Sony A77 M2 DSLR Review: Fast Shooter Great for Low Light. Фотоаппарат sony 77m2


Sony A77MII den İlk Görüntüler ILCA-77M2

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Uzun zamandır, tam 14 aydır Sony A-Mount gövde çıkartmıyordu. En son 2013 yılının Şubat ayında A58 gövdeyi duyurmuş ve çeşitli söylentilerle artık SLT gövde üretilmeyeceği söylenmişti. 14 ay sonra Sony tüm bu söylentileri yalanlayacak ILCA-77M2 yani Alpha 77 Mark II yi duyurmaya hazırlanıyor.

Resmi olarak duyurusu yapılmadan her üründe olduğu gibi merakla beklenen iki şey, görünüşü ve teknik özellikleri oluyor. İşte size yeni Sony Alpha 77 Mark II nin bir başka deyişle Sony ILCA-77M2 nin ilk görüntüleri ve elimize ulaşan bir kaç teknik özelliği.

Kamera görüntüleri ve teknik özellikler doğrulanmıştır.

A-mount SLTBionz X processorTekil renk filtreli 24 megapixel “Exmor” CMOS sensor14 Bit RAW50-51200 ISO60 JPEG kapasiteli buffer ile 12fps çekim hızıAVCHD 2.0 video kaydıSensörün %40’ını kaplayan 79 fokus noktası (15 nokta çapraz). Merkezde F2.8 sensör ve -2EV.1.2 Milyon nokta 3 inch LCD (dokunmatik değil). 3 yönlü hareket2.3 Milyon nokta OLED viewfinderShutter 1/8000 den 30sWiFi ve NFC11 kişileştirilebilir düğme ve 3 adet ayar hafızasıToza ve neme dayanıklı magnezyum kasa.

Bu arada kamera XAVC-S video kaydı yapmıyor.

Karşılaştırma tablosunu tam olarak görmek için görsele tıklayınız.

 

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Sony Alpha 77II (ILCA-77M2) - Digital Photography Live

digitalphotographylive.com

General Camera type Interchangeable-lens digital camera with built-in flash
Lens compatibility Sony A-mount lenses, operation with Minolta/Konica Minolta lenses confirmed
Image sensor Type APS-C type (23.5 x 15.6 m), Exmor CMOS sensor with primary colour filters
Number of pixels (effective) Approx. 24.3 megapixels
Number of pixels (total) Approx. 24.7 megapixels
Image sensor aspect ratio 3:2
Anti-dust system Charge protection coating on image sensor and image sensor shift mechanism
Recording system (still images) Recording format JPEG (DCF Ver. 2.0, Exif Ver. 2.3, MPF baseline compliant), RAW (Sony ARW 2.3 format)
Image size (pixels) [3:2 aspect ratio] L: 6000 x 4000 (24M), M: 4240 x 2832 (12M), S: 3008 x 2000 (6.0M)
[16:9 aspect ratio] L: 6000 x 3376 (20M), M: 4240 x 2400 (10M), S: 3008 x 1688 (5.1M)
[Sweep Panorama] Wide: horizontal 12416 x 1856 (23M), vertical 5536 x 2160 (12M), Standard: horizontal 8192 x 1856 (15M), vertical 3872 x 2160 (8.4M)
Image quality modes RAW, RAW & JPEG, JPEG Extra fine, JPEG Fine, JPEG Standard
Picture Effect 13 modes: Posterization (Colour, B/W), Pop Colour, Retro Photo, Partial Colour (R, G, B, Y), High Contrast Monochrome, Toy Camera, Soft High-key, Soft Focus, HDR Painting, Rich-tone Monochrome, Miniature, Watercolour, Illustration
Creative Style Standard, Vivid, Neutral, Clear, Deep, Light, Portrait, Landscape, Sunset, Night Scene, Autumn Leaves, Black & White, Sepia (Contrast -3 to +3 steps, Saturation -3 to +3 steps, Sharpness -3 to +3 steps) (Style Box 1–6 also provided)
Dynamic range functions Off, Dynamic Range Optimiser (Auto/Level (1-5)), Auto High Dynamic Range: Auto Exposure Difference, Exposure Difference Level (1–6 EV, 1.0 EV step))
Colour space sRGB standard (with sYCC gamut) and Adobe RGB standard compatible with TRILUMINOS Colour
Recording system (videos) Recording format AVCHD format Ver. 2.0 compliant / MP4
Video compression AVCHD: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264MP4: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
Audio recording format AVCHD: Dolby Digital (AC-3) 2ch, Dolby Digital Stereo CreatorMP4: MPEG-4 AAC-LC, 2ch
Image size (pixels) [1080 60i compatible devices]AVCHD: 1920 x 1080 (60p/28Mbps*1/PS, 60i/24Mbps*1/FX, 60i/17Mbps*2/FH, 24p/24Mbps*1/FX, 24p/17Mbps/FH)MP4: 1440 x 1080 (30fps/12Mbps*2), 640 x 480 (30fps/3Mbps*2)
[1080 50i compatible devices]AVCHD: 1920 x 1080 (60p/28Mbps*1/PS, 50p/28Mbps*1/PS, 60i/24Mbps*1/FX, 50i/24Mbps*1/FX, 60i/17Mbps*2/FH, 50i/17Mbps*2/FH, 24p/24Mbps*1/FX /25p/24Mbps*1/FX, 24p/17Mbps*2/FH, 25p/17Mbps*2/FH)MP4: 1440 x 1080 (30fps/12Mbps*2, 25fps/12Mbps*2), 640 x 480 (30fps/3Mbps*2, 25fps/3Mbps*2)
Video functions Audio Level Display, Audio Rec Level, AF Tracking Duration, AF Drive Speed, Auto Slow Shutter, HDMI info. Display (On/Off selectable), Creative Style, Picture Effect
Media Media Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick XC-HG Duo, SD memory card, SDHC memory card (UHS-I compliant), SDXC memory card (UHS-I compliant)
Slot Multi slot for Memory Stick Duo/SD memory card
Noise reduction Noise reduction Long exposure NR: On/Off, available at shutter speeds longer than 1 sec.
Multi Frame NR Auto/ISO 100 to 51200
White balance Modes Auto / Daylight / Shade / Cloudy / Incandescent / Fluorescent (Warm White / Cool White / Day White / Daylight) / Flash / Colour Temperature (2500 to 9900K) & Colour Filter (G7 to M7, A7 to B7) / Custom (1/2/3) / Custom Set
AWB micro adjustment G7 to M7 (15 steps), A7 to B7 (15 steps)
Bracketing 3 frames, H/L selectable
Focus system Type TTL Phase-detection AF
Focus sensor CCD line sensors
Focus point 79 points (15 points cross type)*3 , with centre F2.8 sensor
Sensitivity range EV -2 to 18 (at ISO 100 equivalent)
Focus modes Autofocus, Manual focus selectable
AF modes Single-shot AF (AF-S), Continuous AF (AF-C), Automatic AF (AF-A), Direct Manual Focus
Focus area Wide / Zone / Centre / Flexible Spot / Expanded FlexibleSpot / Lock-On AF (Wide / Zone / Centre / Flexible Spot / Expanded Flexible Spot)
Other features Eye AF, Lock-on AF, Predictive control (AF-A, AF-C), Focus lock, AF Range Control, AF micro adjustment
Exposure control Metering type 1200-zone evaluative metering
Metering sensor Exmor CMOS sensor
Metering sensitivity EV -2 to EV 17 (at ISO 100 equivalent with F1.4 lens attached)
Metering modes Multi-segment, Centre-weighted, Spot
Exposure modes iAuto, Superior Auto, Programmed AE (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter-speed priority (S), Manual (M), Scene Selection, Sweep Panorama, Video
Modes Multi-segment, Centre-weighted, Spot
Exposure modes AUTO (Intelligent Auto/Superior Auto), Scene Selection, Sweep Panorama, Continuous Advance Priority AE, Video (P/A/S/M), Programmed AE (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter-speed priority (S), Manual (M), Memory recall (MR1/2/3)
Scene Selection Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports Action, Sunset, Night Portrait, Night Scene, Hand-held Twilight
Exposure compensation +/-5.0 EV (1/3 EV or 1/2 EV steps
AE bracketing Bracket: Cont./Bracket: Single, With 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1.0 EV, 2.0 EV, 3.0 EV increments, 3 /5 frames
AE lock Available with AE lock button. AE is also locked when focus is locked in multi-segment metering mode. (Auto/On/Off selectable)
ISO sensitivity (Recommended Exposure Index) Still Images: ISO 100–25600 (1/3 EV steps), (ISO numbers up from ISO 50 can be set as expanded ISO range.), AUTO (ISO 100–25600, selectable lower and upper limits)Videos: ISO 100–12800 equivalent (1/3 EV steps), AUTO (ISO 100–12800 equivalent, selectable lower and upper limits)
Viewfinder Type 1.3 cm (0.5 type) electronic viewfinder
Number of dots 2,359,296 dots
Brightness control Auto/Manual (5 steps between -2 and +2)
Colour temperature control Manual (5 steps)
Field coverage 100%
Magnification ‘Approx.1.09x (35 mm camera equivalent: Approx. 0.71x with 50 mm lens at infinity, -1m-1
Dioptre adjustment -4.0 to +3.0m-1
Eye point Approx. 23 mm from the eyepiece lens, 21.4 mm from the eyepiece frame at -1m-1 (CIPA standard)
Display Graphic Display / Display All Info./ No Disp. Info. / Digital level gauge / Histogram
Real-time image-adjustment display ON/OFF
LCD monitor Type 7.5 cm (3.0 type) TFT drive
Total number of dots 1,228,800 dots
Brightness control Auto, Manual (5 steps between -2 and +2), Sunny Weather mode
Adjustable angle Tilt angle: Up approx. 150 degrees, down approx. 180 degreesRotation angle: 180 degrees clockwise, 90 degrees anticlockwise.
Display Graphic Display / Display All Info./ No Disp. Info. / Digital level gauge/ Histogram / Shooting information for viewfinder mode
Real-time image-adjustment display On/Off
Focus magnifier 5.9x, 11.7x
Peaking MF Yes (Level setting: High/Mid/Low/Off, Colour: White/Red/Yellow)
Display panel Top panel
Other features Face detection On / On (Regist. Faces) / Off, Face registration, Face selection (Max. number of detectable faces: 8)
Auto Object Framing Yes
Clear Image Zoom Still / Video: Approx. 2x
Digital zoom Smart zoom (still images) M: Approx. 1.4x, S: Approx. 2.0xDigital zoom (still images) L: Approx. 4x, M: Approx. 5.7x, S: Approx. 8xDigital zoom (videos) Approx. 4x
Smart Teleconverter Approx.1.4 x / 2x
Lens compensation Peripheral shading, chromatic aberration, distortion
Shutter Type Electronically controlled, vertical-traverse, focal-plane type
Shutter speed*4 1/250 sec.
Electronic front curtain shutter Yes, On/Off
SteadyShot INSIDE (image stabilisation) Type For still images: Image Sensor-Shift mechanism, for videos: Electronic
Flash Control (with optional external flash) Control ADI, Pre-flash TTL, Manual flash
Flash compensation +/- 3.0 EV (switchable between 1/3 and 1/2 EV steps)
Flash bracketing 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1.0, 2.0, 3.0 EV steps, 3/5 frames selectable
Flash modes Flash off, Autoflash, Fill-flash, Slow Sync., Red-eye reduction (On/Off selectable), Rear Sync, Wireless *4, Hi-speed sync.*4
External flash Sony α System Flash compatible with Multi Interface Shoe. Attach the shoe adaptor (ADP-MAA, sold separately) for flash compatible with Auto-lock Accessory Shoe
FE level lock Yes
Wireless control Wireless flash with lighting ratio control
Drive Drive modes Single shooting, Continuous shooting (Hi/Lo selectable), Self-timer (10/2 sec delay selectable), Self-timer (Cont.) (10 sec delay 3/5 exposures selectable), Bracketing (Cont., Single, White Balance, DRO)
Speed (approx., max.)*5 Continuous Advance Priority AE: Maximum 12fps, Continuous shooting Hi: Max. 8fps, Continuous shooting Lo: Max. 3fps
No. of recordable frames*5*6 (approx.) Continuous Advance Priority AE mode: 53 frames (JPEG Extra Fine L), 60 frames (JPEG Fine L), 93 64 frames (JPEG Standard), 26 frames (RAW), 25 frames (RAW & JPEG)Continuous shooting: 56 frames (JPEG Extra Fine L), 75 frames (JPEG Fine L), 93 frames (JPEG Standard), 28 frames (RAW), 26 frames (RAW & JPEG)
Playback Modes Single (with or without shooting information Y RGB histogram & highlight/shadow warning), 9/25 – frame index view, Enlarged display mode (Maximum magnification L: 18.8x, M: 13.3x, S: 9.4x), Panorama (Standard): 25.6x, Panorama (Wide): 38.8x), Display Rotation (Auto/Manual/Off selectable), Slideshow, Panorama scrolling, Auto Review (10/5/2 sec, off), Folder selection (Still), Forward/Rewind (Video), Delete, Protect
Interface PC interface Mass-storage, MTP, PC remote
Multi / Micro USB Terminal Yes
NFC Yes (NFC Forum Type 3 Tag compatible, One-touch remote, One-touch sharing)
Wireless LAN (built-in) Yes (Wi-Fi Compatible, IEEE802.11 b/g/n (2.4 GHz band))*7
HD output HDMI micro connector (Type-D), BRAVIA Sync (control for HDMI), PhotoTV HD, 4K Still Image playback
Others Sync. Terminal, Multi Interface Shoe*8, Microphone terminal (3.5 mm Stereo minijack), DC IN Terminal, Wired remote terminal, Wireless Remote Control (RMT-DSLR2 (sold separately))
Compatible OS Windows Vista*9 SP2, Windows 7 SP1, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Mac OS X (v. 10.7-10.9)
Audio Microphone Built-in stereo microphone or ECM-XYST1M/ECM-CG50 (sold separately)
Speaker Built-in, monaural, volume settings in 16 steps between 0 and 15
Print Compatible standards Exif Print, Print Image Matching III, DPOF setting
Custom function Type Custom key settings, Programmable setting
Memory function Yes (3 sets)
Power Battery Rechargeable battery pack NP-FM500H
Still images*10 Approx. 410 shots (viewfinder) / approx. 480 shots (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
Videos Actual*11 *12: Approx. 110 min. with viewfinder, approx. 120 min. with LCD monitor (CIPA standard) Continuous*11 *13: Approx. 175 min. with viewfinder, approx. 175 min. with LCD monitor (CIPA standard)
External power AC Adaptor AC-PW10AM (optional)
Operating temperature Range 32°–104°F / 0–40°C

Sony Alpha a77 Mark II translucent mirror camera announced (a77M2)

Sony officially announced the Alpha a77 Mark II translucent mirror camera. The price will be $1,198 for camera body and $1,798 for a kit with the 16-50mm/2.8 lens. Shipping will start on June 10th. Here are the main a77M2 features: World’s fastest continuous shooting speed up to 12 fps

The α77II has the world’s fastest continuous shooting speed in its class1—up to 12 frames per second at full resolution. Equipped with a 79 point AF sensor and advanced auto focus tracking, technology, you never have to miss a moment. The α77II outperforms even more expensive rivals with continuous auto focus and auto exposure when shooting at 12fps at full 24.3MP resolution and can capture up to 60 frames in a single burst when in JPEG fine setting.

World’s most AF points: 79-point Phase Detection AF system*

The α77II is equipped with a newly developed phase detection auto focus system, featuring wide coverage 79 AF points. Fifteen of the AF points are cross-type and placed in the most-frequently-used central area of the sensor. This helps the α77II achieve accurate focusing even with horizontally striped subjects, which line-type AF points typically find challenging. The new AF system also performs well in low-light conditions—as low as EV -2 (ISO 100), which is similar to a moonlit night under which objects are difficult to see even with the naked eye. The new AF algorithm instantly recognizes and reliably tracks the desired subject. The α77II also realizes impressive focusing accuracy, even when a large-aperture lens is mounted, thanks to the f/2.8 AF point placed horizontally in the center of the AF sensor overlapping another AF point.

*Among interchangeable-lens digital cameras equipped with a dedicated phase-detection AF sensor as of May 1, 2014.

24.3MP Exmor® CMOS sensor

The α77II houses a large APS-C sensor with approx. 24.3 effective megapixels for incredible detail and gorgeous enlargements. Its high resolving power adopts the same gapless on-chip lens structure as the α7R and features the latest-generation RGB color filter and other cutting-edge device technologies developed by Sony, the number 1 manufacturer of image sensors. The α77II’s image sensor exhibits approximately 20% higher sensitivity and lower noise levels compared to the α77 throughout a wide sensitivity range of ISO 100 to 25,600.

Advanced BIONZ® X image processing

The α77II is equipped with the same BIONZ® X image processing engine as on the top-of-the-line full-frame models—α7 and α7R. This engine achieves approximately three times the processing speed of previous BIONZ and features all the latest image processing technologies, which are optimized for this model. The result is astonishingly high-speed processing capabilities as well as faithfully reproduced textures and amazing definition.

Detail reproduction technology

Strong outlines a common characteristic of digital images, are minimized as much as possible to achieve finely detailed images with a natural three-dimensional appearance and naturally depicts subjects as seen by human vision. This increases the ability to depict detailed textures and brings photography another step closer to creating totally realistic, high-quality images.

Diffraction-Reducing Technology

Diffraction-reducing technology maximizes the optical performance of lenses and produces finer details when shooting with a small aperture setting. Optimal filter processing—that best matches the f-number—is applied to correct image points that are blurred, preventing diffraction effects that become an issue when shooting with a deep depth of field and high pixel count. You can therefore depend on finely detailed images even when shooting with a small aperture setting.

Max ISO 25,600

The α77II has a wide sensitivity range of ISO 100 to 25,600 for faster shutter speeds and low-light shooting situations. Combined with detail reproduction technology, area-specific noise reduction effectively suppresses noise and realize high-sensitivity images resulting in fine details and less grain from corner to corner.

Smartphone sharing with build-in Wi-Fi and NFC

Connectivity with smartphones has been simplified with Wi-Fi® and NFC control for one-touch sharing. Simply tap the camera to another NFC-enabled device like a tablet or smartphone and photos are transferred with just one touch. Users need only touch devices to connect; no complex set-up is required. Moreover, when using Smart Remote Control, the camera’s shutter can be conveniently controlled by your smartphone’s touchscreen.

Full HD Movie 1080/60p/60i/24p video recording

Take full control when you shoot HD movies and enjoy the full expressive potential of Program, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority or Manual (P/A/S/M) control in HD movie mode. Capture spectacular HD movies in your choice of super-smooth 60p, standard 60i or cinematic 24p, all at Full HD 1920x1080 resolution. AVCHD™ codec delivers stunning picture quality. MP4 codec offers smaller files for easier upload to the web. You also have the option of capturing uncompressed HD to an optional external recorder for super high bitrate via the clean HDMI® output.

Weather-resistant magnesium alloy body

The α77II is a high-quality, high-precision shooting tool built for the real world with a rugged magnesium alloy body that combines high strength with light weight. Sealing around the main buttons, dials, ports and doors are weather-resistant with a double-layered structure that enhances sealing effectiveness at all camera body openings including the media compartment and terminal area. The same high-level resistance to dust and moisture is maintained even when the camera is mounted with the 16-50mm F2.8 (SAL1650) zoom lens, VG-C77AM vertical shooting grip or HVL-F60M flash.

EVF - XGA OLED Tru-Finder

There’s never been anything quite like the OLED Tru-Finder™ electronic viewfinder. For size, speed and brightness even after sunset, this is a gem. It begins with 2,359,296 dots for amazing resolution and high contrast ratio for incredible depth and shows 100% frame coverage. OLED reduces motion blur to a bare minimum. You can also see the results of camera adjustments in real time with superb color and detail, including the ability to display the effects of various camera settings, the use of MF Assist and a peaking function for fine-tuning the focus.

Three-way Tilt and Swivel LCD Screen

The α77II incorporates a large 3” TFT LCD with 1,228,800 dots pixel count for bright high resolution and high contrast display making framing and shooting a breeze - even in harsh lighting situations. Tilt it up or down to frame high and low-angle shots that would otherwise be hit-or-miss. Tilt and swivel over the camera for self-portraits. You can even tilt it up and down when you hold the camera in vertical mode! Finally, the monitor folds flush to the camera with the LCD exposed for shooting or protected for travel.

Full-Time LiveView in LCD or EVF

You can use both the LCD monitor and OLED Electronic Viewfinder for composing shots in LiveView. Both provide a what-you-see-is-what-you-get preview of white balance, focus, depth of field, exposure and 100% framing accuracy, plus informative on-screen displays.

Every Lens is Stabilized

The α77II incorporates sensor shift technology called SteadyShot® INSIDE image stabilization. This means every lens you use—from the widest angle to longest telephoto—Is corrected for camera shake and reduces blur, resulting in crisp and sharp images.

Built-in Flash (Guide Number 12)

To help you shoot more effectively, the camera includes a built-in flash (Guide Number 12) that can also trigger a wireless accessory flash (sold separately). The integrated hot shoe enables you to expand your lighting options with a range of accessory flashes (sold separately).

Long Shutter Life

A highly durable and reliable shutter unit has been proven to endure approximately 150,000 shutter releases. This durability ensures long-lasting shooting performance, including continuous shooting performance that takes into consideration the large number of photos shot by advanced users.

Here is a quick specifications comparison with the major a77M2 competitors (click for larger view):

photorumors.com

Fast Shooter Great for Low Light

The good

  • Tilt-and-swivel LCD
  • Evenly exposed pictures with accurate color and sharp detail
  • Wide ISO range for low-light photography
  • Continuous shooting of 12 fps for up to 25 photos

The bad

  • Eye sensor too sensitive
  • Overly aggressive noise reduction at high ISOs
  • Poor smartphone Wi-Fi connectivity

Verdict

Sony's Alpha 77 Mark 2 DSLR is a solid, fast-shooting camera that can do it all, but it especially shines in low-light settings.

A variation on the conventional DSLR, Sony's Alpha 77 M2 camera is an upgrade of its popular Alpha 77 SLT (single-lens translucent) camera. This system lets a portion of the light through to a dedicated autofocus sensor while sending most light to the image sensor, providing a full-time live view as found on mirrorless cameras for shooting stills and videos. The $1,050 (body only) A77 M2 features a speedy new 79-point phase-detection autofocus system and a large ISO range to capture more detail in extreme low-light situations. With these improvements, can the new Alpha continue to impress, and take on competitors like Canon's $1,200 (body only) EOS 70D?

Image Quality

In general, pictures shot with the A77 M2 turned out bright, sharp and beautifully colored. Sony provided us with an f/2.8, 16-50mm SSM zoom lens ($800) to test the camera. We evaluated the camera's ability to set the right aperture, shutter speed and ISO light-sensitivity levels for even exposure by shooting on shutter- and aperture-priority modes. The A77 M2 performed well at these tasks, for the most part.

Bright-Light Results: Vivid Colors and Sharp Detail

In bright settings, the A77 M2 performed very well. My pictures of Central Park's Sheep Meadow on a sunny Sunday afternoon showed vibrant green blades of grass and a deep blue sky. The camera also retained the fine detail of wispy clouds in the sky.

Photo Credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/100 sec, ISO 100, Aperture priority.Photo Credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/100 sec, ISO 100, Aperture priority.A portrait of my friend taken at the same place captured great detail with a pleasing shallow depth of field.

Photo Credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/5, 1/100 secs, ISO 100, Aperture priority.Photo Credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/5, 1/100 secs, ISO 100, Aperture priority.

The A77 M2 accurately captured the pink and red strands in her hair, and kept the overall picture evenly exposed despite her bright white blouse. The flowers on her metallic necklace also rendered clearly. I did notice some distortion in this picture though, where people and trees in the background appear to be stretched diagonally toward the corners.

This photo was shot at the lens's widest focal length (16mm), which results in some distortion on most systems. So if you're getting this lens (which the A77 M2 is frequently bundled with), make sure to set the focal length a little narrower (20mm and up removes the distortion).

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/10, 1/60, ISO 320, Aperture priority. (CANON 70D) Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/10, 1/60, ISO 320, Aperture priority. (CANON 70D)

The Sony's color reproduction is as good as the quality from Canon's $1,200 EOS 70D DSLR, albeit with subtle differences. A colorful installation at the High Line park taken with both cameras showed similarly rich hues, with the Sony image showing a slightly blue cast while the Canon picture displayed warmer tones.

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/10, 1/60, ISO 320, Aperture priority. (SONY A77 M2) Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/10, 1/60, ISO 320, Aperture priority. (SONY A77 M2)

Low-Light Results: High ISO Range Captures More Detail

With a light-sensitivity range of ISO 100 to 25,600, the A77 M2 is capable of capturing brighter and sharper images in darker situations than competitors such as the Canon 70D (which can achieve ISO 25,600, though Canon recommends staying at 12,800).

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/60, ISO 5000, Aperture priority.Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/60, ISO 5000, Aperture priority.

At a night game during the US Open, my picture of the Arthur Ashe stadium lit by floodlights is so clear you can see individual people in their seats if you zoom to 100 percent.

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/60, ISO 5000, Aperture priority.Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/13, 1/60, ISO 5000, Aperture priority.

In even more challenging light situations, such as the nighttime view from my 36th-floor Hell's Kitchen apartment, the A77 M2 delivered pictures with crisp detail. With a top limit of ISO 25,600, the A77 M2 was able to snap photos of the Manhattan skyline at shutter speeds of 1/60, which is fast enough for handheld shots. (Shooting in aperture-priority mode, I set the aperture to f/2.8 to enable that shutter speed.)

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/2.8, 1/60 secs, ISO 25,600, Aperture priorityPhoto credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/2.8, 1/60 secs, ISO 25,600, Aperture priority

However, Sony's JPEG processor was a bit overzealous. The JPEGs of my nighttime cityscapes appeared muddy in parts, as if someone had finger painted the black sky. In comparison, the unprocessed RAW version of the same shot showed crisp detail, but naturally also plenty of chroma noise (sharp, colored dots). Using Adobe Photoshop CC, I easily reduced the amount of noise to output a crisp JPEG without that finger painted look.

MORE: Best DSLR Cameras

With the A77 M2, you should be able to rely on the camera's JPEG processor up to ISO 6400 to deliver pictures that are relatively noise- and smudge-free. If you start seeing the smudged texture on your images, you're better off processing the RAW version yourself. To be safe, make sure you're shooting in RAW+JPEG (at least in low light) so you have a chance to rescue images in editing.

Video: Good Image Quality, Slight Stuttering

Thanks to its translucent mirror technology with full-time phase-detection autofocus, the A77 M2 deftly kept moving targets sharp even as I panned from a close-up object to one in the distance. All the videos for this review were shot at 1080p and 30 and 60 frames per second, and recorded in AVCHD format. The M2 also shoots in MP4, but not at the Full HD resolution that you get with AVCHD.

On a sunny day in Central Park, I recorded the busy road full of cyclists, horse carriages and people milling around at 1080p 30fps. The video displayed little to no shutter roll – a distortion that happens when the camera is unable to keep up with a moving object, resulting in stretched images. The Sony's footage did show some stutter as I panned slowly across the scene, though.

Sony A77 M2 DSLR Test Footage: Horse Carriage

In darker environments, such as the streets of the Las Vegas strip at night, the A77 M2 showed some shutter roll (also at 30fps) in the fast-moving limbs of a street performer as he cartwheeled in front of an amused audience. The overall exposure in the video was somewhat even. Bright lights in the background were not blown out, but the features of a darker-skinned performer were a bit lost in the shadow and hard to see. More impressively, though, the cartwheeling man was sharp throughout the clip, without significant shutter roll.

Sony A77 M2 DSLR Test Footage

I then shot 1080p video at 60 fps, but noticed even more stuttering in the clips when panning across a scene. Stuttering was also somewhat noticeable when subjects in the frame were moving. You won’t notice this effect when playing back the clips in the camera, but you likely will on a computer. We asked Sony's experts about the issue, and they suggested it could be that the computers were not up to the task of playback. But we were using several high-end laptops, including a Dell Latitude 6430u and an Apple MacBook Pro Retina Display. Clips uploaded to YouTube also exhibited the stuttering.

It may be that the AVCHD files are so large that they would require some processing and compression to play smoothly on typical computers and online. Exporting 1080p files in the MP4 format might be better for most users, but the A77 M2 isn't currently able to do this. (Sony first introduced this capability in its new entry-level a5100 mirrorless camera.) For now, the best advice, if you are not shooting professional video, is to shoot in AVCHD but at 30fps.

The A77 M2’s onboard stereo mics picked up sound very well. In the Central Park video, not only was the clopping of horses' hooves distinct, but the chatter of the carriage passengers was also crisp. I could hear birds chirping and kids laughing in the background.

Sony vs Canon EOS 70D Video

Canon’s EOS 70D packs its own system, called dual-pixel autofocus, for tracking a moving subject while recording video. Canon’s technology has 80 percent of its image-sensor pixels run double duty, capturing images and acting as autofocus sensors at the same time. I tested this out at Madison Square Park, filming parkgoers going about their business.

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For the most part, there wasn’t a significant difference in the focusing ability of the two cameras. However, the Canon definitely outperformed the Sony, as it was able to shift focus quickly from a set of bars in the foreground to blades of grass behind the bars within a fraction of a second. The Sony focused on the bars but struggled to shift to the new subject.

Sony A77 M2 DSLR Camera Comparison Footage

Also, while you can tap on the LCD monitor to designate a subject on the Canon 70D, the Sony just decides what to focus on. You can half-depress the shutter while recording to force the camera to refocus, but during my testing this was often cumbersome and I could not get the result I wanted.

The Canon shifted focus with ease, creating a pleasingly artistic look, while the Sony held focus on the leaves for a second, then struggled between keeping the leaves and the bar sharp.

Canon EOS 70D Camera Comparison Footage

Autofocus and Speed

With a shooting speed of 12 frames per second (with autoexposure and autofocus adjustment for each shot) up to 25 images on RAW+JPEG mode, and a top shutter speed of 1/8,000 second, the A77 M2 is quite the speed demon. In comparison, the Canon 70D can shoot only 7 fps up to eight shots on RAW+JPEG mode.

Thanks to the Sony's swift performance, I was able to snap several shots of my friend frolicking on Sheep Meadow in Central Park – and each shot was tack sharp.

Photo credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/2.8, 1/60 secs, ISO 25,600, Aperture priorityPhoto credit: Cherlynn Low/Tom's Guide. Meta: f/2.8, 1/60 secs, ISO 25,600, Aperture priority

Carrying a 79-point phase-detection autofocus system, the A77 M2 latched on to subjects quickly. During video recording though, the camera had a tendency to shift focus midway through filming, blurring the subject.

Design and Handling: Solid, User-Friendly Build

At 5.62 x 4.12 x 3.25 inches in size and 1.42 pounds (body only), the A77 M2 is a hair lighter than the Canon EOS 70D (1.48 pounds, body only). A rubberized grip on the right of its magnesium alloy body has contours to rest your middle and ring fingers on, while your index finger sits comfortably on the shutter button.

The majority of the A77 M2's controls lie on the right side of its body. I especially liked the 3-inch tilting LCD display on the camera, which you can flip out, rotate and twist around to let you easily compose shots at a wide variety of odd angles — even selfies.

One little annoyance with the A77 M2 is the sensor that detects if you put the viewfinder up to your face. Meant to automatically switch the active display between the viewfinder and the 3-inch LCD monitor, it also turned the LCD black anytime my finger hovered within 2 inches of the viewfinder. Thankfully, you can disable the sensor and use a switch on top of the camera instead to switch between viewfinder and screen.

Battery Life

The A77 M2's battery is supposed to last for 410 images, using the viewfinder, or 480 images with LCD monitor, based on CIPA testing standards. I took the M2 with me to a three-day tech convention in Las Vegas and shot 474 pictures and 10 videos (about 45 minutes in total) on one charge with a mix of viewfinder and monitor use. That's better than the touted ability.

Wireless: Useless

The A77 M2 has Wi-Fi built in for sending pictures from your camera to your smartphone or to remotely control the camera. During my time with the Sony, though, the Wi-Fi sharing function did not work at all, whether I used iOS or Android devices. I connected the phones to the camera's built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, entered the password and waited an eternity for the two devices to link, but it never happened. Canon's 70D has better built-in Wi-Fi capability (though that's not saying much, as it's still rather clunky to set up).

For better wireless connectivity, consider using an Eye-Fi memory card, which gives almost any camera a Wi-Fi connection to your smartphone, tablet or computer. In tests, I've found Eye-Fi very easy to use.

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Controls: Plenty of Knobs and Dials for Easy Use

It might sound intimidating, but the total of 17 buttons, three wheels, a switch and a joystick make the A77 M2 easy to use. If you've already picked the mode you want to shoot in with the Mode dial on the left, you'll find everything else (such as ISO, White Balance and exposure compensation) easily accessible with your right hand.

Thanks to the Fn button on the right of the LCD monitor, top-level controls were easy to access. These include exposure compensation, metering mode, ISO light sensitivity, white balance and drive mode. Just press the button and a 6 x 2 grid appears on the LCD or in the viewfinder. You can go through it with the joystick to adjust each box's setting with either wheel on the camera. You can customize this menu to show your preferred options.

A Menu button on the top left of the LCD offers more in-depth and less commonly used settings. Since there isn't a touch screen, you're dependent on the joystick next to the screen to navigate the multiple pages under each of the five major menu tabs.

When you press the Fn button while looking at a playback of a picture or video, you'll bring up options to send that file to your smartphone or computer via Wi-Fi.

The A77 M2 scored well on our test of how easy it is to reach key settings, thanks to a wide array of dedicated buttons. (Settings that have a dedicated button or knob, such as shutter speed, require 0 steps to access.)

Setting

Button presses to access

Function

Shutter

0*

Length of exposure

Aperture

0*

Amount of light let in

ISO

1

Light sensitivity

Focus Mode    

4

Point or points used for focus

Light metering

2

Part of image with optimized exposure

Custom white balance

4

Tune overall color cast of image

Exposure compensation

1

Set auto exposure to be darker or lighter

Wi-Fi Sharing

2

Send images to smartphone, activate remote viewfinder

Video recording

1

Switch from photo to video and back

Play

1

View images or videos you've shot

Delete image   

1

Remove image from card

Photo capture resolution

2

Number of megapixels

Photo capture quality

2

Amount of JPEG compression/detail, or RAW

Video capture quality

3

Resolution, frame rate and amount of compression/detail

Drive

1

Single photo, burst, timer, etc.

* Measured in the relevant priority mode

Lenses

The Sony A77 M2 is compatible with 12 Sony A-mount lenses. The f/2.8 16-50mm zoom lens we tested provided good color and image detail with some distortion at its widest setting. The amount of stretching was reasonable though, and expected. You can reduce or get rid of the distortion by pulling back a little from 16mm to 20mm.

Sony also offers a f/1.8 35mm prime (nonzooming) lens for a low $218, which should be great for food and portrait photography. Both Sony and third-party lens maker Sigma offer a 50mm prime lens in the $400 to $500 price range, and sample pictures taken with the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM setup show that this lens delivers good clarity and color.

The M2 is also compatible with a wide array of A-mount lenses from other third-party manufacturers, such as Tamron and Tokina.

Bottom Line

All in all, Sony's Alpha 77 M2 is a great camera that performs well in everyday situations. A large ISO range also makes it ideal for extreme low-light photography, while the translucent mirror system enables decent autofocus while you're shooting video. The camera is also easy to use, and I especially loved the tilting LCD for selfies or a variety of odd-angled shots. Plus, the Alpha 77 M2 boasts an impressively fast still shooting speed (12 fps) that puts rivals to shame.

Those who want a rig for video recording may prefer Canon's EOS 70D, which has a superb dual-pixel autofocus system that effectively latches on to and tracks moving subjects. But the 70D only shoots up to 30 fps, while the Sony gets up to 60 fps. So each camera has its strengths and weaknesses. Ultimately, if action photography is a higher priority for you than video, the $1,050 Sony Alpha 77 M2 is an excellent choice.

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