Sony has today released details of two new ultra-compact interchangeable-lens cameras with 36 x 24 mm sensors.


 Sony’s new ILC-a7R with the new 55mm f/1.8 Zeiss lens. (Source: Sony.)

Confirming the marketing message the ‘full-frame is now palm-sized’ the new ILC-a7 and ILC-a7R cameras have dust- and moisture-resistant bodies with aluminium alloy chassis. A detailed ‘First Look’ at the ILC-a7 has been posted on the Photo Review website here.


 The new ILC-a7 (top) and ILC-a7R (below) cameras, shown without lenses. (Source: Sony.)

Both models have virtually identical body designs that feature built-in high-resolution EVFs with Eye-AF detection and tilting LCD   monitor screens with rubberised mode and exposure dials to provide a comfortable grip. The ILC-a7 has a polycarbonate front plate and will sell for an RRP of AU$1999 or US$1698 (body only). This model has a 24-megapixel resolution sensor with embedded phase-detection pixels to support tracking AF for fast focusing when shooting moving subjects. It supports continuous shooting at up to five frames/second.

The ILC-a7R is a 36-megapixel model with magnesium alloy front and top plates. Its sensor has no low-pass filter and features improved microlenses that are offset towards the edge of the chip to minimise light loss when third-party lenses are used with lens adapters. This model will retail for AU$2499 or US$2198.

Both cameras come with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Communication) support and both have inherited the three dial control system from the NEX-7. The also feature a new dual menu system that allows users to choose between a NEX-style user interface or one based on the Sony Alpha DSLR cameras. Continuous shooting is supported at up to four frames/second.

Both cameras are highly customisable, with nine button controls to which up to 43 settings can be assigned. The dials can also be customised. Sony’s Quick Navi screen is available to provide fast access to frequently used adjustments and the AF system has the same adjustable spot mode as the NEX-7, which allows the size of the spot to be controlled.


Rear view of the ILC-a7R with the new VG-C1E vertical grip. (Source: Sony.)

The new cameras will begin shipping in November and will be offered as body-only or in kit format with the 24-70mm and 28-70mm lenses. The a7 kit, which includes the 28-70mm Sony lens will be priced at AU$2199. A vertical grip will also be available. Sony has also announced it will phase out the NEX brand name by the end of 2014.




Lens compatibility

Sony E-mount lenses

Image sensor


35mm full frame (35.8ø—23.9mm), Exmor CMOS sensor

35mm full frame (35.9ø—24.0mm), Exmor CMOS sensor

Number of pixels (effective)

Approx. 24.3 megapixels

Approx. 36.4 megapixels


system (still image)

Recording format

JPEG (DCF Ver. 2.0, Exif Ver.2.3, MPF Baseline compliant), RAW (Sony ARW 2.3 format)

Record system (movie)

Recording format

AVCHD format Ver. 2.0 compliant/ MP4


Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick XC-HG Duo, SD memory card, SDHC memory card (UHS-I compliant), SDXC memory card (UHS-I compliant)

Focus system


Fast Hybrid AF
 (phase detection AF/

contrast detection AF)

Fast Intelligent AF
 ï¼ˆcontrast detection AF)

Focus points

35mm full frame: 117 points (phase detection AF / 25 points (contrast detection AF)

25 points (contrast detection AF)

Exposure control

Metering type

1200-zone evaluative metering

ISO sensitivity (Recommended Exposure Index)

Still images: ISO 100-25600 equivalent (1/3 EV step), (ISO numbers up from ISO 50 can be set as expanded ISO range),
 AUTO (ISO 100-6400, selectable lower limit and upper limit)
 Movies: ISO 200-25600 equivalent (1/3 EV step) / AUTO (ISO 200-6400 equivalent)



1.3 cm (0.5-type) electronic viewfinder (colour)

Number of dots

2,359,296 dots

Field coverage



approx. 0.71x (with 50mm lens at infinity, -1m-1) diopter

LCD screen


7.5cm (3.0-type) type TFT

No. of dots

921,600 dots

Adjustable angle

Up by approx. 90 degrees, Down by approx. 45 degrees


View on smartphone


Send to computer


View on TV



Yes (NFC Forum Type 3 Tag compatible,

One-touch remote,   One-touch sharing)

PlayMemories Camera Apps




Built-in stereo microphones or ECM-CG50/ XLR-K1M (sold separately)


Built-in, monaural

Headphone Terminal

Yes (3.5 mm stereo minijack)

Dimensions (excluding protrusions)

Approx. 126.9mm x 94.4mm x 48.2mm


Approx. 416g (body only)

Approx. 474g (with battery and Memory Stick PRO Duo included)

Approx. 407g (body only)

Approx. 465g (with battery and Memory Stick PRO Duo included)