Which Sony E Mount Camera Is The One For You? The Easy Answers

Sony’s mirrorless cameras are at the forefront of an ever evolving photographic industry, and in a market where product cycles usually range from three to five years, Sony has blown up that trend and regularly updated their A7 series cameras much more often than the norm. This has led to there quickly being six relatively new A7 full frame cameras, in addition to the APS-C based A6000 and A6300. This makes shopping for a Sony mirrorless a little confusing; and you’re bound to be asking yourself stuff and wondering if you need the latest model, do you need the higher ISO, or resolution or faster auto focus, etc. In today’s post we break it down and share our picks for which Sony mirrorless camera is right for you.

The Professional

Are you looking to use your Sony mirrorless camera as a primary camera for professional purposes? Then this is the section for you as we break down which Sony mirrorless cameras you should be looking at when making your decisions.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7r Mk II product images review (2 of 3)ISO 4001-100 sec at f - 2.8

 

In our review we had the following to say about the Sony A7R II:

“The Sony A7r Mk II deserves absolutely nothing else but the site’s Editor’s Choice rating. It amazed in the high ISO results and even though we expected more with RAW file versatility, it still is rather impressive. When it comes to image quality, it puts the Canon 5Ds to shame. Beyond this, there is the spot on AF system, WiFi/NFC, 4K video, 5 fps, and a great overall experience when it comes to shooting. And again–it puts a DSLR to shame as well as other focusing systems.”Read Our Full Review Here

The A7R II is the king of the Sony mirrorless ecosystem right now offering the highest resolution, fastest (FF) Auto Focus, and arguably the best image quality. If you are wanting the absolute best that Sony has to offer right now in terms of bodies, this is it. The only professional that I might recommend another A7 body to would be primarily video shooters, and in that case I may suggest looking at the A7S II or the A6300, as those are arguably better on the video side of the spectrum.

ISO 5400

So here are our rankings for the Sony mirrorless ecosystem in terms of being ideal for a Professional as a primary camera.

  1. A7R II (Review) – Buy
  2. A7 II (Review) – Buy
  3. A7S II (Review) – Buy
  4. A7 (Review) – Buy
  5. A6300 (Review) – Buy
  6. A7R (Review) – Buy
  7. A7S (Review) – Buy
  8. A6000 (Review) – Buy

The Semi-Pro or Secondary System

Are you a semi-professional photographer (making taxable income off of your photography),  or a professional looking for a secondary mirrorless camera to your primary kit? Then this is the section for you.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony a7 Mk II product photos (2 of 8)ISO 1001-50 sec at f - 5.0

In our review we had the following to say about the Sony A7 II:

“While current Sony A7 owners may be groaning because of the quick refresh to their brand new camera, they can rest assured that the A7 Mk II is really nothing more than a further attempt to snatch up the professional market. This is evident in the small changes.”Read Our Full Review Here

If having the absolute best that Sony has to offer isn’t something you are worried about, yet you still want a good all around camera, than your primary camera in consideration for this section should be the Sony A7 II. This camera offers image stabilization, good but not great AF performance, stellar image quality, and what we think is the best all around mix in the Sony system (A7R II aside).

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony a7 Mk II JPEG images extras (1 of 12)ISO 2001-400 sec at f - 6.3

So here are our rankings for the Sony mirrorless ecosystem in terms of being ideal for a semi-pro or as a secondary camera for a professional:

  1. A7 II (Review) – Buy
  2. A6300 (Review) – Buy
  3. A7 (Review) – Buy
  4. A6000 (Review) – Buy
  5. A7R II (Review) – Buy
  6. A7S II (Review) – Buy
  7. A7R (Review) – Buy
  8. A7S (Review) – Buy

The Hobbyist or Non-Professional

Do you just like photography and are looking for a good all around camera to capture things as you see them? Maybe pictures of family outings, or the occasional travel photo while on vacation? Then this section is for you.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony a6300 product images first impressions (3 of 8)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 4.0

 

In our review we had the following to say about the Sony A6000:

“The Sony A6000 hands down has what could arguably be called the best autofocusing system out there. While it isn’t the fastest, it by far is the smartest and the most responsive–putting some DSLRs to shame in our tests for sure. Granted, Sony did this with an APS-C sensor and have yet to do this with a full frame sensor. If that doesn’t bother you, then you’ll have an autofocusing beast in the palm of your hand.”Read Our Full Review Here

Since having the latest and great, highest image quality and fanciest features likely aren’t a concern for a hobbyist or non-professional, our pick for the best Sony camera right now is actually the A6000. This camera offers some of the best mirrorless performance out there and is more than enough camera for most people who just want good pictures from a small package with the option to interchange lenses.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A6000 review images (22 of 37)ISO 1001-1250 sec at f - 1.8

Alternatively, if you are set on a full frame option, the original A7 is also a great choice (note it is also the cheapest full frame camera you can currently get brand new at just slightly over $1000).

So here are our rankings for the Sony mirrorless ecosystem in terms of being ideal for a hobbyist or Non-Professional just looking for a good camera for when pictures need to be taken:

  1. A6000 (Review) – Buy
  2. A7 (Review) – Buy
  3. A6300 (Review) – Buy
  4. A7 II (Review) – Buy
  5. A7R II (Review) – Buy
  6. A7S II (Review) – Buy
  7. A7R (Review) – Buy
  8. A7S (Review) – Buy

So there you have it. Sony’s mirrorless ecosystem of cameras broken down and ranked depending on where you fit into the photographer spectrum. We hope this has been helpful for those of you looking to get into a Sony mirrorless rig. If you would like to see more camera system breakdowns similar to this one drop us a comment, like, or email and let us know!

Anthony Thurston

Anthony is a Portland, Oregon based Boudoir Photographer specializing in a dark, moody style that promotes female body positivity, empowerment, and sexuality. Besides The Phoblographer, he also reviews gear and produces his own educational content on his website.