Industry News: Sony announces their new flagship camera, the alpha a1

Feb 15, 2020
458
314
Might be just me, but this makes me even happier with my R5. The specs sound good, but this is as good as it gets for them and it is 7,5k euro.

Nothing makes me feel as though I am missing out with the R5. And there is still the R1 to come.
I feel the same way really. Some pretty amazing specs though! Let’s see how the overheating situation plays out.
 

jam05

EOS RP
Mar 12, 2019
344
181
That an impressive set of specs! Sony users will be happy. If they were to fix the UI they would have a winner!
Don't know about it being a "Winner" but is will retire their A9, which one can count on one hand in most sporting venues
 

HarryFilm

EOS RP
Jun 6, 2016
705
166
This is actually a VERY VERY VERY GOOD CAMERA from Sony!

We are platform agnostic using Arri, Red, Sony, Canon, Fuji, Panasonic, Phantom, Blackmagic, Olympus, Go-Pro, Our Own Custom Built cameras, etc. etc), so I have NO PROBLEM with switching between or using different cameras from different manufacturers depending on my project needs/desires.

The ONLY ISSUE I see with this Sony A-1 is that 1.89:1 Cinema Aspect Ratios (i.e. DCI 8K 8192 by 4320 pixels and DCI 4K 4096 by 2160 pixels) video recording is NOT available on this camera!

This Sony A1 only has the 16:9 aspect ratio XUHDTV 7680 by 4320 pixels and UHDTV 3840 by 2160 pixels recording modes which is a limiting factor for those who are using this as B and C cameras or as Crash Cams for Hollywood, Netflix, Amazon or Apple Cinema distribution contracts. For TV commercials and documentaries though this Sony A1 is a GREAT CAMERA!

We use the Canon R5 as Cinema crash cams in flight, underwater and in space, so WE MUST HAVE 1.89:1 Cinema Aspect Ratio imagery on ANY video-centric or hybrid camera we buy! Only Arri, Red, Canon and Blackmagic offer these native 1.89:1 DCI recording modes.

Other than that issue, this NEW Sony A-1 camera will DEFINITELY BE GREAT for the low-to-medium budget commercial-oriented and documentray-oriented cinematographer.

I am looking forward to giving it a try. I’ll put in a P.O. for a few of them later this afternoon.

See full specs for Sony A-1:

https://www.sony.ca/en/electronics/interchangeable-lens-cameras/ilce-1/specifications

V
 
  • Like
Reactions: tvs

PerKr

EOS 90D
Jul 11, 2018
107
102
Sverige
Honestly not impressed. I expected to be. But this is more or less a somewhat upgraded A9. A9 with higher resolution and faster sensor (to allow 1/200s flash sync) and 8k that's not on the level of the R5. And the price... I mean, it's a great camera, it's just not that impressive given what the A9 and R5 already achieved. Seems like a pretty easy target for the R1 to hit?

Also, I don't understand why they did not make this the A9mkIII and instead decided to mess their naming conventions up. Why do it now, after so many years of 5-, 7- and 9-series in both A and E mount? especially since it's designed and priced as an A9mkII successor. It's like they just looked at Canon and said "let's be more like Canon. On the surface."
 

Andy Westwood

EOS R6
CR Pro
Dec 10, 2016
146
226
UK
Sony Trumps Canon once more (ah! Should I have said that word, Trump! Lol) Sony first to announce the mirrorless 1! I watched the launch via CR live and certainly an impressive bit of kit.

Come on Canon! The bar is set to follow or surpass for the up-and-coming R1
 

jayphotoworks

EOS RP
Aug 11, 2016
249
103
It will still have overheating constraints in 8K (8.6K oversampled) at about 30mins, but the rest of the spec sheet seems great. The electronic shutter can sync to 1/200 and the mechanical shutter can sync to 1/400. It looks like the e-shutter itself might be very close to mechanical shutter speeds removing some of the remaining advantages of mechanical shutters.

I think Sony really needed a new body rather than recycle the same A7 style they've been using for what seems like an eternity. But Sony seems to be the new Nikon these days and it seems to be coming around to those early days when Canon and Nikon leapfrogged each other release after release.
 

fred

I'm New Here
Oct 9, 2020
21
18
Sony changed their strategy for the zoom olympics and came out of hiding first - usually they will wait for Canon and Nikon first (e.g. R6, Z6II —> A7IV)...
 

john1970

EOS R5
CR Pro
Dec 27, 2015
118
130
Northeastern US
Amazing specifications and I will be very interested to see what Canon R1 can do as well. Not surprised at the price of $6500, but that is without a vertical grip. By the time one adds the vertical grip and pays sales tax one is looking at $7000 for a camera. Wow! I definitely want to purchase a flagship camera from Sony or Canon, but because I can only afford one I will wait and see what Canon releases. Once I have info on both I will make my decision.
 
  • Like
Reactions: navastronia

JordanCS13

EOS R5 | R6
Aug 1, 2020
18
57
www.admiringlight.com
So... its basically a 5DS for 3 times the price, with less noise, more DR and a few more frames per sec :p

I'm assuming you're joking, but in case you aren't....it's a 5Ds with two stops better dynamic range 30fps vs 5fps, world-class AF, zero blackout, 1/400s flash sync, 1/200s electronic shutter flash sync, an enormous viewfinder and so on.. But yeah, otherwise the same. :)
 

padam

EOS R
Aug 26, 2015
1,143
761
The R5 still has:
-better ergonomics
-much sharper articulating screen
-better lens mount
-better IBIS
-internal 8K RAW or 10-bit 4:2:2 instead or 4:2:0
-colours (this could trigger some people, but true to an extent especially for video, which is usually compressed)
-4K30p HQ full sensor mode, not offered in the A1 (only 5.8K APC-C mode) maybe because it would overheat just as much and 8K 10-bit 4:2:0 generates less heat? but it puts the overheat drama into a very different perspective

For 2600$ less, it looks to be in a very solid position in the camera market, so I wouldn't except a price drop after this.

While the A1 looks great, I think it is typical Sony in the way of just endlessly chasing specs (which are actually lacking here and there) and not improving in other important areas while the R5 is now suddenly perceived as "lacklustre" but it is actually a really great camera underneath.
 
Last edited:

HarryFilm

EOS RP
Jun 6, 2016
705
166
What am impressive improvement once again - a realy impressive featureset.
I think the a7s III was very specific for video people - while this camera looks like a perfect, high end allrounder. Sport, landscape, productshots, video... it simply got everything one could wish for...

It runs "up to 30 minutes", according to sony in 4k60 or 8k. So similar overheating is to be expected like on the R5. Lets see how this plays out on the fans :-D

---

The 30 minute issue is POSSIBLY linked to the European-specific Taxation issue which charges different import tax rates on cameras that record for less than 30 minutes versus 30+ minutes. If someone is clever with camera BIOS'es (i.e. ME!) I would just do a quick bios assembler/microcode JMP/RTN instruction to get rid of that limit! That voids the warranty but I don't care since we buy cameras by the bucket load at 10 to 100 cameras at a time!

If it TRULY IS a thermal limitation, then it means then Sony is NOT using active cooling or a large-enough internal heat sink!

It also means the Canon R5 is STILL THE SUPERIOR CAMERA, since I get Hollywood Cinema-specific DCI 8k (1.89:1 aspect ratio 8192 by 4320 pixels) recording AND up-to-45 minutes at 8K when I put in our CF-express slot to external 4TB SSD-drive system on it which removes the R5 card slot file save limits! The Sony only has UHDTV 16:9 aspect ratios for 8K and 4K video.

For Sports/Action/Wildlife still photographers, the Sony A-1 has 30 FPS burst rate which is INSANELY FAST !!!

I should note though, for the longest while on ALL my side-job F1, Soccer, Hockey, Skiing, basketball imagery, I've been shooting at DCI 4K (i.e. 8 megapixel shots) at 60 fps VIDEO MODE for my online and printed magazine spreads. I've never had the low-pixel count issue raised since I use a super-high-quality Fractal Image Resizer to submit my final images as colour-corrected and cropped 8 Megapixel Web-specific RGBA PNG files and and 32 megapixel hardcopy print CMYK TIFF files to editors around the world! They don't need to do any other work so they are happy and we get PAID FAST AND FURIOUSLY!

We also submit colour corrected/edited video clips and they are THRILLED at that for using those on their online web promos! AND NOBODY HAS NOTICED THE DIFFERENCE between my stills modes and video frame captures since I use a video-oriented DCI 8K 30 fps or a DCI 4K 60 fps recording as my Burst Rate imaging !!!!!


V
 
Last edited:

Codebunny

Elil
Sep 5, 2018
735
729
Scotland
The specs look impressive but it lacks a built in grip. We'll also need to see what the R1 and Z1/Z9 have, I suspect the pro Z body will have the A1 sensor with Nikon colour's and Nikon ergonomics for instance.

Like Nikon, Sony do put the on/off switch in the 'right' place. Flick and click in one motion.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Kharan

john1970

EOS R5
CR Pro
Dec 27, 2015
118
130
Northeastern US
I am also also disappointed that Sony did not address ergonomics of the Alpha series especially for their premier camera. I really wished they would have made an integrated vertical grip and made the camera a bit larger for us individuals with larger hands.
 

padam

EOS R
Aug 26, 2015
1,143
761
Like Nikon, Sony do put the on/off switch in the 'right' place. Flick and click in one motion.
I do have a few (minor) reservations about the R5, but the on/off switch on the left side is perfectly fine, makes the right side a lot cleaner and the shutter button can be at the perfect positive with the right angle, I'd rather have it as-is.
I think they may put the on/off switch on the R1 in a similar position where it is on the 1DX III.
What I hate is where they've moved the menu button (copied from Sony...) at least it should have been exchanged with the rate button.
 
  • Like
Reactions: dwarven and Zakiff
<-- start Taboola -->