After more than a year of speculation Sony have finally announced an update to its top of the range DSLT A-Mount Camera with the launch of the A99II. This will be excellent news for those photographers who want to capture fast action (sports and wildlife) and also photographers who just enjoy a larger form factor than the the mirrorless Alpha cameras offer.
The camera appears to have acquired the Backside Illuminated Sensor from the A7RII along with its 5-Axis Image Stabilisation (Steadyshot Inside). The camera has also been brought up to date with WiFi connectivity and 4K movie recording. Perhaps the biggest leap in performance for A-Mount Alpha users is its 12 frames per second and Hybrid Phase Detection AF system. The A99II will use both the 399-point focal-plane AF system located on the image sensor (as found on the sensor of the A7RII) together with a dedicated 79-point AF sensor using 15 cross-type points for increased accuracy and speed. The system is reported to function in lighting conditions as dim as -4 EV which is very dim ambient light. The A99II will also acquire the excellent Eye-AF in AF-C currently enjoyed by A7RII and A6300 users.
Although this update is undoubtedly targeted to Sony A-Mount users who have not wanted to jump to the mirrorless E-Mount system, it will be a very attractive camera for other DSLR owners. This camera has many attractive features that would appeal to owners of a Nikon 810 or Canon 5DMKIII. Features such as its tilting screen, no optical low pass filter, 4K full-frame recording or Super 35mm recording with no pixel binning and higher resolution Backside Illuminated sensor make the features of the newly announced Canon 5DMKIV look a little out of date before it even hits the shelves. The Nikon 810A records only 1080p movies, shoots at a maximum of 5 frames per second and also has no tilt screen. It is, however, harder to make the shift to A-Mount rather than E-Mount as the lens adapter solution does not apply to these DSLR/DSLT cameras.
Short Overview of Specifications
- 42.4 MP Sensor
- 5-Axis SteadyShot INSIDE Image Stabilization
- 4D Focus Hybrid Phase Detection AF System: The a99 II is able to utilize both a dedicated 79-point AF sensor and the 399-point focal-plane AF system located on the image sensor at the same time.
- UHD 4K Video Recording in XAVC S Format
- Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC and Bluetooth
- Redesigned Body – The body has been reduced in size by 8%
Full overview of the A99II: Sony.Co.UK/ilca-99m2