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Sony Alpha A580 review

Dennis Hissink
Photokina report
Tuesday 31st, August 2010
Posted by: Dennis Hissink

Review Photokina 2010 - There is an interesting development occurring in the Sony camera division. While last year we could only choose between Cybershot and Alpha DSLR cameras, the choices have been significantly extended with only two new types of cameras. First of all, of course the very compact NEX system cameras that are very quickly becoming a sales hit. Secondly, the Sony Alpha A55 and A33 cameras with Translucent Mirror technology, a new type of camera with interchangeable lens, but now with an electronic viewfinder and translucent, fixed mirror. In fact, it is no longer a real ‘reflex’. With the introduction of the Sony Alpha A580, the traditional DSLR is equipped with the most recent technology.

Sony Alpha A580

Sony Alpha A580 review
The new Sony Alpha A580 SLR camera is based on the previous generation of Sony Alpha digital cameras, but has overcome a couple of hindrances that were becoming quite a nuisance in the past year. Sony still did not have an Alpha DSLR camera with video function, which was quite striking for a camcorder specialist. Even within the Sony division people were becoming impatient, especially as there was audible demand and expectation from the consumers. The fact that Sony found the available video technology too inferior to integrate and that they were busy developing an optimal technology was not really getting through.

Sony Alpha A580

Sony Alpha A580 Digital SLR camera
With the arrival of the Sony Alpha A580, an end has come to the missing video function. Sony has equipped the Alpha A580 with the new APS HD CMOS sensor of 16.2 Megapixels, and therefore takes advantage of all the possibilities that this sensor has to offer in combination with the powerful BIONZ processor. A high resolution, high picture quality, and faster image processing. We think that this is an ideal combination. A function that we have run into previously in the NEX system cameras, is the so-called Sweep Panorama mode. In this mode it is possible to take a fantastic panorama photo, by literally making a fluid sweeping movement. If you are already a lucky owner of a compatible 3D HD television, then you can also display these photos in 3D. It does demand a different form of composition-making, as you do have to consider subjects that have depth, but once you have gotten into this habit, the effect is outstanding.

Sony Alpha A580

Sony Alpha A580 video in HD
Action photographers can get their kicks with the Sony Alpha A580. With an image speed of 7 frames per second with full resolution, it is possible to optimally freeze fast-moving objects and children playing. Additionally, the Sony Alpha A580 is equipped with a renewed AF-system. This system is made up of a 15-point autofocus system and face detection. Such an AF-system is also found in the new Sony Alpha A55 and A33 cameras. The Sony Alpha A580, however, does actually have a traditional mirror that also folds upwards during photography and video recording. It is thus not possible to continuously get a live preview in the viewfinder, as the mirror blocks the view.

Sony Alpha A580

Sony Alpha A580 review
Next to the standard Memory Stick Pro support, the well-known SD-platform memory cards are also supported. SDXC support is new; it is a memory card with an impressive storage capacity. At this moment, cards are available with a capacity of 48 and 64 GBs, and in each upcoming year this will be doubled and end up as a maximum storage capacity of 2TB!! Additionally, the transfer speed will be drastically increased in the near future, so that there are even more application possibilities imaginable.

Sony Alpha A580

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