Overnight, Sony has released details of its latest full-frame mirrorless camera, the α7R III plus new FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS and FE 400mm f/2.8GM OSS lenses.


Angled view of the new ?7R III camera with the FE 24-70MM f/2.8 GM lens (Source: Sony.)

The body of the ?7R III is almost identical to the previous generation Mark II model and the 42.4-megapixel back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor is essentially unchanged, although it uses a slightly different design with gapless microlenses and a new anti-reflective coating on the surface of the sensor’s sealing glass. No optical low pass filter has been added to maximise resolution. Improvements to the BIONZ X   process or have boosted processing speed by approximately 1.8 times compared to the ?7R II. Consequently, continuous shooting speeds have increased from five frames/second (fps) to 10 fps (mechanical or electronic shutter) with full AF/AE tracking. Sensitivities have expanded to cover a native ISO range of 100-32000 (expandable to ISO 50″“102400 for still images) with a claimed 15-stopdynamic range at low sensitivity settings. The camera also supports 14 bit RAW format, including when shooting in silent or continuous mode.

The AF system still includes the 399 point phase detection array, which covers approximately 68% of the sensor area in both the horizontal and vertical directions.   The system also includes 425 contrast AF points, an increase of 400 points compared to the ?7R II, which roughly halves the Mark II’s acquisition time in low-light conditions and doubles tracking accuracy. The Eye AF feature, available when utilising Sony’s A-mount lenses with an adapter, is also approximately two times more effective. Additional improvements in focusing flexibility include AF availability in Focus Magnifier mode, focal plane phase-detection AF support when using A-mount lenses, an ‘AF On’ button, a multi-selector or ‘joystick’ for moving focusing points quickly and flexible touch focus functionality.

The in-body image stabilisation system has also been improved and is now rated at 5.5 stops. There is also a new low-vibration shutter that reduces vibration and image blur in all modes, including the high speed 10 fps shooting, as well as several advancements in accurate colour reproductions of skin tones. Users can activate the Anti-flicker function to allow the ?7R III to automatically detect frequency of flicker-prone lighting and time the shutter to minimise its effect on images being captured. This minimises any exposure or colour anomalies that can sometimes occur at the top and bottom of images shot at high shutter speeds.

Like its predecessor, the ?7R III can record 4K (3840 x 2160 pixels) video across the full width of the full-frame image sensor. It also supports a Super 35mm format, that uses full pixel readout without pixel binning to collect 5K of information, oversampling it to produce 4K footage with greater detail and depth. A new HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) function supports an instant HDR workflow that records in Log but displays fully corrected.  S-Log2 and S-Log3 are available for increased colour grading flexibility. The camera can also record full HD at 120 fps at up to 100 Mbps for editing into 4x or 5x slow motion movies.

The ?7R III boasts a high-resolution, high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finderâ„¢ with approximately 3,686,000 dots and a customisable frame rate, plus a an upgraded monitor with 1,440,000 dots and WhiteMagic technology for improved viewing in outdoor lighting.   Dual media slots include support in one slot for UHS-II type SD memory cards. Users have a variety of options for storing their content, including separate JPEG / RAW recording, separate still image / movie recording and  relay recording. Battery life has been greatly extended as well, as the new camera utilises Sony’s Z series battery that have approximately 2.2 times the capacity of the W series battery in the ?7R II. The new ?7R III allows for convenient transfer of files to a smartphone, tablet, computer or FTP server via Wi-Fi, while also including a flash sync terminal. A SuperSpeed USB (USB 3.1 Gen 1) USB Type-C terminal is also available for increased flexibility in power supply or connected accessories, as well as a faster image transfer speed when connected to a PC.

Released concurrently with the ?7R III is a software suite called “Imaging Edge” that provides three PC applications called ‘Remote’, ‘Viewer’ and ‘Edit’, available for free download, which support live view PC remote shooting and RAW development.

Also launching on the ?7R III is a new Pixel Shift Multi Shooting mode, which uses the 5-axis optical in-body stabilisation to create super-high resolution composite images containing approximately 169.6 megapixels of image data. These four images can be composited together and processed with the new “Imaging Edge” software suite.

The Sony ?7R III full-frame interchangeable lens camera will be available in Australia for SRP$4999 in mid-November.  


The new Sony E-mount FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS standard zoom lens; model SEL24105G. (Source: Sony.)

The latest addition to the Sony E-mount line-up is the FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS (model SEL24105G) lens, which covers the frequently used 24 to 105mm focal length range and is used for genres like landscape, portrait, wedding and general photography. Its optical design uses  17 elements in 14 groups and include four aspherical lens elements, two of which are high precision AA (advanced aspherical) lenses. There are also three strategically located ED (Extra-low Dispersion) glass elements that work in combination with the aspherical lens elements to minimise chromatic aberration and ensure the ultimate resolution is captured. Sony’s Nano AR coating has been applied to minimise flare and ghosting, while a circular aperture delivers high quality bokeh that is consistent for all Sony’s G series. This lens also boasts a moisture-resistant design plus a fluorine coating on the front element to repel dust and grime.

The new FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS lens weighs just 663 grams, making it the lightest lens in its class. It has a minimum focus of 38 cm with a magnification of 1:3.2.  It also includes built-in optical image stabilisation.  The new FE 24-105mm f/4 G OSS standard zoom lens will be available in Australia for SRP$2099 in mid-November.

Sony has also released a ‘development announcement’ heralding a new G Master FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS Super-Telephoto lens, with winter 2018 set for the target launch date. This lens is designed to meet the needs of professional sports, news and wildlife photographers.

For additional Sony product information or stockist details, readers can contact Sony  Australia on 1300 720 071 or visit www.sony.com.au.