REVIEW: Head to head, the Sony A7R III vs Sony A7R II

2 February 2018 | Category: General News

REVIEW: Head to head, the Sony A7R III vs Sony A7R II

While the Sony A7R III has the same pixel count (42.4million) and sensor design as the camera it replaces, there are some quite major updates made by the new camera. Here, we examine the most significant.

Front-end LSI

The addition of an LSI (large scale integrated circuit) on the imaging sensor doubles the readout speed and in tandem with the improved Bionz X processor, this helps boost the A7R III's processing power by 1.8x over the A7R II. This enhanced processing power means the A7R III can apply more complex noise reduction algorithms and as a result Sony has extended the native sensitivity range from ISO 100-25,600 to 100-32,000.

Sony a7r II vs a7r III review

Continuous Shooting Rate

Another benefit of the boosted processing power of the A7R III is that it can shoot at up to 10fps. That rate can be maintained whilst using continuous focus and when shooting silently with the electronic shutter.

Enhanced Autofocus system

Like the A7R II, the A7R III has 399 phase detection points but the number of contrast detection points has been uprated from 25 to 425. This will help with subject detection, but Sony also says that the AF speed has been doubled in comparison with the Mark IIs. In addition to this, the minimum sensitivity for the AF system has improved to -3EV, that's a one-stop or 2x improvement over the A7R II.

Sony a7r II vs a7r III review


As it's a mirrorless camera, the A7R III has an electronic viewfinder and Sony has given it the same 0.5-inch type OLED with 3,686,400 dots as is in the A9. The A7R II's EVF has 2,359,296 dots, so it can't show as much detail or make gradations look as smooth as its newer brothers.


As well as boosting the screen's dot-count from 1,228,800 to 1,440,000, Sony has made the A7R III's screen touch-sensitive. As on the A9, the degree of touch control is quite limited, but it's useful for setting the AF point or zooming into images with a double-tap to check sharpness.

Sony a7r II vs a7r III review


One of the most pleasing improvements that the A7R III makes on the A7R II is the addition of the mini-joystick Multi-Controller on the back of the camera. We first saw this on the Sony A9 and it makes setting the AF point very easy when you're looking in the viewfinder. It's also useful for navigating menus and making setting selections.


Dual SD Card Ports

Dual SD card ports was high on the request list for the A7R III and happily Sony was listening. The only disappointment is that only one is UHS-II compliant, the other is UHS-I.

Sony a7r II vs a7r III review

Bigger Battery

According to Sony's own figures, and in CIPA testing, the A7R II battery only has enough power for 390 shots. Happily, Sony has given the Mark III the same battery as the A9 and this extends its life significantly to 650 shots. Meanwhile the 4K video recording time is doubled from 50 mins to 100 mins.

So it looks like Sony have upped their game yet again with their latest offering in the A7 range, but don’t take our word for it, you can hire the A7R III HERE.