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Sony a6400 is an intermediate model with fast autofocus

Create: 02/07/2019 - 18:15
Sony a6400

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Intermediate model with improved autofocus
  • LCD monitor flips upward 180 degrees
  • Battery can be charged in the camera

Rather than reinvent the wheel, Sony has taken a different path with its cameras, and that’s to build new features onto an exisiting body.

Sony’s latest APS-C mirrorless camera, the a6400, makes some improvements over its predecessors while retaining the same body shell. That works out well for current owners, as the transition to the new body will take less time.

As its model number indicates, the a6400 sits neatly between the a6300 and a6500 in terms of price, features and name.

  a6300 a6400 a6500
Sensor 24.2 APS-C CMOS
ISO 100-32,000 (102,400) 100-32,000 (102,400) 100-25,600 (51,200)
Shutter (manual only) 1/4,000-30 seconds
Lens mount E-mount
Price US$749.99 US899.99 $1,099.99

The three cameras share a lot, as can be seen above. But there are some differences with the a6400.

SPEEDY AUTOFOCUS

Sony says the a6400 has “the world’s fast autofocus system” with a subject acquisition of 0.02 seconds. This model also introduces “Real Time Eye Autofocus” and “Real Time Tracking” of your subject.

To achieve this, the camera has 425 phase-detection AF points and 425 contrast-detection AF points covering roughly 84% of the image area.

In addition to the electronic viewfinder, the a6400 also has a touch-enabled 3.0-inch LCD monitor. Unlike its siblings, the LCD monitor on this camera swings upward 180 degrees. That makes it useful for selfies, as well as for using to record a vlog (video blog).

The a6400 can record 4K video in the XAVC S format with oversampling, which Sony says makes the clip the equivalent of 6K. The camera has a port that allows the use of various types of external microphones.

Like the others, a6400 can record shots as quickly as 11 frames per second.

There is a single memory card slot that accepts either a full-size SD or Memory Stick Pro Duo.

IN-CAMERA BATTERY CHARGING

The single lithium-ion battery can be charged in camera via USB. There is a small pop-up flash, which has been part of the alpha APS-C series since they were branded as NEX models.

The camera body is 4 3/4 x 2 3/4 x 2 3/8 inches ( 120.0 x 66.9 x 59.7mm) and weighs 14.3 ounces (403 grams). It will be available in late February.

The Sony a6400 can be purchased as either just the body or as a kit with the 16-50mm lens for US$999.99 or the 18-135mm lens for $1,299.99.

About the Author

Mike Elek is a longtime journalist and was one of the original editors for The Wall Street Journal Online. He also has worked as a reporter and editor in Pittsburgh; Philadelphia; Vineland, N.J.; Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; New York City; and Hong Kong. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran. He shoots with film and digital cameras.