STANDOUT FEATURE: Continuous phase-detection AF for stills and video, thanks to Sony Translucent Mirror Technology.
Estimated Street Price: $599 (with 18-55mm Ć’/3.5-5.6 zoom)
Sony’s newest Translucent Mirror Technology (TMT) model, the SLT-A58 features a new 20.1-megapixel Sony Exmor APS HD CMOS image sensor and improved Bionz processing engine, with ISOs from 100-16,000. Super SteadyShot Inside sensor-shift stabilization works with any lens, while 3-shot Auto HDR provides more detail from shadows through highlights.
Sony’s TMT technology employs a fixed, semitranslucent mirror in place of the conventional DSLR moving mirror. This enables the camera’s quick phase-detection AF system to function in live-view operation, which means thatâ€”unlike with conventional DSLRsâ€”you get quick, accurate continuous AF for moving subjects, for both still and video shooting. It also allows Sony to do away with the bulky, complex SLR viewfinder, replacing it with a high-resolution OLED eye-level electronic viewfinder, which lets you see the effects of white balance, exposure compensation, aperture, ISO and Picture Effects as you compose, not just after you shoot. There’s also a 2.7-inch tilting LCD monitor.
The SLT-A58 is quick, able to shoot full-res images at 5 fps and 5-megapixel images at 8 fps, all with continuous phase-detection AF. A new Lock-On AF feature adjusts the AF frame size based on subject characteristics to improve the in-focus rate. Also new is the Object Framing feature, which combines Face Detection, By Pixel Super Resolution technology and the Rule of Thirds to create an "optimally framed" image in portrait or landscape format and save it along with the original image.
Video features include 1080 full HD at 60i or 24p in AVCHD format, with stereo sound via a built-in microphoneâ€”all with full-time continuous phase-detection AF.