Sony A6600 hands-on overview: This small digital camera is a giant deal

“It is an evolutionary replace, however the A6600 continues to be high canine thanks to raised battery life and best-in-class autofocus.”

Actual-Time AF is a breeze

810-shot battery life

Sensor-shift picture stabilization

Larger grip

Similar sensor as A6500

Low-res EVF in comparison with friends

At occasions, it appears APS-C cameras should shout to be heard over the roar of more and more well-liked full-frame cameras, however a pair of APS-C fashions introduced by Sony in August show that smaller sensors nonetheless have loads of life left. The $749 A6100 is due this October 2019, whereas the flagship A6600 hits shops in November for $1,399 (physique solely). Each cameras share a lot in frequent, together with 24MP sensors, 4K video, 11 frames-per-second steady capturing, and lots of trickle-down options from Sony’s dearer A7/A9 full-frame fashions.

We love full-frame cameras, however they usually price far more, and never everybody wants one. Immediately’s APS-C cameras take excellent images, and it’s good to see that Sony hasn’t uncared for the format — even when the A6600 hasn’t modified a lot from 2016’s A6500.

Design and dealing with

Venerable is one of the simplest ways to explain the design of Sony’s A6000-series cameras — outwardly, they haven’t modified a lot over the previous 5 years. That’s to not say nothing has been enhanced. The A6600 has a a lot deeper and extra comfy grip than its predecessors, a nod to its audience of superior fanatic photographers. That bigger grip has area for a way more potent “Z” battery rated for 810 photographs, nearly double earlier fashions.

sony a6600 review de 2David Elrich / Digital Tendencies

The A6600 measures four.75 x 2.75 x 2.four inches and weighs 18 ounces and not using a lens. We had no points strolling round with this digital camera and the 16-55mm f/2.Eight G lens throughout our restricted hands-on expertise.

The controls, for higher or worse, stay acquainted. There’s an excellent quantity of direct entry management, however we have now to voice our regular squawk in regards to the video file button being tiny and wedged right into a nook). It’s an identical story for the menus, which, whereas improved, may nonetheless be made easier and simpler to navigate.

The EVF is 2.36 million dots whereas the touch-enabled display is 921Ok pixels. Neither is greatest at school — the Fujifilm X-T3 has a Three.6 million dot EVF — however they labored fantastic in observe.

Video shooters will admire the inclusion of each headphone and microphone jacks together with HDMI out and energy connections. Total, the brand new A6600 has a pleasant “heft,” with the magnesium alloy body contributing to that feeling. The digital camera is mud and moisture resistant, as nicely.

The eyes have it

Though the brand new flagship digital camera has a well-known persona, it has many options of dearer full-frame Sonys similar to the brand new A7R IV ($Three,500), together with 5-axis in-body picture stabilization. One of the best new options are Actual-Time Monitoring and Actual-Time Eye autofocus (the latter of which now acknowledges animal eyes along with human eyes). The underlying hybrid autofocus system is far the identical, providing 425 phase- and contrast-detection factors overlaying 84 % of the body.

We’ve beloved the unique Eye AF because it first arrived generations in the past, and the brand new Actual Time enhancements put Sony cameras on the head of the pack relating to focus. Getting tack-sharp photographs is less complicated than ever.

Actual-Time Monitoring and Actual-Time Eye AF additionally work nice in video mode. Since video usually offers with shifting topics or a shifting digital camera, having a dependable AF system might be the distinction between an excellent shot and an unusable one.

Preliminary picture high quality impressions

To provide the A6600 a exercise, Sony introduced us to Coney Island in Brooklyn (we had been friends of Sony, however all opinions are our personal). Whereas there have been no weird sideshow sights to , there have been acrobats, jugglers, magicians, and trend fashions out there. Close by, there have been curler coasters, carousels, boardwalks and different iconic scenes.

Have we stated how a lot we like Actual-Time Monitoring and Actual-Time Eye AF? Forgive us for being redundant however this actually units this digital camera aside. You merely concentrate on a face and the digital camera takes over because it tries to lock onto an individual’s eye. Within the viewfinder, you’ll see a number of illuminated factors as the unreal intelligence tries to determine what it’s seeing. It’s going to attempt to body the face first, then go for the attention. When it hits the goal, a small field seems on the left or proper eye (you may select which one). As soon as the digital camera locks in you’ll get terrific portraits.

The quick burst charge of 11 fps, whereas not new, is one other plus. Coloration was additionally very correct with a richness that was pleasing. Although the sensor is recycled from the A6500, it nonetheless performs nicely by at present’s requirements and, for essentially the most half, gained’t depart you wishing you had opted for a full-frame digital camera.

It was a dreary, misty day so the out of doors photos introduced a problem for the digital camera. For essentially the most half, the A6600 dealt with them pretty nicely, however noise was a problem at larger ISO settings. The digital camera has a local ISO of 100-32,000 that may be expanded right down to 50 and as much as 102,400. Right here, a full-frame digital camera would have confirmed its value. Granted, Sony’s full-frame line begins at $2,000, however extraordinarily low-light scenes is the place you’ll discover the good thing about that bigger sensor.

The following day was sunny, and right here the A6600 carried out very nicely. Once more, the autofocus was the actual winner. Actual-Time Monitoring was quick sufficient to seize a rushing bike owner as we walked the streets of Manhattan.

Sony A6600 sample shot

Sony A6600 sample shot

As for video, all of it stays fairly customary for Sony. The A6600 information 4K HDR video with 2.4x oversampling to seize higher sharpness. It’s nonetheless restricted to Sony’s Eight-bit XAVC-S codec, nevertheless it does supply each Hybrid-Log Gamma (HLG) and Sony’s customary S-Gamut/S-Log profiles for holding onto extra dynamic vary in case you don’t thoughts coloration grading in submit. Different cameras have surpassed Sony in some areas relating to video — the Fujifilm X-T3 gives 10-bit recording and reads its sensor quicker for much less rolling shutter — however, once more, the A6600’s benefit comes right down to it autofocus, which gives unparalleled ease of use.

The 24MP sensor itself will not be any higher than the A6500’s, however the brand new autofocus means you’ll get higher leads to each stills and video, particularly in quick paced or unpredictable conditions.

Our first take

The brand new Sony A6600 is an effective addition to the sequence, delivering high quality photos and flicks in a compact bundle with an autofocus system that tops the category. Our concern is worth — at $1,399 for the physique, it appears a bit excessive for a digital camera that hasn’t actually modified all that a lot over its Three-year-old predecessor. For present A6500 house owners, it may not be value it.

It can save you near $650 with the A6100, which has a lot of the identical know-how however doesn’t have in-body stabilization, the extra strong development, or as highly effective a battery. It additionally doesn’t have S-Log, a headphone jack, or Eye AF for Films, making it extra for a nonetheless shooter than videographers or vloggers. And there are different cheaper APS-C cameras such because the Fujifilm X-T30, the brand new Canon EOS M6 Mark II, and the Sony’s personal A6400 (which additionally has Actual-Time AF) for $899.

The A6600 is far more evolution than revolution. However whereas a lot has remained the identical from the A6500, key enhancements like Actual-Time AF and an even bigger battery can’t be understated. The digital camera will not be best-in-class in each respect, however these two options arguably do extra to enhance the person expertise than the rest, and that makes the A6600 straightforward to suggest.

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