Sony A7C first Impressions

Well, it’s here, sort of, at least available for preorder at the usual retailers. What I am talking about, of course, is the new Sony A7C. Sony’s compact full frame camera.

On first inspection it is nothing more than a full frame sensor in a Sony A6XXX APS-C body.

To some, the specs are unimpressive.

  • 24MP BSI CMOS full-frame sensor
  • Bionz X processor (same as in the a7 III)
  • ‘Real-time tracking’ AF system with human head, face, eye, and animal recognition
  • Oversampled 4K video at up to 30p, including 8-bit S-Log and HLG
  • Continuous bursts at up to 10 fps
  • Fully articulating 921K dot touchscreen
  • 2.36M dot EVF with 0.59x mag.
  • Mic and headphone sockets
  • Large ‘Z-type’ battery, rated to 740 shots per charge

It, basically seems to be a standard A7X series camera, but like I said before, in an A6XXX body.

Most of the reviewers seem to be obsessing over the usual things like only one card slot, which is not that big a deal but it seems to be a deal breaker lately for the OCD spec crowd.

The interesting thing though is the new kit lens that Sony is offering up with this camera a 28-60mm f/4-5.6 zoom is, at first glance an unusual choice.

We’ll get back to that in a minute.

One of the most often asked questions I’ve seen online regarding this camera is  – “Who’s it for”, meaning what type of photographer do you have to be to use this camera. In other words, our camera selection has become so specialized that we would never consider using a “portrait” camera for landscapes or sports. Obviously some cameras are better suited for certain applications than others, but lets not obsess over it mmmkay?

Realistically, I think this camera is aimed at the smart phone convert. The person that has been using their smart phone and wants to get into more serious photography. That’s why it has an articulating selfie screen and comes with a kit lens that approximates the standard cell phone field of view.

The only real problem I see is the pricing. Right now, at preorder prices it’s at $1798 body only and $2098 with the kit lens. As I’ve discussed before, Sony seems to always be at the high end of the spectrum especially with this camera that seems targeted at an entry level type of user. 

I can almost get behind the pricing if you are already invested in the Sony lens system, if not, then there are better options available.

For instance the Panasonic Lumix S5 is $1197 body only and $2297 with the 20-60mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens. The well regarded Nikon Z5 comes in at even less with body only at $1396 or with a 20-50mm f/4-6.3 kit lens for a mere $1696. Both cameras do have some features that Sony has omitted like joystick controls and touch screen menus.

All in all, at the end of the day, the best use for the A7C might be to pair it with an M-mount adapter and use Leica M-mount glass with it in manual focus mode. You could use anything from vintage to modern glass at a host of different price points.

I don’t think I’ll seriously be looking at it any time soon as my A6000 suits me just fine when I need a compact camera and my A7II is the full frame option.

What are your thoughts? Leave a comment!

Stay safe and see the world you own way. Thanks for reading.