They are everywhere (new Sony DSLRs)

sony-a850

Sony A850

Sony A500

Sony A500

Full text press release after the break:

Sony A850 press release

Full-frame DSLR shooting at a real-world price : New α850 with 24.6 megapixels and pro-style features

• Full-frame 24.6 effective megapixel ExmorTM CMOS sensor and dual BIONZ processors for detail-packed, low-noise images with high sensitivity up to ISO 6400 (with expanded ISO range)
• Bright optical glass pentaprism viewfinder with 98% coverage
• SteadyShot INSIDETM offers up to 4.0 steps anti-shake performance with all lenses
• Photo quality (921k dot) 3.0-inch Xtra Fine LCD
• Fast, high-accuracy 9-point AF with 10 focus assist points

The new DSLR-α850 from Sony offers serious photo enthusiasts a step up to the creative possibilities of full-frame imaging at a compelling price.

Ruggedly built for unflinching pro-style handling and performance, the α850 shares the same 24.6 megapixel sensor and virtually all features of the flagship DSLR-α900, introduced last year. Like its full-frame sibling, the α850 fully exploits the creative possibilities of the α family of lenses that includes premium full-frame optics from Carl Zeiss, plus five high-performance G Lens models.

At the heart of the α850 is a full frame 24.6 effective megapixel ExmorTM CMOS sensor that captures flawless, detail-packed images with vibrant, lifelike colours and fine textures.

The purity of high-resolution image data captured by the full-frame sensor is optimised by two-stage noise reduction in both analogue and digital domains. Noise reduction is first applied as the full-frame sensor converts light to electronic signals. Dual BIONZTM image engines process large amounts of digital data, applying finely-tuned noise reduction during image processing to deliver pictures with extremely high level of sharpness and minimal noise level. This combination of high native sensor resolution and powerful noise control techniques ensures superlative image quality, even at high sensitivity settings up to a maximum ISO 6400 (with expanded ISO range).

The camera’s optical glass pentaprism viewfinder aids accurate shot composition, offering an extremely bright view with minimal distortion and an approximate 98% field coverage.

Serious enthusiasts will also prize the camera’s fast, high-accuracy autofocus system that provides excellent framing freedom while making it easier to achieve optimum focus with moving subjects. The 9-point AF system is supplemented by 10 focus assist points to assist subject detection, improved out-of-focus detection to reduce focus hunting and a dedicated F2.8 sensor for enhanced AF accuracy with wide aperture lenses.

Shots can be viewed on the large, high contrast 3.0-inch Xtra Fine LCD that offers an exceptionally high resolution (921k dot) for critical evaluation - even outdoors or in bright ambient light.

For greater creative control, an Intelligent Preview function indicates the effects of exposure, white balance, and D-Range Optimiser adjustments prior to shooting. This Preview is invaluable when composing complex scenes that may typically combine multiple light sources with different colour temperatures.

Touching the Fn button switches the display to Quick Navi mode, allowing convenient one-handed adjustment of key shooting parameters. A secondary backlit LCD panel on the top of the camera body gives useful confirmation of major settings, even when the main LCD is turned off.

In common with all other DSLR cameras from Sony, the α850 features SteadyShot INSIDETM. This in-body optical stabilisation system delivers up to 4 steps of anti-shake correction with all compatible lenses, opening up even greater creative possibilities when shooting handheld.

Like its full-frame sibling, the α850 is ruggedly built for dependable performance in gruelling conditions with a high-tensile aluminium chassis and all-magnesium alloy body shell. Viewfinder, card slots, controls and other sensitive areas are protected from dust and moisture by rubber seals. In addition, an anti-dust system guards the full-frame sensor from the effects of dust entering the body during lens exchange.

The supplied high-capacity InfoLITHIUMTM rechargeable Battery Pack (NP-FM500H) delivers power for up to 880 shots (approx.) per charge. Battery levels can be monitored in precise 1% increments, cutting uncertainty about remaining shooting time.

The camera can be connected to your BRAVIATM or any HD TV (requires optional HDMI cable) for a big-screen view of your shots. On-screen image quality is optimised for superbly lifelike reproduction on BRAVIATM models supporting PhotoTV HD. On-screen playback can be controlled via an optional wireless remote commander (RMT-DSLR1).

The α850 is fully compatible with the range of official accessories by Sony for the flagship α900.

The choice of full-frame lenses to complement the α850 is enhanced with the new 28-75mm F2.8 SAM. This compact, easy-to-carry lens is ideal for photo enthusiasts looking to add a bright, general purpose zoom to their collection of full-frame optics. Delivering excellent imaging quality, this zoom offers a wide F2.8 aperture. Ideal for day-to-day shooting tasks, its bright maximum aperture makes the 28-75mm F2.8 SAM particularly valuable for interior scenes and available-light portraits.

Also, with Memory StickTM at the heart of the Sony alpha, you have every advantage. The advanced Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX (4GB, 8GB, 16GB or 32GB) is the perfect tool for continuous shooting mode, with the ideal combination of massive storage capacity and blisteringly fast operation. Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX 32GB will never miss the key shot because the number of pictures taken in 1 min is approx 160* photos (in RAW+JPEG/L (24M)).

Delivered with USB Adaptor, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX 32GB is ideal for users who want to transfer data in high speed: approx. 660[1] pictures in L (24M) size at RAW+JPEG mode in 26 minutes.

The DSLR-α850 full-frame digital SLR camera is available from September 2009 and the 28-75mm lens will be available from November 2009.

Sony A500 and A550 press release

Catch the moment in perfect detail with responsive new DSLR cameras from Sony : Easy-to-use α500 & α550 offer enhanced Live View shooting and superb image quality

• New 12.3/14.2 effective megapixel (α500/ α550) CMOS sensor and new enhanced BIONZ processor for detail-packed, low-noise images with high sensitivity up to ISO 12800
• Auto HDR mode for high dynamic range exposures
• High-speed continuous shooting up to 5fps (with optical viewfinder) and 7fps in Speed Priority mode (α550 only)
• Enhanced Quick AF Live View captures fast-moving action, with Face Detection for beautiful portraits
• Manual Focus Check Live View mode for precise, convenient adjustment of focus and composition
• 90º upward and 90º downward tilt-angle 3″ Xtra Fine LCD (α550) and intuitive new interface for clear, simple shooting
• Class-leading shooting stamina (1,000 shots - α500)
• HDMITM output and BRAVIATM Sync for control from TV remote

Two powerful, feature-packed DSLR cameras from Sony make it easier than ever to capture beautiful pictures, carefree family portraits, stunning holiday memories and action-packed scenes.

The DSLR-α500 (12.3 megapixels) and DSLR-α550 (14.2 megapixels) are packed with advanced Sony technology that combine the spontaneity and freedom of Live View shooting with generous possibilities to realise your creative vision.

At the heart of both cameras is a new ExmorTM CMOS sensor that ensures crisp low-noise images, packed with fine detail and vibrant colours. Sharing powerful on-chip noise reduction techniques with the full-frame DSLR-α900, this advanced sensor works with processing algorithms handled by the newly developed and high-speed BIONZTM engine to deliver premium images plus razor-sharp shooting responses. Dramatically reduced picture noise now allows super-sensitive shooting at up to ISO12800, allowing attractive results when shooting handheld in challenging situations like candlelit interiors.

Thanks to the powerful BIONZ image processing engine, Quick AF Live View now supports even speedier shooting responses with rapid, precise autofocus. This makes it easier than ever to capture beautifully relaxed portraits, dynamic action shots and more.

Powered by the BIONZ image processing engine, fast-moving action can now be captured effortlessly with faster continuous shooting speeds. Sustained shooting speeds of up to 4 fps can be achieved in Live View Mode, rising to 5 fps with the optical viewfinder. New Speed Priority mode on the DSLR-α550 raises the bar further still, shooting at an incredible 7 fps (with AF and AE setting maintained from the first frame ). It’s a powerful creative tool for capturing the nuances of a portrait subject’s changing expression or dynamic action sequences.

In a DSLR debut, Quick AF Live View now features Face Detection, prioritising AF on people’s faces and fine-tuning exposure/white balance settings for crisp, beautiful portraits with natural skin tones. Another DSLR first by Sony that’s already featured on many Cyber-shotTM models, Smile Shutter detects faces in Live View mode, automatically firing the shutter at just the right moment to capture happy, relaxed smiles.

A special new Manual Focus Check Live View mode assists with fine-tuning your composition. Low-noise images can be previewed directly from the CMOS sensor, allowing critical assessment of focus and fine detail, even in low light. The live image offers 100% field coverage, assisted by framing grid lines for precise composition. There’s also a selectable 7x/14x zoom function for a close-up confirmation of focus.

The α500 offers a crisp, high-contrast 3-inch Clear Photo LCD Plus screen with a tilt range for clear, comfortable composition and reviewing shots.

The α550 features a superb (921k dot) 3-inch Xtra Fine LCD screen for critical focusing and photo-quality viewing with class-leading colour, contrast and detailing. The screen tilts up or down over a 90º upward and 90º downward , allowing uncompromised ‘free-angle’ live view shooting in any position. An ambient light sensor automatically boosts LCD brightness for extra screen clarity when surrounding light levels are high while both cameras also feature a clear, bright optical viewfinder with wide 95% field coverage for framing and focusing as an alternative to live view shooting.

Operation of both cameras is brilliantly simple, thanks to a redesigned on-screen interface that provides easy access to functions and settings during live view operation. A unique Graphic Display gives a clear, intuitive indication of how shutter speed and aperture adjustments will affect the final image.

Creative options are broadened by new Auto HDR mode that captures a huge range of shadow and highlight detail in landscapes, interiors and other scenes. Previously accessible only to enthusiasts equipped with a tripod and image processing software, HDR (High Dynamic Range) is a specialist technique that combines two or more frames shot at different exposure settings. The α500 and α550 use powerful algorithms to combine and optimise two successive frames in only 2 seconds, correcting any misalignment between frames when shooting handheld, which is a Sony unique technology. The result is a single HDR image emulating the huge natural tonal range of human vision - with no PC or tripod needed.

The D-Range Optimiser featured in previous DSLR models has been enhanced for even better results with backlit portraits and other tricky high-contrast scenes. The powerful BIONZ engine now optimises image data in real time even in continuous shooting mode, processing brightness and contrast in individual areas of each exposure for balanced, natural looking results. Optimisation can also be selected manually from 5 processing levels.

A Smart Teleconvertor button instantly boosts image size by 1.4x or 2x to extend your camera’s zoom lens range further for frame-filling close-ups.

Like all DSLR cameras by Sony, both new models feature SteadyShotTM INSIDE, the powerful optical image stabiliser that cuts the effects of camera shake by up to 4 EV steps while shooting handheld with any lens.

After shooting, it’s easy to connect both cameras to your BRAVIATM television via HDMI (requires optional cable) for a stunning big-screen view of your shots. Compatible BRAVIATM models automatically switch to PhotoTV HD mode for optimised still image playback with incredible detail, colour and clarity. BRAVIA Sync lets you control image slideshows in comfort via your TV’s remote.

Both cameras let you capture even more incredible moments without the worry of running out of power. The InfoLITHIUMTM rechargeable battery pack (NP-FM500H) of the α500 allows up to 1000 shots (CIPA test, approx. figure) - the highest capacity of any α series digital SLR camera battery to date. The battery of the α550 delivers up to 950 shots from a single charge.

If you’re hungry for even more shooting stamina, the new VG-B50AM Vertical Control Grip holds up to two NP-FM500H batteries. This premium grip gives A500 users an incredible 2,000 shot maximum capacity (α550: 1,900 shots), with automatic switchover between batteries and accurate display of power remaining in % increments on the camera’s LCD. An additional shutter release and dual controls support comfortable, accurate shooting in either portrait or landscape positions.

Also, with Memory StickTM at the heart of the Sony alpha, you have every advantage. The advanced Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX (4GB, 8GB, 16GB or 32GB) is the perfect tool for continuous shooting mode, with the ideal combination of massive storage capacity and blisteringly fast operation. Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX 32GB will never miss the key shot because the number of pictures taken in 1 min is approx 270* photos (in RAW+JPEG/L (12M).Delivered with USB Adaptor, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo HX 32GB is ideal for users who want to transfer data in high speed: approx. 1700[1] pictures in L (12M) size at RAW+JPEG mode in 26 minutes.

The DSLR-α550 and DSLR-α500 digital SLR cameras are available from the end of October 2009.

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