Sony A9

Sony Alpha A9 front
  • 24MP - Full frame Sensor
  • 3" Tilting Display
  • ISO 100 - 51200 (Bump to 204800)
  • Sensor based 5-axis Image Stabilization
  • 1/8000s Max Shutter
  • 3840 x 2160 video
  • Sony E Mount
  • 673g - 127 x 96 x 63mm
  • Introduced April 2017
  • Refreshed by Sony A9 II
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Lenses
  • Size Comparison
  • FAQ

Sony A9 overview

Sony A9 is Sony's Pro Mirrorless camera first launched on April of 2017. It uses a 24 MegaPixel, BSI-CMOS Full frame size sensor with a maximum resolution of 6000 x 4000.

Sony brought out the updated Sony A9 II (Read Full Comparison) as a way to improve this camera.

The A9 comes in at #29 out of 70 in Pro Mirrorless cameras and all round #43 out of 1465 for cameras in our database. Remember to try our Advanced camera filter to get camera results based on your custom criteria.

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Here is a chart of various criteria used in the scoring system.

Sony A9 family

The Sony A9 is part of a family of digital cameras. You can see the full list underneath.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Sony-Alpha-A7R-V front thumbnailSony A7R V
A9 vs A7R V
61MPFull frame10.0 fps2022
Sony-Alpha-A7-IV front thumbnailSony A7 IV
A9 vs A7 IV
33MPFull frame10.0 fps2021
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Sony-Alpha-a1 front thumbnailSony a1
A9 vs a1
50MPFull frame30.0 fps2021
Sony-Alpha-A7S-III front thumbnailSony A7S III
A9 vs A7S III
12MPFull frame10.0 fps2020
Sony-Alpha-A9-Mark-II front thumbnailSony A9 II
A9 vs A9 II
24MPFull frame20.0 fps2019
Sony-Alpha-A7R-IV front thumbnailSony A7R IV
A9 vs A7R IV
61MPFull frame10.0 fps2019
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Sony-Alpha-A7-III front thumbnailSony A7 III
A9 vs A7 III
24MPFull frame10.0 fps2018
Sony-Alpha-A7R-III front thumbnailSony A7R III
A9 vs A7R III
42MPFull frame10.0 fps2017
Sony-Alpha-A9 front thumbnailSony A924MPFull frame20.0 fps2017
Sony-Alpha-A7S-II front thumbnailSony A7S II
A9 vs A7S II
12MPFull frame5.0 fps2015
Sony-Alpha-A7R-II front thumbnailSony A7R II
A9 vs A7R II
42MPFull frame5.0 fps2015
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Sony-Alpha-A7-II front thumbnailSony A7 II
A9 vs A7 II
24MPFull frame5.0 fps2014
Sony-Alpha-A7S front thumbnailSony A7S
A9 vs A7S
12MPFull frame5.0 fps2014
Sony-Alpha-A7R front thumbnailSony A7R
A9 vs A7R
36MPFull frame4.0 fps2014
Sony-Alpha-A7 front thumbnailSony A7
A9 vs A7
24MPFull frame5.0 fps2014

Sony A9 Pros and Cons

Here is a list of pluses and minuses of the Sony A9 based on aspects which are normally viewed as essential in a camera.

boasts focus via touch
built in image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
features face detection autofocus
features tracking autofocus
good battery (650 shots)
good ISO range (51,200)
good min ISO (100)
good resolution (24 megapixels)
has bluetooth
has dual storage slots
high max frames per second (20.0 fps)
high quality video (3840 x 2160 pixels)
includes external microphone jack
includes HDMI support
includes headphone jack
maximum shutter speed is high (1/8,000 seconds)
NFC support
nice clear screen (1,440 thousand dot)
quiet mode (1/32,000 seconds)
saves RAW files
screen is touchscreen
screen size is good (3")
screen tilts
sensor has phase detect autofocus
sensor size is big (Full frame)
switch lenses (Sony E mount)
weather proof
you can focus manually
doesn't feature selfie friendly display
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Sony A9 Sensor information

The Sony A9 is run by the BIONZ X processor chip. The sensor measurement on the Sony A9 is 35.6mm x 23.8mm (Full frame). The 847 mm² sensor is able to resolve 6000 x 4000 pixels with aspect ratios of 3:2 and 16:9. The camera has got Image Stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis). Sensor stabilization is superior than digital stabilization since the latter may produce cropping.

Photography Glossary

The BSI-CMOS sensor boasts 24 megapixels and supports a native ISO range of 100 to 51200. The ISO can also be expanded electronically to 50 to 204800. RAW photos are supported therefore the user has more margin for error.

The graphic underneath displays the A9's sensor size when compared to other common sizes. The A9 sensor comes with a crop factor of 1 and is highlighted in green.

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To get an idea of various aspect ratios, you should refer to the visual below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Sony A9 dimensions

Sony A9 is 1.48 lbs (673 grams / 23.74 oz) and the size of the camera is 127mm x 96mm x 63mm (5.0" x 3.8" x 2.5"). The weight of normal Pro Mirrorless camera is 722 grams and the Sony A9 is on par compared to other rivals.

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Here is a picture of the Sony A9 with a softdrink so you can have a sense of its size.

Sony Alpha A9 dimensions scale

The top view underneath will highlight the button design on the A9.

Sony Alpha A9 topview buttons dials

Sony A9 Lens information

The A9 works with the Sony E mount and has 170 lenses available for purchase. Here is a few of the lenses we have in our collection that will work with the A9.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Samyang-21mm-F1.4-ED-AS-UMC-CS--Rokinon-21mm-F1.4-ED-AS-UMC-CS-Sony-E lensSamyang 21mm F1.4 ED AS UMC CS21mmf/1.4275g
Zeiss-Touit-2.850M-Sony-E-NEX lensZeiss Touit 2.850M50mmf/2.8 290g
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Tokina-Firin-20mm-F2-FE-MF-Sony-FE lensTokina Firin 20mm F2 FE MF20mmf/2490g
Carl-Zeiss-Touit-1.8-32-Sony-E-NEX lensCarl Zeiss Touit 1.83232mmf/1.8 210g
Sigma-24mm-F3.5-DG-E-Mount lensSigma 24mm F3.5 DG24mmf/3.5 225g
Tamron-35-150mm-F2-2.8-Di-III-VXD lensTamron 35-150mm F2-2.8 Di III VXD35-150mmf/2-2.8 1165g
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Sony-FE-50mm-F2.8-Macro lensSony FE 50mm F2.8 Macro50mmf/2.8236g
Photography Glossary

Sony A9 Connectivity

The A9 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • Wireless Yes
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • NFC Yes
  • HDMI Yes

Cameras that consist of NFC or Bluetooth support can be used wirelessly through smartphones. You will be able to copy photos and oftentimes alter settings with no need to connect directly with the camera.

Some apps also provide a Liveview and click the shutter when you aren't near the camera. If the camera features a HDMI out, it can be connected to an external display. A lot of cameras enable you to recharge the battery using the USB socket.

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Sony A9 Video information

The maximum video resolution on the Sony A9 is 3840 x 2160 and it can save in MPEG-4, AVCHD and H.264 format. 2160p is an excellent resolution for video recording. You will be able to downsample to Full HD to get cleaner results. Beware of the large file sizes and make sure you own high quality SD cards with good write speed. The camera does come with both headphone and microphone jack making it really useful while recording audio.

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Sony A9 Weather Sealing

Sony A9 provides weather sealing making it a very good pick to use during rough climates. This can be particularly helpful any time you are uncertain about the elements you might encounter during outdoor photography.

Sony A9 Display and Viewfinder

The Sony A9 houses a 3 inch tilting display with a resolution of 1,440 thousand dots.

Additionally the display is touch friendly which means you will be able to set focus points and adjust settings by using your finger.

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The View Finder details regarding Sony A9 are below:

  • ViewFinder Electronic
  • ViewFinder Resolution 3,686 thousand dots
  • ViewFinder Coverage 100%
  • ViewFinder Magnification 0.78x

In those sunny outdoor situations that make the camera screens washed out and tricky to view, viewfinders are quite useful.

Sony A9 Shutter information

Sony A9 is able to shoot continuously at 20.0 fps. The max shutter speed is 1/8000s. The camera also comes with silent electronic shutter of 1/32000s. Keep in mind that the electronic shutter could result in "rolling shutter" in some conditions.

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Sony A9 Flash and Hot shoe information

Sony A9 has got external flash ability but is lacking integrated flash.

Sony A9 Autofocusing information

Sony A9 has got both Phase Detect Autofocus and Contrast Detect Autofocus. Phase Detection focusing is a lot faster & exact compared to Contrast Detect focusing. The camera boasts Face detect which is helpful for portrait photography.

It boasts 693 focus points to pick from. Sony A9 has touch to focus. You are able to use your fingers to shift focus points. It also comes with Tracking Autofocus for things on the move. Sony A9 supports manual focus in case it is required during low light situations or you want to have more precise focus control.

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Sony A9 Battery life

The battery (NP-FZ100) for the Sony A9 is made to last for 650 shutters according to the CIPA specifications making it higher than standard when compared to its class. The general Pro Mirrorless camera battery life is 460. Olympus E-M1X has got the highest possible (870) battery life within this range of cameras.

Underneath is a collection of Pro Mirrorless cameras that have the highest battery life:

Sony A9 for various styles of photography

The following graph displays a overview of the Sony A9 for various styles of photography. To find out more, scroll to the specific paragraph underneath.

Sony A9 Portrait photography advice

The Sony A9 gets a points tally of 83 which is outstanding, and means the camera is a awesome option to use for portraits. Photographing portrait photos leans greatly towards sensor dimension, support for RAW photos plus the flexibility to use external lighting.

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you can focus manually
good megapixels (24MP)
large sensor size (Full frame)
includes face detection focus
supports RAW formats

Sony A9 Street photography details

Getting a exceptional rating of 79, the Sony A9 is a outstanding pick to buy for street photography. A decent street photography camera features a perfect balance of picture quality and portability.

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screen tilts
has image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
big sensor size (Full frame)
delivers RAW formats
supports focus via touch
weather proof
great high ISO (51,200)

Sony A9 as a Sports photography camera

A tremendous sports photography rating of 86 indicates the Sony A9 is a terrific option for photographing sports. A camera should have excellent focusing and shutter speeds for sports photography.

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maximum shutter speed is high (1/8,000 seconds)
quiet shooting (1/32,000 seconds)
max frames per second high (20.0 frames per second)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
MP count good (24 megapixels)
big sensor size (Full frame)
includes tracking focus
weather proof
great battery pack (650 per charge)
sensor has phase detect auto focus

Sony A9 Travel photography features

Size is really critical when selecting a camera for travel. On the whole, the Sony A9 gets a very good 73 as a travel camera which is a fine fit to buy for your trips.

Photography Glossary
great battery power (650 per charge)
environment proofing
supports bluetooth
has touch to focus
resolution is good (24MP)
display isn't selfie friendly

Sony A9 Landscape photography highlights

For anybody planning to choose a digital camera for landscape photos, the most critical factor is going to be image quality. The Sony A9 at it's terrific grade of 85 as a landscape camera is a great pick compared to it's rivals.

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manual focus
change lenses (Sony E mount)
nice screen size (3 inch)
has image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
decent megapixels (24MP)
sensor size is big (Full frame)
great ISO range (51,200)
exports RAW files
environment sealing
great battery power (650 shots)
2 card slots

Sony A9 Vlogging details

A vlogging camera preferably should posses a moving display, microphone input and ideally image stabilization. Taking everything in to account, the Sony A9 is not appropriate for vlogging as it delivers a dreadful rating of 36.

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has image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
supports face detect autofocus
great video quality (3840 x 2160 pxls)
does have mic support
screen is not selfie friendly

Sony A9 Alternatives

If you are in the market for alternatives to the A9, below is a list of the highest ranked cameras that fall within the category of Pro Mirrorless.

The diagram down below will give you a summary of the A9 compared to it's top scoring rivals listed earlier.

Following are additional cameras you may check out as alternate options. To read through a comprehensive comparison, just click on the "compare" link.

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General Information
Sony Alpha A9
Pro Mirrorless
Body design
SLR-style mirrorless
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Full frame
Sensor measurements
35.6 x 23.8mm
Sensor surface area
Sensor resolution
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
3:2 and 16:9
Full resolution
6000 x 4000
RAW files
Max native ISO
Max boosted ISO
Lowest native ISO
Lowest boosted ISO
Focus manually
Touch focus
AF continuous
AF single
Tracking AF
AF selectice
AF center weighted
Multi area AF
Live view AF
Face detect AF
Contract detect AF
Phase detect AF
Number of focus points
Lens mounting type
Sony E
Amount of lenses
Crop factor
Range of display
Display sizing
Resolution of display
1,440 thousand dot
Selfie friendly
Touch operation
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder resolution
3,686 thousand dot
Viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder magnification
DXO scores
DXO All around score
DXO Color Depth score
DXO Dynamic range score
DXO Low light score
Slowest shutter speed
30 secs
Maximum shutter speed
1/8000 secs
Maximum quiet shutter speed
1/32000 secs
Continuous shooting speed
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation
Change WB
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash range
no built-in flash
Flash options
Flash off, Autoflash, Fill-flash, Slow Sync., Rear Sync., Red-eye reduction, Wireless, Hi-speed sync
Hot shoe
WB bracketing
Multisegment exposure
Average exposure
Spot exposure
Partial exposure
AF area exposure
Center weighted exposure
Video features
Max video resolution
Video file format
MPEG-4, AVCHD, H.264
Microphone input
Headphone input
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment seal
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
673 gr (1.48 lb)
Physical dimensions
127 x 96 x 63mm (5.0" x 3.8" x 2.5")
Battery life
650 photographs
Form of battery
Battery Pack
Battery model
Self timer
Yes (2, 5, 10 secs + continuous)
Time lapse shooting
Storage media
Dual SD/SDHC/SDXC slots (UHS-II compatible)
Storage slots
Pricing at launch