Last year Popular Photography called the Sony SLT-a55 the Camera of the Year. With praise like that, I couldn’t help but be intrigued. Since then, my plate has been pretty full but I still wanted to get my hands on one to see what all the fuss was about. Well I recently got my wish and am now kicking the tires on a shiny new a55 with lots of lenses to boot.
So what’s so cool about the a55? Well, starting with the basics, it sports a 16.2MP APS-C sensor and ISO that ranges from 100 to 12800. That’s pretty standard stuff these days. Not standard is the 10 frame per second burst rate, translucent mirror, electronic viewfinder, phase detection autofocus in movie mode (1080p), sweep panorama, auto HDR mode, built-in GPS, and more. Of course they had me at 10 frames per second.
I’m not using this camera to write another book. It’s purely to satisfy my curiosity about this new hybrid technology. But now that I have been using it for a little bit, I am really coming around to some of the advances that Sony has brought to the DSLR market. To make things even more interesting, Sony just announced their newest SLT camera last week, the a77. While still an APS-C sensor camera, the a77 has taken all of the techno-coolness of the a55 and improved upon it to make a serious contendor in the pro-sumer level market.
I’ll be taking the a55 with me to Las Vegas next week for Photoshop World to give it a more serious workout. I’m going to be shooting in different conditions including some landscape work in the Valley of Fire, plenty of interior stuff in and around the convention center, and maybe some night shots and HDR on the strip.
Look for a more in-depth review sometime in the next few weeks.