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The Sony A7S was built for video.
Its 1080p footage capture, 4k output, and an ISO up to 409,600 have caught the attention of many filmmakers.
As with any camera, the right accessories will enhance your shooting, giving you more control and higher-quality results.
The A7S has a wide range of great accessories, find out which are the best.
The Sony a7S is powered by a single NP-FW50 Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery. These are quite small batteries compared to similar sized cameras so if you are shooting for the day you will need a power solution. The best options are:
If you want to avoid swapping and charging batteries opt for an external battery pack. The Varavon coupler can function as a continuous external power source for Sony a7S, and with no need to stop and switch batteries. The a7S Coupler connects to the external power source (portable battery or other) via the included cable, and the other side goes inside the camera battery door.
One of the features that sets the a7S series apart is its ability to record in 4k. If you own an a7S ii this is possible internally, with the original you need a separate recorder.
Atomos Shogun Flame
The Atomos Shogun Flame 4K, you can record directly from the cameras sensor in stunning 4K or high frame rate HD (50/60/120p). The high resolution 10-bit colour gives precise 4:2:2 colour accuracy and visually lossless compression of ProRes/DNxHR.
Protect your monitor and mount it your rig or tripod with an armour cage.
Rigs & Cages
A cage is a must for shooting video on your Sony a7S, they provide protection, better handling and stabilisation, and offer mounting options for your accessories.
There are many cages and rigs available that have been designed specifically for the a7S. The Varavon Zeus is a premium cage made from Aluminium, Steel, and Walnut, and boasts many great features. It has two adjustable handles that can be fixed to the sides or top and can rotate in 90degrees increments. As the Zeus was designed for the Sony, when it is in the cage there is still access to the SD card slot, battery compartment, and all camera controls.
The Varavon Zeus features 1/4″-20 and 3/8″-16 threaded holes, as well as a 15mm rod port in the handle for easy mounting of monitors or EVF. There are two cold shoe mounts on the handle and one on the cage body. There are also cable clamps to prevent accidentally pulling a cable out during a shoot.
Lanparte Mirrorless Camera Rig
The Lanparte Ultimate is a powerful complete rig solution. It has a solid enclosure for full protection, large quick release handle, and plenty of 1/4 and 3/8inch threads for mounting. With 15mm clamps you can easily attach your Atomos Shogun, monitor, or viewfinder and the whole system can be powered via the VBP-01 distributor.
- 1 x LanParte MCK-01 Cage for GH3/4 and A7s
- 1 x Top Handle
- 1 x 15mm Rod Raiser
- 1 x LPT UG-03 Rosette handgrips
- 1 x LPT Follow Focus V2 with A-B Hard Stops
- 1 x LPT MB-01 Matte Box
- 1 x LPT VMS-01 Baseplate Shoulder Support
- 1 x LPT VBP-01 Power Distributor
- 1 x Lanparte 95Wh Battery
- 1 x LPT SRC-01 15mm Rod Clamp
- 3 x AR-200 200mm Rods
- 2 x Extension screws
- 1 x LanParte ASC-01 Transportation Case
All in-camera mics give poor quality, and if you are serious about capturing great sound then you will need an external microphone. Whether you use an on-camera solution, a lavalier, or a shotgun/boom pole combination will depend on your needs, but a professional microphone is essential for recording high-quality audio.
RODE VideoMic Pro R
Perfect for run & gun shooting, documentaries, and smaller shoots when the budget does not stretch to a sound recordist. These microphones use standard shoe mounts for on camera as well as having a 3/8″ thread for attaching to a boom pole. From just a single 9V battery, the mic can record for 70hours.
A shotgun mic is the most effective due to its excellent sound capture at the front and ability to cut sound from other directions. Whilst the VideoMic Pro makes a great entry level piece of kit, it uses a 3.5mm jack which whilst good for on-camera can cause problems on longer cable runs. Microphones like the RODE NTG3 use XLR connectors, these use a balanced signal to reduce noise on long cable runs and feature a lock to prevent accidental disconnection when shooting.
To get the best audio, your microphone should be positioned as close to your source as possible without being in the frame. If you are not doing run & gun style shooting then a combination of the NTG3 and boom pole with windshield through an external recorder will give you professional sound to make your film stand out.
The rise of handheld gimbals has opened up opportunities for capturing incredibly smooth shots whilst on the move. With just one piece of small equipment, filmmakers are able to set up in seconds and record in busy locations, at fast paces, and whilst performing action sports. As the Sony a7S is mirrorless and therefore much lighter than a DSLR, you have many options for stabilising your shots.
The Zhiyun-Tech Crane is a simple to operate gimbal for mirrorless cameras weighing up to 1200g (2.6 lbs). The stabilisation is powered by a 3-axis brushless gimbal motor which keeps your camera steady and helps you record smooth shots. Using the thumb control on the 5-way joystick you can switch between modes and pan/tilt for full control of your camera.
Load Capacity: 0.77-2.6 lbs (350 g-1200 g)
Gimbal Weight: 2 lbs.(950 g) (with batteries)
Charge Time: 4-6 hours
Battery Life: 4-12 hours (depending on battery, larger capacity available)