Sony Announces Game Changing Electronic Viewfinder For Mirrorless Cameras

(new 0.5-type OLED Microdisplay ECX339A)

The debate over whether a mirrorless ILC is better than a DSLR camera rages on with mirrorless making up ground in the argument each day. One of the biggest complaints of longtime shooters against mirrorless ILCs is the viewfinder. In a traditional DSLR when you look through the viewfinder you're seeing directly out of the lens through reflections from mirrors. So, you're seeing exactly what the sensor is going to see and there's no lag or image distortion. You don't even need any power to look through them. Mirrorless cameras, on the other hand, are exactly that, they're mirrorless. Because there's no way to get a live reflection out of the lens those types of cameras have an electronic viewfinder.

You're still seeing the exact image the lens is with an electronic viewfinder, but the quality of that image is determined by an OLED screen that's only half an inch wide. As great as the new Sony A9 and A7R III are, some people just can't get past the quality of the EVF. Sony never one to rest on their laurels have just announced that they're upgrading their EVF in a big way.

sony evf compar.png
(New product UXGA on Left and older QVGA on right)

Their new EVF, the ECX339A is an OLED Microdisplay featuring UXGA (1600 x 1200 resolution) which is the highest class for a 0.5-type screen. Sony claims:

"This product achieves the world's smallest pixel pitch of 6.3μm by leveraging Sony's OLED display technology and miniaturization technology, enabling a resolution 1.6x higher than the previous model*1. By employing a new drive circuit design that operates on half the voltage of the previous model*1, the new product achieves the same level of low-power operation as its predecessor but with much higher resolution. When paired with Sony's original driving system, a frame rate up to 240 fps is supported--double that of previous product."

Here's a sample of it compared to the previous model.

(new EVF on left VS old EVF on the right)

The interesting part about all of this is that Sony's OLED tech was so far ahead of the competitors that many of Sony's competitors buy their EVF from Sony to put in their own cameras. It will be interesting to see if they're willing to share this tech with other companies so soon, or if they keep it for themselves for a bit.

There's no news as to when or what product Sony first implements this technology into but the rumored A7 SIII could be a great candidate. It also might be enough of a difference in image quality to entice DSLR shooters to switch over.

Source: SONY