Should You Buy a Sony a7S II?
- Sony A7S II Overview
- Sony A7S II Video Performance
- Sony A7S II Low Light Performance
- Sony A7S II Autofocus Performance
- Sony A7S II Price
- Is the Sony A7S II for You?
- Sensor: 12.2MP full-frame CMOS sensor
- ISO: 100-102,400 (expandable to 50-409,600)
- Lens Mount: Sony E Mount
- Speed: 5.0 fps
- Autofocus: 169 contrast-detection points
- Video: 4K/30p & 1080p/120p
- Size/Weight: 127 x 96 x 60 mm / 627 grams
- Battery Life: 370 shots / 60 minutes of 4K video
- Stabilization: Yes
- Touchscreen: Yes
- Sony Zeiss Sonnar T* FE 55mm f/1.8 ZA
- Sony FE 85mm f/1.8
- Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS
- Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* FE 24-70mm f/4 ZA OSS
- Rokinon AF 50mm f/1.4 FE
If you’re on the hunt for a new camera and considering buying the Sony Alpha A7S II, you’ve come to the right place! I’ll give you a detailed overview of the Sony A7S II and share four reasons why it’s still a great camera in 2022.
Even though Sony officially stopped manufacturing and selling new Sony A7S II cameras at the end of 2021 (in favor of its successor, the Sony Alpha A7S III), don’t let that scare you away. There are still tons of used Sony A7S II’s available, and their prices have never been lower.
One place with endless Sony A7S II cameras in stock is MPB. They’re a trustworthy and reliable online platform that sells used photo and video kit at unbeatable prices.
Furthermore, all of their cameras are carefully hand-inspected by experienced product specialists and backed by warranties, allowing you to make your purchases confidently and worry-free.
I’ve bought and sold several items with MPB over the years, and it’s always been a great experience, thus my recommendation that you check them out.
With that said, let’s dive in and discover whether or not the Sony A7S II is the ideal camera for you!
Table of Contents
Sony A7S II Overview
The Sony A7S II is a professional-level mirrorless camera that first hit stores in October of 2015.
At the core of the camera are a 12.2 megapixel full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor and a powerful Bionz X image processor. The pair work together to make the Sony A7S II one of the fastest and most light-sensitive mirrorless cameras on the planet.
The S actually stands for “sensitivity,” and all of the cameras in the specialty A7S lineup are primarily aimed at videographers, filmmakers, and low-light shooters. The max ISO is the highest found in any Sony camera, and noise is kept to a minimum even when shooting at high ISO levels.
The biggest weakness of the Sony A7S II is that its 12.2MP resolution for still photography is relatively low compared to most modern cameras. Hybrid shooters will see better results with the Sony Alpha A7 III, while photographers who never shoot video will love the Sony Alpha A7R IV.
Here’s an in-depth look at the key features and specs of the Sony A7S II:
Sony A7S II Video Performance
The video capabilities of the Sony A7S II are without a doubt the number one reason it’s still a popular camera today.
For starters, it records stunning 4K UHD video internally at speeds of 24 or 30 fps. On top of that, it uses the whole sensor during 4K recording, meaning no crop factor is applied.
During 4K video capture, you can choose from various color profiles such as S-Log2, S-Log3 Gamma, and S-Gamut3. This enhances the dynamic range of your footage and allows you to have more control during the post-production editing process.
Additionally, the Sony A7S II can record 1080p Full HD video at speeds of up to 120 fps. That means you can create smooth slow-motion videos in-camera, speeding up your overall workflow. Alternatively, you can record 1080p videos at 60 fps and slow them down manually using programs like Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro.
A few other noteworthy video features worth highlighting are the 5-Axis SteadyShot INSIDE Image Stabilization technology, the ability to create as many custom color profiles as you desire, and the fact that it has multiple different timecode recording options.
Sony A7S II Low Light Performance
Another reason the Sony A7S Mark II is still a great camera in 2022 is its killer low-light performance.
There are three principal driving forces behind its superior low-light performance. The first is the aforementioned in-body image stabilization. The second is that it utilizes its entire sensor during video recording, and the third is that there is no pixel binning.
The 5-axis image stabilization adds 4.5 stops of exposure and helps reduce five different types of camera shake. Additionally, using the entire area of the full-frame sensor means more light is captured, and there is less noise whenever you need to boost the ISO. Finally, ditching pixel binning means better video quality and less moiré and aliasing.
Sony A7S II Autofocus Performance
Next, I have to mention the autofocus system of the Sony A7S II. Sony is the unquestioned king of autofocus in digital cameras, and the algorithm powering the AF system of this camera is no different.
The Sony A7S II uses 169 contrast-detection points and does a terrific job locating and tracking subjects in both photo and video modes.
Even though the autofocus is slower than newer Sony cameras that use hybrid AF systems featuring phase-detection and contrast-detection points, it’s still industry-leading.
And while I highly recommend using manual focus when shooting video whenever you can, having the option to switch over to the effective autofocus certainly comes in handy at times.
Sony A7S II Price
Last but not least, there’s the unbeatable price of the Sony A7S II…
Whereas its replacement, the Sony A7S III, checks in at a whopping $4000 on websites like Amazon, you can find the A7S II for well under half the price on platforms like MPB.
At those prices, it’s undoubtedly one of the best bargains out there. It’s no wonder it continues to be one of the most sought-after cameras by videographers and filmmakers alike.
Is the Sony A7S II for You?
If video work is the name of your game, you should definitely consider investing in a Sony A7S II. While it may not be the newest camera on the market, it still boasts advanced video features, powerful low-light performance, and speedy autofocus.
Furthermore, now you can get your hands on one of these bad boys for only a fraction of the cost of other comparable video cameras.
I hope you have found this information helpful, and as a bonus to you for reading the entire article, here is a list of some of my favorite lenses to pair with the Sony A7S II!