Sony a6600 Premium APS-C Camera | Review 2021

Hi i'm dustin abbott and i'm here today togive you my standard reviewof the sony a6600 aps-cmirrorless camera now i am a little bitslow to review the a6600and part of the reason for that isgoing to be summed up in this reviewhere today and that is that whenit was announced at the very end of 2019and releasedearly part of 2020 that uh when ilooked over the press release and lookedthrough the specifications kind oflooking foryou know kind of the killer app thatwould draw me in and you know make mereally want to review it and possiblyevenown it because i've owned sony aps-ccameras for reviews for a number ofyearsthere wasn't really a whole lot therethat moved the needlefor me and so it's taken me a while toget to this point and i'm actuallyreviewingmy own copy of the a6600 that ipurchasedum to supplement an a6400 a little whileback i bought a used copy of itand so i'm reviewing it at this stageand giving you my findings now that i'vereally gotten to know the camera quitefamiliarlynow today i'm doing the standard reviewand if you want a more detailed review irecommend you check out the definitivereview insteadi've also got a companion episode wherei compare the a6400 and the a6600both kind of a long-term evaluationsince i'mquite familiar with both cameras andowned them and to givegive you maybe a few tips on what youshould look for andwhich should be the one on your radar topurchase if you're debating between thetwo so check out that episode as welltoday's episode is brought to you byphantom wallet the minimalistmodern wallet that sets you free from abulky traditional wallet while alsomaking it easy to accessyour cards and money when you need themthanks to their unique fanning mechanismvisit to check outtheir unique sizesstyles and finishes that span fromaluminum to woodto carbon fiber you can even customizeyour wallet with newaccessories like a money clip cacheholderid display and even the chipolo trackingintegrationif you're the kind of person who losestheir walletuse code dustin 15 for 15 off whenyou're ready to check outnow when it comes to the build and thedesign of this camera this is a veryfamiliar looking camerathat strongly resembles previous modelslike thea 6300 a 6400 a 6500etc um the there's one area ofdifferentiation and it reallyis maybe the most attractive feature ofthe camera itselfand that is that we have a deeper andthicker grip that feels much better inthe hand but more important is thereasonfor that and that is that finally sonyhas moved beyond the tiny battery packsthe fw50 batteries that previous models burnedthroughreally quickly particularly if you'reshooting 4k videorated for about 410 uh shots andi didn't often find that i got any morethan that but they've upgraded to the aseries battery a9 you know also used inthe alpha oneand that is the fz100 batterythat gives you raises that rating up to810shots but more importantly it actuallyoverdelivers that rating particularly whenit comes to capturing video it's ahuge huge difference and i noted i kindof put it to the testi went traveling with just this cameraand the 18 to 135 i had to travel lightout of a backpack on a recent trip totexas andand so i was packing very little gearbut i tookover 400 photos that included um someadditional ones that i deleted along theway some video clipsi did a lot of reviewing things on theback of the camera showing other peopleimages etc etcthose things
you do when you travel igot home and on my original charge istill had 50left on the battery life that's a hugeimprovement and i have no question if ihad taken the a6400instead i would have had to recharge thebattery at least onceif not twice over the course of thattime so that really doeschange your workflow and it's a veryvery welcome addition hereas far as other physical changes we haveacouple of uh custom buttons that were wedid see something similar on the a6500but we're missing on models like thea6400and so those custom buttons arecertainly very welcome uh for a reasonthat i'll get to in just a secondwe actually have a third additionalcustom button on the backthat occupies the position that whereonce it was the release forthe flash on all these models they'veactually done away with the onboardflashfor someone like myself i never pop upthat flashunder any circumstance so i could careless your mileage may vary however andso that's something worth consideringbut having a third custom button here isalways welcomeand more physical controls the betterbecause what hasn't changed isany kind of real addition to thephysical controls something i think isneededon sony's aps-c cameras there is nowheel or dial at the front to give you athird controldial and i think that that is a big lossit means that you're relying on the dialhere and then thed-pad dial but the d-pad dial can be alittle bit sensitive because if you overpressyour weight's a little bit too heavy itturns into directional padinstead and so it's not as reliable ashaving another dial there to operate youknowshutter or aperture i would also love tosee two other items that we don't haveherean exposure compensation dial of somekind you know dedicatedand then also a dedicated joystick backherefor navigation other things that haven'tchanged are the viewfinder which isstill a fairly small0.39 inch opening and stillonly that somewhere around 2.34million dot resolution likewise the lcdscreenwe have the same limitations it's fairlylow resolutionand also the touchscreen is just aslimited as it's always been no menunavigationand even tapping to focus getting tothat setting you have to godeep into the the menu and rather thanhaving just anon screen where you can kind of rotatethrough those options as many othercameras dosony doesn't do that and so it's a bitof pain toaccess much touch functionality outsideof moving a focus point around which i'mthankful for thatbut i've been complaining about sony'stouchscreens as long as i've beenreviewing sony camerasit's still no no improvement here and souh no real further progress therethe only other addition here on thecamera itself and this more expensivemodel is that we do have aheadphone jack here for head monitoringaudio which you didn't have onmodels like the a6400 outside of thatit's very familiaronly physical change in terms of thedimensions is it's about 10 millimetersdeeper on the grip portionthat's to accommodate that largerbattery pack andwhile the memory card is still locateddown here in the battery compartment myleast favorite place for itit is uh reoriented away from the doorand into aback facing orientation which does allowyou to have a little bit easier accesstothe memory card but it's still just asingle card only uh s1compatible and that comes into play withthe buffer depthbecause with the a6500 we had a bufferdepth as deep asabout 107 raw images and up to 301 jpegimagesthat really really dropped with thea6400down to about 47 raw images and about116jpeg images and i thought okay they'vedone that to market differentiate andthe replacement for the a6500 which isthisis going to be back up to that at leastto that spec that we had at the a6500and i'm very disappointed to find thatthat's not the casein fact it's got the exact same bufferdepth as the a6400and the same burst rate of 11 frames persecondand so no real advancement there in factyou know in many waysfrom the true model that this replaces a6500we have gone backwards what it does havethat the a6400 did not have was them-body image stabilizationthat the a6500 had and i feel like it'sexecuted a little bit better hereit's a little bit more reliable and ifeel like it does a little bit betterjobalso inherited from the a6400 is theupgraded autofocus system which reallyhasmade the sony a6000 camerasmuch much better
and so we have a hybridaf system that combines 425phase detect points overlaid over 425contrast af pointsthat gives us very reliable focus acrossbasically almostall of the the frame itself and so thatimproves things for tracking you alsogot real-timeiaf for humans and petsand and so that is certainly welcome andone minor addition that we've got on thea6600is that that real-time ief also tracksduring videoand so not just face to tech but eyedetect during video capturewhich is certainly welcome though i haveto say i don't notice a huge differencebetween the a6400and the a6600 in terms of trackingreliabilitythey feel about the same to me butnonethelessi'm well i certainly welcome thatimproved autofocuswhich makes a big difference and this isthe best autofocus systemthat's in any of the aps-c mirrorlesscameras that i've used it's morereliable for both stillsand autofocus and frankly it's reliableenough i just keep it in wide basicallyall thetime and let the autofocus you know grabwhat it needsand if for some reason it rarely doesnot get what i wanti just put a finger over there andoverride and move a flexi point to theplace where i wantso autofocus is excellent my onlydownside there is when it comes to thelimitations of that buffer depthlikewise we have the exact same sensorin this camera that we have seenin quite a number of previous sony aps-cmodelsit's a 24 megapixel cmos sensor bionxprocessor it's a great sensor hasvery good performance it gives you verygood detailit has excellent dynamic range dynamicrange is pretty much at the top of theheap for cameras like thisand i found in my test that i could getreliably get three stops of overexposureand recover highlightsonly at four stops did things fall apartbut i could go as lowas five stops of underexposure and stillrecovershadows quite effectively without anynoticeable color bandingand not a lot of additional noise and soit's a very good sensor for dynamicrangeit also behaves identically to the a6400sensor and so there's nothing new herein that regard the same is true when itcomes to the iso performanceagain it's a very good performance youhave very clean resultsup through iso 6400 more obvious noiseat 12800 but still usable up through 25600 it goes all the way up in the nativerange to 32 000those though those a little bit more ofa drop off between 25600 and thirty two thousand you canexpand the rangeup to over one hundred and two thousandhowever there is one other addition andthat is that you can also go on thebottom end down to iso fiftyyou could go up to the higher end on the6400but not down to iso 50 there at the sametime however the basic performance isidentical and and so there's not reallyany improvement therecolors are good i feel like sony colorhas been getting progressively betterover time notyou know anything revolutionary butthey've just been tweaking it a littlebit betterto where i find that skin tones are morenatural these daysand auto white balance seems to workexactly the same on both modelsit's a very good sensor as i saidhowever it's also nothing that wehaven't seen beforeand that kind of brings me to myconclusion on the a6600 and explains whyi didn't really get a lot very excitedabout its releasenow the reality is is that the cameraitself is excellentand for me this still works better thanyou know say a fuji xt3 or xt4even though the fuji does a lot ofthings better it has better ergonomicsit has better video codecs you can getup to 4k60 without a crop factor he'll hereyou're still at 4k30 and that's with a pretty significant1.6 times crop factorif you're shooting 30 frames per secondi don't love that at the same timehoweverthe reason why this camera ends upworking better for me is becausethat af during video is so reliable andso i can do segments like this and notworry about it pulsingor hunting which unfortunately i'venever yet been able to relyon the fuji camera to do the same and soeven though the fuji isin some ways this is the more superiormodel the sony still works betterfor me it's a great camera and if youbuy one i'm sure that you willthoroughly enjoy it at the same timewe have to be honest and say thatthere's nothing really newhappening here yes we have the in-bodyimage stabilization from the a6500we have the better autofocus from thea6400 and we've got the betterbattery from the a7 series but what wedon't have is any kind of realinnovation as far as the ergonomics noreal progressas far as autofocus nothing really newhere as far as video performancenothing new sensor the same and so whatyou've gotis basically a nice collection and thebest packagingof all these existing sony technologieswhat you don't have is really any kindofnew sony technology that would make yousay ahi really need to own that camera and ithink that's the challenge for sony andthat while this is an excellent camerait feels a lot like a placeholder whilesonyengineers a better more excitingreplacementfurther down the road i'm dustin abbottand if you look in the description downbelow you can find linkage to my fulltext reviewalso to an image gallery check out the photos.

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