It’s been two years since Sony launched its flagship A9 full-frame mirrorless camera, which was already a beast of a performer. Now, the company has quietly introduced a follow-up to that model, unsurprisingly called the A9 II. The new version doesn’t add anything major over its predecessor but it does get some notable improvements in terms of ergonomics, stabilisation, and a faster wired and wireless connectivity. All of this is aimed at improving and speeding up the workflow of professional photographers. The new camera will be available in November for $4,500 (roughly Rs. 3,19,600).
The Sony A9 II uses the same 24.2-megapixel full-frame CMOS image sensor but the Bionz X image processor has been upgraded to deliver a faster sensor readout and improved face, AE/AF tracking. The weather sealing has also been upgraded for better endurance against the elements. Sony says the 5-axis in-body image stabilisation has also been tweaked to provide a shutter compensation of up to 5.5 stops. The body has been re-designed a bit, which looks similar to the A7R IV now and the rear joystick, AF-On buttons are bigger and the rear control dial is now placed on the top of the camera. Sony claims that the shutter mechanism has been redesigned too, to avoid motion blur and is tested to last for over 500,000 cycles.
The storage and wireless connectivity also have big upgrades on the Sony A9 II. The USB Type-C port supports USB 3.2 Gen1 data transfer speeds and both SD card slots now support the faster UHS-II speeds. In order to ease up professional workflows, the A9 II includes a Gigabit Ethernet terminal, 5GHz Wi-Fi 802.11ac, and File Transfer over SSL or TLS encryption (FTPS) for added security. There’s also a new Voice Memo function, where photographers can attach spoken information for a particular photo. This seems like a very useful addition as it will let photographers relay additional context about the photo to editors, for how it should be edited or where it has to be used.
Most of the other features on the Sony A9 II remain the same as the older model. The camera can shoot up to 20fps using the electronic shutter with no blackouts; 693 on-sensor phase detection autofocus points; 4K video recording up to 30fps; 3-inch touchscreen display and a 3.76M-dot resolution electronic viewfinder.