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Just Posted: Sony Alpha SLT-A57 review

By dpreview staff on Sep 14, 2012 at 00:00 GMT

Just Posted: Our review of the Sony Alpha SLT-A57. The A57 replaces the A55 which co-launched Sony's translucent fixed-mirror SLT lineup. While the A57 retains the same 16MP resolution of its predecessor, it inherits an impressive host of features from more recent NEX and SLT models. A 10fps full resolution burst mode, manual focus 'peaking' and class-leading 1080p60 video headline the specs of a beginner-friendly DSLR that, on paper, stacks up very well against the competition. At a street price of $700 with kit lens, is the A57 a compelling alternative for users looking for an affordable and versatile DSLR? Read our in-depth review to find out.

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Comments

Total comments: 235
12
Gesture
By Gesture (Sep 14, 2012)

Why not hire a few folks away from Olympus to learn how to tame those JPEGs?

3 upvotes
sadwitch
By sadwitch (Sep 14, 2012)

hmm i would not consider buying a camera if it only has good RAW but mediocre jpegs. It's like buying so much into technology only to find you're better off finishing it yourself.

2 upvotes
Undah
By Undah (Sep 14, 2012)

I feel that way about cameras in general.

I don't feel that way about the a57. Very happy with jpgs from this cam, and only shoot RAW nowadays for super low light with mixed lighting, for more control over wb.

2 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Sep 14, 2012)

Undah please don't say stuff like that. The Jpeg processing is behind the competition in many respects, overhanded NR with overagressive sharpening artefacts. You'd welcome the improvements if Sony gave them to you. Sure you may be happy but surely you could see room for improvement for others than yourself?

C

4 upvotes
Undah
By Undah (Sep 14, 2012)

I stand by what I wrote. But if there is improvement to be made, who would turn that down? I'm all for it!

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Sep 14, 2012)

Wow. Unexpected. Long time in making, and you managed to finish it in the middle of all those announcements. Wow.

2 upvotes
Peiasdf
By Peiasdf (Sep 14, 2012)

Was thinking that exactly. If all time to finish a review, DP picked the most action packed week of the last four year.

2 upvotes
qwertyasdf
By qwertyasdf (Sep 14, 2012)

Well...yea...this review is kind of anti-climatic.

0 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Sep 14, 2012)

Great, what a way to give DPR motivation to complete reviews. Ask for it over and over again and when they complete it in the busiest time of the year for them, you say it's anti-climatic. What are your stats as an armchair quarterback I wonder.

Carl

3 upvotes
qwertyasdf
By qwertyasdf (Sep 14, 2012)

Nothing wrong with Dpreview, it's just this years Photokina is too great.

1 upvote
Photoviewer
By Photoviewer (Sep 14, 2012)

Thanks for the review. Apprciate it. A57 is designed to be a Gold award. Nice comera.

0 upvotes
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (Sep 14, 2012)

The editors must be some mistake with the gold award. Since when is Nikon orCanon spelt S-O-N-Y?

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Sep 14, 2012)

i see what you did there. Funny thing is that of the 17 cameras ever given gold awards, 5 are made by Sony. That's versus 5 Canons, 3 Nikons, 1 Pentax and 2 Olympuses (oh and a Nokia phone). But hey, we're not going to let our message be dictated by fact-checkers huh?

27 upvotes
FTW
By FTW (Sep 14, 2012)

at least Nikon would not exist the way it does, without S-O-N-Y

1 upvote
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Sep 14, 2012)

Whoops, Simon smoked you.

Facts hurt.

C

1 upvote
Rocker44
By Rocker44 (Sep 14, 2012)

Oh Craig, I believe you were just 'owned'.

FTW, your point is?

1 upvote
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (Sep 14, 2012)

I am afraid so in an attempt to mock the perceived bias of dpreview. My apologies to everyone, even DPReview.

0 upvotes
Craig from Nevada
By Craig from Nevada (Sep 14, 2012)

BTW--congratulations to Sony for their SLT cameras.--recipient for 3 of the 5 gold awards. (a55, a57 and a65).

0 upvotes
riveredger
By riveredger (Sep 14, 2012)

Sony is on a roll lately. Nice job!

0 upvotes
pricklypear
By pricklypear (Sep 14, 2012)

I knew it. 78, Gold but 78 Silver for another Sony.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Sep 14, 2012)

Pardon?

5 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Sep 14, 2012)

are you complaining about the A57's gold award or the lack of gold award on some other camera? Hard to keep track sometimes

5 upvotes
jkrumm
By jkrumm (Sep 14, 2012)

Clearly a conspiracy somewhere.

1 upvote
Mssimo
By Mssimo (Sep 14, 2012)

This is really BS..how come it did not get platinum or at the very least myrrh. ;) Great review

4 upvotes
pricklypear
By pricklypear (Sep 14, 2012)

No complaints here. I'll let you know how good the RX1 is.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
peevee1
By peevee1 (Sep 14, 2012)

It is hard to understand DPR sometimes. A Gold Award goes to a camera which barely matches it's 2-y/o competitor (D5100) and a bunch other cameras with the same sensor thanks to the inherently stupid idea of the light-robbing translucent mirror.

While the camera besting not only everything of it's size by huge margin, but actually reaching the IQ of cameras with kit lenses of 3-4 size classes higher, including that same A57, is only given Silver?

I have only one reasonable explanation.

2 upvotes
nandadevieast
By nandadevieast (Sep 14, 2012)

Dpreview has started airbrushing the edges that a product has and its getting harder to distinguish between various cameras of similar class. What about saying, the ISOs are better, worse or similar to D7000 or the latest rebel...the new comparison tools expect the reader to be a reviewer and everyone is confused at the end of the day, trying to figure out which coin looks cleaner. Let the reviews have a clear POV and a judgment. If the reader can't decide what's better for her, even after going through the entire review, what's the point?

0 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Sep 14, 2012)

If the reader can't decide what's better for her, even after going through the entire review, maybe she's worrying too much about technical IQ differences she's never going to see in real world shooting.

11 upvotes
FTW
By FTW (Sep 14, 2012)

A camera as the RX1 can be as good as nothing else, with a fixed lens it suits few and does not match the interests of most. Sony seems to be specialized now to make cameras for the few while the majority stays on the waiting list. No wonder they write red numbers and are in difficulty at the moment. The RX1 is another proof that Sony likes to play, not to sell. If the image quality is as good as the one from D600, there is nothing to be excited about anyway, except the size and concept of that gadget. But, when we consider the pricing of Sony's and Nikon's latest toys, the RX1 was not the only joke that was told during this last week.

Comment edited 47 seconds after posting
1 upvote
zxaar
By zxaar (Sep 14, 2012)

@FTW camera market is filled with cameras that cater to most. You also seem to think that sony makes cameras for few and not for most , but you ginore the fact that sony offers FF, APC, interchangable, fix lenses plust plethura of other compacts. Also they have strong presence in video cameras too. Offering a camera in almost every walk is hardly catering to few. RX1 may be not for you, but it may be for many who do not want to buy what you like.

1 upvote
Plastek
By Plastek (Sep 14, 2012)

""A Gold Award goes to a camera which barely matches it's 2-y/o competitor (D5100)"" - Ha... hahahahahahahaha hahahahaha hahahahahah ahahahahahahahahaha!!!!
Barely matches? Obviously you never hold these two cameras in hands.

Comment edited 26 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
loranfrfr
By loranfrfr (Sep 14, 2012)

Thanks for the review! I think this is the one (and first) for me

Funny that this camera is compared several times to the T3i during the review, but is only considered "entry level", versus "medium"l for the T3i (and therefore, their score is not directly comparable, right?). I was wondering if it does not make more sense to have the a37 considered entry level, and a57 medium.

0 upvotes
mugupo
By mugupo (Sep 14, 2012)

The article did said the rating is based on its class, if you comparison, all other camera in the class got low 70.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 235
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