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Sony unveils four new lenses

By dpreview staff on May 18, 2009 at 04:00 GMT

Sony has announced four new lenses to accompany its new Alpha models. Aimed squarely at the first-time DSLR owners it's done so much to attract, all feature inexpensive construction (including plastic mounts) and a new in-lens autofocus system designated SAM (which stands for Smooth Autofocus Motor). First up is a pair of new kit zooms (standard and telephoto), in the shape of the DT 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM and the DT 55-200mm F4-5.6 SAM. These are accompanied by a pair of primes; the DT 50mm F1.8 SAM and the DT 30mm F2.8 macro SAM. Prototypes of all four lenses were first shown at PMA earlier this year.

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Press Release:

SAN DIEGO, May 17, 2009 – Sony is making it easy for first-time digital SLR buyers to step up from point-and-shoot digital still cameras with the introduction today of three new easy-to-use α (alpha) cameras (models DSLR-A380, DSLR-A330 and DSLR-A230), four new lenses, a flash and accessories.

Systems, Lenses and Flash
Making it easier for first-time DSLR users to get started, the new Sony cameras come in camera-and-lens packages. In addition to the two new standard zoom and telephoto lenses that are offered with the camera bodies, the company introduced new portrait and macro lenses. These purpose-built lenses make it much easier to obtain professional-looking, creative results. 

Optimized for use with APS-C sized image sensors, these lenses feature a Smooth Autofocus Motor (SAM) that enables in-lens auto focus (AF) drive for smooth, quiet operation, and high optical performance in a compact size.

The DT 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6 standard zoom lens (model SAL-1855) incorporates aspherical and Extra-low Dispersion (ED) elements to provide an all purpose lens with outstanding image quality.  The DT 55-200mm F/4-5.6 telephoto zoom lens (model SAL-55200/2) features an ED glass element and helps bring distant subjects closer, ideal for capturing sports. Both the SAL-1855 and SAL-55200 lenses are available separately, or packaged as kits with the new cameras.

To make the benefits of portrait and macro photography easier and more accessible, Sony is introducing a DT 50mm F/1.8 portrait lens (model SAL-50F18) and DT 30mm F/2.8 (model SAL-30M28) macro lens.  The wide aperture SAL-50F18 lens helps users capture beautiful portraits with gently defocused backgrounds while the SAL-30M28 macro lens captures intricate close-ups. Both techniques are difficult to achieve with standard lenses. 

To help users take better shots with flash, Sony offers an affordable, compact external flash unit (model HVL-F20AM) that is simple to operate. Unlike a camera’s built-in flash, this external flash provides higher output (Guide Number 20), and enables users to bounce light off the ceiling to eliminate harsh shadows and achieve more even illumination when shooting indoors.

Pricing and Availability
Pre-orders will begin on May 18, 2009 at www.sonystyle.com/retail and at selected retailers nationwide. The cameras and a range of accessories will be available in July at Sony Style® retail stores (www.sonystyle.com/retail), at military base exchanges and at authorized dealers nationwide.

  • The SAL-1855 standard zoom lens will cost about $200.
  • The SAL-55200 telephoto zoom lens will cost about $230.
  • The SAL-50F18 portrait lens will cost about $150

Sony DT 2.8/30 Macro SAM lens

Sony DT 1.8/50 SAM lens

Sony 3.5-5.6/18-55 SAM lens

Sony DT 4-5.6/55-200 SAM lens

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