. Even when capturing a subject partially turned away from the camera with a shallow depth of field, the face will be sharply focused thanks to extremely accurate eye-detection (eye AF) that can prioritise a single pupil. First, the phase-detection AF with 117 densely placed phase-detection AF points swiftly, and efficiently moves the lens to bring the subject into focus. Contrast-detection AF (25 points) then fine tunes the focussing in the blink of an eye.

High-resolution still images can be displayed directly on a 4K television that offers four times the detail of Full HD. Support for TRILUMINOS Colour delivers a stunning palette of rich, natural colours when viewing movies and photos captured with the α7 on a compatible BRAVIA television with TRILUMINOS Display.

With both Wi-Fi and NFC, the α7 offers effortless one-touch wireless connections with your Xperia™ or NFC-compatible Android smartphone or tablet. PlayMemories Camera Apps further enhance your photo experience with a growing range of free and paid apps, spanning exciting new creative effects and filters, utilities and more.

The new ‘Multiple Exposure’ app automatically composites sequential exposures, making it easy to create beautiful and dramatic effects with a choice of pre-set artistic themes as well as manual blending modes.

Pre-installed in the α7, ‘Smart Remote Control[ii] controls exposure and shutter release from your smartphone. Great for tripod-mounted group shots and self-portraits, the app also sends photos automatically to your mobile device for on-the-spot sharing.[iii]

New full-frame interchangeable E-mount lenses

There is a choice of five new full-frame E-mount lenses to realise the sheer imaging power of the α7. The E-mount full-frame family includes two mid-range zooms by Sony and Carl Zeiss, two bright Sonnar T* primes and a premium-quality G lens telephoto zoom. There’s also a new-generation mount adaptor that gives photographers extra freedom to re-use their precious collection of full-frame A-mount optics with both cameras, including the newly-announced SAL70200G2 70-200mm F2.8 G SSM II telephoto zoom.

New accessories will also be available for the α7. The VG-C1EM grip extends shooting stamina via two NP-FW50 batteries, as well as providing greater user comfort during vertical shooting. The BC-TRW Battery Charger gives visual LED confirmation of recharging status. The FA-CS1M off-camera shoe can be used as an off-camera cable by connecting with a Multi Flash Cable. The LCS-ELCA premium leather soft carrying case extends the premium quality experience of handling and using the α7 while protecting your camera from scuffs and marks whilst being carried.

The light, compact new α7 interchangeable lens full-frame digital cameras from Sony is available for pre-order from www.sony.co.uk today and will go on general sale in UK from mid-late November.

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  1. According to a survey conducted by Sony as of October 2013, for non-reflex interchangeable lens digital cameras equipped with autofocus function.
  2. Compared to previous BIONZ processors
  3. 117 points (phase detection AF / 25 points (contrast detection AF)
  4. Only top housing and internal structure constructed of rigid magnesium alloy
  5. The α7 series supports both PAL and NTSC movie recording
  6. AVCHD Progressive, 1920x1080 60p/50p/25p/24p
  7. α7 series will become compatible with “Camera Remote API beta”(http://camera.developer.sony.com) , API (Application Program Interface) for remote operation of Sony camera with Wi-Fi-equipped smartphones and electronic tablets, after installation of the most recent Smart Remote Control that is distributed from countries providing PlayMemories Camera Apps.
  8. ‘Direct Upload’ available at launch. ‘Multiple exposure’, ‘Picture Effect+’, ‘Photo Retouch’ and ‘Lens Compensation’ will be available for the α7 series by the end of 2013