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The new Sony a7R III announced with 42.4MP full-frame sensor

By Michael Low & Marcus Wong - on 26 Oct 2017, 9:45am

The new Sony a7R III announced with 42.4MP full-frame sensor

Sony China has just listed the a7R III on its Sony Style site, and it looks to be faster and more accurate than before, while maintaining the same high-resolution sensor as the previous version. How it does this is via a faster BIONZ X processor, coupled with the front-end LSI processor seen in the Sony a9, which also allows the camera a native resolution of ISO 100-32,000 (can be boosted to ISO 50-102,400).

DPReview reports that the camera also has a redesigned low-vibration shutter mechanism, allowing it to shoot at 10 frames per second with full autofocus in both electronic and mechanical shutter mode. Continuous shooting bursts can last for 87 compressed or 28 uncompressed RAW files, or 76 JPEG files.

Also improved, is the autofocus system of the camera. The a7R III gets 399 phase-detect AF points and 425 contrast-detect AF points, compared to just 25 contrast-detect AF points on the a7R II. Suffice to say, focusing speed should be much improved on the new version.

There will also be a new Pixel Shift Multi Shooting mode, which takes a shot four times, shifting the sensor slightly with each shot, much like what we’ve seen with the Olympus OM-D EM5 Mark II. DPReview reports that the final image can’t be produced in camera though, so you’ll have to get the RAW files into a free image processing program that Sony will release soon.

On the video front, it seems the new camera will again offer 4K UHD by using the full width of its sensor, but will also offer Super 35 mode, which essentially uses an APS-C sized region. In this mode, the camera shoots using a 5,176 x 2,924 region and downsamples it to get highly detailed 3,840 x 2,160 4K UHD footage. It will also get the Hybrid Log Gamma feature first seen in the Panasonic LUMIX GH5, which captures Log data, along with metadata so HLG-compatible HDR displays can correctly present the footage.

The a7R III gets the same control layout as the a9.

The a7R III also gains a new layout of controls that follows the a9, with the inclusion of a focus joystick and improved movie recording button. It also gets the new 3.69M-dot OLED viewfinder, and the higher-capacity battery from the A9, while supporting dual SD card slots – changes that should please many photographers.

Sony China has it available for sale by October 26 for RMB23,999, so we can probably expect it to cost about RM15,299 when it reaches Malaysia. Rest assured, we'll update this piece once we get local availability and pricing information. 

Sources: Sony China, Sony Singapore, DPReview, SonyAlphaRumors.