The Sony a9 II and the Sony a7R V are both advanced, even professional-caliber cameras, but that doesn’t mean they’re interchangeable! These two cameras are actually quite different from one another, in part because the Sony a7R V is a full three years newer (practically an eternity in the world of consumer electronics). Here’s what you need to know about the Sony a9 II and the Sony a7R V so you can decide which one is right for you.
Sony a9 II vs Sony a7R V Specifications Comparison
|Camera Feature||Sony a9 II||Sony a7R V|
|Announced||October 2019||October 2022|
|Sensor Type||Stacked CMOS||BSI CMOS|
|Image Processor||BIONZ X (front-end LSI)||BIONZ XR with AI processing unit|
|Resolution||24.2 MP||61.0 MP|
|Sensor Dimensions||35.6 x 23.8 mm (Full Frame)||35.7 x 23.8 mm (Full Frame)|
|Sensor Pixel Size||5.9µ||3.76µ|
|Low Pass Filter||Yes||No|
|IBIS (In-Body Image Stabilization)||Yes||Yes|
|Base ISO||ISO 100||ISO 100|
|Max Native ISO||ISO 51,200||ISO 32,000|
|Extended ISOs||ISO 50-204,800||ISO 50-102,400|
|High-Resolution Sensor Shift||No||Yes|
|Focus Stack Bracketing||No||Yes|
|Pre-Shoot Burst Mode||No||No|
|Fastest Shutter Speed||1/32000||1/8000|
|Longest Shutter Speed||30 seconds||30 seconds|
|Continuous Shooting (Mechanical Shutter)||10 FPS||10 FPS|
|Continuous Shooting (Electronic Shutter)||20 FPS||10 FPS|
|Notes for High FPS Shooting||Compressed 12-bit raw at 20 FPS (uncompressed 14-bit raw is available at 12 FPS)||Compressed raw at 10 FPS (uncompressed and lossless compressed raw at 7 FPS)|
|Buffer Size (Raw)||239 frames (20 FPS)||583 frames (10 FPS)|
|Autofocus System||Hybrid PDAF||Hybrid PDAF with deep learning subject recognition|
|Low-Light AF Sensitivity (f/2 Lens, ISO 100)||-3 EV||-4 EV|
|Standard Flash Sync Speed||1/250||1/250|
|Curtain to Protect Sensor at Shutdown||Yes||Yes|
|Maximum Video Bit Depth (Internal)||8 bits||10 bits|
|Maximum Video Bit Depth (External)||8 bits||16 bits|
|Raw Video||No||Yes, externally|
|8K Maximum Framerate||N/A||25 FPS|
|4K Maximum Framerate||30 FPS||60 FPS|
|1080P Maximum Framerate||120 FPS||120 FPS|
|Additional Video Crop Factor||No||1.24x crop at 8K and 4K 60p (otherwise no additional crop)|
|Chroma Subsampling||4:2:0, 4:2:2 (External)||4:2:2|
|Video Recording Limit||780 min||No limit (4K); 30 minutes (8K)|
Physical and Other Features
|Slot 1 Type||SD (UHS-II)||CFExpress Type A, or SD (UHS-II)|
|Slot 2 Type||SD (UHS-II)||CFExpress Type A, or SD (UHS-II)|
|Rear LCD Size (Diagonal)||3.0 in||3.2 in|
|Rear LCD Resolution||1.44 million dots||2.1 million dots|
|Articulating LCD||Single Axis||Fully Articulating|
|Viewfinder Resolution||3.69 million dots||9.44 million dots|
|USB Type||Type C 3.2 Gen 1||Type C 3.2 Gen 2|
|Battery Life (Viewfinder)||500 frames||440 frames|
|Battery Life (Rear LCD)||690 frames||530 frames|
|Weight (Body Only w/ Battery + Card)||678 g (1.49 lbs.)||723 g (1.59 lbs.)|
|Dimensions (LxHxD)||129 x 96 x 78 mm (5.1 x 3.8 x 3.1″)||131 x 97 x 82 mm (5.2 x 3.8 x 3.2″)|
|MSRP, Body Only||$4500 (Check Current Price)||$3900 (Check Current Price)|
|Used Prices||Sony a9 II Used Prices||Sony a7R V Used Prices|
Clearly, the Sony a7R V has more wins in its column – including some really important specs like resolution, where it simply blows the Sony a9 II out of the water (with 61 megapixels compared to 24). Not everyone needs 61 megapixels, of course, but if you like printing large, it can be quite a nice feature to have.
The Sony a7R V is also way ahead in terms of videography features. It’s capable of 8K recording, external raw video, and 60 FPS slow-motion video at 4K.
Meanwhile, the Sony a9 II has a few wins of its own, with the most important being the maximum frame rate (20 FPS compared to 10 FPS) and the addition of a voice memo feature. Both of these will be welcome additions for sports and event photographers.
Summary and Recommendations
Broadly speaking, the Sony a7R V is the better camera in this comparison, but it depends somewhat upon the subjects that you prefer to photograph. I’ll go through a few of the most popular genres and offer my recommendations.
For landscape photography, it’s no contest – the Sony a7R V definitely wins here, and not just because of the higher-resolution sensor (although that helps). It also has a focus stacking feature, pixel shift shooting, a higher magnification viewfinder, and a fully articulating LCD.
The same is true for videography, where I’d pick the Sony a7R V any day. This one just isn’t a close comparison, even though the Sony a9 II is capable of high-quality video in its own right.
Probably the toughest comparison is for sports and wildlife photographers. The a7R V has a newer, improved autofocus system, and the higher resolution allows much more cropping if your subject is far away. Meanwhile, the Sony a9 II has a faster burst rate (20 FPS versus 10 FPS) and the voice memo feature. Broadly speaking, the Sony a7R V is probably better for distant wildlife photography, while the Sony a9 II is probably better for sport and event photography – but it really could go either way.
As you can see, these are both great cameras, and you can’t go wrong! In terms of pricing, although the Sony a7R V has a lower MSRP, the situation on the used market is flipped. You can find the Sony a9 II on sites like eBay for substantially less than the cost of a used Sony a7R V.
What does the Sony a9 II offer over the Sony a7R V?
- Faster burst rate of 20 FPS compared to 10 FPS
- Better battery life both with the rear LCD and the viewfinder
- Useful voice memo feature for quickly labeling your photos in the field
What does the Sony a7R V offer over the Sony a9 II?
- Significantly higher resolution: 61 versus 24 megapixels
- Newer autofocus system with better subject recognition, even though the a9 II is far from a slouch in autofocus
- Better video features overall, with 8K video and external raw recording
- Lower MSRP, costing $600 less (although the situation is reversed on the used market)
Questions? Go to our forum, where you can start a conversation and talk to photographers about these two cameras!