|1. The only NEX to feature a built-in EVF, the NEX-7 has a great one: the same XGA OLED unit used in the SLT-A77 and SLT-A65 DSLRs, and a tilting 3-inch LCD. 2. Twin dials atop the camera complement the "three buttons and a dial" on the back of all NEX cameras, providing direct access for three settings at a time. 3. Despite the camera's tiny size, the Sony E-mount allows for a big, 24.3-megapixel APS-C sensor inside.
ESTIMATED STREET PRICE: $1,349 (with 18-55mm zoom)
Sony's new NEX-7 is the top model in the NEX mirrorless lineup, featuring a new 24.3-megapixel Sony Exmor APS HD CMOS sensor and Advanced Bionz processing engine, ISOs from 100 to 16,000 and a built-in eye-level 2,359,000-dot XGA OLED Tru-Finder. The Tru-Finder is the best EVF we've seen (it's also used in Sony's new A77 and A65 translucent-mirror DSLRs), and is complemented by a 3.0-inch, 921,000-dot tilting LCD monitor.
The NEX-7 provides video with the new AVCHD Progressive v2.0 format (along with several other new Sony cameras), delivering 1920x1080 full HD video at 60p as well as the usual 60i, and 1080/24p for a more "cinematic" look. There's also 1440x1080 and 640x480 MP4 video at 30p, when smaller files are desired. A built-in stereo microphone provides Dolby Digital stereo sound.
A new Tri-Navi manual control system gives you direct access to three settings at a time via three control dials. The camera can shoot 24.3-megapixel images at 10 fps (with focus and exposure locked at the first exposure) or 2.5 fps with continuous AF and exposure adjustments. Shutter release lag is a class-best 0.02 seconds.
An especially nice feature for those who like to focus manually is "peaking," which outlines in-focus edges in your choice of white, red or yellow, making it easy to see just where focus is in the image. For those who like the camera to do it all, iAUTO mode uses Scene Recognition, Face Detection and Optical SteadyShot image stabilization to automatically provide the best shot.
The only NEX to feature a built-in flash unit, the NEX-7 also has a hot-shoe for external accessory flash and can accept an adapter that provides a PC terminal for studio flash systems.
The NEX-7 can use all Sony E-mount lenses or Sony A-mount DSLR lenses via adapter. The new LA-EA2 adapter contains a translucent mirror and phase-detection AF system as used in the SLT cameras and provides quick phase-detection AF with those lenses.