Home Cameras SLRs Is It Time To Go Full-Frame?
Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Is It Time To Go Full-Frame?

New models and dropping prices put the benefits of full-frame in the hands of more photographers

Labels: CamerasDSLRs
This Article Features Photo Zoom
With the TMT system, the Sony SLT-A99 has an OLED Tru-Finder instead of a typical DSLR optical viewfinder; that's the same unit used in the SLT-A77—a really good one that permits eye-level viewing for video, as well as still shooting. A 3.0-inch, 1229K-dot LCD monitor tilts in almost any direction for easy odd-angle shooting.

The rugged, compact body (5.6x4.4x3.1 inches, 25.8 ounces) is sealed against dust and moisture (although the manual says not to use the camera in the rain). The shutter is rated at 200,000 cycles. You can use SD/SDHC/SDXC and Sony Memory Stick PRO/PRO-HG Duo media.

SONY CYBER-SHOT

So, you want the benefits of full-frame, but you don't want to lug around a big DSLR? Sony's Cyber-shot DSC-RX1 is a "pocket" camera with the same 24.3-megapixel, full-frame sensor that's in the SLT-A99 (and the same $2,799 list price), yet it measures just 4.5x2.6x2.7 inches and weighs only 16 ounces, definitely the smallest full-frame digital camera.

It can shoot full-resolution images at 5 fps (2.5 fps with AFS), JPEG or 14-bit RAW, and saves them on Memory Stick PRO Duo or SD/SDHC/SDXC media. Despite the tiny body, there's a 3.0-inch, 1229K-dot LCD monitor and a built-in flash unit. A mode dial, an exposure-compensation dial and a focus-mode dial make setting those items straightforward, quick and simple.


The built-in Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 35mm ƒ/2 lens focuses from 9.4 inches to infinity in normal mode and 5.5 to 11.4 inches in macro mode. Normal ISO range is 100-25,600 (expandable down to 50 and with Multi-Shot NR up to 102,400). The RX1 can do 1080 full HD video at 60p, 60i and 24p with stereo sound via a built-in or an optional external microphone.

A Multi-Interface Shoe atop the camera accepts an optional, more powerful external flash or eye-level EVF. Sweep Panorama, Auto HDR, SteadyShot image stabilization and a digital level gauge add versatility.

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