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Labels: CamerasBuyers Guide

1. There’s no Live View on the 3.0-inch, 921K-pixel Xtra Fine LCD screen, but an Intelligent Preview mode allows you to review and set proper RAW exposures. 2. Dual memory slots are provided for your choice of CF or Memory Stick cards—or both! 3. The pentaprism viewfinder offers expansive 100% optical coverage of a scene for detailed composition.

Sony DSLR A900

LIST PRICE: $2,699

Even two years after its initial release, the Sony DSLR-A900 is still resolution champion in its class with a 24.6-megapixel, full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor. This is the same sensor that’s found in the $8,000 Nikon D3X in a body that’s available at less than $3,000. The A900 has much more to offer besides just a lot of resolution. Dual BIONZ image processing produces a 5 fps burst rate for up to 13 RAW images and approximately 25 compressed cRAW images or more than 100 large Fine JPEGs. The Dynamic Range Optimizer (DRO) feature boasts two automatic modes and five levels of user-selectable levels for boosting exposure sensitivity in five selectable stops. This allows you to capture detail in both the highlights and shadows of a scene with a single exposure.

The AF system includes 9 center dual cross-type focus points (for optimizing focus with any variety of patterns) with 10 assist points to minimize lost focus during movement. The A900 also performs A/D conversion at the chip level and then again digitally for dual noise reduction without sacrificing sharpness. SteadyShot Sensor-shift image stabilization is located within the camera for between 2.5 and 4 stops of blur reduction, and Sony’s decision to include image stabilization within the camera body saves photographers money in the long run by reducing lens-manufacturing costs. Sony is, in fact, the only company with a full-frame camera to do so.

The Quick Navi gives access to 11 frequently used settings like exposure compensation, ISO, DRO, image size, white balance and more. It’s quickly accessible via the Fn button. A few of the other bells and whistles include wireless flash control, PhotoTV HD viewing via the direct HDMI output, battery performance of nearly 900 images on a single charge, and anti-dust technology with both static-free anti-dust coating on the filter and anti-dust vibration that removes debris by shaking the sensor. List Price: $2,699.

STANDOUT FEATURE: The 35mm full-frame, 24.6-megapixel sensor of the A900 produces very large images with a lot of resolution, measuring in at 6048x4032 pixels.

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