DPReview has completed their extended Sony α9 review. They examined the body and controls, menus, customization, operation and overall shooting experiences in a variety of challenging situations.
In their in-depth review, they recount the impressive functionality of the α9 given its lighter, smaller and more comfortable body. “In creating the herald of what Sony is calling ‘the dawn of the true digital age,’ the company has gone to great lengths to maximize the camera’s performance by minimizing its dependency on mechanical barriers; the α9 operates swiftly and quietly with its fully electronic shutter, with the added bonus that the α9 can remain impressively compact as it does away with the need for the highly robust shutter and mirror mechanisms that are hallmarks of its DSLR competition.”
Many have written about the profound working speed and battery life of this camera, and the DPReview also clearly found them to be notable features.
“The α9 starts up quicker, shoots faster and keeps going longer than any Sony mirrorless full-frame camera to date. A new, higher-capacity battery means thousands of burst-shooting shots per charge, and the new sensor is capable of 20fps shooting with no blackout in the viewfinder. It's something you have to see to believe.”
Regarding the focus system the review team writes, "But what good is all that speed if the camera can't focus on moving subjects? The good news is that it can. Handily. While shooting at 20fps, the α9 is performing 60 autofocus calculations per second utilizing 693 autofocus points, resulting in a generally impressive keeper rate to go with the impressive speed. The fast AF rate means the camera can be less predictive and more reactive; hence, we see far fewer predictive errors even compared to venerable competitors like the Canon 1DX II."
“The α9 is their action flagship meant for speed, with the most reliable autofocus system of their mirrorless (and arguably overall) lineup. The speed, electronic shutter and more reliable Eye AF and subject tracking make it a great option not only for sports photographers, but wedding and event shooters as well.”