Off Brand: Sony Announces the A9

3kramd5

EOS R6
Mar 2, 2012
3,084
405
HTML:
<em>Groundbreaking Full-frame Mirrorless Camera Delivers Unmatched Speed, Versatility and Usability</em></p>
<ul>
<li><em>World’s First<span class="green"><sup>1</sup></span> full-frame stacked CMOS sensor, 24.2 MP<span class="green"><sup>2 </sup></span>resolution</em></li>
<li><em>Blackout-Free Continuous Shooting</em><span class="green"><em><sup>3</sup></em></span><em> at up to 20fp</em><em>s<span class="green"><sup>4</sup></span></em><em> for up to 241 RAW</em><span class="green"><em><sup>5</sup></em></span><em>/ 362 JPEG</em><span class="green"><em><sup>6</sup></em></span><em> images</em></li>
<li><em>Silent</em><span class="green"><em><sup>7</sup></em></span><em>, Vibration-free shooting at speeds up to 1/32,000 sec</em><span class="green"><em><sup>8</sup></em></span></li>
<li><em>693 point focal plane phase detection AF points with 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second</em></li>
<li><em>Extensive professional features including Ethernet port for file transfer, Dual SD card slots and extended battery life</em></li>
<li><em>5-Axis in-body image stabilization with a 5.0 step</em><span class="green"><em><sup>9 </sup></em></span><em>shutter speed advantage</em></li>
</ul>
<p><strong>NEW YORK, Apr. 19, 2017 – </strong>Sony Electronics, a worldwide leader in digital imaging and the world’s largest image sensor manufacturer, has today introduced their new revolutionary digital camera, the α9 (model ILCE-9).</p>
<p>The most technologically advanced, innovative digital camera that Sony has ever created, the new α9 offers a level of imaging performance that is simply unmatched by any camera ever created – mirrorless, SLR or otherwise.</p>
<p>The new camera offers many impressive capabilities that are simply not possible with a modern digital SLR camera including high-speed, blackout-free continuous shooting<span class="green"><em><sup>3</sup></em></span> at up to 20fps<span class="green"><em><sup>4</sup></em></span>, 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second<span class="green"><em><sup> 10</sup></em></span>, a maximum shutter speed of up to 1/32,000 second<span class="green"><em><sup>8</sup></em></span> and much more. These are made possible thanks to its 35mm full-frame stacked Exmor RS™ CMOS sensor – the world’s first of its kind – which enables data speed processing at up to 20x faster than previous Sony full-frame mirrorless cameras<span class="green"><em><sup>11</sup></em></span>. This unique sensor is paired with a brand new, upgraded BIONZ X processing engine and front end LSI that maximizes overall performance.</p>
<p>This industry-leading speed and innovative silent shooting<span class="green"><em><sup>7</sup></em></span> is combined with a focusing system that features an incredible 693 phase detection AF points. Covering approximately 93% of the frame, the focusing system ensures that even the fasting moving subjects are reliably captured and tracked across the frame.</p>
<p>The new α9 also features a vibration free, fully electronic, completely silent anti-distortion shutter<span class="green"><em><sup>7</sup></em></span> with absolutely no mechanical mirror or shutter noise, making it an extremely powerful photographic tool for any shooting situation that demands quiet operation. To ensure maximum usability and reliability, the camera features a new Z battery with approximately 2.2x the capacity of W batteries, as well as dual SD media card slots, including one that supports UHS-II cards. An Ethernet port (wired LAN terminal) is available as well, and there is a wide variety of new settings, controls and customizability options that are essential for working pros.</p>
<p>“This camera breaks through all barriers and limitations of today’s professional digital cameras, with an overall feature set that simply cannot be matched considering the restrictions of mechanical SLR cameras” said Neal Manowitz, Vice President of Digital Imaging at Sony Electronics. “But what excites us most about the α9 – more than its extensive product specs – is that it allows professionals to see, follow and capture the action in ways that were never before possible, unlocking an endless amount of new creative potential.”</p>
<p><!--more--></p>
<p><strong>A New Standard of Speed and Focusing Accuracy</strong></p>
<p>Critical to the record-breaking speed of the new α9 is the combination of the new stacked 24.2 MP<span class="green"><em><sup>2</sup></em></span> Exmor RS image sensor, new BIONZ X processor and front end LSI.</p>
<p>The immense processing power from these new components allows for faster AF/AE calculation while also reducing EVF display latency. The processor and front end LSI are also responsible for the larger continuous shooting buffer, enabling photographers to shoot at a blazing 20 fps<span class="green"><em><sup>4</sup></em></span> with continuous AF/AE tracking for up to 362 JPEG<span class="green"><em><sup>6</sup></em></span> or 241 RAW<span class="green"><em><sup>5</sup></em></span> images.</p>
<p>The camera’s innovative AF system tracks complex, erratic motion with higher accuracy than ever before, with the ability to calculate AF/AE at up to 60 times per second<span class="green"><em><sup>10</sup></em></span>, regardless of shutter release and frame capture. Further, when the shutter is released while shooting stills, the electronic viewfinder functions with absolutely no blackout, giving the user a seamless live view of their subject at all times<span class="green"><em><sup> 12</sup></em></span>. This feature truly combines all of the benefits of an electronic viewfinder with the immediacy and “in the moment” advantages that not even the finest optical viewfinders can match, and is available in all still image modes including high speed 20 fps<span class="green"><em><sup>4</sup></em></span> continuous shooting.</p>
<p>With 693 focal plane phase detection AF points covering approximately 93% of the frame, the camera ensures improved precision and unfailing focus in scenes where focus might otherwise be difficult to achieve. The Fast Hybrid AF system – pairing the speed and excellent tracking performance of phase detection AF with the precision of contrast AF – achieves approximately 25% faster performance when compared with α7R II, ensuring all fast-moving subjects are captured.</p>
<p><strong>Professional Capabilities in a Compact Body</strong></p>
<p>Sony’s new full-frame camera is equipped with a variety of enhanced capabilities that give it a true professional operational style.</p>
<p>The α9 features an all-new, high-resolution, high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder with approximately 3,686k dots for extremely accurate, true-to-life detail reproduction. The new Tru-Finder, which is the highest resolution viewfinder ever for a Sony α camera, incorporates an optical design that includes a double-sided aspherical element, helping it to achieve 0.78x magnification and a level of corner to corner sharpness that is simply outstanding. The EVF also utilizes a ZEISS® T* Coating to greatly reduce reflections, and has a fluorine coating on the outer lens that repels dirt.</p>
<p>This all adds up to a luminance that is 2x higher than the XGA OLED Tru-Finder from the α7R II, creating a viewfinder image with a brightness level that is nearly identical to the actual scene being framed, ensuring the most natural shooting experience. The frame rate of the Tru-Finder is even customizable, with options to set it for 60 fps or 120 fps<span class="green"><em><sup>13 </sup></em></span>to best match the action.</p>
<p>The α9 is equipped with an innovative 5-axis image stabilization system that provides a shutter speed advantage of 5.0 steps<span class="green"><em><sup> 9</sup></em></span>, ensuring the full resolving power of the new sensor can be realized, even in challenging lighting. Also, with a simple half press of the shutter button, the effect of the image stabilization can be monitored in the viewfinder or on the LCD screen, allowing framing and focus to be accurately checked and continually monitored.</p>
<p>The α9 also offers an Ethernet port (wired LAN terminal), allowing convenient transfer of still image files to a specified FTP server at high-speed, making it an ideal choice for studio photography, high-profile news and sporting events and more. There is a sync terminal as well, enabling external flash units and cables to be connected directly for convenient flash sync.</p>
<p><strong>New Features for Fast Operation</strong></p>
<p>Sony’s new α9 has several new and updated focus functions that support faster, easier focusing in a variety of situations. The camera features a multi-selector joystick on the back of the camera, allowing shooters to easily shift focus point within the frame by pressing the multi-selector in any direction up, down, left or right when shooting in Zone, Flexible Spot or Expanded Flexible Spot focus area modes. The new model also offers touch focusing on the rear LCD screen for easily selecting of and shifting focus towards a desired focus point or subject.</p>
<p>New for Sony E-mount cameras, the α9 includes the addition of separate drive mode and focus mode dials, plus a new “AF ON” button that can be pressed to activate autofocus directly when shooting still images or movies.</p>
<p>Additional new capabilities include the “AF Area Registration”, which allows frequently used focus area to be memorized and recalled via custom button assignments. There is also the ability to assign specific settings (exposure, shutter speed, drive mode, etc) to a custom button to be instantly recalled when needed. The camera can memorize and automatically recall the last focus point used in a vertical or horizontal orientation as well, instantly switching back to it when that specific orientation is used again.</p>
<p>For enhanced customization, a “My Menu” feature is available, allowing up to 30 menu items to be registered in a custom menu for instant recall when needed.</p>
<p><strong>Double Battery Life, Double Memory</strong></p>
<p>The innovative α9 camera features an all-new Sony battery (model NP-FZ100) with 2.2x the capacity of previous Sony full-frame models, allowing for much longer shooting performance.</p>
<p>Also, based on extensive customer feedback, the new camera offers two separate media card slots, including one for UHS-II media. The same data can simultaneously be recorded to both cards, or the user can choose to separate RAW / JPEG or still images / movies. Movies can also simultaneously be recorded to two cards for backup and more efficient data management.</p>
<p><strong>High Sensitivity and Wide Dynamic Range</strong></p>
<p>The unique design of the α9 image sensor represents the pinnacle of Sony device technology. The 24.2 MP<span class="green"><em><sup> 2</sup></em> </span>full-frame stacked CMOS sensor is back-illuminated, allowing to capture maximum light and produce outstanding, true-to-life image quality. The sensor also enables the diverse ISO range of 100 – 51200, expandable to 50 – 204800<span class="green"><em><sup>14</sup></em></span>, ensuring optimum image quality with minimum noise at all settings.</p>
<p>The enhanced BIONZ X processor plays a large part in image quality as well, as it helps to minimize noise in the higher sensitivity range while also reducing the need to limit ISO sensitivity in situations where the highest quality image is required.</p>
<p>The new α9 also supports uncompressed 14-bit RAW, ensuring users can get the most out of the wide dynamic range of the sensor.</p>
<p><strong>4K Video Capture</strong></p>
<p>The new α9 is very capable as a video camera as well, as it offers 4K (3840x2160p) video recording across the full width of the full-frame image sensor<span class="green"><em><sup>15, 16</sup></em></span>. When shooting in this format, the camera uses full pixel readout without pixel binning to collect 6K of information, oversampling it to produce high quality 4K footage with exceptional detail and depth. Recording is also available in the popular Super 35mm size.</p>
<p>Additionally, the camera can record Full HD at 120 fps at up to 100 Mbps, which allows footage to be reviewed and eventually edited into 4x or 5x slow motion video files in Full HD resolution with AF tracking<span class="green"><em><sup>17</sup></em></span>.</p>
<p><strong>New Accessories</strong></p>
<p>Sony has released a variety of new accessories to compliment the new α9 camera, including:</p>
<ul>
<li><strong><em>NP-FZ100 Rechargeable Battery – </em></strong>high-capacity battery with approximately 2.2x the capacity of the NP-FW50 W-series battery. It also supports InfoLITHIUM® technology, making it possible to view the remaining battery power as both a percentage display and five step icon on the camera’s LCD screen.</li>
<li><strong><em>VG-C3EM Vertical Grip</em></strong> – provides same operation, handling and design as theα9 camera, doubles battery life and allows USB battery-charging via the camera body.</li>
<li><strong><em>NPA-MQZ1K Multi-Battery Adaptor Kit</em></strong> – External multi-battery adaptor kit capable of functioning as an external power supply for four Z series batteries and as a quick charger. Kit comes with two packs of NP-FZ100 rechargeable batteries.</li>
<li><strong><em>GP-X1EM Grip Extension</em></strong> – Grip extender with same look, feel and design as α9 body. Enables more solid hold on camera.</li>
<li><strong><em>FDA-EP18 Eyepiece Cup</em></strong> –eye piece cup with locking mechanism</li>
<li><strong><em>BC-QZ1 Battery Charger</em></strong> –quick-charging battery charger. Charges one new Z series battery in approximately 2.5 hours.</li>
<li><strong><em>PCK</em></strong>–<strong><em>LG1 Screen Protect Glass Sheet – </em></strong>hard, shatterproof glass screen protector with anti-stain coating to prevent fingerprints. Compatible with touch operation and tilting LCD screen</li>
</ul>
<p><strong>Pricing and Availability</strong></p>
<p>The Sony α9 Full-frame Interchangeable Lens Camera will ship this May for about $4,500 US and $6,000 CA. It will be sold at a variety of Sony authorized dealers throughout North America.</p>

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ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
8,617
1,642
Here you go. $4500 according to DPR.

Not integrally gripped as many had presumed. I'm interested to hear the battery life with something like this.

- A
 

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ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
8,617
1,642
Press release here (with a lot of detail):

https://www.dpreview.com/news/1308959313/sony-announces-a9-24mp-20fps-high-end-full-frame-sports-camera

- A
 

3kramd5

EOS R6
Mar 2, 2012
3,084
405
Infomercial on the stacked sensor:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=87&v=y9Ui4Z7RAqc
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
8,617
1,642
Idiots. They finally step up to a high fps super rig and they kept the A7R II general footprint. Though a grip 'extender' is being sold alongside this rig, the basic grip is both too small and too close to the mount for the larger glass that people buying $4500 cameras will surely use.

A terrible decision. Who the hell buys a $4500 20 fps professional rig and frets about the overall camera footprint?

Superimposed shot below and a reminder of why that sucks.

- A
 

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drjlo

EOS R
Mar 27, 2012
805
7
If I were a pro requiring high frame rates, this would be veeryy interesting.
As things stand with me and I suspect most others, the question is Price, and final image/sensor quality when compared to previous A7xxx series when shooting non-moving objects...
 

ahsanford

Particular Member
Aug 16, 2012
8,617
1,642
drjlo said:
If I were a pro requiring high frame rates, this would be veeryy interesting.
As things stand with me and I suspect most others, the question is Price, and final image/sensor quality when compared to previous A7xxx series when shooting non-moving objects...

If I shoot...

Sports / wildlife = I would consider it. ...after Sony puts out more glass. I also legitimately question whether that dainty grip so close to the mount will p--- off folks who principally hook huge / fast lenses on there.

Weddings/events = I would consider it. It's now possible to shoot fully silent, but 20 fps is clearly overkill. But surely a $2500-3500 5D4 or D810 is the better move for them unless I make a living off of older adapted glass.

Reportage / photojourno = I would consider it. Small footprint + FPS = a weirdly useful place for that bunch of folks.

Landscape = no. This is not the droid they are looking for.

Portraiture = no. Ditto.

Macro / Product = no. Ditto.

Hybrid stills/video = I want to say sure (full frame 4K w/o crop!) but with all things video, the devil's in the details and we don't know the details yet.

Curious to see what camps of interested parties surface for this thing. In some cases, it's a monster. In others, it's clear that they haven't learned much from the A7 experience and they still haven't bulked up the lens portfolio enough to woo CaNikon folks.

- A
 

Chaitanya

EOS R
Jun 27, 2013
1,428
606
35
Pune
Where are super tele lenses? Where is improved UI? Where is good quality tracking AF(even EOS XXXD do decent job of tracking subjects)? Yeah forgot about lockups of Sony cameras when buffer is being cleared.
Atleast they have increased the size of battery and added Dual UHS-II SD slots.
 

SUNDOG04

EOS 90D
CR Pro
Mar 1, 2015
112
56
I own a 6D and am fine with that (I don't do sports). If I were to have a high end Nikon or Canon and still did not get excellent photos, then I doubt a Sony A9 would be helpful.
 

3kramd5

EOS R6
Mar 2, 2012
3,084
405
Chaitanya said:
Where are super tele lenses?
Good question
Where is good quality tracking AF(even EOS XXXD do decent job of tracking subjects)
in this camera, presumably, with nearly edge to edge sensors and the processor integrated into the sensor, but the proof will be in the pudding
Yeah forgot about lockups of Sony cameras when buffer is being cleared.
Even if it still locks up, it would take some doing to get there, but sure that has been problematic before
 

xps

EOS R
Oct 19, 2011
1,001
112
Middle Europe
Maybe an fine addition to use on my 600mm lens. 20fps for birding. Maybe an fast AF and maybe an superb trackingability paired with more than 200 Raw shots.
And this in the range of the 5DIV.

Interesting body, maybe not for carrying and using it with big lenses. But if the IQ will be superb and all adapters work fine, an competitor to some other bodies.
 

H. Jones

Photojournalist
Aug 1, 2014
695
1,323
ahsanford said:
drjlo said:
If I were a pro requiring high frame rates, this would be veeryy interesting.
As things stand with me and I suspect most others, the question is Price, and final image/sensor quality when compared to previous A7xxx series when shooting non-moving objects...

If I shoot...

Sports / wildlife = I would consider it. ...after Sony puts out more glass. I also legitimately question whether that dainty grip so close to the mount will p--- off folks who principally hook huge / fast lenses on there.

Reportage / photojourno = I would consider it. Small footprint + FPS = a weirdly useful place for that bunch of folks.

- A


As a photojournalist that shoots with a 1DX mark II, this definitely has my attention, but I really don't think this camera will start a revolution or anything yet.

If there's anything I need as a photojournalist, it's battery life and professional support.

I'll be interested in hearing how much battery life they can get out of this camera in a typical shoot, but photojournalists didn't go digital to end up having to change batteries as much as we changed film. Missing critical moments is not on the table, and this past weekend I shot a 9-hour wedding on the side with around 5,000+ images with a single battery from my 1DX mark II and still had battery life leftover.

That said, battery life or not, I doubt Sony will suddenly fix its professional supports problems I consistently hear about from people working with them.

Ultimately though, size really doesn't matter to most PJs who often use supertelephoto lenses, and to the ones that it does, they typically don't need high FPS anyway and shoot with a 5D mark III/IV.

As pointed out by other posts, the grip-lens mount distance just looks terrible with bigger lenses as well. I've never found anything about Sony cameras I've tried like the A7R to be ergonomic, and this hasn't changed from that design.

Another thing that I don't see in the press release is the option for voice memos on images. Maybe I'm wrong, but if it doesn't have that, a lot of the professional sports photogs I know won't make the jump simply for that. When you have voice memos, you can quickly say the play and player and result and tag that to the image, so then when you're editing captions you can get the details immediately. I know that's a bit of a niche feature, however.


EDIT: Just found out from DPReview that the CIPA battery life for the A9 is 650 shots. So.. you can shoot 20 fps for 30 seconds then? Not inspiring confidence. Two batteries would put it up to the CIPA for the 1DX mark II, but the 1DX mark II has consistently been much higher for me than CIPA since I almost never chimp or use life-view, while the A9 would be constantly using the EVF when shooting, especially if it's at 120 fps refresh for sports.
 
H. Jones said:
EDIT: Just found out from DPReview that the CIPA battery life for the A9 is 650 shots. So.. you can shoot 20 fps for 30 seconds then? Not inspiring confidence. Two batteries would put it up to the CIPA for the 1DX mark II, but the 1DX mark II has consistently been much higher for me than CIPA since I almost never chimp or use life-view, while the A9 would be constantly using the EVF when shooting, especially if it's at 120 fps refresh for sports.

Take a look at the comments, it seems high speed shooting depleates the battery less per shot (no shutter to power & the setup time per shot is minimal).

I suspect the "CIPA" method is something like, AF, check your light levels.. all over several seconds, then take one shot... someone else may know.
 

PureClassA

Canon since age 5. The A1
CR Pro
Aug 15, 2014
2,123
824
Mandeville, LA
Shields-Photography.com
Certainly this is quite the amazing product if we go straight off the specs sheet, but I have to wonder, who the heck is this camera built for? I'm with ahsanford on that one. This is a ton of meat slapped on what appears to be some frail bones. Shooters who require that level of speed are generally wanting a more robust body to fit bigger/faster glass (that sony doesn't really produce). I'm sure that the Sony fans will buy it nonetheless. I'm still quite happy with my DX2 and all the glass available for it.

The only thing about this to be seen is how well the servo AF works in REAL LIFE (off the specs page). 20FPS isn't worth a damn if the AF can't actually keep up with that.

I'll hold my breath and wait for user feedback before I come to any final conclusions on this one
 

PureClassA

Canon since age 5. The A1
CR Pro
Aug 15, 2014
2,123
824
Mandeville, LA
Shields-Photography.com
Yup, continuous shooting is VERY different. I've previously posted a picture of my 1DX2 screen showing over 10,000 shots fired on ONE battery (LP-E19) with about 7% remaining. This was over about 10 hour period on one day. But yes, I imagine having EVF constantly as you would on MILC would skew the numbers closer together.

rfdesigner said:
H. Jones said:
EDIT: Just found out from DPReview that the CIPA battery life for the A9 is 650 shots. So.. you can shoot 20 fps for 30 seconds then? Not inspiring confidence. Two batteries would put it up to the CIPA for the 1DX mark II, but the 1DX mark II has consistently been much higher for me than CIPA since I almost never chimp or use life-view, while the A9 would be constantly using the EVF when shooting, especially if it's at 120 fps refresh for sports.

Take a look at the comments, it seems high speed shooting depleates the battery less per shot (no shutter to power & the setup time per shot is minimal).

I suspect the "CIPA" method is something like, AF, check your light levels.. all over several seconds, then take one shot... someone else may know.
 

Dylan777

EOS-1D X Mark III
Nov 17, 2011
5,514
9
PureClassA said:
Certainly this is quite the amazing product if we go straight off the specs sheet, but I have to wonder, who the heck is this camera built for? I'm with ahsanford on that one. This is a ton of meat slapped on what appears to be some frail bones. Shooters who require that level of speed are generally wanting a more robust body to fit bigger/faster glass (that sony doesn't really produce). I'm sure that the Sony fans will buy it nonetheless. I'm still quite happy with my DX2 and all the glass available for it.

The only thing about this to be seen is how well the servo AF works in REAL LIFE (off the specs page). 20FPS isn't worth a damn if the AF can't actually keep up with that.

I'll hold my breath and wait for user feedback before I come to any final conclusions on this one

From a7r II stand point, AF is excellent for tracking. A9 seems to be even more superior.

I'll put my preorder this Friday. Will let you guys know real user feedback.