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(Pocket-lint) - We've long been expecting a Sony Alpha A7000 to replace 2010's NEX-7, but Sony has other plans, instead announcing the A6300. But it doesn't scrimp on the features at any level.

Touting the "world's fastest autofocus" at just 0.05-seconds - although it will depend on conditions, which lens you're using and so on - Sony is keen to push itself ahead of the competition (Fujifilm claims a 0.06-second time, while Panasonic a 0.07-second time in its similar system cameras).

But it's not just fast, the new 4D Focus autofocus system consists of a whopping 425 phase-detection AF points that cover almost the entire field of view. The A6300 can "activate a large number of AF points surrounding a subject and intelligently adjust them in accordance with the subject’s motion", according to Sony.

Under the hood there's a newly developed 24.2-megapixel APS-C sensor which can capture stills or - and in-keeping with Sony's ultra-high definition drive - shoot 4K video. It doesn't crop to capture 4K either, using the Super 35mm format (i.e. the whole sensor) with no pixel binning to oversample the captured information for best results.

The official press release claims the A6300 can shoot at 11 frames per second with continuous autofocus, dipping to 8fps when using the LCD screen or viewfinder. As the camera is all-digital, meaning all previews run either through the screen or viewfinder, that will probably sound rather perplexing. It's because the 11fps option is Sony's "High-Speed" shooting option which causes the scene to black out as you're shooting.

The built-in viewfinder is an OLED panel with 2.4m-dots for optimum resolution, which refreshes at 120fps for optimum clarity, while the rear LCD screen is mounted on a tilt-angle bracket so waist-level and other shooting opportunities are possible.

The A6300 accepts Sony E-mount lenses, but is the sole APS-C model in the company's lineup that can accept A-mount lenses with full autofocus compatibility via the Sony LA-EA3 adapter (the full-frame A7 II series can do the same).

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Elsewhere there's Wi-Fi for sharing images from camera via the Sony PlayMemories app, with NFC compatibility to easily sync with an equipped smartphone.

No word on UK pricing at the moment, but the European price of €1,250 body-only pitches the A6300 directly against the likes of the Olympus Pen F, Fujifilm X-Pro2 and Panasonic GX8. Looks like it's in with a good shout too. 

Writing by Mike Lowe. Originally published on 3 February 2016.