Sony Alpha a6500 In-Depth Review: Best Vlogging Camera You Can Buy Under $1500

Read Time5 Minutes, 40 Seconds
 Sony a6500Fujifilm X-T2Sony a6300
MSRP (Body only)$1400$1600$1000
Pixel Count24MP24MP24MP
ISO Range100-25600 (51200 with multi-shot NR)200-51200100-25600 (51200 with multi-shot NR)
AF Point controlTouchscreen/touchpadJoystick4-way controller
Card slots1 x UHS I2 x UHS II1 x UHS I
USBUSB 2.0USB 3.0USB 2.0
Continuous Shooting rate11fps14fps (e-shutter)
8fps (mechanical)
Rear screenTilting up/down touchscreenDual tilt: Up/down/rightTilting up/down
FlashBuilt-inClip-on (supplied)Built-in
Image stabilizationIn-body (+In-lens where available)In-lensIn-lens
4K video capabilityUHD 4K at 24/25/30pUHD 4K at 24/25/30pUHD 4K at 24/25/30p
4K video crop 24/25p Full Width
30p 1.23x crop
1.17x crop24/25p Full Width
30p 1.23x crop
4K video durationUp to 20 minutes (temperature dependent)~10 minutes
(Up to 29:59 with optional grip)
Up to 29:59 (temperature dependent)
Video log profileS-Log2 & S-Log3 with extensive video-focused Picture Profile settingsF-Log (over HDMI only) S-Log2 & S-Log3 with extensive video-focused Picture Profile settings
USB Charging (USB Power?)Yes/YesYes/NoYes/Yes
Battery life – CIPA (Rear screen/EVF)350/310340400/350

The Sony a6500 is the Organization’s top-tier APS-C mirrorless version, a 24MP stills and video camera with image stabilization. It sits above the similar-looking a6300 in Sony’s lineup, adding touchscreen capability and stabilization for enthusiasts keen to dig a little deeper in their pockets.

As should be apparent, many of its core specifications are shared With the a6300 – itself a DPReview Gold winning camera. The biggest differences are the touchscreen, the picture stabilization and a’Front End LSI’ (processing chip) to allow faster and more intricate processing. There are also a few tiny tweaks, such as the addition of a highlight spot metering mode.

The touch sensitivity of the rear screen May Is Used to your choice Of two things: as a touchscreen for positioning your attention point or tripping portrait and focus, or as a touchpad when the camera has been held to an eye.

The Extra processing oomph promises a more responsive camera one That allows immediate picture review even if shooting bursts of pictures. The a6500 also gains a much-needed upgrade to Sony’s menu system, including color-coding to make it easier to recognize and remember different areas of the menu.

This change to the menu, and the inclusion of a Fast way of setting AF point immediately address two of their greatest frustrations with the a6300. However, Sony is making no promises about improvements in terms of camera or of recording strength. With the most recent firmware, the a6300 can frequently record 4K video for the entire 29:59 duration that the camera allows but this isn’t necessarily possible in warm conditions or in case you’ve just taken a very long clip.

Despite being put significantly further up the market, the A6500 uses exactly the same form factor (and dial arrangement) as both the mid-range a6300 along with the entry a6000. Even though all three cameras have two control dials they are arranged so that both must be controlled with the thumb and, for many people, requiring the hand to be repositioned when changing from one to the other. Such a limitation is fair at the a6000 end of the market but sounds an odd fit for a $1400 camera.

The other similarity with the 6300 that seems even more peculiar at this Amount is Sony’s choice to only offer you lossy compressed Raw, restricting their processing latitude.

This table contrasts the way the a6500 compares with Fujifilm’s rather Similarly-priced X-T2 (likely the most competent rival in terms of stills and video shooting).

Body and Controls

The A6500 brings some small alterations, and some huge changes, to its controls and user-friendly interface. Physical controls are largely the exact same to the a6300: there is a high control dial and a rear control wheel as before, however, the C1 button was moved to the upper plate, which also increases an additional C2 button (bringing those controls in line with this a7 series). There’s also now a touchscreen for autofocus point positioning.

We’ve mentioned previously the Sony menu system is overpowering, and Thankfully together with all the a6500, Sony has gone through extensive efforts to arrange the menus. Similar functions like autofocus and movie settings are grouped together under color-coded tabs, which makes it a whole lot easier to recall where a setting resides. Disappointingly, there is still no ‘My Menu’ tab to store often toggled functions in a fast accessible place.

In the hand

The a6500’s grip was further enhanced over the a6300. The thicker, deeper grip has been designed with using big telephoto lenses in your mind.
The a6500 has the same apparent viewfinder specification because of the

There is an eye detector only to the right of the socket, which means the camera can automatically change between the socket and the back screen. There is also a fairly deep rubber hood round, which does a good job of maintaining stray light outside (though eyeglasses wearers will nonetheless need to protect the light coming between their face and their eyeglasses when the camera’s -3 to +4m-1 diopter correction is not sufficient to let them use the finder directly).

After the touchscreen is at any position other than flush against the Continuing in the a6300 is the capacity to run the socket at 120 frames per second, in place of the standard 60 fps.

Gamma Display Assist

  • Using a level gamma curve such as S-Log2 or S-Log3 may leave the trailer picture looking quite washed-out. Gamma Display Adjust gives you a corrected preview so that the camera is much more usable when using these modes.
  • The Gamma Display Assist setting is just another feature cribbed in the a7S II. This allows the user to apply a gamma correction curve into the screen when shooting with a very horizontal Picture Profile manners, meaning that you can shoot quite low-contrast footage to give flexible results when post-processing, but find a meaningfully contrasty preview as you work.

Battery life

  • The a6500 uses the exact same NP-FW50 battery as used on preceding E-mount cameras. The good thing is that the IBIS and touchscreen have negatively impacted battery lifetime.
  • The a6500 has the capacity to set a minimum shutter speed threshold at That the ISO will be increased, in addition to having the ability to set upper and lower limits to the ISO settings it will use. What is more, this minimal shutter speed setting is assignable to a custom switch, allowing for immediate access to it.
  • The camera also features five automatic threshold choices (Slower – Faster), that keep a shutter speed threshold linked to focal length. This is a behaviour we would consider to be best practice.

We’re really happy to see that the camera allows you to use Vehicle ISO in manual exposure mode, with exposure compensation so that you can Specify the target brightness you would like the camera to maintain. This Can be useful for both stills and video shooting, for if you want to ISO.

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