There is a downside to that amazing full-frame sensor on the A7S III. Yes, it can capture absolutely outstanding low-light, allowing filmmakers to do more with less and also film in locations and settings that were previously too dark for any of us to see. That is all made possible by the sensor’s oversized photosites.
With larger photosites, the camera can capture more light and record more information, but with a pixel pitch of 8.36 µm in a photosite area of 69.89 µm², there really isn’t much more room for Sony to cram in much more than the 12,100,000 pixels – which means you can’t punch in to shoot in S35 mode without filming in sub-4k resolutions.
Fortunately, Mauro’s Films have a familiar trick that does a fantastic job at creating an in-camera APS-C crop in 4K that is really easy to find and implement.
If you’re a Sony Mirrorless shooter, you’re probably pretty familiar with Clear Image Zoom. This feature has been offered on Sony cameras for some time now.
Sony engineers refer to Clear Image Zoom as ‘interpolation on steroids’. It is a digital zoom that uses clever algorithms and some in-camera magic to crop the sensor while still maintaining the same captured resolution without a noticeable loss of detail.
I wouldn’t refer to this feature as a ‘hack’ as Mauro does, but it is for-whatever-reason buried in the menu system when it is so cool that they probably should have given it its own button.
You access Clear Image Zoom in the menu by selecting the first menu option, Shoot, and scrolling down to the 9th option, Zoom. Select Clear Image Zoom and then set your zoom range from 1x to 1.5x to match an APS-C crop.
Honestly, that is really all there is to it. You can now zoom in 1.5x and use APS-C lenses on your A7S III without any noticeable loss in image quality. Personally, I recommend you check out the DZO Pictor Zooms. They are some absolutely stunning lenses that only cover an S35 image circle, and would work wonders with this stunning low-light camera.
[source: Mauro’s Films]
Sony Alpha a7S III Mirrorless Digital Camera (B&H)
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