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Sony Alpha A700 – officialy

DSLR News author: admin 09.07.2007 1

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Only a year after Sony had presented his first dslr digital camera Alpha DSLR-A100, Sony releases new high end dslr body under the name Alpha DSLR-A700. Sony did not created Alpha system from a scratch, they had acquired Konica-Minolta, so all Sony’s dslr models are based on Minolta’s long experience in producing SLR cameras.

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New Alpha A700 is not coming as a successor of the A100, but as a successor of Minolta 7D semi professional DSLR body. It’s interesting that the A700 is a totally new camera it doesnt share any component with first Sony’s DSLR. If previous released model has attract amateurs that were searching for more control over the photo process, in this body everything is upgraded and polished to attract more serious users that will use new A700 everyday as a professional tool.List of specs for A700 is quite impressive. First starting from totally new Sony’s APS-C sized CMOS imaging sensor with 12.2 mega-pixels, while entry level A100 is using CCD. New sensor should produce lower amount of color noise at higher ISO sensitivity values and put Sony A700 side to side with new Nikon D300.

Sony has great experience in producing imaging sensors almost ever other sold digital camera implements some of the Sony’s sensor. But still they had problems to design appropriate image processor that will compile with great image sensor and can provide fast and good images. A700 has a new version of the BIONZ, Sony’s image processor optimized to work with CMOS used. Operating speed is increased, also now it has two stage noise reduction system implemented. Fast processor in combination with fast sensor in the end means that new A700 is able to capture up to 5 frames per second.

Auto-focusing system had been totally redesigned and made from scratch. New system has 11 focusing points, and should produce faster and much more precise focus.

Shutter has also been redesigned, now it’s made from composite materials allowing it to offer shutter speeds up to 1/8000 sec, materials used shout not only make shutter faster but more durable. Life cycle should be about 100,000 exposures.

Sony’s SuperSteadyShot in body optical stabilization had a revision, so now they claim that you will get up to 4 stops advantage.

New Sony’s A700 is coming packed in a Aluminium-Magnesium body, apparently it’s built to survive everyday work at hostile environments. Body is not waterproof – but it is sealed and weatherproof, resulting less opportunity for dust and moisture to penetrate the camera body and to damage important sensitive parts of a camera.

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The A700 features a 3.0” TFT monitor with 922,000 pixels, appears to be the same unit used on Nikon’s new D300. Same as the A100, A700 doesn’t have status LCD, so the main LCD is used for all status informations resulting in the end that the battery last much less that you will expect. Also it was a bit surprising that Sony’s new body doesn’t have the live preview ability – to take photos using only LCD and not viewfinder. I don’t thing that anybody who will buy digital camera in this class will use it, but all competition has it.

For new body, new kit lens is produced DT 16-105mm F3.5-5.6. For now there are no information about price and time when is expected on the market.