Sony has released the α7 II (ILCE-7M2), the next in the α7 series of interchangeable-lens models and the world’s first camera with optical 5-axis image stabilisation designed for a full-frame image sensor.
The camera offers outstanding image quality in a compact size and light build, and it carries on the traditions of the α7 series, which includes the world’s smallest and lightest interchangeable-lens full-frame camera (α7R). A 24.3 effective megapixel 35 mm full-frame Exmor® CMOS sensor moves along five axes to compensate for camera shake, providing optical image stabilisation equivalent to up to 4.5 steps faster shutter speed of correction for still images. Shooting sharp handheld stills and video is now possible under conditions that may have required a tripod in the past. In this and other scenarios, users can enjoy beautifully rendered images from the full-frame sensor with the convenience of image stabilisation. In-camera image stabilisation also offers sharper images for those using A-mount lenses on an optional lens adapter.
World’s first full-frame camera with optical 5-axis image stabilisation
Detects and corrects various camera shake along five axes for still images and video, including angular shake (pitch and yaw) that tends to occur when shooting with a telephoto lens, shift shake (along the X and Y axes) that becomes noticeable as photographing magnification increases, and rotational shake (roll) that often affects shots at night or when recording video.
The full-frame image sensor moves to compensate for these kinds of camera shake. For still images, stabilisation is equivalent to up to 4.5 steps faster shutter speed of correction.
Optical 5-axis image stabilisation ideal for a variety of αTM lenses
Handheld low-light shooting at slower shutter speeds becomes possible, allowing for greater creativity and mobility without the need for a tripod. The camera’s in-body image stabilisation is therefore effective even in combination with E-mount lenses without Optical SteadyShot (OSS). For A-mount lenses as well (using an optional mount adapter such as LA-EA4 or LA-EA3), camera shake is compensated for along five axes within the camera body. Users can thus make the most of the beautiful rendering power of various α lenses with the α7 II.
Verify image stabilisation results with live view functionality
Monitor the corrected image in real-time on the camera’s LCD screen or in the OLED viewfinder, thus allowing for fine-tuned framing and focusing even when using a telephoto or macro lens.
Speedy, accurate autofocus with Fast Hybrid AF
Wide AF coverage with the employment of a 117-point focal plane phase-detection AF sensor (in combination with a 25-point contrast detection AF points)
117-point focal plane phase-detection AF sensor and 25 contrast detection AF points are placed over a wide area of the screen, making use of the superb tracking capabilities of the phase detection AF and therefore enabling clear capture of moving subjects that might otherwise evade focus.
30% faster AF responsiveness
A more advanced algorithm is used to detect the subject position, enabling optimal lens drive. In a variety of scenarios, autofocus is very responsive – 30% faster than in previous models.
1.5 times the tracking ability of previous models4 with an improved motion-prediction algorithm
An improved, original Sony algorithm for the prediction of moving bodies results in a 1.5 times improvement in performance in tracking a subject and predicting its next movement. Additionally, AF and automatic exposure (AE) continue to track the subject during high-speed continuous shooting (up to 5 fps), so that a sudden movement or expression of the subject is never missed. Finally, greatly improved tracking ability and subject capture are made possible through the advances in image analysis technology with “lock-on AF,” a feature that optimizes focusing on the subject in accordance with its size.
Superior image quality and enriched video recording functionalities with the full-frame sensor and BIONZ XTM image processing engine
35 mm full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor for high resolution and sensitivity, with minimal noise
The camera is equipped with a full-frame Exmor CMOS image sensor with approximately 24.3 effective megapixels. High resolution and larger pixels enhance sensitivity and reduce image noise to release the full potential of lens’ optical performance. Images are rendered beautifully and bokeh effects attainable only with full-frame sensors become possible.
BIONZ X image processing engine for superb detail and natural textures, less noise
Loaded with an advanced BIONZ X image processing engine. The fast processing enabled by this engine enhances images in several ways, through “detail reproduction technology,” which recreates natural-looking textures even in the minute details of an image; “diffraction-reducing technology,” which prevents loss of detail when aperture stopped down; and “area-specific noise reduction,” which greatly reduces noise while maintaining exceptional detail and texture even under low light conditions such as night time and indoors.
Supports high bit rate XAVC-S recording
In addition to recording in AVCHD Ver. 2.0 Full HD (1920×1080) 60p (50p)/60i (50i)/24p, the camera records in XAVC-S, a consumer format derived from the professional XAVC® format. This offers outstanding Full HD video quality at a high bit rate of 50 Mbps. Long GOP compression is used, targeting differences between frames, along with the MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 codec for video. Regarding audio recording, linear PCM is used and files are saved in the MP4 format.
Full-featured video recording that suits professional workflows
Picture profiles enable convenient in-camera tone adjustment. The α7 II also supports the S-Log2 gamma function, which preserves a wide dynamic range, and a wide S-Gamut mode. Other features include Time Code/User Bit (useful in editing), Rec Control (for synced recording with compatible external recorders), marker display/settings, and dual video recording.
Enhanced usability and reliability
Grip shape and height keep the camera steady even when using a large telephoto lens. The shutter button has been shifted toward the front, to a position that feels more natural. This, along with the button’s increased size, helps reduce camera shake. Shooting comfort and convenience were a priority in design. Ten customizable buttons can be assigned to any of 56 functions. The tilting display features a White MagicTM LCD screen for exceptional visibility even under bright sunlight.
Sharp, high-contrast XGA OLED Tru-Finder™ viewfinder for accurate previewing
An XGA OLED Tru-Finder viewfinder with a 2.36 million dot equivalent resolution and high contrast, enabling faithful reproduction of setting adjustments, fine-tuned focusing using magnified display or peaking features, and bokeh effects. The viewfinder also allows for clear review of previous shots. Because the camera is fully APS-C-compatible, it displays the entire view even when APS-C lenses are used.
Reliability that professionals can appreciate
Sturdy magnesium alloy construction of the top, front cover, and internal structures ensures that the camera is both durable and light. The robust mounting structure easily handles large telephoto lenses, heavy video lenses, and many others.
Main buttons and dials are also sealed to help keep out moisture and dust, and an interlocking double layered construction of media and port covers as well as body seams ensures greater moisture and dust resistance. Overall, the camera is designed to be used by photographers in any number of situations without having to worry about the safety of their cameras.
Quick startup time – 40% faster
After the camera is switched on, it is ready to shoot 40% sooner than current models.
Wi-Fi and NFC enabled for connectivity with mobile devices; support for PlayMemories Camera Apps that allow the camera to evolve even further
– Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity for mobile linking
– Features can be expanded with PlayMemories Camera Apps
By installing an updated Lens Compensation app (enabling the storage of lens information in Exif data, compensation of recorded video, and import/export of lens compensation values), users can manually set correction values for lens peripheral shading, chromatic aberration, and distortion.
5-axis image stabilisationThe ɑ7 II dramatically expands your range of expression by compensating for five types of camera shake during handheld shooting of still images and movies. The highly effective 4.5-step* compensation lets you confidently zoom in faraway subjects, snap detailed close-ups, capture night scenes and more — all with minimal camera shake blur.
* Based on CIPA standard. Pitch/yaw shake only. With Sonnar T* FE 55 mm F1.8 ZA lens mounted. Long exposure NR off.
35 mm full-frame 24.3-megapixel* Exmor™ CMOS sensorThe image sensor delivers beautiful images from corner to corner and stunning 24.3-megapixel resolution. You’ll enjoy low noise, an extremely wide dynamic range, and amazingly rich and subtle gradations. Moreover, innovations that could only be achieved by Sony reproduce details more faithfully so that every scene looks incredibly real.
* Approximate effective megapixels
Robust magnesium alloy bodyThe remarkably compact and lightweight body is solidly built to withstand the rigours of shooting in the field. It’s the ideal blend of lightweight, solid reliability and steady handling, thanks to a top cover, front cover and internal structure constructed of rigid magnesium alloy.
Full-frame expression without the bulkThe α7 II packs powerful movie-making capabilities in extremely compact dimensions. You can create movies of breathtaking visual and sound quality with exquisite background blur, remarkably clear details, and the sensitivity to bring dark scenes to vibrant life. Features like Picture Profile and P/A/S/M modes further expand your creative options.
Lock-on AF trackingIt’s easy to keep moving subjects in focus with enhanced Lock-on AF, which analyses even more information from the scene to ensure usage of the optimal AF point for smooth, stable autofocusing. Its ability to detect and track moving subjects has now been significantly improved, thanks to Sony’s advanced proprietary image analysis technology.
Picture profileFine-tune the look of movies before shooting by adjusting gradation, colour adjustment and detail. Adjusted parameters can be saved with other settings as a profile, and up to 7 profiles can be stored for later recall.
Time code / User bitThis function provides a “Record Run” setting that only advances the time code while recording, a “Free Run” setting that advances the time code whether recording or not, a drop frame method and a non-drop frame method. The α7 II can also output an embedded time code when the clean HDMI output setting is in use.
Easy button customisationButton customisation empowers you to shoot just the way you like, with frequently used functions assigned to the customisable buttons of your choice. You can easily assign any of 56 functions*1 to any of 10 buttons*2 to enjoy speedier, more intuitive operation and maximum convenience.
*1 Some functions can only be assigned to certain buttons.
*2 10 buttons including focus hold button on lens.
PlayMemories Camera Apps™*The exciting new application download service, PlayMemories Camera Apps, lets you add new functions to your camera’s existing feature-set to heighten photographic expression according to your own creative needs.
* Requires a valid Sony Entertainment Network account. Some apps require a fee.
Compatibility with wide-ranging mountable lenses*New 5-axis image stabilisation lets you enjoy unparalleled handheld shooting freedom with more of your favourite mountable lenses. The short flange-back distance in the E-mount α7 II contributes to broad lens compatibility.
* When using a third-party mount adapter, performance, functionality and operation are not guaranteed and Sony will take no responsibility if a malfunction occurs.
5fps AF/AE shooting with accurate trackingWhen your subject is moving fast, you can beautifully capture the decisive moment with sharp, well-exposed results via 5fps continuous AF/AE shooting. A dramatically improved algorithm accurately predicts subject movement so you can steadfastly track the subject even when shooting continuously.
BIONZ X image processing engineBIONZ X faithfully reproduces textures and details in real time, as seen by the naked eye, via extra high-speed processing capabilities. Together with front-end Large Scale Integration that accelerates processing, it enables more natural details, more realistic images, richer tonal gradations and lower noise when shooting still images and movies.
Robust lens mountThe strength and rigidity of the body and lens mount have been enhanced to provide an especially solid foundation for mounting large, heavy lenses such as super telephoto lenses and those preferred for movie shooting.
High-contrast, high-resolution XGA OLED Tru-Finder™The viewfinder offers impressive visibility that contributes to stress-free, intuitive operation. You can accurately monitor what will appear in your final images because it faithfully displays the effects of your various camera settings. Moreover, an advanced 3-lens optical system ensures rich tonal gradation and extremely high contrast.
Detail reproduction technology and diffraction-reducing technologyDetail reproduction technology depicts details more faithfully with a more natural sense of dimension, while diffraction-reducing technology suppresses the effects of diffraction to faithfully reproduce fine details even when shooting at small aperture settings.
S-Log2 gamma settingThis proprietary Sony gamma setting, featured in professional camcorders, creates a 1300% wider dynamic range for smooth expression of gradation with reduced white-out and black-out. Through colour grading in post-production, you can make the most of the low-noise image and super-rich detail to achieve various types of image expression.
Meticulously crafted controlsControls are refined for intuitive operation and immediate adjustment of parameters while viewing scenes through the viewfinder. The front and rear dials have been thoroughly refined and positioned with overall handling in mind to enable easier, more efficient turning. It’s a level of refinement that even surpasses that of other α7 series models.
Anti-dust system and coatingTo keep your photos blemish-free, a special anti-static coating on the surface of the optical filter suppresses the attachment of both dry and moist dust particles when changing lenses. An anti-dust mechanism also vibrates at high speed when you select Cleaning Mode to remove any particles adhering to the filter.
Multi Frame NR (Noise Reduction)This mode composites four shots to significantly suppress noise and raise sensitivity, letting you clearly capture dark scenes without a tripod or flash. Camera shake blur is also lowered while contrast and detail are raised.
Automatic optimisation for every α lensConfidently use your favourite E-mount and A-mount lenses, knowing the α7 II will analyse information from the lens to optimise depiction performance and 5-axis image stabilisation for the particular lens you mount. When using E-mount lenses with optical stabilisation (OSS), the α7 II combines the best of in-lens and in-camera image stabilisation.
High-performance Fast Hybrid AF with wide coverage and 30% faster responseThe newly enhanced Fast Hybrid AF system delivers extremely high-speed response, highly accurate prediction and wide area coverage for autofocusing and tracking you can always depend on. Remarkably fast for a full-frame camera AF system, it ensures maximum speed by optimally employing phase-detection or contrast-detection AF depending on the scene.
Pro-quality XAVC S formatFor extremely high image quality and minimal noise, record movies in the high-bit-rate XAVC S format, which was developed based on the professional XAVC 4K/HD format. It enables Full HD (1920 x 1080) image recording at 50Mbps (60p/50p, 30p/25p, 24p)* and employs linear PCM sound for high-quality sound recording.
Enhanced grip and shutter buttonThe grip is refined in shape and height to support a more secure grasp of the camera even when a large lens is mounted. This also contributes to more confident operation of the shutter button and dials. Moreover, the shutter button has been reshaped and shifted forward to enable more natural shooting with less camera shake.
Stable viewfinder imageMonitor the stabilising effects of camera shake compensation in the viewfinder or LCD screen while shooting still images by pressing the shutter button halfway or magnifying the image, and while shooting movies by entering movie mode. Even when using a telephoto or macro lens, you can fine-tune framing and focusing with stress-free stability.
Area-specific noise reductionArea-specific noise reduction selectively divides the image into areas based on patterns (such as edges, textures and flat areas like blue skies), then applies the most appropriate noise reduction for each area to markedly reduce noise and achieve a new level of clarity.
Clean HDMI outputAn HDMI terminal makes it easy to transfer Full HD movie signals in real-time to an external monitor for accurate, large-screen viewing and listening. This feature supports uncompressed movie recording on external recording equipment and lets you output uncompressed movies with the shooting info display function off.
Convenient tiltable LCD screenThe LCD screen tilts upward approx. 107 degrees and downward approx. 41 degrees to accommodate wide-ranging shooting angles. This flexibility combines with compact mobility to greatly expand your shooting options. Viewing is also clear under direct sunlight thanks to WhiteMagic™ technology that nearly doubles the brightness of the display.
Connect to smartphones and tablets with one touch!Instantly transfer a photo or MP4 movie to your Android™ smartphone or tablet by simply touching it with the α7 II—thanks to built-in Wi-Fi and NFC™ (Near Field Communication)*. Touching your mobile device with the camera can also activate Smart Remote Control, which lets you control the camera’s shutter release from your smartphone or tablet.
* Requires NFC-compatible Android device.