Sony's custom gridline feature just made school photos a whole lot easier (for the photographer, at least!)

Sony gridline feature for A7 IV
(Image credit: Sony)

Sony has just unveiled a feature that could potentially transform the landscape of photography. The tech giant is set to release a Custom Gridline License starting with the Sony A7 IV in March 2024, with plans to extend the innovation to more camera bodies in the future.

Users of one of the best Sony cameras will be able to import up to four personalized gridlines, giving photographers more creative control and precision. These gridlines can be seamlessly displayed on both the electronic viewfinder and the rear LCD monitor during shooting, and will help deliver a new level of consistency and professionalism in image capture. 

This innovative new feature will benefit a wide range of professionals but it will be especially useful for "volume photographers" who shoot portraits at schools, graduations, on cruise ships or at shopping malls. These photographers routinely capture similarly-composed images, and this will enable them to do so without the need for a reference image. It’s quick and easy to import gridlines, and they can be replaced when needed and even colorized to make them easier to see. 

Sony gridline feature ensures that school portrait can all be consistently framed (Image credit: Sony)

"With a focus to improve both the consistency and quality of school photography, this advancement is a great foundation for a platform geared for volume photographers across the globe," says Nic Davison, director of photography at Strawbridge Studios.

Sony has shown unprecedented commitment and support to the industry and this useful new feature could revolutionize the volume photography industry – especially if other camera brands such as Canon and Nikon start rolling out similar features. [Although this is something that has been offered for years on Canon DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, via the popular Magic Lantern software – Ed.] 

The flexibility of the custom gridlines enables users to not only create unique compositions but also use them as partially-filled transparency masks. Beyond school and sports photography, Sony envisions applications in various industries including theme parks, nature photography, ID photography, dentistry, and CG photography.

This first-of-its-kind license will be available for $149 (roughly £117 / AU$224)  through the Upgrade and License Management Suite at Sony's official website in spring 2024. Sony hopes that this innovative custom gridline feature will not only improve the work efficiency of photographers but also ignite a new wave of creativity across diverse industries. Prepare to witness photography like never before.

Why not check out the best tripods for photography – they're another handy tool for capturing consistent photos.

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Hannah Rooke
Staff Writer

Having studied Journalism and Public Relations at the University of the West of England Hannah developed a love for photography through a module on photojournalism. She specializes in Portrait, Fashion and lifestyle photography but has more recently branched out in the world of stylized product photography. For the last 3 years Hannah has worked at Wex Photo Video as a Senior Sales Assistant using her experience and knowledge of cameras to help people buy the equipment that is right for them. With 5 years experience working with studio lighting, Hannah has run many successful workshops teaching people how to use different lighting setups.