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Sony ILCE7SB Full Frame Compact System Camera Body (ISO Senstivity 50-409600, 3.0-inch Tiltable LCD, 5 fps, XGA OLED Tru-Finder) - Black

4.2 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
| 12 answered questions

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DPReview Gold Award
From the experts at DPReview
Overall score: 86%
See review summary and sample images
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DPReview

Digital Photography Review is the most popular dedicated enthusiast digital photography site on the Internet. Our authoritative reviews have earned us the trust of photographers and camera buyers all over the world, for more than 15 years.

Gold and Silver Awards are given to products that deserve special recognition based on how well they perform relative to their competitors at the time of review.


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  • Sony E-mount camera with 12.1MP full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor; compact size; 4K video capability, ultra-high 102400 ISO sensitivity;
  • 12.2MP 35mm full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor
  • Ultra-high sensitivity up to ISO 409600
  • 4K video output with full pixel read out
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Review summary from DPReview

DPReview Gold Award
March 2015
Professional videographers and independent filmmakers, who may be a bit more deliberate in their choice of equipement and don't mind setting up a rig with an external recorder, will find a lot to like in this camera. For these users the a7S delivers an unquestionably cinematic look that's difficult to achieve without increasing your spend by an order of magnitude.

Personal takes

Rishi Sanyal Rishi Sanyal Deputy/Tech Editor
The Sony A7S faces stiff competition as a stills camera by solid DSLR offerings from its competitors, as well as from its own A7-series siblings, which generally offer better features for still imagery. But you'll be hard-pressed to find a better video camera, where the A7S offers class-leading resolution and noise performance.
Dale Baskin Dale Baskin Reviewer
It's not surprising that the camera has started to develop a bit of a cult following among videographers. The a7S simply records beautiful video. Whether you shoot internally at 1080p or externally at 4K, the video files out of the a7S are among the very best we've seen from an interhchangable lens camera at this price point.

Reasons to buy

  • Video quality: The a7S produces superb 1080p video footage with virtually no moiré
  • Image quality: Although only 12 megapixels, the a7S produces impressive image quality even at high ISO
  • S-Log2: Sony's excellent S-Log2 gamma profile preserves impressive dynamic range to facilitate colour grading of video
  • Professional video tools: Adjustable zebras and focus peaking assist shooters in evaluating exposure and achieving sharp focus, particularly with third-party lenses

Things to consider

  • 4K video: The a7S produces class leading 4K (Ultra HD) video, but you'll need an external recorder to capture it.
  • Resolution: Despite having a full frame sensor, the a7S is limited to 12 megapixels for still photography
  • No touch screen: The a7S does not have a touch screen, a useful feature common on other hybrid still/video cameras
  • Battery: Battery life can be restrictive, especially when shooting video
Notable features
12MP CMOS sensor
12MP CMOS sensor
The a7S' sensor may have only 12 million pixels, but this helps it excel in low light, while still allowing for wide, but not class-leading dynamic range. In addition, the low resolution allows for full sensor read-out, which means the a7S produces best-i
Tilting LCD
Tilting LCD
The a7S has the same 3" tilting LCD as its a7 siblings. The screen has 921k dots - average for this class - but sadly isn't touch-sensitive.
Electronic viewfinder
Electronic viewfinder
Photos and videos can also be composed on a large and beautiful 2.4 million dot OLED viewfinder.
Detailed score
Poor Excellent
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Features
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality (RAW)
Image quality (JPEG)
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Performance
Movie / video mode
Connectivity
Value
86%
Overall score
Scoring is relative only to the other products in the same category.
DPReview is the world’s most popular dedicated enthusiast digital photography website. Since 1998 its mission has remained unchanged: to deliver the best reviews of cameras and lenses anywhere on the Internet, and help you find the right gear for your needs.

Sample images from DPReview

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Product details

  • Product Dimensions: 4.8 x 12.7 x 9.4 cm ; 445 g
  • Boxed-product Weight: 1.5 Kg
  • Batteries 1 Lithium ion batteries required. (included)
  • Item model number: ILCE7SB.CEC
  • ASIN: B00KPV1RW4
  • Date first available at Amazon.co.uk: 6 Jun. 2014
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 55,687 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)

Awards

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Product Description

Product Description

Full Frame, palm sized. Marvel at the world's first full-frame sensor capable of full pixel readout on 4K video-impressively precision-packed in the world's smallest interchangeable lens digital camera.

Box Contains

Micro USB cable
Shoulder strap
Eyepiece cup
Cable Protector
Body cap
Rechargeable Battery NP-FW50
AC Adaptor AC-UD10
Battery charger BC-TRW
Accessory shoe cap


From the Manufacturer

ILCE7M2B ILCE7SB ILCE7RB ILCE7B
Sensor Type Full-frame Full-frame Full-frame Full-frame
Megapixels 24.3 MP 12.2MP 36.4 MP 24.3MP
IOS Sensitivity (Still Shooting) ISO 50–25600 ISO 50-409600 ISO 50–25600 ISO 50-25600
Continuous Shooting 5 fps 5 fps 4 fps 5 fpS
Movie Recording Mode X AVC-S 1080 60p XAVC-S 1080 60p AVCHD 1080 60p AVCHD 1080 60p
Image stabilisation In-Body (5-axis) Lens Lens Lens
Viewfinder 100 per cent OLED 2359K 0.71x 100 per cent OLED 2359K 0.71x 100 per cent OLED 2359K 0.71x 100 per cent OLED 2359K 0.71x
LCD 921 K 3.0 inch 921 K 3.0 inch 921 K 3.0 inch 921 K 3.0 inch
AF points 117 points Hybrid AF Contrast Contrast 117 points Hybrid AF
Wi-Fi/NFC

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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

I love this camera. I have two issues with the software and with Sony though:

1) if you were counting on time-lapse features and other useful add ons, you will need to create an account and buy them,

2) however, you may also face the issue that you cannot purchase any add-on unless you update the firmware which is very difficult...

To elaborate on the second issue, firstly allow me to clarify that I have tried four computers (a MacBook Pro and a MacPro running Yosemite, in addition to a Thinkpad and a HP Pavilion (both running Windows 7) three USB cables (including the original as recommended), and none were able to upgrade the firmware (this is a well documented issue and there are many forums with people complaining about this as well as suggesting a number of tricks to get it going...).

Finally, I am currently in the process of returning the camera to Sony, however, they have advised me to try a few more times because if they believe it to be a software fault, as opposed to a hardware fault, they will charge me for the repair and shipment costs before they return the camera back. They also suggested to get my hands on a fresh computer, fresh USB cable and try a fresh install following their instructions precisely. A little unfair to the average person who might not be able to get their hand on 4 or 5 different computers...
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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The reviews of this camera on Amazon are quite brief, so I thought I would put together a more detailed one. Overall I think it is a really good camera, but there are some very inflated claims for its abilities, and it doesn’t quite live up to all the hype. To be honest, I would forgive some of its shortcomings if it were priced a little bit lower, but considering what other cameras are available in this price-range, I would recommend thinking very carefully before buying one of these.
I seem to be a bit unusual in that I bought this camera for still photography and not for video. It is very good for video, but I am not a skilled videographer so probably not the best person to review it on that dimension. I purchased it specifically for low-light situations as a large proportion of my photography falls into this category. I shoot low-light landscapes and cityscapes using a tripod, low-key portraits using flash, and concerts/performances: it is the latter category that I wanted this camera for as you need a relatively high shutter speed and flash is strictly forbidden in live performances. My current set-up is a Nikon D610 combined with a Sigma 70-200mm f2.8, which is a large, conspicuous and heavy combination. The D610 is fairly good when you raise the ISO, certainly better than any other camera I have owned until this point, but for dimly-lit venues you have to go a little higher than I am comfortable with (i.e. over 3200). If I wanted a low-light performer from the Nikon range, the options would be the D4S at over £4k (no chance) or the DF which usually retails for around £2k, but has a peculiar retro styling which does not appeal to me.
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Pros:
• Very detailed out of the box 1080P video at full-frame 35mm sensor size so you get much shallower depth of field than standard film super 35mm size. It makes the 5D2 and 5D3 video look like SD because of how good it is. It's up there with C300 detail.
• Very beautiful stills. There's just something about the quality of them that looks really good. Some reviewers online have said they have a medium format quality to them. That might be because of the great dynamic range. Low shadow noise maybe.
•Silent shutter is an amazing feature.
•Using just about any lens is a great selling point.
•Small raw file sizes for stills is actually a breath of fresh air.
•Incredible dynamic range in stills and video (especially with Slog2)
• The king of low light for video. Similar to other high-ISO cameras for stills at similar output resolutions (ie, if you scale other raw stills down to 12MP at high ISO, some cameras look similar).
•4k mode out to a Shogun is incredible. So detailed. But the 8-bit is still a bit of a problem for grading, which is a shame.
•Metering is very good, especially with the easy-to-access dial on the top. Makes shooting in auto a real option.
•Smooth auto-ISO ramping makes for easy ramping from Indoors to Outdoors for video if you don't have clickless aperture lenses.
•Rear screen is nice and high-res.

Cons:
•You burn through batteries very quickly.
•Compatibility with EF lenses and the Metabones IV adaptor that Sony supposedly worked with Metabones on is terrible. Sometimes the camera won't turn on, sometimes it just doesn't recognise the lens and give you aperture control. It's a pain. Native E-mount and dumb lenses will be fine though.
•Ergonomics are not so great.
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Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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I have had this camera for about a year and it is superb. I rarely use it for video - it has no in body stabilisation and even if the quality is superb, it isn't smooth unless mounted in a tripod. My Oly EM1 is loads better on video with its 5 axis stabilisation....albeit it doesn't do 4K.
The focus is fast and reliable even in almost complete darkness. The ISO is useable up to about 80,000. I use the camera mainly for astro photography where it excels. No problems whatsoever starting ISO at 3,200 when night shooting and even 6,400 for star shots.
The real value of the super high ISO is to frame your shots when you simply can't see in complete darkness. My friend, shooting with his Nikon D800 was amazed at this and loved the clarity of being able view the picture taken in the viewfinder in lovely detail.
The camera is great with manual focusing lenses due to the focus peaking.
If this camera had the Oly 5 axis IBIS it would be amazing - the A7ii has it and no doubt the A7s II will.
It's an amazing low light camera. Probably the best. Contrary to the first reviewer I find the auto focus works even without focus assist even in complete darkness. It is also very good in daylight with lovely rendering and colours.
I really enjoy using it and have no regrets buying when it first came out.
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