Sony announced their flagship mirrorless camera of the Alpha series… the α1 on the 26th of January.
This monster of a camera seems to break free of all the limitations set forth in the Alpha 7 line of cameras, and the list of headline features makes you feel like it can ‘do it all’. The specs read like a mashup of the A7R line and the A9ii. So what you get are 50Mpx images at high frame rates and video resolutions of up to 8K/30p.
Sony α1 Headlining Features
- 50 Megapixel Stacked CMOS sensor that can shoot up to 30 frames a second
- No blackout photography.
- AutoFocus and AutoExposure evaluation 120 times a second.
- 8K Video at 30/25 FPS
- 4K Video at 120/100 FPS
- Enhanced connectivity via 1000Base-T Ethernet, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, and 5G via mmWave mobile phone.
Additional Features of Interest
- Electronic Shutter Flash Sync up to 1/200 sec for the first time in the Alpha series.
- Up to 155 full-frame compressed RAW images saved in the buffer.
- Mechanical Shutter Flash Sync up to 1/400 sec.
- 5-axis in-body stabilization up to 5.5steps.
- 759 phase-detection points which cover 92% of the image area.
- Real-time Eye AF for humans, animals and birds while photographing, but only for humans in video mode.
- AI-based tracking of subjects.
- When using Catalyst Browse or Catalyst Prepare, the built-in gyro data from file metadata can be used to create accurate stabilised video footage.
- Optimised heat-dissipation structure which enables 8K/30p video for up to 30 minutes.
Some Caveats to Watch Out For
- The 30 FPS speed is based on AF tracking ability, and when using the electronic shutter. Real-world numbers are likely to be slightly lower.
- Mechanical Shutter at 10 FPS.
- There’s no animal eye-tracking for video.
- 8K video is oversampled from 8.6K.
Pricing and Availablity
As the flagship Alpha camera, it is priced at around US$ 6,500 and is available for pre-order on most camera retailers’ websites. The company says that cameras will begin shipping on 4th March 2021.
Press Release: Official Press Release
Video Reviews of The Sony A1
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Published: January 28, 2021 | Last Updated: August 8, 2021