Sony’s new A9 camera is a full-frame mirrorless with just insane speed

Sony held an event in New York City yesterday, where it unveiled its new flagship full-frame camera, the A9. This mirrorless shooter, which the company is pegging as a DSLR killer, is geared toward professional photographers. The newly-announced Sony a9 is a 24MP high-end full-frame mirrorless sports camera that can fire off an insane 20fps with no blackout.

Sony is calling this “the most technologically advanced, innovative digital camera that [we have] ever created,” and this descriptor doesn’t miss the mark. The 24.2-megapixel Alpha A9 is equipped with the first ever full-frame stacked CMOS sensor and it’s all about speed, not resolution. While the pixel resolution is not that high compared to the 42.4-megapixel Alpha 7R II, for instance, it can shoot up to 241 RAW images at a scorching 20 fps with no blackout, thanks to a 20-times faster processing speed than previous models.

Video-wise, the A9 can shoot 4K (3,840 x 2,160) with full-frame capture and 1080p at up to 120fps, in case you’re looking to record some slow-motion footage. It also has a whopping 693-point focal plane phase detection autofocus that can do 60 AF/AE tracking calculations a second. The A9 also has a new, compact body with 5-axis image stabilization and a wired ethernet port for studio-based shooters. At the same time, it has over double the battery life of previous full-frame A7 models, two media card slots, including support for high-speed UHS-II SD media in one.

“Full pixel readout with no pixel binning makes it possible to condense the equivalent of the amount of data required for 6K into 3840 x 2160 4K output. This oversampling process plus full-frame pixel readout without binning results in the highest possible 4K movie image quality.”

Reviewing the camera for Sony, award-winning photographer Gene Lower called the a9 “the camera that every sports photographer has been waiting for and wishing for.” That is not small amount of praise.

The A9 will start shipping in the US on May 25th for $4,500 and Europe in June for €5,300. Pre-orders will open up this Friday. Check out the full specs on Sony’s website.