Imagine a scenario where you come back from a trip with hundreds of stunning shots stored on your Sony camera. But before you can transfer them to your PC, they get accidentally deleted.

Is It Possible To Recover Data From a Sony Digital Camera?

As mentioned above, the photos stored on your Sony camera’s SD card can get deleted or lost for several reasons. However, the damage doesn’t have to be permanent as there are several ways to recover your files depending on how you lost them. The table below highlights a few common causes of data loss and how you can undo the damage:

Data Loss ReasonDescriptionSolution
Accidental deletionYou mistakenly delete important images and videosLook for the images in the recycle bin or use data recovery software
A problem occurs while transferring files from the camera to PCThe data transfer gets interrupted before completionYour photos might still be in the camera storage. Retry the action.
Accidental SD card formatYou accidentally formatted your SD cardUse data recovery software
Firmware corruptionYour camera firmware gets corrupted during an updateUse data recovery software to scan your SD card and recover missing files
Virus or malwareYou connected the camera to an infected PCFiles that got deleted by the virus can be recovered by using data recovery software
Physical damageThe camera or the SD card is brokenDepending on the level of damage, you may attempt a recovery using data recovery software
SD card becomes RAWSD card file system gets corruptedData recovery software can recover files in the RAW format
SD card not visible in explorerYour computer doesn’t recognize the SD cardTry to assign a drive letter to your SD card
Files not visible in explorerFiles cannot be accessed by your PCTry the attrib command or use data recovery software

As you might have noticed from the table above, reliable data recovery software can be a photographer’s best friend. And the best part about data recovery software is that it works on any camera regardless of the model. So, if you have a Sony Alpha, a6000, Cybershot, or any DSLR camera, you can put these methods to use to recover deleted photos from an SD card.

How to Recover Deleted Photos From an SD card or a Sony Camera?

In this section, we will highlight the step-by-step process of how you can retrieve deleted pictures from a Sony camera. We have chosen two of the best third-party tools to help you out with data recovery, but the methods will be more or less the same for any given software. Let’s begin.

Method #1: By Using Disk Drill

Disk Drill is one of the leading names when it comes to recovering data from any type of storage. It is a free SD card recovery software that features an easy-to-understand user interface and a simple yet effective data recovery procedure that makes it ideal for people who have no prior data recovery experience.

Apart from recovering data from Sony SD cards, Disk Drill can also recover data from formatted SD cards of any brand and also from other devices like USB drives, external and internal hard drives, and SSDs.
  1. Download Disk Drill from the official website. Once the download is complete, install and launch the application.launch disk drill
  2. Pull the card out of your Sony camera and insert it into your PC. Now open Disk Drill and on the home screen, click on Drive Backup located on the left-hand side.disk drill drive backup
  3. A list of all your partitions and connected drives will show up on your screen. Here, select the memory card you want to recover and click on Byte-to-Byte Backup.select sd card to recover
  4. A dialogue box will appear on your screen where you can rename the backup file and select the destination folder. Once you’re all set, click on OK to proceed.select recovery location and click ok
  5. Be patient as Disk Drill creates a backup of your drive. The time may vary depending on the size of your drive.creating byte to byte backup
  6. Once the process is complete, head to the destination folder where you saved the backup. You will find a folder with a “.dmg” extension.disk image created
    This folder is a byte-to-byte copy of your original drive, and you can interact with it as you would with a physical drive. Naturally, you can use this disk image for data recovery using Disk Drill.
  7. Now, go to the Disk Drill homepage and click on Data Recovery on the left-hand side of your screen. Then click on the ‘three-dot icon’ on the right-hand side of your screen, and click on Attach disk imageattact disk image
  8. Now, select the backup disk image you’ve just created and click on Open.mount disk image to disk drill
  9. It will appear under a new category called Mounted Images. Select it and click on Search for lost data.Select your Sony camera SD Image card
  10. Disk Drill will take a moment to complete the scan based on your SD card’s storage capacity. After the scan is complete, click on Review found items.review found items of your SONY camera
  11. In the next window, you can sort all the files Disk Drill has found based on type by selecting the file type on the left sidebar.sort files by type left sidebar
  12. You can also use the search bar to filter files by name. If you only want to see recoverable photos from your Sony camera’s SD card, you can narrow down your search results by searching for “.ARW” (Sony Alpha Raw extension) in the search bar.search files by name
  13. Disk Drill also displays the recovery chances of every file next to its name.recovery chances scale disk drill
  14. If you have a lot of photos in the list of recoverable files and you only want to recover a specific photo, you can find out the one you are looking for using the preview feature that can even display Sony Camera’s RAW images and videos. To do that, hover your mouse over an image and click on the eye icon that appears.preview raw image disk drill
  15. Now select the images you want to recover using the checkboxes on the left side of the image name and click on Recover.select the files you want to recover
  16. Select a location to store the recovered images and click on OK.select recovery location and click ok

Method #2: By Using Remo Recover

Remo Recover is another data recovery software that’s popular among photographers. Similar to how Disk Drill works, Remo Recover also boasts a straightforward user interface, which means you won’t have to get professional help in order to recover deleted files from an SD card. Here’s how to get started with this software:

  1. Download Remo Recover from the official website on your Windows PC.download remo recover
  2. Go to your Downloads folder, navigate to remo-recover-windows and run it.open remo windows
  3. You will be greeted by the Remo Recover setup wizard. Follow the on-screen prompts to finish setting up the application and launch it.launch remo recover
  4. Once on the Remo Recover app home screen, look for your Sony SD card and click on Scan.select drive to recover
  5. On the next screen, you will find all the files present on your SD card.select recovered files
  6. Select the files you want to recover and click on Save.save recovered files
  7. Alternatively, you can opt for a Deep Scan if all the files are not visible after the initial scan.deep scan remo recover
  8. Once you’ve highlighted all the files you want to recover, select a landing destination for them and hit Save.save recovery session file
  9. Once you’re done, the files from the recovery session will be saved in your desired location.recovered data saved

Can I Restore Data From a Sony Camera Connected Directly To My PC?

A short answer to this question would be “no”. That’s because data recovery software will be unable to read the files from an SD card while it’s plugged into the camera. It is due to the Media Transfer Protocol (MTP) as it does not allow files to be transferred automatically from a portable device to your PC in this case.

Therefore, you’ll have to eject the SD card from your camera, plug it in an SD card reader and connect it to your computer. Only then will the data recovery software on your PC be able to access the photos and videos stored on your memory card.

As for deleted video files from Sony cameras (including Sony Handycam), you can refer to our guide on recovering deleted videos from SD cards.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s take a look at a few commonly asked questions related to recovering deleted photos from a Sony camera.

Wrap Up

If you’re a photographer, it can be a nightmare to see all your hard work get deleted from your camera, and it can happen because of a plethora of reasons. However, you don’t have to stay anxious about losing your camera roll permanently as it is very easy to get them back even after a format. Data recovery software such as Disk Drill and Remo Recovery can become an extremely useful tool in the arsenal of a photographer.