Sony Alpha A7S II - A True Pioneer of Low Light Photography

The Sony Alpha A7S II has been stirring up the photography industry with its state-of-the-art features and functionality. Renowned for its low-light photography capabilities, this camera has been a game-changer for photographers looking to capture stunning visuals in low light conditions. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the Sony Alpha A7S II and unveil some of its notable features that make it a true pioneer of low light photography.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Sony Alpha A7S II article cover photo

Key Features

Oct 12 2015


12 megapixels


Sensor TypeFull frame

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Overview of the Alpha A7S II

The demand for low light photography has been on the rise, and the Sony Alpha A7S II has been at the forefront of this trend. With a full-frame sensor and advanced image processing technology, this camera has the capability to capture stunning visuals in extremely dimly lit environments. In addition to its low light prowess, the Sony Alpha A7S II comes loaded with a plethora of features that have given it a spot at the top of the photography industry. In this blog post, we will take a detailed look at the camera’s features, performance, and what it brings to the table in terms of low light photography. Whether you’re a professional photographer or an amateur enthusiast, you’re sure to find insightful information in this blog post. So, let’s dive in!

The Sony Alpha Series Lineup

Sony Alpha A7S thumbnail

Sony Alpha A7S

Released Apr 06 2014 | 12MP resolution

Sony Alpha A7S II thumbnail

Sony Alpha A7S II

Released Oct 12 2015 | 12MP resolution

Sony Alpha A7S III thumbnail

Sony Alpha A7S III

Released Jul 21 2020 | 12MP resolution

Sony Alpha A7S II Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Sony Alpha A7S II camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


Great Low Light Performance
4k @ 30fps, HD @ 120fps


12MP Resolution Sensor
No Touch Screen
Low Battery Life of 370 shots

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Sony Alpha A7S II

Weather sealed
Dimensions127 x 96 x 60mm

Weather Sealing

The Sony Alpha A7S II camera is equipped with environmental seals that make it resistant to weather, preventing water and dust from entering the camera. If you enjoy outdoor photography and need a camera that can handle extreme conditions, the Alpha A7S II is an excellent choice.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderElectronic
Screen TypeTilting
Screen Resolution1,229k dots
Body typeSLR-style mirrorless

Suitable for:

TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a tilting 3.00" screen, with a display resolution of 1,229k dots. This makes the Sony Alpha A7S II not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


Alpha A7S II includes a electronic viewfinder with 2,359k dots of resolution with a coverage of 100% and a magnification of 0.78x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Sony Alpha A7S II has a 12MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 12 pixels. Sony Alpha A7S II has a native ISO range of 100 - 102400 which can be boosted to 50 - 409600. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Oct 12 2015


100 - 102400

ISO Range

SensorFull frame
Extended ISO50 - 409600
Max resolution4240 x 2832 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


85 / 102

Color Depth

23.6 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

13.3 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

2993 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Sony Alpha A7S II camera has above average color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also above average, allowing it to retain medium amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is average, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the Alpha A7S II is above average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: Full frame



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageSD/SDHC/SDXC, Memory Stick Duo/Pro Duo/Pro-HG Duo
Battery Life370 shots
Battery ModelNP-FW50
Wireless Connectivity


The Sony Alpha A7S II supports SD/SDHC/SDXC, Memory Stick Duo/Pro Duo/Pro-HG Duo with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Sony Alpha A7S II uses the NP-FW50 model of battery pack. This is rated for 370 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Sony Alpha A7S II does not have a built-in flash, but it does offer a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Sony Alpha A7S II boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/8000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Sony Alpha A7S II includes contrast detection autofocus (AF), with 169 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Sony Alpha A7S II?

The Sony Alpha A7S II features a CMOS sensor

Is the Sony Alpha A7S II weather sealed?

Yes the Alpha A7S II does have weather sealing.

When was the Sony Alpha A7S II announced?

The Sony Alpha A7S II was announced on Oct 12 2015

Does the Sony Alpha A7S II have in-body image stabilization?

Yes the Alpha A7S II does have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Sony Alpha A7S II?

The Alpha A7S II has a native ISO range of 100-102400, which can be expanded to ISO 50-409600 for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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