Getting a Sony A7Rii in 2019 = Getting A Modern Day Workhorse
Should you get a Sony A7Rii in 2019? At the point of writing this article, the Sony A7Rii has been out for four years and at the rate camera equipment is released, that seems like a long time. I purchase mine at the Best Buy in Baton Rouge Louisiana. It was a random purchase, but not really. I I run a photography business and wanting to start offering videography as an add on or an even as a separate service and the Canon EOS 5diii just wasn’t going to cut it. So at the drop of a hat, I purchased the A7Rii and their FE 28mm F/2 lens. I wasn’t expecting much. I just knew that for what I needed it for, I could make this camera work. It took me all of an entire 45 minuets to be in complete awe of it. The codec that this camera uses (to claim I’m an expert in codecs by any means) is nothing short of beautiful, and I hadn’t even tried the log features yet. 4k is gorgeous. All I really wanted as far as frame rates are concerned was 60FPS, which it does. Very well actually.
So How’s It Hold Up in 2019?
There’s an old Ray Boltz titled “The Anchor Holds”. I’m a firm believer that Ray was given a glimpse into the future of photography and videography. Actually that has nothing to do with this, and I’m not even sure Ray Boltz even wrote that. Anyway, this camera looks better than any camera I’ve ever owned, yet looks like a toy. Which makes it really convenient for sneaking it into places without a ton of attention.
The small profile is also handy for using a gamble. Balancing a camera this size is an absolute dream. The 1080p is beyond superior to my Canon 5diii and the 6Dii that I had briefly. Sony’s way of achieving this is something along the lines of downsizing a much larger video to produce a higher quality, smaller video. This camera has traveled to Orlando, Indianapolis, Houston, Miami, Tampa, Palm Bay, and Columbus Ohio with me.
During these trips, it started as just a camera for video, still bringing along the c100ii and the 5Diii. That was slowly brought to an end. I know almost exclusively travel with the A7Rii. I’ve added a battery grip, 50mm, 85mm, and a MetaBones converter and I honestly feel like I can take far less gear with me now and feel great about what I’m going to get.
Rest assured, the Sony A7Rii in 2019 is a good choice.
Sony A7Rii in 2019: Great For Video… and Photo?
As a full time photographer, I have a wide scope of opinions on the camera for photography. On one hand it has a KILLER image. Works AMAZING in low light and that gigantic, 42.2 MP image is nothing short of beautiful. My only concern, and reason for not switching 100%, is that the autofocus is still not quite there. I mean, it works great with a native lens, but the second you adapt, it can become chaos. However, another gripe with the autofocus is that if I’m using an auto mode, it is a little more difficult to manually select the focal point I want quickly. Other than that, I’m getting very close to switching completely.
Signature Sony Color
One thing I’ve always admired about Sony products is the unique range of colors they create. As a Canon user, I know that I’m supposed to hate Sony’s color science and only love Canon. However, I’m a huge fan of these colors, and I find that they work really well with the current Lightroom presets and even LUTS for video editing.
Tiny Body, Huge Images
As mentioned before, the Sony A7Rii has a 42.2MP image which is insanely large. This can be a good thing but maybe not for everyone. Naturally, you can choose from one of the smaller options such as compress raw though. (which is still pretty huge). A major downside when shooting with the giant images is the amount of speed it takes for your SD card to process the image. If you so choose to shoot maximum size images with this camera, be prepared for slow load times if you’re cards aren’t the best.
Silky Smooth 60FPS Video
60FPS is essential for my style of shooting wedding videography, so this was one of the primary reasons for choosing this camera. Although the 60FPS is only 1080P, it stands the test of time. Slowing this footage back down to 24FPS really makes it look incredible.
4K at 24FPS
Importing Content with the PlayMemories App
You can, like most current cameras, import your content directly to your iPhone or tablet via the built in WiFi options. This is a feature that is often taken for granted. This does raise a question though… what’s up with the terrible name for their app? Sony isn’t really known for branding prowess and ease of access though.
Get a Battery Grip For A Better Photography Experience with the Sony A7Rii
This portion may not be for everyone. However, I’ve always used battery grips on my Canon gear. This being said, I’ve always been more accustomed to a larger camera body, allowing for better grip in my hands. The actual weight of the camera isn’t really that important to me specifically unless I’m using my Ronin-S for some videography shots. Getting the Rii is getting dream-boat.
The extra size, double battery power (considering that Sony’s battery life SUCKS), and additional buttons is a must if your used to battery gripped Canon cameras. As I said before, not everyone enjoys a larger camera. I do however…
Alright, Enough With The Good Stuff.
So, I’ve worked this camera up, so I guess it’s time to talk about the things I’m NOT a fan of. I’ve mentioned the auto-focus already. The second thing I’m not really crazy about is the image quality that I’m getting on the back of the screen. I feel like they cut the budget in that department. It’s a bit lack luster. Don’t be surprised if you shoot with this camera and you feel like what you’re getting looks like crap, only to put it in your computer and realize it’s a masterpiece.
Unfortunately, the battery life of the Rii is still in need of some work. There’s so many features in this camera that the batteries just can’t keep up. If you get this camera, buy a ton of extras. You’ll need them.
The menus are cumbersome, but very Sony-esk. This was expected.
Overall, Getting a Sony A7Rii is a Winning Choice in 2019
I’m currently shooting an a EOS R, c100ii with duel pixel AF, and various GoPros/Drones. When using this camera in it’s “lane”, I’ve realized that it will out perform any of them. It’s 2019, and I can honestly say that this camera is more than enough for me. I highly recommend getting a Sony A7Rii in 2019.
Real Videography Samples: