Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

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Introduction

The Sony A6500 replaces the 8-month-old A6300 as Sony’s premium APS-C Alpha offering. The A6500 retains a similar outward appearance to its predecessor, featuring full weather sealing against dust and moisture ingress, but now has in-body 5-axis stabilization, a touch-enabled LCD screen, a bigger buffer for continuous shooting, new C2 | C1 custom buttons on the top plate, a high-durability shutter mechanism (up to 200,000 frames) and a redesigned menu interface. The A6500 can capture 4K 3840 x 2160 video at 30fps, along with Full HD 1080p content at 120fps, and the 24.2MP sensor features a cutting edge design that enables the A6500 to record at ISO 51200. The camera features no fewer than 425 phase detection AF points that cover almost the entire image frame, which helps ensure accurate subject tracking, and with the aid of Sony’s powerful Bionz X image processor, gives the A6500 a claimed focussing speed of just 0.05 seconds. The Sony A6500 also offers extensive control customisation, built-in Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth, a 2.36-million dot viewfinder, a tiltable 922k-dot LCD screen, and 11 fps continuous shooting with full autofocus and autoexposure. The Sony A6500 costs £1499 / $1399 / €1700 body-only.

Ease of Use

Externally the Sony A6500 closely resembles the previous A6300, but this is no bad thing as the design and control layout are very intuitive and ergonomic. The A6500 now has a deeper hand grip that is more comfortable to hold on to. Combine it with the sizable rear thumb rest and the A6500 feels totally secure when shooting one-handed. Useful, as at 453g with battery and memory card, the new camera is 50g heavier than its predecessor. The A6500 is also 4.5mm thicker at 53.3mm, though length and width remain the same at 120 x 66.9mm. The A6500 has a tough magnesium alloy body shell that incorporates full weather sealing. Other minor external improvements include a softer eyecup, a slightly larger shutter release button and an extra custom button.

The A6500 has the same 2.36 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder as the A6300, which also features a 120fps high frame rate setting to help track moving subjects more smoothly with virtually no lag. It all adds up to an exceptionally natural viewing experience with outstanding colour accuracy, detail and contrast. The same is true of the 3-inch widescreen LCD monitor, though disappointingly this retains the same 922k resolution as the A6300. It also uses an identical tilting bracket, giving 90 degrees of upward rotation and 45 degrees downward tilt. It’s a real help when shooting from a high or low angle, but a flip-out screen would be even more versatile. Sony have finally added touch sensitivity to the screen, which makes functions like focus point selection easier and more intuitive, and it even works while looking through the electronic viewfinder, although in practice we found it frustratingly laggy and slow to use.

The A6500 is Sony’s latest camera with optical 5-axis image stabilization. Most image stabilization systems compensate for camera shake by correcting yaw and pitch. Sony claim that camera shake is actually caused by five different kinds of motion, and their image stabilization mechanism additionally corrects for horizontal shift, vertical shift and rotary motion (rolling) for both still images and movies. The A6500 offers 5-stops of compensation, with the in-body system ensuring that the A7S II can stabilize all kinds of lenses, not just those with the FE designation, including E-mount lenses without Optical SteadyShot (OSS) and A-mount lenses as well, although third party lenses without any electronic contacts only benefit from three axes of compensation, and you need to input which focal length you’re using.

Sony A6500
Front of the Sony A6500

The Sony A6500’s controls are almost identical to those on the A6300 and include the same dual wheel layout with a primary control dial on the top panel and a secondary rear-panel wheel that doubles as the 4-way navigation buttons. It’s a reasonably ergonomic setup, though we’d still prefer an additional control dial positioned near to the shutter release, enabling simultaneous thumb and forefinger settings adjustment. The auto exposure lock button, located directly alongside the thumb rest, is sited within a lever switch that gives the button two functions. Set the switch to AEL and you can meter light and lock exposure independently of the shutter release. But with the switch set to AF/MF, the exposure lock button instead activates manual focus during autofocussing, or switches the focus mode to auto when in manual mode. The A6500 has two new metering modes. as well two new metering modes – Highlight, where exposure metering is focused on the brightest area of the frame, and Entire Screen Avg, which maintains an average metering for the entire image. Another useful focussing feature is Eye-Start AF. By activating this via the main menu, the A6500 uses the viewfinder’s eye detection sensor to not only activate the EVF when it senses your eye, but also autofocus the camera.

But it’s Sony’s enhanced phase-detection AF system that really steals the limelight. The A6500 has a whopping 425 points, and they’re spread over almost the entirety of the sensor area. Sony claims that this is more PDAF points than any other compact system camera , and it helps the camera achieve a quoted focussing time of just 0.05 seconds. We couldn’t quite match Sony’s figures during our testing with a 16-70mm ZA OSS lens fitted, but we did record a nonetheless impressive 0.15-second lock-on speed, which when combined with instantaneous shutter response makes for extremely quick shooting speed.

The other advantage of having 425 PDAF points is AF tracking accuracy. Rather than utilise every AF point during subject tracking, the camera uses a low density array of AF points over the entire frame and only throws the maximum focus point density at the area covering your subject. This way you get precise focus tracking while also conserving processing and battery power.

Sony A6500
Rear of the Sony A6500

It’s not just continuous focussing that gets a boost though, as continuous shooting is also enhanced. On paper the A6500 is no faster than the A6300, with both cameras capable of shooting at 11fps. However, most compact system cameras can’t shoot this fast without the LCD or EVF display lagging behind or even blacking out until the burst is over. Sony hasn’t been able to completely combat the issue with the A6500, but it has come up with a compromise. In Continuous Hi+ mode the camera shoots at the maximum 11fps with the usual screen lag, but switch to Continuous Hi mode and you’ll get a 8fps with almost no perceptible lag. Additionally, the maximum buffer for high-speed continuous shooting is now an impressive 307 frames (Fine JPEGs).

Back to the A6500’s controls and we find Sony has continued the A6300’s extensive amount of customisable controls. The rear Fn function button displays a quick-access menu of frequently used shooting settings, and you can choose which items appear on this menu. But if that’s too much trouble, there are always the two Custom buttons on top of the camera and another on the rear which can all be assigned a frequently used function for direct access. What’s more, even the AF/MF/AEL button can be customised, along with the left, right, down and centre rear panel navigation buttons, as well as the Fn function button’s role in playback mode.

By default, the Fn button activates the Sony A6500’s Send to Smartphone Wi-Fi function when in playback mode. This works in conjunction with Sony’s PlayMemories Mobile app and lets you transfer a full resolution JPEG image in a nippy three seconds. Of course, you’ll have to connect your smart device first, but NFC pairing makes this a painless process. Even if you don’t have an NFC-enabled smartphone or tablet, Sony lets you scan a QR code displayed on the A6500’s monitor and this automatically enters the SSID password so you don’t need to type it manually. The camera can also be remotely controlled by your smart device, although you’ll need to first enter the A6500’s Application tab on the main menu to activate the Smart Remote Embedded feature. Fortunately this isn’t too inconvenient as the newly revised menu system is clearer and easier to navigate than on the previous A6300 model. The A6500 also offers location data acquisition via a Bluetooth connection to a compatible mobile device.

Sony A6500
Top of the Sony A6500

Move to the top panel and the A6500’s customisable control extends to the mode dial, where there are two Memory modes. These allow you to store two frequently used shooting set-ups for quick access, and within each Memory mode is a further four customisable sub-mode pre-sets which can be saved to your memory card. Aside from these modes, the A6500’s mode dial is fairly standard, containing the usual auto, semi auto and manual modes, plus a Scene Selection position, Sweep Panorama mode, and finally a Movie mode that works in conjunction with the video record button located on the right edge of the thumb grip.

Sony has gone to great lengths to enhance the A6500’s video abilities, as not only can it record at Ultra HD 3840 x 2160 resolution at 30fps, but the power of the Bionz X processor can also be harnessed to record slow motion, high frame rate Full HD 1920 x 1080 sequences at 120fps. The movie-making potential is further enhanced by 100Mb/s high-bit-rate XAVC S data encoding, as well as clean video output over HDMI. The A6500 features Sony’s S-Log 2 and 3 gamma curves which enable it to record greater dynamic range, providing you’re prepared to colour grade the recording in post-production. A new setting called Auto Pwr OFF Temp. offers two options, Standard and High, with the latter extending the recording time even if the camera gets warm to the touch.

New to the A6500 is the the incorporation of a ‘Slow and Quick’ (S&Q) mode that supports both slow motion and quick motion. Frame rates from 1 fps to 100fps can be selected in 8 steps for up to 50x quick motion and 4x slow motion recording, and the footage that’s shot in this mode can be previewed after shooting without the need for a computer. The A6500 also now offers the ability to select, extract and save still images from movie footage directly on the camera, approximately 8 megapixel images from the 4K video and 2 megapixels from Full HD.

Sony A6500
The Sony A6500 In-hand

When it comes to simply snapping a still, the Sony A6500 will capture an image within two seconds of power-up. It’ll keep on shooting for a rated 350 shots per charge, which is a decrease from the A6000’s 400-shot battery life. This drops to 310 shots when using the EVF. The increased power demands of a mirrorless design means the A6500 still trails similarly priced DSLRs in terms of battery life, with cameras like the Canon EOS 80D and Nikon D7200 managing 960 and 1110 shots-per-charge respectively. At least the A6500 can be powered and charged via a USB connection, which is useful if you’re without your charger but can access a computer.

Finally there’s the battery compartment which, like the A6300, also incorporates the memory card slot. It’s not a major bugbear, as opening the compartment to access the card won’t cause the battery to drop out, and the tripod mount is far enough away to avoid a mounting plate blocking the door. It’s just a pity the card slot’s location nestles right next to the door’s hinge, making it fiddly to insert and eject a memory card.

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

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Image Quality

All of the sample images in this review were taken using the 24.2 megapixel Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 7Mb.

The Sony A6500 delivers some seriously impressive image quality. The A6500 generates impressively clean results with minimal grain and detail loss. At ISO 6400 there’s only a slight increase in noise and reduction in detail, making this sensitivity completely usable. Only at ISO 12800 does grain and detail smoothing become more severe, although it’s by no means unsightly. ISO 25600 is really the ceiling for acceptable image quality, such is the high level of grain, loss of detail and reduced dynamic range. ISO 51200 is best avoided due to the intrusive grain and colour speckling.

But dial things down to more sensible sensitivities and the A6500 records excellent dynamic range, especially when assisted by Sony’s Dynamic Range Optimisation. Good colour vibrancy adds extra visual appeal while maintaining accurate colour reproduction, though this of course can be adjusted to your own preference in the camera settings. Detail capture will depend quite a bit on your choice of lens, but our Vario-Tessar 16-70mm f/4 ZA OSS test glass certainly helped maximise the A6500’s potential to resolve a superb amount of detail.

It’s worth noting that unlike Alpha bodies such as the a7 II, the A6500 doesn’t incorporate sensor-shift stabilisation and instead relies on conventional lens-based optical stabilisation. But even if you don’t have an optically-stabilised lens fitted, upping the camera’s sensor sensitivity to compensate for camera shake isn’t a big deal thanks to the A6500’s respectable high ISO image quality.

Noise

The Sony A6500 has a standard sensitivity range of ISO 100 to 25600, expandable to ISO 51200. Auto ISO operates within an ISO 100-6400 range and has selectable upper and lower limits. Two levels of high ISO noise reduction can be selected – Normal, or Low – or the processing can be disabled.

JPEG RAW  

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

 
 
     

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

 
 

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

 
 

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

 
 

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

 
 

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

 
 
     

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

 
 
     

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

 
 
     

ISO 25600 (100% Crop)

ISO 25600 (100% Crop)

 
 
     

ISO 51200 (100% Crop)

ISO 51200 (100% Crop)

 
 

File Quality

Five quality settings are available: RAW, RAW+JPEG (Extra fine, Fine and Standard JPEG compression options), JPEG Extra fine, JPEG Fine and JPEG Standard. RAW files average around 24MB each, Extra Fine JPEGs roughly 15MB, Fine JPEGs are in the region of 7.5MB, and Standard quality JPEGs weigh in at approximately 4.5MB each.

24M Extra Fine (14.8Mb) (100% Crop) 24M Fine (7.5Mb) (100% Crop)
   
24M Standard (4.78Mb) (100% Crop) 24M RAW (23.8Mb) (100% Crop)

Flash

Five flash settings are available: Autoflash, Fill-flash, Slow Sync and Rear Sync, Wireless, and High speed synchronization (although this mode can only be used when an external flashgun is fitted).

With our 16-70mm lens fitted, the pop-up flash produced noticeable vignetting with the lens set to maximum wide angle when shooting a white surface from a distance of 1.5m. The flash is also too short when extended to prevent it casting an obvious lens shadow, making an external flashgun essential when shooting with wide or ultrawide lenses.

Flash Off – Wide Angle

Flash On – Wide Angle

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off – Telephoto

Flash On – Telephoto

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are a couple of portrait shots. A separate menu option controls whether or not red-eye reduction is active, but even without this enabled, the camera successfully avoided red-eye in our testing.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
   

Red-eye reduction

Red-eye reduction (100% Crop)

Night

This night-time scene was captured hand held at f/4, ISO 6400, with a 1/6-second exposure. The result is perfectly exposed with good detail and little image noise, although the stabilised test lens should also be credited for the lack of visible camera shake.

Night

Night (100% Crop)

Picture Effects

The A6500 contains 13 Picture Effects, some with additional sub options: Toy camera (normal, cool, warm, green, magenta), Pop color, Posterization (mono, colour), Retro photo, Soft high-key, Partial color (red, green, blue, yellow), High-contrast mono, Soft focus (low, mid, high), HDR painting (low, mid, high), Rich-tone mono, Miniature (top, middle horizontal, bottom, left, middle vertical, right), Watercolor, and Illustration (low, mid, high).

Off

Toy Camera

   

Pop Color

Posterization

   

Retro

Soft High-key

   

Partial Color (Red)

High Contrast Mono

   

Soft Focus

HDR Painting

   

Rich-tone Mono

Miniature

   

Watercolor

Illustration

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

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Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Sony A6500 camera, which were all taken using the 24.2 megapixel Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample RAW Images

The Sony A6500 enables users to capture RAW and JPEG format files. We’ve provided some Sony RAW (ARW) samples for you to download (thumbnail images shown below are not 100% representative).

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/800s · f/2.8 · 36mm · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/320s · f/4 · 58mm · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/250s · f/8 · 36mm · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 1000
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 500
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 640
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 1000
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 500
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 640
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 1250
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/1.4 · 127mm · ISO 200
Download Original

Sample Movies

This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 3840×2160 pixels at 25 frames per second. Please note that this 20 second movie is 128Mb in size.

This is a sample movie at the quality setting of 1920×1080 pixels at 50 frames per second. Please note that this 17 second movie is 112Mb in size.

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

with special Valentine Day bonuses (two eBooks, Vivid Wonderland preset pack, & Creative Sky Overlay pack) included for free until February 19.

Use coupon code “PHOTOBLOG” to save another $10 on Luminar.

We rated Luminar as “Highly Recommended”. Visit the Luminar web site to try it for free.

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Product Images

Sony A6500

Front of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Front of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Front of the Sony A6500 / Pop-up Flash

 
Sony A6500

Side of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Side of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Side of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Side of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500

Rear of the Sony A6500

 
Sony A6500
Rear of the Sony A6500 / Image Displayed

 

Sony A6500

Rear of the Sony A6500 / Turned On

 
Sony A6500
Rear of the Sony A6500 / Main Menu
 
Sony A6500
Rear of the Sony A6500 / Function Menu
 
Sony A6500
Rear of the Sony A6500 / Tilting LCD Screen
 
Sony A6500
Top of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Bottom of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Side of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Side of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Front of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Front of the Sony A6500
 
Sony A6500
Memory Card Slot / Battery Compartment

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

with special Valentine Day bonuses (two eBooks, Vivid Wonderland preset pack, & Creative Sky Overlay pack) included for free until February 19.

Use coupon code “PHOTOBLOG” to save another $10 on Luminar.

We rated Luminar as “Highly Recommended”. Visit the Luminar web site to try it for free.

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Specifications

What’s In The Box

  • AC Adaptor: AC-UUD12
  • Accessory shoe cap
  • Body cap
  • Eyepiece cup
  • Micro USB cable
  • Rechargeable Battery NP-FW50
  • Shoulder strap

Lens Compatibility

  • Sony E-mount lenses

Lens Mount

  • E-mount

Aspect Ratio

  • 3:2

Number Of Pixels (Effective)

  • Approx. 24.2 megapixels

Number of Pixels (total)

  • Approx. 25.0 megapixels

Type

  • APS-C type (23.5 x 15.6mm), Exmor CMOS sensor

Anti-Dust System

  • Charge protection coating on optical filter and image sensor shift mechanism

Recording Format

  • JPEG (DCF Ver. 2.0, Exif Ver.2.31, MPF Baseline compliant), RAW (Sony ARW 2.3 format)

Image Size (pixels) [3:2]

  • L: 6000 x 4000 (24M), M: 4240 x 2832 (12M), S: 3008 x 2000 (6.0M)

Image Size (pixels) [16:9]

  • L: 6000 x 3376 (20M), M: 4240 x 2400 (10M), S: 3008 x 1688 (5.1M)

Image Size (pixels) [Sweep Panorama]

  • Wide: horizontal 12,416 x 1,856 (23M), vertical 5,536 x 2,160 (12M), Standard: horizontal 8,192 x 1,856 (15M), vertical 3,872 x 2,160 (8.4M)

Image Quality Modes

  • RAW, RAW & JPEG, JPEG Extra fine, JPEG Fine, JPEG Standard

Picture Effect

  • 13 types: Posterization (Color), Posterization (B/W), Pop Color, Retro Photo, Partial Color (R/G/B/Y), High Contrast Monochrome, Toy Camera (Normal/Cool/Warm/Green/Magenta), Soft High-key , Soft Focus (High/Mid/Low), HDR Painting (High/Mid/Low), Rich-tone Monochrome, Miniature (Auto/Top/Middle (H)/Bottom/Right/Middle (V)/Left), Watercolor, Illustration (High/Mid/ Low)

Creative Style

  • Standard, Vivid, Neutral, Clear, Deep, Light, Portrait, Landscape, Sunset, Night Scene, Autumn leaves, Black & White, Sepia, Style Box(1-6), , (Contrast (-3 to +3 steps), Saturation (-3 to +3 steps), Sharpness (-3 to +3 steps))

Picture Profile

  • Yes (Off / PP1-PP9) Parameters: Black level, Gamma (Movie, Still, Cine1-4, ITU709, ITU709 [800%], S-Log2, S-Log3), Black Gamma, Knee, Color Mode, Saturation, Color Phase, Color Depth, Detail, Copy, Reset

Dynamic Range Functions

  • Off, Dynamic Range Optimizer (Auto/Level (1-5)), Auto High Dynamic Range (Auto Exposure Difference, Exposure Difference Level (1-6 EV, 1.0 EV step))

Colour Space

  • sRGB standard (with sYCC gamut) and Adobe RGB standard compatible with TRILUMINOS Color

RAW Output

  • 14bit RAW

Uncompressed RAW

Recording Format

  • XAVC S , AVCHD format Ver. 2.0 compliant , MP4

Video Compression

  • XAVC S: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, AVCHD: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, MP4: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264

Audio Recording Format

  • XAVC S: LPCM 2ch, AVCHD: Dolby Digital (AC-3) 2ch, Dolby Digital Stereo Creator, MP4: MPEG-4 AAC-LC 2ch

Colour Space

  • xvYCC standard (x.v.Color when connected via HDMI cable) compatible with TRILUMINOS Color

Picture Effect

  • Posterization (Color), Posterization (B/W), Pop Color, Retro Photo, Partial Color (R/G/B/Y), High Contrast Monochrome, Toy Camera(Normal/Cool/Warm/Green/Magenta), Soft High-key

Creative Style

  • Standard, Vivid, Neutral, Clear, Deep, Light, Portrait, Landscape, Sunset, Night Scene, Autumn leaves, Black & White, Sepia, Style Box(1-6), , (Contrast (-3 to +3 steps), Saturation (-3 to +3 steps), Sharpness (-3 to +3 steps))

Picture Profile

  • Yes (Off / PP1-PP9) Parameters: Black level, Gamma (Movie, Still, Cine1-4, ITU709, ITU709 [800%], S-Log2, S-Log3), Black Gamma, Knee, Color Mode, Saturation, Color Phase, Color Depth, Detail, Copy, Reset

Image Size (Pixels), NTSC

  • XAVC S 4K: 3840 x 2160 (30p, 100M), 3840 x 2160 (24p, 100M), 3840 x 2160 (30p, 60M), 3840 x 2160 (24p, 60M), XAVC S HD: 1920 x 1080 (120p, 100M), 1920 x 1080 (120p, 60M), 1920 x 1080 (60p, 50M), 1920 x 1080 (30p, 50M), 1920 x 1080 (24p, 50M), AVCHD: 1920 x 1080 (60p, 28M, PS), 1920 x 1080 (60i, 24M, FX), 1920 x 1080 (60i, 17M, FH), 1920 x 1080 (24p, 24M, FX), 1920 x 1080 (24p, 17M, FH), AVC MP4: 1920 x 1080 (60p, 28M), 1920 x 1080 (30p, 16M), 1280 x 720 (30p, 6M)

Image Size (pixels), PAL

  • XAVC S 4K: 3840 x 2160 (25p, 100M), 3840 x 2160 (25p, 60M), XAVC S HD: 1920 x 1080 (100p, 100M), 1920 x 1080 (100p, 60M), 1920 x 1080 (50p, 50M), 1920 x 1080 (25p, 50M), AVCHD: 1920 x 1080 (50p, 28M, PS), 1920 x 1080 (50i, 24M, FX), 1920 x 1080 (50i, 17M, FH), 1920 x 1080 (25p, 24M, FX), 1920 x 1080 (25p, 17M, FH), AVC MP4: 1920 x 1080 (50p, 28M), 1920 x 1080 (25p, 16M), 1280 x 720 (25p, 6M)

Image frame rate

  • 1fps, 2fps, 4fps, 8fps, 15fps, 30fps, 60fps, 120fps

Image size (frame rate)

  • 1920×1080 (60p), 1920×1080 (30p), 1920×1080 (24p)

Movie Functions

  • Audio Level Display , Audio Rec Level , PAL/NTSC Selector , Dual Video REC , TC/UB, (TC Preset/UB Preset/TC Format/TC Run/TC Make/UB Time Rec) , Auto Slow Shutter , REC Control , Gamma Disp. Assist

HDMI Output

  • 3840 x 2160(30p), 3840 x 2160(25p), 3840 x 2160(24p), 1920 x 1080(60p), 1920 x 1080(60i), 1920 x 1080(50p), 1920 x 1080(50i), 1920 x 1080(24p), YCbCr 4:2:2 8bit / RGB 8bit

Clean HDMI output

  • ON/OFF selectable

Location information Link from smartphone

  • Yes

Media

  • Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick Micro(M2), SD memory card, SDHC memory card (UHS-I compliant), SDXC memory card (UHS-I compliant), microSD memory card, microSDHC memory card, microSDXC memory card

Memory Card Slot

  • Multi slot for Memory Stick Duo/SD memory card

Noise Reduction

  • Long exposure NR: On/Off , available at shutter speeds longer than 1 sec., High ISO NR: Normal/Low/Off

Multi Frame NR

  • Auto/ ISO 100 to 51200

White Balance Modes

  • Auto / Daylight / Shade / Cloudy / Incandescent / Fluorescent (, Warm White / Cool White / Day White / Daylight) / Flash /Underwater/ Color Temperature (2500 to 9900K) & color filter (G7 to M7(57-step), A7 to B7(29-step)) / Custom

AWB Micro Adjustment

  • Yes(G7 to M7, 57-step)(A7 to B7, 29-step)

Priority Set in AWB

  • Yes (Standard/ Ambience/ White)

Bracketing

  • 3 frames, H/L selectable

Focus Type

  • Fast Hybrid AF(phase-detection AF/contrast-detection AF)2

Focus Sensor

  • Exmor CMOS sensor

Focus Point

  • 425 points (phase-detection AF) / 169 points (contrast-detection AF)

Focus Sensitivity Range

  • EV-1 to EV20 (ISO100 equivalent with F2.0 lens attached)

Focus Mode

  • AF-A (Automatic AF), AF-S (Single-shot AF), AF-C ( Continuous AF), DMF (Direct Manual Focus), Manual Focus

Focus Area

  • Wide (425 points (phase-detection AF), 169 points(contrast-detection AF)) / Zone / Center / Flexible Spot (S/M/L) /Expanded Flexible Spot/ Lock-on AF ( Wide / Zone / Center / Flexible Spot (S/M/L)/Expanded Flexible Spot)

Other Features

  • Eye-start AF (only with LA-EA2 or LA-EA4 attached(Sold separately)), Lock-on AF, Eye AF, AF micro adjustment, (Sold separately), with LA-EA2 or LA-EA4, Predictive control, Focus lock

AF Illuminator

  • Yes(with Built-in LED type)

AF Illuminator range

  • Approx. 0.3- approx. 3.0m (with E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens attached)

Focus type with LA-EA3 (Sold separately)

  • selectable(phase-detection, contrast-detection)

Metering Type

  • 1200-zone evaluative metering

Metering Sensor

  • Exmor CMOS sensor

Metering Sensitivity

  • EV-2 to EV20 (at ISO100 equivalent with F2.0 lens attached)

Metering Mode

  • Spot (Standard/Large), Entire Screen Avg., Highlight)

Exposure Compensation

  • +/- 5.0EV(1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps selectable)

Exposure Bracketing

  • Bracket: Cont., Bracket: Single, 3/5/9 frames selectable. With 3 or 5 frames, in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1.0, 2.0, or 3.0 EV increments, with 9 frames, in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, or 1.0 EV increments.

AE Lock

  • Locked when shutter button is pressed halfway. Available with AE lock button. (On/Off/Auto)

Exposure Modes

  • AUTO (iAuto/Superior Auto), Programmed AE (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter-speed priority (S), Manual (M), Movie / Sl&Q Motion (Programmed AE (P) / Aperture priority (A) /Shutter-speed priority (S) / Manual (M) ), Sweep Panorama, Scene Selection

ISO Sensitivity (Recommended Exposure Index)

  • Still images: ISO 100-25600 (ISO numbers up to ISO 51200 can be set as expanded ISO range.), AUTO (ISO 100-6400, selectable lower limit and upper limit), Movies: ISO 100-25600 equivalent, AUTO (ISO 100-6400, selectable lower limit and upper limit)

Anti-flicker Shoot.

Scene Selection

  • Portrait, Sports Action, Macro, Landscape, Sunset, Night Scene, Hand-held Twilight, Night Portrait, Anti Motion Blur

Viewfinder Type

  • 1.0 cm (0.39 type) electronic viewfinder (color), XGA OLED

Number of Dots

  • 2,359,296 dots

Brightness Control (Viewfinder)

  • Auto/Manual (5 steps between -2 and +2)

Color Temperature Control

  • Manual (5 steps)

Field Coverage

  • 100%

Magnification

  • Approx. 1.07x (35mm camera equivalent: Approx. 0.70x) with 50mm lens at infinity, -1m-1

Dioptre Adjustment

  • -4.0-+3.0 m-1

Eye Point

  • Approx. 23mm from the eyepiece lens, 21.4mm from the eyepiece frame at -1m-1 (CIPA standard)

Finder Frame Rate Selection

  • Yes (1x, 2x)

Display Contents

  • Graphic Display, Display All Info. No Disp. Info. Digital Level Gauge, Histogram

Type

  • 7.5cm (3.0-type) wide type TFT

Number of Dots

  • 921,600 dots

Touch Panel

  • Yes

Brightness Control

  • Manual (5 steps between -2 and +2), Sunny Weather mode

Adjustable Angle

  • Up by approx. 90 degrees, Down by approx. 45 degrees

Display Selecter (Finder/LCD)

  • Yes (Auto/Manual)

Real-time Image Adjustment Display (LCD)

  • On/Off

Quick Navi

  • Yes

Focus Magnifier

  • Yes Focus Magnifier (5.9x, 11.7x)

Zebra

  • Yes, (selectable level + range or lower limit as custom setting)

Peaking MF

  • Yes (Level setting: High/Mid/Low/Off, Color: White/Red/Yellow)

Others

  • WhiteMagic , Grid Line, (Rule of 3rds Grid/Square Grid/Diag. + Square Grid/Off) , Movie Marker, (Center/Aspect/Safety Zone/Guideframe)

Display Content

  • Graphic Display, Display All Info, No Disp. Info, Digital Level Gauge, Histogram, For viewfinder

PlayMemories Camera Apps™

  • Yes

Clear Image Zoom

  • Still images:Approx. 2x, Movies:Approx. 2x

Digital Zoom

  • Smart zoom (Still images): M:Approx. 1.4x, S: Approx. 2x, Digital zoom (Still images): L: Approx. 4x, M:Approx. 5.7x, S:Approx. 8x, Digital zoom (Movie): Approx. 4x

Face Detection

  • Modes: On/On (Regist. Faces)/Off, Face registration, Face selection, Max. number of detectable: 8

Self-Portrait Self-timer

Others

  • Smile Shutter: Smile shutter (selectable from 3 steps) , Touch Focus: Yes (Touch Panel/ Touch Pad) , ISO AUTO Min. SS , Bright Monitoring , Set File Name , Help guide , Area Setting , Shop Front Mode , Zoom Ring Rotate , Still images

Eye-Fi ready

  • Yes3

Type

  • Electronically-controlled, vertical-traverse, focal-plane type

Shutter Speed

  • Still images:1/4000 to 30 sec, Bulb, , Movies: 1/4000 to 1/4(1/3 steps), up to 1/60 in AUTO mode (up to 1/30 in Auto slow shutter mode)

Flash Sync. Speed

  • 1/160 sec.4

Electronic Front Curtain Shutter

  • Yes (ON/OFF)

Silent Shooting

  • Yes(ON/OFF)

Type

  • Image Sensor-Shift mechanism with 5-axis compensation (Compensation depends on lens specifications)

Compensation Effect

  • 5.0 steps (based on CIPA standard. Pitch/yaw shake only. With Sonnar T* FE 55mm F1.8 ZA lens mounted. Long exposure NR off.)

Type

  • Built-in flash

Guide No.

  • 6 (in meters at ISO 100)

Flash coverage

  • 16mm (focal-length printed on the lens body)

Control

  • Pre-flash TTL

Flash Compensation

  • +/- 3.0 EV (switchable between 1/3 and 1/2 EV steps)

Flash Bracketing

  • 3/5/9 frames selectable. With 3 or 5 frames, in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1.0, 2.0, 3.0 EV increments, with 9 frames, in 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1.0 EV increments.

Flash Modes

  • Flash off, Autoflash, Fill-flash, Slow Sync., Rear Sync., Red-eye reduction (on/off selectable), Wireless control5, Hi-speed sync5

Recycling Time

  • Approx. 4 sec

External Flash Compatibility

  • Sony α System Flash compatible with Multi Interface Shoe, attach the shoe adaptor for flash compatible with Auto-lock accessory shoe

FE Level Lock

  • Yes

Wireless Control

  • Yes

Drive Modes

  • Single Shooting, Continuous shooting (Hi+/Hi/Mid/Lo selectable), Self-timer, Self-timer (Cont.), Bracket: Single, Bracket: Cont., White Balance bracket, DRO bracket

Continuous Drive Speed (approx. max.)

  • Continuous shooting: Hi+: 11 fps, Hi: 8 fps, Mid: 6 fps, Lo: 3 fps6

No. of recordable frames (approx.)

  • JPEG Extra fine L: 233 frames, JPEG Fine L: 269 frames, JPEG Standard L: 301 frames, RAW: 107 frames, RAW&JPG: 100 frames76

Self-Timer

  • 10 sec. delay/5 sec. delay/2 sec. delay/Continuous self-timer (3 frames after 10 sec. delay/5 frames after 10 sec. delay/3 frames after 5 sec. delay/5 frames after 5 sec. delay/3 frames after 2 sec. delay/5 frames after 2 sec. delay)/Bracketing self-timer

Photo Capture

  • Yes

Modes

  • Single (with or without shooting information Y RGB histogram & highlight/shadow warning), 12/30-frame index view, Enlarged display mode (L: 16.7x, M: 11.8x, S: 8.3x, Panorama (Standard): 19.2x, Panorama (Wide): 29.1x), Auto Review (10/5/2 sec, Off), Image orientation (Auto/Manual/Off selectable), Slideshow, Panorama scrolling, Folder selection (Date/ Still/ MP4/ AVCHD/XAVC S HD/XAVC S 4K), Forward/Rewind (movie), Delete, Protect

PC Interface

  • Mass-storage, MTP, PC remote

Multi / Micro USB Terminal

  • Yes

NFC™

  • Yes (NFC forum Type 3 Tag compatible)One-touch remote, One-touch sharing

Wireless LAN (Built-In)

  • Wi-Fi Compatible, IEEE 802.11b/g/n(2.4GHz band), View on Smartphone, Send to Computer, View on TV, View on Smartphone, Send to Computer

Bluetooth

  • Yes (Bluetooth Standard Ver. 4.1 (2.4GHz band))

HD Output

  • HDMI micro connector (Type-D), BRAVIA Sync(Control for HDMI), PhotoTV HD, 4K movie output/4K still image PB

Multi Interface Shoe

  • Yes8

Mic Terminal

  • Yes(3.5 mm Stereo minijack)

DC IN Terminal

Sync Terminal

Headphone Terminal

Vertical Grip Connector

PC Remote

  • Yes

Microphone

  • Built-in stereo microphone or XLR-K2M/XLR-K1M/ECM-XYST1M(sold separately)

Speaker

  • Built-in, monaural

Compatible Standards

  • Exif Print, Print Image Matching III, DPOF setting

Custom Function Type

  • Yes

Memory Function

  • Yes (Body 2 sets /memory card 4 sets)

Setting

  • Peripheral Shading, Chromatic Aberration, Distortion

Supplied Battery

  • One rechargeable battery pack NP-FW50

Battery Life (Still Images)

  • Approx. 310 shots (Viewfinder) / approx. 350 shots (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)9

Battery Life (Movie, actual recording)

  • Movies (actual recording):Approx. 65 min (Viewfinder) / Approx. 70 min (LCD monitor) , (CIPA standard)1011

Battery Life (Movie, continuous recording)

  • Movies (continuous recording):Approx. 105 min (Viewfinder) / Approx. 105 min (LCD monitor), (CIPA standard)1012

Internal Battery Charge

  • Yes

External Power

  • AC Adaptor AC-PW20 (sold separately)

Power consumption with Viewfinder

  • Still images: approx. 2.8W(with E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens attached), Movies: approx. 4.2W(with E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens attached)

Power consumption with LCD screen

  • Still images: approx. 2.6W (with E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens attached), Movies: approx. 4.2W(with E PZ 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens attached)

USB Power supply

  • Yes

Operating Temperature

  • 32 – 104 degrees F / 0 – 40 degrees C

Weight (with battery and memory card included)

  • Approx. 453 g, Approx. 1 lb

Dimensions (W x H x D)

  • Approx. 120.0mm x 66.9mm x 53.3mm, Approx. 4 3/4 x 2 3/4 x 2 1/8 inches

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

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Conclusion

The Sony A6500 is the best APS-C Sony camera yet, principally adding built-in 5-axis stabilization, a touch-enabled LCD screen and a redesigned menu interface to an already excellent camera, but we can’t help feeling that the 8-month-old A6300 should probably have offered most of these features already, especially as the A6500 now has an even higher price-tag than its predecessor. Sony have also missed a trick in their implementation of the touchscreen, which while being a very overdue addition is somewhat poorly implemented, so much so that you might not actually use it after all. We’d also have liked to see a second control dial added on what has now become a camera for serious enthusiasts thanks to the already mentioned price increase – maybe next time…

So, if you simply want the best APS-C camera that Sony currently offers, the A6500 is clearly the one to get. The previous A6300 model is a more keenly price alternative, however, and if you are considering the A6500 ahead of it predecessor, you owe it to yourself to check out the likes of the Fujifilm X-T2 and X-Pro 2, not to mention the Olympus OM-D E-M Mark II.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4.5
Features 5
Ease-of-use 4.5
Image quality 5
Value for money 4

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

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Main Rivals

Listed below are some of the rivals of the Sony A6500.

Canon EOS M3

Canon EOS M3 Review thumbnail

The Canon EOS M3 is a new compact system camera that offers 24 megapixel resolution, full 1080p high-definition videos, a faster auto-focusing system, and a touch-screen interface. Other key features of the EOS M3 include a tilting 3-inch LCD screen, ISO range of 100-12,800, wi-fi and NFC connectivity, and a built-in flash. Is Canon’s new mirrorless model finally a real contender? Read our Canon EOS M3 review to find out…

Fujifilm X-Pro2

Fujifilm X-Pro2 Review thumbnail

The new Fujifilm X-Pro2 is an exciting flagship premium compact system camera. The weather-proof X-Pro2 offers a brand new 24 megapixel sensor that’s claimed to rival full-frame DSLRs, an improved hybrid viewfinder, faster processor and AF system, and a host of other improvements. Read our Fujifilm X-Pro2 review to find out if it can live up to its early promise…

Fujifilm X-T2

Fujifilm X-T2 Review thumbnail

The Fujifilm X-T2 is a new compact system camera that builds on the success of the popular 2-year-old X-T1, most notably by adding 4K video recording, a more sophisticated auto-focusing system, and a wealth of other improvements. Read our in-depth Fujifilm X-T2 review to find out if it’s worth the upgrade…

Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II

Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II Review thumbnail

Capable of shooting at 18fps with focus tracking, the new Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark II is a blisteringly fast professional compact system camera. Read our in-dpeth Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark II review to find out if this speed demon can really deliver the goods…

Olympus PEN-F

Olympus PEN-F Review thumbnail

The new Olympus PEN-F is a new premium compact system camera boasting a gorgeous retro design and some pro-level features, including a new 20 megapixel sensor, 5-axis image stabilisation, 10fps burst shooting, vari-angle 3-inch LCD touchscreen, 4K time-lapse movies, an electronic shutter and built-in wi-fi. Priced at £999 / $1199 body-only, is the PEN-F all style and no substance? Read our in-depth Olympus PEN-F review to find out…

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 Review thumbnail

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 is a new premium compact system camera aimed firmly at enthusiast photographers. With a new 20 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensor, dual lens and in-body image stabilization, built-in tilting electronic OLED viewfinder, 3 inch free-angle OLED touchscreen, 4K video and photo modes, integrated wi-fi and NFC connectivity, and a weather-proof rangefinder-like design, can the Panasonic GX8 live up to its early promise? Read our in-depth Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review complete with sample images, test shots, videos and more to find out…

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

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Review Roundup

Reviews of the Sony A6500 from around the web.

dpreview.com »

The Sony a6500 is the company’s top-tier APS-C mirrorless model, a 24MP stills and video camera with image stabilization. It sits above the similar-looking a6300 in Sony’s lineup, adding touchscreen capability and stabilization for enthusiasts willing to dig a little deeper into their pockets.
Read the full review »

cameralabs.com »

The Sony Alpha A6500 is an upper mid-range mirrorless camera with a 24 Megapixel APSC sensor, built-in stabilisation, touchscreen, 4k video and a powerful AF system that’s perfect for action shooters. Announced in October 2016, it comes only eight months after the A6300, but doesn’t replace it. The A6300, and indeed the A6000, remain on sale, but the A6500 becomes the new flagship APS-C e-mount body.
Read the full review »

thephoblographer.com »

Three refreshes: that’s how long it took for Sony to create a camera with a sensor that can keep up with its competitors. Granted, the processing engine in the Sony a6500 is very capable and a big part of it. But then we also beg the question: Why so many refreshes so suddenly?
Read the full review »

Sony A6500 Review Image

Sony A6500 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

with special Valentine Day bonuses (two eBooks, Vivid Wonderland preset pack, & Creative Sky Overlay pack) included for free until February 19.

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We rated Luminar as “Highly Recommended”. Visit the Luminar web site to try it for free.

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SOURCE:http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/sony_a6500_review