FAQ: Sony a7S III

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It's new, feature-rich, and loaded with tons of unheard-of settings...it's the Sony a7S III! We gathered some of the most frequently asked questions about this camera, threw in some of our own thoughts about what might be asked, and then put together this guide to the camera. Keep in mind that the FAQ is always a work in progress, so if you have a question not listed here be sure to let us know. Let's get to it!

IMAGING
VIDEO
CAMERA DESIGN
GENERAL

IMAGING

What resolution and sensor does the a7S III use?
It uses a newly developed 12.1MP full-frame CMOS sensor. It now uses an Exmor R back-illuminated that promises faster readout and improved low-light performance.

Why is the resolution so low?
The use of a lower resolution sensor offers many benefits: large photosites (pixels) deliver dramatically improved low-light performance; lower resolution means less data for faster performance in all modes; and 12MP, specifically, supports 4K video with a 1:1 pixel readout for eliminating artifacts such as moiré.

What does "back-illuminated" mean in terms of sensor design?
In literal terms, it means the wiring is moved below the light-receptive layer, allowing light to directly hit the receptive layer. Practically, this is more efficient for capturing light, so there will be less noise and better image quality.

What is HEIF?
This is a newer compressed image format. It’s similar to JPEG, but can be much smaller and offer better quality due to increased compression efficiency. You may have seen it in use on your latest smartphone. Other benefits of HEIF over standard JPEGs are that they can support 10-bit 4:2:2 color, as opposed to JPEG’s 8-bit limitation. This means more detail, more dynamic range, and more color fidelity. The only problem is that support is not widespread, so be careful and test it on your devices and with your software before you use it.

Older a7S models had spectacular low-light performance. How does the a7S III compare?
Well, the a7S III has the same general sensitivity range, maxing out at ISO 409600. The new sensor design promises better quality at these higher sensitivities, likely of at least a stop improvement.

How is the dynamic range?
For stills, the camera offers about 14 stops of dynamic range. In video, with S-Log2/S-Log3, you actually see this improve to more than 15 stops.

How much faster is the readout and what does that change?
The 2x faster sensor readout and vastly improved 8x processing will result in things like rolling shutter being virtually eliminated and enhanced speed for features and camera operation.

How much has rolling shutter been improved?
Sony has stated that rolling shutter on the a7S III has been improved by 3 times compared to its predecessor.

What is the continuous shooting speed?
Up to 10 fps, and when using a CFexpress Type A card, you can shoot for over 1000 uncompressed raw images in a single sequence.

Is there silent shooting?
Yup, photographers can use an electronic shutter that is completely silent.

What is the ISO range?
Natively, the camera will offer a range of ISO 80-102400. This can be extended to ISO 40-409600.

How is the image stabilization?
The in-body sensor-shift IS system has been improved to 5.5 stops. For video, there is also an Active IS mode that uses more precise data for even smoother footage straight out of camera.

Will lens stabilization work with the in-body stabilization?
Yes, the in-lens stabilizers will communicate with the in-body stabilizers to provide a higher quality stabilization.

^ BACK TO TOP ^

VIDEO

What is the maximum resolution for video?
The a7S III maxes out at UHD 4K internally.

Does it use pixel binning or other methods to create 4K?
The unique 12MP sensor has a full 1:1 pixel readout for 4K recording; so, no binning required.

Can I use the APS-C/Super 35mm crop mode for video?
Yes, but you won't get access to 4K recording. The APS-C/Super 35mm crop mode is limited to Full HD.

Can I use the Clear Image Zoom function in video?
Yes! In 4K you can use Clear Image Zoom to do a 1.5x zoom and in Full HD you can extend to 2x. This could theoretically enable support for smaller format lenses.

Are there DCI resolutions and/or true 24.00 fps modes?
Unfortunately, the a7S III does not offer DCI resolutions or true 24.00 fps frame rates.

What slow motion recording can we use?
In 4K, the a7S III can record at up to 120p, for 5x slow motion on a 24p timeline. And in Full HD you can hit 240 fps in the S&Q mode.

What frame rates are available?
For 4K, the camera has 24p, 30p, 60p, and 120p, and a PAL mode will unlock 25p, 50p, and 100p. 

Is there any crop during recording?
No, the a7S III will not crop in for most 4K modes. However, at 4K 120p there will be a small 1.1x crop.

Is true 24.00 fps available?
Not at this time.

Bit depth? Color sampling?
The a7S III will offer up to 10-bit 4:2:2 recording internally at up to 4K 120p.

Are there recording time limits?
No recording time limits!

Will the camera stop recording at 30 minutes?
No, really, the camera has no recording time limits and will record indefinitely or until the camera gets too hot or runs out of storage space.

Is there support for anamorphic formats?
No, the a7S III does not have built-in anamorphic support. You would need an external monitor for true anamorphic compatibility.

What are the details on raw video?
For raw video, you will have to use the full-size HDMI output. It will send a raw 16-bit 4K signal up to 60p to a compatible external recorder.

What recorders will support the a7S III's raw video output?
At launch, only Atomos has announced upcoming support for the a7S III with their Ninja V.

What is the raw video format?
The 16-bit linear raw signal can be saved by the Atomos recorder as a 12-bit ProRes RAW file. You can find out more about this format in our ProRes RAW Demystified article.

How is rolling shutter?
Rolling shutter is extremely well controlled and at least 3x better than its predecessor.

Is autofocus available in video?
Yes! The a7S III's fantastic 759-point phase-detect AF system will work in video in every single mode.

What new autofocus features are there?
Real-time tracking and Eye AF have been added to the a7S III. Also, the touchscreen permits touch tracking. Additional controls are available in the settings for changing responsiveness and speed.

How much control over the autofocus is there?
There are 7 steps of control for autofocus speed and 5 steps of control for the autofocus responsiveness. This should help create a smooth look for any type of shot.

Are there focus and framing assists?
Yes, Sony has added peaking, zebras, histogram, and gamma display assist functions to help when shooting.

Vertical video?
Yes, videos can be automatically tagged for vertical payback to suit social media output needs.

Is there an articulating screen?
Yes. Sony has finally added a fully articulating touchscreen to the a7 series with the a7S III.

Are there any warnings about overheating?
Sony has implemented a new passive heat management system that seems effective. They have publicly stated that this system will permit recording of over an hour straight at 4K 60p.

What new formats are available?
Sony has developed two new codecs: XAVC HS and XAVC S-I. XAVC HS uses highly efficient HEVC/H.265 encoding to retain more detail at smaller bit rates. XAVC S-I is a brand-new intraframe codec for consistent performance and quality at bit rates up to 600 Mb/s.

When you record slow motion, will sound be recorded?
Yes, for basic recording up to 120p, sound will be recorded. However, in the camera's Slow & Quick motion mode, sound will not be saved.

Will the a7S III support HDR?
Yes, the a7S III has HLG for instant HDR, and its S-Log2/S-Log3 gamma profiles will enable advanced HDR production with editing.

What is the base ISO for S-Log?
The native setting is ISO 640, though Sony permits recording down to ISO 160.

Is there a headphone/microphone jack?
Yes, the camera has both a 3.5mm headphone output and a 3.5mm microphone input.

How are the built-in audio solutions?
The a7S III has a powered 3.5mm microphone input. It also supports the XLR-K3M and can record 24-bit audio, which is improved over 16-bit on previous cameras.

What size is the HDMI port?
There is a full-size HDMI port on the a7S III.

Can I output over HDMI and record internally at the same time?
Yes! You can record over HDMI and record internally at full quality.

Will autofocus work when using HDMI output?
Yes! Full autofocus will work in all HDMI modes.

Can I use the camera’s screen while outputting video over HDMI?
Yes, the built-in screen and HDMI output can be used simultaneously.

Can I output 4K 120p over the HDMI?
It does not seem this is possible at the moment. 4K 60p is the most reliable recording method for external devices. Most recorders cannot support greater than this yet.

Is there proxy recording in-camera?
Yes, proxy recording is available and can be sorted to the second memory card if desired.

Will it support the XLR-K3M XLR Adapter?
Yes, it will support the XLR-K3M via the Multi Interface Shoe. The a7S III also supports higher-quality 4-channel 24-bit audio from this configuration.

How is the battery life?
The a7S III retains the NP-FZ100 battery pack of other recent Sony cameras. There is a 60% improvement in the battery life compared to its predecessor, at about 600 still images and 90 mins of video.

Can I use a battery grip?
Yes, the camera will work with the VG-C4EM Battery Grip.

Can I power it from an external source?
Yes, the camera will support USB Power Delivery via the USB Type-C port. With a sufficient power delivery device, this can keep the camera powered indefinitely, though a battery will need to be in the camera at all times.

Is there a built-in ND filter?
No, there is no built-in ND filter.

Is S-Cinetone available in camera?
No, while the color science has been improved for better matching with Sony’s cinema cameras, this profile is not built-in.

Does the camera offer Dual Native ISO?
No, the camera does not have a dual native ISO architecture, though low-light performance is superb.

Will this camera be Netflix or BBC certified?
Technically, select modes on the a7S III would appear to meet Netflix’s published specs. However, at this moment no official announcement has been made about whether or not the a7S III will be certified.

Can I use a custom LUT?
The camera does not support the use of custom LUTs. This would require an external monitor with that functionality.

^ BACK TO TOP ^

CAMERA DESIGN

What mount does it have?
The a7S III features Sony's E mount.

Can I adapt my lens to the a7S III?
Yes, much like other mirrorless, the Sony E mount will support the use of adapters and third-party lenses. Keep in mind some functionality may be limited.

Is there an articulating screen?
Yes, Sony has used a new fully articulating touchscreen on this model.

Can you use the HDMI and other outputs and tilt the screen?
Sometimes. The 3.5mm mic input is out of the way, but some other ports, such as the USB input, and doors may interfere with the screen’s full range of motion.

What about the viewfinder? Is it new?
The viewfinder is a "world's first" 9.44m-dot QXGA OLED electronic viewfinder, the highest resolution finder in the a7 Series so far. It has a 0.9x magnification and 25mm eyepoint for comfortable viewing, too.

What battery does it use?
It uses the NP-FZ100 battery pack of many other a7 series cameras.

Can I use an external battery?
Yes, the USB-C port supports Power Delivery, meaning a USB battery pack can power the camera for extended times.

Will the shutter close when a lens is removed to protect the sensor?
Currently, the a7S III's shutter remains open when a lens is removed.

Is there a dedicated record button?
Yes, Sony has put a larger record button on the top of the camera, behind the shutter release.

^ BACK TO TOP ^

GENERAL

Can I use the a7S III as a webcam over USB?
Yes, upcoming software from Sony will allow the use of select Sony cameras, including the a7S III, as a webcam using just a USB cable.

What are the new CFexpress Type A memory cards? Do I need them?
CFexpress Type A is a brand-new media format. It's about the size of SD, but offers much faster speeds. It is recommended for the faster frame rates and higher bit rate video, as well as extended burst shooting at 10 fps for stills. Generally speaking, you will likely be fine with fast V90 SD cards instead if that is what you have right now.

What speed cards do I need to use certain modes?
For general recording in 4K up to 120p, you will have to use at a minimum V60-rated SD cards. Slow motion with the XAVC S-I 4K setting at 60p will demand a V90 SD card, while S&Q 120p XAVC S-I 4K will require a CFexpress Type A.

Has the menu system been changed?
Yes, Sony implemented a new menu structure that supports the touchscreen and should be easier to navigate.

Can I have different settings for stills and movies?
Yes, Sony has made it so many functions and settings can have different defaults depending on whether you are in stills or movie mode.

Can I save my custom settings to a memory card for use on other cameras?
Yes, you can export custom settings and then load them onto another camera. You can also save settings to load for specific situations.

Is there a built-in GPS?
No, but location data can be tagged by connecting to Sony's Imaging Edge mobile app on a smartphone.

How is the weather sealing?
This is a very well sealed mirrorless camera, equivalent to the a9 II, and can comfortably operate in less-than-ideal conditions. 

Where is the camera made?
The country of origin at launch is Thailand.

^ BACK TO TOP ^


If you have a question not listed here or just need some extra help, please make sure to leave it in the Comments section, below. You can also reach out to our knowledgeable sales staff with more specific inquiries and to help find your next camera.

80 Comments

What is the photo resolution when using APS-C lenses and crop mode?

With the aspect ratio at 3:2 and when working in crop mode, the A7S III offers a resolution of 2768×1848 pixels. 

Does the touchscreen allows you to adjust IOS or Aperture on the screen only, WITHOUT using any physical button?

Unfortunately, the ISO and aperture can only be controlled using the physical buttons. 

"Proxy recording is available and can be sorted to the second memory card if desired."

I don't find the option to sort the proxy recording to the second memory card.

Could you explain me where to find it? Thanks!

Hi Merlin - 
Be sure that you applied all available firmware updates. MENU> Shooting (tab)>  Proxy Settings Records low-bit-rate proxy files simultaneously.

Also:   MENU> Shooting (tab)>Media> Rec. Media Settings Sets the method for recording images to two memory card slots.
NOTE:
When recording a movie on memory cards in both the Slot 1 and the Slot 2 with following camera settings, insert two memory cards with the same file system. Movies cannot be recorded simultaneously when using a combination of the exFAT file system and FAT32 file system.

Can you solo audio channels on playback?  It's tough to hear dialog when Tentacle TC is being recorded on one channel?

Hi Peter - 
This is not possible in camera.

In terms of audio, will using the XLR-K3M unit provide the exact same results as the handle that comes with the FX3? 
 

They both appear to record 24 bit LPCM. However, I have seen a number of people on different forums reporting that 24 bit audio recorded via the XLR-K3M is not recognized and FCP or Premier show the footage as video only files (even though playback on camera confirms that there is audio). 

I am wondering if there is any difference at all between between the ways the A7S3 and the FX3 record audio through XLRs via the MI shoe.
 

(I am also wondering if this is still an issue ..and if it’s an issue with the files/codecs/camera or if it’s about the computers and NLE’s not recognizing the format?)

Hi Ryan - 

The a7S III has a powered 3.5mm microphone input. It also supports the XLR-K3M and can record 4-channel24-bit audio, which is improved over 16-bit on previous cameras. SONY does not actually include an XLR-K3M with the FX3.  It is referred to as an" XLR Handle Unit" only.   We are not aware of any substantial differences or quality between the recorded audio of these cameras using the XLR audio adapter.

Hello, I love this camera and have a question about the LCD screen.

When I get ready to film, and before I hit record, I am trying to frame and compose my shot for video.

How can I zoom in on the LCD screen so it's easier to see my subject and make sure my lighting is good.

Thanks!

Hi  Jonathan - 

The LCD touch screen does not offer a pinch/spread function for enlarging your subject.  You could add an external on camera monitor if you need a larger image.  
Atomos Shinobi 5.2" 4K HDMI Monitor B&H # ATSHIN
The Shinobi 5.2" 4K HDMI Monitor is a 5.2" on-camera monitor that monitors DCI 4K, UHD 4K, and HD video input. It features a 10-bit FRC IPS screen with a brightness of 1000 cd/m², which makes it suitable for use in both exterior and interior conditions. The AtomHDR display technology allows you to accurately monitor your log gamma footage without having to view flat, washed-out looking images or use a LUT to compress the dynamic range and color space. The monitor supports popular log formats from Sony, Canon, Panasonic, ARRI, RED, and JVC cameras.

Built to withstand the rigors of production, the Shinobi features a lightweight plastic chassis and powers from a single L-series battery. Additional features include a variety of onscreen exposure analysis, framing, and focus assist tools, as well as anamorphic de-squeeze. A 12V power supply with L-series battery eliminator is included with the unit.

I know a question is asked about powering this using external sources. The answer is yes. But does that mean you can connect a usb-c cable to plug to get ac power?

Correct. Technically the a7S III's USB power will be charging the battery and powering that way, but the speed and Power Delivery standard will actually keep the camera powered up indefinitely.

External Power thru USB-C.  I have a digitalfoto 15mm V-mount plate and i want to use it to power my camera.  I have noticed that there is no trap door on the battery compartment for the cable coming off of the dummy battery to pass thru.  I have also noticed that when leaving the battery door open (which I don't like to do) I get a warning (which I don't like).  This tells me that Sony wants me to externally power the camera tnru the usb-c.  My question is what is the best best way to do this?  5V USB-A to USB-C?  7.2V DC to USB-C?  I worry using the 5V is under powering the camera.  I already ordered one DC to USB-C cable and it didn't work.  The tip of the DC cable was colored yellow, does this mean something?  Or is the only option to use a USB-PD as opposed to my V-Mount plate?

Hi Nathan. 

5VDC will not work.  Minimum power required :  7.2 VDC.
We offer this solution:
 

IndiPRO Tools V-Mount Plate with NP-FZ100 Dummy Battery & 15mm Rod Clamps for Sony a7 III B&H # INPDVSA3 
 

Key Features:

  • For Sony a9, a7 III, and a7R III Cameras
  • V-Mount Battery Plate
  • Dummy Battery is Power Regulated
  • 20" Power Cable Output
  • D-Tap Accessory Power Port
  • Mounts on 15mm LWS Rods
  • Spring-Loaded Locking Levers
  • Made in the USA
     

The IndiPRO Tools V-Mount Plate with NP-FZ100 Dummy Battery and 15mm Rod Clamps for Sony a7 III features power regulation in the V-mount plate and a magnetic choke on the 20"" cable to deliver clean power to your camera. The plate has a built-in D-Tap port for powering accessories and mounts on 15mm LWS rods. Spring-loaded locking levers provide a good grip and the ability to lock or loosen the rod clamps, even when there isn't enough room on your rig to rotate the levers 360°.

Since you already have the 15mm V-mount plate:
 

IndiPRO Tools Coiled D-Tap to Sony NP-FZ100 Type Dummy Battery Cable (24-36") B&H # INDTSA73
This Coiled D-Tap to Sony NP-FZ100 Type Dummy Battery Cable from IndiPRO Tools allows you to power the Sony a7 III series cameras from any power source with a D-Tap input and an 11 to 19 V output. It features a built-in chip that delivers battery status to the camera indicator. The dummy battery end is compatible with the Sony Alpha a9, a7 III, and a7R III cameras.

That still doesn’t rectify the situation. I’m having the same issue with the Sony Alpha 1. I can power it with the dummy battery but the battery compartment door has to remain open having no ‘trap-door’ (good term for it - had not come across that before). I’ve just purchased the camera and only shot once so far and had huge issues with heat (before I knew to turn off the high heat shut down) while powering the camera off USB from Anker USB battery pack.

Hi Dylan - 

Please note tha SONY does not endorse or support the use of any third party powering schemes. This item is available and known to be compatible:
Sony NPA-MQZ1K Multi Battery Adapter Kit B&H # SONPAMQZ1K

  • For NP-FZ100 & NP-FW50 Type Cameras
  • Extends Shooting Time
  • Holds up to Four NP-FZ100 Battery Packs
  • Rapidly Charge Batteries
  • Charges Four Batteries in 480 Minutes
  • Converts to Compact Two-Battery Pack
  • Two USB Ports for Charging Devices
  • Three-Level LED Indicator Light
  • Six 1/4"-20 Mounting Sockets
  • Includes Two NP-FZ100 Battery Packs

    Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions: [email protected]

Is there a way to toggle the vertical shooting mode on and off? From what I can see it is automatic??

The following from Sony's online user guide may help: https://bit.ly/2KCjI6d

Did you solve that issue ?....I couldn’t find clear information on the internet.

Hi. I have problems with using the headphone out because I can not use the flip the screen well because the headphone jack is in the way of rotating the screen... So I was thinking maybe I could use a wireless bluetooth headphone to avoid this unpleasant design problem. But I can find no information about this topic... Can u help me? Is there any bluetooth headphone device the camera supports to connect it directly to camera?

I'm sorry to say you cannot connect a Bluetooth Headset to the A7SIII.

Sad news, but thanks for the reply.

Does the Sony a7siii turn off AF Face detection when connected to an external monitor via HDMI or did Sony finally fix that? I own the A7riii and I'd say that is one of the most frustrating things about that camera. 

We are not aware of AF Face Detection still working when using an HDMI monitor.

Would I be able to watch slow motion playback on the Sony A7S III or would I only be able to watch on an external monitor?

Slow motion playback on the A7S III can be viewed on the LCD or an external monitor connected via HDMI. 

Why is there no 25p in PAL when XAVC-HS h.265 is selected? NTFS provides 24p... Will they adding it in firmware updates?

Hi Valentin,

To get PAL frame rates you have to change another setting on the camera called "NTSC/PAL Selector" and change it. The camera might do a small restart and then you'll have PAL options. You unfortunately don't have constant access to both PAL and NTSC frame rates at all times.

Shawn, have you tested this? I just did and Valentin is correct. In PAL mode, only frame rates available in XAVC HS are, at present, 50p and 100p. Why no 25p? For that matter, why no 30p in NTSC? It is on Version 1.01 so I'm assuming will be enabled with an update but would be great to know for sure. Thanks.. 

You know you got me on this one. I was able to check a camera and also found 25p missing. It is very interesting and I have no explanation as for why this is the case. I would also assume it can come in a future firmware update but we will try to look into this.

Odd and incredibly niche question. What are the chances the MI Shoe on the A7sIII supports the use of a detachable EVF like the Sony FDA-EVM1K? I've always liked the idea of creating an extremely compact shoulder rig for documentary/adventure work, but the holdup has always been finding a tiny monitor solution for when the camera is located next to my right ear. With an MI shoe extension cable and a few rig pieces, you could easily get the EVF correctly positioned for this use-case. I have never decided whether this would be practical or cost effective, I'm just curious whether it is even possible. All the physical components are there for it to work, but it obviously depends on whether the firmware supports it.   

Hi Simon,

It is extremely unlikely to work. My research shows that the EVF didn't work on other cameras besides the RX1 and I highly doubt that a newer model like the a7S III will support it.

Thanks Shawn,
Figured as much. At least now I can get the silly idea out of my head.

I got the camera from you last Friday. Thanks. I looked and looked and I see no option for 1080P 240fps. I only have V60 rated cards. Where is the 240 fps option? I also don't see it in the S&Q.

On a more active (useful) forum someone answered that I need a CFexpress card and it is in the ALL I submenu.  

Hi Richard,

Sorry for the delay, B&H was off the past couple days. You should be able to find the option by going to the S&Q menu, just make sure you have already selected XAVC S HD or XAVC S-I HD before looking there or you will only see the 4K frame rates of up to 120p. It is available in the regular XAVC S HD mode and only the XAVC S-I HD mode at 240p will require CFexpress Type A or UHS-II SD V90 cards.

I just received my a7S III.

I'm very disappointed that none of my Sony Tough SF-M UHS-II V60 cards work. The camera says "Unable to use memory card." Both the 128gb and 256gb.

Does anyone know why and if there will be a firmware that will accept them later on? 

I found the answer.

All my SF-M cards were on recall. I chatted with Sony Support and they will be exchanging them for the updated version.

The updated versions should have a star on the back of the cards.

I also asked if this is why the a7S III didn't accept this card and they confirmed that is the very reason why. So I'm happy I don't have to sell these. 

That is quite a shame. The much cheaper Lexar V60 cards that 128GB work fine for me. It is about $63 for a pack of two of them.

Sorry for the delay. But seems like you found the answer. Sony is doing a recall on select models of their memory cards, though all the current versions work just fine. I had one SF-M on recall while the other I had worked perfectly. Sony is replacing the cards for free if you contact them.

You can NOT say that this camera has got 15 stops dynamic range ! The tests, on a IMATEST showed max. 13 ! and the SONY fx9 clocked in at 11.5 :)))

Hello,

From my understand IMATEST tests performed by some reviewers focus on usable dynamic range and account for noise, while manufacturer ranges discuss maximum measured potential of the sensor in lab conditions. It would obviously be perfect if we could do our own independent testing of every single camera that we offer, but this is not possible, so we have to trust manufacturer-given specs. Also, as every manufacturer tends to use the same (perhaps overly optimistic) ratings, it does make it possible to compare things on a relative scale.

For example, if Sony says camera A can hit 14 stops of dynamic range and camera B offers 15, you can surmise that camera B will have more dynamic range. Whether that means they are both actually 12 and 13 stops in usable DR is another story, but as a comparison point it is helpful.

Can I use the USB-C port to transfer media from the camera to my computer?

Yup! It is the recommend connection if you opt for a direct connection to your computer.

Why do they say that the A7SIII's 12MP sensor does a 1:1 full pixel readout without any pixel binning?  There must be some downscaling being calculated OR they are pixel binning OR they are not doing a full sensor readout.
So I did the math on the MAX resolution you can get out of that sensor at 16:9 ratio.
At 16:9 aspect ratio you could get up to 4264 x 2408 from that sensor.  Go to Sony's website to the product page for the A7SIII, go to full specs, scroll down to the RAW section and that is also stated by Sony as the max 16:9 ratio output.
So 4264 x 2408 is 10,267,712 pixels, yet we only get 3840x2160 or 8,294,400 pixels.
That's 1,973,312 missing pixels or pixel binning of 19.22%
And since they claim they are doing a full sensor readout with no pixel binning... I have to believe that they aren't pixel binning, so that means they are likely down sampling to 3840x2160 (16:9) from the 4264x2408 (16x9) max from the A7SIII's 12MP (3:2) sensor.

They are certainly doing full pixel readout and downsampling in some modes. The key part is that even in modes such as 4K 120 where there is a slight 1.1x crop it still has full UHD 4K resolution.

The 1:1 readout likely is Sony’s way of emphasizing that they are reading every pixel for an accurate downsample as opposed to doing any binning or skipping.

It is probably because this is part of the stabilization. If you have extra pixels you can use some digital stabilization without losing quality.

Why no open gate for raw video!?  Should be 3:2 not 16:9!

It would be nice to have an open gate option, if only for anamorphic. But cropping and such is a potential use case too.

Yeah that's a real bummer... I don't see the sense of giving 15% of the photodiodes a vacation when shooting video... Doesn't make sense to me especially shooting raw when there is no compression processing burden.... Even if it was just via HDMI.

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