Sony a7R II + 28-70mm F3.5-5.6 OSS Zoom Lens Bundle, Black (ILCE7RM2K/B)
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|Model Name||A7R II Lens Kit|
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- 42. 4MP full-frame, 4K movie recording with full pixel readout and no pixel binning
- 2. 4-million dot XGA OLED Tru-Finder w/ZEISS T- coating, connectivity to smartphones via Wi-Fi and NFC w/camera apps, Fast focal plane phase-detection AF realized with A-mount lenses
- Shutter vibration suppression, curtain shutter, silent shutter, Resolution meets sensitivity 42. 4MP up to ISO 102, 400/4K up to 25, 600, Durable, reliable and ergonomically enhanced for professional use
- Fast Hybrid AF with 399 focal plane phase-detection AF points and sensor is 35 mm full-frame (35. 9 x 24. 0 mm), Exmor R CMOS sensor
- FE 28-70mm F3. 5-5. 6 OSS Full-frame Zoom Lens
- Mounting type: Bayonet
- Video capture resolution: 4K DCI 2160p
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Realism meets resolution and sensitivity - with the world's first (1) back-illuminated 35 millimeter full-frame CMOS image sensor. The α7R II increases image quality with 42. 4MP resolution, up to ISO 102, 400 sensitivity and speedy response with 5fps and a Fast Hybrid AF system (399 AF points).
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The lenses that come with this system are very expensive. I'd recommend getting the 85 1.8 as the best quality for cost lens. Or get a used Zeiss 55 1.8 for a good price, those are the lenses I used now and the sharpness is other worldly. Let me explain to you that these lenses are tack sharp on a 43MP Sensor which means they are REALLY Sharp, most lenses cannot resolve well enough to stay sharp even above 30MP, but its really something you only see if you are pixel peeping.
I enjoy the placement of the buttons and dials on this camera. They are solid and smooth to operate - and the ones that need to click into position do so. At this time, with the camera always in manual (M) mode I have the front dial set to adjust shutter speed, the rear to adjust f-stop and a button on the rear to adjust ISO on the fly. A single click on the button brings up the ISO menu, then the thumb wheel allows me to quickly scroll to the rating I want.
The only other button programmed so far is C1 for eye detection. Obviously, only used in portraits but seems to nail it every time. I use this same setup on the RX1R II. I have been using the Exposure Comp wheel more and more to give me the exposure exactly how I want it rather than relying on post to correct that. Also been getting into relying almost solely on the histogram in the viewfinder to expose my work now.
The shutter release is smooth and pleasing (and I like the sound of it) and has the option of silent shutter, though I haven't tried that to date.
SONY A7R II - SENSOR
The A7R II has a 42.4-megapixel back-illuminated 35mm full-frame Exmor R CMOS sensor powered by the BIONZ X image processing engine to support 14-bit uncompressed RAW images. Technically, getting an ISO range of 50-102,400 but realistically using ISO 100-25,600. Even more realistically for my style is ISO 100-6400.
Unlike my RX1R II, there is no optical low-pass filter on this camera.
5-AXIS IMAGE STABILIZATION
The Sony A7R II has 5-Axis Image Stabilization which has been maximized for the 42 MP sensor. This system corrects camera shake while shooting along the 5 axes of angular shake (pitch & yaw), shift shake (along the x/y axis), and rotational shake (roll). Pair this with a IS lens (like the Zeiss Batis 85 I have been using) and you can freehand some ultra-lowlight photography.
Battery is notoriously bad on these cameras, but there are a ton of tips and tricks out there to increase life. Best thing I suggest is tossing the camera into Airplane mode - this turns off all the Wi-Fi and searching for networks. With this off, I can shoot all day with 3 batteries at the ready. To be honest, I shoot so little on a typical day (200-300 max photos) that I seldom need to jump to a backup.
Some other things you can try are reducing the brightness in the monitor and viewfinder, having a short power-save time, turn off the "Sunny Weather" option, turn off audio signals and turn off Pre-AF.
If I am walking around between shots, I tend to switch the camera off too. Not sure how much that helps, but a habit I picked up with the RX1R II.
I also suggest having a couple battery backups and a couple chargers in the house. Right now, I have 2 Sony stock batteries and 2 off-brand ones. I haven't noticed much of a difference between the two. For the house, I have a pair of chargers, as these batteries seem to take forever to get to a full charge. At least with a pair, I am able to cut the charge time in half.
FINDER / SCREEN
There are a couple ways to compose images with the A7R II. Either the screen on the back of the camera with LiveView or via the Electronic View Finder (EVF) that's really a godsend. The camera has the intelligence to automatically only power the view you are using. If LiveView, the EVF is powered off. If you put your eye to the EVF, it fires up in an instant and the back screen powers down. Very good for a camera that's a battery whore, as mentioned above.
With either of these views, you can increase or decrease the resolution, though they both look really good at standard. Very bright and quite responsive. Nearly identical to what I said about the RX1R II and not like the LiveView of the past (where my last experience was with a laggy Sony NEX-3). I keep the rear screen fairly dim, so I like to use the finder as my review of images when needed.
The eye cup for the A7R II finder is much better than the RX1R II, by the way. The former is a proper viewfinder with a rubberized eye cup (see rear image of A7R II below in the My Defaults section) while the later is a pop-up EVF and does not offer eye relief at all.
Both screens offer a slew of data from shutter speed, ISO, f-stop to digital levels, histograms and so on. I won't bore you with all the goodies, but there is a plethora of stuff that can be added to or removed from either screen.
The rear screen tilts up and down which is nice to hold over your head or at your feet to frame a decent shot. I don't use the screen often, but really enjoy the ability when I need it to compost a shot this way. I find this can be a stealthy way of composing a shot without those around aware of what you're doing - if stealth is your motive.
The Sony A7II offers up 25 contrast detection points and 399 phase detection points covering about half the sensor. The modes available here are Single, Continuous and Manual focus as well as AF-A and DMF modes that can be used with the native FE glass. As I don't tend to shoot moving targets, I stick to Single mode for almost all my shooting and have found it to be quite fast and really accurate.
As always, you can also switch the focus areas between Wide Area, Zone Area, Center Area (my preference), Flexible Spot, Expand Flexible Spot, Lock-on AF Expand Flexible Spot, Lock-on AF, Eye AF (which I mapped to C1), and Face Detection.
Like with the Sony RX1R II, the files spoil me. There is a great deal of latitude in them and so much shadow detail. The IQ is really nice to work with and I am getting the hang of how they behave with my one-click edits.
It is very early on with this camera to have any firm conclusions, but I have to tell you, I was secretly hoping to not love this one. I have my film cameras that I am more than happy with, and my Sony RX1R II that I figured was all I wanted. I wanted to shoot this, get it out of my system, then return it. Well, it's not going back. As soon as I strapped on the Zeiss Batis 85 and walked around with the Sony A7R II I was smitten. This camera is really offering everything I currently want in a digital setup. Gorgeous files with the colors I enjoy, great speed and a joy to walk around with. I read complaints about the menu system, but really, once you set it up once, you don't need to dig in there much and it truly isn't that bad.
This is a fine compliment to my film work and will also be a great compliment to the Sony RX1R II - so yes, they are both staying. I plan to get a ton of use out of this throughout the year and re-touch this review with future thoughts, uses, issues or what have you.
Top international reviews
The image quality is great, and almost identical to the more expensive A7R II
I compared both a friend's A7R III with my A7R II, and a side from the physical differences (joystick/dual SD card slots etc), the burst FPS, and all you care about is IMAGE QUALITY, then save your money and buy the A7R II. Both these cameras has the EXACT SAME Full Frame Image Sensor.
I shoot pictures as a hobby, and mostly of nature or astrophotography (my cameras are mounted on a stationary tripod 90% of the time), this camera is perfect, and for the price to image quality performance, it cannot be beaten.
If you shoot sports and fast moving subject, you may consider the fast A7R III if resolution is important. If resolution is not important, you are better off with an A9 or a Fuji X-T3.
I am a primary Fujifilm user (Fuji X-T1 and X-T20), and this is my first Sony camera. I do have to say that the menu is definitely not as user frriendly, and the Fn menu/Q menu is not as intuitive than the Fuji. However, Sony's UI is not the worst I have used. The WORST UI I have ever used goes to.... OLYMPUS....
I like the fast this camera still has 3 control wheels (one on front, one on back, and one on the d-pad).
The lack of joystick on this camera is not something I really care about, as I manual focus all my shots 90% of the time anyways for landscapes, and star photography. The autofocus is more than adequate for casual portraiture shooting (I only shoot portraits only occasionally).
One thing to note is that I had to do an exchange on this camera. The first camera I received had a somewhat loose LCD hinge, where the tilt hinge did not allow the LCD to site flush again the body.
Since I had both A7R IIs during the exchange process, I also realized the LCD panel themselves between the 3 A7R IIs were DIFFERENT.
The one I sent back to Amazon had a brighter LCD display, but the color temperature was very cool (so maybe the perception of a brighter screen?)
My current replacement A7R II LCD screen is slightly dimmer, but the color temperature calibration on this display is much warmer (yellowish tint).
I honest does not know if the differences in LCD panel quality is a manufacturing tolerance, or just poor Quality Assurance... Either way, exchanging my current camera is too much of a hassle for just a slightly brighter screen. I only wrote this as a WARNING, and things to watch for when you order one.
The OLED Electronic Viewfinder between the two A7R IIs were IDENTICAL, so no QA issues here.
Overall, gr8 camera for the price. If you don't care for high speed shooting, then BUY IT NOW..
With my particular situation, I record videos in low lighting.. very low lighting. I was using a Canon Rebel T5i before swapping to the Sony and while that camera can manage great video quality, it doesn't handle low-light very well.
The Sony a7R not only handles my particular situation well, the way it deals with color is superb! I have a blue screen behind me that's almost pitch black, yet the picture quality is so clear that I can chroma key it out without problems.
If you're buying the a7R for pictures, it's VERY easy to get a stunning photo in crystal clear quality. I should also point out I'm using the T * FE 55mm F1.8 ZA lens which has no zoom function.
One issue I have is that the touch screen on the back of the camera doesn't pull out, making it difficult for me to adjust settings while having the camera on myself, but anybody buying a camera like this isn't buying it for selfies, so it's just a personal issue.