Sony is expanding its (Alpha) digital SLR system with the introduction of the DSLR-A700 camera, which is aimed at the photo enthusiasts or serious photo hobbyist.
The DSLR-A700 utilizes Sony’s new 12.2 megapixel Exmor CMOS sensor and Bionz processing engine. The new model incorporates Super SteadyShot Inside image stabilization in the camera body and is compatible with most Minolta Maxxum mount lenses in addition to Sony lenses.
A newly developed 11 point AF auto-focus system uses a center dual cross sensor comprised of two horizontal and two vertical line sensors for exceptional AF precision. An F/2.8 line sensor leverages the brightness of fast aperture lenses for even greater precision.
Sony’s Dynamic Range Optimizer (DRO) function has been updated on this model so users can choose the desired level of detail recovered in areas of shadow. The advanced mode offers the option of five levels of user selectable correction; additionally, DRO bracketing creates three images from a single capture with three different levels of DRO.
Other features of the new camera include a maximum shutter speed of 1/8,000 of a second, large 3-inch LCD, continuous shooting up to five frames per second in JPEG fine or standard mode; the ability to control the camera from a compatible PC via USB with the supplied remote capture application; and extensive personalization options that allow users to store frequently used settings and functions; and separate media card slots for Memory Stick Duo and CompactFlash Type I/II.
“Discerning photo enthusiasts will be impressed with the rugged construction and outstanding performance of the A700, said Phil Lubell, director of marketing for digital cameras at Sony Electronics. “We also expect that this new camera will re-define the post-capture experience with HDMI output for high-quality playback of images on high-definition televisions.”
The new camera features fourteen creative styles, including night view, autumn leaves or vivid, which can be selected to enhance images. These effects can then be fine-tuned by customizing contrast, sharpness, zone matching and other parameters.
The A700 features an HDMI output for connection to HDTV sets, putting a high-resolution spin on the conventional photo slideshow. When connected to a Sony BRAVIA LCD HDTV, photos are optimized for viewing with the new “PhotoTV HD” mode. This mode brings the look of actual printed photography to the television, reproducing high-quality digital photos by fine-tuning such image parameters as sharpness, gradation and color specifically for photographs.
The camera will be introduced with two new lenses, bringing Sony’s lens and teleconverter catalog up to 23. The new lenses include the DT 16-105 mm f.3.5 – 5.6, which will be supplied as a standard kit lens; and the DT 18 – 250 mm f3.5 – 6.3 lens. Sony also plans to introduce a 70 -300 mm f4.5 – 5.6 SSM G telephoto lens featuring super sonic wave motor auto focus drive system for smooth auto focusing in Spring 2008. Accessories include a new vertical grip.