Blending a proven DSLR, 10.2MP sensor, and cool technology.
Highest image quality for price.
Accepts KM lenses.
Dust removal system.
ISO only up to 1600.
Self-timer turns off after one shot.
Who's This For?
Any photographer looking for awesome image quality and an image-stabilized digital SLR at a decent price. Also for Konica Minolta fans who want to keep using their lenses.
The Competitive Set
Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT
($685, street, body only)
We've drawn comparisons between the A100 and the Canon EOS 30D, but it's really priced to compete with the 8MP EOS Digital Rebel XT. In addition to its 10.2MP CCD's extra resolution, the A100 has a much larger LCD monitor than the XT, plus built-in image stabilization, a dust-removal system for the CCD, and an eye-activated AF sensor. The XT gets credit for its smaller size, lighter weight, faster focusing system, and better noise control at ISO 1600, plus a much wider selection of lenses and flash accessories.
Olympus Evolt E-330
($950, street, body only)
Both have dust removal systems for their sensors, but the ultrasonic technology on the Olympus Evolt E-330 may have the edge. Its live LCD preview makes it a winner for shooting macro and remotely. But the Alpha 100's superior image quality, faster and more sensitive AF system, and built-in image stabilization make up the difference. One final distinction is lenses-which the Evolt E-330 has more of than the A100.
Sony Alpha 100 Vital Statistics
Imaging: 10.2MP (effective) CCD sensor captures 10MP images (3872x 2592 pixels) with 12 bits/color in RAW mode. Storage: CF Type I/II or MS Duo (adapter included) cards. Stores RAW, JPEG, RAW + JPEG. Burst rate: 3 fps continuous JPEG, or up to 6 RAW. AF system: 9 selectable AF zones with center cross-type sensor. Single-shot AF, and continuous AF with motion tracking. Tested sensitive down to EV -1 (at ISO 100). Shutter speeds: 1/4000 to 30 sec plus B (in 1 /3-EV increments). Metering: 40-segment honeycomb-pattern SPC metering with evaluative metering, center- weighted, and spotmetering. EV 1-20 (at ISO 100). ISO range: 80-1600 (in 1 EV increments). Flash: Built-in pop-up unit with multiflash control, GN 12 (ISO 100, meters), covers angle of view of 18mm lens. X-sync at 1/160 sec. Viewfinder: Eye-level, fixed pentaprism. LCD: 2.5-in. TFT with approx. 230,000-pixel resolution. Output: Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and video. Battery: Rechargeable Li-ion NP-FM55H. Size/weight: 5.25x3.75x2.8 in., 1.3 lbs with card and batteries. Estimated street price: $900, body only. $999 with 18-70mm f/3.5-5.6 macro. Includes Picture Motion Browser for Windows, Image Data Converter SR for OS X. For info: www.sonystyle.com; 877-865-7669.
Accuracy: 94% (Excellent)
Magnification: 0.86X (Excellent)