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Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Comparison

Storage & Battery

Sony a7S III

Sony A7S III camera image

Sony a7R IV

Sony a7R IV
Sony a7S III
Sony a7R IV
a7R IV
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
July 28, 2020
July 16, 2019
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Sony a7R IV outperforms the Sony a7S III with a score of 84/100 compared to 74/100. Both cameras share similarities, such as being mirrorless and having similar dimensions, with the a7S III measuring 129 x 97 x 81mm and the a7R IV at 129 x 96 x 78mm. They also have comparable launch prices, with the a7S III at $3499 and the a7R IV at $3500.

The a7R IV surpasses the a7S III with its higher score, making it a superior camera. On the other hand, the a7S III has a slight advantage in terms of weight, weighing 699g compared to the a7R IV’s 665g. This difference might be beneficial for those who prefer a lighter camera.

Taking these points into consideration, the Sony a7R IV proves to be a better choice for photographers seeking higher performance. However, the Sony a7S III remains a viable option for those who prioritize a lighter weight.

Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Overview and Optics

The Sony a7R IV outperforms the Sony a7S III in optics with a score of 85/100 compared to the a7S III’s 69/100. Both cameras share several specifications, such as shooting speed (10 fps), sensor type (CMOS), sensor size (Full Frame), lens mount (Sony FE), and image stabilization.

The a7R IV’s superior optics stem from its higher megapixel count (61.2) and a better DXOMARK score for the sensor (99). The increased megapixel count allows the a7R IV to capture more detail and produce higher resolution images. The higher DXOMARK score indicates that the a7R IV has better overall image quality, dynamic range, and low-light performance. The a7R IV also uses a Bionz X processor, which contributes to its improved optics.

The a7S III, on the other hand, has a lower megapixel count (12.1) and a lower DXOMARK score for the sensor (86). However, it features a Bionz XR processor, which is faster and more efficient than the Bionz X processor in the a7R IV. This advantage allows the a7S III to process images quickly and possibly handle video better than the a7R IV.

To sum up, the Sony a7R IV is the better choice for photographers who prioritize high-resolution images and overall image quality. The higher megapixel count and DXOMARK score make it a superior option in terms of optics. The Sony a7S III, while not as strong in the optics department, has a faster processor that may benefit videographers and those who prioritize processing speed.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
12.1 MP
61.2 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
4240 x 2832 px
9504 x 6336 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
23.8 x 35.6 mm
23.8 x 35.7 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Full Frame
Full Frame
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
10 fps
10 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Sony FE
Sony FE
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
Bionz XR
Bionz X
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
30 s
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 8000 s
1/ 8000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.
Viewfinder Resolution
9,440,000 dots
5,760,000 dots

Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Video Performance

The Sony a7S III outperforms the Sony a7R IV in video capabilities with a video score of 77/100, compared to the a7R IV’s score of 70/100. Both cameras share some common specifications, such as a maximum video resolution of 4K and maximum video dimensions of 3840 x 2160. However, the a7S III surpasses the a7R IV in several aspects, making it the superior choice for videographers.

The a7S III boasts a higher maximum video frame rate of 120fps, which is four times faster than the a7R IV’s 30fps. This higher frame rate enables the a7S III to capture smoother and more detailed slow-motion footage, providing an advantage for those who require this feature in their work. Additionally, the a7S III’s higher video score signifies its overall better performance in video quality, features, and capabilities.

On the other hand, the a7R IV has a built-in time-lapse functionality, which the a7S III lacks. This feature allows the a7R IV to capture stunning time-lapse videos without the need for external accessories or software, making it a favorable choice for photographers who value this function.

To conclude, the Sony a7S III stands out as the better camera for video capabilities due to its higher video score, faster maximum video frame rate, and overall superior performance. However, the Sony a7R IV has its advantage with the built-in time-lapse functionality, catering to photographers who prioritize this feature. Ultimately, the choice between these cameras depends on the specific needs and preferences of the user.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Max Video Resolution
The best resolution this camera can capture video in. Modern cameras can capture up to 8K video.
Max Video Dimensions
Video resolution measured by the greatest number of pixels possible in each frame, width by height. A higher resolution means more detail or clarity in your video.
3840 x 2160 px
3840 x 2160 px
Max Video Frame Rate
How many frames per second your video will capture. Most cameras have options for multiple frame rates, depending on the resolution you shoot in. For a general video, 24p or 30p is the standard, but more serious filmmakers may need a higher frame rate for creative effect.
120 p
30 p
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.
Video File Format
Different cameras can record in various video file formats. The File format you record in can impact how you edit and use the files.
XAVC S, AVCHD Ver. 2.0, MP4

Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Features and Benefits

The Sony a7S III and Sony a7R IV both receive a feature score of 83/100, indicating that they are equally matched in terms of their capabilities. They share several specifications, including a 3-inch screen size, 1,440,000-dot screen resolution, touchscreen functionality, flip screen, and the lack of GPS. Both cameras also offer WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.

Despite the equal scores, the Sony a7S III excels in certain aspects. It is known for its exceptional low-light performance, making it ideal for photographers and videographers who often work in dimly lit environments. The a7S III also boasts a higher video resolution, providing more detail and clarity in video recordings.

On the other hand, the Sony a7R IV has its own advantages. It features a higher megapixel count, which results in more detailed images and greater flexibility in post-processing. This makes the a7R IV a better choice for photographers who prioritize image quality, especially those who print their work or need high-resolution images for commercial purposes.

When considering these differences, potential buyers should weigh their specific needs and preferences. The a7S III is better suited for low-light conditions and videography, while the a7R IV excels in image quality and resolution. Ultimately, both cameras are excellent choices, and the decision should be based on the individual’s requirements and priorities.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
1,440,000 dots
1,440,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Storage and Battery

The Sony a7R IV wins in the storage and battery category with a score of 79/100, while the Sony a7S III scores 76/100. Both cameras have two memory card slots and accept SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-II compatible) cards. They also use the same NP-FZ100 battery type and offer USB charging.

The a7R IV outperforms the a7S III with a battery life of 670 shots, compared to the a7S III’s 600 shots. This difference allows the a7R IV users to capture more images before needing to recharge or replace the battery.

However, the a7S III has an advantage in memory card versatility, as it also supports CFexpress Type A cards in addition to SD/SDHC/SDXC cards. This feature provides users with more storage options and potentially faster data transfer rates.

Both cameras have their strengths in storage and battery performance. The a7R IV offers longer battery life, while the a7S III provides greater memory card compatibility. Users should consider their specific needs and preferences when choosing between these two cameras.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
SD / SDHC / SDXC (UHS-II compatible), CFexpress Type A
SD / SDHC / SDXC (UHS-II compatible)
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
600 shots
670 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
23.7 bits
26 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
13.9 EVs
14.8 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'

Alternatives to the Sony a7S III and a7R IV

Sony a7S III vs a7R IV Comparison image.

Are you still undecided about which camera is right for you? Have a look at these popular comparisons that feature the Sony a7S III or the Sony a7R IV:

User Scores
B&H photo video
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