Sony A7 review: Mirrorless marvel?

By Kevin Carter - Thursday December 05 2013

Camera Review
Introduction | Sony A7 sensor performance: Excellent Score | Sony A7 versus competition | Conclusion

Sony A7 vs Sony A7R

Compared against the pricier 36-Mpix Sony A7R model, with its DxOMark score of 95 points, the A7 has  -0.5 stop less color depth, 0.2 stop less exposure or dynamic range and around -0.3 stop less low light performance. 

Sony A7 vs Leica M Typ 240 vs Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX1R: Excellent Performance

Sony has been increasingly innovative in the last 12 months with the outstanding Cyber-shot DSC-RX1R vying for market share in the compact professional class, alongside other full-frame models such as the unique Leica M (Typ 240) rangefinder.

Unsurprisingly with a similar 24-Mpix sensor (albeit without AA filter) the DSC-RX1R performs much the same as the A7 though there are some slight though negligible differences in real terms in color precision and low light performance.

As for dynamic range the A7 has an extra +0.6 Ev over the RX1R and +0.9 Ev over the European sourced 24-Mpix sensor in the Leica. The A7 also has a +1/3 stop extra color depth at base sensitivity and the same +1/3 stop advantage over the Leica in low light though in real terms it’s insignificant.

Sony A7 vs Nikon D610 vs Sony SLT Alpha 99: Competitive Performance

Unsurprisingly perhaps, compared with the Nikon D610 and the firm’s SLT A99, both using a similar full-frame 24-Mpix CMOS sensor, the results are very close.

Color depth between the three is similar and the A7 sits between the two with regard to the dynamic range, just +0.2 Ev separates the Nikon. However, it’s the low light performance that divides the two Sony models.

While the A7 has a + ½ stop advantage over the SLT-based A99, the Nikon has a +1/3 stop over the A7, presumably on account of the latter model’s modified sensor.