Full-Frame, Low-Light 4K Filmmaking with the Sony a7s – Rangefinder

The Sony a7Sis already known to be an incredible video capturing device, but Rangefinder magazine has built the ultimate 4K-capturing low-light system around the Sony a7S and now reviewed the a7S. [Editor’s note: I was formerly the Technology Editor for Photo District News, now owned by the parent company that owns Rangefinder.]

Rangefinder has an interesting interpretation of the a7S’s 4K video capturing capabilities.

Check out the SonyMirrorlessPro.com guide to Must Have Sony Accessories.

But Sony’s marketing department had jumped ahead of the Sony engineers. You see, the a7S can’t record 4K video to a memory card—it requires a separate field recorder that didn’t exist until the very end of 2014. Now that the Atomos Shogun and Convergent Design Odyssey7Q+ are available, we can finally experience full-frame, low-light 4K video with the a7S. It was worth the wait. – See more at.

They’re also not so hot on the ergonomics of the a7S, saying “The a7S has a brilliant design for a still camera, but a lousy design for a video camera. Without a touch screen, all adjustments require turning dials that will definitely shake the camera visibly while filming.”

Personally I think this is true of just about every SLR/Mirrorless camera on the market. That’s why Canon’s taken full-frame sensors from SLR cameras and put them inside a more video-based body.

There are some other minor inaccuracies in the review as well, they state that there are “only eight native E-Mount lenses” but ignore the Zeiss glasses for E-Mount. Certainly it’s true that there are hundreds of lenses for Nikon and Canon, as they say, but that includes most of the third-party lenses available, so it seems fair to mention the third-party glass for Sony as well.

Finally, Rangefinder compares the price of a full Sony a7S system (about $5000 with Shogun Atmos and Solid State Drive) and compares it to the Panasonic GH4, mention that the GH4 is a third of the price. They don’t, however, mention that the GH4 is a Micro Four Thirds camera and the Sony a7S is a full-frame system, so the sensor is the a7S is significantly bigger, has much better dynamic range and vastly better depth of field choices.

Still, Rangefinder is the authority on camera systems, and the review is worth a read.

My daily shooter is Sony A1 with a vertical grip and various Sony lenses attached like the FE 20mm F1.8. Find more gear recommendations in our shop. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.