Sony A7C

Sony A7C Review

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Although the Sony A7C’s specs are modest, particularly in terms of video capabilities, its functional performance, from its convenient vari-angle screen to its outstanding autofocus mechanism, makes it a good camera.

Sony is targeting a new, younger market with the A7C but is betting on the continuous progression of its digital capture technology rather than on any headline-grabbing technical breakthroughs.

The major news in this camera is its design, which resembles a cross between the Sony A7 III and the Sony A6600. While the rectangular body is somewhat smaller than the A7 III, it is larger and thicker than APS-C cameras.

However, the flip-out screen is a significant ergonomic improvement, and the A7C also has an entirely new retractable 28-60mm kit lens to complement the camera’s reduced proportions.

Like many other new cameras, the Sony A7C is intended primarily for vloggers and online content creators, AKA the individuals who generate all of the videos we spend hours viewing each day on YouTube and Instagram.

According to Sony’s study, this group desires the strong performance of a full-frame sensor but in a tiny chassis. And they also want new features to simplify their life when filming their latest masterpiece.

Well, the Sony A7C might be precisely what they’re searching for – since it ingeniously crams a formidable full-frame sensor into a body that’s far, far smaller than that of most rivals.

Sony A7C Hands on Review

Sony A7C Review

Improved tracking and eye focusing, a fully articulating touchscreen, and a smaller form factor are all features of the Sony A7C. Time to put this camera through its paces and see how well it performs. It is perfect for professional photography but mainly for travel, sports, and action geners.

Exmor R BSI CMOS sensor and BIONZ X image processor are included within the Sony A7C. Moreover, an ISO range of 100-51,200 can be increased to 50-204,800, and a maximum continuous shooting rate of 10 fps may be achieved with this combo (frames per second). A dynamic range of 15 stops is also said to be possible.

As expected from a Sony camera, 693 phase-detection points and 425 contrast-detection points are in the A7C’s Fast Hybrid AF system. In addition, Sony’s Real-time Eye AF may be used with either humans or animals while still taking photos, but only with humans when filming video.

With 5-axis in-body image stabilization, the Sony A7C can compensate for up to five stops of shutter speed when photographing moving subjects.

The Body

When it comes to Sony’s smallest and lightest full-frame mirrorless camera, the Sony A7C has all the features of a Sony A7 III, but it’s housed in an APS-C mirrorless camera chassis. The A7C’s interface will be instantly familiar to Sony camera users, but that doesn’t mean it’s free of quirks.

The PASM and exposure compensation dials can be found on the top panel; however, the lack of a front dial can make the manual mode slightly jumble when moving between aperture and shutter speed.

The body is lightweight and small, making it a pleasure to handle. Incorporating Sony’s latest mirrorless battery, the NP-FZ100, in the A7C is also excellent. It has long battery life. If you’re curious, you may expect 225 minutes of video recording at a CIPA rating of 740 shots.

Vloggers will like the Sony A7C’s vari-angle touchscreen LCD, which can be seen from the front of the camera. Unlike the other Sony A7 models, this one has an electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 2.36 million dots. Still, it’s located in a different body part, away from the top plate.

Considering the price of this camera, it’s a shame there aren’t any programmed custom buttons on the top panel for things like ISO and crop mode. Also, there’s no joystick for adjusting the focus point on the camera’s back, but that’s not unexpected, as the A6600 didn’t have one either.

Lastly, as with the A6600, the A7C does not have a second card slot. If you intend to use this camera for professional purposes, you should keep that in mind.

Build and Handling

The Sony A7C looks like a chunkier version of Sony’s APS-C format cameras, such as the A6600. A rectangular pseudo-rangefinder form, with the electronic viewfinder inside the body and offset to the top left corner.

A monocoque structure made of magnesium alloy forms the A7C’s top, front, and back coverings. Despite its small size and lightweight, these features work together to offer it a firm grip.

Dust and moisture are kept out of the body via a watertight seal. The A7C’s grip may not be ideal for people with huge hands, but it’s comfortable. It’s a shame that the grip’s rubber-like covering isn’t more textured. Even in the rain, it’s very slippery.

Control Layout

The A7C does not have a front control dial like the Sony A7 III. However, the phone’s rear has two dials, one above the thumb rest and the other surrounding the navigation pad.

There is no joystick when using the A7C’s viewfinder to set the AF point. As a result, you’ll have to hit a button near the center of a navigation pad, or you may activate the TouchPad menu and use your thumb or finger to move a point across the screen.

Screen

Sony has recently avoided employing variable-angle panels instead of tilting ones as an alternative. The Sony A7C may capture photographs in either landscape or portrait configurations thanks to its vari-angle display. It may also be turned so that it’s viewable from the camera’s front-facing position.

Sony A7C Display

Unfortunately, Sony has once again reduced the degree of touch-control accessible on the camera’s screen, despite making modifications with the Sony A7S III, which was launched before the A7C. As a result, you can only use it for adjusting the AF point and zooming in on the photographs you’ve taken.

This is especially aggravating if you plan to use a tripod to film your vlogs. Walking around is the only way to get to the buttons and menus because you can’t use the screen to reach them.

Viewfinder

When it comes to electronic viewfinders, Sony appears to have employed a 0.39-inch OLED display for the A7C and A6600. Full-frame cameras typically have viewfinders with a 0.5-inch diagonal, out of character.

The Sony A7 III sports a 0.5-inch OLED display with 2,359,296 dots. The A7C’s viewfinder, on the other hand, offers a higher pixel density but is smaller in size.

As a result of this size reduction, you feel like you’re staring into the camera. You may also need to cover your eyes from the light to see well.

It’s recommended to select ‘High’ instead of ‘Standard’ in the Display Quality setting to get a smoother, more realistic picture of the image color and exposure.

Performance

The picture quality and build quality of the Sony A7C are both superb. Using a 24MP full-frame sensor, the camera can capture a fair degree of detail, and the photographs don’t take up an enormous amount of memory card or hard disk space.

Video

A7C can record 4K UHD at 30p and Full HD at 120p for slow-motion movies using the H.264/XAVC S 8-bit 4:2:0 8-bit H.264/XAVC S 4:2:0 8-bit video format.

Customers may now pick S-Log2 or S-Log3 Gamma Curves for increased post-production versatility, expanding the dynamic range by up to 1300% compared to REC709. HDR recording with a broad color spectrum is supported through HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma).

Wireless and Bluetooth connectivity are included in the Sony A7C’s capabilities, as well as a battery that can take 740 images with an LCD or 680 shots with an electronic viewfinder (EVF).

Image Quality of the Sony A7C

The 24-million-pixel full-frame sensor is an excellent compromise regarding image size and pixel density. As a result, noise is well-managed over most of the A7C’s sensitivity range.

Until approximately ISO 1600, images appear clean and clear; however, around ISO 12800, some more advanced features are lost, or out-of-focus regions are somewhat smudged.

ISO 12800 results are often quite good—especially for raw images. So increasing the ISO to 25600 isn’t a problem.

Wide Dynamic Range.

Sony states that the A7C has a dynamic range of 15 stops and doesn’t lose clarity in the highlights or shadows. The shadows can survive a significant amount of brightening without noise or loss of color if you need to underexpose a low ISO shot to save additional highlight information.

You may be able to increase the brightness of an image by 4EV or more in some circumstances.

This latitude is handy if you’re working with a picture with tiny tonal changes because you don’t have to worry about banding. This is useful if you’re working on a landscape photo with a pale blue sky.

Autofocus

Sony’s Alpha 7 series is fantastic in terms of AF systems, and the one in the A7C is no exception. When the camera’s Focus Area is set to ‘Wide,’ it performs excellently following a moving subject and locking onto it.

The Eye AF technology works well even when photographing persons or animals. As a vlogger, you can be confident that your eyes and face are in tip-top physical shape.

The Sony A7C’s superb AF performance and 10fps shooting make it an excellent sports and action camera. However, using long, heavy lenses with this camera isn’t recommended due to its design limitations.

LCD That Flips

The viewfinder of the A7C is likewise a compromise. It has a lower field of vision and just 0.59x magnification than other full-frame versions and its optics necessitates a very dead-on look to see the entire picture well.

A 2.4-million-dot image of the globe is still bright and sharp, but it’s just not as significant. I recommend that those who prefer an eye-level viewfinder look into the a7 III, Panasonic S5, and Nikon Z 5 full-frame cameras.

Instead of being centered behind the lens, it’s in the left-hand corner, similar to a rangefinder camera’s optical viewfinder. With the camera held differently, you may see more of the scene around you, especially if you have a right-eye-dominant gaze.

Power and Connectivity

For some digital versions, a hot shoe is a convenient option for attaching an external microphone to the a7C via a 3.5mm connector. Other features include an SDXC memory card slot (UHS-II), a tiny HDMI video output, and a USB-C connector (for data transmission, charging, and webcam use with Sony’s desktop software).

Sony A7C Ports

There’s also built-in support for wireless technologies like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. In addition, Sony Imaging Edge Mobile, a free app for Android and iOS, connects the a7C to your smartphone. Using the app, you can quickly share and modify photographs on social media, and it can even be a remote control.

The NP-FZ100, Sony’s newer and better mirrorless battery, powers the camera. A7 and a9 series cameras that utilize the same battery have EVFs that consume less energy than smaller a7 and a9 series cameras.

As a result, 740 pictures, or 225 minutes of video, may be captured on the a7C. It has a lifespan of roughly two times greater than competing full-frame mirrorless cameras.

Fast and Reliable Focus:

The A7C has Sony’s latest and finest focusing technology, a tad more potent than the a7 III’s system. In addition, the camera uses scene recognition and face and eye detection (for humans and dogs) to locate the proper topic as it comes out of the box.

The AF-ON button on the back of the phone is slightly different from the front. Moving the camera activates the tracking mechanism, which locks onto a target and follows it.

The tracking system may be programmed to select the subject for you or choose a more specific region of interest. One of the disadvantages of the more petite camera body is that it’s more challenging to move the Flexible Spot square around.

Sony A7C Specifications:

  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 124.0 x 71.1 x 59.7mm / 5 x 2 7/8 x 2 3/8inches
  • Weight: 509g / 1lb 2.0oz with battery and card
  • Camera type: Full-frame mirrorless
  • Sensor: 24.2Mp Full frame (35.6×23.8mm), Exmor R CMOS sensor
  • Processor: Bionz X
  • Lens mount: Sony E
  • Sensitivity range: ISO 100-51,200, expandable to ISO 50-204,800
  • Maximum continuous shooting rate: 10fps with full AF and metering
  • Video resolution: 4K: 3840 x 2160 (4:2:0, 8bit, NTSC) (Approx.) 30p (100Mbps / 60Mbps), 3840 x 2160 (4:2:0, 8bit, NTSC) (Approx.) 24p (100Mbps / 60Mbps), 3840 x 2160 (4:2:0, 8bit, PAL) (Approx.) 25p (100Mbps / 60Mbps)
  • Autofocus system: Hybrid with 693 phase detection points and 425 contrast detection points
  • Eye AF: Stills: Human or Animal, Video: Human
  • Viewfinder: 0.39-inch 2,359,296-dot OLED electronic viewfinder
  • Screen: Vari-angle 3-inch 921,600-dot vari-angle touchscreen
  • Stabilization: 5-axis in-body image stabilization giving up to 5EV shutter speed compensation
  • Storage: SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I/II)

Pros:

  • Full-frame capability
  • Light and compact
  • Best-in-class autofocus
  • Great low-light performance
  • Excellent lens selection
  • Great battery life
  • Gyro data stabilization
  • Vari-angle screen
  • Excellent AF system

Cons:

  • Limited touch-control

Conclusion

A full-frame interchangeable lens camera from Sony, the A7C is the company’s tiniest and most advanced model. Compared to the APS-C sensor a6600, this camera has a 24MP full-frame sensor with image stabilization.

Even though this is one of the tiniest full-frame cameras on the market, many of its features and capabilities are already well-known.

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With the a7C, Sony is introducing a new kit to keep the camera’s size to a minimum.

Recommend if you are looking for a professional-level camera.

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