Fingers Crossed: Sony Rumored to Have a $1,000 Full-Frame Camera in the Works


In a rumor that is either wishful thinking at its best, or a preview of a VERY exciting Photokina announcement from Sony, an anonymous source told sonyalpharumors that the massive electronics company — which, by the way, has made a name for itself as an innovator in the world of photography — is working on a $1,000 NEX-sized full-frame camera.

The source is anonymous, and not one of SAR‘s ‘trusted sources’ that are so often spot on, but if this pans out it will shake up the market to the same or greater degree than the release of the full-frame A7 and A7r did.

The source told SAR that the camera would be similar to the NEX-5, viewfinder-less, and cost right around $1,000. This, we probably don’t need to tell you, would make it both the smallest AND the cheapest full-frame camera on the market… period.

Sony's A7 and A7r really shook up the industry when they arrived on the scene. Is Sony preparing to shock us all again?

Sony’s A7 and A7r really shook up the industry when they arrived on the scene. Is Sony preparing to shock us all again?

There are a lot of reasons why this might not make sense for Sony — for example, at the rumored price point, this camera would likely eat into its APS-C mirrorless sales — but the company did patent a design just like this last year, so there is some indication that this is at least on Sony’s mind.

As to whether we’ll be seeing this at Photokina? Well, we’ll keep our fingers crossed and our ears open for more info, so keep a close eye on the site over the next few months.

(via sonyalpharumors via The Phoblographer)

  • waterengineer

    The RX100 was to prove the concept. However, I believe a FF camera in this configuration would be much better served (by the marketplace) if it had an eye level viewfinder.

  • Woody ONeal

    lenses please

  • Chester A. Arthur

    Exactly this. I think most people decided not to go with the A7 cameras because of the underwhelming native lens selection and shutter sound, not because of the price point or size of the body.

  • Woody ONeal

    Not that I am a Fuji-addict, but Fuji, smartly, has published and delivered on a lens roadmap.

    And as much criticism as Canon and Nikon have taken for “not being innovative”, they are regarded as serious photographic tools by professionals and advanced amateurs alike because of the depth and breadth of their lens lineups.

    Sony, on the other hand, continues to pump out numerous (and admittedly intriguing bodies), but I for one simply cannot commit to any body that has no significant lens ecosystem to support it.

  • Hyper

    Sounds like they are .. (•_•) ( •_•)>⌐■-■ (⌐■_■) Cutting some corners

  • Dan Tauro

    Exactly. Show me the lenses. Good ones in all the major focal lengths.

  • Jason Yuen

    1 word. Adapters.

  • Flying Tanooki

    woohhhoo $1,000 for a fullframe :) hope its true!

  • roxics

    Honeslty I don’t like the design and the size. What I want and what I think most people want is a traditional style DSLR with a full frame sensor for around or under $1000. Even an A7 design.

  • MartinGS

    Yes! Bare bones even, just high quality full frame imaging!

  • amalric

    Return of the 24×36? Where is the advantage? Digital doesn’t NEED it. Nice, but optional. Figure worshippers will never learn.

  • Rick

    A $1000 fool frame camera? Yes please, please, please, please.

  • oscar

    Looks like BM pocket. They are going to need ff lenses.

  • oscar

    You would lose many lenses like the whole Nikon G series, maybe VR etc.

  • oscar

    Different DOF, less noise in High ISOs, more real detail and contrast.

  • amalric

    People already have that, and yet keep choosing m4/3 and APS for overall performance. Sony’s enticement didn’t even scratch their sales. Small sensors are reliiable, sony isn’t

  • gerlos

    Actually DOF control and high dynamic in ISO and color are things that badly need big sensors. Physics matters.ù

    I’d love to be able to buy a full frame camera at the same price of my last APS-C camera.

  • HardWir3d

    I use adapters on my a7r… works nice. I’d take any Voigtlander / Leica M over most of my Canon L glass. If you don’t mind Manual Focus, there’s countless configs you can go with.

  • E-Nonymouse A

    Hah.. On that note I have you beat, my D800E sounds like a the door of a truck slamming every time I take a picture. It can make very nice pictures but real loud bugger..

  • E-Nonymouse A

    I find sony’s a7 camera bodies to be very impressive, they do have many notable drawbacks and I won’t list them all (I just woke up so brain has not had caffeine injection yet) but here’s a few:
    1. Tendency to vignette on wide lenses- especially non sony lenses,
    2. Lacking a proper raw format (fully implemented DNG PLEASE!). According to reviews the 14 bit format they use is not using a proper lossless encoder and seems like a last minute hack.
    3. Soft focus on wide lenses with some or all a7 bodies (owners report it to be an on going issue).
    4. Lack of 16 bit color spectrum and higher dynamic range on their high end bodies, particularly the a7r. If they want to really eat the competitions lunch all they would have to do is add that to a sensor like the a7r.
    5. Lense eco-system is admittedly slim for native lenses but these alpha’s can fit through adaptors some of the best lenses ever made for any camera in that format (Leica, Schneider, Nikon, Zeiss, and Cannon EOS I think).
    6. Software implemented has impressive features but is very clunky. Some or all alpha bodies have an issue with the screen not remaining off, draining the battery during extended shoots. (Astrophotography, time lapse etc).
    7. Some have Shutter lag!

  • genotypewriter

    “Return of the 24×36? Where is the advantage?”

    Same advantage that 35mm had over APS film, 645 over 35mm, 6×6 over 645, 6×7 over 6×6, 6×9 over 6×7, 6×12 over 6×9, 4×5″ over 6×12, 5×7″ over 4×5″, 8×10″ over 5×7″, 11×14″ over 8×10″, etc.

    … the same advantage that DMF has over 35mm digital.

    I.e. the larger area means more light can be gathered for the same intensity (f-number) and therefore produce images with less noise or alternatively, simpler and optically better and smaller lenses with slower f-numbers can be used to obtain better image quality. E.g. compare the quality difference between a mFT Voigtlander 25mm f/0.95 and the equivalent Sony Zeiss FE 55/1.8 on a A7R. It’s not all about the resolution.

    The larger area also means more pixels can be included… even if you don’t need anything more than, say, 16 megapixels, a sensor that produces 24 or 36MP will produce better 16MP images than ones that comes out of a native 16MP sensor, even if the sensors are of the same size.

    “Figure worshippers will never learn.”

    Better to worship numbers than brochures.

  • genotypewriter

    1 and 3. Here are some examples from the Voigtlander 12mm f/5.6, the widest rectilinear lens on this format originally designed to be used on film, fitted on my A7R which has even smaller pixels than the A7:

    No software vignetting compensation applied.

    2. Realistically, chances of DNG happening outside of Pentax and Leica are quite slim. Adobe DNG Converter is always there if you have legacy software, etc.

    I too am against the fact that there’s lossy compression but it’s nothing like what we’ve learned to hate about lossy compression (e.g. JPEG, MPEG, etc.). 14-bits is fairly real as Sony’s lossy encoding only affects sudden transitions that require a lower bit rate rather than the very fine transitions that require a higher bit rate. So it’s only the crude areas that are affected and unless you’re using the camera for scientific purposes, other factors will affect the images far more than this encoding method.

    3. (See 1).

    4. With very small pixels, there’s nothing to be gained by going for a higher bit rate. 16-bits became popular in the old days of digital MF, etc. when pixels were massive. Nowadays, the tiny pixels can barely achieve 14-bits, let alone 16-bits. However, what they lack individually in precision, they make up for in their larger numbers. It’s maths.

    5. The A7/A7R has been out for barely 6 months and there’s 5 lenses already, including 2 excellent primes and premium constant aperture zooms in the two most popular focal length ranges, 24-70 and 70-200. There’s also a similar 16-35mm lens to be released soon, which would be the next popular focal length range in zooms. Another 28-135/4 OSS will also be released around the same time to compete with “standard travel zooms” like 24-105 and 24-120 varieties by other manufacturers.

    6. This infact is an annoyance and but it’s the nature of the classical mirrorless beast. Hopefully a software fix will be introduced.

    7. Very true! It’s comparable to the first generation Nex-5, etc. that was improved massively in models like the Nex-5R. I’m positive the future versions will improve things in this aspect.

  • E-Nonymouse A

    Cool thanks for the feedbax, I just got flamed on Nikon rumors for suggesting that my future camera body purchase would not be another Nikon, lolz. I’m fine with what I got but I have higher expectations.

  • genotypewriter

    I’m a Canon guy… had a 40D, 50D IR, 5D2, 24 1.4L, 24 1.4L II, 85 1.2L II and more. All sold now… kept my 200/2L IS, TS-E 90/2.8 and recently got a 35/2 IS. They work great on the a7r. Doubt I’ll go for a DSLR again… even then it’s pretty unlikely it’ll be a Canon (or a Nikon).

  • RealChangePH

    You know what I love about Sony? Unlike Canon and Nikon, someone at Sony land-actually read The Innovator’s Dilemma.

  • Ne0

    Sony has a lot of good body, their major weakness is their battery department and lenses ! Their lenses just cost way too much, more than canon and nikon for similar specs is just not making any sense. Sony know lens is the real profit not body, but having them too limited choice and overpriced is not helping to bring too many professional onboard.