Sony Launches the Alpha 9 in Malaysia!
Yesterday was a good day in Malaysia. The Japanese electronics giant, Sony today have launched a replacement model of the highly iconic and successful Sony Alpha 7 (A7) Full Frame mirrorless camera. Which means as of yesterday, marks the end of the A7 era; but also marks the beginning of the new Alpha 9 (A9) era.
If you have not yet known, the Sony A7 series has set the standards for mirrorless cameras. In fact the particular family of mirrorless cameras have set the standard high for not just mirrorless cameras, but cameras in general. Gone are the days when you have to lug a heavy, bulky camera body for a full-frame photo quality. Gone are the days where your camera works only when there are enough light with the A7S, and A7Sii. What about near medium format images with extra sharp and vivid detail with the A7R and A7Rii? All these great cameras are so compact that it changed the way professionals work. All these cameras also stem from the humble beginning that is the first generation Sony A7.
As I have mentioned earlier, yesterday marks the end of Sony’s A7 era. But I did also mention the beginning of a new era for Sony; the Alpha 9. For starters the Sony A9 is Sony’s brand new mirrorless, full-frame interchangeable lens DSLR designed for professionals (the price tag says it all; stay tuned for price tag). It is the replacement model for the iconic Sony A7. It is simply the camera for the new age.
The new A9 features a full frame stacked CMOS sensor at 24.2-Megapixel (of course we start with the megapixel count). What that technological jargon means to us is that users can now shoot at up to 20 frames per second without blacking out or terrible buffer. All that also with none of the iconic camera click noise that could annoy the heck out of anyone in burst mode. Of course that has to do with the fact that now you can fit two MicroSD cards into the body of this beast. The half reliable autofocus has been fixed with this particular sensor as well. It is now supposed to lock on subjects a lot quicker and follow it a lot more accurately. The new sensor also features up to 693 phase detection Auto Focus points that cover 93% of the sensor; almost the whole sensor.
The viewfinder is not half as bad as well this time. With 120fps refresh rate, it is as close to real-time as possible. In fact the viewfinder is way more responsive than before. The high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder produces true to live images on the viewfinder to ensure that you always get into the right frames.
For video recording, you would be glad that this still records in 4K resolution. Get this though the camera records in 6K format to ensure that it gets the best information and details from the video. After oversampling the video the camera automatically scales it down again into 4K format. That oversampling also means that you are getting the best of 4K with super fine details. Of course the Super 35 format is still available. If 4K is not your thing though (for some reason) you can record at 1080p Full HD at 120fps at up to 100Mbps. That also means you can get very pretty slow motions shots. All that with AF tracking. Not too bad.
Other improvements includes the battery which is now 2.2x larger than before. The A7’s biggest let down at one point was its hopeless battery life. While competing products could boast 10,000 shots before needing a switch, the A7 could barely do half that. Video recording was a total frustration when you need to keep changing the batteries. That, or you buy a battery grip with larger third-party batteries. Now though the battery is more than twice as large as previously with theoretically twice the battery life from the A7Rii.
The brand new revolutionary Sony Alpha 9 is now available through any Sony camera authorised dealer at MYR21,799. Mind you that price does not include the lenses that you might want to pair it with. Alongside the new A9 there are the brand new G Lenses that has been introduced. The Super-telephoto SEL100400 (100-400mm) zoom lens that goes at MYR12,699. The Premium Wide Angle SEL1635GM (16-35mm) Zoom lens that goes at MYR10,899. Lastly the new Compact Wide Angle SEL1224GM (12-24mm) that retails at MYR7,899. Photo gallery with some sample shots from the demo units (Sony A9 with f/2.8 24-70mm G Master lens and vertical battery grip attachment; second gallery) and press release after the break.
Sony’s New α9 Camera Revolutionises the Professional Imaging Market
Groundbreaking Full-frame Mirrorless Camera Delivers Unmatched Speed, Versatility and Usability
- World’s first full-frame stacked CMOS sensor, 24.2 MP resolution
- Blackout-Free Continuous Shooting at up to 20fps for up to 241 RAW/ 362 JPEG images
- Silent, Vibration-free shooting at speeds up to 1/32,000 sec
- 693 point focal plane phase detection AF points with 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second
- Extensive professional features including Ethernet port for file transfer, Dual SD card slots and extended battery life
- 5-axis in-body image stabilisation with a 5.0 step shutter speed advantage
(KUALA LUMPUR, 15 June 2017) – Sony today introduced its new revolutionary digital camera, the α9 (model ILCE-9). The most technologically advanced, innovative digital camera that Sony has ever created, the new α9 offers a level of imaging performance that is simply unmatched by any camera ever created – mirrorless, SLR or otherwise.
The new camera offers many impressive capabilities that are simply not possible with a modern digital SLR camera including high-speed, blackout-free continuous shooting3 at up to 20fps4, 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second, a maximum shutter speed of up to 1/32,000 second8 and much more. These are made possible thanks to its 35mm full-frame stacked Exmor RS™ CMOS sensor – the world’s first of its kind – which enables data speed processing at up to 20x faster than previous Sony full-frame mirrorless cameras. This unique sensor is paired with a brand new, upgraded BIONZ X processing engine and front-end LSI that maximises overall performance.
This industry-leading speed and innovative silent shooting7 is combined with a focusing system that features an incredible 693 phase detection AF points. Covering approximately 93% of the frame, the focusing system ensures that even the fastest moving subjects are reliably captured and tracked across the frame.
The new α9 also features a vibration free, fully electronic, completely silent anti-distortion shutter7 with absolutely no mechanical mirror or shutter noise, making it an extremely powerful photographic tool for any shooting situation that demands quiet operation. To ensure maximum usability and reliability, the camera features a new Z battery with approximately 2.2x the capacity of W batteries, as well as dual SD media card slots, including one that supports UHS-II cards. An Ethernet port (wired LAN terminal) is available as well, and there is a wide variety of new settings, controls and customisability options that are essential for working professionals.
A New Standard of Speed and Focusing Accuracy
Critical to the record-breaking speed of the new α9 is the combination of the new stacked 24.2 MP2 Exmor RS image sensor, new BIONZ X processor and front end LSI.
The immense processing power from these new components allows for faster AF/AE calculation while also reducing EVF display latency. The processor and front end LSI are also responsible for the larger continuous shooting buffer, enabling photographers to shoot at a blazing 20 fps4 with continuous AF/AE tracking for up to 362 JPEG6 or 241 RAW5 images.
The camera’s innovative AF system tracks complex, erratic motion with higher accuracy than ever before, with the ability to calculate AF/AE at up to 60 times per second10, regardless of shutter release and frame capture. Furthermore, when the shutter is released while shooting stills, the electronic viewfinder functions with absolutely no blackout, giving the user a seamless live view of their subject at all times.
This feature truly combines all of the benefits of an electronic viewfinder with the immediacy and “in the moment” advantages that not even the finest optical viewfinders can match, and is available in all still image modes including high speed 20 fps4 continuous shooting.
With 693 focal plane phase detection AF points covering approximately 93% of the frame, the camera ensures improved precision and unfailing focus in scenes where focus might otherwise be difficult to achieve. The Fast Hybrid AF system – pairing the speed and excellent tracking performance of phase detection AF with the precision of contrast AF – achieves approximately 25% faster performance when compared with α7R II, ensuring all fast-moving subjects are captured.
Professional Capabilities in a Compact Body
Sony’s new full-frame camera is equipped with a variety of enhanced capabilities that give it a true professional operational style.
The α9 features an all-new, high-resolution, high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder with approximately 3,686k dots for extremely accurate, true-to-life detail reproduction. The new Tru-Finder, which is the highest resolution viewfinder Sony has ever incorporated in an α camera, features an optical design that includes a double-sided aspherical element, helping it to achieve 0.78x magnification and a level of corner to corner sharpness that is simply outstanding. The EVF also utilises a ZEISS® T* Coating to greatly reduce reflections, and has a fluorine coating on the outer lens that repels dirt.
This all adds up to a luminance that is 2x higher than the XGA OLED Tru-Finder from the α7R II, creating a viewfinder image with a brightness level that is nearly identical to the actual scene being framed, ensuring the most natural shooting experience. The frame rate of the Tru-Finder is even customisable, with options to set it for 60 fps or 120 fps13 to best match the action.
The α9 is equipped with an innovative 5-axis image stabilisation system that provides a shutter speed advantage of 5.0 steps9, ensuring the full power of the new sensor can be realised, even in challenging lighting. With a simple half press of the shutter button, the effect of the image stabilisation can be monitored in the viewfinder or on the LCD screen, allowing framing and focus to be accurately checked and continually monitored.
The α9 also offers an Ethernet port (wired LAN terminal), allowing convenient transfer of still image files to a specified FTP server at high speeds, making it an ideal choice for studio photography, high-profile news and sporting events and more. In addition, there is a sync terminal, enabling external flash units and cables to be connected directly for convenient flash sync.
New Features for Fast Operation
Sony’s new α9 has several new and updated focus functions that support faster, easier focusing in a variety of situations. The camera features a multi-selector joystick on the back of the camera, allowing shooters to easily shift focus within the frame by pressing the multi-selector in any direction up, down, left or right when shooting in Zone, Flexible Spot or Expanded Flexible Spot focus area modes. The new model also offers touch focusing on the rear LCD screen for easy selection of, and shifting focus towards a desired focus point or subject.
New for Sony E-mount cameras, the α9 includes the addition of separate drive mode and focus mode dials, plus a new “AF ON” button that can be pressed to activate autofocus directly when shooting still images or movies.
Additional new capabilities include the “AF Area Registration”, which allows frequently used focus areas to be memorised and recalled via custom button assignments. There is also the ability to assign specific settings (exposure, shutter speed, drive mode, etc) to a custom button to be instantly recalled when needed. The camera can memorise and automatically recall the last focus point used in a vertical or horizontal orientation, instantly switching back to it when that specific orientation is used again. For enhanced customisation, a “My Menu” feature is available, allowing up to 30 menu items to be registered in a custom menu for instant recall when needed.
Double Battery Life, Double Memory
The innovative α9 camera features an all-new Sony battery (model NP-FZ100) with 2.2x the capacity of previous Sony full-frame models, allowing for much longer shooting performance.
Based on extensive customer feedback, the new camera offers two separate media card slots, including one for UHS-II media. The same data can simultaneously be recorded to both cards, or the user can choose to separate RAW / JPEG or still images / movies. Movies can also simultaneously be recorded to two cards for backup and more efficient data management.
High Sensitivity and Wide Dynamic Range
The unique design of the α9 image sensor represents the pinnacle of Sony device technology. The 24.2 MP2 full-frame stacked CMOS sensor is back-illuminated, allowing it to capture maximum light and produce outstanding, true-to-life image quality. The sensor also enables the diverse ISO range of 100 – 51200, expandable to 50 – 204800 , ensuring optimum image quality with minimum noise at all settings.
The enhanced BIONZ X processor plays a large part in image quality as well, as it helps to minimise noise in the higher sensitivity range while also reducing the need to limit ISO sensitivity in situations where the highest quality image is required.
The new α9 also supports uncompressed 14-bit RAW, ensuring users can get the most out of the wide dynamic range of the sensor.
4K Video Capture
The new α9 is a very capable video camera as it offers 4K (3840x2160p) video recording across the full width of the full-frame image sensor. When shooting in this format, the camera uses full pixel readout without pixel binning to collect 6K of information, oversampling it to produce high quality 4K footage with exceptional detail and depth. Recording is also available in the popular Super 35mm size.
Additionally, the camera can record Full HD at 120 fps at up to 100 Mbps, which allows footage to be reviewed and eventually edited into 4x or 5x slow motion video files in Full HD resolution with AF tracking.
Sony has released a variety of new accessories to compliment the new α9, including:
- NP-FZ100 Rechargeable Battery: High-capacity battery with approximately 2.2x the capacity of the NP-FW50 W-series battery. Supports InfoLITHIUM® technology, which makes it possible to view the remaining battery power as both a percentage display and five step icon on the camera’s LCD screen.
- VG-C3EM Vertical Grip: Provides same operation, handling and design as α9, doubles battery life and allows USB battery-charging via the camera body.
- NPA-MQZ1K Multi-Battery Adaptor Kit: External multi-battery adaptor kit capable of functioning as an external power supply for four Z series batteries and as a quick charger. Kit comes with two packs of NP-FZ100 rechargeable batteries.
- GP-X1EM Grip Extension: Grip extender with same look, feel and design as α9. Enables more solid hold on camera.
- FDA-EP18 Eyepiece Cup: Eye piece cup with locking mechanism
- BC-QZ1 Battery Charger: Quick-charging battery charger. Charges one new Z series battery in approximately 2.5 hours.
- PCK-LG1 Screen Protect Glass Sheet: Hard, shatterproof glass screen protector with anti-stain coating to prevent fingerprints. Compatible with touch operation and tilting LCD screen
Pricing and Availability
The α9 interchangeable lens camera is now available in Malaysia.
- α9 (body only) – RM 21,799
- Super-telephoto Zoom Lens (SEL100400) – RM 12,699
- Premium Wide Angle Zoom Lens (SEL1635GM) – RM 10,899
- Compact Wide Angle Lens (SEL1224GM) – RM 7,899
A variety of exclusive stories and exciting new content shot with the new α9 camera and other Sony α products can be found here, a site built to educate and inspire all fans and customers of the Sony α brand. The new content will also be posted directly at the Sony Photo Gallery and the Sony Camera Channel on YouTube.
SONY α9 LAUNCH 2017
Unveil the Speed Master
(KUALA LUMPUR, June 15, 2017) – The day has finally arrived as Sony unveil the dawn of a new age for digital photography. As the popularity of key models including α7RII and α7SII has been paramount to this success, Sony has developed tomorrow’s image sensor technology into a camera that outperforms other cameras in its class – the α9, a new addition to the big family of Alpha Professional Choice.
With the α9, Sony is proud to provide professional photographers and hobbyists everywhere with the tools to inspire their creativity.
The α9 is also perfect for customers looking for a fast autofocus full frame option. Its fast 20 frame per second shooting, silent operation and low blackout performance makes it especially compelling for Sports and News Photo Journalists.
“To me, the α9 represents the very best of the Sony spirit of kando– which basically means emotional involvement or the power to simulate an emotional response”, Mr. Satoru Arai, the Managing Director of Sony Malaysia. He said, in other words it is the power to make people say, “Wow.”
A worldwide leader in Digital Imaging and the world’s largest image sensor manufacturer, Sony has announced today that their continued growth has vaulted them into the #1 overall position in Malaysia’s full-frame interchangeable lens camera market.
“Another key ingredient to the success is the fact that we listen to our customers. This has led to many new innovations to the alpha series”, Mr. Takashi Yasuda.
More importantly, a strong growth in the number of lenses to meet the demands and expectations of professional and hobby photographers everywhere. To date, Sony E-mount lens selection numbers more than 40 and this list continues to develop and grow. From the basic Sony to the G-Master lenses, Sony is committed to developing lenses of exacting quality and performance.
Also, Sony Malaysia is privileged to have Sony Artisan Benjamin Lowy, who has travelled all the way from the US to share with us his personal experiences using the α9.