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September 5, 2017

Sony A99 II – ISO Lab Testing: ISO 100 – 102,400 w/ 100% Crops

Hello there! In this article I wanted to share the Sony A99 II ISO Lab Testing for those interested in such testing… The Sony A99 II has a killer 42mp full frame sensor, so the ISO performance should be very similar to the A7r II. So lets find out shall we!!

I’m going to throw down all the full frame images first then the 100% Crops in ISO order so it flows better visually. So starting with ISO 100 all the way to ISO 102,400 in each set of images. The 100% Crops are ~900px, so no need to click those to view larger. The full frame images are ~1200px, so you can view those a little larger if you like by clicking on them. Really the 100% Crops should show you everything you need to see in my opinion, so just scroll down to see those, and then scroll up to see what the full frame images look like for reference.

At 100% Crop the images might look really noisy, but when zoomed out looking at the full images you will be surprised how good they look all the way up to 102,400! I was really impressed with the high ISO performance, especially after just reviewing the Sony A9 Here >> 

This first set of images are are raw files with no adjustments at all. Normally I add a medium tone curve for a little contrast, but in this case I wanted the images to be as flat as possible, so it’s a little easier to see the noise in the shadow areas…

For the colorchecker images towards the bottom however, I did add a medium ton curve though, just so you know.

My Sony A99 II Review is Now Up Here >>


Sony A99 II – ISO Testing in the Lab

Right around 51,200 you start to see the purple color shift creeping in from the corners and shadow areas…


100% Crops


Color Check via Gretagmacbeth Color Rendition Chart

The purpose of this test is to illustrate the color rendition at the different ISO levels. At the higher levels you will begin to see a shift is some colors, and this chart is perfect for a visual representation of that. For these colorchecker images I did add a medium tone curve for a little contrast. It helps bring out the color due to the raw file flatness, but has no effect on the noise really.


Closing Remarks

I think the results speak for themselves in this quick article, but I will break down for you what I am seeing here. Basically the Sony A99 II does a solid job in the ISO department in my opinion. It starts to lose some noticeable detail at ISO 12,800, and then at ISO 25,600 the color starts to go. At ISO 102,400 the color loss and noise is very apparent, but overall still pretty good considering it’s 42mp. So when zoomed out the images still look pretty darn good even at the very high ISO levels. You can see in the top right corner of the full frame images, how the purple color caste starts to creep in the shadow areas.

Looking at the colorchecker images you can see how at ISO 51,200 some changes are visible. At ISO 102,400 you can clearly see the changes, but still not bad at all considering it’s ISO 102,400 in my opinion. In fact the color holds up way better than expected!

It’s interesting to me how the red r on the Sony A7r loses it’s color at ISO 102,400 when looking at the 100% Crops, but in the colorchecker images the red looks really good. Not really sure what that is about, but worth noting… Perhaps, because the area of color itself is so large in comparison is all I can think of.

At the end of the day I think the A99 II puts out some respectable High ISO abilities even with the translucent mirror, which does cost a little bit when compared to the mirrorless Sony A7r II which I reviewed Here >>  It’s really not that much of a difference though visually from what I can see anyway in the real world. I have the Auto ISO Max set to 25,600 on the A99 II for now, and have not had a need to go any higher other than this lab testing of course…

I hope you guys got something out of this article and please stay tuned for some Zoo images that I took yesterday with the killer Sony 70-400mm f/4-5.6 G SSM II Lens, and Sony A99 II… I also want to put together a quick HDR Efex Pro video tutorial using some A99 II images I got from the Basha Kill the other day, so watch out for that! Then I have the Sony 70-400mm f/4-5.6 G SSM II Lens aperture run I need to show you guys, plus some action shots I got of the kids playing… Lots more to come!

Please let me know what you think in the comments area below, because I love reading your thoughts, and it helps me refine my articles to help make them the best they can be for you 😉


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  1. Basil

    I get similar results from my A99II. I go up to ISO6400, without any hesitation, and if I get better at noise reduction in post-processing my raw images, I’d probably go higher.

  2. Hello,

    thank you for this detailed test. I shoot with two A99ii up to 12800 in churches. I’m impressed of the Image Quality paired with the other specs.


    • Jay

      Hello Rene’ and thanks for the comments 🙂 I too am impressed with the results, especially with the translucent mirror light loss situation. In the real world it does not have that much of an effect at the end of the day….

      Thanks again,

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