Figuring out which camera is going to deliver the best image quality is a complicated endeavor. A big reason for the difficulty is that each camera is going to have its own quirks or features that might make it amazing for certain things and terrible for others.
It also makes seemingly similar cameras much different in practice if you plan on using one function more than another.
Today, we are going to find out which of Sony’s mirrorless cameras is best for shooting slow motion in low light. That means we are going to have the a7 IV up against the a7S III. The comparison was done by Easy Tiger Creative so let’s check it out.
There are a lot of nuances when you are comparing two cameras. The actual features, the real-world performance, and then the price. Obviously, a lot of people go into comparisons hoping that they can save some cash by going with a cheaper model (a7 IV) that is almost as good as the premium pick (a7S III).
Looking at slow-motion recording, the a7S III and a7 IV both cap out at 120 fps. The big difference is that the a7S III is using nearly the entire full-frame area and recording in 4K while the a7 IV drops down to Full HD to hit that speed. Whether that makes the biggest difference to most people will depend on what you need.
Low-light shooting changes the game even more and that’s where this test goes. This is going to strain both cameras and we will see just how good each camera is in this scenario.
Both cameras will be set to their best ISOs and properly exposed, this is generally the base ISOs for S-Log3. This does give the a7S an edge as it has the dual base ISO which has a high setting at 12,800. That gives it better noise performance and dynamic range in low light. That extra flexibility is huge as the a7 IV is limited to ISO 3200.
Test footage comparisons here do show that when treated right footage from both can look very good. The a7S will beat out the a7 IV in a lot of ways and if you need to push the footage or crop later then that extra resolution will be incredibly helpful. The less light the even more the a7S shines.
Now, if you aren’t planning on using the 120 fps mode all that often, then we should talk about how the a7 IV is producing some good-looking footage.
Even in comparison to the a7S III it was still relatively clean and usable. The a7 IV also doesn’t crop when in Full HD at 120 fps while the a7S has a 1.1x crop at 120p. The a7 IV is a high performing camera at a great price.
There is another option here. If you need the low-light slow motion of the a7S III on a budget you can opt for the ZV-E1 instead. Fewer extras and pro features than the a7S III, but the same image quality at a lower price.
Which camera would you pick?
[source: Easy Tiger Creative]
- Sony a7S III Mirrorless Camera (B&H, Amazon)
- Sony a7 IV Mirrorless Camera (B&H, Amazon)
- Sony ZV-E1 Mirrorless Camera (B&H, Amazon)
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