Sony Alpha Cameras

The focus of this page is the Sony Alpha 7 III, Model No: ILCE-7M3, a.k.a. a7 III, α7 III, a7M3, but may also apply to the other Sony Alpha cameras, like the a7R III, a9, a9 II, a6400, a7R IV, α7R IV, α7S III, a7S III, a7 IV, α1, a1, Alpha 1, etc.

Sony News

Firmware Updates

Make sure you update to the latest firmware on your cameras, lenses, and other hardware.

To view the firmware version, go Menu (Setup7) > Page 7/7 > Version

Where are Photos and Videos Saved on the SD Card?

  • Photos are saved in: DCIM \ 100MSDCF
  • Videos are saved in: PRIVATE \ M4ROOT \ CLIP

Menu Navigation

The [ front scroll wheel ] moves the selection up and down.

  • Move up to the icon row, then use the rear scroll wheel to move through the menu icons.
  • The Fn key moves forward through the menu icons.

The [ rear scroll wheel ] moves forward and back through the pages of each menu.

Eye Auto Focus (Eye AF), Real Time Eye AF

Important:

  • The person’s eye must be within the Focus Area rectangle to register/be tracked/be detected.
  • Make sure you’re using the latest Firmware for the best Eye AF functionality and performance.

How to use “Eye AF” (Eye Auto Focus) on the Sony a7 III

  1. Set the “Focus Mode” to AF-C (Auto Focus –  Continuous).
    • Menu 1 (AF2), Page 5/14
    • Also set “Priority Set in AF-C” to AF
  2. Set the “Focus Area” to Wide or Zone
    • Menu 1 (AF1) Page 5/14
    • Important: An eye must be within the Focus Area rectangle to register/be tracked.
    • Note: Lock-On AF: Expanded Flexible is not compatible with Real Time Eye AF
    • Tip: If you’re in a crowd, try, Flexible Spot: L, to isolate the person of interest.
  3. Enable “Face/Eye Priority in AF” (Real Time Eye AF)
    • Menu 1 (Camera Settings 1) (AF2) Page 6/14
    • Face/Eye AF Settings > Face/Eye Priority in AF = On
    • Set Subject Detection = Human
  4. Eye AF activates with a half-press of the shutter release button.
    • With Firmware lower than v3.00, Press & hold the “select button” in the center of the Control Wheel [15] to enable Eye AF.
    • Alternatively, you can program Eye AF to the AF-ON or AEL button to make it easier to engage Eye AF, when using firmware prior to v3.00.

How Real Time Eye AF works with Different Focus Areas

  • [Wide] Real Time Eye AF will search & track an eye within the entire frame
  • [Zone] Real Time Eye AF will search & track an eye within the selected Zone
  • [Center] Real Time Eye AF will search & track an eye within the center of the frame. (Not recommended)
  • [Flexible Spot: L,M,S] Real Time Eye AF will search & track an eye within the selected Flexible Spot. (Large works best for this setting)
  • [Expand Flexible Spot] Real Time Eye AF will search & track an eye within the area or surrounding the Flexible Spot
  • [Lock-on AF: Expand Flexible Spot] *Not compatible with Real Time Eye AF

Reference

Auto Focus Modes

Prioritize Focusing While Using Continuous AF and High fps

  • Set: Menu > Camera Settings 1 > AF1: 5/14 > [Priority Set in AF-C] = AF
    • [Priority Set in AF-C] The shutter will release, even if the subject is not in focus, when the continuous AF is activated and the subject is in motion.
    • AF-S: Prioritizes focusing. The shutter will not release until the subject is in focus.
  • This allows the camera to reduce the # of frames/second, if it needs to, in order to make sure the auto focus is correct.

Manual Focus

DMF (Direct Manual Focus) with Focus Peaking

Metering Modes

Exposure

Enable Zebras to show overexposed highlights

ISO and Dynamic Range

Silent Shooting Mode

Access to Silent Shooting Mode is via Menu 2 (Shutter/SteadyShot) Pg. 4/9. I’ve assigned Silent Shooting to C1 on my A7 III.

Restrictions when using the Silent Shooting feature:

  • Silent Shooting can only be selected when the mode dial is set to P(rogram), A(perture priority), S(hutter priority), and M(anual) modes.
  • The flash can’t be used. The camera won’t trigger the flash while in Silent Shooting mode. When you turn off Silent Shooting, you may have cycle the power on the camera to get the flash working again.

When the Silent Shooting feature is enabled, the following functions are not available:

  • e-Front Curtain Shutter
  • Auto HDR
  • Picture Effect
  • Picture Profile
  • Long Exposure NR
  • BULB shooting
  • If the RAW file type is set to uncompressed, and you’re making RAW or RAW+JPEG photos, you won’t be able to use bracketing.

Setup Guides

Custom Key Configuration

The following are the Sony a7 III Custom Button/Key Assignments I use for faster access to change or toggle settings.

  • Custom Key 1 = Silent Shooting on/off selection.
    • I’ve been making photos on the set of the Sk8Kingz documentary. So I toggle silent on while they’re recording.
  • Custom Key 2 = Focus Area selection.
    • I often switch between Wide, Zone, or Flexible Spot: L
  • Custom Key 3 = Focus Mode selection.
  • Custom Key 4 = Shot. Result Preview.
    • For checking proper exposure when using flash.
  • Control Wheel = ISO selection.
  • AEL Button: Recall Custom Hold 1 for DMF (Direct Manual Focus) access

Setup Guides for Video

Sony a7 III Tracker at NowInStock.net

Sony a7 III In Stock / Availability Tracker

Tips

General Notes

Shutter Count / Shutter Activations

Sony Alpha Shutter/Image Counter

  • This tool provides the number of shutter actuations up to the file in question. Electronic/silent/quiet shutter activations are not counted.
  • The photo is evaluated on the local computer within the Web browser.
  • This tool is based on ExifTool by Phil Harvey.

Sony A7 III, how to manually control A, S and ISO?

  • After switching the camera to A, S, or P, modes, you can use the front wheel to change the values.

Preventing Overheating

While shooting 4K video, the camera may overheat and shutdown. There are some things you can do to increase the time before the camera overheats.

  • Change the automatic temperature overheating shutoff: Set “Auto Pwr OFF Temp.” to “High” (Setup Menu, Page 2of7)
  • Pull the LCD panel away from the body.
  • The battery is a source of heat. Leaving the battery door open my help the heat from the battery to escape the camera.
  • Do not leave your camera in a hot car or unprotected from direct sunlight.

Replacement Parts

Eyepiece Cup

Multi Interface Shoe Cap

News, Discussion, Issues, Fixes

User Experiences with Sony Alpha Cameras

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