Excerpt: The Sony SLT A57 DSLR is a tidy still snapper with its 16.1 megapixel sensor, but it also pulls double duty as an HD camcorder: it can suck down full HD 1080p resolution video. But is it a jack of all trades and master of none? Check out our group test in the video above to find out.
Summary: The Sony Alpha SLT-A57 really delivers when paired with the 18-55mm kit lens. With bright, vibrant colours, plenty of fine detail and super-fast underlying hardware, it's easy to get great shots in practically any condition.
Excerpt: Sony’s new α57 is aimed at serious enthusiasts who are more interested in the outcome than the process. The camera delivers some high-powered DSLR features in a package that’s intuitive enough for less-experienced shooters. And at a print-worthy 16.1-megapixels, it won’t be fighting for supremacy only in Facebook photo galleries.
Summary: Aside from its more enthusiast-focused design, the A57 can't be said to be a significant update over the A55 it replaces. True, this isn't entirely a bad thing, as it shares many of that camera's positive attributes, from its snappy focusing performance and reliable image and video quality, to the handful of features which make it as enjoyable to use as the camera is capable.
Summary: The A57 combines a high quality 16MP sensor, easy access to shooting parameters and class-leading video performance. And does this while providing an equivalent shooting experience whether composing images via the EVF or rear LCD.
Pros: Very good Raw file output up through ISO 6400, Dynamic range at the top of its class, High magnification EVF with comprehensive information display, Manual focus 'Peaking' option for both stills and video modes, 10fps shooting in full resolution mode, Class-leading 1080/60p video resolution with manual exposure control, Useful function menu provides access to shooting parameters, Two customizeable buttons (AEL and ISO) with wide range of options, Fully articulated rea...
Cons: Mediocre JPEG processing with mushy detail and visible artifacts, LCD viewfinder (vs OLED panel in other Sony models), AF not compatible with manual exposure control in video mode, No live view in 8 or 10 fps continuous shooting modes makes accurate panning very difficult, Counter-intuitive setting of aperture in manual mode, Awkward to navigate between stills and movie playback modes, Main menu system is tedious to navigate, Clear Image Zoom offers no IQ benefits ove...
Sony releases Alpha SLT-A57, a starter DSLR camera featuring CMOS and an electronic viewfinder
14 March 2012
Conclusion: The low price-point of SLT-A57 places it on the entry level category of DLSRs. It’s a great starter camera before moving up to full-featured professional cameras like EOS 5D Mark III . People learning photography will appreciate the simplicity of this camera’s features.
Summary: It is a year and a half since the Sony Alpha 55 hit the market, and the Sony Alpha 57 is more of a refresh than a new model. However, there are enough features to separate it from the entry-level Alpha 35, particularly the angled LCD screen, improved EVF and wider ISO range.
The Alpha 57 stands up well against the competition. In several areas its features are class-leading at this price point, and the camera is very capable of producing crisp images with bold colours.