Sony A6600 preliminary overview: Compact, highly effective, speedy

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Sony has simply unleashed its strongest A6000-series digicam thus far, and from our first attempt with it, there’s positively loads to love about this new APS-C. It primarily has all of the bells and whistles you’d probably discover in among the firm’s costlier full body cameras, however crams them right into a a lot smaller footprint.

It is known as the A6600 and boasts a number of enhancements over its predecessors; together with in physique stabilisation, a lot better battery life, 4K HDR seize, actual time face and eye monitoring for folks and animals, and a svelte design that is simple to grip and carry all day.

After all, with its excessive finish options comes a excessive finish price ticket, nevertheless it’s nonetheless suitably cheaper than any of Sony’s A7 sequence, and which may simply make it a winner. Particularly when mixed with considered one of Sony’s new high-end G Grasp lenses.

Fashionable, uncomplicated

  • Magnesium alloy
  • Mud/moisture resistant
  • 180 diploma tilting touchscreen
  • Built-in headphone jack + mic enter

Take a look at it at arm’s size, and there is loads concerning the A6600’s seems to be that make it instantly acquainted. It is clearly a Sony A6000-series digicam, with its compact rectangular physique and the E-Mount lens mount on the entrance that takes up almost all the out there area. 

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Regardless of its barely heavier weight (in comparison with its predecessors), the A6600 actually does really feel good when held. It is small, which is nice, nevertheless it additionally feels properly made, sturdy and sturdy. That is predominantly because of the magnesium alloy chassis which presents each moisture and dirt resistance. 

A part of the enjoyment of holding this digicam can be within the design of its grip. It does not really feel small or overly cramped, supplying you with a pleasant in-hand really feel, solely helped additional by the grippy texture and the rejigged placement of the ability/shutter buttons on high. All in all, it is very easy to make use of one handed, and does not ever trigger tiredness, even when carried round for hours.

It is not all hunky dory although. Sony has saved with its personal model of an articulating display on the again, which is each nice, and never nice abruptly. We respect the durability and power supplied by the hinges, mechanism and framing that holds the little LCD display in place. That needs to be counseled. It is not overly free, so you may get it exactly the way you need it, and know that it’ll keep there.

It does appear to be lacking a trick in locations although. When flipped 180-degrees – permitting you to see your self when taking pictures a vlog or a selfie – the display is not utterly in view. A tiny sliver of the show’s backside edge appears to be obstructed by the highest of the digicam. Extra frustratingly for videographers nonetheless, is that it sits nearly instantly behind the hot-shoe mount. Meaning when you have a mic, or wi-fi mic package mounted on to it, you are utterly blocking the show, rendering it utterly ineffective.

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In any other case, there’s the standard smattering of buttons and controls on the again of the digicam, most of that are simple to determine in the event you sit down with it for a couple of minutes, and embrace the 2 customized operate buttons on the highest edge which you can set to regulate what you need. Whether or not that be switching between animal and folks monitoring mode, or one thing else completely totally different.

There are two additional customized operate buttons on the again, becoming a member of the directional pad, menu button, handbook/auto focus change, a major operate button and the gallery entry button.

Auto heaven

  • 24.3MP APS-C sensor
  • 23.5 x 15.6mm Exmor CMOS 
  • BIONZ X picture processing engine
  • three:2 ratio photographs
  • Quick Hybrid AF – 425 factors section and distinction detection
  • Steady taking pictures as much as 11fps
  • New Z battery lasts 810 pictures

We may record the spectacular specs on this compact APS-C digicam till they got here out of our ears, however to really use it, you get extra of a way as to how good it may be. The one factor that stood out from our preliminary check was simply how briskly the digicam is. It focus very quickly in any respect, with a fast half-press of the shutter, after which nearly as rapidly snaps the shot as quickly as you absolutely depress the shutter button. 

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You possibly can see the outcomes of those efforts within the assortment above, the place we examined it taking pictures a variety of various pictures, each shut up and zoomed in distant, panorama and portrait. Utilizing the brand new 16-55mm lens we had been in a position to get some beautiful close-up pictures with a pleasant easy bokeh within the background, with nice colors and textures within the picture. 

Inside, powering this efficiency is similar superior Bionz X picture processing engine that is contained in the a lot bigger A9 digicam. This – Sony guarantees – means clear, sharp pictures with actually good low mild efficiency, low noise ranges and a large sensitivity vary. 

We solely received just a few hours to check the digicam, and predominantly outdoor in good daylight, so we’ll have to do fairly much more testing – significantly in low mild situations – when it comes time to completely overview the A6600. 

The factor that Sony was eager for us to check out although was the actual time monitoring and autofocus options, and given how rapidly and precisely it labored in our testing thus far, we would say that Sony has cracked it. 

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It not solely makes use of hybrid section and distinction detection autofocus over 425 factors, but additionally mechanically detects faces and eyes, and might observe them after they’re shifting within the shot, focussing on them. You possibly can even change it to concentrate on animal eyes as an alternative if you would like. 

4K video chops

  • 4K video – 30fps – HDR (HLG)
  • Tremendous 35mm format
  • 1080p at as much as 100fps
  • 5-axis In physique stabilisation
  • Actual-time monitoring/Eye AF

For the videographers and vloggers of the world Sony has ensured the A6500 is supplied with some fairly excessive efficiency specs and capabilities. The goal: to present an amazing B digicam expertise for professionals whereas concurrently giving prosumers and vloggers one thing that’s way over simply able to taking pictures video. In actual fact, it is a instrument that makes taking pictures nice video tremendous easy, or at the very least, that is the declare.

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All of the options that make taking footage simple all work in video/film extra too. And meaning you get the real-time monitoring and autofocusing even once you’re taking pictures in 4K. Mix that with the in physique 5 axis stabilisation and you’ve got one thing that not solely retains focus in your topic effortlessly, however does it with out an extreme quantity of shakiness when taking pictures it handheld.

In apply is fairly spectacular. Following a fast-moving pigeon round Copenhagen’s meals markets saved the fowl in focus simply, rapidly and – simply as vital – silently. Equally, we had been in a position to movie cyclists dashing previous whereas additionally preserving them in focus all through the body.

Most of this was shot utilizing Sony’s new 16-55 mm lens with f/2.eight aperture all through, and that definitely did no hurt. This new lens is fast, and does not lose any mild regardless of whether or not you are zoomed out to its widest 16mm angle or zoomed into 55mm.

After all, video high quality is not the one factor that issues to video makers. Sound high quality, comfort and practicality matter too, and that is why Sony included a handful of very essential ports alongside one aspect. Most vital are the 2 three.5 jacks, for mic/line-in and headphone out. Meaning you can’t solely hook up an exterior microphone (even utilizing a correct mic with XLR, offering you may have the fitting adapter), however you can even monitor your ranges with a pair of wired headphones.

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For exterior monitoring of visuals, fairly than audio, there is a mini HDMI port, which lets you hook your digicam as much as a display.

In video phrases then, it is a very versatile digicam. Some videographers would possibly bemoan the shortage of 4K/60 recording, and if we’re trustworthy, we had been just a little dissatisfied to not see it there. Nonetheless, with the addition of 100p full HD video, you possibly can nonetheless shoot sharp video and sluggish it down with out shedding any smoothness. It simply will not be at 4K decision.

In addition to the problem with the display being blocked by any mounted equipment or microphones (which we talked about earlier) the one different video frustration is that Sony’s digicam does not save the video recordsdata in the identical folder because the photographs on the reminiscence card. You need to go digging by folders within the “MISC” file to search out them. As soon as you realize the place they’re, it is not as large a difficulty, nevertheless it appears just a little counter-intuitive. We perceive maybe why you may want them separate, however Sony ought to at the very least retailer them in a major folder subsequent to “DCIM” that clearly signifies that it has movies in it. 

First Impressions

If what you are after is as a lot energy as you may get in a small package deal, Sony’s A6600 is a really tempting providing. The market-leading digicam maker has crammed some actually high-end specs and capabilities into a tool that is sufficiently small to hold round on daily basis. 

The lasting impression it left was a profitable one – at the very least on first impressions. Not solely is it moveable and cozy to tackle a day of taking pictures, it does its job effortlessly and with out as a lot as a whimper. It focuses and snaps pictures actually rapidly, with the tip outcomes trying stunning and sharp with nice bokeh and colors (because of that new 16-55mm lens). 

For the video maker, it guarantees to be a superb “B” digicam for once you want one thing highly effective that does not take up any additional area, and gives you nice trying footage and will not trigger a lot stress. 

We are going to want extra time with it to present our full verdict, however first impressions as an all-round photograph and video system are superb certainly. We will not wait to spend extra time with it. 

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