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Sony a77 II Review

The discontinuation of the Nex brand and the introduction of the full-frame E-mount Sony A7, A7R, and A7S compact system cameras may have led you to believe Sony will no longer produce single-lens translucent (SLT) cameras using the A-mount. However, this assumption would be incorrect. The Sony Alpha 77 II, on the other hand, demonstrates that this is not the case.

You may probably infer that the Alpha 77 Mk2 is meant to take the place of the original Alpha 77, which has been phased out, and that it has a design and form that are practically the same. The new camera is geared toward photography enthusiasts who already have some experience but are looking for a more advanced model.

There are 24 million pixels on the sensor of the A77 Mark II, just like there were on the original Alpha 77. However, since this is a new device, it takes advantage of the advancements that have been made in sensor design in the more than two and a half years that have passed since the original Alpha 77 was released.

Sony a77 II Build Quality.

Compared side-by-side, an Alpha 77 Mark II and the first-generation Alpha 77 display relatively few noticeable changes. The main form and control configuration of both cameras are identical, and the vertical grip that was designed specifically for the first generation of the A77 may be utilized with the second generation model.

The mode dial on the new camera includes a few key improvements, the most notable of which is the addition of a lock button that safeguards it against being accidentally moved out of place. The hot shoe has also been modified such that it no longer has the Sony (Minolta) proprietary form but rather the universal type that is more often used. Additionally, it has been improved such that it can now function as a multi-shoe, which allows it to accommodate a variety of different attachments.

In addition, there is a broader variety of personalization choices available via the function (Fn) button. The A77 II contains 27 features, each of which may be customized to fit into one of the twelve available spaces in the Function menu.

Suppose you frequently use Picture Effects (Toy Camera, Pop Color, Posterization, Retro Photo, Soft High-key, Partial Color, High Contrast Mono, Soft Focus, HDR Painting, Rich-tone Monochrome, Miniature, Watercolor, and Illustration). In that case, you should consider assigning them to the Function menu and the image quality. This will allow you to disable raw recordings and access the effects quickly. Toy Camera, Pop Color, Posterization, Retro Photo, Soft High-key, Partial

Sony a77 II Performance

The Alpha 77 II does not reduce Sony’s already stellar reputation for sensor design and image processing, which continues to be one of the company’s strengths. Noise is adequately controlled in raw files, even at the highest available sensitivity level of ISO 25,600. Raw files have a fine texture, and there is no banding or clumping apparent when viewed at 100% on the screen.

It is possible, with careful processing, to hide the majority of the colored speckling present in raw files, producing an image with just luminance noise and some grain. This is accomplished by creating a picture with some grain.

JPEG files recorded simultaneously appear to have a softer appearance than their raw counterparts. Upon closer inspection, a painterly texture is revealed, along with some blurring of detail and slightly sharpened edges. When seen at A3 size, they often present an acceptable appearance; nevertheless, I like the somewhat sharper and grainier appearance of the raw files.

When using lower sensitivity settings, the A77 II can record a great degree of detail, which is exactly what you would expect from a camera that has a sensor with 24 million pixels.

Sony a77 II Image Quality

During our evaluation, the Sony A77 II captured photographs of exceptionally high quality. The ISO range of the Sony A77 II can go from 50 to 25,600, making it incredibly versatile. ISO 50–1600 is noise-free, while ISO 3200 and 6400 yield results that are more than adequate, and even ISO 12800 may be used successfully in an emergency (although we recommend avoiding ISO 25,600 if at all possible).

However, the RAW examples show exactly how much processing the camera undertakes by default since they are significantly noisier than their JPEG counterparts across the board, regardless of the ISO value.

The 24-megapixel photographs come out of the camera slightly soft when using the default creative style. For the best results, you should sharpen them some more by utilizing an application such as Adobe Photoshop; alternatively, you may adjust the degree of sharpening that the camera applies automatically.

The built-in flash performed admirably indoors, preventing red-eye and producing photographs with adequate exposure overall. The night shot turned out well thanks to the camera’s maximum shutter speed of 30 seconds and its Bulb mode, which allow lots of room for creative experimentation during nighttime shooting. When shooting at slower shutter speeds while holding the camera by hand, the built-in SteadyShot anti-shake feature performs quite well.

The efficient Dynamic Range Optimizer function may extract additional data from an image’s shadow and highlight sections without adding any noise or other artifacts that aren’t wanted.

The High Dynamic Range mode combines the results of two separate images taken at various exposures into a single image. The result is an image that has a higher dynamic range than what would be produced by a single photograph.

However, it does yield some excellent effects even though it can only function with JPEGs and stationary subjects. Even after all these years, using Sony’s Sweep Panorama is still a delightful experience.

Even though they can only be applied to JPEGs, the vast range of picture effects rapidly generates unique looks that would generally need you to spend a lot of time in the digital darkroom. In contrast, the Creative Styles give a quick and easy approach to editing the camera’s JPEG and RAW photographs.

Sony a77 II Specs

Body typeMid-size SLR
Body materialMagnesium alloy
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Other resolutions6000 x 3376, 4240 x 2832, 4440 x 2400, 3008 x 2000, x 3008 x 1688
Image ratio w:h3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors25 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorBionz X
Color spacesRGB, AdobeRGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
ISOAuto (ISO 100-51200), Manual (ISO 100-25600)
Boosted ISO (minimum)50
Boosted ISO (maximum)51200
White balance presets9
Custom white balanceYes (3 slots)
Image stabilizationSensor-shift
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsSuper fine, fine, normal
File formatJPEG (DCF v2.0, EXIF v2.3)Raw (ARW 2.3)
Image parametersContrastSaturationSharpness
Optics & Focus
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousFace DetectionLive View
Autofocus assist lampYes (flash type)
Digital zoomYes (2X)
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points79
Lens mountSony/Minolta Alpha
Focal length multiplier1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3″
Screen dots1,229,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeWhiteMagic TFT
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeElectronic
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder magnification1.09× (0.73× 35mm equiv.)
Viewfinder resolution2,359,000
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/8000 sec
Exposure modesiAutoProgramAperture priorityShutter priorityManual
Scene modesPortraitSports ActionMacroLandscapeSunsetNight SceneHand-held TwilightNight Portrait
Built-in flashYes
Flash range12.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flashYes (via hot shoe or flash sync port)
Flash modesAuto, fill, rear sync, slow sync
Flash X sync speed1/250 sec
Drive modesSingle-frameContinuous high/lowContinuous advance priority AESelf-timer
Continuous drive12.0 fps
Self-timerYes (Yes (2 or 12 sec))
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpot
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±3 (3, 5 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV, 2 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes (3 shots, low/high selectable)
Videography features
Resolutions1920 x 1080 (60p, 60i, 30p), 1440 x 1080 (30p), 640 x 480 (30p)
Storage typesSD/ SDHC/SDXC, Memory Stick Pro Duo/ Pro-HG Duo
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (mini HDMI)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portNo
Wireless notes802.11b/g/n with NFC
Remote controlYes (wired, wireless, or smartphone)
Environmentally sealedYes
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionNP-FM500H lithium-ion battery and charger
Battery Life (CIPA)480
Weight (inc. batteries)647 g (1.43 lb / 22.82 oz)
Dimensions143 x 104 x 81 mm (5.63 x 4.09 x 3.19″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes

Sony a77 II Verdict

Although the improvements made with the Alpha 77 Mark II may not appear to be very significant, Sony has worked on the most crucial parts, such as the sensor and the CPU, to improve the speed, picture quality, and autofocus speed.

Because a pixel count of 24 million is capable of capturing sufficient information for the majority of applications and enables large prints to be generated, many people will recognize that it is prudent to stay with the exact pixel count as with the Alpha 77. The files are likewise huge, but the typical current computer should be able to handle them without any problems.

The original Alpha 77’s focusing technology was vastly improved because of the hard effort Sony put into developing the autofocus mechanism for the Alpha 77 II. When the conditions are favorable, it has astounding speed and precision.

Naturally, its performance would suffer in low light, but it is still quite good and not too far behind that of the somewhat more costly Canon 5D Mark III when used with an equivalent lens. The Canon 70D and the Nikon D7100 are two examples of rival cameras that do not have an AF Range Control feature like the one that Sony included in the A77 II.

Sony a77 II Pros & Quality

Good For
  • The 24-megapixel sensor captures a great deal of information.
  • Excellent AF system
  • Good noise control
Need Improvements
  • Rather than among the continuous shooting settings, the 12fps option is located on the mode dial.
  • Lack of a touchscreen
  • On the screen is a cumbersome device for articulating.
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Movie / video mode
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The discontinuation of the Nex brand and the introduction of the full-frame E-mount Sony A7, A7R, and A7S compact system cameras may have led you to believe Sony will no longer produce single-lens translucent (SLT) cameras using the A-mount. However, this assumption would be...Sony a77 II Review