Sony's Alpha DSLR-A300: the camera that links you and your subject. For first-time DSLR users, Sony combines superb 10.2-megapixel quality, a high-quality DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 standard zoom lens, and Live Preview in a large, tilting 2.7-inch LCD monitor for point-and-shoot simplicity. You'll have super-quick AF response, 3 fps continuous shooting while you see your subject in the viewfinder, and high sensitivity (ISO 3200) for great low-light shots. What's more, you get simple controls, Creative Style settings and in-camera Super SteadyShot image stabilization that work with every Sony, Carl Zeiss and legacy Minolta a-mount lens. Stamina power for up to 740 shots, Auto Pop-up Flash and many more features make DSLR model an excellent choice for your favorite new hobby.
Alpha DSLR-A300 Highlights
10.2-megapixel Super HAD CCD Superb image quality gives you great DSLR shots right from the start, with a large APS-size CCD imager developed by Sony to expand dynamic range, and minimize noise more effectively for clear, sharp photos even at high sensitivity setting (up to ISO 3200).
Live Preview of your subject The DSLR-A300’s Live Preview mode links you and your subject on a large 2.7-inch LCD screen, for a familiar point-and-shoot style -- with super-quick AF response and accurate exposure control to help you catch the perfect moment. In Live Preview mode, the camera bypasses the optical pentaprism mirror to create a live "eye-to-eye" view of loved ones, children, pets and fast-changing scenes.
Tiltable 2.7-inch Clear Photo LCD Plus screen A large built-in screen with 2-way angle tilt provides a sharp, clear view of your subject and tilts up or down for low-angle or high-angle monitoring in situations where you want a child-level or overhead shot.
Continuous shooting while viewing The DSLR-A300 lets you shoot continuously at up to 3 frames per second while you see your subject in the viewfinder2, so you never lose track of the action. In JPEG mode, you can shoot up to the limit of your flash memory card; in RAW Burst Mode you can capture up to 6 shots, with intelligent buffer management to allow more shots to be captured without waiting for the buffer to clear.
Smart teleconverter 2x zoom At the touch of a button you can zoom in electronically on your subject, reproducing pixels on a 1:1 basis with no degradation in picture quality. One touch zooms in at 1.4X, the second touch advances to 2X zoom -- creating the 35mm equivalent of a 200mm telephoto effect with the DSLR-A300’s standard 18-70mm zoom lens.
Expanded ISO sensitivity A broad sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200 enables the DSLR-A300 to capture beautiful color images even in very dim light -- with High ISO Noise Reduction technology that reduces picture noise artifacts at high-sensitivity ISO 1600 and ISO 3200 settings by eliminating noise from RAW data after analog-to-digital conversion.
Super SteadyShot in-camera image stabilization Because image stabilization is built into the DSLR-A300, every lens benefits by an advantage of from 2.5 to 3.5 exposure steps. This allows you to shoot effectively with minimum blur even in low light without flash -- or adjust exposure control for smaller lens aperture, to increase depth of field and bring both foreground and background into sharp focus.
Bionz image processor The "brain" of the Alpha DSLR-A300 is the advanced Sony Bionz Image Processor, using hardware-based Large Scale Integrated (LSI) circuitry to enhance images with rich tonal reproduction, improved white balance and exposure control, and expanded D-Range Optimizer capabilities. With 2-channel data transfer from CCD to processor, your camera can also respond faster.
1200-zone evaluative metering Exposure information from the image sensor dedicated to Live View is divided into 1200 zones of luminance and RGB color information. In addition D-Range Optimizer technology contributes to judge the scene and then determine the optimum exposure to reproduce images with a more natural look.
Dynamic Range Optimizer To improve results with backlit subjects and recover details hidden in shadows or lost in glare, the DSLR-A300 provides Dynamic Range Optimizer at two levels: Normal DRO, to improve detail using standard gamma curves for fast shot-to-shot response time, or Advanced DRO, to adjust dynamic range area-by-area for the greatest precision.
Anti-Dust technology Changing lenses in a DSLR can allow dust to enter the camera -- so to keep the CCD imager cleaner for better pictures, the DSLR-A300 utilizes both static-free anti-dust coating on the CCD filter and anti-dust vibration that automatically shakes the CCD to dislodge dust each time the camera is shut off.
Auto Pop-up flash The camera flash automatically pops up and fires when needed, to help first-time DSLR photographers shoot more effectively. Auto Pop-up works in Auto mode and some scene selection modes; Flash is cancelled in Landscape, Sport or Sunset modes and in "Flash Off" position on the Exposure Mode dial.
Eye-Start autofocus system It begins precision autofocus adjustments the moment you raise the camera to your eye -- so unlike some DSLR cameras that don’t start focusing until the shutter button is half-pressed, the Sony DSLR-A300 never slows down your ability to catch fast action.
9-point center cross AF sensor A fast focus motor and improved focus control help bring images into sharp definition more quickly, with predictive focus control that automatically calculates the position of a fast-moving subject.
Scene Selection modes Along with auto exposure, the DSLR-A300 gives you scene selection modes to optimize camera performance for Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports, Sunset and Night Portrait/Night View situations.
Creative Style Settings To express your creativity and personal taste, you can adjust contrast, saturation and sharpness settings for any of 8 finishing styles -- including Standard, Vivid, Portrait, Landscape, Night View, Sunset, B&W and Adobe RGB modes.
Index and Slide Show Display To quickly review your photos, the DSLR-A300 can display 4, 9 or 25-frame index views -- or present automatic slide shows with fade-in/fade-out effect.
High-resolution thumbnails for PhotoTV HD viewing The DSLR-A300 automatically creates high-resolution thumbnail images for viewing on Sony’s BRAVIA HDTV in optimized PhotoTV HD mode, with image format adjustable for standard 3:2 or widescreen 16:9 display.
Function Guide Display On-screen menus are intuitive and easy to use -- and a simple Camera Function Display can be activated and operated with one hand using the "Fn" (Function) button and controller button to adjust Flash mode, Autofocus mode, White Balance, Metering mode, AF area and D-Range Optimizer.
Stamina Battery Power In optical viewfinder mode, you can take up to 750 shots3 on a fully charged NP-FM500H InfoLithium battery -- and you’ll be able to see about how much power remains in percentage increments, so you can keep shooting in confidence.
High-capacity media options For conveniently storing and sharing your images, the DSLR-A300 accepts CompactFlash Type I/II media and optional Memory Stick Pro Duo media.
AOptional advanced lenses and system accessories Sony’s Alpha system gives you everything you need to expand your creativity in DSLR photography: precision Sony DT zoom lenses and specialty lenses, Sony "G" Series lenses with advanced motorized autofocusing, amazingly bright Carl Zeiss lens designs, professional-quality flash units, and over 16 million Minolta a-mount lenses sold worldwide.
Stellar for the price
I bought this camera at Circuit City's going out of business liquidation sale for $480 to capture my first family vacation to Puerto Rico. During our 8-days in P.R. we shot over 1500 photos on beaches, rain forest, resorts, restaurants, driving down the road, etc. The only accessories used were a standard UV filter and high speed 4GB CF card.
- Exceptional Battery life. Took close to 800 photos over three days before battery needed replacement.
- Very intuitive menu. My wife, who has never used a SLR or DSLR was able to take great photos with this camera (menu setup also makes it easy to teach)
- Tilting live view screen. Nice feature if you want to avoid bending down to take pictures of the kids or get some low angle shots. Also nice to take pictures over obstacles (walls at El Morro fort)
- Compatible with Playstation 3. I just plugged the camera in to my PS3's USB port and was able to upload the photos into the PS3 hard drive... which brings me to the next point
-- Absolutely stunning photo quality! After uploading the photos to my PS3, I viewed them full screen on my 65' Mitsubishi HDTV (1080p, connected via HDMI cable). The results are stunning. Clear, vibrant colors (all photos shot at 10mp.) I can even zoom in another 50% and the photos still look good. We're talking the equivalent of a 31x56 inch photo!
- Great instruction manual. I wasn't expecting the instruction manual to provide a crash course in photography, well done.
- The flash is mounted low and creates a shadow when shooting on objects closer than a few feet
- 10mp means really large files and slow transfer times. But that should be expected...
- LCD: Doesn't sit flush with the back of the camera... This would be a great improvement.
I highly recommend this camera to those new to DSLR's. Just make sure you budget for all the gear to go with it (good protective case, cleaning kit, UV filter (cheap investment that will save your lenses, CF card.)
It's like a toy
I bought this and returned it for a Nikon D90. Poor quality and it felt like a toy compared to the Nikon D90. Don't waste your time or money. Go with Nikon or Canon.
Very pleased with this DSLR camera
I spent two months reading reviews and looking at the sample pictures taken with various cameras posted on various websites. At first I got caught up in all the specs of different models and the technical aspects of the descriptions. The more I read the more I was inclined to purchase a high end camera and lens. But, I kept saying to myself, "Do you really have to spend $2,000-3,000 to get a good picture?" I kept looking at the sample pictures between cameras and decided not to spend 2x or 3x more for a picture that is a little better. In the end, I am glad that I purchased a Sony A300 with the kit and telephoto lens for $600. I did purchase an additional lens, the Sony DT 18-200mm f3.5 zoom (used $250). That is lens I use the most. I really like that lens and the results I get with it and the A300. For me it came down to value, liveview, and image stabilization within the camera itself.
I have used the camera for two months and continue to learn its features. Overall, I am happy with the results, the quality pictures. The mistakes I make in failing to get 'the shot' rest more with me than the camera. Some reviewers stated that good photographs depend more on the photographer than the equipment. I believe that statement. So I'll keep my money in the bank, thank you. I will continue to use my small P&S and superzooms when I don't want to carry something as big as a DSLR around.