New Sony A55 Camera Reviews

Written by 杨 道波 Saturday, 27 November 2010 10:17

Lori Grunin from CNET reviewed the Sony A55: "Expensive and probably a bit large for the typical point-and-shoot upgrader, the Sony Alpha SLT-A55V nevertheless delivers the performance and photo quality boost those shooters are expecting."

There is also a very long and detailed review at Letsgodigital

Sony Alpha 55 reflex camera review : Sony’s presence on the digital SLR market is remarkable. It is remarkable because of its stormy conquest of market shares with a small assortment of DSLR cameras and just as much of a loss of market shares due to the lack of a true evolution in the succeeding models. This peak and decline is followed by a very successful entry to the so-called system camera market with the Sony NEX 5 and NEX 3 cameras. This was a bit of a chaotic beginning, but now promises a lot of potential.

Sony A55 camera with Translucent Mirror Technology

This made for a surprising introduction of the Sony Alpha 55, or rather the Sony SLT-A55 camera. It is a new camera that remarkably uses an outdated technology. Namely, from the Canon Pellix, used for the first time in 1965 by Canon. The Sony Alpha 55 uses this technology and gives it the name Translucent Mirror Technology. This technology allows Sony to successfully overcome the obstacle of focusing during Live View or Video mode.

Sony Alpha 55 SLT camera
This also makes Sony the last camera manufacturer to introduce video in its DSLR-type camera. The Sony Alpha 55 is not really a true DSLR because it lacks a moving mirror, but a SLT (Single Lens Translucent) camera. The Sony A55’s fixed mirror allows about 70% light in while the remaining 30% is reflected to the phase detection AF sensor. This makes it possible to continually focus, while shooting video or while in Live View. An additional advantage is the speed of continual photography. A mere 10 frames per second is possible with an activated AF, as the mirror no longer has to move. The electronic viewfinder eliminates that problem of a viewfinder that is too dark, as the majority of the light is no longer reflected.

Sony Alpha 55 camera design
What is immediately noticeable is the difference in format between the standard Alpha DSLR camera and the Sony A55. Sony has managed to keep the dimensions compact. Although the handgrip has clearly become smaller, the Sony Alpha 55 is more stable to hold. This makes for pleasant photography, and lightweight and easy to carry. The back of the camera is equipped with a 3-inch, partly foldable, high-resolution screen. It is too bad that the display does not fold out sideways, so that you can take full advantage of such a screen.

Sony Alpha 55 electronic viewfinder
The Sony Alpha 55’s electronic viewfinder displays a lot of information about settings and exposure. It is of excellent quality and the desired amount of information can be installed via the display button. Now and again a ‘ghosting’ effect can be observed, which are sort of rainbow colors, but apparently not everyone can see it.

Sony A55 review and DIWA Labs test

The images are saved onto an SD /Memory Stick Duo format memory card, which are both available at different prices and in a variety of versions. Moreover, the newest generation of SDXC memory card is also supported. The Li-Ion battery is the same one that is used for the Sony NEX cameras . We have had the Sony Alpha 55 camera around for a while after this sample was extensively tested on technical aspects in our DIWA test lab. The practice experiences and technical tests form a balanced test. Our findings can be read in the following Sony Alpha 55 review.

Although the Sony Alpha 55 is not a true DSLR camera in terms of technology, the camera has an equivalent control. The only true differences worth mentioning are the electronic viewfinder and the Translucent Mirror technology. If you already have experience with an Alpha DSLR or competing model, you will be familiar with it immediately. Some buttons have been moved. The ISO button has been moved back and is now part of the multi-control button. The dynamic range has gained more importance as it now has its own button on the top, next to the shutter release button.

Sony SLT-A55 supports video recording
Actually, the biggest difference with the standard Alpha DSLR cameras is video support. Remarkably, Sony was late to introduce it; actually, it was the last one of the DSLR manufacturers. This often led to disappointing reactions to Alpha introductions that lacked video recording support. That disappointment was not only observable in the consumer, but the patience of their own employees was also put to the test. The demand for video functionality was obviously present. With the arrival of the Sony NEX (system camera) and the new generation of Sony Alpha DSLR cameras, Sony is up to date once again.

Sony Alpha 55 offers many setting possibilities
The large color screen and the electronic viewfinder have a more important role in the Sony Alpha 55’s control. The screens are equivalent in the amount of information that is displayed, so that switching between screens happens flawlessly. The camera’s menu can be navigated quickly via the multi-control button.

Switching between aperture and shutter speed settings in the M mode (manual setting) is done with the exposure compensation button. The Sony SLT-A55 only has one control dial, which induced the choice of this solution. The special video button starts a video recording directly. It is pretty handy that this button doe not directly lie under one of the fingers, but close by on top of the camera. This prevents the accidental starting of a video recording.

Control of the Sony A55 system camera
The control of the Sony Alpha 55 is fairly straightforward. Consulting the manual is not necessary in order to take a first shot. The automatic mode makes it very easy, and if you want to take it a step further, you only have to turn the dial to try out an extra-creative setting. The Sony A55 is a true consumer’s camera, user-friendliness and easy control have high priority. The camera is comfortable to handle and due to its compact dimensions, the Sony Alpha 55 can easily be taken with you.

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Last Updated on Saturday, 27 November 2010 10:54