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Showing 1-10 of 37 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 51 reviews
on April 1, 2017
I've had this camera for several years now. It has done what I ask of it very well. I'm not a great photographer. I have an old Minotal Maxxum camera. Those were wonderful camera especially the first one. I had several lenses for that camera so Sony was the natural choice. If I could I might take off half a star for the not very good manual that comes with it and unfortunately the two books I 've found are even worse. It has taken me a while to get used to the menu system, but then my previous experience with digital cameras was a point and shoot. The camera still functions well, Some real hard core folks fuss about the auto focus speed but the auto focus works as fast I can doing it myself. If you're going on an all day shoot take a spare battery.

Pros
Very good camera with lots of pixels.
good low light
versatile
Lots of outstanding Minolta Maxxum lenses out there at very good prices. I just picked up a 100mm macro lens to shoot honey bee for pennies on the dollar.
Full manyal mode plus several program modes.

cons
poor manual
menu systme might be a little better.
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on December 20, 2012
I was unable to find this model locally, often finding it's siblings (A65 and A57), so I took a chance and ordered this based off what I saw from these two other models. I am satisfied with this camera so far, however I've only had it about a week so I have not had a chance to put it through it's paces. I was concerned about the grip, but this has not been a big issue for me even with my large hands. I do prefer to the grip of the A57 and A65 more, however I appreciate the smaller size of this model. I previously used micro four thirds equipment, so I am used to smaller equipment, this is not much bigger then my old Panasonic G1, however the lens mount sits farther out from the camera making the overall package bulkier. I like that the sensor used in this camera is the same one used in other more advanced models, I am a skilled photographer and I do not use many of the automated modes, scenes, etc. I'm not opposed to these, but I find that they often change settings that I can change myself since I am knowledgeable in how these affect the end result. I primarily shoot using Aperture or Shutter priority, or manual mode. I would like to have seen a couple custom modes to set up some different white balance settings, color modes, etc. But these are fairly easy to set up on the fly. There is a dedicated depth of field button on the front of the camera next to the lens which is a welcome feature for an entry level camera. There is also a button with a question mark on it on the back, when pushed it offers tips on taking pictures, I wish this was user definable, I don't need a how-to manual, but I would like a button to access the quality settings. The screen on the back of the camera is ok as far as the resolution for composing the shot, but the viewing angles are horrible, anything other then straight on viewing makes it difficult to see, not usually an issue for me as I use the viewfinder predominantly, but it would have been nice to have a little better screen. I am still undecided on this camera, I like the potential of this camera, however it has a lot of gimmicks that I will not find useful (panoramic, 3D, scenes, etc.) and admittedly I am not the target consumer for this camera, it is geared towards a new photographer that does not know much about the basics but still wants to take nice looking pictures, which I'm sure it can handle. I find that investing in camera bodies is a waste of money, and from that stand point this offers the same image quality that one can get from Sony's higher end models at a significant savings. I do not like the kit lens (18-55mm), it is mediocre in it's clarity and is too dark to be all that useful to me, I would have loved to be able to buy this camera bundled with the Sony 35mm F1.8 lens as this will be the lens I purchase to use primarily on this camera. This camera offers a lot of bang for the buck, in addition to some cheap gimmicks it also throws in some features which will be useful to advanced photographers looking to upgrade on the cheap.

To recap:

Pros:

High image quality for the money
Compact
Comfortable grip and well laid out buttons (I don't smash buttons accidentally when shooting)
A dedicated depth of field button
Support for Minolta lenses manufactured from the mid 1980's on
Plug for an external mic
Plug for a remote shutter release
Support for two different kinds of memory (SD card and Sony memory stick)

Cons:

No decent lens offered with the kit
Lots of gimmick features
Question mark button cannot be reprogrammed
No extra grip offered (a battery grip would be nice to have the option of adding)
Viewing angles for rear screen are poor
Proprietary hot shoe (Not a big deal to me, but worth noting)

UPDATE 2/18/2013

I've shot with this camera much more and I can say I'm happier with it now then when I originally wrote my review. The thing that stands out to me is that even at higher ISO's, the images are still quite usable. I previously used a handful of micro 4/3 cameras, and while I loved the size and especially the Panasonic 20mm lens, I found the images good but lacking. This is not the case with this camera, I feel like the images are pro quality, even if the camera is not. I have become used to the controls and don't find myself as encumbered by them, I still wish I could do something else with the question mark button and custom settings modes would be great to allow for switching to a set of commonly used parameters quickly, but overall I am happy with my purchase. Another thing to note is that I have added a couple older Minolta lenses to my kit and these work quite well. They use the older "screw drive" focus mechanism, but this does not seem to make them any slower or otherwise hinder their use, and surprisingly they are no noisier then the kit lens with it's built in motor. I am still impressed that this camera has the built in motor for these older screw focus lenses, this is something other manufacturers dropped in their cameras and therefore reduced the compatibility. As far as I'm aware, any Minolta lens with mount onto this thing and work without any major compromises, which is great because there is a lot of good old glass out there that can be had at a bargain price!
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on June 3, 2013
I really like this camera, though I don't have much to compare it too. I have a nice sony cybershot and a couple old film SLR cameras. My brother who had a canon 2Ti was pretty impressed with it and though it better than the canon, not better than his 5d mk 2, but that's not a real comparison. Wish it had more custom function buttons and a better directional button for when choosing an AF point. Seems sad that it's already discontinued but that's the world of technology. The lack of an IR sensor for a wireless remote is also a big let down but one I can compromise on. ISO is great and in camera HDR processing is a plus. The burst mode is pretty quick and produces decent pics. It's a great intro camera I believe and happy I went with it

update: The battery life is a big let down, will be picking up another one. Still really enjoy the 18-55 kit that came with mine. Added a decent hoya circular polarizer and got rid of the skylight filter I had on it. Also just picked up a tamron 70-300 and it is fantastic on this camera.
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on October 19, 2012
Great Sony camera. Still learning how to use the SLR made me want to buy the telephoto lens. I was in awe of the quick learning curve and the amazing pictures. The photos were beautiful, clear, and bright. No camera talk from me.
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on August 18, 2013
I love this camera. It's my first DSLR (DSLT). I have been mostly using it for video. It takes great 1080p AVCHD video as well as any professional camcorder. I'm impressed with the built in stereo mic, but equally impressed with the stereo microphone input jack that allows me to connect a shotgun mic. It's small, lite and easy to handle. Even with a 200mm lense, a dual mount bracket, (shotgun mic.), light, and lens hood; it's still light enough to mount on a decent consumer tripod.
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on June 12, 2013
You can not go wrong with this camera. I comparison shopped for weeks and found great models from Sony, Nikon, and Canon. I have used Sony digital cameras for years though, so I was already leaning toward Sony. I know they are expensive, and many times you are just paying for the name, but this is a quality camera I believe. The best part is that I owned an older Minolta 35mm camera with some zoom lenses and they fit this! So I can get some great close-ups using my old lenses that are compatible with this Sony. It's been on vacations with me and has not disappointed me yet. Now I've been keeping an eye out for more older Minolta lenses because you can pick up used ones pretty cheap. Image quality is top notch, has a quick response, and the pop out screen is useful.
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on April 4, 2013
I'm really enjoying this camera. I upgraded from Nikon D40 which I had for over 5 years, so the differences are obvious. Only thing that is a bit different and harder to get used to is the fact that through the eye hole you actually see a video and not a mirror image like I'm used to - BUT the benefit of that is that Sony lets you play with the different parameters (shutter speed, etc.) and actually shows you if you got it right before you snap a photo. That's nice because previously I've had to take a few shots before being sure I got the shutter speed or aperture right. Overall, I love it!
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on December 4, 2014
Easy to operate, beautiful photos. I use it for photographing room settings and gardens for publication and am pleased with the results.
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on May 25, 2013
I am very happy with this camera so far. I just wish there were some better flash options available. I bought this because I already had a Minolta Maxuum film camera and lenses. My Quantaray/Maxxum a-mount lenses work flawlessly with this camera.
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on December 14, 2012
SO THE HOLIDAYS WERE HERE, AGAIN, IN ANOTHER NEW ENGLAND TOWN. LIVING WITH-OUT A DIGITAL CAMERA WAS PAINFUL AND SOME WHAT UNPREDICTABLE. AS I WENT TO SCHOOL AS A DARK ROOM SPECIALIST, BUT NEVER FINISHED MY DEGREE. I AM THANKFUL FOR HAVING THIS CAMERA FALL INTO MY HANDS... LOVE LOVE LOVE IT..

Five stars for this wonderful device. Worth the money and the credit debt that i some how fell into because of this camera.
Where do I start?
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