Sony a9 Wildlife Photography
The new Sony a9 is undoubtedly one of the most impressive cameras Sony has ever produced. Its silent shutter feature will amaze you, no matter whether you’re a beginner or a pro. The camera boasts a 24.2MP full frame back-illuminated stacked CMOS sensor and a burst shooting speed of 20 fps.
You will need to adjust the settings of your camera to use this beast for wildlife photography. It seems like a daunting task. You don’t have to worry, as we offer the best settings for Sony A9 wildlife photography to make it a little easier.
When you’re trying to master Sony a9 wildlife photography, it is a good idea to shoot in RAW mode. Low lighting conditions are a problem when shooting in the wild. This is why pushing the exposure higher is a good idea.
Sony a9 allows you to choose between Uncompressed or Compressed RAW. If you shoot in continuous mode, the best option is to choose the ‘Compressed’ option. The RAW files are smaller and clear the buffer faster. The burst could also be extended at full speed.
You don’t have to worry about color profiles (creative style settings) for JPGs as RAW mode is used.
Enable the APS-C mode
The Sony a9’s APS-C mode allows you to capture stunning images even from afar. You can be sure to get the best shots, regardless of whether you’re shooting a Flying Eagle or a running Hyena.
The APS-C mode captures images from the central part of the sensor. This is also where you can get a similar effect to a 1.5x crop. APS-C mode is a wise choice as cropping would reduce the resolution.
SteadyShot and Image stabilization are important tools when you want to capture perfect images with Sony a9 wildlife photography. Even a slight movement in your arms or hand can cause blurred images when you shoot with long focal lengths. It also allows you to avoid motion blur, and still get the desired image even if your subject is stationary.
The SteadyShot can still be active. However, you can view the stabilization in the EVF by half pressing the shutter button. This is a great way to frame your subject with a long focal length.
Setting the shutter speed
Experts agree that shutter speed should be equal to focal length for Sony a9 wildlife photography. If you have a 600mm lens, the shutter speed should be 1/600 or higher.
Although the rule can be helpful in some cases, it doesn’t account for the subject’s movement or the overall effect of image stabilization. It is recommended that you keep the shutter speed at 1500 if the subject is stationary or is moving slowly.
It is also advisable to increase the shutter speed if the subject is moving very fast.
Use a powerful lens
It is important to be able to photograph wildlife in adverse weather conditions. It is highly recommended to use the Sony FE 70 – 200mm f/4 OSS or FE70 -200mm f/2.8 GM OSS.
They are weather-resistant and have handy switches at the sides that allow you to control image focus and stabilization modes. The lenses come with two focus hold buttons.