Best Sony Camera For Capturing Pictures & Video of Puppies the A9 or A7RIV?

Xenosagagirl3

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Hi I’m new to alphashooters and this is my first post so I hope I’m posting this in the right area.

I’ve been trying to decide the last 4 weeks on a Sony Full Frame Camera to buy as I just got two new mini Dachshund puppies and I want to be able to take quality photos and video of them while they are still small. I’ve been relying on my smart phone the last couple of years for any videos and pictures I take but have been dissatisfied for a while and now with the new puppies it seems like it’s time for a real change. The two cameras I’m vacillating between is the Sony A9 and the Sony A7RIV. Both have their pros and cons but I was looking to see which other people who are more versed in cameras than I would recommend for shooting both stills and video of fast moving hardly ever stationary puppies?

I really want to be able to not only shoot burst pictures of the puppies while they are in motion as they are hardly ever still except when unconscious but I also want to shoot lots of video of them and be able to take stills from the 4k video when they do something I want as a picture as well as on video even though I know in those cases I’ll be dropped down do 8 megapixels. In cases where I know I’ll be wanting to pull pictures from the video I know having the shutter speed set differently than one would normally have for video will help that process out which is important and I know the A9 should have the most range for that but would the A7RIV have enough shutter speed options to be able to do that well too, even though it doesn’t have as much range as the A9? These are mostly indoor puppies at the moment but as they grow up there will be plenty of times they will be outdoors too. One thing I should mention is my house is an older house where overhead lighting is not in the best of places or there isn’t a ton of it so I use table lamps and floor lamps where able to add more light but overall it is not the most well light house so I want to make sure whichever camera I get can handle low light well in both pictures and video. I know the A9 is the better of the two in low light but would the A7RIV be able to do well enough in low light in a house like mine since I know it isn’t supposed to be too bad in low light? I’m not talking dimly lit bar light or outdoors nighttime dark though it’s always nice to have the option to shoot in those conditions if one needed to so if the A7RIV can do alright in those conditions too that would be great to know even if it won’t be as good as the A9. If the A7RIV would work fairly well in those conditions it would be good to know. Also since the A9 doesn’t have as good a weather sealing as the A7RIV would that mean that it wouldn’t be safe to take the down the beach because of the sand or is it protected enough for that just not extreme climates and temperatures? When I've read that the A9 has less rolling shutter it never has specified if that is with the mechanical shutter or if that was using the electronic shutter or does it work just as well on both shutter types? Also can the A9 be considered a great camera for other things besides just fast action photography such as some of types of settings listed below?

While my first priority is capturing my puppies I would also like to be able to have a camera that can fairly well to capture some travel, landscape, wildlife and family moments as the needs arise.

Here are my likes and dislikes on each camera:

Things I like a about the A9 are:

-No blackout when shooting bursts
-Super fast auto focus with more auto focus points then the A7RIV
-Stacked Sensor with fast processor so rolling shutter is less likely to occur
-Better low light capabilities
-Deeper Buffer
-4k video is downsampled from either 6k or 5k depending on the settings (so better quality then the A7RIV which using pixel binning in the full frame mode)
-Faster Shutter speeds then the A7RIV
-Can Shoot bursts of 20fps with the electronic shutter though I’m not sure I would really need 20fps

Things I don’t like about the A9 are:

-Video has a 4k recording limit
-Only one UHS-2 card slot the other is only an UHS-1 slot
-No S-logs in video (Though for home videos I’m not sure how important that really is)
-Its weather sealing isn’t as good as the A7RIV
-It’s ergonomics isn’t as good as the A7RIV (From what I’ve read as I’ve only been able to hold in the store the A7RIV)


Things I like about the A7RIV are:

-No limit to recording 4k video
-62.1 megapixels is both a plus and minus as while you get amazing resolution the file sizes are much larger because of that and I’m don’t think I really Need that much resolution even if it’s nice to have
-Seems to be a more all-around camera in that it does a bit of everything, Landscape, travel, wildlife, portraits, still life, and so on. ( Perhaps I'm mistake and the A9 is works just as well as all around camera just with less megapixels. Feel free to correct me on this)
-Has good auto focus though not as good or as fast as the A9.
- Has S-logs for video though again not sure if for non-professional videos that is really needed
-Has 2 UHS-2 Slots
- I loved the ergonomics of this camera when I tried it out in the store
- Can crop in more because of so much resolution


Things I don’t like about the A7RIV are:

-Full frame 4k video uses pixel binning (I know APS-C mode there I no pixel binning but the crop factor is rather large)
-62.1 megapixels is both a plus and minus as while you get amazing resolution the file sizes are much larger because of that and I’m don’t think I really Need that much resolution
-Doesn’t have as larger a buffer as the A9 because the pictures are 62.1 megapixels
-Lowlight isn’t as good as the A9
-Shutter speed slower than the A9
-Burst rate is only 10fps where as A9 has 20fps with the electronic shutter (Not sure I would really need 20 though)
-Auto focus isn’t as fast or has as many focus points as the A9
-Has black out when shooting Bursts
-I have read it has issue with keeping focus while shooting in bursts. (Can anyone verify or dispel that for me)

Now I know the A9II would fix three of my complaints on the A9 which is the Ergonomics and the 2 UHS-2 card slots and better weather sealing but it’s bit out of my price range sadly so unless it also has the ability to shoot 4k video without a time limit (I haven’t been able to find out if the A9II no longer has that limit or if it still does have the same record limit as the A9) so if anyone knows I would appreciate that as that might really make me consider the A9II over the A9 even if it’s more than I was hoping to spend.

Basically I’m really torn between these two as each are really amazing sounding cameras, I’m just not sure which would fit my needs the best of the two so any advice would be greatly appreciated from people who have had more hands on experience with cameras than I have and preferably these two particular cameras but not necessary required. I plan on going into the city in the next couple days so hopefully by then I’ll have a better idea which I plan to get and can get it then. Thanks again for your time. I wish you all wonderful day.
 
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Ziggy

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That's a thorough listing of features on paper.

Both are capable tools with quite a learning overhead.

IMO few users need 62 MP and it comes at a price (not least intolerance of poor technique and average glass).

I'd suggest you hire each in turn to see if they're tools you can make friends with.
 

Timothy Mayo

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If your main interest is photographing and making videos of your puppies then I'd recommend the a7III over the a7R IV or a9. You'll save quite a bit of money which could be invested in lenses. I've shot lots of pics of my dog Frank with the a7III and are more than happy with the results. You could always add a grip extension or battery grip if you want to improve the ergonomics. There are a few sample photos of my dog shot with the a7III here: https://www.alphashooters.com/cameras/a7iii/sample-images/

You do have the 30 minute recording limit with the a7III but how often will you record over this limit? You only need to hit the record button to start recording again and then put the videos together in post.
 

Ziggy

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Yeah.
I sometimes use the R III for birds. If they're significant in the frame and moving the AF copes fine. And the detail is clearly better than the A9.
On one of the regular sales it's great value.
 

Kim_Captures

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I photograph animals for a local shelter (right now primarily in foster home settings) with my A7Rii and it does a great job. I think the A7Riii would do just fine!
 
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keithinmelbourne

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I have used my A7III on my dog and its eye focus is great. I have just got a new A9, but have not been able to upgrade the firmware, which includes eye focus on animals (a little frustrating), so I can’t comment on its ability yet. I’m sure they all provide great results, however the resolution of the A7RIII and IV seems unnecessary for most uses. They also tend to slow down processing and gobble up memory.
 

garuda

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After wading through that long comprehensive and elegant product comparison -- I think you should abandon all your photography aspirations and immediately apply for a career position in Sony's marketing department.

P.S. -- Tim may have the best solution unless you're leaning toward achieving product envy from others, since everybody knows about the prestigious reputation of the a9ii. Just joking; good luck on choosing.
 
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Jack Wu

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I only wish I had stumbled into Sony Alphashooter much sooner! I had the same dilemma and since I couldn't decide, I ended up purchasing the Sony a9 and added A7R IV later. I have no regret since I was looking for a second body so adding the A7R IV was eventually going to happen anyway.
 

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