Sony a7R IV Review
Jan 28, 2020
The a7R IV is Sony’s high-resolution, fourth generation full-frame mirrorless camera. Featuring 61 MP Exmor CMOS sensor, the camera provides excellent image results as well as promises more refined control, robust build quality, and the latest autofocus implementation. With such features and enhancements, the Sony a7R IV outperforms many of its full-frame rivals.
- 61 MP back-illuminated, full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor
- 3-inch, 1.44m dot tilting touchscreen
- Fast hybrid AF system featuring 567 phase-detects
- Maximum image size: 9,504 x 6,336
- Video: 4k UHD 30p, 24p
- 5.76M Dot OLED Viewfinder
- 100-32,000 ISO range
- HDMI Micro, Micro USB, USB Type C, NFC, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi connectivity
- Battery: Up to 670 shots
- Weight: 655 grams
Design and Handling
The A7 series by Sony was the first full-frame mirrorless camera design but it always felt front-heavy. Sony addressed this issue with the design improvement of the a7R IV camera. The camera grip is now relatively bigger and feels great in hand. The camera also feels a lot like other modern cameras in the Alpha Series. It is easy to hold and lightweight thanks to its magnesium alloy design. From a build perspective, the camera is robust and you should have no worries about its long life.
The 61 MP sensor provides excellent image quality. The dynamic range performance is great as the ‘dual gain’ design of the camera gives more highlight headroom and slightly better dynamic range below the ISO 320. Upgrading to ISO 6400 levels starts to show more noise. However, there isn’t much real difference up from ISO 400. Image details the camera reproduces are amazing with a resolution of about 1.6x higher than Sony a7R III. Color presentation is particularly excellent. The camera produces very natural looking images and most of the shots taken don’t require any color correction.
The a7R IV looks impressive in terms of specifications. It is capable of shooting 4K video by up to 30p of the entire width of the sensor simultaneously by using over-sampled footage from collected areas or by ‘binning’ pixels. Apart from this, the camera offers a choice of log shooting mode, zebra exposure alert, and focus picking. There’s also plenty of advanced autofocus tracking.
The Sony a7R IV is amazing in terms of performance. Although its 61 MP advantage over most 40-50 MP cameras on the market is subtle its real-world dynamic range is outstanding. Furthermore, its 10fps continuous shooting mode is very impressive, particularly when you take into account the resolution of the camera. It works almost invisibly as long as the object is not moving too fast. Battery life is also very good. A single charge can achieve up to 670 shots using the LCD which is sufficient.
The Sony a7R IV is better than most mirrorless full-frame cameras on paper. However, its real-world advantage is modest compared to rivals like the Panasonic Lumix S1R and Nikon Z7. The A-Series cameras from Sony have always scored high and the a7R is certainly better than its predecessor in virtually every case. It’s has some solid competition though, so it’s no longer a straight win for the manufacturer.