Great futures packed in to this small camera. You all read about good features, so here are negatives; Don’t expect miracles, it is a small camera with limitations. It will not a replacement for FS7. Codec good enough but only 8 bit Video record button is very very awkward… come on Sony this is a video camera…. Screen tilt is limited Heavy for its size Battery life very short, you will need 4 batteries for few hours of serious shooting.
Mean Piece of Machinery
With only a week of use I couldn’t be more satisfied with all the features my new A7S II offers. Its full frame sensor not only allows me to take full advantage of my lenses, but it also delivers a fantastic range of colors to my files. Much better dynamic range than its predecessor with good detail in highlights and shadows. Light sensitivity is great for dimly lit shots. All in all a great piece of equipment for a decent price. Recommend it!
Never look in a mirror again
This is the best low-medium budget camera I have used by far. From the canon 5d and 6d, the Panasonic gh4, and the Nikon d40. The 4K 30p is great for downscaling and the color profiles with a little bit of tweaking shoot great flat color footage for post production color grading.
On top of all this the camera is very easy to learn and the menus and button layouts are fantastic.
Best Video Low Light Camera Out There
I have tried this camera for the last couple of weeks and it works flawlessly in low light. Autofocus in low light also accurate. I shot a video at f/8 25000 ISO 1/50 and it was grainless. Highly recommended. The Sony FE f/4 lenses are now usable for low light video.
Love the camera but a big learning curve
Order a neutral density filter when you buy a A7sii if you are using outside. Practice using as many functions as you can to prevent embarrassment. Get a small flash- you want to use this in traditional family party settings.. No one understands what you are getting excited about with its lowlight capabilities.. Order a lager eyecup.
Great lowlight video camera
Purchased this for a documentary we are shooting. The image is relatively clean up to 32,000 ISO. Experienced a slight banding issue at higher ISOs shooting the sky at night. I am really enjoying the color rendition at night. You see this kind of color in high production nighttime aerial shots. One of my only complaints is the poor battery life. Lasts 45 mins max!
Doesn’t see in the dark, but it’s still amazing
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love this camera and think it was worth every cent. It is an extremely good value. It gets amazing night shots, as well as cinematic shots – within limits. 1) You absolutely need a fast lens. Don’t get a zoom lens with a f/4 or above (Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens), it just will not cut it for night shots.
This camera can’t operate on no light. It needs a fast lens to keep up with it. A good option is the Sony Distagon 35mm f1.4. I wrote a review for that too, it has its flaws but they go GREAT together. 2) There is noise. A lot of it. Don’t crank your iso past 200k, the shots will be worthless. Sure it can go up to 400k, if you want your picture to look purple and grainy… Speaking about purple 3) there is a noticeable amp glow problem.
At first I thought it was my Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens, so I sent it back. I got the 35mm 1.4, which I was much more excited to use, as I found it was extremely helpful to have a fast lens. the image still came out purple. I have attached some examples.. Some people might not notice, but a cinematographer like me sure will.
This only occurs at high isos, I have googled the problem and found people experiencing the exact same issue. So basically… Yes this is an amazing night camera as you’ve heard, and a fantastic value. but it still has its flaws. Hell, it came with a dead pixel, I had to google how to do a pixel remap to fix it. not a huge deal… just a tad touchy. Buttons are in weird places but I’ve gotten used to it already, menu is detailed but not the most user friendly… anyway.
Enough of my complaining 🙂 Get this camera because its super good. The built in stabilization and autofocus are awesome. Lots of customization in the menus and overall… a great camera that needs a great lens to go with it.
Dark side, a flawed force
It is indeed really great camera for both professional and home use (I’m an independent freelance filmmaker, I often run-and-gun, do documentary style filmmaking and every now and then produce higher end videos). Overall design of 7S II is great and aesthetically fits very well with retro lenses.
I’m presently using it with my Canon EF lens and LTM rangefinder lens. IBIS is one of the most outstanding features second to the lowlight capabilities. Smooth handheld panning – what? When not filming, I use the camera for personal photography and to look for my cat in the backyard when it’s too dark to see.
Assignable functions are amazingly handy and great, and let users to correct the amazingly stupid position of record button to, say, C3 button. I understand, that you have to market it as a photo camera for obvious tax reasons, but seriusly? Display is superior to the first 7S version with it’s ability to ajust it for top view. It’s great that there are two batteries with camera. I’m sure there will be more comments during future use, this has been only a couple of weeks now. Even with all the cons, I’d say it is well worth the money. I really do enjoy the camera in a personal way.
Maybe it’s the sesitivity..it opens you. Cons (Ver. 1.00): When in NTSC mode, you’ll get warning every time you switch on the camera. Very annonying for someone, who purposefuly runs camera in this mode. It really slows down the camera bootup. Most annoying UX thing. 120fps crop – I totally undestand the science behind the crop, but yes – the crop is massive and that is a bit of drawback.
Focus Magnifier quality is significantly lower in video mode compared to Photo mode, even when not recording (unsable in many cases, I have to tur to Manual mode to adjust focus) Gamma Asisst – I have suspicion that it lifts overal brightness to much in some scanrious. Of course, it is not intended to offer precise exposure, but it would be great if some futeure firmare version adressed that.
Eyefinder, probably mostly due to ergonomics, isn’t designed for merely comfortable eye positioning to it. I think it could benefit from more upwards angle, allowing to press eye to the finder, not just the eyebrow, without sticking nose to the screen and so. Quite annoying, when you pay attention to this. Video Thumbnails in playback mode are awful.
How can you put something like that in a camera? The main market for this camera are video shooters – so why don’t we get the same user experience the photographers get? We get the outdated filmlike markings on side additionally to the play triangle in the middle, who alone let’s to understanf that one is looking at a video.
When you pop display out and use it horizontally and try hold it close to your body, it will switch to finder, which is very, very annoying. The distance for switch to finder obviously isn’t close enough. It’s should closer by half. File numbering – there is no apparent way to set custom file numbering/naming sytems, e.g. date related etc. Histogram is a bit hard to read for exposure. It would be great to have vectorscope and other exposure assistance, that also isn’t hard to implement.