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Sony A7R II vs. Nikon D810


The Sony A7R II is just announced by Sony USA,  we are here to compare the A7R II against the Nikon D810 camera.

Major Difference

Sony Alpha 7R II vs. Nikon D810 Specification Comparison Table.  


Sony Alpha 7R II vs. Nikon D810 5


The Sony A7R II features world’s first back-illuminated full-frame sensor with 42 MP resolution, the sensor is not a traditional CMOS sensor like Nikon D810, the Sony sensor is fabricated with 399 Phase-Detect AF Points and before we begin I must assure you that no Full frame camera in the world have such a advance AF Sensor.

Nikon D810 shares same sensor of Sony A7R II predecessor Sony A7R, the Full frame sensor us capable to capture 36 MP Stills. The sensor is traditional CMOS sensor and doesn’t support Hybrid AF like the A7R II.

ISO Range

The ISO Range is the most important part of the sensor, the entire range defines its sensitivity towards the incoming light to the sensor.

But before we begin to talk about the ISO range of the camera, you must know the relation between the photodiodes size and resolution, imager systems with small pixel size have high resolution. But lowering the pixels size also lowers the sensitivity of the camera that directly affect the ISO range of the camera.

Now, let’s have a look at the ISO range of both the camera. Starting with Nikon D810, the native ISO sensitivity range that runs from 64 to 12,800 and can be expanded from 32 to 51,200, on the other hand we have Sony A7R II camera with native ISO range of 100-25600 and extended ISO range of 50-102400, WHOA… despite of having the small pixels inside the sensor compared to the Nikon D810 camera Sony manages to increase the ISO range of the camera to a new height.

It clearly tells us that the Sony A7R II camera will not only capture high resolution images but will also grab better low-light images compared to the Nikon D810 camera.

So, the clear winner in image quality is Sony A7R II camera.


AF System

Since the Nikon D810 is a traditional DSLR camera it uses external Phase AF module below the sensor , Multi-CAM 3500FX 51-Point AF Sensor. That clearly means..

  1. Nikon Phase AF system is limited to 51 AF points with 15 cross-type sensors, the Nikon D and Group Area AF enables five AF sensors to be used as one group.
  2. Nikon D810 can capture 5 fps Shooting at Full Resolution, you can capture 57 Large fine JPEG with Phase AF tracking,.
  3. The AF point is of the Nikon D810 DSLR camera is active only when we are using the viewfinder of the camera, otherwise will capturing still images with live view mode or while recording videos the phase AF system gets disabled and Contrast AF system gets active… resulting slow AF speed of the camera.

Sony A7R II loaded with world’s first full-frame 42.4-megapixel Exmor R back-illuminated structure CMOS sensor, take a look at the Key points

  1. Sony A7R II features 399 phase-detect points and 25 contrast-detect points, world first fullframe mirrorless camera with that uses 399 on-sensor phase-detect AF points with 45% coverage along with 25 contrast-detect AF points in order to improve the speed, accuracy and tracking performance of the system.
  2. The camera can shoot continuous frames of 40MP @ 5fps with tracking, continuously upto 24 frames while shooting in JPEG L format.
  3. The AF system of Sony is always active while you are shooting still with viewfinder or you are using live view mode.

Sony A7R features advance AF system.


The Sony A7R II features Reduced-Vibration Shutter & Silent Shooting, with the A7R II silent shooting option is also available, the mechanical shutter vibration is reduced upto 50% compared to the older camera models, the top shutter speed is 1/8000 and the mechanical shutter inside the camera has been tested to last for 500,000 cycles.

Nikon D810 also features Electronic & Mechanical shutter, electronic front-curtain shutter reduces the risk of blur in even subtle details by minimizing internal vibrations during exposure. The Nikon D810 top shutter is same as Sony A7R II and the mechanical shutter inside the camera has been tested to last for 200,000 cycles.

Both camera uses Hybrid shutter technology.



The Sony A7R II can capture 4K Videos and records it internally, 35 format which uses oversampling with full pixel readout and no pixel binning, while recording the Video the phase AF system is fully active, thanks to the 399 phase-detection AF points present in the Fast Hybrid AF system, you get blazing fast AF speed without any focus hunting issue like a traditional contrast detect sensor have.

The Nikon D810 is limited to Fulll HD Video mode and contrast based AF system.


The Nikon D810 connectivity is possible with optional WT-5A Wireless Transmitter in combination with the optional UT-1 Communications Unit.

Sony A7R II camera features built-in wireless and NFC connectivity, with WiFi you can share your images with mobile devices directly, and NFC allows for one-touch connection between the camera and compatible mobile devices

Sony A7R II features more advance wireless connectivity option.

Buy / Pre-order the Sony A7 R II camera from Amazon | B&H

more coming soon….

7 comments to Sony A7R II vs. Nikon D810

  • Don Bigger

    In every comparison I’ve seen on this page, optical view finders are always rated higher than EVFs. Do you folks actually look through the EVFs?? They’re quite good and provide as much or as little information as the photographer wants to have.

  • admin

    Optical viewfinders are still preferred by professional photographers worldwide, some advantages
    —- Optical viewfinders provide much better clarity, better dynamic range (roughly, ability to resolve scenes with extreme differences in brightness) and an instantanteous view of the action lacking the delay found in some EVF systems.

  • Lofote

    Optical viewfinders are only prefered because many people are used to it. The clarity and better dynamic range are of no use, if the final picture does not have it – I find its even better to be able to check “live” what the picture will look like and how much is lost. The instantaneous view is not a so good thing anymore when you keep in mind, that the delay for the mirror lockup takes longer than the usual EVF lag. So you are “nearer” to the now, to the action with current (fast) EVF systems.

  • without having red the comments before, I thought the same as Don Bigger.

    The view admin describes is valid for EVF Systems 3 years ago, but definitely not for the 2015s Generation. The best-in-class EVFs are clear, bright and fast. And I can check in the viewfinder the shot after having captured it. That’s a feature I wouldn’t accept to lose.

    For me the disadvantages of the OVF outweigh its advantages by far.

  • mike

    I am shooting compositions from past 30 years, I still find myself comfortable with optical viewfinder… I also have a A7S camera… but I always prefer the optical viewfinder of my Canon 1DX DSLR… At the same moment I also agree that EVF gives us more information than the optical ones…

  • Dimas Sebastian

    I was confused the 2 first days, nikon or sony. I wanted to be the nikon man but I finish accepting. This time Sony takes better pictures, faster and sharper than any of my nikons. In the past way before the digital arrived I used to shoot with canon f1 and I sold it to move to nikon f3, a sick mistake, canon f1 was a superior system. Then this new era, to make it short. I stop looking at nikon cameras or canon bodies. I think sony gives me all I want and I can use all my existing lenses. Now I look at my nikons and think, what a waste. About the evf you just have to get used to it. I don’t miss the ovf at all, no, not at all, if you are the sports photographer I understand also the Want to Show your super toys, I know Sony is the BEST.

  • This article was written in June 2015. For the record, the Sony A7rii mirrorless was voted Camera of the Year for 2015. The Nikon D810 is still an excellent camera as well.

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