sony a7r3 mini review & comparison to the a7r2
Ah, what can I say about the a7r3. This camera is one of the most satisfying cameras I've ever used. This mini review is geared towards using the camera as a photography tool (I don't do much video)
There are so many improvements on the a7r3 over the a7r2. Why did I upgrade even though the sensor is basically the same? Here are a few reasons:
1. Eye-AF is much more responsive and works farther away from the subject.
2. The button customization options are much better than on the a7r2. I'm happy that there are 3 spots on the dial dedicated to memory functions. Here is a basic summary of my memory dial setup:
A. Wide AF, continuous autofocus: quickly capture spontaneous moving moments.
B. Video-ready configuration.
C. Manual, off-camera flash configuration.
Having a setup like this allows me to quickly switch back and forth from natural light photography and focus on capturing the moment instead of fiddling with the camera.
Another great thing to have is the Custom Key function. I have the c4 button customized to "Recall Custom Hold 1," which was the wide AF, continuous autofocus setting I set up. Rather than turning a dial, this c4 custom button shaves off a couple seconds to capture that quickly fleeting moment with motion. I just need to press c4 and I'm ready to shoot a moving subject.
3. Operation speed on the a7r3 is much better than the a7r2. Start-up is faster, but I did wish it was instant; there is still a slight delay.
4. Battery life is much better. I had 5 batteries for the a7r2. I have 2 batteries for the a7r3, but I usually never need that 2nd battery.
Using the camera is such a joy to use. Portrait photography is so much more satisfying because of eye autofocus. I'm able to click the shutter less because I know that 99% of my images will be sharp. I now despise using dslrs that I have to focus multiple times and click that shutter button 5-6 times and hope that the eye is sharp on one of my images for the exact same pose.
What is the a7r3 lacking? Not much. But I was able to come up with some things I want from the next iteration. 1. Much better weather sealing, similar to the Olympus cameras. 2. Faster sensor readout speed so I can use silent shutter most of the time. 3. Instant start-up time 4. even better eye-AF, especially at a distance.
Overall, I'm very happy with the Sony a7r3. It's a tool that can be counted on to capture anything that comes your way. If you have the cash for it, I wouldn't hesitate to upgrade from the a7r2 to the a7r3. One thing I would like to add is that if you do events or weddings, I would go with the a9 since it has slightly better AF, ability to use silent shutter without much banding, and smaller files to deal with.