Chasing the Magic Bullet Again with the Upcoming Sony A7III

in photography •  last year  (edited)

The number one question that I often get asked by anyone is: “What camera do you use.” I’d have a thousand dollars more in the bank if I got a penny for each time somebody asked that question. The truth of the matter is, I’ve used quite a few of them…Lots. So when I post a photo here it may have been taken with an ancient film camera or a more modern DSLR.

I’ve probably used over 34 different cameras throughout my photographic career because, like most photographers, I was chasing the “magic bullet”, hoping somehow that the quality of my photography will improve with the quality of equipment that I use. I have since, abandoned such folly and stuck to a cheaper more affordable camera system that I have now.

The Sony Mirrorless A series.

The camera I currently use, Sony A7II, is not in league with Canon or Nikon DSLRs. It not as fast or as great as the Nikon D80e that I had. In fact, I only bought the A7II because I broke the D80e and it was the cheapest FullFrame camera I could find. It did have something going for it that gave it the edge over DSLRs.
It is Mirrorless.

Sony A7III
Sony A7III (Image Source: Amazon)

Doing away with the mirror of a DSLR means the camera can be smaller and more compact. No cumbersome mirrors to include inside the camera body to make it bulky and heavy. It also means less flange distance between the rear of the lens and the sensor – and this means it is very easy to make adapters to fit all the other lenses from any manufacturer to use with the camera itself. This is what eventually sold me. I wanted to be able to use the lenses I have from Canon and Nikon to one Camera body.

The Sony A7II also had a built-in Image Stabilization Unit, built into the camera body. That means compatible lenses automatically had IS when in use. In contrast, DSLRs from Canon and Nikon don’t have IS included in the body – it can only be added to lenses. That means you would have to pay for the IS feature for EACH lens you bought, which can get very expensive.

Seattle Skyline Sony A7II
The Sony A7II is a flawed camera but it produces amazing images.

Sony A7II, not perfect.

The Sony A7II is far from perfect. The IS would sometimes get stuck and I have to shake the camera to put it back in place. The battery life definitely sucks, by far the worst thing about the camera. Since it doesn’t have a reflex mirror, the camera uses an electronic viewfinder which in turn sucks the camera’s battery power dry.

There’s a lot to complain about the A7II but I can’t complain about the quality of the images. Which in the end, all I really care about. This is why I’ve seen no reason to upgrade to a latest and greatest of the A series. I might have been tempted by the A7SII for its low light and 4k video performance. I might have envied the A7RII for the whopping 42 Megapixel punch that it delivers. But to me, those meager improvements are only skin deep and I’d be back to chasing the “magic bullet.”

Sugarloaf View
Taken in the Sony A7II

A new camera isn’t going to improve the quality of my images. In fact, my best images come from Wooden View cameras without electronics and auto features. Those cameras took away my ability to automate or depend on computers to create a photographic image which subsequently forced me to contemplate and perfect the capture of light.

So why now, contemplate about getting the new Sony A7III?

Well, to be honest, maybe I got shot by an invisible magic bullet through the heart. Maybe some mythical photographer’s cupid equipped with a scoped rifle instead of a bow and arrow had its sights set on me? Whatever it is, I’m excited about camera gear again for the first time in several years. Hell, I’m almost 80% sure I’m going to jump at the chance to grab the new Sony A7III.

It's just a rumor for now.

It won’t even be released until April 10th (2018, next month).

But check this out: The battery life will run circles around my camera, which allows it to grab lunch in Timbuktu, sit in for coffee at café in Paris, and still have time to drop a few more frames into a 64GB SD card. It’s also comes equipped with 4K video capabilities! I also heard down the grapevine that it can shoot 10fps and equipped with dual SD Slot! The screen has also been improved and gotten slightly bigger.

Sony A7III Screen Size (Image Source: Amazon)
Sony A7III Screen Size (Image Source: Amazon)

More features than you can swing your tripod at.

The Camera’s sensor is new, 24MP Full-Frame Exmor R BSI CMOS Sensor. It has the same megapixel count at 24MP as it’s predecessor. I’m glad they kept the pixel density the same. The 21-24MP range is more than enough and anything more is a headache and overkill. I’ve never had any sales of prints larger than 30x40 and there aren’t enough people who have the wall space to accommodate such large prints anyways. Sony has always made excellent camera sensors, even Nikon, uses their sensors for their camera bodies.

If there’s anything out there that can get me chasing the magic bullet again it’s probably this camera. It’s been a while since a new camera got me excited. It’s not cheap by any means at $2,000 for the camera body alone. I haven’t looked at other Fullframe offerings from Nikon or Canon but from a historical standpoint, it’s probably cheaper. It’s probably going to be released at inflated prices so I might wait a few weeks or even months just until the fanfare subsides.

Should you get it too?

For newcomers to photography, I would advise against it. Learn from my mistakes. Don’t chase the magic bullet unless you have too much cash and wearing down heavy on your pockets. You don’t need a fancy camera to produce high-quality imagery. I would instead recommend you work on your techniques and for this, you are better served with a fully manual cheap camera.

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain

All photos are taken and articles are written by Adonis Villanueva of Always Wanderlust unless otherwise stated.



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hun main v ehi khariduga

I'll also be interesting to see what all the other manufacturers launch at NAB this year. Looking forward to it! One day i'll find that magic bullet.


That magic bullet is you!

I will collect the bullet to get the best. "five star quality at a five foot price"

I am very interested in the world of photography, but I am still a beginner
what type of camera you can recommend for beginners like me ?


The cheapest one you can get :) and one you can mount on a tripod.


is there a special trick for a beginner


Put the dial on Aperture Priority or Manual and learn how the interplay and relationship between Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO.


indeed I also use a tripod, especially when I take a photo of the sun
either sunrise or sunset


Then if you already know about Exposure you need to learn about Composition - this will take you to the next level 10x more than a new fancy camera can :)

I'm a big Sony fan, but these mirrorless systems are so incredibly bad with battery life. My biggest pet peeve. I shoot a lot of weddings, photo AND video (mostly photos) and recently sold my old A7 mkI because of the battery life and so I now I'm playing around with the new Fuji's to try something new. I kid you not, but even when shooting photos only, I still kill 3 - 4 batteries on a wedding day. Not even talking video yet. I'm really keen to see how this new A7III compares. I know it's not as important to everyone, but it becomes a stupid annoyance after a while. Wish I could at least try the mkII that you own.


I agree. Battery life really sucks on the A7II. This is why I got excited when they mentioned it has 10x more battery life than its predecessor.


Oh wow! I missed that part. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. Now that's something that'll change my mind again. Good battery life + IBIS + my vintage lenses = a very happy shooter. I prefer manual focus for my videos, so I don't mind the trade-off. Might just get a proprietary lens for photos, something like a 24-70 all-rounder. Again, thanks for mentioning it. Will strongly consider the mkIII. Now just the question of high-ISO noise... :D


The ISO has "supposedly" improved on this sensor as well. I'm happy with my 24-240mm, it took 80% of my photos you see on Steemit.


Completely forgot about that versatile lens and with the images looking very good, it's certainly worth looking into, especially if planning on being the only proprietary lens (I can't afford slow or bad focus-ing with an adapter). Thanks again, Bud. I knew I'm following you for good reason, not just the good photos. Haha. I should really stop being lazy and upload some as well. In a decent blog post of course

Sony has been rocking some great sensors for quite some time now. Especially in the non-DSLR realm. They were one of the first ones to have a full 1" sensor in their compact cameras. I have the second generation of the X1 (I think it was) and it is fantastic for a point and shoot. This camera you have covered looks like it is worth a second or third look for sure. Thanks for the info!

It would be great to be able to afford the new Sony Alpha. But for now I have to settle with shooting with the camera I have on me all the time. My trusty Samsung Galaxy S7 LOL Hey it works. Thanks for sharing! @journeyfreedom


It's all you'll ever need :)

Good advise. I shoot with an a6000, strictly amateur, but I resisted upgrading to the a6500 for example. The a6500 has some great features including in body stabilization and weatherproofing amount other things. When I sit down and contemplate a purchase I realize it's more about what you do with what you have. Eventually I'll wear my present camera out. Then we'll see what's on the market. Until then I'm more than happy with my humble a6000. Thanks for your post enjoy them all.


Well, you have your magic bullet right there!

You just saved me 2k

  ·  last year (edited)

Thanks for the comprehensive writeup - very interesting to read the opinion of someone who actually does photography for a living. As a photography (and tech...) enthusiast, it's sometimes really hard to resist the optimization craze :)

I would agree that most of the camera specs are almost irrelevant, I stopped caring about 20, 30 or 40 Megapixels long ago (For Astrophotography, there's even a case to be made that lower MP can be more beneficial than higher MP, if you were to use one body for everything).
The one thing I do however miss on my Canon 6D is the impressive dynamic range of Nikon's and partially Sonys sensors. Is this something you actually care about, or is this another thing that you dismiss completely?
I find it a lot easier to be able to pull up the shadows from one single Raw than trying to merge from an exposure bracket and dealing with Ghosting and the like...


Dynamic range is good...but this is something you can overcome with exposure blending techniques. Now, for low noise and high ISO performance, I would pay good money for. But, I simply don't shoot enough Astrophotography to warrant a huge purchase.

A7III Is really amazing camera for its price. it kills the competition at the moment. definetly my next buy

What a beautiful camera photography nice work

It's relieving to read something like this in all the 'get your hands on the ultimate piece of gear' type of content and get back down on Earth.

Though sometimes - when I'm lazy that is - I do feel the need of a mirrorless camera instead of my not too bad entry-level DSLR. :)


Cameras don't take pictures...People do :)

Most informative camera article ever! Just what I was looking for. I may just get this one. Thanks.

Very good

İ m using sony alfa a 6300 so i m very pleased and also its cheaper than a7

Oh my goodness Sony A7III you're a beastybitch!!!!
Thank you @adonisabril. I needed that..

This is amzing camera in my piont of view

This is really nice

I'm excited! The Sony A7S ii is already a marvel! Can't wait to see the changes coming

Sony I think for me has the best camera so this new upcoming camera will surely be great. I can't wait to have it :)

Nice post!

The more I read it, the more I'm interested in it. I have owned Nikon D5000 and when it was destroyed I gave up. It was heavy and I wanted something lighter since my hands cannot handle that much weight. This would be something I will consider. Somebody suggested fujifilm cameras. Any thoughts?


I owned a Fuji S2 Pro back in the days. It took 6MP but produced some of the best colors I've ever seen in a sensor.


Decisions, decisions :)

kamera ponsel

amazing magic bullet

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I like this camera, its specification are good.. I also interested to buy one but when earn something from steemit. Nice information about this camera sir @adonisabril

Sounds great. I too didn't like the Sony A7ii, despite having such high hopes. But maybe this one is going to be a keeper :)