With its ubiquitous Alpha mirrorless camera lineup, Sony has completely revolutionized filmmaking technologies, dominating the consumer and prosumer markets with hard-hitting products like the A7S II, A7R III, A6300, A6500, just to name a few. More than three months ago, the company rolled out another successful mirrorless camera, the latest addition to the Alpha series lineup – the A7 III.
With the introduction of the newcomer, there’s been a tremendous amount of fanfare surrounding the camera mainly due to its upgraded features and solid improvements when compared to its predecessors. Reasonably, many folks start to wonder how does the A7III stack up against the A6500. A video by Nate of VforVallee explores the topic with a comparison between the two counterparts.
First off, the A6500 is a mirrorless camera equipped with a 24.4 Megapixel APS-C Exmor CMOS sensor. The camera produces video by using a full 6K sensor readout and then downsampling it to 4K, resulting in sharp and clear images, even in low light.
Thanks to phase detection technology, the autofocus of this camera has been hailed as one of the best in the industry. Furthermore, the inclusion of multiple color profiles in addition to S-Log flavors give the camera even more professional features than other rivals from competing brands.
On the other side of Sony’s mirrorless spectrum lies the A7III. Unlike the A6500, the A7III is equipped with a 24.4 Megapixel 35mm Full Frame Exmor R CMOS sensor for the best image possible. Not only that, but it also boasts BSI technology, meaning that the sensor is backlit for even better low-light performance.
Beyond that, the A7III contains most, if not all the features found in the A6500 including log profiles, phase detection, in-body stabilization, customizable buttons, and more. As the newest camera released by Sony, the A7 III brings several add-ons as well that you won’t be able to not find on the A6500. For instance, the A7III has dual SD card slots, enabling users to record a backup copy of each clip in case the primary SD card fails.
In addition, the camera body of the A7III is weather sealed, allowing videographers to shoot in moderate/semi-difficult climates – all without having to worry about their precious investment suffering under rougher-than-average weather conditions. The screen on the A7III is also a welcome improvement as Sony has opted to increase its overall brightness.
Looking at battery life, the A7III trumps that of the A6500. Shooting for longer periods of time with the smaller sibling is rather tricky since the batteries used in the camera drain considerably faster when compared to the A7III. With the redesigned batteries of the A7III, however, you can expect longer uninterrupted shooting times.
While Sony has clearly made some improvements to the A7III over the A6500, there are a few design quirks that some folks may find inconvenient. For example, although the side covers are weather sealed on the A7III, they can seem rather flimsy and can potentially block some of the connection ports. The heavier build and larger size are other considerations in that regard as some shooters migrating from the A6500 may find these a bit challenging to adapt to.
As Nate concludes, even though the A7III may have some minor flaws, it’s definitely an improvement over the A6500. With design upgrades such as a better screen, sturdy build, more features, and a bigger sensor, there’s no denying that the A7III reigns supreme over the A6500. However, even though the A6500 is almost two years old, its professional-level features at such a compact form factor still make the camera an excellent option for B-Roll shooters and even a main camera for videographers working on a budget or for those who are just starting out.