The Sony a7R III Is a Tethering Monster

The Sony a7R III has generally been receiving glowing reviews for being a more refined and capable version of its predecessor. In this video, you'll see one area that has seen a huge improvement is tethering speed, allowing for a much faster studio workflow.

I recently decided to switch from my 5D Mark IV to the Sony a7R III while adapting my Canon glass and couldn't be happier with the decision, as the autofocus has no problem keeping up when paired with the Metabones V adapter, and in some cases, it's actually better than a native Canon camera, as is the case with the Canon 85mm f/1.2L II USM, which has gone from surly and judiciously used lens to a mainstay of my bag once again, as I joyously texted a friend when I first tried it on the Sony. The a7R III is mostly about refinements, but those little tweaks all add up to a much improved shooting experience, and as this video from Evan Guttman shows, one of those is the vastly improved tethering speed that can now easily keep up with a fast-paced workflow. Comparing the speed with the a7R II, it's easy to see that it's a game changer for studio shooters.

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12 Comments

Johnny Rico's picture

In all my years from 1ds Mark III through 1dx, Phase1 p+ to IQ2, and now Nikon d850 I've never had an issue with tether speed. Is this really a thing? Also I've shot models, and a digitech has never failed to tell me if a light stops firing within 2-3 shots, etc.

Alex Cooke's picture

Knowing the shooting styles of a few of my friends, where a model will move through a look every 2-3 seconds, 5-6 seconds to transfer an image is definitely too slow for them.

Johnny Rico's picture

That's how a good professional model moves, after the packs fire, and I've done magazine work just like that. Was Sony super slow to tether in the past or something?

Alex Cooke's picture

I think the issue was a very high-resolution sensor combined with a USB 2.0 interface.

Felix Wu's picture

I think the issue was the software. Use capture one and saves from buying a sony. : P

Yes: Nikon, Canon and Phase One all supported USB3 long before Sony came along and supported USB3 though USB-C connectors. Its not that the Sony A7RIII is particularly superior to its Nikon and Canon competition; its just the A7RII was poor in comparison.

thomas Palmer's picture

It is indeed night and day and one of the reason I bought it, really helpful and much more reliable for studio work.

I'm a slow shooter much more like a sniper but it's still good to see the result appear fast

Matt Pluz's picture

The tethering is amazing! Unfortunately, the focus on my Canon 85 1.2 Lii consistently fights really hard to get AF or Eye-AF to work with my A7Riii + Metabones IV (yes all my firmware is updated). I wonder why this combo works so much better for everyone else...

Matt Pluz's picture

Agreed. Camera and adapter work perfect with other lenses. And lens work perfect with other cameras. Hmmmm

Alex Cooke's picture

I agree with Bob Brady. I've had no issues with that combo.

This video (assuming its the same one as I sat through when it was on PetaPixel a few weeks back) makes the same mistake thats perpetuated across the industry...

USB-C is not required for USB3.0 support, and USB-C doesn't guarantee any speed improvement over USB-A connectors.

So don't think that you need a new computer with USB-C to support the highest speeds - your computer with USB-A may already support USB 3.0 (and even USB 3.1) - and don't think that because your camera doesn't have USB-C its going to be slower - the Nikon 810 had USB3.0 a long time before the A7RIII came along.

Evan Guttman's picture

Video creator here.

You are correct in saying that USB-C is not needed But this is exactly what i show in the video when I test USB 3 speeds via a USB-A port. I in no way claim that USB-C is needed. Just that the camera's port is USB-C. The speeds are literally the same. I am in fact now shooting connected to a Surface Pro 2017, so it has no USB-C port, but I am getting every ounce of speed I had with the Surface Book 2 USB-C port.

So I am confused what mistake I am perpetuating?