Sony Alpha A9: The new full-frame mirrorless camera

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An open challenge has been given by Sony to its rivals; the company launches a new full-frame mirrorless professional camera. The new Sony Alpha A9 has knocked-out all the professional cameras in the market with its compelling features and image quality.

To give a tough time to the rivals, Sony has designed Alpha A9 with a full-frame CMOS sensor, 693 autofocus points, and implausible continuous shots capabilities. The A9 features 5-axis in body stabilization, shoots 4K videos, and has Ethernet port and dual-SD card slots.

The incredible mirrorless camera dominates over the 20-odd megapixel of Nikon D5 and Canon ID X Mar II. The stacked design means that behind the camera sensor; the BIONZ X image processing engine, integrated DRAM memory modules and a high-speed processing circuit are lined up.

Sony has designed the camera in a different manner, the sensor of A9 can efficiently read the data 20 times faster than any other camera could.

A9 has the capability to shoot at sweltering 20fps for 362 jpeg images or 241 raw files which sound so impressive.

The maximum speed of the camera shutter is 1/32,000 sec and according to Sony A9 is capable of ‘calculating AF/AE at up to 60 times per second — regardless of the shutter release and frame capture’.

To help the photographer in focusing the subject, there is a focus joystick and this is quite handy especially for the photographers who are new in this field.

Sony has also claimed that the 35mm full-frame stacked RS CMOS sensor of Alpha A9 is ‘the world’s first of its kind’. This is indeed a huge claim which Sony has made but this has been proved as compared to Sony’s previous cameras, the data processing speed of A9 is two times faster.

The stacked sensor design is overwhelming; the camera is able to perform 60 AF/AE tracking calculation per second which is quite notable. Designing the sensor of A9 in this way seems that is has benefited the camera a lot.

A broad native ISO range of 100-51, 200 is featured by A9 plus the range is expandable to 50-204,800.

The viewfinder of Alpha A7R11 is quite large but, hold on the EVF on Sony’s A9 is better and bigger.  Sony has corporate the highest-resolution in Alpha A9; the all-new high luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder viewfinder with approximately 3,686,000 dots in it.

‘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 60fps or 120fps to best match the action,’ according to Sony.

The viewfinder boasts the magnification to 0.78x, a Zeiss T* coating is there to reduce the reflection and a 120fps refresh rate. For repelling dust and dirt from damaging the lens, there is fluorine coating on the outside of the lens which keeps it safe from any filth.

Thanks to Sony, the electronic shutter of the camera is absolutely silent and vibration free plus even at 20fps, there won’t be any viewfinder blackouts which can immensely affect upon the shot.

Along with an impressive EVF, the groundbreaking 3.0-inch tilt angle screen touch screen with a solid resolution of 1,440,00 dots. The novel 5-axis image stabilization system of Alpha A9 endows with a shutter speed of five stops.

The video recording feature of A9 is quite prevailing as with a full-frame image sensor, the camera records 4K (3840x2160p) videos efficiently. Moreover, Alpha A9 has the capability to record videos (Full HD) at 120fps.

“Full pixel readout with no pixel binning makes it possible to condense the equivalent of the amount of data required for 6K into 3840 x 2160 4K output. This oversampling process plus full-frame pixel readout without binning results in the highest possible 4K movie image quality,” reported by The Verge.

There are 2 SD card slots in Alpha A9 but it’s somehow very disappointing that Sony has only given a single slot to the UHS-11 media support.

The A9 mirrorless camera has the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and NFC certificate plus it features an Ethernet port and flash sync socket (this feature was missing in the previous camera model of Sony).

The Alpha A9 is a bit chunkier if compared to the mirrorless Alpha 7 camera series of Sony. The camera is handy which helps you to have a tight grip on the camera and for more firm grip an optional grip extension GPX1EM is available.

With Sony lenses, the A9 balances nicely but if a lens like 70-200mm f/2.8 attached to the camera, it makes the front much heavier for the users to hold.

The AF system of Alpha A9 is showered with a confounding  693 phase-detect AF points which cover astoundingly cover the 93% of the frame, even Nikon D500 and Canon E0S-1D X Mark II are still struggling to cope with AF system of Sony’s A9.

In terms of performance, Alpha A9 is just exceptional; the clarity of the 3,686k-dot resolution and 120fps refresh rate combines to provide a skillfully better and clear view of what the users are shooting.

The Alpha A9 will approximately deliver up to 480 shots as the battery of the camera is bumped-up by Sony. But if you are the shutter is held down at the 20fps for a long time then you will definitely need spare batteries.

The 24MP sensor of A9 is capable of delivering some spectacular shots and if the camera is paired with an amazing lens like Sony’s G-Master, then the results of the shots will be outclass.

The Sony Alpha A9 is an exceptional camera but still, there are some faults which can be overcome- the limited control over the touch screen and the lack of XQD card slots are somehow not up to scratch.

But still, A9 has impressed with the handful of incredible features which meet the needs of the professional photographers. It can be predicted that Sony will bring out new telephoto optics to shore up this tremendous camera.


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