I bought this to replace my aging Canon and could not be happier with the camera. The amount of detail and dynamic range that this camera can capture is absolutely insane. I’ve found myself shooting scenes in only one frame that previously would have required using GNDs and/or exposure blends to properly expose.
I’ve also done a couple portrait shoots using primarily a legacy 85mm f/1.5 and am astounded by how easy manual focus is with the A7RII. My keeper rate using this lens wide open on my Canon was likely around 10%, but is easily higher than 75% with the Sony thanks to focus peaking and focus magnification.
To address some of the common qualms with this camera: -Would I prefer the option to capture lossless RAW files? Absolutely. Have I noticed any compression artifacts or posterization? Not at all. -I shoot video quite frequently, but rarely if ever shoot clips longer than 10 minutes. Thus far, it doesn’t appear that overheating will be an issue for me. Based on what I’ve heard, it’s probably not great for shooting interviews in warmer environments, but if you’re shooting rock climbing videos in the mountains of Colorado like I am, you won’t have any issues.
Additionally, the 1080P from this camera is wonderful and doesn’t cause any overheating. -I’ve shot a number of long exposures and have noticed a few hot pixels, but I’ve always been a proponent of using dark frames (either in camera or manually via Photoshop), which entirely take care of the issue. Perhaps if this wasn’t already part of my workflow I would be more concerned about it. Even without any dark frames or in camera LENR, it blows my old EOS 7D out of the water.
The bottom line is that this camera suits my purposes perfectly. That may not be the case for everyone, but if your style of photography is similar to mine, I can promise you that this camera will not disappoint.
Great features, questionable durability and build quality
I bought the a7RII new from B&H in December of 2015. I shoot roughly 1x a week and have put 2,000,000 or so shutter actuations on it. I treat the camera carefully and don’t shoot in extreme conditions.
Within the first year of owning it, it broke twice – the first six months later when the shutter speed could not be adjusted. No firmware update or other adjustments could fix it. Precision Camera replaced the cover assembly and the mounted c board.
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Four months later, the sensor malfunctioned, leading to a ton of white and red pixels on images. Precision repaired the sensor.
Recently, the LCD board shorted out, turning the camera into a brick. The pricetag to replace it is $600.
Prior to owning the a7RII, I owned two Canons, and neither of them ever needed a repair. My take on the a7RII is that the image quality and features are superb, but that it lacks in durability and build quality.
I plan to give Sony one more chance and will buy the a7RIII, in the hopes that I simply had a faulty unit. (Having three very nice e-mount prime lenses is the main reason why.) I certainly hope that my next Sony alpha camera performs more reliably over time, as I would like to continue shooting with Sony mirrorless.
5 stars for doing everything it claims to do
The A7R II does not have some of the features of the A7R III or A7 III, but that should NOT mean I should rate it lower.
Fact is, the A7R II fulfills on all SONY’s promises for this camera, does it very well, and for a very fair price.
I’m a professional photographer and videographer, use mainly vintage primes, as well as Rokinon primes…. and this body produces great results as long as the person behind the camera (me) does his part.
I have TWO of these, and TWO A7 II’s, and would not hesitate to buy more in a few years when I need to update again.
Only one thing spoils the package
I’m a landscape photographer looking for great detail in still photos, and this camera’s 42-Mpfull frame really satisfies. I’m perfectly satisfied with the camera (and Sony lens) itself. Just one thing spoils what, for me, is an otherwise perfect package. It should really be too small a thing to complain about. Unfortunately, it’s not.
Others have commented on how light this camera is, but add the vertical grip and the 24-70 f2.8 Sony G Master lens and it becomes very heavy. That brings me to my complaint. A camera at this price point should not come with a cheesy and inadequate shoulder strap.
Only in the most technical sense does this strap bear the weight, and not comfortably. So I’m looking for one like the one on the camera this one replaced, even if it proudly bears the name “Nikon”. SMH
System and Format Switch – Not looking back
I am very happy with the quality of the images from this camera. I shoot stills and cannot comment on video modes. This camera was a switch from a Pentax K5 and a huge upgrade in resolution and dynamic range. I had been considering the Pentax K-1 but didn’t think enough attention had been paid to improving the focus capabilities of that system. The autofocus features of the Sony A7RII are tremendous but a little daunting.
I am adjusting to all of the various modes of the camera. The menus are a little confusing at first but there is a wealth of information available online. I do wish that adapter support for Pentax glass was as strong as it is for Canon (com’on metabones). I purchased this camera bundled with the 24-70mm f/4 lens.
The lens is also outstanding. I have found it to be very sharp, color accurate, and smooth operating. This is an outstanding product and now available at a great price point.