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Sony A9 First Impressions

Get the about $4499 Sony a9 and about $2499 Sony FE 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 GM OSS at B&H Photo.

The Sony A9 is here.

In my review of the Sony A9 I’ve started a first impressions page, to which I’ll be adding as I use the camera:

I already admire the A9 as a huge step forward over the A7R II. The “visual haptics” (what my eye sees) are not just a huge step forward over the A7R II, I would rate the A9 as the best camera on the market today in the way it feels to my eye while shooting via at the EVF for two reasons: the 3.7 megapixel OLED EVF and the blackout-free operation. The 4-way controller hugely enhances the camera usability also. This A9 is the most important step up in usability that I have seen from Sony, by far.


Blackout-free exposure is a whole-new ballgame that completely changes operational feel— Sony has hit a HOME RUN here! Already I greatly desire this behavior with my A7R II. I would say it is the most unobtrusive way of shooting a camera ever—better than any DSLR, better than any mirrorless camera I’ve ever shot. It makes the experience feel real time. While sports shooters surely will adore the feature, as a still shooter I now lust over having blackout-free exposure on all my cameras. Every other camera will feel sucky when shooting now, alas.

Those who talk about haptics of a camera are well justified in saying that haptics take high priority. But it is a sum total and my feeling is that the “extended haptics” that include the most important thing of all—the eye interface when shooting—this Sony has nailed and it makes all other haptic considerations secondary, for the shooting experience with the eye to the Finder comes first.

Of some background and timeline interest, given the incredible A9 feature set:

Sony Alpha α9 aka ILCE-9

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