Sony A7III vs. A7RII: Should I Upgrade?

Choosing between the A7RIII and the A7III. Am I crazy for even wanting to upgrade?

Ed Note: I eventually upgraded to the a7RII and the a7II as a main camera, and back up camera respectively, so this article is essentially moot. I’m leaving it up, however, because I think it still has some value.

I’m considering upgrading to the A7III or A7RII. Both look tempting, but am I foolish for wanting to upgrade?

I must admit it, I’m not made of money. When I buy gear, I’ll try to buy it used or refurbished to save as much as I can. I generally wait a good while after a product is released — often waiting until a NEWER version comes out, to drive the price down even further. Yet, I can’t help but find myself drooling for a newer A7.

I’ve had a well-loved A7 for a year now, and my original plan was to hold out until the holidays, or for that sweet, sweet tax-return money next year and pick up an A7RII at a deep discount. Hopefully around $1,000. Now, however, I’m reconsidering that. Oh, I’ll probably wait until the holidays, or tax day, but I’m starting to wonder if I want to get the A7III instead.

Let’s be honest, unless I hit the lottery, or Sony goes bankrupt and they need to sell off their stock, I probably won’t consider the RIII. Even a year from now, I won’t be able to justify paying the price while photography is still just a hobby. Were I actually making money off of it, then sure, I’d go for the best, but for now, I think the race is between the A7RII and A7III.

Sony A7 with Minolta 200mm f/2.8 lens. (flickr)
Sony A7 with Minolta 200mm f/2.8 lens. (flickr)

Now, I could probably pull up all kinds of specs and rattle them off, but I’m not a technical guy. I’m learning more and more, but I’m not interested enough to write some deep, in-depth comparison between focus points and ISO levels. The two main factors for me are the age of my A7 and what these newer cameras can do. My A7 is racking up the shutter clicks, and by the time I’m ready to purchase one of these cameras, it’ll be nearly six years old. On top of that, the A7III can do everything my current camera does, except much, much better, and with better battery life; the A7RII can do everything my camera does, except much, much better… and at 42.4 megapixels. I can crop the bejeezus out of EVERYTHING.

There is one thing that is nagging at me, however: do I even NEED to upgrade? Or, do I just WANT to upgrade? I’ve been quite happy with my A7. Aside from having no image stabilization — which, truth be told, is probably the main reason I’m considering stepping up — it’s been a fantastic camera, and a joy to shoot with. I wonder if the urge to upgrade my camera is just the logical progression of GAS more than anything else.

In any case, I guess I have much to think about over the next year, don’t I?

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