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Sony's new A7 II full-frame mirrorless camera comes to the US on December 9th

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It won't be long before you'll be able to get your hands on Sony's recently-announced A7 II full-frame mirrorless camera: the electronics company announced today that it will arrive in the US on December 9th starting at $1699. That price will get you just the camera body itself, but Sony is also offering a kit with a 28-70 f3.5-5.6 OSS lens for $1999. Sony says that eager customers can place preorders for the new camera starting today, though the orders won't actually ship until December 9th.

The A7 II improves on its ground-breaking predecessor in a number of ways, even though it still has the same 24-megapixel sensor. Sony has added a 5-axis image stabilization system that works with any lens you mount to the body, including old manual lenses via adapters, and provides up to 4.5 stops of compensation. The autofocus system, which was one of our biggest complaints with the first generation, is now said to be 30 percent faster and have 50 percent better tracking ability. The camera also features a redesigned grip and more magnesium alloy in its construction.

The A7 II will be priced at $1699, or $1999 with a lens

In addition to launching the A7 II, Sony is also dropping the prices of other cameras in the A7 family. The original A7 can now be purchased body-only for $1299, or as a kit with one lens for $1599. The high-resolution A7R is now priced at $2099 for the body, while the high-sensitivity A7S is still $2499.

Though Sony introduced the first A7 just about one year ago, no other camera maker has been able to cram such a large sensor in a similarly compact camera. The A7 has become popular among photographers that use older manual lenses for its compact size and great image quality, and there are many adapters available to mount virtually anything to it. With the improvements coming in the A7 II, Sony stands to attract even more photographers to the dream of a compact camera with a full-frame sensor.