Sony A300 Reviews & Resources

The 10.2 megapixel Sony A300 features a flip-out 2.7-inch swivel screen and live preview that retains the ability to autofocus with speed. The A300 features sensitivity up to ISO 3200 and feature burst modes of 3fps. The A300 was made available in April 2008 for $800 with a 18-70mm kit lens (now substantially less).

You can order the Sony A300 through Amazon via the following links to the product pages:

Sony A300 w/ 18-70mm lens

Sony A300 w/ 18-70mm & 55-200mm lenses

Reviews

Trusted Reviews

Image quality is pretty much identical to the A200, so no surprises there. The same 10.2-megapixel APS-C sensor has been used in the A100 and A200, as well as the Nikon D60 and D80, and it is a well-proven piece of kit.

PhotographyBLOG

The Sony A300 is certainly a fun camera to use, owing to its zippy Live View performance, tilting screen and advanced feature set. While plastic, it is well made, looking and feeling like it was built to last.

Photo Review

Despite some evidence of edge softening, resolution was retained right up to ISO 1600 and only declined slightly at ISO 3200, as shown in the graph below. Flare was negligible with the supplied lens and the test camera’s spot metering system provided correct exposures with strong backlighting.

Camera Labs

The Sony Alpha A300 is a feature-packed DSLR with a compelling price tag. With built-in stabilisation, Live View and a flip-out screen, it ticks the boxes of most new DSLR buyers. Sony’s fuss-free Live View is also arguably the best implementation yet for general consumers. It’s quick, quiet and offers uncompromised auto-focusing performance.

New York Times

The camera focuses quickly as you aim the lens, without ever blacking out the screen. When you press the shutter, the screen doesn’t go on-off-on, there’s no loud clacking, and there’s no baffling exhibition of mirror calisthenics inside the camera.

Engadget Hands-On Preview

. . . we’re here with a plethora of hands-on shots to prove that they’re the real deal. Since you already know the specs by now — 10.2 megapixel (a300) or 14.2 megapixel (a350) sensors, 2.7-inch screen, ISO up to 3200, and traditional CF slots — we’ll just let you get right to the eye candy below.

Press Release

SONY INTRODUCES TWO MAINSTREAM DSLR CAMERAS WITH UNIQUE “QUICK AF LIVE” VIEW SYSTEM

SAN DIEGO, Jan. 30, 2008 – Sony is bringing live-view shooting to its digital SLR camera line with today’s (alpha) DSLR-A350 camera and 10.2-megapixelintroduction of a 14.2-megapixel α (alpha) DSLR-A300 model. Both cameras feature new technologies that make picture taking faster, easier, and more familiar for first-time DSLR users.

Quick AF Live View System

They both offer Sony’s new “Quick AF Live View” technology so you can frame photos on the camera’s LCD without sacrificing auto-focusing speed common to other live-view systems.

Sony’s innovative Pentamirror Tilt mechanism directs light to a dedicated live view image sensor, enabling fast and responsive TTL phase-detection auto-focusing, even during live view.

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Eliminating the focus delay of other systems, the new models are equally responsive whether using live view or optical viewfinder.

With its two sensor design, Quick AF Live View can even continuously focus-track the subject and provide live view during burst shooting, helping you capture that special moment.

Taking further advantage of Quick AF Live View is the models’ variable angle 2.7-inch Clear Photo LCD ™ screen. This makes it easy to frame scenes from high or low positions difficult to reach when using an eye-level viewfinder.

With Live View and an adjustable LCD, the cameras do not need to be in front of the user’s face, allowing parents, for example, to maintain eye-contact when photographing their children.

“Mainstream users stepping up to DSLRs are looking for a similar experience to their point and shoot cameras, but without compromise in speed or performance” said Phil Lubell, director of marketing for digital cameras at Sony Electronics. “Quick AF Live View gives these new models a familiar shooting style without compromising speed – ideal for the growing market of first-time SLR users.”

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Exceptional Image Quality

The new models produce images with fine detail, rich tonality and vibrant color due to their APS-C CCD image sensors and BIONZ® processing engine. To aid shooting in low light, Super SteadyShot® image stabilization enables shutter speeds 2.5 to 3.5 steps slower than otherwise possible, with every compatible Minolta Maxxum® and Sony α (alpha) lens (sold separately) attached to the camera.

High sensitivity operation at ISO 1600 and 3200 and very low noise are made possible by the user-selectable high-ISO noise reduction features. Sony’s D-Range Optimizer delivers suitable tonality and exposures with rich shadow and highlight detail, even under high contrast situations.

Powerful Performance, Easy to Use

The DSLR-A300 model can shoot about three continuous frames per second and the DSLR-A350 model can shoot up to two-and-a-half continuous frames per second, when using the optical viewfinder. Both are powered by the Bionz processing engine and supplied InfoLITHIUMTM battery for fast start-up times, quick response and long battery life – up to 730 shots per full charge when using the optical viewfinder and up to 410 shots per full charge in live-view mode.

Both models feature lighter, slimmer bodies for easy handling; an improved user interface; an automatic pop-up flash; a comfortable camera grip with an easily accessible mode dial; an anti-dust system to keep the CCD image sensor clean for spot-free pictures; and JPEG and RAW file format support. Both have a slot for CompactFlash™ Type I/II media cards.

An adaptor for Memory Stick Duo™ media cards is also available for the cameras and sold separately.

The new DSLR-A300 and DSLR-A350 cameras are compatible with a range of accessories, including the ergonomic Sony VG-B30AM vertical grip. Also available as an option is the new Sony HVL-F42AM flash unit. It offers advanced features such as automatic white balance adjustment with color temperature information, adjustable bounce angles, ADI metering and wireless remote operation to suit the needs of most photographers.

Price and Availability
The DSLR-A300 kit with a DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 standard zoom lens will ship in April for about $800. The DSLR-A350 camera body will be available in March for about $800, and the DSLR-A350 kit with a DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 3.9x zoom lens will be available for about $900 at the same time. Both models will be available at sonystyle.com, Sony Style® retail stores (www.sonystyle.com/retail ), military base exchanges, and authorized dealers nationwide. Pre-orders begin online today at www.sonystyle.com/dslr.

[tags]sony, a300, review[/tags]

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Comments

  1. says

    The only reason anyone would want a darn A300 is if its Full Frame!!!! It could even be 4 frames per second with a frame limit and just under the A700 but if its just a step in between the A200 and A700… booooorrring! Sony is gonna blow it if they dont think of ways to smash the competition instead of float with it!

  2. says

    Sweet enough looking live view machine….with the A100, A200, A700, A300, A900 all to be on the scene soon, Canikon will start to feel the pressure.

    See A100 and A700 images, and intensive high ISO testing of the Sony A700 here:

    http://www.sonolta.com

    -Sonolta

  3. Jason says

    It takes more than two years to earn respect and even longer to build a reputation. That KM heritage is lost on newbys, so hope you’re not planning on that keeping you warm.

    I like what Sony is doing; aggressive marketing and all. That’s where there fat bank comes into play. When I see the photojournalists at major sporting events pack Sony gear I’ll entertain your rah rah “more power” blast. Until then Sean and Don “Sony Fanboy #1″ can take a back seat and watch how the true players continue to release features that actually work.

  4. Mark Cronin says

    The Sony A300 seems to be the best overall Sony alpha model for the masses to me. The sony a300 reviews seem to echo this?

    It’s like the A200 plus a little bit more, without going to the A700 and A350.

    I wonder if they made the A350 just so people can spend money. It’s amazing the raw images coming from the a200 and a300, there are .arws here:

    http://www.alphamountworld.com/reviews/sony-a300-review?page=0%2C10

    Obviously Nikon is using sony chips in their dslrs for good reason. Don’t tell the photo journalists that!

    take care

  5. says

    Sony Alpha 200 and 300 (I own one of each) – great, great cameras. I love ‘em. Easy, quick custom white balance, wireless flash (eat your heart out Cannon). Just a good functional camera.

  6. Aaron Underwood says

    If you pay attention to reviews and comments the sony alpha A300 is better then both the Cannon XSI and the Nikon D60 i think sony is a very good choice for an entry level DSLR.

  7. Mike Dempsey says

    I bought an A300 in Dec 08 for $599.99 at Best Buy which included a 75-300mm lens and have only take 1 out of focus picture with it out of over 500 pics. This is a darn good camera, really easy to use (especially for the beginner). Haven’t even started using all the features yet but I am sure I will not be disappointed.

    The only thing that bothered me is the shoe for the flash does not match my flash. I can buy an adapter for it but don’t know how it will perform.

    Here are some samples of a Sunday shoot I did.

    http://www.photoreflect.com/pr3/thumbpage.aspx?e=4388552

    Mike

  8. Ryan Cooper says

    For the price, probably the best semi-pro camera on the market. Beats the D60 hands down as well as gives xti’s a run for their money literally. Flip out screen combined with live view make impossible shots possible. Touch start auto focusing, forget about it, makes shots on the fly seem like you have all the time in the world. Stock lens being 18-70mm gives you the best bang for your buck. AF and Stabilization being in the body…etc. I could go on for hours

    10/10

  9. Kevin Hiatt says

    Bought Sony A300SLR from Jessops in the spring 2009 to replace my 28 year old 35mm SLR Practica. Easy to use for taking photos for the Imagine Group of which I am the Chairman.The only problem is that like all equipment you have to buy their equipment to fit most of the time. Very good photos,but auto can catch you out focusing on a closer item in the picture not what you were aiming for, but easy to correct whithout having to see results from the chemist. Taken more photos with A300 than I ever did with the 35mm as don’t have to load film in 36 photos to a roll.

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