Sony announces high-resolution A7R IV with 61MP sensor

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Sony have announced the A7R IV, featuring the world's first 61-megapixel back-illuminated sensor (BSI CMOS), 15 stops of dynamic range, 4K UHD video and 5-axis in-body image stabilisation (IBIS).

As well as the big sensor, the autofocus system gets a sizable bump over the 7R IV's predecessor, the A7R III, with the 7R IV capable of shooting full resolution images at up to 10 fps with continuous AF/AE tracking for up to seven seconds in full-frame, full-resolution (JPEG or RAW), and approx. 21 seconds in APS-C crop mode, which will still deliver 26.2MP files. 

Inside, the BSI CMOS image sensor is completely new, and offers a reported 15 stops of dynamic range.

If 61MP isn't quite enough for you, the new camera features a pixel shift multi shooting mode that composites up to 16 full-resolution images to capture 16 separate pixel-shifted images containing a total of 963.2 million pixels of data, which are then composited into a 240MP (19008 x 12672 pixel) image. It's worth noting you'll need to Sony’s Imaging Edge desktop application to do the final composite. 

The autofocus system is comprised of 567 focal-plane phase-detection AF points that cover approximately 74 percent of the image area, and there are also 425 contrast AF points for extra precision. The 7R IV also supports Sony's Real-time Eye AF,  available for both animal and human subjects.

Real-time Tracking is available as well, which utilises a newly developed subject recognition algorithm, and there is also an anti-flicker shooting mode, which automatically detects the presence of fluorescent or artificial lighting in a shooting environment.

The 7R IV offering 4K (3840x2160 pixels), albeit at 8, not 10-bit, across the full width of the image sensor, and full pixel readout without pixel binning in Super 35mm mode.

S-Log 2 and S-Log 3 are available to maximize colour grading flexibility, with S-Log 3 offering a total of 14-stops of dynamic range. Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG) is also available. In a first, the 7R IV also features real-time Eye AF for movie shooting.  

Sony have also introduced a new digital audio interface that maintains a digital signal from microphone to camera. This is possible thanks to the new ECM-B1M shotgun microphone that features a built-in Analog to Digital converter, and a new multi-interface hot shoe found only on the 7R IV. 

The A7R IV features upgraded dust and moisture resistance, with additional sealing provided at all body seams, the battery compartment cover and media slots.

There's also an improved grip, and a number of changes to the button layout and size: an increase in the size and feedback for the ‘AF-ON’ button; a new multi-selector joystick design for improvised control; an exposure compensation dial lock button; and a redesigned shape and new position for the rear dial. 

There's two UHS-II compatible media slots, and camera settings can be saved to, and read from an inserted memory card. 

Despite its increased pixel count compared to the Alpha 7R III, the battery life has been improved with a CIPA measurement of up to 670 still images per change using LCD monitor, or 530 images with EVF. 

Sony has also released a variety of new accessories to compliment the new Alpha 7R IV camera, including a vertical grip and shotgun microphone. 

You can see sample images taken with the new camera at Sony's image gallery.

Pricing and Availability

The new Alpha 7R IV will be available in Australia at the end of August for $5,699. You can find out more at Sony. 

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