SAN DIEGO- Nov. 7, 2023 – Sony Electronics today introduced the Alpha 9 III camera equipped with the world's firsti full-frame global shutter image sensor. ​ 

The newly developed global shutter image sensor exposes and reads all pixels simultaneously, unlike a rolling shutter sensor that records images sequentially from the top row of pixels to the bottom. The impressive global shutter full-frame image sensor enables the camera to shoot at burst speeds up to 120 frames per second with no rolling shutter distortion or camera blackout. This innovative sensor is combined with Sony’s most advanced AF (autofocus) system to date – boasting AI autofocus with up to 120 times AF/AE focus calculations per second. With the added ability to sync flash at all shooting speeds, the Alpha 9 III opens up a new world of possibilities for professional photographers to capture every decisive moment.

“The Alpha 9 III full-frame camera is a landmark achievement for the industry,” says Yang Cheng, Vice President, Imaging Solutions, Sony Electronics. “Designed with the needs and demands of professional photographers in mind, every single update to this camera – from the sensor to even the size to the button layouts and menu functions – has been made to address specific input and feedback from our community. We have listened and are thrilled to bring the new capabilities of the Alpha 9 III to market—capabilities which allow photographers to capture things they’ve never been able to capture before.” Cheng continued, “For professionals everywhere, they can achieve even more dynamic expressions when the Alpha 9 III is combined with our rich lineup of lenses, in particular with the new 300mm F2.8 G Master OSS – the world’s lightestii large-aperture telephoto lens.”

Features of the Alpha 9 III Full-Frame Camera

A New Dimension of Still Image Performance Created by the World's Firsti Global Shutter Image Sensor 

The Alpha 9 III is equipped with the newly developed, world's firstglobal shutter full frame stacked CMOS image sensor with approximately 24.6 effective megapixelsiii and built-in memory. Combined with the latest image processing engine BIONZ XR®, the Alpha 9 III achieves blackout-free Continuous Shooting Speed with AF/AE trackingiv of up to approximately 120 fpsiv. The Alpha 9 III is supplied with high-density focal plane phase detection AF. A designated AI processing unit uses Real-time Recognition AF to recognize a wide variety of subjects with high precision. By combining high-speed performance of up to 120 fps with highly accurate subject recognition performance, it is possible to easily photograph scenes and moments that cannot be seen with the naked eyeiv. The AI processing unit in the Alpha 9 III supports movies as well as still photography with accurate subject form and movement recognition. The Real-time Recognition AF and Real-time Tracking provide a significant improvement in human eye recognition performance, allowing the camera to automatically recognize, track, and focus on the eyes of a specified subjectv. The Alpha 9 III is equipped with 8.0 stopsvi of optical 5-axis in-body image stabilization, allowing for high-quality image rendering. 

Shutter speed is freed from the limitations of conventional mechanical shutter image sensors and achieves a maximum shutter speed of 1/80,000 second (1/16,000 second during continuous shooting)vii, making it possible to capture at high speed without any distortion. When a compatible Sony flashviii is attached, such as the HVL-F60RM2 and HVL-F46RM (sold separately), it is possible to synchronize the flash and take pictures at all shutter speeds up to 1/80,000 secondvii. Previously, if the user released the shutter at a speed faster than the flash's synchronization speed, the amount of light would drop sharply, but with the full-speed flash synchronization function, it’s now possible to photograph scenes that could not be easily captured with conventional technology. Also, when shooting stills or movies under LED lighting, the Hi Frequency Flicker function can significantly reduce high-frequency flicker problems by allowing the shutter speed to be finely adjusted to match the flicker frequency while viewing the monitor.

Preorder Sony Alpha 9 III Body $5998

The Alpha 9 III features selectable release lag modes which allows the user to prioritize release lag or viewfinder/monitor displayix The newly developed Pre-Capture function allows the camera to continuously record up to one second before the shutter is released, making it easy to capture moments that would otherwise be missed. When selected, the Continuous Shooting Speed Boostx function allows for the user to change to a faster, preset speed set by the user at any time during shooting, and enhanced burst stamina ensures that important moments are reliably captured due to a large buffer memory and increased overall system speed allow up to approximately 390 Fine JPEG imagesxi to be captured in one continuous 30 fpsxii burst.

Customizable focus areas have been expanded to include from XS to XL in addition to the previous S, M, and L sizes. The Preset Focus/Zoom function allows preset focus and zoom settings to be memorized in the camera for quick recall when neededxiii. In addition to the existing custom white balance frame size, the user can now select other sizes as needed which allows for fine white balance adjustment after an image has been composed. The Alpha 9 III has upgraded features such as the latest AF algorithms to achieve high AF precision down to light levels as low as EV-5 in AF-S mode (ISO 100 equivalent, F2.0 lens), AF tracking for continuous shooting at F22xiv and a composite RAW shooting function that gives the ability to combine multiple consecutive images into a high-quality composite. 

Advanced Video Performance Without Distortion 

The global shutter image sensor provides distortion-free image expression for videos as well as still images. For example, the user can shoot images of nearby scenery from a fast-moving vehicle such as a car or fast-moving subjects with ease. This camera is the first in the Alpha™ series to be able to record 4K 120p high-frame-rate video without cropping, allowing the user to shoot at the angle of view intended. It is also possible to shoot high-resolution 4K 60p videos with 6K oversampling. 

The Alpha 9 III has S-Cinetone™, a unique Sony feature which can create a cinematic look straight out of the camera without post-processing. S-Cinetone was created through the development of the VENICE high-end cinema camera and makes human skin tones and subjects stand out beautifully, creating natural highlights. The Alpha 9 III has the latest video performance including rich gradation performance and S-Log3, and when in Log shooting mode, it can reflect and display the user's favorite imported LUT (lookup table). The Alpha 9 III is compatible with the mobile app “Monitor & Control” for video creators.

Operability and Reliability for Professionals 

Sony has listened to the voices of professional photographers and created operability and reliability that supports professional users. The shape of the grip is improved and ergonomically designed so that it can be easily held in the palm of the hand to avoid straining the user even when wearing a telephoto lens or using it for long periods of time. 

The VG-C5 vertical grip (sold separately), provides the same operability and versatility as when shooting horizontally; the user can comfortably support long shooting sessions. The grip and shutter button area share the same design as the main body, allowing image capture without feeling uncomfortable, with the same operability as the camera. The Alpha 9 III is equipped with a 4-axis multi-angle LCD monitor that can be operated by touch, allowing for intuitive operation using the latest touch menu. The electronic viewfinder uses a 9.44 million-dot Quad XGA OLED and achieves high visibility with the same brightness as the Alpha 7R V and a magnification of approximately 0.90x. Also, a custom button is placed on the front of the camera, and the continuous shooting speed can be changed by operating the custom button assigned with Continuous Shooting Speed Boost with the finger holding the grip, allowing for highly immediate operations. It supports professional photographers when shooting in all environments. 

High-Speed Workflow and Scalability to Support Immediate Delivery 

New features for the Alpha 9 III include a playback image filter that allows the user to efficiently select a large number of images using high-speed continuous shooting, and a function menu that can be used even during image playback, strongly supporting professional workflows from shooting to delivery. 

The “Playback Function Menu” can be assigned in advance, so the user can perform protection, smartphone transfer, File transfer protocol, etc. during image playback. The user can select images narrowed down with a playback filter and play them from the function menu, allowing for quick delivery of specific images. The camera has a dedicated microphone for voice memos on the back, and by positioning the built-in microphone near the user’s mouth allows clear recording of audio even in noisy environments. The recorded audio data can be transferred via FTP along with the images. The camera allows the user to set up to 20 presets from the International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC), an international consultative body in which news organizations from various countries participate. ​ 

The Alpha 9 III can transfer data up to twice as fast as the Alpha 9 II. 5 GHz communication offers maximum speed and stability for news and sports shooters who need to deliver immediately via FTP, as well as for studio environments. The Alpha 9 III allows stills and movies to be recorded to memory media in numerous ways including the two media slots that support CFexpress Type A cards as well as UHS-I and UHS-II SD cards.

It is compatible with the professional mobile application “Transfer & Tagging” which speeds up the image delivery workflow, and the application “Remote Camera Tool” which allows remote shooting of PCs using wired LAN. Also, Sony plans to support a new version of Camera Remote SDK, a software development kit that allows remote camera operation and changing shooting settings, in Spring 2024. 

In addition, the Alpha 9 III is scheduled to support functional enhancements such as FTP operability, relay playback, and C2PAxv ​ format support xvi through a camera software updatexvii.

Firmware Updates for the Alpha 1 and Alpha 7S III Models

In addition to the release of Alpha 9 III, Sony has announced new firmware updates for the Alpha 1 and Alpha 7S III full-frame mirrorless cameras xvii. The new software will provide both models with some of Sony’s latest imaging technologies including the highly requested Focus Breathing Compensation feature, IPTC and FTP workflow enhancement, and C2PA format support. The firmware will also update the Alpha 1 with Relay Playback, and the Alpha 7S III with DCI 4K 24.00P shooting format. The camera software update will be available in Spring 2024.

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  1. Ooof, this changes a lot. The mind boggling specs aside (120fps 14bit RAW with Eye AF :O), this marks the dawn of computational photography in full frame cameras. For example just take 12 pics in a 10th of a second and stack them for DR - stuff which so far only smartphones with their small sensors could do. The price is also lower than what I would have expected - still not cheap though. Maybe it will trickle down to amateur cameras within the next years.

    Good for the consumer, this will either force CaNikon to get this tech out themselves or push the prices for whatever camera they have without GS. Any flagship camera without GS will now be considered old tech.
  2. Sony Marketting™ at it's best. A lot of buzzwords and impressive sounding numbers.

    Some good features though that I'd like to see Canon do. the LCD multi-angle display is nice, EVF looks nice, composite RAW, focus breathing compensation. the human AI processing sounds really cool.

    and of course, the R1 should have a global shutter, and 8K.
  3. Bravo, Sony! (not that I'd need GS but it's very good to see). And now it makes me really curious about the upcoming R1. No matter how packed the camera will be, if it's not 24Mpix 120fps GS then not many people will be impressed.
    Canon already has a GS FF sensor but it's 19 Mpix, 60 fps, it's 16:9 and I don't think it has dual pixel AF. My guess is that they'll do something similar for the R1 – about 20 Mpix, 60 fps GS sensor. Or they'll still make a super fast rolling shutter sensor.
  4. Good job Sony and glad to see that global shutters will become a reality. With that said, as a wildlife photographer I would really like to see a camera with 30-40 fps, and solid 1000 frame buffer in RAW not compressed RAW. The 120 fps as mentioned previously is great for stacking and computational photography.

    Still prefer the Canon ergonomics over Sony, but nice to see Sony pushing sensor technology to the limits.
  5. Looks like a great camera.

    However, considering there are some caveats with a global shutter regarding resolution, ISO and dynamic range, if the R5 II rumors are serious about a 62MP stacked sensor with variable resolution and high-end video specs, it looks more like an acceptable compromise for an all-rounder hybrid camera and for a somewhat cheaper price.
    And one day they may also use the stacked sensor from the R3 in an R6 III to keep the R5 and R6 more in line with each other.
  6. Shooting with speeds as low as 1/80,000 with flash sync sounds great for portraits at F1.4 / F1.8 in bright daylight because you could save yourself the ND filter.
    The only flash system that supports such speed will set you back $25,000… enjoy!
  7. Global shutter sounds great and as a Red owner, I’m familiar with the benefits. However, to date only Red has resolved the drawbacks of a global shutter sensor. From the early footage from the Sony A9III, it appears dynamic range took a big hit due to the global shutter. I’m guessing this camera will produce about 10 stops of dynamic range. I’m seeing both crushed blacks and blown highlights. I don’t believe Canon would release such a comprised camera. Frankly, I surprised Sony chose to.
  8. I’m guessing this camera will produce about 10 stops of dynamic range. I’m seeing both crushed blacks and blown highlights. I don’t believe Canon would release such a comprised camera. Frankly, I surprised Sony chose to.
    For a sports-oriented camera should be fine, though.
  9. I’m guessing this camera will produce about 10 stops of dynamic range. I’m seeing both crushed blacks and blown highlights.
    The base ISO is 250. If they kept the read noise the same (probably they were able to, maybe not), DR should be similar to other Exmor sensors at ISO 250. The a9 II delivers 10 stops of DR at ISO 250, per Bill Claff's data. Compare that to the Canon R3, which has 12 stops of DR at base ISO (100).

    Wait, what? Canon's sensor has 2 more stops of low ISO DR than Sony? Calling all DRone Warriors who were so active in bashing Canon a decade ago for their awful low ISO DR compared so Sony sensors (in both Nikon and Sony bodies), when the difference was just 1-1.5 stops. Where are you now? I fully expect you to all start heavily criticizing Sony for this terribly awful 2-stop loss of low ISO DR compared to Canon.

    And then I woke up.
  10. Not so much for wildlife though where you have so little control over shooting conditions
    For which wildlife subject would you need a global shutter, but still can afford low-ISO DR?
  11. I want to test the camera with the new 300 2.8 + TCs ...dayum! Those top specs.... but lets wait for more informations!
    The only flash system that supports such speed will set you back $25,000… enjoy!
    Sony flashes? They advertise those with the A9III.

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