Saturday, March 24, 2012

Sony Alpha A57 SLT 16MP Specification And Price


Max resolution4912 x 3264
Other resolutions4912 x 2760, 3568 x 2368, 3568 x 2000, 2448 x 1624, 2448 x 1376
Image ratio w:h3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels16.1 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors16.7 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ISOAuto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 16000 (25600 with boost)
White balance presets9
Custom white balanceYes (1)
Image stabilizationSensor-shift
Image stabilization notesSteadyShot Inside
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, Normal
Optics & Focus
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View

Digital zoomYes (2x Clear Image Zoom)
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points15
Lens mountSony/Minolta Alpha mount
Focal length multiplier1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3"
Screen dots921,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeXtra Fine TFT drive with TruBlack technology
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeElectronic
Viewfinder coverage100 %
Viewfinder magnification1.04×
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Aperture priorityYes
Shutter priorityYes
Manual exposure modeYes
Subject / scene modesYes
Built-in flashYes (Pop-up)
Flash range10 m (@ ISO 100)
External flashYes (Hot-shoe, Wireless)
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync, High Speed Sync, Rear Curtain, Fill-in, Wireless
Continuous driveYes (12 fps)
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 sec)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot

Exposure compensation±3 EV (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing(3 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes (3 frames, H/L selectable)
Videography features
  • MPEG-4
  • H.264

Resolutions1920 x 1080 (60p, 24p), 1440 x 1080 (30p), 640 x 480 (30 fps)
Videography notes1080p60 or 24 on NTSC models, 50p or 25p in PAL countries
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC/Memory Stick Pro Duo/ Pro-HG Duo
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (Mini Type C)
Remote controlYes (Optional)
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionRechargeable NP-FM500H battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)550
Weight (inc. batteries)618 g (1.36 lb / 21.80 oz)
Dimensions132 x 98 x 81 mm (5.2 x 3.86 x 3.19")
Other features
Orientation sensorYes

Price:    £690
The marquee features of the Alpha A57 are undoubtedly fast burst mode and the sensor, the same as that which also appears in the NEX-5N. At 16MP the resolution is the same at its predecessor, although it does allow for an expanded 100-16,000 ISO range.

The 12fps max burst rate is shot using the Tele-Zoom mode, which crops inward to either the 1.4x crop at 8.4MP or a 2x crop at 4MP. This acts in addition to the existing 1.5x magnification due to the APS-C sensor size. This means a 300mm lens attached when using the 4MP crop mode would have a 900mm equivalent focal length (in 35mm terms).

Compared to the Canon and Nikon equivalents, the A57's 12fps full speed burst mode is 3x faster than both the D5100 and EOS 600D.

The A57's movie mode also sees an upgrade. Able of recording at 1080p at either 25 or 50 frames per second, the camera also includes a mic input for using an external recording device.

The viewfinder, at 1,440k-dots, has a higher resolution than the A55 but relies on LCD technology rather than the OLED of the A77. Two modes are available, the first using the full 1,440k-dot resolution to display shot information outside of the preview, whereas the standard mode uses 1,253k-dots.

Also added is an object tracking AF mode, which detects moving colours or edges, alongside the standard face tracking. If a subject exits the frame the A57 can still maintain focus, so long as it re-enters within a second.

For those shooting portraiture there's an automatic crop mode, called Auto Portrait Framing, that produces a second image automatically having been reframed by the camera. There's also a digital zoom feature that allows for up to 5.5x magnification while maintaining the full 16MP resolution.

Although the Alpha A57 may not be the full-frame SLT model many of us were expecting, it still marks an important step in Sony's dedication to SLT technology.

Although, from a specs front, the Alpha A57 may seem like something of a standard update there are a fair few clever touches that add to the features list. We'll be interested to see how the Alpha A57 measures up against the competitor models when we test it in the near future.

The A57 will be available next month, but the RRP has yet to be confirmed although we expect it to be somewhere near the £690 price - the same as the A55's launch price.

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