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Sony has been killing it recently in the camera game. The a7 series shook up the DSLR world when it was released, culminating with the award-winning Sony a7rII, widely acknowledged as the best camera released in 2015. Sony also had a capable competitor in the APS-C camera world, the a6000.
In February, Sony changed the game once again with the next evolution of the a6000: the a6300.
The a6300 is a powerful amount of technology wrapped up nicely in a small form-factor. It features a 24 megapixel sensor with legendarily fast autofocus and the ability to take pictures at a blazing eleven frames per second. Basically if you want to shoot action or sports, it’s hard to beat this camera without spending thousands more.
The photography elements of the camera are more of an evolution than a revolution. The video capabilities of the a6300 are revolutionary.
The a6300 shoots 4K resolution video, just like my a7rII. To have good-quality 4K in a camera body this small is absolutely incredible. What’s even better, it shoots 120fps slow-motion video at 1080p. There’s much more technical detail about why it’s great but that’s probably beyond the scope of this article.
Why this might be the best new travel camera
The best camera is the one you have with you. I love my a7rII but even I don’t carry it around with me all the time. The a6300 is tiny, even compared to the small a7rII. It’s not quite small enough to put in a pocket (depending on the lens I have on it) but it’s much more portable and is far less conspicuous than a bigger camera. Combine that with a Silent Shooting mode (where you cannot hear the shutter noise) and it’s almost perfect for street photography. The lenses available for the Sony APS-C E-mount tend to be smaller and more affordable than the full-frame lenses as well, making the system even more portable.
The camera runs $1000 for the body only, or $1150 with the included 18-55mm lens. It’s not cheap by any means, but if you want 4K video alongside an amazing still camera, it’s hard to beat this package. If video isn’t as important to you then definitely consider the a6000.
I put together a little unboxing video for the camera nerds out there as well:
Why it may not be the best new travel camera
There are a few things I was hoping that the a6300 would have (namely in-body image stabilization) but it’s absolutely perfect for me. The only thing keeping it from being a slam dunk for everyone is the fact that it’s an interchangeable lens camera and not a point-and-shoot. A point-and-shoot is probably the ultimate in portability and the a6300 isn’t pocketable for most people. (side note: consider the Sony RX100 series of point and shoots if you’re looking for a smaller form-factor)
If you’re already used to carrying around a few lenses with you then this one is a no-brainer. Are you already a Nikon or Canon shooter? No problem, you can adapt those lenses to the a6300, making the switch even easier.
After playing around with it this weekend I couldn’t be happier, stay tuned for image samples coming soon!